Modern scientific cosmology and Orthodox theology

  1. Lemma
  2. Современная научная космология и православное богословие
  3. Russian
  4. Asliturk, Miriam
  5. Modes of interaction > Orthodox critique of science - Scientific theories and disciplines > Biology:evolution - Scientific theories and disciplines > Modern physics: Relativity
  6. 07-07-2018
  7. Кирьянов, Димитрий [Author]. Современная научная космология и православное богословие
  8. Богослов.ру
  9. Einstein, Albert - theory of relativity - Big Bang - cosmology - Russian Orthodoxy - Creationism - dialogue
  10. Click Here
    1. <p>Кирьянов, Димитрий (2008). Современная научная космология и православное богословие. <em>Богослов.ру.</em> Retrieved from: <a href=""></a> </p>
    1. The text tries to answer whether a Russian Orthodox Christian can trust science or not. The author believes that there are two extreme positions on the question. The first is held by creationists, who see science as hostile to religion and therefore refute it. The extreme is when, Christians, especially in the West, see science uncritically and start questioning basic Christian dogmas. 

      According to the author, Russian Orthodox Christianity should seek a dialogue between science and religion. The Russian Orthodox Church should divide truly scientific knowledge from philosophical assumptions that are often presented as scientific truths. Cosmology is central in this dialogue because it is the most ideological among other sciences. Christian cosmology dominated the European mind before the 17th century. In the 18th -19th century, philosophers developed an anti-Christian idea of eternal matter and the endless universe. This changed with Einstein's theory of relativity. Although Einstein himself believed in eternal matter, his theory helped develop the idea of a growing universe, therefore seeing the universe as having a beginning in time.

      Currently, modern cosmology is working within the frames of the Big Bang theory. This does not contradict the Christian idea of Genesis, but the theory has yet to be clearly formulated by scientists. The author believes that thus far, scientists' proposed models of the Big Bang theory cannot be proven; these models are philosophical assumptions and should not be taken as final truths. Physicist Frank Tipler (b. 1949) for example, says that if God exists then science will find and describe him. This idea implies that everything can be written in math formulas.

      Christian cosmology believes that God created the universe out of nothing. Can science come to a conclusion that matter originated from nothing? The problem is philosophical because a Christian “nothing” is non-being, whereas a physical “nothing” is a vacuum, which in itself is something. Moreover, how can scientists measure a non-existing universe? Thus, only philosophy and religion can answer these questions. The author concludes that science and religion have their own areas of describing the universe and they do not contradict each other.