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Mathematician wonders about the respectful reception new multiverse book is getting

Columbia mathematician Peter Woit offers some interesting comments on Max Tegmark’s The Mathematical Universe. We’d noted it last weekend, because the New Scientist review comprised one of the few instances of critical thinking on multiverse theory we’ve encountered in popular science media. Anyway, here’s Woit:

Tegmark’s career is a rather unusual story, mixing reputable science with an increasingly strong taste for grandiose nonsense. In this book he indulges his inner crank, describing in detail an utterly empty vision of the “ultimate nature of reality.” What’s perhaps most remarkable about the book is the respectful reception it seems to be getting, see reviews here, here, here and here. The Financial Times review credits Tegmark as the “academic celebrity” behind the turn of physics to the multiverse:

As recently as the 1990s, most scientists regarded the idea of multiple universes as wild speculation too far out on the fringe to be worth serious discussion. Indeed, in 1998, Max Tegmark, then an up-and-coming young cosmologist at Princeton, received an email from a senior colleague warning him off multiverse research: “Your crackpot papers are not helping you,” it said.

Needless to say, Tegmark persisted in exploring the multiverse as a window on “the ultimate nature of reality”, while making sure also to work on subjects in mainstream cosmology as camouflage for his real enthusiasm. Today multiple universes are scientifically respectable, thanks to the work of Tegmark as much as anyone. Now a physics professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he presents his multiverse work to the public in Our Mathematical Universe.

File:Multiverse - level II.svg It’s part of the “mainstreaming” of the multiverse—quite apart from any evidence in support—that I wrote about here:

Hailed as the “world’s smartest man,” with cameos to his credit on The Simpsons and Star Trek, Stephen Hawking has blessed the multiverse for popular culture. Denouncing philosophy (and religion) as “outdated and irrelevant”, he announced that science dispenses with a designer behind nature because the law of gravity explains how the universe “can and will create itself from nothing.”

Those who want to be in the know, whether or not there is anything to know, will not know enough not to ask about evidence.

Especially when they learn things like this (Woit’s post is must reading):

1. The Templeton Foundation gave Tegmark and Anthony Aguirre nearly $9 million for a “Foundational Questions Institute” (FQXi)

2. Tegmark has little interest in mathematics, it turns out, and

There are no mathematicians among those thanked in the acknowledgements, and while “mathematical structures” are invoked in the book as the basis of everything, there’s little to no discussion of the mathematical structures that modern mathematicians find interesting (although the idea of “symmetries” gets a mention).

3. The book closes with a plea for scientists to “get organized to fight things like ‘fringe religious groups concerned that questioning their pseudo-scientific claims would erode their power’.” This, let’s understand, is from a well-funded multiverse advocate whose discipline rests on no evidence at all.

Woit says he doesn’t understand the attraction of the multiverse. If he means “scientific” attraction, I don’t either. If he had meant “political” attraction, the answer is obvious. Stay tuned.

See also: The Science Fictions series at your fingertips and

Popular science writer “sort of” gets it about the multiverse scam

Hawking [now] says there are no black holes?

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71 Responses to Mathematician wonders about the respectful reception new multiverse book is getting

  1. But Who Needs Reality-Based Thinking Anyway? Not the New Cosmologists – Denyse O’Leary – January 2, 2014
    Excerpt: “Multiverse theory is designed for one purpose, and one purpose only, and that is to defend atheism. It makes no predictions, it gives no insight, it provides no control, it produces no technology, it advances no mathematics, it is a science in name only, because it is really metaphysics.”
    Dr. Robert B. Sheldon – PhD Physics

    “These multiverse theories all share the same fundamental defect: They can be neither confirmed nor falsified. Hence, they don’t deserve to be called scientific, according to the well-known criterion proposed by the philosopher Karl Popper. Some defenders of multiverses and strings mock skeptics who raise the issue of falsification as “Popperazi” — which is cute but not a counterargument. Multiverse theories aren’t theories — they’re science fictions, theologies, works of the imagination unconstrained by evidence.”
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....80281.html

    As even Tegmark himself admits in this recent concession to the problems with the inflation conjecture (whatever level that is in his scheme of things), multiverse scenarios are epistemologically self defeating:

    What Scientific Idea Is Ready For Retirement? Tegmark: “Infinity” – January 2014
    Excerpt: Physics is all about predicting the future from the past, but inflation seems to sabotage this: when we try to predict the probability that something particular will happen, inflation always gives the same useless answer: infinity divided by infinity. The problem is that whatever experiment you make, inflation predicts that there will be infinitely many copies of you far away in our infinite space, obtaining each physically possible outcome, and despite years of tooth-grinding in the cosmology community, no consensus has emerged on how to extract sensible answers from these infinities. So strictly speaking, we physicists are no longer able to predict anything at all!
    This means that today’s best theories similarly need a major shakeup, by retiring an incorrect assumption. Which one?
    Here’s my prime suspect: infinity.
    MAX TEGMARK – Physicist
    http://www.theguardian.com/sci.....t-edge-org

    Actually, contrary to Tegmark’s philosophical druthers, infinity is not ever going away, and infinity itself shows that the scientific idea that needs to be retired is naturalism/materialism:

    William Lane Craig – Hilbert’s Hotel – The Absurdity Of An Infinite Regress Of ‘Things’ – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/3994011/

    Time Cannot Be Infinite Into The Past – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xg0pdUvQdi4

    Moreover, despite Tegmark’s love affair with conjecturing ‘random’ infinite multiverse’s, of all flavors, to ‘explain’ any anomalous effect, that he may stumble across, that needs a cause to explain it, the ‘theory’, (if inflation can rightly be called a theory rather than wild speculation), that needs to be retired, rather than infinity, (and exactly what finite parameter could he possibly postulate that would be up to the task of retiring infinity? :) ), to prevent the epistemological collapse of science itself, is clearly inflation itself (as well as the multiverse in general).

    One of cosmic (Rapid) inflation theory’s creators now questions own theory – April 2011
    Excerpt: (Rapid) Inflation adds a whole bunch of really unlikely metaphysical assumptions — a new force field that has a never-before-observed particle called the “inflaton”, an expansion faster than the speed of light, an interaction with gravity waves which are themselves only inferred– just so that it can explain the unlikely contingency of a finely-tuned big bang.
    But instead of these extra assumptions becoming more-and-more supported, the trend went the opposite direction, with more-and-more fine-tuning of the inflation assumptions until they look as fine-tuned as Big Bang theories. At some point, we have “begged the question”. Frankly, the moment we add an additional free variable, I think we have already begged the question. In a Bayesean comparison of theories, extra variables reduce the information content of the theory, (by the so-called Ockham factor), so these inflation theories are less, not more, explanatory than the theory they are supposed to replace.,,, after 20 years of work, if we haven’t made progress, but have instead retreated, it is time to cut bait.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....wn-theory/

    The ‘big bang’: More data and answers, but what about why? by John Horgan
    Excerpt: Inflation, which was invented more than 25 years ago by the physicist Alan Guth, appealed to cosmologists because it seemed to solve various fine-tuning problems. Unfortunately, inflation comes in many different versions, and it is based on highly speculative physics that so far lack any empirical evidence. Paul Steinhardt, an early champion of inflation, now promotes a rival theory that he says can account for the observed universe just as well.
    String theory suffers from flaws even deeper than those of inflation. Far from making our cosmos seem less arbitrary, string theory allows for more than a googol (1 followed by 100 zeros) different possible universes with dimensions, particles, forces and other properties radically unlike our own.
    http://www.stevens.edu/csw/cgi.....=inflation

    The Inflation Debate – Paul J. Steinhardt – April 2011
    Excerpt: Cosmic inflation is so widely accepted that it is often taken as established fact. The idea is that the geometry and uniformity of the cosmos were established during an intense early growth spurt.,,, But some of the theory’s creators, including the author, are having second thoughts. As the original theory has developed, cracks have appeared in its logical foundations.,,, Highly improbable conditions are required to start inflation. Worse, inflation goes on eternally, producing infinitely many outcomes, so the theory makes no firm observational predictions.
    http://www.scientificamerican......ion-summer

    The Absurdity of Inflation, String Theory and The Multiverse – Dr. Bruce Gordon – video
    http://vimeo.com/34468027

    Last power point of preceding video:

    The End Of Materialism? – Dr. Bruce Gordon
    * In the multiverse, anything can happen for no reason at all.
    * In other words, the materialist is forced to believe in random miracles as a explanatory principle.
    * In a Theistic universe, nothing happens without a reason. Miracles are therefore intelligently directed deviations from divinely maintained regularities, and are thus expressions of rational purpose.
    * Scientific materialism is (therefore) epistemically self defeating: it makes scientific rationality impossible.

    The most succinct rejoinder to multiverse conjectures, that I’ve personally seen, is the following:

    BRUCE GORDON: Hawking’s irrational arguments – October 2010
    Excerpt: The physical universe is causally incomplete and therefore neither self-originating nor self-sustaining. The world of space, time, matter and energy is dependent on a reality that transcends space, time, matter and energy. This transcendent reality cannot merely be a Platonic realm of mathematical descriptions, for such things are causally inert abstract entities that do not affect the material world. Neither is it the case that “nothing” is unstable, as Mr. Hawking and others maintain. Absolute nothing cannot have mathematical relationships predicated on it, not even quantum gravitational ones. Rather, the transcendent reality on which our universe depends must be something that can exhibit agency – a mind that can choose among the infinite variety of mathematical descriptions and bring into existence a reality that corresponds to a consistent subset of them. This is what “breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe.,,, the evidence for string theory and its extension, M-theory, is nonexistent; and the idea that conjoining them demonstrates that we live in a multiverse of bubble universes with different laws and constants is a mathematical fantasy. What is worse, multiplying without limit the opportunities for any event to happen in the context of a multiverse – where it is alleged that anything can spontaneously jump into existence without cause – produces a situation in which no absurdity is beyond the pale.
    For instance, we find multiverse cosmologists debating the “Boltzmann Brain” problem: In the most “reasonable” models for a multiverse, it is immeasurably more likely that our consciousness is associated with a brain that has spontaneously fluctuated into existence in the quantum vacuum than it is that we have parents and exist in an orderly universe with a 13.7 billion-year history. This is absurd. The multiverse hypothesis is therefore falsified because it renders false what we know to be true about ourselves. Clearly, embracing the multiverse idea entails a nihilistic irrationality that destroys the very possibility of science.
    Universes do not “spontaneously create” on the basis of abstract mathematical descriptions, nor does the fantasy of a limitless multiverse trump the explanatory power of transcendent intelligent design. What Mr. Hawking’s contrary assertions show is that mathematical savants can sometimes be metaphysical simpletons. Caveat emptor.
    http://www.washingtontimes.com.....arguments/

  2. Aren’t these the people who speak dismissively – if ever so gently so – at QM as woo-woo?

    ‘Mathematics-based, sure, but a hopeless topic on which to base theoretical assumptions….’ More like Buddhism!

