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Question: Do you believe that the acount of genesis in the Old testament should be taken literally?
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Author Topic: Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy  (Read 326267 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #4005 on: March 16, 2012, 07:08:46 PM »

1Thessalonians 5:21 Test all things; hold fast that which is good.
Read the preceeding verse:

I Thessalonians 5:20
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Do not treat prophecies with contempt

I Thessalonians 5:22
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reject every kind of evil

This scripture does not mean "question everything". Should we discern good from evil? Sure. But questioning everything can lead to dangerous things.

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« Reply #4006 on: March 16, 2012, 07:28:40 PM »

Ok test everything than... Because "questioning" everything is equivalent with doubting all things and a negativism of faith... Starting with the premise and  presumption of faultiness.
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« Reply #4007 on: March 19, 2012, 01:54:15 PM »

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The former president offered answers to each of them with the insights and spiritual wisdom he has included in his latest book: NIV Lessons from Life Bible: Personal Reflections with Jimmy Carter.

Paul Brandeis Raushenbush: Thank you so much for talking with me President Carter. As I warned, I am going to be asking the tough questions. So ... Did God write the Bible?

President Jimmy Carter: God inspired the Bible but didn’t write every word in the Bible. We know, for instance that stars can’t fall on the earth, stars are much larger than the earth. That was a limitation of knowledge of the universe or physics, or astronomy at that time, but that doesn’t bother me at all.

How do you approach the passages in the Bible that talk about God’s creation (Genesis 1:1) while maintaining a positive attitude towards science?

I happen to have an advantage there because I am a nuclear physicist by training and a deeply committed Christian. I don’t have any doubt in my own mind about God who created the entire universe. But I don’t adhere to passages that so and so was created 4000 years before Christ, and things of that kind. Today we have shown that the earth and the stars were created millions, even billions, of years before. We are exploring space and sub-atomic particles and learning new facts every day, facts that the Creator has known since the beginning of time.
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« Reply #4008 on: March 19, 2012, 03:47:52 PM »

Quote
The former president offered answers to each of them with the insights and spiritual wisdom he has included in his latest book: NIV Lessons from Life Bible: Personal Reflections with Jimmy Carter.

Paul Brandeis Raushenbush: Thank you so much for talking with me President Carter. As I warned, I am going to be asking the tough questions. So ... Did God write the Bible?

President Jimmy Carter: God inspired the Bible but didn’t write every word in the Bible. We know, for instance that stars can’t fall on the earth, stars are much larger than the earth. That was a limitation of knowledge of the universe or physics, or astronomy at that time, but that doesn’t bother me at all.

How do you approach the passages in the Bible that talk about God’s creation (Genesis 1:1) while maintaining a positive attitude towards science?

I happen to have an advantage there because I am a nuclear physicist by training and a deeply committed Christian. I don’t have any doubt in my own mind about God who created the entire universe. But I don’t adhere to passages that so and so was created 4000 years before Christ, and things of that kind. Today we have shown that the earth and the stars were created millions, even billions, of years before. We are exploring space and sub-atomic particles and learning new facts every day, facts that the Creator has known since the beginning of time.
I honestly don't think most Orthodox have a problem with age of the earth or cosmos.  The issue that plagues most people is animal death before the creation/fall of man.
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« Reply #4009 on: March 27, 2012, 10:29:19 PM »

Free evolution and climate change book downloads!
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« Reply #4010 on: March 30, 2012, 10:25:59 PM »

Evangelical Evolutionists Meet in New York
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The most sobering moment for attendees of the Biologos "Theology of Celebration" conference in New York City, March 20–22, came when David Kinnaman of Barna Research presented findings on what U.S. Protestant pastors believe about creation. More than half profess a 6-day, 24-hour creation of life. Fewer than one in five, on the other hand, follow Biologos in affirming an evolutionary process as God's method of creation.

Knowing that they are in a minority among Protestants did not limit the gathering's enthusiasm. About 60 participants came by special invitation, with the proviso that their names would not be publicized without permission. This was intended to encourage open conversation on sensitive topics. Attending were such luminaries as N. T. Wright, Alister McGrath, John Ortberg, Tim Keller, Scot McKnight, Os Guinness, Joel Hunter, and Andy Crouch. Prominent scientists included Ian Hutchinson of MIT and Jennifer Wiseman, senior project scientist for the Hubble Space Telescope. Forty-one pastors and parachurch leaders participated.
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« Reply #4011 on: March 31, 2012, 01:10:49 AM »

Evangelical Evolutionists Meet in New York
Quote
The most sobering moment for attendees of the Biologos "Theology of Celebration" conference in New York City, March 20–22, came when David Kinnaman of Barna Research presented findings on what U.S. Protestant pastors believe about creation. More than half profess a 6-day, 24-hour creation of life. Fewer than one in five, on the other hand, follow Biologos in affirming an evolutionary process as God's method of creation.

Knowing that they are in a minority among Protestants did not limit the gathering's enthusiasm. About 60 participants came by special invitation, with the proviso that their names would not be publicized without permission. This was intended to encourage open conversation on sensitive topics. Attending were such luminaries as N. T. Wright, Alister McGrath, John Ortberg, Tim Keller, Scot McKnight, Os Guinness, Joel Hunter, and Andy Crouch. Prominent scientists included Ian Hutchinson of MIT and Jennifer Wiseman, senior project scientist for the Hubble Space Telescope. Forty-one pastors and parachurch leaders participated.

I am not complaining but I am curious as to why your condemned this topic to the Sheol that is the Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy thread rather than news.
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« Reply #4012 on: March 31, 2012, 09:12:00 AM »

Evangelical Evolutionists Meet in New York
Quote
The most sobering moment for attendees of the Biologos "Theology of Celebration" conference in New York City, March 20–22, came when David Kinnaman of Barna Research presented findings on what U.S. Protestant pastors believe about creation. More than half profess a 6-day, 24-hour creation of life. Fewer than one in five, on the other hand, follow Biologos in affirming an evolutionary process as God's method of creation.

Knowing that they are in a minority among Protestants did not limit the gathering's enthusiasm. About 60 participants came by special invitation, with the proviso that their names would not be publicized without permission. This was intended to encourage open conversation on sensitive topics. Attending were such luminaries as N. T. Wright, Alister McGrath, John Ortberg, Tim Keller, Scot McKnight, Os Guinness, Joel Hunter, and Andy Crouch. Prominent scientists included Ian Hutchinson of MIT and Jennifer Wiseman, senior project scientist for the Hubble Space Telescope. Forty-one pastors and parachurch leaders participated.

