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
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Jonathan Gress said:
Dimitrios-Georgios said:
ativan said:
Dimitrios-Georgios said:
ativan said:
Science today serves one purpose: To "prove" that there's no need in God. Fortunately, the truth can easily be revealed.
-Trying to find a cure for cancer.
-Trying to predict earthquakes and tsunamis.
-Trying to maintain biodiversity.
-Trying to understand the evolution of HIV, so as to design drugs that fight against it.

Yes, these all are examples of how science wants to prove there's no need in God.  ::)
Speaking of which, last time I checked I didn't see warning on cancer and HIV (or any other) drugs saying "drugs work or don't because it's God's will". When people get sick they don't pray for forgiveness of their sin and they don't remember God Almighty and All-merciful, and they don't surrender to his will and say "be it thy Will" do they? Who they put all their hope in? In doctors, in medicine and in science. Don't tell me it's not like this. So, the question is how does science (in you rhetoric questions) help us come closer to God? And why do you think it doesn't prevent us remember most important thing?
You know, I have read an Orthodox Confession Book, back from the time of my grandma, who asked the following question:
"Did you go to the doctor and get the suitable treatment when you were sick, or were you arrogant enough to refuse treatment and wait? Doctors are one of the ways God will cure you."

Something along these lines, since I'm far away from my grandma's city and can't go and find it. Was that Confession Book from the 60s so progressive to put science over God?
Interesting. I don't remember ever seeing such a thing in an Orthodox confession guide, but I wouldn't say that makes this suspect. If you refuse treatment out of pride, then it's sinful and must be confessed. Honestly, however, I would have thought the most common sin now would be to forget God completely when you're sick, and put your faith entirely in the doctors. The proper way, of course, is to pray first to God for help in your sickness, and then to go seek appropriate treatment.
For me, it's both at the same time, but everyone's free to choose.

ativan said:
Dimitrios-Georgios said:
You know, I have read an Orthodox Confession Book, back from the time of my grandma, who asked the following question:
"Did you go to the doctor and get the suitable treatment when you were sick, or were you arrogant enough to refuse treatment and wait? Doctors are one of the ways God will cure you."

Something along these lines, since I'm far away from my grandma's city and can't go and find it. Was that Confession Book from the 60s so progressive to put science over God?
No, it was merely you misreading me and wrong conclusion. I did not say when one gets sick not to seek treatment! I said almost nobody puts his hope in God anymore. It's only science, medicine, doctors etc who cure us and who we hope in. And surely if we sincerely and strongly hope in God why we need anything else? Do you not know multiple stories from the lives of Saints cured by God alone when they have faith? I do.
That's a problem of the age we are living at. Don't look at science, everywhere from running at Championship level to getting straight As on a national level, people are forgetting God. Without science, you wouldn't have anything different, just more deaths at a younger age. If people do not want to get to God, that's because perhaps none has spoken to them about God, or shown them how the Church is not here to put dos and donots, but how to help everyone of us achieve the best outcome that the Father planned for us - theosis.
 

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Actually, I think the order in which we do things, e.g. prayer and action, are important. When we are hungry, we should not satisfy our hunger first, and then only thank God after. It is important first to seek God's blessing on our food, and only then to eat. Likewise, when sick, we should look first to God, Who provides us with everything we need, and then only after we have prayed, to seek professional help.
 

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"Jesus would believe in evolution and so should you", by Karl Giberson. Karl W. Giberson, Ph.D., is vice president of The BioLogos Foundation and is the author or coauthor of seven books, including The Language of Science and Faith.

Jesus once famously said, “I am the Truth.”
....
We are often asked to think about what Jesus would do, if he lived among us today. Who would Jesus vote for? What car would he drive?

To these questions we should add “What would Jesus believe about origins?”

And the answer? Jesus would believe evolution, of course. He cares for the Truth.
 

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Jetavan said:
"Jesus would believe in evolution and so should you", by Karl Giberson. Karl W. Giberson, Ph.D., is vice president of The BioLogos Foundation and is the author or coauthor of seven books, including The Language of Science and Faith.

Jesus once famously said, “I am the Truth.”
....
We are often asked to think about what Jesus would do, if he lived among us today. Who would Jesus vote for? What car would he drive?

To these questions we should add “What would Jesus believe about origins?”

And the answer? Jesus would believe evolution, of course. He cares for the Truth.
good thing Darwin came along to open Jesus' eyes!
 
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Jonathan Gress said:
Actually, I think the order in which we do things, e.g. prayer and action, are important. When we are hungry, we should not satisfy our hunger first, and then only thank God after. It is important first to seek God's blessing on our food, and only then to eat. Likewise, when sick, we should look first to God, Who provides us with everything we need, and then only after we have prayed, to seek professional help.
There are some diseases which require instant and specific treatment. For example, last year around that time I had a very rare disease (only 50 adults in Europe in the last 20 years), which requires treatment within the first 10 days of fever. This disease is so rare, that the doctors in the hospital where I was taken didn't know it. Also, there are no de facto signs that prove you have this disease. A doctor will understand this is the case, if other treatments don't work and only then. After ten to fifteen days of fever, the fever will drop and everything will look normal again. However, you are in serious trouble then. The disease has damaged the arteries of the heart and at any time you may have a heart attack and die, even at 25 years old, without anyone knowing why.

Fortunately, the doctors gave me the right treatment at exactly the tenth day and we prevented further complications. I'm having ultrasound examinations every nine months now, but the doctors say that no arteries are harmed, thankfully.

My point: Pray to God and at the same time visit a doctor. Otherwise, chances are that you might lose valuable time.
 

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Jonathan Gress said:
Actually, I think the order in which we do things, e.g. prayer and action, are important. When we are hungry, we should not satisfy our hunger first, and then only thank God after. It is important first to seek God's blessing on our food, and only then to eat. Likewise, when sick, we should look first to God, Who provides us with everything we need, and then only after we have prayed, to seek professional help.
Nicely said.  However, it's important to note that when we pray before eating, we are not asking God to nourish our bodies in lieu of eating; we're asking his blessing of the food we are about to consume.  Likewise, if we are to encourage praying before going to the doctor, that is fine; but let's make sure we're not praying for healing in lieu of seeking medical attention.  Let's ask his blessing of the care we are about to receive.
 

