- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 6, 2010

What part of “theoretical physicist” does Bruce L. Gordon not understand (“Hawking irrational arguments,” Opinion, Monday)? Famed physicist Stephen Hawking nowhere claims to have the final answer to the origin of the universe. Instead, Mr. Hawking offers theories based on his highly regarded knowledge of physics. Though not easy for the layman to follow, Mr. Hawking’s admittedly speculative theories at least have the merit of being based on independently verified physical principles and mathematical constructs subject to examination.

Not so for Mr. Gordon’s assumption that positing a “transcendent” God can provide a causal explanation for the universe. This merely pushes him one step further from answering the “first cause” question because who, then, created God? Mr. Gordon apparently assumes no one created God, who presumably exists eternally and doesn’t require a cause.

The problem is that such a position leaves Mr. Gordon with no logical grounds to deny that the universe can exist eternally and doesn’t require a cause because his argument assumes the very thing it is attempting to refute - that something can exist without a cause. It is a rather basic logical fallacy and one unlikely to come from Stephen Hawking.

MICHAEL CRAWFORD

Great Falls, Va.