  3. ‘at QM’, should be ‘of QM’, of course.

    My apologies. It was a relic of ‘scoff at’, but they can’t be too ‘up front’ about it, since the modern world is largely based on it.

    I saw an estimate of the scale of QM’s significance, recently, of approximately two thirds of global, industrial output.

  4. Tegmark may be a crank but he is right about infinity. Infinity is nonsense. Heck, it’s not even wrong. And I say this as a Christian. That said, what caught my attention in the OP is this:

    Hailed as the “world’s smartest man,” with cameos to his credit on The Simpsons and Star Trek, Stephen Hawking has blessed the multiverse for popular culture. Denouncing philosophy (and religion) as “outdated and irrelevant”, he announced that science dispenses with a designer behind nature because the law of gravity explains how the universe “can and will create itself from nothing.”

    How did an obvious crackpot/con-man like Stephen Hawking ever acquire such fame? This is a sad commentary on the status of modern science.

  5. To further reflect on Tegmark’s notion of ‘retiring infinity’ from science so as to avoid ‘anything goes’ conundrums, conundrums that he himself, (apparently obliviously), is instrumental in invoking every-time he appeals to an unconstrained ‘random infinity’ to try to explain the universe, or to try to explain some facet of the universe, it is interesting to note where infinity actually pops up as a result of real science instead of infinity being a philosophical add on from naturalists.

    In this endeavor, it is first important to note that ‘higher dimensional’ mathematics had to be developed before Einstein could elucidate General Relativity, or even before Quantum Mechanics could be elucidated;

    The Mathematics Of Higher Dimensionality – Gauss and Riemann – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/6199520/

    In Quantum Mechanics we find that the higher dimensional mathematics, that was required in order to elucidate it, is defined as a ‘infinite dimensional Hilbert space’

    The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences – Eugene Wigner – 1960
    Excerpt: We now have, in physics, two theories of great power and interest: the theory of quantum phenomena and the theory of relativity.,,, The two theories operate with different mathematical concepts: the four dimensional Riemann space and the infinite dimensional Hilbert space,
    http://www.dartmouth.edu/~matc.....igner.html

    Along that line, it is found that a ‘uncollapsed’ photon, in its infinite dimensional quantum wave state, is mathematically defined as ‘infinite’ information:

    Wave function
    Excerpt “wave functions form an abstract vector space”,,, This vector space is infinite-dimensional, because there is no finite set of functions which can be added together in various combinations to create every possible function.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/W.....ctor_space

    Explaining Information Transfer in Quantum Teleportation: Armond Duwell †‡ University of Pittsburgh
    Excerpt: In contrast to a classical bit, the description of a (photon) qubit requires an infinite amount of information. The amount of information is infinite because two real numbers are required in the expansion of the state vector of a two state quantum system (Jozsa 1997, 1)
    http://www.cas.umt.edu/phil/fa.....lPSA2K.pdf

    Quantum Computing – Stanford Encyclopedia
    Excerpt: Theoretically, a single qubit can store an infinite amount of information, yet when measured (and thus collapsing the Quantum Wave state) it yields only the classical result (0 or 1),,,
    http://plato.stanford.edu/entr.....tcomp/#2.1

    It is interesting to note that many times when I have pointed this amazing fact out to Atheists that they responded that the infinite dimensional quantum wave state was just a abstract mathematical description that had no ‘real’ correspondence to reality. Yet, despite what those atheists held beforehand, here was a rigorous measurement of the infinite dimensional quantum wave function, in 2011, that established it as ‘physically real’;

    Direct measurement of the quantum wavefunction – June 2011
    Excerpt: The wavefunction is the complex distribution used to completely describe a quantum system, and is central to quantum theory. But despite its fundamental role, it is typically introduced as an abstract element of the theory with no explicit definition.,,, Here we show that the wavefunction can be measured directly by the sequential measurement of two complementary variables of the system. The crux of our method is that the first measurement is performed in a gentle way through weak measurement so as not to invalidate the second. The result is that the real and imaginary components of the wavefunction appear directly on our measurement apparatus. We give an experimental example by directly measuring the transverse spatial wavefunction of a single photon, a task not previously realized by any method.
    http://www.nature.com/nature/j.....10120.html

    The following experiment actually encoded information into a photon while it was in its infinite dimensional quantum wave state, thus destroying the notion, apparently held by many atheists, that the wave function was not ‘physically real’ but was merely an ‘abstract’ description. i.e. How can information possibly be encoded into something that is not physically real but is merely abstract?

    Ultra-Dense Optical Storage – on One Photon
    Excerpt: Researchers at the University of Rochester have made an optics breakthrough that allows them to encode an entire image’s worth of data into a photon, slow the image down for storage, and then retrieve the image intact.,,, As a wave, it passed through all parts of the stencil at once,,,
    http://www.physorg.com/news88439430.html

    The following paper mathematically corroborated the preceding experiments and cleaned up some pretty nasty probabilistic incongruities/conundrums, in quantum mechanics, particularly incongruities dealing with quantum entanglement. Conundrums that arose from, not so surprisingly, a purely statistical/probabilistic interpretation of the infinite dimensional wave function.

    Quantum Theory’s ‘Wavefunction’ Found to Be Real Physical Entity: Scientific American – November 2011
    Excerpt: Action at a distance occurs when pairs of quantum particles interact in such a way that they become entangled. But the new paper, by a trio of physicists led by Matthew Pusey at Imperial College London, presents a theorem showing that if a quantum wavefunction were purely a statistical tool, then even quantum states that are unconnected across space and time would be able to communicate with each other. As that seems very unlikely to be true, the researchers conclude that the wavefunction must be physically real after all.,,, “This strips away obscurity and shows you can’t have an interpretation of a quantum state as probabilistic,” he says.
    http://www.scientificamerican......vefunction

    Of note: Since I believe, in my unqualified opinion, that the Many Worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics insists on treating the wave function as an abstract probabilistic construct, then, again I believe in my unqualified opinion, that the preceding work refutes the Many Worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics.

  6. footnote:

    On the reality of the quantum state – Matthew F. Pusey, Jonathan Barrett & Terry Rudolph – May 2012
    Abstract: Quantum states are the key mathematical objects in quantum theory. It is therefore surprising that physicists have been unable to agree on what a quantum state truly represents. One possibility is that a pure quantum state corresponds directly to reality. However, there is a long history of suggestions that a quantum state (even a pure state) represents only knowledge or information about some aspect of reality. Here we show that any model in which a quantum state represents mere information about an underlying physical state of the system, and in which systems that are prepared independently have independent physical states, must make predictions that contradict those of quantum theory. (i.e. Any model that holds the Quantum wave state as merely a abstract representation of reality, i.e. as not a real representation of reality, must make predictions that contradict those of quantum theory.)
    http://www.nature.com/nphys/jo.....s2309.html

  7. Hey @bornagain77 speaking of quantum states I recently saw a documentary on BBC about counciosness. At the end of the documentary the host joins up with John-Dylan Haynes a neuroscientist in Berlin. The host did a experiment with a MRI scanner and pressed a button by choice. After the experiment he showed results of a pre-determined state in the brain that showed that the neuroscientist could predict what he was going to press 6 seconds before he actually made the choice. The documentary had showed the picture of his material brain already choosing something before his counciosness mind did. Just wanted to know if you saw this documentary what are the implications of this!

  8. to continue on from post 5: Another interesting place infinity pops up as a result of science, instead of it being a philosophical add on of naturalists, is from Quantum electrodynamics (QED)

    Precise measurements test quantum electrodynamics, constrain possible fifth fundamental force – June 04, 2013
    Excerpt: Quantum electrodynamics (QED) – the relativistic quantum field theory of electrodynamics – describes how light and matter interact – achieves full agreement between quantum mechanics and special relativity.,, QED solves the problem of infinities associated with charged point-like particles and, perhaps more importantly, includes the effects of spontaneous particle-antiparticle generation from the vacuum.,,, Recently, scientists,, tested QED to extreme precision..,,, can be interpreted in terms of constraints on possible fifth-force interactions beyond the Standard Model of physics,,
    http://phys.org/news/2013-06-p.....ental.html

    In fact QED does not so much “‘solve’ the problem of infinities associated with charged point-like particles” as it ‘brushes the problem of infinity under the rug’,

    THE INFINITY PUZZLE: Quantum Field Theory and the Hunt for an Orderly Universe
    Excerpt: In quantum electrodynamics, which applies quantum mechanics to the electromagnetic field and its interactions with matter, the equations led to infinite results for the self-energy or mass of the electron. After nearly two decades of effort, this problem was solved after World War II by a procedure called renormalization, in which the infinities are rolled up into the electron’s observed mass and charge, and are thereafter conveniently ignored. Richard Feynman, who shared the 1965 Nobel Prize with Julian Schwinger and Sin-Itiro Tomonaga for this breakthrough, referred to this sleight of hand as “brushing infinity under the rug.”
    http://www.americanscientist.o.....g-infinity

    Richard Feynman comments further here,,,

    “It always bothers me that in spite of all this local business, what goes on in a tiny, no matter how tiny, region of space, and no matter how tiny a region of time, according to laws as we understand them today, it takes a computing machine an infinite number of logical operations to figure out. Now how can all that be going on in that tiny space? Why should it take an infinite amount of logic to figure out what one stinky tiny bit of space-time is going to do?”
    - Richard Feynman – one of the founding fathers of QED (Quantum Electrodynamics)
    Quote taken from the 6:45 minute mark of the following video:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=obCjODeoLVw

    I don’t know about Feynman, but as for myself, being a Christian Theist, I find it rather comforting to know that it takes an ‘infinite amount of logic to figure out what one stinky tiny bit of space-time is going to do’:

    John1:1
    “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

    of note: ‘the Word’ in John1:1 is translated from ‘Logos’ in Greek. Logos is the root word from which we derive our modern word logic
    http://etymonline.com/?term=logic

    Moreover, besides this brushing infinity under the rug with QED, we also find the conflict of reconciling General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics appears to arise from the inability of either theory to successfully deal with the Zero/Infinity problem that crops up in different places of each theory:

    THE MYSTERIOUS ZERO/INFINITY
    Excerpt: The biggest challenge to today’s physicists is how to reconcile general relativity and quantum mechanics. However, these two pillars of modern science were bound to be incompatible. “The universe of general relativity is a smooth rubber sheet. It is continuous and flowing, never sharp, never pointy. Quantum mechanics, on the other hand, describes a jerky and discontinuous universe. What the two theories have in common – and what they clash over – is zero.”,, “The infinite zero of a black hole — mass crammed into zero space, curving space infinitely — punches a hole in the smooth rubber sheet. The equations of general relativity cannot deal with the sharpness of zero. In a black hole, space and time are meaningless.”,, “Quantum mechanics has a similar problem, a problem related to the zero-point energy. The laws of quantum mechanics treat particles such as the electron as points; that is, they take up no space at all. The electron is a zero-dimensional object,,, According to the rules of quantum mechanics, the zero-dimensional electron has infinite mass and infinite charge.
    http://www.fmbr.org/editoral/e....._mar02.htm

    Quantum Mechanics and Relativity – The Collapse Of Physics? (Overview of Math) – video – with notes in description as to plausible reconciliation that is missed by materialists
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/6597379/

    I guess the mathematicians are having a much harder time ‘brushing infinity under the rug’ here. Yet, to continue on, the unification, into a ‘theory of everything’, between what is in essence the ‘infinite Theistic world of Quantum Mechanics’ and the ‘finite Materialistic world of the 4-D space-time of General Relativity’ seems to be directly related to what Jesus apparently joined together with His resurrection, i.e. related to the unification of infinite God with finite man. Dr. William Dembski in this following comment, though not directly addressing the Zero/Infinity conflict in General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics, offers insight into this ‘unification’ of the infinite and the finite:

    The End Of Christianity – Finding a Good God in an Evil World – Pg.31
    William Dembski PhD. Mathematics
    Excerpt: “In mathematics there are two ways to go to infinity. One is to grow large without measure. The other is to form a fraction in which the denominator goes to zero. The Cross is a path of humility in which the infinite God becomes finite and then contracts to zero, only to resurrect and thereby unite a finite humanity within a newfound infinity.”
    http://www.designinference.com.....of_xty.pdf

    Philippians 2: 5-11
    Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

  9. And if we allow that ‘God can play the role of a person’, (for who could deny Him that possibility “IF” He exists), as even the author of the incompleteness theorem himself allowed that god could do,,

    The God of the Mathematicians – Goldman
    Excerpt: As Gödel told Hao Wang, “Einstein’s religion [was] more abstract, like Spinoza and Indian philosophy. Spinoza’s god is less than a person; mine is more than a person; because God can play the role of a person.”
    – Kurt Gödel – (Gödel is considered one of the greatest logicians who ever existed)
    http://www.firstthings.com/art.....ematicians

    Kurt Gödel – Incompleteness Theorem – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/w/8462821

    ,, if we allow that possibility that ‘God can play the role of a person’, then we find a very credible reconciliation between the finite and the infinite that does not wind up in the ‘anything goes’ epistemological pit of logical absurdities,,,

    The Center Of The Universe Is Life – General Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, Entropy and The Shroud Of Turin – video
    http://vimeo.com/34084462

    ,,,in fact, unlike all thiese outlandish multiverse scenarios which have no empirical support, we find a reconciliation between General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics that has a surprising amount of empirical support. For instance, it is now shown that the process in which the image was formed on the Shroud of Turin was a ‘quantum process’, not a classical process:

    The absorbed energy in the Shroud body image formation appears as contributed by discrete values – Giovanni Fazio, Giuseppe Mandaglio – 2008
    Excerpt: This result means that the optical density distribution,, can not be attributed at the absorbed energy described in the framework of the classical physics model. It is, in fact, necessary to hypothesize a absorption by discrete values of the energy where the ‘quantum’ is equal to the one necessary to yellow one fibril.
    http://cab.unime.it/journals/i.....802004/271

    Scientists say Turin Shroud is supernatural – December 2011
    Excerpt: After years of work trying to replicate the colouring on the shroud, a similar image has been created by the scientists.
    However, they only managed the effect by scorching equivalent linen material with high-intensity ultra violet lasers, undermining the arguments of other research, they say, which claims the Turin Shroud is a medieval hoax.
    Such technology, say researchers from the National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (Enea), was far beyond the capability of medieval forgers, whom most experts have credited with making the famous relic.
    “The results show that a short and intense burst of UV directional radiation can colour a linen cloth so as to reproduce many of the peculiar characteristics of the body image on the Shroud of Turin,” they said.
    And in case there was any doubt about the preternatural degree of energy needed to make such distinct marks, the Enea report spells it out: “This degree of power cannot be reproduced by any normal UV source built to date.”
    http://www.independent.co.uk/n.....79512.html

    Further notes:

    THE EVENT HORIZON (Space-Time Singularity) OF THE SHROUD OF TURIN. – Isabel Piczek – Particle Physicist
    Excerpt: We have stated before that the images on the Shroud firmly indicate the total absence of Gravity. Yet they also firmly indicate the presence of the Event Horizon. These two seemingly contradict each other and they necessitate the past presence of something more powerful than Gravity that had the capacity to solve the above paradox.
    http://shroud3d.com/findings/i.....-formation

    Particle Radiation from the Body – July 2012 – M. Antonacci, A. C. Lind
    Excerpt: The Shroud’s frontal and dorsal body images are encoded with the same amount of intensity, independent of any pressure or weight from the body. The bottom part of the cloth (containing the dorsal image) would have born all the weight of the man’s supine body, yet the dorsal image is not encoded with a greater amount of intensity than the frontal image. Radiation coming from the body would not only explain this feature, but also the left/right and light/dark reversals found on the cloth’s frontal and dorsal body images.
    http://www.academicjournals.or.....onacci.pdf

    Music and Verse:

    Hillsong – Mighty to Save – With Subtitles/Lyrics
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-08YZF87OBQ

    1 Corinthians 15:22
    For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive.

  10. Jaceli123,,,, if you would have googled a bit, you may have found this (or something along this line)

    Do Benjamin Libet’s Experiments Show that Free Will Is an Illusion? – Michael Egnor – January 15, 2014
    Excerpt: Materialists often invoke the experiments of Benjamin Libet when they deny free will.,,,
    (Yet) Libet himself was a strong defender of free will, and he interpreted his own experiments as validating free will. He noted that his subjects often vetoed the unconscious “decision” after the readiness potential appeared.
    ,,,”The role of conscious free will would be, then, not to initiate a voluntary act, but rather to control whether the act takes place. We may view the unconscious initiatives for voluntary actions as ‘bubbling up’ in the brain. The conscious-will then selects which of these initiatives may go forward to an action or which ones to veto and abort, with no act appearing.” – Libet
    Libet even observed that his experimental confirmation of free will accorded with the traditional religious understanding of free will:,,,
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....81171.html

    as well, (as if that were not enough),

    in the following experiment, the claim that past material states determine future conscious choices (determinism) is falsified by the fact that present conscious choices effect past material states:

    Quantum physics mimics spooky action into the past – April 23, 2012
    Excerpt: The authors experimentally realized a “Gedankenexperiment” called “delayed-choice entanglement swapping”, formulated by Asher Peres in the year 2000. Two pairs of entangled photons are produced, and one photon from each pair is sent to a party called Victor. Of the two remaining photons, one photon is sent to the party Alice and one is sent to the party Bob. Victor can now choose between two kinds of measurements. If he decides to measure his two photons in a way such that they are forced to be in an entangled state, then also Alice’s and Bob’s photon pair becomes entangled. If Victor chooses to measure his particles individually, Alice’s and Bob’s photon pair ends up in a separable state. Modern quantum optics technology allowed the team to delay Victor’s choice and measurement with respect to the measurements which Alice and Bob perform on their photons. “We found that whether Alice’s and Bob’s photons are entangled and show quantum correlations or are separable and show classical correlations can be decided after they have been measured”, explains Xiao-song Ma, lead author of the study.
    According to the famous words of Albert Einstein, the effects of quantum entanglement appear as “spooky action at a distance”. The recent experiment has gone one remarkable step further. “Within a naïve classical world view, quantum mechanics can even mimic an influence of future actions on past events”, says Anton Zeilinger.
    http://phys.org/news/2012-04-q.....ction.html

    In other words, if my conscious choices really are just merely the result of whatever state the material particles in my brain happen to be in in the past (deterministic) how in blue blazes are my choices instantaneously effecting the state of material particles into the past?,,, I consider the preceding experimental evidence to be an improvement over the traditional ‘uncertainty’ argument for free will, from quantum mechanics, that had been used to undermine the deterministic belief of materialists:

    Why Quantum Physics (Uncertainty) Ends the Free Will Debate – Michio Kaku – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFLR5vNKiSw

    supplemental notes;

    What Does Quantum Physics Have to Do with Free Will? – By Antoine Suarez – July 22, 2013
    Excerpt: What is more, recent experiments are bringing to light that the experimenter’s free will and consciousness should be considered axioms (founding principles) of standard quantum physics theory. So for instance, in experiments involving “entanglement” (the phenomenon Einstein called “spooky action at a distance”), to conclude that quantum correlations of two particles are nonlocal (i.e. cannot be explained by signals traveling at velocity less than or equal to the speed of light), it is crucial to assume that the experimenter can make free choices, and is not constrained in what orientation he/she sets the measuring devices.
    To understand these implications it is crucial to be aware that quantum physics is not only a description of the material and visible world around us, but also speaks about non-material influences coming from outside the space-time.,,,
    https://www.bigquestionsonline.com/content/what-does-quantum-physics-have-do-free-will

    How Free Will Works (In Quantum Mechanics) – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMp30Q8OGOE

  11. bornagain77,

    Just repeating over and over that infinity exists does not make it so. Most of your arguments are arguments from authority. They sound like propaganda. I distrust authority, especially human authority. Here’s the reason that infinity is nonsense.

    Compared to the infinitely large, everything is infinitely small. And compared to the infinitely small, everything is infinitely large. So, if infinity existed, everything would be infinitely large and infinitely small while also being finite at the same time. This is absurd on the face of it.

    Now, I know you have religious (Biblical) reasons for pushing infinity. In my opinion, your reasons are wrong, whatever they are. Now stop appealing to authority and refute what I wrote above. Let’s see some actual logic for a change and not some useless reference to authority.

  12. Mapou,

    Some infinities exist in reality, some do not.

    For example, if I draw a line that’s one meter long, and then poke a pinhole somewhere on that line, there are an infinite number of places on that line, all irrational number distances from one end, where the hole could appear.

