Saturday, July 08, 2006

Thinking with Küng about God's activity in world evolution

Review of Küng’s Der Anfang aller Dinge, section D, part 8.

The last section of this excellent chapter (D. Life in the Cosmos?) is the very best. It not only summarises the reasoning Küng has worked through in the chapter, but does so in explicit and fascinating reference to the question as to how one should understand God in the light of the evolutionary process. Not only that, Küng writes more personally than ever before, and one feels that the author really ‘comes through’ in this section, even ending his words with a hymn of praise.

Quite frankly, I would like to simply translate the whole section, but as this is out of the question I shall try my best to summarise.

The question Küng now addresses is:

6. Can you think after God’s activity? (Wie Gottes Wirken denken? – tricky German to translate!)

Küng has throughout the book steadily argued for a ‘yes’ to a reasonable trust in an ‘Alpha’, a ‘Ground’ for all things, one based not on an anthropic principle, but one that is simply the ‘other side of science’, where scientific research and knowledge cannot tread.

However, what Küng affirms is not the same thing as faith in a ‘supernatural intervention’ of God in the process of world evolution. Indeed, biology has demonstrated more and more that such a ‘divine intervention’ has become superfluous. However, the evolutionary process cannot either shut out (or in) an origin, an ‘Alpha’, nor a final meaning and goal in the evolutionary process.

But how should we understand God in the light of these points, and his relation to the world?

To be continued ...



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