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ativan said:
Science today serves one purpose: To "prove" that there's no need in God.
Okay, this comment is so patently absurd that I'm sorely tempted to break forum rules and decorum in replying to it.  Science's only purpose is to prove there's no need for God!?  Its only purpose?  Really?  Where in God's green creation do you come up with such drivel?
 

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chrevbel said:
ativan said:
Science today serves one purpose: To "prove" that there's no need in God.
Okay, this comment is so patently absurd that I'm sorely tempted to break forum rules and decorum in replying to it.  Science's only purpose is to prove there's no need for God!?  Its only purpose?  Really?  Where in God's green creation do you come up with such drivel?
methinks it was most probably hyperbole. that seems like a pretty logical reading of the statement.
 

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Jonathan Gress said:
Rufus said:
ativan said:
there's no place of "random" in any theory. Nothing is random in this universe. And any theory that takes God out of the picture serves no purpose.
So we should ditch our theories of chemical kinetics because they presuppose random collisions that determine the outcome of a reaction?
As long as you believe that these "random" collisions are directed by Divine Providence, there shouldn't be a problem. "Chance" is simply shorthand for "we don't know the reasons why this happened". The problem arises when people jump from "we don't know" to "we can't know". Then they deify Chance (Goddess Fortuna), and thereby deny Providence.
So if I strike a match  and it lights, it's only because God willed it to light? and on the off chance that it does not light, it's bacause God willed it not to light? Obviously God is involved in the process either way, but it sounds like you are saying that God's will directly determines every cause and effect. I believe this is a belief of Islamic philosophy, properly called fatalism.

I think we would agree that the laws and existence of the universe subsist in God's Energies. That is not the same as saying that natural processes don't exist.
 

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jckstraw72 said:
Jetavan said:
"Jesus would believe in evolution and so should you", by Karl Giberson. Karl W. Giberson, Ph.D., is vice president of The BioLogos Foundation and is the author or coauthor of seven books, including The Language of Science and Faith.

Jesus once famously said, “I am the Truth.”
....
We are often asked to think about what Jesus would do, if he lived among us today. Who would Jesus vote for? What car would he drive?

To these questions we should add “What would Jesus believe about origins?”

And the answer? Jesus would believe evolution, of course. He cares for the Truth.
good thing Darwin came along to open Jesus' eyes!
According to St. Athanasius, Jesus, in His humanity, took on limited knowledge. See the following post:
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,28594.msg456615.html#msg456615

I would not be surprised if Jesus, in His time on earth, did not know that the Earth goes around the Sun. It would not persuade me do dismiss Copernicus out of hand (although Martin Luther did).

EDIT: fixed the link.
 

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Rufus said:
Jonathan Gress said:
Rufus said:
ativan said:
there's no place of "random" in any theory. Nothing is random in this universe. And any theory that takes God out of the picture serves no purpose.
So we should ditch our theories of chemical kinetics because they presuppose random collisions that determine the outcome of a reaction?
As long as you believe that these "random" collisions are directed by Divine Providence, there shouldn't be a problem. "Chance" is simply shorthand for "we don't know the reasons why this happened". The problem arises when people jump from "we don't know" to "we can't know". Then they deify Chance (Goddess Fortuna), and thereby deny Providence.
So if I strike a match  and it lights, it's only because God willed it to light? and on the off chance that it does not light, it's bacause God willed it not to light? Obviously God is involved in the process either way, but it sounds like you are saying that God's will directly determines every cause and effect. I believe this is a belief of Islamic philosophy, properly called fatalism.

I think we would agree that the laws and existence of the universe subsist in God's Energies. That is not the same as saying that natural processes don't exist.
I understood God as maintaining the whole natural world, with all of its laws, by His will, so in that sense, yes, every natural cause is also caused by God. At the same time, there are evil forces in the world, not necessarily only caused by humans, but also by fallen angels, which God nevertheless allows to operate. The general corruption of the world seems to be an aspect of this, since we are taught that the world became corrupted by being subjected to the devil's reign due to Adam's transgression. But on top of this, God causes certain things to happen against the course of nature, or he permits the angels or saints to do things against the course of nature.

The distinction between what is natural and supernatural, then, doesn't reflect the presence or absence of God in its operation, but rather between whether or not we are able to predict the outcome of events by the application of our reason.
 

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Jonathan Gress said:
Rufus said:
Jonathan Gress said:
Rufus said:
ativan said:
there's no place of "random" in any theory. Nothing is random in this universe. And any theory that takes God out of the picture serves no purpose.
So we should ditch our theories of chemical kinetics because they presuppose random collisions that determine the outcome of a reaction?
As long as you believe that these "random" collisions are directed by Divine Providence, there shouldn't be a problem. "Chance" is simply shorthand for "we don't know the reasons why this happened". The problem arises when people jump from "we don't know" to "we can't know". Then they deify Chance (Goddess Fortuna), and thereby deny Providence.
So if I strike a match  and it lights, it's only because God willed it to light? and on the off chance that it does not light, it's bacause God willed it not to light? Obviously God is involved in the process either way, but it sounds like you are saying that God's will directly determines every cause and effect. I believe this is a belief of Islamic philosophy, properly called fatalism.

I think we would agree that the laws and existence of the universe subsist in God's Energies. That is not the same as saying that natural processes don't exist.
I understood God as maintaining the whole natural world, with all of its laws, by His will, so in that sense, yes, every natural cause is also caused by God. At the same time, there are evil forces in the world, not necessarily only caused by humans, but also by fallen angels, which God nevertheless allows to operate. The general corruption of the world seems to be an aspect of this, since we are taught that the world became corrupted by being subjected to the devil's reign due to Adam's transgression. But on top of this, God causes certain things to happen against the course of nature, or he permits the angels or saints to do things against the course of nature.

The distinction between what is natural and supernatural, then, doesn't reflect the presence or absence of God in its operation, but rather between whether or not we are able to predict the outcome of events by the application of our reason.
I agree that the presence of God is part of any natural process, but I am not sure what your point is when you say that "the distinction between what is natural and supernatural. . . [reflects] whether or not we are able to predict the outcome of events by the application of our reason." Of course, one can predict the result of a natural action (within our normal experience), and one cannot predict the outcome of a supernatural action. What does this mean to you?
 

