"There is no goal better than this one: to know as you lie on your deathbed that you lived your true life, and you did whatever made you happy." --Steve ChandlerI gather that Mr. Chandler's motto is "Do whatever makes you happy." So much for moral guidance. Do what makes you happy - tell the truth or lie, be faithful or betray, be gentle or violent, obey the law or break it, be kind or hurtful, be productive or parasitic. Whatever makes you happy, so you can congratulate yourself on your deathbed that you "lived your true life."
There is a positive to this quote. It is refreshingly honest about the ultimate selfishness of atheistic thought. Many atheists presume that because they have a moral conscience and are pleased to do things that are good, that means atheism is not antithetical to morality. All it means is that they are selfishly pursuing their own pleasures - and in some cases that pleasure is found in doing "good."
I read this yesterday in an article by Clara Moskowitz, entitled "8 Shocking Things We Learned From Stephen Hawking's Book" in LiveScience.com.
The past is possibility:How interesting an idea from people who declare in the same book that everything in the universe came to be organized as it is through a determinism based on simple physical laws!
According to Hawking and Mlodinow, one consequence of the theory of quantum mechanics is that events in the past that were not directly observed did not happen in a definite way. Instead they happened in all possible ways. This is related to the probabilistic nature of matter and energy revealed by quantum mechanics: Unless forced to choose a particular state by direct interference from an outside observation, things will hover in a state of uncertainty.
For example, if all we know is that a particle traveled from point A to point B, then it is not true that the particle took a definite path and we just don't know what it is. Rather, that particle simultaneously took every possible path connecting the two points.
The authors sum up: "No matter how thorough our observation of the present, the (unobserved) past, like the future, is indefinite and exists only as a spectrum of possibilities."
How would they know this about such complex events in the "unobserved past?" Not only is creation the ULTIMATE in unobserved events (by humans), but it is also completely unknown in the present. Nobody has ever seen life spring from non-life. Nobody has ever seen matter spring from nothing. Nobody has ever witnessed macro evolution. But Hawking is sure they happened by purely natural means.
Of course, what they are really saying is that EVERYTHING is possible in the unobserved past - EXCEPT for SUPERNATURAL THINGS - because they don't believe in supernatural things. According to them - the organization of the universe and the origin of life have infinite possible NATURAL antecedents that cannot be known for sure because they were unobserved. From their atheistic perspective, an infinite number of natural antecedents must include the correct formula.
Hawking's problem is that the origin of the universe WAS observed and is described in detail to us by someone who was there.