Admission Essay: Candidates, seeking admission to leading world universities in the USA and other countries, are asked to write a short essay. Here is an example.
–Professor Jitendra Kumar Sharma
- Write a short essay on ‘There’s no God; no one directs our fate’.
A.2.”There is no God. No one created the universe and no one directs our fate”.This is a quote from Stephen Hawking, a genius and physicist who died recently. Stephen Hawking was an atheist. He also raised and answered some important existential questions: Who created the universe? Is there alien intelligence inhabiting our universe? And, questions concerning space colonization and artificial intelligence.
Publishers John Murray have brought out a “Brief Answers to the Big Questions” by Stephen Hawking. This book contains some of this great cosmologist’s most profound reflections gathered from his personal archive. Stephen Hawking’s God is an impersonal God. He uses the word ‘God’ in the same sense as did Albert Einstein. For these two scientists God is their term for the laws of nature. Therefore, to know the laws of nature is to know the mind of God.
“My prediction is that we will know the mind of God by the end of this century,” says Hawking, who died in March 2018. And , somewhat enigmatically, he observes that “universe adds up to nothing, then you don’t need a God to create it”. What about faith? He answers: “We are each free to believe what we want, and it’s my view that the simplest explanation is that there is no God. No one created the universe and no one directs our fate.”This view is akin to the views of Existentialists like Jean Paul Satre and Albert Camus. Stephen elaborates his thought further: “This leads me to a profound realization – there is probably no heaven and afterlife either. I think belief in an afterlife is just wishful thinking. There is no reliable evidence for it, and it flies in the face of everything we know in science.”
Hawking’s “A Brief History of Time”, sold over 13 million copies worldwide. At 20, he was diagnosed with Motor Neuron Disease and was given two years to live. His abilities to move and communicate were increasingly limited. He remained in a wheelchair and spoke through a voice synthesizer. But he lived not for two years but 76 years, the longest living MND survivor. Maybe, his lifelong predicament had something to do with his philosophy of life and universe and his views on God.
During life Stephen Hawking was much celebrated as a cosmologist and a movie, “The Theory of Everything” was made on his life. But neither Hawkins , nor Einstein, nor other philosophers and scientists could decisively change the faith of multitudes. Ordinary men and women need props to upholster their existence. Suffering is universal in this world, as Guru Nanak said, “ Nanak Dkhiya Sab Sansar” [ The Whole World Is Suffering”. Faith in God or some Extraordinary Power makes the riddle of life bearable as the poet T.S. Eliot said,
“ Humankind cannot bear very much reality”.