“Why are we here?”: Reader’s glossary
Dear readers, you all are invited to read the shared article of identical twins Pierre Doucet and Paul Doucet‘s informative post (The Anthropic Principle) about the most complicated and yet uncertain question of existence. The identical twins now lived in the rural suburb of Canadian province Nova Scotia having same occupation of landscape gardening business and alike to look at the cosmic events with philosophical curiosities.
“Nature’s Timeless Principles and the Examined Life” —the slight tricky refrain of the blog (The landscape of reality) reflects their subjective interest of science and philosophy to dig out the meaning of this earthly universal life to the end. The twins are literary nature-lover, in both aspect of profession and discovery. They clenched themselves into the nature from last 25 years and still be the follower of this life-causing and life-hauling reality.
The visible nature perhaps the first manuscript for human, from where the first curious quest begun, “Who I’m and why I be here?” Answer is yet multiplied and relative to the fact of reality. The existence of “everything” is real when anybody thinks it real, and on the opposite, yonder reality seems not real when anybody consider the rhythmic infusion of the “everything” as something different as it appears to the sight.
… if stuffs exist it takes the space and if space not existed stuffs can never be existed
The substance of visible matters and explicitly the invisible substances, all are equally contrasting here to given birth and omitted the landscape. The answer (“Who I’m and why I be here?”), is greatly depended to the realization of this spellbound alteration, where the definition (of reality) is bound to rotate by the accord interlinked alteration. The identical twins tried to dig out the great question by following the most recent scientific progress on Anthropic Principle, which is now tried to explain the reason that why we exist.
Reason is correlative. It depends on the body-capacities of observer, and obviously the thinker, who take decision that he will think to the last to get the real answer. Is it possible to get anything final or absolute about the existence? I exactly not sure but appreciate the curiosity, because it is necessary to fought with the paradox of “what real existence is and in which extent.”
Anyway, the body-capacity of seeing, observing, thinking and inferring are not similar here. We all are animal but having different capacities and instincts. For instance, the owl (and many other alike) can see the tiniest insects in dark that we even not seen in broad daylight. The lion gets the smell of its victim from one kilometer distances (and many other alike, suppose the leopard gets it in three kilometer distance), which we cannot. If they have capacity to express their instinctive power in language, I think their observation and argument about “what reality is” could different from us.
We human have a great analytical capacity to justify the “everything” and we’re able to create a chain between the “most visible and utmost non-visible” objects, other animal have Lilliputian to that context. Despite this, we’re not similar among us to explain the reason at all. Everybody has its own point-of-view to explain the reality of existence. A poet’s reasoning about reality perhaps not similar to the other knowledge seekers; the theology and philosophy’s reasoning nowadays greatly contradict to the scientific theorem. Therefore, it’s really a tough battle to reach the plausible perception about “what reality is and why we existed here.” I think the identical twins knows it as well but they keep their trust on latest anthropic principle to consider that, it could be relatively explicit than the other theory and logical sequence.
We all are animal but having different capacities and instincts
They explained the anthropic principle in an informative method to take the easiest trajectory, so far it was possible for them to choose. They used the latest explanation of Stephen Hawking and Lawrence Krauss about the anthropic principle to get the life here. Yes, everything is commencing here due to the massive gravitational density of energies in the early moment of big bang and that is why we exist, is perhaps a logical commentary of “why everything existed over there”, but it doesn’t solve the quandary that, “why this massive density happened at belong past and what was before.”
The anthropic assumption could applicable to the moment and after of big bang but not before. We know Hawking’s theory itself stands on the metaphysical inference of scientific model and yet it is more philosophical rather than the pragmatic proof. The article writers self mentioned it in the article, I quoted:
“Is the anthropic principle a satisfying explanation? On the surface, it seems like an obvious statement that explains very little. But as I reflect on the idea, I am not so sure. Maybe it is suggesting something profound. Perhaps the answer to why we are here is simple: it could not be otherwise.”
“Our existence is the result of all that came before. Although it does appear that the universe was made for us, it is in fact, the universe that made us. We were formed from the conditions that were set long before conscious beings could observe any of it.”
This underlines of quoted comments indicates that there’s something whimsical to reasoning the existence of “everything” in light of anthropic principle. Suppose, “Perhaps the answer to why we are here is simple: it could not be otherwise.”, and to the contrary: “We were formed from the conditions that were set long before conscious beings could observe any of it.” —automatically reflects the Autonomous nature of energies, first they autonomously condescended them, then the law of physics (includes the fusion and time) was begins to burst out everything, and after that the whole universe is expanding to the uncertain endlessness, where the energies of matter and empty spaces are now almost equal.
