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Digital Subscriptions > Skeptic > 23.2 > Skeptical of the Multiverse

Skeptical of the Multiverse

SPECULATIONS AND THEORIES ABOUT THE EXISTENCE of other worlds have a long history. In recent times, the arguments have shifted away from their typical philosophical and theological character to supposedly become more objective thanks to their scientific underpinnings. A prime example of this trend is the current multiverse theory, which has the support of a number of famous cosmologists, for example, Max Tegmark. But are these arguments more credible than counterarguments based on philosophical and metaphysical considerations?

Ourselves in Other Universes

The multiverse suggests that what we call the “universe” is, in fact, just one among a possible infinite number of other universes, so far away from, or inaccessible to ours, that they are impossible to observe. In one variant of these “parallel” universes, there are exact or nearly exact living copies of you and me; in still other multiverse theories there are universes that obey different laws of physics. Although Max Tegmark is not alone in promoting the multiverse idea, in his 2014 book, Our Mathematical Universe:My Quest for the Ultimate Nature of Reality,1 the MIT physicist argues that the multiverse is a prediction of certain theories. For instance, those parallel universes, including our doppelgängers, would be a logical consequence of cosmic inflation, a theory developed in an attempt to solve some serious problems that afflict the Big Bang cosmological model. Tegmark (emphasis added):

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About Skeptic

THE RISE OF THE NONES Imagining No Heaven — The Rise of the Nones and the Decline of Religion; Never Doubting God — Surveys on Belief in God’s Existence; Persistence of Belief in a Purposeful Universe; Honor, Dignity, Victim — A review of The Rise of Victimhood Culture: Microaggressions, Safe Spaces, and the New Culture Wars; The SkepDoc — Premature Ejaculation in the News: How Headlines Influence Our Thinking; Is the Earth Flat? Flat Earthers Are Back — How do You Best Make the Argument for a Round Earth?; Conspiracy Theorists and the Harm They Do; Bruce Perkins and Another Terrible Tragedy of the Recovered Memory Movement; Deterrence and Its Discontents: Now That Nuclear War Seems to Be Getting More Likely Again, It’s Time to Turn a Skeptical Eye on Deterrence; Reality Need Not Diminish Our Concept of Our Place in the Cosmos; Junior Skeptic — Perpetual Motion; and more…