Physical limitations didn't limit Stephen Hawking's mind or spirit

by Fredrick Graves March 17, 2018, 1:16
Physical limitations didn't limit Stephen Hawking's mind or spirit

Hawking is the Dennis Stanton Avery and Sally Tsui Wong-Avery Director of Research in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge.

While revered professionally, many criticized his "fractious ego" and claimed he was terribly sexist and condescending toward women.

Later, answering a question from the audience, Professor Hawking said he had learnt to appreciate what he had in his life. In the episode, called "Descent, Part 1" Hawking plays poker with Starship Enterprise Lieutenant Commander Data, as well as some other brilliant minds in physics: Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton. However, to the astonishment of his doctors and others everywhere, Hawking lived a full life. He married his college sweetheart with whom he had three children, he embarked on a career that he was immensely passionate about and he aimed toward leaving the world better than he found it. Cosmology gained because he lived over half a century longer.

"It's also important not to become angry, no matter how hard life may seem because you can lose all hope if you can't laugh at yourself and life in general". "So, if you feel you are in a black hole, don't give up, there is a way out".

"He once said: 'It would not be much of a universe if it wasn't home to the people you love.' We will miss him for ever".

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Redmayne says: "We have lost a truly lovely mind, an astonishing scientist and the funniest man I have ever had the pleasure to meet". One day in February of 1992 (see note at bottom), I was walking with Gerry Brown, a nuclear theorist who also visited Caltech each year in the Spring, together with Hans Bethe, Brown's collaborator on the theory of binary neutron stars, along the lovely paths in Arcadia's Arboretum.

I observe a lot on a day-to-day basis and sometimes I hear people complain about things that are relatively insignificant.

"Professor Hawking did a huge amount to raise awareness of motor neurone disease (MND), through so many years in the public eye, and this legacy continues today". The quote itself struck me as relevant for these trying and times but the effort I went through to validate the origin of the quote is apropos. It was also a time when the Nazis were killing handicapped people. In a world where manners and principles are all but gone, we lost someone who was teaching our kids through his life, words and actions what it means to truly live and make a mark.

"In a way, we thought that he would go on forever. Only the Father knows". One can't say that he didn't lead a full life, no matter that the ALS did limit him physically.

Hawking himself believed that it was his sense of humour and his commitment to his work that had helped him survive ALS, as he had revealed during an interview with The Washington Post in 2016.


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