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Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Francois Mauriac (1885–1970) was awarded the 1952 Nobel Prize in Literature “for the deep spiritual insight and the artistic intensity with which he has in his novels penetrated the drama of human life.”

Nationality: French

Education: Licence es Lettres (M.A. in Literature), University of Bordeaux, France, 1905

Occupation: Novelist, playwright, poet, and journalist


1. Francois Mauriac wrote in his book Anguish and Joy of the Christian Life (1931):

“Today, in the evening of my life, I know the final answer. It is Jesus Christ alone who quiets the radical anguish that is in us – an anguish which is so consubstantial with the human condition that it is cruelly manifest from childhood to the grave. The torment of loneliness, the vacillating shadows of those we love as they leave us in the horrible mysteries of death, the secret and permanent thirst we have for the limitless gratification of our ego.

Our hearts remain full of unseen idols until we are stretched on the wood of the Cross with Christ, until we cease trying to nourish ourselves and our desires, and give ourselves completely to the poor, to the needy, to the suffering members of Christ’s body throughout the world.” (Mauriac 1964, Notre Dame).

2. “God does not give Himself totally except to the person who has annihilated all things, everything, whatever is in himself and in the world that stands in the way of divine love.” (Mauriac 1964, 43, Notre Dame).

3. “The God of the Christians does not wish simply to be loved. He wishes to be the sole object of our love. He will not allow us to turn aside a single sigh from Him; all other love is to Him nothing but a form of idolatry unless it is expressed in His name. It is this demand that seems utterly unreasonable. For it is impossible to love a creature without deifying it; yet we are also obliged to love everyone and everything. The creature thus becomes a necessity usurping the place of God: the heaven of His presence, the hell of His absence.” (Mauriac 1964, 26; Section 1 ‘Anguish’, Dimension Books).

4. “Impurity separates us from God. The spiritual life obeys laws as verifiable as those of the physical world. Purity is the condition for a higher love – for a possession superior to all possessions: that of God. Yes, this is what is at stake, and nothing less.” (Mauriac 1963, 51-52).

5. In his book Life of Jesus (1936), Mauriac claimed: “If there is one part of the Christian message that people have rejected with incomparable obstinacy, it is faith in the equal worth of all souls and races before the Father who is in Heaven.” (Mauriac 1978).

6. “The majority of Christians never get beyond the letter of the catechism. They have had no knowledge of God. It is a word which, for them, has never had any real content. They deny, yet do not deny. Christ has never been in their lives.” (Mauriac 1970).

7. “We are therefore wrong to think of the mystics as exceptional Christians. On the contrary, they are the only real Christians. They wear themselves out in the pursuit of God, as sensualists do in the pursuit of the flesh. They unceasingly desire to possess Him; to be possessed by Him, to love Him. Here love is understood to mean embracing God with the whole heart, of giving oneself to Him completely and searching to be possessed wholly by Him in return.” (Mauriac 1964, 26-27, Dimension Books).

8. In Holy Thursday: An Intimate Remembrance (1931) Mauriac described the ethical aspects of the Christian faith: “One must first hate one’s sin, a prerequisite which, in certain cases, is very difficult to achieve. Next, we must resolve never to sin again – and this is not only a matter of words but an inner determination of which God is the only judge. Last, the fear of punishment does not suffice if it is not inspired by love of God. No one can be forgiven without a beginning of love.” (Mauriac 1999, Ch. 5).

Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Abdus Salam (1926-1996) was awarded the 1979 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work in electroweak theory, which explains the unity of the weak nuclear force and electromagnetism; this theory is the latest stage in the effort to provide a unified description of the four fundamental forces of nature.

Nationality: Pakistani

Education: Ph.D. in mathematics and physics, Cambridge University, 1952

Occupation: Professor of Theoretical Physics at London University and Punjab University (Pakistan); Director of the International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste (Italy) since 1964


1. Abdus Salam concludes his address ‘Poor as a Nation’ with the words: “Our society is inflicted with menaces like mountains. Try to remove them from your surroundings with patience. God will have mercy on you one day. Do not be afraid if your endeavours don’t bear fruit, but keep on doing your job and God will indeed bless your efforts.” (Salam 1990).

2. In an interview for the New Scientist (August 26, 1976) Abdus Salam says: “Every human being needs religion, as Jung has so firmly argued; this deeper religious feeling is one of the primary urges of mankind.” (Salam 1976).

3. In physics, Prof. Salam has mostly been involved with the problem of symmetries; he explains his interest in the following way:

“That may come from my Islamic heritage; for that is the way we consider the universe created by God, with ideas of beauty and symmetry and harmony, with regularity and without chaos.

We are trying to discover what the Lord thought; of course we miserably fail most of the time, but sometimes there is great satisfaction in seeing a little bit of the truth.” (Salam 1976; New Scientist).

4. In his article Science and Religion Prof. Salam wrote:

“Einstein was born into an Abrahamic faith; in his own view, he was deeply religious.

Now this sense of wonder leads most scientists to a Superior Being – der Alte, the Old One, as Einstein affectionately called the Deity – a Superior Intelligence, the Lord of all Creation and Natural Law.” (Salam, as cited in Lai and Kidwai 1989, 285).

Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Sir Rabindranath Tagore (1861–1941) received the 1913 Nobel Prize in Literature “because of his profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, by which, with consummate skill, he has made his poetic thought, expressed in his own English words, a part of the literature of the West.”

Nationality: Indian

Education: Privately educated in England and India (Bengali Academy)

Occupation: Poet, novelist, playwright, song composer and painter; founder of the Visva-Bharati University at Santiniketan, West Bengal (1924)


1. “In one salutation to Thee, my God, let all my senses spread out and touch this world at Thy feet.

Like a rain-cloud of July hung low with its burden of unshed showers let all my mind bend down at Thy door in one salutation to Thee.

Let all my songs gather together their diverse strains into a single current and flow to a sea of silence in one salutation to Thee.

Like a flock of homesick cranes flying night and day back to their mountain nests let all my life take its voyage to its eternal home in one salutation to Thee.” (Rabindranath Tagore, Gitanjali (Song Offerings), New York and London: The Macmillan Company, 1913).

2. “This is my prayer to Thee, my Lord – strike, strike at the root of penury in my heart.

Give me the strength lightly to bear my joys and sorrows.

Give me the strength to make my love fruitful in service.

Give me the strength never to disown the poor or bend my knees before insolent might.

Give me the strength to raise my mind high above daily trifles.

And give me the strength to surrender my strength to Thy will with love.” (Tagore 1913, Gitanjali).

3. “Day after day, O Lord of my life, shall I stand before Thee face to face. With folded hands, O Lord of all worlds, shall I stand before Thee face to face.

Under Thy great sky in solitude and silence, with humble heart shall I stand before Thee face to face.

In this laborious world of Thine, tumultuous with toil and with struggle, among hurrying crowds shall I stand before Thee face to face.

And when my work shall be done in this world, O King of kings, alone and speechless shall I stand before Thee face to face.” (Tagore 1913).

4. “Our love of God is accurately careful of its responsibilities. It is austere in its probity and it must have intellect for its ally. Since what it deals with is immense in value, it has to be cautious about the purity of its coins. Therefore, when our soul cries for the gift of immortality, its first prayer is, ‘Lead me from the unreal to truth.’ ” (Tagore, as cited in Chakravarty 1961, 281).

5. “Accept me, dear God, accept me for this while. Let those orphaned days that passed without You be forgotten.

Do not turn away Your face from my heart’s dark secrets, but burn them till they are alight with Your fire.” (From Tagore’s prayer “Accept Me”, as cited in Vetter 1997, 1).

“The self-expression of God is in the endless variety of creation; and our attitude toward the Infinite Being must also in its expression have a variety of individuality ceaseless and unending. Those sects which jealously build their boundaries with too rigid creeds excluding all spontaneous movement of the living spirit may hoard their theology but they kill religion.” (Tagore, as cited in Chakravarty 1961, 286).

6. “The rain has held back for days and days, my God, in my arid heart. The horizon is fiercely naked – not the thinnest cover of a soft cloud, not the vaguest hint of a distant cool shower.

Send Thy angry storm, dark with death, if it is Thy wish, and with lashes of lightning startle the sky from end to end.

But call back, my Lord, call back this pervading silent heat, still and keen and cruel, burning the heart with dire despair.

Let the cloud of grace bend low from above like the tearful look of the mother on the day of the father’s wrath.” (Tagore 1913).

“Time is endless in Thy hands, my Lord. There is none to count Thy minutes. Days and nights pass and ages bloom and fade like flowers. Thou knowest how to wait.” (Tagore 1913).

Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Hermann Hesse (1877–1962) was granted the 1946 Nobel Prize in Literature “for his inspired writings, which while growing in boldness and penetration, exemplify the classical humanitarian ideals and high qualities of style.”

Nationality: German; later Swiss citizen

Education: Educated at the Grammar School in Cannstadt and the Maulbronn Theological Seminary, Germany

Occupation: Novelist and poet


1. Hesse expressed his attitude towards God in a conversation with his friend Miguel Serrano:

“You should let yourself be carried away, like the clouds in the sky. You shouldn’t resist. God exists in your destiny just as much as he does in these mountains and in that lake. It is very difficult to understand this, because man is moving further and further away from Nature, and also from himself.” (Hesse, as cited in Miguel Serrano, C.G. Jung and Hermann Hesse: A Record of Two Friendships, 1966, 10).

2. “The fact that people think they have their life on loan from God and do not want to use it egotistically, but, on the contrary, they want to live it as service and sacrifice to God, this experience and legacy, the greatest one, from my childhood has had an extremely powerful influence on my life.” (Hesse 1972, 59).

3. “When you are close to Nature you can listen to the voice of God.” (Hesse, as cited in Serrano 1966, 10).

4. “Christianity, one not preached but lived, was the strongest of the powers that shaped and moulded me.” (Hesse, as cited in Gellner 1997, Vol. 1).

