How Did the Universe Begin? God, Creation and the Big Bang

Explore both spiritual and scientific approaches to this profound topic and search for harmony between the religious and scientific perspectives.


Sri Swami Medhananda Puri

Sri Swami Medhananda Puri is a distinguished traditional teacher of Vedanta. In 1979, he joined the Kailash Ashram in Rishikesh, India, where he was initiated into the Kailash monastic order. Over the years, he served as acharya at the ashram and in 1987, he was promoted to Treasurer and Manager. He has mastered the Vyakaranam, Mimamsa, Nyaya, Sankhya sastras, Advaita philosophy, Bhagavad Gita, ten principal Upanisads, and Brahma Sutras. A teacher of teachers, many of his students have become acharyas who are now teaching around the world.

Daniel Matt

Daniel Matt, PhD, is one of the world's leading authorities on Kabbalah, the Jewish mystical tradition, and has been widely featured in the media. The author of more than a dozen books, including The Essential Kabbalah and God and the Big Bang: Discovering Harmony between Science and Spirituality, he is currently engaged in an immense project of translating and annotating the Zohar, the masterpiece of the Kabbalah, for which he has been honored with a National Jewish Book Award.

Howard Smith

Howard A. Smith, PhD, is a Senior Astrophysicist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and a Lecturer in the Harvard University Department of Astronomy. He travels, lectures and teaches widely on the topic of science and religion, taking as his primary examples cosmology, modern physics, and the perspectives of Judaism, with an emphasis on Kabbalah and mystical thought. He is the author of a widely acclaimed book on these topics, Let There Be Light: Modern Cosmology and Kabbalah, a New Conversation Between Science and Religion.

Heng Sure

Rev. Heng Sure, PhD (Religion), was ordained in the Mahayana tradition of Chinese Buddhism with the late Chan Master Hsuan Hua. In 1977 he commenced a “Three Steps, One Bow” pilgrimage for world peace, traveling up the California coast from South Pasadena to Ukiah, covering a distance of 800 miles in two years and six months, during which time and for three years following, he observed a vow of complete silence. Rev. Sure currently serves as Director of the Berkeley Buddhist Monastery. He lectures internationally on human values in the hi-tech world, eating a harmless, plant-based diet, and translating Buddhist music into the West.