Scientia et Fides 9 (1):47-61 (2021)

Alfred Driessen
University of Twente
With his bestselling publication, A Brief History of Time, Stephen Hawking introduced in 1988 a new genre by connecting modern science with the question of the existence of God. In the posthumous publication Brief Answers to the Big Questions, he continues with his quest for the ultimate truth. The current study presents a philosophical analysis of this search in terms of the classical philosophy of Aristotle and Aquinas. Causality is the central concept employed by Hawking. However, its meaning, in the modern scientific and philosophical literature, is limited to temporal causality in contrast to the view of classical philosophy. Only the latter one accepts causality from outside space and time, with other words, a reality transcending the material world. In a quote presented in the discussion, Hawking defines himself as an atheist. After a careful reading of his writings, however, doubts arise about his unbelief.
Keywords Hawking, truth, creator, causality, existence of God, Aquinas, Aristotle
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.12775/setf.2021.002
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

 PhilArchive page | Other versions
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding.David Hume - 1955 - In Steven M. Cahn (ed.), Exploring Philosophy: An Introductory Anthology. Oxford University Press. pp. 112.
‘What Place, Then, for a Creator?': Hawking on God and Creation.William Lane Craig - 1990 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 41 (4):473-491.

View all 14 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Death of Philosophy: A Response to Stephen Hawking.Callum D. Scott - 2012 - South African Journal of Philosophy 31 (2):385-404.
A Thomistic Metaphysics of Creation.Gaven Kerr - 2012 - Religious Studies 48 (3):337-356.
The Hawking Information Loss Paradox: The Anatomy of a Controversy.Gordon Belot, John Earman & Laura Ruetsche - 1999 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 50 (2):189-229.
Let's Do Black Holes and Time Warps Again: The Future of Spacetime. [REVIEW]Chris Smeenk - 2003 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 34 (4):680-683.


Added to PP index

Total views
32 ( #332,853 of 2,439,309 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
32 ( #23,584 of 2,439,309 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes