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Evolution and Original Sin - INPEFESS - 05-21-2010

Left to its own capacities and guided only by science (the natural elements), I think evolution is ridiculously improbable; it seems life would have died out long before any single-celled organism(s) could triumph the various biological challenges provided by the environment. However, guided by God's gentle hand, I definitely see how the theory would be more than a possiblity; it would be a probability. What a wonderful contribution to God's glory!

There is very strong evidence in support of the evolution theory. Humani Generis alludes to the theory's potential reconciliation with Catholicism (provided that more evidence could substantiate it):

Pius XII Wrote:36. For these reasons the Teaching Authority of the Church does not forbid that, in conformity with the present state of human sciences and sacred theology, research and discussions, on the part of men experienced in both fields, take place with regard to the doctrine of evolution, in as far as it inquires into the origin of the human body as coming from pre-existent and living matter - for the Catholic faith obliges us to hold that souls are immediately created by God. However, this must be done in such a way that the reasons for both opinions, that is, those favorable and those unfavorable to evolution, be weighed and judged with the necessary seriousness, moderation and measure, and provided that all are prepared to submit to the judgment of the Church, to whom Christ has given the mission of interpreting authentically the Sacred Scriptures and of defending the dogmas of faith.[11] Some however, rashly transgress this liberty of discussion, when they act as if the origin of the human body from pre-existing and living matter were already completely certain and proved by the facts which have been discovered up to now and by reasoning on those facts, and as if there were nothing in the sources of divine revelation which demands the greatest moderation and caution in this question.

37. When, however, there is question of another conjectural opinion, namely polygenism, the children of the Church by no means enjoy such liberty. For the faithful cannot embrace that opinion which maintains that either after Adam there existed on this earth true men who did not take their origin through natural generation from him as from the first parent of all, or that Adam represents a certain number of first parents. Now it is in no way apparent how such an opinion can be reconciled with that which the sources of revealed truth and the documents of the Teaching Authority of the Church propose with regard to original sin, which proceeds from a sin actually committed by an individual Adam and which, through generation, is passed on to all and is in everyone as his own.[12]



11. Cfr. Allocut Pont. to the members of the Academy of Science, November 30, 1941: A.A.S., vol. XXXIII, p. 506.

12. Cfr. Rom., V, 12-19; Conc. Trid., sess, V, can. 1-4.

JPII confirmed the compatibilitiy of evolution with Catholicism is his address to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences (though, this doesn't make it de facto):

John Paul II Wrote:"In his encyclical Humani Generis (1950), my predecessor Pius XII has already affirmed that there is no conflict between evolution and the doctrine of the faith regarding man and his vocation, provided that we do not lose sight of certain fixed points....Today, more than a half-century after the appearance of that encyclical, some new findings lead us toward the recognition of evolution as more than a hypothesis. In fact it is remarkable that this theory has had progressively greater influence on the spirit of researchers, following a series of discoveries in different scholarly disciplines. The convergence in the results of these independent studies – which was neither planned nor sought – constitutes in itself a significant argument in favor of the theory."
. . .

"Theories of evolution which, because of the philosophies which inspire them, regard the spirit either as emerging from the forces of living matter, or as a simple epiphenomenon of that matter, are incompatible with the truth about man."

Genesis, if read the way most of the Old Testament books were written (non-literally) could be interpreted to actually validate the theory without contradicting any teachings of the Faith. But Vetus Ordo brings up a very good question:

(04-13-2010, 05:18 AM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: There's also other problems, like the fact that death entered the world because of sin. There's no amount of lipservice to evolution that can "reconcile" that.

I have read the creation story many times recently, and I don't see where it tells us that there was no death in the garden - to say nothing of the world outside (which is alluded to after God has created the garden). It seems like man's efforts became doomed to failure, but I cannot find any reference to physical death being non-existent outside of the garden. Perhaps the Church has taught on this. Not sure on this one.

Because I do not wish to recapitulate this subject already extensively covered here, the scope of this thread, therefore, is the state of the world before original sin as well as the effects of original sin.


Re: Evolution and Original Sin - James02 - 05-21-2010

With the advent of X-ray diffraction technology, and our ability to peer into cells, I think evolution is false. 

I am also more open to the young earth argument.  The reason being is that for my whole educational years, I was taught about "fossil fuels".  Well, after looking into the thermodynamics, I am convinced that the fossil fuel theory is completely false.  Oil spewing from 23,000 feet below sea level in the Gulf is clear evidence of that.  That oil is there because God made it, and it should be called rock oil or mineral oil.  Since this one proof of an old earth has turned out to be false, I now wonder about the other proofs.  I am not an expert in the other areas of science, so I have to admit that there is good evidence for an old earth, but after seeing that fossil fuels is a myth, I am not as convinced.


