(This is based on a talk given on June 9, 2010 to those attending the Summer program of the Senior University Georgetown, a lifelong learning organization.
THE GREAT STORY I:
THE EPIC OF EVOLUTION FROM THE BIG BANG TO
THE EMERGENCE OF LIFE AND CONSCIOUSNESS
Adam's background can be read by clicking on the "Bio" box above right.)
(Click here to read other papers on philosophy, etc.)
Here is an amazing video I found that captures it all in 2 minutes! (added 9/2012).
This is the first of three webpages devoted to this subject---including the philosophical and psychological overview and implications.
Part 2: From the Big Bang to the formation of Planet Earth.
Part 3. The Evolution of Life on Earth
Part 4. Further notes and additions not in the presentation on June 9.
This introduction "sets the stage," so to speak, noting why it’s worthwhile considering a new approach to our thinking about our place in the cosmos. Theother webpage will review some highlights from the “Big Bang” to the evolution of humanity. The second half of this webpage also reviews the transition from mere awareness to a type of consciousness that contemplates, among other things, not only the recent developments in science and their implications, but the idea that consciousness itself might evolve.
This picture was on the cover of a recent book about the implications of the contributions of Teilhard de Chardin, a Jesuit paleontologist who in the 1920s sought to reconcile religion with science by opening to the idea that evolution was the way God created in the world—not as a “just do it” single act from the top down, but rather, organically, from the bottom-up, in a series of innumerable steps, gropings, failings, extinctions, and a gradual move towards increasing complexity. Teilhard proposed that the universe shows a tendency to proceed from the realm of formation of more complex atoms (through the dynamics of the life cycle of stars) to the formation of complex minerals—and all this he called the “geosphere.”
Atoms seem to absorb energy and form into more complex molecules and from there into not just minerals, but the vastly more complex dynamic called life. Soon after the world was formed and began to cool, for reasons not yet understood, life emerged. Within a few billion years this new development covered the surface of our planet, forming the “biosphere.” Also, not long after life formed, patterns of innate sensitivity also began to complexify, generating subtle inter-organismic communications. As animals evolved, the degrees of mind became more developed, as did amount of communications among organisms, and this was the start of the sphere of consciousness. When that process came to include the human capacity for imagination and language, another “sphere” emerged—the noosphere (pronounced new-oh-sphere), and as communications and transportation technologies advanced, this sphere of activity came to be as prevalent as the biosphere. The last development has to do with the way humanity not only communicated, but also wondered and experienced mystical connection—and when people began to teach and organize about this spiritual and philosophical realm, that was the beginning of another virtual “layer” beyond the noosphere, one Teilhard called the “theosphere.”
What we’re talking about is a mixture of mythology, philosophy, science, and spirituality. Can we tell a story of creation that includes the best insights of all these domains? Well, we can try.
A number of people have begun to write about what has been called “the Great Story,” or “The Epic of Evolution”—an integrated history that links cosmology, astrophysics, geology, biology, psychology, and all other fields of discovery. It’s part science, and partly a daring attempt at re-mythologizing our existence. (A little further on I’ll talk about the need and value of the idea of myth, and how the concept needs to be revised in order to be correctly understood.)
My BiasA little about me: I’m a retired physician, a psychiatrist, who has always been interested in both philosophy and comparative religion. (Click here for my biographical description.) My own orientation is expressed elsewhere on this website—sort of a mixture of science, mysticism, the “process philosophy” of Alfred North Whitehead Charles Hartshorne, John Cobb, David Griffin, and others; and so forth. It is so richly founded in my own experiences in studying science and medicine and other subjects that I have no expectation that I can communicate it adequately to another person, nor do I feel any need to do so. I’m happy to witness to ideas I’ve found useful and readers or audience members are welcome to use any they find useful in their own philosophical development.
I found that this quote by Albert Einstein expresses some of my sentiments, too:
“A knowledge of the existence of something we cannot penetrate, of the manifestations of the profoundest reason and the most radiant beauty - it is this knowledge and this emotion that constitute the truly religious attitude; in this sense, and in this alone, I am a deeply religious man.”
The mythology implicit in the Great Story has been found to be useful to many people who are also clearly affiliated with various religious denominations, and also it’s enjoyed by those who remain unaffiliated.
Preliminary OverviewFirst of all, to the right is another simple diagram of what this talk is hinting at:
This presentation involves the convergence of three ideas: (1) the need for myth and a correction in our understanding of the nature of myth; (2) developments in science in the last fifty to one-hundred and fifty years—the implications of which have as yet been only dimly perceived by the mainstream of our culture; and (3) the value of a better model or myth for helping the world move in a more positive direction.