5. “If one does not take the verses of the New Testament as being commandments, but as expressions of an extraordinary awareness of the secrets of our soul, then the wisest word ever spoken is: ‘Love thy neighbour as thyself.’ ” (Hesse, as cited in Gellner 1997, Vol. 1).

6. “For different people, there are different ways to God, to the center of the world. Yet the actual experience itself is always the same.” (Hesse, as cited in Gellner 1997, Vol. 1).

7. “The road to piety may be a different one for everyone. For me, it led through many blunders and great suffering, through a great deal of self-torment, through tremendous foolishness, jungles full of foolishness. I was a liberal spirit and knew that sanctimonious piety was an illness of the soul. I was an ascetic and drove nails into my flesh. I didn’t know that being religious meant health and cheerfulness.” (Hesse, as cited in Gellner 1997, Vol. 1).

Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Jean-Paul Sartre (1905–1980) won the 1964 Nobel Prize in Literature “for his work which, rich in ideas and filled with the spirit of freedom and the quest for truth, has exerted a far-reaching influence on our age.” Sartre declined the prize.

Nationality: French

Education: Doctorate in Philosophy, Ecole Normale Superieure, France, 1929

Occupation: Professor at Lycee du Havre, Lycee de Laon, Lycee Pasteur de Neuilly-sur-Seine, and Lycee Condorcet; Editor, Les Temps Modernes, Paris, (1944-1980)



1. In his lecture Existentialism Is a Humanism (1946) Sartre described his atheistic existentialism thus:

“Dostoevsky said, ‘If God didn’t exist, everything would be possible!’ That is the very starting point of existentialism. Indeed, everything is permissible if God does not exist, and as a result man is forlorn, because neither within him nor without does he find anything to cling to. He can’t start making excuses for himself. In other words, there is no determinism, man is free, man is freedom.

On the other hand, if God does not exist, we find no values or commands to turn to which legitimize our conduct. So, in the bright realm of values, we have no excuse behind us, nor justification before us. We are alone, with no excuses.” (Sartre 1957, 22-23; see also Sartre 1988, 78).

2. “First of all, man exists, turns up, appears on the scene, and, only afterwards, defines himself. If man, as the existentialist conceives him, is indefinable, it is because at first he is nothing. Only afterward will he be something, and he himself will have made what he will be. Thus, there is no human nature, since there is no God to conceive it.” (Sartre 1957, 15-16; see also Sartre 1988, 75).


3. Nevertheless, Sartre underwent a very surprising change of mind towards the end of his life; in fact, he came very close to theistic commitment. The magazine National Review (June 11, 1982) reported it thus:

“Throughout his mature career, the philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre was a militant atheist. Politically, although he quarreled with Marxist materialism, his rhetoric was often indistinguishable from the most heavy-handed Stalinist boiler-plate.

However, during the philosopher’s last months there were some surprising developments. In 1980, nearing his death, by then blind, decrepit, but still in full possession of his faculties, Sartre came very close to belief in God, perhaps even more than very close.

The story can be told briefly, and perhaps reverently. An ex-Maoist, Pierre Victor, shared much of Sartre’s time toward the end. In the early spring of 1980 the two had a dialogue in the pages of the ultra-gauchiste Nouvel Observateur. It is sufficient to quote a single sentence from what Sartre said then to measure the degree of his acceptance of the grace of God and the creatureliness of man:

‘I do not feel that I am the product of chance, a speck of dust in the universe, but someone who was expected, prepared, prefigured. In short, a being whom only a Creator could put here; and this idea of a creating hand refers to God.’

Students of existentialism, the atheistic branch, will note that in this one sentence Sartre disavowed his entire system, his engagements, his whole life.

Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Isaac Bashevis Singer (1904–1991) won the 1978 Nobel Prize in Literature “for his impassioned narrative art which, with roots in a Polish-Jewish cultural tradition, brings universal human conditions to life.”

Nationality: Polish; later American citizen

Education: Traditional Jewish education at the Warsaw Rabbinical Seminary

Occupation: Novelist, essayist, and journalist


1. In his Nobel Lecture (8 December 1978, Les Prix Nobel 1978) Singer said:

“I can never accept the idea that the Universe is a physical or chemical accident, a result of blind evolution. Even though I learned to recognize the lies, the cliches and the idolatries of the human mind, I still cling to some truths which I think all of us might accept some day. There must be a way for man to attain all possible pleasures, all the powers and knowledge that nature can grant him, and still serve God - a God who speaks in deeds, not in words, and whose vocabulary is the Cosmos.” (Singer 1979).

2. “I’m a sceptic. I’m a sceptic about making a better world. When it comes to this business where you tell me that this-or-that regime, one sociological order or another, will bring happiness to people, I know that it will never work, call it by any name you want. People will remain people, and they have remained people under communism and all other kinds of ‘isms.’

But I’m not a sceptic when it comes to belief in God. I do believe. I always did. That there is a plan, a consciousness behind creation, that it’s not an accident.” (Singer, as cited in The Brothers Singer by Clive Sinclair, London, Allison and Busby, 1983, p. 30).

3. In his last interview (1987) Singer stated:

“God is behind everything. Even when we do things against him, he’s also there. No matter what. Like a father who sees his children doing a lot of silly things, bad things. He’s angry with them, he’s punishing them. At the same time, they’re his children.” (Singer, as cited in Green 1998).

