The Open Universe: An Argument for Indeterminism from the PostScript to the Logic of Scientific Discovery by Karl PopperPopper outlines his thoughts on the existence of indeterminism, though human free will isnt touched on until the afterward. Primarily covers the arguments for indeterminism against both philosophical determinism and scientific determinism.
Intuition: just because it may persuade and convince us of the truth of what we have intuited, may badly mislead us: it is an invaluable helper, but also a dangerous helper, for it tends to make us uncritical. We must always meet it with respect, with gratitude, and with an effort to be severely critical of it.
Scientific determinism: an attempt to replace the vague idea of foreknowledge by the more precise idea of predictability. It asserts that events shown in the film of our lives are, forwards or backwards, never haphazard but always subject to rules. Any scientific theory must imply this much or not be scientific. It appeals to the success of science, eg Newtons theories.
But if scientific determinism is accurate then our logic is really more like brainwashing of the initial states of the universe and our indoctrination to its laws. It implies that we cannot rationally approach the truth because we are not free to be persuaded by arguments from reason, because it was determined for us ahead of time. Reducing rationality to an illusion negates the meaning of science and the scientific methods success at revealing our errors.
Like Einstein, many will have to move from scientific determinists when they realize there are no valid arguments in favor, and move to metaphysical or religious determinist.
Probabilities: for the determinist, the law-like behavior of probabilities, like the 50/50 chance of a coin toss, are ultimately irreducible and unexplainable. They must say both that every coin toss is predetermined from initial conditions of the universe for either heads or tails, and that the universe corrects the tosses and those initial conditions to converge the tosses at 50/50. The convergence must be explained by more unknown initial conditions that are further unexplainable. This prima facie characteristic of determinism adds no explanation.
All singular events in this universe are unique, and if considered under the aspect of their uniqueness might then be described as ultimately undetermined or free. Some actions can of course be caused or even determined already of time, but not everything to 100% accurately *from within the system* (the theory orscientific determinism).
Human knowledge progresses from correcting mistakes, and will create more in the future, those which cannot be foreseen until the future problems arise. Emergent properties represent unforeseeable evolutionary steps in biology, physics, and cosmology.
As a philosophy reductionism is a failure, but these failures led to outstanding success as a method for science to get closer to truth. Popper said we need to act like determinists to explore the problems of what piece of philosophy we can reduce to science next, even if 100% reductionism is impossible and even a bad philosophy. Because sciences greatest accomplishments are failed reductions. Reductionism will always fail to be 100%. Darwin and Newton werent right, Einstein wasnt 100% right. But where their theories failed we open up entire new fields. Reductionism will always fail, and thats why we have an open universe to explore. So despite Popper being an indeterministic we must act methodically deterministic if we hope to reduce our theories and discover causal laws.
But a belief in determinism (aka philosophical reductionism or scientism) and the ability to reduce everything everywhere, leads to ignoring and sweeping real problems under the rug.
Popper says the role of dogma is to set the border of whats allowed and where you have to stop asking, why?. Being a reductionist does the same. People had to shut their eyes to the problem of design in nature until Darwins great success. Natural selection wasnt allowed to be discussed as part of the physical universe. After Darwins theory the reductionists then adopted it since evolution was reduced to a branch of biology. Godels incompleteness says all physical science is incomplete. We can never hope for complete reductionism since we live in an open and indetermined universe, but the critical method of science produces partially successful reductions often and that is enough. Open problems are beneficial and to be called in their own. They are as interesting and important as their solutions. We need more of them and cant sweep them under the rug.
Ultimate fate of the universe
The ultimate fate of the universe is a topic in physical cosmology , whose theoretical restrictions allow possible scenarios for the evolution and ultimate fate of the universe to be described and evaluated. Based on available observational evidence, deciding the fate and evolution of the universe have now become valid cosmological questions, being beyond the mostly untestable constraints of mythological or theological beliefs. Many possible futures have been predicted by different scientific hypotheses, including that the universe might have existed for a finite and infinite duration, or towards explaining the manner and circumstances of its beginning. Observations made by Edwin Hubble during the s—s found that galaxies appeared to be moving away from each other, leading to the currently accepted Big Bang theory. This suggests that the universe began — very small and very dense — about There is a strong consensus among cosmologists that the universe is considered "flat" see Shape of the universe and will continue to expand forever. Factors that need to be considered in determining the universe's origin and ultimate fate include: the average motions of galaxies, the shape and structure of the universe, and the amount of dark matter and dark energy that the universe contains.
Related to open universe: closed universe. A model of the universe in which there is insufficient matter, and thus insufficient gravitational force, to halt the expansion initiated by the Big Bang. A model of the universe in which there is not enough matter, and therefore not enough gravitational force, to stop the expansion started by the big bang. See Note at big bang. Mentioned in? Big Bang closed universe open open fire open up opened openly openness. References in periodicals archive?
What happens next is the real mystery. Luckily, there are only three real possibilities: The universe can be open, flat or closed. Open Universe. In this scenario, the universe will expand forever, and as it does, the matter it contains will spread thinner and thinner. Eventually, galaxies will run out of the raw materials they need to make new stars.
One of the most profound insights of General Relativity was the conclusion that mass caused space to curve, and objects travelling in that curved space have their paths deflected, exactly as if a force had acted on them. If space itself is curved, there are three general possibilities for the geometry of the universe. Each of these possibilites is tied to the amount of mass and thus to the total strength of gravitation in the universe, and each implies a different past and future for the universe. First, let's look at shapes and curvatures for a two-dimensional surface. Mathematicians distinguish 3 qualitatively different classes of curvature, as illustrated in the following image:.
The shape of the universe is the local and global geometry of the universe. The local features of the geometry of the universe are primarily described by its curvature , whereas the topology of the universe describes general global properties of its shape as of a continuous object. The shape of the universe is related to general relativity , which describes how spacetime is curved and bent by mass and energy. Cosmologists distinguish between the observable universe and the global universe. The observable universe consists of the part of the universe that can, in principle, be observed by light reaching Earth within the age of the universe. It encompasses a region of space that currently forms a ball centered at Earth of estimated radius