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Here's Why Stephen Hawking Says There Is No God

Science, philosophy, politics, and religion are frequent topics for writer and public speaker Catherine Giordano.

There is a grand design, but it is not God.

There is a grand design, but it is not God.

Stephen Hawking believed that there is a "grand design" to the universe, but that it has nothing to do with God. In 1988, he spoke of God in his groundbreaking book A Brief History of Time, and said that if physicists could find a sound “theory of everything” they would understand “the mind of God.” He once believed that we would one day discover this unifying, coherent theoretical framework—like God—that explains the universe—but after studying Gödel, he decided that it would never happen. He said,

"Some people will be very disappointed if there is not an ultimate theory, that can be formulated as a finite number of principles. I used to belong to that camp, but I have changed my mind. I'm now glad that our search for understanding will never come to an end, and that we will always have the challenge of new discovery. Without it, we would stagnate."

Let's take a look at the life, work, and worldview of Stephen Hawking, who was widely acclaimed as one of the most brilliant minds in the world.

Stephen Hawking Says, “I’m an Atheist.”

Before his death at the age of 76 on March 14, 2018, Stephen Hawking was generally considered one of the smartest people on Earth. He was a world-famous theoretical physicist and cosmologist who received many honors for his work in the field of cosmology, quantum physics, black holes, and the nature of spacetime.

So, when Hawking said that God didn't exist and added the sentence "I am an atheist” to that statement, the world took notice.

Hawking made this controversial statement in 2014 during an interview with Pablo Jauregui, a journalist from El Mundo, a Spanish newspaper. Read the full quote below:

“Before we understand science, it is natural to believe that God created the universe. But now science offers a more convincing explanation. What I meant by ‘we would know the mind of God’ is, we would know everything that God would know, if there were a God, which there isn’t. I’m an atheist.”

When Did Hawking Become an Atheist?

Hawking was probably an atheist from an early age. His family was nominally Christian, but for all intents and purposes, they were intellectual atheists.

As a boy at St. Albans school, he argued with his classmates about Christianity. During his college years at Oxford and Cambridge, he was a well-known atheist.

His first wife, Jane, whom he married in 1965 and divorced in 1990, was a devout Christian. It is clear they were never on the same page about religious matters, and this was perhaps one of the reasons why the two decided to go their separate ways.

Hawking’s statement denying the existence of God should not have come as a surprise to anyone. Over the years, Hawking has made many statements in opposition to religious beliefs. A few are listed below:

What Did Stephen Hawking Say About God and Religion?

  • “So long as the universe had a beginning, we could suppose it had a creator. But if the universe is really completely self-contained, having no boundary or edge, it would have neither beginning nor end: it would simply be. What place, then, for a creator?” (From A Brief History of Time,1988)
  • “We are just an advanced breed of monkeys on a minor planet of a very average star. But we can understand the Universe. That makes us something very special.” (Der Spiegel, October 17, 1988)
  • “Ever since the dawn of civilization, people have not been content to see events as unconnected and inexplicable. They have craved an understanding of the underlying order in the world. Today we still yearn to know why we are here and where we came from. Humanity’s deepest desire for knowledge is justification enough for our continuing quest. And our goal is nothing less than a complete description of the universe we live in.” (From A Brief History of Time,1988)
  • “What I have done is to show that it is possible for the way the universe began to be determined by the laws of science. In that case, it would not be necessary to appeal to God to decide how the universe began. This doesn’t prove that there is no God, only that God is not necessary.” (Der Spiegel, October 17, 1988)
  • “I think computer viruses should count as life. I think it says something about human nature that the only form of life we have created so far is purely destructive. We’ve created life in our own image.” (Speech given at Macworld Expo in Boston, August 4, 1994)
  • “So Einstein was wrong when he said, 'God does not play dice.' Consideration of black holes suggests, not only that God does play dice, but that he sometimes confuse us by throwing them where they can’t be seen.” (Does God Play Dice? 1996)
  • “We shouldn’t be surprised that conditions in the universe are suitable for life, but this is not evidence that the universe was designed to allow for life. We could call order by the name of God, but it would be an impersonal God. There’s not much personal about the laws of physics.” ("Leaping the Abyss" in Reason Magazine by Gregory Benford, April 2002)
  • “The life we have on Earth must have spontaneously generated itself. It must therefore be possible for life to generate spontaneously elsewhere in the universe.” (In an appearance on Alien Planet on May 14, 2005)
  • “I’m not religious in the normal sense. I believe the universe is governed by the laws of science. The laws may have been decreed by God, but God does not intervene to break the laws.” (BBC News Interview, April 26, 2007)
  • “I regard the afterlife to be a fairy story for people that are afraid of the dark” (In an interview with Charlie Rose, March 9, 2008)
  • "There is nothing bigger or older than the universe." (TED Talk, 2008)
  • “I have noticed even people who claim everything is predestined, and that we can do nothing to change it, look before they cross the road.” (In Black Holes and Baby Universes and Other Essays, April 5, 2008)
  • “There is a fundamental difference between religion, which is based on authority, and science, which is based on observation and reason. Science will win because it works.” (In an interview with Diane Sawyer on June 7, 2010)
  • There is a fundamental difference between religion, which is based on authority, and science, which is based on observation and reason. Science will win because it works.” (In an interview with Diane Sawyer on June 7, 2010)
  • “One can’t prove that God doesn’t exist, but science makes God unnecessary.” (In an interview with Nick Watt on September 7, 2010)
  • “God is the name people give to the reason we are here. But I think that reason is the laws of physics rather than someone with whom one can have a personal relationship. An impersonal God.” (Time Magazine, November 15, 2010)
  • “I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark.” (Interview with Ian Sample in Guardian Magazine, May 15, 2011)
  • “We are each free to believe what we want, and it’s my view that the simplest explanation is; there is no God. No one created our universe, and no one directs our fate. This leads me to a profound realization that there probably is no heaven and no afterlife either. We have this one life to appreciate the grand design of the universe and for that, I am extremely grateful.” (Discovery Channel, August 15, 2011)
  • "I believe there are no questions that science can't answer about a physical universe." (NPR interview, September 13, 2013)

(This select, incomplete list is arranged chronologically.)

Stephen Hawking asserts that "there is no God."

Stephen Hawking asserts that "there is no God."

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Did Hawking Ever Believe In God?

Hawking did make some ambiguous statements about God during his lifetime, which some have translated as proof of belief. For example, in his 1988 book, A Brief History of Time, he discusses what it would mean if we were to ever discover why we and the universe exist. He wrote, “It [finding a unifying theory] would be the ultimate triumph of human reason–for then, we would know the mind of God.”

This statement has been misinterpreted by some to mean that Hawking believed in God. In the El Mundo interview, Hawking made clear that this quote was only a metaphor: “What I meant when I said we would know 'the mind of God' was that we would know everything God would know if there were a God, which there isn't."

So it's unlikely that Hawking ever believed in a God in the traditional sense, and when he spoke of God, he was not claiming any faith in a divine Creator. The church was never a part of Hawking's life, although he did meet with popes, and his first wife was Catholic. Although Hawking did talk about God, he was not using the word's traditional meaning, but instead likened God to a unifying theory of physics. So for Hawking, the word "God" sometimes meant something different than how most dictionaries define the word.

When Hawking wrote that "we would know the mind of God," he meant it as a metaphor.

When Hawking wrote that "we would know the mind of God," he meant it as a metaphor.

