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

Gebre Menfes Kidus

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Ukiemeister said:
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.
Read Father Rose, and read the Early Fathers such as St. Basil the Great on the Creation. No one is saying that the Scriptures are meant to be an exhaustive scientific text. The Fathers have shown us how to interpret and understand the Sacred Scriptures, and we cannot simply jettison their divine wisdom and guidance whenever it conflicts with the latest scientific fad.

Selam
 

Asteriktos

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Believe it or not, some of us have read the Church Fathers and came to a different conclusion. Seems impossible, I know  :angel:
 

Gebre Menfes Kidus

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Asteriktos said:
Believe it or not, some of us have read the Church Fathers and came to a different conclusion. Seems impossible, I know  :angel:
And yet you cannot answer any of the questions that the theory of evolution begs. For example, why don't you respond to each of the specific quotes I posted by Father Rose instead of merely replying by a "rolling of the eyes?" I suspect it's because you have fundamentalist religious zeal for a fashionable but unsubstantiated scientific theory, and neither Scripture, the Fathers, Orthodoxy, or rigid science will dissuade you from your precious presuppostions.

Selam
 

Rastaman

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Ukiemeister said:
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.
Read Father Rose, and read the Early Fathers such as St. Basil the Great on the Creation. No one is saying that the Scriptures are meant to be an exhaustive scientific text. The Fathers have shown us how to interpret and understand the Sacred Scriptures, and we cannot simply jettison their divine wisdom and guidance whenever it conflicts with the latest scientific fad.

Selam
And what about Blessed Augustine??

"It not infrequently happens that something about the earth, about the sky, about other elements of this world, about the motion and rotation or even the magnitude and distances of the stars, about definite eclipses of the sun and moon, about the passage of years and seasons, about the nature of animals, of fruits, of stones, and of other such things, may be known with the greatest certainty by reasoning or by experience, even by one who is not a Christian. It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that he [the non-Christian] should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are. In view of this and in keeping it in mind constantly while dealing with the book of Genesis, I have, insofar as I was able, explained in detail and set forth for consideration the meanings of obscure passages, taking care not to affirm rashly some one meaning to the prejudice of another and perhaps better explanation." (The Literal Interpretation of Genesis 1:19–20, Chapt. 19 [AD 408])

"With the scriptures it is a matter of treating about the faith. For that reason, as I have noted repeatedly, if anyone, not understanding the mode of divine eloquence, should find something about these matters [about the physical universe] in our books, or hear of the same from those books, of such a kind that it seems to be at variance with the perceptions of his own rational faculties, let him believe that these other things are in no way necessary to the admonitions or accounts or predictions of the scriptures. In short, it must be said that our authors knew the truth about the nature of the skies, but it was not the intention of the Spirit of God, who spoke through them, to teach men anything that would not be of use to them for their salvation." (ibid, 2:9)
 

Get_Behind_Me_Satan

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Marc1152 said:
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.    
I know this is off topic, but your picture of conan deserves it, look at him:

http://hellwhenidie.ytmnd.com/

He is so awful. To think, I was 13 when I first saw this.

Its satans #1 song, he's telling everyone else to join the fire.

Its so ridiculous its not even funny, maybe when I was 13 it was.

I used to love watching his lunacy. He is very funny, but this is just wrong.
 

Gebre Menfes Kidus

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Ukiemeister said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Ukiemeister said:
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.
Read Father Rose, and read the Early Fathers such as St. Basil the Great on the Creation. No one is saying that the Scriptures are meant to be an exhaustive scientific text. The Fathers have shown us how to interpret and understand the Sacred Scriptures, and we cannot simply jettison their divine wisdom and guidance whenever it conflicts with the latest scientific fad.

Selam
And what about Blessed Augustine??

"It not infrequently happens that something about the earth, about the sky, about other elements of this world, about the motion and rotation or even the magnitude and distances of the stars, about definite eclipses of the sun and moon, about the passage of years and seasons, about the nature of animals, of fruits, of stones, and of other such things, may be known with the greatest certainty by reasoning or by experience, even by one who is not a Christian. It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that he [the non-Christian] should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are. In view of this and in keeping it in mind constantly while dealing with the book of Genesis, I have, insofar as I was able, explained in detail and set forth for consideration the meanings of obscure passages, taking care not to affirm rashly some one meaning to the prejudice of another and perhaps better explanation." (The Literal Interpretation of Genesis 1:19–20, Chapt. 19 [AD 408])

"With the scriptures it is a matter of treating about the faith. For that reason, as I have noted repeatedly, if anyone, not understanding the mode of divine eloquence, should find something about these matters [about the physical universe] in our books, or hear of the same from those books, of such a kind that it seems to be at variance with the perceptions of his own rational faculties, let him believe that these other things are in no way necessary to the admonitions or accounts or predictions of the scriptures. In short, it must be said that our authors knew the truth about the nature of the skies, but it was not the intention of the Spirit of God, who spoke through them, to teach men anything that would not be of use to them for their salvation." (ibid, 2:9)
I concur with Augustine. The earth is round, not flat. The earth revolves around the sun, the sun does not revolve around the earth. So it has been scientifically proven. The theory of evolution has not been scientifically proven. If it is proven, then I will believe in it. But as this thread perfectly demonstrates, those who vociferously prosyletize about evolution fail to provide an abundance of evidence to equal the abundance of their religious scientific convictions.


Selam
 

Rastaman

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Ukiemeister said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Ukiemeister said:
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.
Read Father Rose, and read the Early Fathers such as St. Basil the Great on the Creation. No one is saying that the Scriptures are meant to be an exhaustive scientific text. The Fathers have shown us how to interpret and understand the Sacred Scriptures, and we cannot simply jettison their divine wisdom and guidance whenever it conflicts with the latest scientific fad.

Selam
And what about Blessed Augustine??

"It not infrequently happens that something about the earth, about the sky, about other elements of this world, about the motion and rotation or even the magnitude and distances of the stars, about definite eclipses of the sun and moon, about the passage of years and seasons, about the nature of animals, of fruits, of stones, and of other such things, may be known with the greatest certainty by reasoning or by experience, even by one who is not a Christian. It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that he [the non-Christian] should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are. In view of this and in keeping it in mind constantly while dealing with the book of Genesis, I have, insofar as I was able, explained in detail and set forth for consideration the meanings of obscure passages, taking care not to affirm rashly some one meaning to the prejudice of another and perhaps better explanation." (The Literal Interpretation of Genesis 1:19–20, Chapt. 19 [AD 408])

"With the scriptures it is a matter of treating about the faith. For that reason, as I have noted repeatedly, if anyone, not understanding the mode of divine eloquence, should find something about these matters [about the physical universe] in our books, or hear of the same from those books, of such a kind that it seems to be at variance with the perceptions of his own rational faculties, let him believe that these other things are in no way necessary to the admonitions or accounts or predictions of the scriptures. In short, it must be said that our authors knew the truth about the nature of the skies, but it was not the intention of the Spirit of God, who spoke through them, to teach men anything that would not be of use to them for their salvation." (ibid, 2:9)
I concur with Augustine. The earth is round, not flat. The earth revolves around the sun, the sun does not revolve around the earth. So it has been scientifically proven. The theory of evolution has not been scientifically proven. If it is proven, then I will believe in it. But as this thread perfectly demonstrates, those who vociferously prosyletize about evolution fail to provide an abundance of evidence to equal the abundance of their religious scientific convictions.


Selam
How do you know the Earth is round, and not flat??
 

Gebre Menfes Kidus

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Ukiemeister said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Ukiemeister said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Ukiemeister said:
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.
Read Father Rose, and read the Early Fathers such as St. Basil the Great on the Creation. No one is saying that the Scriptures are meant to be an exhaustive scientific text. The Fathers have shown us how to interpret and understand the Sacred Scriptures, and we cannot simply jettison their divine wisdom and guidance whenever it conflicts with the latest scientific fad.

Selam
And what about Blessed Augustine??