I am not complaining but I am curious as to why your condemned this topic to the Sheol that is the Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy thread rather than news.
...because this topic would soon evolve into a creationism/evolution debate, or so I would think. Shocked
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« Reply #4013 on: March 31, 2012, 11:29:44 AM »

...because this topic would soon evolve into a creationism/evolution debate, or so I would think. Shocked

I for one am glad the mods merge threads and force them into this one when the subject is creationism vs. science. How could I find my 20 "Jews are evil" threads otherwise?
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« Reply #4014 on: April 01, 2012, 10:03:39 PM »

This is something I've struggled with a lot. I am a little skeptical of both young Earth creationism and evolution. I'm just not quite sure. I'm willing right now to accept that God created it somehow and some way. Hopefully one day I'll figure out the particulars.

Personally, though I don't normally like to quote him, my view right now is pretty close to what Mike Huckabee said here.

"In the beginning God created the heavens and the Earth. To me, it's pretty simple. A person either believes that God created this process or believes that it was an accident, and that it just happened all on its own....Well let me be very clear: I believe there is a God. I believe there's a God who is active in the creation process. Now how did he do it and when did her do it and how long did her take? I don't honestly know....I don't know. I wasn't there, but I believe, whether God did it in six days or whether he did it in six days that represented periods of time, he did it and that's what's important."

Not a big fan of his, but I think he's pretty right there.
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« Reply #4015 on: April 18, 2012, 06:41:57 PM »

I'm a simple guy.  The word of God says:

"In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth."

Atheistic scientists say:

"In the beginning, a huge accident caused amazing order to occur." 

People stumble over the old earth issue.  Were Adam and Eve created as babies or adults?  Obviously they were not babies.  Can God make the light from the stars that are light years away instantly appear to us?  Obviously, yes.  Can God make bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ?  Can God cause a Virgin to be with Child?  If you begin to let science determine what you believe about the Bible, you will begin to question the Real Presence, the Virgin birth, the Trinity, etc

Strange. It's been years and this hasn't happened yet. In fact, just the opposite. Can you give a time frame? I'd like to know how much longer I have before my belief in biology begins corrupting my beliefs into anathematized heresies.
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« Reply #4016 on: April 19, 2012, 06:59:19 AM »

I'm a simple guy.  The word of God says:

"In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth."

Atheistic scientists say:

"In the beginning, a huge accident caused amazing order to occur." 

People stumble over the old earth issue.  Were Adam and Eve created as babies or adults?  Obviously they were not babies.  Can God make the light from the stars that are light years away instantly appear to us?  Obviously, yes.  Can God make bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ?  Can God cause a Virgin to be with Child?  If you begin to let science determine what you believe about the Bible, you will begin to question the Real Presence, the Virgin birth, the Trinity, etc

Strange. It's been years and this hasn't happened yet. In fact, just the opposite. Can you give a time frame? I'd like to know how much longer I have before my belief in biology begins corrupting my beliefs into anathematized heresies.

That's because you evidently hold to a fact/value dichotomy, which means either your Christian faith is mere superstition or your biological knowledge is flawed. But from your own words it is evident that your scientific "knowledge" is no more than a subjective faith, since you refer to your "belief in biology." 


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« Reply #4017 on: April 19, 2012, 10:52:34 AM »

That's because you evidently hold to a fact/value dichotomy, which means either your Christian faith is mere superstition or your biological knowledge is flawed. But from your own words it is evident that your scientific "knowledge" is no more than a subjective faith, since you refer to your "belief in biology." 


Selam

I did not understand this at all Gebre. I would say that I fall into the same phenotypic class as laconicstudent so I am curious about what you are trying to state (not that I will discuss this issue afterwards).
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« Reply #4018 on: April 19, 2012, 11:50:04 AM »

That's because you evidently hold to a fact/value dichotomy, which means either your Christian faith is mere superstition or your biological knowledge is flawed. But from your own words it is evident that your scientific "knowledge" is no more than a subjective faith, since you refer to your "belief in biology."  


Selam

I did not understand this at all Gebre. I would say that I fall into the same phenotypic class as laconicstudent so I am curious about what you are trying to state (not that I will discuss this issue afterwards).

I also. I do not think that there is a problem if one believes in natural law.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2012, 11:50:18 AM by Second Chance » Logged

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« Reply #4019 on: April 19, 2012, 11:53:47 AM »

Although Gebre does not agree with evolution or old earth, perhaps the language itself "believe in" would be reserved for a way of life, as in faith, and not materialistic existence.  Perhaps one is better to say I acknowledge a material reality, but I believe in a certain faith.  Even non-believers will not use the term "believe in" to describe their trust in the scientific method and principles.
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« Reply #4020 on: April 19, 2012, 04:55:54 PM »

I'm a simple guy.  The word of God says:

"In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth."

Atheistic scientists say:

"In the beginning, a huge accident caused amazing order to occur."  

People stumble over the old earth issue.  Were Adam and Eve created as babies or adults?  Obviously they were not babies.  Can God make the light from the stars that are light years away instantly appear to us?  Obviously, yes.  Can God make bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ?  Can God cause a Virgin to be with Child?  If you begin to let science determine what you believe about the Bible, you will begin to question the Real Presence, the Virgin birth, the Trinity, etc.  

Strange. It's been years and this hasn't happened yet. In fact, just the opposite. Can you give a time frame? I'd like to know how much longer I have before my belief in biology begins corrupting my beliefs into anathematized heresies.

That's because you evidently hold to a fact/value dichotomy, which means either your Christian faith is mere superstition or your biological knowledge is flawed. But from your own words it is evident that your scientific "knowledge" is no more than a subjective faith, since you refer to your "belief in biology."  


Selam

And now you are just twisting what I said. I have a belief in the sun. I believe in the physical existence of my computer. To label those as subjective faith is patently absurd. The entire point of science is that it isn't objective.

When I do a gram stain properly, the organism is either positive or negative. No subjectivity.
When I incubate a sample on a particular agar at particular conditions, it either colonizes or it doesn't. No subjectivity.
When I run a statistical analysis, I either get a result indicating significant, or I don't. No subjectivity.

People who don't understand science often use this tired claim that it is a "religion" and a "faith", but I notice they are never people who actually do science.

