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Cosmology, Consciousness & BIRTHING THE ECOZOIC

with Stephan Martin
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with Stephan Martin



Guest Presenters & Facilitators:  Jennifer Morgan, Orla Hazra, Sarbmeet Kanwal, Mary Coelho, Gail Worcelo, John Leydon and Elizabeth Carranza, Shirley Pevarnik and Di Shearer






Is a virus opening the way to an Ecozoic Era? 


Could the challenges we’re facing at this time be feedback from the universe that a new vision of the human is needed, one that includes all people, and resonates with the dynamics of the universe and the Earth community?  How are we to make sense of the seismic shift in the nature of the human presence on the planet?

One approach to the challenges of this time is, as Thomas Berry says, to reinvent ourselves in a way that enables us to live with mutually enhancing relationships….not just with humans but with our Earth—so that our activities actually enhance the world around us.  Thomas Berry suggested the name “Ecozoic” to define the emerging era where humans have transitioned from the destructive industrial dream of consumption and materialism to becoming a sustainable and mutually-enhancing part of the life systems of the planet. He considered the successful emergence of the Ecozoic Era as the Great Work of our time.


“See or perish.”  — Teilhard de Chardin

What’s being called forth in this extraordinary moment?


The discoveries and revelations of modern science have led to radically new understandings of the nature of the universe. We find ourselves in the midst of a stunningly creative and dynamic cosmic process that reaches through the stars, galaxies, and the Earth into the innermost and most intimate depths of our being and existence.  In our learning adventure we’ll explore leading-edge ideas in the sciences, systems theory, and in the emerging field of consciousness studies that suggest that consciousness may be as fundamental to the cosmos as is space, time, energy, and matter. Is there an emerging participatory cosmology that brings together the inner and the outer, the subjective and the objective, the personal and the cosmological as interrelated aspects of a creatively unfolding cosmos?


How can we use this moment to birth an Ecozoic Era?


matrixWe can already see some expressions of this emerging holistic cosmic perspective in our culture.   One emphasis of our learning and creating community together will be to highlight case studies and how to take these radical discoveries into our lives and apply them personally and in our work in the world.

We will learn how a cosmic perspective, and the deep connections it reveals, can help us meet the challenges of our times; and evolve our planet and even our universe.  Maria Montessori instructed us that our cosmic task as humans is to “evolve the universe.”  These insights can create much needed positive change in this extraordinary moment of our Earth story.



Join a community of like minded explorers . . .

During this time of upheaval, join a community for twelve weeks where we can support each other on our collective journey.  Enter an emergence zone where the future is bubbling up, be nurtured, moved, inspired, and yes, have a lot of fun too!




Topics we’ll explore:

  • Cosmogenesis and the implications of living in a participatory universe
  • The surprising discoveries of quantum physics and what they imply about connectedness, causality, and personal identity
  • Chaos theory, fractals and deep patterning in nature and our lives
  • Emerging results from consciousness research that revolutionize our understanding of ourselves and our relationship to the world
  • The provocative and challenging insights of extraordinary mystical, and cosmic consciousness experiences and what they may mean for our lives
  • Exploring some of the ways that philosophers and scientists have tried to synthesize cosmos and consciousness into a coherent framework that includes both

Real Life Application

  • This course includes real life case examples of how people around the world are applying these principles in education and religious and spiritual practices, other case examples to come in future programs.
  • Dive into ways to integrate, and express these radical insights in your life, action, and community.
  • We’ll use the course as a place to foster emergence to give birth to an Ecozoic era.


Who is this for?

  • Everyone who wants to delve deeply into the Universe Story and it’s implications for our future.
  • Teachers who want to frame their curriculum inside the Story of the Universe.
  • Spiritual/religious who want to situate and ground their understandings/practices inside an evolving universe
  • Activists looking for a larger frame and understanding of relationships to address the crises of today.
  • Therapists/counselors/coaches who understand that our cosmologies give us meaning and purpose.  Dysfunctional cosmologies can be at the root of mental illness and addiction.
  • Anyone who wants to join with others in exploring the possibilities of a new view together with a community situating and grounding their lives in the cosmic story and new emerging consciousness.

