Prior Conversations Leading Up to This One:
I’m afraid I don’t have much useful to offer to Robert’s initiative at this time. But I wanted to briefly note, for you and others, that evolutionary science writer Connie Barlow and former fundamentalist evangelical Christian minister Michael Dowd offer another, complementary, angle on evolution and religion (including their own thoughts on the relevance of evolutionary psychology) at Thank God for Evolution and The Great Story.
Michael is translating Christian theology into terms not only consistent with but expressive of a sacred understanding of science-based evolution. (He half jokes that he is a CreaTHEist, while Connie is a CreAtheist!) He is currently doing some remarkable interviews with luminaries in the field of Evolutionary Christianity. At the very least, their work should provide you with some additional juicy quotes…
Michael and Connie’s work inspired my own book Reflections on Evolutionary Activism: Essays, Poems and Prayers from an Emerging Field of Sacred Social Change. The only evolutionary dynamic they highlight for social change work is (following John Stewart’s “Evolution’s Arrow”) evolution’s tendency to find ways to align the self-interest of individual entities with the well-being of the whole during the creation of more complex entities (e.g., multicellular entities out of unicellular entities, societies out of individuals, global economies out of corporations, etc.) — the presence of increasing complexity being the major trajectory of evolution. My own work clarifies the application of that dynamic to social systems and explores other evolutionary dynamics as well (including social-systemic and cultural approaches to transcending the limitations imposed by our biologically structured individual cognitive systems).
Sensing into your work, my work, Michael and Connie’s work, I wonder at the significance and potential of these diverse but significantly overlapping threads of emerging evolutionary understandings of religion, science, and social change…