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Author Topic: Theotokos or Mother of God?  (Read 10639 times) Average Rating: 5
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« on: May 06, 2010, 12:15:33 PM »

A small treatise on Theotokos - Mother of God
by the Abbot of Old Forge

Ever since I learned to say formal prayers as a little lad, I have called the
most holy Virgin "Mother of God," and I will continue to do so, by Gods' grace,
for the rest of my life, hoping that even with my last words I will invoke her.
Although I confess to being, as one writer would categorize me, a "lazy former
Roman Catholic", it is not for this reason that I say "Mother of God," but
because such is the normal English for the title Theotokos.

The word "Theotokos" itself appears in the Oxford English Dictionary, but with a
mark indicating that it is a foreign term. The first citation of the word is
only from 1874, from the Tractarian E.B. Pusey, who in using it immediately
clarified it by adding, Mother of God. The writer who alleges use of the term in
the middle ages cites a pre-Reformation prayer in which "otheotocos" appears
(from Eamon Duffy's Stripping of the Altars - the correct reference should be to
p. 274, not p.24). He must be aware that it was only used in a rather
superstitious context, in a prayer of exorcism, in which various other "names of
God" from various languages are used, e.g., Sother, Unigenitus, Adonay and even
(I don't know why) Serpens (Serpent) and Vermis (Worm.) This one dubious
instance surely does not attest to any ancient usage of Theotokos in English.
The Theotokos is she who bore God - His Mother. Some translations have used
Birthgiver, but that sounds barbarous. Imagine: I am introducing my dear old
parent to someone. I certainly wouldn't say, "John, meet my birthgiver." No - my
Mother!

Theotokos is a beautiful word, but it is Greek. To insist that it be used
habitually for the blessed Virgin would be comparable to saying that we must not
call the Deity "God", but "Theos", or our Saviour "Christos" instead of
"Christ." No! Greek is Greek, and English is English.

If we habitually use Theotokos, we shall have to keep explaining to people what
it means, since, outside of theology students, literate Orthodox or
Greek-speakers it will not be understood.

Every language has its own evolution, its own genius. A writer presents,
untranslated, a lengthy list of Greek words called "Theotokonyms." Nice, but
what does it prove? Only that Greek can form all sorts of compound words.
English is remarkably expressive and has a huge vocabulary, but often it
expresses by a phrase that which another language might express in a single
word. This is not a fault, it is just the nature of the language. When the
church books were translated into Slavonic it was possible to form compounds
that might not have existed previously, since the language was at a formative
stage. But English is already a developed language, and it has its own idiom.

So, we don't have a single word for chelovekoliubets, but we can say Lover of
mankind, He Who loveth man, the Friend of man, etc.

For that matter "homoousios" is in the O.E.D., and it is a theological term of
vital importance, yet no one is contending that we ought to retain it in an
English translation of the Creed. We say " of one essence" or "consubstantial",
because that is English.

I don't think that it is a good principle of literary translation to insist that
every occurrence of a word of the original always be rendered by the same word
in the translation. The translation must fit the context. So, sometimes we can
say God's Mother, or Theotokos, while retaining "Mother of God" as the most
familiar form of our Lady's title.

To the writer who did not understand the Latin word "Deipara" which is an exact
equivalent of Theotokos: The "-para" does not come from the verb paro, parare -
to prepare, but rather from pario, parere, peperci, partus - to give birth, from
which we get such words as parturition - childbirth and post-partum depression -
that which occurs after giving birth. As we shall soon sing, once we have past
the hurdle of the fast, "Ecce quod natura/ Mutat sua jura/ Virgo parit pura/ Dei
filium." (Behold, how nature changes its own laws: A pure Virgin gives birth to
the Son of God.)

I think there is a place for the word Theotokos in English, as an alternate name
for the Mother of God, particularly in such contexts as the hymn "It is truly
meet." But the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English is and should be
Mother of God, because that's English, not Greek, Latin or Slavonic.

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« Reply #1 on: May 06, 2010, 12:23:16 PM »

Quote
Theotokos is a beautiful word, but it is Greek. To insist that it be used
habitually for the blessed Virgin would be comparable to saying that we must not
call the Deity "God", but "Theos", or our Saviour "Christos" instead of
"Christ." No! Greek is Greek, and English is English.

I don't insist on others using Theotokos, of course, but I do use it in my own prayers (even when the book I'm using doesn't have it). It's not like it's unheard of for English speakers to borrow words from foreign languages. I strongly encourage using English in parishes where that is the language that will be best understood, but a foreign word here or there isn't going to hurt, IMO.
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« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2010, 12:23:32 PM »

You should have made this a poll. I vote for regular usage of "Mother of God" with "Theotokos" as an occasional title, but not the norm.
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« Reply #3 on: May 06, 2010, 12:28:44 PM »

Christ is risen!

Problem is, that Mother of God is Meter Theou, not Theotokos. Same in Slavic, Boghoroditsa versus Mat' Bozhija, Arabic Walidat Allah versus Umm Allah, etc. The only language that seems to have the same question of usage is Romanian, where Maica Donmului (the Lord's dear little Mother) seems to be more common than Născătoare de Dumnezeu.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theotokos
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« Reply #4 on: May 06, 2010, 12:44:05 PM »

Problem is, that Mother of God is Meter Theou, not Theotokos. Same in Slavic, Boghoroditsa versus Mat' Bozhija, Arabic Walidat Allah versus Umm Allah, etc. The only language that seems to have the same question of usage is Romanian, where Maica Donmului (the Lord's dear little Mother) seems to be more common than Născătoare de Dumnezeu.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theotokos

But what about longstanding usage, and this whole idea of "baptizing" cultures that Orthodoxy enters? This term has a huge precedent in our cultural context and should be embraced. As I've said before, the fact that it causes so much scandal among the Protestants is an excellent indicator of its accuracy, because usually they prefer "Mother of Christ." Sound familiar?  Wink
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« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2010, 01:23:52 PM »

Problem is, that Mother of God is Meter Theou, not Theotokos. Same in Slavic, Boghoroditsa versus Mat' Bozhija, Arabic Walidat Allah versus Umm Allah, etc. The only language that seems to have the same question of usage is Romanian, where Maica Donmului (the Lord's dear little Mother) seems to be more common than Născătoare de Dumnezeu.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theotokos

But what about longstanding usage, and this whole idea of "baptizing" cultures that Orthodoxy enters? This term has a huge precedent in our cultural context and should be embraced. As I've said before, the fact that it causes so much scandal among the Protestants is an excellent indicator of its accuracy, because usually they prefer "Mother of Christ." Sound familiar?  Wink
LOL. Of course.

That aside, if English were like the Scandinavian languages or German or Dutch, it would be one thing.  But there are very few Anglo-Saxon purists, and English is practically a Romance language (Latin distinction Mater Dei and Dei Genetrix): Protestants get apoplectic over loans like "liturgy" too.
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« Reply #6 on: May 06, 2010, 01:30:24 PM »

Of course, I'm not consistent in this regard, because I prefer "Pascha" over "Easter" any day. But then again, I'm all for "Christmas" over "Nativity." Also, I'm normally all for the Old Calendar. The only time it annoys me is on Christmas!!!
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« Reply #7 on: May 06, 2010, 02:45:57 PM »

Mother of God is not an adequate translation of Theotokos thus I favor the traditional honorific.

My reasons are this and feel free to disagree.  I think Theotokos is a more intimate term linking Christ to Mary since it leaves no doubt that Mary did give birth to the incarnate Christ and thus links Him to us.  Mother has become, whether in English or any number of other languages, a generic term often applied metaphorically.  Of course, one can be a mother without actually physically giving birth to a child.  As EO theology is rooted in the incarnation, in that God became one of us so that all that we are may be healed, the term Theotokos conveys this very simply and efficiently whereas Mother of God does not.

Again, my opinion.
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« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2010, 03:45:57 PM »

That's a good point.   There are those jurisdictions which use "birthgiver of God" following Hapgood.  But if we use "Mother of God" in many places and "Theotokos" in a few such as "it is truly meet," that still affirms the Incarnation, no? 
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« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2010, 07:09:24 PM »

I think rendering "Theotokos" as "Mother of God" makes some prayers, like "It is truly meet," awkward. "It is truly meet to bless thee, Mother of God, ever blessed and most blameless, and the Mother of our God."

By now, the use of "Theotokos" has become standard in many anglophone parishes and switching back to "Mother of God" would be jarring.
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« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2010, 07:19:54 PM »

I think rendering "Theotokos" as "Mother of God" makes some prayers, like "It is truly meet," awkward. "It is truly meet to bless thee, Mother of God, ever blessed and most blameless, and the Mother of our God."

Yes, that would be an instance where Theotokos would be appropriate to keep, and one of the few moments in my prayers that I keep the form Theotokos.
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« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2010, 07:36:01 PM »

I prefer Theotokos Greek/English , Serbian Bogorodica.... Grin
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« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2010, 08:21:36 PM »

I prefer Theotokos Greek/English , Serbian Bogorodica.... Grin

Serbs cannot even say 'Theotokos.'   Either they turn the 'th' into a t or an f.  laugh
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« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2010, 09:00:14 PM »

I prefer Theotokos Greek/English , Serbian Bogorodica.... Grin

Serbs cannot even say 'Theotokos.'   Either they turn the 'th' into a t or an f.  laugh

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« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2010, 09:06:04 PM »

I prefer Theotokos Greek/English , Serbian Bogorodica.... Grin

Serbs cannot even say 'Theotokos.'   Either they turn the 'th' into a t or an f.  laugh

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« Reply #15 on: May 06, 2010, 09:20:43 PM »

I prefer Theotokos Greek/English , Serbian Bogorodica.... Grin

Serbs cannot even say 'Theotokos.'   Either they turn the 'th' into a t or an f.  laugh

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You must be an Ephraimite!

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« Reply #16 on: May 07, 2010, 01:17:28 PM »

That's a good point.   There are those jurisdictions which use "birthgiver of God" following Hapgood.  But if we use "Mother of God" in many places and "Theotokos" in a few such as "it is truly meet," that still affirms the Incarnation, no? 

consistency is key, I think.  If we use Theotokos here and Mother of God there I think that it could possibly lead to confusion.
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« Reply #17 on: May 08, 2010, 01:36:18 AM »

Usually in place of theotokos parishes here use birthgiver of God. 
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« Reply #18 on: May 08, 2010, 01:38:00 AM »

Usually in place of theotokos parishes here use birthgiver of God.

That sounds so stale and cold. Who calls anyone a "birthgiver"?
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« Reply #19 on: May 08, 2010, 01:51:22 AM »

Usually in place of theotokos parishes here use birthgiver of God.

That sounds so stale and cold. Who calls anyone a "birthgiver"?

Don't forget to call your birthgiver on Sunday to wish her a happy Birthgiver's Day!
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« Reply #20 on: May 08, 2010, 01:52:29 AM »

Usually in place of theotokos parishes here use birthgiver of God.

That sounds so stale and cold. Who calls anyone a "birthgiver"?
All orthodox Greek [Theotokos]or Serbian [Bogorodica]or other Slavic tongues [Bogoroditsa]it sounds respectfull ,also it doesn't sound  bad, in english ,when i hear Birthgiver my mind translates it to theotokos and Bogorodica must be a ethnic thing....

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« Reply #21 on: May 08, 2010, 02:07:22 AM »

Christ is Risen!

The English and the Irish, the Welsh and the Scots, were Orthodox for nearly 1000 years.  Long before Singidunum adopted Orthodoxy we Irish were Christians -and ORTHODOX!  We did not use the term "Theotokos." Why should we adopt it now for our prayers? 

What's next?  I like the way that Greeks refer to the Mother of God as Panagitsa. but I am NOT going to start calling her that in English.
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« Reply #22 on: May 08, 2010, 02:15:22 AM »

Usually in place of theotokos parishes here use birthgiver of God.

That sounds so stale and cold. Who calls anyone a "birthgiver"?

Perhaps "God-bearer" might sound better in english?

I personally prefer saying "Theotokos".
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« Reply #23 on: May 08, 2010, 05:16:34 AM »

Usually in place of theotokos parishes here use birthgiver of God.

That sounds so stale and cold. Who calls anyone a "birthgiver"?
 

Baptized and chrismated Orthodox do everyday in English. Lest anyone forget not to judge the very church one seeks to sacramentally join.
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« Reply #24 on: May 08, 2010, 05:41:07 AM »

Usually in place of theotokos parishes here use birthgiver of God.

That sounds so stale and cold. Who calls anyone a "birthgiver"?
 

Baptized and chrismated Orthodox do everyday in English. Lest anyone forget not to judge the very church one seeks to sacramentally join.

There are a few idiocies in the English which has been artificially created for Orthodox worship.  Who can use Orlov''s text with a straight face.... "and the Saints vociferating unto the tri-une effulgence.

Now someone is trying to foist on the clergy of the Russian Church Abroad "the Very Most Reverend" as the title for higher hierarchs in the litanies.  It's so not English!  It make you think at once of the amusing titles which Gilbert and Sullivan created for their operettas.

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« Reply #25 on: May 08, 2010, 09:47:37 AM »

Usually in place of theotokos parishes here use birthgiver of God.

That sounds so stale and cold. Who calls anyone a "birthgiver"?

Perhaps "God-bearer" might sound better in english?

It does sound better, but it produces even more confusion when we consider the "God-bearing (Theophoric) Fathers."

Theotokos is fine. It's hardly the first time the English language has borrowed Greek words.
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« Reply #26 on: May 08, 2010, 10:27:15 PM »

I prefer to use English were I can but in most prayers Mother of God sounds odd so I tend to use Theotokos.
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« Reply #27 on: May 09, 2010, 01:36:52 AM »

I prefer to use English were I can but in most prayers Mother of God sounds odd so I tend to use Theotokos.
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For us oldies who have been used to 'Mother of God' all our lives it was very odd when first the OCA and then the Jordanville Prayerbook switched to 'Theotokos.'

English speakers in the UK and around the Commonwealth generally refused to change to 'Theotokos' andf continued to use the original printings of the Jordanville Prayerbook with 'Mother of God.'  This Prayerbook was photocopied and was also loving rebound when needed-I know that mine was.

Vladyka Mitropolit Laurus then gave his blessing for the original  'Mother of God' version to come back into print and we are very grateful for his kindness and solicitude. 
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« Reply #28 on: May 15, 2010, 06:11:38 PM »

Personally, in English I prefer "God-bearer" to "Mother of God". Of course when translating from the Latin one is more likely to be stuck with the latter phrase.
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« Reply #29 on: May 15, 2010, 06:57:01 PM »

I find the name Mother of God sufficiently satisfying. 
I hear the Gospel ring clearly in the name, Mother of God.
In the name Mother of God, God draws near to us.
The name Mother of God communicates that God is with us!
The name Mother of God communicates God is like us even as He is unlike us!

It poses and answers its own questions and frees the observant intellect to be born outside its own box...which so many talk about and so little do. 

John




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« Reply #30 on: May 15, 2010, 09:15:15 PM »

In Russian Churches in America, we call the priest's wife, "Matushka", not "Little Mother" or "Priest's Wife", so what is the problem with not translating Theotokos, especially since "Mother of God" is not a perfect translation?
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« Reply #31 on: January 12, 2011, 11:49:54 PM »

In Russian Churches in America, we call the priest's wife, "Matushka", not "Little Mother" or "Priest's Wife", so what is the problem with not translating Theotokos, especially since "Mother of God" is not a perfect translation?
I was looking for what is the Chinese for Theotokos, and this thread came up (my son has expressed a desire to learn Chinese).  I found 上帝之母 Mother of God, and 圣母 Holy Mother but is there something based on 生 or 生育 or 产 or 养, give birth/produce/yield etc?

Btw, skimming through some Chinese Orthodox texts, it seems that the Orthodox have retained  上 帝  for God, despite the ruling of the Vatican long ago about that being unacceptable
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_Rite_Controversy
am I reading that right?
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« Reply #32 on: January 13, 2011, 01:02:11 AM »

In Russian Churches in America, we call the priest's wife, "Matushka", not "Little Mother" or "Priest's Wife", so what is the problem with not translating Theotokos, especially since "Mother of God" is not a perfect translation?

Well, the English language doesn't have a longstanding conventional term for a priest's wife, which is why it is borrowed. English does, however, have a longstanding historical title for the Virgin Mary, and that is the Mother of God. When you don't translate it, English speakers immediately ask "What does that mean?" "Oh, it means God-birthgiver!" Give me a break. You tell people it means Mother of God, and you get on with things, because that's what it is in English.

Most Holy Mother of God save us!
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« Reply #33 on: January 13, 2011, 01:10:18 AM »

EDIT--Bad joke is bad, abort, abort...  angel
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« Reply #34 on: January 13, 2011, 01:14:37 AM »

Mother of God is, [Bogo Majka ]in serbian...or[ Majka Bozhija]........ laugh
                        [God's Mother ]         or    [ Mother Of God]
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« Reply #35 on: January 13, 2011, 01:49:02 AM »

In Russian Churches in America, we call the priest's wife, "Matushka", not "Little Mother" or "Priest's Wife", so what is the problem with not translating Theotokos, especially since "Mother of God" is not a perfect translation?

Well, the English language doesn't have a longstanding conventional term for a priest's wife, which is why it is borrowed. English does, however, have a longstanding historical title for the Virgin Mary, and that is the Mother of God.
Actually, no, it doesn't. The phrase doesn't appear in the Book of Common Prayer, which uses the longstanding historical title of Blessed Virgin. Before the BCP everything was in Latin, which had Mother of God and Theotokos as I pointed out about, which came out in English as "þe blissid virgine."

Since English has at least 4 centuries experience with priest's wives, and it has vicaress but vicar has fallen out of disuse in America.

Quote
When you don't translate it, English speakers immediately ask "What does that mean?" "Oh, it means God-birthgiver!" Give me a break.

Funny, no one asks me to translate telephone, television, theology, theologian, tocology or any number of Greek terms English uses every day.

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You tell people it means Mother of God, and you get on with things, because that's what it is in English.

Nestorius could say as much.

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Most Holy Mother of God save us!
Amen!
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« Reply #36 on: January 13, 2011, 01:53:58 AM »

Nestorius could say as much.

Nestorius would have said Mother of Christ and denied the use of Mother of God.
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« Reply #37 on: January 13, 2011, 02:09:41 AM »

Nestorius could say as much.

Nestorius would have said Mother of Christ and denied the use of Mother of God.

No, saying the adoptive Mother of God posed him no problem, confessing she gave birth to God did.
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« Reply #38 on: January 13, 2011, 02:57:20 AM »

No, saying the adoptive Mother of God posed him no problem, confessing she gave birth to God did.

I didn't say the Adoptive Mother of God, I said the Mother of God. Mothers give birth. You're really stretching it there.

Do you have a problem calling St. Joseph the Betrothed the Father of God?
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« Reply #39 on: January 13, 2011, 03:09:06 AM »

In Russian Churches in America, we call the priest's wife, "Matushka", not "Little Mother" or "Priest's Wife", so what is the problem with not translating Theotokos, especially since "Mother of God" is not a perfect translation?

Please see the first message in this thread by the Abbot of Old Forge.
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« Reply #40 on: January 13, 2011, 03:14:54 AM »

Never heard St . Joseph called Father of God ever, Only Guardian of the Infant Christ...or ..StepFather....But mostly Guardian...



No, saying the adoptive Mother of God posed him no problem, confessing she gave birth to God did.

I didn't say the Adoptive Mother of God, I said the Mother of God. Mothers give birth. You're really stretching it there.

Do you have a problem calling St. Joseph the Betrothed the Father of God?
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« Reply #41 on: January 13, 2011, 03:18:48 AM »

Never heard St . Josheph called Father of God ever, Only Guardian of the Infant Christ...or ..StepFather....But mostly Guardian...

I was making a point about his whole "adoptive" disclaimer.
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« Reply #42 on: January 13, 2011, 09:39:59 AM »

No, saying the adoptive Mother of God posed him no problem, confessing she gave birth to God did.

I didn't say the Adoptive Mother of God,

Neither did I. You capitalized the "A."

Quote
I said the Mother of God. Mothers give birth. You're really stretching it there.

No, just repeating what the Church as said in Aramaic, Syriac, Coptic, Greek, Slavonic, Latin etc., all of which use the general term for mother in "Mother of God," and the specific term that precludes an adoptive sense and mandates the sense which Nestorius denied.  "Mother of Christ" wasn't the title he got apopletic about.

It's a defiency the English should fix, and since English usually turns to Greek and Latin to fill in its lacunae, "Theotokos."

Quote
Do you have a problem calling St. Joseph the Betrothed the Father of God?

I hear him called the Foster Father of God all the time.
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« Reply #43 on: January 13, 2011, 09:52:03 AM »


It's a defiency the English should fix, and since English usually turns to Greek and Latin to fill in its lacunae, "Theotokos."

No! You are creating an artificial problem.  Please read message 21.
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« Reply #44 on: January 13, 2011, 11:12:06 AM »


It's a defiency the English should fix, and since English usually turns to Greek and Latin to fill in its lacunae, "Theotokos."

No! You are creating an artificial problem.  Please read message 21.

I agree with Father  and the author of the orignial posting on this one. As to the Slavic use of 'Bohorodice' and its dialectic variants within the Church Slavonic I have always found it interesting to note to the supporters of 'Theotokas' that when SS. Cyril and Methodius brought Christianity to the Slavs and introduced the Liturgy in a local tongue they used neither any of a number of common Latin honorifics for the Virgin Mary such as "Mariæ semper Virginis"nor the Greek "Theotokos". Clearly, they wanted to convey what Theotokos meant to the ears of the 'heathen' Slavs.  I believe that the literal translation of Bohorodice is in fact 'Birth Giver of God' as opposed to 'Mother of God' but I may be in error. In the devotional hymns of Ukrainians and Rusyns the term 'Maria, Mati Boze' may also be commonly heard although it is often interchanged with 'Bohorodice.'

Never the less, the use of 'Mother of God' in the context of Orthodox prayer clearly, to me at least, respectfully expresses her unique role in our Faith.

As to the "Matushka" argument, I think it works the other way for the long term. The Greeks use "Presvetera", the Ukrainians and Rusyns use "Pani" and so on. To one unfamiliar with the cultural lingo of a parish that is confusing, to say the least. I don't have an answer to that for the future, but I don't think it supports the argument of using a non-English based term.
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« Reply #45 on: January 13, 2011, 12:14:28 PM »

"Theotokos" is now widely used by Anglophone Orthodox. Generations have been brought up with it. It is an English word now. Problem solved.

