He was a breakthrough theoretical physicist, and his brilliance piqued the curiosity of others in his ideas about God and the afterlife. In several interviews and writings, he discussed the existence of a higher power and the possibility of an afterlife.
When asked if he believes in God, Hawking’s reaction was unequivocal. He held that there was no proof of a higher power and that scientific laws could explain the universe.
“Before we understand science, it is natural to believe that God created the universe,” he said in an interview with El Mundo, a Spanish newspaper. But science now provides a more plausible explanation.”
Hawking’s religious views were not limited to a single faith. He held that all religions were founded on the same foundations of faith and provided no empirical evidence. He is an atheist.
Hawking expanded on his thoughts about the universe’s origins in his book “The Grand Design,” which he co-wrote with Leonard Mlodinow. He claimed that the universe was created by the principles of physics rather than by a divine creator.
“Because there is a law like gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing,” he wrote. “There is something rather than nothing; the universe exists, and we exist because of spontaneous creation.”
Hawking’s beliefs about the afterlife were also scientifically based. He thought the idea of an afterlife was nothing more than wishful thinking. He wrote in his final book, “Brief Answers to the Big Questions,”
“No one created the universe or controlled our destiny.” This brings me to a stunning realization: there is likely no Heaven or afterlife…I believe that believing in an afterlife is wishful thinking. There is no trustworthy evidence, and it contradicts all we know about science.”
However, Hawking does not discard other people’s beliefs to impose his own. “We are all free to believe whatever we want, and in my opinion, the simplest explanation is that there is no God,” he said.
Stephen Hawking’s perspectives on God and religion were shaped by his experiences as a mathematician and his desire to understand the cosmos through physical rules. While his ideas differed from those of others, his contributions to science will be honored and remembered for many years to come.