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Author Topic: Old vs. New Calendar?  (Read 204356 times) Average Rating: 0
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Mickey
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« Reply #675 on: May 29, 2009, 08:57:58 AM »

All of the feasts were established on this calendar, and changing it at least destroys a part of our liturgical harmony.

Amen. The "old" calendar is an Icon of time!
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« Reply #676 on: May 29, 2009, 09:10:18 AM »

Why do you care of astronomy? The Church is not built on astronomy, but on the Canons of the Orthodox Church. We can't just "fix" them whenever we want... The canon of Nicaea I clearly states the clause "not with the Jews". Unfortunately the date of Pascha set by RC's can coincide with Jewish Pesach, so we would be in direct violation of canon law.

We care of astronomy because the date of Passover is set by astronomy.

Also, I do not think it is true that Gregorian Easter can fall on Passover; if it can, it is because of the errors in the astronomical calculations in the various calendars, a potential problem to which the Julian calendar is also susceptible. If you think that it can, it's up to you to provide the date on which it does. So far as I can discern, if Passover falls on a Sunday, Gregorian Easter falls either a week later or four weeks earlier.
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« Reply #677 on: May 29, 2009, 09:24:01 AM »


Also, I do not think it is true that Gregorian Easter can fall on Passover;

The canon of Nicaea I clearly states the clause "not with the Jews". Unfortunately the date of Pascha set by RC's can coincide with Jewish Pesach, so we would be in direct violation of canon law.



if it can, it is because of the errors in the astronomical calculations in the various calendars, a potential problem to which the Julian calendar is also susceptible.


You are mistaken, Church Calendar (the one you call the "Julian one") isn't susceptible to the error you are pertaining to it. Consequently, one would debate with your misconception, and not with your stance.
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« Reply #678 on: May 29, 2009, 09:35:52 AM »

Church Calendar (the one you call the "Julian one") isn't susceptible to the error you are pertaining to it.

Prove it.
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« Reply #679 on: May 29, 2009, 09:58:31 AM »

Church Calendar (the one you call the "Julian one") isn't susceptible to the error you are pertaining to it.

Prove it.


The proof is that it always complied with the rule not to celebrate with the Jews, unlike the Gregorian, that violated it several times.

Besides, the above is not the proof, it's just info. I don't need to prove anything to you.

Prove the contrary.
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« Reply #680 on: May 29, 2009, 11:18:04 AM »

...

Ok, perhaps intended, but let's face it that the current calendar is not "astronomically" in sync.  It failed to take into account so much of what we now know is factual concerning the earth's revolution around the sun, etc.  The purpose of setting the date of March 21 was so that everyone did it the same way not to make sure that March 21 was the actual date of the vernal equinox.

Also, the calendar is not an issue that can just be chucked as a small-t tradition.  The calendar has the backing of Ecumenical Councils.  Just because the rest of the world does their calculaations differently using a different calendar does not and should not ever be a compelling reason for us to change.  Besides, it's not a broken system. 
Why do we care when everyone else celebrates their Easter?  It works, don't fix it.  Whether or not the calendar itself was a pagan calendar revised by Julius Caesar in 46 B.C. is a moot point.  Spoil the Egyptians.

Well said!
Not if he can't back it up!

Did I say it was well-said? Oh my! How mistaken was I!

It was excellent and marvelous!!!

We care about when everyone else celebrates easter because we strive for the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church which is united. If we can't unite we can never create the Church as God envisioned and Christ founded.

-Nick
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« Reply #681 on: May 29, 2009, 02:23:34 PM »

Church Calendar (the one you call the "Julian one") isn't susceptible to the error you are pertaining to it.

Prove it.


The proof is that it always complied with the rule not to celebrate with the Jews, unlike the Gregorian, that violated it several times.
But what if the Jews change their method of calculating the date of their Pascha?  Are we to follow them in their reasoning in order to celebrate after them?  Or are we to not even care and continue with our schedule as we have calculated it?
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« Reply #682 on: May 29, 2009, 04:24:19 PM »

But what if the Jews change their method of calculating the date of their Pascha?  Are we to follow them in their reasoning in order to celebrate after them?  Or are we to not even care and continue with our schedule as we have calculated it?

Thankfully, there will always be some traditionalist Jews we can rely on to keep Pesach as it is. So that won't be a problem.
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« Reply #683 on: May 29, 2009, 08:22:30 PM »


Sorry but it was intended to be astronomically correct. There were two canons/rules both of which set Pascha in reference to the astronomical phenomenon of the vernal equinox. In fact, the second rule set the vernal equinox on March 21st, because the astronomical phenomenon varied plus or minus a day. Some folks claim the setting of the vernal on March 21 (Julian calendar) somehow endorses the use of the Julian calendar. They are correct ONLY in the sense that the astronomical and man-made calendar coincided at that time.

