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Question: Do you believe that the acount of genesis in the Old testament should be taken literally?
Yes - 53 (15.7%)
No - 129 (38.2%)
both metaphorically and literally - 156 (46.2%)
Total Voters: 338

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Author Topic: Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy  (Read 328868 times) Average Rating: 0
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minasoliman
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« Reply #2655 on: December 11, 2010, 09:59:06 PM »

I have a question for you.

I'd like you to quote mine the Church fathers for me on the idea of whether they believed Angels came and produced children through human women called the Nephilim?

dont you mean quote mine St. Athanasius? he's the only one that matters i thought ....

if anything, you've been quote mining to find people who you think are in agreement with St. Athanasius because you think he's infallible, whereas the Creationist POV can point to countless Fathers from every age of the Church. and anyways, St. Athanasius is incompatible with evolution also. he believes people were created immortal (whether by nature or by grace, either way they were immortal), and he believes the creation act of each day was instantaneous. so if you really fully follow St. Athanasius like you say you do you would have to drop evolution.

but anyways, this site: http://www.robibrad.demon.co.uk/Chapter5.htm has a chart that has it all laid out. whether or not the chart is entirely accurate im not sure, because although i like his page overall, i have found a few points of research that i would disagree with him about.

also, in post 2542 you said that St. Irenaeus is an infallible source that no one really disagrees with, but he believed the sons of God were angels ....

but isnt this just a diversion from the topic at hand?

It's not really a diversion.  You criticize me of not following the majority of the Fathers.  I'm reading that the Church fathers of the first three centuries almost unanimously believed that the sons of God were angels.

I already gave you a quote on how St. Athanasius is scientifically wrong.  It just so happens, he was right about death existing with other animals even before the Fall.  So I wonder do you agree with the concensus patrum that angels had intercourse with humans (even St. Jerome who did not accept Enoch as Scripture)?

did you look at the website i linked? its quite clear that the teaching that angels had intercourse with humans is NOT the concensus patrum. this is an issue on which there is a noticeable divergence. but it is mainly the early writers who interpreted the "sons of God" this way, whereas this teaching fell out of the later Fathers and is not part of the Church's teaching. Many later Fathers, approaching the issue theologically, interpreted the "sons of God" as sons of Seth, as angels do not have bodies and cannot reproduce. This interpretation is put forth by St. John Chrysostom, St. Ephraim the Syrian, St. John Cassian, St. Augustine, St. Athanasius, St. Cyril of Alexandria, St. Gregory Palamas, etc. if we were to try to define a concensus patrum on this issue it would be that the "sons of God" are sons of Seth, with some earlier writers being the outliers. it is clear that the Church does not teach that the "sons of God" are angels.

You're missing the point.  There seems to be a drastic change in the way this verse was interpreted over the centuries.  You missed the point that you have for three hundred years, the Church seemed to be quite unanimous at the idea that Angels had intercourse.

Then you get a 50/50 mix in the 300s, and then by the 400s, it became unanimously that it doesn't make sense angels can have intercourse.

In other words, this was not an issue central to the faith, and so the Church fathers rather than follow the Church fathers before them used logic.  St. John Chrysostom, St. Augustine, St. Ephrem were not the first Church fathers.  They were ancient, but relatively speaking, they were the first ones to imply that the earlier church fathers were wrong.

And the fact that you're adding St. Gregory Palamas, 13th Century, a jump and a leap from everyone else, you're lumping them together with the first and second century theologians.  That makes no sense.  I am using Bishop Alexander Mileant, God rest his soul, and you easily dismiss him.  There's something that necessary for the faith and others that are not.  St. Augustine recognized this, and so his literal interpretation of Genesis is malleable at best.

i understood exactly what you were saying. You asked if i abide by the concensus patrum that angels bred with men and i said there is no such concensus patrum, which is true. it may have been the dominant view at one time, but that fell away long ago. same story with chiliasm - many early Fathers believed in it, but that teaching fell away and is certainly not the teaching of the Church. the understanding of creation and paradise and the fall, on the other hand has remained consistent right up through our modern holy elders and Saints.

Then, I believe there will come a time when also the belief of a young Earth will also be abandoned and the belief that death before the Fall will also be abandoned.  I'm not sure what the Church believes about Paradise itself, but the fact that trees and plants and herbivores don't exist in Paradise today, I don't see that this belief that it existed in Adam's time holds much water to my salvation either.  Right now, we are in the 50/50 era of this discussion.  Perhaps, next century will show that this discussion might even be pointless.  It may not be the "consensus patrum" now, but perhaps in another two or three centuries, it will.

If the angels causing intercourse was the "consensus patrum" by 300 AD, only for it to change later, then I only see a precedence with this issue as well.

the idea of angels mating fell away for theological reasons - because angels dont have bodies. you're hoping that the concensus patrum will be changed for scientific reasons. pretty noticeable difference. perhaps we will one day discount Christ's miracles because science doesnt recognize healing powers in mud!

There's no theological issue at all.  If they came and mated with humans, so what?  This doesn't change the Christian faith one bit, and certainly has no bearing on each person's salvation.
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If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
jckstraw72
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« Reply #2656 on: December 11, 2010, 10:28:17 PM »

I have a question for you.

I'd like you to quote mine the Church fathers for me on the idea of whether they believed Angels came and produced children through human women called the Nephilim?

dont you mean quote mine St. Athanasius? he's the only one that matters i thought ....

if anything, you've been quote mining to find people who you think are in agreement with St. Athanasius because you think he's infallible, whereas the Creationist POV can point to countless Fathers from every age of the Church. and anyways, St. Athanasius is incompatible with evolution also. he believes people were created immortal (whether by nature or by grace, either way they were immortal), and he believes the creation act of each day was instantaneous. so if you really fully follow St. Athanasius like you say you do you would have to drop evolution.

but anyways, this site: http://www.robibrad.demon.co.uk/Chapter5.htm has a chart that has it all laid out. whether or not the chart is entirely accurate im not sure, because although i like his page overall, i have found a few points of research that i would disagree with him about.

also, in post 2542 you said that St. Irenaeus is an infallible source that no one really disagrees with, but he believed the sons of God were angels ....

but isnt this just a diversion from the topic at hand?

It's not really a diversion.  You criticize me of not following the majority of the Fathers.  I'm reading that the Church fathers of the first three centuries almost unanimously believed that the sons of God were angels.

I already gave you a quote on how St. Athanasius is scientifically wrong.  It just so happens, he was right about death existing with other animals even before the Fall.  So I wonder do you agree with the concensus patrum that angels had intercourse with humans (even St. Jerome who did not accept Enoch as Scripture)?

did you look at the website i linked? its quite clear that the teaching that angels had intercourse with humans is NOT the concensus patrum. this is an issue on which there is a noticeable divergence. but it is mainly the early writers who interpreted the "sons of God" this way, whereas this teaching fell out of the later Fathers and is not part of the Church's teaching. Many later Fathers, approaching the issue theologically, interpreted the "sons of God" as sons of Seth, as angels do not have bodies and cannot reproduce. This interpretation is put forth by St. John Chrysostom, St. Ephraim the Syrian, St. John Cassian, St. Augustine, St. Athanasius, St. Cyril of Alexandria, St. Gregory Palamas, etc. if we were to try to define a concensus patrum on this issue it would be that the "sons of God" are sons of Seth, with some earlier writers being the outliers. it is clear that the Church does not teach that the "sons of God" are angels.

You're missing the point.  There seems to be a drastic change in the way this verse was interpreted over the centuries.  You missed the point that you have for three hundred years, the Church seemed to be quite unanimous at the idea that Angels had intercourse.

Then you get a 50/50 mix in the 300s, and then by the 400s, it became unanimously that it doesn't make sense angels can have intercourse.

In other words, this was not an issue central to the faith, and so the Church fathers rather than follow the Church fathers before them used logic.  St. John Chrysostom, St. Augustine, St. Ephrem were not the first Church fathers.  They were ancient, but relatively speaking, they were the first ones to imply that the earlier church fathers were wrong.

