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Author Topic: OOC View of Chalcedon  (Read 2134 times) Average Rating: 0
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holdencaulfield
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« on: June 20, 2008, 04:29:48 AM »

Hello everyone, I am currently an Eastern Orthodox Inquirer. I was hoping to do some more research on the Eastern Orthodox Church and I wanted to see an OOC view of Chalcedon. I have researched both points and I would like to understand what the objection is to the Council. St. Cyril of Alexandria most certainly agrees with the Faith drawn up with at Chalcedon, and the Council seems to combat the heresies of Monophysitism and Nestorianism. I don't want this to become a violent argument, I just want to discuss this so I can understand. Please of course use quotes from the Early Church Fathers, that are well cited.
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« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2008, 01:56:09 PM »

Dear HoldenCaulfield (wow, what a nickname... I love JDS!... even though The Catcher is not my most favorite book of this author...),

I am sure others will give you a more detailed answer; I'll just say quickly one thing that I seem to recall. St. Cyril's formula of the nature of Christ was, "one (or "same") nature incarnate." Because in Greek "same nature" is "mia phisis," St. Cyril's views were later called "miaphysitism." Is not exactly monophysitism, because St. Cyril accepts both the full divivity and the full humanity of Christ after His incarnation; yet, it is somewhat different from the mainstream formula of Eastern Orthodoxy, "two natures joined in one Hipostasis without confusion, without change, without division, without separation."
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holdencaulfield
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« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2008, 03:53:36 PM »

Dear HoldenCaulfield (wow, what a nickname... I love JDS!... even though The Catcher is not my most favorite book of this author...),

Thank you, I like the book as well.

yet, it is somewhat different from the mainstream formula of Eastern Orthodoxy, "two natures joined in one Hipostasis without confusion, without change, without division, without separation."

Right of course, however he understood the importance of Christian unity and later made some balancing statements to John of Antioch in which he talked to two natures, but he still stressed the unity above all things. So has the OOC Anathematized this letter of St. Cyril? It seems like they would have to as it is agreement with the Chalcedonian position.

Quote
"He is also called the Man from heaven, being perfect in his Divinity and perfect in his Humanity, and considered as in one Person. For one is the Lord Jesus Christ, although the difference of his natures is not unknown, from which we say the ineffable union was made." (St. Cyril of Alexandria; Epistle to John of Antioch)

St. Cyril even uses the same language as St. Leo the Great of Rome later uses in his Tome.

Quote
"To the same purpose the all-wise Peter also said when he wrote of Christ as having "suffered in the flesh," and not in the nature of his ineffable godhead. In order that he should be believed to be the Saviour of all, by an economic appropriation to himself, as just said, he assumed the sufferings of his own Flesh." (ibid.)

Quote
"the Son of God is said to have been crucified and buried, since he suffered these things not in the divinity itself whereby the Only-begotten is co-eternal and consubstantial with the Father, but in the weakness of the human nature." (St. Leo the Great of Rome; The Tome of St. Leo)

---------------------------------------------------

For me I have seen the Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon as a balencer between the Alexandrian and Antiochene schools of thought, which both if taken too far can lead to Apollinarianism and Nestorianism respectively.
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« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2008, 04:06:32 PM »

Holden needs to search our past threads, many past threads. I know from elsewhere he likes short synopses, but there's no other way unless we want to re-post 5+ years of activity for him.
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holdencaulfield
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« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2008, 04:27:30 PM »

Holden needs to search our past threads, many past threads. I know from elsewhere he likes short synopses, but there's no other way unless we want to re-post 5+ years of activity for him.

No, I understand that my friend. I am just trying to rationalize the OOC argument against Chalcedon. They can argue that their approach is simpler, however maybe you could just send me in the right direction, or perhaps respond to another one of my threads: Chalcedonian Apologetics.
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« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2008, 05:01:01 PM »

As stated above, this has been discussed to death here.  You really should click on the tags below and examine some of those threads.  Some  of the threads lead to the private forum, so if you are not a member of the private forum, you may want to pm an administrator for admission.

In a nutshell, the OO's would highly contest your assertion that St. Cyril would be O.K. with Chalcedon.  These are a few of the reasons given in past threads:

1.  In the agreement signed with John of Antioch, St. Cyril agreed to language to the effect that Christ was OF two natures.  Chalcedon said IN two natures.  There are theological implications that go with that language.

2.  St. Cyril wrote On the Unity of Christ after the above agreement.  In that book, he upheld "one nature" as more proper.

3.  Since St. Cyril died before Pope Leo's Tome was written, we can't know for sure if he would have liked it.  However, we do know that Nestorius lived long enough to read the Tome and approve of it.

4.  There was language in the Tome which attributed different actions of Christ to one nature or another.  St. Cyril explicitely condemned this practice in his above mentioned book.

5.  Chalcedon was initially accepted by some groups that were explicitely Nestorian, such as the Nestorian Persian Church.

So on and so forth, blah, blah, blah...

This has all been discussed to death here in the past five years, both in the private and public forums.  The EO's have presented cogent and well-crafted resposes to all of the above points, as well as other points we OO's like to make.

This all reached a boiling point in June of 2004, here in the OO section, with some extremely contentious threads.  Two members-one of whom I respect highly-left OC.net over the issue, and over time the private forum was created to take discussions about Chalcedon that wax polemical. 

You are not going to find too many people here wanting to discuss this again, as the subject has already been beaten to death repeatedly.  As it is, if this thread goes much further into the discussion, I'll probably have to move this to private.  Thus the advice to look at past threads, and if there is something about Chalcedon that is not addressed in all those threads, post that question.  You may want to do it in the private forum, though.
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holdencaulfield
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« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2008, 05:10:38 PM »

You are not going to find too many people here wanting to discuss this again, as the subject has already been beaten to death repeatedly.  As it is, if this thread goes much further into the discussion, I'll probably have to move this to private.  Thus the advice to look at past threads, and if there is something about Chalcedon that is not addressed in all those threads, post that question.  You may want to do it in the private forum, though.

Ok, well could you point me in a good direction to research this on my own.
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« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2008, 05:15:34 PM »

Ok, well could you point me in a good direction to research this on my own.
Each tag at the bottom of this thread is a link that will take you to a list of other threads that talk about the same subject.  I think these tags will point you in a good direction.
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Salpy
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« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2008, 05:22:10 PM »

Of course there is nothing better than going to the original source, which is why I would recommend St. Cyril's On the Unity of Christ.  You can probably get it through Amazon.com.  Or maybe it is online somewhere?  Does anyone know?  (That would be cool.)

If you really want the OO perspective on Chalcedon, you may also want to get The Council of Chalcedon Re-Examined, by V. C. Samuel.  Fr. Samuel was an OO priest, but the book is not polemical in tone.  It's about 400 pages, but I found it a quick and easy read since his writing style was very straight forward and accessible.  You can probably find that as well on amazon.com.
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holdencaulfield
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« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2008, 05:44:26 PM »

Does the OOC accept the Second Council of Ephesus as Ecumenical?
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Salpy
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« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2008, 05:47:21 PM »

This is discussed here:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,14138.0.html


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Tags: Chalcedon Chalcedon polemics St. Cyril Tome of Leo Ephesus II 
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