Newsy: Stephen Hawking: No Creator God

“The Grand Design,” a new book co-authored by British physicist Stephen Hawking, is due out next week, but an excerpt from the book is already sparking controversy.
“The Grand Design,” a new book co-authored by British physicist Stephen Hawking, is due out next week, but an excerpt from the book is already sparking controversy.
STEPHEN HAWKING: “Because there are laws such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing. It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and the university going.”
REPORTER: “According to Stephen Hawking, our universe is one of many and the laws of physics shows other universes were formed before the big bang.”(BBC)
M Theory, developed in the mid 90’s, is a system many physicists believe forms the long-sought after “theory of everything.” In his new book, Hawking claims M Theory can be used to explain the origins of the universe, which means invoking a creator isn’t necessary.
On Channel 4 News, theologian Alister McGrath disagreed, saying M Theory doesn’t explain it all: “But he’s placed such emphasis on the laws of nature and so on that he really is simply inviting the obvious question: where did THESE come from?”
An article in the Catholic Herald agrees, and says it’s premature to rule out a Creator: “…if all the physical laws had been explained and proved … our understanding of the actions of God would not be one whit greater: his existence and his actions are of a different order. … how something existing comes out from nothing … is a question which science cannot answer, and will never answer, because nothingness is not within its domain.”
But MSNBC’s Alan Boyle defends Hawking, saying he wasn’t claiming there is no Creator. Instead, he’s saying science doesn’t need to reference a Creator while explaining origins: “Does Hawking’s view mean that modern physics ‘leaves no place for God in the creation of the universe,’ as the Times suggests, or that ‘God did not create the universe,’ as The Guardian claims? Not unless you need a ‘God of the Gaps’ to step into science’s place.”
Hawking compared discovering the laws of physics to knowing the mind of God in his 1988 book, “A Brief History of Time.” This caused many to think Hawking previously believed in a Creator. But as he explains in a June interview with ABC’s Diane Sawyer, Hawking’s use of the word “god” is more poetic than religious: “The question is: is the way the universe began chosen by God for reasons we can’t understand, or was it determined by a law of science? I believe the second. If you like, you can call the laws of science ‘God’, but it wouldn’t be a personal God that you could meet, and ask questions.”
“The Grand Design” hits shelves September 9th.
Writer: Steven Sparkman
No copyright infringement intended. For educational, non-commercial purposes only.
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About Labor Teacher

NNET, Secondary Education, Labor School, Vigo
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