More evidence against the existence of god (universal constant that may be variable).

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More evidence against the existence of god (universal constant that may be variable).

 

More evidence against the existence of god (universal constant that may be variable).

 

OK, I will pop the article after my commentary on the matter.

 

Those of us who have two working brain cells are aware that the anthropic principal in not proof of the existence of god. Sure, the universe is as it is. So fucking what?

 

If the universe was much different than it is, then there would be nobody to ask the questions. Even so, the universe is as it is. How that leads to some dude who decided how the universe will be is really insane.

 

In fact, I would raise a question about the matter. What if the universe was just slightly different than it is known to be? Sure, if gravity was 10% different than the measured value, then nothing. What if gravity had been 0.0000000000001% different from what it happens to be? Would that have been a universe that was so different that it would not admit the existence of life as we know it?

 

If the answer happens to be yes, then just add a bunch more zeros to the number above. Eventually, you will get to a number that is different from what we have but not so different as to prevent life as we know it.

 

Again, so fucking what? The nature of the universe does not automagically lead to some dude with a universe making machine twiddling dials to set certain numbers to the values that we observe.

 

New Physics? Fundamental Cosmic Constant Now Seems Shifty By Clara Moskowitz
SPACE.com Senior Writer
posted: 14 September 2010
10:32 pm ET

A fundamental constant of the universe may not be so constant after all, according to a new study.

Recent observations of distant galaxies suggest that the strength of the electromagnetic force – the so-called fine-structure constant – actually varies throughout the universe. In one direction, the constant seemed to grow larger the farther astronomers looked; in another direction the constant took on smaller values with greater distance.

If confirmed, this revelation could reshape physicists' understanding of cosmology from the ground up. It may even help solve a major conundrum: Why are all the constants of nature perfectly tuned for life to exist?

"This is an exciting and potentially important result that challenges astronomers and particle physicists for an explanation," said astrophysicist John Barrow of the University of Cambridge, who was not involved in the new study but has worked with the researchers in the past. "It could be a further hint about new physics."

A changing constant

Astrophysicists have been studying the fine-structure constant – known as the alpha constant – for years, searching for hints that it might change. Some projects have found evidence that the constant does vary, while other probes confirmed the constant's constancy.  [The Greatest Mysteries in Science]

But the evidence supporting the alpha constant's variable nature was ambiguous, because it could also be due to a variation over time, or across different parts of space, researchers said.

The farther out astronomers peer into the universe, the longer it has taken the light they see to reach Earth. Since this light is older, it represents an earlier epoch in the universe's history.

So if scientists measured a change in the fine-structure constant from different observations, it may have been because the constant has different values in different places, or it might have been because it had different values at different times. But determining which case is right has been a challenge.

To settle that question, researchers led by John Webb from the University of New South Wales, Australia, gathered observations from the Keck telescope in Hawaii, and the Very Large Telescope in Chile – thereby covering both the northern and southern skies.

"When you look in one direction, you cannot distinguish between variation in space and variation in time," co-researcher Victor Flambaum, also of the University of New South Wales, told SPACE.com. "Now there is nearly complete coverage of the sky. The conclusion is:It's a variation in space, not in time."

To determine how strong the alpha constant was in any given spot, the scientists measured the frequency at which electrons in various atoms would hop from one energy level to the next. This frequency depends on the fine-structure constant.

The researchers found that in the northern sky, the fine-structure constant gets smaller with increasing distance, or as astronomers look farther back in time. In the southern sky, however, the alpha constant value appeared to increase the farther away they looked.

Since those two results would contradict each other if the alpha constant varied with time, the constant must take on different values in different areas of the universe, the researchers concluded.

Why do we exist?

Webb presented the findings last week at the Joint European and National Astronomy Meeting in Lisbon, Portugal. The research has been submitted to the journal Physical Review Letters and is awaiting peer review.

If the study is confirmed, it could be a landmark find in astrophysics, researchers said.

