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Latest News

According to ISCAST Executive Director, Chris Mulherin, "sceptics should stop demanding proof of climate change, because that’s not how science works."

An interview with Denis Alexander

In September, ISCAST Executive Director Chris Mulherin interviewed well-known UK scientist Denis Alexander. Alexander holds a PhD in neurochemistry and conducted research in human genetics, molecular immunology, and cancer for forty years. In 2006 he founded the Faraday Institute for Science and Religion at Cambridge, where was director until 2012.

This interesting survey posted by the ABC begins:
A long-term study of Australian biology students reveals how attitudes towards creationism and evolution have shifted.
The survey, published in the journal Evolution: Education and Outreach, was started 32 years ago by Mike Archer at the University of New South Wales.
"I wanted to know what percentage of our incoming university students held a [creationist] view, which in effect meant we were wasting our time trying to teach them about the science of evolution," Professor Archer said.

Some ISCASTians will remember Simon Conway Morris's visit to Australia and his reflections on 'convergent evolution' and what theological significance it may have. Here is an interview (without theological commentary) with a biologist that explains briefly the idea of evolution having a 'direction'.

The August issue of the ISCAST Digest is now available to download. The Digest is full of fascinating stories and resources.

Download Volume 10, Issue 3

Comic book writers love multiverses. It’s such an easy way to explain continuity problems; just say it happened in a different universe and move on.

Luke Barnes, who many of you may remember from his presentation at COSAC 2018, had a closer look at the multiverse concept.  

ISCAST president Alan Gijsbers speaks on ABC Radio National's show God Forbid

The history of life on Earth is almost as long as the history of Earth itself. The most precise scientific dating methods tell us that our planet formed 4567 million years ago, although there are no rock samples preserved from this ancient and chaotic time.

At ABC Religion and Ethics, ISCAST fellow Peter Harrison has written a review of (Harvard psychologist and popular atheist) Steven Pinker's new book Enlightenment Now. It's a review that many ISCAST friends might find interesting as it challenges (although a stronger word is probably in order) Pinker's grasp on history and the way he puts his misunderstanding to work in the interests of (a godless) "reason, science, humanism and progress". 

This very clearly written article delves into the nature of the universe and attempts to make sense of its apparent 'fine tuning' by proposing 'cosmo​ psychism'. It is posted here not because it coheres with orthodox Christianity (it doesn't!) but because (in the first half) it sets out clearly some of the current state of physics and the challenges it faces before going on to propose that the whole universe itself is 'conscious' and claiming that such a theory is a better one than either the multiverse theory or theism. (Chris Mulherin, ISCAST Exec. Director)​

ISCAST distinguished fellow Tom McLeish writes in Physics Today about the nature of the science–faith relationship and suggests that the conflict myth is harmful to science.

To say, “I believe in the Church” is to embrace and live into a reality that precedes us, encompasses us, and continues beyond us. Indeed, if we are to truly be the Church in the present, I believe that it is incumbent on us to listen to those who have gone before us, and recognize that our own “here and now” is not the whole of the Christian story.

ISCAST Director Chris Mulherin writes in Eternity news about last Friday's Doomsday Clock announcement and our attraction to apocalyptic scenarios.

ISCAST fellow (and COSAC speaker) Peter Harrison writes on the ABC Religion and Ethics website about being cautious about referring to "Western values".

Until last month, the smallest star in the Southern Cross had the no-nonsense title of Epsilon Crucis – literally the fifth-brightest star of the Cross.

Michael Strauss, particle physicist and Christian, explains string theory (the most popular attempt at the physicists' 'theory of everything') for the layperson. Amongst other things, string theory has been criticised for not even being science.

In the span of less than a decade, social scientist Elaine Howard Ecklund’s research has ostensibly supported complete opposite observations in the ongoing “wars” (real or imagined) between science and religion.

The mother of all string theories passes a litmus test that, so far, no other candidate theory of quantum gravity has been able to match.

Daniel Dennett’s latest book marks five decades of majestic failure to explain consciousness.

In this 12 min video David Bentley Hart discusses the problem of understanding consciousness; materialism (or physicalism) just doesn't have the resources to explain the most overwhelming reality that we all experience. Those ISCASTians who have heard or read ISCAST President Alan Gijsbers' reflections on the self will be interested in this short video.

Parents often ask me what they ought to do to prepare their children for a future they can scarcely imagine, in a world that's changing before their eyes. 

An opinion piece by Alan Finkel.

Albert Einstein said that the ‘most incomprehensible thing about the Universe is that it is comprehensible’. He was right to be astonished. 

Each semester, I teach courses on the philosophy of science to undergraduates at the University of New Hampshire. Most of the students take my courses to satisfy general education requirements, and most of them have never taken a philosophy class before.

John Buchanan, a Christian psychiatrist in Melbourne, reflects in The Spectator on the recent passing of a euthanasia (assisted suicide) bill in Victoria.

The December issue of the ISCAST Digest begins with a passionate plea from the Executive Director. The Digest is full of fascinating stories and resources, and it's now available for download.

Download Volume 9, Issue 4