Stephen Hawking discovers atheism September 3, 2010
Cosmologist Stephen Hawking apparently concludes in his forthcoming book “The grand design” that physics has eliminated the need for God to have created the universe. Instead, he claims, the universe (or multiuniverse) was created from nothing by the laws of science (e.g. the law of gravity). But this is an ontological black hole, for if he is right (which he isn’t of course) the laws of nature must have had a prior and independent existence before the nature they describe came into being. In what matrix, we must ask, did these laws exist in the absence of the material universe?
The theist might answer (as Hawking himself formerly answered) that they existed in the “mind of God”. But now Hawking has abandoned that view, where, pray, were these laws located before creation occurred? In fact, it is a philosophical leap of faith to suppose that the laws of nature can have an existence in the absence of the nature they describe. It certainly isn’t science. From a scientific perspective the laws of nature are an integral part of nature and thus of the divinely created order.
In fact, most of Hawking’s arguments (such as the appeal to multiverses and a confused understanding of what constitutes the the laws of nature) are considered and refuted in “Who made God?”, published just a year ago!
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