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Author Topic: If God's energies are God, are they personal just as his essence is?  (Read 6671 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: October 14, 2009, 06:28:05 PM »

The following thread started here:  Energy and Spirit  -PtA


It seems that if one believes in the essence energies distinction, they would most certainly have to believe that the energies are God. Can I add another question to this discussion?
If God's energies are God, are they personal just as his essence is?
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« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2009, 07:58:13 PM »

There's little point in the assertion unless someone actually IS asserting that God is energy, in which case one needs to examine what that person means by "energy".

Papist, saying that "the energies are God" is the same thing, in modern language, as saying that what God does is God. If one is maintaining an energies/essence distinction, then since the essence IS God (by definition-- essence comes from "esse", that is "being') then the energies cannot be God.
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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2009, 08:45:50 PM »

There's little point in the assertion unless someone actually IS asserting that God is energy, in which case one needs to examine what that person means by "energy".

Papist, saying that "the energies are God" is the same thing, in modern language, as saying that what God does is God. If one is maintaining an energies/essence distinction, then since the essence IS God (by definition-- essence comes from "esse", that is "being') then the energies cannot be God.

I have heard EOs argue that the essence and energies are God but are distinct. They often use the distinction in person in the Trinity as an analogy to help understand this concept. The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit are each God but are distinct from one another. Still, I am curious, are God's energies also the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. In other words, are God's energies personal?
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« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2009, 10:18:21 PM »

There's little point in the assertion unless someone actually IS asserting that God is energy, in which case one needs to examine what that person means by "energy".

Papist, saying that "the energies are God" is the same thing, in modern language, as saying that what God does is God. If one is maintaining an energies/essence distinction, then since the essence IS God (by definition-- essence comes from "esse", that is "being') then the energies cannot be God.


No, it is not the same thing.  "What God does" is ambiguous.   If you are speaking of the result, then no, that is not God, that is creation.  If we say that "Jim pushed a cart," the cart being in a different location is not Jim--it was Jim, however, that touched the cart and pushed it.  By definition energies are God as He is in relation to His creation.  The Father Son and Holy Spirit as they relate to each other and interact solely with each other is essence.
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« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2009, 11:25:47 PM »

No, it is not the same thing.  "What God does" is ambiguous.   If you are speaking of the result, then no, that is not God, that is creation.  If we say that "Jim pushed a cart," the cart being in a different location is not Jim--it was Jim, however, that touched the cart and pushed it.  By definition energies are God as He is in relation to His creation.  The Father Son and Holy Spirit as they relate to each other and interact solely with each other is essence.

Well, you've used "in relation to" in the sense that I meant "does", so the problem hasn't changed as the ambiguity has apparently been resolved. But is God's relation to the not-God "his" in the same way as God's name(s) is/are "his', or perhaps are they "his" in the same way that creation is "his"? Or to take another apposite example, is the "his" of His word being scripture the same "his"? I think that a western theologian might argue that only those "his"s which require only Him as a subject are God; everything that is His that has something else as a subject-- grace, scripture, creation, etc.-- are divine (as they partake of God) but are not God.
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« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2009, 03:41:05 PM »

There's little point in the assertion unless someone actually IS asserting that God is energy, in which case one needs to examine what that person means by "energy".

Papist, saying that "the energies are God" is the same thing, in modern language, as saying that what God does is God. If one is maintaining an energies/essence distinction, then since the essence IS God (by definition-- essence comes from "esse", that is "being') then the energies cannot be God.


No, it is not the same thing.  "What God does" is ambiguous.   If you are speaking of the result, then no, that is not God, that is creation.  If we say that "Jim pushed a cart," the cart being in a different location is not Jim--it was Jim, however, that touched the cart and pushed it.  By definition energies are God as He is in relation to His creation.  The Father Son and Holy Spirit as they relate to each other and interact solely with each other is essence.
This understading of the essence/energies distinction almost seems like the energies are a fourth person in the Trinity.
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« Reply #6 on: October 15, 2009, 03:41:48 PM »

No, it is not the same thing.  "What God does" is ambiguous.   If you are speaking of the result, then no, that is not God, that is creation.  If we say that "Jim pushed a cart," the cart being in a different location is not Jim--it was Jim, however, that touched the cart and pushed it.  By definition energies are God as He is in relation to His creation.  The Father Son and Holy Spirit as they relate to each other and interact solely with each other is essence.

Well, you've used "in relation to" in the sense that I meant "does", so the problem hasn't changed as the ambiguity has apparently been resolved. But is God's relation to the not-God "his" in the same way as God's name(s) is/are "his', or perhaps are they "his" in the same way that creation is "his"? Or to take another apposite example, is the "his" of His word being scripture the same "his"? I think that a western theologian might argue that only those "his"s which require only Him as a subject are God; everything that is His that has something else as a subject-- grace, scripture, creation, etc.-- are divine (as they partake of God) but are not God.

Well stated.
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« Reply #7 on: October 15, 2009, 05:16:01 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
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« Reply #8 on: October 15, 2009, 05:21:23 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex

Wonderfully helpful friend. Thank you for your post.
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« Reply #9 on: October 15, 2009, 06:15:24 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.
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« Reply #10 on: October 15, 2009, 06:20:34 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.

