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Wednesday, August 06, 2008

The hunt for Higgs

Narrowing the range or falsifying string theory?

Scientists working on the CDF and DZero experiments at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory are entering Higgs territory. On Sunday, the two groups reported at a conference in Pennsylvania that for the first time their results directly restrict the allowed mass range for the elusive Higgs boson. The results show that the CDF and DZero experiments are sensitive to Higgs signals that may show up as the two collaborations gather and analyze more data.

One of the interesting contrasts between science and atheist logic is the way the two distinctly different methods of thought regard range restriction. For the scientist, the restriction of the allowed mass ranges for the Higgs boson is interpreted as a helpful means of identifying the correct properties of the Higgs boson. While this ongoing search may eventually eliminate the possibility altogether, the basic assumption is that the boson exists and any restrictions discovered will aid them in finding it.

Atheist logic, on the other hand, interprets the restrictions on God's perceived actions as evidence of His nonexistence. The fact that God does not [fill in the physical action of your choice] as was previously believed is logically extrapolated to the extreme in order to allow for the conclusion that God does not exist. But, as the Higgs hunt shows, this is not only an unscientific way of thinking, its assumptions are precisely the opposite of those made from a scientific perspective.

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