Author(s): Stuart A. Kauffman
This is a compelling and sweeping argument that complexity theory can build a bridge between science and religion. Consider the woven integrated complexity of a living cell after 3.8 billion years of evolution. Is it more awesome to suppose that a transcendent God fashioned the cell at a stroke, or to realize that the living cell evolved with no Creator, no Almighty Hand, but arose on its own, created by the evolving biosphere? In "Reinventing the Sacred", complexity theorist Stuart Kauffman presents a new understanding of a natural divinity based on an emerging, scientifically based worldview. Kauffman argues that the qualities of divinity that we hold sacred-creativity, meaning, purposeful action - are also, in fact, properties of the universe that can be investigated scientifically. In addition, Kauffman offers stunning evidence for this idea in an abundance of fields-from cell biology to economics to the philosophy of mind-in order to find common ground between two belief systems often at odds with each other. A daring and ambitious book, "Reinventing the Sacred" challenges readers on every level of scientific thought.
Stuart A. Kauffman is the founding director of the Institute for Biocomplexity and Informatics and a professor at the University of Calgary. During the 1990s he rose to prominence at the Santa Fe Institute where he developed groundbreaking theories on emergence and complexity. He lives in Calgary, Canada.