Monday, April 19, 2010

Mapping the Fine-Tuning Argument: Other Forms of Life?

Let us once again look at the first four statements of the fine-tuning argument:

1. It is conceptually possible to change physical laws and constants from observed values.

2. Conceptually changing some constants from their observed values (independently) would make the universe uninhabitable for life as we know it. NOTE: What I mean by changing "independently" is when someone changes the constant value in their equation without changing the value(s) of any other constants.

3. The constants have an extremely large range of conceptually possible values.

4. Therefore, the number of values that permit life is very small.

Obviously, "life as we know it" (Premise 2) is not necessarily the same as life period. After all, there could be very different forms of life in a universe with different constant values. This certainly seems to undercut the vast majority of fine-tuning arguments. However, William Lane Craig, in his debate with Victor Stenger, brings up the point that some of the 'finely tuned' constants have to do with whether chemistry would exist or not (and it is certainly a reasonable assumption that all forms of life will depend on a pre-existent chemistry) and so the 'other forms of life' argument, while weakening the fine-tuning argument considerably, does not quite destroy it, for there is still some fine-tuning to be explained.

4 comments:

Guy with an Eye said...

I can't wait for you to start arguing. Here is a link to a good post on fine tuning. :)

http://www.alternet.org/story/146165/why_%27the_universe_is_perfectly_set_up_for_life%27_is_a_terrible_justification_for_god%27s_existence?page=entire

Guy with an Eye said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Guy with an Eye said...

Well I am sure you can find it by going here. For some reason the whole address is not showing up in comment.

http://www.alternet.org/

spanner said...

"Obviously, "life as we know it" (Premise 2) is not necessarily the same as life period. After all, there could be very different forms of life in a universe with different constant values. This certainly seems to undercut the vast majority of fine-tuning arguments. However, William Lane Craig, in his debate with Victor Stenger, brings up the point that some of the 'finely tuned' constants have to do with whether chemistry would exist or not (and it is certainly a reasonable assumption that all forms of life will depend on a pre-existent chemistry) ..."


I wonder what right the theist has to posit the fine tuning of the universe for "life as we know it" when they propose the argument as justification for a form of life that is not dependent on chemistry physics or anything else that we 'know'.

This occured to me as a possible argument against the theists use of fine tuning.

On their theory life can exist sans a universe entirely so how can they say that atoms, energy clouds, singularities are not alive. They have no way to do so because their own position destroys their capacity to discriminate life from non life.

Therefore the fine tunning argument is destroyed by their own god.

Thoughts?