Evolutionaries: Unlocking the Spiritual and Cultural Potential of Science's Greatest Idea

Evolutionaries: Unlocking the Spiritual and Cultural Potential of Science's Greatest Idea

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by Carter Phipps
     
 

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“Carter Phipps brilliantly expands our understanding of evolution by showing us that a new science is emerging—one that will holistically integrate our understanding of consciousness, cosmology, and evolution.”
—Deepak Chopra

Blending cutting-edge ideas with incisive spiritual insights, Evolutionaries is the first popular

Overview

“Carter Phipps brilliantly expands our understanding of evolution by showing us that a new science is emerging—one that will holistically integrate our understanding of consciousness, cosmology, and evolution.”
—Deepak Chopra

Blending cutting-edge ideas with incisive spiritual insights, Evolutionaries is the first popular presentation of an emerging school of thought called “evolutionary spirituality.” Carter Phipps, the former executive editor of EnlightenNext magazine, asserts that evolution is not only a scientific but also a spiritual idea in a book whose message has the power to bring new meaning and purpose to life as we know it. Readers will be fascinated and enlightened by Evolutionaries, a book which Deepak Chopra, the world-renowned author of The Seven Spiritual Laws of Superheroes, Jesus, and Buddha, says “is going to help create a worldview that will influence our vision of the future direction of evolution and also our role in consciously participating in it.”

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Evolution is universal in this masterful survey by Phipps of the diverse ideas that make up the emerging field of Integral thought. By presenting “culture, consciousness, and the cosmos” as dynamic and interrelated areas of expansion, mind and matter alike are viewed as part of “a vast process of becoming.” The aim is to incorporate science and faith by broadening the definition and scope of what evolution is understood to be. While concepts like transhumanism, complexity science, spiral dynamics, and the noosphere will be new to many readers, Phipps, EnlightenNext editor, explains them thoroughly and makes a strong case for their legitimacy. In the process, the lives of several theorists—from 20th century sages such as Teilhard de Chardin and Sri Aurobindo to contemporary intellectuals like Ken Wilber and Andrew Cohen—are examined. These “evolutionaries” are shown to possess a worldview that is optimistic yet realistic, both rational and spiritual. The author, too, appears to share this mindset. His writing projects a palpable sense of positivity and excitement for what is to come. Agent: Natasha Kern. (July)
John F. Haught
"This beautifully written book is not only a splendid survey of evolutionary thought and its spiritual implications. It is also a significant contribution to the increasingly important conversation between the natural sciences and our spiritual traditions. Enthusiastically recommended."
Reverend - Michael Dowd
"No one has their head and heart around the full range of evolutionary worldviews like Carter Phipps."
Ken Wilber
"A profound and profoundly important new work. With clarity and deep understanding, Carter Phipps walks us through the great evolutionary pioneers and their ideas in this extraordinary philosophy, making the book absolutely indispensable for lay and professional alike. The very highest recommendation!"
Brian Swimme
"We live in one of those rare historical moments when the deepest metaphysical questions are being turned over and examined as we search for a new orientation for the next millennium. It would be hard to find a better guide into this fascinating conversation than Carter Phipps’s Evolutionaries."
Deepak Chopra
"Brilliantly expands our understanding of evolution. Evolutionaries is going to help create a worldview that will influence our understanding of the future direction of evolution and also our role in consciously participating in it."
Barbara Marx Hubbard
"Essential reading for anyone who cares about humanity’s future and our role in creating a better one. Evolutionaries, is a brilliant, accessibly written, and eye-opening book"
Andrew Cohen
"Evolutionaries is a tour-de-force where science, poetic prose, philosophical thinking, and authentic spiritual depth come together to deliver a powerful message of hope, optimism, and inspiration."
Elizabeth Debold
"A rare book, equally delightful and deep, Phipps explores how our growing knowledge about the evolutionary process catalyzes nothing less than a revolutionary understanding of our selves."
JOHN F. HAUGHT
“This beautifully written book is not only a splendid survey of evolutionary thought and its spiritual implications. It is also a significant contribution to the increasingly important conversation between the natural sciences and our spiritual traditions. Enthusiastically recommended.”
Reverend MICHAEL DOWD
“No one has their head and heart around the full range of evolutionary worldviews like Carter Phipps.”
KEN WILBER
“A profound and profoundly important new work. With clarity and deep understanding, Carter Phipps walks us through the great evolutionary pioneers and their ideas in this extraordinary philosophy, making the book absolutely indispensable for lay and professional alike. The very highest recommendation!”
BRIAN SWIMME
“We live in one of those rare historical moments when the deepest metaphysical questions are being turned over and examined as we search for a new orientation for the next millennium. It would be hard to find a better guide into this fascinating conversation than Carter Phipps’s Evolutionaries.”
DEEPAK CHOPRA
“Brilliantly expands our understanding of evolution. Evolutionaries is going to help create a worldview that will influence our understanding of the future direction of evolution and also our role in consciously participating in it.”
BARBARA MARX HUBBARD
“Essential reading for anyone who cares about humanity’s future and our role in creating a better one. Evolutionaries, is a brilliant, accessibly written, and eye-opening book”
ANDREW COHEN
Evolutionaries is a tour-de-force where science, poetic prose, philosophical thinking, and authentic spiritual depth come together to deliver a powerful message of hope, optimism, and inspiration.”
ELIZABETH DEBOLD
“A rare book, equally delightful and deep, Phipps explores how our growing knowledge about the evolutionary process catalyzes nothing less than a revolutionary understanding of our selves.”
Kirkus Reviews
Debut author Phipps offers a challenging reexamination of the connection between the "evolutionary dynamics of the universe and the very being of the divine." As the executive editor of the magazine EnlightenNext, the author has kept abreast of leading trends in modern science, theology and philosophy, and he denies that there is an inherent contradiction between science and religion. Phipps has coined the word "evolutionaries" to describe a group of scientists, futurists, sociologists, psychologists, philosophers and theologians who share an "evolutionary vision and a care for our collective future." He cites writings of the Jesuit anthropologist priest Teilhard de Chardin (1881–1955) as exemplary of those who seek inspiration from the past but are not bound by a fixed system of beliefs. Phipps is also sharply critical of environmentalists who deny the unique position of man as the highest expression of creation. He suggests that the chaos bred by rapidly changing environments creates the potential for evolution, whether of species or in the realm of culture, and he compares the "rough and tumble world of globalization in the twenty-first century [to] the dynamics at play in Earth's prebiotic soup billions of years ago." Both are chaotic environments that foster evolutionary transformation by bringing natural selection into play. At the same time, Phipps believes that evolution is not a random process; rather, it embodies directionality and purpose. "Might we in some way represent the feedback loop for the universe itself," he asks, "fulfilling the next stage in our development…[and] creating the next novel stage of cosmogenesis?" Phipps interviews a number of physicists, futurologists working in artificial intelligence, and cognitive psychologists seeking an explanation for consciousness. Thoughtful and provocative.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061916137
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
06/26/2012
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
555,122
Product dimensions:
5.38(w) x 7.86(h) x 1.02(d)

