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Stephen Hawking says universe not created by God

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Mandarb
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« Reply #15 on: September 03, 2010, 08:42:59 AM »

There was a article in Popular Mechanics a few years back that gave me a idea what the basic idea is, and Mefiante's explanation is as succinct a explanation I've come across. Most of it is still way over my head, but also most of what I know is that M and string theory doesn't answer the questions it set out to answer.

Will have to see what is Hawking's argument.
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Mandarb
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« Reply #16 on: September 03, 2010, 10:41:08 AM »

Interesting video
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mdg
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« Reply #17 on: September 03, 2010, 15:30:11 PM »

A Catholic group has challenged Prof. Stephen Hawking to prove Our Lady of Gaudalupe image is a fraud and have offered him $8356.38, which is kinda weird.




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By Stephen K. Ryan      September 03, 2010

Today the world learned that physic's wunderkind, Stephen Hawking, has come down from the mountaintop to announce (quite dramatically) that  "God did not create the universe"   

Does he mean that the case is now closed?  We are not sure the Catholic Church has turned the lights out just yet.

 MinistryValues.com  would like to suggest to Mr. Hawking that before he rushes to any conclusion about God he should check with the scientists that work for the Catholic Church on the matter. Scientist by the way with better credentials than Mr Hawkings including a Nobel Prize.

The Catholic Church, as you might expect, disagrees with Stephen Hawking on the matter of God and creation.

We  would like to propose to Stephen Hawking that before he gets ahead of himself that he take care of a little business first. Like disprove the miracles of the Virgin Mary.

Guadalupe is one of the great mysteries of the world. The Catholic Church stands by the claim that "God" created the famous iconic image of the Virgin Mary.  Nobel prize winning scientists have investigated the famous icon an state under no uncertain term the image of Guadalupe was not created man. Richard Kuhn, a Nobel Prize winner in chemistry, has found that the image did not have natural, animal or mineral colorings. Given that there were no synthetic colorings in 1531, the image is inexplicable. 

Millions of Catholics believe the famous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe was miraculously painted by God.  Clearly Mr. Hawking would find this  event impossible, yet the Catholic Church indeed stands by the claim that the image was the result of a miracle.

So with this in mind ministryvalues.com would like to offer Hawkings a $$8356.38 reward (its all we can come up with) if he can prove to us  who painted Our Lady of Guadalupe or tell the Catholic church how it came to be.  By proving the image of "Our Lady Of Guadalupe was not painted by "God"  would not only improve Mr. Hawkings considerable  reputation but he  would enjoy the added benefit  crushing the hopes and dreams of millions of believers. 

The Catholic Church claims the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe was miraculously imprinted by Mary on the tilma, or cloak, of St. Juan Diego in 1531. The image has numerous unexplainable phenomena, such as the appearance on Mary’s eyes of those present in the room when the tilma was opened and the image’s lack of decay.

Just Recently on an Official State visit, Ms. Hillary Clinton asked the Monsignor of the Basilica of "Our Lady of Guadalupe" who painted the  beautiful image of the Virgin Mary. The Monsignor answered "well God did!"   (we know he wanted to add "you big ninny)
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Wandapec
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« Reply #18 on: September 03, 2010, 20:30:38 PM »

A Catholic group has challenged Prof. Stephen Hawking to prove Our Lady of Gaudalupe image is a fraud
These guys just don't get it. Surely the burden of proof is on them - they're the ones making the claim?
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Mefiante
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« Reply #19 on: September 03, 2010, 20:47:23 PM »

At the very real risk of trivialising such an obviously well thought-out piece of scholarly research Roll Eyes

  • “Today the world learned that physic's wunderkind…”
    No, no.  That should be: “Today the world learned that physics’ wunderkind…” although “… physics wunderkind…” would be fine too.

  • “MinistryValues.com  would like to suggest to Mr. Hawking that…”
    No, no.  That should be Prof. Hawking.  He’s earned it.  Really.

