Fri, 05 May 2006

Creationism dismissed as 'a kind of paganism' by Vatican's astronomer

Wow! What are they smoking these days in the Vatican Observatory? I'll bet Galileo, Bruno and a host of others must be rolling in their graves at at this news! Here's the money quote:

"Religion needs science to keep it away from superstition and keep it close to reality, to protect it from creationism, which at the end of the day is a kind of paganism - it's turning God into a nature god. And science needs religion in order to have a conscience, to know that, just because something is possible, it may not be a good thing to do."

The problem here, in Christian terms, is that of Biblical inerrancy. The Bible clearly says a lot of things, which, on their face, are rather silly. Six days to create the world, folks living to age 967, God fathering a son on a virgin, dead dudes coming back to life ... and while the first two ideas may not be exactly critical to the faith, the last two certainly are. If the first two are accepted as allegories, why not the others? By what criteria do you pick and choose? This is a huge theological problem for Christians, and has led to many schisms and even wars.

I find it interesting that the good Brother Consolmagno (the Vatican astronomer) goes on to categorize Papal Infallibility, as a "PR disaster", while creating one of his very own for the Church.

Of course, in Heathenry, this is a non-issue: it's all allegory and myth. We understand that an event needn't have actually happened to be "true" - we understand that truth itself has many levels of meaning beyond the literal. To put it in secular terms, which came first, the cherry tree or Washington's reputation as an honest man? And does it matter?

But of course, the Vatican doesn't understand this, either. Which is why creationism as literal truth must be "pagan" in their book, even though it's an almost exclusively Christian (and Muslim) concept. All I can ask of good Brother Consolmagno is that he refrain in the future from smearing us like this: keep your problems in you own house, brother!

Believing that God created the universe in six days is a form of superstitious paganism, the Vatican astronomer Guy Consolmagno claimed yesterday.

(link) [The Scotsman]

via Sannion

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