SMN Golden Jubilee Celebration – Visions of Interconnectedness in Science and Spiritual Wisdom
An in-person and live-streamed event to celebrate 50 years of the Scientific and Medical Network
We warmly invite you to come in person or attend online to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the Network! We have put together a series of dialogues -interspersed with music – between distinguished Honorary Members around the overall theme of Visions of Interconnectedness in Science and Spiritual Wisdom in the context of our overall mission of connecting spirituality and science through education in ways that support transformational change and learning in our personal and professional lives.
As well as conversing on these themes, the speakers will reflect on significant changes in their fields and the role that the Network has played through its educational outreach by means of its conference programme, special interest groups and publications. We are including evensong at St Paul’s Cathedral in the programme (5 minutes’ walk away) as well as celebrating together with a delicious chocolate cake and toasting the Network with magnums of Prosecco. We look forward to you joining us for this historic day!
Please note: This hybrid event (in-person and online) is not included in the Season Ticket.
All timings are in UK, BST
9:30 am onwards Registration
10:00 Introductions by Prof Bernard Carr, President, Janine Edge, Chairman of the Trustees, and Dr Paul Filmore, Chair
10:15 Dr Rupert Sheldrake & Prof Keith Ward FBA – live dialogue on Science and Spiritual Wisdom
11:00 New Paradigm Navigators – introduced by Dr Louise Livingstone
11:30 Coffee and mingling
12:00 Music – Dr Edi Bilimoria on the piano. Featuring these pieces:
- Debussy: Prelude X – La Cathédrale Engloutie
- Chopin: Nocturne in C sharp minor, Opus 27 No. 1
(…and if time permitting: Brahms: two Intermezzi)
12:15 Dr Vandana Shiva (Zoom) – Terra Viva – A Regenerative Future – dialogue with Satish Kumar
13:00 Lunch and catch-up with old and new friends
14:00 Dr Iain McGilchrist (Zoom) and Federico Faggin (Zoom) – Towards an Interconnected Science of Consciousness
14:45 Music – Dr Chika Robertson, violin. Featuring these pieces:
- Bach’s Adagio from his Sonata in G minor (with Joe Steele)
- Bach’s Presto from his Sonata in G minor (with Elizabeth Kirov)
- Massanet’s Meditation from Thais (with Sapphie Johnson)
15:00 Prof Marjorie Woollacott (Zoom) & Prof Ravi Ravindra (Zoom) – Interconnected Ways of Knowing in Science and Spiritual Wisdom
15:45 Concluding observations – David Lorimer
15:55 Tea with chocolate cake
16:35 Depart for St Paul’s Cathedral
17:00 Choral Evensong in St Paul’s Cathedral
18:00 Wine reception
All bookings will receive a link to view the RECORDING.
Join the in-person event – HURRY – limited Standard and Student tickets are left (you may only purchase a maximum of two tickets each):
Join the online Live Stream:
Bernard CarrEmeritus Professor, SMN President
Prof Bernard Carr is Emeritus Professor of Mathematics and Astronomy at Queen Mary University of London. For his PhD, he studied the first second of the universe with Stephen Hawking at Cambridge University and Caltech. His professional area of research is cosmology and astrophysics and includes such topics as the early universe, black holes, dark matter, and the anthropic principle. He is a former chairman and current President of the Scientific and Medical Network and a former President of the Society for Psychical Research.
David LorimerWriter, Lecturer, Poet, Editor
David Lorimer, MA, PGCE, FRSA is a writer, lecturer, poet and editor who is a Founder of Character Education Scotland, Programme Director of the Scientific and Medical Network and former President of Wrekin Trust and the Swedenborg Society. David is also the Editor of Paradigm Explorer, and Chair of the Galileo Commission, which seeks the expand the evidence base of science of consciousness beyond a materialistic world view.
