Something deeply hidden
I saw Prof. Sean Carroll interviewed as part of Veritasium’s video Parallel Worlds Probably Exist. Here’s Why - YouTube.
The video caught my interest and this book was me reading on. There is an enthusiastic tone that helps draw you through a complex topic. Carroll does a good job of giving clear and lucid descriptions, I felt like I understood a great deal of what was going on whilst I was reading it. Not long after I saw the HBO series “Devs” (YouTuber Thomas flight gives a good review of here) which touches on some similar areas of science. I felt like the book had given me a peek deeper into that world.
Now some time has past, I find many of the details have slipped. I wonder how well I really understood the mechanics of what was going on. That said, I have retained an idea that there is an important debate. At gunpoint I might be able to provide the basic coordinates of it. I will look on with interests at how physicists (and philosophers?) approach the debate. With luck we will see how experimental data offers insight at some point too.
I think it is an achievement for a book to transmit not only concepts but enthusiasm.
The book is clear though, we cannot prove this yet. It is a conjecture. So… do I buy it? Is this actually how our world works? I am still not sure what to think.
However, its offer fits with what I have understood of science to date. We are so easily the centre of our own universes, yet discoveries in the science have helped decenter us. The complex worlds in orders of magnitude bigger and smaller than us, so our scale is a thin slice of experience. The narrowness of our senses and the bounty of what lies beyond them. The depth of time. The earth, around a sun, on an arm a galaxy, amongst many. Our central place and importance to the universe seems consistently undermined by evidence. Being a happy little accident seems comfortingly plausible to me.
This book presents another decentering, though deeper into the fabric of the universe than most I have come across. A new dimension in which the entire present of our universe can be dwarfed into branching depths, and our bit of it another tiny slice of a much grander whole. For that reason alone it feels plausible to me!