30 March 2016 8:24 AM (musing)
Some people claim that we live in a universe remarkably, uncannily fine-tuned for life.
This prompts the question: where is it? Sure, there's us. But so far we haven't found life anywhere else. There's various resolutions to the Fermi paradox, like the Cosmic zoo, or that the universe is terribly dangerous and nobody talks to other planets for fear of getting a computer virus (yes, that's a serious argument) or worse a delicious, delectable memetic virus that might run rampant through the minds of its citizens, or the notion that after a certain point all civilizations blow themselves up or, optimistically, decide to engage in some really serious Diaspora cosplay.
There are also various physical resolutions, that making life in this universe is not as easy as may have been thought. My preferred resolution is of this sort: that gamma ray bursts reset evolution within a certain radius of where they occur and the outside edges of the Milky Way galaxy have only recently (in cosmic terms) become calm enough to give a civilization a chance to come about. In this view, humanity is the Great Elder Race.
In this view, the universe is minimally biophilic, i.e. not very good at having life in it but passable. The C's Get Degrees school of cosmology. If someone evolves in it anyway, they still get tempted to think it's a universe uniquely suited for life. After all, it made all the life they're familiar with.
This got me daydreaming in a Christian mythology storytelling kind of way. Imagine a world where the universe was created, and it was filled with life all over, and then as the result of The Fall, humanity was relocated to the minimally biophilic one in which it finds itself today. The punishment for sin is not only death, but loneliness.
(No, I don't actually believe that. It's why I used words like 'mythology'.)