And the fact that you're adding St. Gregory Palamas, 13th Century, a jump and a leap from everyone else, you're lumping them together with the first and second century theologians.  That makes no sense.  I am using Bishop Alexander Mileant, God rest his soul, and you easily dismiss him.  There's something that necessary for the faith and others that are not.  St. Augustine recognized this, and so his literal interpretation of Genesis is malleable at best.

i understood exactly what you were saying. You asked if i abide by the concensus patrum that angels bred with men and i said there is no such concensus patrum, which is true. it may have been the dominant view at one time, but that fell away long ago. same story with chiliasm - many early Fathers believed in it, but that teaching fell away and is certainly not the teaching of the Church. the understanding of creation and paradise and the fall, on the other hand has remained consistent right up through our modern holy elders and Saints.

Then, I believe there will come a time when also the belief of a young Earth will also be abandoned and the belief that death before the Fall will also be abandoned.  I'm not sure what the Church believes about Paradise itself, but the fact that trees and plants and herbivores don't exist in Paradise today, I don't see that this belief that it existed in Adam's time holds much water to my salvation either.  Right now, we are in the 50/50 era of this discussion.  Perhaps, next century will show that this discussion might even be pointless.  It may not be the "consensus patrum" now, but perhaps in another two or three centuries, it will.

If the angels causing intercourse was the "consensus patrum" by 300 AD, only for it to change later, then I only see a precedence with this issue as well.

the idea of angels mating fell away for theological reasons - because angels dont have bodies. you're hoping that the concensus patrum will be changed for scientific reasons. pretty noticeable difference. perhaps we will one day discount Christ's miracles because science doesnt recognize healing powers in mud!

There's no theological issue at all.  If they came and mated with humans, so what?  This doesn't change the Christian faith one bit, and certainly has no bearing on each person's salvation.

angels are spirits, they have no bodies with which to mate. but if we're really going to devolve into this nonsense, how about just get back to me when the Church drops its literal interpretation of Genesis, which you're sure it will. we can talk then.
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« Reply #2657 on: December 11, 2010, 10:46:46 PM »

I have a question for you.

I'd like you to quote mine the Church fathers for me on the idea of whether they believed Angels came and produced children through human women called the Nephilim?

dont you mean quote mine St. Athanasius? he's the only one that matters i thought ....

if anything, you've been quote mining to find people who you think are in agreement with St. Athanasius because you think he's infallible, whereas the Creationist POV can point to countless Fathers from every age of the Church. and anyways, St. Athanasius is incompatible with evolution also. he believes people were created immortal (whether by nature or by grace, either way they were immortal), and he believes the creation act of each day was instantaneous. so if you really fully follow St. Athanasius like you say you do you would have to drop evolution.

but anyways, this site: http://www.robibrad.demon.co.uk/Chapter5.htm has a chart that has it all laid out. whether or not the chart is entirely accurate im not sure, because although i like his page overall, i have found a few points of research that i would disagree with him about.

also, in post 2542 you said that St. Irenaeus is an infallible source that no one really disagrees with, but he believed the sons of God were angels ....

but isnt this just a diversion from the topic at hand?

It's not really a diversion.  You criticize me of not following the majority of the Fathers.  I'm reading that the Church fathers of the first three centuries almost unanimously believed that the sons of God were angels.

I already gave you a quote on how St. Athanasius is scientifically wrong.  It just so happens, he was right about death existing with other animals even before the Fall.  So I wonder do you agree with the concensus patrum that angels had intercourse with humans (even St. Jerome who did not accept Enoch as Scripture)?

did you look at the website i linked? its quite clear that the teaching that angels had intercourse with humans is NOT the concensus patrum. this is an issue on which there is a noticeable divergence. but it is mainly the early writers who interpreted the "sons of God" this way, whereas this teaching fell out of the later Fathers and is not part of the Church's teaching. Many later Fathers, approaching the issue theologically, interpreted the "sons of God" as sons of Seth, as angels do not have bodies and cannot reproduce. This interpretation is put forth by St. John Chrysostom, St. Ephraim the Syrian, St. John Cassian, St. Augustine, St. Athanasius, St. Cyril of Alexandria, St. Gregory Palamas, etc. if we were to try to define a concensus patrum on this issue it would be that the "sons of God" are sons of Seth, with some earlier writers being the outliers. it is clear that the Church does not teach that the "sons of God" are angels.

You're missing the point.  There seems to be a drastic change in the way this verse was interpreted over the centuries.  You missed the point that you have for three hundred years, the Church seemed to be quite unanimous at the idea that Angels had intercourse.

Then you get a 50/50 mix in the 300s, and then by the 400s, it became unanimously that it doesn't make sense angels can have intercourse.

In other words, this was not an issue central to the faith, and so the Church fathers rather than follow the Church fathers before them used logic.  St. John Chrysostom, St. Augustine, St. Ephrem were not the first Church fathers.  They were ancient, but relatively speaking, they were the first ones to imply that the earlier church fathers were wrong.

And the fact that you're adding St. Gregory Palamas, 13th Century, a jump and a leap from everyone else, you're lumping them together with the first and second century theologians.  That makes no sense.  I am using Bishop Alexander Mileant, God rest his soul, and you easily dismiss him.  There's something that necessary for the faith and others that are not.  St. Augustine recognized this, and so his literal interpretation of Genesis is malleable at best.

i understood exactly what you were saying. You asked if i abide by the concensus patrum that angels bred with men and i said there is no such concensus patrum, which is true. it may have been the dominant view at one time, but that fell away long ago. same story with chiliasm - many early Fathers believed in it, but that teaching fell away and is certainly not the teaching of the Church. the understanding of creation and paradise and the fall, on the other hand has remained consistent right up through our modern holy elders and Saints.

Then, I believe there will come a time when also the belief of a young Earth will also be abandoned and the belief that death before the Fall will also be abandoned.  I'm not sure what the Church believes about Paradise itself, but the fact that trees and plants and herbivores don't exist in Paradise today, I don't see that this belief that it existed in Adam's time holds much water to my salvation either.  Right now, we are in the 50/50 era of this discussion.  Perhaps, next century will show that this discussion might even be pointless.  It may not be the "consensus patrum" now, but perhaps in another two or three centuries, it will.

If the angels causing intercourse was the "consensus patrum" by 300 AD, only for it to change later, then I only see a precedence with this issue as well.

the idea of angels mating fell away for theological reasons - because angels dont have bodies. you're hoping that the concensus patrum will be changed for scientific reasons. pretty noticeable difference. perhaps we will one day discount Christ's miracles because science doesnt recognize healing powers in mud!

There's no theological issue at all.  If they came and mated with humans, so what?  This doesn't change the Christian faith one bit, and certainly has no bearing on each person's salvation.

angels are spirits, they have no bodies with which to mate. but if we're really going to devolve into this nonsense, how about just get back to me when the Church drops its literal interpretation of Genesis, which you're sure it will. we can talk then.

You didn't answer the question.  You answered why you disagree with it, not how it affects my salvation.

If you don't like how this discussion "devolved" to be honest, I'm only avoiding going in circles with the arguments we already made before.  So this only a new perspective of the same argument I've been making all along.  But if you don't like it, you don't have to answer.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2010, 10:48:57 PM by minasoliman » Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
jckstraw72
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« Reply #2658 on: December 11, 2010, 11:08:47 PM »

I have a question for you.

I'd like you to quote mine the Church fathers for me on the idea of whether they believed Angels came and produced children through human women called the Nephilim?

dont you mean quote mine St. Athanasius? he's the only one that matters i thought ....

if anything, you've been quote mining to find people who you think are in agreement with St. Athanasius because you think he's infallible, whereas the Creationist POV can point to countless Fathers from every age of the Church. and anyways, St. Athanasius is incompatible with evolution also. he believes people were created immortal (whether by nature or by grace, either way they were immortal), and he believes the creation act of each day was instantaneous. so if you really fully follow St. Athanasius like you say you do you would have to drop evolution.

but anyways, this site: http://www.robibrad.demon.co.uk/Chapter5.htm has a chart that has it all laid out. whether or not the chart is entirely accurate im not sure, because although i like his page overall, i have found a few points of research that i would disagree with him about.

also, in post 2542 you said that St. Irenaeus is an infallible source that no one really disagrees with, but he believed the sons of God were angels ....

but isnt this just a diversion from the topic at hand?

It's not really a diversion.  You criticize me of not following the majority of the Fathers.  I'm reading that the Church fathers of the first three centuries almost unanimously believed that the sons of God were angels.

