Joined: June 2003
Which also poses a problem for the "fine tuning" issue. If the universe is "fine tuned" so that life can exist, in all the universe is the earth the only beneficiary of that fine tuning? If ID is true, doesn't that predict that life, and complex life as well, should be ubiquitous throughout the galaxy?[/qb][/QUOTE]An exceedingly good point. I recall a clever bit of Carl Sagan:
Our universe is almost incompatible with life -- or at least what we understand as necessary for life: Even if every star in a hundred billion galaxies had an Earthlike planet, without heroic technological measures life could prosper in only about 10^(-37) the volume of the Universe. For clarity, let's write it out: only 0.000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 1 of our universe is hospitable to life. Thirty-six zeroes before the one. The rest is cold, radiation-riddled black vacuum.
(Pale Blue Dot, p. 34)
It is perfectly possible to imagine universes much more hospitable to life -- most early cosmologies were exactly that.
There is more than one version of the AP, as I recall, but the only one that ever made sense to me was WAP, which I always understood not as an explanation so much as simply a corollary to the logical principle that propositions entail their necessary conditions: If I know you won the lottery, I should expect to observe a world in which you play lotto.
Note that this *only* works if there aren't a lot of fairies and gods running around suspending the rules all the time. If there are fairies who could poof you into a lottery winner without your first buying a ticket, all bets and inferences are off.
The universe looks exactly the way it should if life on earth occured without the help of fairies: as Sagan put it, just barely hospitable to life. In a metaphysics populated with super-powerful intelligences, there is no explanation for why we ought to observe such a thing, as opposed to an even friendlier universe miraculously kept clean of other meddling life forms, or a completely hostile universe in which we nonetheless miraculously exist.
Fortuna nimis dat multis, satis nulli.