Were Adam and Eve real people?

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Author Topic: Adam and Eve: Historical People? (Poll)  (Read 50964 times)

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Offline jckstraw72

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Re: Adam and Eve: Historical People? (Poll)
« Reply #225 on: October 09, 2009, 02:59:39 PM »
you're saying you condemn the idea that the body existed before the soul? if evolution is true then the body obviously predates the soul ...  

No, I'm condemning the idea that the soul predates the body.  That's what Origen believed, or accused of believing.

right right, sorry i got mixed up there. however, i know that at least St. Gregory of Nyssa condemns the opposite idea that the body predates the soul.

well in that part St. John is speaking of Origenians -- perhaps Origen himself didn't actually believe it, I don't know. but St. John is talking about the tendency to turn everything in the story into an allegory and deny the literal level of it -- St. John Chrysostom, St. Basil, St. Ephraim, St. Augustine, St. Bede, and others also warn about the same tendency, but here it seems St. John has identified it as an actual heresy.

But the quote is talking about Paradise here.  Frankly, if St. John Damascene has a problem with the Garden of Eden not being taken literally and instead calling it Paradise, his beef is also with St. Athanasius.  In addition, St. Basil is one of the compilers of the Philocalia of Origen.

Yes, I agree over-allegorizing things is a danger, but I thought Paradise is a common tradition of the allegorizing of Garden of Eden in both the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox churches.

i dont know what you mean by Paradise is an allegorizing of the Garden of Eden -- from everything I've read they're synonymous. The entire earth was a sort of Paradise ie incorrupt, but the Garden was a distinct and special place that was Paradise. The Garden remained incorrupt even after man's sin and that is why he is kicked out of it, and for a while man could still see the Garden/Paradise and weep over his sins, but gradually the Garden was taken away, but Saints such as St. Euphrosynos have visited Paradise/the Garden.

Offline minasoliman

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Re: Adam and Eve: Historical People? (Poll)
« Reply #226 on: October 09, 2009, 03:10:33 PM »
The Garden from my understanding wasn't a Garden with trees and grass and leaves and birds chirping.  It portrayed a life that the saints are living right now that Adam lost.  This is what I mean by allegory.  It's not synonymous.

Neither did every father believe the entire Earth was incorrupt.  St. Athanasius left room for belief otherwise, and the only one that/who received the grace of incorruption was man, and they were placed in God's own Paradise.

I think St. Paul also visited Paradise, and he said "man has not seen, ear not heard, nor heart can contemplate" it.

As for the body/soul idea, I honestly don't know.  I don't think evolution can necessarily contradict the idea that the body and soul were formed at the same time.  Evolution does not deal with matters of the soul, it only deals with matters of the flesh.
« Last Edit: October 09, 2009, 03:13:37 PM by minasoliman »
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Offline AlexanderOfBergamo

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Re: Adam and Eve: Historical People? (Poll)
« Reply #227 on: October 09, 2009, 03:29:20 PM »
... We receive our soul at conception, when our body is literally created (aka formed) out of clay (pre-existing matter). That doesn't contradict a pre-existence of the humankind as a species, but only the pre-existence of the human soul as if it had evolved from an animal soul. Which explains why I believe in a real Adam but don't deny (since I'm not sure) that the kind 'homo' pre-existed to him.

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Re: Adam and Eve: Historical People? (Poll)
« Reply #228 on: November 12, 2009, 11:01:13 AM »
I won't vote in the poll so as not to skew the results (not that my single vote would have much of an impact). I'm sure you all can guess what I'd have voted, though. ;) And for the record, I would have voted the same if I were Orthodox.

Offline Jetavan

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Re: Adam and Eve: Historical People? (Poll)
« Reply #229 on: November 06, 2010, 02:47:36 PM »
There's a Christian tradition/legend that Adam was created in such a way that his body and mind were those of a 20-year old.

What if that could be interpreted to mean that the pre-human (or physically, but not spiritually, human) father and mother of Adam gave birth to a child, and this child became fully conscious of God ("God-breathed") at the age of 20?

Is this tradition/legend mentioned in the Church Fathers?
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