Author Topic: Head vs. Heart  (Read 6166 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Skipper

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8
  • Kyrie Eleison
    • A Catechumen's Walk
Head vs. Heart
« on: July 15, 2003, 12:33:44 AM »
As a Protestant who regularly attends an Orthodox Church, I would like to know from the successful converts out there if you ever experienced a head/heart split with the Church.

While I read and learn about the theology of Orthodoxy, there seems to be an ever-widening gap between what I know (intellectually) to be true, and what my heart will believe.  I "know" Orthodoxy, but I "believe" Protestantism.  Although I disagree with most of Orthodoxy on a theological level, I cannot help but feel that there is something deeply right about all of it; I can't stop going to an Orthodox Church.  Anyone know what I am talking about?  Any ideas on how to reconcile what I know with what I believe?  Thanx.
Lord, enlighten me; help me to know Thy will.  Bring light to my darkened heart and mind.

Offline Robert

  • "Amazing"
  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,442
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2003, 02:46:04 AM »
Lay aside your intellectual tendencies.  Christianity isn't about intellect. But it is about faith, charity, hope, and obedience.  Christianity is meant to be lived, on all walks of life.  How do you know your intellect isn't deceiving you? What you know intellectually to be true, may frankly be wrong.

With that said, it seems your heart knows where you are supposed to be, but your mind is elsewhere.  Things take time, but through prayer and patience, I am sure you will find that God shows you the right path.

Bobby

Offline Linus7

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,780
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2003, 07:27:28 AM »
Quote
From skipper:
As a Protestant who regularly attends an Orthodox Church, I would like to know from the successful converts out there if you ever experienced a head/heart split with the Church.

Yes, early on I did experience something like that.

My head was convinced of the truth of Orthodoxy while my heart clung to the familiar and what had always seemed safe. I don't think that is unusual.

Quote
From skipper: While I read and learn about the theology of Orthodoxy, there seems to be an ever-widening gap between what I know (intellectually) to be true, and what my heart will believe.  I "know" Orthodoxy, but I "believe" Protestantism.  Although I disagree with most of Orthodoxy on a theological level, I cannot help but feel that there is something deeply right about all of it; I can't stop going to an Orthodox Church.  Anyone know what I am talking about?  Any ideas on how to reconcile what I know with what I believe?  Thanx.

I'm not sure I follow part of this: you disagree with most of Orthodoxy on a theological level? Did you mean to say that you disagree with Protestantism on a theological level but feel good about it anyway?

Let's face it: Protestantism has a definite appeal (and here I'm lumping all the multitudinous sects of that movement together as one). It has a certain rational simplicity to it. There's this sacred book, and all one must do is read it, pray, and make up his own mind. It's the individual and God. That's appealing. No bothersome middlemen: the lone believer is the final authority in the Christianity he and his conscience construct.

Then there's Orthodoxy. It has historical continuity on its side and lots of authority, and it makes more sense of the Bible than sectarian Protestantism can.

But when one has been raised Protestant by a Protestant family in an arguably Protestant nation, it's tough to make the switch. It wasn't easy for me.

My suggestion is that you pray. Ask God to show you the truth, to make you realize that it is true, and to give you a heart-felt love for it.

May He guide you.
The first condition of salvation is to keep the norm of the true faith and in no way to deviate from the established doctrine of the Fathers.
- Pope St. Hormisdas

Offline Oblio

  • Elder
  • *****
  • Posts: 454
  • The Pointless One !
    • St. Innocent Orthodox Church
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2003, 08:09:50 AM »
First of all, as Linus and Bobby suggested, pray.

And then remember,

You must unlearn, what you have learned ...

Offline Anastasios

  • Webdespota
  • Administrator
  • Merarches
  • *******
  • Posts: 10,514
  • St. Chrysostomos the New
    • AnastasiosHudson.com
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Greek Old Calendarist
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2003, 09:40:34 AM »
Linus,

Skipper is an Episcopalian that has been struggling with Orthodoxy--you can read all about it on her blog, linked to her profile.

anastasios
Please Buy My Book!

