by Greg Spearritt
Are the 'laws' of nature fixed and immutable or merely human approximations?
Theoretical physicist and cosmologist Paul Davies, currently at Arizona State University, apparently raised a storm of protest by suggesting in a recent article that the laws of physics have been reified into metaphysical entities à la Plato. He's quoted in a New York Times article (see below) as saying that in the 17th century "God got killed off and the laws just free-floated in a conceptual vacuum but retained their theological properties".
The NYT article, 'Laws of Nature, Source Unknown', is a helpful discussion of the issue.