So precise is this set up that some Christians have gone as far as to claim that it is direct evidence for the existence of a benevolent God at work behind the scenes who keeps humanity in mind and constructs a universe suitable for them to exist in.
I would agree more so with the folks who were at the meeting tonight (and with the viewpoint presented in the DVD we were discussing) that this fine tuning is more so evidence that is consistent with a theistic interpretation (whether or not that fine tuning arises from a twirling of cosmic dials or through an evolutionary development of a subset of parallel universes within a larger multiverse) rather than definite proof of a Supreme Intelligence/God at work.
As interesting as that all was there was a bit of a slight lack of robots and artificial lifeforms for me which got me thinking. What would the state of play be for such forms of life with regards to the Anthropic Principle?
I initially see two options here:
- The original 'naturally' spawned creators of the subsequent artificial lifeforms co-exist with with each other and the artificial lifeforms can thus recognise the convenience and amicability of fine tuning in the context of their creators and agree with the consistency of that viewpoint in a theistic interpretation of the nature of the universe
- The creators are no longer in existence (think a billion years or so down the line) for one reason or another. Exact knowledge of the artificial lifeforms own origins have also been lost. It would seem that in this scenario there is no reason to think that there would be an obvious connection between the universes properties and the form of life now inhabiting it.
This could be interpreted by the artificial lifeforms to mean that they were specially and instantly created by God which would be a misunderstanding of their place in the universe. Equally however this mystery could also be a driver into the lifeforms search for their true origins and thus reveal to them a wider understanding of the scope of God's creative plans for the universe.
Interestingly this sort of activity parallels pretty much what we humans are attempting to do so now through science and a better understanding of our own history.
Another idea that could be included in either scenario 1 or 2 above is that is perhaps that although the artificial lifeforms might not be able to associate themselves especially with some more human-centric fine tuning arguments there would still be plenty of other more generic arguments as to why the universe seems friendly to producing intelligent lifeforms of one form or another.
By looking at a wider perspective they might well conclude on a wider 'Genesis' Principle of which our current Anthropic Principle might be a smaller part of which would however remain hypothetical to the artificial lifeforms who construct the final, more encompassing principle. The presence of its possibility however might give them important clues on the nature of the universe and help them to explore and appreciate more the universal consistency of the purposes of God.