Matter is Frozen Light: Sheldrake-Vernon Dialogue 86


The everyday stuff called matter turns out to be both more fascinating and stranger than we usually assume. In this episode of the Sheldrake-Vernon Dialogues, Rupert Sheldrake and Mark Vernon ask just what matter is, beginning with contemporary ideas from quantum physics, in which matter is frozen light, as the physicist David Bohm put it. They consider the relationship between matter and gravity, as well as matter and ancient notions of potentiality, which turn out to be surprising relevant today. The differences between quantity and quality offer another conversational thread, with the discussion also drawing in wider questions, such as the nature of matter within the philosophy of panpsychism, and also the etymological links between matter and mater, or mother, revealing factors about material of which most are unconscious today.

Dr Rupert Sheldrake, PhD, is a biologist and author best known for his hypothesis of morphic resonance. At Cambridge University, as a Fellow of Clare College, he was Director of Studies in biochemistry and cell biology. As the Rosenheim Research Fellow of the Royal Society, he carried out research on the development of plants and the ageing of cells, and together with Philip Rubery discovered the mechanism of polar auxin transport. In India, he was Principal Plant Physiologist at the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics, where he helped develop new cropping systems now widely used by farmers. He is the author of more than 100 papers in peer-reviewed journals and his research contributions have been widely recognized by the academic community, earning him a notable h-index for numerous citations. On ResearchGate his Research Interest Score puts him among the top 4% of scientists.

Dr Mark Vernon is a psychotherapist and writer with a rich academic background in physics, theology, and philosophy. He contributes to programmes on the radio, writes and reviews for newspapers and magazines, gives talks and podcasts. His books have covered themes including friendship and God, ancient Greek philosophy and wellbeing. His new book, out August 2019, is "A Secret History of Christianity: Jesus, the Last Inkling and the Evolution of Consciousness". He has a PhD in ancient Greek philosophy, and other degrees in physics and in theology, and works as a psychotherapist in private practice. He used to be an Anglican priest.

Mark's latest book is...
A Secret History of Christianity: Jesus, the Last Inkling, and the Evolution of Consciousness

Be the first to comment