"It not infrequently happens that something about the earth, about the sky, about other elements of this world, about the motion and rotation or even the magnitude and distances of the stars, about definite eclipses of the sun and moon, about the passage of years and seasons, about the nature of animals, of fruits, of stones, and of other such things, may be known with the greatest certainty by reasoning or by experience, even by one who is not a Christian. It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that he [the non-Christian] should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are. In view of this and in keeping it in mind constantly while dealing with the book of Genesis, I have, insofar as I was able, explained in detail and set forth for consideration the meanings of obscure passages, taking care not to affirm rashly some one meaning to the prejudice of another and perhaps better explanation." (The Literal Interpretation of Genesis 1:19–20, Chapt. 19 [AD 408])

"With the scriptures it is a matter of treating about the faith. For that reason, as I have noted repeatedly, if anyone, not understanding the mode of divine eloquence, should find something about these matters [about the physical universe] in our books, or hear of the same from those books, of such a kind that it seems to be at variance with the perceptions of his own rational faculties, let him believe that these other things are in no way necessary to the admonitions or accounts or predictions of the scriptures. In short, it must be said that our authors knew the truth about the nature of the skies, but it was not the intention of the Spirit of God, who spoke through them, to teach men anything that would not be of use to them for their salvation." (ibid, 2:9)
I concur with Augustine. The earth is round, not flat. The earth revolves around the sun, the sun does not revolve around the earth. So it has been scientifically proven. The theory of evolution has not been scientifically proven. If it is proven, then I will believe in it. But as this thread perfectly demonstrates, those who vociferously prosyletize about evolution fail to provide an abundance of evidence to equal the abundance of their religious scientific convictions.


Selam
How do you know the Earth is round, and not flat??
It is a scientific fact.

1.  During lunar eclipses, the projected shadow of the earth on the moon is
always round.  If the earth were flat, then this projection will not always
be circular (it could degenerate to a line!).  But this is never observed,
regardless of the time of the lunar eclipse.  Aristotle (384-322 BCE) wrote
about this.  The third point, below, is also credited to Aristotle.

2. Eratosthanes (276-195(?) BCE) did a famous experiment on measuring the
angle of the sun at noon in Alexandria, Egypt, and in Syrene.  Finding the
difference in the angles and knowing the distance between the two points,
the circumference can be calculated.  He calculated the circumference in
stadia, which we do not know the conversion to our present day measure.

3. If you travel north or south a signigicant distance, you will see a
different set of stars at night.  This will not happen on a flat surface.





Selam
 

greekischristian

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Asteriktos said:
Believe it or not, some of us have read the Church Fathers and came to a different conclusion. Seems impossible, I know  :angel:
And yet you cannot answer any of the questions that the theory of evolution begs. For example, why don't you respond to each of the specific quotes I posted by Father Rose instead of merely replying by a "rolling of the eyes?" I suspect it's because you have fundamentalist religious zeal for a fashionable but unsubstantiated scientific theory, and neither Scripture, the Fathers, Orthodoxy, or rigid science will dissuade you from your precious presuppostions.

Selam
Allow me:

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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." 
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

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

Conclusion: he's either an idiot, or purposely deluding people, or both.
 

Riddikulus

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These Orthodox Christians don't agree with Fr Seraphim Rose, may his memory be eternal. In answer to the OP, "Is evolutionary theory compatible with the Orthodox Christian faith?" they say yes.


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.

edit: Really should add Theodosius Dobzhansky, Russian Orthodox Christian, to the list.  ;)

Does the evolutionary doctrine clash with religious faith? It does not. It is a blunder to mistake the Holy Scriptures for elementary textbooks of astronomy, geology, biology, and anthropology. Only if symbols are construed to mean what they are not intended to mean can there arise imaginary, insoluble conflicts. As pointed out above, the blunder leads to blasphemy: the Creator is accused of systematic deceitfulness.  (Theodosius Dobzhansky)


 

Rastaman

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
It is a scientific fact.

1.  During lunar eclipses, the projected shadow of the earth on the moon is
always round.  If the earth were flat, then this projection will not always
be circular (it could degenerate to a line!).  But this is never observed,
regardless of the time of the lunar eclipse.  Aristotle (384-322 BCE) wrote
about this.  The third point, below, is also credited to Aristotle.
Scientific fact?? Not according to the Flat Earth Society. http://www.theflatearthsociety.org/tiki/tiki-index.php?page=The+Lunar+Eclipse

