Creationism, Evolution, and Orthodoxy

Do you believe that the acount of genesis in the Old testament should be taken literally?

  • Yes

    Votes: 73 16.8%
  • No

    Votes: 163 37.6%
  • both metaphorically and literally

    Votes: 198 45.6%

  • Total voters
    434

livefreeordie

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A little aside to state the obvious, since statistics is, "a mathematical science pertaining to the collection, analysis, interpretation or explanation, and presentation of data." I don't see how it could come up with any sort of probability on something like the existence of a creator who lives outside the scientific realm. Any "probability" someone posited would just be a random, unscientific guess.  Which of course is why someone like GIC says any probability of existence from atoms bonding together is greater than the probability of the existence of a metaphysical creator, they've lost their faith and reject any data that might point to God. Ultimately, you either believe in a metaphysical God (or a flying spaghetti monster as some so charitably describe it) or you don't. You won't find statistics to back you up one way or another. Of course, when you have faith in God you don't normally feel the need to back it up with statistics. And when you don't have faith in God, nothing posited as data for his existence like the resurrection, miracles, etc. would you consider as credible evidence that you would then enter into any sort of statistical equation. This of course, is why 2000 years after the resurrection we are still here arguing whether God exists, miracles occur, etc.
 

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Science has not and cannot determine what constitues a human being. Why? Because science cannot prove the existence of the soul. Science takes a very materialistic very of the human being. They ask questions like "How big is his brain? How tall was he? What was the shape of his skull". Last time I checked, Christianity does not consider materialism as a the definitive qualifier for what makes a human being human.

Also regarding "ensoulment", God created man in His Image and Likeness. Of Cro-Mag's and Neanderthals are our biological ancestors, but didn't have a soul, then God would have inserted a soul into an pre-existing animal species. Lame.

Bottom line: If Cro-Mag's and Neanderthals aren't human, then they were animals without a soul. IMHO, they were less advanced in skills and technology, but were still humans with a soul.


But where do we go from here? What are you implying? Yes, science cannot define or study soul, and it doesn't do it. Yes, scientifically speaking, we are absolutely unable to say, just who was this first owner of a "truly human" soul. So... what?
Where we go is to the creation of man. We can have endless discussions from a scientific point of view as to "when" man became man. Why? Because the scientific qualkifier for "when" is human consciousness.

For Christianity, it is an open and closed book. Man was created by God with a soul and consciousness of who he was. There was no "pre-human" ape roaming around that was zapped with a soul after evolution and natural selection ahd produced it's flesh.

THe so what is that science creates a dualistic body-mind divide by evolution. There is no soul for man in science, there is only consciousness and according to the current theory of evolution, consciousnes "developed" over time.

To this I say, huh? Really?

I reject a marixist view of the human person, that is that unconscious man "created" and "evolved" himself over time from a primate. I alos reject a deistic view of the human person in which God created a system and leaves it to "play out as he designed it" from the beginning without intervention.

Rather, God gives us every breath of every moment of our existence. He blesses us with each movement of every motion. He loves us so intimately that He IS the very life and energy we live. This isn't some Pantheistic view of creation, but rather creation as Communion with God. I do not believe that God needs natural selection or evolution to determine how creation works, especially not for man.

IN the end, science is a great discipline to study the world around us. But the best science pales in comparison to the worst (but honest) pursuit of holiness by living life in Christ. Man is made for deification;this is something science cannot understand.
 