4. “Man prays for mercy, but is unwilling to extend it to others. Why should man then expect mercy from God? It’s unfair to expect something that you are not willing to give. It is inconsistent.” (Singer, as cited in Rosen 1987).

5. “The serious writer of our time must be deeply concerned about the problems of his generation. He cannot but see that the power of religion, especially belief in revelation, is weaker today than it was in any other epoch in human history. More and more children grow up without faith in God, without belief in reward and punishment, in the immortality of the soul and even in the validity of ethics. The genuine writer cannot ignore the fact that the family is losing its spiritual foundation.

All the dismal prophecies of Oswald Spengler have become realities since the Second World War. No technological achievements can mitigate the disappointment of modern man, his loneliness, his feeling of inferiority, and his fear of war, revolution and terror. Not only has our generation lost faith in Providence but also in man himself, in his institutions and often in those who are nearest to him.” (Singer 1979).

6. “The material world is a combination of seeing and blindness. The blindness we call Satan. If we would become all seeing, we would not have free choice anymore. Because, if we would see God, if we would see His greatness, there would be no temptation or sin. And since God wanted us to have free will this means that Satan, in other words the principle of evil, must exist. Because what does free choice mean? It means the freedom to choose between good and evil. If there is no evil, there is no freedom.” (Singer, as cited in Farrell 1976, 157).

7. “Life is God’s novel. Let him write it.” (Singer, as cited in Moraes 1975).

Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Sir Winston Churchill (1874–1965) received the 1953 Nobel Prize in Literature “for his mastery of historical and biographical description as well as for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values.”

Nationality: British

Education: Churchill was educated at Harrow School and the Royal Military College in Sandhurst, England, 1895

Occupation: Writer, historian, and Prime Minister (UK)


1. In his speech “The 20th century – Its Promise and Its Realization” at the MIT Mid-Century Convocation, Boston (March 31, 1949) Sir Winston Churchill said:

“Here I speak not only to those who enjoy the blessings and consolation of revealed religion but also to those who face the mysteries of human destiny alone. The flame of Christian ethics is still our highest guide. To guard and cherish it is our first interest, both spiritually and materially. The fulfilment of Spiritual duty in our daily life is vital to our survival. Only by bringing it into perfect application can we hope to solve for ourselves the problems of this world and not of this world alone.

United we stand secure. Let us then move forward together in discharge of our mission and our duty, fearing God and nothing else.” (Churchill 1974, Volume VII, p. 7807ff).

2. “We must indeed be vigilant, we must indeed be firm in upholding the principles we believe to be just, but let us resolve with patience and with courage to work for the day when all the men in all the lands can be brought to cast aside the dark aspirations which some have inherited and others have created. Then at last together we shall be able to strive in freedom for the enjoyment of the blessings which it has pleased God to offer to the human race.” (Churchill 1974, Vol. VIII, p. 8607).

3. “Above all, we have our faith that the universe is ruled by a Supreme Being and in fulfilment of a sublime moral purpose, according to which all our actions are judged.” (Churchill 1974, Vol. VII, p. 7650).

4. “There is another element which should never be banished from our system of education. Here we have freedom of thought as well as freedom of conscience. Here we have been the pioneers of religious toleration. But side by side with all this has been the fact that religion has been a rock in the life and character of the British people upon which they have built their hopes and cast their cares. This fundamental element must never be taken from our schools.” (Churchill 1974, Vol. VII, p. 6762).

5. In his Harvard Address (September 6, 1943) Churchill stated:

“If we are together nothing is impossible. If we are divided all will fail.

Let us rise to the full level of our duty and of our opportunity, and let us thank God for the spiritual rewards He has granted for all forms of valiant and faithful service.” (Churchill 1974, Vol. VII, p. 6827).

6. “The flame of Christian ethics is still our best guide. Its animation and accomplishment is a practical necessity, both spiritually and materially. This is the most vital question of the future. The accomplishment of Christian ethics in our daily life is the final and greatest word which has ever been said. Only on this basis can we reconcile the rights of the individual with the demands of society in a manner which alone can bring happiness and peace to humanity.” (Churchill 1974, Vol. VII, p. 7645).

Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Sir John Eccles (1903–1997) received the 1963 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology for establishing the relationship between inhibition of nerve cells and repolarization of a cell’s membrane. Eccles’ other significant contributions were primarily in the area of brain research. Eccles is one of the greatest neurophysiologists of the XXth century; he is one of the founders of modern electrophysiology.

Nationality: Australian; later British and American resident

Education: M.A. and Ph.D., Oxford University, 1929

Occupation: Professor of Physiology at Oxford University, Australian National University (Canberra), State University of NY, etc.


1. In his article “Modern Biology and the Turn to Belief in God” that he wrote for the book, The Intellectuals Speak Out About God: A Handbook for the Christian Student in a Secular Society (1984), John Eccles came to the following conclusion:

“Science and religion are very much alike. Both are imaginative and creative aspects of the human mind. The appearance of a conflict is a result of ignorance.

