Closer To Truth Radio Hour Episode Listings

Could Our Universe Be A Fake?
The idea that we might encounter aliens seems like the stuff of science fiction, but the possibilities demand serious thought. In part one we ask, could our existence be part of a computer game run by unknown creatures? Could our universe be a fake? In part two we ask, since most scientists feel the universe must contain alien civilizations, why can’t we see any? Where are they, all those aliens?

Contributors:
David Brin, Physicist, Science Fiction Author
Nick Bostrom, Philosopher, St. Cross College. Univ. of Oxford
Raymond Kurzweil, Inventor, Computer Scientist, Futurist
Marvin Minsky, Cognitive Scientist, MIT
Martin Rees, Astronomer Royal, Cosmologist, Cambridge Univ.
Jill Tarter, Director, Center for SETI Research, SETI Institute
Doug Vakoch, Director, Interstellar Message Composition, SETI
Frank Drake, Director, Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute
Raymond Kurzweil, Inventor, Computer Scientist, Futurist
Francisco J. Ayala, Philosopher, UC, Irvine
Steven J. Dick, Chief Historian, NASA

Would Alien Intelligence Undermine God?
Suppose intelligent, self-conscious, knowledge-seeking aliens do exist? In part one, we ask: What Would Intelligent Aliens Mean? Whether or not we are alone in the universe has implications for religion as well as for science. In part two, we ask: Would Intelligent Aliens Undermine God?

Contributors:
Martin Rees, Astronomer Royal, Cosmologist, Cambridge Univ.
Frank Drake, Director, Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute
Lawrence M. Krauss, Theoretical Physicist, Arizona State
Gregory Benford, Astrophysicist, UC, Irvine, Sci-Fi Author
Jaron Lanier, Computer Scientist and Artist
Steven J. Dick, Chief Historian, NASA
Russell Stannard, Physicist, Open University, U.K.
Paul Davies, Physicist, Arizona State University
Robin Collins, Professor of Philosophy, Messiah College
Jill Tarter, Director, Center for SETI Research, SETI Institute
Doug Vakoch, Director, Interstellar Message Composition, SETI

What’s The New Atheism?
In part one, we explore Atheism, from classical arguments against God to latest scientific thinking showing no need for God. In recent years, a new wave of aggressive Atheism has taken hold. In part two, we ask, What’s the New Atheism?

Contributors:
Michael Tooley, Professor of Philosophy, Univ. of Colorado
Daniel Dennett, Philosopher, Tufts University
Richard Swinburne, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, Oxford University
Nancey Murphy, Theologian, Fuller Theological Seminary
Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Professor of Practical Ethics, Duke University
Michael Shermer, Author, Founder and Publisher, Skeptic magazine
Alister McGrath, Theologian, Kings College London
Lawrence M. Kruass, Theoretical Physicist, Arizona State
Keith Ward, Philosopher of Religion and Author
Anthony A. C. Grayling, Philosopher, New College of the Humanities

Does Evil Disprove God?
Some atheists claim that the existence of evil is inconsistent with an all-powerful, all-good God. In part one, we ask: Does Evil Disprove God? God-believers invoke the universe’s apparent fine-tuning. But what if there is more than one universe? In part two we ask, would Multiple Universes Undermine God?

Contributors:
Peter van Inwagen, Philosopher, Notre Dame
Quentin Smith, Prof. of Philosopher, Western Michigan University
Alvin Plantinga, Philosopher, Notre Dame
Michael Tooley, Professor of Philosophy, Univ. of Colorado
Richard Swinburne, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, Oxford University
Victor Stenger, Prof. Philosophy and Astronomy, University of Hawai
Robin Collins, Professor of Philosophy, Messiah College
Russell Stannard, Physicist, Open University, U.K.

Can Science Deal With God?
Are Science and Religion they compatible? Are they at war? Each pursues big truths and offers total solutions – but is there any common ground? We explore the myriad conflicts between God and Science.

Contributors:
Lawrence M. Krauss, Theoretical Physicist, Arizona State
Francis S. Collins, Geneticist, Director, National Insitutes of Health
Robert John Russell, Dir., Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences
Ian Barbour, Prof. Science, Tech & Society, Carleton College
Freeman Dyson, Physicist, Institute for Advanced Study
Michio Kaku, Physicist, City College of New York
Daniel Dennett, Philosopher, Tufts University
Owen Gingerich, Astronomer, Harvard University
Marvin Minsky, Cognitive Scientist, MIT
Francisco J. Ayala, Philosopher, UC, Irvine
J. Wentzel van Huyssteen, Theologian, Princeton Theological Seminary
Paul Davies, Physicist, Arizona State University

Are Science And Religion At War?
Science can describe everything about the physical world, but can it say anything at all reliable about God? In part one we ask, Can Science Talk God? For centuries, Science and Religion have battled – with science seeming to advance, religion seeming to retreat. But is religion really losing? In part two we ask, Are Science and Religion at War?

