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CMU welcomes renowned climate change expert as Scientist in Residence

Dr. Katharine Hayhoe set to speak about science in a ‘post-truth’ world

Canadian Mennonite University is pleased to announce it will host acclaimed atmospheric scientist Dr. Katharine Hayhoe as its 2017 Scientist in Residence.

Katharine Hayhoe
Dr. Katherine Hayhoe
Photo: Ashley Rodgers, Texas Tech University

Hayhoe is a professor at Texas Tech University and the director of its Climate Science Center. In 2014, TIME magazine listed her as one of the 100 most influential people in the world.

Hayhoe will appear on campus January 30−February 1 to share her insights, observations, experience, and personal reflections in a number of speaking events open to the public.

As a means to minimize carbon emissions related to these speaking events on the topic of climate change, Hayhoe’s appearances will be via two-way video conference technology.

CMU is looking forward to hosting Hayhoe, says Dr. Tim Rogalsky, Associate Professor of Mathematics and Chair of the Science and Faith Advisory Committee.

“Katharine is a renowned researcher with more than 120 peer-reviewed publications in the top journals in her field,” Rogalsky says. “More than that, she’s a fantastic communicator with a remarkable ability to talk about the connections between science and faith.”

Dr. Hayhoe’s confirmed speaking engagements are as follows:

A student forum titled, “Science in a Post-Truth World: A Climate Scientist’s Perspective,” on Monday, January 30 from 11:30 AM to 12:00 PM in the CMU Chapel (600 Shaftesbury Blvd.).

 2017_01.SIR.poster.finalproof.wifi[1]A chapel titled “Listening to God’s Creation – A Faith Story,” on Tuesday, January 31 from 11:30 AM to 12:00 PM in the CMU Chapel.

A lecture on Wednesday, February 1 at 7:00 PM in Marpeck Commons (2299 Grant Ave). The lecture is titled, “Talking Climate: Why Facts Are Not Enough.”

For the first time ever, all of these presentations will be streamed live on YouTube, allowing anyone from anywhere in the world to watch and participate in the discussion. It’s an exciting aspect of this year’s events, Rogalsky says.

“It really allows us to involve people from off campus in ways we haven’t in the past,” he says.

Hayhoe says she is looking forward to her time as Scientist in Residence because it will give her the opportunity to talk about both science and faith in the same breath.

“So often the two are completely separated in our society and even in our Christian communities,” she says. “The reality, though, is that if we truly believe that God created this amazing universe that we live in, then what is science, other than trying to figure out what He was thinking when He created it?”

While Hayhoe has been named one of Foreign Policy’s 100 Leading Global Thinkers, as well as one of POLITICO’s 50 thinkers, doers, and visionaries transforming American politics, she may be best-known to many people because of how she’s bridging the broad, deep gap between scientists and Christians—work she does in part because she’s a Christian herself.

Together with her husband Andrew Farley, a professor of applied linguistics, pastor of Church without Religion, and best-selling author, Katharine wrote A Climate for Change: Global Warming Facts for Faith-Based Decisions, a book that untangles the complex science and tackles many long-held misconceptions about global warming. 

Her work as a climate change evangelist has been featured on the Emmy award-winning documentary series Years of Living Dangerously and The Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers. In 2012, she was named by Christianity Today as one of their “50 Women to Watch.”

Hayhoe has a BSc in Physics from the University of Toronto and an MS and PhD in Atmospheric Science from the University of Illinois. Hayhoe is currently serving as lead author for the upcoming Fourth U.S. National Climate Assessment and producing her new PBS Digital Studios short series, Global Weirding: Climate, Politics and Religion.

“My hope is that people walk away from these events with a better understanding of climate change and the role they can play in caring for our planet,” says Rogalsky.

All of the Scientist in Residence events are free and open to the public. For more information, visit cmu.ca/sir.

About CMU
A Christian university in the Anabaptist tradition, CMU’s Shaftesbury campus offers undergraduate degrees in arts, business, humanities, music, sciences, and social sciences, as well as graduate degrees in theology, ministry, peacebuilding and collaborative development, and an MBA. CMU has over 800 full-time equivalent students, including those enrolled in degree programs at the Shaftesbury and Menno Simons College campuses and in its Outtatown certificate program.

For information about CMU visit www.cmu.ca.

For additional information, please contact:
Kevin Kilbrei, Director of Communications & Marketing
kkilbrei@cmu.ca; 204.487.3300 Ext. 621
Canadian Mennonite University
500 Shaftesbury Blvd., Winnipeg, MB  R3P 2N2

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Face2Face: On Campus – Community in Conversation Uncategorized Video

Face2Face | Why Beauty Matters: Radical Amazement, Spirituality, and the Ecological Crisis (video)

Nature has the power to draw us into her beauty, to inspire feelings of wonder and awe, to connect with our spirit. Sadly, our approach in this technological age is too often the opposite, seeing nature as a tool to be used, a resource to be consumed. In a time of ecological crisis what we may need, more than anything else, is a change of posture.

The phrase “radical amazement” comes from the Jewish rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, whose work represents one strand of Jewish environmentalism. He has argued that the root of the environmental crisis lies in the way that we have changed our posture toward the natural world—from awe, wonder, and amazement to detachment, control, and manipulation.

Mathematician Dr. Tim Rogalsky, biologist Dr. Rachel Krause, and engineer Randy Herrmann take us on a fascinating ‘guided tour’ into the wonder of nature. See with new eyes and stand in awe of the hidden beauty of flora, fauna, and land.