Do Scientists Tend to be Atheists?

In his atheism, Stephen Hawking had lots of company among his peers. Research suggests as many as 93% of top-tier scientists do not believe in God. In comparison, about 83% of Americans do believe in God.

Nature magazine conducted a survey in 1998 among members of the National Academy of Sciences, a prestigious group of top scientists. They found that only 7% of these scientists believed in God. Further, they showed the group of believers was shrinking when they compared their study to prior studies of a similar nature (28% in 1914 and 15% in 1933), so perhaps the proportion of believers is even lower today. (Nature 394,313:23 July 1998)

A similar study was conducted among British scientists, specifically the Fellows of the Royal Society of London. Among the British population as a whole, 42% believe in a personal God, but among British scientists, only 5% do. (Evolution and Outreach, December 2013 6:33)

Did ALS Influence Hawking’s Religious Beliefs?

Hawking was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) at the age of 21. ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. This causes the brain to be unable to initiate and control muscle movement. It eventually leads to total paralysis.

At the time of diagnosis, Hawking was given only two years to live. He defied that prediction and lived to the age of 76. During the latter half of his life, he was almost totally paralyzed and used a voice synthesizer to speak, which he controlled with a cheek muscle.

Some have said that Hawking’s long life was a "miracle." Hawking did not believe this, saying, “Religion believes in miracles, but they are not compatible with science.”

Thus, Hawking's illness played no part in his views on God: just as he did not need God to explain the existence of the universe, he did not need God to explain his survival. Hawking attributed his longevity to a fierce will to live and a stubborn desire to not let his illness keep him from having a full life. Hawking said: “However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there's life, there is hope.”

Adhering to this motto, Hawking lived his life as "normally" as possible. He had three children with his first wife, Jane, remarried in 1995 to his caretaker Elaine Manson (they divorced in 2006), and continued to write, teach, and lecture up until his last days. Hawking received numerous awards and honors for his work and authored several books intended for a general audience, including an autobiography.

Although his atheism was not affected by his illness, his life certainly was, and his scientific achievements may also have even been fostered by his illness. Being unable to live a normal physical life meant he could devote himself to the inner life of the mind. Also, the feeling that he did not have long to live likely spurred him to work harder in order to accomplish as much as possible in the time he had.

Some say Hawking's longevity was a miracle, but Hawking didn't believe in miracles.

Some say Hawking's longevity was a miracle, but Hawking didn't believe in miracles.

How Did Hawking Explain the Creation of the Universe?

In his 2010 book The Grand Design, written with co-author and physicist Leonard Mlodinow, Hawking took the reader on a journey from the earliest beliefs about the creation of the universe to the cutting edge of modern cosmology, which includes quantum physics, string theory, multi-verses, and M-theory. Together, these theories are bringing us close to what scientists call “The Theory of Everything," one theory that unifies all.

This book doesn’t play coy about belief in God. Right away, on page 8, Hawking writes “M-Theory predicts that a great many universes were created out of nothing. Their creation does not require the intervention of some supernatural being or God. Rather these multiple universes arise naturally from physical law.”

Something from nothing? It doesn’t immediately make sense. We have this reaction because, at the level that humans experience the universe, we see cause and effect. But cause-and-effect does not exist on the quantum level in the same way that we experience it.

At the end of the book on page 180, Hawking sums everything up:

“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.”

In the El Mundo interview, Hawking said:

“When people ask me if a God created the universe, I tell them that the question itself makes no sense. Time didn’t exist before the Big Bang, so there is no time for God to make the universe in. It’s like asking directions to the edge of the earth; The Earth is a sphere; it doesn’t have an edge; so looking for it is a futile exercise.”

M-Theory shows how "something can come from nothing."

M-Theory shows how "something can come from nothing."

What Was the Response From the Religious Community?

As might be expected, there was a huge outcry from religious leaders offering vigorous rebuttals to Hawking’s statement that God did not necessarily create the universe. Their arguments were weak, petty, and often showed little to no understanding of science. They even sometimes misquoted Hawking in order to set up a "straw man" to knock down. The rebuttals boiled down to, “God exists because I say so.”

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, said, “Belief in God . . . is the belief that there is an intelligent, living agent on whose activity everything ultimately depends for its existence. Physics on its own will not settle the question of why there is something rather than nothing.” ( 9/23/2010)

The Chief Rabbi of the United Kingdom, Lord Jonathan Sacks, said, “Science is about explanation. Religion is about interpretation. The Bible simply isn't interested in how the universe came into being." ( 9/23/2010)

Some make a big deal about the idea that Hawking never disproved the existence of God, but this comes as no surprise. No one can prove or disprove the existence of an immaterial, invisible being. What Hawking did was show how the universe could come into existence without a Prime Mover to set things into motion.

Others said that you cannot get something from nothing and everything has to have a cause . . . with God being that cause. These critics probably didn't read Hawking’s book, because he explains these points.

There were some Christian publications that took aim at scientists themselves, claiming that God is merely the laws of the universe as physicists understand them. The Christian Post wrote: “Hawking’s redefinition of ‘nothing’ in no way removes God (and actually introduces us to something like God), but instead only reacquaints us with the standard debate between two eternal ‘somethings’—the uni/multiverse and God.”

Some pointed out that string theory and M-theory are not accepted by all scientists. This is true, but that doesn't mean that Hawking was wrong. Many scientists do accept these cutting-edge theories, and the fact that some do not does not disprove them. The methodology of science is based on postulation and experimentation.

Finally, some have tried to discredit Hawking by attacking his character rather than his work. For instance, Hawking has said life might exist on other planets, and that these "aliens" might be hostile to Earthlings. His antagonists retort that there is no proof of this, so everything Hawking says must be wrong. They try to conflate mere musings (that many other scientists have also speculated about) with his scientific work.

Should Hawking Have Stuck to Science and Left God to Theologians?

Some critics have stated that Hawking should have stuck to science and left God to theologians.

But Hawking did stick to science.

His views about God are informed by his study of science. Hawking was not discussing theology, which would encompass issues like whether God is one or three, whether God cares about the eating of pork, or how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. Hawking had nothing to say about theological issues, for theological issues assume the existence of God or gods.

Hawking’s opinion about God is a scientific opinion. Since the laws of physics can explain the creation of the universe, there is no need to have a Supreme Being to create it. Hawking explains that we do not need a God who is outside spacetime and who Himself was created from nothing to create the universe. God is superfluous.

Brief Answers to the Big Questions

Why Was Hawking’s Funeral at a Church?

There were 500 invited guests at Stephen Hawking’s funeral held on March 31, 2018, at St Mary the Great Church in Cambridge, England. Although Hawking was an atheist, his children Lucy, Robert, and Tim chose St Mary the Great, the church of Cambridge's prestigious university, to say their farewell. The family chose the Church of England funeral service customarily given to longtime fellows at Cambridge University. (Hawking did his graduate work at the University and was a fellow at the University for 52 years.) About 1000 people lined the streets to view his funeral procession.

His children issued a statement saying, "Our father's life and work meant many things to many people, both religious and non-religious. So, the service will be both inclusive and traditional, reflecting the breadth and diversity of his life."

The Hawking family arranged and paid for a three-course Easter weekend meal for the homeless at the Wesley Methodist Church in Cambridge served on the day of his funeral. The tables were adorned with flowers and a card reading, “Today’s lunch is a gift from Stephen . . . From the Hawking family.”