It truly amazes me the great lengths we Orthodox go to preserve a pagan calendar (the Julian one) that is not accurate in placing the various feasts at their proper time. Could it be that dislike of the Roman Catholic Church is so strong or there is a corresponding Orthodox inferiority complex that is preventing us from admitting the obvious? Pope Gregory was correct in adjusting the man-made calendar to more accurately reflect the astronomical phenomena that God Himself has ordained.

Respectfully,

Also, the calendar is not an issue that can just be chucked as a small-t tradition.  The calendar has the backing of Ecumenical Councils.  Just because the rest of the world does their calculaations differently using a different calendar does not and should not ever be a compelling reason for us to change.  Besides, it's not a broken system.  Why do we care when everyone else celebrates their Easter?  It works, don't fix it.  Whether or not the calendar itself was a pagan calendar revised by Julius Caesar in 46 B.C. is a moot point.  Spoil the Egyptians.

Let me start with what I agree: The timing of he rest of the world is not a compelling reason for me either. It would be a nice thing but I would not hang my hat on that argument. The fact that Julius Casear was pagan should not matter either. I said that to counteract the tendency by some to reverently say "Julian calendar  angel" Finally, I'll even agree that the Julian Calendar cannot be just chucked aside; there are too many folks who would rebel and schism. If it is done, it must be done by a all-Orthodox Council and with great pastoral care and sensitivity.

Let's go to the basics. A calendar is a man-made device to approximate God's calendar, which is the astronomical sequence and duration of events. The relationship of the earth and the moon and the sun is not determined by the calendar but by God. The equinox is simply when the sun is directly over the equinox. None of the data points here are determined by a calendar: they happen when God ordained them to happen and we can measure them independently of a calendar. 

With that prelude, these are your points that I disagree with:

a. "It works, don't fix it." If a calendar dos not accurately reflect what it is supposed to reflect, it is in error and it certainly does not work. So it is with the Julian Calendar. It is off reality by 13 days. It is off by 13 days from the letter and spirit of the Holy Fathers at the First Ecumenical Council.

b. "The calendar has the backing of Ecumenical Councils." I am fairly sure that none of the seven councils that are authoritative in the Orthodox Church. I stand ready to be corrected. Please cite some sources.
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« Reply #684 on: May 29, 2009, 08:27:53 PM »

The rules for calculating the date of Pascha was never intended to be astronomically accurate.

Sorry but it was intended to be astronomically correct. ...

If that is your stance and reasoning, I expect you to stand for adoption of Mayan calendar in your Church.

Maya people produced the most accurate and correct calendar.

If possible, avoid worshiping their God Queckakoetel(sp?), but I guess it won't stop you from adopting their calendar. After all, it is the most accurate one, and that's what you think that Nicene Fathers wanted.


Nice use of sarcasm. I am not biting.

I think the historical record is clear: the Nicene fathers DID NOT specify the Julian calendar (sorry for yelling but I wanted for you to understand).
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« Reply #685 on: May 29, 2009, 08:48:37 PM »

... A calendar is just a calendar, i.e. a conventional system to calculate fixed and movable dates over the tropical year. From this point of view, the Julian Calendar and the Gregorian Calendar are equally "valid" ways to measure time... The same idea that Pascha is modelled after the astronomical spring is also strange. When it's spring in the Northern hemisphere, in Australia it's actually autumn... The spring season here is just the indication of a quarter of the tropical year beginning from the conventional date of March 21st. All of the feasts were established on this calendar, and changing it at least destroys a part of our liturgical harmony.

I agree with your first and last sentences. The ones in between contain grave factual and logical errors. (Sorry about being so blunt; I could have the same thing in a much gentler way but it would have meant the same thing. I really don't mean to attack or demean you. I just find your arguments to be deficient).

"A calendar is just a calendar, i.e. a conventional system to calculate fixed and movable dates over the tropical year" Yes, this is exactly what any church calendar does. The key word is "to calculate." And, as in any calculation the premises must be true for the conclusion to be logically valid/true.

"From this point of view, the Julian Calendar and the Gregorian Calendar are equally "valid" ways to measure time..." I am sure you must remember the Lord's parable of the houses built upon the sand: the Julian calendar is not valid way to measure time because it is off reality by a whopping 13 days. Sure, the Gregorian, Revised Julian and the Mayan calendars (as alleged by Orthodox Lurker) are not perfect but they are closer to God's time than the Julian. To make them equally valid would be to elevate man's time to the same level of validity as God's time.

