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

88Devin12

Protokentarchos
Joined
Feb 28, 2008
Messages
5,182
Reaction score
0
Points
0
When we say that death isn't natural, it typically means that man's soul being torn from his body was never meant to happen.
Now, I'm sure some people like to get specific and say that cellular death is natural, but the death man experiences is not. However, I haven't heard that explanation anywhere outside of this forum. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist as a common view, but I haven't heard it from any Orthodox person i've met in real life, and I haven't heard it taught by any Priest or even on Ancient Faith Radio or the Orthodox Christian Network. (or even any of the books i've read)
 

murse

Newbie
Joined
Jan 11, 2010
Messages
15
Reaction score
0
Points
0
here is a clip of Bishop Kallistos Ware on the subject...

http://www.tangle.com/view_video?viewkey=d32e16f75c0e84e66464

I think it's a pretty good ;)

Whether you are an evolutionary theist or a fundamental creationist, this should not be a point of division in the body of Christ and cause one to refuse communion with another christian. The Nicene Creed says we "believe in one God the Father Almighty maker of all things visible and invisible".
 

Riddikulus

Protokentarchos
Joined
Feb 20, 2006
Messages
4,788
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Queensland, Australia
murse said:
here is a clip of Bishop Kallistos Ware on the subject...

http://www.tangle.com/view_video?viewkey=d32e16f75c0e84e66464

I think it's a pretty good ;)

Whether you are an evolutionary theist or a fundamental creationist, this should not be a point of division in the body of Christ and cause one to refuse communion with another christian. The Nicene Creed says we "believe in one God the Father Almighty maker of all things visible and invisible".
Quite true, it shouldn't be a point of division, but in practice this subject has been elevated to a deciding factor for judging the faith of others. I've heard many claim - family members amongst them - that one cannot accept evolution and be a Christian.

I like the video, too.  :)
 

Marc1152

Hoplitarches
Joined
Nov 12, 2007
Messages
14,838
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
67
Location
Maryland
Nebelpfade said:
deusveritasest said:
What are you asking? How it is true that modern science is not in conflict with Genesis?
I was wondering what this 'true', non-allegorical and non-literal understanding was (which also happens to not conflict with modern science)?

It has more to do with where Christ and the Church came than with humanity itself.
What if 'the Word became alien' when life on Earth hadn't even left the primordial soup and we are simply unaware?  Why wouldn't they be the "true children of God"?  Humanity as placed itself on a pedestal for quite some time now, and it is always evident in the various creation myths that have sprung up over human history.  As Dr. Sagan said "Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark".
It' also jut as likely that "Aliens" are exactly what the Judeo-Christian Tradition has always said existed, beings from another realm of existence ( Demons, Angles etc etc.). They already know about God.
 

Marc1152

Hoplitarches
Joined
Nov 12, 2007
Messages
14,838
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
67
Location
Maryland
Nebelpfade said:
Depends on what your definition of "just as likely" is. :p  
Oh okay...  There is no firm evidence that advanced life exists on other planets. It turns out that many disparate details all have to be present for life to arise. Even more variables need to be in place for that life to be at least as intelligent as us... The odds are far shorter than scientists had  assumed in the past.
On the other hand, evidence of  the existence of other dimensions of existence has steadily increased.

The Christian understanding is that there are other realms of existence. We believe that life exists there.    
 

deusveritasest

Taxiarches
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
7,521
Reaction score
0
Points
0
88Devin12 said:
Death is in no way a natural occurance... I think all Orthodox would even agree to that.
Not exactly. I would say that it is natural in the sense of what humanity is naturally subject to in and of itself, but not natural in the sense of what God intends for humanity. Some think that humanity was not naturally subject to corruption before the Fall and that the Fall corrupted our very nature. Others have taught (such as Severus of Antioch) that corruption/death was a logical result of our limited nature as human beings but that God intended for us to supersede what we are naturally inclined to by His sanctifying grace. Corruption entered into our world because we rejected a life of unity with God and thus lost the sanctifying grace that would have prevented us from dying (we were not able to eat from the Tree of Life because we disobediently ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil). This latter school of thought is what I personally adhere to, and thus why it could be appropriate to say that death is not natural in one respect and also that it is natural in another.
 

deusveritasest

Taxiarches
Joined
Feb 10, 2008
Messages
7,521
Reaction score
0
Points
0
88Devin12 said:
When we say that death isn't natural, it typically means that man's soul being torn from his body was never meant to happen.
It isn't what was meant to happen. But it is what we are naturally inclined to in and of ourselves.
 

Orthodox11

Archon
Joined
Nov 10, 2006
Messages
2,994
Reaction score
0
Points
0
deusveritasest said:
Others have taught (such as Severus of Antioch) that corruption/death was a logical result of our limited nature as human beings but that God intended for us to supersede what we are naturally inclined to by His sanctifying grace. Corruption entered into our world because we rejected a life of unity with God and thus lost the sanctifying grace that would have prevented us from dying (we were not able to eat from the Tree of Life because we disobediently ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil). This latter school of thought is what I personally adhere to, and thus why it could be appropriate to say that death is not natural in one respect and also that it is natural in another.
This is more or less my understanding of the issue too.
 