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Scientists to explore why beauty matters at upcoming Face2Face discussion event

Three scientists will take audience members on a guided tour into the wonder of nature at Canadian Mennonite University’s next Face2Face community discussion.

Titled, “Why Beauty Matters: Radical Amazement, Spirituality, and the Ecological Crisis,” the discussion will feature Dr. Tim Rogalsky, Associate Professor of Mathematics at CMU; Dr. Rachel Krause, Assistant Professor of Biology at CMU; and Randy Herrmann, an engineer who works at the University of Manitoba.

The event happens Wednesday, November 2 at 7:00 PM at Marpeck Commons (2299 Grant Ave.). Admission is free, and everyone is welcome to attend.

Face2Face Poster“All three of us are going to introduce things that we study within our disciplines that can be fairly easily understood and that are just totally amazing,” Rogalsky says, adding that his talk will explore spiral patterns found in flowers, and what we can glean from this natural display of beauty.

The phrase “radical amazement” comes from the Jewish rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, who has argued that the root of the environmental crisis lies in the way that we as humans have changed our posture toward the natural world—from awe, wonder, and amazement, to detachment, control, and manipulation.

In 1955, Heschel wrote, “As civilization advances, the sense of wonder declines. Such decline is an alarming symptom of our state of mind. Humankind will not perish for want of information; but only for want of appreciation.”

“Seeing nature through eyes of radical amazement may be exactly what our world needs today,” Rogalsky says. “It is also precisely the natural posture of the religious person… Science has the power to explain. Religion has the power to inspire. Inspiration has the power to galvanize people to action. The presentations (on November 2) will attempt to bring all of that together.”

He adds that for each of the scientists who will present, scientific inquiry is an act of worship that helps them connect to God. Some people think about science as being a dry, boring process, when in fact, it’s the exact opposite: Scientific inquiry is a creative act that reveals how interconnected everything in the natural world is.

“Scientists are uniquely positioned to reveal (the) beauty (in our world),” Rogalsky says. “I want people to be inspired by the beauty we can’t always see, but that we can investigate.”

Started in 2013, Face2Face is a series of conversations organized by CMU, designed to engage the community on a wide variety of current events and issues at the intersection of faith and life.

“Why Beauty Matters” is the second of four Face2Face events CMU is scheduled to host during the 2016-17 school year. For details, visit cmu.ca/face2face.

About CMU

A Christian university in the Anabaptist tradition, CMU’s Shaftesbury campus offers undergraduate degrees in arts, business, humanities, music, sciences, and social sciences, as well as graduate degrees in theology, ministry, peacebuilding and collaborative development, and an MBA. CMU has over 800 full-time equivalent students, including those enrolled in degree programs at the Shaftesbury and Menno Simons College campuses and in its Outtatown certificate program.

For information about CMU visit www.cmu.ca.

For additional information, please contact:
Kevin Kilbrei, Director of Communications & Marketing
kkilbrei@cmu.ca; 204.487.3300 Ext. 621
Canadian Mennonite University
500 Shaftesbury Blvd., Winnipeg, MB  R3P 2N2

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Articles Faculty Profiles

Faculty: In Their Own Words – Dr. Tim Rogalsky

Dr. Tim Rogalsky, Associate Professor of Mathematics, has taught at CMU since 2000.

What do you love about your work here?

There are so many things. One is that my students are really, really fun to work with. I just taught a chaos theory course, and student papers at the end of the semester included a paper on spirituality and environmentalism, a paper on Shakespearean literature, and a paper on God’s omniscience. I love the way they think deeply about so many different but interconnected things, and the way they come up with some really profound insights derived from the mathematical theory of chaos and its applications.

05 - Tim Rogalsky (June 2016)

What did you teach this past year that most excited you?

My favourite course is Intro to Calculus, because it’s easy to apply. That’s what makes math really exciting for me: To think about how the way the real world operates can be understood through mathematics.

What are you researching and writing right now?

I just finished a project on Salvador Dali that I would like to continue. Salvador Dali is fairly well known as a surrealist painter, as someone who was rather crass, someone who you certainly wouldn’t think of as a religious person, but there are a lot of depths to him that I’ve found, and some of those depths involved using mathematics and science as a conduit to spirituality. I call it mathematical mysticism.

What do you most long for in your work?

I love the a-ha moments. Sometimes it’s in the classroom and I watch the light bulb come on in a student’s eyes. Sometimes it’s in my own mind or in my heart; I’m teaching a concept and I suddenly get these intense shivers, and I think about how amazing all of this is in the way that it works together. Sometimes it’s in my own research. I can be in the shower or wake up in the middle of the night, and suddenly there’s this idea that just kind of pops forth in full glory that the day before, the hour before, the minute before I didn’t know, but in that moment I suddenly know and understand.

Do you have any interesting projects underway in the broader community or church?

I have given a handful of noon-hour talks at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. In April I presented, “Why Beauty Matters: The Art of Nature,” on some of the really beautiful mathematical patterns we find in the world. I’ll be sharing a version of that at a CMU Face2Face event in November. Explaining mathematics in ways that are understandable to people who don’t have a mathematics degree is something that I love to do. Watching an audience of non-mathematicians says, “Wow!” about mathematics is so, so cool.

What saying or motto inspires you?

The Franciscan friar and author Richard Rohr has been known to say that mystery is not that which is unknowable, but that which is endlessly knowable. That is so often true in both mathematics and theology. We’re always learning, always striving to know better, and that journey is always thrilling.