OrthodoxChristianity.net
September 20, 2014, 08:00:39 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Reminder: No political discussions in the public fora.  If you do not have access to the private Politics Forum, please send a PM to Fr. George.
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Pages: 1 2 All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Church and Social Justice (split from "Female Priests" thread)  (Read 6262 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« on: August 01, 2007, 09:34:16 PM »

This topic has been split off from the "Female Priests in the RCC thread" to allow its own development.  The original thread is here: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,12352.0.html - Cleveland, GM

I agree. When liberal Protestants ask me if I have a problem with women ministers, I say, "Of course not. You are welcome to have female ministers if you like. However, there is no such thing as a woman priest, as our Church defines it." Sometimes they criticize me for having this position, and I ask them why they are so concerned about the practices of a Church of which they are not even a member. To many of them, gender "equality" (as they define it) is a universal absolute, a truth more unchanging than traditional Christian moral teachings and many traditional Christian dogmas. The chief mission of the Church, to them, is "social justice" (as they define it). It is a very different Gospel and should be recognized as such.

Any attempt to divorce the Gospel of Christ and the concept of 'social justice' will simply alienate the Church (yours or mine) from modern society. I, of course, disagree with your perspective for theological reasons, but in the grand scheme of things I view these arguments as relatively moot. Theology does establish right, save souls, or beget truth, Love, especially the infinite love of the Divine, does all these things through the communion of the faithful, embodied in the Eucharist. Theology is merely an abstraction of this reality. But praxis does have a direct bearing on these things, and by praxis I do not mean so much the formality of the rubrics as the manner in which we conduct ourselves. If the Church alienates herself from the world, if the Church fails to uphold Justice (social or otherwise), if the Church values abstractions above people she fails in her duty of being the conduit of Divine Love, she fails to be the communion for which she was established, in essence she negates the very reason for their being a Church.

Quote
These women who think they've been ordained Catholic priests should recognize that their Gospel is not the Catholic Church's Gospel. Somehow they think these stunts are akin to act of civil disobedience against Jim Crow laws. They think largely in secular, worldly terms. They speak a language of "rights" and "liberation."

Should not the Church 'become all things to all people'? Should we not learn this language and address these people in their own tongue so that we can 'be ready always to give an answer to everyone'?
« Last Edit: August 02, 2007, 12:06:57 PM by cleveland » Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2007, 11:55:30 PM »

Any attempt to divorce the Gospel of Christ and the concept of 'social justice' will simply alienate the Church (yours or mine) from modern society.

I, of course, disagree with your perspective for theological reasons, but in the grand scheme of things I view these arguments as relatively moot. Theology does establish right, save souls, or beget truth, Love, especially the infinite love of the Divine, does all these things through the communion of the faithful, embodied in the Eucharist. Theology is merely an abstraction of this reality. But praxis does have a direct bearing on these things, and by praxis I do not mean so much the formality of the rubrics as the manner in which we conduct ourselves. If the Church alienates herself from the world, if the Church fails to uphold Justice (social or otherwise), if the Church values abstractions above people she fails in her duty of being the conduit of Divine Love, she fails to be the communion for which she was established, in essence she negates the very reason for their being a Church.

Should not the Church 'become all things to all people'? Should we not learn this language and address these people in their own tongue so that we can 'be ready always to give an answer to everyone'?
Must the Church identify herself solely with this 'social justice' gospel?  Certainly such service is important, for we will be judged by what we have done or failed to do for the least of Christ's brethren.  But if we devote all of our attention to being of service to this world and the individuals living therein, we risk losing consciousness of the other-worldly Divinity Who gives us life and makes us the Church.  When this happens, we cease to be truly the Christian Church and become instead just another social service agency.  Is this not part of the lesson Jesus expressed in His dialogue with Mary and Martha?
« Last Edit: August 02, 2007, 12:07:06 PM by cleveland » Logged
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2007, 02:02:03 AM »

Must the Church identify herself solely with this 'social justice' gospel?  Certainly such service is important, for we will be judged by what we have done or failed to do for the least of Christ's brethren.  But if we devote all of our attention to being of service to this world and the individuals living therein, we risk losing consciousness of the other-worldly Divinity Who gives us life and makes us the Church.  When this happens, we cease to be truly the Christian Church and become instead just another social service agency.  Is this not part of the lesson Jesus expressed in His dialogue with Mary and Martha?

Solely? No, of course not; however, this is not because 'social justice' is not an essential and most fundamental aspect of the faith, but rather because it is not complete in and of itself (though it could be argued that the governing attribute of Divine Love is). But, while not complete, we can be assured of the righteousness of such a pursuit; therefore, while 'social justice' is not the completeness of the Christian faith, we must conclude that it is an essential element, and thus that no element that is truly of the Christian faith can conflict with it. Thus, the spiritual, while not being directly governed by the temporal, must at least be consonant with the same.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2007, 12:07:14 PM by cleveland » Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2007, 02:35:46 AM »

Solely? No, of course not; however, this is not because 'social justice' is not an essential and most fundamental aspect of the faith, but rather because it is not complete in and of itself (though it could be argued that the governing attribute of Divine Love is). But, while not complete, we can be assured of the righteousness of such a pursuit; therefore, while 'social justice' is not the completeness of the Christian faith, we must conclude that it is an essential element, and thus that no element that is truly of the Christian faith can conflict with it. Thus, the spiritual, while not being directly governed by the temporal, must at least be consonant with the same.
As long as it is the Gospel and not the world that defines what we mean by 'social justice'.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2007, 12:07:21 PM by cleveland » Logged
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Posts: 29,839



« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2007, 07:34:36 AM »

Peter,

Quote
As long as it is the Gospel and not the world that defines what we mean by 'social justice'.

I can see not letting the world define your beliefs or practices. But culture is sometimes a factor, is it not? For example, Christians usually argue that slavery was always bad, but that Christianity went along with the culture until the abolishment of slavery could be achieved. When the culture(s) finally advanced far enough to enact a good change, the Church was right there to support the change. Now, I would agree that the female priest issue is a whole different ball of wax, but I still think it's important not to discount at the outset the part a changing secular culture could play in how the Church acts and speaks. When eminent theologians like Bp. Kallistos are willing to explore the subject, I'd think there would be good reason to discuss, wait and see.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2007, 12:07:30 PM by cleveland » Logged

"No man gives the same exegesis twice: for he is not the same man, and it is not the same text." - St. Heraclitus
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #5 on: August 02, 2007, 11:10:36 AM »

Peter,

I can see not letting the world define your beliefs or practices. But culture is sometimes a factor, is it not? For example, Christians usually argue that slavery was always bad, but that Christianity went along with the culture until the abolishment of slavery could be achieved. When the culture(s) finally advanced far enough to enact a good change, the Church was right there to support the change. Now, I would agree that the female priest issue is a whole different ball of wax, but I still think it's important not to discount at the outset the part a changing secular culture could play in how the Church acts and speaks. When eminent theologians like Bp. Kallistos are willing to explore the subject, I'd think there would be good reason to discuss, wait and see.

Personally, I'm a bit suspicious of 'any' attempt to push a 'social-gospel'. The very fact that our Lord Jesus Christ didn't decry slavery suggests to 'me' that the the gospel wasn't preached to bring about social justice but the liberation of individual bondage to sin through our death 'in the flesh' and being 'born-again in the spirit'.

As I understand it, and I'll admit that I'm not so sure that I do, but like I said as I understand it our faith renews from the inside out not from the outside in. If you desire social justice you have the make the 'people' desire sainthood and seek it. Nothing else works in my humble opinion.

Salve.

« Last Edit: August 02, 2007, 12:12:33 PM by ignatius » Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
lubeltri
Latin Catholic layman
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Catholic
Jurisdiction: Archdiocese of Boston
Posts: 3,795



« Reply #6 on: August 02, 2007, 12:03:51 PM »

Social justice grows out of faith; it is not faith itself.

And social justice does not necessarily = egalitarianism or minority politics.

"Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in. Aim at earth and you get neither." C.S. Lewis
« Last Edit: August 02, 2007, 12:07:47 PM by cleveland » Logged
recent convert
Orthodox Chrisitan
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Antiochian (N.A.)
Posts: 1,901


« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2007, 12:30:34 PM »

I have not read this thread throughly (yet) nor have I read what I am mentioning in my post (yet) but at a glance, it seems to be a good source for how we are to obey the Gospel in its proper social context. On Wealth and Poverty: St. John Chrysostom (SVS Press ISBN 0-88141-039-X). Also something all Christians should be able to agree on since the church was not split at this point.
Logged

Antiochian OC N.A.
Fr. George
formerly "Cleveland"
Administrator
Stratopedarches
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox (Catholic) Christian
Jurisdiction: GOA - Metropolis of Pittsburgh
Posts: 20,075


May the Lord bless you and keep you always!


« Reply #8 on: August 02, 2007, 12:54:47 PM »

I have not read this thread throughly (yet) nor have I read what I am mentioning in my post (yet) but at a glance, it seems to be a good source for how we are to obey the Gospel in its proper social context. On Wealth and Poverty: St. John Chrysostom (SVS Press ISBN 0-88141-039-X). Also something all Christians should be able to agree on since the church was not split at this point. 

Ahh... Well, while all social justice could be discussed here, specifically what started this thread was a discussion on "social justice" in the sense of "womens' rights" and whatnot.
Logged

"The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the one who can't read them." Mark Twain
---------------------
Ordained on 17 & 18-Oct 2009. Please forgive me if earlier posts are poorly worded or incorrect in any way.
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2007, 12:59:16 PM »

I have not read this thread throughly (yet) nor have I read what I am mentioning in my post (yet) but at a glance, it seems to be a good source for how we are to obey the Gospel in its proper social context. On Wealth and Poverty: St. John Chrysostom (SVS Press ISBN 0-88141-039-X). Also something all Christians should be able to agree on since the church was not split at this point.

I believe I'll just keep it simple:

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
- Matthew 6:33 KJV
Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
recent convert
Orthodox Chrisitan
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Antiochian (N.A.)
Posts: 1,901


« Reply #10 on: August 02, 2007, 01:20:11 PM »

Ahh... Well, while all social justice could be discussed here, specifically what started this thread was a discussion on "social justice" in the sense of "womens' rights" and whatnot.
sorry, I do not usually jump into a thread prematurely; i was bouncing back from another forum and got my circuits crossed. Huh
Logged

Antiochian OC N.A.
Fr. George
formerly "Cleveland"
Administrator
Stratopedarches
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox (Catholic) Christian
Jurisdiction: GOA - Metropolis of Pittsburgh
Posts: 20,075


May the Lord bless you and keep you always!


« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2007, 01:28:10 PM »

sorry, I do not usually jump into a thread prematurely; i was bouncing back from another forum and got my circuits crossed. Huh

No apologies necessary!
Logged

"The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the one who can't read them." Mark Twain
---------------------
Ordained on 17 & 18-Oct 2009. Please forgive me if earlier posts are poorly worded or incorrect in any way.
Philokalia
Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic
Posts: 173


Hail Mary Full of Grace


WWW
« Reply #12 on: August 02, 2007, 04:27:11 PM »

I believe I'll just keep it simple:

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
- Matthew 6:33 KJV

Well Isaiah 58 has this

 3"Why do we fast, but you do not see? Why humble ourselves, but you do not notice?" Look, you serve your own interest on your fast day, and oppress all your workers.
4 Look, you fast only to quarrel and to fight and to strike with a wicked fist. Such fasting as you do today will not make your voice heard on high.
5 Is such the fast that I choose, a day to humble oneself? Is it to bow down the head like a bulrush, and to lie in sackcloth and ashes? Will you call this a fast, a day acceptable to the Lord?
6 Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of injustice, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?
7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover them, and not to hide yourself from your own kin?

8 Then your light shall break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up quickly; your vindicator shall go before you, the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.
9 Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; you shall cry for help, and he will say, Here I am. If you remove the yoke from among you, the pointing of the finger, the speaking of evil,
10 if you offer your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted, then your light shall rise in the darkness and your gloom be like the noonday.
11 The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your needs in parched places, and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters never fail.
12 Your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to live in.

And think of James 5

1 Come now, you rich people, weep and wail for the miseries that are coming to you.
2 Your riches have rotted, and your clothes are moth-eaten.
3 Your gold and silver have rusted, and their rust will be evidence against you, and it will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure  for the last days.
4 Listen! The wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts.
5 You have lived on the earth in luxury and in pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter.
6 You have condemned and murdered the righteous one, who does not resist you

Logged

Violence is a lie, for it goes against the truth of our faith, the truth of our humanity. Violence destroys what it claims to defend: the dignity, the life, the freedom of human beings. Violence is a crime against humanity, for it destroys the very fabric of society.
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #13 on: August 02, 2007, 05:39:46 PM »

Well Isaiah 58 has this

 3"Why do we fast, but you do not see? Why humble ourselves, but you do not notice?" Look, you serve your own interest on your fast day, and oppress all your workers.
4 Look, you fast only to quarrel and to fight and to strike with a wicked fist. Such fasting as you do today will not make your voice heard on high.
5 Is such the fast that I choose, a day to humble oneself? Is it to bow down the head like a bulrush, and to lie in sackcloth and ashes? Will you call this a fast, a day acceptable to the Lord?
6 Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of injustice, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?
7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover them, and not to hide yourself from your own kin?

8 Then your light shall break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up quickly; your vindicator shall go before you, the glory of the Lord shall be your rear guard.
9 Then you shall call, and the Lord will answer; you shall cry for help, and he will say, Here I am. If you remove the yoke from among you, the pointing of the finger, the speaking of evil,
10 if you offer your food to the hungry and satisfy the needs of the afflicted, then your light shall rise in the darkness and your gloom be like the noonday.
11 The Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your needs in parched places, and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water, whose waters never fail.
12 Your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to live in.

So much of Isaiah can be interpreted as heralding our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ that I have a very difficult time believing it is crying out for a social worker and not a spiritual saviour. Perhaps this is why Harnack and other Liberal Theologians share such a mundane interpretation.

Quote
And think of James 5

1 Come now, you rich people, weep and wail for the miseries that are coming to you.
2 Your riches have rotted, and your clothes are moth-eaten.
3 Your gold and silver have rusted, and their rust will be evidence against you, and it will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure  for the last days.
4 Listen! The wages of the laborers who mowed your fields, which you kept back by fraud, cry out, and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts.
5 You have lived on the earth in luxury and in pleasure; you have fattened your hearts in a day of slaughter.
6 You have condemned and murdered the righteous one, who does not resist you

I guess this begs the question "Who is Rich"?
Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #14 on: August 02, 2007, 11:43:26 PM »

Peter,

I can see not letting the world define your beliefs or practices. But culture is sometimes a factor, is it not? For example, Christians usually argue that slavery was always bad, but that Christianity went along with the culture until the abolishment of slavery could be achieved. When the culture(s) finally advanced far enough to enact a good change, the Church was right there to support the change. Now, I would agree that the female priest issue is a whole different ball of wax, but I still think it's important not to discount at the outset the part a changing secular culture could play in how the Church acts and speaks. When eminent theologians like Bp. Kallistos are willing to explore the subject, I'd think there would be good reason to discuss, wait and see.
Yes, the Church must always be responsive to the culture in which she lives; she must be wise enough to know when to act boldly and when to wait patiently for favorable winds.
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #15 on: August 02, 2007, 11:44:40 PM »

Personally, I'm a bit suspicious of 'any' attempt to push a 'social-gospel'. The very fact that our Lord Jesus Christ didn't decry slavery suggests to 'me' that the the gospel wasn't preached to bring about social justice but the liberation of individual bondage to sin through our death 'in the flesh' and being 'born-again in the spirit'.

As I understand it, and I'll admit that I'm not so sure that I do, but like I said as I understand it our faith renews from the inside out not from the outside in. If you desire social justice you have the make the 'people' desire sainthood and seek it. Nothing else works in my humble opinion.

Salve.
"Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven."
Logged
Philokalia
Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic
Posts: 173


Hail Mary Full of Grace


WWW
« Reply #16 on: August 03, 2007, 01:22:08 AM »

So much of Isaiah can be interpreted as heralding our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ that I have a very difficult time believing it is crying out for a social worker and not a spiritual saviour. Perhaps this is why Harnack and other Liberal Theologians share such a mundane interpretation.

I guess this begs the question "Who is Rich"?

Why is it not possible to have a care for both spirit and body? Remember the Apostles in Acts 6

1 Now during those days, when the disciples were increasing in number, the Hellenists complained against the Hebrews because their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution of food.
2 And the twelve called together the whole community of the disciples and said, "It is not right that we should neglect the word of God in order to wait on tables. 
3 Therefore, friends, select from among yourselves seven men of good standing, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we may appoint to this task,
4 while we, for our part, will devote ourselves to prayer and to serving the word."
5 What they said pleased the whole community, and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, together with Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch.
6 They had these men stand before the apostles, who prayed and laid their hands on them.


The first Christian Martyr was the "Social Worker" Saint Stephen who showed that serving Jesus and distributing food to the poor are not two different things but the same thing.

Who are the rich? Well people who defraud others of their wages might come into that category. And speaking up for the victims of this fraud might count as a Godly activity.

Logged

Violence is a lie, for it goes against the truth of our faith, the truth of our humanity. Violence destroys what it claims to defend: the dignity, the life, the freedom of human beings. Violence is a crime against humanity, for it destroys the very fabric of society.
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #17 on: August 03, 2007, 02:14:02 AM »

Yes, the Church must always be responsive to the culture in which she lives; she must be wise enough to know when to act boldly and when to wait patiently for favorable winds.

Well, if you're waiting for the winds of civilization to shift again in favour of oppression and misogyny you will have a rather long wait. Either we liberals are going to win, or we all are going to loose.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #18 on: August 03, 2007, 02:23:59 AM »

Well, if you're waiting for the winds of civilization to shift again in favour of oppression and misogyny you will have a rather long wait. Either we liberals are going to win, or we all are going to loose.
So you define oppression and misogyny by the world's ever-changing standards and not by the unchanging standard of Holy Tradition?
Logged
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Posts: 29,839



« Reply #19 on: August 03, 2007, 07:21:05 AM »

A Church That Can And Cannot Change: The Development of Catholic Moral Teaching, by John Thomas Noonan

Learn it. Know it. Live it. Wink
« Last Edit: August 03, 2007, 07:41:41 AM by Asteriktos » Logged

"No man gives the same exegesis twice: for he is not the same man, and it is not the same text." - St. Heraclitus
lubeltri
Latin Catholic layman
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Catholic
Jurisdiction: Archdiocese of Boston
Posts: 3,795



« Reply #20 on: August 03, 2007, 09:48:02 AM »

Avery Cardinal Dulles wrote a response to that book's claims in First Things a couple years ago:

http://www.firstthings.com/article.php3?id_article=234
« Last Edit: August 03, 2007, 09:49:02 AM by lubeltri » Logged
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #21 on: August 03, 2007, 11:31:33 AM »

Avery Cardinal Dulles wrote a response to that book's claims in First Things a couple years ago:

http://www.firstthings.com/article.php3?id_article=234

Thanks for the link, I am very impressed with Avery Cardinal Dulles' critique.
Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Posts: 29,839



« Reply #22 on: August 03, 2007, 12:28:08 PM »

Perhaps both the book and the critique have some merit...? I think he doesn't go far enough, but he's probably ruffled enough feathers  Grin
Logged

"No man gives the same exegesis twice: for he is not the same man, and it is not the same text." - St. Heraclitus
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #23 on: August 03, 2007, 01:18:53 PM »

So you define oppression and misogyny by the world's ever-changing standards and not by the unchanging standard of Holy Tradition?

I fancy myself a pragmatist, I define the terms neither by the standards of the world or the church but rather by what we can practically observe. The history of ecclesiastical culture related to women is consistantly one of oppression, no doubt derived from the prevailing cultural norms of the day. The cultural impositions against the Christian Faith you mistakenly lable as 'Holy Tradition' have resulted in inequality and the relegating of half the population to the status of second class. It can be objectively argued from psychology, neurology, and economics that this is detrimental to our collective well-being and a moral argument, be it derived from modern common sense or Christian high theology of love and the divine attributes, must conclude that the conduct is simply immoral.

Your attempt at Orwellian doublespeak may work for the intellectual self-pleasuring of those who share your passé ideology; however, it fails to cover up the very real reality of centuries, no, millenia of oppression condoned, directly or indirectly, by those who fancied themselves Christians. Until the shameful history of this reality, called by whatever name you wish, is confronted, addressed, and overcome we shall continue to impede and undermine our mission of bringing the Gospel of Christ to the world.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #24 on: August 03, 2007, 01:40:33 PM »

Thanks for the link, I am very impressed with Avery Cardinal Dulles' critique.

This is the response that for all intents and purposes argues, 'we don't condemn slavery, we really condone it, so ha, we ARE to stubborn to change', is it not?
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
lubeltri
Latin Catholic layman
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Catholic
Jurisdiction: Archdiocese of Boston
Posts: 3,795



« Reply #25 on: August 03, 2007, 02:02:05 PM »

This is the response that for all intents and purposes argues, 'we don't condemn slavery, we really condone it, so ha, we ARE to stubborn to change', is it not?

Oh dear, and to think he spent all that time writing such a lengthy article for something so simple!
Logged
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #26 on: August 03, 2007, 02:24:43 PM »

This is the response that for all intents and purposes argues, 'we don't condemn slavery, we really condone it, so ha, we ARE to stubborn to change', is it not?

I'm not convinced that your assertion is an accurate one so I don't feel a necessity to affirm or deny said assertion. What I don't do is assume that I am an objective moral authority and pass judgment on the Fathers of the Church.

The advent of slavery was originally an act of compassion toward one's enemies. It said that my enemy is not beyond reconciliation and the whole sell slaughtering of them and their people is not necessary to establish my tribes safety. It said that although they are my enemy today that they might be subjugated and live that future generations might be integrated into my tribe in the future. The advent of slavery was never meant to be a permanent social class but a means of integrating one's enemies into one's tribe as an act of compassion and a means of avoiding the whole sell slaughter of one's competition.

You and other modern liberals are so far removed from the necessities of daily survival that you fail to see the actual root of the practice and how it once was and continues to be today in some quarters of the world a means of compassion toward one's mortal enemies. Instead you condemn it and all those who practiced it throughout history in the most naive and ill responsible way to serve some self-conceived notice of your own superiority.

Personally, I find this ignorance and arrogance unacceptable.
Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Posts: 29,839



« Reply #27 on: August 03, 2007, 02:57:25 PM »

Hey there Whoeverites! I'm gonna take your land--not that I need it--because the god of hosts told me to do so, and I'm gonna kill all the males, and take the females captive, and force them to become our wives/concubines, whether they like it or not. I can also release them on a whim if they aren't up to my sexual standards, even though our backward society will consider them "damaged goods," and therefore essentially condemn them to starvation or prostitution.  But trust me... this is an act of compassion! We could just kill you for no reason at all, other than the voices in our heads telling us that this is our land.

"When you go to war against your enemies and the LORD your God delivers them into your hands and you take captives, if you notice among the captives a beautiful woman and are attracted to her, you may take her as your wife. Bring her into your home and have her shave her head, trim her nails and put aside the clothes she was wearing when captured. After she has lived in your house and mourned her father and mother for a full month, then you may go to her and be her husband and she shall be your wife. If you are not pleased with her, let her go wherever she wishes. You must not sell her or treat her as a slave, since you have dishonored her." - Deut. 21:10-14

Isn't that nice? After you kill her husband and family, kidnap her, force her to do things she doesn't wanna do (to put it gently), and then reject her... then you can't treat her like a slave after that. This is the book that your unchanging morality is based on. Yes yes, it was for the Jews and not you. How much else do you pick and choose? It seems that certain things are still enforced, others not. ... I really can't believe that someone would rationalize slavery. I've heard people making arguments about slavery being different in ancient times (which is true, but partially a red herring), but this is just too much. Have fun with all of whatever it is that you believe.

[/Rant]
« Last Edit: August 03, 2007, 03:04:48 PM by Asteriktos » Logged

"No man gives the same exegesis twice: for he is not the same man, and it is not the same text." - St. Heraclitus
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #28 on: August 03, 2007, 03:16:38 PM »

The advent of slavery was originally an act of compassion toward one's enemies. It said that my enemy is not beyond reconciliation and the whole sell slaughtering of them and their people is not necessary to establish my tribes safety. It said that although they are my enemy today that they might be subjugated and live that future generations might be integrated into my tribe in the future. The advent of slavery was never meant to be a permanent social class but a means of integrating one's enemies into one's tribe as an act of compassion and a means of avoiding the whole sell slaughter of one's competition.
This is certainly an interesting justification of slavery, if only because I've never heard anyone argue it before.  Can you cite any scholarly sources to support your argument?
Logged
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #29 on: August 03, 2007, 03:55:35 PM »

I'm not convinced that your assertion is an accurate one so I don't feel a necessity to affirm or deny said assertion. What I don't do is assume that I am an objective moral authority and pass judgment on the Fathers of the Church.

The advent of slavery was originally an act of compassion toward one's enemies. It said that my enemy is not beyond reconciliation and the whole sell slaughtering of them and their people is not necessary to establish my tribes safety. It said that although they are my enemy today that they might be subjugated and live that future generations might be integrated into my tribe in the future. The advent of slavery was never meant to be a permanent social class but a means of integrating one's enemies into one's tribe as an act of compassion and a means of avoiding the whole sell slaughter of one's competition.

You and other modern liberals are so far removed from the necessities of daily survival that you fail to see the actual root of the practice and how it once was and continues to be today in some quarters of the world a means of compassion toward one's mortal enemies. Instead you condemn it and all those who practiced it throughout history in the most naive and ill responsible way to serve some self-conceived notice of your own superiority.

Personally, I find this ignorance and arrogance unacceptable.

Slavery initially an act of mercy? Well, first of all since slavery originated in pre-history we are somewhat uncertain as to the first cause, but suffice it to say from the earliest times we do read about slavery we see that slaves are spoils of war, much like land or gold, and that wars were often fought for the primary purpose of securing slaves. It's more likely that slavery arose out of the need for cheap agricultural labour than out of some act of mercy on an honourably defeated foe.

Now a moral argument could potentially be made in favour of this from the perspective of Nietzschean philosophy, but from the perspective of Christianity? Well, yes, due to unfortunate realities of our past the argument can be made and can be made quite well; but it really won't hold any water with Christians in this day and age. The problem is that those hierarchs who would make such an argument simpy alienate their flock and in doing so fail their office. (This is not to say that I condemn those in the past who held slaves, but like all things morality has progressed with the advancement of civilization, we enjoy benifits our forefathers lacked, we are more intelligent, we are more advanced, we are wiser than our forefathers, if only because we have more history from which to learn (though I personally believe our scientific advancement to be even more significant).)

Like it or not, and whether or not it should, morality has changed; the sooner we realize this and act on it the better we all will be.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #30 on: August 03, 2007, 04:37:24 PM »

This is certainly an interesting justification of slavery, if only because I've never heard anyone argue it before.  Can you cite any scholarly sources to support your argument?

Any nominally educated sociologist teaches the advent of slavery in primitive cultures in Sociology 101. We're not discussing any novel theories here you can easily read studies of primitive cultures articulating the principles of warfare and the whole sell slaughter of their enemies has historically been the rule of survival and slavery the exception. Only in relatively recent times have societies seen a rational to systematically exploit their neighbors. Primitive cultures simply didn't have the resources (i.e. food) nor the necessity to engage in such practices. In fact, such distortions of intragenerational slavery was a departure from the principles of warfare from which slavery originated. Warfare was and continues to be in many quarters of the world a necessity of survival.

Without slavery the Israelites would have been wiped out from all history so we should be thankful that it was a means of survival for them.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2007, 04:51:34 PM by ignatius » Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #31 on: August 03, 2007, 04:51:02 PM »

Slavery initially an act of mercy? Well, first of all since slavery originated in pre-history we are somewhat uncertain as to the first cause, but suffice it to say from the earliest times we do read about slavery we see that slaves are spoils of war, much like land or gold, and that wars were often fought for the primary purpose of securing slaves. It's more likely that slavery arose out of the need for cheap agricultural labour than out of some act of mercy on an honourably defeated foe.

If, as you say, slavery originated in pre-history then your presupposition for war being a means for cheap labor is contradicted by the fact that war predates agrarian society. As I have already stated any sociologist will tell you that slavery was a means of acculturation of the members of a competing tribe not slaughtered by the ensuing conflict between them.

Scripture offers us a glimpse of the norm of such conflicts (whole sell slaughter). The attempt of acculturation by the victor was and is an act of mercy.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2007, 05:13:19 PM by ignatius » Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #32 on: August 03, 2007, 06:48:43 PM »

You certainly read a lot into my replies on this thread; much of what you read represents a pov that hasn't even crossed my mind.

I fancy myself a pragmatist, I define the terms neither by the standards of the world or the church but rather by what we can practically observe.
Even your pragmatism is a philosophy that doesn't have its roots in the Church, and you would set this up against the Tradition of the Church, telling the Church that you're right and that she must change.  Isn't this the idolatrous worship of your own opinions?

Quote
The history of ecclesiastical culture related to women is consistantly one of oppression, no doubt derived from the prevailing cultural norms of the day. The cultural impositions against the Christian Faith you mistakenly lable as 'Holy Tradition' have resulted in inequality and the relegating of half the population to the status of second class. It can be objectively argued from psychology, neurology, and economics that this is detrimental to our collective well-being and a moral argument, be it derived from modern common sense or Christian high theology of love and the divine attributes, must conclude that the conduct is simply immoral.

Your attempt at Orwellian doublespeak may work for the intellectual self-pleasuring of those who share your passé ideology; however, it fails to cover up the very real reality of centuries, no, millenia of oppression condoned, directly or indirectly, by those who fancied themselves Christians. Until the shameful history of this reality, called by whatever name you wish, is confronted, addressed, and overcome we shall continue to impede and undermine our mission of bringing the Gospel of Christ to the world.
I'm not arguing that we should continue to perpetuate any oppression of women, whether this is real or just a figment of your own agenda-driven imagination--this oppression, real or imagined, is not even relevant to my point.  What I am arguing is that you have redefined the Gospel of Jesus Christ to make it represent your own pragmatic view of the world, a pragmatism foreign to the mind of the Church, though it may very well represent your own intellectual, self-pleasing ideology.

Someone argued here that Jesus and the Apostles never spoke out against slavery, and I'm aware of others who have argued on this forum in the past that the Fathers very rarely said anything against the practice.  This doesn't mean, however, that our current condemnation of slavery isn't based on the Gospel.  Maybe we don't base our opposition to slavery on specific doctrinal statements made in the Scriptures, but we do see such anti-slavery sentiment as an extension of basic principles found in the teachings of Christ.  The Judaeo-Christian belief that every man, woman, and child is created in the image of God...  The Christian belief that all are equal before the sight of God...  That forced subservience of one man to another, at least as we have seen this in the American form of slavery, is fundamentally a form of the oppression condemned in our Holy Writ and a violation of the aforementioned equality before God...

Based on these and other foundational Christian principles found in the Gospel, I suppose one could make a case that some of the mindsets and practices we've preserved in the Church are indeed oppressive of women and should be abolished.  I honestly don't know, for I just never considered it important to investigate this except to determine how I should relate to those women with whom I have frequent contact.  I do know, however, that the Apostles and Fathers were much more outspoken regarding the role of women in the Church than they were regarding slavery.  Thus you potentially do much more harm to the Faith of the Church by challenging her attitude toward women and, specifically, her opposition to women in the sacramental priesthood.  Considering how much the Apostles and Fathers have said about the place of women in the Church, your case that our overall attitude toward women is shaped entirely by cultural influences outside the Church needs to be much stronger than you've made it out to be so far.
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #33 on: August 03, 2007, 06:52:12 PM »

Any nominally educated sociologist teaches the advent of slavery in primitive cultures in Sociology 101. We're not discussing any novel theories here you can easily read studies of primitive cultures...
I've never met a nominally educated sociologist before.  Can you name a few who present your theory of the advent of slavery, and can you cite their writings on this subject?
Logged
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #34 on: August 03, 2007, 08:26:58 PM »

I've never met a nominally educated sociologist before.  Can you name a few who present your theory of the advent of slavery, and can you cite their writings on this subject?

