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Author Topic: Abortion again?  (Read 31771 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #180 on: August 20, 2007, 01:30:39 AM »

This is the most immoral and irresponsible thing I've heard from an Orthodox Christian. I'm deeply saddened by your comments.

Dang, it took me over 4000 posts to do that? I must not be trying hard enough. Wink

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Boy, for a scientific feller this sure is a strange thing to say. What kind a baby do you 'spose two humans can have?

As I have said many times, I tend to define 'humanity' in terms of intellectual capability, not merely sharing dna with the species homo sapiens.

Quote
Um, no. Despotic is when a person selfishly decides to murder because they don't want to take responsibility for their own decision.

If this thing murdered was an uninvolved third party, that might be a legitimate argument. But when this third party is infringing upon the liberty of the so-called murderer involved, it is an act of self-defence. And that is ultimately the point, a pregnancy is not an insignificant thing, it can be deeply rewarding or a painful hardship, depending on the conditions surrounding it. No one has the right to force a pregnancy on any woman, it is not so much a violation of their right to privacy (which it is) as a violation of a fundamental human liberty not to be degraded by being forced into such a position. It can also be a deprivation of property rights, in our country there are unfortunately still some backwards places where a pregnancy outside of marriage can damage social standing, and in many places it can cause hardship for schooling or career, effecting real economic damage (damage, it should be noted, the male is almost always free from). So the issue simply comes down to the liberty of the woman (who is a citizen, in our context, by the way) vs. the life of the fetus (assuming it's even alive, which, considering it can't survive on its own, is a VERY shaky argument) (which is, of course, not a citizen)...I for one value liberty over life, and I would hope that none would contest this position.

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BTW, you've successfully argued against any physical self-defense against any future attackers. OOPS!

Actually, that seems to be what you're arguing...that a fetus has a right to a parasitic life at the expense of the woman, who should have no recourse to defence of her body and liberty.
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« Reply #181 on: August 20, 2007, 01:36:55 AM »

An art you did perfect here.

Thank you. Grin

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In which case you have no real bull in this fight, at least not one with horns, four legs, and a bad attitude. This is just an intellectual argument for you; not so for many of us.

Oh, I have pleanty of 'bull' in this fight. Wink But, really, this is a matter of liberty, not family psychology.

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Despotism? Now there's a laugh, considering your views on Church government.  Cheesy

The Church has no legal force behind it, and one is free to leave if they choose...like I said before, everyone is welcome to their opinion, the problem only comes about when you try to force it on others.
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« Reply #182 on: August 20, 2007, 02:02:48 AM »

Yes, of course one is free to sin. 
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« Reply #183 on: August 20, 2007, 02:15:26 AM »

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like I said before, everyone is welcome to their opinion, the problem only comes about when you try to force it on others.
Am I welcome to my opinion that it's OK to shoot you because you make lousy arguments? Should the state not force its opinion that such a thing is morally reprehensible on me? Abortion is murder, and no arguments about liberty have anything to do with that fact.

And if you're going to play the "is it really human" card, then I would ask you to prove conclusively that a fetus is not human. If you cannot do so, then allowing someone to abort their child is like allowing someone to throw a grenade into a building that is possibly uninhabited.
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« Reply #184 on: August 20, 2007, 02:31:04 AM »

I for one value liberty over life, and I would hope that none would contest this position.
I contest this position, for what good is liberty to those who are dead?

Oh, I have pleanty of 'bull' in this fight. Wink
Yes, you DO have--or can I say you have given us--plenty of 'bull' in this fight. Wink
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« Reply #185 on: August 20, 2007, 06:04:26 AM »

GIC

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And that is, in large part, the issue at hand: does one person have the right to inflict physical hardship upon another for the benifit of a third party (that may or may not be human and may or may not be alive)...or more to the point, does anyone have the right to inflict hardship upon another person for their own well being? Ultimately, I would argue, no one has the right to survive, and much less impose their opinion, at the expense of another...for these things are, by their very nature, despotic.

I've got to say, when you made this type of argument yesterday, the first thing that popped into my head was: how then does he defend Byzantium with a straight face? Wink
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« Reply #186 on: August 20, 2007, 10:50:27 AM »

I've got to say, when you made this type of argument yesterday, the first thing that popped into my head was: how then does he defend Byzantium with a straight face? Wink

It's the best thing we had going at the time, the lesser of several great evils Wink

Plus, I'm behind a computer...I don't have to do it with a straight face. Grin
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« Reply #187 on: August 20, 2007, 10:58:51 AM »

I contest this position, for what good is liberty to those who are dead?

Then what of our honoured dead, who fought and gave their lives in the defence of liberty? They are given the honour due to them, but as for those who turned to cowardice and forsook liberty for their lives, they are condemned as traitors and are without honour. The liberty of our people is a greater thing than any life, or any millions of lives.

