Imatge de l'autor

Chet Raymo

Autor/a de 365 Starry Nights

21+ obres 2,114 Membres 37 Ressenyes 3 preferits

Sobre l'autor

Chet Raymo is the author of The Dark of Cork, Honey from Stone, and The Soul of the Night. He is a professor of physics and astronomy at Stonehill College in Massachusetts.
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Obres de Chet Raymo

Obres associades

Soul: An Archaeology--Readings from Socrates to Ray Charles (1994) — Col·laborador — 101 exemplars
Night: A Literary Companion (2009) — Col·laborador — 8 exemplars


Coneixement comú



Can religion and science co-exist? There will always be a human need for a spiritual connection to the cosmos, those who search within. There will always be those who search for meaning through scientific enterprise. Raymo finds paths that intertwine the two.
ben_r47 | Hi ha 4 ressenyes més | Feb 22, 2024 |
Reviewed in Winter 2018 issue of Pantheist Vision:

Book Review by Harold Wood

Chet Raymo, a Ph.D physicist and popular science writer, was raised as a Catholic, and remained devout up through college. But soon, his science courses, even in a Jesuit college, led him to question traditional beliefs. As his understanding of science grew, so his attitude toward the meaning of God changed as well. Like many Catholics, Teilhard de Chardin was his avenue into adopting a spirituality based more on evolution, replacing the Bible or the teachings of the Church. Today, Raymo is a respected member of the Religious Naturalist Association Board of Advisors. He states his beliefs as follows:

So this is my Credo. I am an atheist, if by God one means a transcendent Person who acts willfully within the creation. I am an agnostic in that I believe our knowledge of "what is" is partial and tentative-a tiny flickering flame in the overwhelming shadows of our ignorance. I am a pantheist in that I believe empirical knowledge of the sensate world is the surest revelation of whatever is worth being called divine. I am a Catholic by accident of birth.

Much of the book deals with Raymo’s insistence that to affirm “absolute belief” in anything is simply wrong; that with a scientific point of view we must always realize how ignorant we are of the facts of the world. We find answers to many questions using science, but those in turn inevitably raise new questions. The scientific enterprise is not intended to find the “ultimate” answers to the Big Questions about the meaning of life and the universe, but to find answers to the little questions. Raymo also completely rejects “cultural accretions that religious traditions” apply to “Mystery” - “the anthropomorphisms, misplaced pieties, triumphalism, intolerance toward “infidels,” supposed miracles, and supernatural natural imaginings,” which he calls “Memes without substance.” Thus, Raymo forthrightly eschews anything supernatural, or any form of “deity” whatsoever. Inspired equally by Walt Whitman (see page 7 of this issue) and the latest brain science, he asserts that there is nothing in the human body or brain that could be the locus of a “soul.” Yet, he still counts himself as among the “religious.”

He explains that the reason he is a “religious” naturalist and not a purely secular naturalist is because he doesn’t want to lose the experience of “the mind-stretching, jaw-dropping, in-your-face wonder of the universe itself, the Heraclitean mystery that hides in every rainbow, every snowflake, every living cell.”

It is this latter sense of mystery that make Raymo embrace the term “agnostic” - not just in a traditional religious sense, but in a scientific sense. His insistence that we must accept that we never will know everything makes him reluctant to embrace Pantheism wholeheartedly. Like most Pantheists, he does believe the “sensate world” is indeed worthy of being called divine, but, again like most Pantheists, he fears falling into the trap of “certainty” about anything. Without more explanation than that slender reed, he says the term “Pantheist” isn’t quite right for him. But why he thinks that a sense of “awe” and “wonder” and willingness to affirm that “we just don’t know” everything no matter how deep our scientific expertise explores the world is inconsistent with Pantheism, I cannot fathom.

In fact, as Raymo says, “With the discovery of the universe of the galaxies, the geologic eons, the wonders of evolution, and the dance of the DNA, our eyes are opened to a majesty and a mystery of far greater dimension than the Olympian deities of our ancestors - or of the slightly more abstracted personal God worshipped by most believers today.” To my mind, the logical result of these scientific discoveries makes the truth of Pantheism virtually self-evident. Our Creator is the Universe, and evolution and DNA is how it creates. The majesty and mystery in the natural world far exceeds those of “Olympian deities,” — what can be more divine than that?
… (més)
pansociety | Hi ha 9 ressenyes més | Jan 2, 2023 |
Years ago I watched an Irish movie called Frankie Starlight and loved it. A few years later, I discovered that it was based on a book by Chet Raymo called The Dork of Cork. It’s about a dwarf who grows to manhood and publishes a book, called Nightstalk, based on his observations of the stars. It’s also about his slightly mad French mother, an Irish immigration officer who loves them both, and Frankie’s journey to find acceptance and love. It’s a sweet story of love and redemption that will stay with the reader long after the last page is turned.… (més)
LoriFox | Hi ha 5 ressenyes més | Oct 24, 2020 |
A wonderful book that I wish I had read long ago.
hailelib | Hi ha 2 ressenyes més | Aug 9, 2020 |



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