Past posts reflect stages of my life before my baptism and may not be accurate expositions of Orthodox teaching. Also, I served as an Orthodox priest from 2008-2013, before resigning.

Offline CDHealy

  • Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 112
  • I'm a philosophy major.
    • This Is Life!
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2003, 09:57:30 AM »
Skipper:

With Linus7, I was a bit confused about with which theology you disagreed, and with which your heart was warmed.

For my own part, my situation was the opposit of what your post describes (if indeed, you meant to say you disagreed with Orthodoxy).  I came to see Orthodoxy was the fullness of the Faith, the one Body of Christ.  But my heart just couldn't "get into" the Liturgy and some of the prayers.

But in the last seven or eight months, though I've still worked to understand certain doctrtines of the Faith, I've focused much more on prayer and Divine Liturgy.  From time to time I'll ask my priest a pertinent question.  But it has been in patient prayer that head and heart have met once again.
Clifton D. Healy
email: chealy5@yahoo.com
blog: http://benedictseraphim.wordpress.com

"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy."
--Hamlet,

Offline Ebor

  • Vanyar
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 6,492
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2003, 05:01:04 PM »
Christianity is about faith and hope and charity and obedience and many other things including the intellect.  If that were not so, why would there be so many writings and councils and expositions and explanations to make things understandable to the intellect?

The intellect is not always right and neither is the heart.  Sometimes the heart wants things that are not good.  Sometimes the intellect makes decisions based on bad data.  One should not trump the other, in either direction.

I have read some of Skipper's blog.  This is an difficult and confusing time for her.  It is not a time for snap answers but to listen to her and try to address her concerns. It is also a time for prayer for God's Will, whatever that is, and it may not be what other people expect or want, to be done.  

Ebor
« Last Edit: July 15, 2003, 05:03:25 PM by Ebor »
"I wish they would remember that the charge to Peter was "Feed my sheep", not "Try experiments on my rats", or even "Teach my performing dogs new tricks". - C. S. Lewis

The Katana of Reasoned Discussion

For some a world view is more like a neighborhood watch.

Offline Jonathan

  • High Elder
  • ******
  • Posts: 937
    • St. Mary's Coptic Orthodox
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2003, 05:12:01 PM »
I spent a long time not being sure which I believed, so I kept going to multiple Churches simultaneously and doing a lot of research.  First it was between Protestantism and Catholicism, and I just kept struggling with the doctrinal differences until one day I realized that I unexpectedly believed it... later it was between Catholicism and Orthodoxy and the same thing happened.  Of course you're going to be confused, you're going against a lot of stuff you've previously just taken for granted, and probaby a lot of times you'll not quite understand stuff you learn about Orthodoxy since you're viewing it from a mostly Protestant framework of thought when a lot of other related things have to be understood in the Orthodox way for everything else to make sense.  But if you just keep studying to understand Orthodox theology in general, and studying to find out the reasons for the beliefs you disagree with, and the history & theology behind it, then as you study and pray, God will gradually make you at home where He wants you to be, in His time, it just takes a while.  If God's will for you is Protestantism, He'll lead you back there, if it's Orthodoxy, you're difficulties will be overcome.  Don't be afriad to seek help in understanding things you can't accept, from your local preist, or here, or your own studies, or some combination thereof.

Offline FrChris

  • The Rodney Dangerfield of OC.net
  • Site Supporter
  • Taxiarches
  • *****
  • Posts: 7,253
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #8 on: July 15, 2003, 05:56:30 PM »
Skipper:

Please draw comfort from knowing that you are not alone. Several of us here had the same experience as you. In my case, I was going back and forth between my head and heart for almost a decade.

The conflict between the head and heart actually makes sense, because Christianity is full of paradoxes (How is He both fully Man and fully Divine?, among others). What is important is that you pray and continue to be open to what the Comforter will teach you, since He is the Spirit of Truth.

Also, draw comfort from the Call narratives of the Old Testament prophets, and due to their typological reference, also from the Annunciation. Many of the prophets tried to hide from their calling (Jonah being the extreme example) because what they were being told by God did not make sense to them.

