21.7.08

C.S. Lewis ja evoluutio

C.S. Lewis on ylistettu kristinuskon selittäjä ja puolustaja. Mere Christianity-kirja on niitä teoksia joita suositellaan luettavaksi. Lewis oli epäilemättä viisas ja perinpohjainen mies. Eräs asia on kuitenkin helppo unohtaa, kun miehen teoksia mainostetaan kreationistien suunnalta.

C. S. Lewis ei nähnyt ratkaisematonta ristiriitaa evoluution ja kristinuskon välillä.

Viitteitä tällaisesta ajattelumaailmasta saadaan, kun luemme minkälaista kirjeenvaihtoa Lewis kävi Bernard Acworthin kanssa. Valitettavasti Acworthin kirjeet eivät ole säilyneet jälkipolville. Lewisin kanta tulee kuitenkin selkeäksi. Hän oli usein ilmoittanut olevansa jonkinsortin teistinen evolutionisti (IDeistit eivät tykkää heistä). Acworth taas oli tiukka evoluution vastustaja. Hän osallistui 30-luvulla evoluutiota vastustaviin protesteihin. Acworth ei ymmärtänyt miten evoluutio ja kristinusko mahtuisivat samaan päähän. Siksi hän painosti vastausta Lewisilta.

Lewis ei koskaan suostunut antamaan nimeään anti-evoluutioprotestiliikkeen käyttöön. 50-luvulla hän kuitenkin ilmoitti, että "evoluutio on modernia sivilisaatiota hallitseva olennainen ja radikaali valhe."

"I have read nearly the whole of Evolution [probably Acworth’s unpublished “The Lie of Evolution”] and am glad you sent it. I must confess it has shaken me: not in my belief in evolution, which was of the vaguest and most intermittent kind, but in my belief that the question was wholly unimportant. I wish I were younger. What inclines me now to think that you may be right in regarding it as the central and radical lie in the whole web of falsehood that now governs our lives is not so much your arguments against it as the fanatical and twisted attitudes of its defenders."


Syyskuu 13, 1951

Sitä ennen - kirjeenvaihto käytiin 40-luvulla - Lewis ei kuitenkaan nähnyt suurta ongelmaa evoluution ja uskon välillä:

September 23, 1944: "Do I agree that the theory of evolution, its truth or falsehood, is of fundamental importance to the Xtian faith?" This question can have several senses, in some of which the answer yes wd. most seriously misrepresent my position. I believe that Man has fallen from the state of innocence in which he was created: I therefore disbelieve in any theory wh. contradicts this. It is not yet obvious to me that all theories of evolution do contradict it. When they do not, it is not my business to pronounce on their truth or falsehood. My "message" on any biological theorem wh. does not contradict (or wh. I, with my imperfect process of reasoning, do not perceive to contradict) the Creed, is not "equivocal" but non-existent: just as my message about the curvature of space is not equivocal but non-existent. Just as my belief in my own immortal & rational soul does not oblige or qualify me to hold a particular theory of the pre-natal history of my embryo, so my belief that Men in general have immortal & rational souls does not oblige or qualify me to hold a theory of their pre-human organic history—if they have one.

December 9, 1944: Thanks for your interesting letter of the 8th:—I can't have made my position clear. I am not either attacking or defending Evolution. I believe that Christianity can still be believed, even if Evolution is true. This is where you and I differ. Thinking as I do, I can't help regarding your advice (that I henceforth include arguments against Evolution in all my Christian apologetics) as a temptation to fight the battle on what is really a false issue: and also on terrain very unsuitable for the only weapon I have. Atheism is as old as Epicurus, and very few polytheists regard their gods as creative.


Problem of Pain-kirjassaan C.S. Lewis kirjoittaa:

"If ... you mean simply that man is physically descended from animals, I have no objection"


s. 72

"... for we have good reason to believe that animals existed long before men... For long centuries God perfected the animal form which was to become the vehicle of humanity and the image of Himself ... [Eventually,] God caused a new kind of consciousness to descend upon this organism".


s. 133, 77.

Minulla ei ole näitä kirjoja, joten en voi heti tarkistaa onko kyseessä paha misquote vai ei.

Näyttäisi kuitenkin siltä, että Lewis ei ottanut Raamatun Genesis-tarinaa kirjaimellisesti totena. Hän tietenkin vastusti evolutionismiä, eli evoluutioteoriaan pohjautuvaa materialistista ideologiaa.

Lewisin kuoleman jälkeen julkaistu The Funeral of a Great Myth taas esittää selkeimmät evoluutiota vastustavat argumentit. Hän ei kuitenkaan ole murhaamassa sitä evoluutiota, jonka parissa biologit telmivät:

I do not mean that the doctrine of Evolution as held by practising biologists is a Myth. It may be shown, by later biologists*, to be a less satisfactory hypothesis than was hoped fifty years ago [the beginning of the twentieth century]. But that does not amount to being a Myth.