PeterTheAleut

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Stephans said:
To put it another way, if one were to accept evolution then the Kenosis of Christ does not exist and He died on the Cross for no reason other than the hatred of His enemies. Also, if one were to accept evolution then the Resurrection of Christ (a total impossibility in the opinion of evolutionary scientists) is nothing more than a forlorn wishful thinking by his apostles. The real reason for the anti-gospel of evolution as a supposed fact obviating and voiding the Christian faith of the believer is to bring in the Pantheistic-Monist en-sof of the qabbalists and the neo-gnostic hatred of the flesh leading to full gratification thereof; as well as many other objections to the Gospel of Christ. In short, though many who might try to defend evolution may not see themselves in this fashion, they are pandering to the apostasy that will bring in the Antichrist. I am not saying they do this on purpose, but they fall into a trap laid carefully for them. Our Lord Jesus Christ was born of the most Blessed Theotokos, the Virgin Mary, an impossibility in an evolutionary universe. Our Lord Jesus Christ walked on water and transformed five loaves and a few fishes into a huge amount and raised the dead including Lazarus who was rotting already. All of this is impossible in an evolutionary universe. Our  Lord Jesus Christ made the singular sign of proof of His divine mission His own Resurrection from the dead in the flesh and showed this forth as the promise of our own resurrection at His return from heaven from the Father's right hand. All of this is impossible and unthinkable in an evolutionary universe. We have to face the question, which is impossible and unthinkable? The Truth of Christ or evolution? I say evolution is impossible and unthinkable.
This, however, is based on the premise that ALL who argue in favor of evolution are necessarily motivated by an anti-Christian spirit of materialism.  This is just an overly broad induction from the fact that a few evolutionists are indeed materialists, IMO.  Your reasoning doesn't take into account, however, the many genuine Christians who seek to reconcile the evidence for evolution (apart from the naturalistic agendas of many of the theory's most militant advocates) with their unwavering faith in the salvific work of Jesus Christ through human history.  In short, I don't think evolutionary science and materialist/naturalist philosophy are necessarily inseparable.


BTW, welcome to the forum, Stephans. ;D
 

Demetrios G.

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greekischristian said:
Was I the only person here paying attention in Quantum Mechanics? Perhaps you remember this Heisenberg fellow from...oh, I don't know...THE FIRST WEEK OF CLASS??? ::)
You missed a good show. the Six Billion Dollar Experiment on the science channel. It was on this morning. They are trying to prove, Heisenberg uncertainty principle. http://science.discovery.com/tv-schedules/special.html?paid=48.15158.25615.0.0

Trying and proving are two different things. ;)
 

greekischristian

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Demetrios G. said:
You missed a good show. the Six Billion Dollar Experiment on the science channel. It was on this morning. They are trying to prove, Heisenberg uncertainty principle. http://science.discovery.com/tv-schedules/special.html?paid=48.15158.25615.0.0

Trying and proving are two different things. ;)
Wow...you don't buy the Uncertainty Principle either...LMAO. :D And while there are a handful of interpretations other than the uncertainty principle (though none nearly as well developed) for the universal absence of vacuum, not one denies the observable fact that mass spontaneously appears.

I guess you ditched Physics as often as you ditched Biology. If you want to believe in a supernatural entity, that's your business, but it's just comical when you try to make your superstitions out to be reasonable.
 

Demetrios G.

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greekischristian said:
Wow...you don't buy the Uncertainty Principle either...LMAO. :D And while there are a handful of interpretations other than the uncertainty principle (though none nearly as well developed) for the universal absence of vacuum, not one denies the observable fact that mass spontaneously appears.

I guess you ditched Physics as often as you ditched Biology. If you want to believe in a supernatural entity, that's your business, but it's just comical when you try to make your superstitions out to be reasonable.
The First Law of Thermodynamics is called a "law" because within the bounds of scientific observation it has been proven true beyond all reasonable doubt. The First Law of Thermodynamics asserts that matter or its energy equivalent can neither be created nor destroyed under natural circumstances. Matter cannot create itself and, in the real world, cannot arise from nothing. Within the bounds of natural law all effects must have a cause. Because of this fact, the spontaneous appearance of hydrogen atoms out of nothing (ex nihilo creation) is a definite breach of the First Law of Thermodynamics which asserts that matter, under natural  circumstances, can neither be created nor destroyed.
  Lets not forget Isaac Newton's Law of Inertia. which declares that a body at rest will remain at rest unless acted upon by an outside force. ;)
 