However, the prophets in their calling continued to explore this with God, asking questions as needed. Because we are made in His image and have self determination, He permits these questions because He knows this is one method of how we grow in our relationship with Him.

IMHO, everyone has given you good advice. Pray and listen, and continue to attend the Orthodox Church that you love. In the fullness of time and aided by many people's prayers you will make the right decision, one which both honors the image of God that we all are and one which shows your love for Him.
"As the sparrow flees from a hawk, so the man seeking humility flees from an argument". St John Climacus

Offline Skipper

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Posts: 8
  • Kyrie Eleison
    • A Catechumen's Walk
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2003, 12:10:38 AM »
Thank you for your responses.

Firstly, I come from a very Protestant background.  I went to an Anglican (technically Episcopal, but very conservative, and not all were happy to be part of the ecusa) church for my first few months of college and fell in love with sacraments, so I followed them to Orthodoxy.  But I was very Protestant; I go to a Bible college, and was a leader of my high school Bible study at my Protestant church.

Linus, I was not misspeaking when I said I disagree with most of Orthodoxy, but am still drawn to it.  I generally believe the normal Christian stuff in common between Orthodoxy and Protestantism (admit it - there is a lot in common).  It is all of the specific doctrinal points on which I differ.  Orthodox soteriology, Marian devotion, ikons, saints, theosis, &c are points which at this current time I cannot bring myself to theologically accept.  Sometimes I think the only reason I don’t go back to Protestantism is because of sacraments; the idea of sanctified matter is too phenomenal.  But I go to an Orthodox Church; there is something that seems right.

Jonathan says:
Quote
If God's will for you is Protestantism, He'll lead you back there, if it's Orthodoxy, you're difficulties will be overcome.

It is weird for me to hear you say this.  I assume you are Orthodox (forgive me if I am wrong), and that would make me assume you do not think Protestantism is right.  So, in your opinion, God wouldn’t lead me to Protestantism.  Right?  I don’t know.

As far as the advice to pray, pretty much everyone with whom I have spoken has suggested as such.  It seems like a good idea (and one that I actually hadn’t thought ofGǪ); but how long does “patience” take?  I know this is not really a fair question, but how long should one pray about something before doing something about it?
Lord, enlighten me; help me to know Thy will.  Bring light to my darkened heart and mind.

Offline Robert

  • "Amazing"
  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,442
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2003, 12:21:22 AM »
Pray without ceasing I'm afraid.

I know it isn't the most inspirational of comments, but with time God will lead you to where he wants you. You mentioned that you had problems with the Mother of God.  Might you do what a friend once did? He didn't hold her in too much of a high place, so he said a prayer to her. The Theotokos holds such a prominant place in our faith, She will most certainly help you in your journey.

It might help to find a good priest, willing to listen, and tell him everything. The guidnace you find will be comforting.

And above all, don't rush anything, take things slowly, pray, listen, go to Liturgy, etc.


Bobby

Offline Chuck S.

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 71
  • Place Personal Text Here
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2003, 12:24:12 AM »
Dear Skipper,

I'm a convert from protestantism to Orthodoxy. And my experience, was as follows:

I actually set out to disprove Orthodoxy (as a good Fundamentalist would)...I took one doctrine at a time, but as I would research each subject, I would find that the Scriptures actually taught Orthodox doctrine and it drove me nuts.

I didn't want to believe what I was believing. I dont know if this was my mind, or my heart, but I wanted to remain a protestant. Even though I realized that Orthodoxy was true, I didn't want to be Orthodox.

Again I dont know if this was my mind accepting Orthodoxy, or my heart, but I know there was conflict. But After 5 months of intense research, I realized that I knew Orthodoxy was true, and that I couldn't remain a protestant.

And after 5 months I also realized that I "believed" everything Orthodoxy taught. I began praying Orthodox prayers, began living like an Orthodox as best I could outside the Church...but it wasn't until I experienced Orthodox Pascha that I was completely and totally converted in the deepest parts of my soul.
<p>
So I know where you're coming from.
<p>
I figure its normal...because part of us wants to hold on to protestantism...I dont know why, but it was true for me. But I simly knew Orthodoxy was Biblically, and historically true. So I began attending services...and realized from day one that God was there unlike anywhere else.

So while there is a place for the logical parts of understanding Orthodoxy...the essence of truly being Orthodox is simply LIVING in the Way. Simply worshipping the Lord....I think the mind stuff comes first, and then the heart conversion follows for those who begin researching Orthodoxy first. But then others it may be the opposite. Some go to services first and are so struck they realize they must be Orthodox. In either case, its the experience of The Way that is the final conclusion. Understanding Orthodox doctrine IS important...its what made me realize all my beliefs were wrong....but then there was another part, my first Pascha service, where I felt the deepest part of me finally "got" Orthodoxy in my heart.

I dont know if this helps...but I hope it does a little

In Christ Thomas



In Christ, Thomas

Offline Chuck S.

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 71
  • Place Personal Text Here
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2003, 12:45:11 AM »

Dear Skipper,

I just saw you second post so my first may not all that helpful since I accepted Orthodox doctrine as true before ever setting foot inside an Orthodox Church.

I see you have problems with Icons, the saints, Mary etc...We can answer all these question here if you want to ask them. I'm sure we'd all be happy to help out and clear up any misunderstandings you have.

You could also try a book called "The Truth of our Faith" written by Monk Cleopa which touches on all these issues....but sometimes its better for direct interaction.

The thing you must do though is when asking, is put aside all pre-suppositions you have. You can't ask questions with the mindset you'll never change your mind. (although I did and God still got through somehow) Its not the best advice.

I had problems with Icons, and the saints....and Mary, but realized, by the Scriptures alone that these doctrines did not contradict the Bible in any way. and in fact in the case of Icons, was an essential aspect of defending the incarnation of Christ.

The biggest problem for me was the end times view in Orthodoxy (as I was a dispensationalist) and I STRONGLY rejected Orthodoxy on this...but prayed that God show me how HE meant these Bible to be understood...soon, I realized I was wrong about that as well.

So questions are normal Skipper...dont worry. Feel free to ask them. Read up on them...you already know there is something drawing you to Orthodoxy...so you're just the opposite as me. But hopefully this is of some help...

In Christ, Thomas




In Christ, Thomas

Offline CDHealy

  • Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 112
  • I'm a philosophy major.
    • This Is Life!
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2003, 09:39:07 AM »
Skipper:

I can tell from your blog and your posts here that you have some anxiety about where you're at and where you may be going.  This is an in-between time in which a lot of things are unsettled.  There are things about Protestantism you no longer find true; on the other hand, Protestantism is where you've been all  your life.  You found the sacraments at an Anglican parish (as, coincidentally, did I back when).  Yet, as you imply, you know all is not well in ECUSA.  Then there's Orthodoxy, which in some way draws you despite your current convictions.

If I've described your journey accurately, rest assured you're in the same boat as a great many of us on this board (though I have not yet been chrismated into the Orthodox Church).  Feel free to post your questions and comments.  We sometimes get a bit testy here, but someone always calls us back to Christian charity.  Don't let our rough spots get to you.  We are very great sinners here.

Prayer is, for some strange reason, almost always seen as the least inspiring and certainly the least exciting path to take when we're perplexed.  But it is the only way we'll genuinely reach where it is we're headed.

In Orthodoxy you'll soon see, if you haven't yet, that the personal touch is eminently better than electronic contact.  If there is an Orthodox priest there where you are that you feel  you can trust, or would be willing to take a chance on, by all means go see him.  For all my reading and research, it wasn't until I began receiving the counsels and prayers of my parish priest that I began to make any real headway with regard to my questions.

In the words of our Lord, Take courage.
Clifton D. Healy
email: chealy5@yahoo.com
blog: http://benedictseraphim.wordpress.com

"There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy."
--Hamlet,

Offline David

  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,952
  • Retired GM
    • Homepage
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2003, 10:33:39 AM »
Skipper,

Others have given you good advice.   Since you are particularly drawn to the Holy Mysteries(Sacraments), I would like to reccomend a book on sacramental theology.  It is very inexepensive and can easily be found at your library or through an interlibrary loan.