You might want to refrain from trying to divine the internal cognitions of people you meet on the internet; you'll avoid making yourself look ridiculous.
« Last Edit: April 19, 2012, 05:00:27 PM by laconicstudent » Logged
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« Reply #4021 on: April 19, 2012, 05:00:32 PM »

Quote
You might want to refrain from trying to divine the internal cognitions of people you meet on the internet; you'll avoid making yourself look ridiculous
This site is rampant with such divinations.....I think it would be easier to state who is NOT guilty of such things...I know I am guilty from time to time Smiley

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« Reply #4022 on: April 20, 2012, 06:10:17 PM »

In his commentary on the Torah, Rabbi Bahya ben Asher (11th century, Spain) concludes that there were many time systems occurring in the universe long before the spans of history that man is familiar with. Based on the Kabbalah he calculates that the Earth is billions of years old.[citation needed]

Some medieval philosophical rationalists, such as Maimonides and Gersonides[3] held that not every statement in Genesis is meant literally.[4] In this view, one was obligated to understand Torah in a way that was compatible with the findings of science. Indeed, Maimonides, one of the great Rabbis of the Middle Ages, wrote that if science and Torah were misaligned, it was either because science was not understood or the Torah was misinterpreted.[citation needed] Maimonides argued that if science proved a point that did not contradict any fundamentals of faith, then the finding should be accepted and scripture should be interpreted accordingly.[5] For example, in discussing Aristotle's view that the universe had existed literally forever, he argued that there was no convincing rational proof one way or the other, so that he (Maimonides) was free to accept, and therefore did accept, the Biblical view that the universe had come into being at a definite time; but that had Aristotle's case been convincing on scientific grounds he would have been able to reinterpret Genesis accordingly.

Nahmanides, often critical of the rationalist views of Maimonides, pointed out (in his commentary to Genesis) several non-sequiturs stemming from a literal translation of the Bible's account of Creation, and stated that the account actually symbolically refers to spiritual concepts. He quoted the Mishnah in Tractate Chagigah which states that the actual meaning of the Creation account, mystical in nature, was traditionally transmitted from teachers to advanced scholars in a private setting. Many classic Kabbalistic sources mention Shmitot - cosmic cycles of creation, similar to the Indian concept of yugas. Nahmanides' disciple, Rabbi Isaac of Akko, a prominent Kabbalist of 13th-century, held that the Universe is about 15 billion years old.[citation needed] According to the tradition of Shmitot, Genesis talks openly only about the current epoch, while the information about the previous cosmic cycles is hidden in the esoteric reading of the text.

A literal interpretation of the biblical Creation story among classic rabbinic commentators is uncommon. Thus Bible commentator Abraham Ibn Ezra (11th Century) wrote,

If there appears something in the Torah which contradicts reason…then here one should seek for the solution in a figurative interpretation…the narrative of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for instance, can only be understood in a figurative sense.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_views_on_evolution
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« Reply #4023 on: April 20, 2012, 06:40:36 PM »

A modern view, described by Stephen Jay Gould as "non-overlapping magisteria" (NOMA), is that science and religion deal with fundamentally separate aspects of human experience and so, when each stays within its own domain, they co-exist peacefully.[25] While Gould spoke of independence from the perspective of science, W. T. Stace viewed independence from the perspective of the philosophy of religion. Stace felt that science and religion, when each is viewed in its own domain, are both consistent and complete.[26]

Both science and religion represent distinct ways of approaching experience and these differences are sources of debate.[27] Science is closely tied to mathematics—a very abstract experience, while religion is more closely tied to the ordinary experience of life.[27] As interpretations of experience, science is descriptive and religion is prescriptive.

A fundamental principle of the Bahá'í Faith is the harmony of religion and science. Bahá'í scripture asserts that true science and true religion can never be in conflict. `Abdu'l-Bahá, the son of the founder of the religion, stated that religion without science is superstition and that science without religion is materialism. He also admonished that true religion must conform to the conclusions of science.[

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Relationship_between_religion_and_science
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« Reply #4024 on: April 20, 2012, 06:42:41 PM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process; being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.
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« Reply #4025 on: April 20, 2012, 06:59:46 PM »

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A modern view, described by Stephen Jay Gould as "non-overlapping magisteria" (NOMA), is that science and religion deal with fundamentally separate aspects of human experience and so, when each stays within its own domain, they co-exist peacefully.

This is the view that has allowed me to function (most of the time) as a Christian without suffering from too much cognitive dissonance. Three cheers for Gould!
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« Reply #4026 on: April 20, 2012, 07:03:26 PM »

I must start by saying i know very little about Evolution..

There is a quote of a romanian elder that runs through my mind now : the human being is a reasonable animal.. Fr. Petre Tutea... I think he also said that the only thing that differentiates us from animals is reason... Nature takes its course... Life is survival the fittest.. If we are to consider evolution i would say that God created nature and let it take its course.. I remmeber seing a Mishnah that was alluding that the nature in Genesis has a course of its own.. By this same reasoning we can say that humans have just evolved the fastest, intelectually... From my pov, evolution and divine providence are not mutually exclusive... nor is a creationist God and Evolution... God could create through evolution... I don`t think we need to see the account of creation necessary as a direct act, of God making things done, settled all of the sudden.. We see through Genesis that the earth the sea gave their fruits...

Just talking out loud...
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« Reply #4027 on: April 20, 2012, 07:09:07 PM »

In his commentary on the Torah, Rabbi Bahya ben Asher (11th century, Spain) concludes that there were many time systems occurring in the universe long before the spans of history that man is familiar with. Based on the Kabbalah he calculates that the Earth is billions of years old.[citation needed]

Some medieval philosophical rationalists, such as Maimonides and Gersonides[3] held that not every statement in Genesis is meant literally.[4] In this view, one was obligated to understand Torah in a way that was compatible with the findings of science. Indeed, Maimonides, one of the great Rabbis of the Middle Ages, wrote that if science and Torah were misaligned, it was either because science was not understood or the Torah was misinterpreted.[citation needed] Maimonides argued that if science proved a point that did not contradict any fundamentals of faith, then the finding should be accepted and scripture should be interpreted accordingly.[5] For example, in discussing Aristotle's view that the universe had existed literally forever, he argued that there was no convincing rational proof one way or the other, so that he (Maimonides) was free to accept, and therefore did accept, the Biblical view that the universe had come into being at a definite time; but that had Aristotle's case been convincing on scientific grounds he would have been able to reinterpret Genesis accordingly.

Nahmanides, often critical of the rationalist views of Maimonides, pointed out (in his commentary to Genesis) several non-sequiturs stemming from a literal translation of the Bible's account of Creation, and stated that the account actually symbolically refers to spiritual concepts. He quoted the Mishnah in Tractate Chagigah which states that the actual meaning of the Creation account, mystical in nature, was traditionally transmitted from teachers to advanced scholars in a private setting. Many classic Kabbalistic sources mention Shmitot - cosmic cycles of creation, similar to the Indian concept of yugas. Nahmanides' disciple, Rabbi Isaac of Akko, a prominent Kabbalist of 13th-century, held that the Universe is about 15 billion years old.[citation needed] According to the tradition of Shmitot, Genesis talks openly only about the current epoch, while the information about the previous cosmic cycles is hidden in the esoteric reading of the text.

