Stephen Hawking Dismisses God and Calls Heaven a Fairy Story

Tapesh
by Tapesh
18-May-2011
 

Noted theoretical physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking is trending after he dismissed the idea of Heaven as "a fairy story." In an upcoming interview with The Guardian, Hawking said, "There is no heaven or afterlife ... that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark."

He has come under fire from religious circles before, most recently after his book, The Grand Design, argued that god did not create the universe and that The Big Bang was a natural event that could've created everything from nothing.

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Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Azarin

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

Regarding Prophet. I am using a historical figure as my avatar. I do not have any claims to be a "Prophet". Please look up the figure of: Mukanna. He was a brilliant man.

And I am using him as avatar.

VPK


Azarin Sadegh

@VPK

by Azarin Sadegh on

Dear vpk,

I don’t agree with Richard Dawkins that god is a scientific concept…I think the scientists would never be able to prove the existence of god since I think this concept belongs to the domain of superstition, something like sorcery or spirituality as some people like to call it… :-)

But (sigh sigh) I am starting to think you might be mixing up Hawking with Dawkins (because you keep calling the man Hawkins!)...Dawkins is way more radical than Hawking. We also have Hitchens (my favorite atheist who is unfortunately struggling with cancer) BTW, have you read The God Delusion and God is Not Great?

To me, all the arguments in these books seem very logical and earthy (as opposed to spiritual). Now if you find the authors arrogant, maybe it has to do with the nature of their argument! 

 About your claim of stereotyping the high level scientists as being arrogant: Well, don't take it personally, but I truly think that people who call themselves a “prophet” sound more arrogant than those who would never claim anything unless they have the mathematical proof of it…:-)

Peace, Azarin (in kidding mood...don't take me too seriously! it's TGIF or Thank GOD it's Friday!)


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Shepesh

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

 

I have spent more time in Graduate School than many spent in College. And I got the degrees to show for them. I know many of the top one personally. Believe me they are arrogant. I am talking from personal experience.

Why should a physicist be more knowledgeable about spirituality than a baker? Sure they know more about Physics. But not about much more. I also pointed out that there is no agreement amongst them. Einstein was very religious; Hawkins is not. So what is bad about making our own decisions? Why do we need icons to follow. I will decide for myself and do not need either the Rahbar ot Hawkins to tell me. Of course he is welcome to his opinions. But that is all it is: his opinion. 


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VPK

by Shepesh on

These are some comments I was referring to. There's a lot of name calling: arrogant, now ignorant to undermine people's opinions. People who have peacefully noted their opinion and moved on. I hope it is clearer for you. THis is my last comment to you as you are determined to take discussions to a personal level.

"The problem with science is that many of the top ones become arrogant."

"What disturbs me is giving more credence to a spiritual opinion because it is from Hawkins."

"Contradictions between science and traditional religious beliefs are attributed to human fallibility and arrogance."

 


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Well I am

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

glad to see so many people totally misunderstand what I said. It tells a lot about some people. When did I say anything disturbing about science. You folks do not bother to read a post; just have your own opinion and refuse to hear.

No wonder the world is full of people shouting without listening. I am learning more about people by their posts. Incomplete knowledge is as bad as ignorance.

 


default

There is nothing disturbing about Science

by Shepesh on

I respect all religions but find it sad when some demean or criticize others as a means of altering their views to fit theirs. Insulting Humans and Scientists gets us nowhere. We should willingly accept or tolerate differences between peoples views and  let them make their own moral decisions. Noone should say what is best for people, they can only say what is best for themselves.


Truthseeker9

Respectful discussion

by Truthseeker9 on

Respectful discussion is not Character assassination  with those whom you do not agree. It was you who said "You do not know me", which is totally irrelevant to the thread or your comment.  People respond to your comment. Anyway, I'm out of here. Peace!


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

General Response

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

 

I do not engage in discussion with arrogant people who "judge" me. I do not need to be in control of anything. This is a free blog controlled only by the admin. I am not the admin and have no desire to be one. 

However I will only debate with people with an open mind  and manners. If someone wants to "judge" me I have no time for them. If someone wants a respectful discussion I am there.

Thaanks to all decent people on IC.

There are many of them here.

VPK


Truthseeker9

That is fine VPK

by Truthseeker9 on

It seems to you it is more important to feel in control than to have a discussion.


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Faryam

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

 

I somewhat agree with you. The problem with science is that many of the top ones become arrogant. They see glimpse of knowledge and think they are God. It is like the blind me trying describe an elephant.

In the 19th century people thought they knew all there is to know about Physics. There were a few "anomalies" that were not explained and were dismissed. The ones with more open mind persisted and found Quantum Mechanics and Relativity.

We are no where near knowing what is going on. Humans have no idea whether there is a God or not. When we do not know something the best thing to do it to admit it. Not to make pronouncements that there is or is not a God. 

I am not sure if science will ever unite with religion. I oppose organized religion. But to all their way.

Good luck to you and I wish you success in your path.

VPK


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Truthseeker9

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

I do not have to know you to judge your most recent comment here.

