Saturday, April 21, 2007
Questions That Should Be Asked
Assuming that the paper is correct (and I certainly don't know enough about cosmology to say anything there), then that means that we know that it is possible for the evidence to indicate a false understanding of the universe. Think about that -- we have a paper that demonstrates that physical evidence can lead to a false understanding of cosmology even if the data is measured 100% accurate.
So that brings up the question - how do we know that our current view of cosmology is not flawed? How do we know that the data that we need to understand the beginnings of the universe is still in existence? If we know that physical evidence can lead to a false understanding of the historical development of the universe even given uniformitarian assumptions, how do we know that we ourselves are not missing similar typea of evidence needed to understand the universe itself?
Let's extrapolate ourselves out into the far, far future described by Krauss et al. Let's say that some astronomers are doing some calculations and trying to come up with a cosmology. Let's say that all that is left from our century is a basic introductory textbook describing the universe. These astronomers/cosmologists are trying to create a cosmology based on the evidence. Based on the evidence, they propose a static universe (which is what Krauss et al say is what the data will in fact point to at that time). Let's say that a historian comes in and says, "Wait! The ancients (that's us) said that the universe is expanding!" The scientists would laugh and say, "those were primitive people and didn't have access to the same data that we do. Our data firmly supports a static universe. That "expanding universe"/"big bang" idea was just a mythology of creation that they made up to fill their gaps in knowledge." But in fact, it would be us (the ancients) who were the only ones able to detect the evidence. They problem is not that one group is smart and the other is stupid, but that one is working closer to the event and the other is extrapolating from circumstantial data (actually, in this case they both are extrapolating from circumstantial data, just different sets).
So, in the case of Genesis, why should we not believe what has been handed down? The question is not what does the evidence say. Today's evidence is only circumstantial, and, as this paper points out, circumstantial evidence can lead to dramatically wrong conclusions. The question is who do you trust? This is the ultimate question, and cannot be settled based on circumstantial data.
[Related Post -- History, Creation, Observables, and Scientific Theories]