August 20, 2010
WOOSTER, Ohio - The complex relationship between science and religion will be re-examined this fall when The College of Wooster's Fall Academy of Religion presents "Science and Religion: Exploring and Embracing Mystery." The six-session lecture series will feature a range of scholars, including three faculty members from The College of Wooster. Each session begins at 7:30 p.m. in Lean Lecture Room of Wishart Hall (303 E. University St.).
"Some trace the beginning of the conflict between science and religion to the dispute between Galileo and the Church about whether the sun or the earth was at the center of the universe," said Charles Kammer, professor of religious studies at The College of Wooster and academic dean of the Fall Academy as well as one of the series' six speakers. "But the real origin of the cultural clash began in the late 19th century when Charles Darwin published his theory about evolution in On the Origins of the Species. A popular literal reading of the creation stories in the Biblical accounts of Genesis led many to see science and religion as incompatible, and the debate continues to this
The Academy, which is in its 42nd year at Wooster, will look at the conflict from several different points of view, including the fundamental assumption that both science and religion are important human endeavors. "Given the overwhelming number of global challenges, it is quite clear that we need both the tools that science can provide and the moral guidance that religion offers," said Kammer. "Science that rejects all religious thought and tradition, separates itself from the wisdom that has developed over thousands of years of human history; likewise, religion that dismisses science strips itself of the ability to engage meaningfully in the debate over how to use the enormous potential and promise of scientific exploration and discovery. It is our hope that through this series, we will discover the resources for a deep and rich conversation between modern science and contemporary religion."
Kammer will provide a context for the discussion when he presents "The Complex Relationship between Science and Religion" at the opening lecture on Wednesday, Sept. 15. Anna Case-Winters, professor of theology at McCormick Theological Seminary, will speak one week later on the topic of "Finding a Home in the Cosmos: Insights from Science and Religion," on Sept. 22.
The third lecture will feature Mark Wilson, the Lewis and Marian Senter Nixon Professor of Natural Sciences and Geology at Wooster, presenting "Evolution's Challenge" on Sept. 29, followed by The Reverend Dr. Anders Tune, co-pastor at Wittenberg University, discussing "In God's Image: Science, Religion, and Our Understanding of the Human" on Oct. 6.
The fifth lecture will be delivered by Constance Bertka, program director of the Deep Carbon Observatory at the Geophysical Laboratory of the Carnegie Institution of Washington. She will address "The Science and Religion Dance: In Search of a New Tune" on Tuesday, Oct. 12, and Paul Edmiston, associate professor of chemistry at Wooster, will close out the series on Oct. 20, with "Science, Religion, and the Human Future."
Each of the lectures is free and open to the public. Additional information is available by calling 330-263-2473.
1189 Beall Avenue, Wooster, Ohio 44691. (330) 263-2000
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