If that is your attitude I have nothing more to say to you. 


faryarm

The Unity of Religion and Science

by faryarm on


Dear Friends,
Hawkins's observations are entirely based upon on the physical aspect of the universe, and do not recognise, nor consider the spiritual side of the human existance .

All of our acquired knowledge is from experience and study of the material world; our mind is nourished by culture and education in the sciences, our body nourished and sustained by essential nutrition and physical activity.
Spiritual knowledge and education is the missing link in any discussion regarding humanity's age old questions; as knowledge of the Divine has from time immemorial come to us through human intermediaries, mouthpieces or Manifestations of God, the founders of world's religions, each of Whom have been stages in the spiritual education of mankind; each suited for a limited time and place.
One must not blame religion, but it's corrupt clerical leaders whose vested interest , to this day, as in Iran, have corrupted the very purpose and essence of religion as a force for the common good.

"Contradictions between science and traditional religious beliefs are attributed to human fallibility and arrogance. Over the centuries, distortions have gradually infiltrated the doctrines of many religious systems and diluted the pure teachings originally given by the Manifestation who was their Founder. With time these distortions become increasingly difficult to distinguish from the original message. Similarly, unsupported speculations of various schools of scientific thought have at times become more popular and influential than the results of rigorous scientific research, and have further blurred the picture.

'Abdu'l-Baha affirmed that religion and science are, in fact, complementary:

Religion and science are the two wings upon which man's intelligence can soar into the heights, with which the human soul can progress. It is not possible to fly with one wing alone! Should a man try to fly with the wing of religion alone he would quickly fall into the quagmire of superstition, whilst on the other hand, with the wing of science alone he would also make no progress, but fall into the despairing slough of materialism.4


"Put all your beliefs into harmony with science; there can be no opposition, for truth is one. When religion, shorn of its superstitions, traditions, and unintelligent dogmas, shows its conformity with science, then will there be a great unifying, cleansing force in the world which will sweep before it all wars, disagreements, discords and struggles – and then will mankind be united in the power of the Love of God."
~ ‘Abdu’l-Bahá

1844-1921

Please see here for a more on 


The Unity of Religion and Science

http://info.bahai.org/article-1-3-2-18.html


Truthseeker9

VPK

by Truthseeker9 on

I do not have to know you to judge your most recent comment here. I was surpised by your "distubed" comment, that is all. But please do not  make assumptions in saying that people only give credance to science when stating an opinion, or follow others blindly.

With regards to Spirituality, where is any part of it based on fact? Your comment is neither here or there.


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Truthseeker9

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on


What is it that "disturbs" you about people giving their opinions here? Has anyone stopped others being spiritual or whatever they chose by simply stating their opinion?

You obviously do not know me. I am a proponent of free speech to the most. However that includes my free speech. Now to the point:

What disturbs me is giving more credence to a spiritual opinion because it is from Hawkins. While he is a great physicist he is also a human being. To me his opinion on physics is very important. His opinion on spirituality is no more important than your opinion.

We Iranians have a habit of elevating people specially those with Ph.D. There are some geniuses that made hugs mistakes based on religion. For example Einstein refused to believe in Quantum Mechanics. He said "God does not play dice with the Universe". He turned out to be absolutely wrong. Quantum Mechanics is one of the most successful theories. The reverse may be true for Hawkins. Our knowledge of the Universe is insufficient to know if God exists or not.


Truthseeker9

VPK

by Truthseeker9 on

What is it that "disturbs" you about people giving their opinions here? Has anyone proposed stopping others being "spiritual" or whatever they chose by simply stating their opinion?

And what does believing/ not believing in God have to do with nationality?

You are making so many assumptions here.


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Science and theology

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

 

Folks I am both happy and disturbed by the majority remarks here.

  • I am happy to see so many Iranians willing to give up religion. This is great as religion has done our nation a great deal of damage.
  • I am disturbed by people taking work of a scientist as gospel. A physicist even a genius does not know any more about spirituality. We should stop replacing religion with science. Spirituality should be left as a personal matter.

Azarin Sadegh

I admire Hawking for saying it loud...:-)

by Azarin Sadegh on

I truly love mathematicians for their intelligence (and I especially love Hawking for writing A Brief History of Time).... but honestly I am really tired of this same old discussion about god-heaven-hell-etc.. that must be going on since the big bang, I assume..:-)

I think we don't need to be as intelligent as Hawking to understand his point of view or even to come up with the same conclusion! Come on! This is pure common sense, or as he might call it: "a mathematical theorem" :-)

A long time ago, when I was only a teenager, I read many books of different and contradictory opinions about god and religion to make up my own mind and to figure out my own truth...and at the end, I ended up with this belief that I really didn't care about god. Actually i even prefer to think that there is no god. Because if it really exists, I'd be so pissed at it. And I don't really like to feel pissed..:-) So I believe that god is just a placeholder, an empty well, an abstract black hole for those of us who are afraid of solitude; a concept for the weak and the needy; a motivation for those who lack self-control and the courage to make difficult decisions; a rope to hang onto for those who are sinking in their own unreasonable expectations, etc,...

