We can’t perceive the limits of the universe, but we know in various ways that they exist, because we and our world is finite. We need to understand our universe and how it works. We have no need or purpose to understand what might be beyond our universe and how it works.
We are not God and we do not need to be God. The existence of God is the flip side of our finitude. We need to live within our limits and allow God to do God’s work of governing the universe. [quote=“John_Dalton, post:336, topic:37310”]
His former reasons sound awfully like theoretical reasons as well (note my bolded part)-
My point if it was not clear is that Einstein’s Theory has been around for more than 100 years and has been tested in many ways. If we would have to throw it away now, our picture of the universe would be shattered. The theories he is proposing have not been tested and probably cannot be tested. They are still theory.
These are the points that I was trying to make, so I want to thank Hawking for supporting these ideas. 1. The universe has a Beginning. 2. This conclusion is supported by general relativity, even though it does not fully describe it. 3. The Beginning of the universe means that matter, energy, time, and space began at the some time.
There should be no problem that a singularity cannot be explained fully be describable by the laws of physics because this is a one time event. I have heard that the Big Bang was caused by a matter and anti-matter explosion of energy which does not fit into other models.
The answer to the question, “Did the universe have a beginning?” is, “It probably did.” We have no viable models of an eternal universe. The BGV theorem gives us reason to believe that such models simply cannot be constructed.
This essay by Alexander Vilenken is very good and of course he is one other creators of this understanding of the universe. I would certainly agree that there are clear limits to our scientific understanding of precisely how our universe came into existence. Our understanding of the Beginning is not dependent on science, or theology or philosophy, but all three of them.
The issue for me is not the existence of God. God exists. Nothing can change that. For me God is not First Cause, God is not the universe, but God is the Source of the universe. God created the universe out of nothing, no matter, no energy, no space, and no time, but God did exist before the Beginning.
There are three basic questions about the universe that we need to address. 1. The Scientific question, How does it work? 2. the Philosophical question, How and why can we understand the universe? 3. The Theological question, What is the meaning and purpose of the universe?
They are interrelated therefore we cannot answer one of them without answering the others. This is why all disciplines need to work together to have intellectual integrity. If we fail, as we appear to be failing with climate change, then the forces of ignorance and fear could well take over.
Hawking quotes the words of Laplace to demonstrate the old Newtonian cause and effect cosmological view, and then demonstrates why it is not valid. The problem is that as best I can determine, a replacement view has not been found.
If that is true, I suggest the Einsteinian relational holistic view of cosmological change. This view enables us to integrate the three aspects of Reality, physical, rational, and spiritual into one system that we call can work within without being uniform.