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Author Topic: Why Filioque Is a Christological Error  (Read 33931 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: July 22, 2010, 09:44:54 AM »

The problem with the Filioque is that it obscures the two natures of Christ, fully God, and fully Man.

I think it important here to not get into Biblical hermeneutics. This issue has had a lot of ink spilled over it.


But consider this if p then not q: If Christ is fully God, "of one essence with the Father," then it is incoherent to say that the Holy Spirit proceedeth from both the Father and the Son-----unless one resorts to a polytheist paradigm of essence, perhaps, which is of course, heresy (ugh. hate to use that word).

The results of the Filioque have been utterly predictable. Diaphysite Christiology has been utterly marginalized in the West, the Trinity has acquired a vertical hierarchy (which error sparked the Protestant reformation), and the Mother of God has been made the suffering sweetheart of the most Gothic family romance in history... You think I'm wrong? Look at the art.



In summary, a thoroughgoing understanding of diaphysite Christology immediately reveals the error, and even a cursory view of the Filioque's history exposes the doctrine for what it is...
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« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2010, 09:54:49 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.
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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2010, 10:25:02 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

By this reasoning, the Holy Spirit must also beget the Son, since the Holy Spirit is also one in essence with the Father.

"Homoousios" does not erase distinctions between the hypostases.
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« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2010, 10:35:34 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

But the Holy Spirit is also of one essence with the Father and the Son.  As Iconodule pointed out, if you're going to go down the logical route you've proposed, the other two Persons of the Trinity must also proceed from any given one Person.  Yet no one would say that Father proceeds from the Son or the Holy Spirit.
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« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2010, 10:38:56 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

But the Holy Spirit is also of one essence with the Father and the Son.  As Iconodule pointed out, if you're going to go down the logical route you've proposed, the other two Persons of the Trinity must also proceed from any given one Person.  Yet no one would say that Father proceeds from the Son or the Holy Spirit.
I understand what you are saying, but the distinction in persons must be maintained. Let me look at the Summa this evening because I think that St. Thomas Aquinas argues this point really well.
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« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2010, 10:43:21 AM »

The problem with the Filioque is that it obscures the two natures of Christ, fully God, and fully Man.
The Holy Spirit proceeds from Father and Son, ergo the Son in not God and Man...I don't follow this train of thought. Could you expand on what you mean by this?
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« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2010, 10:47:13 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.
That's not how Catholics have traditionally defended the filioque. Traditionally, it is said that the Latin "procedere" does not refer simply to being "sent from its origin", but also includes "sent from a non-origin".

If that is the definition of "procedere", then one could say that the Holy Spirit [procedere] from the Son, because the Son is not the origin of the H.S.

But, the problem arises from the fact that "procedere" is also, in Latin, used to describe the relationship between the Holy Spirit and the Father.

Qui ex Patre Filióque procédit.

It's clear from the Greek, however, that the H.S. does not [procedere] from the Father, because the Father is the origin of the H.S., not a non-origin. Instead, the H.S.  takes origin ("ekporeuomenon") from the Father.

τὸ ἐκ τοῦ Πατρὸς ἐκπορευόμενον

The Latin creed, as it exists, does not fully describe in a clear manner the true nature of the H.S. relationship to the Father.
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« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2010, 10:56:36 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.
By that "logic" the Spirit begets the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Spirit.

Btw, I don't get the OP either.
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« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2010, 11:05:45 AM »

Yes, this seems to be the problem: if the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Holy Spirit due to their state of homoousios, then the natural conclusion is that the Son is eternally begotten of the Father and the Holy Spirit.  To argue otherwise would seem to imply the 'superiority' of the Son over the Holy Spirit since one is involved in the origin of the other, but not the other way around.

It would be nice if the RCC  would drop its insistence on this addition, if nothing else but for the sake of progress towards the unity of Christianity.


Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

But the Holy Spirit is also of one essence with the Father and the Son.  As Iconodule pointed out, if you're going to go down the logical route you've proposed, the other two Persons of the Trinity must also proceed from any given one Person.  Yet no one would say that Father proceeds from the Son or the Holy Spirit.
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« Reply #9 on: July 22, 2010, 11:08:37 AM »

Nobody ever seems to bring up how the Son is begotten of the Father and born of the Holy Spirit. How is that not the same alleged "subordination" in the other direction?
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« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2010, 11:08:45 AM »

Yes, this seems to be the problem: if the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Holy Spirit due to their state of homoousios, then the natural conclusion is that the Son is eternally begotten of the Father and the Holy Spirit.  To argue otherwise would seem to imply the 'superiority' of the Son over the Holy Spirit since one is involved in the origin of the other, but not the other way around.

It would be nice if the RCC  would drop its insistence on this addition, if nothing else but for the sake of progress towards the unity of Christianity.


Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

But the Holy Spirit is also of one essence with the Father and the Son.  As Iconodule pointed out, if you're going to go down the logical route you've proposed, the other two Persons of the Trinity must also proceed from any given one Person.  Yet no one would say that Father proceeds from the Son or the Holy Spirit.
Do you think that the lack of filioque then seems to suggest that the Spirit and the Son are not co-equal with the Father then?
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« Reply #11 on: July 22, 2010, 11:12:17 AM »

Nobody ever seems to bring up how the Son is begotten of the Father and born of the Holy Spirit. How is that not the same alleged "subordination" in the other direction?
I would suspect that the Son was born, temporally, of the H.S.

And, to be fair, many Catholics argue that the H.S. is sent, temporally, from the Son.
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« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2010, 11:12:47 AM »

Aquinas Argues:

"The Father and the Son, being one in essence, differ only in this, that He is the Father, and He the Son. Everything else is common to Father and Son. But being the origin of the Holy Ghost lies outside of the relationship of paternity and filiation: for the relation whereby the Father is Father differs from the relation whereby the Father is the origin of the Holy Ghost. Being the origin then of the Holy Ghost is something common to Father and Son."
-Summa Contra Gentiles
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« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2010, 11:14:45 AM »

Nobody ever seems to bring up how the Son is begotten of the Father and born of the Holy Spirit. How is that not the same alleged "subordination" in the other direction?
I would suspect that the Son was born, temporally, of the H.S.

And, to be fair, many Catholics argue that the H.S. is sent, temporally, from the Son.

Which explicitly contradicts the teaching of Florence, the current Catechism, etc.
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« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2010, 11:15:03 AM »

I have a question to our RCC brothers and sisters. Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it? If so, what is the backing for such a thing, first in the Holy Scriptures and second in the Ecumenical Councils?
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« Reply #15 on: July 22, 2010, 11:17:11 AM »

Nobody ever seems to bring up how the Son is begotten of the Father and born of the Holy Spirit. How is that not the same alleged "subordination" in the other direction?
\

I just want to make sure that I understand what you are stating. Are you saying that the Word is being born of the Holy Spirit in time due to His temporal mission just as the Son sends the Holy Spirit in His Temporal mission without being the cause of His procession in the Godhead? Or are you saying that the Son is born of the Holy Spirit as part of their relationship in the Godhead? Forgive me if i have bumbled through this question. I hope you understand what I mean.
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« Reply #16 on: July 22, 2010, 11:18:03 AM »

Aquinas Argues:

"The Father and the Son, being one in essence, differ only in this, that He is the Father, and He the Son. Everything else is common to Father and Son.

I'm wondering whence Aquinas derived this striking principle. Can this actually be found in Patristic teaching, or is it, as I suspect, an artificial construct made to justify the Filioque ex post facto?


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« Reply #17 on: July 22, 2010, 11:18:46 AM »

I have a question to our RCC brothers and sisters. Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it? If so, what is the backing for such a thing, first in the Holy Scriptures and second in the Ecumenical Councils?
On this Point:

"IF any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is not of him (Rom. viii, 9). These words of the Apostle show that the same Spirit is of the Father and of the Son: for the text alleged follows upon these words immediately preceding: If so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now it cannot be said that the Holy Ghost is the Spirit merely of the man Christ (Luke iv, 3): for from Gal. iv, 6, Since ye are sons, God hath sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, it appears that the Holy Ghost makes sons of God inasmuch as He is the Spirit of the Son of God, -- sons of God, that is to say, by adoption, which means assimilation to Him who is Son of God by nature. For so the text has it: He hath predestined (them) to become conformable to the image of his Son, that he may be the first-born among many brethren (Rom. viii, 29). But the Holy Ghost cannot be called the Spirit of the Son of God except as taking His origin from Him: for this distinction of origin is the only one admissible in the Godhead."  - St. Thomas Aquinas (SCG)

"The Son says of the Holy Ghost: He shall glorify me, because he shall receive of mine (John xvi, 14). Now it cannot be maintained that He shall receive that which belongs to the Son, namely, the divine essence, but not receive it of the Son, but only of the Father: for it follows, All things whatsoever that the Father hath are mine: therefore did I say to you that he shall receive of mine: for if all things that the Father has belong to the Son, the authority of the Father, whereby He is the principle of the Holy Ghost, must belong likewise to the Son." (SCG)




                                                                                                                                    
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« Reply #18 on: July 22, 2010, 11:22:44 AM »

Aquinas Argues:

"The Father and the Son, being one in essence, differ only in this, that He is the Father, and He the Son. Everything else is common to Father and Son.

I'm wondering whence Aquinas derived this striking principle. Can this actually be found in Patristic teaching, or is it, as I suspect, an artificial construct made to justify the Filioque ex post facto?




I think it is a requirement of the doctrine of the Unity of the Trinity. But I will look into Patristic support. I was under the impression that Eastern Orthodox Christians believed that the persons of the Trinity had all things in common except those things that were proper to each person, those things that distinguished them from one another.
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« Reply #19 on: July 22, 2010, 11:25:25 AM »

Nobody ever seems to bring up how the Son is begotten of the Father and born of the Holy Spirit. How is that not the same alleged "subordination" in the other direction?
\

I just want to make sure that I understand what you are stating. Are you saying that the Word is being born of the Holy Spirit in time due to His temporal mission just as the Son sends the Holy Spirit in His Temporal mission without being the cause of His procession in the Godhead? Or are you saying that the Son is born of the Holy Spirit as part of their relationship in the Godhead? Forgive me if i have bumbled through this question. I hope you understand what I mean.
When the EO argue that the filioque subordinates the Holy Spirit to the Father and the Son because he is the only person that does generate another person, they are doing so based on the following premise: "If one person proceeds from another, then the one who proceeds is subordinate from the one from whom he proceeds".
But if one accepts that premise then the only conclusion is that in the EO view of the Trinity, the Son and the Holy Spirit cannot be co-equal with the Father because they both find their origin in the Father.

Because I know that EOs see the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit as co-equal, then the premise of their apologetic argument must be false and cannot be applied to the filoque. Thus, the attempt to "debunk" the Filioque on the part of EOs is invalid.
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« Reply #20 on: July 22, 2010, 11:38:42 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

There are three distinct Persons in the Holy Trinity. The Son is not the selfsame Person of the Father.
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« Reply #21 on: July 22, 2010, 11:39:35 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

There are three distinct Persons in the Holy Trinity. The Son is not the selfsame Person of the Father.
I agree. But they are distinguished as persons, not in their essence. Christ points out that everything the Father has, the Son has. This means that they must share all things in common, except what distinguishes them from one another. Since the thing that distinquished the Father and the Son is the Father's Paternity with regard to the Son and the Son's Sonship with regard to the Father, then they are not distinguished by the procession of the Holy Spirit. Thus, the procession of the Spirit must be something that is common to both the Father and the Son.

That being said, because the the distinction of Paternity and Sonship is what distinguishes the Father and the Son, this distinction makes the relationship of each to the procession of the Spirit different. The Father spirates the Spirit as the Father who is monarch, and source without source. The Son, on the other hand, spirates the Spirit by participation because the everything the Son has, comes from the Father, so the procession of the Spirit from the Son, is really From the Father through the Son and is done in unison with the Father as a single source.
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« Reply #22 on: July 22, 2010, 11:51:08 AM »

The problem with the Filioque is that it obscures the two natures of Christ, fully God, and fully Man.
The Holy Spirit proceeds from Father and Son, ergo the Son in not God and Man...I don't follow this train of thought. Could you expand on what you mean by this?

Hi.

My logical argument is at the head of the thread. To say that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son creates a dialectical contradiction between Christ's two natures. The doctrine of the trinity is supposed to be an infinite knot, you know; but the west managed to unravel it, starting with the Filioque.

I merely cited wording from the Creed itself to demonstrate that the Filioque deconstructs even the very text into which it was inserted.

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« Reply #23 on: July 22, 2010, 11:53:13 AM »

I have a question to our RCC brothers and sisters. Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it? If so, what is the backing for such a thing, first in the Holy Scriptures and second in the Ecumenical Councils?
On this Point:

"IF any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is not of him (Rom. viii, 9). These words of the Apostle show that the same Spirit is of the Father and of the Son: for the text alleged follows upon these words immediately preceding: If so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now it cannot be said that the Holy Ghost is the Spirit merely of the man Christ (Luke iv, 3): for from Gal. iv, 6, Since ye are sons, God hath sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, it appears that the Holy Ghost makes sons of God inasmuch as He is the Spirit of the Son of God, -- sons of God, that is to say, by adoption, which means assimilation to Him who is Son of God by nature. For so the text has it: He hath predestined (them) to become conformable to the image of his Son, that he may be the first-born among many brethren (Rom. viii, 29). But the Holy Ghost cannot be called the Spirit of the Son of God except as taking His origin from Him: for this distinction of origin is the only one admissible in the Godhead."  - St. Thomas Aquinas (SCG)

"The Son says of the Holy Ghost: He shall glorify me, because he shall receive of mine (John xvi, 14). Now it cannot be maintained that He shall receive that which belongs to the Son, namely, the divine essence, but not receive it of the Son, but only of the Father: for it follows, All things whatsoever that the Father hath are mine: therefore did I say to you that he shall receive of mine: for if all things that the Father has belong to the Son, the authority of the Father, whereby He is the principle of the Holy Ghost, must belong likewise to the Son." (SCG)

I get what you are saying. Yet, you really have not answered my first question, which was "Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it?" As you may surmise, I ask this because the one Creed that the entire Church agreed to does not contain the Filioque. So, the issue may not be so much theological but ecclesiological.

Perhaps, I can ask the same question in this way: Is the RCC prepared to rejoin the Catholic Church by putting herself under the authority of the entire Body of Christ, starting with de-dogmatizing those beliefs that are not agreed to by all, through the Seven Ecumenical Councils? I realize that any answer to this question will involve a rethinking of the role of the Pope, not only in the Roman Church but in the entire Body.


                                                                                                                                    

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« Reply #24 on: July 22, 2010, 11:56:23 AM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

There are three distinct Persons in the Holy Trinity. The Son is not the selfsame Person of the Father.
I agree. But they are distinguished as persons, not in their essence. [bgcolor=#ffff00]Christ points out that everything the Father has, the Son has.[/bgcolor] This means that they must share all things in common, except what distinguishes them from one another. Since the thing that distinquished the Father and the Son is the Father's Paternity with regard to the Son and the Son's Sonship with regard to the Father, then they are not distinguished by the procession of the Holy Spirit. Thus, the procession of the Spirit must be something that is common to both the Father and the Son.

That being said, because the the distinction of Paternity and Sonship is what distinguishes the Father and the Son, this distinction makes the relationship of each to the procession of the Spirit different. The Father spirates the Spirit as the Father who is monarch, and source without source. The Son, on the other hand, spirates the Spirit by participation because the everything the Son has, comes from the Father, so the procession of the Spirit from the Son, is really From the Father through the Son and is done in unison with the Father as a single source.

Yes, but which nature is speaking when He says this.

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« Reply #25 on: July 22, 2010, 12:19:36 PM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

There are three distinct Persons in the Holy Trinity. The Son is not the selfsame Person of the Father.
I agree. But they are distinguished as persons, not in their essence. [bgcolor=#ffff00]Christ points out that everything the Father has, the Son has.[/bgcolor] This means that they must share all things in common, except what distinguishes them from one another. Since the thing that distinquished the Father and the Son is the Father's Paternity with regard to the Son and the Son's Sonship with regard to the Father, then they are not distinguished by the procession of the Holy Spirit. Thus, the procession of the Spirit must be something that is common to both the Father and the Son.

That being said, because the the distinction of Paternity and Sonship is what distinguishes the Father and the Son, this distinction makes the relationship of each to the procession of the Spirit different. The Father spirates the Spirit as the Father who is monarch, and source without source. The Son, on the other hand, spirates the Spirit by participation because the everything the Son has, comes from the Father, so the procession of the Spirit from the Son, is really From the Father through the Son and is done in unison with the Father as a single source.

