(Latin: creare, to create)

The production of something out of nothing, that is, so that prior to the production of the thing nothing whatever existed that enters into its makeup. Creation, therefore, differs essentially from all other modes of production. Before the tailor can begin his work, the cloth must exist; likewise, the chemist does not produce his new compounds out of nothing, but out of some preexisting substances. Both faith and reason teach us that the origin of the world was by creation. "In the beginning God created heaven, and earth," the Bible proclaims in its opening sentence. Reason arrives at the same conclusion. The world did not emanate from God, as pantheists claim; if it did, it would have Divine attributes. Nor can we assume (as did Anaxagoras and Plato) that the matter of the world is not created, but self-existent; matter is too imperfect for that.

New Catholic Dictionary

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