A literal interpretation of the biblical Creation story among classic rabbinic commentators is uncommon. Thus Bible commentator Abraham Ibn Ezra (11th Century) wrote,

If there appears something in the Torah which contradicts reason…then here one should seek for the solution in a figurative interpretation…the narrative of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for instance, can only be understood in a figurative sense.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_views_on_evolution

Very interesting, although you might say there's a premise that human reason is infallible, i.e. if there's a contradiction between a literal reading of scripture and what our reason tells us about the past, based on our other observations, the literal reading must fail and we must adopt a figurative reading. But if human reasoning is fallible, and we are obliged to base our Scriptural exegesis on Tradition, we would arguably be compelled to keep the literal reading, if that's what the Fathers enjoin, even if our reasoning from other observations contradicts it.

Maybe we need some apophaticism at this point: we don't have evidence against evolution, apart from Genesis, but on the other hand evolution is a scientific hypothesis and not a dogma. If I were pressed, I might say I "accept" evolution, as I accept any other scientific hypothesis that enjoys broad support among scientists, but I don't "believe in" it. I think maybe Mina was making the same point?

Were Maimonides et al. in any way anticipating modern science's contradiction of Genesis? What reason would there have been at the time to doubt a literal reading of Genesis? Is it just because it would contradict Aristotle?
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« Reply #4028 on: April 20, 2012, 07:11:27 PM »

Although Gebre does not agree with evolution or old earth, perhaps the language itself "believe in" would be reserved for a way of life, as in faith, and not materialistic existence.  Perhaps one is better to say I acknowledge a material reality, but I believe in a certain faith.  Even non-believers will not use the term "believe in" to describe their trust in the scientific method and principles.

St Gregory the Theologian made this very point! We can distinguish between "believe", as in acknowledge a fact or truth, and "believe in", i.e. make a truth the foundation of our moral life.
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« Reply #4029 on: April 21, 2012, 12:44:32 AM »

Although Gebre does not agree with evolution or old earth, perhaps the language itself "believe in" would be reserved for a way of life, as in faith, and not materialistic existence.  Perhaps one is better to say I acknowledge a material reality, but I believe in a certain faith.  Even non-believers will not use the term "believe in" to describe their trust in the scientific method and principles.

St Gregory the Theologian made this very point! We can distinguish between "believe", as in acknowledge a fact or truth, and "believe in", i.e. make a truth the foundation of our moral life.

+1
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« Reply #4030 on: April 21, 2012, 01:08:59 AM »

Quote
A modern view, described by Stephen Jay Gould as "non-overlapping magisteria" (NOMA), is that science and religion deal with fundamentally separate aspects of human experience and so, when each stays within its own domain, they co-exist peacefully.

This is the view that has allowed me to function (most of the time) as a Christian without suffering from too much cognitive dissonance. Three cheers for Gould!

NOMA seems like dualism to me. Orthodox theology draws a strong distinction between the created and the uncreated, but not as much between the material and spiritual. To say that they do not overlap does not, to me, sound Orthodox at all.
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« Reply #4031 on: April 21, 2012, 01:54:43 AM »

Although Gebre does not agree with evolution or old earth, perhaps the language itself "believe in" would be reserved for a way of life, as in faith, and not materialistic existence.  Perhaps one is better to say I acknowledge a material reality, but I believe in a certain faith.  Even non-believers will not use the term "believe in" to describe their trust in the scientific method and principles.

St Gregory the Theologian made this very point! We can distinguish between "believe", as in acknowledge a fact or truth, and "believe in", i.e. make a truth the foundation of our moral life.

+1


I absolutely agree. It is ridiculous for evolutionists to claim that they "believe in biology" and that the rest of us don't. I believe in biology; i.e. I know that biology exists. Now, how one understands and interprets the science of biology is essentially the issue at hand with this whole discussion. What I have noticed is that rather than actually providing empirical evidence for the theory of evolution, the evolutionists on this thread instead resort to accusing the rest of us of not "believing in science," which is neither a fact nor an argument for the evolutionary position.


Selam
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« Reply #4032 on: April 21, 2012, 02:55:34 AM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process;

Huh? How? I think it is beautiful and elegant.

being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.

Um, God lets species go extinct all the time even in our modern era. So I don't see the point here.
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« Reply #4033 on: April 21, 2012, 03:10:45 AM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process;

Huh? How? I think it is beautiful and elegant.

being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.

Um, God lets species go extinct all the time even in our modern era. So I don't see the point here.



The issue I have raised that has yet to be satisfactorily addressed is that evolution makes God the Author of death, and therefore the theory is not compatible with an Orthodox worldview. From an Orthodox standpoint, the concept of God using death to create humanity is indeed an "ugly" concept.

Another question I have asked that has yet to be answered is this: If evolution is true, then who or what determines who and what is "fully human"? If we are still evolving, then the sanctity of human life is undermined. We have seen the logical consequence of biological Darwinism, which is social Darwinism. Chattel slavery, the Holocaust, and abortion on demand are the foul fruit of evolutionary theory.



Selam
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« Reply #4034 on: April 21, 2012, 03:37:00 AM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process;

Huh? How? I think it is beautiful and elegant.

being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.

Um, God lets species go extinct all the time even in our modern era. So I don't see the point here.



The issue I have raised that has yet to be satisfactorily addressed is that evolution makes God the Author of death, and therefore the theory is not compatible with an Orthodox worldview. From an Orthodox standpoint, the concept of God using death to create humanity is indeed an "ugly" concept.

Another question I have asked that has yet to be answered is this: If evolution is true, then who or what determines who and what is "fully human"? If we are still evolving, then the sanctity of human life is undermined. We have seen the logical consequence of biological Darwinism, which is social Darwinism. Chattel slavery, the Holocaust, and abortion on demand are the foul fruit of evolutionary theory.



Selam


I guess I just take bishops and priests at their word when they say evolution is acceptable, and don't rely on Internet web forums. Also, death is not the mechanism of evolution; differential reproductive success is.

I'm not even going to bother addressing the hackery that is equating evolution with social Darwinism, it is disingenuous and idiotic.
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« Reply #4035 on: April 21, 2012, 03:38:51 AM »

Although Gebre does not agree with evolution or old earth, perhaps the language itself "believe in" would be reserved for a way of life, as in faith, and not materialistic existence.  Perhaps one is better to say I acknowledge a material reality, but I believe in a certain faith.  Even non-believers will not use the term "believe in" to describe their trust in the scientific method and principles.

