Stephen Hawking admits his greatest blunder was...
Not his atheism, apparently.
World renowned physicist Stephen Hawking described what he felt was his biggest mistake in life before an audience gathered at the Cedars-Sinai Regenerative Medicine Institute. So what was Stephen Hawking's biggest blunder?
It was none of those things, according to Hawking. Instead, following a tour of the hospital he told people, who gathered to hear him speak, that his greatest blunder was subscribing to a long-held belief about black holes.
Hawking explained that he once made the mistake of believing that once something fell into a black hole, it was lost forever and nothing could escape. However, his work has demonstrated that black holes actually emit radiation. That newly discovered radiation has been dubbed Hawking radiation in his honor.
Hawking spoke about the work researchers were doing at the microscopic level, compared it to research that astronomers and physicists have been doing in trying to understand the universe.
He talked about the attempt to understand everything there is in the universe, from the largest structures to the tiniest particles.
"To understand the universe at the deepest level, we have to understand why is there something rather than nothing," Hawking said was a great question of the age.
"Why do we exist? Why this particular set of laws, and not some other? I believe the answers to all of these things is M-theory," Hawking said.
M-theory is an all-encompassing unifying theory that so far remains elusive. It is a theoretical construct that if completed would explain all of the how's in the universe. Hawking said that solving M-series would also help humanity to understand its place.
Perhaps ironically, therein lies Hawking's greatest blunder. He has spent his entire life trying to understand where humanity fits in the universe. Of course it isn't M-theory we need for this understanding because most of us already know something much better that explains everything we need to know...
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