Science is so much cooler when you aren’t afraid of it

The Big Bang era of the universe, presented as...

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Now you might think: that’s really unlikely. And so it is! But that’s because fluctuating into the Big Bang is tremendously unlikely. What we argue in the paper is simply that, once you insist that you are going to examine histories of the universe that start with high-entropy empty space and end with a low-entropy Bang, the most likely way to get there is via an incredible sequence of individually unlikely events. Of course, for every one time this actually happens, there will be countless times that it almost happens, but not quite. The point is that we have infinitely long to wait — eventually the thing we’re waiting for will come to pass.

And so what?, you may very rightly ask. Well for one thing, modern cosmologists often imagine enormously long-lived universes, and events like this will be part of them, so they should be understood. More concretely, we are of course all interested in understanding why our actual universe really does have a low-entropy boundary condition at one end of time (the end we conventionally refer to as “the beginning”). There’s nothing in the laws of physics that distinguishes between the crazy story of the fluctuation into the Big Crunch and the perfectly ordinary story of evolving away from the Big Bang; one is the time-reverse of the other, and the fundamental laws of physics don’t pick out a direction of time. So we might wonder whether processes like these help explain the universe in which we actually live.

So far — not really. If anything, our work drives home (yet again!) how really unusual it is to get a universe that passes through such a low-entropy state.

via A Universe Out of Chaos | Cosmic Variance | Discover Magazine.

First, notice that Science does sorta confirm eternity. And, this seems to state that our universe is much more unique than previously thought. Okay, so it took me reading it twice in some places, but a great article.

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Stephen Hawking doesn’t believe in Heaven.. who’d guessed?

Thanks to Robert for the tip to this story. As many of my readers know, I don’t believe in ‘going to heaven’ either, but I do believe that their is a life after this one. I have been Surprised by Hope upon finding this story of the New Creation… ;)

A belief that heaven or an afterlife awaits us is a “fairy story” for people afraid of death, Stephen Hawking has said.

In a dismissal that underlines his firm rejection of religious comforts, Britain’s most eminent scientist said there was nothing beyond the moment when the brain flickers for the final time. (here)

Why is this news?

 

God the Interpretation v God the Explanation?

In defending Hawking, Nidhal Guessoum writes,

First and foremost, God is not a factor that one adds or removes (as unnecessary) in an equation or a model for the beginning of the Universe or any part of Science. All scientists, theists and atheists, subscribe to Methodological Naturalism, whereby all explanations for phenomena of nature and the universe must exclude supernatural agents. God, however, is an interpretation – not an explanation – given by believers for the existence of the universe, life, intelligence, consciousness, humans, and everything that we witness. When we became able to fully explain celestial motions, lightning, diseases, mental disorders, and many phenomena around us, we did not conclude that “there is no place for God anymore”.

Irtiqa: Hawking, God, and the Universe.

My first thought is that perhaps Science and Faith really cannot get along, but I step back and try to look at what Guessoum is saying. He is, of course, speaking of hard science, in which things must be proven and be proven in such a way as to have absolute answers. They really are no different from some who declare that the bible alone is the proof for all things, and anything secular which questions it is wrong from the start. The Bible is the absolute. So, perhaps the reason that they cannot get along is that they are identical twins?

But, is God an explanation or an interpretation? For ‘thinkers’ (quote, without the scare part), I believe that he is correct. Whether in faith or science, these thinkers have come to the conclusion that their religion may not be all that there is to the Truth of the matter. Even for those who ‘take the Scriptures seriously’, as I heard John Walton say, we look at Genesis 1 and see that Science can fill in the gaps and make the Creation of God that much more spectacular. And for Science?

He concludes with,

Many of us scientists and thinkers doubt that full explanations of everything can be complete and self-contained, with no need for a metaphysical principle like God.

Of course, it seems that Christians weren’t the only ones to jump on Hawkings claims,

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The Right Reverend Stephen Hawking and the Creation of the Universe

Namely, because I was out all day today, and most likely others have covered this, I ain’t saying much,

Right Reverend Hawking,

God did not create the universe and the “Big Bang” was an inevitable consequence of the laws of physics, the eminent British theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking argues in a new book.

In “The Grand Design,” co-authored with U.S. physicist Leonard Mlodinow, Hawking says a new series of theories made a creator of the universe redundant, according to the Times newspaper which published extracts on Thursday.

“Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing. Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist,” Hawking writes.

“It is not necessary to invoke God to light the blue touch paper and set the universe going.”

Apollos/Luke/Paul:

By faith we understand that the entire universe was formed at God’s command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen. (Heb 11:3 NLT)

Yes, and the standard question to respond with…

Um, but who created those laws?

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