Dr. Iain McGilchrist – How compatible are science and religion?

There is a widely-held view that religion and science are incompatible.  How true is this – in any sense?  Do they conflict in their vision of reality? Do ‘real’ scientists find an allegiance to both impossible, or even difficult, to maintain?  Does the fact that there are differences in approach to the world make mutual comprehension impossible or incoherent? What are the significant differences  between spirituality and religion?

DR IAIN MCGILCHRIST  is a Quondam Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, an Associate Fellow of Green Templeton College, Oxford, a Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and former Consultant Psychiatrist and Clinical Director at the Bethlem Royal & Maudsley Hospital, London.  He has been a Research Fellow in neuroimaging at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore and a Fellow of the Institute of Advanced Studies in Stellenbosch.  He has published original articles and research papers in a wide range of publications on topics in literature, philosophy, medicine and psychiatry.  He is the author of a number of books, but is best-known for The Master and his Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World (Yale 2009), and is currently working on a book of epistemology and ontology for Penguin Random House.  He lives on the Isle of Skye, and has 2 daughters and a son.

 

Related Articles

Rupert Sheldrake PhD: Science and Spiritual Practice

Science is now transcending the materialist philosophy, and pointing toward a new sense of a living world. The cosmos is no longer like a machine running down; it is more like a developing organism with an inherent memory, and so is our planet, Gaia. The old idea of determinism has given way to indeterminism, chaos and complexity. The laws of nature may be more like habits. Minds may extend far beyond brains. Memories may not be stored as traces in our brains, and may not be wiped out at death. Mental causation may work from the future towards the past, while energetic causation works from the past towards the future. New experimental research points to the reality of our mental connections to the world around us. These new paradigm shifts in the sciences shed a new light on spiritual practices like pilgrimage, ritual, prayer and the survival of bodily death. In this workshop we will explore some of these many implications.