And I thought Stephen Hawkings was smart. Just goes to show you what I know! Hawkings is the British scientist touted as one of the smartest men on the planet. His 1988 international best-seller, "A Brief History of Time" helped to solidify his position as a leading researcher and modern-day thinker.
But last year, Hawkings inked another massive tome, "The Grand Design." In that highly intellectual writing, Hawkings debunks - through physics - the notion of God's creation of the universe.
Through his extensive research into quantum physics, Hawkings now believes that the biblical version of creation and heaven are a "fairy story" for those afraid of the dark.
Let me point out the painfully obvious. I am no biblical scholar. Not even a casual scholar. And our views of heaven - though clearly based on the Bible - tend to be somewhat different from person to person.
The way I envision heaven may vary greatly from others. But the underpinning of the biblical view of heaven is that through faith and acceptance in a greater being, there is the promise of a better life beyond the mere decades we spend here.
OK, so that's a somewhat condensed version of my definition and beliefs and, as I plainly said, it may vary from your beliefs.
But Hawkings - who is clearly a brilliant man - ignores the aspect of faith in his number-crunching revelation. He mistakenly believes all things can be explained on some flow-chart of physics. He can explain in minute detail the process of evolution that creates matter and the eon-changing alternations that brought us to this point.
But Hawkings can't accept that which he can't explain. For all of his brilliance, he displays a remarkable ignorance.
Hawkings said there is no heaven or afterlife.
In his first book, Hawkings said that the concept of a divine being was acceptable within his expanding scientific understanding of the universe. Now Hawkings, in his new book, says that new developments in physics debunk the concept of that supreme being.
I suspect we should respect the conclusions of this revered mind. But respect and agreement are two separate issues.
Hawkings is simply wrong. Simply because of our inability to "prove" something most certainly doesn't make it false. It takes faith. And belief. And the ability to recognize that there are some things that we cannot explain, yet we know to be true.
The press had a field day with the Hawkings revelation. They failed to fully report that this conclusion is simply the opinions of one man.
And in this case - despite his brilliance and accomplishments - Hawkings falls into the trap of trying to debunk what he does not understand.
He's not to first to have this failing. Just the most recent.