We come to exist through a divine act. That divine guidance is a theme throughout our life; at our death the brain goes, but that divine guidance and love continues. Each of us is a unique, conscious being, a divine creation. It is the religious view. It is the only view consistent with all the evidence.” (Eccles 1984, 50).

2. In an interview published in the scientific anthology, The Voice of Genius (1995), Prof. Eccles stated:

“There is a fundamental mystery in my personal existence, transcending the biological account of the development of my body and my brain. That belief, of course, is in keeping with the religious concept of the soul and with its special creation by God.” (Eccles, as cited in Brian 1995, 371).

3. “I am constrained to attribute the uniqueness of the Self or Soul to a supernatural spiritual creation. To give the explanation in theological terms: each Soul is a new Divine creation which is implanted into the growing foetus at some time between conception and birth.” (Eccles 1991, 237).

4. In The Human Mystery, Eccles writes: “I believe that there is a Divine Providence operating over and above the materialist happenings of biological evolution.” (Eccles 1979, 235).

5. “If I consider reality as I experience it, the primary experience I have is of my own existence as a unique self-conscious being which I believe is God-created.” (Eccles, as cited in Margenau and Varghese 1997, 161).

6. Eccles described the so-called ‘promissory materialism’ thus:

“There has been a regrettable tendency of many scientists to claim that science is so powerful and all pervasive that in the not too distant future it will provide an explanation in principle for all phenomena in the world of nature, including man, even of human consciousness in all its manifestations. In our recent book (The Self and Its Brain, Popper and Eccles, 1977) Popper has labelled this claim as promissory materialism, which is extravagant and unfulfillable.

Yet on account of the high regard for science, it has great persuasive power with the intelligent laity because it is advocated unthinkingly by the great mass of scientists who have not critically evaluated the dangers of this false and arrogant claim.” (Eccles 1979, p. I).

7. With respect to ‘promissory materialism’, in his book How the Self Controls Its Brain (Berlin: Springer-Verlag, 1994), Eccles wrote:

“I regard this theory as being without foundation. The more we discover scientifically about the brain the more clearly do we distinguish between the brain events and the mental phenomena and the more wonderful do the mental phenomena become. Promissory materialism is simply a superstition held by dogmatic materialists. It has all the features of a Messianic prophecy, with the promise of a future freed of all problems - a kind of Nirvana for our unfortunate successors.” (Eccles 1994).

8. In his book Evolution of the Brain: Creation of the Self (London: Routledge, 1991), Eccles wrote:

“I maintain that the human mystery is incredibly demeaned by scientific reductionism, with its claim in promissory materialism to account eventually for all of the spiritual world in terms of patterns of neuronal activity. This belief must be classed as a superstition.

We have to recognize that we are spiritual beings with souls existing in a spiritual world as well as material beings with bodies and brains existing in a material world.” (Eccles 1991, 241).

9. “Since materialist solutions fail to account for our experienced uniqueness, I am constrained to attribute the uniqueness of the self or soul to a supernatural spiritual creation.

This conclusion is of inestimable theological significance. It strongly reinforces our belief in the human soul and in its miraculous origin in a divine creation.” (Eccles 1994, 168).

10. “As a dualist I believe in the reality of the world of mind or spirit as well as in the reality of the material world. Furthermore I am a finalist in the sense of believing that there is some Design in the processes of biological evolution that has eventually led to us self-conscious beings with our unique individuality; and we are able to contemplate and we can attempt to understand the grandeur and wonder of nature.” (Eccles 1979, 9).

Eccles’ teacher, the Nobelist in neurophysiology Sir Charles Sherrington, too, is a dualist; Sherrington maintains that our nonmaterial mind is fundamentally different from our physical body. Sherrington believes in an almighty Deity and Natural Religion. (See Charles Sherrington, Man on His Nature. The Gifford Lectures in Natural Theology, Cambridge University Press, 1975, 59 and 293). There are many other Nobel scientists, who have explored thoroughly the mind-body problem, and who are staunch dualists: George Wald, Nevill Mott, M. Planck, E. Schroedinger, Brian D. Josephson, Santiago Ramon y Cajal, Roger Sperry, Albert Szent-Gyoergyi, Walter R. Hess, Henri Bergson, Alexis Carrel, etc. (See Margenau and Varghese 1997, ‘Cosmos, Bios, Theos’; see also Popper and Eccles 1977, The Self and Its Brain).

See the chapters on George Wald, Nevill Mott, M. Planck, and E. Schroedinger in this book.

11. In his article “Scientists in Search of the Soul” (Science Digest, 1982), the science writer John Gliedman pointed out:

“Eccles strongly defends the ancient religious belief that human beings consist of a mysterious compound of physical body and intangible spirit. Each of us embodies a nonmaterial thinking and perceiving self that ‘entered’ our physical brain sometime during embryological development or very early childhood, says the man who helped lay the cornerstones of modern neurophysiology. This ‘ghost in the machine’ is responsible for everything that makes us distinctly human: conscious self-awareness, free will, personal identity, creativity and even emotions such as love, fear, and hate. Our nonmaterial self controls its “liaison brain” the way a driver steers a car or a programmer directs a computer. Man’s ghostly spiritual presence, says Eccles, exerts just the whisper of a physical influence on the computerlike brain, enough to encourage some neurons to fire and others to remain silent. Boldly advancing what for most scientists is the greatest heresy of all, Eccles also asserts that our nonmaterial self survives the death of the physical brain.” (Gliedman 1982, 77).

