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Anthropic Principle-Are we just lucky?

If the sun was closer to the earth then it would be too hot to sustain life.  Further away and too cold.  The moon is just the right size to effectively control the tides of the universe.  Any smaller and it wouldn’t provide the needed benefits.  Larger and it would be unstable. If gravity was altered in the most minuscule amount we would have no Sun and thus no life.

The Earth’s atmosphere is made up of 21 percent oxygen.  Change that number to 25 percent and we would have spontaneous combustion.  Drop the number to 12 percent and we would suffocate.   The earth tilts at 23 degrees, any change in that would make temperatures too extreme for life.  Move Jupiter and the Earth would have been destroyed by asteroids.   If the orbit of the Earth around the Sun was altered results would be disatrous.  Closer and we would be sucked into the sun.  Farther away and the gravitational pull would be too weak and we would fly off into space.

All of the above factors and more (many many many more) are needed for our world to sustain life. This is the essence of the anthropic principle.  Basically, it states that the fine-tuning exhibited in our world which allows for life shows design.  And if design then a designer.

The question is what is more reasonable:  That we are really lucky that all of these coincidences worked in our favor, or that the Earth has a design and therefore a designer.  I believe the latter.  Therefore, I believe in God.

Next post in this series we will discuss objections and what this teaches us about God.

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  1. This is one perfect example of just how complex our world is. However, there are so many out there it seems crazy for a person to believe that these things occur out of pure coincidence. Take the human circulatory system. A vast array of veins, arteries, organs, and cells that make the most intricate highway system seem to have been built by children. There is no feasible way that complex occurences just happen in nature by chance. As Wes stated, our unique world along with the complexities of living organisms repeatedly show the tell tale signs of a design. A design that cannot be replicated by man, and certainly cannot be explained by mans feeble attempts. The only textbook that can give the answers to all of these questions was not published in a factory in upstate N.Y. It has been around for centuries and the truth is there. Waiting for us to read and apply to our lives.

  2. Wesley

    September 2, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    Thanks Ben for the comment. I think for some people no matter the overwhelming support in favor, will not accept God.

  3. Great timing on this one Wesley! Stephen (I think is his first name) Hawking just came out and changed his mine about this issue. He know believes in te big bang theory as opposed to a creator. This leads me to a thought I’ve considered for awhile, do you think the smarter you are (academically) the harder it is for you to have faith or believe in God and creation? It is frustrating to hear people who truly believe that all these major things just happened perfectly by chance. If I were said to be so lucky that I avoided all the disaterous circumstaces over and over and not only avoid them but then recieve immense benefits I think people would say there is no way that is possible. However that is the same thing they are saying is possible in terms of the big bang. (hope the last illustration made sense). Great job Wesley!

  4. Wesley

    September 3, 2010 at 6:34 pm

    I’m going to be talking about Hawking more tomorrow.

    I don’t think the smarter you are the less likely you are to believe in God. Many brilliant people believe in God. I think that currently our academic environment is anti-God therefore it is producing individuals with a warped worldview.

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