By Jaroslav Pelikan
The debate approximately evolution and creationism is awesome proof of the tensions among biblical and philosophical-scientific reasons of the origins of the universe. for many of the earlier twenty centuries, very important historic context for the talk has been provided through the relation (or "counterpoint") among huge texts: Plato's Timaeus and the Book of Genesis.
In What Has Athens to Do with Jerusalem?, Jaroslav Pelikan examines the origins of this counterpoint. He experiences the vital philosophical problems with origins as posed in classical Rome by way of Lucretius, and he then proceeds to an exam of Timaeus and Genesis, with Timaeus' Plato representing Athens and Genesis' Moses representing Jerusalem. He then follows the 3 most vital case reports of the counterpoint--in the Jewish philosophical theology of Alexandria, within the Christian considered Constantinople, and within the highbrow foundations of the Western Middles a while represented by way of Catholic Rome, the place Timaeus often is the purely Platonic discussion normally circulation.
Whatever Plato could have meant initially in writing Timaeus, it has for many of the intervening interval been learn within the mild of Genesis. Conversely, Genesis has been identified, no longer within the unique Hebrew, yet in Greek and Latin translations that have been obvious to undergo a special resemblance to each other and to the Latin model of Timaeus. Pelikan's examine results in unique findings that take care of Christian doctrine within the interval of the church fathers, together with the 3 Cappadocians (Basil of Caesarea, Gregory of Nazianzus, and Gregory of Nyssa) within the East, and within the West, Ambrose, Augustine, and Boethius. All of those very important authors addressed the matter of the "counterpoint," and neither they nor those basic texts can develop into absolutely intelligible with no realization to the principal matters being explored here.
What Has Athens to Do with Jerusalem? might be of curiosity to historians, theologians, and philosophers and to a person with curiosity in any of the non secular traditions addressed herein.
Jaroslav Pelikan is Sterling Professor Emeritus of historical past, Yale college and President of the yankee Academy of Arts and Sciences.