Yes, but which nature is speaking when He says this.

Welcome to Byzantium.

There is only one divine nature.
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« Reply #26 on: July 22, 2010, 12:25:56 PM »

I have a question to our RCC brothers and sisters. Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it? If so, what is the backing for such a thing, first in the Holy Scriptures and second in the Ecumenical Councils?
On this Point:

"IF any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is not of him (Rom. viii, 9). These words of the Apostle show that the same Spirit is of the Father and of the Son: for the text alleged follows upon these words immediately preceding: If so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now it cannot be said that the Holy Ghost is the Spirit merely of the man Christ (Luke iv, 3): for from Gal. iv, 6, Since ye are sons, God hath sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, it appears that the Holy Ghost makes sons of God inasmuch as He is the Spirit of the Son of God, -- sons of God, that is to say, by adoption, which means assimilation to Him who is Son of God by nature. For so the text has it: He hath predestined (them) to become conformable to the image of his Son, that he may be the first-born among many brethren (Rom. viii, 29). But the Holy Ghost cannot be called the Spirit of the Son of God except as taking His origin from Him: for this distinction of origin is the only one admissible in the Godhead."  - St. Thomas Aquinas (SCG)

"The Son says of the Holy Ghost: He shall glorify me, because he shall receive of mine (John xvi, 14). Now it cannot be maintained that He shall receive that which belongs to the Son, namely, the divine essence, but not receive it of the Son, but only of the Father: for it follows, All things whatsoever that the Father hath are mine: therefore did I say to you that he shall receive of mine: for if all things that the Father has belong to the Son, the authority of the Father, whereby He is the principle of the Holy Ghost, must belong likewise to the Son." (SCG)

I get what you are saying. Yet, you really have not answered my first question, which was "Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it?" As you may surmise, I ask this because the one Creed that the entire Church agreed to does not contain the Filioque. So, the issue may not be so much theological but ecclesiological.
Yes, it is that important because I believe that it is orthodox, scriptural, and patrisitc. It is true. Just as you do not want to sacrifice truth for unity, neither do we.
Perhaps, I can ask the same question in this way: Is the RCC prepared to rejoin the Catholic Church by putting herself under the authority of the entire Body of Christ, starting with de-dogmatizing those beliefs that are not agreed to by all, through the Seven Ecumenical Councils? I realize that any answer to this question will involve a rethinking of the role of the Pope, not only in the Roman Church but in the entire Body.
We have the same understanding of our Church that you have of yours. We would similarly ask, "Is the EOC prepared to rejoin the Catholic Church by putting herself under the authority of the Body of Christ, starting by accepting the Latin Fathers and all the councils, not just the first seven?"

I think that fact that each of our Churches sees itself as the true Church and the Body of Christ, will keep us from being able to achieve unity with one another this side of Heaven. But who knows. God is not limited and can perform the miralce that is required to restore unity if he sees fit.
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« Reply #27 on: July 22, 2010, 12:28:33 PM »

The problem with the Filioque is that it obscures the two natures of Christ, fully God, and fully Man.
The Holy Spirit proceeds from Father and Son, ergo the Son in not God and Man...I don't follow this train of thought. Could you expand on what you mean by this?

Hi.

My logical argument is at the head of the thread. To say that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son creates a dialectical contradiction between Christ's two natures. The doctrine of the trinity is supposed to be an infinite knot, you know; but the west managed to unravel it, starting with the Filioque.

I merely cited wording from the Creed itself to demonstrate that the Filioque deconstructs even the very text into which it was inserted.


I still don't see how it creatres a contradiction between Christ's two natures. Can you explain?
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« Reply #28 on: July 22, 2010, 12:33:43 PM »

The problem with the Filioque is that it obscures the two natures of Christ, fully God, and fully Man.
The Holy Spirit proceeds from Father and Son, ergo the Son in not God and Man...I don't follow this train of thought. Could you expand on what you mean by this?

Hi.

My logical argument is at the head of the thread. To say that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son creates a dialectical contradiction between Christ's two natures. The doctrine of the trinity is supposed to be an infinite knot, you know; but the west managed to unravel it, starting with the Filioque.

I merely cited wording from the Creed itself to demonstrate that the Filioque deconstructs even the very text into which it was inserted.


I still don't see how it creatres a contradiction between Christ's two natures. Can you explain?
Me neither, although my head usually spins anytime the Holy Trinity is discussed since it is pretty much impossible to completely wrap your head around the concept.
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« Reply #29 on: July 22, 2010, 12:54:54 PM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

There are three distinct Persons in the Holy Trinity. The Son is not the selfsame Person of the Father.
I agree. But they are distinguished as persons, not in their essence. Christ points out that everything the Father has, the Son has. This means that they must share all things in common, except what distinguishes them from one another.

Like the procession of the Holy Spirit.

Quote
Since the thing that distinquished the Father and the Son is the Father's Paternity with regard to the Son and the Son's Sonship with regard to the Father, then they are not distinguished by the procession of the Holy Spirit.

Yes, they are: according to the Son, the Spirit proceeds from the Father.  The further jesuitry usually employed to defend the indefensible filiqoue, that the Spirit proceeds from a single spiration, as the Son would need, according to his sophistry, to have this single spiration in common with the Father (remember "everything the Father has, the Son has"), i.e. two sources of the Trinity.  Either the Son has both the single spiration and the procession, and you are a dualist, or He does not have the procession for the same reason He doesn't have the single spiration and single source.

Quote
Thus, the procession of the Spirit must be something that is common to both the Father and the Son.

