Since the publication of Darwin’s The Origin of Species in 1859, the theory of evolution has revolutionised our view of life and what it means to be human. The ideas of natural selection, random mutation, and the survival of the fittest have become the foundations for a materialistic worldview, in which any form of spiritual life makes hardly any sense. This is not just a matter of scientific knowledge, since the idea of evolution has changed our understanding in ways that impact our daily lives. Religious traditions have not found it easy to acknowledge evolution, with a fundamentalist backlash in the form of creationism among some Christians. Evolution likewise challenges the traditional Buddhist view of the cosmos, in which all beings are reborn according to their karma.
Are there ways of looking at evolution that go beyond the biological, making room for a Buddhist perspective on life and its development? Sangharakshita explored the idea of “higher evolution” as a way of talking about the spiritual development of the individual. Other thinkers have questioned the standard materialist view of evolution, making room for alternative ways of understanding it. In this symposium we will explore the scientific theory of evolution, the Buddhist spiritual life, and the idea of a “higher evolution” in talks, discussions and meditation.
This event is not so much a meditation retreat as an opportunity to engage in philosophical thought and reflection about the Dharma.
Philosophy Symposium: Exploring Higher Evolution
Led by Dhivan, Silavadin and Matt Drage
Please note that this event will finish at lunchtime rather than in the morning, so arrange travel accordingly to include time to clean and pack up.
This retreat is for Triratna Mitras and members of the Triratna Buddhist Order only
Start Date: 9th Jul 2021
End Date: 12th Jul 2021
Event Type: Residential
Price: £117 (Waged/Supported (including deposit)) / £84 (Unwaged/Unsupported (including deposit))
If you can’t afford to come on retreat you might be interested in our bursary fund.