greekischristian

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Demetrios G. said:
The First Law of Thermodynamics is called a "law" because within the bounds of scientific observation it has been proven true beyond all reasonable doubt. The First Law of Thermodynamics asserts that matter or its energy equivalent can neither be created nor destroyed under natural circumstances. Matter cannot create itself and, in the real world, cannot arise from nothing. Within the bounds of natural law all effects must have a cause. Because of this fact, the spontaneous appearance of hydrogen atoms out of nothing (ex nihilo creation) is a definite breach of the First Law of Thermodynamics which asserts that matter, under natural  circumstances, can neither be created nor destroyed.
   Lets not forget Isaac Newton's Law of Inertia. which declares that a body at rest will remain at rest unless acted upon by an outside force. ;)
You do understand that these 'laws' only apply to classical systems don't you? If you don't believe that matter can be destroyed, pray tell, how do you explain Hiroshima? What do you think is the significance of the famous equation E=mc^2? And, quite frankly, how can I possibly discuss scientific issues with someone who obviously has zero grasp of even the most basic principles of Quantum Mechanics? You really need to go back and revisit your education in the sciences.
 

livefreeordie

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greekischristian said:
You do understand that these 'laws' only apply to classical systems don't you? If you don't believe that matter can be destroyed, pray tell, how do you explain Hiroshima?
It would probably be more accurate to say that matter was converted or transformed to energy at Hiroshima, or even rearranged.  But not destroyed.  Of course, I'm sure you knew that! You just got a little carried away.  ;) And of course, we could probably also argue the semantics of "destroyed".
 

greekischristian

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livefreeordie said:
It would probably be more accurate to say that matter was converted or transformed to energy at Hiroshima, or even rearranged.  But not destroyed.  Of course, I'm sure you knew that! You just got a little carried away.  ;) And of course, we could probably also argue the semantics of "destroyed".
Actually, there's an even more fundamental problem...I implied a fundamental divide between matter and energy, whereas the two are essentially the same thing; but the example does illustrate the absurdity of applying laws of classical thermodynamics to nuclear physics and quantum mechanics, matter in the classical understanding of the term (the understanding in the laws of thermodynamics) actually was destroyed with a release of energy (the exact thing the first law of thermodynamics says cannot happen...you see, sometimes 'theories' are better supported and developed than 'laws'...in fact most 'laws' in physics are technically wrong).

The better example is vacuum fluctuations and virtual particles...which is what I was getting at with all my talk of the uncertainty principle. The response was a red herring, criticizing the Copenhagen Interpretation...but regardless of your opinion of the Copenhagen Interpretation (assuming someone on this board is even in a position to offer an opinion one way or the other), vacuum fluctuations are strongly supported by experimental evidence.

So what's the response? Dismissing quantum mechanics based on the classical laws of physics. This may be the only thing I've read on this board that is more absurd than attacking the Theory of Evolution...the effects of vacuum fluctuations and virtul particles can be observed over and over again, it is a repeatable and verified experiment. Heck, Willis Lamb got his Noble Prize for measuring the effect back in '53, this stuff is ancient history. I simply don't see how any sane and rational person could dismiss these well established fundamentals of quantum mechanics...the experiments have been published, if you doubt the results you can reproduce them, try it for yourself, see what happens...physicists don't make a mystery out of these things, everything's freely available to the world.
 

Demetrios G.

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greekischristian said:
Actually, there's an even more fundamental problem...I implied a fundamental divide between matter and energy, whereas the two are essentially the same thing; but the example does illustrate the absurdity of applying laws of classical thermodynamics to nuclear physics and quantum mechanics, matter in the classical understanding of the term (the understanding in the laws of thermodynamics) actually was destroyed with a release of energy (the exact thing the first law of thermodynamics says cannot happen...you see, sometimes 'theories' are better supported and developed than 'laws'...in fact most 'laws' in physics are technically wrong).