St Gregory the Theologian made this very point! We can distinguish between "believe", as in acknowledge a fact or truth, and "believe in", i.e. make a truth the foundation of our moral life.

+1


I absolutely agree. It is ridiculous for evolutionists to claim that they "believe in biology" and that the rest of us don't. I believe in biology; i.e. I know that biology exists. Now, how one understands and interprets the science of biology is essentially the issue at hand with this whole discussion. What I have noticed is that rather than actually providing empirical evidence for the theory of evolution, the evolutionists on this thread instead resort to accusing the rest of us of not "believing in science," which is neither a fact nor an argument for the evolutionary position.


Selam

Creationists don't believe in biology. You can't cut out a fundamental unifying scientific theory with no alternstive framework offered and then claim to believe in science.
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« Reply #4036 on: April 21, 2012, 03:56:21 AM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process;

Huh? How? I think it is beautiful and elegant.

being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.

Um, God lets species go extinct all the time even in our modern era. So I don't see the point here.



The issue I have raised that has yet to be satisfactorily addressed is that evolution makes God the Author of death, and therefore the theory is not compatible with an Orthodox worldview. From an Orthodox standpoint, the concept of God using death to create humanity is indeed an "ugly" concept.

Another question I have asked that has yet to be answered is this: If evolution is true, then who or what determines who and what is "fully human"? If we are still evolving, then the sanctity of human life is undermined. We have seen the logical consequence of biological Darwinism, which is social Darwinism. Chattel slavery, the Holocaust, and abortion on demand are the foul fruit of evolutionary theory.



Selam


I guess I just take bishops and priests at their word when they say evolution is acceptable, and don't rely on Internet web forums. Also, death is not the mechanism of evolution; differential reproductive success is.

I'm not even going to bother addressing the hackery that is equating evolution with social Darwinism, it is disingenuous and idiotic.

but you dont take Saints at their word when they say that evolution is NOT acceptable ...?!
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« Reply #4037 on: April 21, 2012, 04:05:52 AM »

Although Gebre does not agree with evolution or old earth, perhaps the language itself "believe in" would be reserved for a way of life, as in faith, and not materialistic existence.  Perhaps one is better to say I acknowledge a material reality, but I believe in a certain faith.  Even non-believers will not use the term "believe in" to describe their trust in the scientific method and principles.

St Gregory the Theologian made this very point! We can distinguish between "believe", as in acknowledge a fact or truth, and "believe in", i.e. make a truth the foundation of our moral life.

+1


I absolutely agree. It is ridiculous for evolutionists to claim that they "believe in biology" and that the rest of us don't. I believe in biology; i.e. I know that biology exists. Now, how one understands and interprets the science of biology is essentially the issue at hand with this whole discussion. What I have noticed is that rather than actually providing empirical evidence for the theory of evolution, the evolutionists on this thread instead resort to accusing the rest of us of not "believing in science," which is neither a fact nor an argument for the evolutionary position.


Selam

Creationists don't believe in biology. You can't cut out a fundamental unifying scientific theory with no alternstive framework offered and then claim to believe in science.

its a disingenuous and idiotic strawman to say that Creationists dont believe in biology. what we dont believe is the extrapolation and interpretations of the biology of the fallen world into the pre-fallen world. Fr. John Romanides, following upon the consensus of the Church Fathers, says in his "Ancestral Sin" that science and philosophy have absolutely no ability to go back before the Fall because the world was then in a condition that we know nothing about based upon our observations of the fallen world. we can only know about it through the Scriptures, Church Fathers, and prayer.

if anyone is putting a wall between science and religion, its the evolutionists. this thread proves it. its not possible to accept both the Church Fathers AND evolution, so you choose evolution. you acknowledge the division that evolution forces between Orthodoxy and science:
Quote

A common attack against Creationists is that they are anti-science, or that they are positing an antithesis between religion and science. However, I think, in fact, the exact opposite is true. I think it is actually the evolutionists that put a divide between theology and science. On the theistic evolutionist side there seems to be a denial that theology has implications for science, and that science has implications for theology. How often do we hear or read: "The Bible isn't a science book!" (1) or "The Fathers weren't scientists!"? Well, no one is claiming that the Bible's purpose is to teach science or that the Fathers first concern was the natural sciences, but I don't know how we could reasonably claim that the two spheres have no overlap. Our faith is entirely centered on the Person of the Incarnate Word - Jesus Christ. Christ took on flesh, died in the flesh, and rose again in the flesh. He is the Creator Who created the physical world which Orthodox Christianity understands to be a good creation. We do not believe in the dualistic/Manichean/Gnostic divide between the material and the spiritual. We do not posit a chasm between the two.

But theistic evolutionists seek to harmonize Orthodoxy and evolution by either giving full credence to science, or by not really accepting either theology or science. In the Patristic Tradition the entire world was created as Paradise, and as man is the crown of creation, it was only once man sinned that all of creation was plunged into a state of corruption. However, if man is a product of evolution then there was necessarily death long before man sinned. The two are incompatible and so some theistic evolutionists deny that physical death is a result of sin - they lend full weight to science and none to the Fathers. This makes Christ's physical Incarnation, death, and Resurrection in the flesh, and our own resurrection from the dead, which we proclaim in the Creed, nonsensical, and places the blame for death on God. Furthermore, the Fathers do not doubt the historicity of Adam or that he was truly the first and only person on earth, being uniquely created - having no parents - along with Eve. However, evolution happens in populations, not individuals, and so some theistic evolutionists deny that there ever was a historical Adam and Eve, but rather, they simply symbolize all of mankind. However, since the Patristic understanding of anthropology and the consequences of sin comes from their literal reading of the Genesis story, this tactic is obviously problematic. Others seek to harmonize Orthodoxy and evolution by not really accepting either. Some, acknowledging that Orthodox Tradition teaches that man physically dies only as a consequence of sin, will accept that man was indeed physically immortal until he sinned, but still wanting to be hip scientifically they will deny that animals and plants also die as a result of man's sin. This still blames some death on God although the Wisdom of Solomon 1 teaches that God is not the author of death of any kind. So they accept Orthodox Tradition only partially, and they only accept evolution partially. From an evolutionary-scientific standpoint it is absurd to believe that man alone was somehow immortal. Evolution is one big, connected picture and I know of no scientist who can scientifically justify saying that one species was somehow exempt from the chain. Also, recognizing that the Scripture and Fathers teach the historicity of Adam and Eve, some theistic evolutionists will say that the bodies of Adam and Eve were part of a larger species, but the two of them were called out to receive through the breath of God a spiritual aspect. But this denies that man as we know him is truly a result of evolution.This also posits that there are, or were, creatures that are exactly like humans physically speaking, but lacking the rational aspect of humanity. This is also absurd scientifically speaking. So in order to try to "harmonize" Orthodoxy and evolution, one either disregards the Patristic Tradition and sides completely with science or one denies both Orthodoxy and science and creates his own illegitimate amalgamation. Thus, theistic evolutionists are the ones truly placing a divide between religion and science.

