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Author Topic: Isaac and Maphrianate  (Read 883 times) Average Rating: 0
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deusveritasest
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« on: September 15, 2010, 05:33:36 AM »

Is it possible that Isaac the Syrian was actually part of the Syriac Orthodox Maphrianate headquartered in Tigrit rather than the ACE?
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« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2010, 06:29:24 AM »

The writings of St Isaac the Syrian had become very popular among the West Syrian Monastics on Mt Izla and in Turabdeen.

The West Syrians then claimed him as his own.  Patriarch Ignatius Afrem Barsoum (1887-1957) in his Scattered Pearls mentions this and says that the Syrian monastics wrongly claimed Isaac. 

There are very many Isaac's in the Syriac Church and there is a school of thought that Mar Isaac the Syrian was at some time on the West Syrian calendar,  atleast in the Turkish dioceses.  After Patriarch Afrem Barsoum work on standardization of the West Syrian Calendar, the Isaac on the calendar is always said to be Mar Isaac the poet of Antioch or the two Isaac's of Edessa.
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Leb Aryo
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« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2010, 12:40:08 PM »

St. Isaac chose to stay away from the arguments of his day in his writings.  His writings can be applied to basically any Christian.
There was a sizable community of the Assyrian Church in the Mt. Izla area and in Tur Abdin until the 19th century.  It is likely that some members coming from the West Syriac Church today from the Mt. Izla area were members of the ACE in centuries past.  This is probably the reason for the overlap in faith and some traditions.
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deusveritasest
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« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2010, 08:54:32 PM »

Ugh. I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around how a member of the ACE could be a Saint, given that he/she would have been devoid of the means of redemption.
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Leb Aryo
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2010, 12:34:06 PM »

Ugh. I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around how a member of the ACE could be a Saint, given that he/she would have been devoid of the means of redemption.

If you believe that only members of your immediate religious group are going to heaven, than I think you would have a hard time wrapping your mind around St. Isaac.  The man is venerated by many other churches besides the SOC.  His writings make you stop and think to yourself how insightful and what an intellect this man was even after 13 centuries.  He was a holy man, who gave his life to God, he lived the life of an anchorite for a large portion of his life.  He didn't accept even the honor of being a bishop which was given to him.  He also wasn't a decisive man.  He didn't write and argue for or against the "heresies" of his time.  I really don't see a problem here...
« Last Edit: September 16, 2010, 12:34:50 PM by Leb Aryo » Logged
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« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2010, 02:53:44 PM »

Ugh. I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around how a member of the ACE could be a Saint, given that he/she would have been devoid of the means of redemption.

If you believe that only members of your immediate religious group are going to heaven, than I think you would have a hard time wrapping your mind around St. Isaac.  The man is venerated by many other churches besides the SOC.  His writings make you stop and think to yourself how insightful and what an intellect this man was even after 13 centuries.  He was a holy man, who gave his life to God, he lived the life of an anchorite for a large portion of his life.  He didn't accept even the honor of being a bishop which was given to him.  He also wasn't a decisive man.  He didn't write and argue for or against the "heresies" of his time.  I really don't see a problem here...

So you wouldn't have problem with venerating RC or protestant Saints?
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Leb Aryo
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« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2010, 03:02:31 PM »

If they go along with mainstream Christianity and aren't propounding their specific Protestant dogmatic beliefs against others, I really don't have a problem with them.  If St. Isaac belonged to a Protestant church (yeah I know the timing is off) I wouldn't change my mind about him.  It's not really about which club you belong to is it?  I'm sure there are variances in the beliefs of some specific parishioners of OO churches that don't conform to dogma and vice versa.
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« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2010, 05:18:31 PM »

HH Pope St. Kyrillos VI of Alexandria also was influenced a lot from St. Isaac's writings and venerated him.
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« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2010, 05:30:33 PM »

If you haven't read St. Isaac, I'd recommend this book that comes with an English Translation and the original Syriac, before you make up your mind.
http://www.gorgiaspress.com/bookshop/showproduct.aspx?isbn=1-59333-335-8
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deusveritasest
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« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2010, 06:42:09 PM »

If you believe that only members of your immediate religious group are going to heaven,

That's not it.

It doesn't have anything to do with whether or not people who were not part of the Orthodox Church in this life can eventually wind up in Heaven or not; I am fairly confident they can.

On the other hand, I understand holiness and redemption as particularly a phenomenon of the Church, and furthermore that Sainthood is a matter of what role a person played in the Church's salvation history. If someone wasn't even part of the Church obviously they cannot play such a role.

On top of that, I think for someone to be rendered a Saint in this life they essentially need to have access to the means of redemption. That's really the only way anyone can be rendered free from sin.

His writings make you stop and think to yourself how insightful and what an intellect this man was even after 13 centuries.

One can have charismatic ability and have a divine vision without necessarily being holy.

He was a holy man,

Also, one can be quite religiously pious without necessarily being holy.

He didn't write and argue for or against the "heresies" of his time.  I really don't see a problem here...

It doesn't particularly matter if he wrote in favor of Nestorianism or not if he was part of the Nestorian church because the Nestorian church is devoid of the means of redemption.
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« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2010, 06:46:31 PM »

I really don't have a problem with them.

I don't particularly have a problem with who Issac was as an individual or what he said either. But to me, judging whether or not someone was a Saint based off of that is complete folly. It's that sort of mentality that leads to this:

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_4Jy7eIXAKq0/SYaLH5MBLoI/AAAAAAAAAJ4/qFgNL1nFBp4/s1600-h/IMG_0287.JPG

It's not really about which club you belong to is it?

Yes, redemption is about unity with the One Church of Christ.
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« Reply #11 on: September 16, 2010, 07:33:26 PM »

I don't think St. Isaac is actually on the calendars of any of the OO Churches.  He's only a saint in the sense that many unofficially venerate him.  Also, of course, his writings are greatly respected, and he seems to have had an influence on OO spirituality. 

I'm pretty sure he's on the EO calendar, and I assumed that was possible because the emperor maurice briefly entered into union with the Church of the East near or around the time when St. Isaac lived.

There was a thread that discussed all this previously.
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