The Grand Dialogue in Science and Religion
The Grand Dialogue is an inter-institutional, interdisciplinary, and interfaith exploration of science and religion. The Dialogue seeks to find positive ways of relating these two great ideas in a constructive dialogue. Participating organizations each have their own unique perspectives, foci, message, and intended audience. By cooperating, we affirm the willingness to be open to various issues and perspectives in a spirit of mutual respect.
Scott Davison, Ph.D.
"Science, Faith, and Answers to Prayer"
Saturday, May 13, 2017
Scott A. Davison (Ph.D., Notre Dame) writes on questions about divine providence and human freedom. His publications include a number of articles in prestigious journals, two entries in the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy ("Prophecy" and "Prayer"), and the first full-length book treatment of issues involving divine providence and petitionary prayer: Petitionary Prayer: a Philosophical Investigation, Oxford University Press. He is also the author of On the Intrinsic Value of Everything, Oxford.
The 2017 Grand Dialogue was presented in conjunction with another of our projects funded by the Templeton Foundation: "Abrahamic Reflections on Science and Religion." That project brings 30 scientists and philosophers from around the world, each from one of the Abrahamic religions, to address the key issues in science and religion. All speakers, respondents, and breakout session leaders at this year's Grand Dialogue were project participants. Find out more about the project here: Abrahamic Reflections on Science and Religion
Alvin Plantinga, the 2017 recipient of the Templeton Prize, was also honored at this year's conference. Plantinga’s pioneering work began in the late 1950s, a time when academic philosophers generally rejected religiously informed philosophy. In his early books, however, Plantinga considered a variety of arguments for the existence of God in ways that put theistic belief back on the philosophical agenda. These arguments have now influenced three generations of professional philosophers.
2017 Keynote and responses
Turkish Scholar Caner Taslaman
"Can a Darwinian Be a Muslim?"
Saturday, June 13, 2015
Caner Taslaman was born in Istanbul where he completed his elementary and high school educations. As the son of a mother who is a chemical engineer and a father who is a doctor, he always had deep enthusiasm in natural sciences from a very tender age. He completed his undergraduate studies at the Sociology Department of Bogazici University in Istanbul. During his undergraduate education he has also showed interest in fields like anthropology, sociology of religion, and sociology of knowledge. He later got his master’s degree at the Philosophy and Religious Studies Department of Marmara University in Istanbul, with a thesis on the relationship between the Big Bang Theory, philosophy and theology. Following that, he got his doctorate in the same department with a thesis on the relationship between the Evolution Theory, philosophy and theology. He got Associate Professorship with his book on the relationship between Quantum Theory, philosophy,theology and Professorship with his work on science, philosophy and religion. He also earned a second Ph.D. degree in Political Sciences Faculty of Istanbul University with his thesis on "Islam in Turkey During the Globalization Process.” He had post-doctorate studies first at Tokyo University and later at Oxford University. He also studied at Harvard University and Cambridge University as a visiting scholar. He currently serves as Professor of Philosophy at Yildiz Technical University.
Dr. Alvin Plantinga
"Religion and Science: Where the Conflict Really Lies”
Saturday, April 12, 2014
Alvin Plantinga is the John A. O’Brien Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at the University of Notre Dame. He received his Ph.D. in philosophy from Yale University, has served as President of the American Philosophical Association (Western Division) and Society of Christian Philosophers, and has delivered the Gifford Lectures in Scotland three times.
He is the author of God and Other Minds, The Nature of Necessity, Warrant and Proper Function, and Warranted Christian Belief. His newest book is Where the Conflict Really Lies: Science, Religion, and Naturalism (Oxford University Press). In 1979, he was described in Time magazine as “the leading philosopher of God."
2014 Keynote Presentation
2012 Keynote Presentation
Dr. Gerald Schroeder
"God in the Hebrew Bible, Science in the Modern World? Can Both Be True?"
March 24, 2012
Dr. Gerald Schroeder earned his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Applied Nuclear Physics and Earth and Planetary Sciences. He has taught at MIT, the Weizmann Institute of Science and Hebrew University. He currently teaches at the Aish HaTorah College of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem. In addition to publishing over 60 peer-reviewed articles, Schroeder is the author of four books that explore the relationship between science and religion: Genesis and the Big Bang, The Science of God, The Hidden Face of God, and God According to God.
Nancey Murphy, Ph.D., Th.D.
"Do Humans Have Souls? Perspectives from Science and Religion"
April 16, 2011
Nancey Murphy is a professor of Christian philosophy at Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, CA. She has two doctorates, a Ph.D. in philosophy of science from U.C. Berkeley and a Th.D. in theology from the Graduate Theological Union. Her first book, Theology in the Age of Scientific Reasoning(Cornell, 1990), won the American Academy of Religion award for excellence. She is author of nine other books, including Anglo-American Postmodernity: Philosophical Perspectives on Science, Religion, and Ethics (Westview, 1997); and On the Moral Nature of the Universe: Theology, Cosmology, and Ethics(with George F.R. Ellis, Fortress, 1996). She also has co-edited 11 volumes, and published many articles in science and religion.
2011 Keynote speaker and responses
B. Alan Wallace, Ph.D.
"Experience, Reason, and Faith in Science and Religion: A Buddhist Perspective"
March 20, 2010
B. Alan Wallace, Ph.D. is a practicing Buddhist and the author of several books including, Hidden Dimensions: The Unification of Physics and Consciousness (2008), Embracing Mind: The Common Ground of Science and Spirituality (2008), Contemplative Science: Where Buddhism and Neuroscience Converge (2007), Buddhism and Science: Toward a New Science of Consciousness (2003, and The Taboo of Subjectivity: Toward a New Science of Consciousness (2000).