The efforts of theologians in the last few decades to adapt their discipline to the methodological constraints of the empirical sciences have become obsolete. Just as many theologians have reached a tentative rapproachment with the secular mentality, the elements of mystery hitherto shepherded by religious thinkers have been appropriated in the cosmological models of the new physics.
The paper explores revolutionary developments over the last ten years within quantum physics. It points to an imminent convergence between scientific and religious concepts within a larger framework of speculation termed synholism (from Friedrich von Weizsächer), and examines theoretical implications of such hypotheses in high-energy physics as a cosmic consciousness and multiple universes.
Carl Raschke is associate professor of religious studies at University of Denver, University Park, Colorado 80208.
Niels Bohr and the Mysticism of Nature by John Honner
Some authors have described Niels Bohr as never being open to anything transcendental. Wolfgang Pauli, on the other hand, spent many years trying to persuade Bohr to admit to a kind of mysticism. This study offers support to Paulis claims. First, a distinction between what is vague on the one hand, and what is necessarily circular on the other, clarifies the work of Bohr. This discussion leads to comments on Bohrs attitude towards the mutuality of spirit and matter and of reason and mysticism. Finally, some reflections are made about the relevance of Bohrs covert transcendental philosophy for theological endeavors.
John Honner lectures in philosophy of science and twentieth-century theology at the United Faculty of Theology, Ormond College, Melbourne University, and is a member of the Jesuit Theological College, 175 Royal Parade, Parkville, VIC 3052, Australia. The author thanks Professor Aage Bohr and Mr. Erik Rüdinger for permission to work in the Niels Bohr Archive and to quote from his letters and notes.
Quantum Physics and Freedom in a Whiteheadian Perspective by George Arkell Riggan
This paper attempts to demonstrate the critical significance of early advances in quantum physics for Alfred North Whiteheads development of the categories of his metaphysics and to illustrate the capacity of his system to serve as a bridge between the sciences and the humanities by relating specific Whiteheadian categories to concrete microphysical behavior with special reference to the notion of freedom.
George Arkell Riggan is professor emeritus of systematic theology at Hartford Seminary Foundation and lives at Leshures at Cross Road, Rowe, Massachusetts 01367.
Evolution, Human Values and Religious Experience: A Process Perspective by W. Widick Schroeder
This essay sketches an interpretation of human experience utilizing the perspective of process philosophy. Beauty is a key notion, and emergent evolution is a central theme. The following topics are addressed: the emergence of modern evolutionary thinking and alternative responses to it; the nature of human nature in a process perspective; the place of humans in nature; the immanence of laws; emergent evolution on this planet; some implications of the hierarchy of nature for the interpretation of human life, human morality, and human values; and human religious experience.
W. Widick Schroeder is professor of religion and society at Chicago Theological Seminary, 5757 University Avenue, Chicago, Illinois 60637.
Psychological Foundations of Value Theory: B. F. Skinners Science of Values by William A. Rottschaefer
The thesis that the sciences are value neutral has recently been criticized severely. However, both the critics of the value-neutrality thesis and its upholders share the separatist position that there is a fundamental dichotomy between fact and value, differing only on the degree to which science is impregnated with values. Skinners claim that the science of operant behavior is the science of values rejects this dichotomy and is opposed to both the value-neutrality thesis and criticisms of it. I examine Skinners claim that psychology is value-laden in the radical sense of providing a foundation for a theory of values and conclude that Skinner is arguing for an ethics and theory of values which is naturalistic, teleological, and both substantively and methodologically objective.
William A. Rottschaefer is associate professor of philosophy at Lewis and Clark College, Portland, Oregon 97219. The author thanks Professor Skinner for his comments on an earlier draft of this paper as well as Karl Peters and two anonymous referees for their very helpful comments and criticism.
Free Will by John Thorp, reviewed by William H. Austin