About the Guest
Rupert Sheldrake, PhD, is a biologist and author of more than eighty-five technical papers and eight books, including Science and Spiritual Prcatices, and the co-author of six books. He was a Fellow of Clare College, Cambridge University, a Research Fellow of the Royal Society, and a Frank Know Fellow at Harvard. He worked in India as Principal Plant Physiologist at the International Crops Research Institute ICRISAT, and also lived for two years in the Benedictine ashram of Fr Bede Griffiths in Tamil Nadu. From 2005-2010, he was Director of the Perrott-Warrick Project for the study of unexplained human and animal abilities, funded from Trinity College, Cambridge. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Noetic Sciences and of Schumacher College in Devon, England. He lives in London and is married to Jill Purce, with whom he has two sons. His web site is www.sheldrake.org.
In this episode, we discuss:
- Obstacles to the science of spiritual practice – limitations of a materialist¬†view
- Engagement with the Indian tradition and how it helped him return to Christianity
- Intention of a pilgrimage and how it differs from being a tourist
- The interplay of form and energy and the common ground with a¬†Trinitarian view
- Human genome project – what we know and don’t know (e.g.¬†shape, form, instincts)
- The brain as a mediator and not the cause
- His book Science and Spiritual Practices and how science helps validate seven practices on which all religions are built and spiritual practices in a secular world
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Throughout 2023 at Embodied Philosophy, one of our editorial and research themes will be connected to this question: “What is the future of the yoga teacher”? This is at once a practical, professional and philosophical question.
Yet materialism, which has dominated our intellectual culture since the Victorian age, covers fewer and fewer bases of life in the twenty-first century. The natural sciences are increasingly defined by quantum data, interdimensional formulas, and fields like neuroplasticity, which uses brain scans to demonstrate the capacity of thought to alter neural matter. Our ordinary reference points of life are in greater flux today than at any time since Darwinism upended what it meant to be human in the Victorian era.
Rabbi Rami Shapiro PH.D. is an award–winning author of over thirty-six books on religion and spirituality. Rami co-directs the One River Foundation, is a Contributing Editor at Spirituality and Health magazine, and hosts the magazine’s podcast: Spirituality & Health with Rabbi Rami.
Suddenly, I realized that my friend didn’t actually want advice or solutions at that moment. My friend just wanted to feel like someone had their back and was on their side and that I was listening. In other words, my friend wanted me to sit and listen to their experience of discomfort and suffering with compassion.