Alternatively, we could say "Godbirther" but that just doesn't sound right to me.
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« Reply #46 on: January 13, 2011, 12:20:52 PM »

In Russian Churches in America, we call the priest's wife, "Matushka", not "Little Mother" or "Priest's Wife", so what is the problem with not translating Theotokos, especially since "Mother of God" is not a perfect translation?
I was looking for what is the Chinese for Theotokos, and this thread came up (my son has expressed a desire to learn Chinese).  I found 上帝之母 Mother of God, and 圣母 Holy Mother but is there something based on 生 or 生育 or 产 or 养, give birth/produce/yield etc?

Btw, skimming through some Chinese Orthodox texts, it seems that the Orthodox have retained  上 帝  for God, despite the ruling of the Vatican long ago about that being unacceptable
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_Rite_Controversy
am I reading that right?

I think the Latins wanted to get rid of Shangdi because of its pagan origins. Of course, the problem is, pretty much all of our words for God (e.g. "God", "Theos") have a pagan origin. As it is, when the average Chinese asks someone if he believes in God, in a general sense, he'll ask, "do you believe in Shangdi?" At least in my experience. Tianzhu is specifically Roman Catholic (Protestants also still use 上帝).
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« Reply #47 on: January 13, 2011, 01:10:43 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

However, I would argue that, for those who are looking to use an appropriate English phrase, you can't have accuracy and intimacy together; "Mother of God" is less accurate than "Birthgiver" and "God-bearer," but the latter two are not nearly as intimate.
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« Reply #48 on: January 13, 2011, 01:20:07 PM »

How "intimate" is Theotokos in Greek? Do Greek people introduce their mothers by saying, "allow me to introduce you to my tokos?" It seems to me the intimacy is not in the term, but in how it's used. "Mother of God" is not inherently "intimate"; frankly, it's a fearsome title: GOD'S Mother. The intimacy comes if we are filled with tender love for Mary, whether we call her Theotokos or Mother of God. What matters is the warmth or coldness of one's heart.
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« Reply #49 on: January 13, 2011, 01:27:38 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

Interestingly, the Romanians translated Theotokos as Nascatoare de Dumnezeu so "Birthgiver of God" isn't entirely unprecedented.
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« Reply #50 on: January 13, 2011, 02:24:25 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

Interestingly, the Romanians translated Theotokos as Nascatoare de Dumnezeu so "Birthgiver of God" isn't entirely unprecedented.

We could also make use of the more-and-more-quickly-becoming-unfashionable English genitive case, and say "God's Birthgiver".
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« Reply #51 on: January 13, 2011, 02:25:55 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

Interestingly, the Romanians translated Theotokos as Nascatoare de Dumnezeu so "Birthgiver of God" isn't entirely unprecedented.
Yeah, but "nascatoare" isn't a normal, everyday word, used in  other contexts, besides this. It's just that sufficient time has passed for it to no longer sound off.
The most common way Romanians refer to the Virgin is "Maica Domnului" or "The Lord's Mother".
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« Reply #52 on: January 13, 2011, 02:29:15 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

Interestingly, the Romanians translated Theotokos as Nascatoare de Dumnezeu so "Birthgiver of God" isn't entirely unprecedented.
Yeah, but "nascatoare" isn't a normal, everyday word, used in  other contexts, besides this. It's just that sufficient time has passed for it to no longer sound off.
The most common way Romanians refer to the Virgin is "Maica Domnului" or "The Lord's Mother".

Which, I think, is true of Bogoroditsa and Theotokos as well.

Iconodule is right that Theotokos is now basically just an English word, but I think it's worth noting that this is due to English's somewhat unique tendency to accumulate what one might call "etymologically obscure" words of foreign origin (this sentence being a case in point). Think of how we say "sanctification" instead of "holyfication" (or "hallowing"). Or even "Saint So-and-so" instead of "Holy So-and-so". English doesn't seem to have a problem with the fact that the meaning of many of its words is not immediately/superficially apparent, as is more often the case in other languages.
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« Reply #53 on: January 13, 2011, 03:07:54 PM »

If I may make a suggestion, perhaps once you are done hashing the Theotokos thing out, you can next move on to theosis, hesychasm, pascha, and so forth. I mean, really, what random English-speaking schlub off the street would have any idea what those words mean?  angel
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« Reply #54 on: January 13, 2011, 03:12:44 PM »

If I may make a suggestion, perhaps once you are done hashing the Theotokos thing out, you can next move on to theosis, hesychasm, pascha, and so forth. I mean, really, what random English-speaking schlub off the street would have any idea what those words mean?  angel

What English speaking schlub would know what Easter means? What Greek speaking schlub would know what Pascha means? Pascha is just a corruption of pesach; it's not Greek.
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« Reply #55 on: January 13, 2011, 03:19:02 PM »

If I may make a suggestion, perhaps once you are done hashing the Theotokos thing out, you can next move on to theosis, hesychasm, pascha, and so forth. I mean, really, what random English-speaking schlub off the street would have any idea what those words mean?  angel

What English speaking schlub would know what Easter means? What Greek speaking schlub would know what Pascha means? Pascha is just a corruption of pesach; it's not Greek.

Very good. We are making progress. Keep going. Don't stop until you've completely eliminated all unique theological terminology and dumbed down everything for mass consumption.
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« Reply #56 on: January 13, 2011, 03:34:35 PM »


It's a defiency the English should fix, and since English usually turns to Greek and Latin to fill in its lacunae, "Theotokos."

No! You are creating an artificial problem.  Please read message 21.
I did, Father, but the problem is that the English didn't use "Mother of God" either, at least I haven't seen it Old or Middle English (I don't know Irish, nor Irish usage).

Nothing heretical about calling her "Mother of God," but it doesn't translate (at least accurately) "Theotokos."

As for the original article "Theotokos is a beautiful word, but it is Greek. To insist that it be used
habitually for the blessed Virgin would be comparable to saying that we must not
call the Deity "God", but "Theos", or our Saviour "Christos" instead of
"Christ." No! Greek is Greek, and English is English."

He seems to be unaware that "Christ" (and "Bible," "angel," "bishop," etc.) is Greek, "Virgin" ( and "Scripture," "Saint," etc.) is Latin, etc.  Unless he wants to switch to "Smeared" ("anointed" is Old French), "book," (there is no Anglo-Saxon replecent of angel that I can think of), "overseer," "Maiden, "writings," "holy," etc..  Anglo-Saxon avoided non-English, calling the Cross "rod," a saint "holy," a patriarch "high father," the prophets "the wise ones," etc. The modern English do not share the purist tastes of their ancesters.  Such neologisms (itself Greek) as "chemotheraphy" seem to indicate that their appetite hasn't slacked, certainly not enough to not swallow "Theotokos.'

In German we have "Gottesgebärerin" (versus Muttergottes, Mutter Gottes or Gottesmutter), Swedish "Gudaföderska" (versus "Guds moder"), Norwegian (Bokmål/Nynorsk) Gudføderske/Gudefødar (versus "Guds mor"), Danish Gud-bærer/Gudføderske (versus "Guds Moder") (Danish, btw, can have the same problem as English with the translation confusion of Θεοτόκος with "Godbearer" ). Dutch uses "Theotokos," alongside "Godbaarster" (versus "Moeder van God"). I don't know about Friesian. None seem to find their equivalent to "Birthgiver" "barberous." Certainly not any more than "Birth mother," though some activists who in their own cause demean the role of adoptive mothers
http://www.exiledmothers.com/adoption_facts/Why_Birthmother_Means_Breeder.html
might disagree. On that, see the movie "The Ten Commandments," the scene where Moses confronts his (adopted) mother about his adoption, his last words before he leaves her.  Btw, besides Arabic, all those languages which use the equivalent to "Birthgiver of God," "certainly wouldn't say, "John, meet my birthgiver" either.  They use their equivalent (as Arabic would normally too) of "my mother."

Mother of God translates "Μήτηρ του Θεού," "Θεομήτωρ" and "Μητρόθεος." Not "Θεοτόκος." All four appear in patristic texts, so it comes down only to a matter of paraphrase versus translation. I happen to come down on the literal side of the dynamic/formal equivalence debate.

I must plead innocence as to making problems: the original article gives no indication of anyone "insist[ing] that it be used habitually for the blessed Virgin" when he rather dogmatically incorrectly states "that I say "Mother of God," but because such is the normal English for the title Theotokos," when that claim belongs to "Blessed Virgin," or "Our Lady," as indeed his slip in the quote shows.  "If we habitually use Theotokos," will "we...have to keep explaining to people what it means, since, outside of theology students, literate Orthodox or Greek-speakers it will not be understood"? Hardly. The English seem to have no problem from "electro-magnetic," "telekinesis" and hosts of other neologism entered into English-or created in English-from Greek since 1874. Btw, his date is off, it appears in English at least a little earlier, in the 1860's:
Quote
But you think that I have been unjust to myself in not stating what I do believe in regard to the Blessed Virgin, as well as what I do not believe, and that, had I so done, my book would have found less favour with Protestants9. Certainly, the last thing which I imagined was, that my book could find any thing but condemnation at the hands of those who were really Protestants; and if it has met with less disfavour than I expected, it is, I think, owing to the powerful spell which those words, "re-union of Christendom," must exercise over every Christian heart. My omission of any positive statements, in regard to the greatness of the Blessed Virgin, was partly owing, I suppose, to my not even imagining that any one could doubt my belief, since the doctrine expressed by that great title, Theotokos, is a matter of faith, an essential part of the doctrine of the Incarnation. Partly too my immediate subject was not her eminence, but the " invocation of saints,"—in what way I thought that the requests for the prayers of the saints would find entrance among us, and what held us back
First letter to the Very Rev. J. H. Newman, D.D.: In explanation chiefly in the reverentual love due to the Ever-Blessed Theotokos. 1869.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA21&dq=Theotokos&cd=2&id=J0kQAAAAIAAJ&as_brr=4#v=onepage&q&f=false
It seems that Card. Newman used it publically in England at least from 1866. My computer is acting up, so I can't research that further right now.

"Every language has its own evolution, its own genius." And a study of English will find the English expressing their genius a lot, ever since the Renaissance, in Greek, such that Modern English has evolved away from Anglo-Saxon aversion of Greek terms.  "A writer presents,untranslated, a lengthy list of Greek words called "Theotokonyms." Nice, but what does it prove? Only that Greek can form all sorts of compound words" It also proves, as any study of English vocabulary will tell you, that English borrows a lot of Greek, and forms even more compound of Greek words.  "English is remarkably expressive and has a huge vocabulary, but often it expresses by a phrase that which another language might express in a single word," e.g. "Birthgiver of God." English uses Greek to fulfill its needs. "This is not a fault, it is just the nature of the language." "When the church books were translated into Slavonic it was possible to form compounds that might not have existed previously, since the language was at a formative stage. But English is already a developed language, and it has its own idiom" and it continues to form compounds of Greek words in English (telephone, television, polychromatic, hoi polloi (which predates the term "Theotokos" in English at MOST by less than 30 years) etc.) and borrow more.

"So, we don't have a single word for chelovekoliubets?" actually, we do, "philanthropist," but that didn't appear in English until 1730 (Phillip Ludwell III, the first American Orthodox, converted in 1738, after translating the DL. I haven't seen how he translated the term in the DL) and has a different connotation in today English. "We can say Lover of mankind, He Who loveth man, the Friend of man, etc.," just like we say "Birthgiver of God." Or "Theotokos."

"For that matter "homoousios" is in the O.E.D.," but the O.E.D, IMHO, adbicated to Webster's (which IIRC also has "Theotokos," and "Theotokia") when it defined communism as "scientific materialism: the logical end of historical development" at the U.S.S.R's dictate.  "It is a theological term of vital importance, yet no one is contending that we ought to retain it in an English translation of the Creed. We say " of one essence" or "consubstantial", because that is English." No, they are Latin, and rather odd since "consubstantial" is itself a calque borrowing of Greek "homoousios."  

"I don't think that it is a good principle of literary translation to insist that every occurrence of a word of the original always be rendered by the same word
in the translation." Well it seems that he and I stand on opposing sides of the dymanic/formal equivalence fence.  "The translation must fit the context. So, sometimes we can say God's Mother, or Theotokos, while retaining "Mother of God" as the most familiar form of our Lady's title." Who is saying otherwise. Except, as the slip of his pen/lip shows, "Mother of God" isn't the most familiar form of address/reference to the Theotokos in English: "Blessed Virgin" or "Our Lady" is.  I personally don't use or care for either, but then, I make no bones about being Eastern, and not Western, Orthodox.

"the Latin word "Deipara" ...is an exact equivalent of Theotokos" Actually, Latin uses "Dei Genetrix," which shows it to is a borrowing (calque) from Greek.

The dear Abbot is entitled to his opinion "I think there is a place for the word Theotokos in English, as an alternate name for the Mother of God, particularly in such contexts as the hymn "It is truly meet,"" and even to say "the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English...should be Mother of God, because that's English, not Greek, Latin or Slavonic." But to say Mother of God "is....the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English" does not match reality.



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« Reply #57 on: January 13, 2011, 03:38:32 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

Interestingly, the Romanians translated Theotokos as Nascatoare de Dumnezeu so "Birthgiver of God" isn't entirely unprecedented.
Yeah, but "nascatoare" isn't a normal, everyday word, used in  other contexts, besides this. It's just that sufficient time has passed for it to no longer sound off.
The most common way Romanians refer to the Virgin is "Maica Domnului" or "The Lord's Mother".

Which, I think, is true of Bogoroditsa and Theotokos as well.

Iconodule is right that Theotokos is now basically just an English word, but I think it's worth noting that this is due to English's somewhat unique tendency to accumulate what one might call "etymologically obscure" words of foreign origin (this sentence being a case in point). Think of how we say "sanctification" instead of "holyfication" (or "hallowing"). Or even "Saint So-and-so" instead of "Holy So-and-so". English doesn't seem to have a problem with the fact that the meaning of many of its words is not immediately/superficially apparent, as is more often the case in other languages.
I came across this in comparing lexicography in various languages. English by far has the largest dictionairies and fullest definitions. Why? Because the words' meanings are not readily apparent, largely due to such heavy borrowing, including plural formations.
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« Reply #58 on: January 13, 2011, 03:42:12 PM »

If I may make a suggestion, perhaps once you are done hashing the Theotokos thing out, you can next move on to theosis, hesychasm, pascha, and so forth. I mean, really, what random English-speaking schlub off the street would have any idea what those words mean?  angel

What English speaking schlub would know what Easter means? What Greek speaking schlub would know what Pascha means? Pascha is just a corruption of pesach; it's not Greek.

Very good. We are making progress. Keep going. Don't stop until you've completely eliminated all unique theological terminology and dumbed down everything for mass consumption.

First off, I think you're attributing motives to my basically aimless comments that I do not have. Secondly, while we're on it, while not necessarily for consumption (in the modern capitalist sense), the Gospel is indeed for all, including the "masses" (demos).
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« Reply #59 on: January 13, 2011, 03:42:26 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

Interestingly, the Romanians translated Theotokos as Nascatoare de Dumnezeu so "Birthgiver of God" isn't entirely unprecedented.
Yeah, but "nascatoare" isn't a normal, everyday word, used in  other contexts, besides this. It's just that sufficient time has passed for it to no longer sound off.
The most common way Romanians refer to the Virgin is "Maica Domnului" or "The Lord's Mother".

Which, I think, is true of Bogoroditsa and Theotokos as well.

Iconodule is right that Theotokos is now basically just an English word, but I think it's worth noting that this is due to English's somewhat unique tendency to accumulate what one might call "etymologically obscure" words of foreign origin (this sentence being a case in point). Think of how we say "sanctification" instead of "holyfication" (or "hallowing"). Or even "Saint So-and-so" instead of "Holy So-and-so". English doesn't seem to have a problem with the fact that the meaning of many of its words is not immediately/superficially apparent, as is more often the case in other languages.

What is English?

Meanings are as meanings do.

The English were made to rub their faces in the dirt of so many masters over the ages we have a ton of loan words. Now that America controls the world, we gain loan words from every who grovels before those who speak American.

English should no longer be considered a language. The language of the world is American.

Can you imagine being Brazilian and being told you speak Portuguese?

How far do you want to go back in "English's" history to recover the true language? To the fantastical proto Indo-Germanic tongue spoken by the first primate to utter a word in the family of these languages?

By the way at least 32% of the words you used in your post without ""s are not Germanic kosher words.
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« Reply #60 on: January 13, 2011, 03:43:12 PM »

"Theotokos" is now widely used by Anglophone Orthodox. Generations have been brought up with it. It is an English word now. Problem solved.

Alternatively, we could say "Godbirther" but that just doesn't sound right to me.
LOL. The term "birther" in America might make that more acceptable in time.
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« Reply #61 on: January 13, 2011, 03:47:43 PM »


It's a defiency the English should fix, and since English usually turns to Greek and Latin to fill in its lacunae, "Theotokos."

No! You are creating an artificial problem.  Please read message 21.
I did, Father, but the problem is that the English didn't use "Mother of God" either, at least I haven't seen it Old or Middle English (I don't know Irish, nor Irish usage).

Nothing heretical about calling her "Mother of God," but it doesn't translate (at least accurately) "Theotokos."

As for the original article "Theotokos is a beautiful word, but it is Greek. To insist that it be used
habitually for the blessed Virgin would be comparable to saying that we must not
call the Deity "God", but "Theos", or our Saviour "Christos" instead of
"Christ." No! Greek is Greek, and English is English."

He seems to be unaware that "Christ" (and "Bible," "angel," "bishop," etc.) is Greek, "Virgin" ( and "Scripture," "Saint," etc.) is Latin, etc.  Unless he wants to switch to "Smeared" ("anointed" is Old French), "book," (there is no Anglo-Saxon replecent of angel that I can think of), "overseer," "Maiden, "writings," "holy," etc..  Anglo-Saxon avoided non-English, calling the Cross "rod," a saint "holy," a patriarch "high father," the prophets "the wise ones," etc. The modern English do not share the purist tastes of their ancesters.  Such neologisms (itself Greek) as "chemotheraphy" seem to indicate that their appetite hasn't slacked, certainly not enough to not swallow "Theotokos.'

In German we have "Gottesgebärerin" (versus Muttergottes, Mutter Gottes or Gottesmutter), Swedish "Gudaföderska" (versus "Guds moder"), Norwegian (Bokmål/Nynorsk) Gudføderske/Gudefødar (versus "Guds mor"), Danish Gud-bærer/Gudføderske (versus "Guds Moder") (Danish, btw, can have the same problem as English with the translation confusion of Θεοτόκος with "Godbearer" ). Dutch uses "Theotokos," alongside "Godbaarster" (versus "Moeder van God"). I don't know about Friesian. None seem to find their equivalent to "Birthgiver" "barberous." Certainly not any more than "Birth mother," though some activists who in their own cause demean the role of adoptive mothers
http://www.exiledmothers.com/adoption_facts/Why_Birthmother_Means_Breeder.html
might disagree. On that, see the movie "The Ten Commandments," the scene where Moses confronts his (adopted) mother about his adoption, his last words before he leaves her.  Btw, besides Arabic, all those languages which use the equivalent to "Birthgiver of God," "certainly wouldn't say, "John, meet my birthgiver" either.  They use their equivalent (as Arabic would normally too) of "my mother."

Mother of God translates "Μήτηρ του Θεού," "Θεομήτωρ" and "Μητρόθεος." Not "Θεοτόκος." All four appear in patristic texts, so it comes down only to a matter of paraphrase versus translation. I happen to come down on the literal side of the dynamic/formal equivalence debate.

I must plead innocence as to making problems: the original article gives no indication of anyone "insist[ing] that it be used habitually for the blessed Virgin" when he rather dogmatically incorrectly states "that I say "Mother of God," but because such is the normal English for the title Theotokos," when that claim belongs to "Blessed Virgin," or "Our Lady," as indeed his slip in the quote shows.  "If we habitually use Theotokos," will "we...have to keep explaining to people what it means, since, outside of theology students, literate Orthodox or Greek-speakers it will not be understood"? Hardly. The English seem to have no problem from "electro-magnetic," "telekinesis" and hosts of other neologism entered into English-or created in English-from Greek since 1874. Btw, his date is off, it appears in English at least a little earlier, in the 1860's:
Quote
But you think that I have been unjust to myself in not stating what I do believe in regard to the Blessed Virgin, as well as what I do not believe, and that, had I so done, my book would have found less favour with Protestants9. Certainly, the last thing which I imagined was, that my book could find any thing but condemnation at the hands of those who were really Protestants; and if it has met with less disfavour than I expected, it is, I think, owing to the powerful spell which those words, "re-union of Christendom," must exercise over every Christian heart. My omission of any positive statements, in regard to the greatness of the Blessed Virgin, was partly owing, I suppose, to my not even imagining that any one could doubt my belief, since the doctrine expressed by that great title, Theotokos, is a matter of faith, an essential part of the doctrine of the Incarnation. Partly too my immediate subject was not her eminence, but the " invocation of saints,"—in what way I thought that the requests for the prayers of the saints would find entrance among us, and what held us back
First letter to the Very Rev. J. H. Newman, D.D.: In explanation chiefly in the reverentual love due to the Ever-Blessed Theotokos. 1869.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA21&dq=Theotokos&cd=2&id=J0kQAAAAIAAJ&as_brr=4#v=onepage&q&f=false
It seems that Card. Newman used it publically in England at least from 1866. My computer is acting up, so I can't research that further right now.

"Every language has its own evolution, its own genius." And a study of English will find the English expressing their genius a lot, ever since the Renaissance, in Greek, such that Modern English has evolved away from Anglo-Saxon aversion of Greek terms.  "A writer presents,untranslated, a lengthy list of Greek words called "Theotokonyms." Nice, but what does it prove? Only that Greek can form all sorts of compound words" It also proves, as any study of English vocabulary will tell you, that English borrows a lot of Greek, and forms even more compound of Greek words.  "English is remarkably expressive and has a huge vocabulary, but often it expresses by a phrase that which another language might express in a single word," e.g. "Birthgiver of God." English uses Greek to fulfill its needs. "This is not a fault, it is just the nature of the language." "When the church books were translated into Slavonic it was possible to form compounds that might not have existed previously, since the language was at a formative stage. But English is already a developed language, and it has its own idiom" and it continues to form compounds of Greek words in English (telephone, television, polychromatic, hoi polloi (which predates the term "Theotokos" in English at MOST by less than 30 years) etc.) and borrow more.

"So, we don't have a single word for chelovekoliubets?" actually, we do, "philanthropist," but that didn't appear in English until 1730 (Phillip Ludwell III, the first American Orthodox, converted in 1738, after translating the DL. I haven't seen how he translated the term in the DL) and has a different connotation in today English. "We can say Lover of mankind, He Who loveth man, the Friend of man, etc.," just like we say "Birthgiver of God." Or "Theotokos."

