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Author Topic: Here's an Icon with Something for Everyone  (Read 19823 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: March 05, 2007, 02:46:10 PM »

I thought I'd seen everything under the sun in whacko icons, but here's a good one.  And I think I'll just leave it at that.  Though a deacon at church told me he'd seen someone advertising icons painted of your departed pets.  St. Coco of Carpeta Urinatus (patron saint of teacup poodles of course).


http://www.dormitionskete.org/DsWebStore/product_info.php?products_id=435
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« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2007, 03:15:16 PM »

I thought someone posted this recently as a legit icon, but maybe not or this is another version.

Looking at the source and description (the website), I think I can understand:  is from ROAC if I'm not mistaken.  Doesn't surprise me.
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« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2007, 03:46:53 PM »

Ah this one.   Roll Eyes  I've read that it is a re-working and updating of an earlier icon that did not have such things as "New Age"  or the historical anachronism of Martin Luther with a rifle.

Well, Elisha, Dormition Skete (DS) *used* to be ROAC, but now it is separated and is the domain of Gregory of Colorado.  He split from ROAC not quite 3 years ago iirc.  It was in the summer.  So this icon is from Gregory's mindset it seems likely.

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« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2007, 04:34:34 PM »

I don't think it is wacko.  This 'icon' has been around in a different format for 20 years.  I think it was first produced in Bulgaria - I have a copy framed which for me is a reminder of the Church in the midst of worldly heresies.  I don't venerate it and my copy is more detailed than that produced by the Colorado Beetle.  The only person missing is Clinton and his NATO buddies dropping bombs on school children in Serbia during Pascha.
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« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2007, 05:11:50 PM »

I've also seen the icon sans "new age" and Athenagoras.  It specifically depicted Pope Leo as the Pope, as well as Luther (minus rifle).
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« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2007, 05:19:30 PM »

I wish the "enlargement" link actually worked.  I'm curious to see these depictions.

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« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2007, 05:30:06 PM »

Where's the depiction of the guy who figured out how to make a bag of pretzels or chips only a quarter full and still sell it to you as if was full to the top?
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« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2007, 05:33:00 PM »

Ecumenism doesn't necessarily mean accepting of all religions as they are, but merely to unite them. Which is, after all, our goal, so long as they become Orthodox. Not to mention he implies that Jews and Christians worship different Gods. They may not accept Jesus, but I have no doubt they are worshiping the Father.

And masonry isn't a religion, no matter how hard people want it to be a secret cult that runs our country and anoints kings. 

The guy who wrote that description seems a bit off his meds.
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« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2007, 06:15:18 PM »

It'd be nice if some people here showed more respect to an icon that is based off a 17th century prototype and is perfectly Orthodox as far as I can tell, as heretics do indeed attack the Church by their heresies (and sometimes by physically killing Orthodox monks, lay people, and clergy), but yet Christ, the Theotokos, the Apostles and the Bishops guide the Church with the Truth of Her teachings, and thus the Church continues to "sail", and is not able to be "sunk".  There is an older version of this icon that I have seen too, but for some reason I can't post it here Sad, the forum isn't letting me.

Given that YHWH/the Logos/Jesus was the person of the Trinity who appeared to the Old Testament patriarchs, how can one say that modern day Jews are worshipping the Father?
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« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2007, 07:51:55 PM »

It'd be nice if some people here showed more respect to an icon that is based off a 17th century prototype and is perfectly Orthodox as far as I can tell
The problem that I have with such depictions is that it doesn't fully convey a spiritual truth, because 
a) it demonizes people, and
b) it seems to express a belief in dualism- i.e, that the battle between Good and Evil is somehow evenly pitched and could go either way.

 I think it would be better if it showed the Ark of the Church triumphing over demons trying to attack her and the personification of Hades, in accordance with Christ's promise in the Gospel.

And being based on a 17th century prototype is no guarantee of Orthodox Iconography. There are 17th century Icons depicting St. Christopher with the head of a dog:

   
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« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2007, 08:20:38 PM »

I can see what you mean, it can get out of control to demonize people, but heretics do attack the Church, and sometimes this is important to show the victory of Orthodoxy over heretics.  This is another icon that might be considered as demonizing by some, but I think it is a good icon:   This is an icon of Zografou Monastery on Athos when the Latins attacked the Monastery and the faithful fathers of the monastery were killed.

My point about the 17th century thing was to show that this icon didn't just pop up all of the sudden with Gregory, but the idea of it has been around for some time. 
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« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2007, 08:58:58 PM »

This is another icon that might be considered as demonizing by some
Actually, I don't consider the Icon of the Athonite Martyrs to be demonizing anyone, since it is recording  actual historical events, and it follows the rules of Orthodox Iconography, in that the only difference between the Martyrs and their executioners is that the former have haloes. The Martyrs and the Soldiers are depicted as just as human as each other. This Icon does not depict an allegorical attack but a real one. (By the way, it wasn't the Latins who attacked the monks, but rather the Soldiers of the Byzantine Emperor.)
The Icon of the Ark of the Church, on the other hand, uses real, recognisable people as "allegories" (i.e. robs them of their humanity). Lenin is not Lenin in the Icon, but the personification of Communism, yet he is still recognisable as Lenin.
The fact that this is a political poster rather than an Icon is evident from Dormition Skete's own description of it:
Quote
"Next to him is Lenin, with his Russian pistol carefully aimed at the heart of Christ. He tried to destroy the Russian Church by putting his own KGB agents as bishops. He killed Patriarch Tikhon, who was the heart of the Russian Church, but failed to understand that the Church is not centered around one person. The Church went into the catacombs and lived. One of the bishops of the Catacomb Church was one of the three consecrating bishops who ordained our Archbishop Gregory."
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« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2007, 10:51:48 PM »

Quote
Next above him is the "Orthodox" Patriarch of Constantinople, Athenagoras, the father of modern day Ecumenism. He also has a hooked rod, trying to redirect the path of the Church. He was a 32 degree Mason, and behind him is the demon of Masonry, who has around his waist the apron which Masons wear with the square and compass and the letter G in the middle. Masons embrace all peoples and faiths into their religion. Ecumenism accepts all religions with a desire to create a one world religion. An Orthodox bishop cannot accept Ecumenism. It is the heresy of all heresies. Because these "Orthodox" bishops accepted the false belief of all religions, not only heretical Christianity, but also Judaism and Islam, saying that "we all worship the same god", just as Masonry tries to do, they are not Orthodox, and in fact fight against the Church.

This is clearly an old calendarist Icon. Very judgemental I must say. Not Orthodox by my standard.
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« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2007, 10:56:47 PM »

I wish the "enlargement" link actually worked.  I'm curious to see these depictions.




Yeah, it is frustrating, especially when your eyes are as bad as mine.  Is there anyone here who knows how to enlarge it?  I'm particularly interested in seeing the evil monophysites with the pointy hats.    Smiley

(For those who don't know, Eutyches is condemned by the Oriental Orthodox.  I assume that is who the site is referring to as "Eftyches.")
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« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2007, 08:49:56 AM »

I've seen neo-Coptic icons which depict a trampled Arius and a cowering Nestorius before Sts. Athanasius and Cyril, respectively. I'm not sure whether such depictions existed in antiquity.

Quote
Yeah, it is frustrating, especially when your eyes are as bad as mine.  Is there anyone here who knows how to enlarge it?  I'm particularly interested in seeing the evil monophysites with the pointy hats.


I, too, wish the icon had an enlargment function. I seriously want to see who this Eftyches fellow is (the one who apparantly refused to accept the decisions of two councils almost 100 years apart--he must've been ancient!), not to mention this mownofeezyte demon! I also honestly never knew we Coptic mownofeezytes wore pointy hats, "till this day", either; I was so sure that that was only the practice of you Armenian heretics. We, and our demons, have much more class and style than that!
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« Reply #15 on: March 06, 2007, 10:03:09 AM »

The first time I ever saw an icon of St Christopher the dog-faced, I realized that it was a representation of an adult with an unrepaired harelip.  I noted as I read about the icon that he came from a village of "dog-faced" people.  The reality was more probable that the village was a group of people who genetically had hare-lips and they had managed to find a way to feed the babies early on so they could survive the harelip at a time that most hare lip babies died from malnourishment. The acceptance of  the dog-faced people is indicative of the inclusiveness of the Church for all people.

As to the Ship Icon, I have seen versions of it in Slavic Monasteries where it is quite  popular.  The use of the gun with Luther had more to do with the  Lutheran Swedes invasion of Poland, Russia , Eastern Europe,etc and their use of guns during that invasion.  Luther is representative of that grouping seeking to destroy the Orthodox Church by military force.  The icon will also include a Pope of Rome usually holding some form of spear or other weapon, some Orthodox or Eastern Catholic Bishops (I was never sure but realized that it was people in authority who were  actually enemies of the faithful),and a moslem turk or caliph firing an arrow from a bow. The great whore of Babylon from Revelations is there as well as the false prophet and the Beast of Revelations, the open mouthed leviathan representing hell is usually behind all of these figures waiting to gobble them and any who fall from the ship as a result of their efforts.  On the ship will be Christ, the Theotokos,some of the Apostles, and a grouping of saints including the three Theologians, the patronal saint of the monastery, and popular national saints of the Orthodox Church.  All in all, it is an Icon that tells a story of those who seek the safety of the Ship of Orthodoxy and those who seek to destroy it.

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« Reply #16 on: March 06, 2007, 03:59:23 PM »

To show the worst heretics, one can merely depict an Orthodox clergy/layman making divisions between himself and others, separating the righteous from the unrighteous. Not only is he judging on his own accord, which on God can do, but he is doing it within the Church.


Therefore, the 'faithful' who deem others as unworthy commit the greatest sin of all.
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« Reply #17 on: March 06, 2007, 10:41:30 PM »

I also honestly never knew we Coptic mownofeezytes wore pointy hats, "till this day", either; I was so sure that that was only the practice of you Armenian heretics. We, and our demons, have much more class and style than that!

Hey don't you know that pointy heretical hats are better than rounded heretical hats?  Of course both are better than the flat heretical hats worn by the diophysites.  Those are just not fashionable.

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« Reply #18 on: March 08, 2007, 11:25:28 AM »

that produced by the Colorado Beetle. 

"Beetle" ??  That's a new on on me.

As OzGeorge pointed out, this seems to be a DS political/personal statement.

