English 233: Introduction to Western Humanities - Baroque & Enlightenment
Note on "the end of creation."
Here you will need to clarify the significance of the special place or role accorded to Man (humankind) within the creation as a whole. To do this, you will need to discuss the divine ordination both of plants and animals with respect to Man and of Man with respect to his Creator. What rights and obligations are attached to the human creature?
- What was man (apparently) originally created for -- in the Garden of Eden? (Cf. Gen. 1:27-31, 2:15.)
- What becomes the purpose of earthly human existence after the Fall?
- What is the ultimate end of man, beyond history?
How does all this relate to the ultimate purpose of the Creation taken as a whole? Is it the same as the "ultimate end of man"?
Note that different Christian theologies may diverge on this point. Consider the exchange between Calvin and the Catholic Bishop Sadoleto on the ultimate end of human existence: note that this difference turns upon a deeper disagreement about God's purpose in the undertaking the creation as a whole.
Review the general concepts of telos, teleology, and teleological explanation.
Do "Back" (or click here) to return to the main outline on the traditional Christian picture of history.
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This page last updated 01 February 1999.