Slavery, Acculturation and Social Change by H. O. L. Patterson - The British Journal of Sociology

I'm home now and can offer to you one source which mentions the advent of slavery as the means of acculturation of one's competition in the struggle for survival. It further elaborates on the environmental factors as well as others which come into play in a tribes propensity to 'eradicate' (i.e. whole sell slaughter) one's competition and the survival incentives for increasing one's population of females of breeding age as well as the benefits of broadening one's genetic pool. Of course this is scientific study and not a moral or ethical thesis but it establishes very firmly that such behavior, especially within tribal cultures within environments with limited resources, was an act of great risk in the face of the benefits and wasn't taken on lightly. The brutality we tend to attribute to the Middle-East is actually the same kind of efficiencies such a culture would tend to cultivate out of a need to survive in such a challenging environment (such as the Arabian Desert for example).

One point I would like to make is that abundant resources (i.e. food, water, shelter, technology etc) tends to create buffers between the necessary exercise of brutal efficiencies to survive and the exercise of what we tend to equate as generosity (the sacrifice or placing at risk the well-being of the tribe for a stranger). Within the sated confines of modernity we all can sit back and pat ourselves on the back for our apparent ethical superiority but any sociologist would tell you that we are one regional disaster away from witnessing the same kind of exercise of brutal efficiencies our forefathers saw as necessities for survival. Until we have experienced the anxiety of having to struggle and fight with strangers to feed our 3 year old daughter who is sick we are simply in no position to pass these idealistic swiping judgments on what we believe to be morally inferior descendent's. Like I said, we are one regional disaster away from a moral reality check which would be very sobering for all of us.

Having the resources to not have to exercise such practices to survive doesn't make us morally superior, it makes us fortunate.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2007, 08:34:23 PM by ignatius » Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #35 on: August 03, 2007, 09:04:43 PM »

Even your pragmatism is a philosophy that doesn't have its roots in the Church, and you would set this up against the Tradition of the Church, telling the Church that you're right and that she must change.  Isn't this the idolatrous worship of your own opinions?

Pragmatism contrary to the Church? To argue that is to argue that matter is contrary to spirit, which is dualism, and to argue that the latter is dependent upon the former is monophysitism in the truest sense of the term. I could think of no more dangerous (or better addressed in the history of the Church, for that matter) a heresy than the belief that faith, dogma, and theology is somehow divorced or, heaven forbid, above praxis, reality, and the pragmatic love of one's neighbour. To quote St. James, 'faith without works is dead.' Is our Lord not the creator of both visible and invisible?

Quote
I'm not arguing that we should continue to perpetuate any oppression of women, whether this is real or just a figment of your own agenda-driven imagination--this oppression, real or imagined, is not even relevant to my point.  What I am arguing is that you have redefined the Gospel of Jesus Christ to make it represent your own pragmatic view of the world, a pragmatism foreign to the mind of the Church, though it may very well represent your own intellectual, self-pleasing ideology.

Real or imagined? Are you being serious here? Do you truly need graphic examples of the oppression of women over the past 2000 years in 'Christian' societies?

Quote
Someone argued here that Jesus and the Apostles never spoke out against slavery, and I'm aware of others who have argued on this forum in the past that the Fathers very rarely said anything against the practice.  This doesn't mean, however, that our current condemnation of slavery isn't based on the Gospel.  Maybe we don't base our opposition to slavery on specific doctrinal statements made in the Scriptures, but we do see such anti-slavery sentiment as an extension of basic principles found in the teachings of Christ.  The Judaeo-Christian belief that every man, woman, and child is created in the image of God...  The Christian belief that all are equal before the sight of God...  That forced subservience of one man to another, at least as we have seen this in the American form of slavery, is fundamentally a form of the oppression condemned in our Holy Writ and a violation of the aforementioned equality before God...

And that is an argument well made; I only ask for consistancy, I only ask that you equally apply these principles to the relationship between men and women. Specificially, 'the Judaeo-Christian belief that every man, woman, and child is created in the image of God...  The Christian belief that all are equal before the sight of God'

If we logically applied these exact words to the debates surrounding gender issues our arguments would be moot.

Quote
Based on these and other foundational Christian principles found in the Gospel, I suppose one could make a case that some of the mindsets and practices we've preserved in the Church are indeed oppressive of women and should be abolished.  I honestly don't know, for I just never considered it important to investigate this except to determine how I should relate to those women with whom I have frequent contact.  I do know, however, that the Apostles and Fathers were much more outspoken regarding the role of women in the Church than they were regarding slavery.

Were they? While I can with relative ease flip through the scriptures and find numerous misogynistic passages, I believe that I can find pro-slavery passages with equal ease. As a former apologist for the particular institution I can think of several verses off the top of my head that condone slavery, more that accept slavery as an appropriate norm (even from the words of Christ), and even a few that severely condemn runaway slaves and abolitionists as essentially being the enemies of God. (May I recommend, to this extent, A Defence of Virginia [,and through her the South], written by Rev. Dr. R. L. Dabney, chief of staff to General Jackon during the valley campaign of '62 and one of the most eminent presbyterian theologians of the 19th century. If anyone doubts the scriptural defences of slavery before reading this book, they surely cannot afterwards.) Since my time as an apologist for the particular institution was from before my conversion to Orthodoxy, I do not have as many quotes accumulated from the Church fathers, though I have a large number that I've simply came across in my readings. It would seem to me that the institution of slavery was addressed almost as often as gender issues, though these texts tend to be a bit more obscure because the issue is hardly pressing today. Furthermore, I understand that The Honorable John Thomas Noonan in his book makes a rather extended defence of the particular institution using the Latin fathers; I have no doubt that an equally strong defence could be made using the Greek fathers.

In short, the only reason that one would not see the overwheleming evidence in defence of slavery in the fathers and scripture is because they choose to ignore it, in large part conditioned by their cultural upbringing, as irrelevant to our modern world. Unfortunately we have yet to advance so far in matters of gender and continue to entertain stomach-churningly misogynistic nonsense, that any civilized human being should reject without consideration, based solely upon its source...no book or text is so holy as to be taken seriously when advocating the oppression of half the human race.

Quote
Thus you potentially do much more harm to the Faith of the Church by challenging her attitude toward women and, specifically, her opposition to women in the sacramental priesthood.

The damage will only come if the Church continues to resist the truth that the faithful of the civilized world know in their hearts. I desire to preserve and advance the cause of the Church, from my point of view those who oppose these necessary reforms are endangering the future and relevancy of the Church, they are the ones who are trying to harm the Church. Not that I accuse any of doing this delibrately, I don't think anyone deeply involved in the Church wants to actually harm her, and I would even suggest that most who have put that much thought in to this particular matter arn't even truly that misogynistic, it is truly an ideology of the ignorant peasant classes from days gone by; it is simply that some involved in religion, for reasons that continue to escape me, believe it necessary to suspend both reason and temporal knowledge in the search of some divine ideal. That is not to say that this pursuit is inherently bad, but when the concept of the divine is divorced from the temporal it is a most dangerous thing.

Quote
Considering how much the Apostles and Fathers have said about the place of women in the Church, your case that our overall attitude toward women is shaped entirely by cultural influences outside the Church needs to be much stronger than you've made it out to be so far.

I don't think I really need to make the argument (though I have to much greater length than in this thread, elsewhere on the board in the thread 'Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church', which happenes to be the second longest thread on this board after 'Random Postings', more than twice as long as the next contender), for this issue will not be decided by apologetics and polemics but rather by cultural forces that are a direct result of the advancement of civilization through the enlightenment. These forces will either force change in the Church or effectively destroy Her, for all intents and purposes. The mantra of evolution is 'adapt or die', a cross roads is fast approaching for the Church, I pray to God she makes the right choice.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #36 on: August 03, 2007, 09:41:29 PM »

One point I would like to make is that abundant resources (i.e. food, water, shelter, technology etc) tends to create buffers between the necessary exercise of brutal efficiencies to survive and the exercise of what we tend to equate as generosity (the sacrifice or placing at risk the well-being of the tribe for a stranger). Within the sated confines of modernity we all can sit back and pat ourselves on the back for our apparent ethical superiority but any sociologist would tell you that we are one regional disaster away from witnessing the same kind of exercise of brutal efficiencies our forefathers saw as necessities for survival. Until we have experienced the anxiety of having to struggle and fight with strangers to feed our 3 year old daughter who is sick we are simply in no position to pass these idealistic swiping judgments on what we believe to be morally inferior descendent's. Like I said, we are one regional disaster away from a moral reality check which would be very sobering for all of us.

