I apologize if I misrepresented the motivations or general worldview of atheists.
It is hardly relevant to the matter, however, if you are willing to take an objective look at the evidence.
My quote of Einstein is a matter of public record at this point. It is readily available to anyone who wants to read it.
I know Wikipedia is not the most reliable, but look at their sources if it is not enough to convince you.
"The Theory of Relativity has been confirmed numerous times. Those seeking to refute it are on the road to futility. Exceptions to the Law of Relativity have been discussed in the literature, but it is still considered to be the foundation of physics along with electromagnetism, mechanics, and gravity.
Einstein recognized that his biggest mistake was the cosmological constant, a fudge factor he introduced to explain the expansion of the universe. When presented with the idea of quantum physics, he replied, 'God doesn't play with dice.' "
My quote of Hawkins is equally valid. It came from HIS book "A Brief History of Time."
I'll show you my evidence one more time. Keep in mind that it will only be as valid in your mind as science, logic, and philosophy. If you have no stomach for these things then please do not waste your time reading this.
Einstein's GTR has been proven accurate to 9 decimal places.
The GTR requires that there be an origin to the universe - a start.
Einstein himself was so biased against this idea, that he was willing to change his formula to eliminate the origin of the universe.
That was quickly detected(he divided by 0).
He made his life's ambition from that point on to 'know the mind of God' through science.
On top of the GTR's argument for the Big Bang(origin of the universe), it is also impossible that there WASN'T a start to the universe.
It is impossible to have an infinite number of finite things. Time is finite. So is space. Therefore it is impossible that time is infinite.
This should be obvious when you think about it. Saying the universe is infinite is saying there was an infinite number of days before today. That means we never would have gotten to today because you cannot traverse infinity.
Additionally the First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics argue that if the universe WERE infinite, there would be no usable energy left in the universe. Simply put, there would be no stars, no heat, no light, no form of energy that is usable by nature or man.
Because of the above arguments, as well as the presence of Cosmic Background Radiation and great galaxy seeds consistent with the theory of the big bang, we can logically conclude beyond reasonable doubt that the universe started with a big bang.
Now that big bang - being the start of the universe - is also the start of all of the natural laws. The Law of Causality, the laws of physics, the limitations of space and time, etc.
Anything before the bang is not subject to these laws and is therefore infinite.
Again, the Law of Causality will tell us that the Big Bang - which is subject to the laws of nature - needs a cause.
That cause would be, by definition, supernatural. It could not have come from the natural world as it was what CREATED the natural world.
This cause would also have to be conscious and have chosen to create the world. Otherwise you are left with a what caused it to cause the universe conundrum.
So if we accept the Law of Causality as valid, the following argument is valid.
Everything in the universe has a cause.
The Big Bang is the start of the universe.
The Big Bang had a cause.
As the agnostic Astronomer and Cosmologist Robert Jastrow put it
"There is a kind of religion in science... every effect must have its cause, there is no First Cause... This religious faith of the scientist is violated by the discovery that the world had a beginning under conditions in which the known laws of physics are not valid, and as a product of forces or circumstances we cannot discover. When that happens, the scientist has lost control. If he really examined the implications, he would be traumatized. As usual when faced with this trauma, the mind reacts by ignoring the implications - in science this is known as "refusing to speculate" - or trivializing the origin of the world by calling it the Big Bang, as if the Universe were a firecracker."
all of this is based on sound logic, good, verified, science, and well established principals of nature.
Now, feel free to continue to insult me and my methods, but know that this is all very well-founded stuff. If you're going to say it's wrong, then the burden of evidence is now on you to overturn the well-established facts and arguments I have put forth.