Astrophilosophy, Exotheology, and Cosmic Religion: Extraterrestrial Life in a Process Universe
Andrew M. Davis, Roland Faber, eds.
(Lanham: Lexington, 2024)

Astrophilosopy, Exotheology, and Cosmic Religion: Extraterrestrial Life in a Process Universe applies Alfred North Whitehead’s process philosophy and the associated process philosophies of Henri Bergson, Teilhard de Chardin, and others to the interdisciplinary layers of astrobiology, extraterrestrial life, and the impact of discovery. This collection, edited by Andrew M. Davis and Roland Faber, asks questions such as “How have process thinkers imagined universal creative evolution and its implications for philosophies, theologies, and religions beyond earth?” and “How might their claims as to the primacy of organism, temporality, novelty, value, and mind enrich current discussions and debates across disciplines?”

As experts in their fields, the contributors are informed by, but not limited to, process conceptualities. The chapters not only advance recent discussions in astrobiology, cosmology, and evolution but also consider a constellation of philosophical topics, from shared extraterrestrial knowledge and values to the possibilities or limitations afforded by A.I. technology, the Fermi Paradox, the Drake Equation, and the increasing need to nurture the cosmic dimensions of theological and religious traditions.

This is a unique, fascinating, and unprecedented collection of cross-disciplinary essays on extraterrestrial life and intelligence. It is also an unusually coherent anthology. Its editors have asked the contributors to say whether and how A. N. Whitehead's "process thought," known for its adventurous and hopeful integration of science, cosmology, philosophy, and religious thought, might illuminate the possible discovery of living and thinking beings elsewhere in our universe—and even in a possibly larger plurality of worlds. In these diverse and well-crafted chapters, readers will discover scientifically informed, philosophically sophisticated, and theologically interesting explorations of a topic that will become increasingly important for years to come.

John F. Haught, Georgetown University

Astrobiologists have long realized the value of philosophy and theology for anticipating the impact of discovering life beyond Earth. But these fields can do so much more. With sophistication and masterful nuance, Astrophilosophy, Exotheology, and Cosmic Religion: Extraterrestrial Life in a Process Universe enchantingly demonstrates the true importance of these disciplines: by contemplating what it means to exist as living beings in the universe, process philosophers and theologians give us provocative insights into advancing the scientific search for alien Others.

Douglas A. Vakoch, President of METI International and editor of Xenolinguistics: Towards a Science of Extraterrestrial Language


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