Stephen Hawking’s phrases are always a source of illumination about the immensity of the universe and issues as slippery as the existence of God . The astrophysical genius who contributed to numerous discoveries, was also known for stimulating intellectual debate and inviting existential reflection. Although he left us in March of this year, Stephen Hawking leaves us his work and his thoughts, which we try to summarize in the following sentences about God and the universe.
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50 phrases by Stephen Hawking to think and reflect
Half a hundred phrases full of wit and depth for you to think and reflect on.
Phrases about God
Stephen Hawking always left the door open to the existence of God, although if so he considered it completely unnecessary.
1. If we find the answer to that, it will be the ultimate triumph of human reason.
For him, this would be synonymous with having entered the mind of God.
2. Einstein was wrong when he said that God does not play with dice.
“Not only does God play with the dice, but he sometimes confuses us by throwing them where we cannot see them”, suggested the genius speaking of black holes.
3. It would be boring to be God: the human race always needs a challenge.
Ironically, Hawking considers that science is more attractive than religion, because the challenge of discoveries is more interesting than the immobility of dogmas.
4. What did God do before creating the universe?
What came first, the chicken or the egg. Hawking puts us at the momentous crossroads.
5. In my opinion, there is no aspect of reality beyond the reach of the human mind.
The creation of God is an abstract but it does not solve any of the questions that science has shown to be able to solve.
6. It is not necessary to invoke God to light the fuse and set the universe in motion.
The British astrophysicist believed that the theory of gravity shows that the universe was created from nothing.
7. The laws of science do not leave much room for miracles or for God.
Although in an ironic way I always try to stimulate the idea of his existence, phrases like these show his skepticism.
8. I am not saying that God does not exist. But God is the name that people give to the reason why we are here.
For him, God is the laws of physics, and not someone with whom we can have a personal relationship.
9. If the answer to the question of who created the universe is God, then we have to ask ourselves who created God.
It was a recurring question in his thinking: to question the origin of the universe by projecting the question to what existed before.
Phrases about the universe
The Cambridge genius once said that his goal in life had been to know the universe, not to be famous. That is what he dedicated all his efforts to.
10. The idea that we are alone in the universe seems implausible and arrogant to me.
Stephen Hawking considered that with the number of planets and stars that we know, it is unlikely that we are the only intelligent life form that exists in the universe.
11. The universe does not allow perfection.
Suggestive phrase about the universe in which it invites us to think of it as a messy chaos.
12. Ask yourself what you are doing in the universe.
Reflection of a philosophical nature in which he invited us to look up at the stars and question ourselves about our own existence.
13. Things can go out of black holes to other universes.
Stephen Hawking was a revolutionary because he did not see eternal prisons in black holes, but doors that communicated various dimensions with each other.
14. The universe continues to surprise us.
For Stephen Hawking, the universe always had that inexhaustible, immense and exciting dimension.
15. If you understand how the universe works, in a way, you control it.
A message of hope about the possibilities of humanity in the future.
Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking in zero gravity. | Image from: Forbes.
16. Each of us exists for a short space of time, and in this time we can explore only a small part of the universe.
About the immensity of the universe, which suggests that we can never fully know it. An invitation to the humility of man.
17. One million million million million (1 with 24 trailing zeros) miles is the exact size of the universe.
For Stephen Hawking, the universe is something immense that is beyond our possibilities. This phrase about the universe invites us to recognize our smallness.
18. The universe not only has a history, but any possible history.
I speak on several occasions about the past of the universe, and in turn about how far we are from understanding it.
19. We can understand the universe. That makes us very special.
Despite being aware of its immensity, he considered it a knowable space and, as such, encouraged its study for its understanding.
20. Our only chance to survive this is to expand into space.
He thus spoke of man’s capacity for destruction on Earth, which urged him to find a new home outside the planet.
21. Black holes, after all, are not black.
He described them as very bright holes giving off enormous heat. “The smaller they are, the brighter they are,” he used to say.
Phrases about extraterrestrial life
Few scientists like him dared to speak so openly about taboo subjects such as the existence of intelligent life outside of Earth.
22. We will be able to have a permanent base on the Moon in 20 years, and on Mars in 46 years.
But we will never find better conditions for life than on Earth, he suggested. I always invite you to overcome the mental limits of the here and now.
23. Aliens would be more advanced than us.
For him, the meeting with the aliens would be a disaster, and he remembered the tragedy of the meeting of races in different stages of development on Earth itself.
