Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Welcome to the first issue of The EVOLUTIONARY TIMES! We're so pleased to have this new tool to help bring our ever-evolving story to you.

We are Michael Dowd and Connie Barlow, full-time itinerant evolutionary evangelists. Since April 2002 we have traveled North America non-stop, sharing in religiously inspiring ways the 14 billion year history of the Universe given by mainstream science. Some of you know us from one of our presentations or workshops. Others we’ve met thanks to my new book Thank GOD for EVOLUTION. To All, it's been an honor and a privilege to meet and become part of so many of your lives over the past six and a half years on the road.

This publication will now be our main means of communicating with the millions in the middle who, like us, find inspiration, comfort, and encouragement in our common creation myth—The Great Story of cosmos, Earth, life, and humanity told in meaningful and empowering ways. Here you will find key links to informative blog posts, news coverage, our itinerary, mention of what’s new on our websites, and suggestions for how you can join us and play an important part in furthering this movement.

OUR TWO-FOLD VISION: (1) By 2050, we see the majority of religious and non-religious people worldwide joyfully embracing an evolutionary, ecological worldview. (2) We also imagine, by mid-century, that humanity, in symbiotic partnership with our technologies and social structures, will have largely transitioned to a mutually enhancing relationship with the larger body of life of which we are part.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Honoring Thomas Berry

by Michael Dowd

I have been inspired by the work of countless scientists, theologians, and scholars over the years, but none has had a greater influence on my thinking and my life than Fr. Thomas Berry, a 94-year-old retired Passionist priest, cultural historian, and self-described "geologian". He is one of the most precious people in the world to me.

Connie and I visited Thomas in Greensboro, North Carolina a few days ago (on Nov 17, 2008), where he and his sister Margaret both live in a residential care community. Thomas has been a friend and mentor since 1988. He is truly one of the great hearts and minds of our time.


Thursday, December 4, 2008

4 Reasons Why Nothing Matters More Than What We Think About Evolution

by Michael Dowd
1. A shared sacred story that honors both objective truth and subjective meaning: For the first time in human history we have a creation story that not only addresses life’s biggest questions—Who are we? Where did we come from? Where are we going? Why are we here? How are we to live?—but helps us answer those questions in ways that are both religiously inspiring and scientifically accurate. No longer are subjective meaning and objective truth isolated from one another in separate domains. Both are conveyed through the same story.


Waking Up to the Evolutionary Message of Our Times

by Tom Atlee

We are clearly in crisis mode. How many times have you thought, we're on new ground? Things are not working the way they used to. We need to radically change the way we do things. We need to consciously evolve ourselves and our social systems.

The current crisis in our financial and governance systems is clearly revealing how these systems we've created now tie us all into invisible but extremely dense webs of interdependence. We are now fully bound to each other, by virtue of our own creations. This interdependence is both the problem and the solution to the crises we face. Furthermore, within the unfolding crises are the very energies we need to make the change. We just need to wake up to that fact.

Here are four vital truths to help us do that -- truths that are vividly obvious from a sacred, participatory evolutionary perspective.


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Evolve or Perish

by Michael Dowd

We are at a turning point in human history.

The quality of this century and beyond will be determined largely by how how quickly we are able to come into integrity -- that is, how well we learn from and align with Life's One Great Law: evolve or perish.

It's no coincidence that we are facing what many commentators suggest is a Perfect Storm of crises: the global economy, climate change, terrorism, health care, the collapse of biodiversity and fisheries around the world, and a host of other educational, social, political, environmental, moral, and ethical challenges. Simply put, we are confronted by Reality. The future of civilization depends on if, and how quickly, our personal worldviews and the structure of our institutions come into alignment with this Reality.


Science Leaders Praise TGFE

by Michael Dowd

Given that my book, Thank GOD for EVOLUTION, emerged out of six years of Connie and I teaching and preaching Evolution Theology in hundreds of diverse religous settings across North America, I was quite sure that it would be celebrated by all but the most conservative of religous folk. But what has truly amazed me is the way TGFE has been embraced by leaders in the scientific community—including scientists and academics who would hardly consider themselves religious in any traditional sense.


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Teach Both Sides of What Controversy?

by Michael Dowd

Michael Zimmerman of the Clergy Letter Project alerted me yesterday to a newspaper article discussing John McCain's VP pick, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin’s, stance on the evolution/creation issue. The piece is from the Anchorage Daily News and ran during the last gubernatorial race.

I have previously written blog posts on the subject of intelligent design (ID) and young-earth creationism (YEC). The reason that well over 95% of the scientists of the world reject these approaches is because neither has offered a viable scientific theory to replace the evolutionary one. "Teach both sides of the controversy" is a rallying cry often heard in ID circles. But among scientists. there simply is no controversy. And this is a demonstrable fact (carefully look at and read the image above left. T-shirts with other humorous images on the subject of "Teach the Controversy" can be found HERE).

The following is excerpted from Chapter 4 of Thank GOD for EVOLUTION...


"A Push Toward Common Ground... A Way To Bridge The Gap"

by Duane Kuss

Michael Dowd and Connie Barlow were guest speakers at a 2008 Unitarian Universalist summer camp in Oklahoma. In this video story you'll hear from a number of individuals who attended the camp sessions. This inspiring (and funny!) 5-minute collage of five of those video statements was contributed by our colleague Duane Kuss. (posted September 2008)

Watch Video...

Monday, December 1, 2008

Connie's Corner

by Connie Barlow

WHAT'S NEW on The Great Story website?

New postings include: a new audio of a sermon by Michael Dowd; a video of a sermon by Connie Barlow; an audio and PDF of "Evolution Now: A Manifesto" by Connie Barlow; and link to a 5-minute video collage of "testimonials" by 5 people excited by Michael's and Connie's presentations.