Re: Evolution and Original Sin - INPEFESS - 05-21-2010

(05-21-2010, 05:05 PM)James02 Wrote: With the advent of X-ray diffraction technology, and our ability to peer into cells, I think evolution is false.

That is interesting. Could you expound upon this a bit?

Quote: 

I am also more open to the young earth argument.  The reason being is that for my whole educational years, I was taught about "fossil fuels".  Well, after looking into the thermodynamics, I am convinced that the fossil fuel theory is completely false.  Oil spewing from 23,000 feet below sea level in the Gulf is clear evidence of that.   That oil is there because God made it, and it should be called rock oil or mineral oil.  Since this one proof of an old earth has turned out to be false, I now wonder about the other proofs.  I am not an expert in the other areas of science, so I have to admit that there is good evidence for an old earth, but after seeing that fossil fuels is a myth, I am not as convinced.

I have never even heard that argument for an old earth. The arguments I have read are of a completely different origin.


Re: Evolution and Original Sin - cgraye - 05-21-2010

I don't really see how life could exist without death, without being radically different from how it is now.  Cells die and are replaced constantly in the body.  It's part of how the system works.  Are cells life?  We certainly consider them to be.  In that case, if there was no death of any kind before the Fall, life was, in a biological sense, radically different from how it is now - so different I can't even imagine it, and I think this is highly unlikely.  So maybe scripture didn't count cells as life.  What about plants, then?  Did plants die?  They must have, if the humans and animals were eating them.  So either scripture also doesn't count plants, or by "death" it doesn't mean all death, just death from natural causes.  But if that's the case, then we've already opened up the door to there being some kind of death.

And what about the carnivorous animals?  Did God radically alter them after the Fall to subsist on only meat?  There are a lot of odd conclusions you have to accept if you believe that there was no death of any kind before the Fall.  I think it is more likely that the meaning of that scripture is that there was no death for man before the Fall.


Re: Evolution and Original Sin - INPEFESS - 05-21-2010

(05-21-2010, 07:26 PM)cgraye Wrote: And what about the carnivorous animals?  Did God radically alter them after the Fall to subsist on only meat? 

Haven't you ever heard of "punctuated equilibrium"?


Re: Evolution and Original Sin - cgraye - 05-21-2010

(05-21-2010, 07:56 PM)INPEFESS Wrote:
(05-21-2010, 07:26 PM)cgraye Wrote: And what about the carnivorous animals?  Did God radically alter them after the Fall to subsist on only meat? 

Haven't you ever heard of "punctuated equilibrium"?

Yes.  How do you think that applies here?


Re: Evolution and Original Sin - INPEFESS - 05-21-2010

(05-21-2010, 08:03 PM)cgraye Wrote:
(05-21-2010, 07:56 PM)INPEFESS Wrote:
(05-21-2010, 07:26 PM)cgraye Wrote: And what about the carnivorous animals?  Did God radically alter them after the Fall to subsist on only meat? 

Haven't you ever heard of "punctuated equilibrium"?

Yes.  How do you think that applies here?

Oh, don't you know?! The carnivors evolved suddenly, growing teeth, diastemas, and claws overnight!  ::)


Re: Evolution and Original Sin - cgraye - 05-21-2010

I don't get it.


Re: Evolution and Original Sin - Spence - 05-22-2010


Quote:Because I do not wish to......as well as the effects of original sin.

Some points:

Doctrine: The angels could not be stigmatized because the angels are each a unique species.

Argument:  However, the offense occured across genus lines(created spirits), not species. The case showed that the predominant points of this case is that beings can tempt and communicate across species lines.

Doctrine: Eve was tempted by satan to eat of the forbidden fruit.

Argument: Eve's case is won in her favor on a technicality. Satan is also a differing species than Eve. (cite: fall of the angels angels.vs.God)  Attorney for the defense requests dismissal.

The arguments assumes a single standard, and the Justice system factors in favor of the least advantaged.

Spence






Re: Evolution and Original Sin - INPEFESS - 05-22-2010

(05-22-2010, 05:04 PM)Spence Wrote:
Quote:Because I do not wish to......as well as the effects of original sin.

Some points:

Doctrine: The angels could not be stigmatized because the angels are each a unique species.

Argument:  However, the offense occured across genus lines(created spirits), not species. The case showed that the predominant points of this case is that beings can tempt and communicate across species lines.

Doctrine: Eve was tempted by satan to eat of the forbidden fruit.

Argument: Eve's case is won in her favor on a technicality. Satan is also a differing species than Eve. (cite: fall of the angels angels.vs.God)  Attorney for the defense requests dismissal.

The arguments assumes a single standard, and the Justice system factors in favor of the least advantaged.

Spence

So do you have a conclusion on the matter? Do you have teachings from the Church relating to the death outside the garden pre-"fall"?