Zygon: Journal of Religion & Science

March 1994 Editorial

[Zygon, vol. 29, no. 1 (March 1994).]
© 1994 by the Joint Publication Board of Zygon. ISSN: 0591-2385
DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-9744.1994.tb00643.x

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This twenty-ninth volume of Zygon: Journal of Religion and Science begins with the third in our series of Profiles. The subject is the philosopher and historian of biology, Michael Ruse. He joins previous profilees, biochemist and theologian Arthur Peacocke (December 1991) and neuropsychiatrist Eugene d’Aquili (June 1993). If our plans do not go awry, the March 1995 issue will focus upon the ethicist and theologian James Gustafson.

The conversation that follows in these pages, between Ruse, biologist George Williams, philosopher Michael Bradie, and theologians Richard Busse and Philip Hefner, turns out to be a remarkably personal give-and-take on the issue whether Christian faith and scientific understanding of the world can be reconciled or yoked in any significant manner. This, in turn, becomes the question whether an intelligent, scientifically informed person can entertain Christian faith as a possibility for interpreting the world and our lives in it. The conversation takes this form because of the way in which Michael Ruse poses the issues at the outset. In so doing, he has generated a vigorous, even scrappy, exchange that goes to the heart of this journal’s concerns for over a quarter-century. The editor, for one, is grateful to Ruse for having set the agenda as he has.

By happenstance, the other two pieces in this issue are pertinent to the issues raised in the profile conversation. Anthropologist Lee Cronk provides an interpretation of morality under the rubric of manipulation—a way of approach that is being explored widely in anthropological circles today. Linda Jarchow Jones, minister of a Christian congregation, gives us a glimpse of how she has wrestled with the same questions that exercise Messrs. Ruse et al. and the modus vivendi that works for her.

Readers are encouraged to respond to the issues raised here. We remind you that 1995 marks the thirtieth year of Zygon. We have already scheduled a comprehensive retrospective on the thought of the French paleontologist and mystic, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, for the June 1995 issue. If you have suggestions for the contents of this special anniversary volume, please let the editors have them without delay.

Philip Hefner



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