Hawking was cremated and a memorial service was held on June 15, 2018. His ashes were interred at London’s Westminster Abbey near the remains of the renowned scientist lsaac Newton.

Questions & Answers

Question: If there is no God, please explain how can so many people be wrong? Statistically, it is not possible.

Answer: First, statistics has nothing to do with it. We do not take a poll to determine what is true and what is false.

Second, throughout history, the vast majority of people have believed things to be true that today have been proven false. For instance, the earth is not flat, and it is not even spherical. (There is a bulge around the equator.) Also, the sun does not revolve around the Earth, and the Earth is not the center of the universe. And spontaneous generation, the idea that living things can emerge from non-living things, once widely believed, is now known to be impossible.

Further, lightning bolts do not strike Earth because some God or other is angry. At one time, the atom was thought to be the smallest constituent of matter, but we now know there are many subatomic particles. I could go on, but by now you should have gotten the idea.

Many people have very different ides about God from what presume your idea is. Over one billion people are Hindus who believe in multiple gods and goddesses. Half a billion people are Buddhists who do not believe in any god. (Buddha is not a god, but a teacher.)

In what is called "the Western world," there are many atheists/agnostics. In France, about 40% of people do not believe in God. In the United Kingdom, the percentage is 30%. In the United States, it is a much smaller percentage--about 8%. The statistics can vary a lot depending on what country you are looking at. You can see for yourself in this article from "Psychology Today."

It seems that Stephen Hawking was far from alone when he said he did not believe in the existence of God.

Question: I believe that Steven Hawking was correct. If mankind did not exist, there would be no God; therefore, it is fair to say God equals mankind. As it is mankind that has everlasting life and we are the body of mankind, we are made in the likeness of mankind. All that matters is your life and to live a purposeful life is our value to mankind. Is this what he meant to say?

Answer: No, Hawking wasn't saying that at all. Hawking was a theoretical physicist, not a philosopher or a theologian. Hawking meant to say exactly what he did say and that is what he said in his book "The Grand Design" and elsewhere. The universe can exist with the need of a supernatural "First Mover."

I don't know if Hawking agrees with your theory or not because he has never said anything about it.

I am not saying that your idea is a bad idea, just that you can not attribute it to Hawking.

Question: Is it right to question the existence of God?

Answer: Yes it is just fine for people to question the existence of God. Just as it is right to question the existence of leprechauns and Abominable Snowmen. Everything should be subject to rational examination.

Scientists, especially, must question everything. Do quarks exist? Show me why you think they exist. If a scientist can question the existence of quarks, why not also question the existence of God?

Question: If time didn't exist before the Big Bang (and I'm not arguing that), how is it possible that anything happened in no time? If God can't create it because there was no time to, how could the laws of physics create it in no time?

Answer: I'm not a physicist, but I don't think Hawking is saying that the "laws of physics" created the universe. I think Hawking is saying that the universe, time, and the laws of physics are all part of the "Big Bang."

It is hard for most of us to understand this because we are used to "cause and effect." But quantum physics goes against everything we "know" in our everyday life. And the idea of a multi-verse which creates new universes is mind-boggling. The fact that the universe is expanding is mind-boggling.

I wasn't trying to explain astrophysics in this article. I was only trying to discuss Hawking's beliefs about God and religion. If you want to understand astrophysics a bit better, read Hawking's books or the books of other theoretical physicists or astrophysicists.

Question: Did Hawking ever consider the universe to be like a Mobius band; i.e. having no beginning or end?

Answer: I don't know if Stephen Hawking ever used the Mobius strip (also called Mobius band) analogy, but I do think he believed that the multi-verse had no beginning or end as we understand those terms.

I checked the index in his book "A Brief History of Time" and the term "Mobius strip" is not there.

Question: Why do people not recognize that scientists are the ones responsible for atheism?

Answer: Maybe the reason people don't recognize that scientists are the ones responsible for atheism is because it is not true.

Atheism means without god (from the Greek "a" which means without and "theos" which means god/gods). Every human being is born an atheist. We have to be taught to believe in gods. That is why almost all people have the same beliefs about god and religion as their parents.

Some people are never taught this so they never believe in god/gods. Some people are taught to believe, but later reject these beliefs because they don't seem true or they don't make sense. They then look to alternate explanations for existence and find them through the application of science, philosophy, logic, or other disciplines. But even uneducated people can be atheists.

Far from not recognizing that scientists are responsible for atheism, science is frequently credited with causing atheism. However, there are some scientists that continue to believe. For instance, the eminent scientist Stephen Jay Gould (American paleontologist, evolutionary biologist, and historian of science) posited NOMA--non-overlapping magisterium. Science was one and religion was the other. Neither should be used to try to explain the other.

Some religious people say that science is the way man can understand God's creation. For this reason, the Catholic Church was the main supporter of science during medieval times and beyond.

However, for many people, science and religion are mutually exclusive. One relies on fact; the other relies on faith. So they arrive at different conclusions.

I think that Stephen Hawking was an atheist even as a child. In his autobiography, Hawking says that his father was an atheist. Science did not make Hawking be an atheist, but appears to have resolved any doubt he might have had on the matter.

Question: Religion believes in miracles, but science doesn't according to Hawkins. Isn't getting something from nothing a miracle?

Answer: You are correct--science does not believe in miracles. Hawking is not talking about everyday life; he is talking about the creation of universes. I have summarized Hawking's explanation in the article. You can read Hawking's books for more details or any science book about astrophysics.

Actually, it is not important to understand the details. It is only necessary to know that Hawking was satisfied that our universe could be created without God.

Question: Has Stephen Hawking written any books about the existence of God? Please give the name of that book.

Answer: The answer is both "Yes" and "No". Stephen Hawking never wrote any books that were solely about God. However, in his newest book (published after his death), "Brief Answers to the Big Questions" he included a chapter titled "Does God Exist?"

Spoiler Alert: Hawking's answer to this question is "No". He uses theoretical physics to explain his answer. He looks at the question from every angle and his explanation is very convincing.

Stephen Hawking's most famous book is "A Brief History of Time." He also wrote "The Universe in a Nutshell," and other books. "The Grand Design," the book discussed in the article, was his last book prior to the posthumous publication of "Brief Answers to the Big Questions." He also co-authored some children's books with his daughter, Lucy. (Even the children's books were about science.)

Stephen Hawking did not write an entire book about God because his atheism was just his personal belief, based on his knowledge of science. He did not feel that it was his mission to convince anyone else about the existence or non-existence of God. However, he included a chapter about God in his last book because he often got questions about God.

Richard Dawkins is an evolutionary biologist. His knowledge of science also led him to a belief that God did not exist, and it could be said that his mission in life includes atheism. He wrote "The God Delusion." I can recommend that book to you if you want to understand why so many scientists are atheists.

Question: How did Stephen Hawking die?

Answer: Stephen Hawking died at the age of 76 on Wednesday, March 14th, 2018. The family did not give a cause of death, saying only that he died peaceably at his home in Cambridge, England.

Hawking lived for 55 years after his diagnosis of ALS at age 21. Only 5% of people with ALS survive for more than 20 years after diagnosis, so Hawking's long life is remarkable.

ALS causes the nerve cells that control voluntary muscle movements, (such as the muscles that control walking, talking, eating, and breathing) to degenerate and eventually die. Most people with ALS die from respiratory failure because the muscles that control breathing become paralyzed. People with ALS often die very peacefully while sleeping.