5 comments:

Markku said...

Problem of Painin lainaukset laajemmin:
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If by saying that man rose from brutality you mean simply that man is physically descended from animals, I have no objection. But it does not follow that the further back you go the more brutal in the sense of wicked or wretched - you will find man to be. No animal has moral virtue: but it is not true that all animal behaviour is of the kind one should call "wicked" if it were practised by men. On the contrary, not all animals treat other creatures of their own species as badly as men treat men.
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2. The origin of animal suffering could be traced, by earlier generations, to the Fall of man - the whole world was infected by the uncreating rebellion of Adam. This is now impossible, for we have good reason to believe that animals existed long before men. Carnivorousness, with all that it entails, is older than humanity. Now it is impossible at this point not to remember a certain sacred story which, though never included in the creeds, has been widely believed in the Church and seems to be implied in several Dominical, Pauline, and Johannine utterances - I mean the story that man was not the first creature to rebel against the Creator, but that some older and mightier being long since became apostate and is now the emperor of darkness and (significantly) the Lord of this world. Some people would like to reject all such elements from Our Lord's teaching: and it might be argued that when He emptied Himself of His glory He also humbled Himself to share, as man, the current superstitions of His time. And I certainly think that Christ, in the flesh, was not omniscient - if only because a human brain could not, presumably, be the vehicle of omniscient consciousness, and to say that Our Lord's thinking was not really conditioned by the size and shape of His brain might be to deny the real incarnation and become a Docetist. Thus, if Our Lord had committed Himself to any scientific or historical statement which we knew to be untrue, this would not disturb my faith in His deity. But the doctrine of Satan's existence and fall is not among the
things we know to be untrue: it contradicts not the facts discovered by scientists but the mere, vague "climate of opinion" that we happen to be living in. Now I take a very low view of "climates of opinion". In his own subject every man knows that all discoveries are made and all errors corrected by those who ignore the "climate of opinion".

Markku said...

Se mikä minua ihmetyttää on että miksi tämän kirjoittaja jätti pois sen kaikkein relevanteimman osan Problem of Painista:
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I offer the following picture - a "myth" in the Socratic sense, a not unlikely tale. For long centuries God perfected the animal form which was to become the vehicle of humanity and the image of Himself. He gave it hands whose thumb could be applied to each. of the fingers, and jaws and teeth and throat capable of articulation, and a brain sufficiently complex to execute all the material motions whereby rational thought is incarnated. The creature may have existed for ages in this state before it became man: it may even have been clever enough to make things which a modern archaeologist would accept as proof of its humanity. But it was only an animal because all its physical and psychical processes were directed to purely material and natural ends. Then, in the fullness of time, God caused to descend upon this organism, both on its psychology and physiology, a new kind of consciousness which could say "I" and "me", which could look upon itself as an object, which knew God, which could make judgements of truth, beauty, and goodness, and which was so far above time that it could perceive time flowing past. This new consciousness ruled and illuminated the whole organism, flooding every part of it with light, and was not, like ours, limited to a selection of the movements going on in one part of the organism; namely the brain. Man was then all consciousness.

Paholaisen Asianajaja said...

Kiitos noista lainauksista!

Olenko nyt ymmärtänyt oikein. Lewis ei näe mitään ongelmaa siinä, että muut kuin ihmiset ovat kehittyneet lukemattomien vuosien ajan. Mutta ihmisen kohdalla mukaan astuu - jossain kohtaa - Jumala? Tämä ainakin selittäisi miksi Lewis ei heti hypännyt antievolutionistien kelkkaan.

Markku said...

Käsittääkseni Lewisin ajatus oli että Jumalalla oli alun alkaenkin tarkoitus luoda ihminen evoluution avulla. Siinä vaiheessa kun ruumis on muuten valmis, Jumala muuttaa tämän olennon aivoja ja tuloksena on ihminen.

Larus said...

"I do not mean that the doctrine of Evolution as held by practising biologists is a Myth. It may be shown, by later biologists*, to be a less satisfactory hypothesis than was hoped fifty years ago [the beginning of the twentieth century]. But that does not amount to being a Myth."

Sikäli kuin ymmärrän, Suuren myytin hautajaiset -essee ei vastusta evoluutioteoriaa sinänsä, vaan sitä käsitystä, että evoluutio olisi edistystä. Tässähän Lewis on siis samaa mieltä nykyisten evoluutiobiologien kanssa.

"But the Myth knows none of these reticences. Having first turned what was a theory of change into theory of improvement, it then makes this a cosmic theory. Not merely terrestrial organisms but everything is moving ‘upwards and onwards’."