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Archive for the ‘Scientific Spirituality’ Category

Wyckoff library is ‘Human Origins’ whistlestop

Posted: April 11, 2015 at 6:50 am

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Photo courtesy of the Smithsonian

Replica of "Neanderthal and Child," part of the traveling show.

WYCKOFF The Wyckoff Public Library has been selected to host a special month-long exhibit and lecture series on human evolution organized by the Smithsonian and American Library Association.

The traveling exhibit, "Exploring Human Origins: What Does It Mean to Be Human?," begins a two-year tour this month to 19 libraries nationwide and is scheduled to stop Oct. 16 to Nov. 12, 2016, in the township.

"We are the only library in New Jersey and in the New York metropolitan area to host this engaging exhibit," said Mary Witherell, library director. "The next closest location is Norwich, Conn., 143 miles from Wyckoff."

"Exploring Human Origins: What Does It Mean to Be Human?" will highlight key milestones in the journey of human evolution and explain how humans developed over time, from walking upright and the earliest known technologies to, brain enlargement, symbolic language development, the origin of agriculture and the creation of complex societies.

The exhibition will feature replicas and images of specimens from the "David H. Koch Hall of Human Origins" that opened in 2010 at the Smithsonians National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.

In November, Witherell applied to host the1,200-square-foot exhibition, which that includes more than 40 educational panels, interactive kiosks, hands-on displays, videos, 3-D skull casts and presentations on groundbreaking research in the scientific study of human origins.

Applications were reviewed by peer public librarians and representatives from the National Museum of Natural History and ALAs Public Programs Office.

"I believe the strength of our application was based on our past performance of hosting the 2012 Big Read (Edgar Allan Poe) which included 53 specific programs," said Witherell.

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Wyckoff library is 'Human Origins' whistlestop

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April 11th, 2015 at 6:50 am

Protecting the environment begins in the heart, says Buddhist leader

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As a child living in a rural area in eastern Tibet, His Holiness the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje recalls a natural environment that was pristine and untarnished by modern development.

It was there, he said during his Chubb Fellowship Lecture at Yale on April 7, that he first experienced a feeling of intimate connection with and respect for the natural world.

Where I was born, we regarded and experienced our environment as a living system, a living being: The mountains, the sources of water were all regarded as the dwelling places of what I would call holy spirits of various kinds, the Karmapa told the packed audience in Woolsey Hall. We therefore respected every aspect of the environment as part of a living system. We didnt wash our clothes or even our hands in flowing water sources. We didnt cast any kind of garbage or any kind of other pollutant into our fire in our hearth. We regarded the entire environment as innately sacred.

Today, the Buddhist leader hopes to inspire others to see the interconnectedness of humans and their environment, and discussed that theme in his Chubb Lecture on Compassion in Action: Buddhism and the Environment.

Addressing the audience through an interpreter, the Karmapa decried the human-contrived distinction between their own being and the external world and described environmental stewardship as a moral responsibility.

For us to acquire or eat any food, have clothes to wear, or even to have the bodies we do, all of these require the interconnectedness of many things and many people within the environment, he said. The value of understanding interdependence in this regard is that we often feel at some distance from our environment. We divide the world into subject and object, and we feel that the external environment is an object separated from us by some kind of boundary and some distance from ourselves as subjects. We need to dissolve this artificial boundary and decrease the distance from ourselves and our environment.

In Tibet, he told his audience, people compare the interconnectedness of humans and their environment to a container and its contents where one cannot be separated from the other. To think of our interconnectedness with the environment in those terms, he said, makes it easier to understand our responsibility for protecting it.

We need to acknowledge that our environment can affect us, and we can also affect our environment, he commented. Some people have the idea that the environment is so vast and so primordial that nothing we do is actually going to affect it. Unfortunately, thats been proven not to be the case, and we need to begin to acknowledge the aspect of interdependence that is our effect on the environment even as the environment affects us.