I'd say so...Father, Son, and Holy Spirit = Lover, Lovely, and Spirit of Love.  Love isn't the essence of God, but an energy.  I sure hope if God is Love that I can partake of that.
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« Reply #11 on: October 15, 2009, 06:35:24 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.
A rectification of names is always appropriate, says Confucius.

What do you mean by 'personal'?
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« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2009, 06:37:12 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.
A rectification of names is always appropriate, says Confucius.

What do you mean by 'personal'?
Are they the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit? When a person is defied does he not experience the tri-personal God or just some emanation from God?
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« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2009, 06:56:44 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.
A rectification of names is always appropriate, says Confucius.

What do you mean by 'personal'?
Are they the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit? When a person is defied does he not experience the tri-personal God or just some emanation from God?

Are you assuming that God is either (1) totally knowable; or (2) totally unknowable?

Lossky, Mystical Theology, p. 86, states that in deification, the Trinity dwells within us. The essence of the Trinity is unknowable, but "the Trinity dwells in us by means of that in itself which is communicable [or knowable] -- that is to say, by the energies which are common to the three hypostases, or, in other words, by grace -- for it is by this name that we know the deifying energies which the Holy Spirit communicates to us." And who has the Spirit, thus has the Son, through whom every gift is transmitted to us. And who has the Son, has the Father, the source of every gift. The gift is the deifying energies. All gifts, all energies are common to all three hypostases, all three persons.

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« Reply #14 on: October 15, 2009, 07:04:11 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.
A rectification of names is always appropriate, says Confucius.

What do you mean by 'personal'?
Are they the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit? When a person is defied does he not experience the tri-personal God or just some emanation from God?

Are you assuming that God is either (1) totally knowable; or (2) totally unknowable?
Neither. I believe that God is supremely knowable in that he is perfect truth and the proper object of the inellect is truth. However, becuase God is such supreme truth, our limted minds are blinded by the resplendant truth and are thus very limited in what we can know about God. See my signature below. Now back to the topic at hand.
Lossky, Mystical Theology, p. 86, states that in deification, the Trinity dwells within us. The essence of the Trinity is unknowable, but "the Trinity dwells in us by means of that in itself which is communicable [or knowable] -- that is to say, by the energies which are common to the three hypostases, or, in other words, by grace -- for it is by this name that we know the deifying energies which the Holy Spirit communicates to us." And who has the Spirit, thus has the Son, through whom every gift is transmitted to us. And who has the Son, has the Father, the source of every gift. The gift is the deifying energies. All gifts, all energies are common to all three hypostases, all three persons.


So we exerperience the presons of the Trinity in deification?
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« Reply #15 on: October 15, 2009, 07:27:27 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.
A rectification of names is always appropriate, says Confucius.

What do you mean by 'personal'?
Are they the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit? When a person is defied does he not experience the tri-personal God or just some emanation from God?

Are you assuming that God is either (1) totally knowable; or (2) totally unknowable?
Neither. I believe that God is supremely knowable in that he is perfect truth and the proper object of the inellect is truth. However, becuase God is such supreme truth, our limted minds are blinded by the resplendant truth and are thus very limited in what we can know about God. See my signature below. Now back to the topic at hand.
Oh, this is very much related to the topic at hand. If you say that God is supremely knowable, and then yet say that God is not fully knowable because of the limitations of our minds, then are you not contradicting yourself? Should you not simply say that God is not fully knowable?
Lossky, Mystical Theology, p. 86, states that in deification, the Trinity dwells within us. The essence of the Trinity is unknowable, but "the Trinity dwells in us by means of that in itself which is communicable [or knowable] -- that is to say, by the energies which are common to the three hypostases, or, in other words, by grace -- for it is by this name that we know the deifying energies which the Holy Spirit communicates to us." And who has the Spirit, thus has the Son, through whom every gift is transmitted to us. And who has the Son, has the Father, the source of every gift. The gift is the deifying energies. All gifts, all energies are common to all three hypostases, all three persons.


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So we exerperience the presons of the Trinity in deification?
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« Reply #16 on: October 15, 2009, 10:01:12 PM »

Dear Western brothers,
I'd like to make you consider a parallel in nature which made many physicists curious. The nature of quanta. A quantum is thought of in physics as both a particle and a wave. Would you say: are the particle and the wave in a quantum distinct entities? No, they aren't. They are just sides of the same medal... different states. God's essence is "God in His permanent, eternal attributes". God's energies are "God in His interactions with the world". The attributes of God "generate" energies which communicate God's presence. Another example in nature is the Sun. When we say "look at the Sun", are we really looking at the sun - i.e. at the surface of the sun? No, our eyes get in touch with the photons (light particles) irradiated from the sun. We can't say that light is a creation of the sun. Light is created within the essence of the star and projected outside so that we can perceive the sun and study it, but we can't touch it and study it directly (you just can't walk on the sun and touch it, huh?). Even if light *isn't* part of the celestial body named sun, we can identify His light as an irradiation of the sun, and we can say we see "the sun". God works more or less in the same manner. He is static substance in His attributes, and dynamic interactions in His energies. The energies are "shared" by the entire divine nature because they are irradiated from it, and yet they're not a part of it. We can get in touch with God's energies, but the substance of God is veiled behind His glorious energies, which nevertheless can reveal us something of His infinite nature and His attributes.

