Sabine Hossenfelder on Multiple Wholes

Sabine Hossenfelder writes:

Our universe is one of infinitely many [universes].

Let me try to decipher the meaning of this sentence. The problem is that you are using the word “universe” with two different meanings in the same sentence.

[Of course, when I say “you” I don’t mean you. Don’t take it personally. Just like the word “universe” the word “you” have two meanings. It may refer to you, or to a generic particle physicist representing your colleagues who are the lovers of null results and corrupters of physics.]

The word universe can have two meanings. First let me explain the difference between the words “universe” and “cosmos”. Today these two words are used interchangeably but historically they were used to refer to two different entities.

The word “universe” meant “the universe as a whole.” This means that, by definition, the word “universe” cannot have a plural because it is the name of the absolute whole. It’s like the word “God” in a monotheistic religion. By definition there is only one God. It makes no sense to say “our God is one of many Gods” because you defined a monotheistic religion with one God.

Similarly, the plural of the word universe, “universes”, does not make sense because by definition we decided that the word “universe” referred to everything that exists, the absolute whole. (Physicists are the major corrupters of the English language.) There can only be one whole. Do you dispute this? How can you dispute it? There can only be one Whole. I even wrote it with a capital letter to emphasize that it is a unique entity and it does not have a plural. The Whole is whole. The Whole is One. These are definitions that cannot be changed.

Cosmos, on the other hand, is a truncation of the Whole. Since the ancient times, the professional class who owned the subject of astronomy defined a cosmos. The owners of astronomy and cosmology always have been a priestly class working for the rulers. This priestly class obtained their power from their supposed knowledge of the entire universe. Did they know the entire universe? Of course not. So what did they do? They defined a cosmos and defined the cosmos they defined to be the entire universe. So rest assured that what you are doing is nothing new, on the contrary it is the oldest trick in the profession.

What is this trick? Let’s repeat. The professional priests of astronomy know that they cannot know the Whole. But their power comes from their claim to know the Whole. So they define a cosmos. This cosmos is the part of the universe visible to them by using their current technology. For instance, naked eye cosmos is limited with the spheres of fixed stars. The priests claim that this cosmos they defined is also the universe as a whole, or what we’ve been calling “the Whole.”

But with the discovery of the telescope, the lies of this priestly professionals are revealed and the new generations of astronomers observing with telescopes discover that the universe is much bigger than their predecessors believed. You would think that this new generation would say “we don’t know the Whole, we will never know the Whole, all we can know is the observable universe and what we can infer from it scientifically.” No. These are professionals and their job is to lie and define a cosmos and sell it as the Universe as a Whole. And that’s what they do. They claim that the Whole is made of galaxies. Again, the priestly class who work for the ruling powers defined a cosmos and then sold their cosmos as the Universe as a Whole.

In short, every generation of cosmologists markets its cosmos as the Whole. Then the next generation comes with more powerful observational tools and markets its cosmos as the Whole. This charlatanism has been going on for millennia and furthermore it is been sold as the progress of science. This is not progress. This is lying.

I’m sure that now you understand clearly the difference between a cosmos and the universe as a whole. Let’s look at your sentence again. When you say “our universe” you actually mean “our cosmos” because if you use the word “universe” here to mean “universe as a whole”, “-our- universe as a whole” does not make sense. By using the word “our” you delimit or truncate the Whole and you implicitly and tacitly assume a cosmos. The way you start your sentence with “our” makes it clear that you are talking about a cosmos, “our cosmos” or the visible universe plus the inferable universe.

You admit that there is a part of the Whole from where no light reaches you and no light will ever reach you. The unknown part is not a different Whole. The fact that you do not know that unknowable part does not make that part another Whole. Don’t forget the Whole is whole. By definition.

So when we clearly define the word universe in your sentence, it turns out you are saying something trivial because your sentence simply means “our cosmos is one of infinitely many cosmoses that we can define.” Please note, a cosmos is a defined entity. You can define as many cosmoses as you wish.