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What do you mean by asking whether God directly wills a match to light or not? Isn't God omnipresent and omnipotent? Or do you imagine God really has no direct involvement with the "everyday" workings of nature?
 

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chrevbel said:
ativan said:
Science today serves one purpose: To "prove" that there's no need in God.
Okay, this comment is so patently absurd that I'm sorely tempted to break forum rules and decorum in replying to it.  Science's only purpose is to prove there's no need for God!?  Its only purpose?  Really?  Where in God's green creation do you come up with such drivel?
Sorry, I did not know you wanted exact statements on science. Then I'd like to hear from you proofs of Darwinian faith.

Meanwhile I'll say, yes, in science many things are done. In science many theories are developed. Science can give us comfort in daily chores from which we should be running away as Orthodox faithful but the opposite is true that we like science exactly because it makes us comfortable.

Now the facts: 1) I haven't seen any scientific article or book that starts with "In the name of the Father, of the Sun and of the Holy Spirit"; I don't see scientist praising God for the discoveries they make; 2) Since Laplace nobody needs anymore theories that has God in it; All science is materialistic from top to bottom in spite of the fact that this materialistic science is stuck exactly because of its materialistic nature; Though they don't want to abandon it; 3) I don't see anything thought in schools and universities (the pillars of science teaching) about Almighty One who is the Lord of All; 4) People are taken to courts just because they teach children how to reason and critically approach to unscientific theory of Darwinism and so on and so on. Is that enough reason for me (I don't know about you) to make the statement I made? 
 

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ativan said:
... Is that enough reason for me to make the statement I made?
Wow.  I guess all I can say is yes, this seems like plenty enough reason for you to say the things you say.  Fair enough.

[quote author=jckstraw72]methinks it was most probably hyperbole. that seems like a pretty logical reading of the statement.[/quote]
Still sound like hyperbole to you?
 

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chrevbel said:
ativan said:
... Is that enough reason for me to make the statement I made?
Wow.  I guess all I can say is yes, this seems like plenty enough reason for you to say the things you say.  Fair enough.
Now you got my point. Can you , please, elaborate a little bit on how science today helps us to come closer to God. Is there any reason to believe so?
 

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ativan said:
Can you , please, elaborate a little bit on how science today helps us to come closer to God.
Well, if personal experience is of any value, I never would have found Orthodoxy if it were not for evolution.  When I realized the lunacy of those who rejected a scientific theory on shaky theological grounds, I realized that the church I was in had very little to do with truth.  My subsequent search ultimately ended with my finding the Orthodox Church.  Does that count?
Edited once to remove superfluous verbiage.
 

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chrevbel said:
ativan said:
Can you , please, elaborate a little bit on how science today helps us to come closer to God.
Well, if personal experience is of any value, I never would have found Orthodoxy if it were not for evolution.  When I realized the lunacy of those who rejected a scientific theory on shaky theological grounds, I realized that the church I was in had very little to do with truth.  My subsequent search ultimately ended with my finding the Orthodox Church.  Does that count?
Edited once to remove superfluous verbiage.
I don't think it was science that brought you in the Church. Based on your story, you were looking for a church which would lend support to your preconcieved idea of evolution. You could have found another church, say Catholic or some Protestant denomination, by reading some priest or preacher who supported evolution. Is it not possible? It definitely is. Do all Protestants and Catholics hold the same view on evolution? Of course not. Many are supporters of it. Actually Catholic church has very modern idea on that. So, can you tell me frankly if it's not to personal for you 1) Why would you choose Orthodoxy over these Churches if it was only search for a church supporting evolutionary view? 2) And if you did not find any Orthodox priest/bishop/archbishop whould you subscribe to Orthodoxy? 3) What happens if all of a sudden Orthodox Church unanimously proclaim heresy of Darwinism?

Now I'm one of those lunatics who rejects Darwinism partially on the theological grounds and I think this ground is quite sturdy. Can you do favor to lunatics like us and show how is Darwinism not a faith and unsubstantiated theory? I've asked question on Darwinism and if there's no answer to those Darwinism can't have any support whatsoever. Don't even think I'm looking for apology from you. I don't care what you call me seriously. I only care you could show me Darwinism's validity. Answer just one question only please.

Thanks and God bless
 

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ativan said:
Answer just one question only please.
It's a bit hard to know which one you actually want me to answer.  You ask six questions in this post, and refer to at least one more.  But I'll try this one...
[quote author=ativan]What happens if all of a sudden Orthodox Church unanimously proclaim heresy of Darwinism?[/quote]
I would definitely question whether our Church was still seeking God's truth; that's for sure.  But I'd apply the same standard in numerous other areas, as well.  If the Church were to dogmatically insist that Pi was rational, against all well-established mathematical thinking, I'd have some serious doubts about us.  If our Church were to denounce the Copernican model of the solar system, I'd have some serious doubts about us.  If our Church were dogmatically to deny the role of hydrogen bonds in chemical substances, I'd have doubts.  Etc.  Why are you not up in arms about these areas, as well?  In each case, they attempt to explain what we observe solely through an appeal to science, and not an appeal to the divine.

In the field of mathematics, we do not know whether the Goldbach Conjecture is true or not.  It's very basic; it's very straightforward; it's comprehensible by a fifth grader.  But we don't know wheter it's true or false.  Question: do you think the answer is more likely to come from rigorous mathematical inquiry, or from divine revelation through the Church?
 

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Jonathan Gress said:
What do you mean by asking whether God directly wills a match to light or not? Isn't God omnipresent and omnipotent? Or do you imagine God really has no direct involvement with the "everyday" workings of nature?
Of course God is involved. I do not pretend to know how God is involved. However, it is absurd to say that we must reject natural explanations of phenomena simply because "God did it." Lighting a match might be a perfect example of a process that is ultimately willed by God and simultaneously a natural process not requiring supernatural interference.
 