Hope this helps.

In Christ,     Alex
But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.

I'd say so...Father, Son, and Holy Spirit = Lover, Lovely, and Spirit of Love.  Love isn't the essence of God, but an energy.  I sure hope if God is Love that I can partake of that.
God is Love.  I John 4:8
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« Reply #17 on: October 15, 2009, 10:12:50 PM »

Oh, this is very much related to the topic at hand. If you say that God is supremely knowable, and then yet say that God is not fully knowable because of the limitations of our minds, then are you not contradicting yourself? Should you not simply say that God is not fully knowable?
Its not a contradiction because I am talking about objective vs. subjective knowablitiy. Objectively, God is knowable, that is in and of him light. Just as light is illuminating in and of itself. However, if light is too bright it is blinding to us because of our limited eyes. In a sense the light is objectively illuminating but subjectively blinding for us. God is objectively knowable but subjectively unknowable.
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« Reply #18 on: October 15, 2009, 10:53:30 PM »

Oh, this is very much related to the topic at hand. If you say that God is supremely knowable, and then yet say that God is not fully knowable because of the limitations of our minds, then are you not contradicting yourself? Should you not simply say that God is not fully knowable?
Its not a contradiction because I am talking about objective vs. subjective knowablitiy. Objectively, God is knowable, that is in and of him light. Just as light is illuminating in and of itself. However, if light is too bright it is blinding to us because of our limited eyes. In a sense the light is objectively illuminating but subjectively blinding for us. God is objectively knowable but subjectively unknowable.

Wouldn't it be the other way around?  Objectively He is unknowable, but subjectively He makes Himself known to us?  Using the rays of the light, yes, we can't see the source of light directly (like the sun) or it will be too bright.  But, this light always shines on us, always touching us, and we can touch it.  We can feel the light, and through this light we can see all things.  This is energy.  We can't touch the Son, but we can touch His Light.  His Light is an eternal, uncreated Light, and we partake of Him through that Light.  We feel the warmth and the heat coming from that Light, which is the Holy Spirit.  Since we are now warmed up and enlightened like the Son, we are therefore sons of the Father, and like the Father, we can enlighten others, and like the Holy Spirit, others can feel our warmth, which is the warmth of the Holy Spirit.  So while we can't fathom the Source of Light, the Power of the Light, and the Warmth of the Light from afar, we can feel the warmth of the Light, see and become empowered through the Light, and be a source of Light to others.

So yes, I would say the energies, like the essences are personal.  Like a tiny flowing stream from an ocean, distinct, but inseparable.  I sometimes feel when the Fathers give analogies to the understanding of the Trinity, they also gave analogies to theosis and moral example.
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« Reply #19 on: October 15, 2009, 11:05:53 PM »

I don't know if this helps, but recently I heard essence/energies described in more human terms.

Our minds/hearts/souls are like God's essence. We know ourselves in a way that no person ever can, because no other person can ever be us. Our own human essences are unknowable to other people.

The things we do and say are our energies. This post is part of my energies. Our energies are the way we can know each other, and it seems that they're personal by definition. Our energies are part of us; we don't separate people's actions and functions from the people themselves.

THe same would go for God, it seems. We can never know God's essence because his essence is simply unknowable. Everything we know about God is his energies, and since God is personal, his energies are personal.

People often tend to assume some traits of people they're close to, such as a spouse or close friend. That's sort of an image of theosis then. By greater interaction of their personal energies, they become more like each other. (In God's case, we change to be like him.)
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« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2009, 11:06:32 PM »

So we exerperience the presons of the Trinity in deification?

Grace and Peace Brother,

Remember that God's energies is God's graces. For the Latin Fathers this is how we express what the Greek Fathers know as energies. I can't speak for Orthodoxy but I believe that it is in God's energies that we share in His Divine Nature. Perhaps we can, as Latins, think of this are participation in the divine virtues. I believe, in the Greek Fathers, there is a 'real' encounter with the Godhead when we share in His graces. This encounter with the 'uncreated' energies is taught by the Greek Fathers to be a 'real' encounter with that eternal source of all life, God. I hope that I am helpful to you and haven't spoken in error about this subject. It is truly a profound mystery which is taught by our Eastern Brothers and Sisters and one that leaves me in great hope for that life in Christ that we all seek.

Peace.
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« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2009, 11:16:54 PM »

So we exerperience the presons of the Trinity in deification?

Grace and Peace Brother,

Remember that God's energies is God's graces. For the Latin Fathers this is how we express what the Greek Fathers know as energies. I can't speak for Orthodoxy but I believe that it is in God's energies that we share in His Divine Nature. Perhaps we can, as Latins, think of this are participation in the divine virtues. I believe, in the Greek Fathers, there is a 'real' encounter with the Godhead when we share in His graces. This encounter with the 'uncreated' energies is taught by the Greek Fathers to be a 'real' encounter with that eternal source of all life, God. I hope that I am helpful to you and haven't spoken in error about this subject. It is truly a profound mystery which is taught by our Eastern Brothers and Sisters and one that leaves me in great hope for that life in Christ that we all seek.