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Yes, you DO have--or can I say you have given us--plenty of 'bull' in this fight. Wink

As we all have. Wink
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« Reply #188 on: August 20, 2007, 11:00:02 AM »

Plus, I'm behind a computer...I don't have to do it with a straight face. Grin

You are such a game player. I wouldn't write off a CEO future for yourself just yet.  

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« Reply #189 on: August 20, 2007, 11:05:25 AM »

Am I welcome to my opinion that it's OK to shoot you because you make lousy arguments? Should the state not force its opinion that such a thing is morally reprehensible on me? Abortion is murder, and no arguments about liberty have anything to do with that fact.

Well, you can give it a try...but don't be surprised if I shoot back, and I shoot straighter than most. Wink

Of course, I am not dependent on a parasitic connection to you for my survival, so the issue is a bit different, if I were, then while an argument could be made that you shouldn't be able to shoot me, I have no doubt that you would have the right to remove me from yourself and force me to live or die on my own...and that is ulimately the point.

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And if you're going to play the "is it really human" card, then I would ask you to prove conclusively that a fetus is not human. If you cannot do so, then allowing someone to abort their child is like allowing someone to throw a grenade into a building that is possibly uninhabited.

Well, seeing how it lacks a brain should be proof enough.
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« Reply #190 on: August 20, 2007, 11:45:52 AM »

The liberty of our people is a greater thing than any life, or any millions of lives.


Wasn't this the mindset of the Sanhedrin when they passed judgement on our Lord?
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« Reply #191 on: August 20, 2007, 12:43:31 PM »

Wasn't this the mindset of the Sanhedrin when they passed judgement on our Lord?

No, their attitude was that their religion and their authority were of greater importance than the life of one man...were they concerned for liberty they would have fought for the freedom of speech and religion, which they most certainly did not.
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« Reply #192 on: August 20, 2007, 01:03:13 PM »

No, their attitude was that their religion and their authority were of greater importance than the life of one man...were they concerned for liberty they would have fought for the freedom of speech and religion, which they most certainly did not.

That's entirely true.  But one can also argue that they were given a certain amount of liberty by the Roman civil authority due to their peculiar situation within the Empire (ie their religion) and were afraid that Jesus of Nazareth was a rabble rouser who would bring the might of the legions down on the Jewish people, taking that liberty away. 

The Jews most certainly did fight and win for the freedom to practice their religion.  The Jews alone were exempt from the various civic-religious obligations enforced on every other conquered people in the Empire.
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« Reply #193 on: August 21, 2007, 09:08:44 PM »

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I feel it would be much more helpful to have prayer about this issue than debate. Men debating it will, IMO, have no effect.

Actually, I rather disagree with this statement. A healthy and hearty debate quite often leads to a change in one's viewpoint. I have often had a change of opinion as a result of healthy debate. I would take the balanced approach that prayer and an exchange of ideas can make a difference (especially when there are those amongst the flock who disagree with the church's position).

Quote
Y,
I agree that prayer is always key, esp when the issue is a hot one and that evokes so much pain and emotion. Where I veer from your point is men debating. To begin with, abortion is not a woman's issue. It is a family issue because all members of the family will be affected. My ex-wife, as all women who go thru the procedure, was the one who went through the *physical* aspect. Yet, both her and myself, went through  (and to an extent are still going through) the psychological effects. Grandfathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles also must deal with the decision. The liberal movement seeks to distort the issue by making it a woman's cause. 'Pro-choice', as they understand it, is a selfish choice. 'My body, my right' is a selfish delusional choice that affects every member of our society regardless of sex. Men not only have the right to engage in this cause, they have a moral responsibility.

Gabriel,

Your approach is fair and balanced(not to steal from fox news). Methinks you have hit the nail on the head.

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« Reply #194 on: August 21, 2007, 09:58:25 PM »

Actually, I rather disagree with this statement. A healthy and hearty debate quite often leads to a change in one's viewpoint. I have often had a change of opinion as a result of healthy debate. I would take the balanced approach that prayer and an exchange of ideas can make a difference (especially when there are those amongst the flock who disagree with the church's position).

On some issues, but from my experience on both sides of the abortion issue I have found this rarely to be the case. Anti- or pro-abortion is not so much a position in and of itself, but rather a derivative of other beliefs and priorities. I didn't wake up one day and say, 'hey, I think I'll be pro-choice now.' Rather, my entire world view was slowly changed (I would argue enlightened, but I understand if you disagree with me Wink) and almost at the completion of that transformation I realized, 'I can't really remain pro-life any more without being a hypocrite'...it was really one of the last socially 'conservative' positions I abandoned, because I had to abandon all others before being logically compelled to reject this one.

So, if you want to argue and possibly have some affect, argue about fundamental philosophies of life and liberty, argue about the evolution of gender roles, argue about the role of religion in society...for though it is always difficult to convert someone to your position, in these at least there is a possibility of effecting that which you desire.
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« Reply #195 on: August 21, 2007, 10:31:16 PM »

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On some issues, but from my experience on both sides of the abortion issue I have found this rarely to be the case. Anti- or pro-abortion is not so much a position in and of itself, but rather a derivative of other beliefs and priorities. I didn't wake up one day and say, 'hey, I think I'll be pro-choice now.' Rather, my entire world view was slowly changed (I would argue enlightened, but I understand if you disagree with me Wink) and almost at the completion of that transformation I realized, 'I can't really remain pro-life any more without being a hypocrite'...it was really one of the last socially 'conservative' positions I abandoned, because I had to abandon all others before being logically compelled to reject this one.

So, if you want to argue and possibly have some affect, argue about fundamental philosophies of life and liberty, argue about the evolution of gender roles, argue about the role of religion in society...for though it is always difficult to convert someone to your position, in these at least there is a possibility of effecting that which you desire.

There are those within the church who fall into the culture of death unwittingly. I have seen this first hand. In these situations an exchange of ideas and a good apologetic are necessary. For those who are in opposition to the church and remain Orthodox (which I don't understand these people) then it is pointless to debate them. Prayer and the grace of God are the only things that will enlighten a darkened mind. I, for one, am an Orthodox Christian who holds to the teachings of the church. The church says abortion is wrong and it is murder, and I agree with the church. I do not think I am wiser than Jesus Christ, the Holy Orthodox Church or the Saints.
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« Reply #196 on: August 21, 2007, 10:38:41 PM »

GIC,

From your various posts on OC.net, it seems to me that you are in contrast to nearly all of the teachings of the Orthodox church. I am just curious why you remain in the church since it seems like you don't believe in its teachings? Do you hold any of the teachings of the Orthodox Church? If so what are they?
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« Reply #197 on: August 21, 2007, 10:42:52 PM »

WOW, I don't think I've seen so many overt propaganda terms thrown into one post in quite sometime...and to think I tried to be somewhat moderate in my last response. Wink

But in all seriousness, no one 'fall(s) into the culture of death unwittingly' as you put it. If one is easily swayed from one position to the other they probably neither understand the issue nor their personal beliefs to support or oppose it one way or the other. You merely swayed them to your position until such time as someone better spoken comes along on the other side to sway them to theirs. Ultimately, these people neither support nor oppose abortion...they simply don't understand the issue. No perhaps you could use your skills in propaganda to turn them into a true convert, but you will not do this by indoctrinating them on the issue of abortion alone, you must work at presuppositions behind the position. But, even then, if they are so easily swayed there is the question of whether they actually support your position, or if they simply have a personality such that they want to please everyone...I have met several people in both categories.

Ultimately, what you sound like you desire is to go out and get as many votes as possible, rather than intellectual contributors to your political camp.
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« Reply #198 on: August 21, 2007, 10:51:14 PM »

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WOW, I don't think I've seen so many overt propaganda terms thrown into one post in quite sometime...and to think I tried to be somewhat moderate in my last response. Wink

But in all seriousness, no one 'fall(s) into the culture of death unwittingly' as you put it. If one is easily swayed from one position to the other they probably neither understand the issue nor their personal beliefs to support or oppose it one way or the other. You merely swayed them to your position until such time as someone better spoken comes along on the other side to sway them to theirs. Ultimately, these people neither support nor oppose abortion...they simply don't understand the issue. No perhaps you could use your skills in propaganda to turn them into a true convert, but you will not do this by indoctrinating them on the issue of abortion alone, you must work at presuppositions behind the position. But, even then, if they are so easily swayed there is the question of whether they actually support your position, or if they simply have a personality such that they want to please everyone...I have met several people in both categories.

Ultimately, what you sound like you desire is to go out and get as many votes as possible, rather than intellectual contributors to your political camp.

When I speak of the culture of death, I think we all know what I am talking about. Any one who is slightly aware of cultural issues knows what this is. It is not propaganda. If anyone is confused by what the culture of death is, I will be more than happy to articulate it. If one supports abortion,  euthanasia, etc... they are part of the culture of death. The church is part of the culture of life. If you don't like the terminology, I don't know what to tell you.

Also, you didn't answer my questions. Again I will ask you "From your various posts on OC.net, it seems to me that you are in contrast to nearly all of the teachings of the Orthodox church. I am just curious why you remain in the church since it seems like you don't believe in its teachings? Do you hold any of the teachings of the Orthodox Church? If so what are they?"

BTW, I tend to be more Democrat in my politics. Does that make me a right wing propagandist?
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« Reply #199 on: August 21, 2007, 10:52:26 PM »

GIC,

From your various posts on OC.net, it seems to me that you are in contrast to nearly all of the teachings of the Orthodox church. I am just curious why you remain in the church since it seems like you don't believe in its teachings? Do you hold any of the teachings of the Orthodox Church? If so what are they?

