Our universe didn’t need any divine help to burst into being, famed cosmologist Stephen Hawking told a packed house here at the California Institute of Technology Tuesday night (April 16).
He noted that many people still seek a divine solution to counter the theories of curious physicists, and at one point, he quipped, “What was God doing before the divine creation? Was he preparing hell for people who asked such questions?”
After outlining the historical theological debate about how the universe was created, Hawking gave a quick review of more scientific cosmological explanations, including Fred Hoyle and Thomas Gold’s steady-state theory. This idea hypothesizes that there is no beginning and no end and that galaxies continue to form from spontaneously created matter.
After giving a brief historical background on relativistic physics and cosmology, Hawking discussed the idea of a repeating Big Bang. He noted that in the 1980s, he and physicist Roger Penrose proved the universe could not “bounce” when it contracted, as had been theorized.
Therefore, time began at the moment of singularity, and this has likely occurred only once, Hawking said. The age of the universe — now believed to be about 13.8 billion years — fits that model, as the number and maturity of observed galaxies seem to fit in the general scheme.
In another observation of modern religion, Hawking noted that in the 1980s, around the time he released a paper discussing the moment the universe was born, Pope John Paul II admonished the scientific establishment against studying the moment of creation, as it was holy.
“I was glad not to be thrown into an inquisition,” Hawking joked.
Hawking closed the event with a familiar plea for continued exploration of the cosmos: “We must continue to go into space for the future of humanity,” he said, adding, “I don’t think we will survive another thousand years without escaping our fragile planet.”
There are believers who criticize Stephen Hawking for playing the role of Richard Dawkins. They like to hear about science but not the truth that god doesn’t exist. They love the first line and the last line of Hawking’s book. ‘We go about our daily lives understanding almost nothing about the world’, the first line and ‘if we find the answer to that, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason — for then we would know the mind of God’, the last line. The believers love to believe that ‘god’ of the last line of Hawking’s book is the god that lives in the sky. They love when scientists believe in god. To them, scientists say god exists means god exists. They get more convinced when scientists say god exists than god says god exists.
Stephen Hawking is not giving the believers the delusional pleasure anymore. They are now angry. You can read their angry comments. They would have been angry with Einstein too if he were alive today and explained that his god was not the god that lived in the sky, and more importantly he used god in a purely metaphorical, poetic sense. There are some scientists who say that god exists. I do not think all of them believe in god. They say it for different weird reasons. One of the reasons, Richard Dawkins says that scientists who want to get fund for scientific research do not say that they are atheists because atheists are often prevented from getting fund.
Religionists are using religion all over the world to fight against equality, justice, women’s rights, human rights, freedom of expression and hundreds of nice and necessary things. I think scientists should take responsibilities to save the world by telling the truth about creationism how freakishly false belief it is. Science is the best weapon to fight religion. Every time scientists discover a star or a planet or a galaxy, religionists come to claim that god mentions about it in their holy books. Most reformers fight the bad parts of religion by using the good parts of religion. It ultimately makes people more religious as they get attracted by the good parts of religion. But it is always better to believe in science than religion or parts of religion, because religion with its good and bad parts, is a complete myth, not a fact. It is always better to believe in truth than in lies. And it is always better to believe with things evidence than without evidence. Science does not talk without evidences, religion talks. Would you believe me if I say I grow two horns on my head? You would not. You would sure ask me to show you the proof. But you are not asking your most powerful god to show you the proof of his existence. You are too merciful. Your mercy has been extended to god big time.
Is it fun to live in this flaky world!