Science and Faith Wrestle with Nothing over the Big Bang

The creator of the YouTube Channel, Science Uprising, does a good job with the production of Big Bang: Something from Nothing, both in the technical aspects of the video and its content. The mask is a nice, dramatic touch.

The mask has taken on a the meaning of standing up to tyranny in countercultural circles, and that meaning is not lost in the video. Popular science promoters of the atheist stripe in the last 20 years have been aggressive in trying to squelch the idea that faith and science can live together. This YouTuber is having none of it!

Indeed, the effort seems to have awoken and inspired many believing scientists in recent years like some of the people who appear in this video, pushing back against the New Atheist mantra. Not only do science and faith fit together like a hand in a glove; non-theism seems to be pulling at the fringes of credibility to walk back the determination that the universe had a beginning a finite time ago.

The so-called “Big Bang” or “singularity”, as Hawking called it, has proven problematic for the scientist who wants to remain a materialist. The implication of a Beginning from the fact that there was a beginning to matter, space, energy and time is a conclusion that Einstein didn’t want to face, though his theory of relativity suggested it.

He came around, and so have almost all scientists today, albeit reluctantly for many who thought that science buried God years ago. Hawking, who proved singularity mathematically, spent much of the rest of his life trying to avoid the inevitable conclusion that his math confirmed. Multiverses would be his answer, though they are no more provable by science than a creator.

Science, though, didn’t bury God. Science is increasingly being seen as the study of the universe God created. I know a handful of atheists who became believers through science. The dogma of the New Atheists is turning brittle as time wears on.

These are just some of the things I think about as I view this short, but well done, video:

What is the Nothing Out of which the Universe Emerged

On a typical Sunday morning, I am contemplative, thinking about God, the nature of the world and other ultimate things. I have gotten home from church. The distant rumbling of thunder portends more rain to add to the buckets (more like vats) that came down earlier this morning. (We’ve had an unusual amount of precipitation in the Chicago area for about a year now.)

Though sunlight threatens to break through the clouds, despite the rumblings to the contrary, it’s a good day for reading and thinking.

In that vein, I read an article from Forbes magazine that came up in my Google feed: Ask Ethan: Can We Really Get a Universe From Nothing? Ethan, is Ethan Siegel, a Forbes contributor. He is an astrophysicist, author and “science communicator” according to the short bio at the end of the article.

It just so happens that I spent my Friday evening this week with another astrophysicist, Hugh Ross, a brilliant man who is a Christian, and also a man of science. In fact, it was science that led him to his belief in God. But I digress. (You can hear the story of how science led Hugh Ross to God in his own words here.)

My meeting with Hugh Ross isn’t really relevant to the topic, other than the fact that our conversation got me thinking about science and ultimate things, things that science doesn’t really address (or hasn’t yet answered). Does God exist? Where did the universe come from?

The article suggests an answer to one of those ultimate questions: where did the universe come from? It suggests that the universe didn’t really come from nothing – at least not the kind of nothing that we usually imagine when we think of nothing. It entices the reader with a title that suggests an ultimate answer, but it doesn’t deliver.

Continue reading “What is the Nothing Out of which the Universe Emerged”

Did Nature Cause Itself?

 (c) Can Stock Photo

I haven’t heard anyone say specifically that nature caused itself, in so many words,(other than the Hawking axiom about the laws of gravity causing the universe), but that is the question begged by any assertion that God doesn’t exist. Anyone who maintains that nature and natural causes are the beginning and the end of all reality is begging that question: did nature cause itself?

Perhaps the greatest obstacle to the assertion that nothing supernatural exists is the Big Bang. The Big Bang is accepted science. The evidence is very compelling, though it wasn’t received well when it was first postulated. The thought that the universe was not eternal and had a beginning was thought to be “repugnant” and to “betray the very foundations of science”.[1]

This is because a beginning to the universe suggests that the universe had a Beginner. The initial reluctance to accept the Big Bang has long ago changed, however, as the evidence has accumulated. Stephen Hawking proved it mathematically, but struggled with the implications of it the rest of his life. Continue reading “Did Nature Cause Itself?”