Creationists, however, recognize that theology has implications for science, and science has implications for religion. The Orthodox tradition accepts the historicity of the Genesis account and teaches that death is a result of sin. Thus, we know when death entered this world. This has clear scientific implications. However, if evolutionary science is true and death has existed for billions of years and evolution happens in populations, then the Orthodox understanding of anthropology and sin and death need a radical change. Again, Orthodoxy is not dualistic. The physical and the spiritual realms necessarily interact and have implications for each other. Understanding this, the Creationist realizes that Orthodoxy and science must truly harmonize, and so both Orthodoxy and evolution cannot be true, because, as even the evolutionists' tactics demonstrate, they are incompatible. Since the understanding of God's act of Creation and the Scriptural account thereof, and of the paradisiacal life belongs obviously to the Church, the Orthodox Tradition is held as true, and thus evolution cannot be maintained to be true. However, against the frequent attacks of evolutionists, this does not mean that Creationists are "anti-science," for we recognize that true faith and true science will necessarily complement each other. We simply recognize that evolution is not true science.

(1) Which makes me wonder why evolutionists then turn around and look to scientists to explain it ...

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« Reply #4038 on: April 21, 2012, 04:12:14 AM »

There certaintly are leaks in the theory of Evolution.Though we should not be against true science.Religious books are not scientifical treatises.. Religion tells us why and Science tells us how.. The two shall not pass over each other.. Religion should not claim scientifical expertise nor science religious expertise.. These are two different aspects..

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« Reply #4039 on: April 21, 2012, 05:53:26 AM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process;

Huh? How? I think it is beautiful and elegant.

being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.

Um, God lets species go extinct all the time even in our modern era. So I don't see the point here.



The issue I have raised that has yet to be satisfactorily addressed is that evolution makes God the Author of death, and therefore the theory is not compatible with an Orthodox worldview. From an Orthodox standpoint, the concept of God using death to create humanity is indeed an "ugly" concept.

Another question I have asked that has yet to be answered is this: If evolution is true, then who or what determines who and what is "fully human"? If we are still evolving, then the sanctity of human life is undermined. We have seen the logical consequence of biological Darwinism, which is social Darwinism. Chattel slavery, the Holocaust, and abortion on demand are the foul fruit of evolutionary theory.



Selam


I guess I just take bishops and priests at their word when they say evolution is acceptable, and don't rely on Internet web forums. Also, death is not the mechanism of evolution; differential reproductive success is.

I'm not even going to bother addressing the hackery that is equating evolution with social Darwinism, it is disingenuous and idiotic.

With respect my friend, there is not a unanimity of concensus amongst Priests and Bishops that evolution is compatible with Orthodox theology. I am aware that Bishop Kallistos Ware (who I admire and respect in many ways) is essentially a believer in evolution, but he is not the authority on the matter. I consider Father Seraphim Rose to be a father of the Orthodox Faith, and he wrote extensively on the falsehood of evolution. Not to mention that my own Ethiopian Orthodox Fathers teach that the earth is only approximately 7,000 years old, which obviously precludes the possibility for Darwinian evolution.

As for your dismissal of the obvious link between Darwinian evolution and social Darwinism, that is to be expected. Whenever evolutionists can't answer the challenge, they resort to attacking those who present the challenge as being idiotic and obscurantist. Of course, such attacks are neither answers nor defenses for their sacred cow of evolution.

But I am repeating myself.


Selam
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« Reply #4040 on: April 21, 2012, 08:52:02 AM »

You can moralize all you want about sperm/egg genetic selection. The only thing about it that bothers me is the guarantee that my generation will be the last to suck. When I'm 80 I'll be completely surrounded by a bunch of young nubine geniuses who are better than me at literally everything.
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« Reply #4041 on: April 21, 2012, 08:52:02 AM »

Not to mention that my own Ethiopian Orthodox Fathers teach that the earth is only approximately 7,000 years old, which obviously precludes the possibility for Darwinian evolution.
Here's my beef with this. You say the Ehtiopian Orthodox Fathers teach that the earth is 7,000 years old and on what authority do they have to make claim to that? They weren't' archeologists or geologists, so what they say in regards to how old the Earth is (and the implications for believing such) really is moot.

Quote
As for your dismissal of the obvious link between Darwinian evolution and social Darwinism, that is to be expected. Whenever evolutionists can't answer the challenge, they resort to attacking those who present the challenge as being idiotic and obscurantist. Of course, such attacks are neither answers nor defenses for their sacred cow of evolution.
I'm with you 100% on the social Darwinism aspect. The thing that bothers me about evolution, and I don't care if it's true or not, is what it says about the origin of man. We are nothing but a disease of the dirt, and as such we shouldn't value any of our species either. Without being made in God's image, we have no ground on elevating the human race to something with a little more worth than dust.
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« Reply #4042 on: April 21, 2012, 09:31:33 AM »

Not to mention that my own Ethiopian Orthodox Fathers teach that the earth is only approximately 7,000 years old, which obviously precludes the possibility for Darwinian evolution.
Here's my beef with this. You say the Ehtiopian Orthodox Fathers teach that the earth is 7,000 years old and on what authority do they have to make claim to that? They weren't' archeologists or geologists, so what they say in regards to how old the Earth is (and the implications for believing such) really is moot.

grace-filled interpretation of Scripture. thats the only way to know about the time before the Fall. science can have nothing to say on this matter.

Quote
Quote
As for your dismissal of the obvious link between Darwinian evolution and social Darwinism, that is to be expected. Whenever evolutionists can't answer the challenge, they resort to attacking those who present the challenge as being idiotic and obscurantist. Of course, such attacks are neither answers nor defenses for their sacred cow of evolution.
I'm with you 100% on the social Darwinism aspect. The thing that bothers me about evolution, and I don't care if it's true or not, is what it says about the origin of man. We are nothing but a disease of the dirt, and as such we shouldn't value any of our species either. Without being made in God's image, we have no ground on elevating the human race to something with a little more worth than dust.


precisely. the Fathers consistently teach that God formed man uniquely out of the clay with His own "hands" which shows that He is the crown of creation. if evolution is true then man just crawled out of the slime with everything else and was not created specially by God.
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« Reply #4043 on: April 21, 2012, 09:39:34 AM »

In the words of Severian, nvm...