I hold to all the theology of the faith. I believe in the incarnation, I believe in the Holy Trinity, I believe Chalcedonian definition of Christ, I believe in duality of the Natures and Energies of Christ, and I believe in the defending of the Holy Icons. I also believe the ancient teachings regarding the Oneness of the Divine, It's Nature as ultimate Originator and Cause of all things, I believe in the perpetual sustaining of existence by the Divine...and I believe in the infinite love, mercy, and forgiveness of the Divine. In effect I believe the dogma of the Church. Where I disagree is merely on several social and cultural issues influenced excessively by the mores of past, less enlightened, civilizations: I take issue with many elements of a moral code which can be demonstrated to merely perpetuate ancient discriminatory practices, I oppose ancient norms that advocate misogyny and the oppression of women and practices derived from these, in general I oppose the imposition of ancient societal norms on modern civilization. While I support the eternal dogma of the Church, I believe each society and generation must develop a system of morals and customs that pays homage to Christian high theology and is primarially based on the pragmatic needs and understandings of the day, uninfluenced by the morality and customs of past generations.
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« Reply #200 on: August 21, 2007, 10:55:25 PM »

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Where I disagree is merely on several social and cultural issues influenced excessively by the mores of past, less enlightened, civilizations: I take issue with many elements of a moral code which can be demonstrated to merely perpetuate ancient discriminatory practices, I oppose ancient norms that advocate misogyny and the oppression of women and practices derived from these, in general I oppose the imposition of ancient societal norms on modern civilization. While I support the eternal dogma of the Church, I believe each society and generation must develop a system of morals and customs that pays homage to Christian high theology and is primarially based on the pragmatic needs and understandings of the day, uninfluenced by the morality and customs of past generations.

So in other words you are an eastern rite episcopalian? Do you believe in repentance of sins? Do you believe fornication and abortion are sins? Do they need confession and repentance of?
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« Reply #201 on: August 21, 2007, 10:55:48 PM »

When I speak of the culture of death, I think we all know what I am talking about. Any one who is slightly aware of cultural issues knows what this is. It is not propaganda. If anyone is confused by what the culture of death is, I will be more than happy to articulate it. If one supports abortion,  euthanasia, etc... they are part of the culture of death. The church is part of the culture of life. If you don't like the terminology, I don't know what to tell you.

It's ok, really, no one 'likes' to hear the other side's propaganda...but I'm not going to get too upset over it. But to even things out, perhaps I'll start refering to your side as 'the culture of oppression and misogyny'...of course, 'If you don't like the terminology, I don't know what to tell you.'

Quote
BTW, I tend to be more Democrat in my politics. Does that make me a right wing propagandist?

American politics aside (and they don't belong in this thread), by your arguments you've clearly established yourself as a social conservative.
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« Reply #202 on: August 21, 2007, 10:59:17 PM »

So in other words you are an eastern rite episcopalian?

I keep looking for those Churches...no luck finding one yet Wink

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Do you believe in repentance of sins?

Of course, pride, domination, arrogance, oppression, despotism...these all require repentance.

Quote
Do you believe fornication and abortion are sins? Do they need confession and repentance of?

Depends on the circumstance...at times they may be appropriate, at times they may be the lesser of two evils, as a worst case scenario they are merely symptoms of other true sins. For example, I would, in general, not say that fornication is a sin, but lust certainly is.
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« Reply #203 on: August 21, 2007, 11:00:41 PM »

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It's ok, really, no one 'likes' to hear the other side's propaganda...but I'm not going to get too upset over it. But to even things out, perhaps I'll start refering to your side as 'the culture of oppression and misogyny'...of course, 'If you don't like the terminology, I don't know what to tell you.'

I support life like the Orthodox church does and the RCC does as well as many protestant denominations. I also think that being pro life is more than being anti abortion. Unlike many conservatives, I think the government should help the mothers any way they can (but this is for another thread).

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American politics aside (and they don't belong in this thread), by your arguments you've clearly established yourself as a social conservative.

So being pro life makes me a social conservative? Interesting, and where do you find this definition?
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« Reply #204 on: August 21, 2007, 11:02:51 PM »

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Depends on the circumstance...at times they may be appropriate, at times they may be the lesser of two evils, as a worst case scenario they are merely symptoms of other true sins. For example, I would, in general, not say that fornication is a sin, but lust certainly is.

