My name is David Patrick Harry, I am a Religious Studies doctoral student at the Graduate Theological Union next to the campus of the University of California Berkeley. My research is focused on the historical use of visionary plants within Christianity, particularly during the ancient, medieval, and modern periods. Previously I was at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign where I studied Classical Greek with a research focus on magic in both Early Christian and Native American traditions. I am also Founder and Director of Fractal Youniverse Productions; where our focus is producing the highest quality of inspiring entertainment and education ("edutainment") through a multitude of mediums (lectures, video montages, visual art, my own personal research, motivational/inspirational video compilations, and much much more). In addition to having grown up in the Indianapolis area, it was there that I completed my undergraduate studies at IUPUI (Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis). Despite beginning as a Biology major and continuing for three years, I graduated with a B.A. in Religious Studies, an Academic Certificate in Chinese Language (Mandarin 普通话) & Culture, a minor in Biology, and was fortunate enough to study abroad twice at Sun Yat-Sen University (中山大学 ) in Guangzhou, China.
My approach to the study of Comparative World Religions is one through both a Scientific and Humanistic lens. I see the timeless spiritual wisdom of our ancestors and the technologies of modern science as two epistemologically valid perspectives, not antagonistic but approaching the living mystery of reality from opposite sides of the looking glass. The underlying interest in my research is to investigate the role entheogenic substances have played in the evolution of religious traditions. Dogmatic ideologies, whether Religious Fundamentalism or mechanistic materialism are no longer viable in the age of information; due to their rigidity they are now finding themselves in direct opposition to their own modernizing traditions and established experimental results. The central question I have been asking throughout my studies has been, "how does language, symbols, and ritual make things act in the world?"