A Critique of Stephen Hawking
Professor Stephen Hawking, known for being a theoretical physicist, has appeared in many works of popular culture. Click here to see a list.
Popular culture or pop culture is the entirety of attitudes, ideas, images, perspectives, and other phenomena within the mainstream of a given culture, especially Western culture of the early to mid-20th century and the emerging global mainstream of the late 20th and early 21st century. Heavily influenced by mass media, this collection of ideas permeates the everyday lives of the society.
The most common pop culture categories are: entertainment (movies, music, television, games), sports, news (as in people/places in news), politics, fashion/clothes, technology, and slang. Popular culture has a way of influencing an individual's attitudes towards certain topics. People like popular culture; it is the common mythology of our time (just take The Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, etc.).
The goal of The Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series (click here) is to get philosophy out of the ivory tower by publishing books about smart popular culture for serious fans. With each volume in this series it seeks to teach philosophy using the themes, characters, and ideas from your favorite TV shows, comic books, movies, music, games, and more. Inspired by this I have created what I call The Pop Culture Files.
The intention with the Pop Culture Files is to bring the reader from pop culture to my teaching Meditation as an Art of Life. And since philosophy is such an important aspect of my teaching, the intention is also to bring pop culture to philosophy. Willie Sutton was a criminal mastermind, a genius of sorts. Once asked, “Willie, why do you rob banks?” he replied straightforwardly, “Because that´s where the money is.” Why write about pop culture? Because that´s where the people are. In these Pop Culture Files, I do therefore not in every instance attempt or purport to convey the intended meaning of the writers and artists responsible for one or the other of the pop culture topics I will be writing about. Rather, I will highlight the philosophical significance of them, seen in relation to my own teaching Meditation as an Art of Life. See The Pop Culture Files
But also my main concept of The Matrix Conspiracy can be said to be about philosophy and popular culture. I consider the New Age and Self-help industry to be a part of popular culture, and therefore also a mythology of our age. I have especially shown this in my article: Self-help and the Mythology of Authenticity
My favorite mythologist is Joseph Campbell. Read about him in my article: The Hero´s Journey
But have you ever wondered: if Stephen Hawking is such a popular figure and famous scientist, why is it we never have heard him mentioned in connection with the nobel prize?
Andy Buckley PhD in particle physics, visiting researcher at CERN, lecturer in physics, writes about Stephen Hawking:
The reason for that fame -- which I'm surprised that other answers have not mentioned -- is of course his disability. An able-bodied physicist who had done the work that Hawking did would be regarded very highly in their sub-field, but would probably be largely unknown even in the wider physics community. Please don't interpret this as attacking a disabled man: his achievements have been extraordinary given the limitations of his condition, but his fame has been enabled by it.
A Masters' level physics degree will typically not mention Hawking's work at all, except in informal references to Hawking radiation and maybe his singularity theorem work with Penrose. The technicalities of quantum field theory (QFT) in curved spacetime is pretty rarified stuff that has yet to significantly trickle into other branches of physics, and Hawking radiation is expected to be undetectable unless we happen to find quantum black holes which decay that way. There are plenty of other theoretical physicists who have done work of comparable or superior depth, and who are virtually unknown in the public eye, e.g. Roger Penrose, Edward Witten, and Michael Atiyah (and I'm sure there are more). And that's just restricting to "abstract" theorists on the borderline of physics & mathematics -- there are yet more unknown great theoretical physicists as one ventures closer to calculations of direct experimental relevance. The only ~recent physicist of remotely comparable fame was Feynman, who at least in the UK would be an unfamiliar name to most. Before that, Einstein.
Hawking is 1000 times the mathematical physicist that I am, and no-one argues that he isn't (or at least wasn't) a very significant figure in 20th century theoretical physics. But there were many of those, versus the public perception that he is one of the great physicists of all time -- I think that doesn't square with the perception among physicists. Although it is proof of nothing,Hawking's absence from the Fields Medal and Nobel prize lists does hint that maybe his influence has not been extraordinary.