As for the second issue, here is another overview of what is covered on the associated webpage that tells the factual story. This present webpage, so as not to be redundant, sets the frame for appreciating that story. Briefly summarizing, consider that a kind of theme is discernable as crossing the many fields of study applicable to Cosmology (beginning 13.7 years ago, give or take), Astrophysics (i.e., how stars are born and die), Geology (how planets are born and transform); Chemistry; Physics; Biology (especially how life evolved); Anthropology; Archeology (especially a consideration of the evolution of technology and ideas); and, finally, Individual and Social Psychology (which includes cultural psychology and the idea that consciousness itself has evolved. The details of this evolutionary process from the beginning to the beginnings of the emergence of reflective consciousness will be found on the other website.
The Changing Understanding of “Myth”Less than a century ago the word applied to the superstitious or quaint beliefs of mainly other people, especially those arrogantly imagined as “primitive.” Euro-American culture was still colonialistic and ethnocentric, meaning that “we” would not indulge ourselves in mere “myth.” Of course we had our beliefs, mixed with our convictions and ideals. One of these beliefs was that since we were rational—as evidenced by our capacity to manufacture weapons of mass destruction—(and, alas, many people holding such beliefs were oblivious to the irony here)—Western “civilization” was “above” mere myth. (Anecdote: Mahatma Gandhi, in reply to a question as to what he thought of Western Civilization, responded, “I think it would be a very good idea.”) People often confuse success in a few roles—like the ability to wage war more effectively than the other group—with moral or spiritual or artistic superiority.
Anyway, continued research in fields such as comparative religion, cultural psychology, anthropology, less-biased history, and the like reveal that Western Civilization is as laced with innmerable myths, as much as any other culture, whether ancient or “primitive.”
The forms these myths take include:
– popular stories, romances, Westerns, science fiction, movies, books, magazines, television shows
– popular songs, poetry, lyrics, words or word usage in fashion or old-fashioned, catchy slang
– popular icons, heros, villains, stereotypes, celebrities,
– endearing others to which we attribute “cute” pet names, have little stories—pets, loved ones, grandchildren, etc.
– patriotism, national rituals, regional allegiances, sports team loyalties and a fascination with how those sports teams do in their league play-offs
– cultural and national holidays, Christmas, Easter, Mother’s Day, etc.
– much of what passes for high and low status, signals of “class,” rank, valued and devalued elements in ethnicity, loyalties to various clubs, professions, demographic collectives, etc.
– and of course, basic stories of commonly-known religions
It doesn’t matter whether some of these elements have more or less basis in fact. It is their emotional impact that matters. Our appreciation of the prevalence of myth in culture and the significance of myth in psychology has grown as we’ve come to appreciate the extent to which humans, though rational in some roles, are at the same time irrational in others—often in harmless and even aesthetically pleasing ways.
For a while, a major myth in the West was that rationality without illusion was preferable and theoretically attainable. Neither proposition is so. Certainly, there are many situations in politics in which it might be well argued that we all could do with a bit more rationality, more critical thinking. But this speaks to where and how much rationality should be applied—it doesn’t mean that rationality is the only criterion of value. Zest, humor, drama, much of beauty, that elusive quality called “cute,” the sense of identity, the sense of coherence, the sense of purpose, and many other intrinsic and necessary components of psychological and social functioning are based on complex aggregates of experiences, only some of which are factual. This is okay, it’s the way it has to be! Fact and materialism is good, in its rightful place, but only to a degree. Same with myth.
Now some myths are obsolete. One is the belief in witches and, by extension, the “evil eye,” and other superstitions that lead to blaming and persecuting often innocent victims. (This coming Fall I’ll be offering a lecture series on Lesser-Known Aspects of the Early Renaissance, and the rise of the persecution of witches will be the subject of one of the talks.) Many controversies today may resolve so that the “old ways” of prejudice will be recognized as being based on misleading myths. So there is no question that many myths are foolish and some even wicked. However, what needs to be recognized is that it isn’t that they’re myths, but that these are a mixture of mythic and irrational elements that are clung to in the face of contrary evidence. What this talk is proposing is that we may be able to generate new myths that are more compatible with the insights of modern science and other sources of realization.