Back to the issue of "believe in" vs "believe" or "acknowledge", I hope many people here, evolutionist or creationist, can understand this.  I've already addressed why I disagree with Gebre and jckstraw.  And Gebre, your continued demonization of evolutionists doesn't make you any better than the continued ridicule of creationists.  If you complain of the ridicule, then you should also stop making comments like "sacred cow of evolution".  Or you can continue to demonize, but don't complain if they ridicule you.  You can't have your cake and eat it too my friend.

God bless
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« Reply #4044 on: April 21, 2012, 10:44:28 AM »

Quote
A modern view, described by Stephen Jay Gould as "non-overlapping magisteria" (NOMA), is that science and religion deal with fundamentally separate aspects of human experience and so, when each stays within its own domain, they co-exist peacefully.

This is the view that has allowed me to function (most of the time) as a Christian without suffering from too much cognitive dissonance. Three cheers for Gould!

NOMA seems like dualism to me. Orthodox theology draws a strong distinction between the created and the uncreated, but not as much between the material and spiritual. To say that they do not overlap does not, to me, sound Orthodox at all.

No one is specifically saying that the material and spiritual do not overlap. NOMA (as I understand it) says that science functions in its own particular way and domain of expertise, and religion/spirituality in its way and domain of human experience. NOMA is simply accepting that the Bible is not a science textbook, and that science indeed works, given time and enough serious participants, as a process. One can still engage with the ascetic struggle and sacramental life of the Church, practice watchfulness of one's thoughts, engage in deeper and deeper prayer, approach theosis (by God's grace), and so on without trying to argue against the bits of science that contradict the Biblical mytho-poetic narrative of creation, for instance. Science works. Orthodox spirituality works. But each works in a very different dimension or domain of human experience.

This, at least, is my understanding of NOMA.
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« Reply #4045 on: April 21, 2012, 10:49:11 AM »

In the words of Severian, nvm...

Back to the issue of "believe in" vs "believe" or "acknowledge", I hope many people here, evolutionist or creationist, can understand this.  I've already addressed why I disagree with Gebre and jckstraw.  And Gebre, your continued demonization of evolutionists doesn't make you any better than the continued ridicule of creationists.  If you complain of the ridicule, then you should also stop making comments like "sacred cow of evolution".  Or you can continue to demonize, but don't complain if they ridicule you.  You can't have your cake and eat it too my friend.

God bless

Well, if I can accept that my belief in a young earth is a matter of faith, then why can't evolutionists accept that their theory is a matter of faith as well? If someone attempts to ridicule my belief in Creation as a "sacred cow," then so be it. It is indeed an article of my faith. I can admit that, and I am also willing to defend my belief. Evolutionists want to claim that their pet theory is an empirical scientific fact without offering legitimate evidence to substantiate it, and I will consistently call BS on that every time. The narrow minded fundamentalist zeal of evolutionists makes Pat Robertson and his ilk look tame in comparison.

I will also note that the ostensible "evidence" for evolution is highly contested. This "evidence" only appears to have merit within the context of a presuppositional evolutionary framework. By a prima facie ruling out of any and all other competing theories, the evolutionists exalt their own theory as an established "fact." Then they procede to mock, ridicule, and disparage anyone who dares to remain objectively unconvinced. I am too familiar with the game, and I won't allow the evolutionists to dictate the terms and set the rules. As long as they adhere to the strict criteria of the scientific method, then I will listen to what they have to say. But as this thread clearly demonstrates, the evolutionist camp is less concerned with producing actual evidence than with attacking those who are asking for evidence.


Selam


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« Reply #4046 on: April 21, 2012, 11:14:04 AM »

Quote
This, at least, is my understanding of NOMA.

And after writing that post, I thought I'd better see what S.J. Gould himself has to say on the matter. I grabbed this excerpt from the essay linked to below.

Regarding the "war" between religion and science, he writes:

"No such conflict should exist because each subject has a legitimate magisterium, or domain of teaching authority-and these magisteria do not overlap (the principle that I would like to designate as NOMA, or "nonoverlapping magisteria").The net of science covers the empirical universe: what is it made of (fact) and why does it work this way (theory). The net of religion extends over questions of moral meaning and value. These two magisteria do not overlap, nor do they encompass all inquiry (consider, for starters, the magisterium of art and the meaning of beauty). To cite the arch cliches, we get the age of rocks, and religion retains the rock of ages; we study how the heavens go, and they determine how to go to heaven. This resolution might remain all neat and clean if the nonoverlapping magisteria (NOMA) of science and religion were separated by an extensive no man's land. But, in fact, the two magisteria bump right up against each other, interdigitating in wondrously complex ways along their joint border. Many of our deepest questions call upon aspects of both for different parts of a full answer-and the sorting of legitimate domains can become quite complex and difficult. "

http://www.stephenjaygould.org/library/gould_noma.html

I guess I'd say that it's no real fault of his (as a scientist) that he excludes the noetic from his understanding of religion.
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« Reply #4047 on: April 21, 2012, 11:16:37 AM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process;

Huh? How? I think it is beautiful and elegant.

being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.

Um, God lets species go extinct all the time even in our modern era. So I don't see the point here.



The issue I have raised that has yet to be satisfactorily addressed is that evolution makes God the Author of death, and therefore the theory is not compatible with an Orthodox worldview. From an Orthodox standpoint, the concept of God using death to create humanity is indeed an "ugly" concept.

Another question I have asked that has yet to be answered is this: If evolution is true, then who or what determines who and what is "fully human"? If we are still evolving, then the sanctity of human life is undermined. We have seen the logical consequence of biological Darwinism, which is social Darwinism. Chattel slavery, the Holocaust, and abortion on demand are the foul fruit of evolutionary theory.



Selam


I guess I just take bishops and priests at their word when they say evolution is acceptable, and don't rely on Internet web forums. Also, death is not the mechanism of evolution; differential reproductive success is.

I'm not even going to bother addressing the hackery that is equating evolution with social Darwinism, it is disingenuous and idiotic.

but you dont take Saints at their word when they say that evolution is NOT acceptable ...?!

No. I let my Bishop and priest interpret the Fathers instead of being my own infallible theologian. Had enough of that as a Protestant. I JUST said that, are you not paying attention?
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« Reply #4048 on: April 21, 2012, 11:19:40 AM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process;

Huh? How? I think it is beautiful and elegant.

being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.

Um, God lets species go extinct all the time even in our modern era. So I don't see the point here.



The issue I have raised that has yet to be satisfactorily addressed is that evolution makes God the Author of death, and therefore the theory is not compatible with an Orthodox worldview. From an Orthodox standpoint, the concept of God using death to create humanity is indeed an "ugly" concept.