For the Life of the World: Sacraments and Orthodoxy
by Alexander Schmemann
 

I hope this helps!
"When looking at faults, use a mirror, not a telescope."
-Yazid Ibrahim

Offline Ebor

  • Vanyar
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 6,492
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #15 on: July 16, 2003, 03:40:26 PM »
If you still have some connection to your Anglican parish (looks nice btw) I think it would be wise to keep it while you are looking at EO.  If you cut loose from all moorings without a line attached to others (not on-line but real in the flesh people.) it could be very hard for you and your search.  I speak as one who drifted in the past.

Ebor
« Last Edit: July 16, 2003, 03:41:40 PM by Ebor »
"I wish they would remember that the charge to Peter was "Feed my sheep", not "Try experiments on my rats", or even "Teach my performing dogs new tricks". - C. S. Lewis

The Katana of Reasoned Discussion

For some a world view is more like a neighborhood watch.

Offline Linus7

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,780
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #16 on: July 16, 2003, 04:00:12 PM »
Quote
From skipper: Linus, I was not misspeaking when I said I disagree with most of Orthodoxy, but am still drawn to it.

Ahh . . .

I misunderstood. I thought your head is with Orthodoxy and your heart is still with Protestantism. Now I see that things are the other way around.

Interesting. For me it was exactly the opposite, since early on I found the twin pillars of Protestantism, Sola Scriptura and Sola Fide, untenable. Thus my head left Protestantism well before my heart did.

Sorry for the misunderstanding.

May God help and guide you. None of this is easy.
The first condition of salvation is to keep the norm of the true faith and in no way to deviate from the established doctrine of the Fathers.
- Pope St. Hormisdas

Offline Jonathan

  • High Elder
  • ******
  • Posts: 937
    • St. Mary's Coptic Orthodox
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #17 on: July 16, 2003, 04:12:33 PM »

Jonathan says:
Quote
If God's will for you is Protestantism, He'll lead you back there, if it's Orthodoxy, you're difficulties will be overcome.

It is weird for me to hear you say this.  I assume you are Orthodox (forgive me if I am wrong), and that would make me assume you do not think Protestantism is right.  So, in your opinion, God wouldn’t lead me to Protestantism.  Right?  I don’t know.

As far as the advice to pray, pretty much everyone with whom I have spoken has suggested as such.  It seems like a good idea (and one that I actually hadn’t thought ofGǪ); but how long does “patience” take?  I know this is not really a fair question, but how long should one pray about something before doing something about it?

Yes, I believe that Orthodoxy is the fullness of Christianity, and that if you are open God will lead you here.  However you aren't sure of that yet, so me telling you that wouldn't help you much, would it?  What I was trying to express is that God has a plan for you, and that all the discomfort you're feeling is for a reason, namely to bring you closer to Him.  While I don't see any conflict, and I know for certain where the truth lies, that doesn't help you who are in conflict, not knowing which way is right, feeling torn.  All I mean is that if you keep open, and follow Him with all your strength & trust, then He'll lead you to peace.  I don't expect you to start off with the conclusion that where He'll lead you is Orthodoxy, although I believe that.  What's important is not to despair and think that this feeling will be permanent.

I don't know what's practicle for you, but I attended Catholic Mass on Sat night & Orthodox Liturgy on Sun morning for about 1/2 a year before I felt ready to let go of the Catholic Mass, and then it was another 1/2 year or more before I was ready to enter Orthodoxy.  Is there any way you can do something like that, keep going to your Anglican Church some of the time, and to an Orthodox Church some of the time?  That way you're not jumping out into the unknown & changing to quickly, and you're also not sticking to what's familiar and not allowing God to lead you.  If you can expose yourself to both thoroughly, God will lead you to whichever one He wills.

I think that if you just pray, you'll never find peace, but if you pray, participate in both, and study history and theology with as much intensity as you can muster, God will lead you.  God won't do stuff for us, or there'd be no point in it getting done, but when we apply all our effort and let Him guide the direction, He supplies what our effort lacks.  Problems arise when we don't let Him pick the direction, don't pray and trust in Him to lead us, or don't apply the effort we are able to.

