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Harvey

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Teleology in the World
« on: July 31, 2020, 07:56:46 am »
Perhaps the greatest argument for me that personal theism is correct is a general teleological argument. I don't mean a specific theory of design like Paley's which was made ineffectual by Darwin's natural selection theory or fine-tuning of the physical constants which is diverted by the atheistic strong anthropic principle involving a multiverse theory such as eternal inflationary theory. Rather, when we consider the very earliest period of the universe before what is thought to involve inflation we see that the fix was in for what was to come. The quantum gravity laws, whatever they are, were such that there could be an expanding universe containing galaxies, and stars, etc. The period of inflation was such that the universe could exit a period of immense expansion and a hot big bang could transpire to separate the weak and electromagnetic forces. Then nucleosynthesis could occur precisely as it did. Water and carbon so key to life was seemingly destined to have such unique properties. Water itself has so many key properties that many people are not aware how much life and the evolution of life depends on its abundance and features. Dark matter too is showing to be essential for galactic formation. The fact that matter clumps and collapses into black holes is absolutely essential it seems for the formation of galaxies.

Then we get to the epoch of recombination which we can have observational data from the cosmic background microwave. It's eerie that the universe would have such a featurs to allow it to be understood by future beings such as us so close to its origins. The CBM is like a bread crumb that was laid for a halfway technological civilization like our own to discover, which would later be surpassed by a civilization that could detect gravity waves prior to recombination and all the way to the big bang itself.

Then, as if a heist had gone down perfectly, we see the emergence of galaxies which we can observe by looking at distant galaxies that are more than 12 billion light years away, the rapid formation of first generation stars, Then those stars begin to die out some bringing about supernovas which complete the periodical table as factories of new elements that the big bang wasn't able to form. Such ingredients were necessary for life and the evolution of any kind of technological culture.

Eventually we have planet formation with a sequence of complexity that is still not well understood. Water gets to planets in a manner not fully understood and massive gas planets like Jupiter seem to protect the small rocky planets in the Goldilocks region.

Then something that seems hard to imagine is that life itself forms from non-matter. It happens naturally but its processes are poorly understand and nothing less than a natural miracle that goes back to the laws of physics being what they are.

The life that forms emits oxygen which is lethal to its own survival, but it survives while building up an ozone that would eventually allow life to evolve on land.

As the earth undergoes a couple of planet wide ice ages instead of life going extinct in the ice it goes multicellular opening up a whole new planetary changes that quickly increase the complexity in the universe and the speed by which intense complexification happens.

Almost instantaneously is cosmic terms the entire planet is filled with life of all sorts. Evolution in the form of natural selection, genetic mutation, and perhaps other forms of evolution that we don't understand well (e.g., group selection, Baldwin effect, etc.) produces an array of life that boggles the mind to consider.

Then for an encore a special structure evolves that no one understands how it is possible: consciousness. It increases hand in hand with intelligence and eventually our species evolves and quickly begins to look at the universe from which it emerged and then backtrace the events that led to our being here. The universe begins to study itself.

And, it's not like the universe was resisting in that endeavor. All along it seems the universe laid down the bread crumbs as if waiting for someone to eventually come along and ask these very questions. The laws seem designed for this very purpose.

We very easily could have lived in a universe where dark enery forced the galaxies further apart than what it has, and we would know nothing about an expanding universe. No way to know that time began. There's thousand possibilities like this that it's just amazing that like a movie of five strangers waking up in a,room and having to figure out how they got there, and they always do, we too woke up in a "room" and the plot just continues to thicken.

Then we look at our own history and not only has our evolution been a series of fortunate events that allowed us to be here, but as Christians we see that even our Christian religion was extremely unlikely with a man being crucified and then that faith bringing about modern science.

Something weird is afoot. Teleology has turned into a game of Clue. Where is all of this going? The events see like they are picking up speed. Will we eventually get to a point where the events speed up at an exponential pace? Will "our movie" reach a climax? It seems that's the direction. Who knew God was a screenwriter?

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noncontingent

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2020, 08:50:41 am »
Evolution is a sifter, but not a generator of biological "ideas".

There is no mind behind evolution. People confuse micro w/macro all the time. Variations ala Darwins finches is adaptive radiation and not the evolution people are taking about in the popular literature.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zU7Lww-sBPg
This guy is a must see if you even pretend to want to understand what origin of life researchers are up to.

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Harvey

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #2 on: July 31, 2020, 08:53:38 am »
Why don't you create a thread on evolution?

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Mammal

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2020, 09:40:02 am »
Harvey, I thought we agreed just the other day that everything that happened, happened because it was possible and because it was inevitable to happen at some stage.
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Harvey

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2020, 09:48:17 am »
Harvey, I thought we agreed just the other day that everything that happened, happened because it was possible and because it was inevitable to happen at some stage.

I don't recall that discussion. Maybe I misunderstood what you were saying.