"The same idea that Pascha is modelled after the astronomical spring is also strange. " Not strange at all my friend. Pascha happened in the Northern Hemisphere and it happened in the Spring, after the vernal equinox. At the time of Nicea, the astronomical vernal fell on March 21st, plus or minus a day. According to the Gregorian or the Revised Julian, the same coincidence of God's time and man's time occurs. This means that these calendars are correctly calculating the date of the venal equinox and therefore the date of Pascha in accordance with the ecumenical councils.

"All of the feasts were established on this calendar, and changing it at least destroys a part of our liturgical harmony." This is certainly true. On the other hand, it would not and should not be that difficult to rearrange the calendar so that our liturgical harmony may be maintained.

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« Reply #686 on: May 29, 2009, 09:18:33 PM »

Christian group claims progress on a common Easter
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5g-mBPHr0Ya18j7JVrLsOsmHs_NIwD98F8TA80

By BRADLEY S. KLAPPER – 1 day ago

GENEVA (AP) — Christianity's largest ecumenical movement expressed hope Thursday that churches were moving closer to a common Easter for the world's Christians, despite a historical debate nearly as old as the religion.

Catholic and Protestant congregations will celebrate their belief in Jesus' resurrection on the same day as Orthodox churches in 2010 and 2011 because of a coincidence in the Julian and Gregorian calendars. The common holiday has happened three times this decade.

But the World Council of Churches says consensus is emerging that these should not just be occasional occurrences.

At a recent meeting in Lviv, Ukraine, theologians representing nearly the breadth of Christianity agreed in principle on a strategy for all the faithful to continue observing their feast together.

"It's not a problem of principle, of dogma or of doctrine," said Juan Michel, spokesman for the council, whose 350 Protestant, Orthodox and other churches represent more than 560 million Christians. It cooperates with the Roman Catholic Church, which is not a member.

"It's more of a pastoral issue for some churches," said Michel. "There are concerns how the faithful will feel if there is a change in the traditional way of calculating the date."

The confusion over Easter's historical date arose in the early days of Christianity as the faith spread and different groups interpreted the four Gospels in different ways.

According to Matthew, Mark and Luke's Gospels, the last meal Jesus shared with his disciples was the Jewish Passover meal, while John's Gospel says that Jesus died on the feast of Passover itself.

Christianity's leading authorities first sought to establish a common date in 325 at the Council of Nicaea, determining it as the first Sunday after the full moon following the spring equinox.

The problem before the advent of modern astronomy was calculating the equinox. Orthodox churches use March 21 in the Julian calendar, but since the 16th century the Western date has been derived in the Gregorian calendar. The resulting difference can be up to five weeks apart.

The council said theologians from the Vatican and various Orthodox and Protestant churches endorsed a compromise on May 15 that Easter should be held for all Christians using an equinox based on accurate astronomical data.

Under the plan the unified Easter usually falls as it would under the Gregorian calendar used by Catholics and Protestants, said Dagmar Heller, an ecumenical professor in Switzerland heading the council's faith and order commission.

In the next 15 years, the only time Western churches would have to change Easter is in 2019 from April 21 to March 24. The bigger adjustment would be for the Orthodox Church, which has experienced several schisms in its history over the question of dates.

"There are of course some fundamentalist Orthodox who say 'The Julian calendar is our tradition and it was used in Jesus' lifetime so we cannot change,'" Heller said, adding that some Eastern theologians might fear more breaks in their church as a result of a date change.

"And, of course, it's an issue because the astronomical data is closer to the Gregorian calendar, which was introduced by a pope," she said, referring to Pope Gregory XIII's reform of the calendar in 1582. It only slowly replaced the calendar named for Julius Caesar, who introduced it in 46 B.C.

Some Orthodox representatives at the meeting appeared to back the plan. French Orthodox theologian Antoine Arjakovsky acknowledged that the astronomy was closer to the Gregorian calendar, but noted that Catholic and Protestant churches were also compromising by "accepting that the date of Easter should be established on the basis of a cosmic calendar rather than by a fixed date."

The Vatican was represented in Lviv by the Rev. Milan Zust, an official of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

Heller said the proposed Easter calculation would be discussed by higher level officials from different denominations.

Christian groups have been trying for a century to establish a common Easter. In the 1920s some proposed a fixed Sunday as the date, but others opposed losing the theological link of the first Easter with Passover — which Jews still celebrate according to a lunar calendar.

Copyright © 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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« Reply #687 on: May 29, 2009, 10:11:51 PM »


The problem before the advent of modern astronomy was calculating the equinox. Orthodox churches use March 21 in the Julian calendar, but since the 16th century the Western date has been derived in the Gregorian calendar. The resulting difference can be up to five weeks apart.