Originally a merchant banker then a teacher of philosophy and modern languages at Winchester College, he is the author and editor of over a dozen books, including Survival? Death as Transition (1984,2017) Resonant Mind (originally Whole in One) (1990/2017), The Spirit of Science (1998), Thinking Beyond the Brain (2001), The Protein Crunch (with Jason Drew) and A New Renaissance (edited with Oliver Robinson). He has edited three books about the Bulgarian sage Beinsa Douno (Peter Deunov): Prophet for our Times (1991, 2015), The Circle of Sacred Dance, and Gems of Love, which is a translation of his prayers and formulas into English. His book on the ideas and work of the Prince of Wales – Radical Prince (2003) – has been translated into Dutch, Spanish and French. His most recent books are A Quest for Wisdom and his collection of poems, Better Light a Candle.
Dr Chika Robertson
Dr Chika Robertson, CEO of the Music Mind Spirit Trust, is professor of violin at the Royal Academy of Music and international Diploma Examiner for the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music. She is much in demand as a music adjudicator, workshop presenter, project director and conference speaker. Chika is passionate about using innovative interdisciplinary methods to benefit music and medicine. She co-presented the ‘Connection through Music’ online global concert series with Prof Nigel Osborne, the NHS and X-System throughout the pandemic lockdown to bridge diverse ages, styles and cultures together. Her work in health, wellbeing and recovery forges new career paths by training Young Artist Musical Ambassadors (YAMA) to reinvigorate latent musicianship in care homes and community settings. Through this musical mentorship and leadership programme, the Royal Academy of Music YAMAs learn to design and deliver bespoke programmes of personalised live & recorded music, particularly for those living with dementia. Chika is currently co-creating an exciting intergenerational music and ecology project, based upon the Green Man.
Born in India and educated at the universities of London, Sussex and Oxford, Edi Bilimoria presents an unusual blend of experience in the fields of science, arts and philosophy.
A student of the perennial philosophy for over half a century, Edi has given courses and lectured extensively in the UK, and internationally in California, the Netherlands, India, and Australia. He has organized and chaired conferences with the object of encouraging discourse on the different, but overlapping, roles of science, religion and practical philosophy. He worked as Education Manager for the Theosophical Society in Australia developing courses and study papers, researching, lecturing and organizing international conferences; as well as supervising the Research Library, National Media Library, National Members Lending Library and the development of the website.
An award-winning Consultant Engineer by profession for the offshore and transport industries, currently engaged on safety and environmental management for Royal Navy projects, Edi has published extensively in the fields of science, engineering and the esoteric philosophy. His trilogy Unfolding Consciousness: Exploring the Living Universe and Intelligent Powers in Nature and Man will be published early in 2022. His book The Snake and the Rope was awarded a prize in 2007 by the Scientific and Medical Network on which he now serves as a Board Director.
An enthusiastic glider pilot for many years, Edi is a choral singer and a dedicated pianist of concert standard.
Federico FagginPhysicist, Engineer, Inventor, Entrepreneur
Federico Faggin received a Laurea degree in Physics, summa cum laude, from the University of Padua, Italy, in 1965, and moved to Silicon Valley in 1968. He developed the MOS Silicon Gate Technology in 1968; the world’s first microprocessor, the Intel 4004 in 1971, and several highly successful microprocessors, like the Intel 8080 and the Z80 produced by Zilog, his first startup company. Faggin was CEO of several high-tech startup companies he founded and directed since 1974. He is currently president of Federico and Elvia Faggin Foundation, dedicated to the science of consciousness. Faggin has received many international awards, including the 2009 National Medal of Technology and Innovation, from President Barack Obama. In 2021 he published his autobiography Silicon.
Iain McGilchristPsychiatrist, Philosopher, Literary Scholar
Dr Iain McGilchrist is a psychiatrist, philosopher and literary scholar. He is a Quondam Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, a Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and of the Royal Society of Arts, as well as a former Clinical Director of the Bethlem Royal & Maudsley Hospital, London. His previous book, The Master and His Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World reached international recognition and acclaim and has marked him out as one of the greatest thinkers and philosophers of our time.
His latest publication is the two-volume work, The Matter with Things which was published in November 2021 by Perspectiva Press. This is a sustained critique of reductive materialism, and concerns such questions as ‘Who are we? What is the world? What is the nature of time and space? What do we mean by purpose, value and the divine? And how do we most reliably set about finding out?’
