A Briefer History of Time – Stephen Hawking

14th March 2018 notes the demise of a legend superman (literally!), Stephen Hawking, an extraordinary Theoretical Physicist and a brilliant Cosmologist. This man is an inspiration to billions and who knows to extraterrestrial life too! This post is dedicated to one of his best writings – A Briefer History of Time.

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The great genius Stephen Hawking, the author of the scintillating book “A Briefer History of a Time ” addresses with great precision, the nature of space and time, god’s role in creation and the past and future of the universe. To try to answer some of the questions he equates the theory of an infinite tower of tortoises supporting the flat earth, with the theory of Super strings. Both these theories he says have no observational evidence. The tortoise theory simply fails as otherwise people would have disappeared in Bermuda Triangle.

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The earliest attempts to explain universe involved the idea that events and natural phenomenon were controlled by spirits with human emotions. Gradually it was noticed that there were regularities; sun rising in east and setting in the west and they were still referred to as gods who obeyed strict laws with exception of stories that the sun stopped moving for Jashua.

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We have similar references in “Geeta” where Lord Krishna was sermonising Arjun his disciple about the philosophical importance of the scripture. In this monologue, there is also a reference about Lord Krishna stopping the setting of the sun to ensure Arjun’s victory. This led Laplace to postulate that there would be a set of laws that would determine the evolution of the universe presently given its configuration at any one time.

Stephen Hawking in the book also addressed subjects like the nature of time and space and the role of god in creation. Einstein once asked “How much choice did god have in constructing the Universe? If one proposes a boundary less Universe, then god had no freedom to choose initial conditions, but he would still have the freedom to choose the laws that Universe obeyed”.  The book is filled with such mind boggling questions to which you may find answers if you read carefully.

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This book demands high level of concentration and may require multiple reads for better understanding but once understood, it leaves the reader enlightened. It may not be an enjoyable read for someone who dislikes the intricacies of Physics or Philosophy. But for a science buff like me, it is a dream come true.

Review Written By: Aishwarya Kaul

A typical engineer, worked in a data analytics company for a year and currently work for a consulting firm, hence she pays very little attention to her passions. But one odd day realization struck her and she started chasing her favorite things to do a year ago-designing, music and writing!

She is a latecomer in the land of GoT but she is hooked. She usually while away free time looking at quick two-minute recipes (Yes! She is a foodie!), romcoms, listening to her favorite tunes or writing just about anything. Read her reviews for an unbiased and a little sarcastic opinion on a number of books/apps/foods etc.

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