Re: Anthropic Principle Refuted

Damien Broderick (
Mon, 12 Jan 1998 19:00:10 +0000

Hal Finney <> wrote:

>> Take a look at figure 5 on
>>and you see what a tiny fraction of the possible values for physical
>>constants would allow life as we know it to exist.

Daniel replied:

>No, actually the anthropic principle is false. Certain physical parameters
>just are. We exist because of them, not vice versa. And if the universe
>had been different, perhaps some other conscious life forms would
>exist and argue the same arguments. But to argue this principle is like
>saying the God exists because I deal a certain hand of cards and not

No, it's not. You haven't addressed the max.toe diagram (or other similar
scholia) which certainly seem(s) to show that Hal's summary statement is
correct: *life as we know it* can't exist in most plausible universes. God
is a blind alley in this discussion, or at least just one kind of (sheaf
of) possible explanation(s) for the life-cosy character of the universe.
Either we live in one of an indefinite number of variant universes, or this
one has been built with life in mind, or life is an unsurprising side
consequence of cosmogenesis. Whatever is the case, it's a genuine puzzle.

Damien Broderick