Having scientific knowledge of the symbiotic relationship between humans and their environment is not enough, however, to make people feel protective of all that surrounds them, the 29-year-old Karmapa acknowledged.

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Protecting the environment begins in the heart, says Buddhist leader

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April 11th, 2015 at 6:50 am

Very Ancient wall Paintings inside Jain Temple at Sharavanbelagola- Aerial Warfare – Video

Posted: April 8, 2015 at 2:47 pm

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Very Ancient wall Paintings inside Jain Temple at Sharavanbelagola- Aerial Warfare
Namaskar, This video was shot during the Jainism research expedition at Shravanbelagola, Karnataka, inside a ancient Jain temple, depicting Aerial Warfare with soldiers using maybe highly potent...

By: Scientific Spirituality

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Very Ancient wall Paintings inside Jain Temple at Sharavanbelagola- Aerial Warfare - Video

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April 8th, 2015 at 2:47 pm

One Mind, One Consciousness – when spirituality meets …

Posted: April 6, 2015 at 1:42 am

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his distinguished Texas physician, deeply rooted in the scientific world, has become an internationally influential advocate of the role of the mind in health and the role of spirituality in healthcare. Bringing the experience of a practicing internist and the soul of a poet to the discourse, Dr. Larry Dossey offers panoramic insight into the nature and the future of medicine.

Upon graduating with honors from the University of Texas at Austin, Dr. Dossey worked as a pharmacist while earning his M.D. degree from Southwestern Medical School in Dallas, 1967. Before completing his residency in internal medicine, he served as a battalion surgeon in Vietnam, where he was decorated for valor. Dr. Dossey helped establish the Dallas Diagnostic Association, the largest group of internal medicine practitioners in that city, and was Chief of Staff of Medical City Dallas Hospital in 1982.

An education steeped in traditional Western medicine did not prepare Dr. Dossey for patients who were blessed with "miracle cures," remissions that clinical medicine could not explain. "Almost all physicians possess a lavish list of strange happenings unexplainable by normal science," says Dr. Dossey. "A tally of these events would demonstrate, I am convinced, that medical science not only has not had the last word, it has hardly had the first word on how the world works, especially when the mind is involved."

The author of nine books and numerous articles, Dr. Dossey is the former Executive Editor of the peer-reviewed journal Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, the most widely subscribed-to journal in its field. The primary quality of all of Dr. Dossey's work is scientific legitimacy, with an insistent focus on "what the data show." As a result, his colleagues in medical schools and hospitals all over the country trust him, honor his message, and continually invite him to share his insights with them. He has lectured all over the world, including major medical schools and hospitals in the United States --Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Cornell, the Universities of Pennsylvania, California, Washington, Texas, Florida, Minnesota, and the Mayo Clinic.

The impact of Dr. Dossey's work has been remarkable. Before his book Healing Words was published in 1993, only three U.S. medical schools had courses devoted to exploring the role of religious practice and prayer in health; currently, nearly 80 medical schools have instituted such courses, many of which utilize Dr. Dossey's works as textbooks. In his 1989 book Recovering the Soul, he introduced the concept of "nonlocal mind" -- mind unconfined to the brain and body, mind spread infinitely throughout space and time. Since then, "nonlocal mind" has been adopted by many leading scientists as an emerging image of consciousness. Dr. Dossey's ever-deepening explication of nonlocal mind provides a legitimate foundation for the merging of spirit and medicine. The ramifications of such a union are radical and call for no less than the reinvention of medicine.

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April 6th, 2015 at 1:42 am

Youre praying to the wrong God: What organized religion gets wrong about prayer

Posted: April 4, 2015 at 10:43 pm

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The power of praying comes from daring to enter that mysterious place between the emerging God and us. But its not an empty spaceits our own selves on progressively larger size scales, where we are participating in multiple emerging phenomena and creating emergent identities. As the ancient Egyptian world blended outward into the spiritual world, so does ours. And the higher our consciousness goes along the Uroboros of Human Identity, the more it blends into the emerging phenomenon of God. In tuning our ordinary consciousness in to those higher levels that we may have scarcely ever visited before, we approach God.