Having the resources to not have to exercise such practices to survive doesn't make us morally superior, it makes us fortunate.

But we do have the luxury of sitting in judgement, perhaps not on account of our own deeds, but on account of the deeds of others throughout history who when confronted with great hardships, including certain death, choose death over dishonour. From the Greeks at Thermopylae to Arnold von Winkelreid at Sempach to Constantine XI during the fall of Constantinople to the Americans at the Alamo history is full of of brave people who sacrificed their lives for greater causes, not only for the well-being of others but for reasons of honour and human dignity. So while we may not be able to pass judgement upon ourselves until we have endured greater hardship we can look at history, look at such people as Constantine XI who prefered to die in the royal purple than live a life as a lesser man, though victory was impossible at that point, or the Americans at the Alamo who prefered death to the dishonour of surrender, though their contribution to the war was questionable at best, and looking at them we can say that they ARE morally superior to the cowards who valued their live over their honour or liberty, and we can say that, relative to these great people, those who choose the easier way and in doing so betrayed the nobility and honour of mankind are morally inferior.

But while I cannot speak from experience, nor do I wish to be able to, I pray that if I am ever confronted with such a situation I shall be given the grace to at least die with dignity by embracing death, by whatever means necessary, over servitude. As I've said before, 'Ελευθερία ή θάνατος' should be more than a mere political slogan, it should be the standard by which all of humanity lives.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #37 on: August 03, 2007, 11:45:42 PM »

Pragmatism contrary to the Church?
Pragmatism contrary to the Church?  No.  Your version of pragmatism contrary to the Church?  Now that's a different issue altogether.

Quote
To argue that is to argue that matter is contrary to spirit, which is dualism, and to argue that the latter is dependent upon the former is monophysitism in the truest sense of the term. I could think of no more dangerous (or better addressed in the history of the Church, for that matter) a heresy than the belief that faith, dogma, and theology is somehow divorced or, heaven forbid, above praxis, reality, and the pragmatic love of one's neighbour. To quote St. James, 'faith without works is dead.' Is our Lord not the creator of both visible and invisible?
If you read those replies where I address the other pole (represented by Ignatius) in this overall debate, you'll see that you have no argument from me on this point.  I believe we will be saved or condemned, and I hold in great honor St. Marie of Paris who said the same, in accordance with our obedience or disobedience to Matthew 25:31-46.  I read the petition "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven" as a call to be God's agents for divine justice even in our social institutions.

Quote
Real or imagined? Are you being serious here? Do you truly need graphic examples of the oppression of women over the past 2000 years in 'Christian' societies?
I don't doubt that women have been oppressed through the centuries, and by Christians who should know better.  But to embrace the untenable dogmas of today's feminist movement is to truly, IMO, blow this oppression way out of proportion and context and see oppression where none ever existed.

Quote
And that is an argument well made; I only ask for consistancy, I only ask that you equally apply these principles to the relationship between men and women. Specificially, 'the Judaeo-Christian belief that every man, woman, and child is created in the image of God...  The Christian belief that all are equal before the sight of God'

If we logically applied these exact words to the debates surrounding gender issues our arguments would be moot.
I think many Christians today try to do this but still recognize that men and women are created for different roles and that we are most blessed when we develop as persons through the gender roles God has given us.  Unfortunately, you consider this oppressive when many Orthodox and Catholics carry this reasoning to the conclusion that different but equal roles necessarily exclude women from the priesthood.  How is the fatherhood of sacramental ministry somehow superior to the great charism of motherhood?  Is this attitude not constructed upon the feminist doctrine that equality requires that women be allowed to do everything men do, to be just like men?  (Is this not a tacit admission that men are fundamentally superior to women, so that women must put aside being women and must work instead to become men?)  If anything, we glorify the Theotokos above all other creatures because she is the Mother of all the faithful, the perfect fulfillment of Godly womanhood.

Quote
I don't think I really need to make the argument (though I have to much greater length than in this thread, elsewhere on the board in the thread 'Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church', which happenes to be the second longest thread on this board after 'Random Postings', more than twice as long as the next contender), for this issue will not be decided by apologetics and polemics but rather by cultural forces that are a direct result of the advancement of civilization through the enlightenment. These forces will either force change in the Church or effectively destroy Her, for all intents and purposes. The mantra of evolution is 'adapt or die', a cross roads is fast approaching for the Church, I pray to God she makes the right choice.
So if the forces of cultural change destroy the Church, how can these forces be good?  I don't disagree that the Church must adapt to the world in which she finds herself today so that she can speak with a voice of relevance to today's cultural issues, but she must do so in a way that preserves the core essence of her unchanging kerygma.  The Church must never depart from her Christ-given mission to proclaim the fundamental message of salvation through the incarnation, death, and resurrection of the God-man Jesus Christ.  Yes, this does require that we seek, in keeping with the words of the Our Father, to sanctify our culture and make it an expression of God's will "on earth as it is in heaven."  But when we pursue social justice to the extent that it distracts us from preaching the Gospel of Christ's death and resurrection, we have departed from the Way of Faith.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2007, 12:11:16 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #38 on: August 04, 2007, 02:31:21 AM »

Pragmatism contrary to the Church?  No.  Your version of pragmatism contrary to the Church?  Now that's a different issue altogether.

Ah, that prejudice should have been stated upfront. Wink

Quote
If you read those replies where I address the other pole (represented by Ignatius) in this overall debate, you'll see that you have no argument from me on this point.  I believe we will be saved or condemned, and I hold in great honor St. Marie of Paris who said the same, in accordance with our obedience or disobedience to Matthew 25:31-46.  I read the petition "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven" as a call to be God's agents for divine justice even in our social institutions.

The petition is 'thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven'...not the other way around. It is your attempt to impose the errors of 'Christians' over the past two millenia on God to which I object. Rather, let us enact on earth the equality that the Church has long proclaimed to exist 'in Christ'.

Quote
I don't doubt that women have been oppressed through the centuries, and by Christians who should know better.  But to embrace the untenable dogmas of today's feminist movement is to truly, IMO, blow this oppression way out of proportion and context and see oppression where none ever existed.

Many of the arguments of today's feminist movement regarding oppression are derived from the notion of human dignity, and as such is actually far more Christian than the materialistic approach to defining oppression. You would seem to define freedom from oppression as freedom from economic hardship and freedom from violence (the latter of which is really a twentieth (or at best late ninteenth) century phenomena save amongst the aristocracy and upper strata of the bourgeoisie, thanks in large part to the failure of the Church to deal with matters of domestic violence); however, a social class is oppressed if it is denied equal dignity to other members of society, and essential to this dignity is liberty and self-determination. Thus it is most reasonable to label any society that fails to give equal opportunity, be it political, economic, or social, to both men and women as misogynistic and oppressive. I would even take this further to argue that the traditional privileges given to women are also misogynistic as they are condescending, but while this is a valid criticism of modern western culture it is perhaps too subtle an issue relative to the extreme abuses of traditional 'Christian' societies.

Quote
I think many Christians today try to do this but still recognize that men and women are created for different roles and that we are most blessed when we develop as persons through the gender roles God has given us.

I, of course, reject your notion of 'gender roles', perhaps even in matters of procreation as I observe the rapidly advancing blessings of science over the past couple decades...but as this topic would draw us further off topic let me just address a greater flaw in your proposition: you would impose that which you view as 'most blessed' in an autocratic manner, by absolute prohibition. No blessing can come by force, if gender roles are, as you seem to suggest, a blessing then we must allow free acceptance or rejection of the same for the blessing to be realized. There is no such thing as coerced virtue, but for your theory to work liberty must be abolished and conduct compelled by statue.

Quote
Unfortunately, you consider this oppressive when many Orthodox and Catholics carry this reasoning to the conclusion that different but equal roles necessarily exclude women from the priesthood.