New Insights in Science and Contemporary Intellectual ThoughtIn the last 150 years many breakthroughs in science have happened that have widened our scope of awareness. These will be discussed in more detail further on. In addition, in the last 50 years (also known as since I was a kid—a commentary as to how the worldviews have been shifting away from what I took for granted when I was growing up), a number of new themes have entered the intellectual mainstream—though for the most part they haven’t yet become prominent in the popular mainstream:
One theme involves “systems theory,” the idea that most phenomena need to be recognized as operating at different “levels,” with many elements being coordinated. Causality is recognized as being far more complex than it had been two centuries ago. (More about complexity further on.) Also, phenomena often operate within the context of more encompassing systems, which in turn operate within broader systems; and on examination, phenomena (as systems) may also be better understood as being composed of sub-systems that are composed in turn of sub-sub-systems, and so forth. Or to quote http://www.yourdictionary.com/quotes/bite Jonathan Swift around 1733: “So, naturalists observe, a flea Hath smaller fleas on him prey; And these have smaller fleas to bite 'em, And so proceed ad infinitum. Thus every poet, in his kind, Is bit by him that comes behind.” (This quote was a favorite of one of the pioneers of fractal theory in mathematics! http://www.qi.com/talk/viewtopic.php?p=180076
Another theme that has emerged with increasing power in the last fifty years is that processes that absorb energy seem to move towards increasing levels of complexity. This was an insight of Teilhard de Chardin, of whom we’ll hear more, and continues to find increasing support. We don’t fully understand yet why this is so or all the ways it works—but that’s what they said about electricity 200 years ago.
A third theme that overlaps with this is that not only is just about everything we learn about more complex than it appeared to be at first glance—often staggeringly more complex!—but much of this complexity partakes of the dynamics associated with another new realm of research, the nature of chaos and the mathematics of fractals. More about that in a moment.
A fourth theme that contributes to this whole endeavor is the reversal of the tendency to imagine that knowledge can be compartmentalized. In specializing in study during the 19th and early 20th centuries, a myth of reductionism was followed: If we can only find out about the elementary principles, anatomy, physiology, and so forth, of some phenomenon, we can extrapolate that to understanding the whole. It works with watches somewhat, or simple machinery. But it doesn’t work with highly complex systems that are characterized by multiple types of functions operating simultaneously.
To counter reductionism—which is still a common worldview and is taught implicitly if not explicitly in many schools—Jan Christian Smuts in the late 1920s proposed the concept of “holism.” An example of this: If you really want to understand elephants, you must see their behavior in the wild, their behavior in groups, communities. Studies in zoos just won’t do it. The whole field of ecology represents part of this more integrative mood.
Similarly, the number of “inter-disciplinary” fields of studies have continued to escalate over the last half-century. Applied to the Great Story, let’s just recognize that our ultimate roots—for that’s what this is about—lie in an appreciation of the ways the various fields overlap: physics, chemistry, cosmology, and so forth. We’re increasingly recognizing the ways life and the world are truly inter-dependent—which then leads logically to wondering about the category in which all these fields have a kind of membership in a greater wholeness—and wondering if that is what many mystics have experienced and sages intuited as something some call “God.”
Creation From the Top Down or the Bottom Up: The Implications of Chaos TheoryIn the olden days, God was imagined more as the father, the planner, the designer. In this picture by William Blake, the Creator is using geometry, the compass and straight edge, to construct perfect triangles and circles. People were quite taken with these ideal forms, the perfection of the circle—that was as perfect as people could handle—and this ideal was projected onto God. Many medieval theologians insisted that the orbits of the planets must be perfect circles. During the Renaissance, increasing sensitivity of observation and measurement revealed that those orbits were not perfect circles but slightly off, ellipses, which said something about what? God’s imperfection? Does not compute. Does not compute. Heresy.
But what if there’s something even more mysterious and beautiful than a circle, something more complex than what humans can encompass, grasp? What if the cosmos is messy, seemingly chaotic? It turns out that there were a few artists and theologians who could imagine such a things, such as illustrated by this late medieval picture again of God as designer, with the compass—a tool used widely in architectural design during that era. But this picture includes non-perfect elements, squiggles, waves: Could it be that God is capable of a higher type of perfection that goes beyond mere classical geometry?
Could God create fractal elements, like waves, coastlines, leaves on a forest floor—patterns that are at once both seemingly random and yet hauntingly beautiful? So now we have by no means a tight understanding, but at least an opening of our awareness that there are some mathematical patterns discernable in such “chaotic” structures.