I already gave you a quote on how St. Athanasius is scientifically wrong.  It just so happens, he was right about death existing with other animals even before the Fall.  So I wonder do you agree with the concensus patrum that angels had intercourse with humans (even St. Jerome who did not accept Enoch as Scripture)?

did you look at the website i linked? its quite clear that the teaching that angels had intercourse with humans is NOT the concensus patrum. this is an issue on which there is a noticeable divergence. but it is mainly the early writers who interpreted the "sons of God" this way, whereas this teaching fell out of the later Fathers and is not part of the Church's teaching. Many later Fathers, approaching the issue theologically, interpreted the "sons of God" as sons of Seth, as angels do not have bodies and cannot reproduce. This interpretation is put forth by St. John Chrysostom, St. Ephraim the Syrian, St. John Cassian, St. Augustine, St. Athanasius, St. Cyril of Alexandria, St. Gregory Palamas, etc. if we were to try to define a concensus patrum on this issue it would be that the "sons of God" are sons of Seth, with some earlier writers being the outliers. it is clear that the Church does not teach that the "sons of God" are angels.

You're missing the point.  There seems to be a drastic change in the way this verse was interpreted over the centuries.  You missed the point that you have for three hundred years, the Church seemed to be quite unanimous at the idea that Angels had intercourse.

Then you get a 50/50 mix in the 300s, and then by the 400s, it became unanimously that it doesn't make sense angels can have intercourse.

In other words, this was not an issue central to the faith, and so the Church fathers rather than follow the Church fathers before them used logic.  St. John Chrysostom, St. Augustine, St. Ephrem were not the first Church fathers.  They were ancient, but relatively speaking, they were the first ones to imply that the earlier church fathers were wrong.

And the fact that you're adding St. Gregory Palamas, 13th Century, a jump and a leap from everyone else, you're lumping them together with the first and second century theologians.  That makes no sense.  I am using Bishop Alexander Mileant, God rest his soul, and you easily dismiss him.  There's something that necessary for the faith and others that are not.  St. Augustine recognized this, and so his literal interpretation of Genesis is malleable at best.

i understood exactly what you were saying. You asked if i abide by the concensus patrum that angels bred with men and i said there is no such concensus patrum, which is true. it may have been the dominant view at one time, but that fell away long ago. same story with chiliasm - many early Fathers believed in it, but that teaching fell away and is certainly not the teaching of the Church. the understanding of creation and paradise and the fall, on the other hand has remained consistent right up through our modern holy elders and Saints.

Then, I believe there will come a time when also the belief of a young Earth will also be abandoned and the belief that death before the Fall will also be abandoned.  I'm not sure what the Church believes about Paradise itself, but the fact that trees and plants and herbivores don't exist in Paradise today, I don't see that this belief that it existed in Adam's time holds much water to my salvation either.  Right now, we are in the 50/50 era of this discussion.  Perhaps, next century will show that this discussion might even be pointless.  It may not be the "consensus patrum" now, but perhaps in another two or three centuries, it will.

If the angels causing intercourse was the "consensus patrum" by 300 AD, only for it to change later, then I only see a precedence with this issue as well.

the idea of angels mating fell away for theological reasons - because angels dont have bodies. you're hoping that the concensus patrum will be changed for scientific reasons. pretty noticeable difference. perhaps we will one day discount Christ's miracles because science doesnt recognize healing powers in mud!

There's no theological issue at all.  If they came and mated with humans, so what?  This doesn't change the Christian faith one bit, and certainly has no bearing on each person's salvation.

angels are spirits, they have no bodies with which to mate. but if we're really going to devolve into this nonsense, how about just get back to me when the Church drops its literal interpretation of Genesis, which you're sure it will. we can talk then.

You didn't answer the question.  You answered why you disagree with it, not how it affects my salvation.

If you don't like how this discussion "devolved" to be honest, I'm only avoiding going in circles with the arguments we already made before.  So this only a new perspective of the same argument I've been making all along.  But if you don't like it, you don't have to answer.

i didnt say it affected your salvation in the first place
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minasoliman
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« Reply #2659 on: December 12, 2010, 02:12:37 AM »

Well, I know you didn't.  That's why I'm asking you the question.  Does it affect my salvation or doesn't it?
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« Reply #2660 on: December 12, 2010, 04:16:40 AM »


 but if we're really going to devolve into this nonsense, how about just get back to me when the Church drops its literal interpretation of Genesis, which you're sure it will. we can talk then.

I didn't know the church preached a literal interpretation of genesis...that's new to me.
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« Reply #2661 on: December 12, 2010, 02:26:27 PM »


 but if we're really going to devolve into this nonsense, how about just get back to me when the Church drops its literal interpretation of Genesis, which you're sure it will. we can talk then.

I didn't know the church preached a literal interpretation of genesis...that's new to me.

dude, come on. thats what this entire thread has been about. i and others have provided countless examples of the Chuch's understanding of Genesis through Scriptures, Patristics, canons, calendars, etc etc.

even Theokritoff, an evolutionist, in his critique of Fr. Seraphim's book, acknowledged that Fr. Seraphim is reading the Fathers correctly, and that if we were to follow the Fathers we would have to interpret Genesis literally. he says:

Quote
Fr Seraphim is commendably honest in recognizing that if one believes, as he does, that we must read Genesis exactly as the Fathers did, one is then committed to a thorough-going young earth creationism, however much contrary evidence there may appear to be.

he also acknowledges that Fr. Seraphim does not rely on proof-texting to come to this conclusion, although so many are wont to charge Creationists of doing that. he says:

Quote
The selection from patristic commentaries on the creation and fall stories contains much valuable material; Fr Seraphim is right to stress the importance of appreciating the broad picture of what the Fathers are trying to say, rather than taking excerpts out of context.


if anyone has read the Mountain of Silence, the author also acknowledges in that work that the Church has traditionally interpreted Genesis literally. i thought i had the reference for that, but i can't find it.

and even since Darwin, our Saints and holy elders have continued to intepret Genesis literally: St. John of Kronstadt, St. Barsanuphius of Optina, St. Nektarios, St. Justin Popovich, St. Nikolai Velimorovich, Fr. George Calciu, Elder Cleopa, Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim, Elder Paisios, Fr. Philotheos Zervakos, Fr. Seraphim Rose, Elder Joseph of Vatopaidi (it was divinely revealed to him that Genesis is literal history), etc. etc. All these men who we recognize as holy, as bearers of the Tradition who beheld Christ in glory, all bear witness to the Church's literal understanding of Genesis. For the Fathers, allegory is not mutually exclusive with a literal interpretation, and allegory is never used to develop dogma anyways.

you might disagree with the Saints on this matter, but there's no denying that the Saints have uniformly taught this. Even evolutionists have admitted that the Church teaches this (Theokritoff, Minasoliman as well), they have just found ways to disagree.
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« Reply #2662 on: December 12, 2010, 02:53:48 PM »


and even since Darwin, our Saints and holy elders have continued to intepret Genesis literally: St. John of Kronstadt, St. Barsanuphius of Optina, St. Nektarios, St. Justin Popovich, St. Nikolai Velimorovich, Fr. George Calciu, Elder Cleopa, Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim, Elder Paisios, Fr. Philotheos Zervakos, Fr. Seraphim Rose, Elder Joseph of Vatopaidi (it was divinely revealed to him that Genesis is literal history), etc. etc. All these men who we recognize as holy, as bearers of the Tradition who beheld Christ in glory, all bear witness to the Church's literal understanding of Genesis. For the Fathers, allegory is not mutually exclusive with a literal interpretation, and allegory is never used to develop dogma anyways.
So, would you say that it is impossible for future Saints and holy elders to move away from a necessarily literal interpretation of Genesis 1-2, towards an interpretation that includes an evolutionary perspective?
« Last Edit: December 12, 2010, 02:54:12 PM by Jetavan » Logged

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« Reply #2663 on: December 12, 2010, 02:59:56 PM »

Well, I know you didn't.  That's why I'm asking you the question.  Does it affect my salvation or doesn't it?

i dont think so.
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« Reply #2664 on: December 12, 2010, 03:02:37 PM »


and even since Darwin, our Saints and holy elders have continued to intepret Genesis literally: St. John of Kronstadt, St. Barsanuphius of Optina, St. Nektarios, St. Justin Popovich, St. Nikolai Velimorovich, Fr. George Calciu, Elder Cleopa, Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim, Elder Paisios, Fr. Philotheos Zervakos, Fr. Seraphim Rose, Elder Joseph of Vatopaidi (it was divinely revealed to him that Genesis is literal history), etc. etc. All these men who we recognize as holy, as bearers of the Tradition who beheld Christ in glory, all bear witness to the Church's literal understanding of Genesis. For the Fathers, allegory is not mutually exclusive with a literal interpretation, and allegory is never used to develop dogma anyways.
So, would you say that it is impossible for future Saints and holy elders to move away from a necessarily literal interpretation of Genesis 1-2, towards an interpretation that includes an evolutionary perspective?

