Atoms and Eden: Conversations on Religion and Science

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Oxford University Press, Nov 1, 2010 - Religion - 320 pages
2 Reviews
Here is an unprecedented collection of twenty freewheeling and revealing interviews with major players in the ongoing--and increasingly heated--debate about the relationship between religion and science. These lively conversations cover the most important and interesting topics imaginable: the Big Bang, the origins of life, the nature of consciousness, the foundations of religion, the meaning of God, and much more. In Atoms and Eden, Peabody Award-winning journalist Steve Paulson explores these topics with some of the most prominent public intellectuals of our time, including Richard Dawkins, Karen Armstrong, E. O. Wilson, Sam Harris, Elaine Pagels, Francis Collins, Daniel Dennett, Jane Goodall, Paul Davies, and Steven Weinberg. The interviewees include Christians, Buddhists, Jews, and Muslims, as well as agnostics, atheists, and other scholars who hold perspectives that are hard to categorize. Paulson's interviews sweep across a broad range of scientific disciplines--evolutionary biology, quantum physics, cosmology, and neuroscience--and also explore key issues in theology, religious history, and what William James called ''the varieties of religious experience.'' Collectively, these engaging dialogues cover the major issues that have often pitted science against religion--from the origins of the universe to debates about God, Darwin, the nature of reality, and the limits of human reason. These are complex, intellectually rich discussions, presented in an accessible and engaging manner. Most of these interviews were originally published as individual cover stories for Salon.com, where they generated a huge reader response. Public Radio's "To the Best of Our Knowledge" will present a major companion series on related topics this fall. A feast of ideas and competing perspectives, this volume will appeal to scientists, spiritual seekers, and the intellectually curious.
 

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User Review  - madcurrin - LibraryThing

This is the all-in-one package that you've always been looking for: a quick, intelligent snapshot of some very different perspectives about spirituality and scientific evidence. Each chapter features ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DubiousDisciple - LibraryThing

If you really want to start an argument, ask a room full of physicists this question: Are the laws of physics fine-tuned to support life? This question and others are debated in Steve Paulson’s ... Read full review

Contents

Introduction
1
E O Wilson
19
Francis Collins
31
Sam Harris
45
Karen Armstrong
59
Andrew Newberg
73
John Haught
83
Richard Dawkins
99
Ken Wilber
173
Robert Wright
187
Elaine Pagels
201
Nidhal Guessoum
215
Rebecca Goldstein and Steven Pinker
229
Paul Davies
245
Steven Weinberg
259
Stuart Kauffman
273

Simon Conway Morris
115
Ronald Numbers
131
Alan Wallace
145
Daniel Dennett
159
Jane Goodall
285
Epilogue
301
Acknowledgments
311
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Steve Paulson is Executive Producer of Wisconsin Public Radio's nationally syndicated radio program "To the Best of Our Knowledge." He is a recipient of the Templeton-Cambridge Journalism Fellowship in Science and Religion. He has written for Salon, Slate, and other publications, and has produced feature stories for NPR's "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered."

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