The better example is vacuum fluctuations and virtual particles...which is what I was getting at with all my talk of the uncertainty principle. The response was a red herring, criticizing the Copenhagen Interpretation...but regardless of your opinion of the Copenhagen Interpretation (assuming someone on this board is even in a position to offer an opinion one way or the other), vacuum fluctuations are strongly supported by experimental evidence.

So what's the response? Dismissing quantum mechanics based on the classical laws of physics. This may be the only thing I've read on this board that is more absurd than attacking the Theory of Evolution...the effects of vacuum fluctuations and virtul particles can be observed over and over again, it is a repeatable and verified experiment. Heck, Willis Lamb got his Noble Prize for measuring the effect back in '53, this stuff is ancient history. I simply don't see how any sane and rational person could dismiss these well established fundamentals of quantum mechanics...the experiments have been published, if you doubt the results you can reproduce them, try it for yourself, see what happens...physicists don't make a mystery out of these things, everything's freely available to the world.
There is currently no evidence that proton decay exists. Some are claiming that it does. Nothing has yet to be proven.

 

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greekischristian said:
The response was a red herring, criticizing the Copenhagen Interpretation...but regardless of your opinion of the Copenhagen Interpretation (assuming someone on this board is even in a position to offer an opinion one way or the other), vacuum fluctuations are strongly supported by experimental evidence.
If your knowledge is so superior to that of the OC.net community (which it probably is, I was a Math major and you touch on things I've long lost a good understanding of) that you question whether anyone here can even have an opinion on statements like the Copenhagen Interpretation and other issues of higher Mathematics and Physics you like to pontificate upon, then the really interesting question is, why do you bother?
 

greekischristian

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livefreeordie said:
If your knowledge is so superior to that of the OC.net community (which it probably is, I was a Math major and you touch on things I've long lost a good understanding of) that you question whether anyone here can even have an opinion on statements like the Copenhagen Interpretation and other issues of higher Mathematics and Physics you like to pontificate upon, then the really interesting question is, why do you bother?
For what it's worth, I don't consider myself to be in a position to opine on the viability of the Copenhagen Interpretation, while my physics training is grounded in it and I have a descent grasp of the main concepts, I still take issue with it at times. Furthermore, I am not really familiar enough with Mathematics behind Quantum Mechanics to make a truly informed judgement, especially the developments over the last 50 years or so. Many physicists would question whether anyone is truly in a place to offer an interpretation of Quantum Mechanics (other than the so-called 'null interpretation': 'Shut up and calculate!' :D ;)), but the experiments and mathematical equations still stand, regardless of how one interprets them, and those are what I was addressing when referring to vacuum fluctuations.

As for why do I bother...guess I just don't have anything better to do. ;)
 

greekischristian

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Demetrios G. said:
There is currently no evidence that proton decay exists. Some are claiming that it does. Nothing has yet to be proven.
And WHAT, pray tell, does that have to do with vacuum energy? Now you're just begging the question. ::)
 

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prodromas said:
Actually no the belief in an omnipotent deity is literally infinitely more complex to fathom and believe then to first believe that an almost statistically improbable event occurred (come on GIC back me up :D). But seriously
Actually, theologically speaking, God is simple, although inifinite.  Actually, being inifinite is connected to Him being simple.

So the existence of a metaphysical realm need not exist for an omnipotent THEISTIC deity to exist? I don't think its possible, but I could be wrong. and I assume your a theist (since you are Christian) unlike GIC which can get away with the whole metaphysical system.
Yes, theism comes with the Creed.  But since physics (science in general) depends on the finite analysis of finite beings of finite data, something beyond that finite realm is an easy concept.  As to supernatural, that would depend on it being brought within that finite data, another issue.  As for the ominpotent, or better, necessary being, He is a case unto Himself, and one need only prove the logical possibility/inevitability of such a being transending the limits of finite man's knowledge:the God of the Philosophers. Not the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  But that's why we have revelation.
 

greekischristian

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ialmisry said:
Actually, theologically speaking, God is simple, although inifinite.  Actually, being inifinite is connected to Him being simple.
That's nice and all, but let's, for just a minute, pretend we're rational beings rather than 'theological' ones.