Ebor

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« Reply #19 on: March 08, 2007, 12:22:29 PM »

Quote
'm particularly interested in seeing the evil monophysites with the pointy hats.    Smiley
Here you have an icon of the Last Judjement dating back to the 16th century from the Voronet monastery (Moldova, Romania), where the Latins, the Jews, the Turks, the Armenians and the Germans are shown on their way to hell (represented as a river of fire). It might be a bit difficult to distinguish  between all of them, because of the relatively poor quality of the photos (second upper row):
http://www.eol-reisen.de/images/13_voronet_innen_tiemann_l.jpg
http://www.visit-romania.ro/sectiuni/gf/romania/bucovina/Bucovina/Voronet/Voronet%202004%20088.jpg
http://www.visit-romania.ro/sectiuni/gf/romania/bucovina/Bucovina/Voronet/Voronet%202003%20018.jpg
http://www.visit-romania.ro/sectiuni/gf/romania/bucovina/Bucovina/Voronet/Voronet%202004%20088.jpg
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« Reply #20 on: March 08, 2007, 01:02:38 PM »

To show the worst heretics, one can merely depict an Orthodox clergy/layman making divisions between himself and others, separating the righteous from the unrighteous. Not only is he judging on his own accord, which on God can do, but he is doing it within the Church.


Therefore, the 'faithful' who deem others as unworthy commit the greatest sin of all.

Deeming someone unworthy/judging them: sinful.
Refraining from communion with heretics/separating from the believer who flaunts the church's commandments: commanded from St Paul through the Fathers until today.

I think that these icons are part of the tradition of the Church based on historical examples pointed out; the real problem is how people respond to them. Do we look at these heretics and think "how can I keep from becoming a heretic?" or do we get full of pride and think "I am ORTHODOX. I belong to the TRUE faith! Look at those STUPID heretics!"  If that's the case, we missed the point.

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« Reply #21 on: March 08, 2007, 05:47:24 PM »

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« Reply #22 on: March 08, 2007, 09:45:43 PM »

Here you have an icon of the Last Judjement dating back to the 16th century from the Voronet monastery (Moldova, Romania), where the Latins, the Jews, the Turks, the Armenians and the Germans are shown on their way to hell (represented as a river of fire).
Then who is the figure with the halo standing in front of them and who is looking at them holding a scroll and pointing to Christ? It seems to me that they are being called to repentance, and having something explained to them. Could this be Elijah or Enoch who is to come and preach repentance before the end? I personally think we Orthodox will be in for a big surprise on Judgement day when, in accordance with Christ's prophetic parable, workers will be hired at the eleventh hour and receive the same reward as Orthodox Christians who were faithful throughout their lives.

“So when evening had come, the owner of the vineyard said to his steward, ‘Call the labourers and give them their wages, beginning with the last to the first.’  And when those came who were hired about the eleventh hour, they each received a denarius. But when the first came, they supposed that they would receive more; and they likewise received each a denarius.  And when they had received it, they complained against the landowner, saying, ‘These last men have worked only one hour, and you made them equal to us who have borne the burden and the heat of the day.’ But he answered one of them and said, ‘Friend, I am doing you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a denarius? Take what is yours and go your way. I wish to give to this last man the same as to you. Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with my own things? Or is your eye evil because I am good?’ So the last will be first, and the first last. For many are called, but few chosen.”
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« Reply #23 on: March 08, 2007, 10:52:12 PM »

I'm sure I'm going out on a limb here, so have a go (but don't saw the limb out from under me).  So many icons are shown with what has been characterized as one form of judgmentalism or another.  I can certainly understand the generic icons of the righteous separated from the unrighteous, but writing an icon with specific historical or contemporary figures does seem to be crossing the line from religious to secular.  Almost like a bad political campaign ad.  I also see a pattern of always holding up centuries old icons as patterns of what is acceptable.  Just because something is old and preserved on an ancient church wall doesn't necessarily make it the best example.  Antiquity doesn't confer legitimacy. 
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« Reply #24 on: March 08, 2007, 11:04:35 PM »

Deeming someone unworthy/judging them: sinful.
Refraining from communion with heretics/separating from the believer who flaunts the church's commandments: commanded from St Paul through the Fathers until today.

I think that these icons are part of the tradition of the Church based on historical examples pointed out; the real problem is how people respond to them. Do we look at these heretics and think "how can I keep from becoming a heretic?" or do we get full of pride and think "I am ORTHODOX. I belong to the TRUE faith! Look at those STUPID heretics!"  If that's the case, we missed the point.

Anstasios

I think it's a little to soon to depict Patriarch of Constantinople, Athenagoras as a heretic. There is nothing heretical about wanting people of other faiths to come to the truth and be saved. In fact its very noble. One can even go as far as calling him a martar for the faith. If the truth is really the truth it will stand up to anything that is thrown at it. I don't believe we have a right to judge. Specially when the fruit of age isn't over yet.
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« Reply #25 on: March 09, 2007, 12:09:43 AM »

I think it's a little to soon to depict Patriarch of Constantinople, Athenagoras as a heretic. There is nothing heretical about wanting people of other faiths to come to the truth and be saved. In fact its very noble. One can even go as far as calling him a martar for the faith. If the truth is really the truth it will stand up to anything that is thrown at it. I don't believe we have a right to judge. Specially when the fruit of age isn't over yet.

I don't know why you are quoting my paragraph in order to talk about Patriarch Athenagoras. I did not say I thought Gregory's icon discussed here was ok, but simply that the style is historically based, and not one of Gregory's invention, of depicting heretics in icons.  You are right, Patriarch Athenagoras is not anathematized by a Synod so it is a bit premature to be putting him in icons depicting condemned heretics.

I think there are some problems with the other things you wrote, in that IF Patriarch Athenagoras were a heretic, we would be OBLIGED to judge his faith as heretical and refrain from commmunion with him--this is not "judgmental" but commanded by St Paul and the Fathers. It would not matter that he was sincere--so was Nestorius.  However, this is beyond the scope of this thread because I am not arguing here that he was a heretic. I have my opinions on what he did, but I did not say anything about him, so I would appreciate if you would edit my statement out of the quote that you then reply to, because it gives the impression that I was condemning Patriarch Athenagoras here, which I was not.

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« Reply #26 on: March 09, 2007, 05:59:03 AM »

Here you have an icon of the Last Judjement dating back to the 16th century from the Voronet monastery (Moldova, Romania), where the Latins, the Jews, the Turks, the Armenians and the Germans are shown on their way to hell (represented as a river of fire). It might be a bit difficult to distinguish  between all of them, because of the relatively poor quality of the photos (second upper row):
http://www.eol-reisen.de/images/13_voronet_innen_tiemann_l.jpg
http://www.visit-romania.ro/sectiuni/gf/romania/bucovina/Bucovina/Voronet/Voronet%202004%20088.jpg
http://www.visit-romania.ro/sectiuni/gf/romania/bucovina/Bucovina/Voronet/Voronet%202003%20018.jpg
http://www.visit-romania.ro/sectiuni/gf/romania/bucovina/Bucovina/Voronet/Voronet%202004%20088.jpg

I'd also point out that the frescos on the Painted Monasteries were commissioned by rulers of Moldova who were under Turkish suzerainty and, as such, were not at all averse to using monastery buildings as a way of reinforcing political views. At Sucevita, for instance, they have fresco of the Ladder where everyone falling off on the way up is wearing a turban - clearly they are meant to be Turks. Givenm the patronage of churches and monasteries by noblemen and rulers, I find it hardly surprising to find that there is a little politics mixed in with the religion especially when, as is the case with the exterior frescos on the painted monasteries, they were designed as pedagogical tools for illiterate peasants. Of course the ruler is going to try and make them se things his way if he can get away with it.

Sometimes I think we westerners have got so used to the modern idea of separation of church and state that we assume this should be the norm when it is actually nothing of the kind and tend to find fault with those who didn't hold to such ideas in the past. I don't see anything to fault, we just need to use a bit of God given good judgement when viewing such things.

James
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« Reply #27 on: March 09, 2007, 09:58:34 AM »

I don't know why you are quoting my paragraph in order to talk about Patriarch Athenagoras. I did not say I thought Gregory's icon discussed here was ok, but simply that the style is historically based, and not one of Gregory's invention, of depicting heretics in icons.  You are right, Patriarch Athenagoras is not anathematized by a Synod so it is a bit premature to be putting him in icons depicting condemned heretics.

I think there are some problems with the other things you wrote, in that IF Patriarch Athenagoras were a heretic, we would be OBLIGED to judge his faith as heretical and refrain from commmunion with him--this is not "judgmental" but commanded by St Paul and the Fathers. It would not matter that he was sincere--so was Nestorius.  However, this is beyond the scope of this thread because I am not arguing here that he was a heretic. I have my opinions on what he did, but I did not say anything about him, so I would appreciate if you would edit my statement out of the quote that you then reply to, because it gives the impression that I was condemning Patriarch Athenagoras here, which I was not.

Anastasios

I didn't mean to offened you. If I did I appologize sincerly. I agree with your statement fully regarding heretics. What I put emphesis on is the depiction of someone who shouldn't be depicted as a heretic if he in fact isn't. Many new comers to Orthodoxy may get the wrong impression. As far as some so called Orthodox who view him as such. I feel pity for them. All we have to do is look at some quotes from the Philokalia and Desert fathers to come to this conclusion.

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« Reply #28 on: March 09, 2007, 12:59:07 PM »

Demetrios,

Thanks for your response.  I actually will keep everything up because I think some important points were raised in our discussion and it's clear that this was a misunderstanding and nothing more.

In Christ,

Anastasios
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« Reply #29 on: May 06, 2007, 11:04:44 PM »

(wicked)
Where's the picture of Gregory of Buena Vista trying to saw the boat in half?
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« Reply #30 on: May 14, 2007, 01:56:58 PM »

Thanks indeed for the laugh!  I had to go to the Web site to read the full description of this icon and look at its thumbnail print.     Appalling.
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« Reply #31 on: March 01, 2009, 09:28:23 PM »

That's an interesting Icon. I would have liked to have seen a larger picture of it however. But I do have to disagree with it as well. Now, granted what they said about heretics in the description is correct, it does seem to be portraying a rather negative image as opposed to one positive. It seems to be as if the creators were truly malicious and violent against heretics, which is not proper, and instead of creating something to create scorn and hate they should just keep the one as the boat and maybe have demons or something like someone earlier had mentioned. Oh well.
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« Reply #32 on: March 02, 2009, 12:02:00 AM »

Is this big enough?