But I’m sure that you will deny that when you say “universe” you mean “cosmos”. You claim that your “universe” refers to the universe as a whole. Because just like all priestly professional astronomers and cosmologists before you, you defined a cosmos and assert that your cosmos is the Whole. But you also have become a masterful sophist and surpassed your professional ancestors in the art of doubletalk because now it is impossible for us to tell when you mean “universe as a whole” and when you mean “cosmos”. I bow respectfully under this level of sophistry.

***

But since the word universe has only two meanings we can read your sentence by writing explicitly the meanings of the word “universe”. So the universe can mean

  1. The Whole; or
  2. The part, or the cosmos.

Simple as that.

So all the permutations of meanings of your sentence are these:

1. Our Whole is one of many Wholes.
2. Our Whole is one of many parts.
3. Our part is one of many parts.
4. Our part is one of many Wholes.

(I eliminated the word “infinity”, since it is not essential to the meaning.)

Probably you assert the first meaning: “Our Whole is one of many Wholes.” This is a masterful example of scholastic doubletalk. You define the Whole to be a part and a part to be the Whole.

Above I gave the example of the concept of God in a monotheistic religion. God is unique, the way the Whole is unique. It makes no sense to say “Our unique God is one of infinitely many Gods.” This makes your God one God among many. But this contradicts your axiom that your God was unique. Same with the Whole. Don’t you see this? I’m sure you do. It makes no sense to say “Our unique Whole is one of many Wholes.”

This is absurd: “Our universe as a whole is not unique, there are infinitely many universes as a whole.” Written like this, the absurdity of your sentence becomes clear. But this sentence is not only absurd but it is a linguistic slight of hand. It is sophistry. If “our universe” is the universe as a whole then there cannot be another universe as a whole inside it because that second “universe” will be a part of “our universe as a whole”.

So which meaning do you really believe! You believe in all of them as the case may be! Yes you can, and will, defend each of the four meaning permutations as the case may be. This is called casuistry, as I explain below. So if I accuse you of claiming something as absurd as the first permutation, you will simply say “No” and claim to defend the third meaning. Or another one. You will always be right. This cannot change. Because you are the present representative of the priestly class who owned cosmology for millennia.

Your “multiverse” should really be “multimos” from “multicosmos”. But no one will take you seriously if you speculate about a small part of the universe. You are the priests of cosmology and you know the secrets of the universe as a whole so you make grandiose claims about the universe as a whole even though you admit that you know nothing about the unkowable parts of the Whole. This is where your mastery scholastic sophistry comes handy. You sell yourself as an expert on what you admit you know nothing about. This is the bonus of being the hereditary Doctors of Philosophy.

***

The above analysis showing the absurdity of the concept of multiverse (a concept defining multiple Wholes or exploiting the word “Whole” by corrupting it) is so simple that it is not possible for a physicist not to understand it. But they don’t. Why? How come a physicist can utter a sentence meaning “our universe as a whole is one of many universes as a whole” with a straight face and build philosophical sand castles on this sophistry and doubletalk?

How can a physicist claim that the Whole is a part of many Wholes?

Well, this type of doubletalk by corrupting the meanings of words is the oldest trick in the book of scholasticism. This is called casuistry. It is a well-known, standard method of argument used by all Doctors of Philosophy including academic doctors and lawyers and politicians. They secretly define a word multiple times and then choose a meaning case by case. If you argue the letter of the law, the lawyer will argue the spirit of the law. If you argue the spirit he will argue the letter. Same with the cosmologist and physicist. They are in the same profession.

People who call themselves “physicists” today are the professional descendants of the ancient scribes who go as far back as ancient Egypt. They continue the tradition of defining a cosmos for their employers, the rulers, and market this cosmos as the universe as a whole.

***

We may also ask why these priestly professionals needed to invent the multiverse, the infinitely many Wholes? One answer may be that they love the absurd. The more absurd a concept is, the more papers you can write about it. (See my next article on this topic.)

Notes:

— Sabine Hossenfelder’s article where she talks about “naturalness” and “our universe” being one of infinitely many [universes] is A philosopher’s take on “naturalness” in particle physics. Her article about Multiverse nonsense is The Multiworse Is Coming

— Of course, when I say “you” I don’t mean you. Don’t take it personally. Just like the word “universe” the word “you” have two meanings. It may refer to you, or to a generic physicist representing your colleagues who are the lovers of null results.

 

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