"For that matter "homoousios" is in the O.E.D.," but the O.E.D, IMHO, adbicated to Webster's (which IIRC also has "Theotokos," and "Theotokia") when it defined communism as "scientific materialism: the logical end of historical development" at the U.S.S.R's dictate.  "It is a theological term of vital importance, yet no one is contending that we ought to retain it in an English translation of the Creed. We say " of one essence" or "consubstantial", because that is English." No, they are Latin, and rather odd since "consubstantial" is itself a calque borrowing of Greek "homoousios."  

"I don't think that it is a good principle of literary translation to insist that every occurrence of a word of the original always be rendered by the same word
in the translation." Well it seems that he and I stand on opposing sides of the dymanic/formal equivalence fence.  "The translation must fit the context. So, sometimes we can say God's Mother, or Theotokos, while retaining "Mother of God" as the most familiar form of our Lady's title." Who is saying otherwise. Except, as the slip of his pen/lip shows, "Mother of God" isn't the most familiar form of address/reference to the Theotokos in English: "Blessed Virgin" or "Our Lady" is.  I personally don't use or care for either, but then, I make no bones about being Eastern, and not Western, Orthodox.

"the Latin word "Deipara" ...is an exact equivalent of Theotokos" Actually, Latin uses "Dei Genetrix," which shows it to is a borrowing (calque) from Greek.

The dear Abbot is entitled to his opinion "I think there is a place for the word Theotokos in English, as an alternate name for the Mother of God, particularly in such contexts as the hymn "It is truly meet,"" and even to say "the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English...should be Mother of God, because that's English, not Greek, Latin or Slavonic." But to say Mother of God "is....the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English" does not match reality.





Serious question, no sarcasm. Who do you know so damn much?

At least from a language perspective. You have a rather remarkable grasp of many languages, if I only gauge by your use of the ones I am most familiar with. I can't speak to your prolific posts on Orthodox history, European, history, Orthodox theology, etc. I  
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« Reply #62 on: January 13, 2011, 03:55:43 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

Interestingly, the Romanians translated Theotokos as Nascatoare de Dumnezeu so "Birthgiver of God" isn't entirely unprecedented.
Yeah, but "nascatoare" isn't a normal, everyday word, used in  other contexts, besides this. It's just that sufficient time has passed for it to no longer sound off.
The most common way Romanians refer to the Virgin is "Maica Domnului" or "The Lord's Mother".

Which, I think, is true of Bogoroditsa and Theotokos as well.

Iconodule is right that Theotokos is now basically just an English word, but I think it's worth noting that this is due to English's somewhat unique tendency to accumulate what one might call "etymologically obscure" words of foreign origin (this sentence being a case in point). Think of how we say "sanctification" instead of "holyfication" (or "hallowing"). Or even "Saint So-and-so" instead of "Holy So-and-so". English doesn't seem to have a problem with the fact that the meaning of many of its words is not immediately/superficially apparent, as is more often the case in other languages.

What is English?

Meanings are as meanings do.

The English were made to rub their faces in the dirt of so many masters over the ages we have a ton of loan words. Now that America controls the world, we gain loan words from every who grovels before those who speak American.

English should no longer be considered a language. The language of the world is American.

Can you imagine being Brazilian and being told you speak Portuguese?

How far do you want to go back in "English's" history to recover the true language? To the fantastical proto Indo-Germanic tongue spoken by the first primate to utter a word in the family of these languages?

By the way at least 32% of the words you used in your post without ""s are not Germanic kosher words.

Again, what's with the assumptions about my attitude and desires? I'm not suggesting we "go back" at all. I'm just making observations about an interesting difference between English, and other languages.
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« Reply #63 on: January 13, 2011, 04:10:07 PM »

Ultimately, the question is whether "Theotokos" and "Mother of God" are synonyms. Two titles referring to the same person are not necessarily synonyms, and interestingly, in the original version of the Hymn "Axion Estin" ("Truly You Are Worthy"), both terms are used in the same verse:
"Truly you are worthy to be blessed, the Theotokos, The holy, blessed, and all-spotless, and Mother of Our God."
Even in Greek, the terms are considered different, and if "Theotokos" were translated as "Mother of God", the hymn would read:
"Truly you are worthy to be blessed, the Mother of God, the holy, blessed, and all-spotless, and Mother of Our God."

 
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« Reply #64 on: January 13, 2011, 04:10:55 PM »

First off, I think you're attributing motives to my basically aimless comments that I do not have. Secondly, while we're on it, while not necessarily for consumption (in the modern capitalist sense), the Gospel is indeed for all, including the "masses" (demos).

I'm not speaking of your motives. I was merely speaking about what I think the logical conclusion would be if some people were consistent in how they are dealing with the Theotokos/Mother of God/etc. stuff. Every religious group worth more than a wet shoe has a particular (and usually peculiar) theological language. And even when they don't have an especially unique theological language, there is still learning to do. I came across a Christian group the other day who had the motto: "We simply teach the Bible. Simply." or something like that. Maybe they "simply" use words like salvation and avoid words "confusing" words like soteriology, but the content they attach to the simple words will still be a unique blend of thoughts and interpretations, such that one cannot assume that "salvation" means the same to them that it means to a Roman Catholic or Orthodox Christian.
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« Reply #65 on: January 13, 2011, 04:12:33 PM »


It's a defiency the English should fix, and since English usually turns to Greek and Latin to fill in its lacunae, "Theotokos."

No! You are creating an artificial problem.  Please read message 21.
I did, Father, but the problem is that the English didn't use "Mother of God" either, at least I haven't seen it Old or Middle English (I don't know Irish, nor Irish usage).

Nothing heretical about calling her "Mother of God," but it doesn't translate (at least accurately) "Theotokos."

As for the original article "Theotokos is a beautiful word, but it is Greek. To insist that it be used
habitually for the blessed Virgin would be comparable to saying that we must not
call the Deity "God", but "Theos", or our Saviour "Christos" instead of
"Christ." No! Greek is Greek, and English is English."

He seems to be unaware that "Christ" (and "Bible," "angel," "bishop," etc.) is Greek, "Virgin" ( and "Scripture," "Saint," etc.) is Latin, etc.  Unless he wants to switch to "Smeared" ("anointed" is Old French), "book," (there is no Anglo-Saxon replecent of angel that I can think of), "overseer," "Maiden, "writings," "holy," etc..  Anglo-Saxon avoided non-English, calling the Cross "rod," a saint "holy," a patriarch "high father," the prophets "the wise ones," etc. The modern English do not share the purist tastes of their ancesters.  Such neologisms (itself Greek) as "chemotheraphy" seem to indicate that their appetite hasn't slacked, certainly not enough to not swallow "Theotokos.'

In German we have "Gottesgebärerin" (versus Muttergottes, Mutter Gottes or Gottesmutter), Swedish "Gudaföderska" (versus "Guds moder"), Norwegian (Bokmål/Nynorsk) Gudføderske/Gudefødar (versus "Guds mor"), Danish Gud-bærer/Gudføderske (versus "Guds Moder") (Danish, btw, can have the same problem as English with the translation confusion of Θεοτόκος with "Godbearer" ). Dutch uses "Theotokos," alongside "Godbaarster" (versus "Moeder van God"). I don't know about Friesian. None seem to find their equivalent to "Birthgiver" "barberous." Certainly not any more than "Birth mother," though some activists who in their own cause demean the role of adoptive mothers
http://www.exiledmothers.com/adoption_facts/Why_Birthmother_Means_Breeder.html
might disagree. On that, see the movie "The Ten Commandments," the scene where Moses confronts his (adopted) mother about his adoption, his last words before he leaves her.  Btw, besides Arabic, all those languages which use the equivalent to "Birthgiver of God," "certainly wouldn't say, "John, meet my birthgiver" either.  They use their equivalent (as Arabic would normally too) of "my mother."

Mother of God translates "Μήτηρ του Θεού," "Θεομήτωρ" and "Μητρόθεος." Not "Θεοτόκος." All four appear in patristic texts, so it comes down only to a matter of paraphrase versus translation. I happen to come down on the literal side of the dynamic/formal equivalence debate.

I must plead innocence as to making problems: the original article gives no indication of anyone "insist[ing] that it be used habitually for the blessed Virgin" when he rather dogmatically incorrectly states "that I say "Mother of God," but because such is the normal English for the title Theotokos," when that claim belongs to "Blessed Virgin," or "Our Lady," as indeed his slip in the quote shows.  "If we habitually use Theotokos," will "we...have to keep explaining to people what it means, since, outside of theology students, literate Orthodox or Greek-speakers it will not be understood"? Hardly. The English seem to have no problem from "electro-magnetic," "telekinesis" and hosts of other neologism entered into English-or created in English-from Greek since 1874. Btw, his date is off, it appears in English at least a little earlier, in the 1860's:
Quote
But you think that I have been unjust to myself in not stating what I do believe in regard to the Blessed Virgin, as well as what I do not believe, and that, had I so done, my book would have found less favour with Protestants9. Certainly, the last thing which I imagined was, that my book could find any thing but condemnation at the hands of those who were really Protestants; and if it has met with less disfavour than I expected, it is, I think, owing to the powerful spell which those words, "re-union of Christendom," must exercise over every Christian heart. My omission of any positive statements, in regard to the greatness of the Blessed Virgin, was partly owing, I suppose, to my not even imagining that any one could doubt my belief, since the doctrine expressed by that great title, Theotokos, is a matter of faith, an essential part of the doctrine of the Incarnation. Partly too my immediate subject was not her eminence, but the " invocation of saints,"—in what way I thought that the requests for the prayers of the saints would find entrance among us, and what held us back
First letter to the Very Rev. J. H. Newman, D.D.: In explanation chiefly in the reverentual love due to the Ever-Blessed Theotokos. 1869.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA21&dq=Theotokos&cd=2&id=J0kQAAAAIAAJ&as_brr=4#v=onepage&q&f=false
It seems that Card. Newman used it publically in England at least from 1866. My computer is acting up, so I can't research that further right now.

"Every language has its own evolution, its own genius." And a study of English will find the English expressing their genius a lot, ever since the Renaissance, in Greek, such that Modern English has evolved away from Anglo-Saxon aversion of Greek terms.  "A writer presents,untranslated, a lengthy list of Greek words called "Theotokonyms." Nice, but what does it prove? Only that Greek can form all sorts of compound words" It also proves, as any study of English vocabulary will tell you, that English borrows a lot of Greek, and forms even more compound of Greek words.  "English is remarkably expressive and has a huge vocabulary, but often it expresses by a phrase that which another language might express in a single word," e.g. "Birthgiver of God." English uses Greek to fulfill its needs. "This is not a fault, it is just the nature of the language." "When the church books were translated into Slavonic it was possible to form compounds that might not have existed previously, since the language was at a formative stage. But English is already a developed language, and it has its own idiom" and it continues to form compounds of Greek words in English (telephone, television, polychromatic, hoi polloi (which predates the term "Theotokos" in English at MOST by less than 30 years) etc.) and borrow more.

"So, we don't have a single word for chelovekoliubets?" actually, we do, "philanthropist," but that didn't appear in English until 1730 (Phillip Ludwell III, the first American Orthodox, converted in 1738, after translating the DL. I haven't seen how he translated the term in the DL) and has a different connotation in today English. "We can say Lover of mankind, He Who loveth man, the Friend of man, etc.," just like we say "Birthgiver of God." Or "Theotokos."

"For that matter "homoousios" is in the O.E.D.," but the O.E.D, IMHO, adbicated to Webster's (which IIRC also has "Theotokos," and "Theotokia") when it defined communism as "scientific materialism: the logical end of historical development" at the U.S.S.R's dictate.  "It is a theological term of vital importance, yet no one is contending that we ought to retain it in an English translation of the Creed. We say " of one essence" or "consubstantial", because that is English." No, they are Latin, and rather odd since "consubstantial" is itself a calque borrowing of Greek "homoousios."  

"I don't think that it is a good principle of literary translation to insist that every occurrence of a word of the original always be rendered by the same word
in the translation." Well it seems that he and I stand on opposing sides of the dymanic/formal equivalence fence.  "The translation must fit the context. So, sometimes we can say God's Mother, or Theotokos, while retaining "Mother of God" as the most familiar form of our Lady's title." Who is saying otherwise. Except, as the slip of his pen/lip shows, "Mother of God" isn't the most familiar form of address/reference to the Theotokos in English: "Blessed Virgin" or "Our Lady" is.  I personally don't use or care for either, but then, I make no bones about being Eastern, and not Western, Orthodox.

"the Latin word "Deipara" ...is an exact equivalent of Theotokos" Actually, Latin uses "Dei Genetrix," which shows it to is a borrowing (calque) from Greek.

The dear Abbot is entitled to his opinion "I think there is a place for the word Theotokos in English, as an alternate name for the Mother of God, particularly in such contexts as the hymn "It is truly meet,"" and even to say "the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English...should be Mother of God, because that's English, not Greek, Latin or Slavonic." But to say Mother of God "is....the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English" does not match reality.





Serious question, no sarcasm. Who do you know so damn much?

LOL. OCD.

The other day I was pleased to tell my son who just made first horn (although he is technically deaf. I still don't understand how he does it, and now he wants to learn Chinese, and can distinguish the tones) that I can't follow music at all:scales, diacrotic tone, etc. I don't get it.   I told him because he fears I know everything.

Quote
At least from a language perspective. You have a rather remarkable grasp of many languages, if I only gauge by your use of the ones I am most familiar with. I can't speak to your prolific posts on Orthodox history, European, history, Orthodox theology, etc. I  
God gave me a natural gift for languages, odd since I come from and married into (now out of) a family of engineers. Yet I can't follow mechanics, engineering, etc. at all. I just got a new cell phone and will spend no doubt several months (Lord willing, not more) learning the basics of working the thing.
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« Reply #66 on: January 13, 2011, 04:13:01 PM »

Personally, and not forcing my wishes on anyone else, I prefer the word of the fathers - Theotokos - to God-bearer (Theoforos), Mother of God (Mitir tou Theou), or Birthgiver.

Interestingly, the Romanians translated Theotokos as Nascatoare de Dumnezeu so "Birthgiver of God" isn't entirely unprecedented.
Yeah, but "nascatoare" isn't a normal, everyday word, used in  other contexts, besides this. It's just that sufficient time has passed for it to no longer sound off.
The most common way Romanians refer to the Virgin is "Maica Domnului" or "The Lord's Mother".

Which, I think, is true of Bogoroditsa and Theotokos as well.

Iconodule is right that Theotokos is now basically just an English word, but I think it's worth noting that this is due to English's somewhat unique tendency to accumulate what one might call "etymologically obscure" words of foreign origin (this sentence being a case in point). Think of how we say "sanctification" instead of "holyfication" (or "hallowing"). Or even "Saint So-and-so" instead of "Holy So-and-so". English doesn't seem to have a problem with the fact that the meaning of many of its words is not immediately/superficially apparent, as is more often the case in other languages.

What is English?

Meanings are as meanings do.

The English were made to rub their faces in the dirt of so many masters over the ages we have a ton of loan words. Now that America controls the world, we gain loan words from every who grovels before those who speak American.

English should no longer be considered a language. The language of the world is American.

Can you imagine being Brazilian and being told you speak Portuguese?

How far do you want to go back in "English's" history to recover the true language? To the fantastical proto Indo-Germanic tongue spoken by the first primate to utter a word in the family of these languages?

By the way at least 32% of the words you used in your post without ""s are not Germanic kosher words.

Again, what's with the assumptions about my attitude and desires? I'm not suggesting we "go back" at all. I'm just making observations about an interesting difference between English, and other languages.

I said nothing about your attitude. You did not answer my first question though. If you want to make "interesting" observation between any two things or among more than two, you need to define at least one of them.

Of course my point is that language is porous and that labeling words "foreign" which native speakers of a language use is silly. It much like someone raised on the Grammars of English modeled on Latin to correct how ME and my friends talk.

Language is as language does.

And English is not "unique" in the way you describe. All languages pick up loan words. English as mentioned just had the pleasure of being ruled by a variety of folks who spoke different languages. England then became the Empire of the World and pulled loan words via trade and colonization. America took England's place and allowed the world to pour in bringing many words with it. The early development of the written language, its quick standardization relative to other Indo-Germanic tongues, and the widespread literacy of Americans before most other Indo-Germanic peoples also account for the broad lexicon.

And our open mindedness toward "foreign" words.

American is a wonderful tongue.
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« Reply #67 on: January 13, 2011, 04:17:37 PM »


It's a defiency the English should fix, and since English usually turns to Greek and Latin to fill in its lacunae, "Theotokos."

No! You are creating an artificial problem.  Please read message 21.
I did, Father, but the problem is that the English didn't use "Mother of God" either, at least I haven't seen it Old or Middle English (I don't know Irish, nor Irish usage).

Nothing heretical about calling her "Mother of God," but it doesn't translate (at least accurately) "Theotokos."

As for the original article "Theotokos is a beautiful word, but it is Greek. To insist that it be used
habitually for the blessed Virgin would be comparable to saying that we must not
call the Deity "God", but "Theos", or our Saviour "Christos" instead of
"Christ." No! Greek is Greek, and English is English."

He seems to be unaware that "Christ" (and "Bible," "angel," "bishop," etc.) is Greek, "Virgin" ( and "Scripture," "Saint," etc.) is Latin, etc.  Unless he wants to switch to "Smeared" ("anointed" is Old French), "book," (there is no Anglo-Saxon replecent of angel that I can think of), "overseer," "Maiden, "writings," "holy," etc..  Anglo-Saxon avoided non-English, calling the Cross "rod," a saint "holy," a patriarch "high father," the prophets "the wise ones," etc. The modern English do not share the purist tastes of their ancesters.  Such neologisms (itself Greek) as "chemotheraphy" seem to indicate that their appetite hasn't slacked, certainly not enough to not swallow "Theotokos.'

In German we have "Gottesgebärerin" (versus Muttergottes, Mutter Gottes or Gottesmutter), Swedish "Gudaföderska" (versus "Guds moder"), Norwegian (Bokmål/Nynorsk) Gudføderske/Gudefødar (versus "Guds mor"), Danish Gud-bærer/Gudføderske (versus "Guds Moder") (Danish, btw, can have the same problem as English with the translation confusion of Θεοτόκος with "Godbearer" ). Dutch uses "Theotokos," alongside "Godbaarster" (versus "Moeder van God"). I don't know about Friesian. None seem to find their equivalent to "Birthgiver" "barberous." Certainly not any more than "Birth mother," though some activists who in their own cause demean the role of adoptive mothers
http://www.exiledmothers.com/adoption_facts/Why_Birthmother_Means_Breeder.html
might disagree. On that, see the movie "The Ten Commandments," the scene where Moses confronts his (adopted) mother about his adoption, his last words before he leaves her.  Btw, besides Arabic, all those languages which use the equivalent to "Birthgiver of God," "certainly wouldn't say, "John, meet my birthgiver" either.  They use their equivalent (as Arabic would normally too) of "my mother."

Mother of God translates "Μήτηρ του Θεού," "Θεομήτωρ" and "Μητρόθεος." Not "Θεοτόκος." All four appear in patristic texts, so it comes down only to a matter of paraphrase versus translation. I happen to come down on the literal side of the dynamic/formal equivalence debate.

I must plead innocence as to making problems: the original article gives no indication of anyone "insist[ing] that it be used habitually for the blessed Virgin" when he rather dogmatically incorrectly states "that I say "Mother of God," but because such is the normal English for the title Theotokos," when that claim belongs to "Blessed Virgin," or "Our Lady," as indeed his slip in the quote shows.  "If we habitually use Theotokos," will "we...have to keep explaining to people what it means, since, outside of theology students, literate Orthodox or Greek-speakers it will not be understood"? Hardly. The English seem to have no problem from "electro-magnetic," "telekinesis" and hosts of other neologism entered into English-or created in English-from Greek since 1874. Btw, his date is off, it appears in English at least a little earlier, in the 1860's:
Quote
But you think that I have been unjust to myself in not stating what I do believe in regard to the Blessed Virgin, as well as what I do not believe, and that, had I so done, my book would have found less favour with Protestants9. Certainly, the last thing which I imagined was, that my book could find any thing but condemnation at the hands of those who were really Protestants; and if it has met with less disfavour than I expected, it is, I think, owing to the powerful spell which those words, "re-union of Christendom," must exercise over every Christian heart. My omission of any positive statements, in regard to the greatness of the Blessed Virgin, was partly owing, I suppose, to my not even imagining that any one could doubt my belief, since the doctrine expressed by that great title, Theotokos, is a matter of faith, an essential part of the doctrine of the Incarnation. Partly too my immediate subject was not her eminence, but the " invocation of saints,"—in what way I thought that the requests for the prayers of the saints would find entrance among us, and what held us back
First letter to the Very Rev. J. H. Newman, D.D.: In explanation chiefly in the reverentual love due to the Ever-Blessed Theotokos. 1869.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA21&dq=Theotokos&cd=2&id=J0kQAAAAIAAJ&as_brr=4#v=onepage&q&f=false
It seems that Card. Newman used it publically in England at least from 1866. My computer is acting up, so I can't research that further right now.

"Every language has its own evolution, its own genius." And a study of English will find the English expressing their genius a lot, ever since the Renaissance, in Greek, such that Modern English has evolved away from Anglo-Saxon aversion of Greek terms.  "A writer presents,untranslated, a lengthy list of Greek words called "Theotokonyms." Nice, but what does it prove? Only that Greek can form all sorts of compound words" It also proves, as any study of English vocabulary will tell you, that English borrows a lot of Greek, and forms even more compound of Greek words.  "English is remarkably expressive and has a huge vocabulary, but often it expresses by a phrase that which another language might express in a single word," e.g. "Birthgiver of God." English uses Greek to fulfill its needs. "This is not a fault, it is just the nature of the language." "When the church books were translated into Slavonic it was possible to form compounds that might not have existed previously, since the language was at a formative stage. But English is already a developed language, and it has its own idiom" and it continues to form compounds of Greek words in English (telephone, television, polychromatic, hoi polloi (which predates the term "Theotokos" in English at MOST by less than 30 years) etc.) and borrow more.

"So, we don't have a single word for chelovekoliubets?" actually, we do, "philanthropist," but that didn't appear in English until 1730 (Phillip Ludwell III, the first American Orthodox, converted in 1738, after translating the DL. I haven't seen how he translated the term in the DL) and has a different connotation in today English. "We can say Lover of mankind, He Who loveth man, the Friend of man, etc.," just like we say "Birthgiver of God." Or "Theotokos."

