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Objectivity (again)

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There is a book review in today's Wall Street Journal, a review of "Our Mathematical Universe", the review written by Peter Woit. The title of the review is " The Multiverse in a Nutshell". Leading into his review Mr. Woit says "Mr. Tegmark (the author of the book) raises the age old question of whether math just describes physical reality or whether it defines physical reality. This distinction is of relevance to philosophers, but its significance for practicing physicists is unclear."

As I typed that out it occurred to me one could play "what does he (either) mean by...." for a long time. But the thought it triggered originally in my mind was this: The universe, physical reality, existed before there were human beings, indeed, before their was consciousness in any of the forms we find it on earth (assuming the atheists are right). Mathematics is a human concept; so there was no mathematics before human consciousness arose. The question of which came first would be the wrong question, misunderstanding the nature of reality in this way: mathematics is objective, a product of the intersection of human consciousness and the rest of the universe, ie, physical reality.

I became interested in the work surrounding the "multiverse" idea after reading Michael Crighton's notes and bibliography for the novel "Timeline", so that is how the book review noted above arrested my attention.

THX for your interest.

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