Dr. T. D. Singh (His Holiness Bhaktisvarupa Damodara Swami) received Ph.D. in Physical Organic Chemistry from the University of California at Irvine in 1974. He was a scientist and spiritualist known for his pioneering efforts in the synthesis of science and religion for a deeper understanding of life and the universe. He was trained in Vaishnava Vedanta studies from 1970 to 1977 under His Divine Grace A C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada and was appointed Director of the Bhaktivedanta Institute in 1974. He organized four major International Conferences on Science and Religion - First and Second World Congress for the Synthesis of Science and Religion (Mumbai, 1986 & Kolkata, 1997), First International Conference on the Study of Consciousness within Science (San Francisco, 1990), and Second International Congress on Life and Its Origin (Rome, 2004). Collectively thousands of prominent scientists and religious leaders including several Nobel Laureates participated. He has authored and edited more than dozen books including What is Matter and What is Life? (1977), Theobiology (1979), Synthesis of Science and Religion: Critical Essays and Dialogues (1987) and Thoughts on Synthesis of Science and Religion (2001). He was also the founder Editor-in-Chief for two journals of the Bhaktivedanta Institute.
Dr. Singh had lots of concern for the student community with regard to their holistic development. He felt our younger generations were exposed to the latest scientific and technological developments in various disciplines at numerous colleges and universities around the world, but lacked spiritual foundation to make proper use of them. Hence, he felt the need to organize students' conference on the interface of Science and Spirituality for the holistic growth of their personality. With this vision, Dr. Singh conceptualized the series on All India Students' Conference on Science and Spiritual Quest (AISSQ). He personally organized the first conference in the series in December 2005 at Vrindavan, UP. However, by the will of Providence, Dr. Singh left for the spiritual abode on 2 October 2006. He had made all the arrangements for the 2nd AISSQ conference that was held in December 2006 in Puri, Orissa. Dr. Singh also expressed his noble desire for the third and fourth AISSQ conferences in the series to be organized in Tirupati and Sri Rangam (Trichy), respectively. The fifth AISSQ conference was held at MNNIT Allahabad. Both NIT Trichy and MNNIT Allahabad received funding from prestigious Department of Science and Technology (DST), one of the research apex bodies of the country. Today, inspired by his vision, his students, friends and well-wishers throughout the world are making a humble attempt to carry out his grand vision for harmonizing the modern culture through the synthesis of science and spirituality.