On the Argument from Quantum Cosmology against Theism

Analysis 55 (4):247 - 251 (1995)
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In a recent Analysis article, Quentin Smith argues that classical theism is inconsistent with certain consequences of Stephen Hawking's quantum cosmology.1 Although I am not a theist, it seems to me that Smith's argument fails to establish its conclusion. The purpose of this paper is to show what is wrong with Smith's argument. According to Smith, Hawking's cosmological theory includes what Smith calls "Hawking's wave function law." Hawking's wave function law (hereafter, "HL") apparently has, among its consequences, the following claim. (1) The unconditional probability that a universe like this one - i.e., a universe with the metric hij and matter field Φ - should begin to exist is 95%.2 Smith then argues that the theist who accepts HL must also accept that the following sentence was once true.3..

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Ned Markosian
University of Massachusetts, Amherst


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