From Goedel by way of Berlinski

Posted: March 2, 2007 in Intelligent Design, Theo/Philo


 “The formation within geological time of a human body,”  remarked to the logician Hao Wang, “by the laws of physics (or any other laws of similar nature), starting from a random distribution of elementary particles and the field, is as unlikely as the separation by chance of the atmosphere into its components.”
This is a somewhat enigmatic statement. Let me explain. When  spoke of the “field” he meant, no doubt, the quantum field; Schrodinger’s equation is in charge. And by invoking a “random distribution of elementary particles,” Godel meant to confine the discussion to typical or generic patterns — what might reasonably be expected. Chance, again.
Under the double action of the fundamental laws and chance, Godel was persuaded, no form of complexity could reasonably be expected to arise. This is not an argument, of course; it functions merely as a claim, although one made with the authority of Godel’s genius. But it is a claim with a queer prophetic power, anticipating, as it does, a very specific contemporary argument.


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