I hold to the Orthodox view that lust and fornication are both sins and that they need to be repented of. Abortion is clearly held as a sin by the church (a major sin at that). Does that mean that the Orthodox church is socially conservative?
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« Reply #205 on: August 21, 2007, 11:07:31 PM »

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For example, I would, in general, not say that fornication is a sin, but lust certainly is.
What?? How could fornication occur without the involvement of lust?
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« Reply #206 on: August 21, 2007, 11:08:47 PM »

Where I disagree is merely on several social and cultural issues influenced excessively by the mores of past, less enlightened, civilizations: I take issue with many elements of a moral code which can be demonstrated to merely perpetuate ancient discriminatory practices, I oppose ancient norms that advocate misogyny and the oppression of women and practices derived from these, in general I oppose the imposition of ancient societal norms on modern civilization. While I support the eternal dogma of the Church, I believe each society and generation must develop a system of morals and customs that pays homage to Christian high theology and is primarially based on the pragmatic needs and understandings of the day, uninfluenced by the morality and customs of past generations.
And herein lies the rub that chaps our behinds.  What you so consistently attribute to mere cultural influences and the imposition of outside societal norms the Church sees as the very manner by which her flock is to live their life in Christ.  Ironically, we Orthodox have said many times here that you seek to impose on the faithful a modern, worldly norm that has no organic foundation at all in the Holy Tradition that our Church has preserved faithfully since the Apostles but is rather the product of our modern, "enlightened," and--we would say--apostate culture.

In short, GiC, you have set yourself up to be the judge of the Church rather than allow the Church and her Gospel to enlighten your reasoning.
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« Reply #207 on: August 21, 2007, 11:12:06 PM »

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And herein lies the rub that chaps our behinds.  What you so consistently attribute to mere cultural influences and the imposition of outside societal norms the Church sees as the very manner by which her flock is to live their life in Christ.  Ironically, we Orthodox have said many times here that you seek to impose on the faithful a modern, worldly norm that has no organic foundation at all in the Holy Tradition that our Church has preserved faithfully since the Apostles but is rather the product of our modern, "enlightened," and--we would say--apostate culture.

In short, GiC, you have set yourself up to be the judge of the Church rather than allow the Church and her Gospel to enlighten your reasoning.

Well said Peter!
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« Reply #208 on: August 21, 2007, 11:12:23 PM »

I support life like the Orthodox church does and the RCC does as well as many protestant denominations. I also think that being pro life is more than being anti abortion. Unlike many conservatives, I think the government should help the mothers any way they can (but this is for another thread).

You're confusing social conservatism and economic conservatism. Most religions are economically moderate and socially conservative as they were generally created hrough generous economic policies and sustained through social conservatism.

Quote
So being pro life makes me a social conservative? Interesting, and where do you find this definition?

Well, it's not socially liberal or libertarian...so we're running out of options.

I hold to the Orthodox view that lust and fornication are both sins and that they need to be repented of.

The latter, as it is condemned in the Church, is but a physical manifestation of the former...why someone would believe committing fornication in any more a sin than desiring fornication is beyond me, the act merely lacks the hypocracy of the desire. If you overcome the will in act alone, without affecting though, you have accomplished nothing...such a level of 'self control' is harldy noteworthy.

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Abortion is clearly held as a sin by the church (a major sin at that). Does that mean that the Orthodox church is socially conservative?

Clearly? It was clearly held as a 'sin' by past societies with the Church was deeply intertwined...but I believe that the quote I posted earlier from His Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco demonstrates a more sophisticated, understanding, and enlightened approach to the issue by the Church today...the one I garnered from many of my seminary professors in discussion regarding this issue.
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« Reply #209 on: August 21, 2007, 11:17:04 PM »

What?? How could fornication occur without the involvement of lust?

While fornication probably generally results from lust, I have no doubt that at times it results as the sexual expression of true love in the most Christian sense. On the other hand, it is possible that sex occur not out of this love, but out of lust, even in the context of marriage making this act of sex, though technically acceptable in the eyes of society and the church, 'fornication' in the canonical and spiritual context of the term.
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« Reply #210 on: August 21, 2007, 11:20:27 PM »

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Well, it's not socially liberal or libertarian...so we're running out of options.

I like to call it Orthodox. But nice try.

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The latter, as it is condemned in the Church, is but a physical manifestation of the former...why someone would believe committing fornication in any more a sin than desiring fornication is beyond me, the act merely lacks the hypocracy of the desire. If you overcome the will in act alone, without affecting though, you have accomplished nothing...such a level of 'self control' is harldy noteworthy.

That is like saying committing murder in your heart is worse or the same as actually committing murder. Yes, of course, it is wrong to hate your brother;however, when one gets to the point of acting upon that hate and committing murder it is worse. The same goes with fornication. There are consequences for such actions. Your views are out of line with the Holy Orthodox church.

Quote
Clearly? It was clearly held as a 'sin' by past societies with the Church was deeply intertwined...but I believe that the quote I posted earlier from His Eminence Metropolitan Gerasimos of San Francisco demonstrates a more sophisticated, understanding, and enlightened approach to the issue by the Church today...the one I garnered from many of my seminary professors in discussion regarding this issue.