Question: Do Stephen Hawking's views about God apply to all other religions?

Answer: It absolutely does. Stephen Hawking uses the word "God" to mean "The Supreme Being,". The Prime Mover," "The Creator of the Universe." It does not matter if this "Being" is called God, Allah, Vishnu, Zeus, or Quetzalcoatl. Stephen used the term "God" because that is the term used in the culture in which he lived. Other cultures use different words, but the scientific facts apply equally to all.

© 2017 Catherine Giordano

I welcome your comments. Please keep them brief and on topic.

Jadon troyer on December 11, 2019:

Well cathrine I believe in god how could this whole thing called earth be possible you think a Big Bang theory made this and all the parts of your body whoever things god isn’t real it’s sad to say but your going to hell if you don’t

Jason B on November 24, 2019:

Bet hes burning in hell wishing he believed!! Too late now!! No one can say they werent warned

Double D on October 12, 2019:

Here's a scripture that fits Hawking, "always learning but never coming to a knowledge of the truth". I know there is a God, because I've met Him and received His Spirit. "The fool says in his heart, 'there is no God'.

James Tittle on October 05, 2019:

Mr. Hawking was a brilliant man. God made that possible.

PvtMadnage on August 26, 2019:

Jesus saves you from an eternity spent in Hell, the awful consequence of sin. It is a FREE gift which you receive by believing in and trusting in the FINISHED WORK and the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ at the cross at Calvary for your sins!

Romans 10:9-10 (KJV)

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

John 3:16 (KJV)

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Romans 10:13 (KJV)

For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

John 3:3 (KJV)

Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

Romans 6:23 (KJV)

For the wages of sin [is] death; but the gift of God [is] eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Are You Saved?

If you do not know for sure that you are saved, please settle this issue permanently.

Satan does not want you to accept God's gift of eternal life with Him in Heaven.

He wants to drag you into Hell with him, and the time for you to make a decision on your eternal destiny grows very short.

The time will soon come when God will no longer offer his gift of eternal life.

Making no decision is the same as rejecting God and choosing to spend eternity in Hell.

Please do not put off making your decision for Jesus until it is too late.

And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

Acts 16:31 KJV

Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.

Acts 4:12 KJV

For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

Luke 19:10 KJV

You are not saved by your own righteousness but by what the Lord Jesus Christ has done for us on the cross.

Ephesians 2:8-9 (KJV)

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Galatians 5:4 (KJV)

Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace.

Galatians 3:10 (KJV)

For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed [is] every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.

Romans 10:4 (KJV)

For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

Ehsan on August 14, 2019:

The reason why science can not accept any creator known as God is, there is so much creations puzzled them already,

If they open their eyes and look around alone on planet earth they will realise the energy, beauty, power, intelligence from their head to their toe in every cell

of their body, everything is govern by universal laws. they have no answer who created these laws and who brought us on this planet with million perhaps billions of other small form of life.

Scientists have no idea about life in other galaxies either, due to the vast distance or if they do know from crashed UFOs, they not allowed to disclose anything to public about ETs Aliens and their technologies. Having Free Energy will harm the crude oil Cartels business who invested trillions dollar and pound to drill the sea.

Theories can not become facts at all, like monkeys lost their tails and became human. This was just a joke.

They asked monkeys why you guys still in the zoo and in the wild their answer was higher tax rate and cost of living too expensive to live like human, we better off live and die like a monkey.

This has nothing to do with being atheist or religious, There is cause and effect, negative and positive forces, light and dark matter, then the theories and some miracle must have happened out of nothing to create the Big Bang then expanded the galaxies then another miracle happened to create billions of stars and billions life forms. This mean scientists talk about miracles! after miracles!

Why would we believe miracle conclusion based on theory?

If we believe in scientists miracle,

then longing to know will stop.

Nobody can explain what is the purpose of life?

Why our intelligent body is made to operate automatically nonstop till we die without our intervene?

Why do we need to sleep eat and reproduce?

Why today’s monkeys don’t become human?

We do not know the answer to these questions we will never know who created these universal laws that govern billions of galaxies.

When we do not know, we can not admit to say we do not know, and we have jump to a conclusion to protect our reputation no matter if we mislead.

Perhaps millions will believe these miracle theories of Big Bang.

Pat Luk on July 19, 2019:

God and Science is the same thing. The sheer force of both concepts are the driving force between what makes one believe in the miracle of life and the sheer determination of living which is why we as individuals strive to become better. Our natural human behaviours are ambitious as we crave for more of something rather than nothing. The presence of spirit can be likened to dimensions and parallel mediums that support one another and having faith is a sheer force and link between the two mediums. When we sometimes feel alone and reach out to God and angels looking over us, it is that faith connection and psychological forces in the spiritual world which some people may describe as the chi or the yin and yang balance that holds us together that keeps life alive. God is science and science is God in my view. We know people who can talk to the departed and see spirits and this is a part of the universe that we should not question as to why some individuals have the ability to tap into this psyche. Maybe it’s a way of the universe to tease us through the eyes of these people into providing the answers of our existence but leave us dangling. Because if we knew everything there is a danger that the meaning of life in itself would be over. There are some things in life that we should leave untouched as they exist in their own right and should be left undisturbed. We do not have to know everything and there is a reason for that as we as humans should live in the now but have faith that life in itself serves its purpose. The purpose being to feel amazement of the scale of the universe and living life to the fullest as we would never live life to the fullest if we knew everything that is coming. Stop questioning why and start living.

A person who is willing to be no gey on June 03, 2019:

I hope you guys realize this mans passed away

Mcaizehi on April 25, 2019:

Hi Catherine,

Well I don't have much to say in this. Can your creations tell of your presence.

Ella on April 19, 2019:

I keep thinking..

There is no greater difference than the difference between life and non life. Consciousness and a rock.

Joey on April 08, 2019:

not true heavan is real god made the earth in 7 days and restid on day 7 sunday athises you are going to not make it on judgement day the holy gates will close and you will always be sick and mad and will fell pain so belive in god almity

Crystal Lynn on January 26, 2019:

I wonder what his views on ghosts were? Did he have an explanation for them. I feel like we cannot (as scientists) rule out the existence of God if we cannot explain the unexplainable. For example ghosts, the paranormal, chance, and our self-consciousness as compared to animals... ect..

On that note: Please check out my Sci-Fi book -^_^-

E Pagan on December 21, 2018:

Thank you for your writings. I am convinced more than ever that I need to read his materials. I think Hawkins as a scientist spoke in terms of probability as opposed to possibility. Though anything is possible, including the concept of God, his scientific body of knowledge simply told him the existence of God was not very probable. In his mind, the hard facts of science at his disposal told him otherwise. Religion demands unquestioned faith, not science.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on October 27, 2018:

Ian McKay: Thanks for your comment. I too call for more science education and more use of facts instead of "beliefs."

According to a 2017 Gallup survey, 24% believe that the Bible is literally the word of God.The same survey also reported that 38% believe the Creationist view.

What is especially interesting about the reports of this data is the word "only" that precedes these numbers. You and I find these numbers to be startlingly high. But the authors of the report think that they are low. Evidently, this type of belief was much higher not too long ago. So I suppose this is good news for the fact-based segment of the population.

Keep in mind when you look at the poll numbers in this article that the survey is not based on a random sample. It is based on people who chose to read this article and who then chose to do the survey. (Gallup, of course, did a scientific survey with a random sample of U. S. adults.)

