By Michael Welker
This publication files the convention on The technological know-how and faith discussion: previous and Future, held on the college of Heidelberg, Germany, October 25-29, 2012. The convention venerated the 100th anniversary of the delivery of Sir John Templeton and the 25th anniversary of the institution of the toilet Templeton origin. It introduced jointly approximately 60 lively individuals, them all famous students from many nations and plenty of educational fields. such a lot of them were engaged within the Science and faith discussion for the final or 3 a long time. This publication stories on multi-year foreign and interdisciplinary study tasks at best associations. The contributions begin with displays by means of Hans Joas, Martin Nowak and John Polkinghorne and variety from Astronomy, arithmetic, Physics and Biology to Philosophical Theology and spiritual Ethics. particular subject matters of the discussion among technological know-how and faith also are handled, resembling Eschatology and Anthropology; Cosmology, Creation, and Redemption; Evolutionary Biology and the Spirit; and The position of concept Experiments in technology and Theology.
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But in Sir John’s conception the reverse was true as well. There are insights in the domain theology that lead us to look through the lens of sciences in ways that we otherwise would not. These are thus mutually informing disciplines, such that it is not just a one-way flow of information from science to theology. How has all of this manifested itself in the funding of the Templeton Foundation? Over the years our funding into the secondary areas has grown; in the past five years we have provided one third of our funding into these “secondary” areas: Character, Freedom and Free Enterprise and so on, with the reminder within Humility in Theology.
Why? He formulated the doctrine of Advaita, which refers to the identity of the Atman (“self ” or “spirit”) and the Brahman (the “Supreme” or “Ultimate Reality,” “Infinite Mind” that is the origin and support of the phenomenal universe, the “Godhead” or “Absolute”, the “Divine Ground of All Being”). In Shankara’s philosophy, we find best articulated the perennial formula that Atman = Brahman (see Aldous Huxley’s classic, The Perennial Philosophy). Each of our individual souls (Atman) is like a grain of sand.
In our time, a magisterial book like Robert Bellah’s “Religion in Human Evolution”, published in 2011 (the research of which was, I am happy to add, generously supported by the Templeton Foundation, as was the Axial Age volume edited by Bellah and myself) is a prototypical example for the empirical fruitfulness of such research – how far we have come beyond Hume – and of the possibilities for a religious faith that takes scientific innovation not as a threat, but as an inspiration for its own renewal.