Alan Rayner is an evolutionary ecologist, writer and artist. He was born in Nairobi, Kenya in 1950 and obtained B.A. and Ph.D. in Natural Sciences at King’s College, Cambridge in 1972 and 1975. He was a Reader in Biological Sciences at the University of Bath from 1985 to 2011. He was President of the British Mycological Society in 1998 and President of Bath Natural History Society from 2012 to 2018.
Alan has published numerous papers and books, including Degrees of Freedom: Living in Dynamic Boundaries published in 1997 where he explains how current abstract perceptions of space and boundaries in human cultural psychology and evolutionary ecology are sources of discontinuity that limit the ability to understand the natural relationships of living systems. Additionally, Alan published NaturesScope in 2012 which evokes a different view, FROM Nature, bringing human beings and the world into empathic mutual relationship. His most recent book, ‘The Origin of Life Patterns in the Natural Inclusion of Space in Flux’ was published in 2017 and offers insights into how human cultural patterns are influenced by abstract perceptions of space and boundaries that can be transformed by more natural perceptions.
Alan’s most recent publications are two chapters titled, The γ – Principle of Natural Inclusion: From Competition Versus Cooperation to Heartfelt Relay and Combining Focus and Circumspection: An Education in Natural Inclusion in the book Transformative Education for Regeneration and Wellbeing (2022).
Since childhood, Alan has expressed his feelings of the natural world through painting. Art lifts his spirit and reveals aspects of reality that he feels he’d otherwise be unaware of. Alan creates artwork in his study and has stated, “As paint flows from my brush, I feel exhilarated by recognising that if we view them closely enough, and for long enough, all natural forms, my self included, are continually on the move.” For him, art and science are fundamental to his understanding of natural inclusion and its implications for every kind of human endeavor.
He has been pioneering awareness of the process of natural inclusion since 2000. Alan regards natural inclusion as a fundamental principle that can be discovered and understood by anyone, based on our actual life experience. Much of his life’s endeavor has consciously and unconsciously been to help restore soul to science and not just science, but a human culture that has increasingly excised its self from its birthplace, with dire consequences.