    -Q

  13. Mapou, I’m quite happy to let what I wrote, and referenced, stand on its own merits, as I am quite happy to let what you wrote fall by the same standards. Infinity is a wild, wild, horse and any material explanation will be thrown off into the dirt of epistemological absurdity. Only God, who is infinite, not infinity, can tame infinity. Only God who is omniscient, knows every number in pi, or possesses the infinite knowledge necessary to collapse the infinite dimensional quantum wave state to a photon of one bit.

    The Supreme God is a Being eternal, infinite, absolutely perfect;,,, from his true dominion it follows that the true God is a living, intelligent, and powerful Being; and, from his other perfections, that he is supreme, or most perfect. He is eternal and infinite, omnipotent and omniscient; that is, his duration reaches from eternity to eternity; his presence from infinity to infinity; he governs all things, and knows all things that are or can be done. He is not eternity or infinity, but eternal and infinite; he is not duration or space, but he endures and is present. He endures for ever, and is every where present:
    Sir Isaac Newton – Quoted from what many consider the greatest science masterpiece of all time, his book “Principia”
    http://gravitee.tripod.com/genschol.htm

  14. bornagain77 @13,

    Your reply to my comment @11 is exactly what I expected from you. You would rather believe in lies than change your doctrine. Your doctrine IS your God. You worship your idea of God more than you worship God. That makes you an idolater in my book. Good luck with that.

  15. Querius @12:

    Mapou,

    Some infinities exist in reality, some do not.

    I disagree.

    For example, if I draw a line that’s one meter long, and then poke a pinhole somewhere on that line, there are an infinite number of places on that line, all irrational number distances from one end, where the hole could appear.

    Saying that there is an infinite number of places on that line does not make it so. It is an assertion, not a proof.

    PS. Please, don’t circumvent my proof against infinity @11 above with other arguments. Either prove me wrong (if you do, I’ll bow down to your superior understanding and apologize for my foolishness) or accept that I am right (in which case, you must bow down to my superior understanding and make amends). Anything else is just useless talk.

  16. Mapou, actually I did not presuppose that God, through Christ, could ‘tame the irreconcilable infinity problem’ that had popped up between General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics. In fact I did not even know the infinity problem between the two existed until a few years ago, but I can not deny that I was very pleasantly surprised that Christ offered such a ‘neat’, very credible, empirically backed, reconciliation between the two grand theories of physics. You accuse of me that I would ‘rather believe in lies than change your doctrine’, but I strongly disagree with, what I find to be, your emotional assessment. I came to the table of science many years ago willing to let the evidence speak for itself, and to not try to force fit the evidence into any preconceived notions that I may have had. Thus my Christian belief was very vulnerable to falsification at the time. But what I have found through the years is that, not only has my basic Christian belief not been threatened by the findings of modern science, the findings of modern science actually require Christianity to be true in order for a ‘theory of everything’ to truly be successful in the reconciliation of General relativity and Quantum Mechanics (not to mention the reconciliation of perfect God with imperfect man)!

    “So you think of physics in search of a “Grand Unified Theory of Everything”, Why should we even think there is such a thing? Why should we think there is some ultimate level of resolution? Right? It is part, it is a consequence of believing in some kind of design. Right? And there is some sense in which that however mulrifarious and diverse the phenomena of nature are, they are ultimately unified by the minimal set of laws and principles possible. In so far as science continues to operate with that assumption, there is a presupposition of design that is motivating the scientific process. Because it would be perfectly easy,, to stop the pursuit of science at much lower levels. You know understand a certain range of phenomena in a way that is appropiate to deal with that phenomena and just stop there and not go any deeper or any farther.”,,, You see, there is sense in which there is design at the ultimate level, the ultimate teleology you might say, which provides the ultimate closure,,”
    Professor Steve Fuller

    quote as stated At 17:34 minute mark of the following video
    In Cambridge, Professor Steve Fuller discusses intelligent design – Video
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....nd-others/

  17. @bornagain77 thanks also what are the implications of this video!
    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=CT43MogXAjI

  18. Jaceli123, sorry I’m not watching any of your off topic rabbit trail videos anymore. You have to do your own homework!

  19. Mapou, it is also humorous to note that you simply cannot wish infinity away by demanding everyone else bow to your will that infinity should be stricken from discussion in science. Science simply does not work that way! (Much less do scientists work that way). If you want to be taken seriously then you have to provide a rigorous mathematical/logical proof as to why infinity is persona no gratis in science.,,, Which I wish you luck in, because it was through the ‘logic of infinity’ that Godel was able to bring the incompleteness theorem to fruition.

    Kurt Gödel – Incompleteness Theorem – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/w/8462821

    It is also interesting to note in the following video, that documents the lives of several mathematicians who were studying infinity, that there was a strange streak of madness that followed them in this endeavor:

    BBC-Dangerous Knowledge – Part 1 (Cantor and Boltzmann)
    https://vimeo.com/30482156

    Part 2 (Godel and Turing)
    https://vimeo.com/30641992

    Personally I find the fact that man should even be able to contemplate the infinite to be a wonderful mystery. A mystery I hold is related to the fact that we were created by infinite God, in his image, to have a personal relationship with Him.

    Verse and Music:

    Genesis 2:7
    And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

    Brooke Fraser – Hillsong: “Lord Of Lords” Worship and Praise Song (HQ)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WB4Tc5zJMUc

  20. Ok sorry this subject has me really worrying because if brain states occur and we have no control over this what does this show for free will. Anyway sorry again!

  21. bornagain77,

    Unless you are prepared refute my argument @11 against infinity, everything you write from now on is unimportant to me. In fact, my respect for you has taken a precipitous dive. See you around.

  22. Mapou, in your argument, you are trying to understand the infinite from a finite materialistic/naturalistic perspective. OF COURSE it is logically absurd from that position. Why should I try to refute your argument when I agree with you 100% that materialism/naturalism cannot handle the infinite? i.e. non sequitur!

  23. bornagain77 @22,

    Your self-deception is as bold and in-your-face as that of a Jerry Coyne or a Richard Dawkins. But it does not fool me. Why should anybody try to understand something that does not exist? The non-existence of infinity has absolutely nothing to do with materialism of naturalism.

    Another thing that bothers me about you is your constant use of this world’s pathological science to prove your Christian faith. Don’t you know that Yahweh’s science makes a mockery of human science? Yahweh and the host of his angels laughs at the stuff you bring up to defend your doctrine. I, too, join them in poking fun at it. Don’t you know that this world’s science is carefully designed to deny God and his glory? But those of you who truly have faith in Yahweh will not have long to wait to see His science manifested in this world and crush the science of this world like one crushes a bug underfoot.

  24. Funny Mapou, you rail against infinity being real on the one hand but then on the other you say the ‘science of this world’ will be crushed by, what I assume is, the infinite wonder and glory of God. Which is it, does the infinite not exist? or does infinite power exist in God? And if you don’t think God is infinitely powerful, just how much finite power are you willing to grant him? Just asking, inquiring minds and all that!

  25. bornagain77,

    Funny Mapou, you rail against infinity being real on the one hand but then on the other you say the ‘science of this world’ will be crushed by, what I assume is, the infinite wonder and glory of God.

    The science of this world is hopelessly infatuated with infinity. Black holes, wormholes, Big Bangs, infinite parallel universes, etc., are all based on continuity, which assumes infinity.

    Which is it, does the infinite not exist? or does infinite power exist in God? And if you don’t think God is infinitely powerful, just how much finite power are you willing to grant him? Just asking, inquiring minds and all that!

    The concept of infinite power is both absurd and stupid. It is a concept created by weak men who do not understand that they, too, are gods.

    Sure, Yahweh’s power and wisdom are enormous and can continue to grow indefinitely, if he so wishes, but that is not the same as saying that they are infinite. Show me a single quote from the scriptures where Yahweh says, “I am infinitely powerful” or “I have infinite knowledge of the past present and future.” This stuff is not even wrong. It makes a mockery of God and opens a door for the forces of evil to come in and mock God and his people.

  26. Interesting Mapou, never heard anyone claim God is not infinite in power and knowledge. Does it not bother you that you have a finite god instead of a infinite God? What church were you brought in? or what church do you currently go to that teaches this strange doctrine?

    Isaiah 46:9-10
    “Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me, Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done, Saying, ‘My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure’;

    Job 38
    The Lord Reveals His Omnipotence to Job

    38 Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said:

    2 “Who is this who darkens counsel
    By words without knowledge?
    3 Now prepare yourself like a man;
    I will question you, and you shall answer Me.

    4 “Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth?
    Tell Me, if you have understanding.
    5 Who determined its measurements?
    Surely you know!
    Or who stretched the line upon it?
    6 To what were its foundations fastened?
    Or who laid its cornerstone,
    7 When the morning stars sang together,
    And all the sons of God shouted for joy?

    8 “Or who shut in the sea with doors,
    When it burst forth and issued from the womb;
    9 When I made the clouds its garment,
    And thick darkness its swaddling band;
    10 When I fixed My limit for it,
    And set bars and doors;
    11 When I said,
    ‘This far you may come, but no farther,
    And here your proud waves must stop!’

    12 “Have you commanded the morning since your days began,
    And caused the dawn to know its place,
    13 That it might take hold of the ends of the earth,
    And the wicked be shaken out of it?
    14 It takes on form like clay under a seal,
    And stands out like a garment.
    15 From the wicked their light is withheld,
    And the upraised arm is broken.

    16 “Have you entered the springs of the sea?
    Or have you walked in search of the depths?
    17 Have the gates of death been revealed to you?
    Or have you seen the doors of the shadow of death?
    18 Have you comprehended the breadth of the earth?
    Tell Me, if you know all this.

    19 “Where is the way to the dwelling of light?
    And darkness, where is its place,
    20 That you may take it to its territory,
    That you may know the paths to its home?
    21 Do you know it, because you were born then,
    Or because the number of your days is great?

    22 “Have you entered the treasury of snow,
    Or have you seen the treasury of hail,
    23 Which I have reserved for the time of trouble,
    For the day of battle and war?
    24 By what way is light diffused,
    Or the east wind scattered over the earth?

    25 “Who has divided a channel for the overflowing water,
    Or a path for the thunderbolt,
    26 To cause it to rain on a land where there is no one,
    A wilderness in which there is no man;
    27 To satisfy the desolate waste,
    And cause to spring forth the growth of tender grass?
    28 Has the rain a father?
    Or who has begotten the drops of dew?
    29 From whose womb comes the ice?
    And the frost of heaven, who gives it birth?
    30 The waters harden like stone,
    And the surface of the deep is frozen.

    31 “Can you bind the cluster of the Pleiades,
    Or loose the belt of Orion?
    32 Can you bring out Mazzaroth[a] in its season?
    Or can you guide the Great Bear with its cubs?
    33 Do you know the ordinances of the heavens?
    Can you set their dominion over the earth?