"For that matter "homoousios" is in the O.E.D.," but the O.E.D, IMHO, adbicated to Webster's (which IIRC also has "Theotokos," and "Theotokia") when it defined communism as "scientific materialism: the logical end of historical development" at the U.S.S.R's dictate.  "It is a theological term of vital importance, yet no one is contending that we ought to retain it in an English translation of the Creed. We say " of one essence" or "consubstantial", because that is English." No, they are Latin, and rather odd since "consubstantial" is itself a calque borrowing of Greek "homoousios."  

"I don't think that it is a good principle of literary translation to insist that every occurrence of a word of the original always be rendered by the same word
in the translation." Well it seems that he and I stand on opposing sides of the dymanic/formal equivalence fence.  "The translation must fit the context. So, sometimes we can say God's Mother, or Theotokos, while retaining "Mother of God" as the most familiar form of our Lady's title." Who is saying otherwise. Except, as the slip of his pen/lip shows, "Mother of God" isn't the most familiar form of address/reference to the Theotokos in English: "Blessed Virgin" or "Our Lady" is.  I personally don't use or care for either, but then, I make no bones about being Eastern, and not Western, Orthodox.

"the Latin word "Deipara" ...is an exact equivalent of Theotokos" Actually, Latin uses "Dei Genetrix," which shows it to is a borrowing (calque) from Greek.

The dear Abbot is entitled to his opinion "I think there is a place for the word Theotokos in English, as an alternate name for the Mother of God, particularly in such contexts as the hymn "It is truly meet,"" and even to say "the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English...should be Mother of God, because that's English, not Greek, Latin or Slavonic." But to say Mother of God "is....the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English" does not match reality.





Serious question, no sarcasm. Who do you know so damn much?

LOL. OCD.

The other day I was pleased to tell my son who just made first horn (although he is technically deaf. I still don't understand how he does it, and now he wants to learn Chinese, and can distinguish the tones) that I can't follow music at all:scales, diacrotic tone, etc. I don't get it.   I told him because he fears I know everything.

Quote
At least from a language perspective. You have a rather remarkable grasp of many languages, if I only gauge by your use of the ones I am most familiar with. I can't speak to your prolific posts on Orthodox history, European, history, Orthodox theology, etc. I  
God gave me a natural gift for languages, odd since I come from and married into (now out of) a family of engineers. Yet I can't follow mechanics, engineering, etc. at all. I just got a new cell phone and will spend no doubt several months (Lord willing, not more) learning the basics of working the thing.

Congratulations on your son's incredible accomplishments. I know of very good promising fiddler who recently decided to not go to conservatory and on a whim took the USAF language aptitude test. He scored through the roof. So he is spending the next couple of years learning Mandarin and Arabic. Even at 18, he still had the ability to both hear and mimic the tonal aspect of Mandarin.

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« Reply #68 on: January 13, 2011, 04:53:19 PM »

How "intimate" is Theotokos in Greek? Do Greek people introduce their mothers by saying, "allow me to introduce you to my tokos?" It seems to me the intimacy is not in the term, but in how it's used. "Mother of God" is not inherently "intimate"; frankly, it's a fearsome title: GOD'S Mother. The intimacy comes if we are filled with tender love for Mary, whether we call her Theotokos or Mother of God. What matters is the warmth or coldness of one's heart.

I personally don't care about the intimacy factor one way or another; but it was a concern brought up by others in the context of this discussion.
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« Reply #69 on: January 13, 2011, 04:57:58 PM »

Ultimately, the question is whether "Theotokos" and "Mother of God" are synonyms. Two titles referring to the same person are not necessarily synonyms, and interestingly, in the original version of the Hymn "Axion Estin" ("Truly You Are Worthy"), both terms are used in the same verse:
"Truly you are worthy to be blessed, the Theotokos, The holy, blessed, and all-spotless, and Mother of Our God."
Even in Greek, the terms are considered different, and if "Theotokos" were translated as "Mother of God", the hymn would read:
"Truly you are worthy to be blessed, the Mother of God, the holy, blessed, and all-spotless, and Mother of Our God."

Thank you for bringing this up.
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« Reply #70 on: January 13, 2011, 05:25:19 PM »

Congratulations on your son's incredible accomplishments.

Thanks. I'm quite proud (though I can't say that too often "don't embarras me").

Quote
I know of very good promising fiddler who recently decided to not go to conservatory and on a whim took the USAF language aptitude test. He scored through the roof. So he is spending the next couple of years learning Mandarin and Arabic. Even at 18, he still had the ability to both hear and mimic the tonal aspect of Mandarin.
LOL. So, a masochist.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2011, 05:25:41 PM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #71 on: January 13, 2011, 05:42:42 PM »

Ultimately, the question is whether "Theotokos" and "Mother of God" are synonyms. Two titles referring to the same person are not necessarily synonyms, and interestingly, in the original version of the Hymn "Axion Estin" ("Truly You Are Worthy"), both terms are used in the same verse:
"Truly you are worthy to be blessed, the Theotokos, The holy, blessed, and all-spotless, and Mother of Our God."
Even in Greek, the terms are considered different, and if "Theotokos" were translated as "Mother of God", the hymn would read:
"Truly you are worthy to be blessed, the Mother of God, the holy, blessed, and all-spotless, and Mother of Our God."

Thank you for bringing this up.

Yes, thanks.  A quick check through a couple texts found the same distinction in all of them, although the Romanian says "Dear little Mother of Our God" (Maica Dumnezeului nostru).


Btw, the British refer to "the Pond" between themselves and us in the States. What do they call in Australia/New Zealand what seperates us (the body of water, that is).
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« Reply #72 on: January 13, 2011, 05:50:58 PM »

"Maica" in Romanian, despite its etymology, has lost any diminutive connotations. It is just a more antiquated (and churchy) form of saying "mama" (mother).
"Maicuta" would be "dear little mother", but that never appears in liturgical texts proper, only in carols and para-liturgical songs.
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« Reply #73 on: January 13, 2011, 06:11:21 PM »


It's a defiency the English should fix, and since English usually turns to Greek and Latin to fill in its lacunae, "Theotokos."

No! You are creating an artificial problem.  Please read message 21.
I did, Father, but the problem is that the English didn't use "Mother of God" either, at least I haven't seen it Old or Middle English (I don't know Irish, nor Irish usage).

Nothing heretical about calling her "Mother of God," but it doesn't translate (at least accurately) "Theotokos."

As for the original article "Theotokos is a beautiful word, but it is Greek. To insist that it be used
habitually for the blessed Virgin would be comparable to saying that we must not
call the Deity "God", but "Theos", or our Saviour "Christos" instead of
"Christ." No! Greek is Greek, and English is English."

He seems to be unaware that "Christ" (and "Bible," "angel," "bishop," etc.) is Greek, "Virgin" ( and "Scripture," "Saint," etc.) is Latin, etc.  Unless he wants to switch to "Smeared" ("anointed" is Old French), "book," (there is no Anglo-Saxon replecent of angel that I can think of), "overseer," "Maiden, "writings," "holy," etc..  Anglo-Saxon avoided non-English, calling the Cross "rod," a saint "holy," a patriarch "high father," the prophets "the wise ones," etc. The modern English do not share the purist tastes of their ancesters.  Such neologisms (itself Greek) as "chemotheraphy" seem to indicate that their appetite hasn't slacked, certainly not enough to not swallow "Theotokos.'

In German we have "Gottesgebärerin" (versus Muttergottes, Mutter Gottes or Gottesmutter), Swedish "Gudaföderska" (versus "Guds moder"), Norwegian (Bokmål/Nynorsk) Gudføderske/Gudefødar (versus "Guds mor"), Danish Gud-bærer/Gudføderske (versus "Guds Moder") (Danish, btw, can have the same problem as English with the translation confusion of Θεοτόκος with "Godbearer" ). Dutch uses "Theotokos," alongside "Godbaarster" (versus "Moeder van God"). I don't know about Friesian. None seem to find their equivalent to "Birthgiver" "barberous." Certainly not any more than "Birth mother," though some activists who in their own cause demean the role of adoptive mothers
http://www.exiledmothers.com/adoption_facts/Why_Birthmother_Means_Breeder.html
might disagree. On that, see the movie "The Ten Commandments," the scene where Moses confronts his (adopted) mother about his adoption, his last words before he leaves her.  Btw, besides Arabic, all those languages which use the equivalent to "Birthgiver of God," "certainly wouldn't say, "John, meet my birthgiver" either.  They use their equivalent (as Arabic would normally too) of "my mother."

Mother of God translates "Μήτηρ του Θεού," "Θεομήτωρ" and "Μητρόθεος." Not "Θεοτόκος." All four appear in patristic texts, so it comes down only to a matter of paraphrase versus translation. I happen to come down on the literal side of the dynamic/formal equivalence debate.

I must plead innocence as to making problems: the original article gives no indication of anyone "insist[ing] that it be used habitually for the blessed Virgin" when he rather dogmatically incorrectly states "that I say "Mother of God," but because such is the normal English for the title Theotokos," when that claim belongs to "Blessed Virgin," or "Our Lady," as indeed his slip in the quote shows.  "If we habitually use Theotokos," will "we...have to keep explaining to people what it means, since, outside of theology students, literate Orthodox or Greek-speakers it will not be understood"? Hardly. The English seem to have no problem from "electro-magnetic," "telekinesis" and hosts of other neologism entered into English-or created in English-from Greek since 1874. Btw, his date is off, it appears in English at least a little earlier, in the 1860's:
Quote
But you think that I have been unjust to myself in not stating what I do believe in regard to the Blessed Virgin, as well as what I do not believe, and that, had I so done, my book would have found less favour with Protestants9. Certainly, the last thing which I imagined was, that my book could find any thing but condemnation at the hands of those who were really Protestants; and if it has met with less disfavour than I expected, it is, I think, owing to the powerful spell which those words, "re-union of Christendom," must exercise over every Christian heart. My omission of any positive statements, in regard to the greatness of the Blessed Virgin, was partly owing, I suppose, to my not even imagining that any one could doubt my belief, since the doctrine expressed by that great title, Theotokos, is a matter of faith, an essential part of the doctrine of the Incarnation. Partly too my immediate subject was not her eminence, but the " invocation of saints,"—in what way I thought that the requests for the prayers of the saints would find entrance among us, and what held us back
First letter to the Very Rev. J. H. Newman, D.D.: In explanation chiefly in the reverentual love due to the Ever-Blessed Theotokos. 1869.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA21&dq=Theotokos&cd=2&id=J0kQAAAAIAAJ&as_brr=4#v=onepage&q&f=false
It seems that Card. Newman used it publically in England at least from 1866. My computer is acting up, so I can't research that further right now.

"Every language has its own evolution, its own genius." And a study of English will find the English expressing their genius a lot, ever since the Renaissance, in Greek, such that Modern English has evolved away from Anglo-Saxon aversion of Greek terms.  "A writer presents,untranslated, a lengthy list of Greek words called "Theotokonyms." Nice, but what does it prove? Only that Greek can form all sorts of compound words" It also proves, as any study of English vocabulary will tell you, that English borrows a lot of Greek, and forms even more compound of Greek words.  "English is remarkably expressive and has a huge vocabulary, but often it expresses by a phrase that which another language might express in a single word," e.g. "Birthgiver of God." English uses Greek to fulfill its needs. "This is not a fault, it is just the nature of the language." "When the church books were translated into Slavonic it was possible to form compounds that might not have existed previously, since the language was at a formative stage. But English is already a developed language, and it has its own idiom" and it continues to form compounds of Greek words in English (telephone, television, polychromatic, hoi polloi (which predates the term "Theotokos" in English at MOST by less than 30 years) etc.) and borrow more.

"So, we don't have a single word for chelovekoliubets?" actually, we do, "philanthropist," but that didn't appear in English until 1730 (Phillip Ludwell III, the first American Orthodox, converted in 1738, after translating the DL. I haven't seen how he translated the term in the DL) and has a different connotation in today English. "We can say Lover of mankind, He Who loveth man, the Friend of man, etc.," just like we say "Birthgiver of God." Or "Theotokos."

"For that matter "homoousios" is in the O.E.D.," but the O.E.D, IMHO, adbicated to Webster's (which IIRC also has "Theotokos," and "Theotokia") when it defined communism as "scientific materialism: the logical end of historical development" at the U.S.S.R's dictate.  "It is a theological term of vital importance, yet no one is contending that we ought to retain it in an English translation of the Creed. We say " of one essence" or "consubstantial", because that is English." No, they are Latin, and rather odd since "consubstantial" is itself a calque borrowing of Greek "homoousios."  

"I don't think that it is a good principle of literary translation to insist that every occurrence of a word of the original always be rendered by the same word
in the translation." Well it seems that he and I stand on opposing sides of the dymanic/formal equivalence fence.  "The translation must fit the context. So, sometimes we can say God's Mother, or Theotokos, while retaining "Mother of God" as the most familiar form of our Lady's title." Who is saying otherwise. Except, as the slip of his pen/lip shows, "Mother of God" isn't the most familiar form of address/reference to the Theotokos in English: "Blessed Virgin" or "Our Lady" is.  I personally don't use or care for either, but then, I make no bones about being Eastern, and not Western, Orthodox.

"the Latin word "Deipara" ...is an exact equivalent of Theotokos" Actually, Latin uses "Dei Genetrix," which shows it to is a borrowing (calque) from Greek.

The dear Abbot is entitled to his opinion "I think there is a place for the word Theotokos in English, as an alternate name for the Mother of God, particularly in such contexts as the hymn "It is truly meet,"" and even to say "the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English...should be Mother of God, because that's English, not Greek, Latin or Slavonic." But to say Mother of God "is....the normal, usual, common, frequent word in English" does not match reality.





Thank you for posting this as it was very insightful and interesting. If one is reverential in tone, it seems that there really is not a 'correct' answer  but rather a matter of preference or custom. As English is ever-evolving and adaptive we will just have to let the language evolve and solve the question for us.
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« Reply #74 on: January 13, 2011, 07:39:23 PM »

ME

Then me will refrain from correcting you grammar.

Quote
Of course my point is that language is porous and that labeling words "foreign" which native speakers of a language use is silly.

If I give you a list of words:

1 Taco
2 Theotokos
3 Mother
4 Tooth

and you cannot see that one possible division of this list would have 1 and 2 in one group, and 3 and 4 in another group, well...

That is what "foreign" means the way I used it. It's pretty obvious, and it's not silly.
Quote
And English is not "unique" in the way you describe. All languages pick up loan words.

Not Icelandic.

And by the way, 'English', whether American, British, Australian, etc., is the commonly accepted name of the language that originated in England, which is spoken by people all over the world. It's just a word. Language, dialect, foreign, native - all these words mean a variety of things, and that's okay. I'll stop referring to it as English when I can't readily understand someone from England. As it stands, we speak the same language.
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« Reply #75 on: January 13, 2011, 08:34:09 PM »

how bout MoM im addicted to pachomius so i throw theotokos out there quite abit
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« Reply #76 on: January 13, 2011, 11:08:22 PM »

In the 1000 years when Ireland and England and Spain and France were
Orthodox, the Orthodox of those nations did not feel that they had to do
violence to their languages and introduce the awkward term "Theotokos."   It
is something imported into American English over the last few decades.

Fr Aidan of Austin informs us that in all the Orthodox literature, secular,
theological, liturgical, homiletical, of Orthodox England, from the first
centuries to the Schism,  the word Theotokos occurs just... once - in a rather
questionable semi-magical prayer.

If we did not have Theotokos in Orthodox English for 1000 years, I daresay we
can manage without it until Doomsday comes around.

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« Reply #77 on: January 13, 2011, 11:56:12 PM »

In the ROCOR parish I attend, when they use English, they translate Theotokos as Birthgiver of God. 

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« Reply #78 on: January 14, 2011, 12:16:00 AM »

In the 1000 years when Ireland and England and Spain and France were
Orthodox, the Orthodox of those nations did not feel that they had to do
violence to their languages and introduce the awkward term "Theotokos."   It
is something imported into American English over the last few decades.

Fr Aidan of Austin informs us that in all the Orthodox literature, secular,
theological, liturgical, homiletical, of Orthodox England, from the first
centuries to the Schism,  the word Theotokos occurs just... once - in a rather
questionable semi-magical prayer.

If we did not have Theotokos in Orthodox English for 1000 years, I daresay we
can manage without it until Doomsday comes around.



Forgive me, Father, but I see two problems with that statement:

1) The Angles and Saxons wouldn't have had time to be Orthodox for most of those 1000 years, being latecomers to an already Christian Britannia.  St Augustine of Canterbury didn't get around to evangelizing them until late in the 6th century, leaving them 5-600 years of Orthodox England.

2) Given that pretty much any reference material we would have from Orthodox England would be ecclesiastic (written Old English appearing around the time of the schism), it would seem readily apparent that any references to the Theotokos would be in Latin and thus using the Roman Mater Dei.

The fact of the matter is you're not going to see Orthodox England using any "English" term for "Theotokos".

That is all I really have to contribute to this fascinating debate.  FWIW, I prefer "Theotokos" mainly because it's what's in the prayerbooks I have used and the Liturgies I have attended, and so it is what I am used to. 
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« Reply #79 on: January 14, 2011, 01:14:04 AM »

In the 1000 years when Ireland and England and Spain and France were
Orthodox, the Orthodox of those nations did not feel that they had to do
violence to their languages and introduce the awkward term "Theotokos."   It
is something imported into American English over the last few decades.

Fr Aidan of Austin informs us that in all the Orthodox literature, secular,
theological, liturgical, homiletical, of Orthodox England, from the first
centuries to the Schism,  the word Theotokos occurs just... once - in a rather
questionable semi-magical prayer.

If we did not have Theotokos in Orthodox English for 1000 years, I daresay we
can manage without it until Doomsday comes around.

:

Forgive me, Father, but I see two problems with that statement:

I was loosely bundling together all of Western Europe: Ireland, England, France, Spain...
Quote

1) The Angles and Saxons wouldn't have had time to be Orthodox for most of those 1000 years, being latecomers to an already Christian Britannia.  St Augustine of Canterbury didn't get around to evangelizing them until late in the 6th century, leaving them 5-600 years of Orthodox England.

All the more surprising then that Augustine did not bring into England the official term from the Council of Ephesus, Theotokos.

Neither did Patrick and the other missionary bishops take it into Ireland.

Nor did David, familiar with worship in Jerusalem, take it into Wales.
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« Reply #80 on: January 14, 2011, 02:33:19 AM »

In the 1000 years when Ireland and England and Spain and France were
Orthodox, the Orthodox of those nations did not feel that they had to do
violence to their languages and introduce the awkward term "Theotokos."   It
is something imported into American English over the last few decades.

Fr Aidan of Austin informs us that in all the Orthodox literature, secular,
theological, liturgical, homiletical, of Orthodox England, from the first
centuries to the Schism,  the word Theotokos occurs just... once - in a rather
questionable semi-magical prayer.

If we did not have Theotokos in Orthodox English for 1000 years, I daresay we
can manage without it until Doomsday comes around.

:

Forgive me, Father, but I see two problems with that statement:

I was loosely bundling together all of Western Europe: Ireland, England, France, Spain...
Quote

1) The Angles and Saxons wouldn't have had time to be Orthodox for most of those 1000 years, being latecomers to an already Christian Britannia.  St Augustine of Canterbury didn't get around to evangelizing them until late in the 6th century, leaving them 5-600 years of Orthodox England.

All the more surprising then that Augustine did not bring into England the official term from the Council of Ephesus, Theotokos.

Neither did Patrick and the other missionary bishops take it into Ireland.

Nor did David, familiar with worship in Jerusalem, take it into Wales.
Dear Father, St. David and St. Patrick wouldn't be speaking English. For one thing, the Anglo-Saxons were barely in the British Isles in their days, and the saints were with the Celts.

When the Anglo-Saxons got there, they did not feel that they had to do violence to their languages and introduce the awkward terms "Cross," "Saint," "Patriarch," "Virgin," "prophet," etc. Their descendants felt otherwise, once the French Normans came and put an end to Orthodox England.  Btw, it would "Dei Genetrix" as the official term (in the West) in St. Augustine's day.

Forgive me Father, as for their descendants in America importing it in the last few decades, I am afraid that is incorrect.  I've already come across Card. Newman using the term in the 1840's in England, and in his banter with the Anglicans during the 1860's, in England again. I am interested in what term Philip Ludwell III used.  As for its use in the magical formula, it shows at least some in England knew of the term before the 19th century.
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« Reply #81 on: January 14, 2011, 02:44:06 AM »


 I've already come across Card. Newman using the term in the 1840's in England, and in his banter with the Anglicans during the 1860's, in England again. I am interested in what term Philip Ludwell III used.  As for its use in the magical formula, it shows at least some in England knew of the term before the 19th century.

All the above amounts to special pleading.  It means nothing that a scholar such as Newman should use it in his banter with the Anglicans.  Was it used in his cathedrals and parish churches throughout England?  Lordie, he may have used the word apokatastasis but I wouldn't want to push that too far either.

A few years before his death Metropolitan Laurus gave his blessing for a reprint of the original Jordanville Prayerbook, which uses Mother of God throughout.  The English had staunchly refused to adopt the term theotokos.  This theotokos-less Prayerbook is in print and may be purchased.

The Church of Greece has the theotokos-less original on its website.

http://www.myriobiblos.gr/texts/english/prayerbook/main.htm


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« Reply #82 on: January 14, 2011, 10:09:47 AM »

In the ROCOR parish I attend, when they use English, they translate Theotokos as Birthgiver of God. 



ACROD has also used the term Birthgiver of God as well since the mid 80's although some parishes have started using Theotokas despite the use of Birthgiver in liturgical publications. i.e. "Commemorating our ever-holy, ever-pure, ever-blessed and glorious Lady, the Birth-giver of God and ever-Virgin Mary, together with all the Saints, let us commend ourselves and one another and our whole life to Christ our God."
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« Reply #83 on: January 14, 2011, 11:51:33 AM »

In the ROCOR parish I attend, when they use English, they translate Theotokos as Birthgiver of God.  



ACROD has also used the term Birthgiver of God as well since the mid 80's although some parishes have started using Theotokas despite the use of Birthgiver in liturgical publications. i.e. "Commemorating our ever-holy, ever-pure, ever-blessed and glorious Lady, the Birth-giver of God and ever-Virgin Mary, together with all the Saints, let us commend ourselves and one another and our whole life to Christ our God."

