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“A Powerful Universe – Levels of Powers”. A S&R Conference in Paris

After almost three years of the existence, the Science and Religion Cluster of HEST reached the highest point of its activities, the conference: “A Powerful Universe – Levels of Powers: Dispositions and Their Applications in Science, Metaphysics, and Theology”. It was a fully academic event which took place 8-9th of October 2019 in Centre Sèvres Jesuit Theological Faculty in Paris. The planning of the conference and our preparations to it took almost two years. The conference was prepared by the survey among the members, the formulation of the research programme, two workshops (in Kraków and Braga) as well as almost 15 skype meetings.

During the conference we had a great privilege to host prof. Stephen Mumford (Durham University / GB), the most renowned scholar on the question of dispositions and powers in metaphysics. He was very kind to accept our invitation and was very actively involved in the discussions sharing his deep knowledge of the topic as we presented our own papers. We hosted also prof. Douglas Porpora (Drexel University / USA), a sociologist, prof. William Abraham (Southern Methodist University / USA), a theologian, prof. Alvaro Moreno (University of the Basque Country, San Sebastian / Spain), a biologist. On Skype joined us prof. Ruth Groff (Saint Louis University / USA), a political scientist.

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The Science and Religion Cluster’s workshop in Braga

The core group met in Braga, Portugal, between 26-29th of April 2019. Five of us turned up for the meeting in person (Bruno Nobre, Francois Euvé, Ulf Jonsson, Josef Quitterer, Jacek Poznański) and Georg Gasser from Innsbruck joined us on Skype at Saturday’s evening session.

We were guests of the Jesuit Community of the scholastics (Jesuits in formation) in Braga. We spend two nice days with them, celebrating masses, eating together and discussing philosophical, theological and everyday questions.

Saturday we dedicated to the organizational issues. We started with discussion on our conference which is to take place in Centre Sèvres in Paris, 8th-9th of October 2019. The title of the conference is “A Powerful Universe – Levels of Powers. Dispositions and their applications in Science, Metaphysics, and Theology”. It is the final event of the three years of existence of the Science and Religion Cluster of the HEST Programme. We invited for the conference a number of key scholars on powers and dispositions. We will try to enter in dialogue with them on the important issues concerning metaphysics, anthropology, sciences and God.

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