As shown above, does not compute.

Quote
That being said, because the the distinction of Paternity and Sonship is what distinguishes the Father and the Son, this distinction makes the relationship of each to the procession of the Spirit different.

You just said filiation is the only thing different between the Son and the Father. Your argument depends on it. Now spiration is addition difference, pulling the rug under your false syllogism.  Either the Son having everything includes spiriation, or it doesn't.

Quote
The Father spirates the Spirit as the Father who is monarch, and source without source. The Son, on the other hand, spirates the Spirit by participation because the everything the Son has, comes from the Father, so the procession of the Spirit from the Son, is really From the Father through the Son and is done in unison with the Father as a single source.
So the Spirit is a third rate God.
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« Reply #30 on: July 22, 2010, 01:05:03 PM »

I have a question to our RCC brothers and sisters. Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it? If so, what is the backing for such a thing, first in the Holy Scriptures and second in the Ecumenical Councils?
On this Point:

"IF any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is not of him (Rom. viii, 9). These words of the Apostle show that the same Spirit is of the Father and of the Son: for the text alleged follows upon these words immediately preceding: If so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now it cannot be said that the Holy Ghost is the Spirit merely of the man Christ (Luke iv, 3): for from Gal. iv, 6, Since ye are sons, God hath sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, it appears that the Holy Ghost makes sons of God inasmuch as He is the Spirit of the Son of God, -- sons of God, that is to say, by adoption, which means assimilation to Him who is Son of God by nature. For so the text has it: He hath predestined (them) to become conformable to the image of his Son, that he may be the first-born among many brethren (Rom. viii, 29). But the Holy Ghost cannot be called the Spirit of the Son of God except as taking His origin from Him: for this distinction of origin is the only one admissible in the Godhead."  - St. Thomas Aquinas (SCG)

"The Son says of the Holy Ghost: He shall glorify me, because he shall receive of mine (John xvi, 14). Now it cannot be maintained that He shall receive that which belongs to the Son, namely, the divine essence, but not receive it of the Son, but only of the Father: for it follows, All things whatsoever that the Father hath are mine: therefore did I say to you that he shall receive of mine: for if all things that the Father has belong to the Son, the authority of the Father, whereby He is the principle of the Holy Ghost, must belong likewise to the Son." (SCG)

I get what you are saying. Yet, you really have not answered my first question, which was "Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it?" As you may surmise, I ask this because the one Creed that the entire Church agreed to does not contain the Filioque. So, the issue may not be so much theological but ecclesiological.
Yes, it is that important because I believe that it is orthodox, scriptural, and patrisitc. It is true. Just as you do not want to sacrifice truth for unity, neither do we.

But you have:every "Union" agreement between the Vatican and those who have submitted to it give up the whole array (filioque, mandated clerical celebacy, etc.) that it has dogmatized as so important.

Quote
Perhaps, I can ask the same question in this way: Is the RCC prepared to rejoin the Catholic Church by putting herself under the authority of the entire Body of Christ, starting with de-dogmatizing those beliefs that are not agreed to by all, through the Seven Ecumenical Councils? I realize that any answer to this question will involve a rethinking of the role of the Pope, not only in the Roman Church but in the entire Body.
We have the same understanding of our Church that you have of yours. We would similarly ask, "Is the EOC prepared to rejoin the Catholic Church by putting herself under the authority of the Body of Christ, starting by accepting the Latin Fathers and all the councils, not just the first seven?"

Because you have contradicted yourself on your number 8, and 9-21 directly contradict 1-7 that you accept.

And you do not ask about the authority of the Body of Christ: it's that much vaunted "visible head" that your councils claim that you want us to put the Body of Christ under.

Quote
I think that fact that each of our Churches sees itself as the true Church and the Body of Christ, will keep us from being able to achieve unity with one another this side of Heaven. But who knows. God is not limited and can perform the miralce that is required to restore unity if he sees fit.
Amen.
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« Reply #31 on: July 22, 2010, 01:09:33 PM »


Dear Papist,

No, I am suggesting that the filioque insertion leads etymological problems that can lead to heresy.  The problem lies in confusing the co-equality of the substance with the personhood of each member.  Based on the other posts here, the Latin term is much more loosely understood that the original Greek, but this looseness of definition is precisely the problem.

The Father is the Father.  He alone eternally-begets the Son and from Whom eternally-proceeds the Holy Spirit.  To attribute some of His personal attribute to the Son leads to confusion of the Persons, which then can stray in all sorts of bizarre directions that neither the OC nor the RC want.  The Creed in its original form confirms this, and the later accretion confuses our temporal reception of the Holy Spirit with His eternal procession.

Let me add that I do not think that the RCC is guilty of the heresy of Subordinationism or the like, but I do think that it would do the RCC no harm to remove the insistence on this accretion without harming it theology.  The filioque is utterly dispensible, protecting no one from anything.


Do you think that the lack of filioque then seems to suggest that the Spirit and the Son are not co-equal with the Father then?
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« Reply #32 on: July 22, 2010, 01:38:00 PM »

When Christ says that the Son has all the Father has, it is not a generic statement. It's context is thus:

Quote
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he shall guide you into all the truth: for he shall not speak from himself; but what things soever he shall hear, [these] shall he speak: and he shall declare unto you the things that are to come.

He shall glorify me: for he shall take of mine, and shall declare [it] unto you.

All things whatsoever the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he taketh of mine, and shall declare [it] unto you.
St. John 16:7-15

The "all" Christ is referring to is the Glory of God. "All things..." is an explanation of why "He shall glorify me...". And to make it not dubious, the Apostle even wrote "therefore said I" and then mentioned the previous verse.