The church absolutely condemns abortion. Whether you find a quote here or there that may seem at first to slightly support your point of view, the church stands united that abortion is murder and that life begins at the moment of conception.  If your seminary professors supported abortion, then they are sadly misguided and out of step with the Holy faith.
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« Reply #211 on: August 21, 2007, 11:24:09 PM »

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While fornication probably generally results from lust, I have no doubt that at times it results as the sexual expression of true love in the most Christian sense. On the other hand, it is possible that sex occur not out of this love, but out of lust, even in the context of marriage making this act of sex, though technically acceptable in the eyes of society and the church, 'fornication' in the canonical and spiritual context of the term.

Fornication is clearly condemned in the Bible and by the Holy tradition of the church. I would like to see you defend such actions to a monk or priest. The Christian expression of love through sex is inside of marriage plane and simple. There is no justification for fornication. It is condemned by the church. An interpretation that fornication outside of marriage is good is simply unorthodox.
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« Reply #212 on: August 21, 2007, 11:27:07 PM »

And herein lies the rub that chaps our behinds.  What you so consistently attribute to mere cultural influences and the imposition of outside societal norms the Church sees as the very manner by which her flock is to live their life in Christ.  Ironically, we Orthodox have said many times here that you seek to impose on the faithful a modern, worldly norm that has no organic foundation at all in the Holy Tradition that our Church has preserved faithfully since the Apostles but is rather the product of our modern, "enlightened," and--we would say--apostate culture.

Have I made any secret of the fact that I believe that modern enlightened culture and civilization is not an deviation from Christianity, but rather the fulfillment of the same? If this has not come across clearly in the past, my appologies.

Quote
In short, GiC, you have set yourself up to be the judge of the Church rather than allow the Church and her Gospel to enlighten your reasoning.

I have come to interpret the morals and customs of the fathers in the same manner I was taught to interpret the holy canons. When I first started studying the holy canons I took them literally (as I did the customs and morals of the fathers), but I was fortunate to have a teacher who was patient with me and who slowly demonstrated to me that there were deeper more substantial meanings behind the canons, that the literal interpretation was merely accidental to the discipline of canon law, which was more high theology than law. Whether or not this teacher would have intended me to look at morals of the fathers in a similar manner is certainly an open question, but I found that more understanding, tolerance, and dare I say truth can be gleaned from such an approach. Taking our example of fornication, it is not the act of sex that is immoral, it is the lust behind it, and yet, why is lust immoral? It is immoral because it is the reduction of a loved one to a selfish desire...in short it is pride and the absence of love. So when you really get down to it, it is the failure to love one's neighbour that is the sin. The various penances, laws, and cultural norms are merely baggage that distract from this fundamental understanding.

So while you say I stand in judgement of the Church, I believe that I rather reveal the actions of the Church through the lense of the Holy Gospels and Christian Theology, when these things do not line us the fact that I brought these discrpancies to light merely appear to be an act of judgement.
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« Reply #213 on: August 21, 2007, 11:30:43 PM »

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Have I made any secret of the fact that I believe that modern enlightened culture and civilization is not an deviation from Christianity, but rather the fulfillment of the same? If this has not come across clearly in the past, my appologies.


Quote
I have come to interpret the morals and customs of the fathers in the same manner I was taught to interpret the holy canons. When I first started studying the holy canons I took them literally (as I did the customs and morals of the fathers), but I was fortunate to have a teacher who was patient with me and who slowly demonstrated to me that there were deeper more substantial meanings behind the canons, that the literal interpretation was merely accidental to the discipline of canon law, which was more high theology than law. Whether or not this teacher would have intended me to look at morals of the fathers in a similar manner is certainly an open question, but I found that more understanding, tolerance, and dare I say truth can be gleaned from such an approach. Taking our example of fornication, it is not the act of sex that is immoral, it is the lust behind it, and yet, why is lust immoral? It is immoral because it is the reduction of a loved one to a selfish desire...in short it is pride and the absence of love. So when you really get down to it, it is the failure to love one's neighbour that is the sin. The various penances, laws, and cultural norms are merely baggage that distract from this fundamental understanding.

So while you say I stand in judgement of the Church, I believe that I rather reveal the actions of the Church through the lense of the Holy Gospels and Christian Theology, when these things do not line us the fact that I brought these discrpancies to light merely appear to be an act of judgement.


Sounds like good unitarian/episcopalianism to me.

It is the heart and the actions that are BOTH sinful. This is the balanced approach.

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« Reply #214 on: August 21, 2007, 11:33:02 PM »

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Have I made any secret of the fact that I believe that modern enlightened culture and civilization is not an deviation from Christianity, but rather the fulfillment of the same? If this has not come across clearly in the past, my appologies.

Its funny how the church views is as a deviation from Christianity. I guess anything goes right?
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« Reply #215 on: August 21, 2007, 11:33:49 PM »

Well, seeing how it lacks a brain should be proof enough.

 Huh Huh  "lacks a brain"?  The Neural Tube closes and the brain starts to develope around weeks 5-6.  How much brain do you consider "enough"?