GammaRay

High Elder
Joined
Jun 3, 2009
Messages
574
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
28
Location
Greece
The bishop's video was nice. Good to know that such people belong to the clergy.

Nebelpfade said:
So, you believe that there was a literal Eden where death did not occur sometime during the history of the Earth?  And outside of that, death has been a natural occurrence?
Yes, but it was only God's Rest, not the reformed world (the "8th Day").

Just look at Roman Catholics who think the Immaculate Conception refers to the the conception of Christ.
Haha, I love it when the atheists are doing it even more! It gives them a chance to see their theological ignorance.

The doctrine deusveritasest is talking about above is walking in hands with the one I'm following too. Only Adam & Eve were placed initially to live within God's Grace. The rest of humans (who were made long before the couple) were destined to follow God on their own.

Maybe we should rephrase this to 'no Christian should ever accept that God's intentions were to create us and let us be forever mortals'.
(Can we please use this for an anathema at the next council? I don't mind not getting the credit, but it'll be fun! :D)
 

Christianus

Elder
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
Points
0
GammaRay said:
The bishop's video was nice. Good to know that such people belong to the clergy.

Nebelpfade said:
So, you believe that there was a literal Eden where death did not occur sometime during the history of the Earth?  And outside of that, death has been a natural occurrence?
Yes, but it was only God's Rest, not the reformed world (the "8th Day").

Just look at Roman Catholics who think the Immaculate Conception refers to the the conception of Christ.
Haha, I love it when the atheists are doing it even more! It gives them a chance to see their theological ignorance.

The doctrine deusveritasest is talking about above is walking in hands with the one I'm following too. Only Adam & Eve were placed initially to live within God's Grace. The rest of humans (who were made long before the couple) were destined to follow God on their own.

Maybe we should rephrase this to 'no Christian should ever accept that God's intentions were to create us and let us be forever mortals'.
(Can we please use this for an anathema at the next council? I don't mind not getting the credit, but it'll be fun! :D)
1Co 15:45  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.
Adam is the first man on earth, God did not make death book of wisdom Deus non mortem fecit.
It's a heresy to say that people died before adam sinned.
 

Christianus

Elder
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
Points
0
88Devin12 said:
Death is in no way a natural occurance... I think all Orthodox would even agree to that.
Rom 6:23  For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Theologically, in evolution which could have profound implication upon orthodoxy you have death before sin, death before Adam.
Death is not only physical but spiritual.
If you're orthodox and believe that the two views are compatible, you have death before sin, which adam brought. and also you have God creating death (animal from latin anima meaning soul, and -al) before Adam.
 

Christianus

Elder
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
Points
0
ζῷον animal, or beast  from greek Zoe meaning life:
and Animal from Latin anima meaning soul.
So in the Bible Animals clearly were alive, or had souls (according to the latin).
 

Christianus

Elder
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Pro 12:10  A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast: but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.
Animals have life,to whom man brought death.
1Co 15:21  For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.

any scientist will tell you that animals are living beings, but the Bible says by man came death, which evolution doesn't believe: I don't even know their answer as to why we have death.

and God didn't create death.
Wis 1:13  For God made not death: neither hath he pleasure in the destruction of the living.
 

greekischristian

Merarches
Site Supporter
Joined
Feb 4, 2005
Messages
9,487
Reaction score
0
Points
36
Christianus said:
any scientist will tell you that animals are living beings, but the Bible says by man came death, which evolution doesn't believe: I don't even know their answer as to why we have death.
The inability of cells to function or reproduce due to genetic mutation or environmental factors (ionizing radiation, lack of oxygen, etc.), perhaps?

I would be most interested in hearing a detailed explanation of your theory from the perspective of cell biology. Not to mention the bio-physics of how pre-fall cells would be able to survive everything from the gravitational field inside a quantum singularity to energy levels capable of turning the atoms in the cell into plasma. After all, you said we were immortal, flying inside the event horizon of a black hole or to the center of an active star should have no effect...I'm just asking you to flesh out the details of your theory.
 

NorthernPines

High Elder
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
934
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
44
Location
Wisconsin
Christianus said:
1Co 15:45  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.
Adam is the first man on earth, God did not make death book of wisdom Deus non mortem fecit.
It's a heresy to say that people died before adam sinned.
Do you also believe God was "walking" around in the Garden of Eden? How did God walk without a body? In fact, how can there have been a first day, (equaling a 24 hour period) before the sun was even created? (hence no 24 hour period)

You seem determined to "prove" Genesis' creation account is literal and that to deny it is "heresy". (first WHY? You claim the use of Latin etc often, are you a Roman Catholic? The RCC has said evolution is not contradictory to it's faith)

What I really wonder is a few questions if you don't mind.

1.) taking the position you do, just what do you do with the myriads of scientific evidence, in dozens of independent fields that all draw identical conclusions independently of one another, and that these conclusions is that the earth is ancient, and that animals lived and died long before humans appeared?

2.) Do you simply ignore these massive amounts of evidence?

3.) Do you think hundreds of thousands, if not millions of scientists across at least a dozen scientific fields are in on some "conspiracy" to trick everyone?

4.) Do you also deny scientific evidence that supports Biblical Christianity along with the evidence that doesn't?  Or do you only throw out the evidence that "disagrees with the Bible"? And if so, why are you the best authority on what does and doesn't agree with the Bible? After all many people used to say Africans and Europeans were different "races" (by that they meant race as in, whites were human beings, blacks were not) and they used the Bible to "prove it". We now know through science, genetics, DNA and particularly evolution that such an idea is mumbo jumbo. but there are a few people still around who believe it, reject the science that proves them wrong because it "disagrees with the bible"...(more accurately their intepretation of the bible) Don't believe me, just try Googling Sheppard's Chapel, you'll see they still exist.

So by what criteria do you decide which science is "true" and which isn't? Or do you reject all science? (at least that would be consistent, and yes I have a friend who does reject pretty much all science, and believes we can't know anything about anything, so I know those people exist)

lastly, did you get a flu shot? (maybe not, I haven't due to a severe egg allergy) But if you did, you're benefiting from evolutionary theory since it's that theory that gives us stuff like flu vaccines, antibiotics and other cool stuff like polio vaccines. :)

As far as Adam, death etc, perhaps, Adam and Eve were simply the first hominids endowed with a "living soul", (ie eternal soul), or sapience, and the death has to do with spiritual death...or perhaps any number of other interpretations of Genesis that go back to at least Origen, and arguably even to before the time of Christ. However every Christian believed the same thing about this story up until Darwin, then I'd probably agree with you. But considering the ancient church was open to interpretations, I don't see why it should be an issue now. But that's just me. maybe as you say, I'm believing heresy, if so, then so be it. At least I don't live in the 8th century when "heresy" could get me exiled to some island, or worse. :)





 

Christianus

Elder
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
Points
0
NorthernPines said:
Christianus said:
1Co 15:45  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.
Adam is the first man on earth, God did not make death book of wisdom Deus non mortem fecit.
It's a heresy to say that people died before adam sinned.
Do you also believe God was "walking" around in the Garden of Eden? How did God walk without a body? In fact, how can there have been a first day, (equaling a 24 hour period) before the sun was even created? (hence no 24 hour period)

You seem determined to "prove" Genesis' creation account is literal and that to deny it is "heresy". (first WHY? You claim the use of Latin etc often, are you a Roman Catholic? The RCC has said evolution is not contradictory to it's faith)

What I really wonder is a few questions if you don't mind.

1.) taking the position you do, just what do you do with the myriads of scientific evidence, in dozens of independent fields that all draw identical conclusions independently of one another, and that these conclusions is that the earth is ancient, and that animals lived and died long before humans appeared?

2.) Do you simply ignore these massive amounts of evidence?

3.) Do you think hundreds of thousands, if not millions of scientists across at least a dozen scientific fields are in on some "conspiracy" to trick everyone?

4.) Do you also deny scientific evidence that supports Biblical Christianity along with the evidence that doesn't?  Or do you only throw out the evidence that "disagrees with the Bible"? And if so, why are you the best authority on what does and doesn't agree with the Bible? After all many people used to say Africans and Europeans were different "races" (by that they meant race as in, whites were human beings, blacks were not) and they used the Bible to "prove it". We now know through science, genetics, DNA and particularly evolution that such an idea is mumbo jumbo. but there are a few people still around who believe it, reject the science that proves them wrong because it "disagrees with the bible"...(more accurately their intepretation of the bible) Don't believe me, just try Googling Sheppard's Chapel, you'll see they still exist.

So by what criteria do you decide which science is "true" and which isn't? Or do you reject all science? (at least that would be consistent, and yes I have a friend who does reject pretty much all science, and believes we can't know anything about anything, so I know those people exist)

lastly, did you get a flu shot? (maybe not, I haven't due to a severe egg allergy) But if you did, you're benefiting from evolutionary theory since it's that theory that gives us stuff like flu vaccines, antibiotics and other cool stuff like polio vaccines. :)

As far as Adam, death etc, perhaps, Adam and Eve were simply the first hominids endowed with a "living soul", (ie eternal soul), or sapience, and the death has to do with spiritual death...or perhaps any number of other interpretations of Genesis that go back to at least Origen, and arguably even to before the time of Christ. However every Christian believed the same thing about this story up until Darwin, then I'd probably agree with you. But considering the ancient church was open to interpretations, I don't see why it should be an issue now. But that's just me. maybe as you say, I'm believing heresy, if so, then so be it. At least I don't live in the 8th century when "heresy" could get me exiled to some island, or worse. :)
It's called the THEORY of evolution, not the fact of evolution, and also not all scientists believe in evolution.
 

Riddikulus

Protokentarchos
Joined
Feb 20, 2006
Messages
4,788
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Queensland, Australia
Christianus said:
NorthernPines said:
Christianus said:
1Co 15:45  And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.
Adam is the first man on earth, God did not make death book of wisdom Deus non mortem fecit.
It's a heresy to say that people died before adam sinned.
Do you also believe God was "walking" around in the Garden of Eden? How did God walk without a body? In fact, how can there have been a first day, (equaling a 24 hour period) before the sun was even created? (hence no 24 hour period)

You seem determined to "prove" Genesis' creation account is literal and that to deny it is "heresy". (first WHY? You claim the use of Latin etc often, are you a Roman Catholic? The RCC has said evolution is not contradictory to it's faith)

What I really wonder is a few questions if you don't mind.

1.) taking the position you do, just what do you do with the myriads of scientific evidence, in dozens of independent fields that all draw identical conclusions independently of one another, and that these conclusions is that the earth is ancient, and that animals lived and died long before humans appeared?

2.) Do you simply ignore these massive amounts of evidence?

3.) Do you think hundreds of thousands, if not millions of scientists across at least a dozen scientific fields are in on some "conspiracy" to trick everyone?

4.) Do you also deny scientific evidence that supports Biblical Christianity along with the evidence that doesn't?  Or do you only throw out the evidence that "disagrees with the Bible"? And if so, why are you the best authority on what does and doesn't agree with the Bible? After all many people used to say Africans and Europeans were different "races" (by that they meant race as in, whites were human beings, blacks were not) and they used the Bible to "prove it". We now know through science, genetics, DNA and particularly evolution that such an idea is mumbo jumbo. but there are a few people still around who believe it, reject the science that proves them wrong because it "disagrees with the bible"...(more accurately their intepretation of the bible) Don't believe me, just try Googling Sheppard's Chapel, you'll see they still exist.

So by what criteria do you decide which science is "true" and which isn't? Or do you reject all science? (at least that would be consistent, and yes I have a friend who does reject pretty much all science, and believes we can't know anything about anything, so I know those people exist)

lastly, did you get a flu shot? (maybe not, I haven't due to a severe egg allergy) But if you did, you're benefiting from evolutionary theory since it's that theory that gives us stuff like flu vaccines, antibiotics and other cool stuff like polio vaccines. :)

As far as Adam, death etc, perhaps, Adam and Eve were simply the first hominids endowed with a "living soul", (ie eternal soul), or sapience, and the death has to do with spiritual death...or perhaps any number of other interpretations of Genesis that go back to at least Origen, and arguably even to before the time of Christ. However every Christian believed the same thing about this story up until Darwin, then I'd probably agree with you. But considering the ancient church was open to interpretations, I don't see why it should be an issue now. But that's just me. maybe as you say, I'm believing heresy, if so, then so be it. At least I don't live in the 8th century when "heresy" could get me exiled to some island, or worse. :)
It's called the THEORY of evolution, not the fact of evolution, and also not all scientists believe in evolution.
As used in science, a theory is an explanation or model based on observation, experimentation, and reasoning, especially one that has been tested and confirmed as a general principle helping to explain and predict natural phenomena.

Any scientific theory must be based on a careful and rational examination of the facts. A clear distinction needs to be made between facts (things which can be observed and/or measured) and theories (explanations which correlate and interpret the facts).

A fact is something that is supported by unmistakeable evidence. For example, the Grand Canyon cuts through layers of different kinds of rock, such as the Coconino sandstone, Hermit shale, and Redwall limestone. These rock layers often contain fossils that are found only in certain layers. Those are the facts.

It is a fact is that fossil skulls have been found that are intermediate in appearance between humans and modern apes. It is a fact that fossils have been found that are clearly intermediate in appearance between dinosaurs and birds.

Facts may be interpreted in different ways by different individuals, but that doesn't change the facts themselves.

Theories may be good, bad, or indifferent. They may be well established by the factual evidence, or they may lack credibility. Before a theory is given any credence in the scientific community, it must be subjected to "peer review." This means that the proposed theory must be published in a legitimate scientific journal in order to provide the opportunity for other scientists to evaluate the relevant factual information and publish their conclusions.

Creationists refuse to subject their "theories" to peer reviews, because they know they don't fit the facts. The creationist mindset is distorted by the concept of "good science" (creationism) vs. "bad science" (anything not in agreement with creationism). Creation "scientists" are biblical fundamentalists who can not accept anything contrary to their sectarian religioius beliefs. 

http://www.fsteiger.com/theory.html
 

Christianus

Elder
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
Points
0
http://www.creatio.orthodoxy.ru/english/rose_genesis/index.html
By Father Seraphim Rose.

http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/phronema/evolution_frseraphim_kalomiros.aspx

http://www.creatio.orthodoxy.ru/sbornik/sbufeev_whynot_english.html
 

Christianus

Elder
Joined
Jan 12, 2010
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Nebelpfade said:
Proof that those who lack an elementary understanding of science should not write about it, especially when they foolishly attempt to do so with any sort of authority on the matter.
Christians are not ignorant of Science. It's like a stereotype to say that all Christians are ignorant of science, and like to burn all heretics, and call crusades on Muslims, burn witches etc.
Isaac Newton was a Christian, and many others.
 

Friul

Protokentarchos
Site Supporter
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
4,492
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
33
Location
Earth, Solar System, Local Interstellar Cloud, Loc
Website
www.iheu.org
Christianus said:
Christians are not ignorant of Science. It's like a stereotype to say that all Christians are ignorant of science, and like to burn all heretics, and call crusades on Muslims, burn witches etc.
Isaac Newton was a Christian, and many others.
I didn't say all Christians are ignorant of Science.  All I said that it is evident that the authors of those articles are.

Also, it isn't hard to make an argument against the orthodoxy of Newton's Christianity.
 

Riddikulus

Protokentarchos
Joined
Feb 20, 2006
Messages
4,788
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Queensland, Australia
Christianus said:
Nebelpfade said:
Proof that those who lack an elementary understanding of science should not write about it, especially when they foolishly attempt to do so with any sort of authority on the matter.
Christians are not ignorant of Science. It's like a stereotype to say that all Christians are ignorant of science, and like to burn all heretics, and call crusades on Muslims, burn witches etc.
Isaac Newton was a Christian, and many others.
You are right; not all Christians are ignorant of science, and I don't think that Nebelpfade was suggesting any such thing.

Here's a list of articles and books by those Orthodox Christians who have accepted and written or spoken on the theory of evolution. I've added the urls where I was able, for the rest you will have to go to http://orthodoxwiki.org/Evolution.

Woloschak, Gayle, Beauty and Unity in Creation: The evolution of life. (Minneapolis: Light and Life, 1996) — Primer on the relationship between evolutionary biology and Orthodoxy by a scientist. ISBN 1880971275  

Boojamra, Dr. John, "The Orthodox Idea of Creation" The Word, June 1999, pp.31-34 An overview of Orthodox cosmology, intended for teachers and youth leaders as a background for discussion of various educational segments related to creation. Concise and useful for a general understanding of Orthodox cosmology.

Breck, Archpriest John V. "Ex Nihilo" Life in Christ, February 2008 #1. http://www.oca.org/CHRIST-life-article.asp?SID=6&ID=148&MONTH=February&YEAR=2008

Fritts, Kevin Basil, "On the Dogma of Creation" The author is a contributor to this OrthodoxWiki article. http://blog.kevinbasil.com/on-the-dogma-of-creation/

Hallam, Fr. Gregory, "Orthodoxy and Creationism" http://antiochabouna.blogspot.com/2006/02/orthodoxy-and-creationism.html

Kalomiros, Dr. Alexandre, "The Six Dawns" http://www.zephyr.gr/stjohn/sixdawn1.htm

Kuraev, Fr. Deacon Andrey, "Can an Orthodox Become an Evolutionist?" http://www.hvmla.org/library/evolution.html

Kuraev, Fr. Deacon Andrey, "Orthodoxy and Creationism" http://www.sullivan-county.com/id4/ort_creation.htm

Maletis, John P., "Let There Be Light: An Orthodox Christian Theory of Human Evolution for the 21st Century". Theandros Vol. 5 No. 3. http://www.theandros.com/protozoe.html

Metallinos, V. Rev. Prof. Dr. George, "Faith and Science in Orthodox Gnosiology and Methodology" Very briefly mentions evolution, but overall states the traditional Orthodox position of separation between divine and earthly knowledge.

Mileant, Bishop Alexander of Buenos Aires and South America (ROCOR). The Origins of the World and Mankind: An Attempt to Reconcile the Biblical Account with Scientific
Discoveries. Transl. by Karyn and Michael Grigoriev. Ed. by Natalia Semyanko. Holy Trinity Orthodox Mission, La Canada, California, 2004.
http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/patrology/metallinos_faith_and_science.htm

Nicozisin, Fr. George, "Creationism versus Evolution" http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/nicozisin_creationism.htm

Smith, Allyne, H. Tristram Engelhardt, Jr., Edward Hughes, and J. Henry, "Orthodoxy", in The History of Science and Religion in the Western Tradition (2000): 268-273.

Theokritoff, George, with Elizabeth Theokritoff, "Genesis and Creation: Towards a debate" (PDF) — Review of Seraphim Rose, Genesis, Creation and Early Man: The Orthodox Christian Vision, in St. Vladimir's Theological Quarterly, Volume 46, Number 2 (2002). George Theokritoff is a paleontologist and Elizabeth is a theological scholar, author and editor of The Cambridge Companion to Orthodox Christian Theology (ISBN 0521683388).

Ware, Metropolitan Kallistos, "Orthodoxy and Evolution", video: answer to a question asked in a forum at Seattle Pacific University.

 

NorthernPines

High Elder
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
934
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
44
Location
Wisconsin
Christianus said:
It's called the THEORY of evolution, not the fact of evolution,
OK, a few points. First, it is not the "theory of evolution", as in "an idea that might or might not be true, let's now go find out." That's not what "theory" is in science. for scientists a theory is in fact, a, well fact.

In the scientific world what you think of as a "theory" would in fact be known as a hypothesis. Evolution is not an hypothesis. When science uses the word theory they are using it in a very different way than we are. Which is in large part why there is so much misunderstanding about this issue. I used to believe in 6 literal day creationism, so believe it or not I know where you're coming from. I had a horrible misunderstanding of science, in large part because of the horrible scientific educational system in this country. (and I've come to recognize in part, that it's horrible because religious communities have been putting pressure on science educators for a good 30 years now)

It's only been in recent years that I've gotten back into my childhood love of science and the natural world. And I now see how terribly I misunderstood Evolution, and in fact I'm still learning more every day. So I really do sympathize with your position.  

With that said, let's clear a few things up. It's actually not "the theory of evolution", in it's shortage phrase it is more accurately titled "Evolutionary theory". Like Gravitational theory, Germ theory, Heliocentric theory etc...

Heliocentrism of the solar system is also a "theory"...Germ theory is also a "theory", do also you deny that the earth goes around the sun, and that there are such things as germs? Of course not! But they are "theories" none the less. Again it's the fact that science uses the term theory in one since, and us non scientists use it in a totally different since that causes so much confusion. For science, theory is NOT synonymous with hypothesis, and no scientist uses it as such, even though in common usage we tend to do so.



and also not all scientists believe in evolution.
No scientists "believe" in Evolution. Evolution simply is. Like Gravity. whether one "believes" in Gravity or not is irrelevant. Gravity still is a law of nature and just "is" whether I believe it or not.

However using the word "believe" in the since you mean, not all scientists "believe" the earth goes around the sun, or even that the earth is round. Of course these people are crackpots and are rightly laughed out of the scientific community or just ignored. Not because scientists aren't open to other opinions, but because some things are just wrong. If indeed Evolution were not true, some scientist somewhere would have produced the evidence for it long ago, and believe it or not, they would have been heralded as heroes of science, the next Einstein, or the next Darwin. Many scientists in Darwin's time didn't like his conclusions, but as time went on they accepted it because it was true.

Science is open to anyone who actually wants to go out and do the science like Darwin did, or like Einstein did, (who was unpopular at first as well, until everyone figured out he was actually correct) So indeed, if Evolution wasn't true, and those who denied it had any leg to stand on at all, they'd in fact be the next nobel prize winner, but the truth is no credible scientist denies Evolutionary theory. It's been prove over and over again, specifically in the lab. The very fact that we have concepts like antibiotic resistance is in fact PROOF of evolution, as the bacteria are evolving to become resistant to antibiotics. of course I suppose if one truly believed Germ theory was "just a theory" none of that would "prove" anything. which is why when I often see people not washing their hands after using the restroom, I wonder if in fact those people simply don't "believe" in germs or not. But I guess that's another, disgusting conversation isn't it? ;)



 

NorthernPines

High Elder
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
934
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
44
Location
Wisconsin
Riddikulus said:
Here's a list of articles and books by those Orthodox Christians who have accepted and written or spoken on the theory of evolution. I've added the urls where I was able, for the rest you will have to go to http://orthodoxwiki.org/Evolution.
Great links.

To Christianus, I'd also add a few other names to the list, including Francis Collins, who mapped the human genome and headed the human genome project, who also happens to be an "Evolutionist", yet a devout Roman Catholic. http://www.genome.gov/10000779

And Ken Miller, a biologist and another Roman Catholic has a fantastic website with dozens of book suggestions.

http://www.millerandlevine.com/km/evol/


Also Bob Bakker (the paleontologist with the long grey beard, who was a science advisor on the Jurassic Park movies) is also an "evolutionist", (obviously) and I just found out he's also a Protestant preacher.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_T._Bakker#Religious_beliefs


For a defense of evolution from a non-theist I'd recommend Why Darwin Matters by Michael Shermer. He's pretty much the most respectful and cordial writer in the atheist/agnostic Community (at least of those who actually write about these subjects, and he seems like a guy anyone could go watch the Superbowl with).

Dawkin's new book "The Greatest Show on Earth" is probably going to be the new definitive defense for the evidence of evolution but some people might be opposed to it just because it's a book by Richard Dawkins. (I'm reading it now and it is truly amazing how much new evidence has been dug up in just the last couple of years) However Shermer shows how Evolution in no way affects religious belief, and is pretty good at just showing how science works, while Dawkins is somewhat more technical, and of course, comes across a bit harsh in his writing at times.


The reason I mentioned 2 non-theists along with the above Christians is to show that people from all different backgrounds, beliefs, cultures (one used to be a Christian, then became agnostic, another used to be an atheist then became a Christian) end up drawing the same scientific conclusions. While Dawkins probably has nothing in common with Bob bakker, they both agree on the truth/ fact of evolutionary theory. Why would they do this, if it wasn't true?  Not to mention they are in 2 different scientific fields, both drawing the exact same conclusions about life on earth totally independent of one another. It simply doesn't make sense that this would happen, unless the conclusions were in fact true. They I'm sure disagree spiritually, philosophically, culturally, and probably politically etc, but agree on this one subject?

The same goes for Dawkins and Ken Miller, both biologists. My point is the science is just the science. It is what it is, and what is true is what is true. Science does not challenge faith. Now many other things challenge faith, and have challenged my faith very severely recently. But science, to me, is simply not one of them. History is by far more challenging to my faith (and also it's biggest support) than science is.

Anyways, I recommend Ken Miller's page as a good starting point, and go from there.


 

Jimmy

Sr. Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2007
Messages
203
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
38
That is essentially the view of Maximus the Confessor as well.  Man is mortal according to his nature but he was meant for deification.

deusveritasest said:
88Devin12 said:
Death is in no way a natural occurance... I think all Orthodox would even agree to that.
Not exactly. I would say that it is natural in the sense of what humanity is naturally subject to in and of itself, but not natural in the sense of what God intends for humanity. Some think that humanity was not naturally subject to corruption before the Fall and that the Fall corrupted our very nature. Others have taught (such as Severus of Antioch) that corruption/death was a logical result of our limited nature as human beings but that God intended for us to supersede what we are naturally inclined to by His sanctifying grace. Corruption entered into our world because we rejected a life of unity with God and thus lost the sanctifying grace that would have prevented us from dying (we were not able to eat from the Tree of Life because we disobediently ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil). This latter school of thought is what I personally adhere to, and thus why it could be appropriate to say that death is not natural in one respect and also that it is natural in another.
 

Friul

Protokentarchos
Site Supporter
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
4,492
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
33
Location
Earth, Solar System, Local Interstellar Cloud, Loc
Website
www.iheu.org
NorthernPines said:
Dawkin's new book "The Greatest Show on Earth" is probably going to be the new definitive defense for the evidence of evolution but some people might be opposed to it just because it's a book by Richard Dawkins. (I'm reading it now and it is truly amazing how much new evidence has been dug up in just the last couple of years) However Shermer shows how Evolution in no way affects religious belief, and is pretty good at just showing how science works, while Dawkins is somewhat more technical, and of course, comes across a bit harsh in his writing at times.
I'd definitely recommend Dawkins' book; once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down.  It strikes a nice balance between readability and the technical nature of the material.  Obviously though, it is still a primer when it comes to evolution.  If you want to really dive into the theoretical aspects of natural selection, it is time to pick up some scientific journals.
 

Heorhij

Merarches
Joined
May 2, 2007
Messages
8,574
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
62
Location
Columbus, MS, USA (Originally from Ukraine)
Website
www.muw.edu
Christianus said:
Nebelpfade said:
Proof that those who lack an elementary understanding of science should not write about it, especially when they foolishly attempt to do so with any sort of authority on the matter.
Christians are not ignorant of Science. It's like a stereotype to say that all Christians are ignorant of science, and like to burn all heretics, and call crusades on Muslims, burn witches etc.
Isaac Newton was a Christian, and many others.
But SOME Christians were total ignoramuses in science - Fr. Seraphim Rose, may his memory be eternal, most definitely was...  :-[
 

Iconodule

Hoplitarches
Joined
Jan 2, 2010
Messages
16,485
Reaction score
2
Points
38
Age
38
Location
PA, USA
Fr. Seraphim Rose was essentially right, but he borrowed too many arguments from fundamentalist creationism and wasn't able to articulate the more fundamental philosophical arguments as well.

There are genuinely Orthodox reasons for rejecting evolutionism and the ideology of modern science which have nothing to do with fundamentalist creationism. There is a much deeper philosophical incompatibility. I recommend everyone read Philip Sherrard's Human Image, World Image: The Death and Resurrection of Sacred Cosmology. The fact that some leading scientists also happen to be Christians is not really relevant- it just demonstrates their ability to compartmentalize and avoid putting 2 and 2 together. The dualist/ materialist methodology which is inherent to their field of work is anti-Christian.
 

Riddikulus

Protokentarchos
Joined
Feb 20, 2006
Messages
4,788
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Queensland, Australia
Nebelpfade said:
NorthernPines said:
Dawkin's new book "The Greatest Show on Earth" is probably going to be the new definitive defense for the evidence of evolution but some people might be opposed to it just because it's a book by Richard Dawkins. (I'm reading it now and it is truly amazing how much new evidence has been dug up in just the last couple of years) However Shermer shows how Evolution in no way affects religious belief, and is pretty good at just showing how science works, while Dawkins is somewhat more technical, and of course, comes across a bit harsh in his writing at times.
I'd definitely recommend Dawkins' book; once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down.  It strikes a nice balance between readability and the technical nature of the material.  Obviously though, it is still a primer when it comes to evolution.  If you want to really dive into the theoretical aspects of natural selection, it is time to pick up some scientific journals.
Oh dear, another book to order! BTW, I got Thank God for Evolution and am about half way through.
 

Asteriktos

Hypatos
Joined
Oct 4, 2002
Messages
39,212
Reaction score
89
Points
48
Age
41
Nebelpfade said:
I'd definitely recommend Dawkins' book; once I started reading it, I couldn't put it down.  It strikes a nice balance between readability and the technical nature of the material.  Obviously though, it is still a primer when it comes to evolution.  If you want to really dive into the theoretical aspects of natural selection, it is time to pick up some scientific journals.
I seem to recall having this conversation with someone before (perhaps even you?), but if I may ask again, how would you compare this new book by Dawkins with his older scientific material? I know many praise Dawkins for his ability to articulate complex ideas in a way that your average person on the street can understand, but frankly, when I tried to read The Blind Watchmaker I thought it was exceedingly dry.
 

Friul

Protokentarchos
Site Supporter
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
4,492
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
33
Location
Earth, Solar System, Local Interstellar Cloud, Loc
Website
www.iheu.org
Riddikulus said:
Oh dear, another book to order! BTW, I got Thank God for Evolution and am about half way through.
One thing that I thought was particularly well done were the illustrations and full-colour photo pages.  So many science books these days have illustrations that look like I drew them, with my left hand, in MS Paint...

Asteriktos said:
I seem to recall having this conversation with someone before (perhaps even you?), but if I may ask again, how would you compare this new book by Dawkins with his older scientific material? I know many praise Dawkins for his ability to articulate complex ideas in a way that your average person on the street can understand, but frankly, when I tried to read The Blind Watchmaker I thought it was exceedingly dry.
I'd say the language/material is less dry than The Selfish Gene or The Blind Watchmaker, but not quite as "lively" as say Unweaving the Rainbow.  It even has a small non-fiction horror story attached at the end, called "The History-Deniers".  :laugh:
 

Riddikulus

Protokentarchos
Joined
Feb 20, 2006
Messages
4,788
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Location
Queensland, Australia
Nebelpfade said:
Riddikulus said:
Oh dear, another book to order! BTW, I got Thank God for Evolution and am about half way through.
One thing that I thought was particularly well done were the illustrations and full-colour photo pages.  So many science books these days have illustrations that look like I drew them, with my left hand, in MS Paint...
I've added it to my wishlist. Have you read, by chance, Living with Darwin, by Philip Kitcher? I bought it sometime ago and haven't read it yet.

 

Friul

Protokentarchos
Site Supporter
Joined
Dec 10, 2006
Messages
4,492
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
33
Location
Earth, Solar System, Local Interstellar Cloud, Loc
Website
www.iheu.org
Riddikulus said:
I've added it to my wishlist. Have you read, by chance, Living with Darwin, by Philip Kitcher? I bought it sometime ago and haven't read it yet.
Yup!  It was surprisingly good.  I'm always a fan of an author who spars with the ID crowd, but it was interesting to see the argument from a more philosophical side.  He also brings up a lot of interesting points surrounding religious naturalism vs. the current faith climate, and how evolution has become a favourite target by some due to fear of its possible implications on the supernatural.
 

Gebre Menfes Kidus

Merarches
Joined
Feb 3, 2009
Messages
10,800
Reaction score
5
Points
0
Age
52
Location
Jackson, MS
Website
www.facebook.com
In answer to the OP, "Is evolutionary theory compatible with the Orthodox Christian faith?":


"Evolution is a rival thought-pattern to Orthodoxy, not just another idea."


"I have always regarded evolution, in all its ramifications, as an important part of the 'modern American' intellectual baggage which I left behind when I became Orthodox."


"Teilhard de Chardin (a  paleontologist and Catholic religious philosopher who promoted evolution) rightly saw that evolution, if true, cannot be kept in one compartment of human thought, but profoundly affects the whole of thought. He was unconcerned to 'reconcile' evolution with single points of Christian tradition and dogma, because he rightly saw that there is no possible reconciliation. In the light of evolution everything must change - not just the 'static worldview' of the Holy Scripture and the Holy Fathers, but one's whole outlook toward life, God, the Church."  


"The whole purpose and intent of the theory of physical evolution is to find an explanation of the world without God; i.e, physical evolution is by its nature atheistic."


"The teaching that 'by one man sin entered the world, and death by sin' (Romans 5:12) becomes extremely hazy if not entirely lost when one sees man as having evolved from lower creatures over millions of years."


"Evolution is one of the most dangerous concepts that faces Orthodox Christians today - perhaps it is the very key to the assault upon the Church, to the very 'philosophy' of the coming Antichrist."


"Man must know the truth about where he came from before he can know where he is going."



-Father Seraphim Rose-



Selam
 

Gebre Menfes Kidus

Merarches
Joined
Feb 3, 2009
Messages
10,800
Reaction score
5
Points
0
Age
52
Location
Jackson, MS
Website
www.facebook.com
Heorhij said:
Christianus said:
Nebelpfade said:
Proof that those who lack an elementary understanding of science should not write about it, especially when they foolishly attempt to do so with any sort of authority on the matter.
Christians are not ignorant of Science. It's like a stereotype to say that all Christians are ignorant of science, and like to burn all heretics, and call crusades on Muslims, burn witches etc.
Isaac Newton was a Christian, and many others.
But SOME Christians were total ignoramuses in science - Fr. Seraphim Rose, may his memory be eternal, most definitely was...  :-[
Father Rose stood on the foundation of the Early Fathers. Dismiss their interpretation of the Scriptures, and you dismiss Orthodoxy. You are free to believe what you want regarding the Bible and interpet it however you choose, but in so doing you act like a fundamentalist evangelical rather than an Orthodox Christian.

Selam
 

Rastaman

Protokentarchos
Site Supporter
Joined
Dec 20, 2005
Messages
3,535
Reaction score
0
Points
0
Age
32
Location
Alberta, Canada
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Father Rose stood on the foundation of the Early Fathers. Dismiss their interpretation of the Scriptures, and you dismiss Orthodoxy. You are free to believe what you want regarding the Bible and interpet it however you choose, but in so doing you act like a fundamentalist evangelical rather than an Orthodox Christian.

Selam
There is no indication that the Scriptures were ever meant to be used as a scientific text. They were meant to record God's Revelation and His interaction with mankind. It did that. But the Scriptures were not emant to be used a exhaustive scientific text.
 
Top