2. Eratosthanes (276-195(?) BCE) did a famous experiment on measuring the
angle of the sun at noon in Alexandria, Egypt, and in Syrene.  Finding the
difference in the angles and knowing the distance between the two points,
the circumference can be calculated.  He calculated the circumference in
stadia, which we do not know the conversion to our present day measure.
The friends over at the Flat Earth Society have also answered this one:  "It's a common misconception that Eratosthenes was measuring the circumference of the Round Earth in his shadow experiment. Eratosthenes had simply assumed that the earth was a sphere in his experiment, based on the work of Aristotle. He was actually measuring the diameter of the Flat Earth (distance across), which is a figure identical to the circumference of the Round Earth (distance around)."

http://www.theflatearthsociety.org/tiki/tiki-index.php?page=Eratosthenes+on+Diameter

3. If you travel north or south a signigicant distance, you will see a
different set of stars at night.  This will not happen on a flat surface.
The Flat Earth Society rescues us again: "Ergo, when I stand outside and look into the skies, the star constellations I do not see are simply invisible past the vanishing point, beyond my perspective. When I travel south I am moving to a new location, changing my perspective, rising up a completely different set stars."

http://www.theflatearthsociety.org/tiki/tiki-index.php?page=Shifting+Constellations
 

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GiC said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Asteriktos said:
Believe it or not, some of us have read the Church Fathers and came to a different conclusion. Seems impossible, I know  :angel:
And yet you cannot answer any of the questions that the theory of evolution begs. For example, why don't you respond to each of the specific quotes I posted by Father Rose instead of merely replying by a "rolling of the eyes?" I suspect it's because you have fundamentalist religious zeal for a fashionable but unsubstantiated scientific theory, and neither Scripture, the Fathers, Orthodoxy, or rigid science will dissuade you from your precious presuppostions.

Selam
Allow me:

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."  
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

"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."
Irrelevant to the scientific method.

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

Conclusion: he's either an idiot, or purposely deluding people, or both.
I don't see Fr Seraphim as an idiot, but as someone who hadn't been able to shake himself free of fundamentalist thinking; on this subject in particular.
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Asteriktos said:
Believe it or not, some of us have read the Church Fathers and came to a different conclusion. Seems impossible, I know  :angel:
And yet you cannot answer any of the questions that the theory of evolution begs. For example, why don't you respond to each of the specific quotes I posted by Father Rose instead of merely replying by a "rolling of the eyes?" I suspect it's because you have fundamentalist religious zeal for a fashionable but unsubstantiated scientific theory, and neither Scripture, the Fathers, Orthodoxy, or rigid science will dissuade you from your precious presuppostions.

Selam
Actually, I have changed pretty much my entire world view multiple times over the past 10 years. I also used to lean in favor of creationism--something I have stated before on these evolution threads on OC.net. If there is one thing I am generally not, it's dogmatic or fundamentalist. If anything, I am exactly the opposite. My user name does mean unstable, after all. ;) Now, I find the charge of being a fundamentalist especially humorous, given the dogmatic tone of most creationist arguments (or leastwise the philosophy behind them), and that includes some of the quotes by Fr. Seraphim Rose that you provided (e.g., Evolution is one of the most dangerous concepts that faces Orthodox Christians today...).

As for responding to the quotes of Fr. Seraphim, what can I say? If I disagree, you will say I am blinded by "fundamentalist religious zeal". That is not to say that I consider all the quotes to be without substance. For example, there is this one:

"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."

I agree with this, but not as it was originally intended. If evolution is true, things are not so black and white as... um... well who insists on thinking about things in black and white terms? The word for that type of person begins with an F... I think you mentioned it in your post... ;)
 

PeterTheAleut

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
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
And yet you use the same tactics in your approach (following after Fr. Seraphim's approach) to the Fathers that the "fundamentalist evangelicals" you like to lambaste use in their approach to the Scriptures.

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Read Father Rose, and read the Early Fathers such as St. Basil the Great on the Creation. No one is saying that the Scriptures are meant to be an exhaustive scientific text.
And yet you appear to recommend that the Fathers be used as an exhaustive scientific authority.

Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
The Fathers have shown us how to interpret and understand the Sacred Scriptures, and we cannot simply jettison their divine wisdom and guidance whenever it conflicts with the latest scientific fad.

Selam
Does the Holy Spirit speak only through the Fathers?
 