You’ll Get To:

  • Participate in collaborative learning combining lecture, discussion, embodiment, and application
  • Connect with people around the world to grow a planetary nervous system
  • Choose between two sections every week for twelve weeks
  • Become part of a global cohort and develop relationships that can continue after the course is over
  • Experience and help create embodiment experiences each week
  • Integrate this work into your community and life


Week 1:  The Emerging Cosmic Story — Exploring the work of Brian Swimme, Thomas Berry and Big History

Week 2:  Cosmogenesis and the Implication of a Participatory Universe —  What does it mean to live in the New Cosmology? Exploring perspectives from Brian Swimme, Thomas Berry, David Korten, Nancy and Joel Primack and others.

Week 3:  Case Study:  Cosmic Vision in Education — Framework for education and the Montessori Cosmic Vision (Guest presenters — Orla Hazra and Jennifer Morgan)

Week 4:  Chaos, Self-Organization, and the Fractal Universe — Perspectives on living in a complex and patterned universe by Jeremy Hayward, Sally Goerner, Ursula Goodenough, Terence Deacon and others

Week 5:  The Quantum Universe: Uncertainty Principle and the False Vacuum (co-presented with Sarbmeet Kanwal) — Exploring the hidden reality under our noses with readings from Brian Greene, Carlo Rovelli, and others

Week 6:  The Interconnected Universe: Quantum Entanglement & Non-locality (co-presented with Sarbmeet Kanwal) — Parallels with Eastern Mysticism, with readings from Fritjof Capra, Gary Zukav, and others

Week 7:  Scientific and Philosophical Perspectives on Consciousness, including Neurobiology — Will explore the works by David Chalmers, Pim van Lommel, Chris Bache, Charles Tart, Freya Matthews, Stanislav Grof, and others

Week 8:  Insights from the Frontiers of Consciousness Research: Fields, Global Consciousness and Mysticism.   Additional readings include Chris Bache, Roger Nelson, and others.  Guest presenter — Mary Coelho, author of Awakening Universe, Emerging Personhood: The Power of Contemplation in an Evolving Universe, will discuss the mystical tradition and how it aligns with discoveries about the energetic interiority of matter.

Week 9: Case Study: Applying to Religion and Spiritual Practice — Guest presenters — Sarbmeet Kanwal and Gail Worcelo

Week 10: Cosmos and Consciousness: Towards a Synthesis — Including perspectives offered by David Bohm, Deepak Chopra, Menas Kafatos, Terry Deacon and others

Week 11:  Case Study:  Human Culture and the Earth:  Ritual, Healing, and Living in a Planetary Society; Guest presenters — John Leydon and Elizabeth Carranza discuss how they are participating in the creation of a new vision for human culture in the Philippine Church and among national Catholic institutions and ecological civic society organizations.

Week 12: Conclusions: Cultivating an Experiential Cosmology


Our Learning Management System

We use Sensei integrated with Buddypress so that between Zoom meetings participants can engage in asynchronous course discussions, and share resources, profiles, and information about their organizations.  We’ve now had experience using this technology in previous courses with people of all levels of technical capability.  And if there are any questions, we’re right there to help you.  All meetings are recorded.  The course will remain open for one year so you can view recordings, stay in touch and continue to share thoughts and resources with others sharing the journey with you.  Our fearless developer, Mohit Sharma, stands at the ready to solve any tech problems that might crop up a long the way.


Endorsements from Hidden Heart of the Cosmos Study Group with Stephan Martin:

I feel that Deeptime is a group of pioneers that are ushering in a revolution that will transform the world and help evolve it to its next level. I feel privileged to be able to be a part of this group and to be able to contribute something towards the transformation.   — Sarbmeet Kanwal, Holmdel, NJ

The reading and group discussion expanded the horizons of the universe for me in a breathtaking way.  — Dan Troy, Hong Kong

I thought this was a great course. it helped us see the universe and ourselves in a new way, in a way that sees us all as interconnected and one. It is a needed perspective in this age of division and alienation. I think it is critical for ourselves and the planet for people to be exposed to this new world view in this kind of a supporting and nurturing environment.  — Bruce McGraw, San Diego, CA (US)

You and I are stardust! You and I are the center of the Universe!  — Sheryl Morris, Caldwell, ID (US)