    34 “Can you lift up your voice to the clouds,
    That an abundance of water may cover you?
    35 Can you send out lightnings, that they may go,
    And say to you, ‘Here we are!’?
    36 Who has put wisdom in the mind?[b]
    Or who has given understanding to the heart?
    37 Who can number the clouds by wisdom?
    Or who can pour out the bottles of heaven,
    38 When the dust hardens in clumps,
    And the clods cling together?

    39 “Can you hunt the prey for the lion,
    Or satisfy the appetite of the young lions,
    40 When they crouch in their dens,
    Or lurk in their lairs to lie in wait?
    41 Who provides food for the raven,
    When its young ones cry to God,
    And wander about for lack of food?

  27. boranagain77,

    You are indeed a deceiver and you are not to be trusted.

    Job 38
    The Lord Reveals His Omnipotence to Job

    This line is not found in the book of Job. It is an editorial addition by the translators of the New King James Bible.

    In other words, you have nothing to show but deception. And you know what? You will never have anything because you are lying to yourself and to others. Stop doing that. You’re not doing God a favor.

  28. So Mapou, you hold that the God who spoke Job 38 is a finite being? I certainly don’t! In fact I can’t even conceive of such knowledge and power, as was manifested in the verses of Job 38, being confined to a finite being.

    As well, I noticed you didn’t comment on Isaiah 46:9-10 which directly contradicted your claim that there was no verse that said God was omniscient. Or was that, in your eyes, just me misinterpreting the scripture again so you didn’t bother to acknowledge your mistake?

  29. Enough theology in this one thread for a divinity school. Anyone noted how Tegmark’s philosophizing (with a clearly religious turn) can be advanced in science publications (SciAm comes to mind)? Odd that it bothers so few.

    Stephen Hawking/No Black Holes, by the way, reached 76 m on Google search.

  30. Mapou @ 11

    Compared to the infinitely large, everything is infinitely small. And compared to the infinitely small, everything is infinitely large. So, if infinity existed, everything would be infinitely large and infinitely small while also being finite at the same time. This is absurd on the face of it.

    Consider the set of counting numbers 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10. There are 10 of them. Notice that the set of even numbers is 5. Do the same for the set of counting numbers to 100, 1000, a million, and a trillion. There are still half as many even numbers. Extrapolating, if you divide the infinite number of counting numbers by the infinite number of even numbers in the series, the answer will be exactly 2. Thus, there are larger and smaller infinities, falsifying your first statement.

    Calculus is based on finding the sums of infinitesimally small slices of areas under 2D curves, from which we can calculate many things including the thermal efficiency of a Carnot engine (although it’s easier to use the formula 1-T1/T2). The sum of an infinite number of infinitesimally small numbers is not infinitesimally small. For example, the thermal efficiency of a typical steam engine is about 0.4, and not zero. This falsifies your second statement.

    Divide the length of the circumference of a circle by the length of its diameter. How many digits are in the answer? From memory, the answer starts out 3.14159265358979323846264338327950… Thus, infinity exists in mathematics and in reality, falsifying your conclusion as well.

    -Q

  31. “And the truth shall set you free”, that is exactly why reading posts from BA77, Q, KF, VJT and others like them makes us die-hard fans of them and makes us want to read more and more. Kudos!

  32. 32

    @Querius:

    Extrapolating, if you divide the infinite number of counting numbers by the infinite number of even numbers in the series, the answer will be exactly 2.

    The cardinalities of “counting numbers” and “even numbers in the series” are both the same. So the answer is 1, not 2.

  33. F/N: Pardon, but attempted division does weird things with transfinites and is a forbidden operation as a result. Think of p / q as find multiplicative inverse of q, q’ and multiply: p x q’. Now, what is the multiplicative inverse of aleph-null? H’mm, that requires a div. by zero error if there ever was one! Verboten, tut, tut! Better view is that we identify transfinite sets by seeing the cardinality of a proper subset is the same as of the full set. Yes, that is strange, but it works. Doff hats for Cantor on that, knowing the price he paid for messing with ant trying to tame infinity. KF

  34. Q: There actually is a non-standard development of calculus on hyper reals that takes up the infinitesimal and conceptualises it into something tractable, as opposed to the usual infinite series limits approach. KF

  35. As to Querius’s comment here:

    Divide the length of the circumference of a circle by the length of its diameter. How many digits are in the answer? From memory, the answer starts out 3.14159265358979323846264338327950… Thus, infinity exists in mathematics and in reality, falsifying your conclusion as well.

    This is another place where the findings of modern science give us clear indication that ‘the infinite’ must reside in God. As Querius indicated we know that pi is infinite, although no finite being (or finite computer) has been, nor will ever be, able to elucidate all the numbers of pi. But whatever, or more precisely Whomever, brought this universe must have had/has knowledge of every number of the infinite number of pi. This is apparent since ‘He’, if I may be so bold as to use that pronoun, designed the universe along the parameters of pi, using the infinite pi as a sort of a template if you will.,,,

    0 = 1 + e ^(i*pi) — Euler

    The following is very interesting since, with the discovery of the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation (CMBR), the universe is found to actually be a circular sphere which ‘coincidentally’ corresponds to the circle of pi within Euler’s identity:

    Proverbs 8:26-27
    While as yet He had not made the earth or the fields, or the primeval dust of the world. When He prepared the heavens, I was there, when He drew a circle on the face of the deep,

    Planck’s view of the Universe – Oct. 18, 2013 – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fn0FgOwyu0w

    The Known Universe by AMNH – video – (please note the ‘centrality’ of the Earth in the 4-D space-time of the universe in the video)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=17jymDn0W6U

    The Cosmic Background Radiation
    Excerpt: These fluctuations are extremely small, representing deviations from the average of only about 1/100,000 of the average temperature of the observed background radiation. The highly isotropic nature of the cosmic background radiation indicates that the early stages of the Universe were almost completely uniform.
    http://csep10.phys.utk.edu/ast.....y/cbr.html

    Moreover, there is now known to be an unexpected ‘flatness’ to the universe that also corresponds to the diameter of pi in Euler’s identity:

    Did the Universe Hyperinflate? – Hugh Ross – April 2010
    Excerpt: Perfect geometric flatness is where the space-time surface of the universe exhibits zero curvature (see figure 3). Two meaningful measurements of the universe’s curvature parameter, ½k, exist. Analysis of the 5-year database from WMAP establishes that -0.0170 < ½k < 0.0068.4 Weak gravitational lensing of distant quasars by intervening galaxies places -0.031 < ½k < 0.009.5 Both measurements confirm the universe indeed manifests zero or very close to zero geometric curvature,,,
    http://www.reasons.org/did-universe-hyperinflate

    The curvature of the space time of the universe is 'flat' to at least 1 in 10^15 places of accuracy
    http://books.google.com/books?.....38;f=false

    Job 38:4-5
    “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
    Tell me, if you understand.
    Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
    Who stretched a measuring line across it?

    That the fine-tuning of the roundness and flatness of the universe are unexpected from a naturalistic perspective is revealed by the fact that naturalists attempted to ‘explain it away’ by postulating rapid inflation during the initial stages of the Big Bang, which, as Tegmark himself concedes,,

    What Scientific Idea Is Ready For Retirement? Tegmark: “Infinity” – January 2014
    Excerpt: Physics is all about predicting the future from the past, but inflation seems to sabotage this: when we try to predict the probability that something particular will happen, inflation always gives the same useless answer: infinity divided by infinity. The problem is that whatever experiment you make, inflation predicts that there will be infinitely many copies of you far away in our infinite space, obtaining each physically possible outcome, and despite years of tooth-grinding in the cosmology community, no consensus has emerged on how to extract sensible answers from these infinities. So strictly speaking, we physicists are no longer able to predict anything at all!
    This means that today’s best theories similarly need a major shakeup, by retiring an incorrect assumption. Which one?
    Here’s my prime suspect: infinity.
    MAX TEGMARK – Physicist

    Thus Tegmark concedes that postulating a unconstrained random infinity, as was done with inflation, to explain the roundness of the universe is a epistemologically self-defeating proposition. Yet, in irony of ironies, he calls for retiring the concept of ‘unconstrained infinity’ from science altogether. A concept that he, as news pointed out in the OP, Max Tegmark himself was instrumental in championing in the first place:

    Mathematician wonders about the respectful reception new multiverse book is getting – January 25, 2014
    Excerpt: As recently as the 1990s, most scientists regarded the idea of multiple universes as wild speculation too far out on the fringe to be worth serious discussion. Indeed, in 1998, Max Tegmark, then an up-and-coming young cosmologist at Princeton, received an email from a senior colleague warning him off multiverse research: “Your crackpot papers are not helping you,” it said.
    Needless to say, Tegmark persisted in exploring the multiverse as a window on “the ultimate nature of reality”, while making sure also to work on subjects in mainstream cosmology as camouflage for his real enthusiasm. Today multiple universes are scientifically respectable, thanks to the work of Tegmark as much as anyone. Now a physics professor at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he presents his multiverse work to the public in Our Mathematical Universe.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-488558

    Supplemental notes:

    Hugh Ross PhD. – Scientific Evidence For Cosmological Constant (Expansion Of The Universe)
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4347218/

    Besides the evidence that Dr. Ross listed for the 1 in 10^120 finely tuned expansion of the universe, this following paper clearly indicates that we do live in universe with a ‘true cosmological constant’. A cosmological constant that is not reducible to a materialistic basis. Thus, the atheistic astrophysicists are at a complete loss to explain why the universe expands in such a finely tuned way, whereas Theists are vindicated once again in their beliefs that the universal constants are truly transcendent!

    Dark energy alternatives to Einstein are running out of room – January 9, 2013
    Excerpt: Last month, a group of European astronomers, using a massive radio telescope in Germany, made the most accurate measurement of the proton-to-electron mass ratio ever accomplished and found that there has been no change in the ratio to one part in 10 million at a time when the universe was about half its current age, around 7 billion years ago. When Thompson put this new measurement into his calculations, he found that it excluded almost all of the dark energy models using the commonly expected values or parameters.
    If the parameter space or range of values is equated to a football field, then almost the whole field is out of bounds except for a single 2-inch by 2-inch patch at one corner of the field. In fact, most of the allowed values are not even on the field. “In effect, the dark energy theories have been playing on the wrong field,” Thompson said. “The 2-inch square does contain the area that corresponds to no change in the fundamental constants, (a ‘true cosmological constant’), and that is exactly where Einstein stands.”
    http://phys.org/news/2013-01-d.....-room.html

    Music:

    Elton John – Circle of Life
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o8ZnCT14nRc

  36. Querius, I agree with you. Cantor never proved anything wrt infinite sets and he is not God. Not only that there isn’t any utility in saying all countable and infinite sets have the same cardinality.