Peace.

This is key:  It is a mystery!  You rap your head with logic on this for too long, and not try to live it, you'll never believe it.  Some logic we provided, but the more you try to over-think it, the more you delve into a sea with no compass.  This is no different from the Trinitarian doctrine, also a mystery.
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« Reply #22 on: October 15, 2009, 11:20:12 PM »

So we exerperience the presons of the Trinity in deification?

Grace and Peace Brother,

Remember that God's energies is God's graces. For the Latin Fathers this is how we express what the Greek Fathers know as energies. I can't speak for Orthodoxy but I believe that it is in God's energies that we share in His Divine Nature. Perhaps we can, as Latins, think of this are participation in the divine virtues. I believe, in the Greek Fathers, there is a 'real' encounter with the Godhead when we share in His graces. This encounter with the 'uncreated' energies is taught by the Greek Fathers to be a 'real' encounter with that eternal source of all life, God. I hope that I am helpful to you and haven't spoken in error about this subject. It is truly a profound mystery which is taught by our Eastern Brothers and Sisters and one that leaves me in great hope for that life in Christ that we all seek.

Peace.

This is key:  It is a mystery!  You rap your head with logic on this for too long, and not try to live it, you'll never believe it.  Some logic we provided, but the more you try to over-think it, the more you delve into a sea with no compass.  This is no different from the Trinitarian doctrine, also a mystery.

Truly, Wisdom.
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« Reply #23 on: October 16, 2009, 08:39:42 AM »

Dear papist,
if we assume that the beatific vision, as the Latin Church says, is the same as seeing his face, then we commit a dangerous error.
It is a clear and OT and NT idea that the face of God (His essence) is veiled. God says to Moses that he can't show His face to him, Moses would have died - in other words, Moses would have lost his individual existence, being absorbed into God's essence. It is like touching the sun: you would be immediately melted by its 6000 °C temperature and lose your personal existence, being absorbed into the solar plasma. Yes, you would become "the sun", but you wouldn't be conscient at that time: you just wouldn't exist anymore to witness what's within the sun. That doesn't make the sun unknowable. Even if we can't see and touch the sun "in its essence", we can see it "in its energies", that is in the light and heat of the sun. The sun is literally "veiled" in light, in the same way as God is "veiled" in His glory. This shining light is what we can partake of the sun... so that the invisible sun is make intelligible in his light. Now, taking your question whether God is tri-personal, or we should count for the graces as a fourth person, I'll make a further astrophysical example.
Let's assume there's a system of three identical stars very very far from us. They are connected with each other by an intense gravitational field. They are identical in substance (they are all made of solar plasma) and form (they have the same mass and volume). These stars all shine in the same light: even if they are independent sources, light is always made by the same photons, which are identical in every part of the universe. Now, these stars are so distant that from the Earth that we see them as one star shining in a white light. Now the questions are:
Is this light a fourth star? The answer is: no, the stars remain three.
Are there three different substances in the stars? The answer is: no, the solar plasma they are made of is the same, so the plasma substance is equal.
Are there different lights from the stars? The answer is: yes and no. Yes: because every beam of white light conveys seven different colours, from red to indigo, at the same time; no, because the light produced independently from the three stars are made of photons, which are all identical.

Now take the comparison with God and answer these questions:
Is God's glory a fourth divine person? - No, the persons remain three.
Are there three different substances in the divine persons? - No, the stars are of the same substance/essence.
Are there different energies from the divine persons? - Yes, because the same glory is multi-faceted in different energies (love, grace, mercy, justice...), and no, because the energies are an emission of light from the inners persons, and since the persons are of the same essence and form, the energies irradiated by three persons are identical to each other.

Hope this helps... I know it's complicated, but I tried to examplify it as much as possible.
The fact that the sun and, more in general, light, have been so largely used by God in the Scriptures and in the mystic experience of the Church as symbols for Himself is a testimony of how studying the nature of stars can help us understand the nature of God. Our world orbits around the Sun like our lives should orbit around God... The sun provides light as a guide for our physical steps and heat to warm our bodies and sustain life, like God provides his energies to guide us in our spiritual steps, to warm our hearts with His love and to sustain our spiritual life. I love to call the sun "the mirror of God in nature" LOL

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #24 on: October 16, 2009, 10:22:51 AM »

ousia, energeia and hypostasis are all technical terms. Even St. Paul uses them as such. David Bradshaw has produced a truly remarkable study, which traces this through all the sources, East and West. Pretty much have to read it to make sense of either Palamism or Thomism.

It's called Aristotle East and West: Metaphysics and the Division of Christendom (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004). You can read selections from it on Google Books: http://books.google.com/books?id=xZPsSG75uCUC&dq=Aristotle+East+and+West:+Metaphysics+and+the+Division+of+Christendom&source=gbs_navlinks_s
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« Reply #25 on: October 16, 2009, 10:41:06 AM »

ousia, energeia and hypostasis are all technical terms. Even St. Paul uses them as such. David Bradshaw has produced a truly remarkable study, which traces this through all the sources, East and West. Pretty much have to read it to make sense of either Palamism or Thomism.