i think so, because to include an evolutionary perspective would be to completely change our understanding of death. the Fall had cosmic ramifications, not just for man, and death is the last enemy to be overthrown. that is why Christ's death and resurrection are the very heart of our faith. if we were to change this to say that death is actually good and has been there from the very beginning, by the will of God, we would change everything. in that light, Christ's defeat of death would become a defeat of His own will! i think that God has already well-equipped the Church to deal with modern academia where necessary.
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« Reply #2665 on: December 12, 2010, 03:13:14 PM »

I think Met. KALLISTOS Ware addresses this topic quite well here:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1088949815257678826#

topic starts at the 1:29.30 mark, evolution is addressed specifically at 1:33.30
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« Reply #2666 on: December 12, 2010, 03:23:40 PM »

I think Met. KALLISTOS Ware addresses this topic quite well here:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1088949815257678826#

topic starts at the 1:29.30 mark, evolution is addressed specifically at 1:33.30

i have great respect for Met. KALLISTOS, but i dont understand why he is more authoritative than so many Saints, other than that he agrees with the position you already hold ...

a couple points:

1. he simply stated that he sees no reason why evolution should be a problem for Orthodoxy, but, at least in this video, he made no attempt to demonstrate how they are harmonious. he shows no signs of having considered the various theological questions that arise from evolution. he simply stated, as so many do, that he can accept evolution.
2. he made the same tired statement that there's no reason that his faith should fear science, although no one makes this claim anyways. its a strawman.
3. he actually contradicted himself. he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.
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« Reply #2667 on: December 12, 2010, 04:05:33 PM »

3. he actually contradicted himself. he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is!
Incorrect. In the Darwinian perspective, yes, Homo sapiens is not radically different from the other living hominids (chimpanzees, gorillas, orangutans). But the Darwinian perspective is not the only evolutionary perspective. For instance, there is theistic evolution, as well as evolutionary creationism. And then you have the Latin Catholic teaching, which accepts the possibility of the evolution of the human body, but maintains that God directly, supernaturally creates each human soul.
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« Reply #2668 on: December 12, 2010, 04:11:30 PM »


and even since Darwin, our Saints and holy elders have continued to intepret Genesis literally: St. John of Kronstadt, St. Barsanuphius of Optina, St. Nektarios, St. Justin Popovich, St. Nikolai Velimorovich, Fr. George Calciu, Elder Cleopa, Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim, Elder Paisios, Fr. Philotheos Zervakos, Fr. Seraphim Rose, Elder Joseph of Vatopaidi (it was divinely revealed to him that Genesis is literal history), etc. etc. All these men who we recognize as holy, as bearers of the Tradition who beheld Christ in glory, all bear witness to the Church's literal understanding of Genesis. For the Fathers, allegory is not mutually exclusive with a literal interpretation, and allegory is never used to develop dogma anyways.
So, would you say that it is impossible for future Saints and holy elders to move away from a necessarily literal interpretation of Genesis 1-2, towards an interpretation that includes an evolutionary perspective?

i think so, because to include an evolutionary perspective would be to completely change our understanding of death. the Fall had cosmic ramifications, not just for man, and death is the last enemy to be overthrown. that is why Christ's death and resurrection are the very heart of our faith. if we were to change this to say that death is actually good and has been there from the very beginning, by the will of God, we would change everything. in that light, Christ's defeat of death would become a defeat of His own will! i think that God has already well-equipped the Church to deal with modern academia where necessary.
Do you think God originally planned (before the Fall) for organisms to reproduce?
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« Reply #2669 on: December 12, 2010, 04:15:11 PM »

he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

That's because evolution only seeks to answer the natural explanation of the emergence of man.  Yes, we are simply a superior ape, naturally speaking. But that changed when God breathed His life into man.  It does not leave science behind, it means that science is philosophically neutral and we don't draw philosophical conclusions from it, which is what many, wrongly, do.

You're creating a false dichotomy here.
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« Reply #2670 on: December 12, 2010, 04:16:14 PM »


and even since Darwin, our Saints and holy elders have continued to intepret Genesis literally: St. John of Kronstadt, St. Barsanuphius of Optina, St. Nektarios, St. Justin Popovich, St. Nikolai Velimorovich, Fr. George Calciu, Elder Cleopa, Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim, Elder Paisios, Fr. Philotheos Zervakos, Fr. Seraphim Rose, Elder Joseph of Vatopaidi (it was divinely revealed to him that Genesis is literal history), etc. etc. All these men who we recognize as holy, as bearers of the Tradition who beheld Christ in glory, all bear witness to the Church's literal understanding of Genesis. For the Fathers, allegory is not mutually exclusive with a literal interpretation, and allegory is never used to develop dogma anyways.
So, would you say that it is impossible for future Saints and holy elders to move away from a necessarily literal interpretation of Genesis 1-2, towards an interpretation that includes an evolutionary perspective?

i think so, because to include an evolutionary perspective would be to completely change our understanding of death. the Fall had cosmic ramifications, not just for man, and death is the last enemy to be overthrown. that is why Christ's death and resurrection are the very heart of our faith. if we were to change this to say that death is actually good and has been there from the very beginning, by the will of God, we would change everything. in that light, Christ's defeat of death would become a defeat of His own will! i think that God has already well-equipped the Church to deal with modern academia where necessary.
Do you think God originally planned (before the Fall) for organisms to reproduce?

well i know at least man was commanded to be fruitful and multiply, but the Fathers teach that it would have happened virginally, somehow. i dont know about anything else.
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« Reply #2671 on: December 12, 2010, 04:20:28 PM »

he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

That's because evolution only seeks to answer the natural explanation of the emergence of man.  Yes, we are simply a superior ape, naturally speaking. But that changed when God breathed His life into man.  It does not leave science behind, it means that science is philosophically neutral and we don't draw philosophical conclusions from it, which is what many, wrongly, do.

You're creating a false dichotomy here.

that works if you say that God's breathing of His life into man had absolutely no biological effects on man's life in any way. but if it did,that would enter into the realm of science, and science would have no way of accounting for that. it would not fit into the naturalistic scheme of evolution. for instance, i think most would still hold that God's breath granted man at least the ability for immortality (had he not sinned). can evolution account for even the possibility of physical immortality?
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« Reply #2672 on: December 12, 2010, 06:57:00 PM »


and even since Darwin, our Saints and holy elders have continued to intepret Genesis literally: St. John of Kronstadt, St. Barsanuphius of Optina, St. Nektarios, St. Justin Popovich, St. Nikolai Velimorovich, Fr. George Calciu, Elder Cleopa, Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim, Elder Paisios, Fr. Philotheos Zervakos, Fr. Seraphim Rose, Elder Joseph of Vatopaidi (it was divinely revealed to him that Genesis is literal history), etc. etc. All these men who we recognize as holy, as bearers of the Tradition who beheld Christ in glory, all bear witness to the Church's literal understanding of Genesis. For the Fathers, allegory is not mutually exclusive with a literal interpretation, and allegory is never used to develop dogma anyways.
So, would you say that it is impossible for future Saints and holy elders to move away from a necessarily literal interpretation of Genesis 1-2, towards an interpretation that includes an evolutionary perspective?

i think so, because to include an evolutionary perspective would be to completely change our understanding of death. the Fall had cosmic ramifications, not just for man, and death is the last enemy to be overthrown. that is why Christ's death and resurrection are the very heart of our faith. if we were to change this to say that death is actually good and has been there from the very beginning, by the will of God, we would change everything. in that light, Christ's defeat of death would become a defeat of His own will! i think that God has already well-equipped the Church to deal with modern academia where necessary.

Is the understanding of death really the only problem you have with evolution?  Because frankly, before evolution came out, death before the coming of man was already a given, and this was no biological statement alone, but also geological, chemical, etc. all confirming one another.

