The Big Question Is: Does the Cosmos Leave Space for God?
On the street there’s a mixture of confusion and assumption. Out there, it is mostly assumed that with every scientific breakthrough, God is more and more redundant. Yet instinctively, the vast majority of people in the world feel “there must be something”. Well, is there? What’s the evidence? That’s the territory of The God Question series. Atheists – and especially the group now called the New Atheists – are naturally certain about God. In this programme, Richard Dawkins claims that science has replaced religion as a way of answering the deep questions of life. Oxford University chemistry professor Peter Atkins puts it more directly: “God is a lie.” Fighting for God, Oxford professor of mathematics and philosopher of science John Lennox argues that “‘God or science’ is a false alternative.”
Viewers will be fascinated by the gladiatorial punch and counter punch in the programme but what is the real evidence and where does it point? God’s existence can never be proved but, on the other hand, can we draw a conclusion from the balance of probability? We begin to test this possibility with a journey into the Cosmos, where we ask ‘does it leave space for God’? According to Nobel Prize winner Steven Weinberg, science is “as certain as anything” that the universe began with the phenomenon nicknamed “The Big Bang”. BUT:
- Where did it come from and how could order emerge from the chaos of an explosion?
- How did the elements crucial for life form in the first three minutes and why was that precise timing so very important for us?
- How did stars and planets form from gas and dust left over from the big bang?
- Why is the universe governed by laws that are so predictable and consistent that they can be described by mathematics?
- What is meant by fine tuning and why is it so crucial for life on earth?
It’s hard to see more than two interpretations of the facts. Either there is a mind behind the universe or its – and our - existence is the result of cosmic good fortune. But which one is true? In an open-ended way, that’s what The Cosmos and The God Question will help you explore.
To help viewers determine a contributor's stance on the topics discussed within The God Question, we have introduced a series-wide colour coding scheme; Theists, Atheists and Neutral Contributors.