In the last 10+ years, Hawking has been much more a celebrity than physicist, and to my mind one who is lamentably keen to make grandstanding & self-publicising statements for the press: see for example the recent event covered as Stephen Hawking warns artificial intelligence could end mankind. This involved no depth of insight or expertise (other than being a spoiler for the back-story of Terminator), and might even have been a PR stunt for Swiftkey, but was jumped on by the press as "genius professor makes genius prediction about future". This stuff may cement a public persona that he has cultivated and which he apparently enjoys, but in my experience makes physicists (certainly me) more likely to dismiss him as a has-been and dilettante. Which I think is sad, given the undeniable, if rarified, substance of his major academic work.
[And another example — in Dec 2016 I see a report about his recording a short video of vacuous pseudo-intellectual waffle about whether wealth makes you rich, for the marketing benefit of UBS Wealth and in exchange for a £70,000 fee. Hawking is clearly happy to venture far outside his expertise and shamelessly “leverage his brand” for material gain. Nothing illegal in knowingly promoting bullshit for cash, but it’s in stark contrast to the intellectual values that physicists tend to hold dear.]
The Grand Design is a popular-science book written by Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow.
Nietzsche is famous for having declared God is Dead! Nietzsche was a philosopher. Hawking seems to want to surpass this. In the introduction he presents a variety of philosophical questions, whereafter he says:
Traditionally these are questions for philosophy; but philosophy is dead. Philosophy has not kept up with modern development in science, particular physics…
I have written about biologists and computer programmers who want to be philosophers instead of the philosophers. Hawking is a physicist who wants to be a philosopher instead of the philosophers. And therefore he writes a book which only can be described as what he just has declared dead: philosophy. Like Deepak Chopra he would probably call his philosophy “speculative science.” But like Chopra it is bad philosophy.
The book examines the history of scientific knowledge about the universe and explains 11 dimension M-theory. The authors of the book point out that a Unified Field Theory (a theory, based on an early model of the universe, proposed by Albert Einstein and other physicists) may not exist.
It argues that invoking God is not necessary to explain the origins of the universe, and that the Big Bang is a consequence of the laws of physics alone. In response to criticism, Hawking has said; "One can't prove that God doesn't exist, but science makes God unnecessary." When pressed on his own religious views by the Channel 4 documentary Genius of Britain, he has clarified that he does not believe in a personal God.
In non-technical terms, M-theory presents an idea about the basic substance of the universe. So far no experimental evidence exists showing that M-theory is a description of the real world. Interest in this theory is mainly driven by mathematical elegance.
The multiverse (or meta-universe) is the hypothetical set of possible universes, including the universe in which we live. Together, these universes comprise everything that exists: the entirety of space, time, matter, energy, and the physical laws and constants that describe them.
The various universes within the multiverse are called "parallel universes", "other universes", or "alternative universes"
It is interesting that the two arch enemies Richard Dawkins and Deepak Chopra both are overall excited for the book, for two opposite reasons:
Richard Dawkins welcomed Hawking's position and said that "Darwinism kicked God out of biology but physics remained more uncertain. Hawking is now administering the coup de grace."
Best selling author Deepak Chopra in an interview with CNN said: "We have to congratulate Leonard and Stephen for finally, finally contributing to the climatic overthrow of the superstition of materialism. Because everything that we call matter comes from this domain which is invisible, which is beyond space and time. All religious experience is based on just three basic fundamental ideas...And nothing in the book invalidates any of these three ideas".
This paradox is just incredible funny, and it shows precisely the paradox: M-theory can be used to justify just about anything. Speaking at the string theory conference at University of Southern California in 1995, Edward Witten of the Institute for Advanced Study suggested that the five different versions of string theory might be describing the same thing seen from different perspectives. He proposed a unifying theory called "M-theory", in which the "M" is not specifically defined but is generally understood to stand for "membrane". The words "matrix", "master", "mother", "monster", "mystery" and "magic" have also been claimed.