PeterTheAleut

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Ukiemeister said:
Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
Ukiemeister said:
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.
Read Father Rose, and read the Early Fathers such as St. Basil the Great on the Creation. No one is saying that the Scriptures are meant to be an exhaustive scientific text. The Fathers have shown us how to interpret and understand the Sacred Scriptures, and we cannot simply jettison their divine wisdom and guidance whenever it conflicts with the latest scientific fad.

Selam
And what about Blessed Augustine??

"It not infrequently happens that something about the earth, about the sky, about other elements of this world, about the motion and rotation or even the magnitude and distances of the stars, about definite eclipses of the sun and moon, about the passage of years and seasons, about the nature of animals, of fruits, of stones, and of other such things, may be known with the greatest certainty by reasoning or by experience, even by one who is not a Christian. It is too disgraceful and ruinous, though, and greatly to be avoided, that he [the non-Christian] should hear a Christian speaking so idiotically on these matters, and as if in accord with Christian writings, that he might say that he could scarcely keep from laughing when he saw how totally in error they are. In view of this and in keeping it in mind constantly while dealing with the book of Genesis, I have, insofar as I was able, explained in detail and set forth for consideration the meanings of obscure passages, taking care not to affirm rashly some one meaning to the prejudice of another and perhaps better explanation." (The Literal Interpretation of Genesis 1:19–20, Chapt. 19 [AD 408])

"With the scriptures it is a matter of treating about the faith. For that reason, as I have noted repeatedly, if anyone, not understanding the mode of divine eloquence, should find something about these matters [about the physical universe] in our books, or hear of the same from those books, of such a kind that it seems to be at variance with the perceptions of his own rational faculties, let him believe that these other things are in no way necessary to the admonitions or accounts or predictions of the scriptures. In short, it must be said that our authors knew the truth about the nature of the skies, but it was not the intention of the Spirit of God, who spoke through them, to teach men anything that would not be of use to them for their salvation." (ibid, 2:9)
I concur with Augustine. The earth is round, not flat. The earth revolves around the sun, the sun does not revolve around the earth. So it has been scientifically proven. The theory of evolution has not been scientifically proven. If it is proven, then I will believe in it. But as this thread perfectly demonstrates, those who vociferously prosyletize about evolution fail to provide an abundance of evidence to equal the abundance of their religious scientific convictions.


Selam
The validity of a scientific theory often lies more in whether it has not yet been disproven than in whether it has yet been proven.  So I put before you this challenge, Gebre.  Prove evolutionary theory false from the basis of science and science alone.  I'd be willing to bet you can't.
 

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Gebre Menfes Kidus said:
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
Nonsense. All of it.  :p
 

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Ukiemeister said:
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.
And no one is arguing that they were. To say they weren't is both anachronistic and besides the point. The Scriptures are much higher than that. They supersede and transcend all the benighted gropings of modern science. Modern man, in a fallen world, with corrupted senses, and in a materialistic culture, has "discovered" that man evolved through natural selection. Soon, no doubt, he will also "discover" that the cosmos is cyclical and self-contained and there is no need for a divine role to explain creation at all. The Scriptures and the Fathers say otherwise.

It is incredibly naive to think that modern scientists, many of them atheists like Dawkins, are able to give an objective account of the universe. "But they use the scientific method!" "They are peer-reviewed!" The modern scientific methodology assumes that the material universe can be studied and understood without any reference to the spiritual world (irrespective of whether this latter world exists or not). Again, the Church teaches otherwise.

PeterTheAleut said:
The validity of a scientific theory often lies more in whether it has not yet been disproven than in whether it has yet been proven.  So I put before you this challenge, Gebre.  Prove evolutionary theory false from the basis of science and science alone.  I'd be willing to bet you can't.
I have no doubt that the scientists arguing for evolution are being perfectly scrupulous in their adherence to the basic scientific methodologies they were trained in. The problem is, those methodologies are materialist to begin with and therefore necessarily produce a distorted vision of creation. The people here arguing for Darwinism operate under the assumption that modern science = undoubted truth, to the extent that they allow it to supersede the teaching of the Fathers. To be fair, we were all indoctrinated with this worldview in school; now that we are conscious, committed Christians, though, it's time to reflect on this more deeply. Why do you think that this secular society, anti-Christian is so many respects, is finally the one able to give us an accurate and objective understanding of the universe? Why do you align yourselves with Epicurus and not with the Fathers?



 
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