Now, since the the angels issue really doesn't affect my salvation, I would like to ask then the important question here that matters.  Besides death, what else about evolution affects our salvation in your opinion?
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« Reply #2673 on: December 12, 2010, 06:58:33 PM »

he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

That's because evolution only seeks to answer the natural explanation of the emergence of man.  Yes, we are simply a superior ape, naturally speaking. But that changed when God breathed His life into man.  It does not leave science behind, it means that science is philosophically neutral and we don't draw philosophical conclusions from it, which is what many, wrongly, do.

You're creating a false dichotomy here.

that works if you say that God's breathing of His life into man had absolutely no biological effects on man's life in any way. but if it did,that would enter into the realm of science, and science would have no way of accounting for that. it would not fit into the naturalistic scheme of evolution. for instance, i think most would still hold that God's breath granted man at least the ability for immortality (had he not sinned). can evolution account for even the possibility of physical immortality?

Remember what some of the Church fathers said?  We have a sensible nature and an intellectual nature.  So, in the mind of the Church fathers, intellect, at least in a spiritual sense, cannot be sensed.  Therefore, science will be unable to test it.  Another methodology is needed to understand our spirit.  And we know this is prayer and spiritual exercises, as well as giving alms.
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« Reply #2674 on: December 13, 2010, 12:44:17 AM »

Granted I'm new to Christianity but I don't see how the theory of evolution or the Big Bang theory or any scientific theory would conflict with Christianity or Christian Orthodoxy or Christian dogma. Said theories merely explain how the creation works, not Whom started the whole thing or why or any of those sorts of things and I think this whole religion vs. science thing is a false dichotomy, science doesn't address the philosophical/theological questions that are answered by religion in particular Christianity. Perhaps we shouldn't read the scriptures literally but rather metaphorically but even if so it doesn't negate the truth of it.
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« Reply #2675 on: December 13, 2010, 02:15:50 AM »

I think Met. KALLISTOS Ware addresses this topic quite well here:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1088949815257678826#

topic starts at the 1:29.30 mark, evolution is addressed specifically at 1:33.30

i have great respect for Met. KALLISTOS, but i dont understand why he is more authoritative than so many Saints, other than that he agrees with the position you already hold ...

a couple points:

1. he simply stated that he sees no reason why evolution should be a problem for Orthodoxy, but, at least in this video, he made no attempt to demonstrate how they are harmonious. he shows no signs of having considered the various theological questions that arise from evolution. he simply stated, as so many do, that he can accept evolution.
2. he made the same tired statement that there's no reason that his faith should fear science, although no one makes this claim anyways. its a strawman.
3. he actually contradicted himself. he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

Do you honestly think that Met. Kallistos has not seriously considered the implication of evolution to his faith or has not thoroughly reviewed what the fathers have to say about the matter of creation? I think he is more than capable of discerning between what Orthodox Tradition, and what tradition is.
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« Reply #2676 on: December 13, 2010, 02:18:56 AM »

he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

That's because evolution only seeks to answer the natural explanation of the emergence of man.  Yes, we are simply a superior ape, naturally speaking. But that changed when God breathed His life into man.  It does not leave science behind, it means that science is philosophically neutral and we don't draw philosophical conclusions from it, which is what many, wrongly, do.

You're creating a false dichotomy here.

that works if you say that God's breathing of His life into man had absolutely no biological effects on man's life in any way. but if it did,that would enter into the realm of science, and science would have no way of accounting for that. it would not fit into the naturalistic scheme of evolution. for instance, i think most would still hold that God's breath granted man at least the ability for immortality (had he not sinned). can evolution account for even the possibility of physical immortality?

Again, immortality was granted to man by communion with God via the 'tree of life'. Once this connection was severed, the hopes for immortality was lost. Science has nothing to say about this matter.
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« Reply #2677 on: December 13, 2010, 02:25:25 AM »

I think Met. KALLISTOS Ware addresses this topic quite well here:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1088949815257678826#

topic starts at the 1:29.30 mark, evolution is addressed specifically at 1:33.30

i have great respect for Met. KALLISTOS, but i dont understand why he is more authoritative than so many Saints, other than that he agrees with the position you already hold ...

a couple points:

1. he simply stated that he sees no reason why evolution should be a problem for Orthodoxy, but, at least in this video, he made no attempt to demonstrate how they are harmonious. he shows no signs of having considered the various theological questions that arise from evolution. he simply stated, as so many do, that he can accept evolution.
2. he made the same tired statement that there's no reason that his faith should fear science, although no one makes this claim anyways. its a strawman.
3. he actually contradicted himself. he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

Do you honestly think that Met. Kallistos has not seriously considered the implication of evolution to his faith or has not thoroughly reviewed what the fathers have to say about the matter of creation? I think he is more than capable of discerning between what Orthodox Tradition, and what tradition is.

im simply saying his answer in that video shows no signs of it. it was just a very brief, shallow answer i thought. not very satisfying at all.
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« Reply #2678 on: December 13, 2010, 02:26:53 AM »

I think Met. KALLISTOS Ware addresses this topic quite well here:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1088949815257678826#

topic starts at the 1:29.30 mark, evolution is addressed specifically at 1:33.30

i have great respect for Met. KALLISTOS, but i dont understand why he is more authoritative than so many Saints, other than that he agrees with the position you already hold ...

a couple points:

1. he simply stated that he sees no reason why evolution should be a problem for Orthodoxy, but, at least in this video, he made no attempt to demonstrate how they are harmonious. he shows no signs of having considered the various theological questions that arise from evolution. he simply stated, as so many do, that he can accept evolution.
2. he made the same tired statement that there's no reason that his faith should fear science, although no one makes this claim anyways. its a strawman.
3. he actually contradicted himself. he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

Do you honestly think that Met. Kallistos has not seriously considered the implication of evolution to his faith or has not thoroughly reviewed what the fathers have to say about the matter of creation? I think he is more than capable of discerning between what Orthodox Tradition, and what tradition is.

im simply saying his answer in that video shows no signs of it. it was just a very brief, shallow answer i thought. not very satisfying at all.

Agree to disagree. I think that in the time alloted he gave a very succint and well rounded answer, perhaps if he had more time to expound he would provide you with the details you are searching for.
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« Reply #2679 on: December 13, 2010, 02:30:29 AM »

he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

That's because evolution only seeks to answer the natural explanation of the emergence of man.  Yes, we are simply a superior ape, naturally speaking. But that changed when God breathed His life into man.  It does not leave science behind, it means that science is philosophically neutral and we don't draw philosophical conclusions from it, which is what many, wrongly, do.

You're creating a false dichotomy here.

that works if you say that God's breathing of His life into man had absolutely no biological effects on man's life in any way. but if it did,that would enter into the realm of science, and science would have no way of accounting for that. it would not fit into the naturalistic scheme of evolution. for instance, i think most would still hold that God's breath granted man at least the ability for immortality (had he not sinned). can evolution account for even the possibility of physical immortality?

Again, immortality was granted to man by communion with God via the 'tree of life'. Once this connection was severed, the hopes for immortality was lost. Science has nothing to say about this matter.

and thats the problem -- we confess a biological reality (man being created in a state of immortality) that science is incapable of ascertaining and commenting on, and thus it ends up putting forth the exact opposite. "scientifically" speaking, man dies of natural necessity, because that's just the course of things in evolution, but the 7th Ecumenical Council anathematizes the belief that man dies of natural necessity, and those who confess it.

not to mention that in the scheme of evolution, man is necessarily the descendant of another living being, and is related to all living things, whereas in Orthoodxy, man is uniquely created by God from the dust, without any ancestry. Only man is created by the hands of God, rather than a simple verbal command. Man is not simply another link in the chain, not even biologically speaking. this is two ways in which naturalistic science contradicts our faith.
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« Reply #2680 on: December 13, 2010, 02:31:53 AM »

I think Met. KALLISTOS Ware addresses this topic quite well here:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1088949815257678826#

topic starts at the 1:29.30 mark, evolution is addressed specifically at 1:33.30

i have great respect for Met. KALLISTOS, but i dont understand why he is more authoritative than so many Saints, other than that he agrees with the position you already hold ...

a couple points:

1. he simply stated that he sees no reason why evolution should be a problem for Orthodoxy, but, at least in this video, he made no attempt to demonstrate how they are harmonious. he shows no signs of having considered the various theological questions that arise from evolution. he simply stated, as so many do, that he can accept evolution.
2. he made the same tired statement that there's no reason that his faith should fear science, although no one makes this claim anyways. its a strawman.
3. he actually contradicted himself. he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

Do you honestly think that Met. Kallistos has not seriously considered the implication of evolution to his faith or has not thoroughly reviewed what the fathers have to say about the matter of creation? I think he is more than capable of discerning between what Orthodox Tradition, and what tradition is.

im simply saying his answer in that video shows no signs of it. it was just a very brief, shallow answer i thought. not very satisfying at all.

