On the occasion of ISCAST‘s COSAC 2020 Conference: “A Hopeful Future? Christians, Creation, and the AI World,”AIOCS’ founding director, Doru Costache, read the paper “Theology, Spirituality, Science, and Technology: Strange Bedfellows?” The conference took place on 10-12 July 2020, being held online because of the pandemic. Fifty scholars presented on a wide range of topics, from facing environmental catastrophes to the impact of technology, and from the culture wars to the hope of a better world.
Here is Costache’s abstract
While the scriptural parables of the Fall and the Tower might mean that theology, spirituality, science, and technology cannot be reconciled, certain premodern voices suggested otherwise. This is quite interesting, since many people, today, believe that the early Christians opposed science and technology wholesale, causing the arrival of the dark ages. In this talk, I show that the early Christian understanding of science and technology was nuanced. First, I consider the scriptural stories mentioned above, showing what they mean for the way theology, spirituality, science, and technology intersect. Then, I introduce the anonymous Letter to Diognetus and Maximus the Confessor’s Book of Difficulties, especially the parts illustrating the creative coexistence of the four areas. For both sources, indeed, these areas are not strange bedfellows at all. While these sources invite a different reading of the two scriptural stories, they furthermore suggest ways out of current impasses.
He also offered a brief promotional clip before the conference
The text of his talk can be found here
The audio recording of the talk
14 July 2020 © AIOCS