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Number 5

Science and spirituality appear to be reconverging. Centuries ago, the intermingled realms of scientific inquiry and religious study diverged down sharply disparate paths, eventually becoming mutually exclusive worlds. Science claimed the domain of secular, verifiable, and "worldly" phenomena. Its focus was the understanding and manipulation of physical existence. Religion became inwardly directed, seemingly nonverifiable, and distinctly "otherworldly." The afterlife, targeting what many believe awaits us beyond this world, became its focus.

But increasingly, these two domains have begun to look like approximations of the same basic truths. Recent discoveries in genetics and molecular biology have led to profound questions about the basic definition of life. Breakthroughs in computing and artificial intelligence have spawned new debate about the nature of consciousness. Modern physics offers a universe of relativistic time and multiple dimensions beyond those of the observable physical realm. And the search for extraterrestrial life and hospitable planets beyond the solar system has awakened our intuitive sense that we are neither alone nor unique.

In short, science and religion are once again asking the same basic questions about our existence and our universe. To better shed light on these questions, pragmatic scientific knowledge and the insights of spiritual intuition must be more effectively melded and utilized. Science and religion have for too long been at odds—it’s time to leverage this emerging synchronicity.

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