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Thread: Stephen Hawking, renowned scientist, dies at 76

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    Default Stephen Hawking, renowned scientist, dies at 76

    Stephen Hawking, renowned scientist, dies at 76
    By CNN Staff
    Updated 12:03 AM ET, Wed March 14, 2018

    (CNN) - Stephen Hawking, the brilliant British theoretical physicist who overcame a debilitating disease to publish wildly popular books probing the mysteries of the universe, has died, according to a family spokesman. He was 76.

    Considered by many to be the world's greatest living scientist, Hawking was also a cosmologist, astronomer, mathematician and author of numerous books including the landmark "A Brief History of Time," which has sold more than 10 million copies.

    With fellow physicist Roger Penrose, Hawking merged Einstein's theory of relativity with quantum theory to suggest that space and time would begin with the Big Bang and end in black holes. Hawking also discovered that black holes are not completely black but emit radiation and will likely eventually evaporate and disappear.

    Hawking suffered from ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), a neurodegenerative disease commonly known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, which is usually fatal within a few years. He was diagnosed in 1963, when he was 21, and doctors initially only gave him a few years to live.

    The disease left Hawking wheelchair-bound and paralyzed. He was able to move only a few fingers on one hand and was completely dependent on others or on technology for virtually everything -- bathing, dressing, eating, even speech.

    Hawking used a speech synthesizer that allowed him to speak in a computerized voice with an American accent.

    "I try to lead as normal a life as possible, and not think about my condition, or regret the things it prevents me from doing, which are not that many," he wrote on his website.

    "I have been lucky that my condition has progressed more slowly than is often the case. But it shows that one need not lose hope."

    Hawking was married twice. He and his first wife, Jane Wilde, wed when he was still a grad student and remained together for 30 years before divorcing in 1995. Hawking was later married for 11 years to Elaine mason, one of his former nurses.

    Hawking was born in Oxford, England, on what turned out to be an auspicious date: January 8, 1942 -- the 300th anniversary of the death of astronomer and physicist Galileo Galilei.

    In an exclusive interview with CNN in October 2008, Hawking said that if humans can survive the next 200 years and learn to live in space, then our future will be bright.

    "I believe that the long-term future of the human race must be in space," Hawking told CNN's Becky Anderson.

    "It will be difficult enough to avoid disaster on planet Earth in the next 100 years, let alone next thousand, or million. The human race shouldn't have all its eggs in one basket, or on one planet. Let's hope we can avoid dropping the basket until we have spread the load."

    At Cambridge, he held the position of Lucasian Professor of Mathematics -- the prestigious post held from 1669 to 1702 by Sir Isaac Newton, widely considered one of the greatest scientists in modern history.

    Yet Hawking once said if he had the chance to meet Newton or Marilyn Monroe, he would opt for the movie star.

    Hawking became a hero to math and science geeks and pop culture figure, guest-starring as himself on "Star Trek: The Next Generation" and "The Simpsons."

    He had at least 12 honorary degrees and was awarded the CBE in 1982. A CBE, or Commander in the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, is considered a major honor for a British citizen and is one rank below knighthood.

    Despite being a British citizen he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the US's highest civilian honor, in 2009 by President Barack Obama.

    In September 2016 Hawking joined 375 "concerned" scientists in penning an open letter criticizing then-presidential candidate Donald Trump, citing the threat of climate change and blasting his push for the US to leave the Paris Accord.

    Hawking leaves behind three children and three grandchildren, according to his website.

    https://www.cnn.com/2018/03/14/healt...ead/index.html

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    The below is from an NPR interview of commentator Aaron Freeman:

    You want a physicist to speak at your funeral. You want the physicist to talk to your grieving family about the conservation of energy, so they will understand that your energy has not died. You want the physicist to remind your sobbing mother about the first law of thermodynamics; that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. You want your mother to know that all your energy, every vibration, every Btu of heat, every wave of every particle that was her beloved child remains with her in this world. You want the physicist to tell your weeping father that amid energies of the cosmos, you gave as good as you got.