Stephen is clearly scientifically trained and knowledgable to talk elegantly about scientific discoveries, but very open and curious about non-newtonian world-views activated by wonder and awe. The class evokes spine-tingling reverence for a completely stupendous universe.  James Long, El Cahon, CA (US)

We experienced a community becoming deeply engaged and excited as the new cosmology is explored and understood.  Mary Coelho, Cambridge, MA (US)

Thank you for the on-line availability of all these courses.  Anne Marie Raftery, South Attleboro, MA (US)

A BIG, BIG THANK YOU!  Elizabeth (Bing) Carranza, Quezon City, Phillipines


Stephan Martin is an astronomer, educator, and author who has taught astronomy, physics, and consciousness studies at colleges, universities, and learning centers across the US for over twenty-five years. Between 2003-2008 he studied directly with Brian Swimme and others at the California Institute of Integral Studies, out of which came his first book Cosmic Conversations, in which he held dialogues with scientists, spiritual teachers, and cultural creatives on the nature of the universe and our role in it. Since then he has led workshops on the New Cosmology at seminars and retreat centers across the US and Europe and has been active in exploring multidisciplinary approaches to exploring the universe.  He is currently adjunct faculty in the Consciousness and Transformative Studies graduate program at John F Kennedy University where he teaches a course on “Cosmology and Consciousness.” Steve is also a co-director of the continuing care program at the Center for Spiritual Emergence in Asheville, NC where he assists clients in living more conscious lives from an expansive perspective.


Jennifer Morgan, president and founder of the Deeptime Network, is an award-winning author, storyteller, and educator inspired by the work of Teilhard de Chardin, Maria Montessori, Thomas Berry, and Brian Swimme. Her Universe Story Trilogy — Born With a Bang, From Lava to Life, and Mammals Who Morph — are used in classrooms around the world, particularly in Montessori schools as part of the Cosmic Education Curriculum, and have received the Teachers Choice Award, Nautilus Semi Finalist, highest ratings from AAAS and endorsements from Jane Goodall, Neil de Grasse Tyson, astronaut Edgar Mitchell, Thomas Berry, Brian Swimme and others.  She is Vice President of the American Teilhard Association.  Her life inspiration is to foster emergence by helping to link a planetary nervous system of people immersed in this radical new understanding.


Orla Hara currently lives in Sarasota Florida after recently returning from ten years in Mumbai, India. While in India she developed a curriculum to renew the Ignatian (Jesuit) Pedagogical Paradigm, applying it at St. Xavier’s College and at Tarumitra, an ecoliteracy center in Patna. Her academic formation in recreation leadership, addiction counseling, and spiritual direction, led her into a PhD program in Religious Education, from Fordham University; her research becoming a model for educational reform considering the fourfold wisdom conversation suggested by Thomas Berry — science, religion, women and indigenous peoples. She is a founding board member of the Deeptime Network and is delighted to be witnessing the model in practice, healing our trauma of separation.


Sarbmeet Kanwal is an award-winning college level educator and a pioneer in novel ways of teaching quantum physics and astronomy. He holds a PhD in Theoretical Physics from the California Institute of Technology. His aptitude for explaining, in everyday language, intricate concepts in cosmology has made him a sought after speaker among both scientific and non-scientific communities. Last year he was selected from hundreds of applicants to make a speech titled “Chaos to Cosmos” at the highest rated TEDx event on the East coast.  Raised in India as a follower of Sikhism, Sarbmeet is a long time board member of the Monmouth Center for World Religions and Ethical Thought where he helped initiate several interfaith projects including the cofounding of an award winning youth leadership program called MOSAIC. Strongly influenced by the writings of Brian Swimme and Thomas Berry, he is the founder and leader of a popular study circle centered on the New Creation Story.


Mary Conrow Coelho is author of the book Awakening Universe, Emerging Personhood. (Wyndham Hall Press, 2002) and a number of articles. She has been a member of the Steering Committee of the Friends Committee on Unity with Nature, is on the board of The American Teilhard Association and founder with others of the New Story Group at Friends Meeting at Cambridge and a similar group in New York City. She has led a number of workshops on the integration of the epic of evolution and the Western contemplative/mystical tradition.  She brings her theological studies, her background in science as a biology teacher and her excitement about our transformed worldview to her work as a water painter of images evoking the new cosmology.  A few of her paintings and some accordion books are on her website: Mrs. Coelho is a signature member of the Northeast Watercolor Society, exhibiting her paintings in the northeast.


