In today's Huffington Post, Seth Shostak takes a look at the debate between science and religion over how the universe was built.
The split between religion and science is relatively new. Isaac Newton, who first worked out the laws by which gravity held the planets and even the stars in their traces, was sufficiently impressed by the scale and regularity of the universe to ascribe it all to God.You can read the entire article here.
Physicist Stephen Hawking, who has authored a new book on cosmology (The Grand Design), now says that Newton underestimated his own discoveries. The law of gravity is like "love" to the Beatles: it's all you need. With gravity in place, the cosmos-as-we-know-it was just a matter of hanging out for a few billion years.
However, this approach inevitably begs the question, "who designed gravity?" Isn't it remarkable that this gentle force seems so perfectly suited to the job of assembling a grand and habitable universe?