Related Subjects

What People are saying about this

Deepak Chopra
“Brilliantly expands our understanding of evolution. Evolutionaries is going to help create a worldview that will influence our understanding of the future direction of evolution and also our role in consciously participating in it.”
John F. Haught
“This beautifully written book is not only a splendid survey of evolutionary thought and its spiritual implications. It is also a significant contribution to the increasingly important conversation between the natural sciences and our spiritual traditions. Enthusiastically recommended.”
Andrew Cohen
Evolutionaries is a tour-de-force where science, poetic prose, philosophical thinking, and authentic spiritual depth come together to deliver a powerful message of hope, optimism, and inspiration.”
Ken Wilber
“A profound and profoundly important new work. With clarity and deep understanding, Carter Phipps walks us through the great evolutionary pioneers and their ideas in this extraordinary philosophy, making the book absolutely indispensable for lay and professional alike. The very highest recommendation!”
Elizabeth Debold
“A rare book, equally delightful and deep, Phipps explores how our growing knowledge about the evolutionary process catalyzes nothing less than a revolutionary understanding of our selves.”
Brian Swimme
“We live in one of those rare historical moments when the deepest metaphysical questions are being turned over and examined as we search for a new orientation for the next millennium. It would be hard to find a better guide into this fascinating conversation than Carter Phipps’s Evolutionaries.”
Barbara Marx Hubbard
“Essential reading for anyone who cares about humanity’s future and our role in creating a better one. Evolutionaries, is a brilliant, accessibly written, and eye-opening book”
Michael Dowd
“No one has their head and heart around the full range of evolutionary worldviews like Carter Phipps.”

Meet the Author

Carter Phipps is a writer and speaker and the former executive editor of Enlighten-Next magazine. He lives in Lenox, Massachusetts.

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Evolutionaries: Unlocking the Spiritual and Cultural Potential of Science's Greatest Idea 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
popscipopulizer More than 1 year ago
*A full executive-style summary of this book will be available at the website newbooksinbrief dot wordpress dot com, on or before Monday, July 16, 2012. The main argument of the book: Up until the scientific revolution, some half a century ago, religion reigned supreme in the realm of belief and understanding. Since that time, though--and especially since the introduction of the theory of evolution in 1859--science has increasingly challenged religion as the chief source of how we understand the world and our place in it. Science's increasing influence can be seen in the growing trend towards secularism in the past 200 years, and particularly in the last century, as church and state have been increasingly separated, and a growing percentage of the population has moved away from the world's religions. Still, though, religion is not going down without a fight. What's more, even many who have turned away from religion question science's ability to provide the kinds of understandings that truly satisfy the human psyche. The problem, many believe, is that science, with its materialist explanations, fails to accommodate our deeper spiritual and moral nature. According to the author Carter Phipps, though, while science and spirituality may seem diametrically opposed, the latest developments in evolutionary theory are actually upsetting this notion. This is the case because the theory of evolution, which was once confined to the realm of biology, has now spread to envelop every other domain of human inquiry, such that it has become the key paradigm in understanding the natural (and meta-natural) world, from biology to psychology to morality to culture to spirit to god to the unfolding of the universe. The result is that evolution can now be turned to in order to answer virtually all of our deepest and most profound existential questions, and in a unified and coherent way that does in fact satisfy our deepest spiritual longings. When I say that this is Phipps' argument, it is true that the author is very much a proponent of the evolutionary worldview. However, rather than focusing on his own particular views in the book, Phipps centers his attention on the theories that the leading thinkers have advanced in the field. This includes not only current theorists, but all of the major theorists that have been involved with the worldview since its inception some 200 years ago (beginning with Georg Hegel--whom Phipps identifies as the first explicitly evolutionary philosopher). Phipps does well to show how evolutionary views have spilled out of science and into more meta-natural domains, such as spirituality and conceptions of god (theology). While this is no doubt interesting, it presents a problem. The approach of scientific evolutionism to spirituality and god is entirely different from an evolutionarily-informed spirituality and theology. Given that this is the case, as evolutionary theory is pushed beyond the boundaries of science, it necessarily splits into opposing sects. This is a major problem for any supposedly whole and coherent evolutionary worldview. And Phipps does not fully address this challenge in the book. A full and comprehensive summary of the main argument of the book will be available at newbooksinbrief dot wordpress dot com, on or before Monday, July 16, 2012.