The council said theologians from the Vatican and various Orthodox and Protestant churches endorsed a compromise on May 15 that Easter should be held for all Christians using an equinox based on accurate astronomical data.

Under the plan the unified Easter usually falls as it would under the Gregorian calendar used by Catholics and Protestants, said Dagmar Heller, an ecumenical professor in Switzerland heading the council's faith and order commission.

In the next 15 years, the only time Western churches would have to change Easter is in 2019 from April 21 to March 24. The bigger adjustment would be for the Orthodox Church, which has experienced several schisms in its history over the question of dates.

"And, of course, it's an issue because the astronomical data is closer to the Gregorian calendar, which was introduced by a pope," she said, referring to Pope Gregory XIII's reform of the calendar in 1582. It only slowly replaced the calendar named for Julius Caesar, who introduced it in 46 B.C.

Some Orthodox representatives at the meeting appeared to back the plan. French Orthodox theologian Antoine Arjakovsky acknowledged that the astronomy was closer to the Gregorian calendar, but noted that Catholic and Protestant churches were also compromising by "accepting that the date of Easter should be established on the basis of a cosmic calendar rather than by a fixed date."

These people don't seem to get it.  ANd I'm sure there are some on this board who think that I and others are making way too much of a big deal about this.  Well we are and it is because we are correct.  The date of our Lord's Pascha has NOTHING, absolutely  NOTHING to do with being astronomically correct!  It is simply not dependent on that.  The Council of Nicaea gave us the way to calculate the Paschal celebration each year.  And what authority do we have to abrogate the canons which specifically dictate this?  The answer is none.  Also, keep in mind that, from the article, if adopted, the date of a "unified" Easter would still follow that of the Western Calendar.  What is at stake and do not make light of this is that the Eastern Orthodox are being depicted as backwards and should become more like the West. 
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« Reply #688 on: May 30, 2009, 12:13:52 AM »

The date of our Lord's Pascha has NOTHING, absolutely  NOTHING to do with being astronomically correct!
Since it's defined using astronomical events, I'd say it at least has something to do with being astronomically correct.

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Well we are and it is because we are correct.
Which is more important -- being correct, or being together?
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« Reply #689 on: May 30, 2009, 12:33:28 AM »

But what if the Jews change their method of calculating the date of their Pascha?  Are we to follow them in their reasoning in order to celebrate after them?  Or are we to not even care and continue with our schedule as we have calculated it?

Thankfully, there will always be some traditionalist Jews we can rely on to keep Pesach as it is. So that won't be a problem.
I'm trying to find some information to back me up here--maybe someone else can help--but I believe the Jews already did change either their calendar or their method of calculating Passover several centuries ago, but still a few centuries into the Christian era.  I guess that creates a problem then, doesn't it.



(Later addendum)
Here's something to suggest I may be right.  Now if we can only get Keble to link us to some online documentation to back up his point, just for the sake of strengthening our case. Wink  Are you up for this, Keble? Smiley
One thing to understand is that the Jewish calendar was not calculated until at least 358, possibly later. It's possible that the modern calculation didn't start until the 800s. Part of the ante-Nicene problem, apparently, was that different communities of foreign Jews didn't follow the same rules about determining Passover; also, there is pretty good evidence that some of them followed rules which ensured that it always fell in March, which would have put it prior to the equinox in many years.

Also, the Gregorian, Julian, and Hebrew calendars drift at different rates. The Gregorian drift against the equinoctal year is minuscule; it takes 10,000 years to slip a day. The Julian drifts the fastest, while the Jewish calendar is in the middle. Therefore, the earliest possible date of Passover is drifting away from the true equinox, but not as fast as the earliest day for Julian Easter. Julian Easter always follows Passover (a) because the pattern of Jewish leap years keeps Nisan early enough, and (b) because the Julian dates are even more "wrong" than the Jewish dates. "Wrong" in this case means "picks the second full moon after the equinox, rather than the first." For example, in 2002 the Jewish date was right, but the Julian date was a month late;in 2005 both were late. The Gregorian pascalion nearly always picks the right date; I think there's some slight possibility that it could pick too early a day, but as far as I can tell this hasn't happened. However, the drift of the Jewish calendar has meant that when it picks the wrong date, it follows Gregorian Easter. However, this is OK, according to the rules. There is no rule that says that Easter has to follow Passover.

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« Reply #690 on: May 30, 2009, 12:39:22 AM »

Which is more important -- being correct, or being together?