Physicist Peter Woit, of Columbia University, has criticized the book: "One thing that is sure to generate sales for a book of this kind is to somehow drag in religion. The book's rather conventional claim that "God is unnecessary" for explaining physics and early universe cosmology has provided a lot of publicity for the book. I'm in favor of naturalism and leaving God out of physics as much as the next person, but if you're the sort who wants to go to battle in the science/religion wars, why you would choose to take up such a dubious weapon as M-theory mystifies me
Roger Penrose in the FT doubts that adequate understandings can come from this approach, and points out that "unlike quantum mechanics, M-theory enjoys no observational support whatsoever".
Gerald Schroeder in "The Big Bang Creation: God or the Laws of Nature" explains that "The Grand Design breaks the news, bitter to some, that … to create a universe from absolute nothing God is not necessary. All that is needed are the laws of nature. … [That is,] there can have been a big bang creation without the help of God, provided the laws of nature pre-date the universe. Our concept of time begins with the creation of the universe. Therefore if the laws of nature created the universe, these laws must have existed prior to time; that is the laws of nature would be outside of time. What we have then is totally non-physical laws, outside of time, creating a universe. Now that description might sound somewhat familiar. Very much like the biblical concept of God: not physical, outside of time, able to create a universe."
In Scientific American, John Horgan is not sympathetic to the book: "M-theory, theorists now realize, comes in an almost infinite number of versions, which "predict" an almost infinite number of possible universes. Critics call this the "Alice's Restaurant problem," a reference to the refrain of the old Arlo Guthrie folk song: "You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant." Of course, a theory that predicts everything really doesn't predict anything... The anthropic principle has always struck me as so dumb that I can't understand why anyone takes it seriously. It's cosmology's version of creationism. ... The physicist Tony Rothman, with whom I worked at Scientific American in the 1990s, liked to say that the anthropic principle in any form is completely ridiculous and hence should be called CRAP. ... Hawking is telling us that unconfirmable M-theory plus the anthropic tautology represents the end of that quest. If we believe him, the joke’s on us."
Stephen Hawking is apparently also in favour of the so-called Simulation Theory.
Simulated reality is the hypothesis that reality could be simulated — for example by computer simulation — to a degree indistinguishable from "true" reality. It could contain conscious minds which may or may not be fully aware that they are living inside a simulation. This is quite different from the current, technologically achievable concept of virtual reality. Virtual reality is easily distinguished from the experience of actuality; participants are never in doubt about the nature of what they experience. Simulated reality, by contrast, would be hard or impossible to separate from "true" reality. There has been much debate over this topic, ranging from philosophical discourse to practical applications in computing.
In the documentary Stephen Hawking´s Grand Design Hawking tries to explain what science can tell us about the meaning of life through physics, philosophical discussion, and Hawking's own unique scientific perception, he attempts to shed light on humanities most profound question Is There a Meaning of Life?
In the documentary Hawking says: “It might seem crazy to doubt that our concept of reality is true, but I think to find the meaning of life, we must ask the question: is there an independent reality or not?”
This part of the documentary could be called "Stephen Hawking raises an interesting question about observer-created reality in the first six seconds, followed by a narrator blathering on about the Matrix. First the brain-in-jar hypothesis, hereafter the simulation theory, and claiming: this is a genuine scientific hypothesis.” One might suppose that Hawking has approved the film.
The documentary ends with Descartes: we think therefore we are. The circle is closed: we´re back in black, back in philosophy, or rather: bad philosophy.
Yes precisely: we think all this, it is a theory. The title is therefore good: Stephen Hawking´s Grand Design. Hawking has replaced God and philosophy. Because that´s what it is. The theory of everything is something we think. As all theories of everything it ends in the thought distortion called Endless Split of the Thought.
