Academic Presentations

Reflections on the Relation between Religion and Modern Rationalism

One hundred years prior, Vivekananda popularly introduced Hinduism to America at the 1893 “Parliament of the World's Religions” held in Chicago. During this time, the so-called conflict thesis of religion and science dominated discourse. Thompson steers around that dilemma while engaging constructs drawn from the bhakti traditions identified with Gaudiya Vaisnavism. He further discusses a variety of research initiatives in quantum mechanics, genetics, and artificial intelligence, which appear amenable to a complementary relationship.

Relationship between Consciousness and Matter

In a talk given at the Eindhoven University of Technology, Thompson discusses accounting for consciousness within the framework of a mechanistic paradigm. After considering the solutions offered by Walter Elsasser, Eugene Wigner, and David Bohm, Thompson introduces the concept from the Vedic tradition of jiva and Paramatma, as part of an explanatory framework. A lively Question & Answer session explores some of the insights that can be gained from this approach.

A Trans-Temporal Approach to Mind-Brain Interaction

Presented before a gathering that included "sixteen eminent scientists including three Nobel laureats," Thompson's talk addressed contentions involving free will and the laws of physics. He proposes a dualistic approach influenced by concepts emerging from deterministic chaos theory, which can help illustrate how matter affected by consciousness could violate the laws of physics without violating the conservation of energy principle.

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