Stephen Hawking’s New Book: God Belief and Science

Stephen Hawking’s New Book: God Belief and Science

It’s unusual for science to cross over to the mainstream but Stephen Hawking is one brilliant scientist and author who managed to make a science book into a bestseller. His work, “A Brief History of Time” sold in bucketfuls all over the world, eventually reaching sales figures of more than 9 million. Now the esteemed professor is set to try to do the same again with his new book, due out next week.

The book, entitled “Grand Design” is described by its publishers as “A controversial new theory on the origins of the universe, from the world’s most famous living scientist,” which hardly sounds like bed-time reading but no doubt anybody who is anybody will be claiming to have it. Richard Lea over on the Guardian though makes a good point of asking how many people who bought “A Brief History of Time” actually read the book.

Lea also questions quite how it is that a professor of maths manages to sell science books on such a grand scale and believes the inclusion of God is the thing that swings it. If you cast your mind back to “Brief History” about the theory of relativity, the Big Bang and black holes, the notable variation from other science books was that Hawking doesn’t rule out God, as most other scientists and scientific books do. Lea reminds us that at the end of “A Brief History of Time” Hawking said, “If we discover a complete theory, it would be the ultimate triumph of reason – for then we should know the mind of God.”

Somewhat controversially though this belief in God doesn’t equate with believing that the universe was created by God as many who believe in God might say, which is causing a media storm. The new book looks into the ‘grand design’ of the universe and asks if it was a benevolent creator that set thing in motion, or if in fact it can all be explained with science. Now he makes the statement, “Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing … It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going.”

For more on this go to How do you feel about Hawking’s latest theory? Do you feel it’s possible to believe in God and yet not believe that God created the universe and that it can all be explained with science? Please send in your comments below as we’re really interested to hear where you stand on this and encourage as many views as possible.

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  • Mack Stevenson

    I think that God is much more creative and intelligent than any human could possibley imagine. I have degrees in Chemistry, Pharmacy and Law. The more I learn the more ignorant I feel.

  • Name

    The problem is that when we cannot understand something or cannot find a reason for it we explain that it is because of God and whenever we find out a reason for something we think that thing is existing because of that reason.
    In this case, when we do not know how the universe has been created we say God has done it; but, when we figure it out we say no need to God because we have understood the reason. Question is here, who has created that rule or law?

  • doug manchester

    What one believes is inconsequential. How one acts is the most important element of our existence.


  • @all_west

    "Scientific method involves observations, definitions, and measurements of the subject of inquiry; empathy is not generally seen as a useful tool. While it is not unknown for scientists to lapse into anthropomorphism to make the objects of their study more humanly comprehensible or memorable, they often do it with an apology." [anthropomorphism] I had majored in Chemistry and Theology and have degrees in Biology and Medicine. My religious beliefs are that of Christianity. But I believe it is not within the human's finite mind to comprehend or prove the full existence of God. That is where faith comes in.

  • YeCristos

    I suspect Hawking and his partner must have failed to discover the 'complete theory' of everything as they promised they would more than ten years ago. So this book, which I'll read, but I believe is a soup of different String Theory ideas (or beans?) is Hawking throwing up the towel. Why? because if he disovered the Holy Grail as he promised, the headline of the story would have been quite different. I'm an electrical engineer by training and did buy and read his earler book: "The Brief History of Time." He fascinates me as he does many others interested in science. But I believe anything he says about God is his BELIEF based on scientific conjecture. Truly, God's thoughts are not like our thoughts and His ways are not like our ways. He is unsearcheable, unfathomable and unmatched. That is why even Hawking with all his brilliant mind (and perhaps ummatched among us mortals) has finally given up after a lifetime of study, if only he'd admit.

  • a believer

    "God" is the term mankind created for those things they don't understand.

  • Uchitrakar

    Beginning of any universe cannot be governed by its own laws, for the simple reason that a universe that has not yet come into existence cannot have any laws in it. But Hawking has written that when the universe was small enough it was governed by both general relativity and quantum theory. But these are the two laws of our universe and therefore these laws could not be there when the universe has not yet begun. So how did Hawking come to know that these two laws governed the beginning of our universe? Is he all-knowing God?
    Singularity theory of Penrose and Hawking was correct in showing that all the known laws of science would break down at the point of singularity, because when there is no universe there is also no arena in which these laws can appear. Nothing is more obvious than this that there cannot be any laws of science when there is no universe. Universe coming to an end means all the known laws of science also coming to an end with it. If we cannot believe in the existence of God due to lack of evidence, then it is equally true that due to this same lack of evidence we cannot believe that the laws of gravity and quantum theory were already there at the beginning of our universe to govern that beginning.

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