You are on page 1of 4

On the Fine-Tuning Argument for the Existence

of God and its Reliance on Common Sense
Luca Seemungal
May 9, 2018

Contents
1 Abstract 1

2 The Fine-Tuning Argument for the Existence of God 1

3 Common Sense 3

4 Conclusions 4

1 Abstract
This essay serves as a criticism of the Fine-Tuning Argument (henceforth, for
brevity, referred to using the acronym FTA) for the existence of God. In order
to do so we recognise FTA’s reliance on the notion of Common Sense. We then
analyse the notion of Common Sense, and find where it is or is not valid. Having
found that Common Sense is only valid from certain perspectives, we then show
that the FTA, relying on Common Sense, is made from a perspective where
Common Sense is not valid. Therefore the FTA is not a valid argument for the
existence of God.

2 The Fine-Tuning Argument for the Existence
of God
Below is our definition of the FTA.

The constants of the universe, which are called constants by their
virtue of being unit-independent and are found by physicists using
the method of science (that method viewed by us to be currently the
most effective known for measuring reality) are such that if changed
even very slightly outside the limits of their experimental errors then

1

Thirdly. so there are only 6 events. we would use science.given our current theory (which we know for sure is incomplete). and the probability of a universe having different 2 . stars would never form. be equal to 1. and it is therefore reasonable to assume that God fixed those constants. each event is associated with a probability of that event occurring. then it has been shown mathematically that. How might we find out the probability of each universe existing? Usually. In this case. then changing the physical constants results in a universe in which humans would not exist. We would on the one hand model the situation mathe- matically. We therefore have an unverifiable hypothesis. which talks about conclusions from this scientific fact. and therefore God exists. all the possible events are all the possible different unique universes defined by their various physical constants. We then verify this experimentally. etc. “the probability of a universe having the physical constants of this one is 1. First of all. But there are only 6 faces. while we might come up with some sort of mathematical theory as to what the probability of each universe existing. Therefore the probability of the die landing on each face is 16 . All the criticisms are from the second sentence. and the probabilities of all the events must sum to 1. and therefore has geometric symmetry resulting in no particular preference for each side. we have a few prerequisites which are well defined. the universe would instantaneously collapse. we have the requirement that the summation of the probability of each event. we have no way of measur- ing whether this theory is true. The first sentence. indeed one in which we would not exist. Therefore the hypotheses. throwing hundreds of thousands of dice and counting out of all the times that the dice are thrown. This is what we shall refer to as a scientific fact . Therefore the probability of the die landing on one particular face is equal to the probability of another face. is one which is irrefutable. for example. This is very vaguely defined. Crucially. Firstly. When we talk about probability.the likelihood of the existence of each universe. Secondly. we have a set of all possible events. It is therefore highly unlikely that these constants became so finely-tuned through chance. or that. for example. we do not have probabilities associated with each universe .the resulting reality would be a very different one. and indeed that which we currently regard as life would not exist. or that atoms would not form. The second sentence talks about a notion of things being “unlikely”. If we create a universe which follows the same laws of logic as our current one. In the case of throwing a die. and then on the other hand verify this experimentally. and it is therefore valid to use mathematical methods as is common in science. over all events. We assume that the die is a cube. and probability. talking about the changing of physical constants. how many times each side turns up. would model this mathematically. but this universe has differing constants. It is therefore useless to talk about the likelihood of the existence of this universe.

logic. and this is one of the fundamental flaws of Common Sense. We use creativity to create mathematical models of the world around us. And from a human perspective. Due to the vague definition of Common Sense (one might even say that the definition of Common Sense is just Common Sense . Common Sense is the ability to understand that which is shared by nearly all people. impossible to analyse the phenomenon. because the curvature of the Earth is so slight from our perspective that it does not matter. because then this universe would not exist .everyone knows it). For people who have grown up thinking that the Earth is flat.but. approximating a sphere to a flat surface is fine. and the probability of a universe having different physical constants is 21 ” are both as valid as the other. and “the probability of a universe having the physical constants of this one is 12 .physical constants is 0”. it does exist. it is difficult to argue against. Note that in order to survive and thrive. The only hypothesis we know to be weak (read “false”). we use science to infer things about the universe which are beyond our direct human perspective. it becomes experimentally valid to claim that the Earth is flat. We start with an example. It is not. Using science. until you 3 . the earth looks flatter and flatter. The FTA assumes a uniform distribution of universes . As your perspective gets smaller and smaller. Common Sense tells us that the Earth is flat. we can extend our perspectives to beyond the limits of that of a human. 3 Common Sense Below is our definition of Common Sense. learning that the Earth is roughly spherically shaped is absurd.because it is natural and normal to do so. In other words. is that “the probability of a universe having the physical constants of this one is 0”. by experimental evidence. This is because the roundness of the Earth has very little impact on our everyday lives. We claim that Common Sense is not valid when talking about universes. and critically.it assumes that all possible universes are as likely as each other . For a human. therefore the hypothesis is weak. given the assumption that this universe exists (and we could verify this experimentally). We use creativity. the Earth looks very flat. and mathematics. it is not necessary to know that the Earth is round. We use creativity to devise experiments to test the predictions of those models and try to disprove them. A flat-Earth theory works. however. We note that even the definition of Common Sense is vague. It is Common Sense. to analyse these models and come up with predictions about the universe.

For things outside a human perspective. Common Sense only works for things that are in a human perspective. which are outside the human per- spective. The FTA relies on Common Sense.devise a clever experiment which tests predictions of the flat-Earth theory. 4 . But the FTA deals with universes. We have shown that Common Sense is not valid from outside a human perspective. then the FTA is invalid when dealing with universes. to show that a round-Earth theory works better than a flat-Earth theory. Common Sense is not valid. Therefore since Common Sense is invalid when dealing with universes. Therefore the FTA is invalid. 4 Conclusions Universes are outside human perspectives.