You're kidding, right?  It is far more important to keep the faith in its totality as to how it has been handed down to us by the fathers.  Who are we to controvene that or abrogate the canons?  Are we wiser than they?  Besides, why do we want to celebrate our Lord's Pascha with other Christians who deny Christ has risen from the dead?  Do we want to join our song with the cacophany of western theologies or do we want to preserve the truth and not let it simply become one alternative among so-called competing Christianities? 
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« Reply #691 on: May 30, 2009, 12:39:58 AM »

I have to wonder.  Since I merged the latest incarnation of this discussion into an earlier thread, has anyone taken the time to read any of the responses from earlier discussions on this thread?  I don't see any quotes of material posted prior to a few days ago.
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« Reply #692 on: May 30, 2009, 12:47:59 AM »

Not trying to make this an issue of taking sides, but I tend to agree with Scamandrius here.  We cannot go along to get along as the popular expression goes.  Undecided
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« Reply #693 on: May 30, 2009, 12:50:24 AM »

But what if the Jews change their method of calculating the date of their Pascha?  Are we to follow them in their reasoning in order to celebrate after them?  Or are we to not even care and continue with our schedule as we have calculated it?

Thankfully, there will always be some traditionalist Jews we can rely on to keep Pesach as it is. So that won't be a problem.
I'm trying to find some information to back me up here--maybe someone else can help--but I believe the Jews already did change either their calendar or their method of calculating Passover several centuries ago, but still a few centuries into the Christian era.  I guess that creates a problem then, doesn't it.
For instance, I remember that just a couple of years ago, the Jewish had scheduled their Pesach to follow after the second full moon of spring.  Are we to follow them in their error when this happens again?
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« Reply #694 on: May 30, 2009, 01:15:01 AM »

1) Why do you care of astronomy? The Church is not built on astronomy, but on the Canons of the Orthodox Church. We can't just "fix" them whenever we want... The canon of Nicaea I clearly states the clause "not with the Jews". Unfortunately the date of Pascha set by RC's can coincide with Jewish Pesach, so we would be in direct violation of canon law. The case of the Church of Finland can be thought of as an exception by economia due to specific local reasons and granted by the authority of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. Actually we've got no power to change them since at the moment no panorthodox synod would be "ecumenical".
This brings up to me what I think is a much deeper question that underlies both sides of this and many other similar debates.  Which view of the Church is to prevail?  The "ascetic" (for lack of a better term) view that sees the Church as being totally not of this world, so that we shouldn't even care about astronomy or history when it comes to determining our practices and canons?  Or the incarnational view that sees the Church as making Christ incarnate in the world (not in the same way that He made Himself incarnate as the God-man, but in the way that we are the Body of Christ that St. Paul envisioned), an incarnational view that considers harmony with natural cycles (e.g., cyclical astronomical phenomena such as the vernal equinox) and with history as being at least equal in importance to our call to not be of this world?
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« Reply #695 on: May 30, 2009, 01:54:31 AM »

These people don't seem to get it.  ANd I'm sure there are some on this board who think that I and others are making way too much of a big deal about this.  Well we are and it is because we are correct.  The date of our Lord's Pascha has NOTHING, absolutely  NOTHING to do with being astronomically correct!  It is simply not dependent on that.
PROVE IT!!!
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« Reply #696 on: May 30, 2009, 01:55:09 AM »


The problem before the advent of modern astronomy was calculating the equinox. Orthodox churches use March 21 in the Julian calendar, but since the 16th century the Western date has been derived in the Gregorian calendar. The resulting difference can be up to five weeks apart.

The council said theologians from the Vatican and various Orthodox and Protestant churches endorsed a compromise on May 15 that Easter should be held for all Christians using an equinox based on accurate astronomical data.

Under the plan the unified Easter usually falls as it would under the Gregorian calendar used by Catholics and Protestants, said Dagmar Heller, an ecumenical professor in Switzerland heading the council's faith and order commission.

In the next 15 years, the only time Western churches would have to change Easter is in 2019 from April 21 to March 24. The bigger adjustment would be for the Orthodox Church, which has experienced several schisms in its history over the question of dates.

"And, of course, it's an issue because the astronomical data is closer to the Gregorian calendar, which was introduced by a pope," she said, referring to Pope Gregory XIII's reform of the calendar in 1582. It only slowly replaced the calendar named for Julius Caesar, who introduced it in 46 B.C.

Some Orthodox representatives at the meeting appeared to back the plan. French Orthodox theologian Antoine Arjakovsky acknowledged that the astronomy was closer to the Gregorian calendar, but noted that Catholic and Protestant churches were also compromising by "accepting that the date of Easter should be established on the basis of a cosmic calendar rather than by a fixed date."