    And at one point you’d hope that the physicist would step down from the pulpit and walk to your brokenhearted spouse there in the pew and tell him that all the photons that ever bounced off your face, all the particles whose paths were interrupted by your smile, by the touch of your hair, hundreds of trillions of particles, have raced off like children, their ways forever changed by you. And as your widow rocks in the arms of a loving family, may the physicist let her know that all the photons that bounced from you were gathered in the particle detectors that are her eyes, that those photons created within her constellations of electromagnetically charged neurons whose energy will go on forever.

    And the physicist will remind the congregation of how much of all our energy is given off as heat. There may be a few fanning themselves with their programs as he says it. And he will tell them that the warmth that flowed through you in life is still here, still part of all that we are, even as we who mourn continue the heat of our own lives.

    And you’ll want the physicist to explain to those who loved you that they need not have faith; indeed, they should not have faith. Let them know that they can measure, that scientists have measured precisely the conservation of energy and found it accurate, verifiable and consistent across space and time. You can hope your family will examine the evidence and satisfy themselves that the science is sound and that they’ll be comforted to know your energy’s still around. According to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you’re just less orderly. Amen.

    -Aaron Freeman

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkShadow View Post
    The below is from an NPR interview of commentator Aaron Freeman:

    You want a physicist to speak at your funeral. You want the physicist to talk to your grieving family about the conservation of energy, so they will understand that your energy has not died. You want the physicist to remind your sobbing mother about the first law of thermodynamics; that no energy gets created in the universe, and none is destroyed. You want your mother to know that all your energy, every vibration, every Btu of heat, every wave of every particle that was her beloved child remains with her in this world. You want the physicist to tell your weeping father that amid energies of the cosmos, you gave as good as you got.

    And at one point you’d hope that the physicist would step down from the pulpit and walk to your brokenhearted spouse there in the pew and tell him that all the photons that ever bounced off your face, all the particles whose paths were interrupted by your smile, by the touch of your hair, hundreds of trillions of particles, have raced off like children, their ways forever changed by you. And as your widow rocks in the arms of a loving family, may the physicist let her know that all the photons that bounced from you were gathered in the particle detectors that are her eyes, that those photons created within her constellations of electromagnetically charged neurons whose energy will go on forever.

    And the physicist will remind the congregation of how much of all our energy is given off as heat. There may be a few fanning themselves with their programs as he says it. And he will tell them that the warmth that flowed through you in life is still here, still part of all that we are, even as we who mourn continue the heat of our own lives.

    And you’ll want the physicist to explain to those who loved you that they need not have faith; indeed, they should not have faith. Let them know that they can measure, that scientists have measured precisely the conservation of energy and found it accurate, verifiable and consistent across space and time. You can hope your family will examine the evidence and satisfy themselves that the science is sound and that they’ll be comforted to know your energy’s still around. According to the law of the conservation of energy, not a bit of you is gone; you’re just less orderly. Amen.

    -Aaron Freeman
    Great post DS.
    I've always felt this exact same thing without even reading or seeing this before. There's much more to our existence than any man even knows. Religion only seeks to explain the unknown with fantastical stories, but I really don't believe that any human really knows at this point and it's all subject to what you choose to believe and if you choose religion, then good on you. It's your prerogative (Bobby Brown reference) LMAO.

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    Yes, I don't even know who Aaron Freeman is, but that quote from him is brilliant. ;) I have been saying much the same thing, but not in connection to a funeral. LOL

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    Quote Originally Posted by Natural Lefty View Post
    Yes, I don't even know who Aaron Freeman is, but that quote from him is brilliant. ;) I have been saying much the same thing, but not in connection to a funeral. LOL
    I frequent several other messages boards, and someone had the nerve to say,

    "It's too bad he didn't believe in God."

    SMH....

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    As if God would reject Stephen Hawking for being a nonbeliever. SMH...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Natural Lefty View Post
    As if God would reject Stephen Hawking for being a nonbeliever. SMH...

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    LOL If God's the father, by the way, who's the mother?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Natural Lefty View Post
    LOL If God's the father, by the way, who's the mother?
    That would be Tonantzin.

  10. #10

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    Ah, the Aztec Mother Goddess. And to think, the bible is all about God and not a single mention of his wife in the whole book.

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