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chrevbel said:
ativan said:
Answer just one question only please.
It's a bit hard to know which one you actually want me to answer.  You ask six questions in this post, and refer to at least one more.  But I'll try this one...
I meant any of the questions related to Dariwninian theory itself. This one for example will do: Evolutionists claim that certain type of analogy in between human chromosome #2 and apes chromosome N and M (I just artificially chose the names) proves the chromosome #2 is the result of fusion of chromosomes N and M. And they go so far that call this even a fact. This is blatantly wrong. You can't prove this and you can't even come up with credible theory that would explain how the population of new individuals with 23 diploid set could be isolated from the parent 24 diploid set. My questions on this issue is open and have not been answered. To answer this question is only a drop in the ocean Darwinism needs to claim something. But even this drop is out of reach for Darwinism. Minasoliman gave me hypothetical answer which doesn't work. Here's that link and show me how that is done, if you can at all.

[quote author=ativan]
What happens if all of a sudden Orthodox Church unanimously proclaim heresy of Darwinism?
I would definitely question whether our Church was still seeking God's truth; that's for sure.[/quote]That's my point and you proved it. Today science (which is the total of scientific establishment, general materialistic approach in science and materialistic theories)  does not bring a man to God but makes him forget it. Surely If The Lord Jesus Christ told you through his Saints you are wrong  you would leave the Church. Why? Because science put an idea in you that logic and observation is good to make conclusions; It told you that scientific theories are right and undeniable (at least some of them); You will deny Christ himself if he appeared before you and told you what you've learned is all wrong, because you already know by education science is valid. You just said it. This happens. The Lord does talk to us through his Saints and He has said it too. We're back to square one; How does science help you? It doesn't. Many people say same thing. They want actually the Church of the Lord take there advise and listen to them rather take Church's advice on all matters. It does not work that way.

One young man had revelation from God to go to Monastery and become monk. He talked his parents. They were against it and didn't give him blessing. They asked him at least to study and finish university and if at the end of study he decided he still wanted to become a monk they would bless him. After 5 years of study (during this time he never forgot his true vocation) was through he came to his parents and reminded them their promise. So they blessed him and he went to a monastery. He became true man of God. He once retold this story to others and they were amazed and asked: you lost 5 years and listened to you parents despite of you wanting recluse life so much? He answered, he actually lost 10 years, 5 years to study and 5 years to forget what he has learned.

But I'd apply the same standard in numerous other areas, as well.  If the Church were to dogmatically insist that Pi was rational, against all well-established mathematical thinking, I'd have some serious doubts about us.  If our Church were to denounce the Copernican model of the solar system, I'd have some serious doubts about us.  If our Church were dogmatically to deny the role of hydrogen bonds in chemical substances, I'd have doubts.  Etc.  Why are you not up in arms about these areas, as well?
Who said I'm not? All of the science in the end is wrong and has nothing to do with reality not to say that all of them contributes none to man's call to Almighty. Is that good enough? Notwithstanding there are really bad and worhtles theories (pretty much anything trying to answer origins of universe and the life) and there are some that have utility in daily life. Darwinism though is especially important and belongs to category of "bad and worthless". Origin and essence of life (which need soul to be alive) is the hardest (in fact impossible) problems to find answers for. And once there came this notion of "we can explain" life without God atheism really took off. People need faith in something. They can't leave without it. Moreover they need their faith be called rational and logical. They don't like to be called stupid and lunatics. Although they are ready to call others same thing while holding worse. So they find "rational theories" to feel secure. However painful it might be to admit it seems to be a fact. I haven't seen a single scientist who'll say "my theory is just a theory and I'm ready to throw away it any time even if it's not refuted". Darwinism is especially dear to many people.

In the field of mathematics, we do not know whether the Goldbach Conjecture is true or not.  It's very basic; it's very straightforward; it's comprehensible by a fifth grader.  But we don't know whether it's true or false.  Question: do you think the answer is more likely to come from rigorous mathematical inquiry, or from divine revelation through the Church?
I won't deny what you said here but Mathematics is completely other world. Math is just a game. You can change the rules and play new games. You may have a rule that says "I want to choose other rule so that they along with inference rules do not produce contradictions" or you can even sacrifice this rule and still play (like paraconsistent logic). And there're some cases when genius mathematicians (like Ramanujan) get their ideas through a kind of "revelation".

P.S. Whole my reasoning is also my opinion and I do not claim they are absolute truth. But I do have faith in them and I do believe there's no other way then totally surrendering to God's will.

Glory to Almighty God, Glory to Him, The Creator of All visible and invisible.
 

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Rufus said:
Jonathan Gress said:
What do you mean by asking whether God directly wills a match to light or not? Isn't God omnipresent and omnipotent? Or do you imagine God really has no direct involvement with the "everyday" workings of nature?
Of course God is involved. I do not pretend to know how God is involved. However, it is absurd to say that we must reject natural explanations of phenomena simply because "God did it." Lighting a match might be a perfect example of a process that is ultimately willed by God and simultaneously a natural process not requiring supernatural interference.
Why are you putting words into my mouth? And I think you have a strange concept of the "natural/supernatural" distinction. It's almost as if you believe there is a separate force called "Nature" which acts independently of God. On the contrary, natural law is simply what we call one way in which God works in the world. Through natural law, God makes Himself known to us through our ability to reason and discern such a law. We see how everything in the universe follows its appropriate order and are thereby led to worship the Creator of that order. But the order itself is not some independent actor.

The point of our discussion originally was that you appeared to be attributing some kind of objective reality to "chance". However, in Orthodoxy we do not believe in chance, i.e. that there is any true randomness. There may be phenomena appearing to be random, but the randomness is simply a failure of our ability to understand the actual causes behind it. In reality, we believe everything is determined by God, with the exception of those things determined by the wills of rational creatures, whether men or angels.
 

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ativan said:
All of the science in the end is wrong and has nothing to do with reality
All of science is wrong?  And has nothing to do with reality?  Nothing?

Is this a tenet of the Orthodox Church?
 