Is it solve the philosophical quandary (maybe my doubt is stupidity) that, “If it is autonomous then “why it could not be otherwise”, since the autonomy of anything could never exactly inferable to the last.
If they have capacity to express their instinctive power in language, I think their observation and argument about “what reality is” could different from us.
I think the article writers inspired by the Lawrence Krauss’s principle greatly that everything in here is commencing from such type nothing (before the bang), where nothing (no time, space, matter or even the energies) is existed, which we used to explain the reasoning of life and the universe. The doubt is raise over after that, if everything belonged in nothing state (before creating the massive condescended state for dilation) then in from which state the quantum fluctuation appeared suddenly in the scene.
So far I know professor Krauss is militant to the philosophical metaphysics, but his reasoning is yet imitate the repercussion of oldies philosophical ideas. Even though he is militant atheist, but sadly his autonomous nothing could explain in both perspective of theism and atheism. An atheist could get some pleasure from his declared “before the beginning of beginning”, to think that “we’re in here for the beginning point of nothing”. And to the parallel, a theist (maybe the believer of Vedic, Christian, even the most imitating religion the Islam) also gets the pleasure to consider the theory that the almighty Lord was stated incorporeal in the autonomous state, then He wished to burst out the word “kun fayakun” (“to be” or “to exist”) and after that “we’re here for life”.
However, another stanza of the article bit more conflicting, I quoted:
“The universe has been expanding since the big bang, and as it expands the density of matter decreases. Matter gets diluted as galaxies get farther apart from each other. Meanwhile, the energy in empty space remains constant (there is nothing to dilute or increase in empty space). Therefore, at the time galaxies formed the density of matter was greater than the energy in empty space. That’s a good thing, because the gravitational effect of matter was dominant, which allowed matter to come together.”
Consider the chance and uncertainty principle definitely exigent and I truly meant it logical and pragmatic, but the underlined word “Meanwhile, the energy in empty space remains constant (there is nothing to dilute or increase in empty space)”, I think creates contradiction to the early state of “everything was stated in a nothing state” statement. If the present empty space is nothing to dilute or increase for the expansion of universe then what was the early state condition? Was it constant in big empty space with its nothingness? If it was constant (according to the law of present state) then how it was gets prepared itself to dilute or increase for the bang!
Krauss’s theory is great to think everything in a new perspective, but when he omitted the space from the scenario only to prove his “nothing”, it creates quandary that “what does he meant by the “empty”? Today’s observation and mathematical model (if I’m not wrong) clearly stated that the universe has no empty space and it was not emptied just the moment of bang or far before. If it’s true that empty nothing could possible there, and if it’s filled by stuffs lot of probable events can happened there, which is truly uncertain (and I loved it). Is it possible to think any state under any condition where no space existed? If space not existed, how everything stated there?
Is it possible to get anything final or absolute about the existence?
The old Indian logic precisely dealt this dilemma of space-and-stuffs. They’re interlinked to the relation; if stuffs exists it takes the space and if space not existed stuffs can never be existed. I think Krauss’s thoughtful assumption suffers the same old linguistic problem to visualize the “nothing state of everything (that has been the constant beginning of everything)” before the bang. He could consider an “unlimited space” scenario (with full of nothing, waited to commence for everything) for his theory and it will help the anthropic principle to face the same old question, “why I be here now and where was staying before the beginning of this “everything”.
I hope my reading intuition if raise anything ludicrous, the identical twins (or any reader of the article) will help me to rectified. Personally I’m the science-lover (though yet I know very little about this) with the curiosity of questioning it critically. If anybody here help me to understand more about this, it will help my “self” to advance more to the “Self Quest”.
The Anthropic Principle
by Pierre Doucet and Paul Doucet
Why are we here? This is perhaps the most fundamental philosophical question. One can imagine contemplating this question at any time in human history. Many stories have been inspired by this question, usually taking the form of myths, or religious and spiritual traditions. Today, ‘why are we here’ is also a scientific question. The anthropic principle arose as a response to the question of human existence. The idea was first proposed in 1973 by theoretical astrophysicist Brandon Carter. Since then, it has been expanded and stated in several forms.
What is the Anthropic Principle?
The word anthropic is defined by the Merriam-Webster online dictionary as: “Of or relating to human beings or the period of their existence on Earth.” That’s a start. For simplicity, I will stick close to Brandon Carter’s original formulation, which he expressed as two variants. I will paraphrase based on the description from a few sources:
1. The Weak Anthropic Principle refers to our special location in the universe (both in time and space), which is conducive to our existence. The fact that we can observe the universe means that planet Earth must have the conditions necessary for our existence.
2. The Strong Anthropic Principle refers to the fundamental laws of physics, which are precisely set for our existence. The strong principle takes into account the properties of the universe as a whole.
