The question as to whether or not we are hardwired for religion and spirituality is an important one from a range of different perspectives says pioneering neuroscientist Dr. Andrew Newberg. The philosophical, theological and biological implications of the answer to this question are profound. “When we look at how the brain works, we see it’s … More The Human Brain: Hardwired for God?
Researchers at Harvard, Yale, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have found intriguing evidence that meditation can alter the brain’s physical structure. Indeed, brain scans conducted by the team have revealed that experienced meditators exhibit increased thickness in parts of the brain that deal with attention and processing sensory input. Fascinating. You can read the … More Meditation Increases Brain Size – It’s Official!
Could Our Genes Make Moral Consensus on Certain Issues Impossible?. According to the above article, it would indeed seem that genes, inasmuch as they control endogenous emotional responses, are responsible for divergent responses to moral questions; this genetic divergence, according to the hypothesis advanced in the article therefore makes moral consensus on many issues practically … More Could Our Genes Make Moral Consensus on Certain Issues Impossible?
Zoned-out rats may give clue to consciousness – life – 12 October 2011 – New Scientist. According to this fascinating article: HUMAN minds wander when they have nothing else to do. This is when people start to introspect, using a specific network of brain structures. The same network has now been identified in monkeys and … More Do ‘Zoned-Out’ Rats Give an Insight into Consciousness?
The life of the mind | Inside Story. An excellent article on the philosopher David Chalmers and his take on the vexed issue of consciousness. Here’s an excerpt that summarizes the problem, especially as they relate to the ‘hard questions’ of consciousness and hints at a potential solution: “We’ve got this great chain of explanation,” … More The Consciousness Conundrum
According to an interesting article written by Steven and Michael Meloan for the Huffington post: A recent study led by Massachusetts General Hospital found that half hour per day of meditative practice over only eight weeks led to increased feelings of compassion, self-awareness, introspection, and reduced stress. The study also reported that changes in brain structure appear … More Meditation & Self-Directed Evolution…….How Does that Work?!
“The only two certainties in life are death and taxes” according to Mark Twain……..and a few others that came before and after him. So, what actually happens when we die? All faiths and wisdom traditions have something to say about the destiny of our ‘soul’ (however that is defined) when our bodies die. But what does science say? Perhaps this is … More What Happens When We Die?
I don’t need to believe….I know! So says the famous Psychiatrist and founder of Analytical Psychology, Carl Jung in an interview given to the BBC in the mid-1950’s, shortly before his death. At first glance, Jung’s enigmatic statement contrasting knowledge with belief seems rather difficult to fathom. Thankfully he goes on to explain in much … More I Don’t Need to Believe……I Know!
Faraday Institute Course in Belfast: An Introduction to Science and Religion Union Theological College, Belfast: June 24-26, 2011 Aim of Course This short weekend course is for busy people who would like to obtain a broad introductory overview of the science-religion debate from leading spcialists in the field, covering topics such as the ‘conflict model’ of … More Science & Religion Course in Belfast
Neurotheology is a fascinating area of study still in its infancy, but with huge potential to answer many significant questions, including elucidating the nature of consciousness. I recently came across an informative opinion piece by Andrew Newberg, Director of Research at the Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine at Thomas Jefferson University Hospitals. His conclusion is that: While … More The Future of Neurotheology