Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Cosmological Model

Picture from Hubble Space Craft, NASA.


Another of Eugene Koonin's articles published last year, "The cosmological model of eternal inflation and the transition from chance to biological evolution in the history of life," takes unsolved aspects of evolution to a higher level. The numbers of combinations that atoms can make randomly show us that biological life by random chance is so improbable as to be impossible. Genes can flow, drift, move horizontally or vertically or double, triple or quadruple but they just can't overcome these probability numbers. That is because the extreme improbability encompasses all the movements and chemical reactions of the so-called pre-biotic elements. Though scientists are trying to find chemistry which produces the present organization, they haven't found a set of answers which can explain the complexity of life.

What has been found on the cosmological level is an anthropic fine-tuning of physical laws that had to be as they are to make the universe livable for humans (anthropic). So Koonin blends the high improbabilities of life into the anthropic principle. He says, "In an infinite universe (multiverse), emergence of highly complex systems by chance is inevitable."

Koonin says that in this scenario, the RNA world may never have existed. The universe we live in is, in this theory, fine-tuned not only for physical laws but biological origin and evolution. It has only become that way, however, by chance because an infinite number of universes would cover everything.

This is a scientific article published by a scientific journal. Yet many believe evolution is a fact, not a theory.

The infinite universe theory is as un-falsifiable as they accuse Intelligent Design of being. It seems to me that if the multiverse wipes out biological probabilities, it would wipe out physical ones as well--the ones used to understand quantum physics in the first place. It is quantum physics that underlies the multiverse claim--a quantum fluctuation somewhere in space (see references in Koonin article for more information). And quantum physics was first described by Max Planck based on probabilities of energy radiating from light at various frequencies.

New microbiological scientific data does not coincide with past evolutionary data and theory. If new facts fell into the expected place, it would be different. Scientists should evaluate where we are now no matter what they hope for the future. It is important for citizens such as judges and school board members to know the truth. As of now, though there may be micro-evolution where species can make small changes, macro-evolution of all species, one from another, is not a fact.

I talked a while ago about doing some posts on the history of science and religion. I haven't gotten very far but will try to do more shortly.

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