Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, Lewis & Clark College

Fine Tuning

Added on by jay odenbaugh.

Here is an argument for the universe having been "fine tuned" by an intelligent designer. Each of the cosmological constants could have had different values than they do (e.g. the gravitational constant g ). However, intelligent life is compatible only with very, very, very few values of those constants. Suppose there are 5 such constants each of which can take 1 of 10 values. Moreover, assume that only one of those values per constant is compatible with intelligent life. Thus, the probability that all of the constants have the values they do (i.e. compatible with intelligent life) is P(intelligent life/chance) = (1/10)^5 = 0.00001. Likewise, P(intelligent life/intelligent designer) = 1 since it is likely that an intelligent designer would create intelligent beings in our universe. Thus, if we should believe the best explanation of some phenomenon and intelligent design better explains fine tuning than random chance, then we should believe that an intelligent designer fine tuned the universe. 

Is this a cogent* argument? 

*A cogent argument is one where the premises make the conclusion probable as opposed to validity.