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« Reply #33 on: March 03, 2009, 01:07:43 AM »

The pointy hat on the pointy hatted heretic isn't pointy enough.   Smiley
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« Reply #34 on: March 03, 2009, 01:21:44 AM »

Martin Luther didn't have much to do with the Orthodox Church, although I wouldn't support him. He did however have some very interesting things to say about the Orthodox Church. It looks like he's wearing a cowboy hat in this icon.

Who's the bishop on the far right just above Athenegras (He's poking the bishop wearing blue in the boat)? And what's with the guy shooting arrows out of whales mouth? All I can think of is Jonah.  Huh
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« Reply #35 on: March 03, 2009, 02:07:44 AM »

Quote
Next above him is the "Orthodox" Patriarch of Constantinople, Athenagoras, the father of modern day Ecumenism. He also has a hooked rod, trying to redirect the path of the Church. He was a 32 degree Mason, and behind him is the demon of Masonry, who has around his waist the apron which Masons wear with the square and compass and the letter G in the middle. Masons embrace all peoples and faiths into their religion. Ecumenism accepts all religions with a desire to create a one world religion. An Orthodox bishop cannot accept Ecumenism. It is the heresy of all heresies. Because these "Orthodox" bishops accepted the false belief of all religions, not only heretical Christianity, but also Judaism and Islam, saying that "we all worship the same god", just as Masonry tries to do, they are not Orthodox, and in fact fight against the Church.

This is clearly an old calendarist Icon. Very judgemental I must say. Not Orthodox by my standard.

Which is, as you said, "Very judgemental I must say". But is it even possible to judge someone or something as judgmental without being judgmental ourselves?
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« Reply #36 on: March 03, 2009, 11:17:43 AM »

It's big enough to see, Alveus, but it's not the same one that's on the DS site.  That one has some other figures including Lenin and "New Age"

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« Reply #37 on: March 03, 2009, 07:07:34 PM »

No, that icon should not be venerated. It is simply a polemical propaganda piece, promoting a particular ecclesiopolitical ideology. Some food for thought:

Iconography is, above all else, concerned with the revelation of God in Trinity: of the incarnation of the Son and Word of God which has allowed the sanctification of fallen creation (matter), including humanity (made in the image of God)**; of the signs and wonders of the Divine revelation in both the Old and New Testament periods; and, in its portrayal of the saints, their transfiguration from mere men and women into those who have attained deification, a "oneness with God" and full participation of the heavenly life with God and in God, through the conduct of their earthly lives and their steadfast witness to the true faith. They have become true icons and reflections of the Divine. The word godly is most apt to describe them.

(** St John of Damascus sums this up beautifully: "Of old, the incorporeal and uncircumscribed God was not depicted at all. But now that God has appeared in the flesh and lived among men, I make an image of God who can be seen. I do not worship matter, but I worship the Creator of matter, who through matter effected my salvation. I will not cease to venerate the matter through which my salvation has been effected.")

Secondly, in the same way that the saints have obliterated their passions to give themselves completely to God, icons must also reflect this dispassionate quality. Obvious displays of human emotions, even a “positive” one such as laughter, are considered to be manifestations of human passion, and therefore have no place in iconography. Christ’s kingdom is “not of this world” (John 18: 36), therefore the portrayal of saints in their spiritually transformed state must be dispassionate. This also applies to church singing and reading; the singers and readers are there to glorify God and serve the church by their efforts, not to self-aggrandise. Even the display of sorrow in the face of a saint or the Mother of God should be kept subtle, with the emotion conveyed with the eyes, not through histrionics.

Thirdly, there must be complete agreement between scripture, liturgical content (which represents the distillation of the doctrinal, dogmatic and theological position of the Church), and the pictorial content of an icon for any icon to be deemed canonical.

Hence there is no place for ugliness, anger, enmity, and other negative emotions in iconography. The purpose of an icon is to draw us closer to God. Of course, there are specific examples of didactic icons, such as Last Judgement and Ladder of Divine Ascent which feature fearsome dragon-like creatures swallowing unrepentant evildoers. The Resurrection icon shows the personification of sin and death bound in chains in the abyss. It may be said, therefore, if there is room for such portrayals in these canonical icons, then why object to the presence of the figures in the Ark of Salvation image?

I offer this reply: An icon is a material, tangible expression of the incarnate God. The iconographic portrayal of the saints as icons of Christ, then, should reflect the sanctity, dispassion and boundless compassionate mercy of Christ to those who repent of their sins. Do we not pray to the saints and the Mother of God to intercede on our behalf? Are we not exhorted to pray for our enemies, to love them, and not to hate them? Of all scripture passages on this theme, Matt. 5: 43-48 is perhaps the most useful and succinct:

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

We are also assured that God is Love, and that His love and mercy are available to all who seek Him in true faith. There are petitions in various Orthodox litanies which ask for the repentance and return to the true faith of sinners, apostates, and, yes, enemies. One which immediately comes to mind is "Let us pray for those who love us, and those who hate us", a petition in the litany sung towards the end of the Great Compline services of Great Lent where the Canon of St Andrew of Crete is sung.

There is the question of the iconographic portrayal of prophets and saints who denounced kings and princes. Such scenes are found in the smaller panels of a "life" icon of a saint or prophet (an icon which has a large central panel of the saint or prophet, surrounded by a series of smaller panels showing scenes of his or her life). Keeping to the dispassionate nature of icons, these scenes of rebuke of kings and princes (such as in icons of Prophet Elijah, and any number of OT and NT saints and righteous ones) show the saint standing before the errant ruler with a hand raised in rebuke, but nothing more. It is also significant that such scenes, almost without exception, are never used as icons in their own right.

it is not surprising that certain schismatic groups have favoured this so-called Ark of Salvation image as it reflects their particular ideology. This image suggests that those who are not Orthodox are somehow beyond repentance and redemption. Can we really agree with this as Orthodox Christians? The persecuting Pharisee Saul openly boasted of his zeal and success in persecuting Christians, yet, by the grace of God, became one of the Princes of the Apostles, a pillar of Orthodoxy. There are also innumerable converts to the Orthodox faith who have come from every religious background imaginable, including atheism, paganism and communism; many who have become saints, in times of old, and in our present day. The grace of God knows no bounds.

Iconography, as I have said before, must never be used for political or ideological purposes. To portray the non-Orthodox as a whole as being irredeemable and in league with demonic and evil forces to destroy Orthodoxy is a shameful debasement of iconography. I am reminded of a reply to a convert to Orthodoxy as to how he came to the conclusion that the Orthodox faith was the true faith: "The Soviet Union was capable of destroying anything. Yet, despite its immense power and resources, it could not destroy the Orthodox Church. So that was good enough for me." The gates of hell cannot prevail, indeed ...
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« Reply #38 on: March 04, 2009, 11:46:50 AM »

Is this big enough?



That's one magnificent  ikona,i like it very much....
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« Reply #39 on: March 20, 2009, 10:01:17 AM »

Ecumenism doesn't necessarily mean accepting of all religions as they are, but merely to unite them. Which is, after all, our goal, so long as they become Orthodox. Not to mention he implies that Jews and Christians worship different Gods. They may not accept Jesus, but I have no doubt they are worshiping the Father.

And masonry isn't a religion, no matter how hard people want it to be a secret cult that runs our country and anoints kings. 

The guy who wrote that description seems a bit off his meds.


I would say that Masonry is heretical at the very least........
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« Reply #40 on: March 26, 2009, 09:20:14 PM »

Who's the bishop on the far right just above Athenegras (He's poking the bishop wearing blue in the boat)? And what's with the guy shooting arrows out of whales mouth? All I can think of is Jonah.  Huh

The guy in the mouth of the beast represents Muhammad and Islam.
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« Reply #41 on: March 26, 2009, 09:40:17 PM »

Is Luther carrying a shotgun?
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« Reply #42 on: March 26, 2009, 09:45:13 PM »

Is Luther carrying a shotgun?

Maybe an arquebus/musket?
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« Reply #43 on: March 26, 2009, 09:49:05 PM »

Quote
Next to him is Eftyches, the heresiarch who would not accept the decision of the 4th and 5th Ecumenical Councils that Christ has two natures: Christ is both perfect God and perfect man. Eftyches divided the Church with his followers who believed that Christ had only one nature. Therefore, he is depicted with a pointed cowl on his head, which is what the Monophysites wear to this day. Monophysites include the Copts of Egypt, and the Armenians, who are located around Palestine. Behind Eftyches is depicted the demon of the Monophysites and Monothelites.
Sigh.

I've had to debate with countless EO that insist that the OOs canonized Eutyches, and refuse to recognize that the OO in fact anathematized him.  Btw, although there are Armenians in Palestine (lovely community), Armenia is not near Palestine (btw, Armenia once did rule Palestine, and their tradtion claims, and genetic testing proves, a link to the Hebrews).
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« Reply #44 on: March 26, 2009, 11:52:51 PM »

Is Luther carrying a shotgun?

Maybe an arquebus/musket?

Did those exist in Luther's time...and did Luther really wear a cowboy hat?

That's just hilarious!  I can see Protestants being proud of their "guns and religion" when they see this.
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« Reply #45 on: March 27, 2009, 12:47:53 AM »

Is Luther carrying a shotgun?

Maybe an arquebus/musket?

Did those exist in Luther's time...and did Luther really wear a cowboy hat?

That's just hilarious!  I can see Protestants being proud of their "guns and religion" when they see this.

lol!  Yup, the 16th century was the crossover period between the arquebus and musket.
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« Reply #46 on: March 27, 2009, 02:27:13 AM »

It's big enough to see, Alveus, but it's not the same one that's on the DS site.  That one has some other figures including Lenin and "New Age"

Oh, New Age is included in the ikon I posted.  It's the dragon-thing in the lower right part.
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« Reply #47 on: March 27, 2009, 04:51:26 PM »

Is Luther carrying a shotgun?

It doesn't look much like Luther to me

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« Reply #48 on: March 27, 2009, 08:38:21 PM »

No, that icon should not be venerated. It is simply a polemical propaganda piece, promoting a particular ecclesiopolitical ideology. Some food for thought:

Iconography is, above all else, concerned with the revelation of God in Trinity: of the incarnation of the Son and Word of God which has allowed the sanctification of fallen creation (matter), including humanity (made in the image of God)**; of the signs and wonders of the Divine revelation in both the Old and New Testament periods; and, in its portrayal of the saints, their transfiguration from mere men and women into those who have attained deification, a "oneness with God" and full participation of the heavenly life with God and in God, through the conduct of their earthly lives and their steadfast witness to the true faith. They have become true icons and reflections of the Divine. The word godly is most apt to describe them.

