Modern cosmology tells us that the universe is remarkably 'fine-tuned' for life. If the constants of physics or the initial conditions at the Big Bang were different by the smallest of margins then the universe would have been dull and lifeless. Why should the universe be so accommodating to life? Many cosmologists believe that the existence of many universes can explain why ours is so special. In this book Rodney Holder subjects this 'multiverse' hypothesis to rigorous philosophical critique. A multitude of problems is exposed. Going substantially further than existing treatments, Holder argues that divine design is the best explanation for cosmic fine-tuning, specifically that design by God is a superior explanation in terms of both initial plausibility and explanatory power, and is therefore the most rational position to take on the basis of the cosmological data.
Table of Contents
Contents: Preface; Scientific naturalism and the alternative of design; The origin and evolution of the universe; Cosmic fine-tuning; Avoiding the inference of design; How to evaluate the fine-tuning - probabilistic framework; Comparing the alternative hypotheses; The multiverse - a viable alternative to design?; Inflation to the rescue?; The realization of infinitely many universes in cosmology; Conclusion; Appendices; Glossary; Bibliography; Index.
Revd Dr Rodney D. Holder is Course Director, Faraday Institute of Science and Religion, St Edmund's College, University of Cambridge, UK.
'Rodney Holder lays out a clear and detailed account of the fine-tunings of natural law that were necessary for our universe to be able to evolve life. He then uses Bayes's theorem to give a careful assessment of the metaphysical significance of these facts.Â The book is a most helpful contribution to the contemporary active discussion of an argument for God's existence based on an appeal to cosmic design.' Sir John Polkinghorne, University of Cambridge, UK 'The subject is of enormous interest, The issue of design or 'many universes' is a fundamental one, and it is a joy to see it dealt with so professionally by someone versed both in theology and astrophysics.' Professor Roger Trigg, University of Warwick, UK 'Rodney Holder writes in an area of great importance with a light but authoritative style. This book explores an area where there is, to my knowledge, nothing comparable with this publication.' Revd Dr David Wilkinson, St John's College Durham, UK 'Holder [...] builds a compelling argument for God's existence being statistically more likely, and philosophically more satisfying, than the theory of multiple universes... Holder has crafted an excellent response to the multiverse theory... an indispensable contribution in support of a statistical defense of God's existence and creation.' Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith 'The book is one for the serious reader and it is a welcome contribution to a topic of considerable importance in the contemporary dialogue between science and theology.' Theology '... [Holder] has produced an intriguing, important and novel work - I know of no other work that deals in such depth with the issue of the multiverse and design.' Themelios 'God, the Multiverse and Everything is an excellent, engaging and fascinating book, which will surely help to inform and provoke serious debate on the issue of cosmological design in the future.' Science and Christian Belief 'Numerous conceptual innovations accompany an eloquent an