From Matter to Emergence

  • Article (PDF)
  • 13 pages
  • Level: university

Fr. George V. Coyne, S. J., Director of the Vatican Observatory from 1978 to 2006, discusses how scientific evidence shows that evolution from the Big Bang to the human brain has been a continuous process of complexification where the passage from inorganic to organic to prebiotic to biotic to intelligent does not demonstrate clear scientific demarcations, and how this presents many challenges for theological thought, especially as regards the human being in relationship to the evolutionary process.

A version of this paper appeared in Fr. Coyne’s article “The concept of Matter and Materialism in the Origin and Evolution of Life” in Exobiology: Matter, Energy, and Information in the Origin and Evolution of faith-science: Proceedings of the Fifth Trieste Conference on Chemical Evolution: An Abdus Salam Memorial Trieste, Italy, 22–26 September 1997 (Springer, 1998).

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