Here’s a famous picture painted by
Hokusai in Japan around 1800. It sought to capture the elusive yet evocative power of the fractal nature of waves and sea. There is an aesthetic that appreciates what on the surface seems random. Jackson Pollock’s modern paintings also evoke this sensation.
In the associated webpage that lays out the general framework of the Great Story, the history of the cosmos in broad strokes, I also want to note that there is a supreme irony—a mixture of two seemingly incompatible ideas: Often events at the sub-microscope, the inconceivably small, are essential parts of what goes on at the level of the astronomical, the inconceivably large and massive. The dynamics of atoms and forces tinier than atoms are intrinsic to the dynamics of the core of stars, and in turn, the high temperatures and pressures generated by fusion reactions in their cores generate the conditions in which atoms behave in ways they’d never do in ordinary conditions. Size is so weird.
On that webpage I trace the evolution of the cosmos from geosphere through the evolution of biosphere (very briefly acknowledged) to the very beginning of the noosphere. (We’ll explain these terms further below.). So, having evolved through stars, planets, one-celled animals, and up to early humanity, something new emerges: Mind, and more than mere mind, but reflective mind, sentience, and on this planet, human consciousness. Even before humans as a species evolved, pre-humans (but way beyond apes) worked out the beginnings of tool use, axes, hammers, fire, probably the beginning domestication of dogs. Beginning around 100,000 years ago, it is thought, consciousness became complex enough to generate more complex forms of language. There was a co-evolution of tools and thought---that's an important point that we shall reconsider as we recognize that the invention of writing also has made thinking and language more complex---and that computers, the internet, and the electronic environment is possibly making human cognitive processes a step more complex. So, consider tools (as in this cartoon by Gary Larson, created around the 1990s. It should be noted that it is historically inaccurate, because spectacles were not invented until just before the Renaissance, about which I'll be teaching in the Fall of 2010. But how else to suggest that geeks may be pioneers, even then?)
ConsciousnessMind is a spectrum as complex as matter. It can exist in the dimmest sensitivity and reactivity of a bacterium that opens to and admits certain substances while closing off to others. Some respected philosophers even rationally support the idea that something even more rudimentary than mind, call it experience, feeling, “subjectivity, or “interiority” operates even beyond what our high school science teachers considered to be within the category of “life.” But then, those boundaries have been stretched in many other ways. At any point, there comes a point where mind begins to notice itself, existence. This reflective mind realizes that it will die. It becomes embarrassed, feels shame in ways that few animals give evidence of feeling. Humans imagine, communicate in more subtle way, makes jokes, feels and comments on paradox (often as part of humor), and plays in innumerable ways.
The NoosphereThis term speaks to the sphere of human thought and communication. The geosphere formed through the activity of the Big Bang, galactic and star formation, experiments with atoms and chemicals and physics, the formation of planets, earth, a very rich complex of events. It should be noted, though, that the biosphere began to form in less than a billion years after the earth formed, just when it was cool enough to do so. Not widely appreciated is the idea that very early in the process, even primitive life had something in the way of experience or mind, though not until humans evolved were minds complex enough to reflect on their own existence or communicate in complex ways. As they did, a new phenomenon, a new emergent quality evolved---a sphere of thought and communication began to form wherever humans lived.
On the left is a sample of cuneiform writing from Mesopotamia (a Latin word meaning between---meso--the rivers---pota, as in hippopotamus, river horse---referring to the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in what is now southeastern Iraq. It was produced by the Sumerian civilization around 3000 BCE.
Over time, this "noosphere" (pronounced "new-oh-sphere" began to spread, to become international, aided by writing, by travel, by letters, postal systems, roads, wheels, telegraphs, and all the modern forms of media. Human consciousness as a social or community or collective endeavor began to reveal what might be perceived as resonating networks—though we can only imagine or intellectually discern such networks. If each message sent and received were the thinnest hairlike strand, and if it were a strand of light, and if we could view the earth from above, we might begin to see the earth’s biosphere as becoming covered, overlain by first a thin layer and then a thick matting of interactive communications.
These are pictures of the earth seen by satellites, a composite of hundreds of photos with extended frames allowing for an accumulation of light that wouldn’t be seen by our eyes. To me it suggests the noosphere. (This heightened sensitivity is also what enabled us to see galaxies from the hubble space satellite.) Although these are photos of the electric lights produced globally, we might imagine each source of light as the source also of cell phone messages and other electronic interactions.
