Reality, Truth, and Beauty: Faith and the Pursuit of Authenticity

Part of the image of God in us is the capacity to create. But “seeing through a glass darkly” seems to be a universal description of all human quests towards reality, beauty, and spiritual truth.  Our limited vision creates in these quests not only the drive and imagination to “see better,” but also the mechanisms to safeguard their authenticity and enhance their reach: a fundamental humility, intellectual respect for existing norms, and submission to peer feedback. The process is not easy – it takes the best out of us and challenges us to our limits – yet the struggle seems ordained by a God who sets it before us as a path towards a higher road, or a deeper place, where we can be more rooted in our true identity and our place in the cosmic enterprise of His making.  

This faculty retreat aims to focus us on the centrality and commonalities of human quests, cutting across academic, artistic, and spiritual pursuits, with the hope that we can all be more authentically centered in what we do as believers called to His purposes in the world.

Keynote Speaker

Dr. Ehsan Samei is a Persian-American medical physicist and a tenured Professor of Radiology, Medical Physics, Biomedical Engineering, Physics, and Electrical and Computer Engineering at Duke University. He is an imaging scientist with an active interest in bridging the gap between scientific scholarship and clinical practice. He has mentored over 100 trainees, has published over 250 referred journal papers, and been the recipient of over 30 extramural grants. On the personal side, he is also a musician and has an active interest in common traits and interactions between science, art, and faith. He has run five marathons (3:17 PR, including the 2013 Boston), is married to Dr. Maija Samei who is a scholar of medieval Chinese literature. Maija and Ehsan are blessed with four children.


Other Speakers

Greg Jao is the Senior Assistant to the President, focusing on executive office communications and external relations. Greg is the author of Your Mind’s Mission (an Urbana Onward book), The Kingdom of God (a LifeGuide Bible Study), and a contributing author to Following Jesus without Dishonoring Your Parents (a discipleship book for Asian Americans) (all published by IVP), Telling the Truth (a book on postmodern evangelism), and Voices of Conflict & Voices of Hope (a two-volume study of American teenagers).


Children's and Youth Programming

Activities for children and youth programming will be coordinated and run by the Ridge Haven Conference Center staff and will include many of the activities listed on their website. Contact them directly with any questions.

Conference Schedule

Click here to view the conference schedule. The schedule is subject to change.