(** St John of Damascus sums this up beautifully: "Of old, the incorporeal and uncircumscribed God was not depicted at all. But now that God has appeared in the flesh and lived among men, I make an image of God who can be seen. I do not worship matter, but I worship the Creator of matter, who through matter effected my salvation. I will not cease to venerate the matter through which my salvation has been effected.")

Secondly, in the same way that the saints have obliterated their passions to give themselves completely to God, icons must also reflect this dispassionate quality. Obvious displays of human emotions, even a “positive” one such as laughter, are considered to be manifestations of human passion, and therefore have no place in iconography. Christ’s kingdom is “not of this world” (John 18: 36), therefore the portrayal of saints in their spiritually transformed state must be dispassionate. This also applies to church singing and reading; the singers and readers are there to glorify God and serve the church by their efforts, not to self-aggrandise. Even the display of sorrow in the face of a saint or the Mother of God should be kept subtle, with the emotion conveyed with the eyes, not through histrionics.

Thirdly, there must be complete agreement between scripture, liturgical content (which represents the distillation of the doctrinal, dogmatic and theological position of the Church), and the pictorial content of an icon for any icon to be deemed canonical.

Hence there is no place for ugliness, anger, enmity, and other negative emotions in iconography. The purpose of an icon is to draw us closer to God. Of course, there are specific examples of didactic icons, such as Last Judgement and Ladder of Divine Ascent which feature fearsome dragon-like creatures swallowing unrepentant evildoers. The Resurrection icon shows the personification of sin and death bound in chains in the abyss. It may be said, therefore, if there is room for such portrayals in these canonical icons, then why object to the presence of the figures in the Ark of Salvation image?

I offer this reply: An icon is a material, tangible expression of the incarnate God. The iconographic portrayal of the saints as icons of Christ, then, should reflect the sanctity, dispassion and boundless compassionate mercy of Christ to those who repent of their sins. Do we not pray to the saints and the Mother of God to intercede on our behalf? Are we not exhorted to pray for our enemies, to love them, and not to hate them? Of all scripture passages on this theme, Matt. 5: 43-48 is perhaps the most useful and succinct:

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

We are also assured that God is Love, and that His love and mercy are available to all who seek Him in true faith. There are petitions in various Orthodox litanies which ask for the repentance and return to the true faith of sinners, apostates, and, yes, enemies. One which immediately comes to mind is "Let us pray for those who love us, and those who hate us", a petition in the litany sung towards the end of the Great Compline services of Great Lent where the Canon of St Andrew of Crete is sung.

There is the question of the iconographic portrayal of prophets and saints who denounced kings and princes. Such scenes are found in the smaller panels of a "life" icon of a saint or prophet (an icon which has a large central panel of the saint or prophet, surrounded by a series of smaller panels showing scenes of his or her life). Keeping to the dispassionate nature of icons, these scenes of rebuke of kings and princes (such as in icons of Prophet Elijah, and any number of OT and NT saints and righteous ones) show the saint standing before the errant ruler with a hand raised in rebuke, but nothing more. It is also significant that such scenes, almost without exception, are never used as icons in their own right.

it is not surprising that certain schismatic groups have favoured this so-called Ark of Salvation image as it reflects their particular ideology. This image suggests that those who are not Orthodox are somehow beyond repentance and redemption. Can we really agree with this as Orthodox Christians? The persecuting Pharisee Saul openly boasted of his zeal and success in persecuting Christians, yet, by the grace of God, became one of the Princes of the Apostles, a pillar of Orthodoxy. There are also innumerable converts to the Orthodox faith who have come from every religious background imaginable, including atheism, paganism and communism; many who have become saints, in times of old, and in our present day. The grace of God knows no bounds.

Iconography, as I have said before, must never be used for political or ideological purposes. To portray the non-Orthodox as a whole as being irredeemable and in league with demonic and evil forces to destroy Orthodoxy is a shameful debasement of iconography. I am reminded of a reply to a convert to Orthodoxy as to how he came to the conclusion that the Orthodox faith was the true faith: "The Soviet Union was capable of destroying anything. Yet, despite its immense power and resources, it could not destroy the Orthodox Church. So that was good enough for me." The gates of hell cannot prevail, indeed ...


I think this is an excellent, fair, well thought out, and loving perspective.  PoM nominee!

I was going to add to what you said, but really, I think you said it all.  Thank you for the beautiful reflection.

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« Reply #49 on: March 28, 2009, 01:20:17 PM »

This blown-up image of the icon is apparently missing Leo the iconoclast (probably replaced by Julian the Apostate), Lenin the Communist (another dude with a gun), and "Eftyches" the heiresiarch (who lived a ripe old age).
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« Reply #50 on: March 29, 2009, 06:53:13 PM »

minasoliman, there are several versions of this "icon", each with slight variations in its composition. I have at least three versions on file, with inscriptions in Greek, Slavonic and English. The compositional variations seem to reflect the particular ideology of the respective schismatic group which promotes the particular variant of this image.

The saddest aspect of the matter is that certain extremist groups have hijacked the perfectly acceptable motif of the "Ship of the Church" (Η Ναύς τής Εκκλησίας), where Christ, the Mother of God, the Apostles and various saints are in a boat, steadily and surely sailing the waters of life, and modified it for ideological and ecclesiopolitical ends. It grieves me that such groups which proclaim themselves bastions of "true Orthodoxy", are quite happy to debase iconography in this way. After all, iconography is the pictorial equivalent of the liturgical tradition of the Orthodox Church, the pictorial equivalent of the Church's consensus patrum. If it is accepted that liberties cannot be taken with the liturgical deposit of the Orthodox Church, then why should such images be seen as acceptable? The sacrifices of life and limb of the iconodules of past centuries to uphold the place of iconography as an integral and inseparable part of the Orthodox faith is surely mocked by such images as the so-called "Ark of Salvation". Are such images truly in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" which we commemorated a few weeks ago?
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« Reply #51 on: March 29, 2009, 08:13:00 PM »

LBK,

I'm wondering if you could comment on something. I've noticed that Gregory who painted the icon in question maintains on his website that he based it off of prototypes from centuries ago.  Could you comment on what prototypes he may be using, and how they might differ from the product of his work?

Also, I noticed when looking at some photos of ancient manuscripts that there were images of Orthodox hierarchs stepping on heretics that are on the ground (I believe it was from the time after iconoclasm).  Are illuminated manuscripts subject to differing rules?

Thanks for helping to clear up these questions I have.

Fr Anastasios
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« Reply #52 on: March 29, 2009, 08:22:53 PM »

Are such images truly in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" which we commemorated a few weeks ago?
IMO, not so much in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" as in the spirit of the triumphalism of some Orthodox. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #53 on: March 29, 2009, 08:36:56 PM »

Are such images truly in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" which we commemorated a few weeks ago?
IMO, not so much in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" as in the spirit of the triumphalism of some Orthodox. Roll Eyes

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« Reply #54 on: March 29, 2009, 09:38:22 PM »

Are such images truly in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" which we commemorated a few weeks ago?
IMO, not so much in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" as in the spirit of the triumphalism of some Orthodox. Roll Eyes

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« Reply #55 on: March 29, 2009, 09:50:43 PM »

Are such images truly in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" which we commemorated a few weeks ago?
IMO, not so much in the spirit of the "triumph of Orthodoxy" as in the spirit of the triumphalism of some Orthodox. Roll Eyes

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« Reply #56 on: March 29, 2009, 10:39:29 PM »

LBK,

I'm wondering if you could comment on something. I've noticed that Gregory who painted the icon in question maintains on his website that he based it off of prototypes from centuries ago.  Could you comment on what prototypes he may be using, and how they might differ from the product of his work?

Also, I noticed when looking at some photos of ancient manuscripts that there were images of Orthodox hierarchs stepping on heretics that are on the ground (I believe it was from the time after iconoclasm).  Are illuminated manuscripts subject to differing rules?

Thanks for helping to clear up these questions I have.

Fr Anastasios
I have to say, although it would make sense, and isn't heterodox, I've never seen the Church portrayed as a ship with the Theotokos etc. inside.

I've seen icons of the Council of Chalcedon with devils whispering in Eutyches and Pope Dioscoros' ears.

And one of St. Nicholas giving Arius a firm right hook.
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« Reply #57 on: March 29, 2009, 11:32:33 PM »

And one of St. Nicholas giving Arius a firm right hook.

I've heard that this one was a true story, not necessarily or merely a symbolism of Orthodox triumph.
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« Reply #58 on: March 29, 2009, 11:53:06 PM »


Also, I noticed when looking at some photos of ancient manuscripts that there were images of Orthodox hierarchs stepping on heretics that are on the ground (I believe it was from the time after iconoclasm).  Are illuminated manuscripts subject to differing rules?


This sort of thing exists in OO tradition, although I haven't seen the boat icon in our iconography. 

I've seen Coptic icons of St. Athanasius stepping on Arius.  Also, there is this Armenian icon of St. Hripsime stepping on King Drtad:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,15818.msg225937.html#msg225937

The odd thing about that icon though, is that King Drtad himself is also a saint in the Armenian Church, since after he martyred St. Hripsime he converted to Christianity.  So the above icon is really of a saint stepping on a saint.   Shocked  I think what Hovnadanian was trying to depict, though, was St. Hripsime successfully resisting King Drtad's advances and the temptation to sin with him. 
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« Reply #59 on: March 30, 2009, 12:01:55 AM »

"Stepping on heretics" icons were discussed a little at the beginning of this old thread:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,7204.0.html

EA apparently attached an icon like this, concerning the Council of Ephesus, in reply 4, but it was deleted for some reason.  It would be nice to get another link to it.
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« Reply #60 on: March 31, 2009, 10:07:43 AM »

LBK,

I'm wondering if you could comment on something. I've noticed that Gregory who painted the icon in question maintains on his website that he based it off of prototypes from centuries ago.  Could you comment on what prototypes he may be using, and how they might differ from the product of his work?