    Cantor’s is more dogma than mathematics.

  37. Ladies and gentlemen, here is my argument again:

    Compared to the infinitely large, everything is infinitely small. And compared to the infinitely small, everything is infinitely large. So, if infinity existed, everything would be infinitely large and infinitely small while also being finite at the same time. This is absurd on the face of it.

    Unless you have a counter argument that either directly refutes it or agrees with it, you are wasting both your time and mine. Sorry.

    Querius @ 30, nope, that’s not it.

  38. By the way, those of you who are under the false impression that calculus uses infinity, consider that digital computers routinely solve calculus problems and yet, nothing is more discrete and finite than a computer.

  39. M:

    First, I just note that your “ratios” — note, your use of compared to — are not the same as the things themselves.

    A subtle but important difference.

    The same finite distance, measured in light years will be a small fraction, but measured in Angstroms, it will be a large number. But all along it is the same distance, say from Papine to Half Way Tree in Kingston, Jamaica, or the length of Long Beach in Christchurch, Barbados [a mile].

    On the way, a corrective note for me, if we try to assign a multiplicative inverse, say v, to the transfinite aleph Null, say A0, we see v * A0 –> 1. The cardinality of evens AND of natural no’s will both be A0, and the division you proposed “translates” to v*A0 –> ??, or the same 1. But this is “toying” the real point is that cardinality of a transfinite countable set has different properties from that of a finite set. And in fact it is sets we are really dealing with here.

    To see that 1, 2, 3, . . . and 2, 4, 6 . . . have identical cardinality, let us do a transformation:

    1 –> 2 * 1 –> 2

    2 –> 2 * 2 –> 4

    . . .

    n –> 2 * n –> 2n

    . . .

    So the logic forces us to accept that N and the set of evens hold the same cardinality, A0.

    Being strange to us given our current concepts and being absurd in itself are different things.

    A simple case is how it is possible to stand at one and the same point and be due North of London, New York, and Tokyo.

    At first it seems odd, but the geographic North Pole is due North of every other point on the Eart’s surface.

    This also holds for many concepts in theology and philosophy, that seem strange until worked through.

    KF

  40. bornagain77 @28:

    So Mapou, you hold that the God who spoke Job 38 is a finite being? I certainly don’t! In fact I can’t even conceive of such knowledge and power, as was manifested in the verses of Job 38, being confined to a finite being.

    I can.

    As well, I noticed you didn’t comment on Isaiah 46:9-10 which directly contradicted your claim that there was no verse that said God was omniscient. Or was that, in your eyes, just me misinterpreting the scripture again so you didn’t bother to acknowledge your mistake?

    You are imagining things. There is no mistake to acknowledge. Here is the verse again:

    Isaiah 46:9-10
    “Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me, Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done, Saying, ‘My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure’;

    Where in this verse does it say anything about Yahweh being either infinitely powerful or infinitely knowledgeable? Enlighten me.

  41. PS: A computer does not solve a calculus problem, the programmer does. And if you mean evaluating a numerical solution to say volume of a solid of revolution between defined points, that is a numerical approximation. If you program the machine to analytically integrate, it gives an analytic solution worked out elsewhere. Try to get it to solve for an analytic expression for integral of e^(-x^2). It will predictably fail for the obvious reason.

  42. kairosfocus @39:

    M:

    First, I just note that your “ratios” — note, your use of compared to — are not the same as the things themselves.

    A subtle but important difference.

    I fail to see the truth in what you’re saying here. Is it a refutation of my argument?

    The same finite distance, measured in light years will be a small fraction, but measured in Angstroms, it will be a large number. But all along it is the same distance, say from Papine to Half Way Tree in Kingston, Jamaica, or the length of Long Beach in Christchurch, Barbados [a mile].

    This proves nothing. Be a hero and go right ahead and measure your finite distance using an infinitely small unit. Good luck with that.

    The rest of your argument @39 does not address my argument. Sorry. Notice that your argument assumes the very thing (the existence of infinity) it is trying to prove.

  43. F/N: Is God eternal, a necessary being? Your answer will give us a clear view of the matter, and of your particular theology . . . and closely linked philosophy. Similarly, is God all knowing, all-powerful, all-good, all-wise, etc. These questions help clarify what is meant when God is said to be “infinite-personal.” KF

    PS: This, from Wiki, will be interesting. The world has some really strange things in it.

  44. M: I am not trying to prove the existence of an infinite set, thus of an infinity. That reality, has long been obvious. Set up a mirror. Locate images behind it, then understand it poses a virtual half-universe. Then, put two in parallel with a pin with a bright red knob on top in the middle, yielding (mathematically, if you will) an infinity behind each. Similarly, observe a line, the real number line and observe the property that between any two neighbouring values we can define a third, etc. Perhaps, your problem is with the logic involved, as is suggested by challenging on the supertask of measuring an infinity in finite succession. All that succeeds in doing is highlighting that one cannot traverse an infinity in steps. The whole set must be delivered at once. That a transfinite set may have strange properties should be no more surprising than negative numbers, zero, the incommensurate nature of sides and diagonals of squares, the sqrt(-1) = i, etc. And BA77 is dead right to highlight how all of these things (including implied infinite series) come together in the Euler expression 0 = 1 + e^(i*pi). KF

  45. “Enlighten me.,”

    so this verse

    ‘Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done,’

    Is not reflective of God’s omniscience in your book? I must say, I have never met anybody, and I mean anybody, that holds to your strange interpretation of scripture (and mathematics). I find omniscience and omnipotence to be integral to Theism. For instance how people going to give an account for ‘every careless word uttered’ on the day of judgement if God is not omniscient?

    Matthew 12:36
    But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken.

    And just because you personally believe God is not omniscient and omnipotent, in your own private interpretation of scripture I might add, what in God’s green earth gives you the audacity to believe that you can change thousands of years of Monotheistic thought on God’s omniscience and omnipotence, by throwing, what I perceive to be, a rather childish tantrum on a out of the way blog?

    If changing Theological thought were not enough for your unconstrained ambitions, you also want to exclude infinity from role in mathematics because you find absurdities with it that you, personally, have not been able to work your way through. But you offer no rigorous proof, in any system of logic, as to why infinity should be stricken. Just because you are stuck in a personal mental mire on the infinity matter why do you think the world of mathematics should suddenly stop and take notice of you. Do you really think that name calling, and such as that as you have displayed here, is going to have any effect on the preeminent mathematicians of the world? Perhaps you should call Gregory Chaitin up with your insight that infinity should be stricken from math?

    The Limits Of Reason – Gregory Chaitin – 2006
    Excerpt: an infinite number of true mathematical theorems exist that cannot be proved from any finite system of axioms.,,,
    http://www.umcs.maine.edu/~chaitin/sciamer3.pdf

    I’m sure he could probably use a good belly laugh at your suggestion!

  46. kairosfocus:

    M: I am not trying to prove the existence of an infinite set, thus of an infinity.

    In that case, this discussion is futile because my argument is that infinity is nonsense. Unless you are trying to disprove my argument, I fail to see the purpose of our debate, assuming this was a debate to begin with.

  47. bornagain77:

    “Enlighten me.,”

    so this verse

    ‘Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done,’

    Is not reflective of God’s omniscience in your book?

    If humans, with their feeble means, can make predictions, imagine what a being who can create a universe can do. Not only can such a being make very accurate predictions, he can make his predictions happen by actively manipulating physical events. I fail to see the need for omniscience (infinite knowledge) here. Besides, the Yahweh of the scriptures is never presented as knowing everything. If one knows everything, one cannot have regrets. Did not Yahweh regret having created humans? The answer is yes, of course, because this is what the book of Genesis says in plain language that cannot be denied or futzed with unless one is a liar.

    On another note, is not Jesus God? If so, as God, he should know everything according to your theology, right? And yet we know from reading the scriptures that Jesus does not know everything. How can that be? Well, Jesus himself said that he did not know the exact time of his return, only the father knows.

    Methinks the holes your theology would let a Mack truck through.

    I must say, I have never met anybody, and I mean anybody, that holds to your strange interpretation of scripture (and mathematics).

    I am sure there is a point you are trying to make here but I can’t place a finger on it. Sorry.

    I find omniscience and omnipotence to be integral to Theism. For instance how people going to give an account for ‘every careless word uttered’ on the day of judgement if God is not omniscient?

    Simple. Everything that occurs in the physical universe is being recorded in what I call “the lattice”. It’s a finite universe and a finite lattice.

    And just because you personally believe God is not omniscient and omnipotent, in your own private interpretation of scripture I might add, what in God’s green earth gives you the audacity to believe that you can change thousands of years of Monotheistic thought on God’s omniscience and omnipotence,

    It is not audacity. I just don’t trust anybody, especially those who hold on to thousands of years of dogma at all costs. That’s idolatry, in my opinion. I question everything this world throws at me.

    by throwing, what I perceive to be, a rather childish tantrum on a out of the way blog?

    Your personal opinion of my behavior is irrelevant to me.

    If changing Theological thought were not enough for your unconstrained ambitions, you also want to exclude infinity from role in mathematics because you find absurdities with it that you, personally, have not been able to work your way through. But you offer no rigorous proof, in any system of logic, as to why infinity should be stricken.

    I do offer a simple solid proof @11 above but I’m still waiting for your refutation.

    Just because you are stuck in a personal mental mire on the infinity matter why do you think the world of mathematics should suddenly stop and take notice of you. Do you really think that name calling, and such as that as you have displayed here

    I simply call a spade a spade. I am not a politician.

    , is going to have any effect on the preeminent mathematicians of the world? Perhaps you should call Gregory Chaitin up with your insight that infinity should be stricken from math?

    I don’t give a rat’s posterior about Gregory Chaitin’s opinion or the world of mathematics and their preeminent mathematicians. I know my priorities. I always write for the simple man or woman. Those are my peers.

  48. Mapou, to borrow your words, ‘you are deceiving yourself’!

  49. bornagain77 @48,

    You got me, Mr. born again man. I yield to the infinite superiority of your arguments. NOT. LOL.

  50. Mapou you state:

    ‘I yield to the infinite superiority of your arguments.’

    But alas Mapou, I am not the one who said this:

    ‘I don’t give a rat’s posterior about Gregory Chaitin’s opinion or the world of mathematics and their preeminent mathematicians.’