Another question I have asked that has yet to be answered is this: If evolution is true, then who or what determines who and what is "fully human"? If we are still evolving, then the sanctity of human life is undermined. We have seen the logical consequence of biological Darwinism, which is social Darwinism. Chattel slavery, the Holocaust, and abortion on demand are the foul fruit of evolutionary theory.



Selam


I guess I just take bishops and priests at their word when they say evolution is acceptable, and don't rely on Internet web forums. Also, death is not the mechanism of evolution; differential reproductive success is.

I'm not even going to bother addressing the hackery that is equating evolution with social Darwinism, it is disingenuous and idiotic.

With respect my friend, there is not a unanimity of concensus amongst Priests and Bishops that evolution is compatible with Orthodox theology. I am aware that Bishop Kallistos Ware (who I admire and respect in many ways) is essentially a believer in evolution, but he is not the authority on the matter. I consider Father Seraphim Rose to be a father of the Orthodox Faith, and he wrote extensively on the falsehood of evolution. Not to mention that my own Ethiopian Orthodox Fathers teach that the earth is only approximately 7,000 years old, which obviously precludes the possibility for Darwinian evolution.

As for your dismissal of the obvious link between Darwinian evolution and social Darwinism, that is to be expected. Whenever evolutionists can't answer the challenge, they resort to attacking those who present the challenge as being idiotic and obscurantist. Of course, such attacks are neither answers nor defenses for their sacred cow of evolution.

But I am repeating myself.


Selam

The link is not obvious. It is ridiculous to link a stupid social policy based on straw manned evolution to actual biology? What do you really wish to discuss? Social theory? Straw manned evolution or real biology?
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« Reply #4049 on: April 21, 2012, 11:32:51 AM »

One problem I have with accepting evolution as an Orthodox Christian is simply that evolution is an ugly process;

Huh? How? I think it is beautiful and elegant.

being more specific, what about all of those sub-human species that existed before us or around the same time modern humans were rising and went extinct because of evolution? Animals I do not care about, but were these species really animals or closer to humans than we actually think? How could God really just let them die off? How could He really create them knowing that they were basically just lab mice to serve a biological purpose that He knew were going to die in the end? Why favor humans over the rest of them? This is a mystery.

Um, God lets species go extinct all the time even in our modern era. So I don't see the point here.



The issue I have raised that has yet to be satisfactorily addressed is that evolution makes God the Author of death, and therefore the theory is not compatible with an Orthodox worldview. From an Orthodox standpoint, the concept of God using death to create humanity is indeed an "ugly" concept.

Another question I have asked that has yet to be answered is this: If evolution is true, then who or what determines who and what is "fully human"? If we are still evolving, then the sanctity of human life is undermined. We have seen the logical consequence of biological Darwinism, which is social Darwinism. Chattel slavery, the Holocaust, and abortion on demand are the foul fruit of evolutionary theory.



Selam


I guess I just take bishops and priests at their word when they say evolution is acceptable, and don't rely on Internet web forums. Also, death is not the mechanism of evolution; differential reproductive success is.

I'm not even going to bother addressing the hackery that is equating evolution with social Darwinism, it is disingenuous and idiotic.

but you dont take Saints at their word when they say that evolution is NOT acceptable ...?!

No. I let my Bishop and priest interpret the Fathers instead of being my own infallible theologian. Had enough of that as a Protestant. I JUST said that, are you not paying attention?

please ask your bishop and/or priest to interpret what St. Theophan is saying here (NOT asking whether or not they agree with him, but simply for their interpretation of his words, since you leave that up to them), and get back to us about it:

Thoughts for Each Day of the Year According to the Daily Church Readings from the Word of God, trans. Lisa Marie Baranov (2010), pp. 127-128
What ought we to preach? We should cry to all, ‘Sons of the Kingdom [of Heaven]! Don’t run from the Kingdom into bondage and slavery’ – for they are in fact running. Some are captivated by freedom of mind. They say, ‘We don’t want the bonds of faith and the oppression of authority, even Divine authority; we’ll figure things out and make up our minds for ourselves.’ So they have made up their minds. They have built fables in which there is more childishness than in the mythology of the Greeks – and they magnify themselves … Others are enticed by the broad path of the passions. They say, ‘We don’t want to know positive commandments or the demands of conscience – this is all abstract: we need tangible naturalness.’ And they have gone after it. What has come of it? They have bowed down before dumb beasts. Has not the theory that man originated from animals arisen from this moral fall? This is where they have gone! And everyone runs from the Lord, everyone runs …”

pp. 227-228
The truth of God is simple; can a proud mind study it? Such a mind would rather think up its own thing: sensational things, although empty and as weak as a spider’s web. To see that this is so, look at the current theories of the creation of the world: they are like a somnambulistic or drunken delirium. And yet how good they seem to those who invented them! How much energy and time are wasted on this – and all in vain! The deed was accomplished simply: ‘He spake and they cam to be. He commanded and they were created’ (Ps. 148:5). No one can think up anything better than this solution.

Sozertsaniye i razmyshleniye (Contemplations and Reflections) (1998) p. 146
These days many nihilists of both sexes, naturalists, Darwinists, Spiritists, and Westernizers in general have multiplied among us. All right, you’re thinking – would the Church have been silent, would it not have proferred its voice, would it not have condemned or anathematized them if there had been something new in their teaching? To be sure – a council would have done so without doubt, and all of them, with their teachings, would have been given over to anathema. To the current Rite of Orthodoxy only the following item would have been added: ‘To Büchner, Feuerbach, Darwin, Renan, Kardec, and all their followers – anathema! But there is no need, either for a special council or for any kind of addition. All of their false teachings were anathematized long ago. At the present time, not only in principal cities but in all place and churches the Rite of Orthodoxy ought to be brought in and celebrated, so that all the teachings contrary to the word of God might be collected and that it might be proclaimed to everyone what they must fear and from what teachings they must flee, and all might know. Many are seduced intellectually only through ignorance, and therefore a public condemnation of pernicious teachings would save them from destruction. If the action of an anathema is terrible to someone, then let him avoid the teachings that lead to it. Let him who is afraid of it for the sake of others bring them back to a healthy teaching. If you who are not favorably disposed to this action are Orthodox, then you are going against yourself; and if you have already lost sound teaching, then what business do you have concerning what is done in the Church that supports it? After all, you’ve already separated yourself from the Church and have your own convictions, your own way of looking at things – well, live with them then. It’s all the same whether or not your name and your teaching are uttered under the anathema: you are already under anathema if you philosophize against the Church and persist in this philosophizing.
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