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A Pathetic Demise to a Brilliant Career?


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Showing 1-25 of 93 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 5, 2010, 9:49:14 AM PDT
As we all know, the famous theoretical physicist Steven Hawking announced he had changed his mind about the existence of God and claims in so many words that He does not exist, or really need to.

Before I wrote a counterargument to his theory, of course, I would have to read what his theories were in the first place, so I discovered the following Press Release published by Reuters and posted on Yahoo news:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100902/lf_nm_life/us_britain_hawking

"By Michael Holden Michael Holden - Thu Sep 2, 9:08 am ET

LONDON (Reuters) - God did not create the universe and the "Big Bang" was an inevitable consequence of the laws of physics, the eminent British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking argues in a new book.

In "The Grand Design," co-authored with U.S. physicist Leonard Mlodinow, Hawking says a new series of theories made a creator of the universe redundant, according to the Times newspaper which published extracts on Thursday.

"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," Hawking writes.

"It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going."

Hawking, 68, who won global recognition with his 1988 book "A Brief History of Time," an account of the origins of the universe, is renowned for his work on black holes, cosmology and quantum gravity.

Since 1974, the scientist has worked on marrying the two cornerstones of modern physics -- Albert Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, which concerns gravity and large-scale phenomena, and quantum theory, which covers subatomic particles.

His latest comments suggest he has broken away from previous views he has expressed on religion. Previously, he wrote that the laws of physics meant it was simply not necessary to believe that God had intervened in the Big Bang.

He wrote in A Brief History ... "If we discover a complete theory, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason -- for then we should know the mind of God."

In his latest book, he said the 1992 discovery of a planet orbiting another star other than the Sun helped deconstruct the view of the father of physics Isaac Newton that the universe could not have arisen out of chaos but was created by God.

"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 evidence that the Earth was carefully designed just to please us human beings," he writes.

Hawking, who is only able to speak through a computer-generated voice synthesizer, has a neuro muscular dystrophy that has progressed over the years and left him almost completely paralyzed.

He began suffering the disease in his early 20s but went on to establish himself as one of the world's leading scientific authorities, and has also made guest appearances in "Star Trek" and the cartoons "Futurama" and "The Simpsons."

Last year he announced he was stepping down as Cambridge University's Lucasian Professor of Mathematics, a position once held by Newton and one he had held since 1979.

"The Grand Design" is due to go on sale next week.

(Editing by Steve Addison)"

.........

Obviously, this Press Release was one big pot-boiling promotion tactic to raise awareness of his new book "The Grand Design". Of course, one should read his book to find out exactly what he says, however the few quotations taken from Hawking displays this book presents seriously flawed ideas.

As you can see from the article above, there is a reason Hawking is called a "theoretical physicist", he cannot provide proof for his arguments, and uses alternative theories to explain why there need not be a God to set the universe in motion.

I find his statement "because there is a Law of Gravity the universe can and will create itself from nothing" a complete paradox. The term "Law" alone suggests a great Mind was at work, an Authority creates a law and sets it in motion. How can there be "Spontaneous Creation"? After all , it is an Action, an action does not come from Nothing. Nothing begets nothing. And even Hawking must use the word "creation", which means a powerful entity had to devise all the building blocks of the universe.

The fact we can describe or compute everything we have discovered on earth and in the universe using numbers and complicated mathematical equations, including the processes of quantum physics, displays a great Mind set everything into motion. Line up zeros for as many aeons as you can, and you still end up with 0. Take the Binary Code, it will not work without 1 added. What is Zero, and Who is the One? God and His Creation. Without Him, there is nothing, not even a zero.

Hawking previously wrote before his atheistic theory "If we discover a complete theory, (for the existence of the universe) it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason -- for then we should know the mind of God." (I might add, he could read his Bible once in awhile if he really wanted to know.)

He was bound to fail when attempting to find this "complete theory" for no one can discover how God created the universe from Nothing simply by his Omnipotent Will Power: there is obviously no way we can find physical evidence for how this could come about except for "Let there be..." as Genesis displays. Since human reason will never be able to "triumph" as he predicted in this instance, Hawking came up with the alternative, and mind-numbing, paradox: "it is not necessary to believe God set the Big Bang in motion", i.e. if there is a God, we don't have to believe He did anything, we can just continue to study the origins of the universe, talk about the Big Bang, but bury our heads in the sand and not worry about where , how or why it happened. A real triumph for human reasoning and the scientific process.