Hawking hasn't expressed anything new, yet I admire his courage for saying it so loud and I appreciate his efforts to move the science forward...and this is all that should really matter for us, because as he says, "the Science works!"


Anonymous Observer

Of course it's a fairytale

by Anonymous Observer on


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Religion

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

 

Is not the same as belief in God. You may believe in God or at least be agnostic like me. But you do not have to follow a religion. Organized religion is just a bunch of rituals and rules. 

Most of these rules do not help humans. As Ramins said: Safavids were hard core Muslims But had cannibals to devour their opponents. Religion did not their vile practice. Religion does not help us survive. It tells people to have more children than the planet is able to support. That will result in pollution and over population. This threatens not just humans but most life on this planet. We are better off without organized religion. If you want God then do it on your own.

It is stupid to think God has his messenger in a well. Or to look at some meteor rock as God sent. It is the rituals that are making people miserable.

May God save us from religion

VPK


gitdoun ver.2.0

Give him some time. He'll come around ...

by gitdoun ver.2.0 on

It's hard to be an Atheist on a death bed!


پندارنیک

Me and My goddammed God

by پندارنیک on

I have no problem whatsoever with  the existence or non-existence of God. My biggest fear, and I say it without an iota of pretence, is the possibility of Nietzsche being right.


ramintork

2 questions

by ramintork on

1. No Ethics existed independently of religion. Abrahimic religions borrow a lot from philosophy and Ethics exists happlily outside religion and in fact religion often destroys ethics. Cannibalism is in fact a religious ritual where it is believed that by eating your enemies you gain their power. In the old days and in fact in some villages today, when a child is circumcised the fore skin is fed back to the child because it is believed you don't own your body and all parts have to be delivered back to the maker, so Islamic belief forces you to eat your own flesh! Up to 500 years ago Safavies had Canibals and they would condemn someone to death by canibalism, so Islam certainly didn't help the ethics of its societies.

2. No religious belief puts us on the wrong path to face real challenges that could endanger our species. Dangers such as Global warming, exploding world population and shortage of resources.

Some one like George W Bush or Mullah's in Iran use religion to exploit people and cause mass suffering. The progress of Humanity in overcoming disease, poverty etc. at least in some parts of the world is down to the age of enlightenment and becoming free from religious thinking. 


ComraidsConcubine

rtayebi1, two answers and one song

by ComraidsConcubine on

 answers:

 1. religion and cults  don't have a monopoly on morality

2. there is no purpose to life; "it just is, or might be or whatever"

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFWA1A9XFi8

 

 



rtayebi1

2 questions

by rtayebi1 on

1. is it not because of religion that we have laws such as not being a cannibal?

2. doesn't religion helps us to continue our kind (specie)  ?  to go through all this shit for nothing?


ramintork

Nothing new

by ramintork on

He has been saying that even if there was a God, God tied up his powers the moments he created the laws of Universe.

By the way atheists don't have to prove that there isn't a God. Burden of proof falls on those who claim existance of something so it is down to theists to prove that there is a God. We don't have to prove there is a God no more than we have to prove that there are faries in our gardens or jinies in the bathrooms!

Cosmology has evolved further and now we talk about multiverse rather than Universe and baby Universes being born out of black holes.

If the Quranic intepretation is that they are invisible pillars then I'm sorry that intepretation is still wrong! Gravity is consequence of the curvature of spacetime governing the motion of inertial objects. Another words if spacetime was a fabric and you put two balls on this fabric then the heavier ball would create a bigger contour on fabric and pull the other ball towards it. See No Quranic pillars involved!Quran 18: 86 Till, when he (the traveller Zul-qarnain) reached the setting-place of the Sun, he found it going down into a muddy spring…According to Quran the Sun sets in a muddy spring! So never mind all the other interpretations that try to adjust some verse to modern day science!

 

 


ComraidsConcubine

Truthseeker, thanks for the interesting link,

by ComraidsConcubine on

the contents of which, of course, I've got issues. hehe! ;)

Interesting though, so, thank you. 

 



Soosan Khanoom

My reply to MG , Bavafa and any one who is interested

by Soosan Khanoom on

 Please read my blog...... ( I wish I had time to write more on the blog ... perhaps later )

There has to be a mind behind the creation

 I am open to any discussions ...  I actually love to talk about science and universe and God and those exciting stuff : )

Bavafa thanks for your honest observation which is as honest as VPK .... 

" I don't know " sounds more right

and MG .... thanks for at least thinking of me as gentle and kind but honestly I am not Neelofar  ... 

 

 


Truthseeker9

...

by Truthseeker9 on


Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

Thank you Maryam Jan!

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on

 

I am "An Kas ke nadanad va bedanad ke nadand". I will lead my donkey limping along to my destination :-)

VPK


Roozbeh_Gilani

"argued that god did not create the universe"

by Roozbeh_Gilani on

Really? I had no idea until now!

:) 

"Personal business must yield to collective interest."