Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Religious Studies

First Advisor

Greg Johnson

Second Advisor

Danika Medak-Saltzman

Third Advisor

Penelope Kelsey


This thesis seeks to explore the power of stories, how they affect the way we move in the world and how we relate to the creatures we share it with. The separation between the sciences and the humanities in a Western context has obscured certain truths about the nature of our fleshy creaturely existences. Weaving these seemingly separate disciplinary narratives together is necessary for cultural reformation. The stories of neuroscientists, philosophers, religious studies scholars, theologians, cultural critics, botanists, physicists and novelists combine with the personal experiences of the author in this thesis to create a foundation for the kind of narrative reform and reflection that needs to occur.