Agree to disagree. I think that in the time alloted he gave a very succint and well rounded answer, perhaps if he had more time to expound he would provide you with the details you are searching for.

true. as i said, i have great respect for him, and im sure he's not ignorant of the Fathers on this matter. i would really like to hear how he harmonizes the two in his mind, because he is often put forth as an Orthodox authority that accepts evolution, but i have never heard/read/seen an explanation from him.
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« Reply #2681 on: December 13, 2010, 02:36:46 AM »

mispost.
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« Reply #2682 on: December 13, 2010, 02:38:14 AM »

he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

That's because evolution only seeks to answer the natural explanation of the emergence of man.  Yes, we are simply a superior ape, naturally speaking. But that changed when God breathed His life into man.  It does not leave science behind, it means that science is philosophically neutral and we don't draw philosophical conclusions from it, which is what many, wrongly, do.

You're creating a false dichotomy here.

that works if you say that God's breathing of His life into man had absolutely no biological effects on man's life in any way. but if it did,that would enter into the realm of science, and science would have no way of accounting for that. it would not fit into the naturalistic scheme of evolution. for instance, i think most would still hold that God's breath granted man at least the ability for immortality (had he not sinned). can evolution account for even the possibility of physical immortality?

Again, immortality was granted to man by communion with God via the 'tree of life'. Once this connection was severed, the hopes for immortality was lost. Science has nothing to say about this matter.

and thats the problem -- we confess a biological reality (man being created in a state of immortality) that science is incapable of ascertaining and commenting on, and thus it ends up putting forth the exact opposite. "scientifically" speaking, man dies of natural necessity, because that's just the course of things in evolution, but the 7th Ecumenical Council anathematizes the belief that man dies of natural necessity, and those who confess it.

not to mention that in the scheme of evolution, man is necessarily the descendant of another living being, and is related to all living things, whereas in Orthoodxy, man is uniquely created by God from the dust, without any ancestry. Only man is created by the hands of God, rather than a simple verbal command. Man is not simply another link in the chain, not even biologically speaking. this is two ways in which naturalistic science contradicts our faith.

Here again as others have mentioned we believe you are positing a false dichotomy between strict supernatural creationism and purely naturalistic darwinian evolution. There is a middle ground, called theistic evolution, that accepts divine influence into the natural process, such that science is unable of explaining, and those who espouse such a belief are comfortable with that.
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« Reply #2683 on: December 13, 2010, 03:07:35 AM »

he said he accepts the evolutionary picture but cannot believe that man is simply a superior ape, but in the evolutionary picture that is exactly what man is! to make man more than that is to leave science behind. he just accepts more of the science than the Creationists do, but both camps at some point must leave the science behind and acknowledge that Revelation has something to say that is contrary to the theory of evolution.

That's because evolution only seeks to answer the natural explanation of the emergence of man.  Yes, we are simply a superior ape, naturally speaking. But that changed when God breathed His life into man.  It does not leave science behind, it means that science is philosophically neutral and we don't draw philosophical conclusions from it, which is what many, wrongly, do.

You're creating a false dichotomy here.

that works if you say that God's breathing of His life into man had absolutely no biological effects on man's life in any way. but if it did,that would enter into the realm of science, and science would have no way of accounting for that. it would not fit into the naturalistic scheme of evolution. for instance, i think most would still hold that God's breath granted man at least the ability for immortality (had he not sinned). can evolution account for even the possibility of physical immortality?

Again, immortality was granted to man by communion with God via the 'tree of life'. Once this connection was severed, the hopes for immortality was lost. Science has nothing to say about this matter.

and thats the problem -- we confess a biological reality (man being created in a state of immortality) that science is incapable of ascertaining and commenting on, and thus it ends up putting forth the exact opposite. "scientifically" speaking, man dies of natural necessity, because that's just the course of things in evolution, but the 7th Ecumenical Council anathematizes the belief that man dies of natural necessity, and those who confess it.

not to mention that in the scheme of evolution, man is necessarily the descendant of another living being, and is related to all living things, whereas in Orthoodxy, man is uniquely created by God from the dust, without any ancestry. Only man is created by the hands of God, rather than a simple verbal command. Man is not simply another link in the chain, not even biologically speaking. this is two ways in which naturalistic science contradicts our faith.

Here again as others have mentioned we believe you are positing a false dichotomy between strict supernatural creationism and purely naturalistic darwinian evolution. There is a middle ground, called theistic evolution, that accepts divine influence into the natural process, such that science is unable of explaining, and those who espouse such a belief are comfortable with that.

yes, i realize there is theistic evolution -- thats what all of you espouse. i actually have little to no interest in debating against atheistic evolutionists because there is no common ground from which to begin with them. if you're an atheist then it makes perfect sense to be an evolutionist. my point is that TE is an untenable position because in order to believe that man was created apart from the line of descent and that man was created in a state of immortality you can't actually believe fully in the theory of evolution, because evolution professes the exact opposite of these beliefs. so, while TE is touted as being an option that allows you to accept science (whereas Creationism is supposedly a rejection of science), it also must reject "science." it is not simply that science cannot comment on these matters - it does comment, and it does so in contrary to Orthodox Tradition.

so if you believe that man was created uniquely and in a state of immortality then youre not really accepting the scientific theory of evolution, and if you believe that man is simply part of a chain of descent and that he was necessarily bound for physical death then you're not really accepting Orthodox Tradition. this brand of TE is just an amalgam that is put together by individual believers to their own liking, and there's all kinds of variants on this belief. i dont think its very satisfying theologically or scientifically.

of course there are some TE's, and i think there were some a while ago in this thread, who see the contradiction between the theory of evolution and Orthodox Tradition and therefore completely reject the unique creation of man, and that man was meant for even biological immortality. they say that sin brought only spiritual death, and that man was destined to die phsyically, no matter what.
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« Reply #2684 on: December 13, 2010, 03:26:05 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe was the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.
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« Reply #2685 on: December 13, 2010, 03:30:48 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.

curious indeed. i wonder if you can find Patristic support for it.
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« Reply #2686 on: December 13, 2010, 03:31:31 AM »

Is that really all you're actually worried about with evolution?

Well, here's a possible solution.  They had to be assured immortality by living a life in accordance with God's command in Paradise.  In other words, the first humans that were born with God's Image can be believed to be taken into Paradise, grew up, and then when they failed, they fell back into mortality.

Here's a quote I read from Francis Collin's book, "The Language of God".  I must admit though, I haven't read C.S. Lewis' book where he got this from:

Quote
For long centuries, God perfected the animal form which was to become the vehicle of humanity and the image of Himself. he gave it hands whose thumb could be applied to each of the fingers, and jaws and teeth and throat capable of articulation, and a brain sufficiently complex to execute all of the material motions whereby rational thought is incarnated. The creature may have existed in this state for ages before it became man: it may even have been clever enough to make things which a modern archaeologist would accept as proof of its humanity. But it was only an animal because all its physical and psychical processes were directed to purely material and natural ends. Then, in the fullness of time, God caused to descend upon this organism, both on its psychology and physiology, a new kind of consciousness which could say "I" and "me," which could look upon itself as an object, which knew God, which could make judgments of truth, beauty and goodness, and which was so far above time that it could perceive time flowing past.... We do not know how many of these creatures God made, nor how long they continued in the Paradisal state. But sooner or later they fell. Someone or something whispered that they could become as gods.... They wanted some corner in this universe of which they could say to God, "This is our business, not yours." But there is no such corner. They wanted to be nouns, but they were, and eternally must be, mere adjectives. We have no idea in what particular act, or series of acts, the self-contradictory, impossible wish found expression. For all I can see, it might have concerned the literal eating of a fruit, the the question is of no consequence. (C.S. Lewis, Problem of Pain, 68-71)

In some way, C.S. Lewis preserves the idea of "The Fall."  I think this is a very relevant quote, and something that aided me in my belief.
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« Reply #2687 on: December 13, 2010, 03:33:36 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.

curious indeed. i wonder if you can find Patristic support for it.