Also, I noticed when looking at some photos of ancient manuscripts that there were images of Orthodox hierarchs stepping on heretics that are on the ground (I believe it was from the time after iconoclasm).  Are illuminated manuscripts subject to differing rules?

Thanks for helping to clear up these questions I have.

Fr Anastasios

The prototype said to be used by the Gregory of which you speak is most likely the model for this drawing, by the Greek iconographer Rallis Kopsidis, who studied under Photios Kontoglou:



In this drawing, only Christ and the apostles are present. No sign at all of the "enemies" on the shore. If this drawing is indeed a faithful copy of the prototype at Stavronikita, then the additions of the figures on the shore speak volumes about the artist, and his attempt to legitimise his work of angry propaganda. The original meaning of "the good ship Orthodoxy", skippered by Christ, steadily sailing the turbulent waters of life has been distorted into a polemical ecclesiopolitical statement by his additions to the composition.

Regarding saints trampling on heretics, in keeping with the proper dispassionate nature of icons, it would be better if such portrayals are not done, as it invites a sense of triumphalism and passion. The "icon" of St Joseph of Petrograd on the thread linked to earlier is almost comic in its histrionic portrayal of Patriarch Sergius struggling under St Joseph's feet. Ungainly, unnecessary, and quite lacking in dignity and gravitas, not to mention theologically suspect.

There arem of course, acceptable ways of portraying heretics in icons. Here is an icon of the Third Ecumenical Council at Chalcedon:



The two figures in the foreground with little black demons on their shoulders are Eutyches and Dioscorus, who were condemned at this council; Eutyches for his heretical stance on the nature(s) of Christ, and Dioscorus for his presiding over the non-canonical second council at Ephesus (which later became known as the "Robber Council"), and other serious infractions.

It is interesting to note that Dioscorus's clothing resembles bishop's vestments (on the death of St Cyril of Alexandria, Dioscorus succeeded him as Patriarch). A closer look shows that his omophorion (the strip of vestment draped over his shoulders and over his left arm) is plain, with no crosses on it, unlike those of the seated hierarchs. Likewise, Dioscorus's blue phelonion and stole (epitracheilion) are also devoid of the usual crosses and other motifs normally on these vestments. Eutyches, a priest and abbot, likewise, wears a plain stole.

This portrayal vividly illustrates the stripping of authority, the repudiation and the excommunication of Dioscorus and Eutyches, therefore, the little black demons could be regarded as an unnecessary embellishment. (But that's me being picky ...)


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« Reply #61 on: April 01, 2009, 02:02:50 PM »

Dear LBK,

Thank you for your response and help in this matter.

Would the illuminated manuscripts I saw then be considered to be a non-standard strand? I can scan and post if it will aid in the discussion to know exactly what I am talking about.

Yours in Christ,

Fr Anastasios
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« Reply #62 on: April 01, 2009, 02:07:35 PM »

Would the illuminated manuscripts I saw then be considered to be a non-standard strand? I can scan and post if it will aid in the discussion to know exactly what I am talking about.

Yes, please do.
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« Reply #63 on: April 01, 2009, 07:40:00 PM »

For no particular reason, this morning I was thinking about St. Nicholas and his role in the first Ecumenical Council.  Suddenly, I found myself wondering if there are any icons of him slapping Arius.  After searching online I was only able to find one, but it is still nice to know there’s at least one in existence.

After seeing this thread today, I figured this icon would be a relevant contribution:




Nicholas striking Arius
Fresco: Soumela Monastery, Turkey


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« Reply #64 on: April 01, 2009, 10:15:06 PM »

I think it would help my faith life if I had an icon depicting most everybody I don't like going to Hell.  It would be reassuring.
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« Reply #65 on: April 01, 2009, 11:30:29 PM »

I think it would help my faith life if I had an icon depicting most everybody I don't like going to Hell.  It would be reassuring.

Even better, it would have a blank spot where I could attach a photo of whomever was annoying me at the moment.
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« Reply #66 on: April 02, 2009, 12:12:25 AM »

I think it would help my faith life if I had an icon depicting most everybody I don't like going to Hell.  It would be reassuring.

That's mean!
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« Reply #67 on: April 02, 2009, 12:19:44 AM »

For no particular reason, this morning I was thinking about St. Nicholas and his role in the first Ecumenical Council.  Suddenly, I found myself wondering if there are any icons of him slapping Arius.  After searching online I was only able to find one, but it is still nice to know there’s at least one in existence.

After seeing this thread today, I figured this icon would be a relevant contribution:




Nicholas striking Arius
Fresco: Soumela Monastery, Turkey




What century was this from?

It's interesting that here too, Arius also wears plain garments with no crosses.

I think there are many different traditions and customs of iconographies, i.e. different rules of what was allowed to be drawn, what was not allowed, different purposes of the drawings (like one tradition draws to help illiterate people and another tradition for purely symbolic theological purposes).

This is just my hypothesis, since I'm sensing a bit of inconsistency in iconography if we were to assume one major tradition of rules and regulations and purposes.

Dear LBK,

Concerning the icon of the 4th Council at Chalcedon, I'm assuming the central figure is Leo?  Who are the ones behind him?
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« Reply #68 on: April 02, 2009, 01:14:24 AM »

I feel bad for Arius.  Even though he recanted of his position, wasn't he still stabbed to death by Roman thugs seeking his deposition?
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« Reply #69 on: April 02, 2009, 03:06:20 AM »

For no particular reason, this morning I was thinking about St. Nicholas and his role in the first Ecumenical Council.  Suddenly, I found myself wondering if there are any icons of him slapping Arius.  After searching online I was only able to find one, but it is still nice to know there’s at least one in existence.

After seeing this thread today, I figured this icon would be a relevant contribution:

Nicholas striking Arius
Fresco: Soumela Monastery, Turkey




What century was this from?

It's interesting that here too, Arius also wears plain garments with no crosses.

I think there are many different traditions and customs of iconographies, i.e. different rules of what was allowed to be drawn, what was not allowed, different purposes of the drawings (like one tradition draws to help illiterate people and another tradition for purely symbolic theological purposes).

This is just my hypothesis, since I'm sensing a bit of inconsistency in iconography if we were to assume one major tradition of rules and regulations and purposes.

Dear LBK,

Concerning the icon of the 4th Council at Chalcedon, I'm assuming the central figure is Leo?  Who are the ones behind him?

The fresco at Soumela is probably no older than 18th century, and possibly 19th, going by the artistic style which is quite fluid and animated (a little too animated for an icon, IMO).

In the Chalcedon icon, Emperor Marcianus is shown enthroned, not Leo; above his head is a (barely legible) inscrption (The) King Marcianus. Three of the mitred bishops seated in the foreground have their names written in their haloes, but they are too indistinct to read. Some of the fathers present at this council include Anatolius, Archbishop of Constantinople; Maximus, Archbishop of Antioch; Juvenal, Archbishop of Jerusalem; Thalassius, Bishop of Cappadocia; and Bishops Paschasinus and Lucentius from Rome.

Regarding the idea that "there are many different traditions and customs of iconographies, i.e. different rules of what was allowed to be drawn, what was not allowed, different purposes of the drawings (like one tradition draws to help illiterate people and another tradition for purely symbolic theological purposes)", this is not at all true. Sure, there are geographic variations in the "artistic" styles of icons (a knowledge of which is very useful in determining age and place of origin of old icons, as, strictly speaking, icons should not be signed by the iconographer). There are generally distinct differences between Greek, Russian, Serbian, and Romanian icons, for instance. Also, within a country, there are further stylistic variations, in terms of how the figures and details are painted, which region or province the icon came from, and even the range of colours used, depending on the availability of pigments and oxides.

What is allowed or not allowed to be depicted must conform to the scriptural, doctrinal, theological and liturgical traditions of the Church, irrespective of country or region. Icons are the visual equivalent of scripture and liturgy (not just the Divine Liturgy, but the whole liturgical deposit of the Church, what is read, chanted and sung, which represents the life and mind of the Church). The teachings of the Church do not change according to geography or ethnicity, therefore there cannot be "different rules" in the content of icons for different parts of the world.

Many people are understandably confused when trying to work out which images are acceptable, and which are not. This confusion is not helped when iconographers themselves, including some quite prominent ones, continue to paint images such as the so-called NT Trinity, Angel of Blessed Silence, or the Mother of God surrounded by a mandorla of Uncreated Light (as seen in the image Multiplier of Wheat). Over the years of studying and writing about icons, perhaps the most valuable source of knowledge for me comes from within the life of the Church. A knowledge of scripture, of patristic writings, lives of saints, and, above all, the liturgical deposit of the Church have filled in many, many gaps in my knowledge, and I'm always learning more. It takes a lot of time to develop the experience and discernment needed to distinguish between a true icon and a false one. My comments on the "ark of salvation" image are a case in point.
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« Reply #70 on: April 02, 2009, 08:43:35 AM »

I think it would help my faith life if I had an icon depicting most everybody I don't like going to Hell.  It would be reassuring.

Even better, it would have a blank spot where I could attach a photo of whomever was annoying me at the moment.

yes!  Like a rotating icon of whose pissing me off at the moment.  I like it.  Why restrict my venom to historical personages.  There's plenty of people around now who we can hope are going to hell.

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Did those exist in Luther's time...and did Luther really wear a cowboy hat?

You didn't know that?  He was able to get his writings out while holed up via Pony Express.
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« Reply #71 on: April 02, 2009, 08:05:48 PM »

I found the icon of St. Athanasius I was thinking of.  It's not that clear in this picture of it, as the bottom is cut off a bit, but you can make out a small Arius under the saint's feet:

http://www.coptic.net/pictures/Icon.StAthanasius-1.gif


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« Reply #72 on: April 02, 2009, 09:01:55 PM »

Arius recanted?
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« Reply #73 on: April 03, 2009, 12:29:50 AM »

Quote
What is allowed or not allowed to be depicted must conform to the scriptural, doctrinal, theological and liturgical traditions of the Church, irrespective of country or region. Icons are the visual equivalent of scripture and liturgy (not just the Divine Liturgy, but the whole liturgical deposit of the Church, what is read, chanted and sung, which represents the life and mind of the Church). The teachings of the Church do not change according to geography or ethnicity, therefore there cannot be "different rules" in the content of icons for different parts of the world.

But LBK, don't you think every culture carries a different interpretation of an icon?  For instance, Greek culture may not be pleased with the Theotokos being alone, but Latins find the icon of the Theotokos being alone as no different than any other saint being alone.

