November 26th, 2012
This is a call for papers to be submitted to me for online publication with Sententias. I’m looking for about ten papers. Please include an abstract and Turabian format. The paper can be a minimum of 4 pages but there’s not maximal limit. I will compile the papers and put them in the first volume and issue of the Sententias Journal (Free online PDF file). This is just to kickstart more activity for Sententias to take part in. Depending on the feedback and participation we can make this a peer-reviewed process so we can have some respectable esteem. But, for now, we need to start modestly. Theists, atheists, Christians, evolutionists, and intelligent design proponents are all welcome. Here are a few suggested options:
- What’s a scientific theory?
- What’s a scientific explanation?
- Breaking down a particular interpretation of quantum physics.
- Brak down a model of cosmological origins.
- Argue for Darwinism
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November 26th, 2012
In 1956 Hugh Everett III published his Ph.D. dissertation titled “The Theory of the Universal Wave Function.” In this paper Everett argued for the relative state formulation of quantum theory and a quantum philosophy, which denied wave collapse. (DOWNLOAD HERE)
Initially, this interpretation was highly criticized by the physics community and when Everett visited Niels Bohr in Copenhagen in 1959 Bohr was unimpressed with Everett’s most recent development. In 1957 Everett coined his theory as the Many Worlds Interpretation (MWI) of quantum mechanics. In an attempt to circumvent the problem of defining the mechanism for the state of collapse Everett suggested that all orthogonal relative states are equally valid ontologically. What this means is that all-possible states are true and exist simultaneously.
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October 15th, 2012
We’ve all probably heard of string theory. I’ve seen specials devoted to it on PBS, it in major science and philosophy books/papers, dialogues with skeptics, and even in [the greatest film of all time... ever] Good Will Hunting. It’s a very complex and confusing field of research. My hope is that my summation here will help give a introductory grasp of the material.
The spontaneous breakdown of symmetries in the early universe can produce linear discontinuities in fields, known as cosmic strings. Cosmic strings are also common in modern string theories in which the most fundamental reality are astronomically tiny vibrating strings (either closed or open depending on the interpretation of the mathematics). The combination of the string/scalar landscape with eternal inflation has in turn led to a markedly increased interest in anthropic reasoning. In this multiverse scenario life will evolve only in very rare regions where the local laws of physics just happen to have the properties needed for life, giving a simple explanation for why the observed universe appears to permit the evolutionary conditions for life.
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August 21st, 2012
A reader of the blog recently contacted me about the Magis Center for Reason and Faith. I’ve since added it to the Resources page. A few years ago I was able to listen to Fr. Robert Spitzer give a presentation on the fine-tuning of physics. (I don’t remember if you can see me in the video but I’m in the house right.) There’s a wonderful resource, the Physics FAQ, which I’ve linked below.
The Magis Center of Reason and Faith is a private, non-profit organization dedicated to explaining the consistency between science and spirituality in contemporary physics. In the past ten years, implications of transcendence in physics, philosophy of mathematics, and metaphysics have become more pronounced. Indeed, no other decade in history has revealed more or better evidence for God. So what is this evidence?
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July 26th, 2012
The level three multiverse is particular to a certain interpretation of quantum mechanics being Hugh Everett’s Many Worlds Interpretation. It is a mathematically simple model in support of unitary physics. Everything that can happen in the particle realm actually does happen. Each of the many worlds following a split represents one of the possible worlds remaining after the event which led to the split. There are no interactions between these worlds. No observer or inhabitant of them will notice anything about the other worlds.
Everett’s interpretation is not impossible due to the fact that we do not experience the continual splitting of our world. Observers would only view their level one multiverse, but the process of decoherence—which mimics wave function collapse while preserving unitary physics—prevents them from seeing the level three parallel copies of themselves. It is no more contradicted by our failure to experience the splitting than the theory that the earth rotates is contradicted by our failure to experience its movement. 
 Max Tegmark, “The Multiverse Hierarchy,” arXiv:0905.1283v1 (accessed March 15, 2011), 10.
 Some of the commentary is summarized by Karl Popper in Quantum Theory and the Schism in Physics, ed. W.W. Bartley, III (Totowa, NJ: Rowman and Littlefield, 1982): 91-2.