  • “Scientist by the way with better credentials than Mr Hawkings including a Nobel Prize.”
    No, no.  Not only does your facility with plurals, punctuation and sentence construction suck, this time ’round you also manage to get the man’s title and his name wrong.  Really, now.  That should be: “Scientists, by the way, with better credentials than Prof. Hawking, including a Nobel Prize winner” or “laureate” or “recipient” or something.  The good professor’s surname has no trailing “s.”  Please.

  • “Nobel prize winning scientists have investigated the famous icon an state under no uncertain term the image of Guadalupe was not created man.”
    No, no.  Hyphenation for adjectival phrases, as well as conjunctions and prepositions are equally problematic, it seems.  How about:  “Nobel Prize-winning scientists have investigated the famous icon and state in no uncertain terms that the image of Guadalupe was not created by man.”

  • “Clearly Mr. Hawking would find this  event impossible…”
    No, no.  Once again, that should be Prof. Hawking.  He truly has earned it.  Not a word of a lie.

  • “So with this in mind ministryvalues.com would like to offer Hawkings $$8,356.38 as areward…”
    No, no.  It’s obvious that basic linguistic rules are well beyond your grasp.  Let’s try:  “So with this in mind, ministryvalues.com would like to offer Hawking $8,356.38 as a reward…”

  • “By proving the image of "Our Lady Of Guadalupe was not painted by "God"  would not only improve Mr. Hawkings considerable  reputation…”
    No, no.  Consistent punctuation and possessives are as far beyond your capabilities as basic respect for earned titles and correct names are, aren’t they?  How about:  “Proving that the image of "Our Lady Of Guadalupe" was not painted by "God" would not only improve Prof. Hawking’s considerable  reputation…”

  • “The image has numerous unexplainable phenomena, such as…”
    No, no.  Wait…  Actually, this is almost okay although it would be much less awkward as:  “The image has numerous inexplicable features, such as…”

  • “Just Recently on an Official State visit, Ms. Hillary Clinton asked…”
    No, no.  Capitalisation is also somewhat troublesome.  More correctly, it should read:  “Just recently on an official state visit, Ms. Hillary Clinton asked…”

Some things are just so stupid that the only sane reaction is ridicule and mockery.

'Luthon64
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Julian
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« Reply #20 on: September 05, 2010, 10:01:44 AM »

If anyone is interested in the facts rather than religious hyperbole, I would refer you to my favourite skeptic podcaster, Brian Dunning aka Skeptoid - http://skeptoid.com/episodes/4201.

In summary, the image has never been subjected to a proper scientific analysis, because well, it is a sacred religious icon dammit, and we can't have pesky scientists cutting little pieces out of it. The legends surrounding the image, as well as its actual history, are pretty interesting though. As always, truth is more interesting than religious wishful thinking.
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Julian
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« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2010, 10:03:57 AM »

As for Hawking I'm pretty sure his allusions to God have always been metaphorical. As far as I know he is a pantheist.
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Rigil Kent
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« Reply #22 on: September 05, 2010, 10:29:49 AM »

I'm no expert on divinely created art, or any art for that matter, but I do know that artists like to sign their paintings. This is presumably so because they normally have a little bit of paint left after completion of the main picture.  So what I suggest is that the relevant catholic gallery curator go and have a look at the right hand side bottom corner of the image. If it says "by God", then we'll all know for sure. Failing that, the painting can be scrutinized for a small depiction of a toaster.

Mintaka
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Julian
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« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2010, 10:49:05 AM »

Failing that, the painting can be scrutinized for a small depiction of a toaster.

Mintaka

toaster??
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Rigil Kent
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« Reply #24 on: September 05, 2010, 10:58:01 AM »

toaster??

