It's All Connected

It's All Connected

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Awesome-ness of Stephen Hawking

Last night, Jero and I watched an episode of Curiosity narrated by Stephen Hawking. It was asking the question, "did God create the universe?". It blew my mind. I haven't stopped thinking about it and the conversation it caused Jero and I to have.

Here's the thing, like many people I have been questioning the existence of God for a very long time. Say since June 16th, 1990. Yes, I was ten years old, but it was the first time I questioned the purpose of a higher being which made me question there actually being one.

I went through a very Christian phase for quite a number of years, starting in Junior High and ending late in High School. I was baptized southern Baptist, I was "born again", I recruited, I witnessed, I preached. Then, I questioned.

It was a shoot first, ask questions later kind of experience. I loved the feeling of community that the church brought me. The feeling of a forever family when I was so struggling with feeling like I was completely alone in the world. My mom worked a lot, was gone a lot, and I was pretty much raising myself. It felt so comforting to have this large circle of people who helped fill that void. But as I got older, and began to really listen to what was being preached and what was being sung, I realized that all of these people did not believe my dad would be in Heaven. In an instant, all of that comfort was gone.

I stopped going to church, I began to call myself an Agnostic. I believed in a higher power, but I didn't believe in organized religion. I took bits and pieces of different faiths and beliefs and I made my own idea of God. I read countless books on theology. I read, "Why Bad Things Happen to Good People" and thought I had found the answer. Thought I had finally come to understand what God was all about. But with that came this nagging question...what is the purpose of a higher being?

I have many friends who are Atheist. Many scientists, physicists, and the like who do not believe in a god. Any god. My brain has been a true believer for some time. The laws of science and nature make sense to me, but my heart is the hold out.

Last night, Stephen Hawking explained the universe in such a way that this light bulb came on in my head. There is no purpose of a God, so why would there be one? Why would He need to exist in the first place?

As the show was ending, Mr. Hawking was explaining how time did not exist before the Big Bang. That without time, God would not have the time to create the Big Bang in the first place. And my heart immediately took over my brain and said, "God is beyond time". For the first time, my head fought back and said, "now is that logical, or are you just trying to make yourself feel better?".

Stupid head and it's stupid logic.

What I was struggling with, no what I AM struggling with, is the idea of there being no Heaven. No place to reunite with those I've lost, those I am going to lose someday, and those I will lose when I die. I looked at Jero and said, "that made me really sad".

Then my wonderful, smart, loving, beautiful man said something that I can't help but love with all of my heart. I am going to paraphrase because this was rather a long conversation.

He basically said that if all mass is energy, then we are energy. Our memories, which are neurons firing, our selves, we are all energy. And energy can never be destroyed, just changed. Therefor, when we die, we do not simply disappear. We are changed into other things that make up this world we all love and hate.

Now, I would love to talk to a scientist about this idea. I really would. Because I still can't completely convince my heart. It's also an issue of some people getting exactly what they deserve. I will be honest and say that along with not seeing my lost loved ones in the way I had always wanted to believe, I also have a vengeful side. I am human, after all. I like the idea of rapists, murderers and pedophiles getting their just desserts in the end. To be judged and sentenced in the end the way they never were in life. That part of me also wants to believe in God.

I am horribly confused but completely in awe of the fortitude of the human mind. Without scientists like Galileo, Einstein, and Hawking, we would all still be thinking that the tides are caused by some god. Really is that any less far fetched than wanting to believe that some higher being is waiting around up there to hand out justice for the wronged here on Earth? Shouldn't that be our job? Shouldn't we be striving for a more well oiled legal system? Shouldn't we be trying to do these things ourselves with our own morality? These great men brought us out of the dark age and into the time of not only knowing how the universe works, but WHY. I cannot help but be in awe of that.

I know this post is going to upset so many people. It's going to cause controversy and be called heresy. But here's the thing, I am not trying to change what anyone else believes. I'm not one hundred percent sure what I believe myself. I won't try to change your minds, or the minds of your children. I am just trying to wrap my head around what's happening in my heart. Or maybe the opposite of that.

Live this life like it's the only one. Because to me, whether Christianity is right or wrong, it's the only one we're going to get. Why wait to make amends until it is too late? If there is a Heaven, we won't be able to fix anything from there anyway.

Hug your babies, follow your own path, and may the mass times acceleration be with you.

1 comment:

  1. My father believes very similarly to Jero. And he's an ordained minister!

    It's hard sometimes to get the head and the heart to come to an agreement, or even an understanding. I'm still working on that. I try to be pretty logical, but my heart can yell really loud when it wants to.

    I think you and I share a lot of the same feelings when it comes to good and bad and heaven and hell. I wish I didn't live so far away, it'd be nice to sit down over a cup of coffee and chat about it!