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Author Topic: Father Lev Gillet and the Immaculate Conception  (Read 8400 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: November 09, 2010, 12:48:58 PM »

Again, please read the article and citations by Father Lev.  The Orthodox do not speak with one voice on this issue.


...it is said that a new teaching is not being established, but that there is only being proclaimed as the church’s that which always existed in the church and which has been held by many Holy Fathers, excerpts from whose writings are cited. However, all the cited references speak only of the exalted sanctity of the Virgin Mary and of Her immaculateness, and give Her various names which define Her purity and spiritual might; but nowhere is there any word of the immaculateness of Her conception. Meanwhile, these same Holy Fathers in other places say that only Jesus Christ is completely pure of every sin, while all men, being born of Adam, have borne a flesh subject to the law of sin.

None of the ancient Holy Fathers say that God in miraculous fashion purified the Virgin Mary while yet in the womb; and many directly indicate that the Virgin Mary, just as all men, endured a battle with sinfulness, but was victorious over temptations and was saved by Her Divine Son. ...

... This teaching, which seemingly has the aim of exalting the Mother of God, in reality completely denies all Her virtues. After all, if Mary, even in the womb of Her mother, when She could not even desire anything either good or evil, was preserved by God’s grace from every impurity, and then by that grace was preserved from sin even after Her birth, then in what does Her merit consist? If She could have been placed in the state of being unable to sin, and did not sin, then for what did God glorify Her? if She, without any effort, and without having any kind of impulses to sin, remained pure, then why is She crowned more than everyone else?

There is no victory without an adversary.

-St John of Shanghai and San Francisco

source: http://preachersinstitute.com/2010/06/24/the-error-of-the-immaculate-conception/

The St John quote was in reference to the divine services in red, which as he points out, says nothing about her immaculate conception.

I did read Fr Lev. People are capable of holding the wrong opinion. A handful of people, even saints, does not make something true, or even theologoumenon.
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« Reply #46 on: November 09, 2010, 12:49:24 PM »

Pardon me for my lack of academic knowledge of the issue, but isn't the Orthodox position regarding the meaning of the red-highlighted verses based upon the differences between how the Orthodox and Church of Rome understand the concept of ancestral sin?

From the time of the Synod of Carthage of 418, which was received by both Ephesus and the Second Council of Nicea, both the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church have understood the STAIN of original sin to be the darkening of the intellect and weakening of the will.

The teaching of the Immaculate Conception teachings that the Theotokos was conceived without the darkening of her intellect or the weakness of the will.

These are things that are granted to us in Baptism, and they are what God preserved the Theotokos from at the moment of her becoming a person.

This is the teaching of the Catholic Church, this used to be something that Orthodox understood as well, even if it was never expressed a dogma.  It is a part of tradition, east and west.

Mary
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« Reply #47 on: November 09, 2010, 12:54:53 PM »

Chapter 232 has nothing to do with the Mother of God. Not one sentence in 232 mentions the Mother of God.
I do not believe you. Prove yourself.
I copied your quote. Stop playing these games.
Please tell me, why did you yourself translate a Spanish translation of the Compendium of Theology, when there are English and Latin versions available at hand?

You need to look around for Aquinas's "Brevis Summa de Fide."  I don't have it but only bits and pieces.

No comment about your own quote from Aquinas which totally supports what I have given you and destroys your allegation that I am lying?

The actual record of what St. Thomas did with this teaching was to say one thing and then say another and THEN he finally said that he would go along with whatever the Church said because it was clear from Tradition that the woman was more holy than any other human being on the face of the earth and had never been blemished by sin...from the earliest times of her becoming a person.

So you loose your reliable witness to his trust in the infallibility of the Church.
What a little lying won't accomplish:
Quote
The controversy continued, but the defenders of the opposing opinion were almost entirely confined to the members of the Dominican Order. In 1439 the dispute was brought before the Council of Basle where the University of Paris, formerly opposed to the doctrine, proved to be its most ardent advocate, asking for a dogmatical definition. The two referees at the council were John of Segovia and John Turrecremata (Torquemada). After it had been discussed for the space of two years before that assemblage, the bishops declared the Immaculate Conception to be a doctrine which was pious, consonant with Catholic worship, Catholic faith, right reason, and Holy Scripture; nor, said they, was it henceforth allowable to preach or declare to the contrary (Mansi, XXXIX, 182). The Fathers of the Council say that the Church of Rome was celebrating the feast. This is true only in a certain sense. It was kept in a number of churches of Rome, especially in those of the religious orders, but it was not received in the official calendar.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07674d.htm
That infallible church then went on to disown this, its own "ecumenical" council.

So it took Aquinas 620 years to change his mind.  Then there's that faulty translation of Gen. 3:15 by Jerome: the Vatican now has disowned the translation, but still promulgates the faulty cult based on it.
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« Reply #48 on: November 09, 2010, 01:00:07 PM »

Again, please read the article and citations by Father Lev.  The Orthodox do not speak with one voice on this issue.


