The articulation between evolutionism and creationism in New Religious Movements: Two South American case studies

Keywords: evolutionism, creationism, News Religious Movements, New Age, ufology, spitirism

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to demonstrate how certain religious perspectives present nuances between the concepts of creation and evolution. Although public debate characterizes them as polarized concepts, it is important to understand how contemporary religious expressions resignify them and create arrangements in which biological evolution and creation by the intervention of higher beings are presented in a continuum. It begins with a brief introduction on the relations and reframing of Science concepts in the New Religious Movements along with New Age thinking. Then we have two examples which allows us to analyze this evolution-creation synthesis. First, I will present a South American New Religious Movement that promotes bricolage between the New Age, Roman Catholicism and contacts with extraterrestrials. Then, I will analyze the thoughts of a Brazilian medium who disseminates lectures along with the channeling of ETs in videos on the internet, mixing the elements of ufology with cosmologies of Brazilian religions such as Kardecist spiritism and Umbanda. These two examples share the idea of ​​the intervention of extraterrestrial or superior beings in human evolution, thus, articulating the concepts of evolution and creation. Therefore, in these arrangements it is possible to observe an inseparability between spiritual and material, evolution and creation or biological and spiritual evolution.

Author Biography

Vitor Campanha, Federal University of Juiz de Fora (UFJF), Brazil

M.A. in Religious Studies and PhD in Religious Studies in progress at the Federal University of Juiz de Fora (UFJF), Brazil.

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Published
2020-12-31