Therefore the use of this verse to support the Filioque does not stand.

On the other hand, even if the verse was ambiguous, Christ states rather bluntantly in St. John 15:26

"But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, [even] the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall bear witness of me"

Here we have the Orthodox Catholic missionary sending, that is, Christ sends the Spirit in a manner analogous to how He sent the Apostles and the Orthodox Catholic sentence that was used as reference for the Symbol of Faith. If there was any such identiy between Father and Son, this would be the place for Christ to have said it. Not only He didn't, but He made a clear distinctiong between the Son sending missionarily the Spirit to the world and procession from the Father.

Plus, the ex post fact RC explanation for the filioque (that it is a sending analagous but different from that of the Father) does not hold simply because both Father and Son are subjects of the same verb of which the Spirit is the object. In no context one would understand in the sentence "They are from U.S. and Canada" that this "are" means for US that they originated their and for Canada that they were just passing through the country.

Finally, the Symbol is written using the figure of speech of parallelism. It describes the Father, then the Son, then the Holy Spirit describe for each precisely that which differentiates each from the other:

  • Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.
  • one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God,
  • the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of life, who proceedeth from the Father,

So, be begotten of God is exclusive of the Son
To proceed from the Father is exclusive of the Holy Spirit.

What is then exclusive of the Father? He is All-Mighty, the only one who is the cause of all potential. *Only* Him, can be cause to other persons of the Trinity. What is that then, that comes *through* the Son?

  • by whom all things were made;

That is, what comes *through* the Son is only the created world. Not persons of the Trinity.

Finally, once these three distinctions were established: a Father Who is the only "source" of both created and uncreated things, a Son Who is begotten from the Father and a Spirit who proceeds from the Father (and here quoting Christ Himself), their essential unity is expressed in:

  • (the Spirit) with the Father and the Son together is worshiped and glorified

The inclusion of "and of the Son" breaks the intended paralellism because it puts the Son and the Father doing the same action and therefore destroying any difference between them.

Now, and this is not meant as an offence, it is not surprising that the this inclusion would be forced upon the Western Church by an illiterate emperor. While in Toledo where this inclusion was first introduced and tolerated by ekonomia of the Primate, they were probably well aware of the difference and the context in which it was being done, the imposition of this element in places where there was no heresy about the Holy Spirit was itself a heresy and a corruption of the very words of Christ.

In very prosaic terms, IMO what I think that happened was that the East was used to heretical emperors trying to tamper with the Faith and the Church learned to recover with time. In the West this had long been forgotten, so when a new emperor emerged imposing this heresy, there was no experience nor humbleness posteriorly to admit that a secular power had messed with the faith and that it could and should be corrected.
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« Reply #33 on: July 22, 2010, 03:04:47 PM »

The problem with the Filioque is that it obscures the two natures of Christ, fully God, and fully Man.
The Holy Spirit proceeds from Father and Son, ergo the Son in not God and Man...I don't follow this train of thought. Could you expand on what you mean by this?

Hi.

My logical argument is at the head of the thread. To say that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son creates a dialectical contradiction between Christ's two natures. The doctrine of the trinity is supposed to be an infinite knot, you know; but the west managed to unravel it, starting with the Filioque.

I merely cited wording from the Creed itself to demonstrate that the Filioque deconstructs even the very text into which it was inserted.


I still don't see how it creatres a contradiction between Christ's two natures. Can you explain?
Me neither, although my head usually spins anytime the Holy Trinity is discussed since it is pretty much impossible to completely wrap your head around the concept.

Why is it that only Orthodox Christians and analytic philosophers can understand metaphysical concepts? Maybe you should read some Aristotle.

Let's turn this around. Maybe you can tell me how it is that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son in such a way that the Son does not become the Father. 

Here's the point: In every analysis of Filioque dialectic, the Son's humanity is ultimately minimized (which leads to a more or less necessary Mariolatry--sound familiar?), and the substance of the Holy Spirit is supressed (leading to a necessary dependence upon rules and formulas---sound familiar?).
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« Reply #34 on: July 22, 2010, 03:32:33 PM »

At the most basic level, Filioque is indefensible because, according to the Synods, nothing can be added to the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed.

That said, since the 12th century, Latin theology has tried to justify its insertion for reasons other than were used when it was erroneously inserted in the first place in 6th century Spain. To give it up would be to admit they were wrong.
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« Reply #35 on: July 22, 2010, 03:59:53 PM »

I have a question to our RCC brothers and sisters. Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it? If so, what is the backing for such a thing, first in the Holy Scriptures and second in the Ecumenical Councils?
On this Point:

"IF any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is not of him (Rom. viii, 9). These words of the Apostle show that the same Spirit is of the Father and of the Son: for the text alleged follows upon these words immediately preceding: If so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now it cannot be said that the Holy Ghost is the Spirit merely of the man Christ (Luke iv, 3): for from Gal. iv, 6, Since ye are sons, God hath sent the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, it appears that the Holy Ghost makes sons of God inasmuch as He is the Spirit of the Son of God, -- sons of God, that is to say, by adoption, which means assimilation to Him who is Son of God by nature. For so the text has it: He hath predestined (them) to become conformable to the image of his Son, that he may be the first-born among many brethren (Rom. viii, 29). But the Holy Ghost cannot be called the Spirit of the Son of God except as taking His origin from Him: for this distinction of origin is the only one admissible in the Godhead."  - St. Thomas Aquinas (SCG)