It is sad to see a brilliant mind and a lifetime of studying physics end up with this "Blind Man's Theory". The simplicity of God's complex creation did not satisfy Hawking, who was more interested in seeing puny human reasoning triumph and decided to play God himself with his intellectual prowess. It is a mistake many men make when they eliminate God from their equations and insert their own flawed reasoning.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 5, 2010, 11:13:00 AM PDT
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Posted on Sep 5, 2010, 2:43:02 PM PDT
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In reply to an earlier post on Sep 5, 2010, 3:18:11 PM PDT
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Posted on Sep 5, 2010, 3:35:21 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 5, 2010, 4:16:53 PM PDT
Thanks for the replys.

Hi Seeker, I suspect the same thing, perhaps the concept of stirring up lucrative publicity was a possibility with this whole concept "you don't need a creator to start the Big Bang". Does he really beleive the illogical statements he released in the Press Release? It puzzles the mind.

Two in Tents: Thanks for the honest reply. I'll give an honest one too. According to your statement about the "mind of God" metaphor, if atheists were and are using it to mask their own non-belief under the cloak of belief, they are the intellectualy dishonest ones, and Hawking has slipped another notch in my estimation. They should say "Mind of Nature"...oh dear, 'Nature' doesn't have a mind, or "Mind of Power", whoops, wrong again, Power alone does not have a mind, but Something greater than ourselves must have. Athiests have been shooting themselves in the foot the whole time, haven't they?
I'm sorry you feel my post is filled with "ignorant and erronesous drivel", but how does the existence of numbers used as the evidence of a great Mind at work illogical, or ignorant? Did we invent numbers? Did they come out of nothing? About not naming any factual or logical errors directly from his book...if you had truly read my post, you will see I am discussing the Press Release related to the book, which contains quotations. At the time of this post, you will find the book has not yet been released, and since I am not a professional reviewer who received a pre-release copy for free, I could not possibly have a copy. If I did, I would be posting an actual book review, and not opening a discussion on the Press Release in the product discussion forum at this point. Thanks for taking part anyway.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 5, 2010, 4:59:22 PM PDT
Gurney says:
"After all , it is an Action, an action does not come from Nothing. Nothing begets nothing."

Than what begat God? (Please don't say God is eternal. If a god can be eternal, so can the universe, or some form of it.)

Posted on Sep 5, 2010, 5:08:01 PM PDT
Mary Watson says:
Au contraire, ol' silly billy Bucchianeri. Of course, Mind of Nature and Mind of Power are/have minds, that's where gravity and the numbers come from, and anyway who are we mindless twits to say otherwise? Do you have a better explanation (that holds up)? Where is your sense of adventure, universalism, orientation to the deep space creation mysteries? And what about the similar less scientific constructs (but similar reach to spirituality and fervor), in the 20th, 19th, 18th, 17th, 16th, 15th, 14th, 13th, 12th, 11th, etc etc etc philosophical/religiosity centuries? Come to think of it, why not give way to the glory of mind-bending symbolism? And you shouldn't pay any attention to the Amazon book reviewers -- we all know they are only folks incredibly gratified to be allowed to comment and pronounce. (Who picks these people? Do they actually get paid?) "A Pathetic Demise to a Brilliant Career?" A truly pathetic response to amazing genius -- more suitable for a premature farewell address for the likes of a fading pop star.

Posted on Sep 5, 2010, 5:21:22 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 12, 2010, 7:39:44 AM PDT
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Posted on Sep 5, 2010, 5:44:00 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 5, 2010, 5:47:01 PM PDT
Mary Watson:

It seems you may have taken my use of "Nature" and "Power" out of the context I was using them. Of course a Mind created numbers! My argument was: if there is no God as the atheists present, why use the metaphor "mind of God" to mask their scientific research as Two in Tents says they do? If there is no God, there cannot be any "Mind" whatsoever in the "Big Bang" process of the universe and its coming into being from an atheist's point of view. (I am talking about 'die-hard' athiests who do not believe in any creative spirit, not those termed 'athiests' who simply have religious beliefs different from my own. I'd rather have people beleive in something rather than nothing.) My argument was die hard atheists would be more honest in coming up with another metaphor rather than using the term "mind of God". However, since atheists prefer to talk of Nature than about a "God concept", I was pointing out Nature exists because there is Mind behind it that set it all into motion. (Nature, like rocks, for example, do not have minds of their own. So I disagree with you Mary, Nature, as in wind, rocks and water, does not have its own mind.) As for "Power", if you are talking of spirits, then yes they would have spiritual minds, but since die-hard atheists will not believe in any spirit entity creating the universe, I was refering to Power as a simple display of forces in inanimate Nature, earthquakes do not have a "Mind" of thier own, Hurricanes do not have a "Mind" of their own. In all, since there is more evidence a Mind set creation into being, the atheists have a hard time finding 'truthful' terms to use, which only puts them on shakier ground. I hope you see my argument in the context I intended it to be read.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2010, 4:23:53 AM PDT
So you say that one press release is "A Pathetic Demise to a Brilliant Career?"