The endless split of the thought implies the so-called polarization-problem. Reality seems to be an Otherness which determines and defines the world – that is: a negation-principle. Any concept, anything, is defined by its negation; that is to say: what it not is. A dream can for example only be defined from what it not is. It is for example not reality. How can you for example assert that life, or reality, is a dream, unless you know what a dream not is? What is the good? This you know if you know what the evil is. This logic seems to be impossible to get around.
The endless split of the thought has to do with the contradiction and split that are lying in, that the expulsion of the polar partners, as well as the negation as such, logical seen not is possible. All images imply the negation. But the more extreme you are thinking, the more you expel the negation, the larger are your contradiction and split.
You can see the logical problems manifested in a nightmare. When you in a nightmare are forced to confront the negations, but at the same time don't practise realizationwork and ethical practice in your awaken life, the nightmare will be characterized by contradiction and split. It is this doubleness, which creates the terror in the nightmare (see the entry on Doublethink).
The paths and the locations in a nightmare can imply two types of terror. The one terror lies in the paths. Each point on a path is determined by the negation of the point, which itself is determined by a third negation etc. The path constitutes in other words a series of points with no end. The points themselves are limited extents. This means, that there never will come a time, where you will get out over the limited points. On the path you become forced from point to point without ever being able to reach the unlimited, this endless, which would bring the path to finish. And yet the path is endless.
The second terror lies in the locations. When each location is determined by the negation of it, this means, that it might well be, that the location is divided from its negation, but nonetheless identical with it. This means, that each location is an endless number of locations, an abyss of worlds, countless, swarming, branching off to all sides in labyrinths, yet without that the worlds ever become mixed together.
You can see these terrors illustrated in the stories by the Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges. You can also see it in M.C. Escher´s works, or in the movies by David Lynch.
Nietzsche is letting his ”Zarathustra” preach the teaching of the ”eternal recurrence of the same”. This teaching contains in its poetic language some complicated considerations over the problem of time, over the perception of time and the understanding of life. But in all briefness it says, that any event repeats itself in all eternity – that is: without change and without any kind of increase. History is a circle, and there isn´t anything, which hasn´t been before, and which doesn´t come again. A nightmarish thought because each event then must be an endless number of events, an abyss of events, countless, swarming, branching to all sides in labyrinths, yet without that the events ever become mixed together. The crucifixion of Jesus Christ has happened an endless number of times before, is happening again right now in an endless number of worlds, and will happen again an endless number of times in the future.
The weak nihilists break down, when they realize the meaninglessness in the eternal recurrence, while the supermans on the contrary ”insatiable shouts Da Capo, not only to themselves, but to the whole play and acting”.
The problem of the endless split of the thought happens because of a lack of discrimination between the thinking and life itself; that is: the problem of magical thinking.
In fact it is the same type of split you can experience, when you are looking up towards the stars and become captured by this wonder over the infinity. How can it just go on and go on? But it is due to magical thinking, the lack of discrimination between the thought and reality itself. Something, which by nature is limitary, namely the thought, seeks to grasp the unlimited. Something, which by nature is expelling, seeks to grasp the all-inclusive. It results in a feeling of endless split, which again results in a lot of logical anomalies, paradoxes and problems. And it is these logical problems which lies underneath the thought distortions, for example Dichotom Thinking and Catastrophe-thinking, and therefore underneath a lot of inappropriate assumptions and rules of living.
It is precisely these logical anomalies, paradoxes and problems, which create Samsara´s wheel of eternal repeating up-cycles which is followed by eternal repeating down-cycles and vice versa (for example life and death, success and fiasco, joy and sorrow) – as well as the ignorance and the suffering when you are caught into this wheel, for example in the experience of nightmare and anxiety. All Jorge Luis Borges´ small stories are about these logical and philosophical problems. His stories are filled with mirrors, masks, infinite series and regresses, labyrinths, doppelgängers, time travel theories, other dimensions, parallel universes, solipsisms and dreams.