The Burden of Proof
In a vast universe it is not surprising that a planet, like the Earth, has a special location (usually called a habitable zone or a Goldilocks zone). The specific laws of the universe needed for human life are more difficult to explain (usually called fine-tuning). Using a legal metaphor, the strong anthropic principle has a greater burden of proof than the weak anthropic principle. In this case, burden of proof is a figure of speech, because the anthropic principle is as much a philosophical idea as a scientific one.
In The Grand Design, Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow describe the weak anthropic principle as an environmental factor. They write:
“Environmental coincidences are easy to understand because ours is only one cosmic habitat among many that exist in the universe, and we obviously must exist in a habitat that supports life”
The strong anthropic principle is all-encompassing and generally more controversial. Hawking and Mlodinow go on:
“The strong anthropic principle suggests that the fact that we exist imposes constraints not just on our environment but on the possible form and content of the laws of nature themselves”
Stating the Obvious or a Profound Insight
Is the anthropic principle a satisfying explanation? On the surface, it seems like an obvious statement that explains very little. But as I reflect on the idea, I am not so sure. Maybe it is suggesting something profound. Perhaps the answer to why we are here is simple: it could not be otherwise.
For example, Lawrence Krauss provides an anthropic interpretation to one of the universe’s properties. In the book, A Universe from Nothing, he examines the relationship between the energy density of matter and the energy density of empty space. Yes, space has energy and it can be measured. The density of matter in the universe can also be measured. It turns out that now is the only time in cosmic history that both values are comparable. That’s a curious result.
The universe has been expanding since the big bang, and as it expands the density of matter decreases. Matter gets diluted as galaxies get farther apart from each other. Meanwhile, the energy in empty space remains constant (there is nothing to dilute or increase in empty space). Therefore, at the time galaxies formed the density of matter was greater than the energy in empty space. That’s a good thing, because the gravitational effect of matter was dominant, which allowed matter to come together.
However, if the values for matter and energy had been comparable at the epoch of galaxy formation, galaxies would not have formed. Empty space exerts a repulsive force, which would have canceled out normal attractive gravity. Matter would not have clumped together. Krauss writes in A Universe from Nothing:
“But if galaxies hadn’t formed, then stars wouldn’t have formed. And if stars hadn’t formed, planets wouldn’t have formed. And if planets hadn’t formed, then astronomers wouldn’t have formed!”
It seems highly coincidental that the energy values for matter and space are roughly equal now, but they could not have equalized too much earlier. Otherwise, no one would be here to observe it. Similarly, if one of a number of physical properties were slightly different, we would also not be here. That’s when anthropic reasoning steps in: An observer must observe the conditions of the universe that allows the observer to exist.
Maybe a change of perspective is needed: Instead of focusing on our present circumstances and looking back, we can look at the evolution of the universe. Life is a latecomer to the process, of which an incalculable series of events occurred. Our existence is the result of all that came before. Although it does appear that the universe was made for us, it is in fact, the universe that made us. We were formed from the conditions that were set long before conscious beings could observe any of it.
Is Physics an Environmental Science?
The traditional approach of physics is to discover and understand the universe we live in. The fundamental laws and the values for the constants of nature are consistent throughout the observable universe. The physical laws discovered on Earth can be applied to the universe as a whole. But there can only be one exact set of laws and history that allow for our existence. That’s unless our universe is not the only one.
For some, recent scientific evidence is suggesting that there are many universes (a multiverse). Others point out that inferring a multiverse is not science; because by definition other universes cannot be observed directly (they would exist outside our observable universe). If we apply the strong anthropic principle to the multiverse theme, it does partly explain the exact parameters of our universe.
If the cosmos is populated with many universes, possibly infinite universes, then the laws of physics could be purely random. They would simply emerge as an environmental consequence. Some physicists have compared the multiverse to a foam of bubbles (each bubble representing a universe). The laws could be different in every bubble of an endless cosmic foam. Some bubble universes could be similar to ours, others vastly different.
Of course, this is a hypothetical argument. Nevertheless, if we could observe every universe in a multiverse, every single one would be finely tuned for its own existence. Anthropic reasoning would state that there is nothing special about our universe. In all the non-life generating universes there is no one to observe them, in ours there is. It’s that simple. Obviously, the anthropic principle (inferring a multiverse or not) is not a proven argument, but it’s one of many possible answers to the question: Why are we here?
References: Stephen W. Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow, The Grand Design (New York: Bantam Books, 2010), 155. Lawrence M. Krauss, A Universe from Nothing (New York: Free Press, 2012).
Answer is yet multiplied and relative by the fact of reality.
Read more about the twins click: The landscape of reality