Contributors:
David J. Gross, Nobel Laureate in Physics
William A. Dembski, Theologian, Southern Evangelical Seminary
Victor Stenger, Prof. Philosophy and Astronomy, University of Hawaii
Gregory J. Chaitin, Mathematician, IBM
George F. Smoot III, Nobel Laureate in Physics
Philip Clayton, Philosopher and Dean, Claremont Lincoln University
Bas C. van Fraassen, Prof. of Philosophy, San Francisco State
Robert John Russell, Dir., Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences

Can Brain Explain Mind?
Why does it “feel like something” to see, hear, taste and think? What’s our private, inner experience all about? In part one we ask, Why is Consciousness So Mysterious? Some scientists claim that the mind is simply a product of the brain – but many philosophers disagree. In part two we ask, Can Brain Explain Mind?

Contributors:
Venerable Dr. Yifa, Buddhist Nun, Scholar, Writer
Susan Blackmore, Writer, Lecturer, Psychologist
Keith Ward, Philospher of Religion and Author
Daniel Dennett, Philosopher, Tufts University
David Chalmers, Philosopher, Australian National University
John Searle, Philosopher, UC Berkeley
Colin McGinn, Philosopher
Christof Koch, Neuroscientist, Caltech, Allen Inst. Brain Science
Rodolfo R. Llinas, Neuroscientist, NYU School of Medicine
Raymond Kurzweil, Inventor, Computer Scientist, Futurist
John Searle, Philosopher, UC Berkeley
David Chalmers, Philosopher, Australian National University

Is Consciousness an Illusion?
Consciousness is a mystery. What is private, inner experience all about?

In part one we ask, what is the meaning of consciousness? Is mind only an accident of biology or does it go deeper? In part two we ask, is consciousness part of the physical world? Or could it be an illusion – a mere trick of the brain?

Contributors:
Ned Block, Philosopher, New York University
Marvin Minsky, Cognitive Scientist, MIT
Alva Noe, Philosopher, UC Berkeley
Jaron Lanier, Computer Scientist and Artist
Colin McGinn, Philosopher
Nicholas Humphrey, Emeritus Professor of Psychology, Darwin College, Cambridge
Julian Baggini, Co-founder, Editor, The Philosopher’s Magazine
Rebecca Goldstein, Philosopher and Novelist
Galen Strawson, Philosopher, University of Texas, Austin
Anthony A. C. Grayling, Philosopher, New College of the Humanities
Raymond Tallis, Philosopher, Essayist, Medical doctor

Does The Cosmos Provide Meaning?
The Cosmos is overwhelming. We humans stand between astonishingly large galaxies and the vanishingly small atoms. What does it all mean? In part one we ask, what about the cosmos astounds and fascinates us? Why is the universe so breathtaking?In part two we ask, with everything we know about the universe, can we find a reason behind it all? Does the Cosmos provide meaning?

Contributors:
Frank Wilczek, Nobel Laureate in Physics
Steven Weinberg, Nobel Laureate in Physics
David Ritz Finkelstein, Physicist, Georgia Institute of Technology
Seth Lloyd, Mathematician and Engineer, MIT
Freeman Dyson, Physicist, Institute for Advanced Study
Saul Perlmutter, Nobel Laureate in Physics
Roger Penrose, Mathematician, Oxford University
Paul J. Steinhardt, Theoretical Physicist, Princeton
Martin Rees, Astronomer Royal, Cosmologist, Cambridge Univ.
Frank Drake, Director, Carl Sagan Center, SETI Institute

Complexity From Simplicity?
Our universe began far smaller than a proton. Today we have galaxies, stars, planets, people. In part one we ask, How does Complexity Come from Simplicity? The laws of our universe are so precise, they appear fine-tuned for our existence. In part two we ask, Does Cosmic Fine-Tuning Demand Explanation?

Contributors:
Stephen Wolfram, Founder and CEO, Wolfram Research
Seth Lloyd, Mathematician and Engineer, MIT
Lee Smolin, Theoretical Physicist, Perimeter Institute
Francis S. Collins, Geneticist, Director, National Insitutes of Health
Frank Wilczek, Nobel Laureate in Physics
Bernard Carr, Mathematician and Astronomer, Univ. of London
David Deutsch, Physicist, Clarendon Laboratory, Univ. of Oxford
Richard Swinburne, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, Oxford University
Rodney Holder, Anglican Priest, Fellow, Cambridge University
Christopher Isham, Physicist (Dirac Medal), Imperial College London