I have to say that anywhere where the issue has come up (i.e. what is said in prayers and liturgy) that I have seen, the choice revolved around "Theotokos" or "Birth-giver of God." "Mother of God" was not even in running. Not translating "Theotokos," I didn't notice it missing in the contest.
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« Reply #84 on: January 14, 2011, 02:09:24 PM »

FWIW, I've always understood "Theotokos" as glossed as "God-Bearer" or the like. "Mother of God" and "God-Bearer" are not necessarily the same thing. The latter seems to definitively uphold the Incarnation, while the former might elliptically do so, I believe it speaks more clearly to the personal relationship between the person of Jesus Christ and his mother Mary. Again both are not completely exclusive in their meaning, but I do believe each underscores a particular relationship the person of Mary had with her son and thus God.

Joseph after all was Jesus' father and had a fatherly personal relationship to him, although he did not beget him.

In the end, we are better off with both IMVHO. And Theotokos sounds better to these English ears than "God-Bearer". And "Birth-Giver" (which sounds equally as bad as "God-Bearer") is not quite like "God-Bearer". Mary bore God; she did not just give birth to Him. The English word "bear" here is quite felicitous due to its many shades of meanings which nuance Mary's role from the Conception till the end of the age.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/bear

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« Reply #85 on: January 14, 2011, 02:24:26 PM »

I had thought, given the relative paucity of the use of the title of "Theotokos' versus "Blessed Virgin," "Virgin Mary," or "Our Lady" in the West before and after Ephesus (given the non-existence of Nestorianism in the West, at least until the Reformation), that the title shouldn't be expected to show up.  However, I came across this:
Quote
England
St. Augustine and his companions brought with them to England the Roman customs and traditions respecting the naming and dedication of churches. Altars were consecrated with the ashes of the martyrs. One of the earliest dedication prayers of the Anglo-Saxon Church runs thus: "Tibi, sancta Dei genitrix, virgo Maria [to you, Holy Birthgiver of God, Virgin Mary] (vel tibi, sancte J. B. Domini, . . . vel martyres Christi, vel confessores Domini) tibi commendamus hanc curam templi hujus, quod consecravimus Domino Deo nostro, ut hic intercessor existas; preces et vota offerentium hic Domino Deo offeras; odoramenta orationum plebis . . . ad patris thronum conferas", etc. (Lingard, "The History and Antiquities of the Anglo-Saxon Church", II 40)
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11562a.htm
The source was published in 1845.

The Venerable Bede, unfortunately, writes only in Latin. But he chooses Dei Genetrix and not Mater Dei in his poem (at least attributed to him by the Anglo-Saxons) on Judgement Day, Versus de Die Iudicii, one of the most circulated poems of Anglo-Saxon England in the Isles and the Continent:
Quote
Quæ trahit alma Dei genetrix, pia Virgo Maria,
 Per benedicta Patris fulgenti regna paratu
http://www.apocalyptic-theories.com/map/bedejgd.htm
Verse and virtuosity: the adaptation of Latin rhetoric in Old English poetry By Janie Steen

The Survey The Cult of the Virgin Mary in Anglo-Saxon England By Mary Clayton, included several instances of "Dei Genetrix" and a few "Mater Domini" and even "Mater Christi"(!), but no "Mater Dei."
http://books.google.com/books?id=89cMonshJKgC&pg=PA101&dq=Dei+Genetrix+old+English&hl=en&ei=MYowTYSvD8GqlAepzPzMCg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=4&ved=0CDcQ6AEwAw#v=onepage&q=Dei%20Genetrix%20old%20English&f=false

Then the Anglo-Saxon "Godes Cennester" "Gods Birthgiver" does occur:
Old English Life of Mary of Egypt
http://books.google.com/books?id=1TAgAQAAIAAJ&q=godes+cennester&dq=godes+cennester&hl=en&ei=AJMwTeKeHoH7lwevuo3iCg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCMQ6AEwAA
On this work (and a mistranslation of "Godes Cennester" as "Mother of God" (which would be "Godes Modor"), in Clayton op. cit.
http://books.google.com/books?id=89cMonshJKgC&pg=PA257&dq=anglo+saxon+life+mary+of+egypt&hl=en&ei=dJcwTce9M8X7lwfU2tiSCg&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2&ved=0CCwQ6AEwAQ#

Evidently there was a Middle English hymn, with the refrain "Dei Genertrix pia," in Latin.
http://www.cddc.vt.edu/host/imev/record.php?recID=1074
http://books.google.com/books?id=7APbQxVR6icC&pg=PA72&dq=Versus+de+die+iudicii+widely+admired&hl=en&ei=eoYwTaCHAcX0gAfVlPzeCw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCMQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=Versus%20de%20die%20iudicii%20widely%20admired&f=false
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« Reply #86 on: January 14, 2011, 02:41:59 PM »


I had wondered about "Godes Cennester", or at the very least something involving "Cennester" and "God", but I didn't even know where on the Internet to start searching (once my one or two googles fell short) and wasn't quite sure how the grammatical construction would work (eg "God's Birthgiver" or "Birthgiver of God").
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« Reply #87 on: January 14, 2011, 04:19:55 PM »

In the ROCOR parish I attend, when they use English, they translate Theotokos as Birthgiver of God.  



ACROD has also used the term Birthgiver of God as well since the mid 80's although some parishes have started using Theotokas despite the use of Birthgiver in liturgical publications. i.e. "Commemorating our ever-holy, ever-pure, ever-blessed and glorious Lady, the Birth-giver of God and ever-Virgin Mary, together with all the Saints, let us commend ourselves and one another and our whole life to Christ our God."

I have to say that anywhere where the issue has come up (i.e. what is said in prayers and liturgy) that I have seen, the choice revolved around "Theotokos" or "Birth-giver of God." "Mother of God" was not even in running. Not translating "Theotokos," I didn't notice it missing in the contest.

The last Jordanville Prayer book to use "Mother of God" throughout was the 1986 edition.

See this on the website of the Church of Greece.
http://www.myriobiblos.gr/texts/english/prayerbook/main.htm

It was a new edition in the 1990s which introduced the term theotokos to the Russians in the United States, in imitation of OCA prayer books.

Until that time it was also 'Mother of God" which was used liturgically in ROCA.

Although you may not know of the Theotokos/Mother of God tension, it led to a reprint of the Original Jordanville Prayer book in the UK in the years before Metropolitan Laurus ' death.  This was because he was aware that the English and others were persisting in their refusal to adopt the term theotokos.  So now we have two Jordanville Prayer books - the original theotokos-less one and the modern which uses theotokos.  It is also available from American church stores.

See
"Original Jordanville Prayer Book Back in Print"
.http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,5531.0.html



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« Reply #88 on: January 14, 2011, 05:18:23 PM »

In Russian Churches in America, we call the priest's wife, "Matushka", not "Little Mother" or "Priest's Wife", so what is the problem with not translating Theotokos, especially since "Mother of God" is not a perfect translation?
I was looking for what is the Chinese for Theotokos, and this thread came up (my son has expressed a desire to learn Chinese).  I found 上帝之母 Mother of God, and 圣母 Holy Mother but is there something based on 生 or 生育 or 产 or 养, give birth/produce/yield etc?

Btw, skimming through some Chinese Orthodox texts, it seems that the Orthodox have retained  上 帝  for God, despite the ruling of the Vatican long ago about that being unacceptable
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_Rite_Controversy
am I reading that right?

I think the Latins wanted to get rid of Shangdi because of its pagan origins. Of course, the problem is, pretty much all of our words for God (e.g. "God", "Theos") have a pagan origin. As it is, when the average Chinese asks someone if he believes in God, in a general sense, he'll ask, "do you believe in Shangdi?" At least in my experience. Tianzhu is specifically Roman Catholic (Protestants also still use 上帝).

Actually, if one reads the following by Fr. Damascene, ShangDi did not start out as pagan, but was one and the same as Shaddai, Hebrew for the Lord Almighty!
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« Reply #89 on: January 14, 2011, 05:39:11 PM »

I'll stop referring to it as English when I can't readily understand someone from England. As it stands, we speak the same language.
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« Reply #90 on: January 14, 2011, 05:53:00 PM »

I'll stop referring to it as English when I can't readily understand someone from England. As it stands, we speak the same language.
Stone the crows and blimey charlie! Fair suck of the sav!
You up for a chucker? Don't forget to byo slab.
Translation:
'This is quite a surprising claim to me! I don't think it's quite right!
Would you like to play a game of cricket? Please remember to bring along a carton of twenty four 375ml bottles of beer which you have purchased yourself.".
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« Reply #91 on: January 14, 2011, 06:06:53 PM »


I had wondered about "Godes Cennester", or at the very least something involving "Cennester" and "God", but I didn't even know where on the Internet to start searching (once my one or two googles fell short) and wasn't quite sure how the grammatical construction would work (eg "God's Birthgiver" or "Birthgiver of God").
Going from Godes Cennester through Dei Genetrix to Theotokos/Thetocos,the earliest I've turned up so far is "The annals of the Church" By Edward Ambrose Burgis
http://books.google.com/books?id=jKYHAAAAQAAJ&pg=PA314&dq=Mary+Theotokos&hl=en&ei=-sYwTdnRGsnogAeNmK2HCw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCQQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=Mary%20Theotokos&f=false
who, in 1738 uses "Theotokos" in his summary of his prior (1712 onwards) discussions of the controversies of the 4th and 5th centuries.  Thereafter, the stream of publications in English using the term swells.  The Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, the oldest Anglican missionary society (and the oldest publishing house in the British Empirre/Commonwealth, only the University Preses of Cambridge and Oxford predating it), whose work the "Catholic Encyclopedia" in 1908 summarized
Quote
The greatest and most important society within the Church of England. It was founded 8 March, 1698, when four laymen, Lord Guildford, Sir H. Mackworth, Justice Hook, and Colonel Colchester, and one clergyman, Dr. Thomas Bray, met on the initiative of the last-named and agreed among themselves "as often as we can conveniently to consult, under the conduct of the Divine providence and assistance, to promote Christian Knowledge". Dr. Bray had been the Bishop of London's Commissary in Maryland, and was a man of wide experience, energetic zeal, and ability for organization. The society soon received the countenance of several Anglican bishops, including Gilbert Burnet of Salisbury. Other well known men also took a speedy interest in the work, such as Strype the antiquary, Gilbert White of Selborne, John Evelyn, and the Rev. Samuel Wesley, father of John and Charles Wesley. The first aim of the society was the education of poor children. Within two years they had founded six schools in London, and by 1704 there were 54 schools with over 2000 scholars. Eight years later the schools numbered 117, the scholars 5000. The movement spread, and by 1741 the charity-schools of the S.P.C.K. reached the number of nearly 2000. This educational work at length became so great that a new society, "The National Society for the Education of the Poor in the Principles of the Established Church", was formed to undertake it. Since 1870 this work has been done by the State, and the society has turned its educational efforts to the training of teachers. It entirely maintains St. Katharine's College, Tottenham, supports the various diocesan training-colleges, and contributes towards the foundation of Sunday-school buildings and mission-rooms. The educational branch of the society's work has not been confined to England, but in India it has founded scholarships for native Christians, both in the boys' colleges and in the schools provided for the higher education of women. It also provides technical training for the native Christians by means of industrial schools. The same work is being developed in Australia, Japan, Africa, Burma, and among the American Indians of the North- West. Besides providing for children, the society has done much for "unlettered adults". From almost the beginning of its existence it has established evening schools and provided for the instruction of prisoners in penitentiaries or prisons. For a time the society paid chaplains to help prisoners, in an age when the government often neglected this duty....Perhaps more widely known than any is the work of the S.P.C.K. as "the great publishing house" of the Church of England. Simultaneously with the foundation of it first schools it began to print and circulate cheap and good books. One of its first subscriptions was begun "for promoting Christian knowledge by raising Lending Libraries in the several Market towns of the kingdom and by distributing good books". The first publication was an edition of 600 copies of Dr. Bray's "Discourse concerning Baptismal and Spiritual Regeneration" which appeared in 1699. The society, while maintaining its position as the great Bible and Prayer Book society of the Church of England, has not confined itself to purely religious works. Its catalogue includes volumes of popular science, travel, biography, and fiction, as well as the special class devoted to theology and history. Even translations of Catholic books are not excluded, and though Catholics, objecting to publications such as Dr. Littledale's "Plain Reasons", in which mis- representation becomes a fine art, cannot approve of much that is issued in the society's volumes, they can acknowledge the general good taste of the society's publications even when directed against themselves. They may also be excused for regarding as objectionable the versions of English church history which are popularized throughout the country, not only attractively produced manuals, but also by popular lantern lectures. Besides the books published, popular tracts, pictures, and illuminated texts are issued in great numbers. The latest figures available show that, exclusive of Bibles, prayer books, and tracts, the circulation of the society's publications in 1905 amounted to 11,078,135...The organization and management of the society is efficient and vigorous, and there can be no doubt that it remains today one of the chief means of preserving for the Church of England its hold over the people. Remarkable, too, is the manner in which it has managed to keep on good terms with the various warring sections in the Anglican Church. A recent writer has observed, "The society comes in for a little friendly criticism from time to time from one side or the other of the Church, but it should be borne in mind that it has always striven to be the handmaid of the Church, not the tool of a section." (Cochrane, "An Important Chapter in English History",13.) The influence of the society, especially displayed in the colonies, has also made itself felt in the drawing together of the entire Anglican episcopate. Speaking of the S.P.C.K. and the S.P.G., Dr. Lewis, the first Anglican Archbishop of Ontario, one of the originators of the Lambeth Conferences, declared that the influence of those two societies did much to make such conclaves possible. The magnitude of the work annually accomplished, of which the main branches have been here indicated to the exclusion of many minor activities, justified the eulogy by the late Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Benson, when he wrote: "Of all our societies in England, this is the oldest and grandest, and its work the very largest ever conceived".
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03720a.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Society_for_Promoting_Christian_Knowledge
in 1851 the society published for dissemination in "promoting Christian knoweledge" the following
Quote
Athanasius was ever bent on establishing the perfect divinity and humanity of Christ, and he thus speaks: " The general scope of Holy Scripture is to make a general announcement concerning the Saviour, that He was always God, and is a Son, being the Word, and brightness, and wisdom of the Father; and that He afterwards became man for us, taking flesh of the Virgin Mary, WHO BARE GOD." [της Θεοτόκου Those who would depend upon this word theotocos as a proof of the exalted honour in which the early Christians held the Virgin, and not rather of their anxiety to preserve whole and entire the doctrine of the union of perfect God and perfect man in the person of Christ deriving his manhood through her, would do well to weigh the language of the Fathers in some analogous cases. The Apostle James (for example), called in Scripture the Lord's brother, was afterwards named Adelphotheos, or God's brother; not to exalt him above his fellow Apostles, but to declare the faith of those who gave him that name, that the Lord Jesus was very God. Just so the word theotocos—or "she who gave birth to God"—was applied to Mary, not to exalt her, but to declare the Catholic faith in the Godhead of Him, who was born of Mary. See Joan. Damasc. Horn. ii. c. 18. In Dormit. Virg. vol. ii. p. 881. Le Quien, Paris, 1712.]...

In this interesting compendium of Christian doctrine, Cyril dwells with much fulness of argument and illustration on the divine generation of Christ by the Holy Spirit, of the Virgin Mary. He exposes with much evident anxiety the baneful heresy of those who held that our Lord was not born of a Virgin, but was the son of Joseph and of Mary. In the course of his argument proving Christ to be God of the substance of his Father begotten before the worlds, and man of the substance of his mother born in the world, many occasions offered themselves, which would not only have naturally admitted, but have called for, a statement of the judgment of the Church, or at least some reference to it as a doctrine acknowledged by all: and yet not one word as to her nature, or character, or the honour due to her name, or her advocacy with God, or invocations of her patronage, occurs throughout. Cyril speaks of her as " the pure and holy Virgin Mary;" he speaks of Christ as " God born of the Virgin;" he applies to her the word "theotocos," "she who gave birth to God;" just as we shall find the most approved writers of the Church of England speaking of her, but nothing more. We find no allusion to her birth or her death, or to her state after death; nor any reference to her life, except just so far as the Gospel itself informs us of her. In the following passages the Annunciation to Mary of the birth of our Lord, the fact of her conception of Christ by the Holy Spirit, the affectionate commendation of her to the care of St. John, made by our Saviour on the cross, are cursorily mentioned and argued from as acknowledged verities; but not a syllable occurs which would lead us to suppose that the Christian Catechist in Jerusalem in the middle of the fourth century thought otherwise of the Virgin Mary, or acted differently towards her, than true members of the Church of England now think and act...

In his treatise on the Incarnation of Christ1, he argues against those who would call Mary Christotocos—mother of Christ, and not Theotocos—mother of God ; but he speaks not of any worship due to her on that account. His mind was fixed upon the union of the Divine and human nature in Him who was Son of God and Man....

SECTION IV. VINCENT OF LIRENS, A.D. 430.

In the short but celebrated work of this writer called Commonitorium, a passage occurs which deserves, on every account, our serious attention. He was called " of Lirens" from an island, or, as Bellarmin says, a monastery of that name; and his work, written about the year 434, is directed against the several heresies which had then perverted Scripture doctrine, and disturbed the peace of Christendom. In his introductory remarks, he points out with equal brevity and clearness the use of primitive tradition in our inquiries after the Apostolic doctrine, and the faith once delivered to the Saints.

The whole passage, to which alone our thoughts are now especially called, is the following: Nestorius held that there were two sons; one, who was God from the Father; the other, man born of his mother; " Consequently, that the holy Mary is not to be called Theotocos, because, forsooth, of her was born, not that Christ who was God, but that Christ who was man." He then proceeds:

" Through this unity of person, by reason of a like miracle, it was brought to pass, that, the flesh of the Word growing entirely from his mother, God the Word Himself is with most truly Catholic faith believed, and is with greatest impiety denied, to have been born of a virgin. This being the case, let not any one attempt to defraud the holy Mary of the privileges and special glory of divine grace. For by the singular gift of our Lord and God, her Son, she must be most truly and blessedly confessed to be Theotocos; yet not in that sense Theotocos, in which a certain impious heresy supposes her to be, which asserts that she is only to be called Mother of God by a figure of speech, namely, because she brought forth that man who afterwards was made God; just as we speak of the mother of a bishop or a priest, not because she gives birth to one already a bishop or priest, but by producing that man who afterwards was made priest or bishop. Not so is the holy Mary Theotocos; but for this reason rather, because in her most holy womb the mystery was effected, that, by a singular and solitary unity of person, as the Word was flesh in flesh, so man in God is God."...

The works of Leo, who in the documents of this council is frequently called Archbishop of Rome 2, and who is a canonized saint of that Church, will be hereafter examined as affording independent testimony. In his letters to Julian, Bishop of Cos, he speaks of Christ as born of " a Virgin;" " the blessed Virgin;" " the pure undefiled Virgin;" and, in his letters to the Empress Pulcheria, he calls the mother of our Lord simply " the Virgin Mary;" or " the blessed Virgin Mary;" or simply " the Virgin-Mother." In his celebrated letter to Flavian, Archbishop of Constantinople, (not one word of which, according to the decree of the Roman council under Gelasius, is to be questioned by any man, on pain of incurring an anathema,) Pope Leo says, that Christ was conceived by the Holy Ghost in the womb of the Virgin Mary his mother, who brought Him forth with the same virgin purity with which she had conceived Him. Flavianus, in his confession of faith to the Emperor Theodosius, affirms that Christ was born " of Mary the Virgin, of the same substance with the Father according to his Godhead, of the same substance with his mother according to his manhood.  He speaks of her afterwards as " the holy Virgin."

There is, indeed, one expression, to which we have already referred, used in a quotation from Cyril of Alexandria, and adopted in these transactions, which requires a few words of especial observation. The word is Theotocos, which the Latins were accustomed to transfer into their works, only substituting the Roman for the Greek characters, but which afterwards the writers of the Church of Rome translated by DeiPara, and in more recent times by Dei Mater (Mother of God), Dei Genitrix, Creatoris Genitrix; employing those terms, not in explanation of the two-fold nature of Christ, as was the case in these councils, but in exaltation of Mary, his Virgin-Mother. This word, as we have seen, in its primitive sense, was adopted by Christians in much earlier times than the Council of Chalcedon; but it was employed to express more strongly the Catholic belief in the Divine and human nature of Him who was Son both of God and man, and by no means for the purpose of raising Mary into an object of religious adoration5. The sense in which it was used was explained in the 7th act of the Council of Constantinople, repeated at Chalcedon, as given by Cyril of Alexandria: " According to this sense of an unconfused union, we confess the Holy Virgin to be Theotocos, because that God the Word was made flesh, and became man, and from that very conception united with Himself the temple received from her."

Nothing in our present inquiry turns upon the real meaning of the word Theotocos. Some, who have been among the brightest ornaments of the Church of England, have adopted the language, " Mother of God;" while many others among us believe that the original sense would be more correctly conveyed by the expression, " Mother of Him who was God."

* It is curious to remark, that (according to Balusius) all the ancient books, and all the editions of the records of these Councils before the Roman edition, retained in the Latin translation the Greek word Theotocos ; and when it was, at length, translated by " Dei Genitrix," the editor thought it necessary, in justification of so novel a form, to ask, " Who doubts that this is a good interpretation?" Vol. vi. p. 735....

And, yet, even to the testimony of this Cyril we are referred for proof that the Virgin is invoked, and that in her, in some sort, the works of Christ are attributed." The homily quoted in evidence was for the first time admitted among the works of Cyril by Aubert, and in the second part of the fifth volume of his edition of 'Cyril's works is entitled " An Encomium of the same Cyril upon Holy Mary, the Theotocos." ...

....One question held to be of great moment was, whether the title of Theotocos (she who gave birth to Him who was God) could be applied properly to her. Never did any theological controversy give more ample room for the full profession of whatever sentiments of reverence and religion were entertained towards her; and yet we find throughout, that the thoughts of Christians were then fixed, not on the superior excellence of the Virgin personally, but on the nature of her office in giving birth to the Saviour. The question was, not whether the Virgin was the proper object of religious adoration, but whether that fruit of her womb which the angel pronounced to be the Son of the Highest, and to have David for his father, Jesus born of her in Bethlehem, though one Christ, was very and eternal God, of one substance with the Father, as well as very man of her substance, —this was the question really at issue. Doubtless, the mystery of God manifest in the flesh invested the mother of our Lord with a mysterious name and character peculiarly her own, and which no other daughter of Eve could ever share ; and, if we understand Theodoret rightly, we see that persons were beginning in his time to apply to her, in elucidation of the mystery of the Incarnation, titles which had not before been ascribed to her. But we find no trace whatever in his writings of any invocation of her; no application to her to exert on the supplicant's behalf her interest with God ; no supplication to God to allow the intercession of the Virgin to prevail with Him for mercy. A very few passages will enable the reader to form a correct estimate of the evidence of Theodoret. He tells us that Mary was called Joseph's wife, because she was betrothed to him1. He (in common with some previous writers) interprets the gate described by Ezekiel2 as prophetic of the Virgin's womb. He tells us, that though she was ten thousand times pure, yet was she the offspring of David, Abraham, and Adam; and that, from her, He who was Truth itself sprang4. And when he declares the Christian's belief in the resurrection of the dead, he says, "Of that resurrection the first-fruits was our Lord Jesus Christ, who received from Mary Theotocos, a hody verily and not in appearance."...For what difference does it make whether we call the holy Virgin anthropotocos [her who bare a man] at once and theotocos [her who bare God], or to call her the mother and the handmaid of Him whom she bare; and to add, moreover, that she is the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ as man, and his handmaid as God, and thus to silence all pretext for carping, while we convey the same idea by another expression ? Besides this, we ought to observe, that one of those is a common appellation, the other exclusively the Virgin's; and that all the controversy has arisen, on this point, which ought not to be. And most of the ancient Fathers have applied the more honourable appellation to the Virgin. And your piety also has done this in two or three orations which have in my possession, you having kindly sent them to me; and you, my lord, have not added the word anthropotocos to the word theotocos, but have conveyed the same sense in other words....Having quoted the prophecy of Isaiah which announces the future Messiah as the Mighty God, he says, "If the Child born of the Virgin is called the Mighty God, with reason is she who brought Him forth called theotocos; for she who bears, shares the honour of Him who is born *:" adding, moreover, this explanation of St. Paul saying of Christ, "without father, without mother ;" " for He is without father as to his manhood, for as man He was brought forth only by his mother; and He is without mother as to his Godhead, for He was begotten of his Father alone before the worlds." In the same letter he thus writes: " But if we confess Christ, and declare Christ to be God and man, who is so foolish as to shun the word anthropotocos in conjunction with theotocos? for in the case of the Lord Christ we use both appellations ; wherefore the Virgin is honoured and called 'highly favoured1.' What sensible person then would refuse to apply names derived from the Saviour's names to the Virgin, who through Him is held in honour by the faithful ? for it is not that He who sprang from her derives his dignity from her, but she through Him who was born of her is adorned with the highest appellations. Now, if Christ were only God, and had derived the origin of his existence from the Virgin, then let the Virgin be called and named Theotocos, as having given birth to Him who by nature is God. But if Christ is both God and man, and the one nature was ever, (for He never began to exist, being coeternal with the Father,) and the other in these last days sprang from human nature, let him who wishes To State Doctrines entwine the Virgin's appellations from both these views, showing what appertains to nature and what to the union; but if any one is desirous of speaking in the panegyric form, and to weave hymns, and compose praises, and wishes at all events to employ the more dignified appellations, Not Stating Doctrines, But Panegyrising, and, as much as possible, holding up to admiration the greatness of the mystery, let him enjoy his desire, and employ the great names, and let him praise and admire: we find many such things among orthodox teachers. But everywhere let moderation be regarded highly.
The worship of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the church of Rome: proved to be contrary to the Holy Scripture By James Endell Tyler
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA346&dq=Theotocos&ei=wrEwTdjoI4SClAfCrtjgCg&ct=result&id=h7A9AAAAYAAJ#v=onepage&q=Theotocos&f=false

It is in this context that Card. Newman slugged it out with Rev. Pusey in the Oxford Movement, in many ways the seeds of revival of Anglo-Saxon Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #92 on: January 15, 2011, 04:17:06 AM »

I am interested in what term Philip Ludwell III used.  
I'm still interested.

But in the meantime, I've been looking at some early translation.  All the ones done by Prof. Nicholas Orloff in London published by the MHGS of Russia (he dedicates them to Abp. Nicholas and St. Tikhon of North America, but commemorates the Czar and Queen Victoria):
Horologion, or Book of Hours. — Containing the daily devotions for the stated or canonical hours. Translated from the Slavic  (1897)
Octoechos: or The book of eight tones, a primer containing the Sunday Service in Eight Tones (1898)
http://books.google.com/books?id=yYMTAAAAYAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false
The general Menaion: or, The book of services common to the festivals of our Lord Jesus of the Holy Virgin and of the different orders of saints  (1898)
http://books.google.com/books?id=VgfZAAAAMAAJ&dq=General%20Menaion&source=gbs_similarbooks
The ferial Menaion: or, The book of services for the twelve great festivals and the new-year's day (1900)
http://books.google.com/books?id=_iYlAQAAIAAJ&source=gbs_similarbooks
use Theotokos.


The divine liturgies of our fathers among the saints John Chrysostom and Basil the Great with that of the presanctified preceded by the Hesperinos and the Orthros edited by James Nathaniel William Beauchamp Robertson
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA14&dq=Robertson+Chrysostom+Liturgy&ei=rh4xTauqKMrLgQep0rytCw&ct=result&id=KDQ3AAAAMAAJ#v=onepage&q&f=false
This work, done in 1894 in London, is based on his earlier work:
Quote
In 1886 the Editor brought out an edition of the divine Liturgies of our Fathers among the Saints John Chrysostom and Basil the Great, in Greek and English. This work was commended by the Patriarchs of Constantinople, Alexandria, and Jerusalem, and other Ecclesiastical Authorities
It has the added benefit of having the facing Greek Text. It uses Theotokos.

The office for the Lord's day, as prescribed by the Orthodox Greek Church, tr. [by S.G. Hatherly]. Published by Theodor Schermann in 1880
http://books.google.com/books?id=6e8CAAAAQAAJ&q=Schermann+Theotokos&dq=Schermann+Theotokos&hl=en&ei=aSQxTfKRM8XTgQeY9cCECw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CDgQ6AEwBA
It uses Theotokos. On Fr. Hatherly:
http://orthodoxhistory.org/tag/stephen-hatherly/
This seems to be the same as his "The Divine Liturgies of our Holy Fathers, John the Goldenmouthed (S. Chrysostoni), and Basil the Great. From the Greek and Russian. London: Shepherd. 1865," which he states in his compendium of English translations of the DL in 1895 this 1865 "version was approved and sanctioned for English use by the Most Holy Governing Synod of the Church of All the Russias." A 1865 review "New Translations of Eastern Liturgies"
The Christian remembrancer; or, The Churchman's Biblical, ecclesiastical & literary miscellany
http://books.google.com/books?id=d_UDAAAAQAAJ&pg=PA427&dq=Hatherly+Divine+Liturgies+of+John+the+Golden-mouthed&hl=en&ei=dEYxTfP4NYjTgQfRhNilCw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CC8Q6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=Hatherly%20Divine%20Liturgies%20of%20John%20the%20Golden-mouthed&f=false
puts it in the context of the translation of DL in England at the time.

The offices of the Oriental church: with an historical introduction By Orthodox Eastern Church, published in New York in 1884
http://books.google.com/books?id=RuPr7ABxTt8C&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false
is interesting in that Fr. Bjerring, the Danish immigrant and convert priest of the Russian mission/metochion in New York, edited it.  It uses Mother of God (which IIRC he got from German translation: Fr. Bjerring spoke neither Greek nor Russian/Slavonic, and was not a native English speaker). On him and his mission:
http://orthodoxhistory.org/tag/nicholas-bjerring/
He actually either apostocized while this book was being published, or shortly thereafter.

A general collection of DL over all the East, "The liturgies of S. Mark, S. James, S. Clement, S. Chrysostom, and the Church of Malabar, translated with introd. and appendices, by J.M. Neale," of 1859 in London
http://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/001933645
uses "Mother of God."

The Divine Liturgy of our Father among the Saints, John Chrysostom, Archbishop of Constantinople. Done into English, with some Prefatory Notes, and the Original Greek of the open parts" published anonymously in 1866 at London, attributed to Crichton
http://books.google.com/books?id=l-8CAAAAQAAJ&pg=PR1&dq=The+Divine+Liturgy+of+our+Father+among+the+Saints,+John+Chrysostom,+Archbishop+of+Constantinople.+Done+into+English&hl=en&ei=zUAxTbXEBcqs8Abf8pGrCQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=8&ved=0CEIQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q&f=false
uses Mother of God. On it Fr. Hatherly in his compendium notes "Its popularity with members of the Greek Church in England was great, and increased, if that were possible, when it was found the edition was sold out, and copies were no longer procurable." 

A lot of these translations were associated with Overbeck's movement to revive Western Orthodoxy.
"OVERBECK'S COLLABORATORS"
http://www.westernorthodox.com/overbeck/collaborators.htm

That it was not, at the time, at least among the native and non-Orthodox British, a question of Theotokos versus Mother of God (neither being used over "Blessed Virgin Mary" by them) is seen in the review of
Quote
A Synopsis of the Daily Prayers, the Liturgy, and Principal Offices of
the Greek Orthodox Church. By Kathar1ne, Ladv Lechmere.
(London : Gilbert and Rivington, 1890.)
Euchology: Prayers of the Holy Orthodox Church, done into English. By G. V. Shann. (Kidderminster, 1891.)
Equally we might learn very much from the careful study of their ancient and venerable Liturgies. Much has, we know, been done among us of late years in this direction by such writers as the late Dr. Neale and the Rev. C. E. Hammond. But the knowledge of their works is confined to scholars. These translations, of moderate size and price, are accessible to alL The ' Introduction' to Lady Lechmere's Synopsis, and the preliminary 'Notes' to Mr. Shann's Euchology, give such necessary explanations as will make the Services which follow intelligible. The 'Office of the Passion of Our Lord' (Synopsis, p. 281, &c), and the Services for Good Friday, Holy Saturday, and Easter, at the close of the volume, will be found to be of great interest. Perhaps the portion most likely to be useful to English Church people is that which is common to both volumes (Synopsis, pp. 123-154 ; Euchology, pp. 221-259) containing private devotions before, at, and after Holy Communion. In this section are given many valuable prayers translated from St. Basil, St. Chrysostom, St. John Damascene, and St. Simeon. Here, as elsewhere in the Greek Services, are to be found some prayers and addresses to the Blessed Virgin which English Catholics could never use, and the presence of which, whatever explanation may be given of them, they cannot but regret But here, as in the ancient Western Breviary Services, these comparatively modern elements are evident accretions and appendages, which may be ruled out without any loss to the completeness and value of the more original portions. The same cannot be said of the Services which occupy pp. 66-122 of Lady Lechmere's translation (pp. 397-433 of the Greek Horology, Venice ed. of 1664). These correspond to the special 'Officia' of the B.V. Mary in the Roman Breviary and to such devotions as the' Litany of Loretto.' In some respects, in the language used they seem to go beyond these. We know that much is explained as mere poetical hyperbole, and we may well believe in charity that for well-instructed Christian souls, who know that worship is due to God alone, such language may mean but little. But is it well at times of devotion to use language which means but little, or to leave in Public Service Books what must be a snare and a danger to the uninstructed?
The Church quarterly review, Volume 33 By Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (Great Britain)
http://books.google.com/books?id=5JE3AAAAMAAJ&pg=PA266&dq=Euchology&output=text
Btw, Shann seems (I know only by citation) to use "Theotokos."

Fr. Hatherly in 1895 reviewed the history of the DL in English in the compendium published as "Office of the credence & the divine liturgy of our father among the saints, John Chrysostom Archbishop of Constantinople, Done into English by John Covel D.D. 1722, John Glen King D.D. 1772, John Mason Neale D.D.  1859, & by the anonymous translator of 1866 [John Patrick Crichton, marquis of Bute]. Ed. & annotated by Stephen G. Hatherly, Proto-Presbyter of the Oecumenical Throne of Constantinople," in which he comments
Quote
Curiously enough, the only theological word not in common use of which all four translators agree in the rendering, is (I say it with reluctance and regret) incorrectly translated, viz.:—the important word Theotokos, given as "Mother of GOD :" but which, having been sufficiently commented on in footnote  at page 6, is here passed over.  On the other hand, the only occasion when the Greek phrase Meter tou Theou justifies the translated term given to Theotokos, Dr. King alone is in order. The generally careful 1866 translator, instead of Mother, gives us the word " Parent," a title given by all four translators, in accordance with
the originals, to Sts. Joakeim and Anna respectively. See footnote t on page 80.
Though having no connection with this I cannot but object to the American paraphrase "Bringer forth of GOD " (Papers Of the Russo-Greek Committee, No. VI. New York, 1865), as being more wordy than Mother of GOD; while the latest English proposal, based on the paraphrase " Bearer of GOD " is, as is " Parent of GOD," already appropriated to other Saints. See the Great Dismissal.

DR. COVEL. 1722
Especially for our all-holy, spotless, above all blessed, glorious Lady, Mother of GOD and always Virgin, Mary,

DR. KINO. 1772
Especially the most holy, most pure, most blessed, and glorious Lady, the Mother of GOD, and Ever-virgin Mary.
Choir sings:
It is meet and right to bless thee, who art most highly blessed above all, 0 most spotless, and the Mother of our GOD.t Thou who art purer than the Cherubim, and incomparably more glorious than the Seraphim, who being immaculate, brought forth GOD the Word: we magnify thee the Mother of GOD.

DR. NEALE. 1859
Especially the most holy, undefiled, excellently laudable, glorious Lady, the Mother of GOD and Ever-virgin Mary.

Choir.
In thee, O Full of grace, (as in the Liturgy of S. James.)

ANONYMOUS. 1866
Especially our Lady, the all-holy, imma
culate, supremely blessed, glorious, Mary,
Mother of GOD and always a Virgin.

The Choir answers,

Meet is it to bless thee in truth, Mother of GOD, ever most blessed, altogether immaculate, and Parent of our GOD, more honourable than the Cherubim, and infinitely more glorious than the Seraphim: thee who didst without corruption bear GOD the Word, truly Mother of GOD, thee we magnify.

This is the one only place in the Liturgy, alluded to in note $  on page 6, in which the phrase "Mother of GOD " is borne out by the Greek. It is curious to observe the trouble which both the above translators put themselves to, to avoid the tautology of the triple occurrence, in so short ahymn, of what they treat as the same phrase. The first of the three occurrences Dr. King boldly omits, following by that safe course his own precedent on page 34 (see note If on page 35); and the second, or only real instance of Mother, becomes in the hands of the 1866 translator a mere " Parent," a title given on pages 10 and 11 to Sts. Joakeim and Anna, but not to the Ever-virgin Mary. Neither of these devices can be commended. Far better for the reader will it be to grasp the nettle firmly. The following is submitted as a preferential reading to both the above :—

It is truly meet to bless thee, the Theotokos, the ever most blessed, and entirely blameless, and Mother of our GOD. The more honourable than the Cherubim, and beyond compare more glorious than the Seraphim, who didst bear without corruption GOD the Word: thee, verily the Theotokos, we magnify.
http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=mdp.39015010962879;q1=Theotokos;start=1;size=100;page=root;view=image;seq=15
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« Reply #93 on: January 15, 2011, 02:10:47 PM »

Btw, Shann seems (I know only by citation) to use "Theotokos."
I seem to have been misled. Fr Hatherly wrote a long and extremely interesting article "Greek Office Books and Their Translations" in 1892 in The Scottish review, Volume 19 By William Musham Metcalfe, Ruaraidh Erskine
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA140&dq=the+scottish+review+Hatherly+Greek+Office-Books&ei=DNUxTbeLI8XDgQf19uymCw&ct=result&id=Ik8cAQAAIAAJ#v=onepage&q&f=false
which starts out discussing biblical translation and the Authorized and Revised versions, goes on to survey the situation of the Orthodox over two centuries before his day and its literature in English, the involvement of Americans and the talks between the Anglicans and Orthodox for the past centuries etc.
Quote
Mr. G. V. Shann's privately issued Euchology must not be confounded with the Greek sacerdotal office-book Eulogion, as it is laid down upon quite other lines. It is a slightly amplified 'Synopsis,' and in phraseology so frequently resembles its rival noticed above at X. as to suggest a common prototypal translation followed in both volumes. With the principle of this we thoroughly agree. The number of English translations of the same Greek offices is now so great, and their variations are so bewildering, that it is a satisfaction to see two such books proceed together for however short a distance. Mr. Shaun is good enough to tell us, in page viii., that the materials of his book are 'arranged in lucid order.' This is gratifying, as readers might not otherwise have discovered it. Mr. Matthew Arnold has said that 'lucidity' is one of the things authors are most deficient in. Mr. Shann lays claim to this virtue, and must be a happy man in contemplating his superiority in this respect over most authors.

What, as it strikes us, most distinguishes his volume, is the evident desire to produce Russian effects. Some proofs thereof have been given earlier in this paper. We notice also an entire absence of the word Theotokos, which Lady Lechmere sometimes uses, as at' Synopsis,' page 9. This word comes to us on the authority of the 3rd (Ecumenical Council, and is accepted by all the un-reformed Churches, orthodox and heretical, excepting, perhaps, among the latter, the few scattered Nestorians. Mr. Shaun prefers the phrase, 'Mother of God,' which must be very offensive to the protestant episcopal clergy, by whose subscriptions the book was principally promoted. Yet even in the use of this word and phrase, the two-fold fault, complained of in the previous volume, is visible. Thus, in the well-known short hymn "Axion estin," page 61, and many other places, where we have the Greek word Theotokos twice, it is rendered by ' Holy Virgin' as well as 'Mother of God '; and where the English phrase ' Mother of God' occurs twice, the original is Metepa tou Theo as well as Theotokos. This may suit Mr. Shann's idea of 'lucidity,' but it is scarcely good enough for ordinary readers. Unfortunately, there is no hope held out of' a second and more leisurely edition.'

S. G. Hatherly,

Proto-presbyter of the Patriarchal (Ecumenical Throne of Constantinople
He also wrote a well received review of some study of Coptic liturgical music.
The Scottish review, Volume 15 By William Musham Metcalfe, Ruaraidh Erskine
http://books.google.com/books?id=TWEcAQAAIAAJ&pg=PR6&dq=the+scottish+review+Hatherly+Coptic&hl=en&ei=utQxTeDQMsvPgAf9rY2ECw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCUQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false

The Church review, Volumes 58-59 By Henry Mason BaumTake our survey New!
http://books.google.com/books?id=5LswAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA300&dq=the+scottish+review+Hatherly+Coptic&hl=en&ei=utQxTeDQMsvPgAf9rY2ECw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=3&ved=0CC8Q6AEwAg#v=onepage&q&f=false
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Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth
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There's nothing John of Damascus can't answer
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« Reply #94 on: January 15, 2011, 03:15:05 PM »

Just for reference, since this is a liturgical question, is a summary of Orthodox English liturgics (it uses "Birthgiver of God), at least in New York in 1916, i.e. avant le déluge.  Volume of Proceedings, Volume 10 By Music Teachers National Association
Quote
The Liturgy Of The Greco-russian Church

N. Lindsay Norden

Brooklyn, N. Y.

The music of the Russian liturgy is a subject upon which much could be written, for, of all churches, there is none that can possibly compare with the Russian in regard to perfection of the system regulating the musical part of her services. Music plays a most important part in the liturgy, in fact, the service could not well be performed without it. It is, therefore, necessary that every detail be carried out correctly, and that all elements combine to perfect the whole. Russian church music has been the admiration of visitors to Russia for years past, and many have declared it to be the most marvelous choral music known. Those who have heard it never forget it, so forceful and so wonderful is its impression. Of the music itself, it appears that there has been more music written for the Russian church than for any other. There are thousands and thousands of magnificent compositions as yet entirely unknown in this country. To be sure, much of this music could not be handled by our choirs, not because of the depth of the second-bass parts, but because our choirs are not properly trained. The majority of them are mere imitators of the harmonies suggested by instrumental accompaniment. The Russian Church has always excluded instrumental accompaniment, and this has given rise to choral writing the like of which is not to be found in the music of any other nation. The Russians have produced genuine, pure, ecclesiastical music—whether old plain-song or from the pen of a living composer—which is church music.

When Russia accepted Christianity from the Greeks, toward the close of the ioth century, the interest in music became centered in church music, which was the first music Russia herself produced. Prince Odoevski, a musician of great fame, said in 1864 that the music of the Russian Church is a treasure, whether considered from the spiritual, the historic or the artistic standpoint, and that that no other nation in Europe can boast of having church songs in the very form in which they appeared at least seven centuries ago. Silence was imposed upon the congregation by the Council of Laodicea (343-381) so as to prevent the chants and hymns from becoming corrupted. Even to this day the congregation takes no part in the service, so far as the music is concerned. This has given room for the development of a highly artistic ritual. The music of the Eastern Church grew up without regard to the harmonic theory of the Western world. The cadences, the melodies, the phrase-sense, the contrapuntal devices are entirely different in character. The invasion of Russia by the Poles, and later by the Italians, had a great influence upon the music of the church. The Poles brought with them partsinging, and the Italians introduced an operatic, florid style of church music.

The first religious music of Russia was simply a kind of recitation, void of accent, rhythm or time, and generally within the limited compass of a few tones. Music of the same type may be heard to-day in the Greek monasteries. It was during the reign of Peter the Great that polyphony was introduced, at his direction. After the Italian influence began, the whole development was much retarded and neglected until the time of the Empress Elizabeth. In 1797 the Emperor Paul ordered only Russian compositions to be sung in the church. It was fortunate that the old religious chants had not been lost. Beginning with Bortnyansky, and continuing through a series of composers following him, Russian music has gradually acquired characteristics of its own. Bortnyansky, Director of the Empress' Royal Choir, by virtue of his excellent work marks the end of the Italian influence. Nearly all the Russian church composers have done something toward preserving the ancient chants, either by harmonizing them or by incorporating them in modern compositions as thematic material. In this respect Rimsky-Korsakoff stands alone, for he made the music of the church thoroughly religious in character through this use of ancient melodies. A. D. Kastalsky, the present Director of the Synod Choir in Moscow, has brought church music into its own, and has firmly established it as an art.

There are three liturgies used in the Russian Church, each of them so highly complex that only lengthy study would make the meaning clear. These are the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, the Liturgy of St. Basil and the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts. The Liturgy of Chrysostom is the normal liturgy of the Eastern Church. Basil's Liturgy is said on all the Sundays in Lent (except Palm Sunday), Maundy Thursday, Easter Eve, Christmas and Epiphany Vigils and on the Feast of St. Basil (Jan. i). The Liturgy of Chrysostom is the union of two sets of material. The first is the ordinary Greek text of the Liturgy, as given in the Euchologion. Thfs embraces the text and rubrics of the invariable portions of the office, without the variable portions, which constitute about one-third of every Liturgy celebrated; it also omits many hymns and responses by the choir, which are always sung except on Great Feasts, and which are therefore universally known. The second is the Egkolopion (Manual) of Raphtare, which gives the texts and rubrics of the parts performed by the choir and the people. The original service was intended for monasteries, where the inmates gave their whole time to worshiping and praying. As it came to be used in churches, much was condensed.