Prof Keith Ward, DD, FBA says: “I have been an academic virtually all my working life, teaching philosophy, theology, and religious studies at various times. So I am an academic, with all the shortcomings that implies. I am interested in intellectual problems, in arguments and theories, and I largely depend on other people for finding out facts.
I am, by nature and conviction, an Idealist philosopher, somebody who believes in the supremacy of Spirit or Mind, and who thinks that the material universe is an expression or creation of a Supreme Mind. I see religions as very ambiguous but probably necessary ways of giving humans some awareness of this Supreme Mind. I am a Christian, and became a priest of the Church of England in 1972. But I have an interest in the many diverse ways in which humans have sought spiritual truth, and in trying to understand what these various paths may have to teach. I think the main task for religious believers today is to ensure that their beliefs are conducive to human flourishing and, so far as is possible, to the flourishing of all sentient beings; to relate ancient religious beliefs to the modern scientific world view; and to see their own faith in a truly global context.
That gives an idea of who I am, and explains why my books fall into three main classes – philosophy, religion, and Christian theology. Virtually all my books have been, rather selfishly, ways of working out what I believe, but they have also responded to particular situations which have in my view shown misunderstandings of the sort of philosophy and religion I adhere to – and those misunderstandings are legion, and growing (which is why I have written so many books)!”
Louise LivingstoneFounder of the Heart Sense Research Institute
Louise Livingstone, PhD, is Founder of the Heart Sense Research Institute. She has an MSc in Holistic Science with distinction from the Schumacher College in Devon, UK, and a PhD from Canterbury Christ Church University in Transformative Learning. During her research she spent four years in deep conversation with her own heart, diving deeply into its many layers and learning its wisdom. Her work aims to re-imagine the long-forgotten, wise and intelligent heart for contemporary times; guiding individuals into the numerous layers of their own hearts, illuminating different hearts to help navigate daily life with heart-based awareness. Louise has a flourishing private mentoring practice, and runs a three-month introduction to Heart Sense personal development course based on her research, within which participants meet four different hearts. She also runs a one-year apprenticeship; a programme within which participants work deeply with six more hearts.
Marjorie WoollacottResearcher, Author
Dr Marjorie Woollacott has been a Professor and Chair in the Dept. of Human Physiology and a member of the Institute of Neuroscience, at the University of Oregon. In addition to teaching courses on neuroscience and rehabilitation, she taught courses on complementary and alternative medicine and meditation. Dr. Woollacott has received over $7.2 million in research funding from the National Institutes of Health and other research agencies for her research in child development, aging, rehabilitation medicine and meditation. She has published more than 200 scientific articles and written or co-edited eight books, the most recent being Infinite Awareness: The Awakening of a Scientific Mind. She has recently (2017) accepted the position of Research Director for the International Association of Near-Death Studies (IANDS) and is the President of the Academy for the Advancement of Postmaterialist Sciences.
Paul FilmorePhysicist, SMN Chair
Paul Filmore lectures in personal and professional development, entrepreneurship, electronics and business management, predominantly to postgraduates at the University of Plymouth, after having been a research physicist for many years. His current research is in creativity and break-through problem solving both for the individual and organisations. He gives talks around the world and is a regular judge for international innovation competitions. He also runs an educational consultancy. He always looks for opportunities to incorporate the spiritual aspect in his research talks, workshops and teaching.
He has a very great interest in all areas of education and with his wife Catherine, jointly ran the original Network student ‘Wider Horizons’ course, for many years. He has been active in the Network for over forty years, since meeting George Blaker and Peter Leggett as an undergraduate, and attending the very first Wider Horizons course. A few years later he became a trustee of the SMN, at George Blaker’s request, and has been until summer 2015, when he switched roles to be chairman.