We have already examined the concept of endless series. But you must descriminate between the concept of endless series and the concept of endless regresses. An endless regress is an endless series, but an endless series is not necessarily an endless regress. You can very well operate with endless series without being involved in an endless regress, as for example when you talk about the cause of a road accident, which is enough explanation, though the chain of causes goes endlessly back in time. But if your thought is getting involved in such a chain of causes, then it ends as an endless split of the thought. This happens often in regression therapy, psychoanalysis, or self-analysis, where the discovery of the “cause” of, for example anxiety, doesn´t heal the anxiety, wherefore you are in need of new analysis, new discoveries of causes, and so on, in endless series, that are flowering in all kinds of directions. I have investigated this in my book A Portrait of a Lifeartist in the section about analysis.
Anyway, you can use the reference to the endless regress as an argument, when the understanding of a concept or a point of view – or the description of something – presupposes a final reason; that is: that the series of assumptions for the understanding have to end somewhere, but where the concept or the point of view nevertheless implicates, that the series continue endlessly.
In ancient India they meant that the Earth was a flat disc. When the children asked how the Earth could keep itself floating in the Universe, then the wise men said, that it was because it was carried by a giant elephant. When the children asked what the elephant was standing on, the answer was: on a giant turtle. And when the children then asked what the turtle was standing on, the wise men answered: now you are asking for more than can be answered.
This “explanation” on, how the Earth keeps itself floating, leads into an endless regress. It is no explanation at all, because it ends with a riddle that is as equally great, and which demands as much explanation as the riddle you started with.
Theories such as solipsism, Theories of everything and Time travel theories always end up in an Endless Split of the Thought.
Endless Split of the Thought implies the problem of the relation between thoughts and consciousness (simulation theory). In the following I will illustrate the problem seen in relation with Time Travel:
In Zen it is said about the process of awakening: ”In the beginning mountains are mountains, and woods are woods. Then mountains no longer are mountains and woods are no longer woods. Finally mountains are again mountains, woods are again woods.”
This refers to the three forms of states the wholeness can be in: sleep, dream, awake. When the wholeness is sleeping, mountains are mountains and woods are woods. This is the reality of the ordinary consciousness (the Ego-consciousness). The ordinary consciousness can sleep in three ways: 1) the dark sleep, which is the Ego´s deep nightly sleep; 2) the grey sleep, which is the Ego´s nightly dreams and other dreams; 3) the light sleep, where the Ego is awake.
The three forms of states the wholeness can be in, can also be described as the personal time, the collective time and the universal time. Furthermore it can be described as the personal history, the collective history and the universal history. Time and history constitute the structure under your thinking.
This structure is also called the astral plane, or the astral world. It is a plane of existence postulated both by classical (particular neo-Platonic), medieval, oriental and esoteric philosophies and mystery religions. It is the world of the planetary spheres, crossed by the soul in its astral body, either through the dream state, or on the way to being born and after death, and generally said to be populated by angels, demons, spirits or other immaterial beings.
The astral plane is connected with the so-called Akashic records. The Akashic records are a compendium of mystical knowledge encoded in a non-physical plane of existence: the astral plane. These records are described as containing all knowledge of human experience and the history of the cosmos. They are holding a record of all events, actions, thoughts and feelings that have ever occurred or will ever occur.
The Akasha is an “astral light” containing occult records, which spiritual beings can perceive by their “astral senses” and “astral bodies”. Clairvoyance, spiritual insight, prophecy and many other metaphysical and religious notions are made possible by tapping into the Akashic reacords. They are metaphorically described as a library. They can be accessed through astral projection, meditation, near-death experience, lucid dreaming, or other means.
The Akashic records are the wholeness, and as mentioned: the wholeness can be in three states of spiritual awakening - sleep, dream, awake – which again can be described as the personal, collective and universal time (or history).
