Bayes, God, and the Multiverse

Richard Swinburne

in Probability in the Philosophy of Religion

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780199604760
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741548 | DOI:
Bayes, God, and the Multiverse

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The chapter begins by summarizing how the structure of an argument from the fine-tuning of a single universe to the existence of God can be expressed in terms of Bayes’ theorem. There could however be scientific evidence in favour of the existence of a multiverse. Insofar as the theory of such a multiverse is simpler than that of a single universe, and that theory makes good predictions, it would make it more probable that there will be a fine-tuned universe, and so — it might seem — would diminish the force of an argument from fine-tuning to God. But it would not diminish it greatly, because God has reason to create such a multiverse, and the supposition that he has done so is a very simple explanation of the existence of such a multiverse, whereas the existence of an uncaused multiverse would be a very complex supposition.

Keywords: Bayes; fine-tuning; God; multiverse; simplicity; predication; universe

Chapter.  12207 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

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