Hawking on God

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dugges
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Hawking on God

Post by dugges » Thu Sep 02, 2010 10:15 pm

http://www.rte.ie/news/2010/0902/hawking.html

Stephen Hawking has a new book on the origins of the Universe and I think some of Dickie's influence is rubbing off, cause he's taking on the gawds.
He also warned in a recent television series that mankind should avoid contact with aliens at all costs, as the consequences could be devastating.
I think that comment will get some negative attention as somepeople have literal minds. But in my opinon aliens would be well advised to keep away from us!

But I rather like this quote:
'Because there is a law such as gravity, the Universe can and will create itself from nothing.
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'Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the Universe exists, why we exist,' he writes in 'The Grand Design', which is being serialised by The Times newspaper.
Ray Comforts entire thesis is based on the "Something from Nothing" argument, I wonder how he will react!
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by Ygern » Thu Sep 02, 2010 10:57 pm

I think some of Dickie's influence is rubbing off
Nope, can't blame this one on Richard!

A brief history of time has a lot of tongue-in-cheek comments about god too, and that was penned back in 1987. In fact, he chose Carl Sagan to write the introduction to his book, where Sagan pointed out:
This is also a book about God... or perhaps the absence of God
.
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by dugges » Thu Sep 02, 2010 11:16 pm

Different times. Was only remarking an how his opinions on creation are gathering much publicity for the book. It's out Sept 9, so I might be making the trip to town to make a purchase and pop into MacTurcaills for a quiet one after ;)
Hopefully I'll have some quiet reading time :)
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by Ygern » Thu Sep 02, 2010 11:50 pm

Back in the 80s the Creationist lobby hadn't fully realised that particle physics was The Enemy just as much as evolution, so probably few fundies bothered to take any notice of a book by a British scientist that was marketed as about Time, Einstein & E=MC². They only targeted biologists much to the disappointment of certain astrophysicists.

Also, a lot of people bought ABHOT but didn't read it, intimidated by the subject matter. They shouldn't have been, it's very accessible and Hawking's mischievous sense of humour shines through. It had me chuckling constantly.

There has been a sudden increase in negative attention from the Raving Looney Brigade towards astrophysics in recent years. Steven Weinberg, Lawrence Krauss, Neil Tyson & Brian Cox all recount certain confrontations with a certain amount of glee.

Actually, Lawrence Krauss gave a talk at the US AAI on pretty much exactly the same subject: A universe from nothing
It seems its a feature of a flat and open universe. It's an awesome talk, you must watch it if you haven't already.
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by Reilly616 » Fri Sep 03, 2010 12:00 am

It's unfortunate that so many of the reports are saying that A Brief History suggested he actually believed in a god. You'd think that a reporter would understand a metaphor.
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by Ygern » Fri Sep 03, 2010 12:17 am

Reilly616 wrote:It's unfortunate that so many of the reports are saying that A Brief History suggested he actually believed in a god. You'd think that a reporter would understand a metaphor.
It's even worse than that.

A Brief History
could only make a person think that Hawking believed in God if that person didn't read the book. Carl Sagan even spells it out in the foreword for those who only managed to make it to page 1: the book is about the absence of god and how the universe works perfectly well without one, just as Laplace had claimed 300 years ago.

In a way it was quite remarkable that two decades before the Gnu Atheists Hawking had taken quite a bit of trouble to spell out in a book on astrophysics that there was no role left for a deity to play in the cosmos.
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by Dionysus » Fri Sep 03, 2010 8:26 am

Yeah, I was gonna say about that Lawrence Krauss vid, it was quite utterly cool...

Y'know, I've never finished A Brief History..., I dunno why not. I mean, it's not like I'm not interested in physics etc, cuz I am, and it's not like I wasn't following Monsieur Hawking, I just never finished it...Ah well, will get round to it some day, I'm sure.

Anyway, I think it's funny that this story will so be forgotten in, like, two seconds...
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by aZerogodist » Fri Sep 03, 2010 9:38 am

Stephen Hawking: God did not create Universe
BBC.co.uk wrote:Stephen Hawking: God did not create Universe
The Universe can create itself from nothing, says Prof Hawking There is no place for God in theories on the creation of the Universe, Professor Stephen Hawking has said.
He had previously argued belief in a creator was not incompatible with science but in a new book, he concludes the Big Bang was an inevitable consequence of the laws of physics.
The Grand Design, part serialised in the Times, says there is no need to invoke God to set the Universe going.
"Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something," he concluded.

'Planetary conditions'
In his new book, an extract of which appears in the Times, Britain's most famous physicist sets out to contest Sir Isaac Newton's belief that the universe must have been designed by God as it could not have sprung out of chaos.
Citing the 1992 discovery of a planet orbiting a star other than our Sun, he said: "That makes the coincidences of our planetary conditions - the single Sun, the lucky combination of Earth-Sun distance and solar mass - far less remarkable, and far less compelling as evidence that the Earth was carefully designed just to please us human beings."
He adds: "Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing.
"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 light the blue touch paper and set the universe going."

'Eyes of faith'
The book was co-written by US physicist Leonard Mlodinow and is published on 9 September.
In his 1988 bestseller, A Brief History of Time, Prof Hawking appeared to accept the role of God in the creation of the Universe.
"If we discover a complete theory, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason - for then we should know the mind of God," he said.
But the Bishop of Swindon, Dr Lee Rayfield, said science "can never prove the non-existence of God, just as it can never prove the existence of God."
He added: "Faith is a matter that's outside that.
"But as I look at the universe, and as many people who are much more understanding of cosmology than I, and mathematics, as they look at it, through the eyes of faith, they see a universe which is still very coherent with what we believe about God and His nature."
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by Ygern » Fri Sep 03, 2010 10:43 am

the Bishop of Swindon wrote:they see a universe which is still very coherent with what we believe about God and His nature.
That's a profoundly stupid comment. How the fuck is particle physics coherent with what he believes about god?

For a start, he's cute enough to NOT remind us what he actually believes about God: i.e. the really daft bits like virgin births, reanimation of corpses, surviving his own death, invisible spirits, celestial judgment and kingdoms in the sky. And yes, he does believe that, he recites it out loud every Sunday as part of the creed.

He is pleading for his god to be the God of the Gaps and in a stunning feat of ingenuity is hammering his concept of god into a theory that has no god-shaped gaps in it to start off with.

Physics ... Jesus
Not the same thing. Get over it.
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Re: Hawking on God

Post by Reilly616 » Fri Sep 03, 2010 1:43 pm

Ygern wrote:
Reilly616 wrote:It's unfortunate that so many of the reports are saying that A Brief History suggested he actually believed in a god. You'd think that a reporter would understand a metaphor.
It's even worse than that.

A Brief History
could only make a person think that Hawking believed in God if that person didn't read the book. Carl Sagan even spells it out in the foreword for those who only managed to make it to page 1: the book is about the absence of god and how the universe works perfectly well without one, just as Laplace had claimed 300 years ago.
I read it. I'm not sure exactly when, but certainly before I was 16. I have never done physics in school, so my knowledge of it is limited to what I seek out due to interest. That said, before 16, I didn't even have the option yet to do physics, so that doesn't really matter. My point is; I have never felt the need to re-read the book. I probably will at some point, but it is easy enough for a child to understand. The aim was, after all, for the general public to read it.
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