Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Stephen Hawking on Heaven

In an interview with the Guardian Stephen Hawking refers to the idea of heaven as a "fairy story".  Pretty blunt, Doc, but I like your style.  As before, when he declared in his book The Grand Design that a god is not necessary to explain the universe, this statement about heaven has created a little firestorm amongst the religious.  The comments on the Guardian article were somewhat interesting, if only because there were 44 pages of them (last I checked) and seem to be a fair mix of religious and non-religious folks debating at varying levels of civility.  But my favorite response so far has come from this article at the Washington Post.  In it, Bishop Wright is arguing that Professor Hawking doesn't understand the Christian notion of heaven.  Perhaps this is an argument meant to confuse people.  I certainly don't get it.  I mean, I understand what he is saying, that Christians don't necessarily believe that they will be swooped up to a bright cloudy place to play harps until the end of....well, forever.  So what?  It is still life after bodily death.  It is still supernatural.  I would imagine that Professor Hawking also rejects the Muslim views of the afterlife.  I would be very surprised after a statement like the one he made Sunday to hear that Hawking believes in any sort of afterlife.  Bishop Wright then goes on to say that Hawking's opinion is not valid because he hasn't looked at the "evidence for Jesus and the resurrection".  We have heard that one before.  I have even tried looking for the evidence.  I even found a couple of copies of the "evidence" in my apartment.  You can also find the "evidence" in most hotel bed stands in the U.S..  If you know of another primary source referring directly Jesus please let me know so I can have a valid opinion on whether or not magic is real.

Sorry, got a bit snarky there for a minute...

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