"I find this result quite exciting," said Steve Lamoreaux, a physicist at Yale University who was not involved in the study. "It explains the apparent discrepancy between different analyses done the last few years.

"Of course, the result needs to be independently verified," he added.

Flambaum said he was particularly interested in what the result could tell scientists about the origin of life.

"This is a puzzle which has existed for many years," he told SPACE.com. "A minor variation of the fundamental constants forbids life to appear – we just could not exist."

For Flambaum and others, it seemed like too much of a coincidence that the universe's constants – which includes the alpha constant and others like the value of the strength of gravity, or the strength of the strong interaction that binds atomic nuclei together – should be perfect for building stars and planets and life.

"Now we have an explanation," Flambaum said."If fundamental constants vary in space, we just appear in the area of the universe where constants are good for us."

In other regions of the universe where the constants are different, life may be absent, he said.

Making sure

Flambaum admitted that such revolutionary results need even more evidence to be believed for sure.

And other experts may take some convincing.

Helge Kragh, a science historian at the University of Aarhus, Denmark, who has written about the history of the fine-structure constant, said it's important to "keep a healthy skepticism" about announcements like these, since past measurements of variation, such as earlier claims that the constant changes over time, have later been disproven.

"If history is a guide -- and often it is not -- the results of Webb et al. will turn out to be untenable," he said.

Flambaum said the team plans to collect more data from the distant universe, as well as conduct laboratory experiments, to test their results.

"The problem is whether there are systematic biases which the authors have not thought of which can mimic the appearance of varying alpha," Barrow said. "They are a very strong and experienced observational team who have subjected the data to many tests in the search for bias but have failed to find any so far."

http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/fine-structure-constant-varies-space-100915.html

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 Yes, but the fact that the

 Yes, but the fact that the answer is 42 will never change no matter what the alpha constant is.

I just usually go with my own taste. If I like something, and it happens to be against the law, well, then I might have a problem.- Hunter S. Thompson


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How many ways are there to

NoMoreCrazyPeople wrote:
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More evidence against the existence of god

This is a very foolish position to take ... it cannot be proven, it has already  been hashed out by some of he greatest minds.

may I suggest that this thread be terminated forthwith ..

 

 


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Huh?

Huh?

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Brian37
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This is nothing new and you

This is nothing new and you don't have to be a scientist to understand that cognition is not required for biological life or even a natural object to form.

If one can accept that a hurricane is not cognitive, and the planet and sun are not cognitive, then why would the universe be cognitive as a whole, much less what came before the universe.

Admitting what we don't know about what came before the big bang, only means that we don''t know. But I would submit that whatever ingredients not known, would be as much an object as any other non being object we observe today.

As Hawkins put it and WAY PAST TIME, he doesn't say, that you cant disprove a god" but rightfully says "a god is not required". Of course he only means "you cant disprove a god" strictly in a semantic sense. I think he is being kind. I think you can disprove, not that it is our job, but you can disprove the bullshit claim of ANY deity claim by simply stating the scientific fact that thoughts require material.

 

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Teralek
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If I understand correctly

 

If I understand correctly "variable constants" are proof against God... does that mean that constants are proof FOR God?!?! OMG!! 

Brian37 wrote:

If one can accept that a hurricane is not cognitive, and the planet and sun are not cognitive, then why would the universe be cognitive as a whole, much less what came before the universe.

 

Your logic is funny! The Carbon atom in your neuron is not cognitive... But YOU are! As a whole! ... I think.

 

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"I once prayed to god for a bike, but quickly found out he didnt work that way...so I stole a bike and prayed for his forgiveness"

"All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force... We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent Mind. This Mind is the matrix of all matter." (Max Planck)

"the existence of mind in some organism on some planet in the universe is surely a fact of fundamental significance. Through conscious beings the universe has generated self-awareness. This can be no trivial detail, no minor byproduct of mindless, purposeless forces. We are truly meant to be here." Paul Davies