These people don't seem to get it.  ANd I'm sure there are some on this board who think that I and others are making way too much of a big deal about this.  Well we are and it is because we are correct.  The date of our Lord's Pascha has NOTHING, absolutely  NOTHING to do with being astronomically correct!  It is simply not dependent on that.  The Council of Nicaea gave us the way to calculate the Paschal celebration each year.  And what authority do we have to abrogate the canons which specifically dictate this?  The answer is none.  Also, keep in mind that, from the article, if adopted, the date of a "unified" Easter would still follow that of the Western Calendar.  What is at stake and do not make light of this is that the Eastern Orthodox are being depicted as backwards and should become more like the West. 

See response here:  http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,4576.msg325903.html#msg325903
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« Reply #697 on: May 30, 2009, 03:56:01 AM »

Quote from: GabrieltheCelt
We cannot go along to get along as the popular expression goes.
Quote from: scamandrius
It is far more important to keep the faith in its totality as to how it has been handed down to us by the fathers.
But the calculated date of Pascha is not a fundamental tenet of our faith.  If so, then such would have been stated in the Nicene Creed.  It wasn't.  The discussions over Pascha at Nicea basically centered around the conclusion that it was more important that Christianity be in one accord than that one particular group be proven correct -- being together was more important than being right.  I fail to see how that principle doesn't apply today.

Pascha is an opportunity to display and demonstrate our unified faith to the world.  The fact that we allow it to become a point of division instead is disappointing.
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« Reply #698 on: May 30, 2009, 04:11:27 AM »

Quote from: GabrieltheCelt
We cannot go along to get along as the popular expression goes.
Quote from: scamandrius
It is far more important to keep the faith in its totality as to how it has been handed down to us by the fathers.
But the calculated date of Pascha is not a fundamental tenet of our faith.  If so, then such would have been stated in the Nicene Creed.  It wasn't.  The discussions over Pascha at Nicea basically centered around the conclusion that it was more important that Christianity be in one accord than that one particular group be proven correct -- being together was more important than being right.  I fail to see how that principle doesn't apply today.

Pascha is an opportunity to display and demonstrate our unified faith to the world.  The fact that we allow it to become a point of division instead is disappointing.
But we're not united in faith with Catholics and Protestants for reasons much, much bigger than celebrating Pascha/Easter on different dates--a particular insertion into the aforementioned Nicene Creed comes readily to mind.
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« Reply #699 on: May 30, 2009, 04:19:49 AM »

Quote from: PeterTheAleut
But we're not united in faith with Catholics and Protestants for reasons much, much bigger than having separate dates for Pascha/Easter.
Exactly my point.  When we add Pascha/Easter to that list of reasons, we are guilty of elevating its importance unnecessarily.
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« Reply #700 on: May 30, 2009, 04:22:10 AM »

Quote from: PeterTheAleut
But we're not united in faith with Catholics and Protestants for reasons much, much bigger than having separate dates for Pascha/Easter.
Exactly my point.  When we add Pascha/Easter to that list of reasons, we are guilty of elevating its importance unnecessarily.

But they don't calculate the date correctly; why are we going to conform to their incorrect ways just for the sake of being together? Then we are elevating THEIR importance unnecessarily.
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« Reply #701 on: May 30, 2009, 04:37:49 AM »

Quote from: HandmaidenofGod
But they don't calculate the date correctly; why are we going to conform to their incorrect ways just for the sake of being together? Then we are elevating THEIR importance unnecessarily.
I have never heard the Julian calendar defended because it's the most correct.  It clearly isn't.  And I'm not really even talking about adapting Orthodoxy to conform with Western Christianity.  I'm mainly talking about the fact that we allow this discussion to be a point of contention within our own midst.  I find that sad.  In other threads, there are comments to the effect of "we could never change the calendar anyway, since it would cause such a great schism."  What!?  Have we reached the point where choosing between two man-made calendars is a reason for schism?  Shame on us.

Technological innovations don't automatically threaten our faith.  I would argue that modern timekeeping systems are but one example of such innovation.  A heterodox named Gutenberg invented the printing press (or introduced it to Europe, depending on how you interpret).  Are we to insist on handwritten scripture?  That's how they did it in the time of Nicea.

And just for the record, I'm not arguing one way or the other.  I personally don't care how we calculate the date, and I'm willing to follow the Church's guidance however it decides.  But I do think that those who vehemently argue the matter either way are completely missing the point.

(Edited once to correct a misspelling.)
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« Reply #702 on: May 30, 2009, 05:54:39 AM »

The proof is that it always complied with the rule not to celebrate with the Jews, unlike the Gregorian, that violated it several times.

