anthropic principle

Definition

Astronomy

  • The idea that the universe is in its present form to allow life capable of observing it to evolve. The principle is the opposite of the commonsense view that life arises as a result of the structure of the universe. The anthropic principle is controversial because it involves a cause – life – coming after the effect – the universe. Some cosmologists claim that it is wrong, unnecessary or unscientific. Others look at the coincidences which are necessary for intelligent life (like ourselves) to arise and favour the Anthropic Principle.
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