12. “We can regard the death of the body and brain as dissolution of our dualist existence. Hopefully, the liberated soul will find another future of even deeper meaning and more entrancing experiences, perhaps in some renewed embodied existence in accord with traditional Christian teaching.” (Eccles 1991, 242).

13. “I do believe that we are the product of the creativity of what we call God. I hope that this life will lead to some future existence where my self or soul will have another existence, with another brain, or computer if you like. I don’t know how I got this one, it’s a pretty good one, and I’m grateful for it, but I do know as a realist that it will disappear.

But I think my conscious self or soul will come through.” (Eccles, as cited in Gilling and Brightwell, The Human Brain, 1982, 180).

14. In his book The Human Mystery, Sir John Eccles said: “The amazing success of the theory of evolution has protected it from significant critical evaluation in recent times. However it fails in a most important respect. It cannot account for the existence of each one of us as unique, self-conscious beings.” (Eccles 1979, 96).

15. Sir John Eccles maintains that the will of the human beings is free, and that’s why he denies the so-called physical determinism: “If physical determinism is true, then that is the end of all discussion or argument; everything is finished. There is no philosophy. All human persons are caught up in this inexorable web of circumstances and cannot break out of it. Everything that we think we are doing is an illusion.” (See Popper and Eccles, 1977, 546).

16. “With self-conscious purpose a person has a great challenge in choosing what life to live.

One can choose to live dedicated to the highest values, truth, love, and beauty, with gratitude for the divine gift of life with its wonderful opportunities of participating in human culture. One can do this in accord with opportunities. For example, one of the highest achievements is to create a human family living in a loving relationship. I was brought up religiously under such wonderful conditions, for which I can be eternally grateful. There are great opportunities in a life dedicated to education or science or art or to the care of the sick. Always one should try to be in a loving relationship with one’s associates. We are all fellow beings mysteriously living on this wonderful spaceship planet Earth that we should cherish devotedly, but not worship.” (Eccles, as cited in Templeton 1994, 131).

17. In his letter to Erika Erdmann (December 19, 1990), Eccles said:

“You refer to protection of our Earth as the most urgent goal at present. I disagree. It is to save mankind from materialist degradation. It comes in the media, in the consumer society, in overriding quest for power and money, in the degradation of our values (that used to be thought as based on love, truth, and beauty), and in the disintegration of the human family.” (Eccles 1990).

18. “I repudiate philosophies and political systems which recognize human beings as mere things with a material existence of value only as cogs in the great bureaucratic machine of the state, which thus becomes a slave state. The terrible and cynical slaveries depicted in Orwell’s ‘1984’ are engulfing more and more of our planet.

Is there yet time to rebuild a philosophy and a religion that can give us a renewed faith in this great spiritual adventure, which for each of us is a human life lived in freedom and dignity?” (Eccles 1979, 237).

Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: Max Planck (1858–1947) won the 1918 Nobel Prize in Physics “for his work on the establishment and development of the theory of elementary quanta.” Max Planck is universally recognized as the father of modern physics; he formulated one of the most important physical theories of the 20th century – Quantum Theory. He also contributed to the progress of the Theory of Relativity and the study of electromagnetic radiation. Planck is a founder of quantum mechanics.
Nationality: German
Education: Ph.D. in physics, University of Munich, Germany, 1879 (at the age of 21)
Occupation: Professor of Physics at the Universities of Munich, Kiel, and Berlin


1. In his famous lecture Religion and Science (May 1937) Planck wrote: “Both religion and science need for their activities the belief in God, and moreover God stands for the former in the beginning, and for the latter at the end of the whole thinking. For the former, God represents the basis, for the latter – the crown of any reasoning concerning the world-view.” (Max Planck, Religion und Naturwissenschaft, Leipzig: Johann Ambrosius Barth Verlag, 1958, 27).

2. “Religion represents a bond of man to God. It consists in reverent awe before a supernatural Might [Macht], to which human life is subordinated and which has in its power our welfare and misery. To remain in permanent contact with this Might and keep it all the time inclined to oneself, is the unending effort and the highest goal of the believing man. Because only in such a way can one feel himself safe before expected and unexpected dangers, which threaten one in his life, and can take part in the highest happiness – inner psychical peace – which can be attained only by means of strong bond to God and unconditional trust to His omnipotence and willingness to help.” (Max Planck 1958, 9).

3. Planck concluded his lecture Religion and Science (May 1937) with the words: “It is the steady, ongoing, never-slackening fight against scepticism and dogmatism, against unbelief and superstition, which religion and science wage together. The directing watchword in this struggle runs from the remotest past to the distant future: ‘On to God!’ ” (Planck, as cited in Heilbron 1986, 185; see also Planck 1958, 30).

