Stephen Hawking: God not needed for creation
Fri, 03 Sep 2010 8:28a.m.
By Jennifer Quinn
Did creation need a creator?
British physicist and mathematician Stephen Hawking says no, arguing in his new book that there need not be a God behind the creation of the universe.
The concept is explored in The Grand Design, excerpts of which were printed in the British newspaper The Times on Thursday. The book, written with fellow physicist Leonard Mlodinow, is scheduled to be published by Bantam Press on September 9.
The Grand Design, which the publishers call Hawking's first major work in nearly a decade, challenges Isaac Newton's theory God must have been involved in creation because our solar system couldn't have come out of chaos simply through nature.
But Hawking says it isn't that simple. To understand the universe, it's necessary to know both how and why it behaves the way it does, calling the pursuit "the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything".
"We shall attempt to answer it in this book," he wrote. "Unlike the answer given in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, ours won't be simply '42.'"
The number 42 is the deliberately absurd answer to the "Ultimate Question" chosen by sci-fi author Douglas Adams.
Hawking, who is renowned for his work on black holes, said the 1992 discovery of another planet orbiting a star other than the sun makes "the coincidences of our planetary conditions ... far less remarkable and far less compelling as evidence that the Earth was carefully designed just to please us human beings".
In his best-selling 1988 book A Brief History of Time, Hawking appeared to accept the possibility of a creator, saying the discovery of a complete theory would "be the ultimate triumph of human reason - for then we should know the mind of God".
But The Grand Design seems to step away from that, saying physics can explain things without the need for a "benevolent creator who made the Universe for our benefit".
"Because there is a law such as gravity, the Universe can and will create itself from nothing," the excerpt says. "Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the Universe exists, why we exist. It is not necessary to invoke God to ... set the Universe going."
Hawking retired last year as the Lucasian Chair of Mathematics at Cambridge University after 30 years in the position. The position was once held by Newton.
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15/12/2010 9:13:54 p.m.
scott t wrote:
just found this story again, fresh T rex bones? are you serious, do you not think every biologist in the world would want to get there hands on dino DNA, where did you here that nonsense haha, you must work with the Hamster. Idiot.
6/09/2010 6:51:25 p.m.
Bother, I mean't Dawkins, not Hawkins.
6/09/2010 10:56:01 a.m.
I couldn't give a stuff about the peoples comments here, what I object to is idiots like you challenging them with stupid arguments based on nothing. You do the cause of science no good by suggesting we have all the answers, when plainly we do not. If we did, we wouldn't be bothering to do research. Oh and for your information I work in the Biotech industry primarily with cancers. As for the age of the planet, there are several Helium Isotopes in the ground date to Billions of years, but in the atmosphere they only date to 100's of thousands. But they should be the same, but we ignore the latter because they are 'inconsistent'. Several years ago we got very excited when a T-Rex was dug up, unfortunately they dropped a Femur and it broke. Inside they found FRESH bone marrow and blood, further investigation found almost intact DNA. Now given that DNA does not survive more than 5000 years, care to explain? Once again, the evidence was 'ignored' because it might fuel the religious nuts. As for Hawkins hate, you only have to read his work to see he's not interested in presenting factual arguments based on science but is more interested in bashing christians (you notice most other religions barely get a mention).
5/09/2010 11:00:14 p.m.
@peter- I will avoid making any more assumptions then, What do you do and how are you qualified to question Stephen?.If you listen to comments being made by opponents of Stephens views on this site you will realise they are all reffering to personal gods and not a deity who has no interest in our day to day lives.I would wonder what scientists you work with that have evidence the earth is either 60 billion or 6 thousand years old, Its is around 4.5 billion.Do you happen to work at the creation museum with Mr Ham?.What "fanatical hate for elements of the community" are you reffering to?@Rodney- What do you mean by satisfying? do you mean do you get an afterlife or not?. "Where did the laws and the properties that are in place come from to cause these events to take place?" Have you heard of the Anthropic principle? maybe you should watch 'Into The Universe With Stephen Hawking - The Story Of Everything - 5 of 9' on youtube, go to minute 9 for your answer, maybe even watch the whole thing, or read his book.
5/09/2010 6:34:01 p.m.
I'm in no position to question Dr Hawkins? How do you come to that conclusion exactly since you ahve no idea what I do. Sorry, but I was under the impression that by definition a'God' is a 'Deity'. The vast majority of evidence suggests the earth is 60 billion years old, there is evidence though which contradicts that down to millions of years, hundreds of thousands and even thousands of years. The bulk of that is ignored or dismissed by my scientific collegues as 'error' even when no error can be found. As for man and the dinosaurs, there is physical evidence to suggest that may have occured at some point. When and how is another matter. You are entirely correct, he does have a bad reputation amongst us scientists. His fanatical hate for elements of the community does our cause no good at all. Again you assume I have not read his papers nor books.
5/09/2010 4:22:42 p.m.
It takes some people like Hawkings to stroke their own ego and that of their fellow science buddies to come out and say that everything is here by a unrelated series of undirected events over millions of years. Big deal. Thousands of other scientists have already said that. Is that really a reasonable and satisfying conclusion? Got a question-where did the laws and the properties that are in place come from to cause these events to take place? Check out "Signature in the Cell" by Stephen Meyer
5/09/2010 3:47:52 p.m.
@peter- I think you are only confusing yourself mate. I do not think you nor anybody here is in a position to question Dr Hawking. What you are reffering to is a Deity, it is not the God of the bible or the quran, Alot of things are plausible bud thats the point. Do you also think it is plausible that earth was created 6000 years ago and man lived alongside dinosaurs?Richard Dawkins does have a bad reputation among you lot doesn't he, to be exected I suppose, don't read his books or anything just condemn them from the outset as blasphemy. Will anybody on here be taking the time to read Stephens book?.
5/09/2010 10:06:01 a.m.
Servant of God wrote:
You claim that God isnt' needed behind creation, but I have one question for Hawking "How did you come about? Genesis 1:1 says, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth." Failure to believe God's word doesn't make it less true. I feel sorry for Mr. Hawking, because unless he repents and ask Jesus Christ to forgive him of his sins, he shall die in his sins and end up in hell for everlasting torment. 2 John 1:9 "Whosoever transgresserth, and abideth not in the doctrineof Christ, hath not God. He that abidenth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. By not believing the creation, you fail to believe God's doctrine.
5/09/2010 9:52:02 a.m.
@ Scott t
You appear to misunderstand the concept of time. Time is neither linear nor absolute. It is a physical dimension relative to the observer, thus time for one person is and can be totally different to another. As such time is affected by mass, speedand gravity. if an object (theoretically) has neither then it could be percieved to be outside 'time' as we understand it. Albert Einstein famously quoted 'People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present and the future is only a stubborn persistent illusion." IF their God is an extra-dimensional being then it is perfectly plausible that he was there at the beginning of our universe. As for Richard Dawkins, I suggest you find another author. The mans an embarrasement to the scientific community.
5/09/2010 4:28:16 a.m.
Hawkings,belief that the universe can create itself from nothing,confuses me.What is nothing?In our physical world we relate nothing to something,such as the box has nothing in it.When you cannot relate nothing to something,then I say you must define nothing as unrelated to something.I believe that a Creator is that something.
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