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ativan said:
chrevbel said:
ativan said:
Answer just one question only please.
It's a bit hard to know which one you actually want me to answer.  You ask six questions in this post, and refer to at least one more.  But I'll try this one...
I meant any of the questions related to Dariwninian theory itself. This one for example will do: Evolutionists claim that certain type of analogy in between human chromosome #2 and apes chromosome N and M (I just artificially chose the names) proves the chromosome #2 is the result of fusion of chromosomes N and M. And they go so far that call this even a fact. This is blatantly wrong. You can't prove this and you can't even come up with credible theory that would explain how the population of new individuals with 23 diploid set could be isolated from the parent 24 diploid set. My questions on this issue is open and have not been answered. To answer this question is only a drop in the ocean Darwinism needs to claim something. But even this drop is out of reach for Darwinism. Minasoliman gave me hypothetical answer which doesn't work. Here's that link and show me how that is done, if you can at all.
I do not understand why you keep harping about 19th century Darwinism. Perhaps you should leave it to the 21st century scientists to deal with the orthodox Darwinsists that remain. I am pretty sure your attitude would be counter productive to the task.

ativan said:
Opus118 said:
I think it is possible you missed the point. HeLa cells are distinctly different.  For example, HeLa ATCC-CCL2 is variably multiploid with 51-179 total chromosomes. Chromosome 3 does not exist.  The long arm of chromosome 3 is fused to the long arm of chromosome 1; the short arm of chromosome 3 is fused to the long arm of chromosome 5. The small arm of chromosome 5 is duplicated at the other side of the centromere to form a small isochromosome. The long arm of chromosome 11 is fused to an arm of chromosome 19. And these changes are the gross ones that can be observed in a light microscope (Lavappa et al, 1976) http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v259/n5540/abs/259211a0.html).
It is definitely possible I missed the point. Not to miss it again can you tell me why are you exactly bringing this example in? What's the purpose? Are you telling this cell is a new species?
From my perspective, HeLa cells are not a new species since, at least on a microscopic level, the original genetic information remains intact (although it may not in reality and I would change my answer if so). Your quote above is the reason why I chose HeLa cells in regard to what is a species, yet you made the statement in the above quote without seeing it. Chromosome 3 no longer exists in HeLa cells. This is an example of what can happen if a virus gets into the germ line. Doesn't this show you how loss of a chromosome can occur circa 1950? I plan to respond to your prior post that responds to mine more fully after Easter

Jonathan Gress said:
Rufus said:
ativan said:
there's no place of "random" in any theory. Nothing is random in this universe. And any theory that takes God out of the picture serves no purpose.
So we should ditch our theories of chemical kinetics because they presuppose random collisions that determine the outcome of a reaction?
As long as you believe that these "random" collisions are directed by Divine Providence, there shouldn't be a problem. "Chance" is simply shorthand for "we don't know the reasons why this happened". The problem arises when people jump from "we don't know" to "we can't know". Then they deify Chance (Goddess Fortuna), and thereby deny Providence.
Seems like a reasonable response to me Jonathan. I also think the comment of Rufus about the role of random collisions in enzymatic reactions puts to rest the denial that the universe created by God is incompatible with random events. I wish I thought of it myself. Perhaps when Ativan is done with attacking 19th century ultra-Darwinists (yes Ativan they do exist, but they are a minority) he might focus his thoughts on the role of random events in both chemical and enzymatic reactions in a thread that has nothing to do with evolution.

 
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chrevbel said:
ativan said:
All of the science in the end is wrong and has nothing to do with reality
All of science is wrong?  And has nothing to do with reality?  Nothing?

Is this a tenet of the Orthodox Church?
In agreement with what chrevbel says:

Really? How about not taking any medicine next time you're sick, since science is wrong? If antibiotics, painkillers and other drugs have nothing to do with reality whatsoever, why don't you stick to your words and refuse them the next time you're sick, huh?
 

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Opus118 said:
I do not understand why you keep harping about 19th century Darwinism. Perhaps you should leave it to the 21st century scientists to deal with the orthodox Darwinsists that remain. I am pretty sure your attitude would be counter productive to the task.
I don't know any other Darwinism and that's why. But all other theories of evolution (random changes leading to new species formation) will  be wrong. You have to name concrete theory to discuss it further.

From my perspective, HeLa cells are not a new species since, at least on a microscopic level, the original genetic information remains intact (although it may not in reality and I would change my answer if so). Your quote above is the reason why I chose HeLa cells in regard to what is a species, yet you made the statement in the above quote without seeing it. Chromosome 3 no longer exists in HeLa cells. This is an example of what can happen if a virus gets into the germ line. Doesn't this show you how loss of a chromosome can occur circa 1950? I plan to respond to your prior post that responds to mine more fully after Easter
What is the point of you argument? Yes, chromosomes can change in the cell. Then what? Did this cell line appear by itself or was it intelligently selected? Of course it's intelligently selected cell lines and humans can select more. I did not doubt that, did I? This cell line is artificially selected. It can't exist if not artificially supported. It can't give you any organism.

So we should ditch our theories of chemical kinetics because they presuppose random collisions that determine the outcome of a reaction?
You are putting your words in my mouth. I did not argue theories can't predict. Theories may predict but it doesn't mean the can predict because they are right. Besides I've mentioned some theories have pragmatic significance. If they work use it. You don't need to go beyond that and say since they work the premises underling it must be wright. Hopefully I'm clear in here. Another question is how it can be so? That's whole new area of speculations.

chrevbel
All of science is wrong?  And has nothing to do with reality?  Nothing?

Is this a tenet of the Orthodox Church?
Yes, ultimately all of them are wrong. This does not mean one should not learn science. I've read science books and I still read them. I get information and see how wrong it is. More I read more I get it. So, if you think I advertise total ignorance I want to assure you that's not right at all. I'd love children to know lots of things in science and be thought lots of things but I'd love also to see it is not thought dogmatically like it's done everywhere now.

I don't know if it's a tenet of Orthodox Church. But from what I've read everything is mystery, whole creation is mystery. Which means in the end we will know nothing through the logical inquiry but we can know God's creation by Revelation through the Grace of the Lord.

