A new two-year project will fund dozens of essays and longform pieces published in one of the most innovative and engaging journals of science and thought.
Founded in 2012, Aeon is a digital magazine that provides a forum for writers, thinkers, and scientists to discuss ideas at the cutting edge of science, philosophy, society, and the arts through longform essays, idea pieces, and videos. With editorial offices in Melbourne, London, and New York, Aeon is structured as an international non-profit, relying on individual donations and grant funding to make its articles freely available to an aggregate audience of about 1.3 million web viewers and social media followers.
A new grant from the John Templeton Foundation will provide support for Aeon’s writers and editors to produce three dozen essays and videos across four general themes: the dialogue between physics and philosophy around cosmology’s leading edge; the ways that new evolutionary insights — including epigenetics, population genetics, and complex systems theory — are enriching the story of life on earth; the cognitive science of consciousness and creativity; and the neuroscience and cognitive connections between spiritual practices, ethics, and mental health.
The current project is a follow-up from a previous collaboration between Aeon and the Templeton Religion Trust, which provided funding for essays including an exploration of the paradoxes of entangled time, changes in biologists’ ideas of what constitutes an organism, an argument that consciousness is not a thing but rather a process of inference, and an essay on the positive effects of forests and other natural settings on mental health. As with the previous project, Aeon’s editorial staff and writers retain full control over what’s written — the grant funding merely makes the writing and editing possible.
“One of the things Aeon is best at is providing a forum for truly cutting-edge thinkers to engage with a broader audience,” says John Cunningham, the John Templeton Foundation’s Program Officer for Public Engagement. “This project will allow Aeon’s editors to work with scientists who may not have written for a popular audience before to make their work — and the important questions it raises — accessible to those outside their field.”
Read more at Aeon.co.
Watch three videos that Aeon produced in conjunction with the Templeton Religion Trust: