Starting with Chapter 7, Anthony Zimmerman, STD, began his descent into the question: If the Adam and Eve stories are true, then what the hell happened to us?
He started with the Council of Trent, which met in 1546. Original sin was one of the topics before the Council. What evidence for Original Sin is to be found in the Holy Scriptures and Apostolic Tradition? What about the ancient councils? How do they describe it, as opposed to other sin, and what are its consequences? How is a person freed of Original Sin?
One claim to go was formulated in the Council at Carthage in 418. It was one of St. Augustine’s many brainchildren: Adam would not have died if he had not sinned. Does this mean that the “death” referred to in the Genesis text is the “death of the soul”? Not quite, because 500 years later the CCC (Catechism of the Catholic Church) proclaims that bodily death is a consequence of Adam and Eve’s transgression, and, as a bonus, if we had not sinned we would be immune from death.
Zimmerman suggested that the core of the Carthage-Trent-CCC concept is: Death follows sin, so beware! He then suggested that further clarification is needed.
From the perspective of the question at the beginning of the blog, however, “bodily death” is one of the hells that happen to us. In the next blog, I will riff on that notion with An Archaeology of the Fall in mind.