Dimitrios-Georgios
Really? How about not taking any medicine next time you're sick, since science is wrong? If antibiotics, painkillers and other drugs have nothing to do with reality whatsoever, why don't you stick to your words and refuse them the next time you're sick, huh?
Even if I took medicine for something how does it prove that science is right? Does my lack of faith prove science is right? There are many people who have stronger faith then I do and miracles happen because of their faith. I know hundreds of these. How does it fit within science that a patient with chronic hepatitis C causing cirrhosis with esophageal varices and deadly gastrointestinal bleeds whom no doctor can cure, who was given prognosis to die in weeks, is brought to a Great Saints tomb on a gurney, is laid down on it and within minutes he can get up and walk and within days and weeks he's completely cured of the problem? Where's is you science here? How can you explain it though science? You can't. The only thing you can do is deny it. And I've seen Orthodox people who ridicule and deny miracles. I'm not saying you are the one but there are many. They even don't believe the Lord's words that if we had little faith we could move mountains. This is not some figurative statement. This is completely true. How can science explain this miracles? I don't take much medicine though. Rarely I will take one. Nobody and Nothing can take care of me except All Glorious and All merciful God if I had a little faith. I don't have it that much though.

Glory to the Father, to the Lord Jesus Christ Son of God and Glory to the Holy Spirit. The Creation belongs to Trinity and we Orthodox people should rightly glorify Him
 

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ativan said:
Yes, ultimately all of them are wrong. This does not mean one should not learn science. I've read science books and I still read them. I get information and see how wrong it is. More I read more I get it.
So, the only reason for learning science is to understand how wrong it all is?  Does this apply to other areas of human knowledge as well?  Mathematics?  Linguistics?
 

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its totally awesome how everyone just picks up on one line out of his entire posts and interprets it in the most extreme way possible and then asks ridiculous questions as if that somehow makes a point! its so cool!
 

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I don't see how you can call my interpretation extreme.  It's perfectly in line with ativan's own posts.  Or if it's not, then by all means feel free to say "No, you miss the point; what he's saying is..."  So far, of course, he himself hasn't chosen to do so.  I asked "All of science is wrong?  And has nothing to do with reality?", and his response was "Yes, ultimately all of them are wrong."  In what way can my continuation of that discourse be considered extreme?

I didn't mean my questions to be curt.  I meant them to be succinct.  My personal pet peeve in these forums is multi-nested quotes that go on for inches, followed by a single question for which it is impossible to see the context.  My posts merely reflect my own preferences.

I think my questions are valid.  ativan has clearly indicated that he considers scientific inquiry to be wasted effort, devoid of value.  (Though if there's anything I've missed, by all means let me know.)  I'm interested in hearing his thoughts on other areas of human knowledge, hence my last set of questions.  Are all attempts at human understanding simply futile?
 

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ativan said:
I don't take much medicine though. Rarely I will take one. Nobody and Nothing can take care of me except All Glorious and All merciful God if I had a little faith. I don't have it that much though.
You should happily take medicine, and trust the doctor. Faith is not above such things, it works in conjunction with them. That's what the Scripture says, anyway.  :)
 

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chrevbel said:
So, the only reason for learning science is to understand how wrong it all is?  Does this apply to other areas of human knowledge as well?  Mathematics?  Linguistics?
For me, yes. I don't know what is the reason for you. People all have different aspirations and I pointed out this clearly - I don't speak on your behalf or somebody else's befalf. For me all science is wrong in the end and one should be ready to abandon everything he has learned if he desires to see God, if he loves God. When a person comes to a point where attraction to God's kingdom increases in him he needs no science. In fact, as I've pointed out, science is an obstacle.

I think my questions are valid.  ativan has clearly indicated that he considers scientific inquiry to be wasted effort, devoid of value.
I've not indicated that. Your interpretation of what I said is wrong and very vague. The question of "value" is vague. Value in what? How do you measure this value? It has value for a given person of course. A scientist who does science sees value in it and I don't say it waste of time from some objective point of view. But it is waste of time once you decide God is the Only One you want. In this case it is total waste of time. And even here it is total waste of time only if you are attached to science and scientific theories as something true. One can still do science with an understanding that whole science is ultimately wrong. In fact, I believe, if a person can accept anything and is not restricted with restrictions that science imposes (the are called laws of nature) can do better science. But in science this people are called crackpots or something like that.

Are all attempts at human understanding simply futile?
This shows me that you did not get what I said. How can I say Peter's life, or John's life, or David's life is futile? Life is life. These are not the question I can answer. I'm a little man.

Are we going to go back to the discussion on Darwinism?

Asteriktos
You should happily take medicine, and trust the doctor. Faith is not above such things, it works in conjunction with them. That's what the Scripture says, anyway.
OK I take that point partially. But can you say the same thing about homeopathic remedies or about acupuncture? What about consecrated water or communion Bread and Wine? Or simple oil for anointing? Do you think of these remedies same way or only drugs and interventions that went though some standard scientific big word procedures (like double blind placebo controlled randomized trials) qualify as medicines for you?

Or do you think a man can posses gift of curing (and even better than doctors in usual sense of this word) without ever reading medical book and graduating from Harvard or somewhere else?
 

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Ativan, I don't think anyone understands fully what you mean by "wrong."  For instance, science shows us that the force of an object is dependent on its mass and the acceleration it's going.  Are you saying that that formula is wrong, or are you saying that the knowledge of such formula is futile when it comes to eternity with God?  Someone reading your message can think, "I don't need to go to the doctor if I have an infection or cancer.  I can just take communion and pray God will cure it, and if He doesn't then it's His will."  The Church never taught such a thing.  In fact, even St. Paul who wrought miracles on people gave some advise for someone to take a little wine for the pains he's been having, an advise based on their own "science" of the day. Can you honestly tell someone that he's wrong for going to the doctor for a disease and not relying on the Church alone?
 

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minasoliman said:
Ativan, I don't think anyone understands fully what you mean by "wrong."  For instance, science shows us that the force of an object is dependent on its mass and the acceleration it's going.  Are you saying that that formula is wrong, or are you saying that the knowledge of such formula is futile when it comes to eternity with God?
1) No scientist knows what is mass; 2) No scientist knows what is force; 3) No scientist knows what is movement; 4) Observation (like galaxy rotation curves) show that there's discrepancy between calculated and observed mass of many galaxies; So original law either A) has to be modified (called modified Newtonian dynamics) or B) some yet unidentified matter (called dark matter) has to be speculated or C) one can think correct way in this manner: we won't be able to know it ever. Taking this into account we can be pragmatic and use any of these theories just for practical purpose and do not go further asserting what really is going on; 5) God's miracles (like completely controlling space and time) done through his Saints defy any science; All these together is "science is wrong in the end".