Ian from Durham on October 26, 2018:

I find it quite alarming that in the 21st Century, 22% of the readers of this article believe that the bible is the blueprint for the universe.

That the genius mind's such as that of the late, great Steven Hawking, should be mocked by those same people is equally ludicrous. More science books please people!

Excellent article and read Catherine!

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on September 26, 2018:

Alan: I was so happy to see your very intelligent comment. I agree with you entirely. I too don't have the background to 100% understand Hawking's physics, but it is enough for me that other well-respected physicists do and they find him persuasive. And of course I entirely agree with his statements concerning atheism.

You mentioned the religiously-based comments on this article. I only allowed a few of them to show. There were probably 100 more that I did not allow because they said nothing new. I thought it would be very boring for readers to read comment after comment all saying the same thing, sometimes using the exact same wording.

jonnycomelately on September 25, 2018:

Catherine, thank you so much for this hub. It is filled with your own humility while at the same time giving due respect and recognition to Stephen's life and work.

I have recently purchased a copy of "Grand Design." Much of the deductions are mathematical and beyond my understanding: that does not matter. I can appreciate his questioning and expansive mind.

Hus book begins with several questions and ends with an "if...."

I note that most of the religiously-based posts here are from those who feel a need to defend their God and their beliefs....which are easier to sustain without inconvenient questions and without a "what of."

Stephen had the mind which was open to infinite possibility.

Religion confines itself to a supposedly infinite god which is petty in the extreme.


Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on September 24, 2018:

Firdous: Thanks for letting me know that this article was useful to you.

Firdous on September 21, 2018:

This was so good and helpful about Stephen hawkings

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on August 08, 2018:

Brianna S: What makes you think Hawking did not carefully consider his beliefs about God? Did you not read the above article? Also, where is all this proof of the existence of God? I have never heard of any proof. There are claims, but no proof. Proof requires facts and that is why religion relies on faith.

BrianaS on August 07, 2018:

I want to know why Hawkings didn't believe christianityto be truth?

I would bet a ship load of money that he tossed religion aside drawing conclusions before examining it thoroughly.

There's astronomical, and mathematical proof that God was the true author of the holy bible. But so many scientists have a one track scientific mind, and will not even bother with anything seemingly unrelated, like the holy bible.

Amazing prophecies that have come true point to biblical truth as well.

Hawkings didn't want to believe in a personal god, whether it bears truth or not, because I think he resents god, that's why.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on July 16, 2018:

Mike cisneros: Hawking did theoretical physics. It is based on mathematics. You can read Hawking's books or the books of other astrophysicists to understand how the math backs up Hawking's claims. I am not an astrophysicist, but Hawking's theories are widely accepted by those who are. It is far more than just one person (or many people) just "saying so." If you are competent enough to follow their reasoning, I think you will agree.

In everyday life, we often accept the opinions of experts. I don't have to understand how to build a house to trust that my architect does; I don't have to understand aviation mechanics to ride in an airplane; I don't have to understand medicine to trust my doctor to safely remove my appendix.

Mike cisneros on July 15, 2018:

What proof or evidence did hawking find that suggest there are multiple universes or that our universe came into existence on its own. Seems like its just because he says so

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on June 25, 2018:

andy tompkins: Thank you for your comment. You have done a good job of explaining why we can trust the truth of science.

One someone self-identifies as "the decadent one," he reveals a lot about himself. But mainly he reveals that we shouldn't trust the truth of anything he says.

andy tompkins on June 24, 2018:

Dear "Mr Decadent One": you assail the scientist/atheist with the words "Please forgive my attitude, but I tend to get a little antsy when I run into atheists being smug and all knowing without the evidence to substantiate it. " But that is the exact opposite of what is going on. To be a scientist is an admission that one is NOT all knowing. That is what science is! It is the process of learning what is yet unknown! And the only things that ARE known are the things for which we have a body of evidence and a theory that is supported by it. And new evidence may at any time prove prevailing theories wrong, and good scientists, and there are many, will be the first to admit it. In fact, one reason you can be assured that a theory like the Big Bang is our best theory so far to explain the origins of our universe is because if new evidence was discovered that knocked the Big Bang off its pedestal, that scientist's name would soon replace "Hawking" (and others) as perhaps the greatest scientist that ever lived.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on June 23, 2018:

Gerrey Marshall: Thanks for your comment, but I am at a loss to figure out what you mean. How do any of the things you mention "prove" the existence of God?

Gerrey Marshall on June 23, 2018:

I have found that there are certain facts, ironocally that exists within science that leads to the very existence of a God and it all starts with gravity, the first law of thermodynamics, a expanded version of Newton's first law and the very existence of our own conscious awareness, which in fact shows ultimately what had to have been before the Big Bang and what actually brought it about.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on May 25, 2018:

Thedecadentone: Scientists change their mind, so to speak, all the time. The whole scientific method is to use new evidence to get closer to the truth. I don't know if Hawking made the statements you attribute to him--perhaps I missed that when I did my research on Hawking--but, if he did, it is because he came across new evidence. This would show that Hawking had an open mind. An open mind is a very good quality in a scientist.

Perhaps the multiple-universe that Hawking posits is infinite, but our own universe has a definite age, whether it is 13 billion years, or 15 billion years, or some other number.

You were quite snarky in your comment so let me respond in kind. Stephen Hawking was widely considered to be a genius. Has anyone ever called you a genius (and not said it sarcasticly.)?

Thedecadentone on May 24, 2018:

Too bad all of these atheist scientists keep taking their crystal balls and time machines with them to the grave. I would love to have 100 % infallible knowledge that all there is is the physical world as well. Maybe one of you fine living specimens will be so kind as to help this poor deluded moron understand existence the way you do? No? Pity. Please forgive my attitude, but I tend to get a little antsy when I run into atheists being smug and all knowing without the evidence to substantiate it. All that intellect and it's wasted trying to prove a negative, which is impossible.

Hawking couldn't make up his mind whether the universe was 13.8, about 15 billion, or infinity years old, so I find it hard to take everything else he says as the unadulterated gospel of reality. Science keeps changing, but God is supposed to be unchanging, so one won't be able to use science to even try proving the non-existence of God for a very, very, very long time, if ever. I could go on a tangent about the scientific theories which have been altered in recent years, but I digress.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on May 23, 2018:

Jojo john: It is hard to make a break with family. I wouldn't worry about the baptism. If you know that the Catholic religion is false, then obviously the baptism is false too.

Jojo john on May 22, 2018:

I really appreciate your patience Catherine. I born and raised in a catholic family in India. Without knowing about Christianity I became christian by infant baptism. I would say i was forcefully became christian because my parents were. Till now I didn't understand one thing Jesus Christ got baptised at the age of 32 then why catholic do infant baptism? because they scared about dwindling the numbers of Christians. I do agree with Hawkins. I saw many comments stating that there is God. My answer is prove it. My family and christian church think that I am devil worshipper. So funny. I don't believe God means I am Devil haha...

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on May 21, 2018:

Ric Harris: I can't print your comment because of the "curse" words you used and your generally hateful language and tone, but I did want to address a very important misunderstanding about science vis a vis religion exemplified in your comment. Science has not, and never will, disprove the existence of God. What science does is offer more valid alternative explanations for the universe--explanations that have a much higher probability of being correct because they explain all of the known facts better.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on April 14, 2018:

Qadosh Gibbowr: First congrats on the "gotcha". You are correct that "most unique" is gramatically incorrect, but most people understand that "most" in this phrase is being used as an intensifier.


