[Marxism] Anthropic principles (was Re: Freeman Dyson on scientific heretics and climate change)

Les Schaffer schaffer at optonline.net
Sat Aug 11 18:11:04 MDT 2007

Jim Farmelant wrote:
> It should be noted that the anthropic principle is actually a set of
> related ideas that

great post Jim.  i've always viewed the anthropic principles as
consistency checks: no sense thinking evolution took X years when the
solar system formed Y (<X) years ago, etc. it sounds trivial, but as a
set of checks it is not. the extensive interpretations and
philosophizing around it are a different story. i read parts of Barrow,
Tipler, and Wheeler's book a long time ago and thought one shouldn't
thumb one's nose too fast at the WAP. Wheeler is top notch in my
opinion. Barrow and Tipler have gone into other curious directions, see
their The Physics of Immortality: Modern Cosmology, God and the
Resurrection of the Dead.

> Some physicists have argued that the role played by the
> observer in quantum mechanics as interpreted by the
> Copenhagen School allow us to formulate a more precise
> version of the SAP.  According to the Copenhagen Interpretation,
> no phenomenon exists unless it is oberved because obervers
> are necessary to collapse quantum wave functions. 

although as you know there have been extensive debates about whether or
not observer means classically functioning instrument or "conciousness".

> The theoretical physicist John Wheeler has formulated what
> he calls the particpatory anthropic principle based on the
> Copenhagen Interpretation of quantum mechanics. According
> to the participatory anthropic principle (PAP) observers must
> exist for the universe to come into being.

right, i forgot his angle on this one


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