It's called Aristotle East and West: Metaphysics and the Division of Christendom (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004). You can read selections from it on Google Books: http://books.google.com/books?id=xZPsSG75uCUC&dq=Aristotle+East+and+West:+Metaphysics+and+the+Division+of+Christendom&source=gbs_navlinks_s
Thank you very much.
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« Reply #26 on: October 16, 2009, 10:43:36 AM »

Dear papist,
if we assume that the beatific vision, as the Latin Church says, is the same as seeing his face, then we commit a dangerous error.
It is a clear and OT and NT idea that the face of God (His essence) is veiled. God says to Moses that he can't show His face to him, Moses would have died - in other words, Moses would have lost his individual existence, being absorbed into God's essence. It is like touching the sun: you would be immediately melted by its 6000 °C temperature and lose your personal existence, being absorbed into the solar plasma. Yes, you would become "the sun", but you wouldn't be conscient at that time: you just wouldn't exist anymore to witness what's within the sun. That doesn't make the sun unknowable. Even if we can't see and touch the sun "in its essence", we can see it "in its energies", that is in the light and heat of the sun. The sun is literally "veiled" in light, in the same way as God is "veiled" in His glory. This shining light is what we can partake of the sun... so that the invisible sun is make intelligible in his light. Now, taking your question whether God is tri-personal, or we should count for the graces as a fourth person, I'll make a further astrophysical example.
Let's assume there's a system of three identical stars very very far from us. They are connected with each other by an intense gravitational field. They are identical in substance (they are all made of solar plasma) and form (they have the same mass and volume). These stars all shine in the same light: even if they are independent sources, light is always made by the same photons, which are identical in every part of the universe. Now, these stars are so distant that from the Earth that we see them as one star shining in a white light. Now the questions are:
Is this light a fourth star? The answer is: no, the stars remain three.
Are there three different substances in the stars? The answer is: no, the solar plasma they are made of is the same, so the plasma substance is equal.
Are there different lights from the stars? The answer is: yes and no. Yes: because every beam of white light conveys seven different colours, from red to indigo, at the same time; no, because the light produced independently from the three stars are made of photons, which are all identical.

Now take the comparison with God and answer these questions:
Is God's glory a fourth divine person? - No, the persons remain three.
Are there three different substances in the divine persons? - No, the stars are of the same substance/essence.
Are there different energies from the divine persons? - Yes, because the same glory is multi-faceted in different energies (love, grace, mercy, justice...), and no, because the energies are an emission of light from the inners persons, and since the persons are of the same essence and form, the energies irradiated by three persons are identical to each other.

Hope this helps... I know it's complicated, but I tried to examplify it as much as possible.
The fact that the sun and, more in general, light, have been so largely used by God in the Scriptures and in the mystic experience of the Church as symbols for Himself is a testimony of how studying the nature of stars can help us understand the nature of God. Our world orbits around the Sun like our lives should orbit around God... The sun provides light as a guide for our physical steps and heat to warm our bodies and sustain life, like God provides his energies to guide us in our spiritual steps, to warm our hearts with His love and to sustain our spiritual life. I love to call the sun "the mirror of God in nature" LOL

In Christ,   Alex
Thank you very much for your very detailed explanation. I guess the problem I am having is this: If God is not simple, then it seems to me that rather than experiencing the tri-personal God (i.e. the persons of the blessed Trinity) we would only experience a non-personal emanation. This seem dangerous to me. I'm really trying to make this all fit but there seems to be good reasons to both accept and reject the essence/energies distinction.  Sad
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« Reply #27 on: October 16, 2009, 10:46:29 AM »

It is truly a profound mystery which is taught by our Eastern Brothers and Sisters and one that leaves me in great hope for that life in Christ that we all seek.

Peace.
I have to be honest with you, this "profound mystery" makes me nervous. On the one hand we are told that we are really participating in God in through his energies. On the other hand, every explanation of God's "energies" seem to suggest that they are not really God.  Sad
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« Reply #28 on: October 16, 2009, 12:15:21 PM »

It is truly a profound mystery which is taught by our Eastern Brothers and Sisters and one that leaves me in great hope for that life in Christ that we all seek.

Peace.
I have to be honest with you, this "profound mystery" makes me nervous. On the one hand we are told that we are really participating in God in through his energies. On the other hand, every explanation of God's "energies" seem to suggest that they are not really God.  Sad

I don't remember which quote this comes from, but a friend of mine, a convert into the Orthodox Church, when teaching me about the energy/essences distinction told me about this trap, i.e. that people can make the energies impersonal by giving me a quote from the late Eastern fathers.  So, yes, the energies are personal.  If we say God is "Love", then that "Love" is God.  It may sound impersonal when we describe it in analogies.  Again, it's a mystery.

I don't know how many Muslims attack the Trinity because they're so used to the idea of the simplicity of God's oneness, and how many times they accuse us of really believing in three gods.  Again, it's a mystery, and they don't give themselves a chance in the experience and prayer of the life of the Trinity.  They just feel more comfortable attacking it.