Before explaining the Liturgy in detail, it is necessary to glance over the arrangement of the church, which is quite different from that customary in the West. The inside may be roughly divided into four parts: the Sanctuary, the long platform outside the imagescreen, the body of the church and the porch. The Sanctuary faces the east, when at all possible. Parts of the service are performed inside the Sanctuary, with the Holy Doors closed. The Holy Doors are the main entrance to the Sanctuary from the platform in front of the image-screen. There is also a curtain inside these doors, and this is drawn aside at the beginning of the Liturgy. Part of the service is performed in the center of the church, the Bishop standing or sitting on the Kathedra or dais. The Priests vary in number, from one or two to as many as ten or twelve, on the Great Feasts; they perform part of their functions within the Sanctuary and part in the body of the church.

It is forbidden to celebrate more than one Liturgy at any one altar in a single day, and also no Priest is allowed to celebrate more than one Liturgy in any one day.

The worshipers stand in the body of the church, the men on the right and the women on the left. Many, as they enter, purchase candles, which they place in various parts of the church, in receptacles provided for them. The illumination from these is very beautiful. Wax and pure oil are used for lighting, since they symbolize the purest of substances, but, of course, other artificial lights are also used for illumination. Lights are always used, even on the brightest days, since they symbolize the truth that the Lord gives to the world the light of the spirit. Lights also vary with the importance of the service and at various stages in the service. All the lights are not lighted at the beginning of Matins, but, as the service progresses, more and more are turned on, until the greatest illumination takes place at the singing of the Gloria in Excelsis. The illumination at the Liturgy proper is greater than at any other of the services.

The congregation is not supposed to make any response. The service is performed by the Priest, the Deacon, the Reader, and the choir, divided, in large churches, into two groups. The Priest, except at the Communion, has little more than Exclamations and Benedictions. The people join in only by crossing themselves and bowing at certain points, as after words like "Lord, have mercy" or "Let us attend."

Services begin on the evening of the day before, as with the Jews. Vespers and Matins are given as one service, on the evening preceding a feast-day or Sunday, and the Liturgy is said on the morning of the day itself.

The Liturgy of Chrysostom is divided into three parts. First, the Office of Oblation, in which the Bread and Wine are prepared; second, the Liturgy of the Catechumens, consisting of anthems, responses and prayers; and, third, the Liturgy of the Faithful, which is the Communion itself. The first part concerns itself mostly with the Priests within the Sanctuary; the second and third parts are those which contain the music. The Bishop enters and is vested by the clergy while standing upon his dais in the center of the church. During this the choir sings, very slowly and with great dignity, a number of verses, the words of which are particularly beautiful and rich in poetic feeling. The Bishop then gives the signal to begin in the words, "Blessed is the kingdom of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen." The Deacon comes forth and, taking his place in front of the Holy Doors, says the Great Litany, while the choir responds Gospodi pomuli, "Lord, have mercy." These responses are one of the most beautiful and inspiring parts of the whole service. Sometimes they are in simple four-part harmony, but on great occasions they are very elaborate. Arkhangelsky's setting in four parts is splendid, but perhaps Rachmaninoff's arrangement is the most unique. In this case the choir sustains the closing tone in three octaves, while the Deacon intones upon this tone. The effect is unique.

Following the Litany the First Antiphon is sung. This consists of Ps. 103, except on certain feasts. While this is being sung prayers are said secretly by the Priests within the Sanctuary. By these Psalms the Incarnation of the Word is understood to be foretold. At the end of the Psalm the Deacon, returning again before the Holy Doors, recites the Little Litany, while the choir responds, "Lord, have mercy." The Second Antiphon, the next response in the Liturgy, is generally omitted. The text is Ps. 146. This is followed by the Anthem, "OnlyBegotten Son," called the Hymn of Justinian (527-565), celebrating the perfect completion of grace in the Son of God Incarnate, with all His work for our salvation, and including adoration of the Virgin Mother. The Third Antiphon begins with the prayer of the penitent thief on the cross, "In Thy Kingdom remember us, Lord, when Thou comest into Thy Kingdom," followed by the Beatitudes. This commemorates the Saints who died a holy death, and, last of all, Christ. The Prayer of the Third Antiphon has come into the English Book of Common Prayer, but just how is not clear.

The Little Entrance is now made, the Priest following the Deacon, preceded by a taper lighted. This light is symbolic of our Lord as the Light of the World, and the Entrance signifies the entering of Christ upon His work. After they have entered the Sanctuary, the Deacon elevates the Gospels and announces in a loud voice and with great dignity, "Wisdom, O Believers!" recalling the Resurrection. As the Gospels are laid upon the Altar, the choir chants, "O come, let us worship, and fall down before Christ. Save us, O Son of God, who rose for us from the dead, as we sing unto Thee, Alleluia."

The Proper Hymn and the Collect, which are now sung, are performed in the old plain-song. These tones are simple melodies, sung in harmony, and their rendition is exceedingly beautiful and impressive for their simplicity and purity of style. Every week in the Church Year includes the singing of one of these tones. They do not resemble the Gregorian tones or the chants of other Slavonic nations. The Russian tones are written in modern notation upon a staff of five lines, in the G-clef, whereas the Ambrosian and Gregorian chants use only four lines, with a Cor F-clef. The music in some old Russian manuscript books bears strong marks of antiquity, for there are no lines and the characters are different from those used since the time of Guido. As early as the 12th century the Russians had a notation of their own.

After the "Alleluia" the Priest blesses the Gospels with the sign of the cross, symbolizing the illumination both in heaven and in earth through the Incarnation of Jesus, with His two natures. The choir then sings the Trisagion, "O Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Eternal, have mercy," three times with a Gloria, and then again very slowly. The Trisagion is one of the oldest parts of the Liturgy, dating from before the time of St. Proclus. This proclaims the mystery of the Trinity, manifested to men by one of its persons, and also the sympathy and union of angels and men.

The Bishop then takes his seat on the throne at the rear of the apse, and blesses the people with the trikerion. The Priests and Deacons are seated beside him. The Gradual is now read, representing the preaching of the Gospel throughout the world, brought to pass, after the Ascension, by the hands of the Disciples. The Gospel and Epistle now follow, the Bishop and Priests standing during the former. Before the reading incense is offered. The Deacon then takes the Book of Gospels and, going through the Holy Doors, places it upon the tribune, while the Priest exclaims, "Wisdom, O Believers! Let us listen to the Holy Gospel." The Gospel is then read by the Deacon, and its reading is very impressive, for he begins in his deepest tones, and gradually raises his voice higher and higher, until at the end he has covered a range of two octaves. The Gospel is preceded and followed by the sentence, "Glory to the Lord," sung by the choir. The Bishop now blesses with the dikerion and the trikerion, and the Litany of Fervent Supplication is said, with the choir-response, "Lord, have mercy," three times after each prayer. The Litany of the Catechumens now follows, and the faithful are exhorted to remain, this moment representing the end of the world.

THE LITURGY OF THE FAITHFUL

Several Amens and short responses now follow, while prayers are said secretly within the Sanctuary. Then comes the Cherubim Song, a text of great antiquity. It is found in the chief Eastern liturgies before the Great Entrance. It is generally ascribed to the time of Justinian, who ordered it sung in churches. It has been used in the Greek church since 600 A.d. Between the first and second parts, distinguished by a change in the spirit and the tempo of the music, the Priest utters the prayer of the penitent thief. The joyous tone of the second part is occasioned by a military figure—the elevation of the Host being likened to the elevation of a king upon his shield by the soldiery. Between the two halves the Great Entrance is made, and the Holy Gifts are taken from the table of oblation to the altar. Priests, Deacons and Readers go in procession, preceded by lighted tapers. This symbolizes the last advent of Christ upon earth, when he shall come with glory. Then all the faithful fall down before the Priests, partly desiring their prayers and partly venerating the Divine Gifts. The choir sings the Many Years, followed by a short Litany. The Doors are closed immediately after the Great Entrance, for it is not fitting that the Mystery should be observed save by any outside of the priesthood. The Symbol of Faith, or Creed, follows, and some very splendid settings are found here. That of Gretchaninoff, for alto solo, with a choral background of eight parts, is perhaps one of the greatest, if not the greatest, that has ever been composed in any country at any time. Sometimes the Creed is rendered in simple plain-song, and this setting is also inspiring.

The Kiss of Peace now follows, and the "Mercy of Peace." Many prayers are said secretly within the Sanctuary by the Priests, while the choir sings, "We praise Thee, we bless Thee, we give our thanks to Thee, and pray to Thee, O Lord, our God." Following this the Hymn to the Birthgiver of God is sung. Some of these settings are worthy of study, for they are usable as anthems in Episcopal and other churches. Tschaikowsky's is the only one published in English at the present time.

The prayers for the Synod and for the people now follow, and a short Litany is said, with the usual response. Then the Priest exhorts the people to praise God with one mind and one heart, and thus leads up to the Lord's Prayer. Here the people kneel, and the whole ceremony is most impressive. The plainsong setting of this has impressed visitors at the Cathedral in New York more than anything else in the service. A few short responses follow, and then the Doors are closed and the curtain is drawn. The choir sings the Communion Anthem. Ordinarily this is, "Praise the Lord from heaven, praise Him in the height. Alleluia," but other texts are used. The Communion takes place, after the proper preparation, and the Holy Doors are opened. During this the choir sings, "Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord; God is the Lord and hath made Himself known to men," and, "Receive the body of Christ, taste of the fountain of life." At the close "Alleluia" is sung. Then the Bishop blesses with the dikerion and trikerion, and, after several short responses and some prayers within the Sanctuary', a Psalm is read by the Reader, and the Priest pronounces the final Benediction.

As before noted, it is impossible in a small space to explain the details of the entire liturgy, or the directions for variance on different occasions. For example, the description above is of a pontifical service, which differs somewhat from an ordinary celebration. The whole is very complex, and would admit of a lengthy discussion. The entire service is so bound up with the music and the incomparable impression which it makes upon an auditor that any description must fail to convey a sense of the splendor of the service. The music alone can tell the story; words are insufficient.

The music of the Russian liturgy is surely the most beautiful church music that the world has ever known. To Western ears, accustomed to organ accompaniment—or, rather, organ domination—the pure a cappella style at first sounds strange, and perhaps even limited. But, when this point is passed, the hearer perceives the intrinsic beauty and splendor of this ecclesiastical music. There is so much music in the Liturgy—in fact, the Liturgy is all music—that the composer must skilfully use means that the complete service may not become monotonous. This requirement has produced choral devices and cadential effects entirely without equal in other religious music. Sometimes the writing is strictly in four parts, but this is perhaps the rarest plan. At other times it is given to as many as twelve parts, and the solidity of such writing is splendid. The first tenor-part is frequently in octaves with the first soprano-part throughout an entire composition, and they are often written together on a separate staff over the other parts. Modern notation is not entirely employed, for the old C-clefs are still used to some extent. In four-part writing the octavo-bass doubles the bass throughout, or at least wherever the harmony permits. Often the sopranoand alto-parts are discontinued for a time, and the basses and tenors sing in four parts. Then, again, in order to complete the harmony for some parts that are singing, other parts merely vocalize on certain long sustained tones, producing an effect very like the horns in an orchestra. Many of the effects, in fact, resemble orchestral writing.

Although the music includes selections for all seasons of the Church Year, and for all occasions, joyous or prayerful, it never becomes secular in style, nor do the composers attempt to interest their auditors by rhythmical effects. For this reason those who are not thoroughly acquainted with the spirit and meaning of this music often criticise it as being too mournful or sad in character, and there are church musicians who would not include a piece of this music on their programs save during Lent or some such period. Yet here is a wealth of genuine religious music, untainted by any secular appeal, and entirely suitable for all occasions of the church calendar. With what great appropriateness might it replace some of the trash, florid, operatic and sensuous in style, now found in nearly all churches in our country! Here is a direct appeal—"church music for churches!"

Of course, it takes diligent rehearsing to produce a cappella music, but consider how much lower our standards must be from those of Russia, if it is impossible for us to adopt some of this music. Such music, doubtless, sounds much better with splendid voices, but it is truly astonishing the effect of rehearsing this music has upon singers. The principal trouble is in ear-training. As soon as a choir has learned how to take the various intervals correctly, nearly all has been accomplished. This music will undoubtedly have a permanent influence in this country. Already this influence is being felt. There is no question among serious musicians as to its value and its great message, but there is some question as to whether we have enough church musicians who are so educated as to comprehend the message it brings, and to work till they secure a perfect production. To accomplish this requires vision, as well as a sincere and frank acknowledgment, that, after all, the organ is a very small factor in true church music. It may be painful to admit this, yet in the estimation of many responsible musicians, it is unquestionably true. We have learned to appreciate Russian opera, the Russian ballet, Russian folk-songs, Russian pictorial art and Russian orchestral music. Let us not be backward about accepting the great music of the Holy Orthodox-Apostolic Greco-Russian Church of the East.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Office of the Credence, and the Divine Liturgy of John Chrysostom,

edited by S. G. Hatherly. The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Papers of the Russo-Greek

Committee.

Divine Liturgy of our Father Among the Saints, John Chrysostom, and Basil the Great, with that of the Presanctified, J. N. W. B. Robertson.

Divine Liturgy of our Father among the Saints, John Chrysostom, J. Masters.

Divine Liturgy of Chrysostom and Basil, with the authorization of the Synod of Russia.

Liturgy of St. Mark, St James, St Clement, St Chrysostom and St. Basil, according to the use of the churches at Alexandria, Jerusalem and Constantinople, J. M. Neale.

Liturgy of St John Chrysostom, Neale.

Hymns of the Eastern Church, Neale.

Octoechos, or Book of Eight Tones, Orloff.

Horologion. Orloff, published by the Synod.

The Ferial Menion, or the Book of Services for the Twelve Great

Feasts and New Year's Day, published by the Synod. The Greek Liturgy of St. James, W. Trollope.

Greek Liturgies, chiefly from original authorities, C. A. Swainson. The Rites and Ceremonies of the Greek Church in Russia, J. G. King.
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« Reply #95 on: January 15, 2011, 03:43:11 PM »


But in the meantime, I've been looking at some early translation.  All the ones done by Prof. Nicholas Orloff in London published by the MHGS of Russia (he dedicates them to Abp. Nicholas and St. Tikhon of North America, but commemorates the Czar and Queen Victoria):

Orloff is one of my favourites.  I well remember when English-speakers were obliged to use him in the absence of anything else.  Kudos to him though for attempting the translation.... but one never really gets used to his style.... "..and the Saint vociferating unto the tri-une effulgence.."   laugh
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« Reply #96 on: January 15, 2011, 04:25:05 PM »


But in the meantime, I've been looking at some early translation.  All the ones done by Prof. Nicholas Orloff in London published by the MHGS of Russia (he dedicates them to Abp. Nicholas and St. Tikhon of North America, but commemorates the Czar and Queen Victoria):

Orloff is one of my favourites.  I well remember when English-speakers were obliged to use him in the absence of anything else.  Kudos to him though for attempting the translation.... but one never really gets used to his style.... "..and the Saint vociferating unto the tri-une effulgence.."   laugh

LOL. Yes, I have to agree with Bp. Ware's assessment in his Festal Menaion (p.17):
Quote
He [N. Orloff] was translating into a language not his own and, as so often in such a situation, the resulting English version is so eccentric in style—and at times altogether grotesque and ludicrous—that it cannot decently be used for public worship
Liturgical Illuminations: Discovering Received Tradition in the Eastern Orthos of Feasts of the Theotokos By Virginia M Kimball
http://books.google.com/books?id=1tV-Vb2EiRAC&pg=PA137&dq=grotesque+and+ludicrous+cannot+be+used+for+public+worship&hl=en&ei=NgEyTcS_Hcf2gAfepNCbCw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCMQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=grotesque%20and%20ludicrous%20cannot%20be%20used%20for%20public%20worship&f=false
But I love his dedications:
Quote
TO

Theik Eminences

THE RIGHT REVEREND NICHOLAS

NOW LORD BISHOP OF TAURIDA & SYMPHEBOPOL,

late of Aleut and Alaska, and

THE RIGHT REVEREND TIKHON,

PRESENT LORD BISHOP OF ALEUT AND ALASKA,

WHOSE FATHERLY SOLICITUDE, FOR THE SPIRITUAL WELFARE OF

THE FLOCK OF THIS UNIQUELY EXTENDED DIOCESE, MOVED

THE FIRST TO SUGGEST THE TRANSLATION, AND THE

SECOND TO CALL HIS BLESSING UPON THE WORK,

IS

THIS B00K

IN A BOLD, BUT HEARTFELT AND PRAYERFUL TRUST OF FURTHERING, UNDER GOD, A GOOD CAUSE,

Dost gratefully anc humbly dedicated....

.....To the glory of the Holy, 0ne-substanced, Life-giving and Indivisible Trinity of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, in the reign of the Right-faithful Autocrat, our Great Sovereign, Emperor Nicholas Alexandrovitch of all the Russias, in the time of his Consort, the Rightfaithful Lady, Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, of his Mother, the Rightfaithful Lady, Empress Mary Feodorovna and of his Heir, the orthodox Lord, Cesarevitch and Grand Duke Michael Alexandrovitch; in the time of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovitch, of his Consort the Grand Duchess Mary Pavlovna, and of the orthodox Lords, Grand Dukes: Cyril, Boris and Andrew Vladiiuirovitchi; in the time of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Alexis Alexandrovitch, of the orthodox Lord Grand Duke Serge Alexandrovitch and of his Consort the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess Elisabeth Feodorovna; in the time of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovitch and of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Demetrius Pavlovitch; in the time of the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess Alexandra Josephovna, of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Nicholas Constantinovitch, of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Constantine Constantinovitch, and of his Consort the Grand Duchess Elisabeth Mavrikievna, and of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Demetrius Constantinovitch; in the time of the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess Alexandra Petrovna, of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Nicholas Nicholaevitch, of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Peter Nicholaevitch, and of his Consort, the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess Militza Nicholaevna; in the time of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Michael Nicholaevitch, of the orthodox Lords, Grand Dukes: Nicholas, Michael, and George Michaelovitchi, of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Alexander Michaelovitch and of his Consort, the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna, and of the orthodox Lord, Grand Duke Serge Michaelovitch; in the time of the orthodox Ladies, Grand Duchesses: 0lga, Tatiana and Mary Nicholaevny, of the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess 0lga Alexandrovna, of the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess Helena Vladimirovna, of the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess Mary Pavlovna; in the time of the orthodox Lady, Grand Duchess Mary Alexandrovna and of her Consort; in the time of the Queen of the Hellenes Olga Constantinovna and of her Consort, of the Grand Duchess Vera Constantinovna, of the Grand Duchess Anastasia Michaelovna; and with the blessing of the Right Reverend Tikhon, Lord Bishop of Alaska and of the Aleutan Islands, this translation of the General Menaion, or the Book of Services common to the Festivals of our Lord, of the Holy Virgin, and of the different Orders of Saints, from the 16th edition of the Most Holy Governing Synod of Russia of 1862, hath been printed in the capital city of London, at the Dryden Press office, in its first impression in the year of the world 7408, and in the year from the incarnation of God the Word 1899, in the month of June, the sixty-second year of the reign of Queen Victoria.
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« Reply #97 on: January 16, 2011, 04:07:29 PM »

None of this is in the Eastern Liturgy written by Mar Addai (St.Thaddeus). Mary is referenced several times but absolutely NEVER as a "Theotokos"/ "Mother of god". Nothing on this in the extant patristic literature which is more ancient and reliable than that posessed by the Greeks. Nor has this title ever been succesfully traced to the Apostles. It is not in the scriptures the title  "Mother of God" or "Thetokos" (Mother of my Lord, or Christ is repeated in scripture though- should we excommunicate the scriptures?)

 At great duress were the SOC coerced into saying "Yaldath Alaha" (khasli) but only after they broke away in schism from the ACOE in later antiquity and required to come up with such a title. The council this title was stipulated as "ecumenical" was not attended by representatives of the Eastern Church therefore thename "Ecumenical council".

 Her own relatives serving under the Church (ie: Mar Abris the third Patriarch, Mar Abraham the fourth patriarch, and Mar Yaʿqob the fifth Patriarch) never teaching this tradition, this loaded title "Theotokos"/"Mother of god" to any of the ACOE. They should definitely know if she was ever called such a thing as a "Theotokos" no ?  Smiley

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« Reply #98 on: January 16, 2011, 04:07:29 PM »

Orthodox women should not envy Mary for being a "Theotokos".


for if bearing God in her womb makes her the "Mother of God" then you too are the "Mothers of God".
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« Reply #99 on: January 16, 2011, 10:12:50 PM »

Orthodox women should not envy Mary for being a "Theotokos".


for if bearing God in her womb makes her the "Mother of God" then you too are the "Mothers of God".

This sounds eerily similar to the heretical statement attributed to Ibas: "I do not envy Christ His becoming God, for I can become God no less than He."
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« Reply #100 on: January 16, 2011, 10:23:27 PM »

Orthodox women should not envy Mary for being a "Theotokos".


for if bearing God in her womb makes her the "Mother of God" then you too are the "Mothers of God".
I have neither ovaries nor a womb, so I guess I'm out.  laugh

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« Reply #101 on: January 17, 2011, 01:35:55 AM »

Orthodox women should not envy Mary for being a "Theotokos".


for if bearing God in her womb makes her the "Mother of God" then you too are the "Mothers of God".

This sounds eerily similar to the heretical statement attributed to Ibas: "I do not envy Christ His becoming God, for I can become God no less than He."

Mar Ibas had dozens of trumped up false charges against him which were dismissed in one synod after another. I believe this supposed statement is yet another.

The M-heresy people also confused the Divinity of Christ and his Humanity, so denying the Divinity of his Humanity would be distorted by them into such a statement which Mar Ibas never said. Anyways, Ibas always had a very high reputation in the East, his predecessor Rabullah is remembered as a forger of scriptures and a heretic in the East, and all his manuscripts were discarded as worthless garbage. Hardly a representative of the School of Edessa.

 As for Constantinople II, it was a giant appeasement council one of the Bishops of Rome had to be deposed for, and the second imprisoned, all directed by a woman of ill repute (as written by the most credible historian of the time Procopius, God bless him for leaving the truth for posterity on who these people really were) who hid the  notorious heretic Severus of Antioch in her palace while her husband had people "instruct" the Bishops of the Western Church on what to decide on as orthodox.