When did this happen? Give dates!
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« Reply #703 on: May 30, 2009, 06:26:47 AM »

Now if we can only get Keble to link us to some online documentation to back up his point, just for the sake of strengthening our case. Wink  Are you up for this, Keble? Smiley

Well, the Wikipedia article on the Hebrew calendar isn't bad. While you're there, you should read the article on the computus, that is, the Easter date calculation. There is a great deal of disagreement about exactly how and when Judaism went uniformly to the same calculated calendar (and the Karaites have gone back to observation). It's possible that Jewish uniformity wasn't achieved until Maimonides in the 1100s.

When it comes down to it, the safest way to ensure that Easter falls away from Passover is to compute one from the other, e.g., to make Easter the first Sunday after the first day of Passover.
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« Reply #704 on: May 30, 2009, 08:33:44 AM »

Quote
And just for the record, I'm not arguing one way or the other.  I personally don't care how we calculate the date, and I'm willing to follow the Church's guidance however it decides.  But I do think that those who vehemently argue the matter either way are completely missing the point.
I've no further comment other than to reiterate the above cogent conclusion.
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« Reply #705 on: May 30, 2009, 08:46:26 AM »

The proof is that it always complied with the rule not to celebrate with the Jews, unlike the Gregorian, that violated it several times.

When did this happen? Give dates!


There is a canon stating this, Keble. Now I must locate it.
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« Reply #706 on: May 30, 2009, 09:13:01 AM »

Quote from: AlexanderOfBergamo
The canon of Nicaea I clearly states the clause "not with the Jews".
Was the restriction a prohibition against concurrence, or simply guidance that the Christian calculation wouldn't derive from the Jewish calculation?  I understood the latter.
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« Reply #707 on: May 30, 2009, 09:46:53 AM »

Quote from: AlexanderOfBergamo
The canon of Nicaea I clearly states the clause "not with the Jews".
Was the restriction a prohibition against concurrence, or simply guidance that the Christian calculation wouldn't derive from the Jewish calculation?  I understood the latter.
I think the latter but in the sense that a disconnect was being made, not a denial of past relation.
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« Reply #708 on: May 30, 2009, 10:29:17 AM »

Quote from: AlexanderOfBergamo
The canon of Nicaea I clearly states the clause "not with the Jews".
Was the restriction a prohibition against concurrence, or simply guidance that the Christian calculation wouldn't derive from the Jewish calculation?  I understood the latter.

It's against the quartodecimians.
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« Reply #709 on: May 30, 2009, 12:31:34 PM »

Quote from: AlexanderOfBergamo
The canon of Nicaea I clearly states the clause "not with the Jews".
Was the restriction a prohibition against concurrence, or simply guidance that the Christian calculation wouldn't derive from the Jewish calculation?  I understood the latter.
I think the latter but in the sense that a disconnect was being made, not a denial of past relation.

It had become a polemic, the Jews claiming proof of their precidence and the Christians dependence on Judaism was that the Pascahl calculation depended on the Jews.  But there was also a cocelebration angle, which caused the Church to ban Quartodecimian celebrations.

Quote
.” We would,” says the circular letter of Constantine in reference to the council of Nice, “we would have nothing in common with that most hostile people, the Jews; for we have received from the Redeemer another way of honoring God [the order of the days of the week], and harmoniously adopting this method, we would withdraw ourselves from the evil fellowship of the Jews. For what they pompously assert, is really utterly absurd: that we cannot keep this feast at all without their instruction .... It is our duty to have nothing in common with the murderers of our Lord.”
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/hcc3.iii.x.vi.html
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« Reply #710 on: May 30, 2009, 12:55:16 PM »

Forgive me here but - The calculated date of Pascha is not a fundamental tenet of our faith?  This sounds like the argument by Protestants using sola scriptura.  The Church is the Body of Christ, a living organism not subject to the fads and fashions of our times.  We learn from our saints, not from books or clever sophistry.  More and more I see Orthodoxy becoming a religion of the mind rather than of the heart.  Of course it is reasonable to discuss issues - if we think clearly about what we are discussing.  Not that I am always clear myself.  May be it's a gut reaction to the general trend to water down of faith that make me respond to this issue.
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« Reply #711 on: May 30, 2009, 02:01:44 PM »

Quote from: HandmaidenofGod
But they don't calculate the date correctly; why are we going to conform to their incorrect ways just for the sake of being together? Then we are elevating THEIR importance unnecessarily.
I have never heard the Julian calendar defended because it's the most correct.  It clearly isn't.  And I'm not really even talking about adapting Orthodoxy to conform with Western Christianity.  I'm mainly talking about the fact that we allow this discussion to be a point of contention within our own midst.  I find that sad.  In other threads, there are comments to the effect of "we could never change the calendar anyway, since it would cause such a great schism."  What!?  Have we reached the point where choosing between two man-made calendars is a reason for schism?  Shame on us.