Second Hawking does an excellent job of explaining how there can be a grand design without a designer. I summarized his reasoning in this article. For more information, I refer you to his book, "The Grand Design."

If you are trying to say that the "proof" for the existence of God is stronger than the proof found in science then you are the one demonstrating "undisciplined thinking."

Qadosh Gibbowr on April 12, 2018:

Before committing much time to essentially cleaning up after this elephant parade of an article, I want to see if there is any intellectual honesty on the other end (the author) to ensure that it will be worthwhile to myself and other readers. Since we are confined to the internet for this discussion, I think we can agree that words chosen to communicate ideas, especially complex ideas, are of the utmost importance. Let's start with two easy examples.

Firstly, you state in your opening paragraph that Hawking had "one of the most unique minds..." I would like you to confirm that there is no degree (i.e. "most") to unique. Either something is unique or it is not. We all have unique minds. Secondly, you quote Hawking as stating (quite accurately) that there is an obvious grand design to the universe. Please explain if you believe it possible to have a design without a designer. Do not change the definition of design as I am familiar with the linguistic contortions others attempt. We already have plenty of examples of storytellers in lab coats that do just that to sway the gullible public and secure funding. This is a test of pride and intellectual honesty. I think we will find that his choice of words was just as careless as your own. Now this may put you off a bit, but if you can get through this, we can move to the more interesting and challenging notions behind theoretical physics and how Hawking, out of necessity, had to abandon the scientific method to advance his models (many aspects do not even qualify as "theories"). This is not to say there is no value to be found here, but we are going to lose another generation to flawed and undisciplined thinking if we allow hyperbole, assumption and good storytelling to replace the solid application of the scientific method. Regards.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on April 11, 2018:

Brad Brown: If your concept of God is that He lives outside the laws of physics, maybe he doesn't need time to exist. When you invent a superhero, you can give him any super powers you want. For more detail, you should consult an actual theoretical physicist who may be able to explain to you how the universe works.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on April 11, 2018:

Alan Borrow: You are restating Pascal's wager. It is a totally illogical proposition in so many ways. Pleas see my article on this:

Brad Brown on April 10, 2018:

There was no time before the big bang, as the bang creates time as we know it....let's say I accept that. It is still a non sequitur that there is no God. What evidence did Hawking have that God needs what we perceive as time in order to exist?

I accept that we know a very tiny percentage of what is knowable. I wish I knew more.

Alan Borrow on April 10, 2018:

maybe that is true, and there may be arguments about why God does not exist, but it is really part of you, if you believe or not believe, since we won't know until we actually die. But if it is true, then I should prepare before I die because if I don't believe right now, and God is actually a true entity, when I want to start believing it, it is too late. Thanks for your feedback on your last question, and have a nice day

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on April 10, 2018:

Alan Borrow; It sounds like you do not understand the Big Bang theory at all. It has nothing to do with the collision of rocks. Please read a good book about astrophysics written for layman. Neil de Grass Tyson has written a good one:"Astrophysics for People in a Hurry."

And I agree with you. There can never be any conclusive proof about the existence of God. Therefore I go with the probabilities. My research leads me to agree with Hawking: God does not exist. There is no need for any supernatural entity to set the universe in motion. There is a very high probability that God does not exist based on the evidence that is available to us.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on April 10, 2018:

Akoch12: I just read a quote from Steohen Hawking. The Genesis story has no basis in fact. Hawking said somethng like "It is fairy tales for people who are afraid of the dark." I suggest you read a good Life Sciences textbook for the answers to your questions.

Alan Borrow on April 09, 2018:

Stephan Hawking : Time did not exist before the big bang so there is no God.

If time didn't exist before the big bang, then that means there is no way the big bang could have happened (scientifically). Time not existing means that the 2 rocks that *supposingly* collided into each other are frozen without time, and the big bang has never or could have happened and never will. Nobody will know if God really exists because we have never met him in real life before, until our lives end, and only after we die we can know the truth. If you haven't experienced a miracle from God, and only heard from other people, there is only 2 choices, believe, or not believe. I am personally a Christian, I am not the smartest of all, but if there is a statement that counters the fact that God does not exist, there will be a answer to it, because Hawking only had Intelligence, and only science facts, but not wisdom so that made him say that God did not exist.

Akuch12 on April 09, 2018:

Well... I honestly think the universe can't just come together randomly like that. I believe that God created Everything, but where do they think we come from? If a science wanted to learn more about the world and universe, I suggest reading the Bible. The first pages tells about how to world was created.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on April 09, 2018:

Hunter Davidson: Please reread the article. I give a summary of Stephen Hawking's reasoning in the article. You could also browse through some of my other articles on this website for further information on this.

Hunter Davidson on April 08, 2018:

Do you mind explaining some proof or reasoning behind the theory that God is not real?

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on April 07, 2018:

Duffin Dave: Your comment is thoughtful and clearly presents your point of view. My reply: Stephen Hawking could be wrong about astrophysics and about his views on God, but at least he presents evidence to support his conclusions. Your argument for "spirit" seems to boil down to "It's true because I believe it is true." Also, there has been some scientific experiments and research into "spirit." The findings always come up negative when studied by independent objective researchers. s

Duffin Dave on April 06, 2018:

I appreciate this intellectually stimulating article, the many comments, and the author's thoughtful and respectful replies. It is refreshing to observe a civil conversation regarding a highly provocative topic. That is a rare find, especially on the internet. Having said that, personally, I believe in God, and I am confident in my own intellectual ability to make that determination. Stephen Hawking was an incredible human being, and gifted intellectually. Only a fool would argue otherwise. I simply disagree with his interpretation of scientific data, and the suggestion that we are somehow on the verge of knowing everything there is to know about everything. While the scientific method has revealed immense understanding, it is still in its infancy in infinite areas of study. We have only scratched the surface of limitless knowledge to be gained through science. And, I believe, science will never lead to an understanding of everything until it's practitioners are willing to consider every possibility, including serious experimentation on the existence of God. My belief is that the planet earth, everything living on it, every similar planet in the universe with life, and everything in the universe including God, all existed spiritually before they existed physically, and the spirit continues to exist forever. And I also believe that the spiritual universe, including God, can only be discerned and understood with spiritual senses. As far as I know, the scientific community has no theories or even interest in the existence of spirit matter, spirituality, or even the nature of God. Perhaps that is because they claim no experience with spirit matter to justify the time, energy, and resources required to investigate. But I find that to be ironic when I consider the wealth of study around so many phenomena that we cannot see, feel, hear, smell, or taste...such as radio waves, gravity, atoms, molecules, etc. Is it really so difficult to imagine that just because we don't have the technology right now to observe and measure it, spirit matter could be a reality? Are we so advanced that we have to deny the possibility of anything that cannot currently be observed by science? Until the great thinkers like Stephen Hawking open their minds and honestly experiment with spirituality, God, and divine design, they cannot hope to understand it, let alone offer intelligent hypotheses, theories, or data to be supported, believed or disbelieved.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on April 01, 2018:

Michael Hoornstra: I don't know why the "probably" is in his statement. Maybe he was just being polite.