Quite. http://forum.skeptic.za.org/fun/image-of-toaster-appears-on-virgin-mary-painting/

M.
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Michael Meadon
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« Reply #25 on: September 09, 2010, 10:59:57 AM »

Jacques Rousseau (an excellent skeptic who, oddly enough, taught me "Thinking About Bussiness - a core course - at UCT) has a thoughtful piece in the Daily Maverick on Hawking and God: http://www.thedailymaverick.co.za/article/2010-09-08-talking-of-hawking-and-thinking-of-god
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Teleological
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« Reply #26 on: September 09, 2010, 11:36:57 AM »

There are several problems with Hawkins' assertions.
1) Hawkins says:
Quote
"Because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing," he writes. "Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist."

Hawkins definitions of "nothing" is wanting. Maybe he says a little more about that in his book (good marketing I guess). If his definition is anything like the classical metaphysical conception whereby nothing is literally nothing and nothing CAN COME from nothing, then he seems to ascribe some God-like property to the law of gravity. According to the classical conception, only God creates from nothing or ex nihilo.
2) Hawkins wants us to believe that the law of gravity is god-like in the sense that it is (like paul Davies opines) "eternal, immutable transcendent entities that just happen to exist and must simply be accepted as given".
3) From these quotes...
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The Grand Design, an extract of which appears in the Times today, sets out to contest Sir Isaac Newton's belief that the universe must have been designed by God as it could not have been created out of chaos.

Quote
"The fact that we human beings – who are ourselves mere collections of fundamental particles of nature – have been able to come this close to an understanding of the laws governing us and our universe is a great triumph."

...it is quite clear that he has a mechanistic view (mechanistic metaphysics) of the universe and is unlikely to know much about the classical Aristotelian conception of God. With this mechanistic view in mind, Hawkins seems to desperately want to attack God-of-the gaps arguments (big bang ID, deism etc,) and probably rightly so. From an Aristotelian and classical theistic perspective this is of course a non-sequitur really and quite irrelevant.

And there are also several problems with the assertion that God is some kind of hypothesis (as in Jacques' piece). To say God is some kind hypothesis is like saying the interior angles of a triangle on an Euclidean plane adding up to 180 degrees is some kind of hypothesis. Sure, there are some (as per the IDers) who would like to argue that God is a hypothesis, heck even a theory, and perhaps Jacques as well as Hawkins targeted those people. Hawkins could have written the book without referring to God or other metaphysical topics (such as something from nothing or the ontological status of laws), but I guess it is good for book sales and it got people talking and thinking.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2010, 12:01:21 PM by Teleological » Logged
Michael Meadon
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« Reply #27 on: September 09, 2010, 14:04:13 PM »

Teleological, you are terribly confused. On the "something coming from nothing" question, you should really read up on quantum mechanics. And... who cares if he doesn't restrict himself to the "classical metaphysical conception"? That conception is based on nothing more solid that human intuition, and, since the universe is not only stranger than we conceive, but stranger that we can possible conceive, there is just no reason to think our intuitions are a guide to truth. Dawkins has a most excellent TED Talk on this: http://www.ted.com/talks/richard_dawkins_on_our_queer_universe.html
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Mefiante
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« Reply #28 on: September 09, 2010, 14:44:16 PM »

And the whole forum, mesmerised and intrigued, waits with bated breath for this thread’s next exciting instalment…

Betting is now open. Lips Sealed

'Luthon64
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mdg
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« Reply #29 on: September 09, 2010, 15:10:30 PM »

Quote from: Mefiante
And the whole forum, mesmerised and intrigued, waits with bated breath for this thread’s next exciting instalment…

Betting is now open
.

LOL! Wait I want to get some popcorn...

Oh dear, I laughed at your joke Mefiante, does that make me your lap dog/minion too?  Evil

@Michael Meadon - I would like to think that I am your friend (albeit an internet one) and feel it's necessary to tell you that the woo is strong with the one they call Teleological. I wish you luck.
When all else fails, just pat him on the head and toss him a cookie.  Wink

mdg
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