Objections to the Big Bang

l "philosophically unacceptable" (atheist John Maddox, “Down with the Big Bang”in Nature)  
l "smacks of divine intervention" (Stephen Hawking, A Brief History of Time).

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Slide 17 of 22

The editor of the prestigious weekly science periodical, Nature, John Maddox, wrote an editorial entitled, "Down with the Big Bang," where he hoped for the downfall of the Big Bang model, because in it, he found it to be "philosophically unacceptable"1 and believes, theological creationists find "ample justification" for their creationist creed in it.

Physicist Hubert Reeves remarked that the Big Bang "involves a certain metaphysical aspect which may be either appealing or revolting".2

Christopher Isham observes:

"Perhaps the best argument in favor of the thesis that the Big Bang supports theism is the obvious unease with which it is greeted by some atheist physicists. At times this has led to scientific ideas, such as continuous creation [steady state] or an oscillating universe, being advanced with a tenacity which so exceeds their intrinsic worth that one can only suspect the operation of psychological forces lying very much deeper than the usual academic desire of a theorist to support his/her theory."3

References Top of page

  1. "Apart from being philosophically unacceptable, the Big-Bang is an over-simple view of how the Universe began, and it is unlikely to survive the decade ahead." Maddox, J. 1989. Down with the Big Bang. Nature 340: 425.
  2. Reeves, H., Andouze, J., Fowler, W. A., and Schramm, D. N. 1973. On the Origin of the Light Elements. Astrophysical Journal 179: 912.
  3. Isham, C. 1988. "Creation of the Universe as a Quantum Process," in Physics, Philosophy, and Theology, A Common Quest for Understanding, eds. R. J. Russell, W. R. Stoeger, and G. V. Coyne, Vatican City State: Vatican Observatory, p. 378.

Last Modified October 4, 2004


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