12:13pm

Mon May 16, 2011
The Two-Way

Stephen Hawking: Heaven Is 'A Fairy Story'

Last September, physicist Stephen Hawking was in the news for making the case that no God was needed to create the universe.

Now, he's told The Guardian that:

"I regard the brain as a computer which will stop working when its components fail. There is no heaven or afterlife for broken down computers; that is a fairy story for people afraid of the dark."

And:

"In the interview, Hawking rejected the notion of life beyond death and emphasized the need to fulfil our potential on Earth by making good use of our lives. In answer to a question on how we should live, he said, simply: 'We should seek the greatest value of our action.' "

During the debate over Hawking's comments last year, Marcelo Gleiser at NPR's 13.7 blog suggested that "maybe Hawking should leave God alone," in part because since "we don't have instruments capable of measuring all of Nature, we cannot ever be certain that we have a final theory."

Hawking is probably best known for his best-seller A Brief History of Time. Copyright 2011 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.