Discoveries in the Last 150 Years:Philosophy, if it is to remain relevant, must take into consideration the findings of science over the relatively recent past---i.e., just in the last 150 years. I think that religion, too, needs to evolve. The idea was written about by my favorite philosopher, Alfred North Whitehead, in a little book called "Religion in the Making," and the contemporary philosopher Ken Wilber wrote about a similar sentiment in his recent book, Integral Spirituality. Consider: we have become far more aware of heretofore unknown realms, such as:
- Microscopic and sub-microscopic worlds
- Planets and comets beyond simple telescopes, fainter stars, the existence of galaxies other than our own
- Electromagnetic radiation in its many varieties
- Sounds that we can’t hear with our ears
- Workings of the human (and animal) body, subtle physiology, cells, germs, chemicals
- Various forms of electricity
- Many aspects of history, archaeology; such as the way we've discovered evidence of whole civilizations that had been forgotten by—or never known—historians a thousand years BCE to almost the present!)
So our map of what is included in our universe now includes the following:
First, we didn't know that other galaxies existed! Or how infused so-called "empty" space was with all sorts of photons, electromagnetic waves at various frequencies.
Only recently have we become aware of the fact—or illusion?—that we seem to be in the middle between the very small and the very big, between the very slow and very fast, the very faint and the very strong (energy-wise), and other extremes.(see below) (Ficino’s idea that we are between the animals and the angels may not be that far off—again, alluding to one of the lectures on the early Renaissance to be given in October, 2010).
In the realm of psychology, we have begun to learn how very complex the mind is, including all these dimensions (picture on right-->)
Each person's mind is composed of a great number of dynamics occurring at different levels (as we talked about systems theory). I make no claims that this diagram is the final culmination of our learning: rather, I expect many refinements and extensions yet to come.
Speaking of psychology, and similar to what was said about ecology, humans are embedded creatures and exist within larger social andc cultural systems. The point is that a person may participate in different kinds of activities in church, games, family, business, hobby, and so forth. Some of these overlap, some not so much.
The next picture to the right carries that idea forward in illustrating the sheer number of different sports, games, sub-types of agriculture, research, science, humor, and variety of human activities has continued to escalate! This expansion in the variety of endeavors means something—these types of activities should be imagined to be a speeded up, expanding evolutionary tree within the evolution of humanity!
Within all these advances, philosophy also advances. The game is to rationally coordinate as much as possible, using criteria that includes aesthetics (feels good, seems elegant), pragmatics (it’s useful), coherence (different parts are relatively consistent with each other rather than strikingly inconsistent), moral, understandable, aligned with other values. (I seriously doubt that we’ll ever achieve perfection in all these ways, by the way, but I do think we can do better than what was done before, and others in the future will have discovered more and do better than we have done.)
Toward the TheosphereThe fellow who originated this term was a Jesuit, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. He was working within a Christian framework, albeit not an orthodox one. But you don’t have to use that symbol system—you don’t even have to think of Theos—God—as a “being.” You might, for example, be more like Spinoza, the pantheist, who definitely believed in God, but not the traditional image. For him God was simply everything, and he was no fool: Spinoza included not just material existence but also music. Those who were less bright thought this superficial, but if you contemplate “everything,” including all we’ve recently discovered, and being open to there being as much more we will yet discover in the next two hundred or two thousand years, everything far exceeds our powers of imagination. It becomes transcendent as well as immanent, an entirely worth image of a spiritual Greater Wholeness.
Other cultures have a de-personalized image of The All. Nirvana for the Buddhist wouldn’t generate commandments or appeal to one people or one prophet—Eastern thought is more psycho-spiritual. That is to say, many religions in the world, when examined closely, are closer to psychology than they are to the Western religious tradition. And many modern Western theologians—Christians, Jews, and even some Muslims—also find more refined or abstract understandings of God to apply. For example, what did Paul Tillich mean by stating that God was the “ground of being”? The point of the theosphere is, in my mind, the idea of humans reflecting on their own capacity to imagine the ways that we share a kind of unity, not just with other humans, or even with all life, but with everything in the universe—and maybe even beyond this presently-known universe.
Teilhard de Chardin
In doing research for this presentation I discovered that a relativel unknown Russian scientist named Vladimir Vernadsky apparently coined the term "biosphere" and may have mentioned the word “noosphere.” Teilhard got those ideas from him and added the term, "theosphere." Teilhard (pronounced "Tay-yard") has produced several books that were compilatiions of his writings in the 1930s and '40s during which time he had been "silenced" from official teaching by the higher-ups in the Roman Catholic Church. He died in 1955 and subsequently his writings became well known. Basically, he dared to note that in his thinking evolution was the way God participated in creation, and that human consciousness allows us to participate in the spirit of the cosmic Christ in helping the world progress towards fulfillment. (Teilhard called this the "Omega Point" (from the Greek alphabet's first and last letters, Alpha and Omega)---but I think we should recognize that this is not just a point of conversion, but rather a general principle that includes both diversification as well as integration. .
