The Fine Tuning Argument

I’m going to make some notes about this video at the top, with my thoughts inside the square brackets.

  • Star – distance the Planet is from the star [“goldilocks zone”]
  • SETI – Silent, no life found
  • More factor’s necessary for life? 200+ known?
  • “must be perfectly met” – [here’s the mistake.]
  • So many factors [assertion: multiply them together, basically]
  • Odds against life existing are very high
  • Could parameters be met by “accident”?
  • Assertion: Due to the improbability of life, science suggests that we cannot be the result of random forces
  • Doesn’t believing in God require less faith than believing that a life-sustaining Earth just happened to beat the inconcievable odds?
  • [Oh god he actually said fine-tuning I love how they treat this one as valid still]
  • Alter a value of 4 fundamental forces and “the universe as we know it could not exist” [tautology]
  • “The appearance of design is overwhelming” [Yes, the *appearance*. Anthropocentrism. Well, the whole thing is anthropocentrism]
  • “the most powerful argument of the other side” [Hitch also, and I’m paraphrasing, said this is because it’s easy to confuse laymen with… blind them with science]

It’s an argument from ignorance, as Dillahunty would say; it works like this:

“I don’t understand how something so crazy improbable would be possible, so God did it”

Whatever you don’t understand, god did it.

this sort of argument can only point to a deist view of god at best, if we granted the Argument from Ignorance. It certainly makes no suggestion of a Christian God, and cannot.

Lemme break it down. It’s not about the impossibility of so many numbers. It’s about our perspective on that. We can only be here to talk about it if by some chance, we do happen to exist. We do, and we have difficulty in accounting for that when the probabilities appear high like this.

But space is effectively infinite. There’s more galaxies than we can count. When we talk about the Universe, we’re typically talking about the *visible* universe. This doesn’t count what’s beyond what we can see. So there’s a very real possiblity that there’s an infinite amount of space, and NOBODY KNOWS YET. This is why it’s an arugment from ignorance. It could be the case that we live in one universe within a multiverse of practically infinite universes. If this is the case, we must live in the one universe, on the one planet, where the almost infinitely improbable dice happened to land in our favor.
Or it could be the case that there’s all sorts of other things out there. We can’t see it because space is so large.

The counter-factual possibilities go on and on. The point is that it’s a false choice to assert that just because we can’t imagine a thing, it must be that God did it.

So go back to perspective. Yes, it’s a wonder that we’re here. There’s a practically infinite space to explore. It’s Awesome and Wonderful and Amazing. It’s also downright terrifying in an existential way that we’re such an infinitesimal pinprick of organic molecules with the audacity to think that we’re important enough that the creator of all this must look and think and be like us, that he would create us “in his image”. The pure hubris of such a statement is… *almost*, almost more awesome than the universe itself.

And that is why I find the fine-tuning argument insane.


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