Here are some truths for Roman Catholic fundies, Archbishops and Muslims to assimilate.
Pope Francis accepts that the theories of evolution and the Big Bang are real and declares that God is not “a magician with a magic wand”. Speaking at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, he made comments which experts said put an end to the fictions of creationism and intelligent design that his predecessor, Benedict XVI, had encouraged.
Francis explained that the two scientific theories were not incompatible with the existence of a creator--– arguing instead that they “require it”. He said: “When we read about Creation in Genesis, we run the risk of imagining God was a magician, with a magic wand able to do everything. But that is not so”. Indeed, God “created human beings and let them develop according to the internal laws that he gave to each one so they would reach their fulfilment. The theories of evolution and the Big Bang are real . . . ”
Good for science! It is inexorably pushing theology out of the conversation. The irrelevance of their commentary is becoming painfully obvious to all but themselves and their blind supporters. Notice that scientists already have a career and do these debates almost as a hobby, whereas apologists do this as a full time job. Apparently parsing a delusion takes a lot of hard work and dedication. However pandering to the credulous can be a highly lucrative effort in the U.S.. If I had any talent as a debater I too would be tempted to go after that coin myself.
I think it is simply a manifestation of how desperate the Church has become in the face of science. I don't believe he would have deviated one iota from Genesis if he didn't feel impelled to do so by the weight of scientific evidence. He might not realize it but his accommodation of evolution and the Big Bang Theory might be creating as many problems for the Church as he thinks it is solving. That is, in that previous Popes have rejected evolution and the Big Bang Theory, his accommodation of them flies in the face of the long held Church doctrine that Popes are infallible.
Agree!!! So well said. I couldn't agree more. If Charles Darwin hadn't come on the scene, the RCC would still be teaching its 'flock' to interpret Genesis as literal.
If Darwin or Alfred Russel Wallace, who independently conceived the theory of evolution by natural selection, hadn't been on the scene, someone else would have put the overwhelming, converging evidence for it together.
And it is quite convenient that believers can interpret their scriptures as allegorical when taking them literally is untenable, or have a parallel "oral law" that modifies and moderates the written laws, or receive new revelations that just happen to begin catching up with the values civilized society arrived at through empathy and reason.
(Edit: great minds sometimes think alike! I just scrolled down to read Bertold Brautigan mentioning that Mormon revelation in 1978 that suddenly it was OK for black as well as white males to be in the priesthood -- something that white Mormon men and teenage boys received as a matter of course, a prerequisite for leadership positions as well as for attaining the highest levels of heaven. Did the U.S. government somehow make the "Heavenly Father" change his mind? :-)
Grinning Cat, absolutely...couldn't agree more. One of the main reasons I left Christianity, was the duplicitous nature of Christians that led Bible studies, and classes, in addition to not being able to reconcile Genesis against the TOE.
The interesting thing to note however, is that most fundies believe Genesis to be literal despite scientific facts, but if one is going to profess a love for Christianity, it would seem fitting to have both feet planted in it, instead of trying to water it down, as the RCC seems to be doing. I wonder how the Pope reconciles 'souls?' Nothing in evolution elevates man over other species...and mankind is taught by the RCC as being ''above the animal kingdom,'' especially in terms of man having a soul. I mean, the whole notion of heaven and hell goes out the window, if the idea of souls is dismantled. lol
The house of cards is tumbling, slowly but surely. It must be hard to be a Pope these days, when money is tight for the Church, people are leaving the faith, and you yourself don't even fully buy into what you're selling.
If you have to water down the Bible, to make it fit with your newfound scientific beliefs, then you might need to take a closer look at your religious convictions. If you have to forfeit scientific facts, to uphold your religious beliefs, the same predicament exists. While I admire the Pope for bringing reason and science to the forefront, he comes off as unstable in his own religious convictions. 'God's Word' doesn't just change when a new Pope comes around. lol
So, all of this should tell a practicing Catholic...hmmm...maybe it's all bullshit?
The last pope evidenced the fallibiity of popes so ferociously he had to be forced out. And the new pope is a kind of consolation prize.
Sorry, Francis, you cannot have it both ways. Either you are right or Darwin was. And since Darwin had no ulterior motive, I kind of side with him.
What this marks is the continuing devolution of the church. Their unreality is butting heads with reality ... and LOSING. Eventually, it will lose, altogether or become so disconnected from the rest of the world so as to render itself irrelevant.
Either way, its influence on us will be diminished if not eliminated completely - a good thing by any rational measure.
Are Catholics less likely to be anti-evolution and anti-science than other Christians?
I've heard there are lots of Catholic intellectuals, Catholic university professors.
Someone told me that a Jesuit education often leads to atheism, by teaching critical thinking and exposing students to a wide variety of thinkers.
Catholics have not traditionally taught that evolution conflicts with their doctrine, and they seemed fine with a metaphorical interpretation of the seven days of creation.
Is this what Catholics who aren't intellectuals think as well? Or do they go along with the fundamentalist science-deniers that seem to rule places like the Bible Belt?
Oh that's beautifully expressed.
Darwin & Huxley accepted!
Lamaître & Hubble accepted!
But still declares that both theories "require" God.
How long will it take to accept Hawking?