    And yet you expect us to ‘yield to the infinite superiority of your arguments’, and indeed you act like a spoiled child when no one takes your strawman argument seriously, when you yourself don’t take the entire field of mathematics seriously. Someone has an seriously hyper-inflated opinion of their own infallibility on this matter!

  51. And yet you expect us to ‘yield to the infinite superiority of your arguments’, and indeed you act like a spoiled child when no one takes your strawman argument seriously, when you yourself don’t take the entire field of mathematics seriously. Someone has an seriously hyper-inflated opinion of their own infallibility on this matter!

    Maybe I have a hyper-inflated opinion of my infallibility in this matter but the same can be said about you.

    PS. I am still waiting for your logical refutation of my argument @11. I guess I’ll have to wait until chickens grow teeth and evolve into predatory birds. LOL.

  52. Mapou, you want a ‘logical refutation’ of your ahem ‘argument’ when you have rejected the entire logical world of mathematics as to having any purchase over your own self-exalted infallible thinking in this matter in the first place? i.e. cart before horse!

    To shine a light in a darkened room it is first necessary to, at least, open a window!

    There’s none so blind as those who will not see.
    Prov. You cannot make someone pay attention to something that he or she does not want to notice.

  53. bornagain77 @52,

    It is precisely because I have read the so-called proofs of infinity that I reject them. My argument is a direct refutation of those proofs. You avoid it like the plague because you don’t have the mental ability to even think about formulating a rebuttal, let alone refute it. You’re weak. You know it and I know it. A true follower of Yahweh is strong, not weak.

    That being said, I don’t challenge you specifically to refute my argument @11. I know you can’t. You are a propaganda artist, not a thinker. I challenge everybody. It’s a logical argument. If I am proven wrong, I will repent and acknowledge my foolishness.

  54. JWTruthInLove @32:

    @Querius:

    Extrapolating, if you divide the infinite number of counting numbers by the infinite number of even numbers in the series, the answer will be exactly 2.

    The cardinalities of “counting numbers” and “even numbers in the series” are both the same. So the answer is 1, not 2.

    This is not what is wrong with Querius’s argument. The glaring problem with his argument is that he is assuming the existence of infinity (e.g., “if you divide the infinite number…”) while arguing for its existence. Querius should man up or woman up, as the case may be, and acknowledge that his argument is invalid or lose face.

  55. Well, according to Georg Cantor, the inventor of the classification of infinities, I’m wrong about comparing counting numbers with even counting numbers. He recognized that there are different orders of infinities, which he called Alephs, and that counting numbers and even counting numbers are both in Aleph-0.

    My original thought was more in line with L’Hopital’s rule where you take ratios of expressions as some part in the numerator or denominator goes to infinity. The *rates* of which each expression goes to infinity or to zero are compared. My thought was that in pairings of the two infinite sets, the the ratios are not 1 in this case; any element of one set is always double its pair in the other. Hmmm, but now I’m talking myself out of my position. The infinities are equal in number despite the fact the values of the numbers in one set are always double that in the other.

    However, Georg Cantor does assert that the infinity of real numbers is greater, because you cannot pair off real numbers with counting numbers (or natural numbers for that matter). In turn, you also cannot pair off the numbers of curves with the real numbers, so these are in different Alephs.

    My point about an infinite number of real numbers on a line of finite length still stands.

    -Q

  56. Mapou, your ad hominem undermines your claim of ‘being strong’. Claiming to be ‘strong’ while disparaging other people who may disagree with you is certainly not a sign of strength but of weakness. A truly strong person does not try to exalt himself by belittling other people, but a truly strong person tries to help those he considers less fortunate than himself/herself.

  57. bornagain77 @56,

    But you got it wrong. I am not trying to help you at all. I have very little respect for you, especially after this exchange. You’re a typical doctrinairian and I don’t like doctrinairians. I don’t think you’re less fortunate. You have access to the same knowledge sources as I do. That’s the way I feel. And I tell it like I see it.

  58. bornagain77 asserted

    A truly strong person does not try to exalt himself by belittling other people, but a truly strong person tries to help those he considers less fortunate than himself/herself.

    This is so true. One of the most brilliant people that I work with is humble and soft-spoken. He carefully considers the technical questions and challenges put to him, and he answers them with both kindness and precision.

    -Q

  59. Mapou, you continue to want me (or anyone) to ‘refute’ your argument at 11, which is as such,,,

    Compared to the infinitely large, everything is infinitely small. And compared to the infinitely small, everything is infinitely large. So, if infinity existed, everything would be infinitely large and infinitely small while also being finite at the same time. This is absurd on the face of it.

    to which I responded to your argument in 13 as such:

    Infinity is a wild, wild, horse and any material explanation will be thrown off into the dirt of epistemological absurdity. Only God, who is infinite, not infinity, can tame infinity. Only God who is omniscient, knows every number in pi, or possesses the infinite knowledge necessary to collapse the infinite dimensional quantum wave state to a photon of one bit.

    The Supreme God is a Being eternal, infinite, absolutely perfect;,,, from his true dominion it follows that the true God is a living, intelligent, and powerful Being; and, from his other perfections, that he is supreme, or most perfect. He is eternal and infinite, omnipotent and omniscient; that is, his duration reaches from eternity to eternity; his presence from infinity to infinity; he governs all things, and knows all things that are or can be done. He is not eternity or infinity, but eternal and infinite; he is not duration or space, but he endures and is present. He endures for ever, and is every where present:
    Sir Isaac Newton – Quoted from what many consider the greatest science masterpiece of all time, his book “Principia”

    and to which I again responded to your argument at 22:

    Mapou, in your argument, you are trying to understand the infinite from a finite materialistic/naturalistic perspective. OF COURSE it is logically absurd from that position. Why should I try to refute your argument when I agree with you 100% that materialism/naturalism cannot handle the infinite? i.e. non sequitur!

    And Mapou to further show you that I agree 100% with your argument against a naturalistic/materialistic interpretation of infinity, which is once again,,

    Compared to the infinitely large, everything is infinitely small. And compared to the infinitely small, everything is infinitely large. So, if infinity existed, everything would be infinitely large and infinitely small while also being finite at the same time. This is absurd on the face of it.

    ,,,I think you may find the following site very interesting:

    The Scale of The Universe – Part 2 – interactive graph (recently updated in 2012 with cool features)
    http://htwins.net/scale2/scale.....olor=white

    The preceding interactive graph points out that the smallest scale visible to the human eye (as well as a human egg) is at 10^-4 meters, which ‘just so happens’ to be directly in the exponential center of all possible sizes of our physical reality (not just ‘nearly’ in the exponential center!). i.e. 10^-4 is, exponentially, right in the middle of 10^-35 meters, which is the smallest possible unit of length, which is Planck length, and 10^27 meters, which is the largest possible unit of ‘observable’ length since space-time was created in the Big Bang, which is the diameter of the universe. This is very interesting for, as far as I can tell, the limits to human vision (as well as the size of the human egg) could have, theoretically, been at very different positions than directly in the exponential middle;

    also of note:

    Planck length – Theoretical significance
    This implies that the Planck scale is the limit below which the very notions of space and length cease to exist.,,,
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P.....gnificance

    The End Of Cosmology? – Lawrence M. Krauss and Robert J. Scherrer
    Excerpt: We are led inexorably to a very strange conclusion. The window during which intelligent observers can deduce the true nature of our expanding universe (and see the Cosmic Background Radiation) might be very short indeed.
    http://genesis1.asu.edu/0308046.pdf

    We Live At The Right Time In Cosmic History – Hugh Ross – video
    http://vimeo.com/31940671

    Evidence for Belief in God – Rich Deem
    Excerpt: Isn’t the immense size of the universe evidence that humans are really insignificant, contradicting the idea that a God concerned with humanity created the universe? It turns out that the universe could not have been much smaller than it is in order for nuclear fusion to have occurred during the first 3 minutes after the Big Bang. Without this brief period of nucleosynthesis, the early universe would have consisted entirely of hydrogen. Likewise, the universe could not have been much larger than it is, or life would not have been possible. If the universe were just one part in 10^59 larger, the universe would have collapsed before life was possible. Since there are only 10^80 baryons in the universe, this means that an addition of just 10^21 baryons (about the mass of a grain of sand) would have made life impossible. The universe is exactly the size it must be for life to exist at all.
    http://www.godandscience.org/a.....ntro2.html

    “Every solution to the equations of general relativity guarantees the existence of a singular boundary for space and time in the past.”
    (Hawking, Penrose, Ellis) – 1970

    i.e. Mapou, there was no time and no space (which your argument is predicated on) before the Big Bang so where did it come from?

    So thus Mapou, I agree 100% with your argument, and nature itself agrees you, that a finite naturalistic/materialistic infinity, with space-time, cannot exist. Where I think your argument goes off the rails is when you try to extrapolate the obvious absurdities that are apparent for infinity in the material (space-time) realm,,,

    William Lane Craig – Hilbert’s Hotel – The Absurdity Of An Infinite Regress Of ‘Things’ – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/3994011/

    Time Cannot Be Infinite Into The Past – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xg0pdUvQdi4

    ,,,off the rails when you try to extrapolate the obvious absurdity in the material, space-time, realm to the transcendent (i.e. higher dimensional) realm that is above this material realm. Yet how did this material, space-time, realm come into being if not from an infinitely powerful, omniscient, transcendent Being who had mastery over infinity so as to be able to do it?

    An Interview with David Berlinski – Jonathan Witt
    Berlinski: There is no argument against religion that is not also an argument against mathematics. Mathematicians are capable of grasping a world of objects that lies beyond space and time ….
    Interviewer:… Come again(?) …
    Berlinski: No need to come again: I got to where I was going the first time. The number four, after all, did not come into existence at a particular time, and it is not going to go out of existence at another time. It is neither here nor there. Nonetheless we are in some sense able to grasp the number by a faculty of our minds. Mathematical intuition is utterly mysterious. So for that matter is the fact that mathematical objects such as a Lie Group or a differentiable manifold have the power to interact with elementary particles or accelerating forces. But these are precisely the claims that theologians have always made as well – that human beings are capable by an exercise of their devotional abilities to come to some understanding of the deity; and the deity, although beyond space and time, is capable of interacting with material objects.
    http://tofspot.blogspot.com/20.....-here.html

    i.e. Mapou, your argument from the infinitely large and from the infinitely small against the validity of infinity itself addresses the issue from the wrong conceptual basis to begin with! i.e. I NEVER disagreed with you that infinity within the space-time of the material realm was completely absurd. You are the one who erroneously assumed that such absurdities for infinitely in the finite material realm hold for the timeless-spaceless transcendent realm that is above this one, and indeed the transcendent realm that brought this universe into being, but you simply are not justified in such an radical extrapolation from the material realm to say that the infinite does not exist in God who brought this material realm, all the space-time matter-energy of it, into being by his word and who continues to uphold it in his infinite power.

