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  • Former creationist preaches gospel of evolution | Thank God For Evolution
    reconciling disparate beliefs But the former pastor s gospel may shock many Christians Dowd preaches evolution theology a view that promotes evolutionary science and God as the ultimate reality In Dowd s mind you can have Darwin and the divine Dowd is so committed to spreading his message that he offers his book Thank God for Evolution How the Marriage of Science and Religion Will Transform Your Life and Our World as a free download on his Web site The presentations that he and his wife give at churches and other venues are also free But DVD and book sales help finance their ministry For more than five years Dowd 49 and his wife Connie Barlow a science writer have traveled the country in a high top van that they named Angel and asked audiences from many backgrounds to consider evolution theology Their work has drawn praise from Nobel Prize winning scientists The couple will speak at 9 45 a m 11 a m and 7 p m Sunday at First Unitarian Universalist Church 4700 Grover Ave We don t try to show evangelicals or young earth creationists or intelligent design people that we re right and they re wrong Dowd said Evolution gives me a bigger God an undeniably real God Dowd believes that God s revelations didn t stop in biblical times but continued in the form of scientific discovery a worldview that he thinks is important as public schools grapple with how to teach evolution Americans choose a new president and the world faces environmental threats If somebody believes that Jesus the cosmic janitor is going to return on a cloud and clean up the mess we made they re more likely to have a less responsible way of thinking about the future and handing on a

    Original URL path: http://www.thankgodforevolution.com/node/853 (2016-04-30)
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  • 'Thank God for Evolution' | Thank God For Evolution
    Going further Kerr says If God is the trigger then how you get to where you are now doesn t matter He also says Pope Benedict XVI has written opinions reflecting that position Technically creationists believe in the literal meaning of the Book of Genesis that God created the universe in six days then rested on the seventh Those who believe in intelligent design say only that God created the universe no time frame Dowd who calls himself an evolutionary evangelist writes Americans everywhere are engaging in a life changing new conversation about Creation The marriage of science and religion builds bridges and restores hope People across the religious and philosophical spectrum are waking up to the fact that cosmic biological and human history is our shared sacred epic our common creation story The singularity One local pastor hasn t read the book yet but says he will After all he shares the author s name I don t think I wrote a book laughs the Rev Michael Dowd pastor of First United Church of Christ of Easton when told of the author s name Every minister is asked about the issue at one time or another Pastor Dowd says I tell them I don t necessarily see the two sides in conflict We talk rather blithely about the big bang theory he says that all creation was within an infinitesimal singularity Dowd who also serves as vice president of the Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce uses such terms because he says he s had an interest in astronomy since he was 5 or 6 years old when he lived in New York City and was regularly taken to the Haydn Planetarium in Central Park My orientation was always in science he says The idea of all creation stuffed into

    Original URL path: http://www.thankgodforevolution.com/node/852 (2016-04-30)
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  • Ordained minister speaks on human evolution | Thank God For Evolution
    in high schools colleges and congregations to spread their message They try to work with as many different groups as possible including atheists Buddhists Christians American Indians and anyone else willing to listen Together they are among the most popular presenters of the United Universalist Association and have spoken to over 170 congregations in the last three years Dowd s talk centered on how Darwinian evolution can be described as part of a 14 billion year sacred story that melds the spheres of science and religion to provide a common ground for atheists theists pantheists humanists and spiritual seekers Tom Jankowski an organizer of the talk and member of the Davis Unitarian Universalist church said by his count 115 people were in attendance to hear the talk Jankowski noted he found Dowd s talks of which this is his fourth inspiring and that they have helped him to reconnect with all other world species Drawing on ideas of science religion philosophy linguistics and literature Dowd described evolution as the process of the universe becoming conscious of its own existence Looking through a telescope is the world looking at itself and saying wow Dowd said We humanity are the universe becoming self conscious As evidence of what Dowd called the universe s move toward greater and greater levels of complexity he systematically advances through evolutionary history from the simplest molecules to mammals up to today s nation states and what he called biocracy Dowd identifies biocracy as a form of governance that takes into account not only the interests of all humanity but all other species in the biosphere Dowd also criticized traditional views that separate or privilege humanity over the rest of the species on the planet as well as the conception of Earth as a simple store of unused