4. “Under these conditions it is no wonder, that the movement of atheists, which declares religion to be just a deliberate illusion, invented by power-seeking priests, and which has for the pious belief in a higher Power nothing but words of mockery, eagerly makes use of progressive scientific knowledge and in a presumed unity with it, expands in an ever faster pace its disintegrating action on all nations of the earth and on all social levels. I do not need to explain in any more detail that after its victory not only all the most precious treasures of our culture would vanish, but – which is even worse – also any prospects at a better future.” (Planck 1958, 7).

5. “But the value of religion exceeds the individual. Not only every man has his own religion but the religion requires its validity for larger community, for nation, race, and the whole mankind. Since God reigns equally over all countries of the world, the whole world with all its treasures and horrors is subdued to Him.” (Planck 1958, 9).

6. Unfortunately, during World War II, in February 1945, Planck’s son Erwin was executed by the Nazis for participation in an unsuccessful attempt to assassinate Adolf Hitler. On 14 March 1945 Planck wrote in a letter to his friend Anton Kippenberg:

“If there is consolation anywhere it is in the Eternal, and I consider it a grace of Heaven that belief in the Eternal has been rooted deeply in me since childhood.

God protect and strengthen you for everything that still may come before this insanity in which we are forced to live reaches its end.” (Planck, as cited in Heilbron 1986, 195-196).

7. “That God existed before there were human beings on Earth, that He holds the entire world, believers and non-believers, in His omnipotent hand for eternity, and that He will remain enthroned on a level inaccessible to human comprehension long after the Earth and everything that is on it has gone to ruins; those who profess this faith and who, inspired by it, in veneration and complete confidence, feel secure from the dangers of life under protection of the Almighty, only those may number themselves among the truly religious.” (Planck, as cited in Staguhn 1992, 152).

8. In his major book Where Is Science Going? (1932) Planck pointed out:

“There can never be any real opposition between religion and science; for the one is the complement of the other. Every serious and reflective person realizes, I think, that the religious element in his nature must be recognized and cultivated if all the powers of the human soul are to act together in perfect balance and harmony. And indeed it was not by accident that the greatest thinkers of all ages were deeply religious souls.” (Planck 1977, 168).

9. “As a physicist, that is, a man who had devoted his whole life to a wholly prosaic science, the exploration of matter, no one would surely suspect me of being a fantast. And so, having studied the atom, I am telling you that there is no matter as such! All matter arises and persists only due to a force that causes the atomic particles to vibrate, holding them together in the tiniest of solar systems, the atom.

Yet in the whole of the universe there is no force that is either intelligent or eternal, and we must therefore assume that behind this force there is a conscious, intelligent Mind or Spirit. This is the very origin of all matter.” (Planck, as cited in Eggenstein 1984, Part I; see “Materialistic Science on the Wrong Track”).

10. To the question of The Observer, “Do you think that consciousness can be explained in terms of matter?” Max Planck replied:

“No, I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.” (Planck, as cited in de Purucker 1940, ch. 13).

11. Planck believed in life after death, he believed in the existence of “another world, exalted above ours, where we can and will take refuge at any time.” (Planck, as cited in Heilbron 1986, 197).

“Farsighted theologians are now working to mine the eternal metal from the teachings of Jesus and to forge it for all time.” (Planck, as cited in Heilbron 1986, 67).

12. Writing on the complementary relations between science and religion, Max Planck observed: “The one does not exclude the other; rather they are complementary and mutually interacting. Man needs science as a tool of perception; he needs religion as a guide to action.” (Planck, as cited in Schaefer 1983, 84).


Author/Compiler: Tihomir Dimitrov (; also see


Nobel Prize: George Wald (1906-1997) received the 1967 Nobel Prize in Medicine and Physiology for his work on the biochemistry of vision. Nationality: American Education: Ph.D. in biology, Columbia University, 1932 Occupation: Professor of Biology at Harvard University (1948-1977)



1. In 1954 Prof. George Wald (who was still an atheist at that time) wrote in Scientific American:

"When it comes to the origin of life there are only two possibilities: creation or spontaneous generation. There is no third way. Spontaneous generation was disproved one hundred years ago, but that leads us to only one other conclusion, that of supernatural creation. We cannot accept that on philosophical grounds; therefore, we choose to believe the impossible: that life arose spontaneously by chance!" (George Wald, 1954, "The Origin of Life," Scientific American, 191 [2]: 48).

2. "The reasonable view was to believe in spontaneous generation; the only alternative, to believe in a single, primary act of supernatural creation. There is no third position.

Most modern biologists, having reviewed with satisfaction the downfall of the spontaneous generation hypothesis, yet unwilling to accept the alternative belief in special creation, are left with nothing." (Wald 1954, "The Origin of Life," Scientific American, 191 [2]: 45-46).


3. Nevertheless, George Wald underwent an astonishing change of mind during the early 1980s, and he came very close to religious mentality.

In his article "Life and Mind in the Universe" (1984) Prof. Wald wrote:

"In my life as scientist I have come upon two major problems which, though rooted in science, though they would occur in this form only to a scientist, project beyond science, and are I think ultimately insoluble as science. That is hardly to be wondered at, since one involves consciousness and the other, cosmology.