Separate but equal, eh? Perhaps you're not a scholar of Constitutional law, but I have a Supreme Court ruling I'd suggest you read...not because US Constitutional law has any bearing on this issue but because it is elegantly argued therein from objective facts that separate or different is inherently unequal.

Quote
How is the fatherhood of sacramental ministry somehow superior to the great charism of motherhood?

What does superiority have to do with anything? The issue here is human liberty, equal opportunity, and the freedom of Choice. I would not compel any woman (or man for that matter) to serve in the priesthood, but I would give the opportunity independent of the relative position of one's sexual organs.

Quote
Is this attitude not constructed upon the feminist doctrine that equality requires that women be allowed to do everything men do, to be just like men?

Yes, feminism does require 'women be allowed to do everything men do'...but the very manner in which you stated that betrays your bias. It is not yours, it is not the state's, it is not the Church's to 'allow' anything, it is an inherent God-given right that must be recognized and accepted. You don't get to be in the position of power that 'allows' or 'disallows' freedom, which is the fundamental flaw in the misogynistic arguments put forward by some in the Church. As said before, this equality is a God-right, the only question whether one will respect this divine right or abuse it.

Quote
(Is this not a tacit admission that men are fundamentally superior to women, so that women must put aside being women and must work instead to become men?) If anything, we glorify the Theotokos above all other creatures because she is the Mother of all the faithful, the perfect fulfillment of Godly womanhood.

This is 'a tacit admission' that freedom is fundamentally superior to the lack thereof, that's it's not your place to choose the path of anyone, male or female, but rather that it is their right to choose that path for their self without any discrimination placed in their way by yourself or others.

Quote
So if the forces of cultural change destroy the Church, how can these forces be good?

Are the winds that can take you to new lands or sail you into the rocks evil? The wind, I would argue, is inherently good because of the many blessings and great potential it can give, if the ship is to crash the Captain cannot blame the winds, he can only blame himself for his own incompetence and his inability to use the winds to his advantage, or at least prevent destruction at their hands. So also with the winds of change, if they bring destruction to the Church, we cannot speak ill of them, the failure would be ours alone.

Quote
I don't disagree that the Church must adapt to the world in which she finds herself today so that she can speak with a voice of relevance to today's cultural issues, but she must do so in a way that preserves the core essence of her unchanging kerygma.  The Church must never depart from her Christ-given mission to proclaim the fundamental message of salvation through the incarnation, death, and resurrection of the God-man Jesus Christ.  Yes, this does require that we seek, in keeping with the words of the Our Father, to sanctify our culture and make it an expression of God's will "on earth as it is in heaven."  But when we pursue social justice to the extent that it distracts us from preaching the Gospel of Christ's death and resurrection, we have departed from the Way of Faith.

But my argument has long been that 'social justice' does not distract, but rather is essential to preaching the Gospel of Christ. To deny human dignity in ones actions but to proclaim it in ones words is not the Gospel of Christ, it's hypocracy. How can a Church that discriminates based on social class preach that there is no social class and that all are one in Christ? The answer is simple, it cannot.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #39 on: August 04, 2007, 02:18:52 PM »

The petition is 'thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven'...not the other way around. It is your attempt to impose the errors of 'Christians' over the past two millenia on God to which I object. Rather, let us enact on earth the equality that the Church has long proclaimed to exist 'in Christ'.
Ya know, this is exactly what I find objectionable in your reasoning.  You attempt to impose the modernist and post-modernist errors of the past two centuries on God in order to see that your will is done in heaven as it is on earth.  The question is: who's right?

Personally, I rejoice in the fact that the world is starting to see us Christians as crazy again.
Logged
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #40 on: August 04, 2007, 04:42:48 PM »

Ya know, this is exactly what I find objectionable in your reasoning.  You attempt to impose the modernist and post-modernist errors of the past two centuries on God in order to see that your will is done in heaven as it is on earth.  The question is: who's right?

Personally, I rejoice in the fact that the world is starting to see us Christians as crazy again.

We as a society have finally corrected the errors of our past, we have finally seen the truth God has been trying to reveal to us for millenia. But when we are finally given the opportunity to preach the Gospel of Christ in a society conducive to the Christian faith, a society that values human rights, dignity, and equality, a society that has overcome oppression, discrimination, and ignorance to a degree unequaled in the history of the world, we run from the opportunity in fear. It's almost as though after being persecuted for centuries we have forgotten how to be an imperial religion, we have forgotten how to be the religion of the world, all things to all people. Thus we crawl up into a ball, paying the world will pass us by, hoping they will see us as insane, though our Gospel, unfettered by past prejudices and archaic customs, is exactly what they desire.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #41 on: August 04, 2007, 06:20:15 PM »

We as a society have finally corrected the errors of our past, we have finally seen the truth God has been trying to reveal to us for millenia.
Really?  By turning her back on repentance from sin?

Quote
But when we are finally given the opportunity to preach the Gospel of Christ in a society conducive to the Christian faith, a society that values human rights, dignity, and equality, a society that has overcome oppression, discrimination, and ignorance to a degree unequaled in the history of the world, we run from the opportunity in fear.
All these platitudes, as good as they are in themselves, are so common to other religions and to what we recognize as "natural law" that they cannot be what makes us distinctively Christian.  If it's these good values you want, what's to stop you from joining another religion that values these precepts as much as or more than we do?  What makes us Christian and not some other religion is that we preach Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

Quote
It's almost as though after being persecuted for centuries we have forgotten how to be an imperial religion, we have forgotten how to be the religion of the world, all things to all people.
Once Christianity becomes a religion of the world, she immediately ceases to be Christian.

Quote
Thus we crawl up into a ball, paying the world will pass us by, hoping they will see us as insane, though our Gospel, unfettered by past prejudices and archaic customs, is exactly what they desire.
"but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, ..." (1 Corinthians 1:23)
Logged
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #42 on: August 04, 2007, 07:35:20 PM »

Really?  By turning her back on repentance from sin?

By turning her back on sin itself.

Quote
All these platitudes, as good as they are in themselves, are so common to other religions and to what we recognize as "natural law" that they cannot be what makes us distinctively Christian.  If it's these good values you want, what's to stop you from joining another religion that values these precepts as much as or more than we do?  What makes us Christian and not some other religion is that we preach Jesus Christ and Him crucified.

And that is what I suggest we preach, Christ and the doctrines of Divine Love that we read in the Holy Gospels. But you would seem to have us replace this Gospel of Christ with archaic cultural norms.

Quote
Once Christianity becomes a religion of the world, she immediately ceases to be Christian.

Then it must be accepted that for over a thousand years, Christianity was not Christian.

Quote
"but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, ..." (1 Corinthians 1:23)

Ah, but in our high theology we do preach the Gospel of Christ, I only criticize the hypocracy of not, in our praxis, living the Gospel of Christ.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,209


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #43 on: August 05, 2007, 03:13:14 AM »

And that is what I suggest we preach, Christ and the doctrines of Divine Love that we read in the Holy Gospels. But you would seem to have us replace this Gospel of Christ with archaic cultural norms.
Interesting that what you think I'm saying is nothing close to what I've been trying to say.  Could this be... Straw-Man? Huh Wink

Quote
Then it must be accepted that for over a thousand years, Christianity was not Christian.
Then is not, by the same definition, the "Christianity" you advocate not Christian, because it is not only a religion of the world, but even moreso a religion of your own creation?


Ya know, it's been quite an interesting discussion, but I have more constructive things to do here than to continue arguing this point with you.  I've said pretty much everything I need to say about this right now, and I'm sure you haven't even scratched the surface of all the wisdom you'd love to share with us on this subject. Wink  Maybe, then, it's best for me to just let you go ahead and knock yourself out.
Logged
Philokalia
Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic
Posts: 173


Hail Mary Full of Grace


WWW
« Reply #44 on: August 05, 2007, 09:39:25 AM »

We as a society have finally corrected the errors of our past, we have finally seen the truth God has been trying to reveal to us for millenia. But when we are finally given the opportunity to preach the Gospel of Christ in a society conducive to the Christian faith, a society that values human rights, dignity, and equality, a society that has overcome oppression, discrimination, and ignorance to a degree unequaled in the history of the world, we run from the opportunity in fear. It's almost as though after being persecuted for centuries we have forgotten how to be an imperial religion, we have forgotten how to be the religion of the world, all things to all people. Thus we crawl up into a ball, paying the world will pass us by, hoping they will see us as insane, though our Gospel, unfettered by past prejudices and archaic customs, is exactly what they desire.

