Author Topic: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve  (Read 29258 times)

Offline Angelorum

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #240 on: September 17, 2014, 12:33:42 PM »
To those that oppose evolution, what are your thoughts on this?

I am skeptical of any sort of human evolution - there are simply too many hurdles in trying to find a balance between the scriptures and the findings of modern science.

However, I don't think that the evolution of lower animals is necessarily anti-scriptural, provided that it mentions that they have a built-in teleology from God that makes them adapt to their environment in order to survive.
Your describing adaptation...the question is when did the fish become the elephant....when did the bacterium become the oak tree....when did the lichen darkening the warm side of a rock become the butterfly...?

Ah, that makes sense. You're right - it seems rather ridiculous to have such a massive transformation by which one species becomes another. I was thinking of the changing of accidental properties, whereas evolution changes the essential features of an organism.
 

Offline Pon de Replay

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #241 on: September 17, 2014, 01:12:37 PM »
To those that oppose evolution, what are your thoughts on this?

I am skeptical of any sort of human evolution - there are simply too many hurdles in trying to find a balance between the scriptures and the findings of modern science.

However, I don't think that the evolution of lower animals is necessarily anti-scriptural, provided that it mentions that they have a built-in teleology from God that makes them adapt to their environment in order to survive.

I'm not sure if I can see where it differs from GloriaPatri's position.  If you're willing to accept the evolutionary mechanisms for animal speciation, it would be difficult to not accept those mechanisms for human animals.  And if you're going to stand on scripture (contra "modern science") for a special creation of man, then you might as well stand on scripture for all of creation.  That's certainly been the tradition.

And why would there need to be a "built-in teleology from God"?  The "findings of modern science" posit a process of natural selection that requires no such teleology.  You would also have the theological problem of why God would chose to create the lower animals in such a long and wasteful process full of dead ends and false starts, not to mention the attendant sufferings related to famine, disease, and predation.  Your pre-lapsarian world would resemble the post-lapsarian world.  Tennyson wrestled with these problems in his poem In Memoriam A.H.H.  He was not successful.
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Offline LouisIX

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #242 on: September 17, 2014, 01:38:40 PM »
How does a teleology exist within an evolutionary universe?  Under what mechanism does it arise that is not somewhat extrinsicist and/or nominalist?  It would seem that under a system of macro-evolution the very concept of nature begins to break down and thus the end of any thing, if such a thing could exist, would be merely tacked on, a label rather than  a true ordering according to essence.
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Offline Angelorum

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #243 on: September 17, 2014, 01:53:16 PM »
To those that oppose evolution, what are your thoughts on this?

I am skeptical of any sort of human evolution - there are simply too many hurdles in trying to find a balance between the scriptures and the findings of modern science.

However, I don't think that the evolution of lower animals is necessarily anti-scriptural, provided that it mentions that they have a built-in teleology from God that makes them adapt to their environment in order to survive.

I'm not sure if I can see where it differs from GloriaPatri's position.  If you're willing to accept the evolutionary mechanisms for animal speciation, it would be difficult to not accept those mechanisms for human animals.  And if you're going to stand on scripture (contra "modern science") for a special creation of man, then you might as well stand on scripture for all of creation.  That's certainly been the tradition.

And why would there need to be a "built-in teleology from God"?  The "findings of modern science" posit a process of natural selection that requires no such teleology.  You would also have the theological problem of why God would chose to create the lower animals in such a long and wasteful process full of dead ends and false starts, not to mention the attendant sufferings related to famine, disease, and predation.  Your pre-lapsarian world would resemble the post-lapsarian world.  Tennyson wrestled with these problems in his poem In Memoriam A.H.H.  He was not successful.

I'm trying to see if there is a way to formulate evolution where it is compatible with the Catholic faith, but I'm honestly finding it to a near-impossible task.

I guess Leibniz was right to say that this was the best possible world God could have created, and that evolution would signify an imperfection in God's original creation.
 

Offline GloriaPatri

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #244 on: September 17, 2014, 04:22:30 PM »
How does a teleology exist within an evolutionary universe?  Under what mechanism does it arise that is not somewhat extrinsicist and/or nominalist?  It would seem that under a system of macro-evolution the very concept of nature begins to break down and thus the end of any thing, if such a thing could exist, would be merely tacked on, a label rather than  a true ordering according to essence.

You're presuming that Aristotelian metaphysics is true in the first place. You are assuming that biological processes must have some teleological end. But it is quite possible that such a metaphysical view as Aristotle's is false. And Voxx, papers on evolution hardly say the equivalent to "the moon is made of cheese." Your unwillingness to actually look at the evidence means that you are incapable of facing the possibility that your beliefs might be wrong. Rather than living an examined life, as Socrates pushed people to do, your content to remain in your ignorance, refusing to change your (wrong) beliefs. You're acting like the epitome of ignorance right now. It's embarrassing, to be frankly honest.

