The superiority of the human being over the created

I ask myself, and I would like to give myself answers, where do we human beings get our superiority over other created beings. We are all God’s creature, we all have his breath of life. I went to the source, which is the bible, to look for where our confusion lies, where is the origin of the problem.  

Consulting several translations, I found in Gen 1:28 of the book of Genesis the text that says “God blessed them, saying to them: “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and subdue it. Have authority over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the sky, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

To read this fragment without taking into account the context and for whom it was written, leads us to a bad interpretation and above all to believe we are superior. As Sister Alcira (of the Franciscan Catechist congregation) told me: “a text without context is a danger”.

Chapter 1 of Genesis was written during the Babylonian exile, and has a sapiential, ethical and theological interest. What it wants to teach us is that God is the creator of everything, including the sun and the moon, which the Babylonians regarded as gods.  This chapter is a critique of everything the Babylonians lived and believed.

We are all God’s creature, no one is above anyone else, we humans are not masters or owners, we are only simple administrators of creation. We are called to care for and preserve what has been created for the next generations.

God is creator and we human beings have been created in his image and likeness, which invites us to be co-creators, as continuers in this work that generates life. We are called to care for, sustain and continue to generate life until the establishment of the Kingdom of God.

Humanity is losing this likeness to God the Creator, and we are becoming consumers, predators, destroyers, and even murderers of other living beings. We would have to say that our resemblance to God is fading, we are losing our humanity. Instead of life we are generating individualism, consumerism, a throwaway society….

We have misinterpreted the authority received from God for the care of nature. We have understood that if God created us at the end of the rest of the beings it is because they are at our service; but it is not so, it is just the opposite, to have the special charge of care, stewardship.

We must return to God’s first desire “Let us make him in our image and likeness”, let us make humanity recover its co-creative mission. Let it watch over the harmony of the cosmos throughout time, let it nourish itself and administer well the gifts received. Let there be abundance for future generations and let this wisdom be transmitted from generation to generation.

 Rosa Maria Marmolejos Genao

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