This may seem bizarre. How can size scales alone control such great mysteries? How can whats essentially a number have the most profound of spiritual impacts? Well, size is not just a numbersize determines cosmic identity. The number that describes a size is not in itself important but is a powerful symbol of the complexity possible on that size scale. Size is a key to the universe. On the Cosmic Uroboros size distinguishes the physical from the spiritual. In fact, in this universe the size or complexity level of a thing or event determines not only its nature but which world its operating in and which physical laws control that world.

But all these worlds exist all the time. And our minds now know it. We cant simply ignore this when we think about God. God fits into this very pattern by emerging.

Prayer is a conversation among different faces of ourselves as we exist on different size scales. We send our ordinary consciousness out to connect to our roles on emergent size scales. Those roles speak back to us if were open to their existence. After all, thats us in there playing them. They expand our sense of self. Their messages sound like thoughts, but in some deep sense they actually are messages, because they come from outside our normal culture-stunted state of mind.

Its time to crack open the whole idea of talking to God. If we are in a universe now known to span more than sixty orders of magnitude, and God is emerging from the infinite interactions of human aspirations, we have to look at everything anew. Weve already begun to do this intellectually, but can we do it emotionally? How can we step outside images of God that are many centuries deep and realize that those are only images and not reality?

It turns out all humans have a tool that will let us do this. The perfect name for it was suggested by the psychoanalyst Carl Jung. In an interview filmed in the early 1950s Jung was asked bluntly, Do you believe God exists? Earlier Jung had written that all people need ideas and convictions that can give meaning to their lives and help them find their place in the universe (his phrase). He had written that we have the capacity to satisfy this need symbolically with a god image. He answered the interviewer by saying, What I know is that all humans have a god-capacity. Thats the tool. Our god-capacity.

Religions offer up symbols and images bounteously, but a capacity is something that belongs to us as humans, not as members of any religion. Our god-capacity is not tied to any specific tradition or symbol. It doesnt require any particular view of God. Its the ability to scratch the meaning-itch with a symbol. Shouldnt we want that symbol to represent the highest truth we know?

Public atheists like Richard Dawkins and others assume that unless a supernatural God is out there, ready and willing to answer prayers, there is no point in praying, and since such a God does not exist, praying is self-delusion. To them our god-capacity is not an ability but a liability, because it leads people to believe in the objective reality of their fantasies.

Many people do indeed believe in the objective reality of their fantasies, and doing so can be wildly dangerous in this world, but trashing our god-capacity because some people do this is like trashing love because sometimes it goes wrong.

At this moment in history, what is the highest and best use of our god-capacity?

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Youre praying to the wrong God: What organized religion gets wrong about prayer

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April 4th, 2015 at 10:43 pm

Deepak Chopra: The problem with atheism

Posted: April 2, 2015 at 12:43 am

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Story highlights We all fall somewhere on the sliding scale of belief and unbelief, Deepak Chopra says Skepticism is a way station on the way to a higher, more fulfilling kind of spirituality, he says

Standing back a bit, faith is on a rheostat, not an on-off switch. Putting God into the position of yes/no, belief/unbelief doesn't really reflect the modern state of faith. There are gradations of belief. In fact, 17% of people who identify as atheists still go to church -- they have social and family reasons for their choice rather than religious ones.

We all fall somewhere on the sliding scale of belief and unbelief. Secular society has sharpened our demand for truth. To me, this is a positive development. If belief in God can't stand up to proof, it won't sustain a person through difficult times.

Deepak Chopra

I consider skepticism a way station on the way to a higher, more fulfilling kind of spirituality.

Millions of people have walked away from organized religion to become more spiritual, not less. They call themselves seekers; their disbelief is a starting point for starting their own investigations.

Where the census form asks what faith they belong to, they might not have a ready answer, but that's not important. What's important is walking your own spiritual path. As a lifelong goal, it's one of the most rewarding.