24. If aliens visited us, it would be like when Columbus arrived in America.
The inferiority of our development would be fatal in the face of an alien invasion, this scientist said in 2010.
25. I know exactly where to start looking for extraterrestrial life.
Of the phrases about aliens this is the most intriguing. Before dying he said he was more sure than ever that we are not alone.
26. We have to avoid answering his call: they will give us the same treatment that we give to bacteria.
That’s how inferior he saw the human race in front of that supposed extraterrestrial civilization.
27. I do not believe that UFOs contain creatures from outer space.
He thought that if the aliens want to visit us they will do it in a more obvious way.
28. With computer viruses we have created a way of life.
In our image and likeness, he ironized him. That’s how he described our way of destroying ourselves.
Phrases about life and death
Stephen Hawking suffered from a degenerative disease, ALS, which was never an impediment for him. But together with his knowledge of the universe, I stimulated his reflections on life and death.
29. When one’s expectations are reduced to zero, one really appreciates everything one has.
Philosophical phrase about the meaning of life, which invites realism and optimism as two sides of the same coin.
30. I am not afraid of death, but I am not in a hurry to die.
He always showed his great attachment to life, insisting that before leaving this world he had many things to do.
31. Work gives you meaning and purpose, and life is empty without it.
He believed that in this life you have to set goals and pursue your dreams.
32. I have noticed that even people who say that everything is predestined, look before crossing the street.
He saw existence as an exciting adventure that we create ourselves: commitment to the ability to make decisions.
33. Nothing can exist forever.
On more than one occasion he made clear his idea that everything has a beginning and an end.
34. We are an advanced race of monkeys on a small planet of a median star.
With that mixture of irony and harsh reality, he defined how small we are in the universe.
35. Life would be tragic if it wasn’t fun.
With this paradox he revealed his philosophical genius, his exact understanding of human life.
36. There is no heaven or life after death; it is a fairy tale for people afraid of death.
He believed that life was something finite, and that there was nothing beyond it. An invitation to squeeze life in each of its moments.
37. Eternity is a long time, especially when its end is near.
Another of Stephen Hawking’s famous phrases about everything having a certain time and nothing is eternal.
38. We now know that our galaxy is only one of a hundred billion galaxies that can be seen through a modern telescope, and each galaxy contains about a hundred billion stars.
It invites us to reflect on the dimension of the universe and our humble position in it.
39. Without imperfection, neither you nor I would exist.
It sounds like a phrase from a self-help book, but it takes on more weight when the person who pronounces it is a scientist of the stature of Stephen Hawking. A lesson in life.
Phrases about the future of humanity
As a scientist, the British astrophysicist was always very critical of the destruction of the planet and our environment, and left important phrases about the future.
40. Robots could eventually take over.
Stephen Hawking made a series of fatalistic predictions, among which was this: that the new machines would end the human being.
41. The destructive power of man surprises me more every day.
He always had in speech of warning and prevention of the destructive effects of our daily action.
42. As we move forward, we are faced with new ways of harming ourselves.
The human being has the strange ability to create his own causes of destruction.
43. Although 9/11 was horrible, it did not threaten the existence of human life as nuclear weapons do.
It invites us to relativize the effects of a terrorist attack in the face of the great threats to humanity, which are created by ourselves.
44. Our power to harm the environment is increasing much faster than our wisdom in the use of power.
About the fast and unstoppable capacity of destruction of the human being.
45. Humanity has about a thousand years left before self-destruction.
That’s how catastrophic this scientist raised it, taking into account that in the entire history of humanity a thousand years are nothing.
46. The next time you hear someone say that climate change doesn’t exist, invite them to take a trip to Venus. I pay the expenses.
With this irony, Stephen Hakwing joined the criticism for the destruction of the planet that has climate change as an immediate consequence.
47. We are all connected to the Internet, like neurons in a giant brain.
The verification of the new way of communicating in today’s world.
48. The end of the world could come from a nuclear disaster, the activity of artificial intelligence and the spread of a genetically modified virus.
All three causes are created by man.
49. The worst case scenario for Earth would be to become a planet like Venus.
It warned of the danger of ending up like that star, with a temperature of more than 250 degrees and sulfuric acid rain.
50. There is no salvation for the Earth, but for our species.
And this salvation lies in the creation of independent human colonies on other planets.
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