"The Son says of the Holy Ghost: He shall glorify me, because he shall receive of mine (John xvi, 14). Now it cannot be maintained that He shall receive that which belongs to the Son, namely, the divine essence, but not receive it of the Son, but only of the Father: for it follows, All things whatsoever that the Father hath are mine: therefore did I say to you that he shall receive of mine: for if all things that the Father has belong to the Son, the authority of the Father, whereby He is the principle of the Holy Ghost, must belong likewise to the Son." (SCG)

I get what you are saying. Yet, you really have not answered my first question, which was "Is the inclusion of the Filioque so important that you would sacrifice unity for it?" As you may surmise, I ask this because the one Creed that the entire Church agreed to does not contain the Filioque. So, the issue may not be so much theological but ecclesiological.
Yes, it is that important because I believe that it is orthodox, scriptural, and patrisitc. It is true. Just as you do not want to sacrifice truth for unity, neither do we.
Perhaps, I can ask the same question in this way: Is the RCC prepared to rejoin the Catholic Church by putting herself under the authority of the entire Body of Christ, starting with de-dogmatizing those beliefs that are not agreed to by all, through the Seven Ecumenical Councils? I realize that any answer to this question will involve a rethinking of the role of the Pope, not only in the Roman Church but in the entire Body.
We have the same understanding of our Church that you have of yours. We would similarly ask, "Is the EOC prepared to rejoin the Catholic Church by putting herself under the authority of the Body of Christ, starting by accepting the Latin Fathers and all the councils, not just the first seven?"

I think that fact that each of our Churches sees itself as the true Church and the Body of Christ, will keep us from being able to achieve unity with one another this side of Heaven. But who knows. God is not limited and can perform the miralce that is required to restore unity if he sees fit.


Amen also to your last sentiment. However, it is not logical for you to state that the Orthodox can rejoin the Church. We never left Her, but y'all presumed (as some Orthodox now think about the EOC) that you could go on without the rest of the Church as if you were The Church. Does not make logical or historical sense to me. Now, we may end up accepting the Latin Fathers and all of the later councils (of both East and West) but we must start from the Seventh Ecumenical Council and not a day after. Another absolute requirement for any give on our part must be the RCC's renunciation of the extraordinary powers that have accrued to the Bishop of Rome. We now have two distinct ecclesiologies; with the EOC holding on to what was common to both, while y'all have gone, in Star Trek fashion, boldly into uncharted and frankly erroneous regions of outer space. Come on down to Earth and rejoin the Church is all that we ask.
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« Reply #36 on: July 22, 2010, 04:42:47 PM »

At last I have found a credible account of this Filioque business. Here is the gist of it:

""Tonight I will be giving you what I consider, based on my years of painsgiving research, to be the diminutive Orthodox version of the events leading up to that momentary day in July of 1054 which is usually marked as the tourniquet point in the relationship between the One, True, Holy, Catholic and Apostlic Church, and those guys in Rome.

"Now as you know, phyllo dough is an issue-thin pastry dough used by the Greeks in making balaklava and other melt-in-your-mouth pasties. What you may not have been aware of, however, is that Cardinal Humbert, the embarassy of the Pope sent in 1054 to Constantinople to heal the growing beach between the Latin and Greek churches, was a man obsessed with phyllo dough. Or to be more concise, with its irradiation. Cardinal Humbert, among his many flaws, sins, and shortcomings as a human being, also — and I can't stretch this highly enough — simply despised phyllo dough.
Where was I? Oh, yes. Anyway, on that cross-eyed summer day, Cardinal Humbert stood at the doors of the great Church of the Holy Wisdom — Hagia Sophia — in Constantinople and asked the passers by in his rustic Iberian Latin, 'Phyllo — que?' Or, 'Phyllo — what?' to paraphrase abruptly.

"Unfortunately for the relationship between the two great eclectial bodies, nobody in the streets of Constantinople that fitful day spoke Iberian Latin too terribly well. They thought he said 'filioque' ('and from the son'), and so the rumour started that the Latins had added a new word to the Nicene Creed.

"Early on in this process, Cardinal Humbert could easily have put an end to the rumours by standing up and exaspirating to the people that the Latins had not, in fact, added any words to the creed. Unfortunately we are not talking about a man of dazzling intellegence. This was not the brightest bulb in the cutlery drawer. Oh, no. When the rumours came back around to Cardinal Humbert, he believed them, and immediately added the word 'filioque' to the St. Joseph's Handy Pocket Missal he always carried on his person, thinking, repairently, that he had somehow missed the papal bull which decreed its addition.

"Meanwhile back in Old Rome, the Latins had broke wind of the rumour and themselves believed it — and immediately set about adding the word to their missals small and great. The Pope's team of crack theologians (which would one day evolve into the Jesuits) quickly began writing treatises on double procession and why this was what the Latin church had always, in fact, believed.

"And so the error spread until all bishops under the Pope of Rome required their priests to insert the offending word into their missals. The Monestary of Kubaan, which hand-copied all the missals used by the Latin church, suddenly found its services in high demand: much higher, in fact, than it could commodiate; thus giving rise to the famous Kubaan Missal Crisis of 1063." From a lecture by the eminent professor Yeraslav Penguin, St. Gregory Palamas Professor of Liturgical History at St. Toucan's Orthodox Seminary and Roadside Icon Shoppe.

http://theoniondome.blogspot.com/ Go to the June 10, 2010 entry.
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« Reply #37 on: July 22, 2010, 04:57:18 PM »

At the most basic level, Filioque is indefensible because, according to the Synods, nothing can be added to the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed.

That said, since the 12th century, Latin theology has tried to justify its insertion for reasons other than were used when it was erroneously inserted in the first place in 6th century Spain. To give it up would be to admit they were wrong.