July 25th, 2012
The universe was created 13.73 billion years ago. At about 10-44 seconds after the big bang inflation kicked in and underwent a period of rapid inflation (expansion, this inflation force is thought to be dark energy depicted in Einstein’s lambda term (the cosmological constant) in the right hand side of his field equation describing the energy momentum of the universe.) The cosmological constant is a characteristic of the spacetime fabric of the universe related to its stretching energy (space energy density—commonly referred to as dark energy). The more the universe expands, the greater this stretching energy becomes. When the spacetime fabric stretches, the bodies of masses, such as galaxies, move farther apart by the stretching of space. The cosmological constant is in effect a pulling property that works against gravity. Since creation, the cosmological constant’s effect has been increasing.
Initial expectations were for the expansion to slow down and for the universe to collapse back in on itself. For instance, when a ball is tossed in the air its speed slows down and the ball falls to the ground. If the cosmological constant were applicable on the scale of tossing a ball in the air the ball would not slow down and return to the ground, it would actually increase in speed and move farther away from where it was tossed. This immediately leads to questions concerning the end of the universe. Either way, gravity contracts back in on itself or dark energy expands the universe to equilibrium (due to the cosmological constant’s effect), the universe is condemned to eventual futility. The advent of relativity theory and its application to cosmology altered the shape of the eschatological scenario on the basis of the second law of thermodynamics.
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July 11th, 2012
With the recent discovery of a new boson, which is likely to be the elusive Higgs boson, the standard model for particle physics would not be complete. Keep in mind that this only confirms the model that has been used for a long time now. This explains the early moments after the big bang where there was the electroweak force which separated and became the electromagnetic and weak nuclear forces (there’s also the strong nuclear force). This doesn’t unify the theory of gravity. Physicists must still develop a theory of quantum gravity.
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June 26th, 2012
We cannot imagine what is going to come next. [God] has set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from the beginning to end (Ecc. 3.11). No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him (1 Cor. 2.9). Stretch your mind and strain your eyes to build a sustaining hope.
HOPE is the theme to the new creation. The creation waits with eager (αποδεχομαι) longing (Rom. 8.19). αποδεχομαι [apodexomai] refers to an anxious, yet careful and patient waiting–a reservation of knowing something is coming but continuing in patience. Hope that creation will be set free from corruption to bring glory to the children of God (Rom. 8.20-21). We wait eagerly for the redemption of our bodies, we groan inwardly for the hope that we were saved by (Rom. 8.23-24). The new creation is unique–hope that is seen is not hope (Rom. 8.24-25).
So, where is heaven and hell? Heaven and hell are physical and not just spiritual. There is a resurrection of believers (1 Cor. 15) and a resurrection of unbelievers (Dan. 12.2; Rev. 20). Heaven and hell continue to exist after this creation. The Bible clarifies that heaven and hell continue after the moment God commands the cosmos to be “rolled up like a scroll” (Is. 34.4), to “disappear with a roar” (2 Pt. 3.10), and to “melt in the heat” (2 Pt. 3.12). This of it this way: suppose I have a paper with the image of Dante’s universe on it. It’s two dimensional (for the analogy to work I need to remove a dimension). If I crumble up the piece of paper the external dimensions where I am do not crumble up too. I can crumble the paper with those dimensions and still not be affected by it.
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June 18th, 2012
The Borde-Vilenkin-Guth Theorem states that any universe, which has, on average, a rate of expansion greater 1 that system had to have a finite beginning. This would apply in any multiverse scenario as well. There are four exceptions to the theorem.*
Time reversal at singularity
(Regarding BVG): The Intuitive reason why de Sitter inflation cannot be past eternal is that in the full de Sitter space, exponential expansion is preceded by exponential contraction. Such a contracting phase is not part of standard inflationary models, and does not appear to be consistent with the physics of inflation. If thermalized regions were able to form all the way to past infinity in the contracting spacetime, the whole universe would have been thermalized before inflationary expansion could begin. In our analysis we will exclude the possibility of such a contracting phase by considering spacetimes for which the past region obeys an averaged expansion condition, by which we mean that the average expansion rate in the past is greater than zero: Havg > 0. (Borde, Guth, and Vilenkin 2003, p1)
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