There is life without great abilities for intellect.  Then there's the idea that a thing is living if it: eats/takes in nutrition, grows and needs oxygen (leaving aside anaerobic organisms).  The developing embryo/fetus/child isn't dead.  When there is a death in utero things stop.  

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« Reply #216 on: August 21, 2007, 11:36:01 PM »



Sounds like good unitarian/episcopalianism to me.

Sigh.   Sad 

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« Reply #217 on: August 21, 2007, 11:39:02 PM »

So in other words you are an eastern rite episcopalian?

 Undecided

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« Reply #218 on: August 21, 2007, 11:42:11 PM »

Every person has a right to opine on every issue, that's the nature of our society. But the choice for an abortion should be between a woman and her physician, and no one else.

Unfortunately, as one may read of cases in the book I mentioned earlier, it is often not such a decision, but others such as the man, or a boss or other people who put pressure on a woman or threaten her with harm, or abandonment or loss of a job if she should not undergo an abortion.  Not a "Free" choice, but coercion. 

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« Reply #219 on: August 21, 2007, 11:42:28 PM »

Have I made any secret of the fact that I believe that modern enlightened culture and civilization is not an deviation from Christianity, but rather the fulfillment of the same? If this has not come across clearly in the past, my appologies.
No, your posts have made this very clear.  It's just that we disagree quite vehemently with your assessment.

Quote
I have come to interpret the morals and customs of the fathers in the same manner I was taught to interpret the holy canons. When I first started studying the holy canons I took them literally (as I did the customs and morals of the fathers), but I was fortunate to have a teacher who was patient with me and who slowly demonstrated to me that there were deeper more substantial meanings behind the canons, that the literal interpretation was merely accidental to the discipline of canon law, which was more high theology than law. Whether or not this teacher would have intended me to look at morals of the fathers in a similar manner is certainly an open question, but I found that more understanding, tolerance, and dare I say truth can be gleaned from such an approach. Taking our example of fornication, it is not the act of sex that is immoral, it is the lust behind it, and yet, why is lust immoral? It is immoral because it is the reduction of a loved one to a selfish desire...in short it is pride and the absence of love. So when you really get down to it, it is the failure to love one's neighbour that is the sin. The various penances, laws, and cultural norms are merely baggage that distract from this fundamental understanding.
Nothing in the above with which any Orthodox can take umbrage.

Quote
So while you say I stand in judgement of the Church, I believe that I rather reveal the actions of the Church through the lense of the Holy Gospels and Christian Theology, when these things do not line us the fact that I brought these discrpancies to light merely appear to be an act of judgement.
We just take umbrage with your particular application of your teacher's wisdom.  I personally question how anyone who is not actively living the spiritual praxis of the Church, as you have often admitted of yourself, can present himself as speaking the mind of the Church to us who at least try.
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« Reply #220 on: August 21, 2007, 11:44:18 PM »

I like to call it Orthodox. But nice try.

Sorry, that's a religious description, not political...try again.

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That is like saying committing murder in your heart is worse or the same as actually committing murder. Yes, of course, it is wrong to hate your brother;however, when one gets to the point of acting upon that hate and committing murder it is worse. The same goes with fornication. There are consequences for such actions. Your views are out of line with the Holy Orthodox church.

Did not Christ say:

'Ye have heard that it was said of them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire'?

And did not the great theologian John the Apostle say:

'Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer'?

To argue that the physical act is somehow worse than the thought or desire is a type of dualism, of gnosticism, it is to say that the flesh, that is to say matter, is capable of greater evil than the spirit or mind. It attempts to create a dichotomy where none exists. But I'm sure it is a comforting notion to those of us who can conduct ourselves in a socially acceptable manner, but are unable to exercise the same level of control over our thoughts, myself included.

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The church absolutely condemns abortion. Whether you find a quote here or there that may seem at first to slightly support your point of view, the church stands united that abortion is murder and that life begins at the moment of conception.  If your seminary professors supported abortion, then they are sadly misguided and out of step with the Holy faith.

First, the belief that life begins at conception stems from an incorrect understanding of conception which ignores the biological role of the woman and has no inclination of that fetal development is...you're trying to dogmatize a scientific issue, which is very dangerous, Rome has yet to live down her persecution of the great Astronomers. Secondly, I bring up those in the Church who may not hold your view on the issue of abortion, and you dismiss themout of hand as being unorthodox...yet I am the one being judgemental?
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« Reply #221 on: August 21, 2007, 11:55:04 PM »

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Sorry, that's a religious description, not political...try again.

Your the one trying to pin a political label on me. I'm not liberal or conservative; I'm Orthodox.

Quote
Did not Christ say:

'Ye have heard that it was said of them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire'?

And did not the great theologian John the Apostle say:

'Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer'?

