Sir John's Vision

What Do We Know? What Is There to Learn?

Edited by Paul C. W. Davies George F. R. Ellis Keith Ward

Foreword by Mary Ann Meyers, PhD

With Philip Clayton Rebekah Alezander Dunlap Owen Gingerich Niels Henrik Gregersen Harold G. Koenig David G. Myers Stephen G. Post Robert John Russell Russell Stannard

In 2017, the year marking the 105th anniversary of the birth of Sir John Templeton, a group of scientists, scholars, and advisors who knew him personally gathered in Lyford Cay in the Bahamas. Their purpose: to discuss how the Foundation that bears his name could best extend his philanthropic vision into the twenty-first century. 

This volume is a result of that meeting—a collection of thirteen essays written by experts in fields that most fascinated Sir John. The contributors assess the Foundation’s fidelity to its founder’s intent, chart promising avenues for future grantmaking, and champion Sir John’s contrarian mission of unlocking life’s deepest mysteries. 

The members of the John Templeton Foundation are the custodians of Sir John’s vision—bold in its aspiration; humble in its approach—charged with using the tools of science to advance the frontiers of the spirit. May the essays collected here serve as inspiration as we carry that vision forward.

Foreword / vii

Introduction / xiii

section one

1. Extending Sir John’s Vision into the Twenty-First Century / 3
Paul C. W. Davies

2. From Cosmology to Life and Ethics / 11
George F. R. Ellis

3. Future Research in a Diversity of Domains in Science, Theology and Spirituality / 27
Robert John Russell

4. John Marks Templeton: The Man Who Said No / 51
Owen Gingerich

Section Two

5. Psychological Science and Christian Faith: Insights and Enrichments from Sustained Dialogue / 61
Malcolm Jeeves

6. Frontiers in Psychological Science / 83
David G. Myers

7. Religion, Spirituality and Health: What We Know, What We Need to Know 97
Harold G. Koenig

8. The Search for God in the Human Mind 111
Russell Stannard

9. The Evolving Process of Man’s Consciousness from a Scientific and Spiritual Perspective / 122
Rebekah A. Dunlap

10. Can We Investigate Sir John’s Core Metaphysical Idea? An Infinite Mind of Creative Love Manifest in the Ordered Universe and as a Source of Our Nonmaterial Souls / 129
Stephen G. Post

Section Three

11. Has There Been Progress in Theological Understanding in the Modern World? / 153
Keith Ward

12. From Spiritual Information to Communication and Transformation / 164
Niels Henrik Gregersen

13. The Philanthropic Vision of a Contrarian / 174
Philip Clayton

About the Contributors / 186