Ravi RavindraTeacher and Author
Professor Ravi Ravindra is a native of India, he emigrated to Canada and is Professor Emeritus at Dalhousie University, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he served for many years as a professor in three Departments: Comparative Religion, Philosophy, and Physics. He was a Member of the Institute of Advanced Study in Princeton, a Fellow of the Indian Institute of Advanced Study in Simla, and Founding Director of the Threshold Award for Integrative Knowledge. He has been a member of the Board of Judges for the prestigious Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion. He is an honorary member of the Scientific and Medical Network. Ravindra’s spiritual search has led him to the teachings of J. Krishnamurti, G. Gurdjieff, Yoga, Zen, and a deep immersion in the mystical teachings of the Indian and Christian traditions. He is the author of many books on religion, science, and spiritual disciplines, including:
‘The Gospel of John in the Light of Indian Mysticism (American edition of The Yoga of the Christ)’
‘Krishnamurti: Two Birds on One Tree Science and the Sacred’
‘Pilgrim Without Boundaries’
‘The Spiritual Roots of Yoga’
‘The Wisdom of Patañjali’s Yoga Sutras’
‘The Pilgrim Soul: Path to the Sacred Transcending World Religions’
‘Heart Without Measure: Gurdjieff Work with Madame de Salzmann’
‘The Bhagavad Gita: Guide to Navigating the Battle of Life’
Ravi is the Series Editor of an eight-volume series dealing with The Inner Journey in the major spiritual traditions of the world.
Rupert SheldrakeBiologist and Author
Rupert Sheldrake, PhD, is a biologist and author of more than 90 scientific papers and nine books including Science and Spiritual Practices and Ways To Go Beyond, And Why They Work. He was a Fellow of Clare College, Cambridge, and is currently a Fellow of the Institute of Noetic Sciences in California, and of Schumacher College in Devon. His website is www.sheldrake.org
Satish KumarEnvironmentalist, Author, Speaker
Satish Kumar was the Editor-in-Chief of Resurgence Magazine (now with the Ecologist) for 43 years and was the Founder of Schumacher College in Dartington. At nine years of age, Satish renounced the world and joined the brotherhood of Jain monks. At the age of eighteen, he left the monastic order and became a campaigner working to turn Gandhi’s vision of a peaceful world into reality. He undertook an 8,000-mile peace pilgrimage, walking without any money, to deliver packets of ‘peace tea’ to the leaders of the four nuclear powers. Satish is the author of five books. His autobiography, ‘No Destination’, first published by Green Books in 1978, has sold over 50,000 copies.
Vandana ShivaPhysicist, Environmentalist, Author, Speaker
Dr Vandana Shiva is trained as a Physicist and did her PhD on the subject ‘Hidden Variables and Non-locality in Quantum Theory’ from the University of Western Ontario in Canada. She later shifted to inter-disciplinary research in science, technology and environmental policy, which she carried out at the Indian Institute of Science and the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore. In 1982, she founded an independent institute, the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology in Dehra Dun dedicated to high quality and independent research to address the most significant ecological and social issues of our times, in close partnership with local communities and social movements. In 1991, she founded Navdanya, a national movement to protect the diversity and integrity of living resources, especially native seed, the promotion of organic farming and fair trade. In 2004 she started Bija Vidyapeeth, an international college for sustainable living in Doon Valley in collaboration with Schumacher College, UK.
Dr Shiva combines sharp intellectual enquiry with courageous activism. Time Magazine identified Dr Shiva as an environmental ‘hero’ in 2003 and Asia Week has called her one of the five most powerful communicators of Asia. Forbes magazine in November 2010 has identified Dr Vandana Shiva as one of the top Seven most Powerful Women on the Globe. Dr Shiva has received honorary Doctorates from University of Paris, University of Western Ontario, University of Oslo and Connecticut College, University of Guelph. Among her many awards are the Alternative Nobel Prize (Right Livelihood Award, 1993), Order of the Golden Ark, Global 500 Award of UN and Earth Day International Award. Lennon ONO grant for peace award by Yoko Ono in 2009, Sydney Peace Prize in 2010, Doshi Bridgebuilder Award, Calgary Peace Prize and Thomas Merton Award in the year 2011, the Fukuoka Award and The Prism of Reason Award in 2012, the Grifone d’Argento prize 2016 and The MIDORI Prize for Biodiversity 2016, Veerangana Award 2018, The Sanctuary Wildlife Award 2018 and International Environment Summit & Award 2018. Her most recent book is ‘Oneness vs 1%’.