What's not rewarding is to base your belief or unbelief on secondhand opinion. Being a knee-jerk skeptic is as limiting as being a knee-jerk fundamentalist. In both cases, the mind is being conditioned by others.

In my own conception of God as the source of consciousness, creativity, intelligence, love and evolution, the reason to be spiritual is to increase all of those qualities.

Unfortunately, the goal of many faiths is to obey dogma and accept a cultural mythology. Atheism can do good by casting a skeptical light on cultural mythologies, but believing in nothing but the material world is cold comfort.

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Deepak Chopra: The problem with atheism

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April 2nd, 2015 at 12:43 am

Flower of Life Center Announces Second Annual Awake and Empowered Expo Coming to Metro Detroit April 2015, Focused on …

Posted: March 31, 2015 at 4:53 pm

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Troy, Michigan (PRWEB) March 31, 2015

World-renowned experts will present the latest advances in holistic health, wellness, science and spirituality at the second annual Awake and Empowered Expo: Thriving in an Age of Higher Consciousness, taking place at The Met Hotel in Troy, Mich. on April 24-26, 2015.

The schedule includes lectures, workshops and panel discussions on emerging technologies in the fields of energy, vibration, and telekinesis; the benefits of adopting a Raw Vegan diet; how to detoxify the body and enhance your vitality with Chinese herbalism; the application of sound and vibrational frequencies to support the immune system and overall wellbeing; and techniques for mitigating the many toxins in our modern world, such as GMO foods and electromagnetic fields.

"There are amazing advancements and scientific breakthroughs going on all over the world today. The Awake and Empowered Expo is focused on bringing these breakthrough solutions into the hands of our attendees," said Ethann Fox, founder of Flower of Life Center and visionary behind the expo. "Our second annual event is designed to strengthen and heal the mind, body and spirit through information, technology and viable tools that allow attendees to live happier and healthier.

Highlighted speakers include Dr. Sam Osmanagich, renowned expert on the Bosnian Pyramids; Dr. Edward Group founder of one of the largest alternative, natural, and organic health internet resources; world-renowned High-Vibration Music Artist, Mark Romero; Taoist Tonic Herbalist Rehmannia Dean Thomas; Founder and Board Chair for The International Sound Therapy Association and Cymatics expert Mandara Cromwell and accomplished author, researcher and documentary producer on alternative healing and cancer, Ty Bollinger.

Attendees will enjoy a variety of interactive demonstrations, participate in the meditative and energy balancing practices of Ki Qigong, take a shamans journey and realign and strengthen the body through yoga, meditation and the vibration of planetary gongs and crystal bowls.

The Expo opens Friday evening with a free-of-charge Exhibitor Showcase from 5:00-7:00 p.m. Visitors will have access to free demonstrations, be eligible for raffles and giveaways and sample products and services that nourish the mind, body and soul and can experience an Energy Transfer and Discourse with spiritual teacher, Ethann Fox. An Opening Night Musical Celebration follows with Dixons Violin at 7 p.m. Tickets are required for the Musical Celebration.

The expo will continue on Saturday and Sunday and there are many ticket options to choose from including an all weekend pass, daily pass, yoga pass, or individual presenter pass. Participants can also purchase a special ticket to mingle with keynote presenters at a VIP Afterglow event planned for Saturday evening at 10 p.m. at the The Met. Refer to for further details.

Accommodations are provided by The Met Hotel. Refer to the Awake and Empowered Expo website for further details.

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Flower of Life Center Announces Second Annual Awake and Empowered Expo Coming to Metro Detroit April 2015, Focused on ...

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March 31st, 2015 at 4:53 pm

‘Religiously integrated’ psychotherapy is effective for depression

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March 31, 2015 - For chronically ill patients with major depression, an approach to cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) that incorporates patients' religious beliefs is at least as effective as conventional CBT, suggests a study in the April issue of The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. The journal is published by Wolters Kluwer.

