1st Edition

A New Copernican Turn Contemporary Cosmology, the Self, and Orthodox Science-Engaged Theology

By Doru Costache, Geraint F. Lewis Copyright 2025
    136 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This short book discusses the latest in terms of cosmology’s knowns and unknowns, and sets out to ascertain the potential of Orthodox Christian theology for accommodating the current scientific view of the universe. It also addresses one of cosmology’s unknowns, the destiny of the self in the vastness of space, a topic that causes angst since the dawn of modern science.

    The book examines, accordingly, the signs of a “New Copernican Turn” within contemporary culture, favouring the self and its meaningful encounters with the infinite universe, at the forefront of which being the quest for a physics that views something akin to the self as undergirding reality, not as an inconsequential byproduct of natural phenomena. The book shows furthermore that theological, spiritual, and religious forms of nature contemplation and wonder facilitate the self’s creative intersection with the universe. It amounts to an exercise in science-engaged Orthodox theology that takes as a starting point contemporary cosmology.

    The intended audience of this book are scholars and researchers of science and religion, religious studies, philosophers, and theologians.

    Introduction. 1. What We Know and What We Don’t Know About the Universe: Scientific Perspectives 2. What We Know and What We Don’t Know About the Universe: Theological Perspectives 3. The Self and the Universe in the Age of Science: For Another Copernican Turn. Conclusions. Bibliography. Index of names. Thematic index


    Doru Costache is a Romanian Orthodox priest living in Australia and an Associate Professor of Theology at the Sydney College of Divinity. He is the current Selby Old Fellow in Religious History of the Orthodox Christian Faith at the University of Sydney Library. Until recently, he was an Honorary Research Associate in Studies in Religion, the University of Sydney’s School of Humanities. He coedits ISCAST’s interdisciplinary journal, Christian Perspectives on Science and Technology. His lecturing and research career spans almost thirty years. His latest monograph was Humankind and the Cosmos: Early Christian Representations (2021).

    Geraint F. Lewis is a Professor of Astrophysics at the Sydney Institute for Astronomy in the University of Sydney’s School of Physics. He has more than three decades of experience studying the cosmos, focusing on the “dark side,” the matter and energy that shape the universe around us. He is the author of more than five hundred academic publications and a populariser of science through public speaking and media presentations. He has written three popular science books on the universe’s wonders, of which the latest was Where Did the Universe Come From? And Other Cosmic Questions (with C. Ferrie 2021).