Offline Anastasios

  • Webdespota
  • Administrator
  • Merarches
  • *******
  • Posts: 10,514
  • St. Chrysostomos the New
    • AnastasiosHudson.com
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: Greek Old Calendarist
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #18 on: July 16, 2003, 05:03:19 PM »
I think that it is important that Skipper stay in contact with her Orthodox priest friend but also talk with her Anglican priest so that she can make an informed decision, not one in haste that she will later regret (of course I hope she becomes Orthodox BUT I hope she does it out of conviction and not merely out of hightened emotionalism--I was highly emotionalized and became a Byzantine Catholic before I had studied Orthodoxy enough; if I had I would have become Orthodox first).

I also would like to clarify the idea that one learns from the heart over the head that has been posted: certainly we cannot learn Orthodoxy merely by the intellect and the intellect can be mistaken but God gave us free will and discernment and it is important that Skipper enter Orthodoxy based on convictions.  Studying and talking with a priest will help the head knowledge while praying and fasting will help the heart.

anastasios
Please Buy My Book!

Past posts reflect stages of my life before my baptism and may not be accurate expositions of Orthodox teaching. Also, I served as an Orthodox priest from 2008-2013, before resigning.

Offline Asteriktos

  • Hypatos
  • *****************
  • Posts: 35,738
  • the irregardless one
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #19 on: July 16, 2003, 06:25:16 PM »
It's all nous--both head and heart. One may be more involved with the active, and one more with the passive, but they are both cleansed in the same way: experientially. Start working out your salvation with fear and trembling, as the Christ taught us through his body the Church, and pretty soon you will find yourself wanting with your soul's deepest desire not only to follow the Church, but to be in the Church, so that you can experience the nous-cleansing uncreated grace most fully.

Um, that's the christianese theory. Here's the summary: fast, pray, love, give alms, pray, learn patience, read the Scriptures, read the fathers, read the lives of the saints, pray, attend Church, cultivate silence, pray, (and perhaps do even more, such as sleeping on the floor, but for that you should talk with an experienced priest). Before long, if your gaze is upward, you will want to unite yourself with the Church. This is because you are not "doing deeds," or "working your way to heaven"; but rather, just as James says that trials can lead us to perfection (he means through trials the grace of God cleanses us and we learn to turn to God and trust him more fully), so to do all of these above things (fasting, prayer, etc.) lead us into a deeper and deeper communion with God. It comes to the point where you have to make a decision whether to keep going into the Church, stop and stay where you are, or go back to your old way. If you start walking, though, you will eventually come to where you're ready to make the decision... to where God has helped you prepare both your heart and your head for what he wants you to do.

Offline Brendan03

  • High Elder
  • ******
  • Posts: 544
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #20 on: July 22, 2003, 01:44:50 PM »
Hi Skipper --

This is a difficult question, and one that will, I'm afraid, require some struggle on your own part to resolve.  For those of us who are "thinking Christians", the struggle can be long and hard indeed, and it requires perseverance.

In reading what you have written, it seems to me that you may just have to float along like this for a while.  My guess is that you are being drawn to Orthodoxy in a way that is perhaps more profound but perhaps also more subtle than an intellectual/theological way .... and it is certainly common for non-Orthodox to be drawn to Orthodoxy in this way.  Nevertheless, as a thinking Christian, you're also called to follow your well-formed conscience in these matters, and to dig, dig, dig, question, question, question, pray, pray, pray until you are satisfied as you can be that your conscience is as well-formed on these matters as it can be .... and then follow that path.  That's not an easy task, but ultimately I think it's probably the only one that will lead you to the place where you are being called to be.

Brendan
B

Offline srenalds

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 43
Re:Head vs. Heart
« Reply #21 on: July 23, 2003, 02:35:15 PM »
The nous is part of the soul, not part of the body.  Specifically, it is called the "eye of the soul" and is often compared to the eye of the body.  Purification of the nous leads to illumination... Just like if you have dirt in your eye, you may be blinded.

Those things Paradosis mentions are good deeds toward purification... especially prayer...

Of course, I've gathered this from things I've read, not from experience...

SRENALDS
NULL