"Integrating religious clients' beliefs into CBT does not appear to significantly reduce its effectiveness, especially in religious clients," write Dr Harold Koenig of Duke University Medical Center, Durham, N.C., and colleagues. They believe that this approach might help to make psychotherapy more acceptable to religious patients with depression and chronic illness.

Incorporating Religious Beliefs into Depression Therapy

The researchers evaluated a religiously integrated CBT approach "that takes into account and utilizes the religious beliefs of clients." The study included 132 patients with major depression and chronic illness. All patients said that religion or spirituality was "at least somewhat important" to them.

Patients were randomly assigned to conventional or religious CBT. Both approaches included broadly spiritual content, focusing on "forgiveness, gratefulness, altruistic behaviors, and engagement in social activities." What made religiously integrated CBT unique was "its explicit use of the client's religious beliefs to identify and replace unhelpful thoughts and behaviors," Dr Koenig and coauthors write.

Religious CBT was performed by therapists experienced in integrating religion into psychotherapy. Most of the patients were Christian, but some received religious CBT adapted to other faiths (Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, and Buddhist). Both groups received ten therapy sessions, mainly by telephone.

At the end of therapy, religious and conventional CBT produced similar improvement in depression scores. Other outcomes were also similar between the two types of therapy--for example, about half of patients in both groups had remission of their depression symptoms.

Better Response in Highly Religious Patients

Patients who identified themselves as highly religious had somewhat greater improvement in depression scores with religious CBT, compared to conventional CBT. The highly religious also tended to complete more psychotherapy sessions if assigned to religious CBT, compared to those receiving conventional CBT.

"Historically, there has been little common ground between religious and psychological concepts of mental health," Dr Koenig and coauthors write. Mental health professionals may have negative attitudes toward religion, while religious patients may view psychological treatments as "unsympathetic to their religious beliefs and values."

'Religiously integrated' psychotherapy is effective for depression

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March 31st, 2015 at 4:53 pm

Science Behind Spiritual Experiences –

Posted: March 28, 2015 at 6:47 am

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I'm driving away from from my mother-in-law's house, crying. Vivian has been a mother to me in every way that matters, and now she's dying of cancer. For months my husband, brother-in-law, and I have been taking turns caring for her in her home. As I pull away this November morning, I know I probably won't see her alive again.

I cry and cry, and after a while a strange feeling bubbles up from my chest into my throat. It takes a minute to recognize it as joy, and I'm horrifiedhow can I feel joy at a time like this? But it's irresistible. I'm laughing and crying and all the while a small part of me is wondering what the hell is going on. And then suddenly I'm having a...for lack of a better word, vision. I'm not asleep; I'm not hallucinating; I know my name and the date and I'm still driving the car. But an image comes to me: I'm in an underground cavern, on the edge of a vast lake, looking at the water with the feeling of joy still bubbling up inside me, and somehow I understand that the water is actually love, and that love lies under every step I take. I understand that even though my mother-in-law is dying, I will never be alone or unloved. That I am inextricably, inexplicably connected to every living thing on the planet.

Five years ago, I didn't believe in spiritual experiences. Or at least I didn't believe I would ever feel anything transcendent or mystical. I knew others did, or said they did, but those people were seekers. They went to energy healers and astrologers. They prayed and meditated and maybe, I thought, talked themselves into believing they'd had an out-of-the-ordinary moment.

I wasn't that type of person. Though I'd love to believe in a higher power, I just don't. I'm a science journalist, an agnostic empiricist who appreciates the cultural aspects of being Jewish but not the religious ones. So when that image of water and love enveloped me in a sense of peace I'd never felt before, I didn't know what to make of it. It wasn't the sort of thing I could easily bring up with others; I couldn't imagine saying, "By the way, last week I had this visionlet me tell you about it!" Eventually, though, I described it to a friend who said, "It sounds like you've had a spiritual experience."