Technological innovations don't automatically threaten our faith.  I would argue that modern timekeeping systems are but one example of such innovation.  A heterodox named Gutenberg invented the printing press (or introduced it to Europe, depending on how you interpret).  Are we to insist on handwritten scripture?  That's how they did it in the time of Nicea.

And just for the record, I'm not arguing one way or the other.  I personally don't care how we calculate the date, and I'm willing to follow the Church's guidance however it decides.  But I do think that those who vehemently argue the matter either way are completely missing the point.

(Edited once to correct a misspelling.)

If it were just a matter of choosing Julian over Gregorian or vice versa I would agree with you. However, the Western form of calculating the date ignores scripture, and therefore sometimes puts Easter ahead of Passover (which of course is incorrect.)

I am not a hard core fundamentalist that thinks we should ignore technological innovation; I just believe that we should be observant of how Easter falls in line with the Passover feast. If there is a way of meeting in the middle while keeping in line with scripture, I am for it. I just want it to be scripturally correct.
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« Reply #712 on: May 30, 2009, 02:04:46 PM »

Forgive me here but - The calculated date of Pascha is not a fundamental tenet of our faith?
No, I don't believe it is.  Over the course of time, we've calculated it in several different ways.  To the best of my knowledge, no council has ever anathematized any of them.  1 Nicaea wasn't about choosing the "correct" one, it was about being in unity.

And for what it's worth, this statement...
Quote from: HandmaidenofGod
But they don't calculate the date correctly;
...I believe is incorrect.  The Western technique for calculating Easter adheres to the guidelines of 1 Nicaea.  The council did not state that the Julian Calendar would strictly be used.  The direct issue at hand was that the Church would do its own calculations, and not depend on the observations and calculations of Jewish astronomers.  So, in accordance with 1 Nicaea, Western Easter is calculated just as correctly as our Pascha.
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« Reply #713 on: May 30, 2009, 03:14:47 PM »

Then western Easter does not precede Jewish Passover in some years?
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« Reply #714 on: May 30, 2009, 03:34:07 PM »

Then western Easter does not precede Jewish Passover in some years?
I didn't say that.  I said that I don't believe 1 Nicaea specifically prohibits that.  In fact, the results of the Council quite clearly state the intent of calculating Pascha independently of the calculation of Jewish Passover.
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« Reply #715 on: May 30, 2009, 03:38:54 PM »

Then western Easter does not precede Jewish Passover in some years?
I didn't say that.  I said that I don't believe 1 Nicaea specifically prohibits that.  In fact, the results of the Council quite clearly state the intent of calculating Pascha independently of the calculation of Jewish Passover.
Fine. I am not arguing with you. We do still consider the Passover in our determination, do we not? Why?
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« Reply #716 on: May 30, 2009, 04:11:59 PM »

Following the First Council of Nicaea, the emporer wrote this in a letter:
Quote
When the question relative to the sacred festival of Easter arose, it was universally thought that it would be convenient that all should keep the feast on one day; for what could be more beautiful and more desirable, than to see this festival, through which we receive the hope of immortality, celebrated by all with one accord, and in the same manner?
Nowhere in that letter, nor anywhere in the canons from that council, is there a proscription against any particular method of calculating Pascha.

Yes, there are many good reasons why our way of calculating Pascha/Easter is a good one.  Perhaps it's the best one.  But I don't think any reasonable interpretation of either scripture or the early fathers can conclude that it's the only valid one.  I see no reason why our Church leadership shouldn't enter into this discussion.  If a common Easter is the result, I personally don't think it violates any principle or tenet of our faith.  It might represent a small step toward healing centuries of schism.  And in the words from Nicaea, what could be more beautiful and more desirable?
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« Reply #717 on: May 30, 2009, 05:12:55 PM »


The article in question's claim that Easter and Passover fell on the same date in 1825 appears to be incorrect. All the calculators I've checked say that Easter that year was on 3 April, which was 15 Nisan-- the day after Passover.
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« Reply #718 on: May 30, 2009, 05:15:23 PM »

... What!?  Have we reached the point where choosing between two man-made calendars is a reason for schism?  Shame on us.

We already have, some 72 years ago. It seems you didn't know, but between 10%-25% (a rough estimate) of Orthodox in Greece are in Old Calendarist Churches that are not in communion with the rest of us.
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« Reply #719 on: May 30, 2009, 06:19:23 PM »

I don't know if "ironic" is the right word, but I find it a little telling that in another thread on this board people are expressing worry over the rising Islamic threat while at the same time we Orthodox are so very divided over issues like the date of Pascha.
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