Someone reading your message can think, "I don't need to go to the doctor if I have an infection or cancer.  I can just take communion and pray God will cure it, and if He doesn't then it's His will."  The Church never taught such a thing.  In fact, even St. Paul who wrought miracles on people gave some advise for someone to take a little wine for the pains he's been having, an advise based on their own "science" of the day. Can you honestly tell someone that he's wrong for going to the doctor for a disease and not relying on the Church alone?
That is someone's problem. I speak of people who have faith (not people like me). Surely Saints (even nowadays) go to doctors not because they can get sick. How can God's man and woman can get sick when the Life-giving Lord lives in them? They can't but they still visit Doctors. Saints know what they're doing. They affect people in a way we sinners will never know. Yes, people should visit to doctors and they are sick. But almost all of them exclusively rely on doctors and on drugs and only doctors who are licensed through certain procedures adn only drugs devised by scientists.

Now I have asked previous questions and I want to know Orthodox faithful's opinion on these:
But can you say the same thing about homeopathic remedies or about acupuncture? What about consecrated water or communion Bread and Wine? Or simple oil for anointing? Do you think of these remedies same way or only drugs and interventions that went though some standard scientific big word procedures (like double blind placebo controlled randomized trials) qualify as medicines for you?

Or do you think a man can posses gift of curing (and even better than doctors in usual sense of this word) without ever reading medical book and graduating from Harvard or somewhere else?
 

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Asteriktos said:
ativan said:
I don't take much medicine though. Rarely I will take one. Nobody and Nothing can take care of me except All Glorious and All merciful God if I had a little faith. I don't have it that much though.
You should happily take medicine, and trust the doctor. Faith is not above such things, it works in conjunction with them. That's what the Scripture says, anyway.  :)
Have you read Sirach 38, ativan?
 

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ativan said:
So we should ditch our theories of chemical kinetics because they presuppose random collisions that determine the outcome of a reaction?
You are putting your words in my mouth. I did not argue theories can't predict. Theories may predict but it doesn't mean the can predict because they are right. Besides I've mentioned some theories have pragmatic significance. If they work use it. You don't need to go beyond that and say since they work the premises underling it must be wright. Hopefully I'm clear in here. Another question is how it can be so? That's whole new area of speculations.
If evolution is a theory of pragmatic significance, why can't we use it for practical purposes?
 

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Jonathan Gress said:
Rufus said:
Jonathan Gress said:
What do you mean by asking whether God directly wills a match to light or not? Isn't God omnipresent and omnipotent? Or do you imagine God really has no direct involvement with the "everyday" workings of nature?
Of course God is involved. I do not pretend to know how God is involved. However, it is absurd to say that we must reject natural explanations of phenomena simply because "God did it." Lighting a match might be a perfect example of a process that is ultimately willed by God and simultaneously a natural process not requiring supernatural interference.
Why are you putting words into my mouth? And I think you have a strange concept of the "natural/supernatural" distinction. It's almost as if you believe there is a separate force called "Nature" which acts independently of God.
Why are you putting words into my mouth?

On the contrary, natural law is simply what we call one way in which God works in the world. Through natural law, God makes Himself known to us through our ability to reason and discern such a law. We see how everything in the universe follows its appropriate order and are thereby led to worship the Creator of that order. But the order itself is not some independent actor.
That's why I said:
a process that is ultimately willed by God and simultaneously a natural process not requiring supernatural interference.
for lack of a better way of putting it.

The point of our discussion originally was that you appeared to be attributing some kind of objective reality to "chance". However, in Orthodoxy we do not believe in chance, i.e. that there is any true randomness.
What does the Church teach about randomness at the quantum level?

There may be phenomena appearing to be random, but the randomness is simply a failure of our ability to understand the actual causes behind it. In reality, we believe everything is determined by God, with the exception of those things determined by the wills of rational creatures, whether men or angels.
I'm not aware of any theological basis for such a precise concept of how God relates to the universe. I'm tempted to just ask you to prove it. Strictly speaking, there's also no scientific basis for determinism. Many aspects of quantum physics are inclusive of the possibility of randomness, an idea which Einstein was uncomfortable with. Not that I'm saying everything is actually random: I'll only say that I have no ides how exactly God designed the cosmos to work. If you claim to know, I frankly don't believe you.

The bottom line is that, for all empirical purposes, there is randomness in the universe. What is actually behind this perceived randomness is totally beside the point in this discussion, because no one here is arguing that humans exist by accident.
 

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But can you say the same thing about homeopathic remedies or about acupuncture? What about consecrated water or communion Bread and Wine? Or simple oil for anointing? Do you think of these remedies same way or only drugs and interventions that went though some standard scientific big word procedures (like double blind placebo controlled randomized trials) qualify as medicines for you?

Or do you think a man can posses gift of curing (and even better than doctors in usual sense of this word) without ever reading medical book and graduating from Harvard or somewhere else?
What about homeopathic remedies or acupuncture?  I don't understand what you're getting at.  But to compare them to the sacraments I don't think is fair.  The sacraments involve a mystery of grace for spiritual uplifting.  Medicine involves the treatment of physical ailments.  As for miracle-workers, I have a feeling God gives these gifts to those who use it wisely, not to the merely educated.  Certainly, God does not squander gifts or miracles in vain.  It's why we don't have or see miracle-workers around us as much.  They are guided by the Holy Spirit for those who are willing to receive spiritual enlightenment through them.  I can imagine every miracle done by Christ was not a miracle wasted, but a miracle that involved a spiritual enlightenment more importantly than physical healing.  Remember the famous parable about Lazarus in the bosom of Abraham, and the man in Hades?  The man offerred that he show himself to unbelievers to warn them of their ways, and God did not allow it because they won't change from their ways when they see it.

Many of us look for miracles as magic or physical healing, and not a matter by which one receives spiritual enlightenment.  How do you know if when you receive a miracle, not only would you be better spiritually, but continue to live that way?  But seeing the way people enjoy a show, like David Blain, or seek selfishly for physical healing rather than spiritual healing, it's no wonder why there's no miracles.  If we understand miracles as a means by which we don't need science or medicine in the end, then I feel you have a spiritual misunderstanding of miracles and of sacraments in the Church.