Parallel universes, and other dimensions, only exist on an astral plane. I therefore accept the theory of Dimension UFOs. But there are also dangers connected with the astral plane such as for example spiritual crises (see my articles Spiritual Crises as the Cause of Paranormal Phenomena and Paranormal Phenomena Seen in Connection with Spiritual Practice). And the problem of consciousness is the same on the astral plane as on the normal plane. I will explain this problem below.
The Buddhist philosopher Nagarjuna said, that the Now´s lawfulness around the function of a universal negationpower, is due to, that energy works as streams and dividings within a superior wholeness. And because the wholeness is a reality, each part will always fit into a correspondent part. This means, that each part only can be understood in relation to its negation; that is: what the part not is. Firstly this implies, that each part comes to appear as part of a polarization-pair, or a pair of opposites – like in the teaching of Yin and Yang. In that way Nagarjuna´s philosophy advocates a kind of dualism if we shall use our thinking and language in an unambiguous way. Secondly it implies, that each part only can be understood in relation to everything else; that is: in relation to the wholeness.
So the more you, through the Ego´s evaluations, isolate these parts from each other, the more the abandoned parts will work stronger and stronger on their polar partners. Therefore these polar partners, in their extremes, finally will switch over in the opposite extreme. Another aspect of this lawfulness, or another way to describe this lawfulness is: energy returns to its starting point. This is also called compensatory karma, and the lawfulness works as wave movements and pendulum movements.
And since everything in this way only work correlative, yes, then Nagarjuna claimed, that we actually can´t say anything about the wholeness, only dualistic about the parts. Therefore he called the wholeness the Emptiness (´sûnyatâ) – a teaching, which had one quite determinate purpose: the neutralization of all the dogmas, theories and viewpoints, which ignorance has created.
The concept of emptiness refers to the intuitive experience of reality, that all inner and outer phenomena are devoid of independent existence and form of being. What they can be said to be, they can only be said to be in relation to something else, a complementary thing and vice versa. In that way they are nothing by virtue of themselves, and therefore nothing by virtue of something else either, etc. They are insubstantial, or as Nagarjuna calls it: codependent originated (everything that exists does so dependently on other things) (pratityasamutpanna). In absolute sense nothing exists independently, eternally or unchangeable. All existence is impermanent; everything that exists is transitory, lasting only a moment.
But this doesn´t mean, that Nagarjuna is an advocate of the absolute non-existence of things. Non-existence means namely neither negation nor opposition to existence. Therefore also non-existence is, as everything else, correlative. Codependent origination is what Nagarjuna calls emptiness. The creation of things, images and concepts ends in the emptiness. And by trying to reveal the unreality of the relative, conventional world, you can reach the absolute reality, which is lying in this emptiness. The emptiness is in that way the inexpressible (Nirvana). Because Nirvana is lying in the revelation of the unreality (Samsara), then Nirvana and Samsara is not at all different.
Nagarjuna´s teaching is in that way a kind of Dream Yoga.
What Nagarjuna´s teaching also tells us is that if we should use thoughts and language in an unambiguous way, it is necessary to advocate a kind of epistemological, or gnoseological dualism. In this dualism critical thinking is essential.
So if we should describe a human being in an unambiguous way, then Nagarjuna´s argumentation leads to the thought, that human beings have two complementary aspects: an energy aspect and a consciousness aspect. Seen from the energy aspect lawfulness rules: your body is subject to the physical laws of nature, your psychic system is subject to the lawfulness of the energy fields and of the energy transformations. The energy aspect is the area of compensatory karma; it is the area of experiences, the area of the personal and collective images of time, which work in sequences in past and future, and therefore in absence of awareness, or absence of consciousness. And that also means that it in itself is without realization.
The problem with time travel is then of course, that it is only in the energy aspect of humans you can talk about time travel (or the simulation theory). The same problem is happening when you on the astral plane try to go back or forth in time, you would then lose more and more consciousness. I will return to this problem below.
