About the Authors
Dr. Matthew T. Lee
Matthew Lee, Ph.D., is Professor and Chair in the Department of Sociology, University of Akron. He is vice-president of the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love and served as vice-president of the Center for Restorative Justice of North Central Ohio. He is the founding editor of Altruism, Morality & Social Solidarity Forum, the forum for scholarship and newsletter for the Altruism, Morality, and Social Solidarity Section of the American Sociological Association. He is also Chair-Elect of that Section. His more than 50 publications include The Science and Theology of Godly Love and Godly Love: Impediments and Possibilities (both co-edited with Amos Yong). He is an elected member of the Board of Directors for the Commission on the Accreditation of Programs in Applied and Clinical Sociology and an ad hoc reviewer for the National Science Foundation. His most recent work focuses on altruism/love, with earlier studies addressing crime and deviance. He was project director and co-principal investigator on the Flame of Love Project, which focuses on the “Great Commandment”—loving and knowing God’s love and then reaching out to love others.
Dr. Margaret M. Poloma
Margaret Poloma, Ph.D., is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Sociology, University of Akron. She has written extensively about religious experience in contemporary American society including pioneering studies on prayer, Pentecostalism, contemporary revivals and divine healing. Much of this work has focused on diverse Pentecostal spiritualities (i.e., denominational Pentecostal, Charismatic, Third Wave, Neo-Pentecostal, etc.), as reported in Charismatic Movement; The Assemblies of God at the Crossroad; Main Street Mystics; Blood and Fire (with Ralph W. Hood); and The Assemblies of God (with John C. Green). Her pioneering research on prayer (c.f., Varieties of Prayer with George H. Gallup Jr.) has served as a bridge between Pentecostal spirituality and common spiritual experiences of American Christians through data collected in two national surveys (1989 and 2009). Through the use of both qualitative and quantitative measures to explore the experiential dimension of religion, Poloma’s work suggests that religious experience does indeed impact human behaviour. She was a co-principal investigator on the Flame of Love Project.
Dr. Stephen G. Post
Stephen Post, Ph.D., is Director of the Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care and Bioethics in the School of Medicine, Stony Brook University (SUNY). From 1998 through 2008 he was Professor of Bioethics, Philosophy and Religion in the School of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University. Post is Editor-in-Chief of the Encyclopedia of Bioethics, 3rd edition (Macmillan Reference, 2004). He is President of the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love, founded in 2001 with a generous grant from the John Templeton Foundation and devoted to high-level scientific research on unselfish love. Post received his Ph.D. in ethics from the University of Chicago Divinity School (1983), where he was an elected university fellow, a member of the Institute for the Advanced Study of Religion and a preceptor in the Pritzker School of Medicine. He served as a co-principal investigator on the Flame of Love Project. His work on love spans three decades.