The debate between creationism and evolution is an “absurdity” since evolution can coexist with faith, said Pope Benedict XVI this week while vacationing in the mountains of northern Italy.
While there is much scientific proof to support evolution, the theory cannot exclude a role by God, he said according to MSNBC News.
“They are presented as alternatives that exclude each other,” the Pope said. “This clash is an absurdity because on one hand there is much scientific proof in favor of evolution, which appears as a reality that we must see and which enriches our understanding of life and being as such.”
However, evolution does not answer all of the great philosophical questions, he said, including: Where does everything come from?
The Pope’s comments came during a question and answer session with a group of 400 priests, deacons, and seminarians from the region where he is vacationing. In his responses he also spoke about the need to care for the Earth. He urged people to listen to “the voice of the Earth” or risk destroying its very existence.
“We cannot simply do what we want with this Earth of ours, with what has been entrusted to us,” said the Pope.
World religions have shown a growing interest in the environment, particularly the ramifications of climate change, he noted. “We must respect the interior laws of creation, of this Earth, to learn these laws and obey them if we want to survive.”
“This obedience to the voice of the Earth is more important for our future happiness ... than the desires of the moment. Our Earth is talking to us and we must listen to it and decipher its message if we want to survive,” he stated.