John Donaldson(From left) Svanur Sigurbjörnsson, Eyrún Ósk Jónsdóttir, Ingo Hofmann

On February 19, SGI-Iceland participated in a symposium titled “Science and Religion—Hand in hand” held at Neskirkja Church in Reykjavík. Some 100 people attended the symposium including many University of Iceland students and people from various faith traditions.

The symposium consisted of presentations from three main speakers: Dr. Ingo Hofmann, professor at the Institute of Applied Physics at Goethe University Frankfurt and an adherent of the Bahá’í faith; Svanur Sigurbjörnsson, a medical doctor and head of ceremonies of the Icelandic Ethical Humanist Association; and Eyrún Ósk Jónsdóttir, theater director and youth leader of SGI-Iceland.

In her speech, Eyrún said that we must not get lost in focusing on our different worldviews. She stressed that a dialogue between science and religion will lead to increased creativity and help those involved work to promote human dignity and human rights, as well as respect for life and the planet.

After the presentations, moderator Ævar Kjartansson of the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service, Ríkisútvarpið RÚV, facilitated discussion on whether science and religion can work together toward solving global problems.

All the speakers agreed that the main point of the panel was respect for each others’ ideas and acknowledging that no one in the world of science or the world of religion has all the answers, but that through dialogue we can all learn and move forward together.

 [Adapted from a report from SGI-Iceland; photos courtesy of SGI-Iceland]

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