Just lol.

Read the book.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2010, 8:06:42 AM PDT
K. Clifton says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2010, 8:22:29 AM PDT
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In reply to an earlier post on Sep 7, 2010, 4:28:00 AM PDT
Potboy says:
"The fact we can describe or compute everything we have discovered on earth and in the universe using numbers and complicated mathematical equations, including the processes of quantum physics, displays a great Mind set everything into motion."

No it doesn't. You have shown no process behind how A must result from B, you are simply asserting: "Well it must have."

Posted on Sep 8, 2010, 8:47:59 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 8, 2010, 8:50:16 AM PDT
A. Arcain says:
You're writing to disprove a book you haven't even read? Based on information you took from reviews? And doing so by quoting a work of fiction?

You're delusional, my friend. I believe it's known as "The God Delusion".

Posted on Sep 8, 2010, 9:25:33 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 8, 2010, 9:26:36 AM PDT
sooner77 says:
In the beginning Hawking decided there is no God but believes there is something rather than nothing because, well, there just is.

Posted on Sep 8, 2010, 9:58:26 AM PDT
"A Pathetic Demise to a Brilliant Career? "

Definitely YES. "Man should know his limitations" - Clint Eastwood

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 8, 2010, 2:37:55 PM PDT
M. McKnight says:
The universe is not eternal. It had a beginning, remember the Big Bang? Furthermore going forward in time the universe will not last forever, as it expands energy is dissipated until the so called heat death of the universe, where the universe is nothing but a bag of evenly spaced protons, and even the protons decay. Entropy also means the universe would lack the energy to re-create itself, if it were to collapse it would not bounce (produce another Big Bang). This is the physics of our 4 dimensional time-space bound reality.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 11, 2010, 7:33:01 AM PDT
Bucchianeri has an interesting post but I wish the Bible quotes were accurate. Here is what I find for Eccles 7:1-3

Ecclesiastes 7:1-3 NKJV
1 A good name is better than precious ointment, And the day of death than the day of one's birth;
2 Better to go to the house of mourning Than to go to the house of feasting, For that is the end of all men; And the living will take it to heart.
3 Sorrow is better than laughter, For by a sad countenance the heart is made better.

What does this have to do with "The Grand Design"?

L. Stultz

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 11, 2010, 12:19:40 PM PDT
Matts Roos says:
What Hawking states about the Universe and God is neither new nor surprising nor shocking to physicists and cosmologists. Let me say a few words about cosmology.

At the very earliest times, the Universe is required to obey the laws of Quantum Mechanics. After that, and until our time, it is required to obey Einstein's General Theory of Relativity. Both theories are well understood to physicists, but much too complicated mathematically to be popularized. An additional problem is, that one would really need a mathematical theory encompassing both Quantum Mechanics and General Relativity, but that has not yet succeeded.

E.A. Bucchianeri does not trust Hawking, because he is a theoretical physicist. That is a useless distrust: everything we know in physics is described by theoretical physics, not by philosophy or beliefs, and every theory has to confront observational data in physics experiments. Like this theories will be verified or discarded.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 11, 2010, 6:27:30 PM PDT
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Posted on Sep 11, 2010, 9:12:14 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 11, 2010, 9:15:21 PM PDT
DougFL says:
E. A. Bucchianeri said:
"Hawking previously wrote before his atheistic theory "If we discover a complete theory, (for the existence of the universe) it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason -- for then we should know the mind of God." (I might add, he could read his Bible once in awhile if he really wanted to know.)"

------------------------------------------------------------------------

Why should anyone look to The Bible to seek the mind of God? A flawed, error-ridden, contradictory book written by men. There is nothing divine about it and most of it was blatantly plagiarized off of earlier religious texts (mainly Sumerian and Egyptians).

If there is a creator, it is certainly NOT the ridiculously anthropomorphic, and obviously man-made tribal totem in The Bible, that jealously seeks worship, that worries about what we eat, who we marry or have sex with etc. - or that creates a ridiculous system of "sin debt" that requires an equally ridiculous (and obviously pagan influenced) blood sacrifice in order to correct. No, if there is a being that created our universe it is a far more logical and rational being than the Christian god or the god(s) of any other earthly religion. Sorry!

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 12, 2010, 6:34:36 AM PDT
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Discussion in:  The Grand Design forum
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Initial post:  Sep 5, 2010
Latest post:  Oct 30, 2012

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The Grand Design
The Grand Design by Leonard Mlodinow (Hardcover - September 7, 2010)
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