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Global Perspectives on Science and Spirituality

Templeton Press, 2009

RRP $48.95 

Reviewed by Pastor Jenny Coombes of Murgon, previously a high school science teacher, now exploring the area of spirituality and excited by possibilities. 

 IMAGINE WALKING around a crowded room, filled with a very diverse group of people and dropping in on their conversations.

Some you might feel an instant rapport with, and be able to participate fully in what was being exchanged – others you might discover a little outside your area of knowledge and so harder to grasp, but the topics are tantalisingly interesting so you stay and listen a while.

This is how this book struck me. 

 The authors of each short article were instructed “to avoid compounding disciplinary suspicion with obscure or jargon-laden prose”, (p.10) thereby making it suitable for “interested lay readers and specialists looking to broaden their horizons” (p,7).

This aim is achieved to a large degree, however, the brevity of the article means that that the authors must assume a basic knowledge and understanding in their field, and this impacts on the reader working in unfamiliar territory. 

 Where the terminology is familiar, the articles are very easy to read and comprehend. 

 Authors are drawn from establishments scattered throughout 10 countries of Western Europe and Asia with very diverse spiritual and scientific perspectives best described as non-Western.

It is the intention of the editor, that Global Perspectives on Science and Spirituality should lure the reader to delve further and create more questions rather than give answers.

 This it does.

 From the suggestion that science and spirituality could form a new discipline of study, to the idea that, “incessant creation is an engine of evolution” (p.141), this book opens up many areas of both science and our spirituality to examination and a fresh approach.