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Author Topic: PostChalcedonianism: "one composite will" ?  (Read 1431 times) Average Rating: 0
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nonchal
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« on: January 04, 2007, 02:00:50 PM »

PostChalcedonianism accepts the phrase that Christ is "one composite nature." (When nature is interpreted to mean concrete existence.) But I wonder: does it permit the phrases "one composite will" and "one composite action." I know that "theadric activies" is used. But what about referring to them as "one composite will" and "one composite action"? Is this acceptable to Chalcedonians? THANKS.

(Note: no debate on this is permitted. I am asking for informational purposes alone.)
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« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2007, 12:27:33 PM »

Out of curiosity and informational purposes....where did you get this information/terms?
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nonchal
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« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2007, 02:04:23 PM »

Out of curiosity and informational purposes....where did you get this information/terms?

"Theandric activities" is found in the PostChalcedonian Fathers.

"One composite will" and "one composite action" is found in NonChalcedonian Fathers.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2007, 03:02:30 PM by nonchal » Logged
nonchal
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« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2007, 02:23:54 PM »

definition of "composite" --

  • complex: a conceptual whole made up of complicated and related parts; "the complex of shopping malls, houses, and roads created a new town"
  • consisting of separate interconnected parts

Now if separate parts can be called composite, much more so can the two wills be called composite, since the two wills are not separate.

JohnDamascus derails the notion that the two wills are a composition and that the two actions are a composition. He uses this word to mean compound. Compound seems to denote a mixture. So this would be correct. But the normal use of composite is more broad than compound.

Furthermore this Father said that the subsistence alone is compound/composite. (Of course Chalcedonians would take "one composite nature" to mean subsistence.) I have never read a PostChal theologian who said that the natures, wills, or actions are composite. Hmm...

But given the above definition can Chalcedonians admit it?

« Last Edit: January 05, 2007, 02:26:35 PM by nonchal » Logged
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« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2007, 02:31:28 PM »

I have read the St. Maximus the Confessor earlier in his life was inclined to say "one energy" or "one will" and even defended the Psuedo-Dionysius phrase "new theandric will" (notice the singular form of "will").  Many have said he had to be strongly dithelete in terminology due to real Monotheletes who denied the human will of Christ.

God bless.

Mina

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« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2007, 03:01:49 PM »

JohnDamascus accepts the phrase "theandric energies" (ie energies = actions) because: "the human part did not energise merely in a human manner, for He was not mere man; nor did the divine part energise only after the manner of God, for He was not simply God, but He was at once God and man." Through the "permeation" or "interchange" of natures, which comes from their "close communion," each action of Christ "manifests" itself as both divine and human. This is how Chalcedonians accept "theandric energies."

The essential passage in the Damascene is:

Quote
This, then, the theandric energy makes plain that when God became man, that is when He became incarnate, both His human energy was divine, that is deified, and not without part in His divine energy, and His divine energy was not without part in His human energy, but either was observed in conjunction with the other. Now this manner of speaking is called a periphrasis, viz., when one embraces two things in one statement. For just as in the case of the flaming sword we speak of the cut burn as one, and the burnt cut as one, but still hold that the cut and the burn have different energies and different natures, the burn having the nature of fire and the cut the nature of steel, in the same way also when we speak of one theandric energy of Christ, we understand two distinct energies of His two natures, a divine energy belonging to His divinity, and a human energy belonging to His humanity.
http://www.orthodox.net/fathers/exactiii.html#BOOK_III_CHAPTER_XIX


So he admits that there is "one theandric action" or in other words "one composite action." Now this is interesting: I dont think (though I would love to be wrong on this! - so please show me otherwise) he ever admitted that there is one theandric nature or one theandric will. Though he comes close:

Quote
When the blessed Dionysius says that Christ exhibited to us some sort of novel theandric energy, he does not do away with the natural energies by saying that one energy resulted from the union of the divine with the human energy: for in the same way we could speak of one new nature resulting from the union of the divine with the human nature.


How come he does not work on this thought in his treatises on the natures and the wills?

I think its because he does not want to make the concession to his opponents. PostChalcedonian theologians admitted one theandric action because they accepted Dionysius as an authority. This had to be explained without much repercussion elsewhere. The theandric action is interpreted more as a manifestation. But given the bold sentence above, Chalcedonians should also be able to speak about one theandric nature and one theandric will, as composite in some sense.









« Last Edit: January 05, 2007, 03:05:21 PM by nonchal » Logged
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« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2007, 05:16:58 PM »

I think St. John Damascene did not reject the use of "one nature" ("one will" I don't know, perhaps?) due to St. Cyril's use of it (and he defends it I think).  He only rejects what he believes the OO's have believed, that is mixture.  He thought people like St. Severus of Antioch caused some sort of confusion, which is probably why he shies away from the language of "one nature" or "one will."

Perhaps, like St. Maximus, he also defended "one will" due to what many people believed to be St. Dionysius' writings at the time.

God bless.

Mina
« Last Edit: January 05, 2007, 05:19:01 PM by minasoliman » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2007, 05:54:01 PM »

Quote
"the fierce opposition to the doctrine of the one theandric will and action in Christ by Saint Maximus the Confessor"

http://www.lasvegasorthodox.com/library/history/century/Church_History_07_The_Seventh_Century.htm    From: Bible and Church History by Fr. Thomas Hopko, Dept. of Religous Education - Orthodox Church in America, Crestwood, New York

I have not read what Maximus said on the one theandric action. But it seems odd that he would not admit it since all later PostChals did. Perhaps this source meant that in general Maximus opposed oneness. Can someone post actual texts from him on one theandric action?

On another note - It seems that one theandric will and one theandric action are often used together in reference to the ancient debates. But I have never read a Chalcedonian who admitted one theandric will. If someone has seen this phrase used for will then please tell me about it!

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« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2007, 11:59:57 AM »

nonchal,

You may find the following excerpt from the Catholic Encyclopedia to be of some interest:

Quote
But if the word will is taken to mean not the faculty but the decision taken by the will (the will willed, not the will willing), then it is true that the two wills always acted in harmony: there were two wills willing and two acts, but one object, one will willed; in the phrase of St. Maximus, there were duo thelemata though mia gnome.
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Tags: Miathelitism one nature one will monothelitism Chalcedon Orthodox Christology 
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