Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Biological and Spiritual Life

Since the beginning of human history, men have endeavoured to understand the ontology of truth, the deeper meanings of life, existence, reality, God etc. With the establishment of the Church we are introduced into a new understanding, a combination of Greek Philosophy and Jewish Teaching, giving us thus very high teachings and beliefs on our new, spiritual life. This new, spiritual life differs from our simple, biological life. C.S. Lewis explains the difference between biological and spiritual life, claiming:

‘We use the same word life for both: but if you thought that both must therefore be the same sort of thing, that would be like thinking that the ‘greatness’ of space and the ‘greatness’ of God were the same sort of greatness. In reality, the difference between Biological life and Spiritual life is so important that I am going to give them two distinct names. The Biological sort which comes to us through Nature, and which (like everything else in Nature) is always tending to run down and decay so that it can only be kept up by incessant subsidies from Nature in the form of air, water, food, etc., is Bios. The Spiritual life which is in God from all eternity, and which made the whole natural universe, is Zoe. Bios has, to be sure, a certain shadowy or symbolic resemblance to Zoe: but only the sort of resemblance there is between a photo and a place, or a statue and a man. A man who changed from having Bios to having Zoe would have gone through as big a change as a statue which changed from being a carved stone to being a real man.
And that is precisely what Christianity is about. This world is a great sculptor’s shop. We are the statues and these is a rumour going round the shop that some of us are some day going to come to life.’[1]  

[1] Lewis, C.S., Mere Christianity, (London, Collins, 2012), p.159. 

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