At the same time, the Church never condoned or taught anything that is remotely close to saying "medicine is wrong."  The Church taught that all things are futile without God, but the word "wrong" has a different connotation.  If you feel all things are wrong before God, then that's no different that the Gnostics or the Manicheans who saw the world and the physical bodies as evil, and that is heretical.
 

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Rufus said:
Have you read Sirach 38, ativan?
I just read it after you asked me. And what is the point, if I may?

If evolution is a theory of pragmatic significance, why can't we use it for practical purposes.
Because its only pragmatic significance is devilish nothing else. All it does it blasphemes and creates ground for those who finally seek to free themselves from God.

There's no question of real pragmatic significance that cannot be asked without knowledge of Darwinism. And statements like Darwinism helping us understand certain phenomena is fallacy.

minasoliman said:
What about homeopathic remedies or acupuncture?  I don't understand what you're getting at.  But to compare them to the sacraments I don't think is fair.
Did I compare them to sacraments? I'm sorry if I made such impression but I didn't even think about it. I compared homeopathy to other treatments. You see, the point is we argue here how science is good that it gives us all those medicines. But I'm almost sure when such discussion arises people don't think of other treatments as remedies and they put them in the fringe science (or whatever science) area. This show my point more clearly. People don't want to consider them medicines. I think  one of the reasons is because it is outside of any explanation. So science wants to stick only to its materialistic base and by flat out denying other treatments they are reinforcing this materialistic dogma. This is what I'm talking about. This is why I ask you and others: Do you consider these treatments as good as or maybe even better then medicines designed through application of certain rigorous procedures? Same applies to healer outside of medical profession.

As for miracle-workers, I have a feeling God gives these gifts to those who use it wisely, not to the merely educated.  Certainly, God does not squander gifts or miracles in vain.  It's why we don't have or see miracle-workers around us as much.  They are guided by the Holy Spirit for those who are willing to receive spiritual enlightenment through them.  I can imagine every miracle done by Christ was not a miracle wasted, but a miracle that involved a spiritual enlightenment more importantly than physical healing.
Yes God gives the gift of healing and miracle working to those who have passed all the tests of life. As a matter of fact there are enough of God's people on the earth. One just needs to have a zeal, a passion to seek God's Holy Saints and God will show him/her those Saints. But anyways this is beyond the point. Question here is how this miracles fall within the scientific knowledge. That is what I was asking. Let's take an example. Such Holy people can walk on the water, can transport themselves though time and space instantaneously, materializing things and so on. How does this fit within science. You don't have much options. Either you can deny this (as so called skeptics do) or you can accept it but this will invalidate science and very basic laws of it. I brought these examples exactly to prove the point "science is ultimately wrong".

At the same time, the Church never condoned or taught anything that is remotely close to saying "medicine is wrong."  The Church taught that all things are futile without God, but the word "wrong" has a different connotation.  If you feel all things are wrong before God, then that's no different that the Gnostics or the Manicheans who saw the world and the physical bodies as evil, and that is heretical.
I never said "medicine is wrong." You can go through my posts again and what I've said is in there. I apologize if I'm blunt to you but repeating myself won't help.
 

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ativan said:
Rufus said:
Have you read Sirach 38, ativan?
I just read it after you asked me. And what is the point, if I may?

If evolution is a theory of pragmatic significance, why can't we use it for practical purposes.
Because its only pragmatic significance is devilish nothing else. All it does it blasphemes and creates ground for those who finally seek to free themselves from God.

There's no question of real pragmatic significance that cannot be asked without knowledge of Darwinism. And statements like Darwinism helping us understand certain phenomena is fallacy.

minasoliman said:
What about homeopathic remedies or acupuncture?  I don't understand what you're getting at.  But to compare them to the sacraments I don't think is fair.
Did I compare them to sacraments? I'm sorry if I made such impression but I didn't even think about it. I compared homeopathy to other treatments. You see, the point is we argue here how science is good that it gives us all those medicines. But I'm almost sure when such discussion arises people don't think of other treatments as remedies and they put them in the fringe science (or whatever science) area. This show my point more clearly. People don't want to consider them medicines. I think  one of the reasons is because it is outside of any explanation. So science wants to stick only to its materialistic base and by flat out denying other treatments they are reinforcing this materialistic dogma. This is what I'm talking about. This is why I ask you and others: Do you consider these treatments as good as or maybe even better then medicines designed through application of certain rigorous procedures? Same applies to healer outside of medical profession.

As for miracle-workers, I have a feeling God gives these gifts to those who use it wisely, not to the merely educated.  Certainly, God does not squander gifts or miracles in vain.  It's why we don't have or see miracle-workers around us as much.  They are guided by the Holy Spirit for those who are willing to receive spiritual enlightenment through them.  I can imagine every miracle done by Christ was not a miracle wasted, but a miracle that involved a spiritual enlightenment more importantly than physical healing.
Yes God gives the gift of healing and miracle working to those who have passed all the tests of life. As a matter of fact there are enough of God's people on the earth. One just needs to have a zeal, a passion to seek God's Holy Saints and God will show him/her those Saints. But anyways this is beyond the point. Question here is how this miracles fall within the scientific knowledge. That is what I was asking. Let's take an example. Such Holy people can walk on the water, can transport themselves though time and space instantaneously, materializing things and so on. How does this fit within science. You don't have much options. Either you can deny this (as so called skeptics do) or you can accept it but this will invalidate science and very basic laws of it. I brought these examples exactly to prove the point "science is ultimately wrong".

At the same time, the Church never condoned or taught anything that is remotely close to saying "medicine is wrong."  The Church taught that all things are futile without God, but the word "wrong" has a different connotation.  If you feel all things are wrong before God, then that's no different that the Gnostics or the Manicheans who saw the world and the physical bodies as evil, and that is heretical.
I never said "medicine is wrong." You can go through my posts again and what I've said is in there. I apologize if I'm blunt to you but repeating myself won't help.
Ativan, i agree that your use of the word "wrong" is, well, wrong. Just by using a computer and the internet you're obviously using science. i think the point you're trying to convey is still pretty clear in context of all your posts, but you should find a better word than "wrong."
 
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