Apologies for missing the Christological dimension of the OP. I think part of the misunderstanding of the Holy Spirit's procession comes from the Latin word "procedit" is simply not as precise as the Greek "ekporevete." The Greek means to proceed from a source, the Latin does not have this distinction. The double procession of the Holy Spirit the Latins teach, IMHO, distorts the teaching of the Father a bit more than the teaching of the son. We forget about the Father in all this, it seems to me. Filioque also makes the Holy Spirit subordinate. I still have trouble seeing how Filioque touches on the natures of Christ. It seems to me if we look at it primarily as a Christological problem, we make the same presumption that instituted Filioque in the first place.
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« Reply #38 on: July 22, 2010, 05:11:46 PM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.
Then he must also proceed from himself, since he shares the same essence, which is utter nonsense.
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« Reply #39 on: July 22, 2010, 05:23:15 PM »

At the most basic level, Filioque is indefensible because, according to the Synods, nothing can be added to the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed.

That said, since the 12th century, Latin theology has tried to justify its insertion for reasons other than were used when it was erroneously inserted in the first place in 6th century Spain. To give it up would be to admit they were wrong.

Apologies for missing the Christological dimension of the OP. I think part of the misunderstanding of the Holy Spirit's procession comes from the Latin word "procedit" is simply not as precise as the Greek "ekporevete." The Greek means to proceed from a source, the Latin does not have this distinction. The double procession of the Holy Spirit the Latins teach, IMHO, distorts the teaching of the Father a bit more than the teaching of the son. We forget about the Father in all this, it seems to me. Filioque also makes the Holy Spirit subordinate. I still have trouble seeing how Filioque touches on the natures of Christ. It seems to me if we look at it primarily as a Christological problem, we make the same presumption that instituted Filioque in the first place.

I think that what they missed was the parallelism in the Creed. Literacy had fallen very much in the West at that time and although translating individual words can be done in a rudimentary way if you have some kind of dictionary, figures of speech that are constructed through the cohesion of the text paragraphs require a higher level of literacy that quite a few people don't have in their own languages and much less in reading a foreign language text with near to no education in their own. After Charlesmagne succeed in imposing the filioque over and despite the protests of even the pope, the papacy entered its real dark ages and was hostage to the proto-mafia families of Italy and with the help of the French (the mature Franks) only could come out of it. After all this turmoil, the events regarding the insertion of the filioque were blurred and it was considered an accomplished fact to be explained and not questioned.

And the consequence of the lack of distinction between the Father and the Son turns the RC God from a Trinity into a Dinity: Fatherson-Holy Spirit. Indeed, it is a kind of restricted modalism, wherein Father and Son are just modes of the same entity.
There are only two kinds of attributes in God. Those who are common to all the Three Persons and pertain to His divinity, and those that are particular of each person. Fatherson-Spirit creates the idea that in fact all attributes are common between the Father and the Son only and that the Holy Spirit is distinguished from the two for not sharing in the causation of Persons. In the True, Triune God, Causation of Persons is just the unique attribute of the Father. That is why the Spirit of the Diune god is weaker. He is defined by what he does not share with two persons who are, for all purposes exactly the same.

This weakened Spirit, obviously cannot manifest the Son perfectly on Earth. Something is lacking in him and even in that Son that is just a mode of Fatherson. Hence, the need for a material medium for the expression of that Son that is indistinguishable: either a bishop or a book,which then completes what is lacking in the Spirit.

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« Reply #40 on: July 22, 2010, 06:30:10 PM »

heresy (ugh. hate to use that word).

Then why not just use "heterodoxy" instead?
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« Reply #41 on: July 22, 2010, 06:31:21 PM »

The problem with the Filioque is that it obscures the two natures of Christ, fully God, and fully Man.

I think it important here to not get into Biblical hermeneutics. This issue has had a lot of ink spilled over it.


But consider this if p then not q: If Christ is fully God, "of one essence with the Father," then it is incoherent to say that the Holy Spirit proceedeth from both the Father and the Son-----unless one resorts to a polytheist paradigm of essence, perhaps, which is of course, heresy (ugh. hate to use that word).

The results of the Filioque have been utterly predictable. Diaphysite Christiology has been utterly marginalized in the West, the Trinity has acquired a vertical hierarchy (which error sparked the Protestant reformation), and the Mother of God has been made the suffering sweetheart of the most Gothic family romance in history... You think I'm wrong? Look at the art.



In summary, a thoroughgoing understanding of diaphysite Christology immediately reveals the error, and even a cursory view of the Filioque's history exposes the doctrine for what it is...

If you are suggesting that the West is inclined to Monophysitism, I must say I find such a suggestion completely absurd.
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« Reply #42 on: July 22, 2010, 06:33:01 PM »

Actually, the fact that the Father and the Son are one in essence almost seems to make the filioque a logical necessity. If they are really one in their essence and the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father, then he must also proceed from the Son as a result of the oneness between the Father and the Son.

Perhaps if you are thinking only in terms of what the Holy Spirit is issuing forth from.

However, if you consider who actually generates the Holy Spirit by spiration, the idea of the Holy Spirit proceeding from both the Father and the Son becomes more questionable.
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« Reply #43 on: July 22, 2010, 06:35:56 PM »

Nobody ever seems to bring up how the Son is begotten of the Father and born of the Holy Spirit. How is that not the same alleged "subordination" in the other direction?

I don't think anyone has ever said the the Son is eternally born of the Spirit.
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« Reply #44 on: July 22, 2010, 06:37:05 PM »

And, to be fair, many Catholics argue that the H.S. is sent, temporally, from the Son.

Huh

The Holy Spirit is temporally sent from the Son.
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