The ACOE had no part in this debacle of course. It merely kept the instructions of the Apostles continuosly while the West drifted away...
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« Reply #102 on: January 17, 2011, 03:21:08 AM »

None of this is in the Eastern Liturgy written by Mar Addai (St.Thaddeus).
At least not in the recension among the followers of Nestorius.

Mary is referenced several times but absolutely NEVER as a "Theotokos"/ "Mother of god". Nothing on this in the extant patristic literature which is more ancient and reliable than that posessed by the Greeks.

Such as?

Nor has this title ever been succesfully traced to the Apostles.

Gal. 4:4, John 1:14, Luke 1:35.

It is not in the scriptures the title  "Mother of God" or "Thetokos" (Mother of my Lord, or Christ is repeated in scripture though- should we excommunicate the scriptures?)
The title Mother of Christ or Birthgiver of Christ does not appear in the scriptures. Nestorius wasn't cast out for using it, but insisting on it instead of Birthgiver of God.

At great duress were the SOC coerced into saying "Yaldath Alaha" (khasli) but only after they broke away in schism from the ACOE in later antiquity and required to come up with such a title.

Pat. John of Antioch and the SOC stayed with the rest of us.  His suffragan, the Catholicos of Seleucia-Ctesiphon, chose heresy and entered schism.

The council this title was stipulated as "ecumenical" was not attended by representatives of the Eastern Church therefore the name "Ecumenical council".

Pat. John of Antioch and Pope St. Cyril of Alexandria settled any question on that.

Her own relatives serving under the Church (ie: Mar Abris the third Patriarch, Mar Abraham the fourth patriarch, and Mar Yaʿqob the fifth Patriarch) never teaching this tradition, this loaded title "Theotokos"/"Mother of god" to any of the ACOE.

Can you quote any of their teachings to any of the ACOE?

Her stepson, St. James the Brother of God, was martyred for teaching it at Jerusalem.

They should definitely know if she was ever called such a thing as a "Theotokos" no ?  Smiley
Sure. Do you know what they taught?  Smiley
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« Reply #103 on: January 17, 2011, 03:34:25 AM »

Orthodox women should not envy Mary for being a "Theotokos".


for if bearing God in her womb makes her the "Mother of God" then you too are the "Mothers of God".

This sounds eerily similar to the heretical statement attributed to Ibas: "I do not envy Christ His becoming God, for I can become God no less than He."

Mar Ibas had dozens of trumped up false charges against him which were dismissed in one synod after another. I believe this supposed statement is yet another.

The M-heresy people also confused the Divinity of Christ and his Humanity, so denying the Divinity of his Humanity would be distorted by them into such a statement which Mar Ibas never said. Anyways, Ibas always had a very high reputation in the East, his predecessor Rabullah is remembered as a forger of scriptures and a heretic in the East, and all his manuscripts were discarded as worthless garbage. Hardly a representative of the School of Edessa.
Revisionism by the schismatic hierarchy which adopted Nestorius' heresy.

As for Constantinople II, it was a giant appeasement council one of the Bishops of Rome had to be deposed for, and the second imprisoned, all directed by a woman of ill repute (as written by the most credible historian of the time Procopius, God bless him for leaving the truth for posterity on who these people really were) who hid the  notorious heretic Severus of Antioch in her palace while her husband had people "instruct" the Bishops of the Western Church on what to decide on as orthodox.
Procopius had his own axe to grind.

The sainted Empress Theodora must have directed it from heaven, as she fell asleep years before the Ecumenical Council of Constantinople II.

The ACOE had no part in this debacle of course. It merely kept the instructions of the Apostles continuosly while the West drifted away...
Yes, so the apostles of Nestorius preserved his heresy.
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« Reply #104 on: January 17, 2011, 04:37:39 AM »

None of this is in the Eastern Liturgy written by Mar Addai (St.Thaddeus).
At least not in the recension among the followers of Nestorius.

Mary is referenced several times but absolutely NEVER as a "Theotokos"/ "Mother of god". Nothing on this in the extant patristic literature which is more ancient and reliable than that posessed by the Greeks.

Such as?

Nor has this title ever been succesfully traced to the Apostles.

Gal. 4:4, John 1:14, Luke 1:35.

It is not in the scriptures the title  "Mother of God" or "Thetokos" (Mother of my Lord, or Christ is repeated in scripture though- should we excommunicate the scriptures?)
The title Mother of Christ or Birthgiver of Christ does not appear in the scriptures. Nestorius wasn't cast out for using it, but insisting on it instead of Birthgiver of God.

At great duress were the SOC coerced into saying "Yaldath Alaha" (khasli) but only after they broke away in schism from the ACOE in later antiquity and required to come up with such a title.

Pat. John of Antioch and the SOC stayed with the rest of us.  His suffragan, the Catholicos of Seleucia-Ctesiphon, chose heresy and entered schism.

The council this title was stipulated as "ecumenical" was not attended by representatives of the Eastern Church therefore the name "Ecumenical council".

Pat. John of Antioch and Pope St. Cyril of Alexandria settled any question on that.

Her own relatives serving under the Church (ie: Mar Abris the third Patriarch, Mar Abraham the fourth patriarch, and Mar Yaʿqob the fifth Patriarch) never teaching this tradition, this loaded title "Theotokos"/"Mother of god" to any of the ACOE.

Can you quote any of their teachings to any of the ACOE?

Her stepson, St. James the Brother of God, was martyred for teaching it at Jerusalem.

They should definitely know if she was ever called such a thing as a "Theotokos" no ?  Smiley
Sure. Do you know what they taught?  Smiley


1)
Quote
At least not in the recension among the followers of Nestorius.

The ACOE aren't "followers of Nestorius"- they did not even know his language and lived thousands of miles away.

The ACOE has the Liturgy written by Mar Addai. The onus of proof of a "rescension" is on you. Nothing there on a "Theotokos".

2)
Quote
Such as?

Nothing in the works of Mar Aphrahat (who had absolute mastery of the exegetical methods passed on by Saint Paul) or Mar Ephrem on a "Theotokos" are  good example. Nothing in the writings of the Patriarchs. Nothing in the life of the Great Rabban Hurmizd who was known for ressurecting the dead, turning water in oil, commanding the elements of the Earth, and mighty miracles such as having the Eutychian monastery of Bezkin uprooted from the Earth by God after Cyril's people tried to flay and murder him.

3)
Quote
Gal. 4:4, John 1:14, Luke 1:35.

Nice try, but we have the originals and they don't say "Mother of God" (khasli). I doubt they say such a thing in Greek either, they probably just use the generic word "Kurios" which like Adonai can mean "My Lord". In Aramaic it read always the Mother of the Lord, but absolutely never the Mother of the LORD (khasli).


4)
Quote
Her own relatives serving under the Church (ie: Mar Abris the third Patriarch, Mar Abraham the fourth patriarch, and Mar Yaʿqob the fifth Patriarch) never teaching this tradition, this loaded title "Theotokos"/"Mother of god" to any of the ACOE.

Can you quote any of their teachings to any of the ACOE?

Her stepson, St. James the Brother of God, was martyred for teaching it at Jerusalem.

Their teachings have been passed down without corruption across the centuries. ACOE documents show they never used such a title as "Mother of God". A certain secrecy exists concerning ACOE literature...if you read the Church's history you will surely understand why only some things are published up to this day.

Quote
Sure. Do you know what they taught?  Smiley

I sure do, and they did not teach the blasphemy that God had a Mother and there are documents to prove this.

Saint James was martyred for teaching about our True Messiah which the pharisees hated, don't change history.

5)
Quote
Revisionism by the schismatic hierarchy which adopted Nestorius' heresy.

The records of the time show the inhabitants called Rabullah "the Devil" and his forgery was in the dustbins for centuries until the british found a copy. Everybody used the Standard Peshitta text, nobody used his heretical Evangelion "Da-Mephareshe"- the existing copies were used to write over the stories of saints, jokes, or whatever occured to scribes since it was not Holy writ and deserved such treatment. The burden of proof is on you for proving that Rabullah and Philoxenus were not forgers of scripture since none of the Antiochian Churches (Maronite, SOC, etc.) or the Assyrian Church of the East use his forged Evangelio da-Mephareshe or anything derived from it to my knowledge. It was garbage, the Peshitta was the scriptures used in the East.

6)
Quote
The sainted Empress Theodora must have directed it from heaven, as she fell asleep years before the Ecumenical Council of Constantinople II.

She set in motion the troubling events of the false council which resulted in depositions, threats, jail for Bishops and Patriarchs of the Universal Church. I invite everybody to look at the "early years" section of Theodora in the fully sourced article at Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theodora_%28wife_of_Justinian_I%29


7)
Quote
Pat. John of Antioch and the SOC stayed with the rest of us.  His suffragan, the Catholicos of Seleucia-Ctesiphon, chose heresy and entered schism.

We have been over this before. Even Roman Catholic seminars don't teach the laughable theory that the ACOE thousands of miles away was a suffragan of Antioch. This middle ages fable came as an attempt to try to somehow connect the closest Western See (Antioch) with the Eastern Church which never interacted the west, thus preserving the "original church" model. Ask the Jacobites if the ACOE was a suffragan of anybody. They will laugh you off. After Ephesus the phonebook was full of people claiming to be the Patriarch of Antioch, why is that so ?


Cool
Quote
Pat. John of Antioch and Pope St. Cyril of Alexandria settled any question on that.

Actually the Patriarchate of Antioch entered instability from that point onwards. Bishop Ibas says Cyril repented and died in peace, I don't know if this was a rumour though.  I am on a board which considers Cyril a Saint, but oh how I wish I could communicate some things known in the ACOE about him, you would quake in your boots, but I don't want trouble. If only you knew how Cyril was early on  taught his "Christianity" and certain things he allowed his Jacobite followers to do in Mesopotamia, certain things which the demons fear thinking about, but I cannot relate these traditions here...
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« Reply #105 on: January 17, 2011, 07:15:35 AM »

Yes, Mary is the Mother of God...

But the term was used specifically in the Church in order to define Who Jesus is... not so much who Mary was.

We must use Theotokos in English.

If someone doesn't know what Theotokos means... just tell them! What's it take - two seconds?

It could be a conversation starter if it piqued someone's curiosity.

I say use Theotokos. The fathers called her Theotokos - it's for a good reason.

It leaves no wiggle room.

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« Reply #106 on: January 17, 2011, 07:43:19 AM »

Orthodox women should not envy Mary for being a "Theotokos".


for if bearing God in her womb makes her the "Mother of God" then you too are the "Mothers of God".

I don't understand the logic here.
I can see why Nestorianism was rejected. It makes no sense.
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« Reply #107 on: January 17, 2011, 07:47:33 AM »


I sure do, and they did not teach the blasphemy that God had a Mother and there are documents to prove this.


You consider this title blasphemous?  Huh

What about saying that God is the Father? Is teaching that Jesus is the "Son of God" also a blasphemy?  Huh
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« Reply #108 on: January 17, 2011, 08:50:58 AM »


I sure do, and they did not teach the blasphemy that God had a Mother and there are documents to prove this.


You consider this title blasphemous?  Huh

What about saying that God is the Father? Is teaching that Jesus is the "Son of God" also a blasphemy?  Huh
Apparently Nestorians don't think Christ is God.
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« Reply #109 on: January 17, 2011, 12:02:06 PM »

Orthodox women should not envy Mary for being a "Theotokos".


for if bearing God in her womb makes her the "Mother of God" then you too are the "Mothers of God".

I don't understand the logic here.
I can see why Nestorianism was rejected. It makes no sense.


Apparently he believes Christ's unity of God and man is no different from that of other holy men. I thought this belief was just a hyperbole used in polemics against the Nestorians, but apparently it isn't.
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« Reply #110 on: January 17, 2011, 12:02:57 PM »

Orthodox women should not envy Mary for being a "Theotokos".


for if bearing God in her womb makes her the "Mother of God" then you too are the "Mothers of God".

This sounds eerily similar to the heretical statement attributed to Ibas: "I do not envy Christ His becoming God, for I can become God no less than He."

Mar Ibas had dozens of trumped up false charges against him which were dismissed in one synod after another. I believe this supposed statement is yet another.

I don't understand why you would have a problem with this statement, since it is substantially the same as yours.
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« Reply #111 on: January 17, 2011, 10:44:35 PM »


I sure do, and they did not teach the blasphemy that God had a Mother and there are documents to prove this.


You consider this title blasphemous?  Huh

What about saying that God is the Father? Is teaching that Jesus is the "Son of God" also a blasphemy?  Huh
Apparently Nestorians don't think Christ is God.

His Humanity is...his humanity. I don't envy his humanity being Divine for I myself can become as Divine as it. His Almighty Divinity is Fully Divine. They are seperate preserved in one person. Strict Orthodox Diophysite position.
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« Reply #112 on: January 17, 2011, 10:44:36 PM »

Anybody proposing a"Divinized humanity" for Christ is a pagan. It's that simple. It is what they taught throughout the ages. Anybody who denies that Christ's humanity was somehow different from their own, that of Elder Paisios, or that of the lowly beggar in the street in the corner, blasphemes since he denies the Messiah's sacrifice for the fallen HUMAN nature of Adam. That person turns the temptation in the Desert into a mockery, says the Immortal was a mortal (an absurdity), that God stopped mantaining the cosmos to pass through a birth canal or eat a fish with the Apostles, and so forth.

If I have not been forceful enough, may the beloved Apostle of our Lord warn those making this blasphemous claim on our Lord not coming in the Flesh:

For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh This is the deceiver and the antichrist.

- 2 John 1:7

and since I ama fan of tradition I again warn: none of the Virgin's relatives ever taught this secret knowledge of a "Mother of God" when they were the Patriarchs of the ACOE. There are documents to prove this.
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« Reply #113 on: January 19, 2011, 11:05:14 AM »

Consder the implications of this title "Mother of God" (khasli). God is the Holy Trinity, you cannot slice the Miltha (Greek "Logos") from the Father or the Holy Spirit. That is paganism and an absurdity, the Western Saint Athanaisus himself warned against such an understanding of the Trinity . They are ONE GOD. If the Virgin Mary is the Mother of God she begot his Father making her the Grandmother of God (Khasli). One absurdity after another. Explain to me how the Holy Trinity mantains the Cosmos while being anthropomorphised to pass into a birth canal (or literally die on the Cross like some deposed people used to claim, but not even the Jacobites make such an extreme claim)...

No- the Holy Spirit resided in the Blessed Virgin's womb and crafted a human Temple for the Miltha (Logos) who was never for the twinkling of an eye seperate from the Father or Holy Spirit, and at all moments God remained God doing the things God and never becoming something he never was, he dwelt among us, came inf the flesh, by human nature of our Messiah.
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« Reply #114 on: January 19, 2011, 01:40:49 PM »

Consder the implications of this title "Mother of God" (khasli). God is the Holy Trinity, you cannot slice the Miltha (Greek "Logos") from the Father or the Holy Spirit. That is paganism and an absurdity, the Western Saint Athanaisus himself warned against such an understanding of the Trinity . They are ONE GOD. If the Virgin Mary is the Mother of God she begot his Father making her the Grandmother of God (Khasli). One absurdity after another. Explain to me how the Holy Trinity mantains the Cosmos while being anthropomorphised to pass into a birth canal (or literally die on the Cross like some deposed people used to claim, but not even the Jacobites make such an extreme claim)...

The Theotokos did not give birth to the common nature of the Trinity but to the hypostasis of the Son, which united his divinity inseparably to his human nature. Unless you are some kind of modalist, you must accept that the Virgin can give birth to God the Son without birthing the entire Trinity. And since, by the hypostatic union, the divine and human natures of Christ are united, you must accept that Mary gave birth to God, unless you think (blasphemously) that there was a separate man Jesus who was inhabited by God.

Again, when Christ died on the Cross, he died in his human nature (the temple of his body) but because his divinity is hypostatically united to his humanity, it is also true to say that God died on the Cross.

How could God be born as a little dchild, and die as a man, while maintaining the Cosmos? By being all-powerful and mighty beyond our reasoning and imagination- a mystery. The real Christ is truly a great mystery, whereas your Nestorian "Christ" is the product of human reasoning.
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« Reply #115 on: January 19, 2011, 01:42:56 PM »


I sure do, and they did not teach the blasphemy that God had a Mother and there are documents to prove this.


You consider this title blasphemous?  Huh

What about saying that God is the Father? Is teaching that Jesus is the "Son of God" also a blasphemy?  Huh
Apparently Nestorians don't think Christ is God.

His Humanity is...his humanity. I don't envy his humanity being Divine for I myself can become as Divine as it.

You earlier said that the statement of Ibas was a "trumped up charge" but now you echo the exact same sentiment? Make up your mind.
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« Reply #116 on: January 19, 2011, 05:02:45 PM »


His Humanity is...his humanity. I don't envy his humanity being Divine for I myself can become as Divine as it. His Almighty Divinity is Fully Divine. They are seperate preserved in one person. Strict Orthodox Diophysite position.

Why would God almighty unite Himself with a fallen human person? Is this not a blasphemy?  Huh
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« Reply #117 on: January 19, 2011, 05:11:25 PM »

Anybody proposing a"Divinized humanity" for Christ is a pagan. It's that simple. It is what they taught throughout the ages. Anybody who denies that Christ's humanity was somehow different from their own, that of Elder Paisios, or that of the lowly beggar in the street in the corner, blasphemes since he denies the Messiah's sacrifice for the fallen HUMAN nature of Adam.

Believing that Christ had the same human NATURE as other humans does not necessitate dividing Him into two PERSONS.

That person turns the temptation in the Desert into a mockery, says the Immortal was a mortal (an absurdity), that God stopped mantaining the cosmos to pass through a birth canal or eat a fish with the Apostles, and so forth.

These are straw-man arguments, and all sound very much like the Islamic propaganda.

If I have not been forceful enough, may the beloved Apostle of our Lord warn those making this blasphemous claim on our Lord not coming in the Flesh:

For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh This is the deceiver and the antichrist.

- 2 John 1:7

Another straw-man. We believe that Jesus Christ came in the flesh, but we also say that Jesus did not need a separate human PERSON or SUBJECT for His incarnation. John the Evangelist says: "The Word became flesh and dwelled among us" rather than "The Word was united with an independent human person". Even according to the prophecies, the Father prepared a BODY for the Son, not a distinct personality.

and since I ama fan of tradition I again warn: none of the Virgin's relatives ever taught this secret knowledge of a "Mother of God" when they were the Patriarchs of the ACOE. There are documents to prove this.

Which secret knowledge are you talking about?
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« Reply #118 on: January 19, 2011, 09:34:17 PM »


"(A)nd since I am a fan of tradition I again warn: none of the Virgin's relatives ever taught this secret knowledge of a "Mother of God" (...)" 

Oh?

"Now Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, to a city of Judah, and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.

Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy.

Blessed is she who believed, for there will be a fulfillment of those things which were told her from the Lord." And Mary said: "My soul magnifies the Lord, And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior."
- Luke 1:39-47


Then Who was Elizabeth referring to as 'Lord' when she called Mary, "The mother of my Lord"?

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« Reply #119 on: January 19, 2011, 10:53:07 PM »



Quote
John the Evangelist says: "The Word became flesh and dwelled among us" rather than "The Word was united with an independent human person".


 “The word became flesh and dwelt among us.” A devout and pious man laboured for many years in prayer to God, that He would disclose to him the meaning of this declaration: A voice from heaven was at length vouchsafed to him, saying:

“Ascribe to the flesh the word” “became” and to the “Word” ascribe “dwelt “; and the meaning was thus preserved.


-Book of Marganitha, Part 3, CHAPTER I- On the advent of Christ, and his union, Mar Odisho, Metropolitan of N’siwin and Armenia, A.D. 1298

Thus at no point in time did God change into Flesh, ie: his humanity become divine or his Divinity become human (he took on a Human nature like that of Adam which is different from the utter blasphemy some propose based on what an Egyptian said 15 centuries ago in the land of sorcery), your interpretation would break the Almighty's declaration in Malachi 3:6 :

For I, the LORD, do not change; therefore you, O sons of Jacob, are not consumed.


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« Reply #120 on: January 19, 2011, 10:53:07 PM »


I sure do, and they did not teach the blasphemy that God had a Mother and there are documents to prove this.


You consider this title blasphemous?  Huh

What about saying that God is the Father? Is teaching that Jesus is the "Son of God" also a blasphemy?  Huh
Apparently Nestorians don't think Christ is God.

His Humanity is...his humanity. I don't envy his humanity being Divine for I myself can become as Divine as it.

You earlier said that the statement of Ibas was a "trumped up charge" but now you echo the exact same sentiment? Make up your mind.


There is a VERY subtle difference between the trumped up charge against Mar Ibas and the statement I made. It is a critical difference which decides if one properly understands the New Testament message or not.

We have had false "God-Men" throughout the ages- these are counterfeits from Satan.

However we have a God/Man who is our true Messiah and redeemed Adam and his inheritance by truly suffering, being tempted, and laying as a sacrifice his Perfect humanity like us, like a descendant of Adam  (Not his Divinity which can never be like us)

...the message of Orthodoxy!

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« Reply #121 on: January 19, 2011, 10:53:09 PM »


"(A)nd since I am a fan of tradition I again warn: none of the Virgin's relatives ever taught this secret knowledge of a "Mother of God" (...)" 

Oh?

"Now Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, to a city of Judah, and entered the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth. And it happened, when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, that the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.

Then she spoke out with a loud voice and said, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! But why is this granted to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me? For indeed, as soon as the voice of your greeting sounded in my ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy.

Blessed is she who believed, for there will be a fulfillment of those things which were told her from the Lord." And Mary said: "My soul magnifies the Lord, And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior."
- Luke 1:39-47


Then Who was Elizabeth referring to as 'Lord' when she called Mary, "The mother of my Lord"?

†IC XC†
†NI KA†
 

Addressed already.
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« Reply #122 on: January 19, 2011, 10:53:09 PM »


His Humanity is...his humanity. I don't envy his humanity being Divine for I myself can become as Divine as it. His Almighty Divinity is Fully Divine. They are seperate preserved in one person. Strict Orthodox Diophysite position.

Why would God almighty unite Himself with a fallen human person? Is this not a blasphemy?  Huh

It is the Glorious truth- the Creator of the world's took on himself the fallen nature of Adam to Redeem us and salvage Adam's stolen inheritance !
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« Reply #123 on: January 20, 2011, 12:26:00 AM »

This thread has left the discussion that pertains to translation and moved into non-Orthodox and heretical discussions. This thread is hereby closed. This is serving as a formal warning, do not bring heretical ideas into this section. This section is only for the discussion of Liturgical issues and not for the spreading of Nestorian heresies.
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