And as far as my beliefs go, since people feel the need to bring that up: I believe in a deity for cosmological reasons, not biological ones. That I think it possible that God created the first cells is only because no theory of abiogenesis has been proposed that can be adequately tested. If such a theory came forth showing how the first single-celled organisms emerged from prior chemical structures then I will willfully admit that God was not the direct cause in the emergence of the first primordial life-forms. And my belief that man is a special creation lies solely on the belief that man is not only physically different from other animals (all species differ physically from one another to greater or lesser degrees), but also spiritually different as well. Man's sapience is not something seen elsewhere in the world, and unless physicalist models of consciousness are found to be true, I don't see how such a quality could evolve. But I have no evidence supporting the existence of the immaterial soul, and thus all evidence that exists points to man evolving from prior primates.

Unlike the majority here I don't plan on sacrificing my reason for my religion. If a doctrine of the Church was shown to contradict the evidence then I would simply leave the Church, rather than try such mental gymnastics in a poor attempt to deny evidence that is clear as day. Thankfully I'm not so poorly-bound to a literalistic, and naive, reading of Genesis.
 

Offline james03

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #245 on: September 17, 2014, 06:42:34 PM »
Quote
Unlike the majority here I don't plan on sacrificing my reason for my religion.
LOL.  You believe that warping a coordinate system in a mathematical model has physical significance, or that a "point" can contain infinitely dense matter, and I suspect a whole host of other absurdities found in Quantum theory.  You have already sacrificed your reason to your religion.
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Offline Pon de Replay

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #246 on: September 17, 2014, 06:47:10 PM »
GloriaPatri, your approach to faith appears to be perversely rationalistic.  Have you ever read anything by Kierkegaard or Dostoyevsky? 
"The sneakiness of prigs, the conventicle secrecy, gloomy concepts like hell, like sacrifice of the guiltless, like unio mystica in drinking blood; above all, the slowly fanned fire of revenge, of chandala revenge—all that is what became master over Rome."

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The Caesars became beasts, and God—a Jew!
 

Offline voxxpopulisuxx

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #247 on: September 17, 2014, 07:59:20 PM »
GloriaPatri, your approach to faith appears to be perversely rationalistic.  Have you ever read anything by Kierkegaard or Dostoyevsky?
There can be no synthesis between creationism and evolution..there is no magical third way....Either God created everything ex-nihlo and all at once...or there is no God....evolution has destroyed this world...and now I see it has finally claimed GP.
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Offline LouisIX

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #248 on: September 17, 2014, 08:03:24 PM »
How does a teleology exist within an evolutionary universe?  Under what mechanism does it arise that is not somewhat extrinsicist and/or nominalist?  It would seem that under a system of macro-evolution the very concept of nature begins to break down and thus the end of any thing, if such a thing could exist, would be merely tacked on, a label rather than  a true ordering according to essence.

You're presuming that Aristotelian metaphysics is true in the first place. You are assuming that biological processes must have some teleological end. But it is quite possible that such a metaphysical view as Aristotle's is false. And Voxx, papers on evolution hardly say the equivalent to "the moon is made of cheese." Your unwillingness to actually look at the evidence means that you are incapable of facing the possibility that your beliefs might be wrong. Rather than living an examined life, as Socrates pushed people to do, your content to remain in your ignorance, refusing to change your (wrong) beliefs. You're acting like the epitome of ignorance right now. It's embarrassing, to be frankly honest.

Well then...  Apart from the content of your post, your tone seems bewilderingly aggressive.  I did not mean to upset you nor was Voxx, I suspect.  I was merely jumping into the discussion.

You do realize that the philosophical and theological weight in the tradition behind Aristotelian metaphysics is of a depth which makes even the best Catholic argument for evolution pale in comparison, right?  The entire artifice of Catholicism collapses if you reject telelogy.  This is the most important point I want to make here.  It cannot be saved, by hook or by crook.

How much of the tradition of the Faith are you willing to twist to save evolution?  Given what has been handed down to us from the Church, if you have to forsake one or the other, I'd forsake evolution.  If you have to choose between Aeterni Patris and the latest evolutionary theory, between the Common Doctor and a modern theory of biology, a Catholic should know just which one has to go.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2014, 08:07:15 PM by LouisIX »
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Offline jim111

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Re: Theistic Evolution: The parents of Adam & Eve
« Reply #249 on: June 23, 2020, 02:46:47 PM »
what do we do with all the fossils and humanoid skeletons and sciencythingies that smart sciency people talk about?

 
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