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Mammal

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2020, 09:54:20 am »
Well, you agreed with me. You were saying something along the lines of that is how God would have set everything in motion, that the inevitability was your teleology. I am happy with that, just that I don't think it implies a divine teleology, definately not a theistic one.
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Harvey

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2020, 10:01:48 am »
Well, you agreed with me. You were saying something along the lines of that is how God would have set everything in motion, that the inevitability was your teleology. I am happy with that, just that I don't think it implies a divine teleology, definately not a theistic one.

Could you provide a link to that discussion? Maybe you dreamt it?

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2020, 10:18:20 am »
What about the objection that a universe with complex fine-tuning for life means the designer, if there is one, has to be even more finely-tuned and complex, and thus hypothesizing God doesn't solve the problem of why our universe is finely-tuned?



On a separate note, I've only read a bit about our universe being finely-tuned for science to be done; it's an interesting argument, but it's not a stretch to call it a coincidence; there are probably trillions of secrets to our universe that humanity will never discover because the "clues" aren't there for us to find. Our scientific knowledge could be worse in an alternate universe with more dark matter or something, but it could also be better.
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Harvey

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2020, 10:54:58 am »
What about the objection that a universe with complex fine-tuning for life means the designer, if there is one, has to be even more finely-tuned and complex, and thus hypothesizing God doesn't solve the problem of why our universe is finely-tuned?

I don't think that's a good objection. A multiverse is far more complex than a brain, and necessary existence requires cohesiveness qua cohesiveness [CQC] to avoid paradox. We already see how cohesive this CQC looks like with mathematical beauty, so there's really no good reason to deny that out of necessity reality has this CQC property. That lays the foundation for theism in a far more parsimonious manner than it does for the brute fact existence for an infinitely complex multiverse.

Quote from: CI
On a separate note, I've only read a bit about our universe being finely-tuned for science to be done; it's an interesting argument, but it's not a stretch to call it a coincidence; there are probably trillions of secrets to our universe that humanity will never discover because the "clues" aren't there for us to find. Our scientific knowledge could be worse in an alternate universe with more dark matter or something, but it could also be better.

Consider that you can only have a universe if certain constant values are fine-tuned (e.g., the cosmological constant) which means in one out of 10^120 (or perhaps a lower number than this but still a vast uncountable number) you have a universe otherwise you don't have one at all -- at least none where any complex structures could form.

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Mammal

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #9 on: July 31, 2020, 01:11:56 pm »

A multiverse is far more complex than a brain, ..That lays the foundation for theism in a far more parsimonious manner than it does for the brute fact existence for an infinitely complex multiverse.
Not so. Same ground state, same mechanism with multiple probabilities. We already know this is part and parcel of our natural quantum reality. Poor argument.
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Consider that you can only have a universe if certain constant values are fine-tuned (e.g., the cosmological constant) which means in one out of 10^120 (or perhaps a lower number than this but still a vast uncountable number) you have a universe otherwise you don't have one at all -- at least none where any complex structures could form.
Bullocks. The cosmological constant is fine tuned by scientists in order to make it work until they've figured out how.
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Harvey

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #10 on: July 31, 2020, 01:14:33 pm »
Not so. Same ground state, same mechanism with multiple probabilities. We already know this is part and parcel of our natural quantum reality. Poor argument.

Where did the ground state come from? Hm.


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Bullocks. The cosmological constant is fine tuned by scientists in order to make it work until they've figured out how.

Huh?

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Mammal

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #11 on: July 31, 2020, 01:31:04 pm »
^ Just a quick quote from Wikipedia:
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According to quantum field theory (QFT) which underlies modern particle physics, empty space is defined by the vacuum state which is a collection of quantum fields. All these quantum fields exhibit fluctuations in their ground state (lowest energy density) arising from the zero-point energy present everywhere in space. These zero-point fluctuations should act as a contribution to the cosmological constant Λ, but when calculations are performed these fluctuations give rise to an enormous vacuum energy.[7] The discrepancy between theorized vacuum energy from Quantum Field Theory and observed vacuum energy from cosmology is a source of major contention, with the values predicted exceeding observation by some 120 orders of magnitude, a discrepancy that has been called "the worst theoretical prediction in the history of physics!".[8]This issue is called the cosmological constant problem and it is one of the greatest mysteries in science with many physicists believing that "the vacuum holds the key to a full understanding of nature".[9]
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Harvey

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #12 on: July 31, 2020, 02:16:31 pm »
^^^ Doesn't this just restate what I said about a non-fine-tuned cosmological constant being destructive to the existence of a universe unless it is almost zero but if it was a few orders of magnitude larger would mean that galaxies would not form?

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Mammal

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #13 on: July 31, 2020, 02:20:16 pm »
^ No, not really.
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Harvey

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Re: Teleology in the World
« Reply #14 on: July 31, 2020, 03:08:27 pm »
^ No, not really.

Yes it does. It states the predicted value of the cosmological constant is off by some accounts up to 122 orders of magnitude from the measured value. However, if the measured value was even a few orders higher than there would probably be no universe. You seemed to reject this earlier but there is no apparent reason in doing so.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2020, 03:11:48 pm by Harvey »