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The God Question

Looking for answers in Stephen Hawking’s last book, Brief Answers to the Big Questions

 

Many ancient texts describe god as beyond speech and mind (comprehension). Frontiers of modern physics and cosmology, since the advent of Albert Einstein, Max Planck, Werner Heisenberg, and Richard Feynman, may not lie beyond speech and mathematical expression, but are almost as difficult to comprehend. The conception of physical reality from the time of Galileo Galilei and Isaac Newton started changing radically with Einstein’s theory of relativity, espousing ideas that are counter-intuitive and can mainly be understood mathematically. It is difficult to conceive that space and time are not independent of each other, that time is the fourth dimension of our familiar three-dimensional space, and that space-time can be warped by gravity.

Stephen Hawking (1942–2018) has extended the frontiers of science like very few before him. His final book, published after his death, Brief Answers to The Big Questions (2018), asks fundamental questions, such as “Is there a God?” “How did it all begin?” “Is there other intelligent life in the universe?” “What is inside a black hole?” and also futuristic ones, like “Is time travel possible?” “How do we shape the future?” “Should we colonise space?” “Will artificial intelligence outsmart us?” None could have perhaps negotiated these questions in a more lucid and admirable manner. However, simplicity of language cannot always hide the complexity of high physics.

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Updated On : 22nd Feb, 2019

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