John Polkinghorne brings unique qualifications to his exploration of the possibilities of believing in God in an age of science: he is internationally known as a theoretical physicist and as a theologian. In this thought-provoking book, Polkinghorne focuses on the collegiality between science and theology, contending that the inquiries of these "intellectual cousins" are parallel.
In medieval times, theology was known as "the queen of the sciences." Not so today. A new dialog between religion and science has begun, however, and in that conversation Polkinghorne, theoretical physicist and Canon Theologian of Liverpool Cathedral, holds a special place. This accessible little book grew from the Terry Lectures the author gave at Yale in October 1996. Polkinghorne discusses new developments in the theology of nature, inquiries into divine purpose and human destiny, and explanations of how God works in the world. He explores prospects for future dialog and the pursuit of truth in the company of both science and theology. The possible rapprochement of scientific thinking and belief in God has been probed in numerous books recently, including Richard Swinburne's Is There a God? (Oxford Univ., 1996). Lay readers may find this discussion exciting but heady; can it be grounded in experience? Recommended for public and academic libraries.John R. Leech, Brooklyn, N.Y.