Michael Hoornstra on March 31, 2018:

Was Hawkins really sure there is no God or was he not so convinced himself when he said; "This leads me to a profound realization that there (probably) is no heaven and no afterlife either."How sure or even intelligent was he to say his conclusion of no God was profound, but in the same breath say probably? Hawkins was not so sure after all he said it in the comment above.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 27, 2018:

Kerry Hull: I can't explain gravity in a comment. Read Hawking's books.

Kerry Hull on March 27, 2018:

" Since the laws of physics can explain the creation of the universe, there is no need to have a Supreme Being to create it. Hawking explains that we do not need a God who is outside spacetime and who Himself was created from nothing to create the universe."

I notice Hawkings indicates in his book that the laws of gravity can and will create everything out of Nothing [Nothing being quantum fluctuations in a vacuum]. The explanation leads me quite void since I am quite sure gravity is not Nothing and I am left with questions about the existence of gravity apart from the void. Care to explain? (Learning).

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 26, 2018:

Critical Friend: I think Hawking supported his claim about God. I think many others have also done so and will continue to do so.

Critical Friend on March 26, 2018:

You said that Hawking's claims about the existence of God are much supported. I said that Hawking never provided support for the claim that "God isn't real." but has only stated that God is not needed as a sufficient reason for the universe, science can provide that. I would like the claim "God isn't real" to be supported, but unfortunately, Stephen Hawking passed.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 26, 2018:

unsaticfied [sic] reader: [I assume you meant "unsatisified."] I try to satisfy my readers, but obviously I am not 100% successful in that, especially when it comes to accepting and replying to comments. In my judgement, your issues were already addressed either in the article itself or in my replies to others who made similar comments. I'll take this opportunity to remind people that comments should not be repetitive. No one wants to read 50 comments all saying the same thing.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 25, 2018:

JackJones25: I did a lot of research when I wrote an article on NDE. I am convinced that an NDE occurs in a living brain. Also, for every person who has an "almost died" occurrence and experiences visions, there are thousands who almost die and have nothing to report.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 25, 2018:

riktopus: The design of a leaf arose over millions of years. Just imagine where a computer might be after millions of years. Computer are already "designing" themselves. They can "learn." Nonetheless, it is a bad analogy because the universe is not like a computer.

JackJones25 on March 24, 2018:

Stephen Hawking said "The Universe created itself". So that means the Universe created everything, including us. That's the definition of God.

As for an afterlife, there are many who have had near death experiences. So many that they cannot just be dismissed as the brain producing the experience. Look up Dr. Jeffery Long on NDE and make up your own mind. He has done more credible research on the topic than most.

riktopus on March 24, 2018:

Everything in the human experience shouts one simple fact.

Is a leaf a more perfect design than the most complex computer or machine? Yes by a million miles it is. We cant duplicate photosynthesis. A single living cell is like a city, but perfect in operation and able to repair and replicate.

Design? Yes. Designer? Of course.Thats the simple fact.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 23, 2018:

Hayden: I can never understand why some people have so much trouble just accepting that we are here because we are here. There is a Grand Design--the design is inherent in the laws of the universe, no creator god needed.

Hayden on March 23, 2018:

All gods and god are the creation of man's small mind trying to find security in an unsecured world where anything happens.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 23, 2018:

Thanks, Don. You might change your mind about my patience if you saw that I am not allowing about two-thirds of the comments because they are over-the-top insulting, puerile, ungrammatical, and just plain boring. Plus, they are repetitive, adding nothing new to the conversation.

Don on March 22, 2018:

I admire your patience.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 22, 2018:

Krissy: YOu can define God however you want. When I say God, like Stephen Hawking, I am referring to the traditional definition of God. And yes, science has a lot to say about love. For one thing, it is based on hormones, but there are other scientific facts about love.

Krissy on March 21, 2018:

I think the concept of God and religion is unique and personal to those of us that have faith. I think his statements are made about some traditional aspects of religion. What if you believe that God is unconditional love? How can Stephen Hawking ever prove, with factual evidence, the fierce unconditional love that I have for my family? It can’t ever be proven or measured or created in an experiment or lab. Would one say then that love does not exist? Just like atheist question the existence of god and religion, science must also be questioned as to being the answer to everything. There are some aspects about life that can never be explained. The inner depths of ourselves are unique and personal and individual.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 21, 2018:

Zach: Scientists don't try to prove "purpose." They try to prove fact. Consciousness makes purpose. The universe has no purpose.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 21, 2018:

Zach: I don't think you have thought through your comment. If scientists created a Big Bang, it would destroy the entire universe.

Zach on March 19, 2018:

If there really is no god and the big bang theory is true then why cant scientists create a big bang that creates a planet and life? Scientists today can surely have the right materials, particles, atoms, etc. to create a big bang, cant they? No they cannot, only God can create the big bang because i dont recall any experiments that have actually proved that the big bang therory is 100% true.

Zach on March 19, 2018:

If there is no god then why were we created? we have a purpose in life, everyone does. Can science explain why we have what we have now instead of the nothingness in the time before the big bang?

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 19, 2018:

Grace: Everything dies. Even stars die. Death is a natural process. There is so much to say on this topic that it will require a new article. I have made a not to write this article.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 19, 2018:

Tim: By your reasoning either God choose to use Hawking to lend credence to atheism or there was no God to do any choosing. I favor the latter explanation.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 19, 2018:

Critical Friend: I agree the poll lacks nuance. It is the nature of polls. You just have to choose the statement that is the best fit.

Hawking's claims about the existence of God is very much supported. It is the claims for the existence of God that are unsupported. That is why belief in God requires faith whereas science requires no faith, just fact and evidence.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 19, 2018:

Rosalene Fernandez: I agree with you. I susuect Hawking would have also agreed. We just think the the things you mention don't require a God.

Grace on March 18, 2018:

If science has an answer to everything, can it explain why we die?

Tim on March 18, 2018:

I think it was a tragedy that Hawking was not a Christian. I think God could have used him to show some to the mysteries that are embedded in the bible. Even as in the old bible days when the earth was supposedly flat. Isaiah described God as sitting “upon the circle of the earth.” Isaiah 40:22. The Book of Job said He stretcheth out the north over the empty place, and hangeth the earth upon nothing Job 26:7. Even with all the technology and resources that is God given. We still can not produce a spontaneous life. No one can reason out where the big bang or elements of the universe come from. Even rock, and gases had to come from something or somewhere. Never heard science describe a big bang for them. Next time you go outside and pick up a rock to through in the water . Ask yourself when was that rock created or formed in the universe. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep - Genesis 1. I believe God was the head physicist and there are things in the bible that we have not even discovered yet. Hawking was intriguing and brilliant in physics. I think he was as intelligent as any scientist, physicist or philosopher. But I have heard him even question why things in the universe happen. If you want to discover the universe, discover the bible.

Critical Friend on March 18, 2018:

I have criticisms to the "What Do You Believe?" poll. It is extremely black-and-white and people are able to have all 3 beliefs, except they cannot be represented because it is select one, strictly. Also, Stephen Hawking makes several claims without any support mentioned. "if there was a god which there isn't" - is an unsupported claim. "His views about God are informed by his study of science." Doubt it. It should be "misinformed by his study of science." Correction should be made. He should be informed about God by his study of philosophy, NOT science. This explains his apparent naivety.