God bless.
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« Reply #29 on: October 16, 2009, 12:38:09 PM »

Dear papist,
if we assume that the beatific vision, as the Latin Church says, is the same as seeing his face, then we commit a dangerous error.
It is a clear and OT and NT idea that the face of God (His essence) is veiled. God says to Moses that he can't show His face to him, Moses would have died - in other words, Moses would have lost his individual existence, being absorbed into God's essence. It is like touching the sun: you would be immediately melted by its 6000 °C temperature and lose your personal existence, being absorbed into the solar plasma. Yes, you would become "the sun", but you wouldn't be conscient at that time: you just wouldn't exist anymore to witness what's within the sun. That doesn't make the sun unknowable. Even if we can't see and touch the sun "in its essence", we can see it "in its energies", that is in the light and heat of the sun. The sun is literally "veiled" in light, in the same way as God is "veiled" in His glory. This shining light is what we can partake of the sun... so that the invisible sun is make intelligible in his light. Now, taking your question whether God is tri-personal, or we should count for the graces as a fourth person, I'll make a further astrophysical example.
Let's assume there's a system of three identical stars very very far from us. They are connected with each other by an intense gravitational field. They are identical in substance (they are all made of solar plasma) and form (they have the same mass and volume). These stars all shine in the same light: even if they are independent sources, light is always made by the same photons, which are identical in every part of the universe. Now, these stars are so distant that from the Earth that we see them as one star shining in a white light. Now the questions are:
Is this light a fourth star? The answer is: no, the stars remain three.
Are there three different substances in the stars? The answer is: no, the solar plasma they are made of is the same, so the plasma substance is equal.
Are there different lights from the stars? The answer is: yes and no. Yes: because every beam of white light conveys seven different colours, from red to indigo, at the same time; no, because the light produced independently from the three stars are made of photons, which are all identical.

Now take the comparison with God and answer these questions:
Is God's glory a fourth divine person? - No, the persons remain three.
Are there three different substances in the divine persons? - No, the stars are of the same substance/essence.
Are there different energies from the divine persons? - Yes, because the same glory is multi-faceted in different energies (love, grace, mercy, justice...), and no, because the energies are an emission of light from the inners persons, and since the persons are of the same essence and form, the energies irradiated by three persons are identical to each other.

Hope this helps... I know it's complicated, but I tried to examplify it as much as possible.
The fact that the sun and, more in general, light, have been so largely used by God in the Scriptures and in the mystic experience of the Church as symbols for Himself is a testimony of how studying the nature of stars can help us understand the nature of God. Our world orbits around the Sun like our lives should orbit around God... The sun provides light as a guide for our physical steps and heat to warm our bodies and sustain life, like God provides his energies to guide us in our spiritual steps, to warm our hearts with His love and to sustain our spiritual life. I love to call the sun "the mirror of God in nature" LOL

In Christ,   Alex
Thank you very much for your very detailed explanation. I guess the problem I am having is this: If God is not simple, then it seems to me that rather than experiencing the tri-personal God (i.e. the persons of the blessed Trinity) we would only experience a non-personal emanation. This seem dangerous to me. I'm really trying to make this all fit but there seems to be good reasons to both accept and reject the essence/energies distinction.  Sad

Maybe something that could help you is understanding how the doctrine of uncreated energies is a solution which can overcome the problem of God's omnipresence, which apparently seems to contradict the notion that God sits in heaven. We could say, more or less, that God the Trinity sits "hypostatically" in heaven according to the countenance (I use the word "countenance" in the same way as Dante Alighieri used it in his Divine Comedy regarding the three Persons) and nevertheless He is energetically present in the world, in hades and everywhere else, extending his presence ad infinitum. Or at least this is my way to solve the "problem of infinity". It must be said that a simpler substance, like in Latin theology, assumes that God is "essentially" present everywhere, thus making it impossible to make Him locally identifiable, so that He couldn't "abide" in heaven, or be "confined" in a human body, or be present in angelic form when He manifests himself to Moses above the Ark of the Covenant etc. And, on the contrary, assuming that God is locally finite, and that the energies of God are created, means to deny that He is truly omnipresent and infinite, since the created energies wouldn't be GOD, but creatures of God that aren't part of His true Being.

And by the way: if God was so simple, He wouldn't have been One in Three... if God was so simple, we would be simple beings too, but that's not true... We are composites of two totally distinct substance such as soul and body... tens of little and larger organs made of billions of cells... How can we God be simple if we aren't? LOL

And by the way, the fact that nature provides fitting examples of how God might work is a proof that God's nature is unknowable by direct experience but still intelligible by the human mind. We know God is light: but as Orthodox we make a distinction between the source of light (God's nature) which is unknowable by direct experience, and the light itself which emanates from the source, i.e. God's energy. It might surprise you that nature works so even regarding particles. All bosons, for example, are particles which mediate the four interactions of our universe (gravity, electromagnetism, weak interaction and strong interaction). These particles - and this is incredible to think - can be treated both as "little balls" and as "waves on a water source" at the same time. The quantum can be individuated in its position as if it were a dot, but the same quantum IS a wave with refractions and other typical wave phenomena. The fact that wave-particles are a substantial scientific truth with solid experimental and mathematical base shows us that being "one" and yet "complex" isn't so difficult for nature, so how could it be so difficult for God himself?