    Original URL path: http://www.thankgodforevolution.com/node/851 (2016-04-30)
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  • Evolving toward a common ground | Thank God For Evolution
    salvation What I really want people to get is science and religion spurring each other to greatness Dowd said When people are exposed to a sacred meaningful understanding of evolution it puts pieces together for them Both sides can lay down their weapons The war is over But for many the war is still raging While the large majority of the scientific community accepts evolution as fact many fundamental religious denominations refuse to do the same instead backing the theory of creationism Much of America also seems divided on the issue According to a USA Today Gallup poll conducted in June 39 percent said creationism was definitely true and 27 percent thought it was probably true When it comes to evolution 18 percent said the theory was definitely true and 35 percent thought it was probably true Overall 25 percent said both creationism and evolution are definitely or probably true So Dowd has his work cut out for him For more than five years Dowd and his wife science writer Connie Barlow have lived on the road sharing their views with religious and secular audiences in both largely conservative and liberal settings They ve spoken at 500 churches convents and spiritual centers to Catholics Mennonites and Buddhists to young children and seniors They spend nights sometimes a week in the homes of people at each stop of their journey Much of Thank God for Evolution is based on presentations the pair give while traveling in a large white Dodge Sprinter van they ve named Angel It s emblazoned with the Jesus fish and Darwin fish kissing People think of this lifestyle as a hardship said Dowd reached by phone as he traveled from Louisville Ky to Birmingham Ala I feel like I m the richest man in the world I get to communicate a message that builds bridges But first Dowd had to accept the message himself He grew up Roman Catholic and as a teenager struggled with drugs alcohol and sexuality In 1979 while in the U S Army in Germany Dowd said he was born again went to church that following Sunday and months later experienced what is known to Pentecostals as baptism in the holy spirit He spoke in tongues Soon he was an ardent young earth creationist handing out virulent anti evolution tracts and challenging anyone who dared to believe earth was any more than 6 000 years old There were a few major ideological turning points First many of the student and teachers he encountered at Evangel University people he worshipped with and respected held evolutionary viewpoints and as Dowd says in his book I couldn t write any of them off as demonically possessed Eventually Dowd began to broaden his mind double majoring in biblical studies and philosophy and hearing professors reinforce the idea that all truth even truth backed by science is God s truth He also met and befriended Tobias Meeker a Roman Catholic hospital chaplain and former Trappist monk who considered

    Original URL path: http://www.thankgodforevolution.com/node/849 (2016-04-30)
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  • Evolution, science and religion | Thank God For Evolution
    Get Involved Evangelize Posters Flyers Donate Testimonials Subscribe Study Guides Media Audio Video Flyers Posters Schedule Store The Great Story Search Evolution science and religion BBC There s a new evangelist on the road in the bible belt of America but whereas Michael Dowd once believed in creationism he s now an evangelist for Darwin and he s not abandoned his Christian faith Indeed his new book is entitled Thank