1) The consciousness problem was hardly avoidable by one who has spent most of his life studying mechanisms of vision. We have learned a lot, we hope to learn much more; but none of it touches or even points, however tentatively, in the direction of what it means to see. Our observations in human eyes and nervous systems and in those of frogs are basically much alike. I know that I see; but does a frog see? It reacts to light; so do cameras, garage doors, any number of photoelectric devices. But does it see? Is it aware that it is reacting? There is nothing I can do as a scientist to answer that question, no way that I can identify either the presence or absence of consciousness. I believe consciousness to be a permanent condition that involves all sensation and perception. Consciousness seems to me to be wholly impervious to science.

2) The second problem involves the special properties of our universe. Life seems increasingly to be part of the order of nature. We have good reason to believe that we find ourselves in a universe permeated with life, in which life arises inevitably, given enough time, wherever the conditions exist that make it possible. Yet were any one of a number of the physical properties of our universe otherwise – some of them basic, others seemingly trivial, almost accidental – that life, which seems now to be so prevalent, would become impossible, here or anywhere. It takes no great imagination to conceive of other possible universes, each stable and workable in itself, yet lifeless. How is it that, with so many other apparent options, we are in a universe that possesses just that peculiar nexus of properties that breeds life?

It has occurred to me lately – I must confess with some shock at first to my scientific sensibilities – that both questions might be brought into some degree of congruence. This is with the assumption that Mind, rather than emerging as a late outgrowth in the evolution of life, has existed always as the matrix, the source and condition of physical reality – that the stuff of which physical reality is composed is mind-stuff. It is Mind that has composed a physical universe that breeds life, and so eventually evolves creatures that know and create." (George Wald, 1984, "Life and Mind in the Universe", International Journal of Quantum Chemistry: Quantum Biology Symposium 11, 1984: 1-15).

4. In 1986 in his address to the First World Congress for the Synthesis of Science & Religion held in Bombay, India, George Wald stated:

"I come toward the end of my life as a scientist facing two great problems. Both are rooted in science, and I approach both as would only a scientist. Yet I believe that both are irrevocably – forever – unassimilable as science. And that is hardly strange, since one involves cosmology, the other, consciousness.


The burden of this story is that we find ourselves in a universe that breeds life and possesses the very particular properties that make that possible. The more deeply one penetrates, the more remarkable and subtle the fitness of this universe for life appears. Endless barriers lie in the way, yet each is surmounted somehow. It is as though, starting from the Big Bang, the universe pursued an intention to breed life, such is the subtlety with which difficulties in the way are got around, such are the singular choices in the values of key properties that could potentially have taken any value.

And now for my main thesis. If any one of a considerable number of the physical properties of our universe were other than they are – some of those properties fundamental, others seeming trivial, even accidental – then life, that now appears to be so prevalent, would be impossible, here or anywhere.


I know that I see. But does a frog see? It reacts to light; so does a photoelectrically activated garage door. Does the frog know that it is reacting to light, is it self-aware? Now the dilemma: There is nothing whatever that I can do as a scientist to answer that kind of question.

Does that garage door resent having to open when the headlights of my car shine on it? I think not. Does a computer that has just beaten a human player at chess feel elated? I think not; but there is nothing one can do about those situations either.

I had already for some time taken it as a foregone conclusion that the mind - consciousness – could not be located. It is essentially absurd to think of locating a phenomenon that yields no physical signals, the presence or absence of which - outside of humans and their like – cannot be identified.

But further than that, mind is not only not locatable, it has no location. It is not a thing in space and time, not measurable; hence – as I said at the beginning of this paper – not assimilable as science.

Mind and Matter

A few years ago it occurred to me that these seemingly very disparate problems might be brought together. That would be with the hypothesis that Mind, rather than being a very late development in the evolution of living things, restricted to organisms with the most complex nervous systems – all of which I had believed to be true – that Mind instead has been there always, and that this universe is life-breeding because the pervasive presence of Mind had guided it to be so.

That thought, though elating as a game is elating, so offended my scientific possibilities as to embarrass me. It took only a few weeks, however, for me to realize that I was in excellent company. That kind of thought is not only deeply embedded in millennia-old Eastern philosophies, but it has been expressed plainly by a number of great and very recent physicists.

So Arthur Eddington (1928):

‘The stuff of the world is mind-stuff. The mind-stuff is not spread in space and time.’

So Erwin Schroedinger:

‘Mind has erected the objective outside world of the natural philosopher out of its own stuff.’

Let me say that it is not only easier to say these things to physicists than to my fellow biologists, but easier to say them in India than in the West. For when I speak of Mind pervading the universe, of Mind as a creative principle perhaps primary to matter, any Hindu will acquiesce, will think, yes, of course, he is speaking of Brahman [God].

That is the stuff of the universe, mind-stuff; and yes, each of us shares in it." (George Wald, 1989, "The Cosmology of Life and Mind." Noetic Sciences Review, No. 10, p. 10, Spring 1989. Institute of Noetic Sciences, California).


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