It turns out I'm in good company. According to a study at the University of Chicago, about half of all Americans say they've had such an experience, which might range from a sense of well-being while watching a sunset to a classic near-death journey. These occurrences are, necessarily, deeply personal and hard to articulate.. "What one person calls a religious experiencewhich could be intense and life-changinganother might call a simple ten-second prayer," explains Patrick McNamara, PhD, director of the Evolutionary Neurobehavior Laboratory at the Boston University School of Medicine.

But no matter what they're called, these events share certain characteristics. Andrew Newberg, MD, director of research at the Myrna Brind Center for Integrative Medicine at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, is one of a new breed of "neurotheologians" studying the intersections among our brains, religion, philosophy, and spirituality. Newberg surveyed about 3,000 people who'd had spiritual experiences and identified a few common elements. Number one was a strong sense of what he calls realness. When you wake up from a dream, he explains, you know it wasn't real, no matter how vivid it felt. Not so with transcendent experiences, which feel authentic not only at the time but years later.

Mona de Vestel, a creative writing teacher from upstate New York, still remembers a moment that literally changed her life nearly 30 years ago: At 16 I had pneumonia and typhoid fever. I knew I was dying. One afternoon I was lying in bed and heard the door open. I didn't open my eyes, but I thought, Mom's coming in. She sat on the bed; I felt the weight. She put a hand on my cheek, and I got the most powerful feeling of well-being. I felt that she was telling me, "You're going to be fine." Later, when she came back, I said, "When you came in earlier and put your hand on my cheek, it felt so good." And she said, "I didn't come in here." Around the time I'd thought she was with me, she was in the kitchen doing dishes and heard the rustling of clothes. She turned around, but no one was there. She'd been praying to her mother, who had died, to help.

De Vestel says that from that moment on, she began to recover, and her attitude toward the spiritual world shifted. "It's not just 'those people' who have 'weird' things happen," she says. "It's something that can happen to anyone."

Newberg also found that spiritual experiences usually occur during times of strong emotionseuphoria, fear, grief, or some combination, as I felt that day in the car. A third defining element is a feeling of connectedness, of not being alone. Spiritual leaders might interpret this as evidence of a higher power. Scientists tend to look for answers elsewhere: in the physical structure of the brain.

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Science Behind Spiritual Experiences -

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March 28th, 2015 at 6:47 am

New Xulon Title Ties Science and Spirituality in a Concise Format

Posted: March 27, 2015 at 12:45 pm

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Seminole, FL (PRWEB) March 27, 2015

Within the pages of his new book, Faith & Belief Are the Heart's Keys: Unlock & Soften Your Heart to Set it Free and Live! ($15.99, paperback, 9781498426893; $7.99, e-book, 9781498426909) Daniel Soto will explain the undeniable harmony between science and religionspecifically within Bible-believing religions. His writing comes as a result of many years of dedicated research, and it exists to explain that the truth in the Bible can be validated with science. The text points out that the Scriptures carried wisdom thousands of years ago and those that believed saw something more to life and the physical world.

This information can truly awaken people to opening their eyes and understanding the mechanics of life as the scientific evidence is provided for those that need it, states the author. The approach is different and unique as I explain though my own examples some of the pitfalls we all face, including recent current events that should make people seek out truth to understand the facts.

Having been extremely curious about both science and religion from an early age, Daniel Soto has continually searched and researched for answers throughout his life. He began with a Catholic education that continued until midway through high school when he left for public school. In college, the author was proficient in math and science, and felt there had to be a connection. Daniel began looking at different religious and spiritual programs. As he studied, he realized how similar certain ideas were to what he had learned from Catholic education, resulting in his return to the Bible.

Xulon Press, a division of Salem Communications, is the worlds largest Christian self-publisher, with more than 12,000 titles published to date. Retailers may order Faith & Belief Are the Heart's Keys: Unlock & Soften Your Heart to Set it Free and Live! through Ingram Book Company and/or Spring Arbor Book Distributors. The book is available online through,, and

Media Contact: Daniel Soto Email:

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New Xulon Title Ties Science and Spirituality in a Concise Format

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March 27th, 2015 at 12:45 pm

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