Physics, Earth & Space Icon Physics, Earth & Space

Chances That Life Originated Without Intelligent Design? “Zero,” Says Physicist Eric Hedin

David Klinghoffer
Photo: Eric Hedin, by Tina Hedin.

Physicist Eric Hedin talked with Jennifer Kabbany at The College Fix about Hedin’s recent book, Canceled Science: What Some Atheists Don’t Want You to See. She asked him to estimate the chances that life originated without intelligent guidance. His answer: a bold zero.

Q. Do people who have not studied this issue in depth truly understand the mathematical enormity of the fine-tuning argument? It’s not just “the chances are low” that life arose by chance.

A. Honestly, as a physicist I would be willing to say the physical reality chance of life originating on its own by natural processes within this universe is zero, not just low. It’s because the universe is not infinitely big. There is a finite universe. We don’t have an infinite amount of time, the universe has a finite age, roughly 13.8 billion years. That limited time, limited spatial extent of the universe means that there’s a limited amount that any natural randomness could generate. The probabilistic resources of our universe fall short of what is necessary to develop even one large functional protein molecule that would be just one of tens of thousands of different protein molecules that are needed for human life to exist. It’s almost to me desperate to keep trying to think that this could have happened by chance.

As Kabbany points out, Hedin was “canceled before the term cancel culture was even coined.” Atheists led by Jerry Coyne at the University of Chicago meddled with Hedin’s department at Ball State University in a pretty despicable power play. Read the rest at The College Fix.

The idea of setting a percentage to the chances of ID being true reminds me of Hedin’s fellow physicist, Nobel Prize-winner Brian Josephson. The Cambridge University emeritus professor has given his own estimate. He was asked, “What is your confidence level, on a scale of 0 to 100, that the design of the process of evolution is by some kind of transcendent intelligence?” Josephson’s answer: “Well, about 80 percent perhaps.” 

That’s a less confident than Hedin’s figure, but not by all that much.