Seen from the consciousness aspect, then a human being seems to be akin to the wholeness, to be transcendent in relation to these lawfulnesses. The consciousness is the area of progressive karma, spiritual development, or spiritual growth; it is the area of realization, the area of the universal images of time, which work in synchronism with the Now. The Now seems to be a quality of awareness, and therefore also of consciousness and wholeness. Realization has to do with the three states the wholeness can be in: sleep, dream, awake. So it is only here you can talk about the spiritual insights of the great mystics. It is only here you can talk about genuine mystical experiences; that is: experiences, which are followed by realization. It is only here you can talk about spiritual growth (also see my article What is Karma?).
In time travel theories and in the simulation theory everything is reduced to the energy aspect, though. It is no coincidence when I say, that the thought about time travel is as old as the human thought, and that this has been shown in fiction, or, if in science, only as a theory. My main arguments against the possibility of time travel is namely that all the different theories of time travel (as well as the simulation theory) confuse thought with reality; that their arguments are based on magical thinking, even if they are materialists. The theory of time travel and the simulation theory are often supported by materialists (physicists), but they are ending up in subjectivism.
The past and the future, which theories of time travel are talking about, are the past and the future of the thought; that is: psychological time, not physical time. Or, said in another way: they are talking about subjective time, not objective time. So, when you are talking about traveling back to the past, you are talking about traveling back into the imageworld of what has been. And when you are talking about traveling into the future, you are talking about traveling into the imageworld of what could be. Said shortly: when you are talking about traveling in time, you are talking about traveling back or forth in the images of time, whether it is the personal or the collective images of time. You are not talking about traveling in reality. When talking about time traveling in reality you are confusing the thought (images) with reality.
If you should time travel in reality, this would mean, that you should bring reality with you, either back in time, or forwards in time. And with reality we are talking about the wholeness, everything. And with reality and wholeness I also mean the now and therefore consciousness. You would also have to bring the now, and the consciousness, either back in time, or forwards in time. And what becomes of the reality and the now you have left? And all the people and their consciousnesses? And the whole of the universe? All this would now either be the future or the past. That would mean that time travel had to change everything in the wholeness, which then again mean, you had to change everything in an infinitely number of times. In that way a time travel theory would have to explain how everything had to be changed infinitely. A time travel theory had to involve a theory of everything, and a theory of everything is not possible as Niels Bohr claims. Because the explanation would never end.
This is precisely the same problem with the simulation theory. It would have to change everything in the wholeness, which again means that it would have to change everything in an infinitely number of times. In that way the simulation theory would have to explain how everything could be changed infinitely. This explanation would neither come to any end.
If you traveled back and forth in time, then the consciousness of course should follow you, and therefore reality, and therefore the now, and therefore the wholeness, and therefore infinity. That would mean that the now you had left would have to change into, either the future or the past. Everything you had left therefore had be destroyed an endless number of times and when you arrive in either the past or the future everything should be created an endless number of times.
And if you should meet yourself, either as young (in the past) or old (in the future), who has the consciousness? Who is experiencing reality?
You can´t talk about consciousness in the energy aspect of Man. You can´t talk about consciousness (and therefore the now/reality/wholeness) in the same area as time travel. Nor can you in relation with M-theory or simulation theory. You end in an endless split of the thought.
Hawking is in view only in favour of this theory because he thinks it the closest to his his own favorite science: physics (read more in my entry on Simulation Theory).
The unbelievable size of the observable universe alone indicates it must be an illusion or simulation. It appears Stephen Hawking, Elon Musk, Neil DeGgasse Tyson think so as well; that is: they think so.
Related in The Matrix Dictionary:
The Matrix Conspiracy Updates
The Matrix Conspiracy Fascism
Anti-intellectualism and Anti-science
Bridge between Science and Spirituality
The Matrix Conspiracy
The Fascism of Theosophy
A Critique of Ken Wilber and His Integral Method
A Critique of Richard Dawkins and the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI)
Time Travel and the Fascism of the WingMakers Project
A Critique of the Human Design System
The New Feminism and the Philosophy of Women´s Magazines
The Matrix Dictionary