Perhaps not strictly bloodline, but I think there is plenty of Patristics where man is created last because the Earth needed to be cultivated and prepared for man.  In the spirit of the Fathers, Ortho-Cat seems to follow this line of thought.
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« Reply #2688 on: December 13, 2010, 03:50:13 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.

curious indeed. i wonder if you can find Patristic support for it.

Perhaps not strictly bloodline, but I think there is plenty of Patristics where man is created last because the Earth needed to be cultivated and prepared for man.  In the spirit of the Fathers, Ortho-Cat seems to follow this line of thought.

if its not a lineage of bloodline then it has nothing to do with biological evolution ....

yes, the kingdom needed to be prepared for the king, but the king is not related to everything living in his kingdom.
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« Reply #2689 on: December 13, 2010, 03:52:25 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.

curious indeed. i wonder if you can find Patristic support for it.

Perhaps not strictly bloodline, but I think there is plenty of Patristics where man is created last because the Earth needed to be cultivated and prepared for man.  In the spirit of the Fathers, Ortho-Cat seems to follow this line of thought.

if its not a lineage of bloodline then it has nothing to do with biological evolution ....

yes, the kingdom needed to be prepared for the king, but the king is not related to everything living in his kingdom.

So where did the king come from?
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« Reply #2690 on: December 13, 2010, 03:56:14 AM »

Is that really all you're actually worried about with evolution?

Well, here's a possible solution.  They had to be assured immortality by living a life in accordance with God's command in Paradise.  In other words, the first humans that were born with God's Image can be believed to be taken into Paradise, grew up, and then when they failed, they fell back into mortality.

Here's a quote I read from Francis Collin's book, "The Language of God".  I must admit though, I haven't read C.S. Lewis' book where he got this from:

Quote
For long centuries, God perfected the animal form which was to become the vehicle of humanity and the image of Himself. he gave it hands whose thumb could be applied to each of the fingers, and jaws and teeth and throat capable of articulation, and a brain sufficiently complex to execute all of the material motions whereby rational thought is incarnated. The creature may have existed in this state for ages before it became man: it may even have been clever enough to make things which a modern archaeologist would accept as proof of its humanity. But it was only an animal because all its physical and psychical processes were directed to purely material and natural ends. Then, in the fullness of time, God caused to descend upon this organism, both on its psychology and physiology, a new kind of consciousness which could say "I" and "me," which could look upon itself as an object, which knew God, which could make judgments of truth, beauty and goodness, and which was so far above time that it could perceive time flowing past.... We do not know how many of these creatures God made, nor how long they continued in the Paradisal state. But sooner or later they fell. Someone or something whispered that they could become as gods.... They wanted some corner in this universe of which they could say to God, "This is our business, not yours." But there is no such corner. They wanted to be nouns, but they were, and eternally must be, mere adjectives. We have no idea in what particular act, or series of acts, the self-contradictory, impossible wish found expression. For all I can see, it might have concerned the literal eating of a fruit, the the question is of no consequence. (C.S. Lewis, Problem of Pain, 68-71)

In some way, C.S. Lewis preserves the idea of "The Fall."  I think this is a very relevant quote, and something that aided me in my belief.

i dont know how you can say "is that all?" when our entire faith is about death. death is the last enemy to be overthrown. aah, but not if evolution is true, then death becomes enshrined as a good part of God's creation which logically means it doesn't need to be overthrown which makes Christ's physical Resurrection just a nice show.

and your possible solution is not a solution to harmonizing evolution and Orthodoxy, because the very idea of physical immortality comes from a literal reading of Genesis and has absolutely no place in Genesis. can you find me even one evolutionary scientist who will say "sure, the science of evolution acknowledges the possibility of immortality?" otherwise, you're confessing something that is anti-thetical to evolution.

and death isnt the only issue, its just the biggest in my opinion. the teaching that man is the unique king and crown of creation as evidenced by his unique physical creation is lost because his unique physical creation is tossed aside. anthropology which is so important for our faith is distorted. in general, the interpretive method of the Fathers is questioned and undermined, etc etc. the very beginning of the story is completely changed, and yet its assumed that the rest of the story will somehow remain exactly the same. its silly.
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« Reply #2691 on: December 13, 2010, 03:57:31 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.

curious indeed. i wonder if you can find Patristic support for it.

Perhaps not strictly bloodline, but I think there is plenty of Patristics where man is created last because the Earth needed to be cultivated and prepared for man.  In the spirit of the Fathers, Ortho-Cat seems to follow this line of thought.

if its not a lineage of bloodline then it has nothing to do with biological evolution ....

yes, the kingdom needed to be prepared for the king, but the king is not related to everything living in his kingdom.

So where did the king come from?

God fashioned him instantaneously from the dust of the earth. He did not descend from other lifeforms for billions of years.
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« Reply #2692 on: December 13, 2010, 04:00:29 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.

curious indeed. i wonder if you can find Patristic support for it.

Perhaps not strictly bloodline, but I think there is plenty of Patristics where man is created last because the Earth needed to be cultivated and prepared for man.  In the spirit of the Fathers, Ortho-Cat seems to follow this line of thought.

if its not a lineage of bloodline then it has nothing to do with biological evolution ....

yes, the kingdom needed to be prepared for the king, but the king is not related to everything living in his kingdom.

So where did the king come from?

God fashioned him instantaneously from the dust of the earth. He did not descend from other lifeforms for billions of years.

And I consider dust of the earth to mean the lowest of life-forms. So it the key distinction for you between instantaneous and gradual?
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« Reply #2693 on: December 13, 2010, 04:07:08 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.

curious indeed. i wonder if you can find Patristic support for it.

Perhaps not strictly bloodline, but I think there is plenty of Patristics where man is created last because the Earth needed to be cultivated and prepared for man.  In the spirit of the Fathers, Ortho-Cat seems to follow this line of thought.

if its not a lineage of bloodline then it has nothing to do with biological evolution ....

yes, the kingdom needed to be prepared for the king, but the king is not related to everything living in his kingdom.

So where did the king come from?

God fashioned him instantaneously from the dust of the earth. He did not descend from other lifeforms for billions of years.

And I consider dust of the earth to mean the lowest of life-forms. So it the key distinction for you between instantaneous and gradual?

yes that is at least one distinction. the Fathers are pretty clear about that. Some even directly said that God did not take a long to create for that is not befitting of the the glory of the all-powerful God.

also, Scripture states that God formed man from the dust of the ground on the 6th day. at this point, all other lifeforms were already in existence, so its not as if God called dust up through a line of succession all the way to man. the Tradition is clear that it went from dust to man instantaneously, without biological relation to any other lifeform.

if man was formed in a chain of succession then his coming-into-existence (it wouldnt strictly speaking even be a creation of man in this scenario, but rather a creation of something else that becomes man) wouldnt be unique at all, which would destroy the Patristic teaching that man's unique creation teaches us his place in creation.

also, Scripture, and the Fathers teach that God had several different creative acts of living beings, but if evolution and common descent are true then God really only had one creative act, from which everything else slithered out.

basically every detail of the story has to be dramatically reworked to fit the evolutionary framework.
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« Reply #2694 on: December 13, 2010, 06:32:18 AM »

A curious thought, which just came to me, which may or may not have been expressed previously on this thread or elsewhere.

I see interesting parallels between the bloodline of Adam and the bloodline of the Theotokos.

As the bloodline of the Theotokos was nurtured and cultivated over generations to prepare her to bear God the Word, so too I believe the bloodline of Adam. Both of them arose through previous generations, but each of these generations shaped the next to come, eventually paving the way for God's ultimate purpose. From the humblest of creatures arose man, the crowning glory of God's creation and the father of humanity, Adam, who through succeeding generations, eventually gave rise to the Queen of humanity, the Theotokos.

One was made worthy to bear the image of God, and the other was made worthy to bear God Himself.

curious indeed. i wonder if you can find Patristic support for it.

Perhaps not strictly bloodline, but I think there is plenty of Patristics where man is created last because the Earth needed to be cultivated and prepared for man.  In the spirit of the Fathers, Ortho-Cat seems to follow this line of thought.

if its not a lineage of bloodline then it has nothing to do with biological evolution ....

yes, the kingdom needed to be prepared for the king, but the king is not related to everything living in his kingdom.

So where did the king come from?