Gail Worcelo is a co-founder, along with Bernadette Bostwick (and the late Passionist priest and cultural historian Thomas Berry), of Sisters of the Earth Community at Green Mountain Monastery  in Greensboro, Vermont.    The mission of this community of Catholic sisters, along with their world wide partners is to foster: A Single Sacred Community: Where we go into the future with the natural world in a mutually enhancing way.  She joined the Passionist nuns, a monastic  community of women in 1982 with a Master’s degree in Christian Spirituality from Fordham  University, and directed,  Homecomings: Center for Ecology and Contemplation; served on the Leadership Team as Councilor and Novice director of the community, and obtained a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology.  She travels the world giving retreats to congregations of men and women religious based on her work with Thomas Berry (1990-present).


John Leydon is an Irish priest of the Missionary Society of St. Columban who has been in the Philippines since 1973. Aside from his pastoral work, most of his missionary years were dedicated to social action and ecological work. For several years, he had been the coordinator of the Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Ministry of the Columban Missionaries in the Philippine Region. His masteral studies in Creation Spirituality at the Institute in Culture and Creation Spirituality, Oakland, California (which he completed in 1996) led him to co-found the Center for Ecozoic Living and Learning (CELL), an eco-center dedicated to the Universe/Earth through the inspiration of Thomas Berry, in 1998. He also co-founded, in 2019, the Terra Sisters of the Trinity, a new and emerging Earth-oriented Philippine-based Catholic religious community of women. He is currently a member of the Steering Committee of the Global Catholic Climate Movement (GCCM) and Chairperson of its Philippine Chapter, GCCM-Pilipinas.


Elizabeth (Bing) Carranza, a passionate Earth-lover, is Co-Founder and Coordinator of the Terra Sisters of the Trinity, a new and emerging Earth-oriented Philippine-based Catholic religious community of women established in 2019. She works with the Global Catholic Climate Movement-Pilipinas and is involved in the Education Program at the Center for Ecozoic Living and Learning, an eco-center dedicated to Thomas Berry which was set up by the Mondejar Foundation along with some members of the Missionary Society of St. Columban in 1998. She was a College Physics Instructor at the University of the Philippines before she entered the religious life. Active in the ecological circle in the Philippines for over 15 years now, she was Chairperson of the Save Sierra Madre Network Alliance Inc. and was also part of the Board to four other environmental organizations. 


Shirley Pevarnik has an MLA in Creation Spirituality from Matthew Fox’s University of Creation Spirituality (UCS)/Naropa. She studied with Brian Swimme at UCS and California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) in the Bay Area. She was a good friend to Thomas Berry and Swimme and is a life long student of their work. She has spent years facilitating video discussion groups on Swimme’s, started many Ecozoic groups and discussion groups on New Cosmology and gives “Active Hope” workshops based on the work of Joanna Macy. She lives in the Southwest desert with the sweet scent of creosote, the beauty of flowering cactus and great horned owls.  A teacher and social worker, she is also a long time social and environmental justice activist. After being arrested many times for Civil Disobedience protesting the state of our world, she was fortunate enough to finally hear Berry and Swimme’s work and the new Universe Story.   This new scientific, cosmic story changed her life as it possibly has or will change yours.


Di Shearer is an earthling who lives in the Southern Hemisphere of our Globe.  In her childhood she was visited by a recurring dream that has given her a lifelong interest in the spiritual and the ways in which an individual might respond to the global crises we face, economically, ethically and ecologically.  Her career path spans secondary and tertiary teaching in Australia and in Singapore and Malaysia.  Her higher degrees (PhD and DMin) focus on intercultural personhood and the true meaning of catholicity respectively.  In her retirement, Di is a freelance spiritual director and supervisor, currently reshaping her work as guide to wisdom practices.  She aims to be deeply rooted in history and open to interfaith application to individual and social life across cultures.  In this reshaping in a new stage of her retirement, Di is promoting and giving priority to a Deeptime Perspective.

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