Life and the universe -- origins

I have no such hesitation in affirming our mediocrity in changeless eternity. I don’t see how anybody can. But even materialists do, which is far stranger than story-bound Christians doing so.

Indeed, that seems to have been a historically hard pill to swallow for most everybody - theistic or otherwise. And we still cling to the vestiges of privilege even now. But what examples have you observed of materialists having difficulty with this?

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That two truly brilliant friends, one materialist, one Christian, specifically cannot deal with eternity. They are so infected with postmodernism that to them eternity is just a story. That empiricism segueing to rationalism via strong uniformitarianism is just a narrative upon a narrative, as invalid as any other. They are incapable of the common sense positivism. Of biting the bullet and swallowing. Christians such as he - engineer and poet - and another utterly brilliant one (Oxford AND Cambridge, physician AND scientist),the three of us in the same room last week, somehow package it with the fallacies of meaning and incredulity. Scientists get bamboozled by philosophers who lose common sense because of misapplying science (the Relativity of Simultaneity) in the the B-theory of time, the block universe, a truly vicious circle, the worst.

Genius will not see eternity whether believer or no.

Find me one who can.

There are a minority, at the Center For Inquiry, starting with Richard Dawkins probably, but not explicitly. Wiki cites a few. Stephen Baxter articulates scientific animus to the fact of infinity in his superb Ultima (the swine, it’s even better than Proxima, and leaves one…). Infinity and therefore eternity swamp everything, as they do objections to infinite eternal multiversal nature on spurious thermodynamic terms.

How wearying it must be for you to be obliged to see and hear the constant and living counter-examples to what you declare with such desperate certainty. You and John are indeed partners in all that alleged “certainty” - telling us much more about you than about reality.

“I’ll see it when I believe it” indeed. And that mocking refrain from materialists finds itself among strange bedfellows as they realize that believers themselves, have - in every bit as much self-awareness - taken up the same refrain and retained it with all seriousness.

But … eternities aside (!) there is much left to unpack about our history with the principle of mediocrity. Maybe more on that later.

Ah, [the] slightly superior slightly projected, desperate, slight, languid, ennuied, passive aggression :slight_smile: (slight_smile) Mervin. There is nothing desperate about what I plainly see in my mediocrity. Thank God I’m not as clever as you all. Like Toinette, the chorus in Molière’s Hypochondriac. Or Benjy the first narrator in Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury. What my style evokes in you tells me about you. All my brilliant interlocutors who expostulate with eternity do the same.

Let there be more!

Eventually those emperor’s clothes will fall.

If it’s not testable then it’s not Science. The OP is about scientific theories.

Eternity and other actual infinities can’t be scientifically detected either.

Rationalism extrapolated from science, using uniformitarianism, does not claim to be science. The title of the OP is ‘Life and the universe – origins’. Rationalism addresses that where science, empiricism can’t.

Passive aggression is my gifting. I majored in it at university. :neutral_face:

You’re too much, Klax.

I think they already have.


The title was not written by the OP. The admins named the thread. The post was written as a comment, in another thread, on the current state of scientific understanding. The admins took my comment and reified it to a separate thread.

Uh huh. SoOhhh? Does that invalidate the use of reason?

There is still a difference in the level of understanding and academic rigor between people who can paint fairies and people who can argue for or against multiverse theory. That’s my only point.

Yes. Cosmos is the word we use in English to unambiguously mean everything there is, whatever that may be. Universe includes that usage but others as well.

Reasonable question? :wink:

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When people talk about “other universes” they are talking about science fiction; they’re engaging in speculation and fantasy, not science. If they don’t know that, they’re deluded.

Some say the same sort of thing, when people talk about God. But I think they have fallen into the error of thinking that their own experiences define reality itself. And the foolishness of this is rather obvious since we (personally and collectively) experience new things all the time.

Say rather that it is not scientific fact. Speculation has a place in science – always has.

BUT… certainly the speculations of science especially about other universes are on no more solid ground than the beliefs of people in God… or in fairies, or UFOS, or psychics, or angels, or healing with crystals, or ghosts, … No demonstrable evidence means we cannot have a reasonable expectation that other people should agree or believe in these things, even if we have seen these things with our own eyes. BUT that includes the negative as well… no demonstrable evidence means we cannot reasonably expect that other people should agree these things do not exist or that they should be equated to science fiction or fantasy.

Speculating about whole other sets of natural laws is purely about trying to escape the consequences of the natural laws discovered by science.

Max Tegmark demonstrates that math nicely demonstrates the possibility of infinite universes.
No math or natural law indicates the supernatural.

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Understanding came in stages. First to understand that the bright band across the sky (from which the word “galaxy” was derived) was actually composed of stars. This was proposed by Democritus (4th century BC) but not believed until Galileo examined it with a telescope. Next was to understand that similar objects which were visible like the Andromeda galaxy were the very much like our own.

In 1917, Heber Curtis observed nova S Andromedae within the “Great Andromeda Nebula” (as the Andromeda Galaxy, Messier object M31, was then known). Searching the photographic record, he found 11 more novae. Curtis noticed that these novae were, on average, 10 magnitudes fainter than those that occurred within our galaxy. As a result, he was able to come up with a distance estimate of 150,000 parsecs. He became a proponent of the so-called “island universes” hypothesis, which holds that spiral nebulae are actually independent galaxies.

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Again, anyone talking about “universes” (plural) is blathering nonsense. They are not to be taken seriously.

So you are better qualified than Max Tegmark? He is a
Physics professor at MiT

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“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” -Colossians 4:6

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