    Verse and Music:

    Hebrews 1:3
    who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,

    1 Corinthians 2:7
    No, we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began.

    You Are God Alone | Phillips, Craig & Dean – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JtS98aTGq0

  60. kairosfocus @41:

    F/N: Is God eternal, a necessary being? Your answer will give us a clear view of the matter, and of your particular theology . . . and closely linked philosophy. Similarly, is God all knowing, all-powerful, all-good, all-wise, etc. These questions help clarify what is meant when God is said to be “infinite-personal.” KF

    PS: This, from Wiki, will be interesting. The world has some really strange things in it.

    Q. Is God eternal, a necessary being?
    A. Yes. But eternal is not synonymous with infinite. It simply means immortal or indestructible. Why? Because God is the greatest power in the universe.

    Q. is God all knowing? A. No.

    Q. All-powerful? A. No.

    Q. All-good? A. I have no idea what this means. Something is either good or bad.

    Q. All-wise? A. If God can make mistakes and can regret making such mistakes, then the answer is no. Yahweh admits that he made a mistake creating humans on earth.

    PS: This, from Wiki, will be interesting. The world has some really strange things in it.

    Cantor was a self-important crackpot and a con artist, IMO. His contribution to society amounts to a disaster, considering the enormous amount of time wasted by the world’s acceptance of infinity as a logical concept. Even after Planck discovered that the universe was discrete, physicists still continue to act as if infinity is a valid concept. It’s painful just to think about it.

  61. Mapou writes,

    The science of this world is hopelessly infatuated with infinity. Black holes, wormholes, Big Bangs, infinite parallel universes, etc., are all based on continuity, which assumes infinity.

    Doesn’t the Big Bang presuppose a beginning, i.e, a starting pooint? That would make the universe finite, not infinite. Hawking uses imaginary numbers in his theorems, but according to William Lane Craig, when he converts the numbers to real integers, a singularity appears (the beginning point). I don’t see at all how Big Bang cosmology supports infinity.

  62. bornagain77 @59:

    i.e. Mapou, your argument from the infinitely large and from the infinitely small against the validity of infinity itself addresses the issue from the wrong conceptual basis to begin with! i.e. I NEVER disagreed with you that infinity within the space-time of the material realm was completely absurd. You are the one who erroneously assumed that such absurdities for infinitely in the finite material realm hold for the timeless-spaceless transcendent realm that is above this one, and indeed the transcendent realm that brought this universe into being, but you simply are not justified in such an radical extrapolation from the material realm to say that the infinite does not exist in God who brought this material realm, all the space-time matter-energy of it, into being by his word and who continues to uphold it in his infinite power.

    There is no question, at least in my yin-yang, dualistic philosophy, that reality consists of both a physical realm and a spiritual realm. The word “transcendent” means nothing to me. Here is how I define the two.

    1. In the physical realm, everything can be created, destroyed or modified. Everything has a beginning and can have an end.

    2. In the spiritual realm, nothing can be created, destroyed or modified. Things just are.

    I see no reason to believe that the spiritual realm is infinite. It contains as many entities as are necessary, no more and no less. Personally, I could not worship a God who is infinitely knowledgeable and powerful. Setting aside, for argument’s sake, the fact that such a God is logically absurd, the problem I see is that everything would come easy to such a God. He would have no merit in my view. I prefer the idea of a self-made God who spent trillions upon trillions of years perfecting his wisdom and power through trial and error and hardship. That’s the kind of God that appeals to me and that’s the kind of God I am not ashamed to call Master. And I believe that’s the God that scriptures refer to as the “ancient of days.”

    I truly believe that humans were made in the image of the Gods (Elohim). The Gods have brains just like us and learn through trial and error just like us. The main difference is that Yahweh Elohim has honor whereas humans don’t.

  63. as to:

    “The word “transcendent” means nothing to me.”

    What Properties Must the Cause of the Universe Have? – William Lane Craig – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1SZWInkDIVI

    Psalm 115:2-3
    Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God?
    Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him.

  64. M: Just a note, eternal in the context of being the necessary being at the root of reality is already infinite, of endless duration. KF

    PS: Other necessary beings such as the proposition 2 + 3 = 5, are endlessly contemplated by God as eternal mind. Another infinity in aggregate.

  65. PPS: Your ad hom on one of the most significant mathematicians in history — who, similar to several others suffered bipolar depression — is unworthy and verges on being offensive. Cantor is a founding father of Set Theory, and in that context a main pioneer of the mathematics of the infinite . . . or better, the transfinite (the Absolute Infinite, he reserved for the Godhead). His reputation is not on trial. Period. This one is in the league of a Gauss, or a Newton. If one can show his work and its cumulative legacy materially in error or in need of limitation and generalisation, fine, but a trash-talk dismissal is simply not acceptable.

    PPPS: I see your framing of your own system of theology. Your privilege, but not compelling. The interested onlooker may wish to refer to say Hodge here on . . . 3 vols (with defense of approach in an ultra-mod era here) or to the alas incomplete (he passed on . . . ) magisterial work by the Angelic Doctor, here. Grudem’s contemporary Systematic Theology is a short [relatively speaking], simple [ditto] survey. Onlookers may like to look at the humble street level course here on, and yes, it starts with where to go for more, including the heavy artillery.

  66. kairosfocus @65,

    I’m sorry but anybody who legitimizes infinity as a viable concept in science is a crackpot in my view. The belief in continuous structures (which presupposes infinity) in the physics community is probably the biggest impediment to progress in the field, IMO. Worse, thanks to the belief in infinity, physics has been inundated with crackpottery, what with time travel, parallel universes, wormholes, black holes, etc. Even Einstein, Mr. Continuity par excellence, had serious doubts about it as seen in this partial quote from a letter he wrote to a friend near the end of his life:

    “I consider it quite possible that physics cannot be based on the field concept, i.e., on continuous structures. In that case, nothing remains of my entire castle in the air, gravitation theory included, [and of] the rest of modern physics.” (From: Subtle is the Lord by Abraham Pais.)

    Too bad Einstein did not live long enough to work on that angle. The only reason that physicists, including Einstein during his heyday, still cannot figure out why C is the fastest possible speed in the universe is that they believe in continuity and infinity. If they could only get rid of those shackles, they would understand that, not only is C the fastest possible speed, it is also the only possible speed. Nothing can move faster or slower, period. Surprise!

    So I don’t care how great a contribution Cantor has made to set theory. His obsession with the legitimacy of infinity and his ability to captivate and deceive the minds of so many generations of thinkers with his crackpottery is unforgivable, IMO.

    PS. The veneration that some people (mostly Catholics, I think) have for the Angelic Doctor (Thomas Aquinas) borders on the idolatrous, IMO. Talk about worshiping doctrine.

  67. M: The validity of infinity has nothing to do with whether or not there is a multiverse, for instance. The continuum is not primarily a scientific concept but a mathematical one and is just as valid. And, with al due respect people may differ on big issues without being crack pots all on one side. KF

    PS: I am about as Protestant as they come, and the angelic doctor is one of the greatest minds in the history of Christendom, with Paul, Augustine, Calvin and Wesley up there too in that league — warts and all.

  68. Mapou writes,

    Q. Is God eternal, a necessary being?
    A. Yes. But eternal is not synonymous with infinite. It simply means immortal or indestructible. Why? Because God is the greatest power in the universe.

    Eternal is most certainly synonymous with infinite.

    (http://www.thefreedictionary.com/eternal)

    You claim that God is the greatest power in the universe, yet below you claim that He is not all powerful. See the contradiction in your own beliefs?

    Q. is God all knowing? A. No.

    Q. All-powerful? A. No.

    You and I are reading entirely different Bibles then.

    Q. All-good? A. I have no idea what this means. Something is either good or bad.

    You didn’t know what eternal meant, either.

    Q. All-wise? A. If God can make mistakes and can regret making such mistakes, then the answer is no. Yahweh admits that he made a mistake creating humans on earth.

    No, He did not. I’m not sure what scriptural reference you’re using here. At times, God changes his attitude toward people. For example, more than once, the ancient Israelites left Jehovah and followed other gods. Jehovah then took away his protection. However, when the people felt sorry for their error and called to God for help, he changed his feelings toward them, or ‘felt regret.’ (Judg. 2:18)

    God is perfect and never errs in judgment, so it is not that he feels regret in the way that a human does when he has completely misjudged a matter. Rather, Jehovah feels regret by adjusting his dealings, responding to the change of heart he observes.

    This is not just a cold rescinding of a sentence. Jehovah’s feelings change toward repentant sinners. According to some scholars, the origin of the Hebrew verb translated “feel regret” in the verses cited above is thought to reflect the idea of “breathing deeply,” maybe with a sigh. This may indicate that when Jehovah sees genuine remorse in a human heart, figuratively he breathes deeply, as with a sigh of relief. God can show the repentant person the loving attention enjoyed by those having His approval. That sinner may still face certain consequences, yet God is pleased with his change of heart. He softens “the calamity,” or divine discipline, that otherwise might be due. (Jer. 26:13)

    You also never answered my point about the Big Bang, either.

  69. Barb,

    I no longer want to discuss this topic. Thanks for the comments.

  70. M: While you may no longer wish to debate the topic, you may find the already linked readings helpful. Again, I commend to you the street level survey with reference links here on. KF

  71. Ok. I cannot let this go without a response. Some dumbass over at antievolution.org who calls itself CeilingCat, wrote the following as a refutation of my argument @11:

    [CeilingCat (here and now): "I'm 175 cm tall. Compared to the Eiffel Tower I'm 175 cm tall. Compared to Mt. Everest I'm 175 cm tall. Compared to infinity, I'm 175 cm tall. Compared to a fireplug I'm 175 cm tall. Compared to a mouse I'm 175 cm tall. Compared to a bacteria I'm 175 cm tall. Compared to an infinitely small thing I'm 175 cm tall.

    Your argument fails in both directions. Bow down and start apologizing, tard-boy!

    LOL. CeilingCat has no clue as to what a comparison is. A comparison is a question or test that demands a true or false answer. For example, given the finite values X and Y, we can ask:

    X is greater than Y, true or false?

    or, within the context of my argument against infinity, if Y is given as an infinitely small value, we can phrase the question thus:

    X is infinitely greater than Y, true or false?

    or, if Y is given as an infinitely large value, we can phrase the question thus:

    X is infinitely smaller than Y, true or false?

    The answer is a resounding YES to both questions. CeilingCat should claw its way back to the ceiling and let grownups take care of grownup business.

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