God fashioned him instantaneously from the dust of the earth. He did not descend from other lifeforms for billions of years.

And I consider dust of the earth to mean the lowest of life-forms. So it the key distinction for you between instantaneous and gradual?

yes that is at least one distinction. the Fathers are pretty clear about that. Some even directly said that God did not take a long to create for that is not befitting of the the glory of the all-powerful God.

God could have instantaneously created Jesus as a man without bringing him into the world through a human lineage over the process of thousands of years after the fall of man. Does this take away of some of His glory by 'taking so long' to bring his Son into the world?
 

Quote
also, Scripture states that God formed man from the dust of the ground on the 6th day. at this point, all other lifeforms were already in existence, so its not as if God called dust up through a line of succession all the way to man. the Tradition is clear that it went from dust to man instantaneously, without biological relation to any other lifeform.

Scripture says alot of things that if interpreted by the literal word don't make a whole lot of sense. I've also seen Orthodox commentary where they argue that specific cues were purposely placed in scripture so as to lead the reader away from a literal interpretation and towards an allegorical one. It says on the '6th day' God created man, that is Man as we know him, in God's image. The 6th day is the last 'day' of creation, and man in his current state (homo sapiens) is among the last of the modern creatures to have come into existence (from an evolutionary framework). I see no contradiction here. Also, are you arguing that Orthodoxy strictly teaches a literal 6 day creation scheme/young earth as well?


Quote
if man was formed in a chain of succession then his coming-into-existence (it wouldnt strictly speaking even be a creation of man in this scenario, but rather a creation of something else that becomes man) wouldnt be unique at all, which would destroy the Patristic teaching that man's unique creation teaches us his place in creation.

I don't think so. Although the Theotokos came from a succession of generations of man, would you say that she is unique among creation, even though she had normal human ancestors? Again, you are ignoring here that theistic evolutionists maintain that once man was adequately prepared to receive God's spirit, the soul, it is then that he became fully human and was deemed fit to partake in communion with the Holy Trinity for eternity.
 
Quote
also, Scripture, and the Fathers teach that God had several different creative acts of living beings, but if evolution and common descent are true then God really only had one creative act, from which everything else slithered out. .

Everyone human is the result of a uniquely creative act, fashioned by God in the womb, when they are granted the gift of a human soul. I rather dislike the usage of 'slithered out' here. I prefer 'triumphally ventured onto land".
 

Quote
basically every detail of the story has to be dramatically reworked to fit the evolutionary framework.

I do not think this is the case at all. Again, agree to disagree.

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« Reply #2695 on: December 13, 2010, 12:06:50 PM »

Is that really all you're actually worried about with evolution?

Well, here's a possible solution.  They had to be assured immortality by living a life in accordance with God's command in Paradise.  In other words, the first humans that were born with God's Image can be believed to be taken into Paradise, grew up, and then when they failed, they fell back into mortality.

Here's a quote I read from Francis Collin's book, "The Language of God".  I must admit though, I haven't read C.S. Lewis' book where he got this from:

Quote
For long centuries, God perfected the animal form which was to become the vehicle of humanity and the image of Himself. he gave it hands whose thumb could be applied to each of the fingers, and jaws and teeth and throat capable of articulation, and a brain sufficiently complex to execute all of the material motions whereby rational thought is incarnated. The creature may have existed in this state for ages before it became man: it may even have been clever enough to make things which a modern archaeologist would accept as proof of its humanity. But it was only an animal because all its physical and psychical processes were directed to purely material and natural ends. Then, in the fullness of time, God caused to descend upon this organism, both on its psychology and physiology, a new kind of consciousness which could say "I" and "me," which could look upon itself as an object, which knew God, which could make judgments of truth, beauty and goodness, and which was so far above time that it could perceive time flowing past.... We do not know how many of these creatures God made, nor how long they continued in the Paradisal state. But sooner or later they fell. Someone or something whispered that they could become as gods.... They wanted some corner in this universe of which they could say to God, "This is our business, not yours." But there is no such corner. They wanted to be nouns, but they were, and eternally must be, mere adjectives. We have no idea in what particular act, or series of acts, the self-contradictory, impossible wish found expression. For all I can see, it might have concerned the literal eating of a fruit, the the question is of no consequence. (C.S. Lewis, Problem of Pain, 68-71)

In some way, C.S. Lewis preserves the idea of "The Fall."  I think this is a very relevant quote, and something that aided me in my belief.

i dont know how you can say "is that all?" when our entire faith is about death. death is the last enemy to be overthrown. aah, but not if evolution is true, then death becomes enshrined as a good part of God's creation which logically means it doesn't need to be overthrown which makes Christ's physical Resurrection just a nice show.

and your possible solution is not a solution to harmonizing evolution and Orthodoxy, because the very idea of physical immortality comes from a literal reading of Genesis and has absolutely no place in Genesis. can you find me even one evolutionary scientist who will say "sure, the science of evolution acknowledges the possibility of immortality?" otherwise, you're confessing something that is anti-thetical to evolution.

and death isnt the only issue, its just the biggest in my opinion. the teaching that man is the unique king and crown of creation as evidenced by his unique physical creation is lost because his unique physical creation is tossed aside. anthropology which is so important for our faith is distorted. in general, the interpretive method of the Fathers is questioned and undermined, etc etc. the very beginning of the story is completely changed, and yet its assumed that the rest of the story will somehow remain exactly the same. its silly.

I've given you how both can be accepted without compromising the idea that we must fight death.  You seem to not get it.  You want science to find proof for immortality.  For science to do that, the spirit has to be sensible, and this is not what the Church fathers believed.  So I don't see how man's salvation is compromised if all of nature except man was dying.  Christ talked about removing branches and pruning branches, etc.  Christ talked about cutting off anything that is bad and throwing it in the fire for destruction.

God programmed the cosmos to work itself out.  As soon as it came to the apes, when the most perfect ape was about to come, God breathed into it.  God formed all animals in Genesis out of the dust of the Earth, but He didn't give all animals the "grace of immortality."  All creation is impermanent, but only man (and angels) have a share in the Image of God.

Is it really necessary for your salvation that all other creatures had to be immortal before the Fall?
« Last Edit: December 13, 2010, 12:13:18 PM by minasoliman » Logged

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« Reply #2696 on: December 19, 2010, 09:47:53 PM »

The very fact that monkeys have hands should be enough to give us paws.
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« Reply #2697 on: December 19, 2010, 11:12:18 PM »

The very fact that monkeys have hands should be enough to give us paws.

 laugh
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« Reply #2698 on: January 06, 2011, 12:10:38 AM »

According to some Muslims, Darwinism/evolutionary-theory will only end with the Second Coming of Jesus:

"With the second coming of Jesus (pbuh), THE ALL-OUT PRESSURE OF DARWINIST DICTATORSHIP OVER THE ENTIRE WORLD WILL COME TO A DEFINITE END. When Jesus (pbuh) comes to the world for the second time, he will bring proof from the Qur’an, the New Testament and the Old Testament, and will DESTROY THIS SUPERSTITIOUS SYSTEM. From the hadith we understand that, by Allah’s leave, HAZRAT MAHDI (PBUH) HAS ALREADY APPEARED. Before the return of Jesus (pbuh), Hazrat Mahdi (pbuh) will defeat Darwinism and eradicate this deviant religion. When Jesus (pbuh) comes, on the other hand, he will put an end to the deviant dictatorship established by the religion of Darwinism. With the returning of Jesus (pbuh), THE POPE WILL BE RELEASED FROM THE PRESSURE OF THOSE WHO FORCE HIM TO ADVOCATE DARWINISM. Those who advocate Darwin and try to spread atheism to the entire world, like Richard Dawkins, on the other hand, will come to realize the big mistake they have done. Jesus (pbuh), together with Hazrat Mahdi (pbuh), will release all the pressure upon people and destroy all beliefs and ideologies openly denying Allah. In this age called the The Golden Age, people will experience an unprecedented environment of peace, comfort and abundance, and will be free from all superstitious religions and this deviant dictatorship. By Allah’s leave, this period is very close."

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If you will, you can become all flame.
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In order to become whole, take the "I" out of "holiness".
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"Those who say religion has nothing to do with politics do not know what religion is." -- Mohandas Gandhi
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« Reply #2699 on: January 06, 2011, 01:01:13 AM »

Alluhu akbar Wink
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Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
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