The calendar was adoped and worked out over time, with synods and councils, within one church in Eucharistic communion. It provided and provides liturgical unity. The adoption of an innovation, in the manner it was done and in its effect, has marred that. It was not a concilliar process, far from it. The question is not one of either 'hardheadedness' or 'hardliners'.
OK, well, let's take this apart.
First: the Old paschalion was devised by a single man, to whom we can even give a name: Dionysius Exiguus. If time was involved in its working out, it's because the Roman church had trouble working out a formula.
Second, the issue of conciliarity: the issue here is the paschalion; put in on a new basis, and the fixed calendar should properly fall into the Gregorian pattern. We've been over the problem that the "revised Julian" calendar puts Easter "late".
The point here is that I have to doubt whether a conciliar solution to this is actually possible. The sense I get is that there is a large enough body in Orthodoxy which refuses to discuss calendar reform, and which therefore holds the rest of Orthodoxy hostage. Contrariwise the "non-traditionalists" do not feel bound to use a Julian fixed calendar.
Whether this has anything to do with love, well, if it does, it traces back to rivalry with the West. I do not think that one side can be labelled as loving and the other not.
As for who are or were headliners, those who introduced with brutal force and the use of gendarmes, forced stripping, shaving and haircutting, the violation of churches during divine services, etc., etc.
But you know, it's 2004 and in the USA we at least don't do any of these things. And if they were done, isn't it time to forgive them? Hmmmmmm??
My understanding is that there was great resistance by good 'protestant' folk when after some resistance Pope Gregory's calendar was finally adopted in England.
Again, behind the question of resistance is whether it was well-grounded. At this late date, we in the West recognize that resistance for the rivalry (if not outright hatred) it was, and have let it go.
You have a different calendar, as do the Hebrews, Moslems, and others.
OK, now we've stepped into false analogies.
In the first place, we now have the subtext that Western Christians aren't Christians.
In the second place, this isn't historical. All of these calendars are astronomical; theoretically, one person could go out each night in Jerusalem and set the dates for each calendar by looking at the moon and determining the equinoxes (the latter not being necessary for the Moslem calendar). That is the way it was anciently done
. The problem for both Judaism and Christianity is that distance and communication rendered this method impossible; therefore, mechanical calculations had to be substituted.
All of these mechanical methods are wrong to the degree that they haven't got the lunar motion exactly right. In theory this error is stable and small; the cumulative error is also pretty tiny.
The cumulative error of the solar portion, however, is not small. So here's the irony: the "sanctification" of the old calendar is based largely on it being in error! If we had all stuck with observations, then we would all be, well, we would be on the Aleppo paschalion and the civil calendar would be a little different (different pattern of leap years, basically). The innovation
of using calculations is what caused the deviation.
And now, apparently, calendar reform in the East is impossible because there has already been calendar reform in the West.
As to the accusation that the Orthodox arrogate to themselves, this or that, I find that accusation an odd one. The bishop of Rome arrogates many thinks to himself, universal jurisdiction, papal infallibility, the ability to introduce 'dogmas' unknown to Scripture, Sacred Tradition or the Church Fathers.
If that is so, what does that matter to the East? There is always enough arrogation to go around; the East does not need to borrow some from Rome!
There's a consistent problem in discourse here in that this particular set of issues doesn't resolve out in East-West differences. On these issues, the Protestant West sees Rome and Constantinople as like each other and unlike the Protestants.
Maybe each of us needs to first look to our own home, only then may be able to talk to each other with confidence.
Wellllllll, maybe that's not possible. It seems to me that one crucial character of Orthodoxy is that it defines itself by excluding the other groups. For instance, people here, in talking from Orthodoxy, use "-ism" words far more than Protestants (and perhaps Catholics) would. Separation can only be justified on unacceptable difference; therefore, the causality (it seems to me) tends to get broken because differences get defined as unacceptable in order to justify the already extant separation.
The homes, in that sense, only exist because of the walls between groups.