In Christ,   Alex

PS: When you experience "philosophical headaches" try and remember st. Augustine's dream of the child who wanted to empty the sea. What did the child (Jesus) answer to Augustine when he said it's impossible? That it'd be easier and faster to empty the seas then to understand the mysteries of God. Keep that in mind and don't trust reason too much... trust FAITH.
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« Reply #30 on: October 17, 2009, 10:21:26 PM »

But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.

Yes, they are personal.  God's Energy simply is God as He acts or communicates outside of the inner essence of the Trinity.   Therefore, the Father acts, the Son acts, the Spirit acts--it is personal.   Again, the 6th Ecumenical Council states that in Christ, JUST AS he has both human and divine essence (nature), so also he has both human and divine energy.   It is personal.  Just in case you question whether the 6th Ecumenical Council really made this distinction, it based its horos upon the teachings of St. Maximus Confessor, who explains:  "If he has two natures, then He surely must have two natural wills, the wills and essential energies being equal in number to the natures. For just as the number of natures of the one and the same Christ, correctly understood and explained, does not divide Christ but rather preserves the distinction of natures in the union, so likewise the number of essential attributes, wills, and energies attached to those two natures do not divide Christ either" (Disputation 13; p4).  He explains in Ambigua 41 that Energy is the whole of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit as He communicates with Creation, whereas the essence is the whole of God as He, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, internally subsist with one another.   
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« Reply #31 on: October 17, 2009, 11:38:31 PM »

It is truly a profound mystery which is taught by our Eastern Brothers and Sisters and one that leaves me in great hope for that life in Christ that we all seek.

Peace.
I have to be honest with you, this "profound mystery" makes me nervous. On the one hand we are told that we are really participating in God in through his energies. On the other hand, every explanation of God's "energies" seem to suggest that they are not really God.  Sad

Are the gifts of God His own? I am speaking of the infused gifts which accompany Sanctifying Grace? Are we not sharing 'in some way' in the Divine Godhead when we are infused with the virtues? This is not an alien teaching among the Greek Fathers. The Roman Catechism says of sanctifying grace: "Grace is... as it were a certain brilliance or light which cleanses all stains from our souls and makes them more beautiful and more brilliant" (II 2, 49).

In the bride of the Song of Songs the Fathers see a symbol of the soul adorned by grace. St. Thomas says: Gratia divina pulchrificat, sicut lux (In Ps. 25, Cool.

As a participation in the Divine nature, sanctifying grace effects in the soul an image of the Uncreated Beauty of God and remoulds the soul to the image of the Son of God (Rom. 8, 29; Gal. 4, 19) which, according to Hebr. 1, 3, is the reflection of the Glory of God and the image of His Substance.
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« Reply #32 on: October 18, 2009, 12:16:43 AM »

But are God's energies personal? If they are not, I am not sure how they can be God because God is tri-personal.

Yes, they are personal.  God's Energy simply is God as He acts or communicates outside of the inner essence of the Trinity.   Therefore, the Father acts, the Son acts, the Spirit acts--it is personal.   Again, the 6th Ecumenical Council states that in Christ, JUST AS he has both human and divine essence (nature), so also he has both human and divine energy.   It is personal.  Just in case you question whether the 6th Ecumenical Council really made this distinction, it based its horos upon the teachings of St. Maximus Confessor, who explains:  "If he has two natures, then He surely must have two natural wills, the wills and essential energies being equal in number to the natures. For just as the number of natures of the one and the same Christ, correctly understood and explained, does not divide Christ but rather preserves the distinction of natures in the union, so likewise the number of essential attributes, wills, and energies attached to those two natures do not divide Christ either" (Disputation 13; p4).  He explains in Ambigua 41 that Energy is the whole of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit as He communicates with Creation, whereas the essence is the whole of God as He, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, internally subsist with one another.   

Very good point.  Makes me wonder how Latin anti-Palamists interpret the Sixth Council.
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« Reply #33 on: October 18, 2009, 07:03:52 AM »

Papist,
If you love me, is that love Personal?
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« Reply #34 on: October 19, 2009, 12:19:07 PM »

Papist,
If you love me, is that love Personal?
Yes. But its not you. God is unique in that God's love is God. I would think that in experiencing God's energies, if one is really experiencing God, then one would have to be experiencing the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and not just an emanation from them. Am I wrong?
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« Reply #35 on: October 19, 2009, 02:40:26 PM »

The divine energies and God's essence can't be divided. In the divine energies, and that's the mystery, God is experience personally. We could say that God is personally present IN, BY and THROUGH His uncreated energies. That's why the RC doctrine of the created energies sounds more strange: the created energies proceeding from the Trinity not only aren't personal, by they even aren't God, because God is uncreated. On the contrary, the message of st. Gregory Palamas on the Uncreated Energies, in agreement with the Church Fathers, is that our contact with the Divine Energies is a direct contact with God Himself, personally, but in a form which is just 'different' then the essence. If we would partake in God's nature, we would become gods by nature, and since God is one, we would become God, losing our own identities which is more or less as Buddhist Nirvana: a total absorption in the Absolute with a loss of identity and personal conscience. But God wants us to partake in Him in a way that we can remain ourselves, and this way is partaking in the Uncreated Energies, which are God exteriorized communing with the world, where God's essence is God interiorized communing within oneself as a relationship in the Trinity.

