"I want you to share my excitement at the discoveries, past and present, which have revolutionized the way we think. From the Big Bang to black holes, from dark matter to a possible Big Crunch, our image of the universe today is full of strange sounding ideas, and remarkable truths. The story of how we arrived at this picture is the story of learning to understand what we see." .
-- STEPHEN HAWKING.
Growing up in high school, I have always had predispositions on thought-based issues such as the origin of life and the extent of our universe. I have been through many phases of confusion and disbelief as well as times of clarity and faith. So, following my instincts, I couldn't think of a better way to maybe gain some more intelligibility or at least gain a new perspective on the world and what surrounds us. My view of the universe until now had always been open to suggestion and I hadn't found a concrete theory of the undoubtedly fascinating realm of the physical universe. A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking not only provided me with insightful and graceful explanations of ideas such as theories of wormholes and time travel, or God's role in the universe, but it also allowed me to gain a new understanding of quite complicated and difficult topics such as quarks and quantum mechanics. Hawking describes many scientific principles including topics on astronomy, cosmology and general physics and shows how science has reached its conclusions.
The expanded tenth anniversary of A Brief History of Time begins with a warm foreword that simply allows Hawking to briefly make some statements regarding his success and ends with a immediately inspiring statement. Hawking states, " within a few years we should know whether we can believe that we live in a universe that is completely self-contained and with out beginning or end." (xi) This flows directly into the first chapter of the book, which Hawking titles "Our picture of the universe.