Well, I have two htoguhts right now; maybe more as they come to me:
Theosis is not only a 'destination' or objective but also a process. What is the ultimate communion with God? Isn't it a potential that, in eternity, even though we will be in communion with Him, that we will still have the potential to increase our communion?
2. Secondly, while theosis is completed through self-emptying, or kenosis, I would like to hear how you understand the role of human will. While we will empty ourselves of ourselves, we will retain our human will, so that we may constantly and voluntarily chose to love Him. This phrase:
gives me pause, as it implies that the our wills may disappear. We will not be absorbed in the Godhead, nor 'lost' in His Glory, but instead will be interpenetrated and surrounded, all phrases implying a retention of individuality.
Thank you Fr. Chris for your response.
How I understand human will is the impression I get from reading fathers from the Church, such as:
God's will is done on earth as in heaven when, in the way indicated, we do not disparage one another, and when not only are we without jealousy but we are united one to another in simplicity and in mutual love, peace and joy, and regard our brother's progress as our own and his failure as our loss. St. Symeon Metaphrastis
(To add on that) "Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven..."
...the true fulfillment of the commandments does not require merely forbearance from excesses or defects, it also demands an aim acceptable to God, that is the fulfillment in everything of God's will alone. St. Gregory of Sinai
This is, of course, just a sampling. But from what I've gathered is that we should, each and every Orthodox Christian, put to death our self and don the "New Self," that is Jesus Christ. Consequentially, that means we extinguish ourselves of:
...among other things. I imagine that our wills, yes, will dissapear once theosis is achieved. As far as our temporal life is concerned, I have yet to see, outside of certain holy people, our own human will dissapear. Are you referring to free will, when you say that "we will retain our human will, so that we may constantly and voluntarily chose to love Him?" I'm interested as to what you mean.
You also said that "we will not be absorbed in the Godhead, nor 'lost' in His Glory." I don't mean to say that we will ontologically be absorbed into the Godhead; rather penetrated by the Divine energies that will restore unto us the nature (a nature in complete subservience to His will) once lost.
If you could reccomend me some writings from the holy fathers that talk about the Individual and his existence within the theotic realm, I would surely appreciate that.
Thank you again, Fr.,