God did not create the universe, world-famous physicist Stephen Hawking argues in a new book that aims to banish a divine creator from physics.
Hawking says in his book “The Grand Design” that, given the existence of gravity, “the universe can and will create itself from nothing,” according to an excerpt published Thursday in The Times of London.
“Spontaneous creation is the reason why there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist,” he writes in the excerpt.
“It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper [fuse] and set the universe going,” he writes.
His book — as the title suggests — is an attempt to answer “the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything,” he writes, quoting Douglas Adams’ cult science fiction romp, “The Hitch-hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.”
His answer is “M-theory,” which, he says, posits 11 space-time dimensions, “vibrating strings, … point particles, two-dimensional membranes, three-dimensional blobs and other objects that are more difficult to picture and occupy even more dimensions of space.” He doesn’t explain much of that in the excerpt, which is the introduction to the book.
But he says he understands the feeling of the great English scientist Isaac Newton that God did “create” and “conserve” order in the universe.
The real news about “The Grand Design,” however, isn’t Mr. Hawking’s supposed jettisoning of God, information that will surprise no one who has followed his work closely. The real news about “The Grand Design” is how disappointingly tinny and inelegant it is. The spare and earnest voice that Mr. Hawking employed with such appeal in “A Brief History of Time” has been replaced here by one that is alternately condescending, as if he were Mr. Rogers explaining rain clouds to toddlers, and impenetrable.
“The Grand Design” is packed with grating yuks. “If you think it is hard to get humans to follow traffic laws,” we read, “imagine convincing an asteroid to move along an ellipse.” (Oh, my.) This is the sort of book that introduces the legendary physicist Richard Feynman as “a colorful character who worked at the California Institute of Technology and played the bongo drums at a strip joint down the road.” Mr. Hawking has written “The Grand Design” with Leonard Mlodinow, a fellow physicist who has also worked on “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” They’re an awkward pair, part “A Beautiful Mind,” part borscht belt. This book is provocative pop science, an exploration of the latest thinking about the origins of our universe. But the air inside this literary biosphere is not especially pleasant to breathe.
On his radio show today, Dennis Prager said: This man is a brilliant mind, but we often confuse brilliance with common sense. They’re not related.
They say he’s the greatest physicist says Albert Einstein.
Stephen Hawking says everything comes from nothing. No reason. He just doesn’t want to believe in God.
So many believers are so happy when they find a scientist who’s a believer. It has no impact on me.
My belief in God is not based on what people who study physics think. If you explain to me how something came from nothing, I’ll be an atheist. It’s not explainable.
Scientists are sophisticated plumbers. God bless science. It’s kept me alive. I had surgery this summer. I didn’t go to a witch doctor or to a rabbi. I went to a scientist.
Stephen Hawking is not an atheist because of his physics and mathematics. He’s an atheist for the same reason your friend Joe is who runs a bottling company for Pabst Brewery.