Radiant light coming from the Theotokos does not necessarily mean she's the source of divine energy.  It's the general experience of many of those who may have seen the Virgin Theotokos appear, in radiant light.

Many icons that were drawn in the past may not have even carried any symbolism, but rather were simply rewriting the stories of the Bible in pictoral format for those who can't read.

Scripturally, doctrinally, theologically, and liturgically, both types of icons may not contradict those traditions.  You also mentioned how you lived the life of the Church in order to understand the significance and symbolism behind what is allowed and what is not allowed in Orthodoxy?  Have you lived the life of Western Orthodoxy?  Have you lived the life of Oriental Orthodoxy?  How do you know you're not simply culturally bound by your beliefs, rather than "doctrinally."  God forbid, we will have to study a new list of heresies based on wrong iconography:

Trampling on heretics-ism
Statue-ism
Lone Theotokos-ism
Radiant Light from saints-ism
Emotionalism
Realistic-ism
etc. etc. etc.

I mean, my gosh.  If this is what you mean by doctrinally, woe to many of them who practice these?

In the Coptic Church for instance, we are taught that there's a certain way not to sing certain hymns.  Does that make one a heretic for singing it incorrectly?  Or are we simply putting a cultural significance and symbolism to the way something is supposed to be sung?

In Coptic New Year, the date is considered a symbolic fruit that commemorates the martyrs (red fruit) with hard core faith (seed).  Nevertheless, those who do not possess the date does not mean they don't commemorate their own martyrs.  This was a cultural significance, and we are told, it is encourage we eat the red dates if made available.  Yet, no one is yelling foul play for those who eat yellow, even though it is not traditionally what should be eaten.
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« Reply #74 on: April 03, 2009, 08:50:18 AM »

Quote
What is allowed or not allowed to be depicted must conform to the scriptural, doctrinal, theological and liturgical traditions of the Church, irrespective of country or region. Icons are the visual equivalent of scripture and liturgy (not just the Divine Liturgy, but the whole liturgical deposit of the Church, what is read, chanted and sung, which represents the life and mind of the Church). The teachings of the Church do not change according to geography or ethnicity, therefore there cannot be "different rules" in the content of icons for different parts of the world.

But LBK, don't you think every culture carries a different interpretation of an icon?  For instance, Greek culture may not be pleased with the Theotokos being alone, but Latins find the icon of the Theotokos being alone as no different than any other saint being alone.

I suppose there should be a bit of wiggle room, but Icons are a unique category of Orthodox worship-aid.  They fulfill a few roles that other things, like what kind of food you eat, or numerology, don't fulfill: (a) being a window to heaven (which means they've got to be the right types of windows - they shouldn't depict heavenly reality); (b) being a teacher of the faith (icons have for quite a long time been succinct didactic aids, especially to those who learn visually or who can't read, and even for those who can they are intended to be summaries of events or people in a way that leads to greater knowledge and faith); (c) being another focus of the worshiping environment (our worship environment engages the senses - the sight of icons, the smell of incense, the sound of chant/music, the taste of the Body of Christ).  Considering these three, it is only natural that there would be a great emphasis on doctrinally correct icons, and a thorough field of iconographic study which maintains this doctrinal purity.  Yes, we are allowed icons because of Christ's incarnation; but we want icons for the reasons listed above - and they're important enough reasons to necessitate a fairly conservative (read: comparing to traditional models and theology) school of iconography.
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« Reply #75 on: April 03, 2009, 09:59:36 AM »

Dear LBK,

I found the manuscript I was talking about earlier. Looking forward to continuing our discussion.

It's from Judith Herrin, Byzantium: The Surprising Life of a Medieval Empire. London: Penguin Books, 2008, in the inserts before page 73.

In Christ,

Fr Anastasios
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« Reply #76 on: April 03, 2009, 10:38:54 AM »

I feel bad for Arius.  Even though he recanted of his position, wasn't he still stabbed to death by Roman thugs seeking his deposition?

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« Reply #77 on: April 03, 2009, 07:34:17 PM »

I suppose there should be a bit of wiggle room, but Icons are a unique category of Orthodox worship-aid.  They fulfill a few roles that other things, like what kind of food you eat, or numerology, don't fulfill: (a) being a window to heaven (which means they've got to be the right types of windows - they shouldn't depict heavenly reality);

I'm going to pick on the icon with the Theotokos alone to address your well thought-out points.  The icon of the Theotokos alone can also be a window to heaven.  For once, the light she radiates have been very similar to the light she radiates upon appearing to people in history.  This light is what we also seek to achieve.  It carries the Biblical teaching of "let your light so shine before men" and the theological teaching behind theosis.

If there was a window where I can see heaven, I would probably contemplate that not just the Theotokos, but all the saints radiate this divine light.

Quote
(b) being a teacher of the faith (icons have for quite a long time been succinct didactic aids, especially to those who learn visually or who can't read, and even for those who can they are intended to be summaries of events or people in a way that leads to greater knowledge and faith);

I think it's one thing to teach faith through stories and another to teach faith through symbolism.  We have had both in the past.  I think the light that radiates from the Theotokos can symbolize theosis, as well as her arms raised and her compassionate facial expression can teach us the intercessory and loving power of this particular saint, among other saints.

Quote
(c) being another focus of the worshiping environment (our worship environment engages the senses - the sight of icons, the smell of incense, the sound of chant/music, the taste of the Body of Christ).

Absolutely.  Perhaps, this should be the first point before any others.  In fact, this is perhaps, in my opinion, the primary reason of iconography in the Church, i.e. a way to engage the senses in worship.

Quote
Considering these three, it is only natural that there would be a great emphasis on doctrinally correct icons, and a thorough field of iconographic study which maintains this doctrinal purity.  Yes, we are allowed icons because of Christ's incarnation; but we want icons for the reasons listed above - and they're important enough reasons to necessitate a fairly conservative (read: comparing to traditional models and theology) school of iconography.

Considering the three points made above, it seems that anything extraneous such as "the Theotokos should never be alone" would be quite absurd to make as a doctrinal point, and that such an icon passes the above three points depending on how you interpret it, whether by cultural or personal reasons.

Another point I'd like to make is the consistency behind such icons.  We know that both the Theotokos and the Forerunner above all angelic authorities and saints.  Thus, there are icons that show the Forerunner baptizing Christ while witnessing the Theophany.  Yet there are other icons of the Forerunner, alone, with wings of an angel and holding his own head on silver plate.  Why should the Forerunner be excluded from the rules?

God bless.
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« Reply #78 on: April 03, 2009, 09:03:36 PM »

Mina,

In your example of an icon of the Theotokos standing alone with the mandora of Uncreated Light - the only other times when that mandora appears in iconography, it is shown around Christ Himself in scenes when He, for one reason or another, is depicted performing an action not seen by human eyes: the trampling of Hades (the most famous example), the Transfiguration on Tabor (He was so bright they couldn't see/look at Him), holding the soul of the Theotokos at her Dormition, and sitting enthroned in the womb of the Theotokos Platytera (more spacious than the heavens).  Thus, depicting it around the Theotokos does indeed cause confusion, and the didactic message is lost - it doesn't matter if a coherent justification can be wrought or not, the message sent by traditional iconography is that the full-body halo (mandora, etc.) is depicting the incarnate Son of God in His Glory in a scene not seen by human eyes.
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« Reply #79 on: April 03, 2009, 09:21:08 PM »

Thank you, cleveland, this is exactly what I was getting at. I also have more to say with regard to minasoliman's post #73. I shall return ....  Cheesy
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« Reply #80 on: April 03, 2009, 09:48:43 PM »

Mina,

In your example of an icon of the Theotokos standing alone with the mandora of Uncreated Light - the only other times when that mandora appears in iconography, it is shown around Christ Himself in scenes when He, for one reason or another, is depicted performing an action not seen by human eyes: the trampling of Hades (the most famous example), the Transfiguration on Tabor (He was so bright they couldn't see/look at Him), holding the soul of the Theotokos at her Dormition, and sitting enthroned in the womb of the Theotokos Platytera (more spacious than the heavens).  Thus, depicting it around the Theotokos does indeed cause confusion, and the didactic message is lost - it doesn't matter if a coherent justification can be wrought or not, the message sent by traditional iconography is that the full-body halo (mandora, etc.) is depicting the incarnate Son of God in His Glory in a scene not seen by human eyes.

Again, my point was culture.  What you may consider as "tradition" can be seen simply as cultural.  In the eyes of Greeks, it would be confusing as this has never been considered before.  But I must say, in experiences like the miracle of the Virgin Theotokos at Zeitoun, it does not seem that far-fetched.  The culture of the Latins also have experienced, true or not, saints appearing in light.  Culturally speaking, they have also shared the life of their own Church through their iconography.

And let's not forget, why do we single out the Theotokos so many times in the Liturgy?  For one thing, we also ask her to "save us."  In the Coptic Church, we say a lot more than that, and I'm sure the EO's also say things in liturgical worship that Protestants can find culturally "confusing."  If you must get rid of the inconsistency in this particular icon, what makes us stop at just images?  Why not the words we use in liturgy?
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« Reply #81 on: April 03, 2009, 10:46:11 PM »

I also wanted to add another cultural difference due to different interpretations.  In the Coptic Church, it is considered wrong to put the Theotokos as the central iconic figure in the altar, but rather the icon of Christ the Pantocrator, because it is to Him we look towards the east, to Him all our eyes should be centered upon, and to Him we worship, and later will partake of in the Eucharist.

In other churches, even our own sister churches, it is not considered wrong for the Theotokos to be the central iconic figure because she was a chosen altar for the flesh of the Logos to be taken from and born from.