I know it's probably too much to expect everyone here to at least have a basic grasp of topology and/or computability theory, but here we go. The infinite is only simple if it lacks or has a very mundane topology, an infinite plane for instance. Otherwise it has the potential of being a computational level beyond the finite, it could solve the halting problem, or even more complex problems depending on the degree of infinity...but then, of course, it's no longer simple. If the infinite is useful it cannot be simple, if it is simple it cannot be useful.

I personally like the 'simple god' theory...no person, no consciousness, no will...simply the impersonal reality of consistency...but I would have thought that you would disagree.
 

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I believe that the Church Fathers, the Saints, all the Apostles, the Disciples and Prophets will always be more correct than Science ever could dream to be.

While the Bible is not a book meant to be taken historically or scientifically, it nevertheless, speaks the truth, and the truth in the Bible, as preached by the Prophets all the way to the Church Fathers and the Orthodox Church, has not changed.

I think I have heard from an Orthodox person whom is very respected today, that it is simply "unorthodox" for Orthodox people to look at things soley from a philosophical and scientific perspective. From what I heard said, was that instead we need to balance it with theological knowledge and always (in a sense) weigh it against what we already know.

Example: The Church Fathers wrote and taught many things, and they themselves said they may not always be correct. Therefore we cannot take one Church Father's opinion/teachings over another or study it always by itself, instead we must look at them together. Those teachings that are true, generally do not contradict. The same goes for Science. We cannot simply say that God exists, and this is how Science says everything occurs... No, instead we must weigh science with others, including the many Saints, Prophets, Apostles etc... as well as the Scriptures.

Another thing, from what I understand about Orthodoxy so far, is that what has always been taught by the Church as a whole, is true and right. The Creed has always been taught and accepted by the Church. We KNOW that God created the heavens and the earth. We know God created man in his image. We know that man was given "dominion" over all the animals. We know that man fell into sin and thus the result is death. We know many things which are true and MUST be believed by any Christian. From what I understand, anything beyond what we know is true, and what is required "doctrine" simply does not matter, and are not things we really have to know.

Forgive me if I am wrong in anything I said about Orthodoxy, I'm still trying to learn, and please, correct me if I'm wrong about it.
 

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greekischristian said:
And WHAT, pray tell, does that have to do with vacuum energy? Now you're just begging the question. ::)
I didn't relate them to vacuum energy. Atoms don't exist outside of matter. I was just making a general statement that even though Atoms break down during an explosion. Protons are indestructible.
Quantum mechanics and the big bang haven't bin proven. I myself prefer the Schrödinger's cat paradox over both of them.
 

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Can't... resist... must post... lolcat:



Seriously though, Schrodinger's paradox seems silly to me.  I'm no scientist by any stretch of the imagination but just because you don't know if the cat is alive doesn't mean it's both alive and dead.  Reality is one way or the other. 
 

greekischristian

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Demetrios G. said:
I didn't relate them to vacuum energy. Atoms don't exist outside of matter. I was just making a general statement that even though Atoms break down during an explosion. Protons are indestructible.
Who said anything about protons? The spontaneous unification of three quarks absent confinement is theoretically possible but would be exceedingly rare. Of course, if the universe was confined in a single point it would happen quite frequently. The spontaneously generated particles that create vacuum fluctuations are much smaller.

Quantum mechanics and the big bang haven't bin proven. I myself prefer the Schrödinger's cat paradox over both of them.
It's not a paradox, it's a metaphor.

EofK said:
Seriously though, Schrodinger's paradox seems silly to me.  I'm no scientist by any stretch of the imagination but just because you don't know if the cat is alive doesn't mean it's both alive and dead.  Reality is one way or the other. 
At the quantum level the double-slit experiment would suggest otherwise. You send a single electron through a paper with several slits you will find that it takes all possible paths simultaneously, but the act of observation will alter the path, kinda. The fallacy is in applying logic from the classical world to the quantum level.
 
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