Polkinghorne's new book

John W. Burgeson (burgy@compuserve.com)
Tue, 18 Aug 1998 15:48:04 -0400

John Polkinghorne has just published a new book.

It is recommended (by me) to all the LISTSERV
participants. Here is a very brief review:


New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1998.
130 pages, index. Hardcover; price not shown.

John Polkinghorne, now the past president and now fellow
of Queens College, Cambridge, the only ordained member
of the Royal Society, continues his series of "short books
with a lot of depth" with yet another gem, one which belongs
n the bookshelf of every ASA member. Those who may have
found some of Polkinghorne's earlier books heavy going
(I am one of these) will be delighted to find this newest terser,
clearer and more understandable. Like C. S. Lewis, the more
he writes, the better it gets.

The author asserts that there have been five principle
concerns which characterize recent (since 1970) science/theology
activity. These are:

1. A rejection of reductionism.

2. Understanding of evolution
as compatible with theology.

3. A revival of a form of natural theology.

4. A methodological comparison of
science and theology.

5. Speculations on how physical processes
are open to divine agency.

He has little to say on the first two of these;
much to discuss on the last three. Chapter 3,
which is titled "Does God Act in the Physical World," is,
perhaps the most challenging.

Read it. It will enrich your life.
Give it as a gift to someone.
It will similarly enrich theirs.

John W. Burgeson
Durango, Colorado August 1998