Sunday, 5 September 2010

Stephen Hawking makes headlines with his views on non-theistic creation

Stephen Hawking. Image courtesy of NASA.

Joel Kontinen

"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.”

Professor Stephen Hawking has been making headlines with his recent statements. He believes that thanks to natural laws, such as the law of gravity, ”the universe can and will create itself from nothing” and God was not needed in the creation business.

Hawking is obviously using the media to get attention for his soon-to-be-released book The Grand Design, co-written by US physicist Leonard Mlodinow.

Stephen Hawking brings up the existence of exoplanets or extrasolar planets as an argument against the supernatural creation of the universe. The idea is interesting since exoplanets basically falsify all known naturalistic theories of planet formation. Moreover, in many cases hot Jupiters orbit surprisingly near their sun. Some Earth-like planets orbit their sun nearer than Mercury our Sun.

The conditions on these worlds would be somewhat inhospitable. Exoplanets speak of the uniqueness of the planet we call Earth.

The idea of multiverses or multiple universes, though popular among some non-theists, is not based on sound science. There is no real evidence to support it.

A major problem in invoking the laws of physics in creation is that although they explain how things work, they do not say anything about how things were originally made.

The idea that everything could come from natural laws that after all do not take a physical form defies logic. In her recently published book The World Turned Upside Down: The Global Battle over God, Truth, and Power (Encounter Books, New York, 2010) British journalist Melanie Phillips suggests that the idea of the spontaneous formation of the universe amounts to magic.


Lopez, Kathryn Jean. 2010. Melanie Phillips on a World Gone Mad. National Review Online (20 May).

Statham, Dominic. 2010. A revealing insight into European and world politics. A review of The World Turned Upside Down: The Global Battle over God, Truth and Power by Melanie Phillips. (31 August).

Stephen Hawking: God did not create Universe.
BBC news 2 September 2010.