To argue that the physical act is somehow worse than the thought or desire is a type of dualism, of gnosticism, it is to say that the flesh, that is to say matter, is capable of greater evil than the spirit or mind. It attempts to create a dichotomy where none exists. But I'm sure it is a comforting notion to those of us who can conduct ourselves in a socially acceptable manner, but are unable to exercise the same level of control over our thoughts, myself included.

Yes, Christ and John both said that. And if you read my prior post, I made the differentiation. Jesus knew that the next step was actual fulfillment of these acts. It is best to correct them before they get to that point. There are serious reprecutions for committing the physical act. It is one thing to hate your brother (which is obviously horrible) it is another to actually kill him. Do you think it is the same thing? Are there not worse affects for every one involved if such a deed is actually carried out? If you committed adultery/fornication or murder and went to confession, don't you think the penance for physically doing the deed would be different than the thoughts? When they are thoughts, they are able to be corrected before they physically manifest.

Quote
First, the belief that life begins at conception stems from an incorrect understanding of conception which ignores the biological role of the woman and has no inclination of that fetal development is...you're trying to dogmatize a scientific issue, which is very dangerous, Rome has yet to live down her persecution of the great Astronomers. Secondly, I bring up those in the Church who may not hold your view on the issue of abortion, and you dismiss themout of hand as being unorthodox...yet I am the one being judgemental?

I hold to the church's teaching of abortion. Those who disagree with the church are simply unorthodox in their view. It is not an insult, it is simply as it is.
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« Reply #222 on: August 21, 2007, 11:55:58 PM »

We just take umbrage with your particular application of your teacher's wisdom.

Well, if we are in agreement on this point, perhaps we should argue the details of these applications rather than the level of my devotion some here believe I have or do not have to Christian faith?

Quote
I personally question how anyone who is not actively living the spiritual praxis of the Church, as you have often admitted of yourself, can present himself as speaking the mind of the Church to us who at least try.

My apologies, is this discussion reserved for those without sin? If so I must excuse myself.

As for the details of my spritual life, or lack thereof: the entire point of this discussion has been about problems I see in what some would try to impose as 'standard Orthodox praxis'...yet, you wish to discount my argument based on the fact that I take issue with these interpretations. Doesn't this argument seem a bit circular to you?
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« Reply #223 on: August 21, 2007, 11:59:52 PM »

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As for the details of my spritual life, or lack thereof: the entire point of this discussion has been about problems I see in what some would try to impose as 'standard Orthodox praxis'...yet, you wish to discount my argument based on the fact that I take issue with these interpretations. Doesn't this argument seem a bit circular to you?

Standard Orthodox practice teaches that abortion and fornication are wrong. Plane and simple. This will never change. I believe when someone adopts a religion, you come to that religion on its terms. I did not come to Holy Orthodoxy trying to reform it or change it. I want Christ to change me. When the church speaks, it speaks with the voice of Christ.
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« Reply #224 on: August 22, 2007, 12:06:28 AM »


I have come to interpret the morals and customs of the fathers in the same manner I was taught to interpret the holy canons. When I first started studying the holy canons I took them literally (as I did the customs and morals of the fathers), but I was fortunate to have a teacher who was patient with me and who slowly demonstrated to me that there were deeper more substantial meanings behind the canons, that the literal interpretation was merely accidental to the discipline of canon law, which was more high theology than law. Whether or not this teacher would have intended me to look at morals of the fathers in a similar manner is certainly an open question, but I found that more understanding, tolerance, and dare I say truth can be gleaned from such an approach. Taking our example of fornication, it is not the act of sex that is immoral, it is the lust behind it, and yet, why is lust immoral? It is immoral because it is the reduction of a loved one to a selfish desire...in short it is pride and the absence of love. So when you really get down to it, it is the failure to love one's neighbour that is the sin. The various penances, laws, and cultural norms are merely baggage that distract from this fundamental understanding.

So while you say I stand in judgement of the Church, I believe that I rather reveal the actions of the Church through the lense of the Holy Gospels and Christian Theology, when these things do not line us the fact that I brought these discrpancies to light merely appear to be an act of judgement.
GiC, now's not the time to backpeddle. Since I've been a member of this forum, roughly 80%-85% of your posts have been representative of a liberal, secular opinion rather than representative of the Holy Traditions of the Orhodox Church. I recognize that you're probably being honest about how you see things, and I appreciate that. But all that aside, it's also apparent that you have almost a mocking quality about your posts. Sometimes it's quite humorous, while other times, it's very...quizical. You're free to believe however you see fit. Far be it from me to dictate what you do or don't believe. But when you make a statement that runs contrary to what Church doctrine and Traditon tells us, and on an Orthodox forum no less, the Church must rise up and correct you. We've tried to do this over and over and over. But since you still cling to your beliefs, this can be interpreted in no other way other than you are, indeed, judging yourself as more knowledgable than the Church you claim to be a member of. You've made some good points, friend, and I've appreciated your honesty and viewpoints. But, no matter how much I like you, you're still wrong when it comes to the abortion issue.
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