Western society is very much dependant on trampling upon human rights, human dignity and equality. In the era of globalisation what has happened is that these practices have been exported from the metropolitan homelands. People in their millions around the world work for less than dollar a day to produce goods and services consumed in the West by relatively free and affluent Westerners. What the Church should do is follow the example of the prophets and denounce the hypocrisy and injustice of societies that pretend concern about the dignity of man while trampling upon it all around the world. Not to mention abortion at home.

Micah 3

1 And I said: Hear, O ye princes of Jacob, and ye chiefs of the house of Israel: Is it not your part to know judgement,
2 You that hate good, and love evil: that violently pluck off their skins from them and their flesh from their bones?
3 Who have eaten the flesh of my people, and have flayed their skin off them: and have broken, and chopped their bones as for the kettle, and as flesh in the midst of the pot.
4 Then shall they cry to the Lord, and he will not hear them: and he will hide his face from them at that time, as they have behaved wickedly in their devices.


Amos 2
6 Thus saith the Lord: For three crimes of Israel, and for four I will not convert him: because he hath sold the just man for silver, and the poor man for a pair of shoes.
7 They bruise the heads of the poor upon the dust of the earth, and turn aside the way of the humble: and the son and his father have gone to the same young woman, to profane my holy name.
8 And they sat down upon garments laid to pledge by every altar: and drank the wine of the condemned in the house of their God.

Logged

Violence is a lie, for it goes against the truth of our faith, the truth of our humanity. Violence destroys what it claims to defend: the dignity, the life, the freedom of human beings. Violence is a crime against humanity, for it destroys the very fabric of society.
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #45 on: August 05, 2007, 01:17:38 PM »

Western society is very much dependant on trampling upon human rights, human dignity and equality. In the era of globalisation what has happened is that these practices have been exported from the metropolitan homelands. People in their millions around the world work for less than dollar a day to produce goods and services consumed in the West by relatively free and affluent Westerners. What the Church should do is follow the example of the prophets and denounce the hypocrisy and injustice of societies that pretend concern about the dignity of man while trampling upon it all around the world. Not to mention abortion at home.

What you imply is exploitation is the introduction of technology and the improvement of life in these countries, we are taking these primitive agrarian societies and industrializing them, we are using our money and our wealth to help them acheive what we were forced to achieve on our own in the 19th Century. Would it be better if we could move them straight from backwards agrarian societies to modern western civilizations overnight? Of course, but this simply isn't possible, the infastructure alone takes decades, if not centuries, to develop; there is the economic infastructure, solid monetary unit, banks, stock markets, etc., etc., which take time to establish and build up; perhaps most importantly, a relatively ignorant people need to become educated, even after the schools are established and the luxury of attending them for several years is made economically viable, generations will be required to bring the society to an intellectual level where it can sustain itself as a western nation, creating wealth primarily through its creative class.

The problem at hand isn't hypocrisy, the problem is reality, as a nation that was primarily agrarian 70 years ago, and has only become truly post-industrial in the past 30-40 years, we simply don't have the means to change the world overnight. However, we have long recognized that it is in our best interest to upgrade the countries world to our current status, our best political think tanks have emphasized that this is essentially the way we must win the war on terrorism, and from an economic perspective, while cheap industrial labour is nice, we can build robots to do that for only a slightly higher upfront cost...what would be infinitely more benificial would be larger consumer markets, more people to buy ipods, music, and prescription drugs: and that market doesn't develop from people making a dollar a day.
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
Philokalia
Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic
Posts: 173


Hail Mary Full of Grace


WWW
« Reply #46 on: August 05, 2007, 02:04:25 PM »

You assume that industrialisation and the consumer society are Good Things. That is not necessarily so. An industrialisation based on children working 60 hours a week for less money than you spend on a quart of milk is not good. A consumer society that seeks happiness in possessing more and more things is not a Christian friendly society. What you are talking about is colonialism. What the British Empire termed the White Man's burden about a hundred years ago when their empire covered 25% of the globe. They said then what you say now. We need to hold the whip hand because we are advanced and civilised and they are backward. Once we educate them up to our level then they can do what they like. Until then they will do what they are told. Or as Kipling put it

Take up the White Man's burden--
Send forth the best ye breed--
Go, bind your sons to exile
To serve your captives' need;
To wait, in heavy harness,
On fluttered folk and wild--
Your new-caught sullen peoples,
Half devil and half child.

Take up the White Man's burden--
In patience to abide,
To veil the threat of terror
And check the show of pride;
By open speech and simple,
An hundred times made plain,
To seek another's profit
And work another's gain.


Take up the White Man's burden--
The savage wars of peace--
Fill full the mouth of Famine,
And bid the sickness cease;
And when your goal is nearest
(The end for others sought)
Watch sloth and heathen folly
Bring all your hope to nought.

Take up the White Man's burden--
No iron rule of kings,
But toil of serf and sweeper--
The tale of common things.
The ports ye shall not enter,
The roads ye shall not tread,
Go, make them with your living
And mark them with your dead.

Take up the White Man's burden,
And reap his old reward--
The blame of those ye better
The hate of those ye guard--
The cry of hosts ye humour

(Ah, slowly!) toward the light:--
"Why brought ye us from bondage,
Our loved Egyptian night?"

You will note the bits I have bolded represent what the Empire then and the USA today says about itself. Sacrificing themselves selflessly for others freedom and benefit. Of course its really all about profit. Liberal Imperialism is just Imperialism. Its like the squirrels, just rats with good PR.
Logged

Violence is a lie, for it goes against the truth of our faith, the truth of our humanity. Violence destroys what it claims to defend: the dignity, the life, the freedom of human beings. Violence is a crime against humanity, for it destroys the very fabric of society.
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #47 on: August 05, 2007, 09:58:46 PM »

You assume that industrialisation and the consumer society are Good Things. That is not necessarily so. An industrialisation based on children working 60 hours a week for less money than you spend on a quart of milk is not good. A consumer society that seeks happiness in possessing more and more things is not a Christian friendly society. What you are talking about is colonialism. What the British Empire termed the White Man's burden about a hundred years ago when their empire covered 25% of the globe. They said then what you say now. We need to hold the whip hand because we are advanced and civilised and they are backward. Once we educate them up to our level then they can do what they like. Until then they will do what they are told. Or as Kipling put it

Much credit must be given to the British Empire to bring civilization to peoples who had not previously known it. The glory of India before the comming of the empire paled in comparison to its state after the empire left, today much of India India stands on the verge of entering the first world, with the significance of industry diminishing and the creative class on the rise. Then of North America...of the US and Canada, surely no one could argue the progress seen in these places thanks to the imperial activities of the British. An entire continent, which before the British Empire came was as primitive and barbaric as any in the world has ever been, and today stands at the head of the civilized world. These things are very good, it is good for people to not have to worry about food, it is good for peoples of the world to live in luxury, and that is what civilization brings, standards of living unequaled in the history of the world to the extent that paupers in modern society enjoy luxuries and, in some manners, standards of living of which past princes and even emperors could not have dreamt. Behold the blessings of technology and of western civilization, why would we not give this gift to the world? Why should we be so cruel as to deny comfort to our neighbours? You would seem to suggest that we should keep the fruits of civilization to ourselves, while watching the struggles of others from afar...sure, it might make good documentaries, but it's hardly an appropriate foreign policy for a civilized and charitable people.

Or would you prefer we allow ignorance and extremism to reign in the rest of the world, ignoring the human suffering that results, while we simply turn in on ourselves?
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
Αριστοκλής
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic
Jurisdiction: American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese
Posts: 10,026


« Reply #48 on: August 05, 2007, 10:01:29 PM »

Does this mean you're now 'englishischristian'?  Cheesy
Logged

"Religion is a neurobiological illness and Orthodoxy is its cure." - Fr. John S. Romanides
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #49 on: August 05, 2007, 10:19:32 PM »

LOL Cheesy
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
Tags:
Pages: 1 2 All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.187 seconds with 77 queries.