In Christ,   Alex
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« Reply #36 on: October 19, 2009, 02:48:02 PM »

The divine energies and God's essence can't be divided. In the divine energies, and that's the mystery, God is experience personally. We could say that God is personally present IN, BY and THROUGH His uncreated energies. That's why the RC doctrine of the created energies sounds more strange: the created energies proceeding from the Trinity not only aren't personal, by they even aren't God, because God is uncreated. On the contrary, the message of st. Gregory Palamas on the Uncreated Energies, in agreement with the Church Fathers, is that our contact with the Divine Energies is a direct contact with God Himself, personally, but in a form which is just 'different' then the essence. If we would partake in God's nature, we would become gods by nature, and since God is one, we would become God, losing our own identities which is more or less as Buddhist Nirvana: a total absorption in the Absolute with a loss of identity and personal conscience. But God wants us to partake in Him in a way that we can remain ourselves, and this way is partaking in the Uncreated Energies, which are God exteriorized communing with the world, where God's essence is God interiorized communing within oneself as a relationship in the Trinity.

In Christ,   Alex
I'm not sure I can accept the arguement that to be in contact with God's nature would make us automatically into God especially given St. Paul's statement that we are "partakers of the divine nature."
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« Reply #37 on: October 19, 2009, 03:01:11 PM »

We are partakers of divinity (theotes). The term "divine essence", or better the distinction between essence and energies, wasn't clarified until the Church Fathers began to study it.
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« Reply #38 on: October 19, 2009, 03:15:38 PM »

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St. Paul's statement that we are "partakers of the divine nature."

Actually that was Peter. I wouldn't have said anything, but since your name is Papist, I'd think you'd have known that! Wink
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« Reply #39 on: October 19, 2009, 03:23:46 PM »

Quote
St. Paul's statement that we are "partakers of the divine nature."

Actually that was Peter. I wouldn't have said anything, but since your name is Papist, I'd think you'd have known that! Wink
You are correct. I spaced it when I wrote this.
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« Reply #40 on: October 19, 2009, 03:38:19 PM »

Quote
St. Paul's statement that we are "partakers of the divine nature."

Actually that was Peter. I wouldn't have said anything, but since your name is Papist, I'd think you'd have known that! Wink
You are correct. I spaced it when I wrote this.
Oops, I didn't realize your little mistake, Papist... let's hope good old st. Peter doesnt' take any offence for that ;-)
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« Reply #41 on: October 19, 2009, 03:43:20 PM »

Quote
St. Paul's statement that we are "partakers of the divine nature."

Actually that was Peter. I wouldn't have said anything, but since your name is Papist, I'd think you'd have known that! Wink

Oh, low blow! Penalty... 15 yards... illegal roughness on the field. 1st down.
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« Reply #42 on: October 19, 2009, 06:40:36 PM »

Papist,
If you love me, is that love Personal?
Yes. But its not you. God is unique in that God's love is God. I would think that in experiencing God's energies, if one is really experiencing God, then one would have to be experiencing the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and not just an emanation from them. Am I wrong?
Isn't it you? Is it some generic force? Does that mean that if you love me it is no different to Mao Tse Tung loving me or Barak Obama loving me?
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« Reply #43 on: October 19, 2009, 06:46:17 PM »

Papist,
If you love me, is that love Personal?
Yes. But its not you. God is unique in that God's love is God. I would think that in experiencing God's energies, if one is really experiencing God, then one would have to be experiencing the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit and not just an emanation from them. Am I wrong?
Isn't it you? Is it some generic force? Does that mean that if you love me it is no different to Mao Tse Tung loving me or Barak Obama loving me?
That's very beautiful George, and if the energies really are The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, then this particular objection to this matter have been resolved.
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« Reply #44 on: October 19, 2009, 06:49:59 PM »

The divine energies and God's essence can't be divided. In the divine energies, and that's the mystery, God is experience personally. We could say that God is personally present IN, BY and THROUGH His uncreated energies. That's why the RC doctrine of the created energies sounds more strange: the created energies proceeding from the Trinity not only aren't personal, by they even aren't God, because God is uncreated. On the contrary, the message of st. Gregory Palamas on the Uncreated Energies, in agreement with the Church Fathers, is that our contact with the Divine Energies is a direct contact with God Himself, personally, but in a form which is just 'different' then the essence. If we would partake in God's nature, we would become gods by nature, and since God is one, we would become God, losing our own identities which is more or less as Buddhist Nirvana: a total absorption in the Absolute with a loss of identity and personal conscience. But God wants us to partake in Him in a way that we can remain ourselves, and this way is partaking in the Uncreated Energies, which are God exteriorized communing with the world, where God's essence is God interiorized communing within oneself as a relationship in the Trinity.

In Christ,   Alex
Can you provide a reference to these "created energies"?
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