This is what I mean by a difference of interpretations.  Nevertheless, if you ask the Coptic Church, nay even read her Theotokias (hymnography to the Theotokos) we literally do think of her as the altar to which God took flesh from her.  And I'm sure our own sister churches and the EO's don't put the Theotokos there to worship her or think that it is her second coming from the East we look forward to.  Nevertheless, if a Copt sees this, he will be "confused" and rather appalled, thinking what matter of tradition this must be!  But what may be tradition to one can really be underneath it all cultural.
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« Reply #82 on: April 03, 2009, 11:46:26 PM »

Um, last I checked "it's culture not tradition" isn't a rebuttal to "you shouldn't depict the mandora around the Theotokos," at least not from the EO perspective (since most of us who have studies iconography here have done so in the EO, not OO, context).  If your argument is that the tradition should change, fine, but say that openly, and then be prepared to withstand the initial resistance to the idea... if it will survive and thrive, then so be it - people will come to the defense of the depiction and it will gain theological acceptance.  If it isn't good for our tradition, then it will be expelled.
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« Reply #83 on: April 04, 2009, 04:59:28 AM »

Um, last I checked "it's culture not tradition" isn't a rebuttal to "you shouldn't depict the mandora around the Theotokos," at least not from the EO perspective (since most of us who have studies iconography here have done so in the EO, not OO, context).  If your argument is that the tradition should change, fine, but say that openly, and then be prepared to withstand the initial resistance to the idea... if it will survive and thrive, then so be it - people will come to the defense of the depiction and it will gain theological acceptance.  If it isn't good for our tradition, then it will be expelled.

Why do I feel I'm sensing resistance already?  Yes, I understand there will be resistance.  There's resistance in my church too.  But that doesn't make the argument I made less plausible.  What you're simply saying if it passes resistance, then it's acceptable.  That to me is a weak argument.  You can say the same about dogma, that heresies can pass a certain resistance, and people will be inevitable divide the church because of it.

I don't mean to attack a tradition.  I'm simply trying to engage in a discussion that hopefully I may learn from.  If this is going to offend you, I apologize.  All I was arguing is that everyone has a beautiful tradition, and everyone has their own interpretation that might clash with other's.  I gave an example on that too that just came to mind.  I was hoping I would get something fruitful out the discussion.
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« Reply #84 on: April 04, 2009, 06:47:16 AM »

Why do I feel I'm sensing resistance already?  Yes, I understand there will be resistance.  There's resistance in my church too.  But that doesn't make the argument I made less plausible. 

You're getting resistance because your idea, especially manifest in the example of the Theotokos with the mandora, is against the prevailing tradition of the Church, and indeed has serious consequences when it comes to the depiction on the most amazing and significant events of Christ's life.  I don't think I'm arguing plausibility, I'm arguing benefit or harm to the Church and its people.

What you're simply saying if it passes resistance, then it's acceptable.  That to me is a weak argument.  You can say the same about dogma, that heresies can pass a certain resistance, and people will be inevitable divide the church because of it.

I'm not saying "if it passes resistance, then it's acceptable."  I'm saying "it will meet resistance, and then people will test it - test it against the writings of the Fathers, test it against the iconographic record from the catacombs to the cathedrals, test it against the wisdom of the iconographers who hold a living tradition - and if it passes these tests, then it will gain acceptance, and if it does not pass even one of these tests, it will be cast out."

I don't mean to attack a tradition.  I'm simply trying to engage in a discussion that hopefully I may learn from.  If this is going to offend you, I apologize.  All I was arguing is that everyone has a beautiful tradition, and everyone has their own interpretation that might clash with other's.  I gave an example on that too that just came to mind.  I was hoping I would get something fruitful out the discussion.

I'm not offended - people question tradition all the time on here; one has to have thick skin for it.  I'm giving you the fruit you are looking for: a cross-cultural analysis, at least from the EO perspective, as to why the mandora is used in icons of Christ and, therefore, why it's actually inappropriate for icons of the Theotokos from our EO POV.  You're being given the fruit - don't be disappointed if you get an apple but were expecting a papaya.
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« Reply #85 on: April 04, 2009, 01:22:20 PM »

It seems to me if icons are not a depiction of a real event, but somehow a imaginative depiction of something that might have been, we're not taking about faith but a world of make believe.
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« Reply #86 on: April 04, 2009, 02:35:27 PM »

Why do I feel I'm sensing resistance already?  Yes, I understand there will be resistance.  There's resistance in my church too.  But that doesn't make the argument I made less plausible. 

You're getting resistance because your idea, especially manifest in the example of the Theotokos with the mandora, is against the prevailing tradition of the Church, and indeed has serious consequences when it comes to the depiction on the most amazing and significant events of Christ's life.  I don't think I'm arguing plausibility, I'm arguing benefit or harm to the Church and its people.

What you're simply saying if it passes resistance, then it's acceptable.  That to me is a weak argument.  You can say the same about dogma, that heresies can pass a certain resistance, and people will be inevitable divide the church because of it.

I'm not saying "if it passes resistance, then it's acceptable."  I'm saying "it will meet resistance, and then people will test it - test it against the writings of the Fathers, test it against the iconographic record from the catacombs to the cathedrals, test it against the wisdom of the iconographers who hold a living tradition - and if it passes these tests, then it will gain acceptance, and if it does not pass even one of these tests, it will be cast out."

I don't mean to attack a tradition.  I'm simply trying to engage in a discussion that hopefully I may learn from.  If this is going to offend you, I apologize.  All I was arguing is that everyone has a beautiful tradition, and everyone has their own interpretation that might clash with other's.  I gave an example on that too that just came to mind.  I was hoping I would get something fruitful out the discussion.

I'm not offended - people question tradition all the time on here; one has to have thick skin for it.  I'm giving you the fruit you are looking for: a cross-cultural analysis, at least from the EO perspective, as to why the mandora is used in icons of Christ and, therefore, why it's actually inappropriate for icons of the Theotokos from our EO POV.  You're being given the fruit - don't be disappointed if you get an apple but were expecting a papaya.

Well, I'm still confused about something because I don't feel like I even got an apple from you.  I wish.  You're repeating the same argument as you mentioned before, you didn't give me anything new, and you're ignoring the arguments I made.

Are you saying it's heretical to have that particular icon even if it can be interpreted differently?
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« Reply #87 on: April 04, 2009, 02:59:31 PM »

It seems to me if icons are not a depiction of a real event, but somehow a imaginative depiction of something that might have been, we're not taking about faith but a world of make believe.

How does that relate to mina's and cleveland's discussion?  Huh
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« Reply #88 on: April 04, 2009, 03:21:03 PM »

It doesn't.
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« Reply #89 on: April 04, 2009, 04:05:45 PM »

Oh yes it does. Icons depict what has been revealed about God and the Holy Trinity, not what springs from the imagination of the painter. Icons, at their very core, are representative of the Incarnation of God, the most potent act of Divine revelation.
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« Reply #90 on: April 04, 2009, 05:38:31 PM »

Oh yes it does. Icons depict what has been revealed about God and the Holy Trinity, not what springs from the imagination of the painter. Icons, at their very core, are representative of the Incarnation of God, the most potent act of Divine revelation.

I think AMM was saying that he made his point specifically to be irrelevant to the discussion.
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« Reply #91 on: May 12, 2009, 08:04:27 PM »

Quote


On another Orthodox forum a lady (Olga) who posts there regularly (and who is a highly experienced iconographer) posted the following on the thread called "The Ark of Salvation" about this "picture":

http://www.monachos.net/forum/showthread.php?t=4612&highlight=Ark+of+Salvation

In particular, post #8 describing the picture is of great interest:

http://www.monachos.net/forum/showpost.php?p=59206&postcount=8









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« Reply #92 on: May 24, 2009, 03:27:44 AM »

The pointy hat on the pointy hatted heretic isn't pointy enough.   Smiley
HaHa.. I guess BOTH of our Catholicoses should be depicted outside the boat Roll Eyes
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« Reply #93 on: August 08, 2011, 08:27:34 AM »

My wife and I were on vacation in Moscow this summer and we visited the Tretyakov gallery. In the section devoted to icons, I did indeed come across an "Ark of Salvation" icon very similar to the ones under discussion. It was dated to the 18th century. It did not, of course, have Lenin or "ecumenists" depicted but there was an array of figures on the shore menacing the Ark, including a figure firing a musket and someone enthroned whom I guessed was the Pope. And there was also a turbaned man, whom I assume to be Muhammad, aiming a bow, as well as other figures. I don't think there were labels attached to identify them, and I didn't have much time to examine the icon, but I think it can surely be said that these contemporary "Ark of Salvation" icons have precedent- which is of course a separate question from whether they are legitimate.
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« Reply #94 on: August 08, 2011, 08:50:50 AM »

This Ark of Salvation icon is from Zographou Monastery on Mt. Athos and dated 1817:

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« Reply #95 on: August 08, 2011, 08:57:36 AM »

My wife and I were on vacation in Moscow this summer and we visited the Tretyakov gallery. In the section devoted to icons, I did indeed come across an "Ark of Salvation" icon very similar to the ones under discussion. It was dated to the 18th century. It did not, of course, have Lenin or "ecumenists" depicted but there was an array of figures on the shore menacing the Ark, including a figure firing a musket and someone enthroned whom I guessed was the Pope. And there was also a turbaned man, whom I assume to be Muhammad, aiming a bow, as well as other figures. I don't think there were labels attached to identify them, and I didn't have much time to examine the icon, but I think it can surely be said that these contemporary "Ark of Salvation" icons have precedent- which is of course a separate question from whether they are legitimate.

Jah has helpfully posted an image I have on file, which is probably a cartoon (an artist's draft), with the annotation "after a fresco of 1817, Zographou Monastery". The crucial word here is after: is this image a faithful copy of the Zographou fresco, or not? It could well be that the composition of the Zographou fresco is the same as the drawing by Rallis Kopsidis I reproduced earlier in this thread, a perfectly acceptable didactic image, and that the presence of the figures on the shore are a deliberate addition, thus perverting the intention of the original.

Even if the Zographou fresco does portray the "enemies of Orthodoxy", it does not make such an image suitable for veneration, for the reasons I expressed in earlier posts. The presence of such an image in an Athonite monastery, or in the Tretyakov Gallery, does not automatically confer legitimacy or canonicity to it.
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« Reply #96 on: August 08, 2011, 09:04:06 AM »

^ All very good points, LBK.
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« Reply #97 on: August 08, 2011, 09:12:11 AM »

My wife and I were on vacation in Moscow this summer and we visited the Tretyakov gallery. In the section devoted to icons, I did indeed come across an "Ark of Salvation" icon very similar to the ones under discussion. It was dated to the 18th century. It did not, of course, have Lenin or "ecumenists" depicted but there was an array of figures on the shore menacing the Ark, including a figure firing a musket and someone enthroned whom I guessed was the Pope. And there was also a turbaned man, whom I assume to be Muhammad, aiming a bow, as well as other figures. I don't think there were labels attached to identify them, and I didn't have much time to examine the icon, but I think it can surely be said that these contemporary "Ark of Salvation" icons have precedent- which is of course a separate question from whether they are legitimate.