    Original URL path: http://www.thankgodforevolution.com/node/850 (2016-04-30)
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  • Former Evangelical Minister Has a New Message: Jesus Hearts Darwin | Thank God For Evolution
    WN What kind of reception have you received from other Christians Dowd Well I don t get the opportunity to speak in the most fundamental contexts Anybody who believes that evolution is the devil isn t going to invite me to their church Most of my audience is on the moderate end But there s definitely interest Three weeks ago I was in the Bahamas with 125 evangelical ministers progressive but evangelical nonetheless There are people who are quite interested in this They re finding that it opens up new ways of thinking WN Have you visited the Creation Museum Dowd The first time my wife Connie and I went there we drove in with our big van with the Jesus and Darwin fish kissing on the side The folks working there kept us in sight understandably but they were cordial Then we went back a few weeks ago and they were very friendly WN Science hasn t proven that God exists so why do you believe in him Dowd Atheists and believers agree that reality consists of nested spheres subatomic particles within atoms within molecules within cells within organisms within planets within galaxies Each nested level exhibits divine creativity the power to bring something new into existence that didn t exist before That creativity didn t exist at the beginning of time making everything like a potter makes a pot but exists through the universe in a nested sense God Goddess Allah they re just proper names for that ultimate reality God is a sacred proper name for largest nesting doll You may choose to call it by another name Many people just call it the universe WN So you embrace science and therefore evolution But in your book you commend conservatives who don t Why Dowd Most conservatives have never been exposed to thinking of evolution except as a chance mechanistic godless process Evolutionary theology talks about evolution in a way that gives people a sense of purpose as part of something infinitely meaningful Until conservatives are exposed to that they should reject evolution It s our responsibility to find more sacred meaningful holy ways of promoting evolution WN How can evolution be meaningful in a personal religiously enriching way Dowd When I say evolution I mean the cosmic biological and human as one sacred story galaxies planets life human consciousness and culture When someone feels connected to ultimate reality and knows themselves to be a part of that it becomes so much easier to exist with integrity with love and compassion for the whole Evolution helps us understand the challenges of life Why do we struggle with what we struggle with Traditional religion says it s the Fall it s original sin But from an evolutionary theology perspective original sin is a way of talking about what we call animal instincts Take testosterone The more a person has the more a person tends to take risks and think about sex If people think they have sex on

    Original URL path: http://www.thankgodforevolution.com/node/848 (2016-04-30)
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  • Evolutionary Theology: How to Love God and Science | Thank God For Evolution
    are absurd questions Instead said Dowd God is another word for universe and the divine imperative is evident in the properties of emergent and symbiotic systems On the current cultural landscape Up until now there s been this big gulf On the one side are creationists On the other are the new atheists Richard Dawkins and Sam Harris and Dan Dennett who say that you have to reject religion completely in order to accept evolution On Dawkins and the New Atheists I m grateful that they re doing what they re doing They re plowing the field There s a hunger in Americans for a meaningful inspiring way of thinking about what science is revealing to us Dawkins let me reprint in Thank God for Evolution Dowd s new book a letter he wrote to his 10 year old daughter On the New Atheists potential alienation of religious believers It s probably true but it s understandable They re trying to combat otherworldly supernatural mythic understandings of religion They re accurate in some of those assessments But they re not critiquing a sacred view of evolution Many have publicly supported us Richard and my wife acclaimed science journalist Connie Barlow have known each other for years On his reception by religious believers There s an interest in this People are finding that it opens up new ways of thinking Studying evolution is like following cosmic bread crumbs back to God The details of evolution understood in an inspiring way reconnect us to the whole to ultimate reality On apocalypse Dinosaurs are here to teach us things not test our faith And contrary to popular belief these aren t the end times for humanity They re just the beginning Dinosaurs were here for 175 million years humans have only been here

    Original URL path: http://www.thankgodforevolution.com/node/840 (2016-04-30)
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  • Preaching the Gospel of Evolution | Thank God For Evolution
    Study Guides Media Audio Video Flyers Posters Schedule Store The Great Story Search Preaching the Gospel of Evolution WIE Unbound When we heard that evolutionary theologian Michael Dowd s new book Thank God for Evolution has been garnering praise from everyone from Nobel laureates to U S senators we wanted to catch up with him to speak about his recent work A one time fundamentalist Christian who later awakened to the great story of evolutionary history Dowd is an evangelical minister who spends his time traveling nonstop across North America to preach the gospel of evolution and the marriage of science and religion Together with his wife science writer Connie Barlow he has spent the last six years on a personal mission to introduce the ideas of evolutionary spirituality to traditional religious believers atheists and everyone in between In this conversation with WIE associate editor Carol Raphael Dowd expounds on the many ways science and religion augment each other With the enthusiasm of a preacher and the curiosity of a scientist he dives into the heart of such universal concerns as God morality and the nature of evil always from an evolutionary perspective And he passionately calls for reimagining our

    Original URL path: http://www.thankgodforevolution.com/node/847 (2016-04-30)
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