Rosalene Fernández on March 18, 2018:

Is not physics about manifestation of matter... I am more than matter... as is the universe... I marvel at the soul, mind, spirit... as I observe the love and dedication of my pet dog, the breathtaking beauty, the will to live in all, the magnificent design, I am reminded I, too, being a universe within the universe, am far more than matter which is the object of physics.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 18, 2018:

Tam Dl: I am replying to your comment a second time.The phrase you used ending in "...knows the value of nothing" is wrong, insulting, and trite, to boot. How dare you insult Stephen Hawking by suggesting he had no values! He loved his family, worked hard, lived honestly, showed great courage in the way he ealt with his disability, and had all of the "values" (except belief in God) that churchgoers like to think only they have. Hawking was like most other atheists in this. You owe all of us an apology.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 18, 2018:

Hawking is important because he made great contributions to theoretical physics and astrophysics. I highly doubt that his work has anything to do with bombs. If you think that, you have no understanding of his work. I am glad that cutting-edge medical science twice saved your life. Your story is a testament to the importance of science.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 18, 2018:

Reinz: It seems that you had not time to read the article either. Hawking's views on this issue are summarized in the article..If you don't have time to read the whole article, just read the section headed "How Does Hawking Explain the Universe

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 18, 2018:

jerry a: Hawking did a lot of good for the world in his scientific work and as a role model for how to live with a debilitating illness.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 18, 2018:

Tam Dt: Your comment is off topic, but I will allow it this time. The job of science is to find facts. They should never allow value judgments to affect their work. That is called bias.

Reinz on March 18, 2018:


you wrote "He (hawking) just said there was no need of a "Prime Mover."

could you help me, did he explain why he said that and what was his arguments ? sorry I have no time to read his book, ?.

TamDl on March 17, 2018:

What things? You could say that is the wrong question. Science is powerful at explaining things, It's knows the function of everything and the value of nothing.

Science doesn't tell us why SH was important. In fact from a scientific point of view, he isn't. He is just an occurrence no more important than an ant. Maybe some day his labours will allow up to make a larger bomb, or a better dishwasher, but we won't know why that maters.

Ideas like Grand Design, and gratefulness are just romanticism in science.

"Science will win because it works.” Which at a certain level is true, i'm typing on a computer. But the Bible suggests that knowledge will destroy us, and while I am wholly supportive of academics, and science, it is passing strange that here we are, with half a dozen technologies that are far more likely to wipe out the world than human generated global warming (not that it can be ignored). And they stand on the shoulders of a relatively recent scientific discoveries. So if science is winning, I would like to know what race.

In fact, at 56 two years ago, I gratefully crossed over into those who are only alive due to cardiac surgery, and in 97 I survived a plane crash only due to medical technology. So I am already on the winning side in the race to global destruction. But yeah, it is a race that science will probably win, in my children's lifetimes.

jerry a on March 17, 2018:

there is no god, but there is good

just live your fortunate existance in goodness for all

TamDl on March 17, 2018:

What things? You could say that is the wrong question. Science is powerful at explaining things, It's knows the function of everything and the value of nothing.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

EL:M again: What things does religion explain better than science?

ELM again on March 17, 2018:

This is in response to your reply.

I am referring to Gould and his non-overlapping magisteria. I just wanted to throw this opinion out there. I wasn't necessarily saying I believe in his idea. I just wanted to give someone else's input.

You are right, there are things science cannot understand. And maybe religion does nothing to expand human knowledge, but I think religion is a tool used by some people to help them understand the things science cannot understand.

I am not saying I necessarily think this, but this is what some people believe.

My comment about Gould's non-overlapping magisteria being a comfortable idea: I think *for some people* it is easier to put science and religion in their own boxes so they don't come in contact with each other. Again, I am not saying this is what I believe. But I can see how this idea can be appealing to some people.

Please don't confuse my input with criticism. I said that I liked this article and that I am interested in this topic. I did not say nor did I imply that religion expands human knowledge. You are right, Hawking did increase human understanding, and that is why he is and will always be celebrated. Nothing that I said took away from his contributions to science or our world. I am not arguing with anything you wrote in your article.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

Jose Pedro: I can't explain "space and time." I can only accept the conclusions of people I have good reason to believe understand it. Hawking is one of these people.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

R. W. You have understood the central point. Hawking never tried to disprove the existence of God, and he never claimed that he had. He just said there was no need of a "Prime Mover."

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

First the word nothing to theoretical phsicists like Hawking does not mean the same thing as it does in everyday conversation. As to your other point, I can best respond by directing you to my other article: "Pascal's Wager: Is it a Food Bet?"

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

Are you referring to Stephen Jay Gould and his idea of non-overlapping magisteria. This idea has not gained traction in either the scientific or religious camp.

There are things that science can't understand, but religion does nothing to expand human knowledge. Hawking is so celebrated becaaue he DID increase human understanding.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

The best way to respond to your comment is to direct you to another one of my articles "Is the Universe Fine-Tuned for Human Life?"

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

Maloy: I'm sorry to have to tell you your comment is just silly. First, Hawking never tried to prove there was no God. As the article states, that conclusion was incidenat to his work. Second, his field of study was not medicine. He had a team of doctors for medical advice.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

Mo: Hawking was not trying to prove the existence or non-existence of God. He merely said that our universe could come into existence without any help from God, and this finding was another support for atheism.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

Venkatachen: Scientists agree that not everything is known. However, what is unknown is not a proof that a non-factual explanation is the answer. See: God of the Gaps

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 17, 2018:

Bodkins: I seems there as many definitions of God as there are human beings. With science, there is initial disagreement and then consensus because of a thing called facts. When new facts come to light, the process begins again. It is highly unusual for a major theory to be totally disproved; instead new facts refine existing theories.

Maloy on March 17, 2018:

The time he spent trying to prove there is no God, he should have worked towards finding a cure for his illness.

Daniel. on March 16, 2018:

Look around and be amazed. If this is chance then we all have won the lottery. I’ve played the lottery and loose every time. Don’t think science can ever explain the theory of everything. Beyond imagination.

ELM on March 16, 2018:

I just wanted to say that this is a really great article. I am taking Philosophy of Religion in college right now. I was thinking of writing a short paper on this topic, so I am happy to have stumbled upon this. I am majoring in both biology and philosophy, so I have had questions about my own beliefs.

For philosophy of religion, I had to read something that discusses the 'fight' between science and religion. This reading basically said there are two 'bubbles,' one for science, and the other for religion. The two bubbles do not and should not overlap. I'm not sure if I believe that, but I think it is a comfortable idea.

Before I started taking philosophy classes more seriously, I thought biology and science asked the only relevant questions and provided the correct answers. Since I've taken existentialism, I am starting to realize that science does not have all the answers. I do believe in science, but there are things science cannot answer.

Gail Dressel on March 16, 2018:

Einstein, for all his brilliance, couldn't tie his own shoes. It does not surprise me that Mr. Hawking, "does not believe in God"; it's too fundamental and it's too easy, by Divine design, like all life. If Hawking were still with us I would pose the query, why the "Big Bang" Something does not come from nothing. Nothing comes from nothing. Or, as once posed in a jovial story of a competition of a scientist and God, God replied, "Get your own dirt".

If I choose to believe in God, and he doesn't exist, I have lost nothing. If I choose not to believe, and God does exist, I have lost everything.

Surely, I am not so egotistical to believe, I am the only living person to have stood in, felt and experienced the presence of Jesus.

Catherine Giordano (author) from Orlando Florida on March 16, 2018:

Gia spanoza: It is more than a right to belieie whatever we want to believe. It is about belieiving in things that have been proven with scientific evidence. .

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