Jah has helpfully posted an image I have on file, which is probably a cartoon (an artist's draft), with the annotation "after a fresco of 1817, Zographou Monastery". The crucial word here is after: is this image a faithful copy of the Zographou fresco, or not? It could well be that the composition of the Zographou fresco is the same as the drawing by Rallis Kopsidis I reproduced earlier in this thread, a perfectly acceptable didactic image, and that the presence of the figures on the shore are a deliberate addition, thus perverting the intention of the original.

Even if the Zographou fresco does portray the "enemies of Orthodoxy", it does not make such an image suitable for veneration, for the reasons I expressed in earlier posts. The presence of such an image in an Athonite monastery, or in the Tretyakov Gallery, does not automatically confer legitimacy or canonicity to it.

LBK- First, please note that I said "...which is of course a separate question from whether they are legitimate." I am not saying I support the veneration of this icon, just pointing out that it has precedent.

Second, the icon I saw was definitely a few centuries old and was definitely not a drawing or a fresco- it was painted on wood and it was Russian. Chances are that this icon and the Zographou fresco had a common ancestor.
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« Reply #98 on: August 08, 2011, 09:20:05 AM »

My dear Iconodule, precedent is of no consequence if an image is not legitimate. It remains simply a piece of art, not an icon. The danger of the presence of such images in prestigious establishments such as the Tretyakov (which houses, among other treasures, the Holy Trinity painted by St Andrei of Radonezh) is that unsuspecting folks could easily and honestly assume they are proper icons suitable for veneration, unless such images are clearly labeled or annotated as not being venerable images.

Historical precedent could also be invoked for images such as the NT Trinity, Angel of Holy Silence, Paternity, and others, which the Church has repeatedly denounced as deficient, false and uncanonical. Yet, to this day, copies of these images are still being painted, and historic examples hang in galleries with no associated caveat. It is bad enough that certain contemporary artists (including some Orthodox) paint "icons" according to their own whims and imaginations; "precedent" can be just as subversive.
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« Reply #99 on: August 08, 2011, 01:06:50 PM »

My dear Iconodule, precedent is of no consequence if an image is not legitimate.

Am I crazy or is this the same point I was making?
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« Reply #100 on: August 08, 2011, 03:03:51 PM »

The irony in Orthodoxy is not even the Orthodox agree with the Orthodox.

This is one of the main reasons I have in falling away from the church.  If Orthodoxy was Orthodox, then more would be traditional, such as what the Holy Metropolis Greek Orthodox Church in America.  Also I give Gregory of Colorado a lot of credence because he dumped ROAC over ecumenism.

Sure lots of allegations fly, but if Orthodoxy really cared about Orthodoxy, it would all be old calendar because it would not have allowed change.

I had to get out of Orthodoxy "mainly" (of course there are some other issues) because the closest Metropolis Greek church was a 7 hour drive from my house.  Can't be hauling my wife & five kids to that, especially when I would have to have long deep talks with a priest or bishop with heavy knowledge of the faith (that I take most metropolis priests have given the reasons they are in that).   

It's a mess, even evidenced by many people here that are slandering this icon which absolutely is within the "boundaries" of the Eastern Orthodox church.
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« Reply #101 on: August 08, 2011, 03:11:03 PM »

The irony in Orthodoxy is not even the Orthodox agree with the Orthodox.

This is one of the main reasons I have in falling away from the church.  If Orthodoxy was Orthodox, then more would be traditional, such as what the Holy Metropolis Greek Orthodox Church in America.  Also I give Gregory of Colorado a lot of credence because he dumped ROAC over ecumenism.

Sure lots of allegations fly, but if Orthodoxy really cared about Orthodoxy, it would all be old calendar because it would not have allowed change.

I had to get out of Orthodoxy "mainly" (of course there are some other issues) because the closest Metropolis Greek church was a 7 hour drive from my house.  Can't be hauling my wife & five kids to that, especially when I would have to have long deep talks with a priest or bishop with heavy knowledge of the faith (that I take most metropolis priests have given the reasons they are in that).   

It's a mess, even evidenced by many people here that are slandering this icon which absolutely is within the "boundaries" of the Eastern Orthodox church.

Did anyone else hear something?  I thought I heard some inane babbling in this thread somewhere, something like a toddler trying to speak to the adults, using big words he can't quite say correctly or even understand what they mean...
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« Reply #102 on: August 08, 2011, 03:15:41 PM »

Also I give Gregory of Colorado a lot of credence because he dumped ROAC over ecumenism.

The only things that he might be applauded for are producing fine icons, and publishing books that give a more traditional view of things. Past that, however... his ecclesiology is nonsense, as is his claim to be an Orthodox bishop (even you call him "Gregory of Colorado," and not "Archbp. Gregory").
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« Reply #103 on: August 08, 2011, 03:22:19 PM »

yeshuaisiam, you left the Church because of these little discrepancies that you found between the various jurisdictions, between various churches/parishes, orthodox faithful and posters on an internet forum?

You left because everyone didn't play nicely in the sandbox of Orthodoxy?  Seriously?

Let me know what you have found out there, outside of Orthodoxy.  I'm interested to see if you find this peaceful utopia where everyone holds hands and sings in unison.

This is earth, not Heaven.  People are people.   We are fallen and imperfect.  I am truly sad to hear that you have left the True Path to wonder in the wilderness.

I hope you will find that the 7 hour drive really wasn't all that bad when you realize what you have lost, and what your 5 children are being kept from.

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« Reply #104 on: August 08, 2011, 03:36:18 PM »

Sure lots of allegations fly, but if Orthodoxy really cared about Orthodoxy, it would all be old calendar because it would not have allowed change.

Yep, calendars are dogmatic and binding. The Nativity of the Holy and Life-Creating Julian Calendar is commemorated on December 25th, which is on January 7th according to the Satanic ecumenists.

As someone who is a member of a church on the Old Calendar, I can honestly say that I'm sorry to see you have such a static view of the Church and her relationship to the world around her. She's a living organism, not a fossil or a museum piece. I guess that explains why you're looking for some fossil of the "New Testament" church as well. You must like digging up dead things that never grow ("change").
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« Reply #105 on: August 08, 2011, 03:43:57 PM »

That has to be one of the most fascinating icons I've seen.
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« Reply #106 on: August 08, 2011, 07:40:06 PM »

That has to be one of the most fascinating icons I've seen.

It is not an icon, folks. It is a piece of angry ecclesiopolitical propaganda, painted in an abstracted, non-naturalistic style by a rather skilled hand. Nothing more.
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« Reply #107 on: August 08, 2011, 08:33:33 PM »

Ah this one.   Roll Eyes  I've read that it is a re-working and updating of an earlier icon that did not have such things as "New Age"  or the historical anachronism of Martin Luther with a rifle.

Well, Elisha, Dormition Skete (DS) *used* to be ROAC, but now it is separated and is the domain of Gregory of Colorado.  He split from ROAC not quite 3 years ago iirc.  It was in the summer.  So this icon is from Gregory's mindset it seems likely.

Ebor

This monastery?  every time I visit Holy Protestion monastery in Lake George, CO, the nun there talks about this monastery.

are they schismatic or what?

What is the "Genuine Orthodox Church of America"?
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« Reply #108 on: August 08, 2011, 08:44:09 PM »

http://www.gocamerica.org/

This is their website.
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« Reply #109 on: August 08, 2011, 08:57:09 PM »

Quote
are they schismatic or what?

Yes, Trevor, they are schismatic, and do not even recognise other similar groups such as the Cyprianites. A look at "Bishop" Gregory's pronouncements on the website, including his listing of apostolic succession (the same ploy used by vagante groups), further illustrate why he favours the image of the so-called "ark of salvation". It perfectly expresses the mentality of his "church" and its virulent hostility to anyone outside it, including the canonical Orthodox.

The "ark of salvation" has become a leaking, two-man dinghy.
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« Reply #110 on: August 08, 2011, 09:11:57 PM »

The "ark of salvation" has become a leaking, two-man dinghy.

Nicely niced.
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« Reply #111 on: August 10, 2011, 08:35:20 PM »

The irony in Orthodoxy is not even the Orthodox agree with the Orthodox.

This is one of the main reasons I have in falling away from the church.  If Orthodoxy was Orthodox, then more would be traditional, such as what the Holy Metropolis Greek Orthodox Church in America.  Also I give Gregory of Colorado a lot of credence because he dumped ROAC over ecumenism.

Sure lots of allegations fly, but if Orthodoxy really cared about Orthodoxy, it would all be old calendar because it would not have allowed change.

I had to get out of Orthodoxy "mainly" (of course there are some other issues) because the closest Metropolis Greek church was a 7 hour drive from my house.  Can't be hauling my wife & five kids to that, especially when I would have to have long deep talks with a priest or bishop with heavy knowledge of the faith (that I take most metropolis priests have given the reasons they are in that).   

It's a mess, even evidenced by many people here that are slandering this icon which absolutely is within the "boundaries" of the Eastern Orthodox church.

Did anyone else hear something?  I thought I heard some inane babbling in this thread somewhere, something like a toddler trying to speak to the adults, using big words he can't quite say correctly or even understand what they mean...

You will know them by their fruits.  I was kind, stated facts of why I am where I am, and pointed out relevant facts about Orthodoxy.  Your text tries to insult me, but doesn't.  You are only burning in your own anger, so if there was anybody throwing a fit like a toddler....

Look, tell me what I said is wrong.  Orthodox disagree with Orthodox.

The OP posted an icon that some embraced, some did not.

1) My argument is that the Orthodox who claim to be the one true church completely disagree with each other on many levels.
2) My argument is that the Holy Metropolis of the Greek Orthodox Church in America is practically the only church I have found in America that sticks to traditional ORTHODOX values.  Old calendar, Non-Ecumenism, Real Succession.

Of course, you can always enjoy your ecumenism bishops if you want.  Any real Orthodox who actually held the Canon of the Holy Apostles as VALID would be running to the Metropolis of the Greek Orthodox Church in America rather than venerating those who celebrate worship with the non-Orthodox in direct defiance. 

Facts are facts, like them or not.  Orthodox disagree with Orthodox in regards to religious things.  Even churches "in communion" with each other.

If what I say is right, why do you insult me?

If you can't handle this then I would heavily consider giving up your moderator access.  I do believe that insults like these should be made noted by site administrators.
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