[quote="NeedImprovement, post:8, topic:254068"]
One of the first things any scientist has to know, is how to ask questions ; pertinent and precise questions.
However, the previous post has provided us with a good model of the straw man argument instead ... not necessarily intentional, but a fallacy nonetheless. So no one should be surprised that it has contributed absolutely nothing towards answering the OP's question because it is based on a false premise.
Our Catholic Faith, our religion, answers the question, " *Why *?"
Evolution attempts to answer the question "How ?"
Both theologians and scientists need to know how to ask and recognize pertinent and precise questions.
Here is Father John Hardon, S.J. 's definition of the Tree of Life from his Modern Catholic Dictionary :
TREE OF LIFE. A tree that stood next to the Tree of Knowledge in the middle of the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2:9). It conferred on anyone eating its fruit the gift of immortality (Genesis 3:22).
We can compare that with his definition of the Book of Life:
BOOK OF LIFE. Figurative expression in the Bible (Revelation 21) for predestination. It signifies God's foreknowledge of the elect. God in virtue of his omniscience must infallibly and eternally know the elect and the lost, but this does not imply that the fate of either is sealed by God without a prevision of each person's merit. The Book of Life refers to those who will enjoy eternal happiness .
A little more intricate take by St. Thomas Aquinas on the Tree of Life in his Summa (you have to scroll down to Article 4. Whether in the state of innocence man would have acquired immortality by the tree of life? ).
I also like Credo's reply in post # 2.
Today, the priest giving our homily told us that in his prayer life, he approaches the Cross as the Tree of Life because it helps him avoid the spiritual death that results when harboring too much anger (a capital sin). Today was the first time I heard of the the Cross of Christ being referred to as the Tree of Life, and had questions. Thanks for the explanations.
I also see the Cross, as the Tree of Life, as having great contextual significance for today as expressed in the priest's homily. He picked today, the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, to share his views on the Cross as the Tree of Life because so many people are going to relive their anger at those attacks today. By going to the Cross of Christ in prayer, we can be reminded of how much we have been forgiven by God through this great sacrifice, and that the death brought about by original sin no longer holds a fatal grip on our eternal destinies. In line with today's Gospel reading, we are reminded that as Christ's disciples we need to turn away from anger and be generous forgivers. It is in this context that I better understand the Cross as the Tree of Life.