Re-addressing the Great Story, in this interpretation the Geosphere includes the Great Story of cosmology leading to Planetary Formation leading to Earth’s Geology. The Biosphere involves the birth and evolution of Life. The Noosphere involves the story of the emergence and evolution of consciousness. And the Theosphere speaks to the ongoing process whereby reflective consciousness can not only contemplate Wholeness and Its Implications, but also acti to promote greater communications and action to foster our highest ideals.
The implications of the Great Story for me suggest that as a species, we seem to be at a point when humanity can begin to: (1) continue to harvest insights from many fields; (2) recognize new ways to help people understand their place in the cosmos; (3) facilitate consciousness as a value in evolution; and (4) participate in creating the further directions of this Great Story. So sharing the Great Story can help this happen!
As a funny addendum, I imagine a little boy asking, “Daddy, where did I come from?” Taking a deep breath, the father proceeded to explain the facts of life to his son: He pulled out the charts and explained not only the birds and bees, the mysteries of sex and DNA exchange, but the entire epic of evolution from the Big Bang. After a lengthy description, aided by power-point, Dad finished. In response, the boy, eyelids drooping, said, “Oh . . . . . I was just wondering. Billy said he was from Cleveland.”
ReferencesBerry, Thomas. 1999 The great work: our way into the future. New York: Bell Tower.
Berry, Thomas. (2003). The new story (Chapter 6, pp 77- 88). In: A.Fabel & D. St. John (Eds.) (2003). Teilhard in the 21st cenutry: the emerging spirit of earth. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books
Breuer, R. (1991.) The anthropic principle: man as the focal point of nature. Boston: Birkhauser.
Davies, P. C. (2007). Cosmic jackpot: why our universe is just right for life. Boston: Houghton Mifflin.
Dickinson, T. (1999). The universe and beyond (3rd ed.) Toronto: Firefly Books.
Dowd, Michael (2007). Thank God for Evolution! How the marriage of science and religion will transform your life and our world. San Francisco: Council Oaks Books
Also check out his website: http://thankgodforevolution.com/ and also http://www.thegreatstory.org/ this one is very rich in further resources!!
McCarty, Doran. (1976). Teilhard de Chardin. Waco, TX: Word, Inc.
Morgan, Jennifer. (2002). Born with a bang: the universe tells our cosmic story. www.dawnpub.com or 800-545-7475 Tell the great story to your kids with these beautifully illustrated modestly priced books. Or check: http://www.universestories.com/
also: Morgan, Jennifer (2003). (Book 2:) From Lava to Life: the universe tells our earth story. (Illustrated by Dana Lynne Andersen).
-- (Book 3: Mammals who Morph) . These are great presents for your grandchildren!!!
Neuhauser, Robert. (200?).The Cosmic Deity. book..
Nicolson, I. (1999). Unfolding our universe. Cambridge U. Press.
Rue, L. (2000). Everybody’s story: wising up to the epic of evolution. Albany: State University of New York Press.
Rue, L. (2005). Religion is not about God: how spiritual traditions nurture our biological nature and what to expect when they fail. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.
Russell, Cathy. The Epic of Evolution. www.EpicOfEvolution.com Remarkable website with many other references!
Schilling, G. (2004). Evolving cosmos. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Swimme, Brian. (1988). The cosmic creation story (Chapter2). In D. R. Griffin (Ed.), The reenchantment of science: postmodern proposals. Albany: State University of New York Press.
Swimme, Brian & Berry, Thomas. (1994). The universe story: from the primardial flaring forth to the ecozoic era—a celebration of the unfolding of the cosmoss. San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco.* (Especiallly relevant)
Swimme, Brian (2001). Interview. What is Enlightenment, No 19, Spring-Summer 2001, 35-46, 133-135.
Swimme, Brian. (2003). The new natural selection (pp 127 - 137) In: A.Fabel & D. St. John (Eds.) (2003). Teilhard in the 21st cenutry: the emerging spirit of earth. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books
Wyller, A. (1996). The planetary mind. Aspen, CO: MacMurray & Beck
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