...it is said that a new teaching is not being established, but that there is only being proclaimed as the church’s that which always existed in the church and which has been held by many Holy Fathers, excerpts from whose writings are cited. However, all the cited references speak only of the exalted sanctity of the Virgin Mary and of Her immaculateness, and give Her various names which define Her purity and spiritual might; but nowhere is there any word of the immaculateness of Her conception. Meanwhile, these same Holy Fathers in other places say that only Jesus Christ is completely pure of every sin, while all men, being born of Adam, have borne a flesh subject to the law of sin.

None of the ancient Holy Fathers say that God in miraculous fashion purified the Virgin Mary while yet in the womb; and many directly indicate that the Virgin Mary, just as all men, endured a battle with sinfulness, but was victorious over temptations and was saved by Her Divine Son. ...

... This teaching, which seemingly has the aim of exalting the Mother of God, in reality completely denies all Her virtues. After all, if Mary, even in the womb of Her mother, when She could not even desire anything either good or evil, was preserved by God’s grace from every impurity, and then by that grace was preserved from sin even after Her birth, then in what does Her merit consist? If She could have been placed in the state of being unable to sin, and did not sin, then for what did God glorify Her? if She, without any effort, and without having any kind of impulses to sin, remained pure, then why is She crowned more than everyone else?

There is no victory without an adversary.

-St John of Shanghai and San Francisco

source: http://preachersinstitute.com/2010/06/24/the-error-of-the-immaculate-conception/

The St John quote was in reference to the divine services in red, which as he points out, says nothing about her immaculate conception.

I did read Fr Lev. People are capable of holding the wrong opinion. A handful of people, even saints, does not make something true, or even theologoumenon.
LOL. I think Salpy said it best:

BTW, do you have any documents in the Armenian Church that state that mere belief is ALWAYS an article of Faith?

Exactly when would those documents have been written?  Between the massacres of Abdul Hamid and the Genocide?  Or perhaps between the Genocide (when about 95% of all our clergy was killed,) and the Communist takeover? 

What do you mean by "article of faith," vs. "belief?"

I still remember a lecture by a deacon in my church, where he told us that one of the big differences between us and the Chalcedonians (both EO and Catholic) is that we OO's believe in using as little language as possible to define things.  We don't elaborate.   We don't over-define things.  We don't get into lots of fancy terminology.  We don't have lots of official documents and councils.  Believe me, we haven't gotten into the difference between an "article of faith" and a "belief."  A Church either believes something, or it doesn't. 

If you want to go to CAF, there is a father deacon there named Diak who has had contact with an Armenian priest who personally believes in the IC.  As your Catholicos states, it is not an article of Faith in your Church, but that's all he says about it.

So there's this discussion forum where someone says they know a priest who believes in IC.  That means nothing.  I wish I had a dollar for every Protestant I know who says they know someone who knows a priest who forbids people from reading the Bible. 

Even if this "father deacon" (obviously not an Armenian Orthodox--we don't call our deacons that) really does know a priest who said he believes that, it means nothing.  One priest doesn't represent the Church.  Also, as I said, a lot of Armenians mistake the phrase "Immaculate Conception" to mean something other than what it means in your Church.  Indeed the title of this thread indicates that it is misunderstood by many.  Especially with non-native speakers of English, you get people who think it means the Mother of God was conceived in a miraculous way (as in her parents were very old and infertile,) or they think it means the Virgin Birth of Christ.  I wasn't there for the conversation that took place between this deacon and the priest.  So I can't tell you what he really believes.  All I know is that this is not a teaching of our Church. 

Quote
Do you think the words "do not accept as an article of faith" precludes anyone believing it, albeit as theologoumenon (i.e., not as an article of Faith)?

My problem here is that I don't know what the word "theologoumenon" means.  I've seen the word a few times since I have been here, but I don't know what it is.  I've only seen it used by EO's.

With regard to what individual Armenians believe, there are Armenians out there who believe in just about anything.  There was a guy at my church a few years ago who got involved with some Oneness Pentecostals and then started going around telling people that it is acceptable in the Armenian Church to not believe in the Holy Trinity.  I am also sure that the Armenian Vassula crowd believes in IC, as well as all the other Latin innovations that my Church has rejected over the centuries.  One of those ladies likes to go around telling people that the Pope in Rome is the "vicar of Christ," whatever that means.

Is that what theologoumenon means?  Is it a fancy Greek word for BS?  If that is the case, then yes, it's theologoumenon.  What it is not, however, is a legitimate teaching of my Church.
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« Reply #49 on: November 09, 2010, 01:01:27 PM »

Chapter 232 has nothing to do with the Mother of God. Not one sentence in 232 mentions the Mother of God.
I do not believe you. Prove yourself.
I copied your quote. Stop playing these games.
Please tell me, why did you yourself translate a Spanish translation of the Compendium of Theology, when there are English and Latin versions available at hand?

You need to look around for Aquinas's "Brevis Summa de Fide."  I don't have it but only bits and pieces.

No comment about your own quote from Aquinas which totally supports what I have given you and destroys your allegation that I am lying?

The actual record of what St. Thomas did with this teaching was to say one thing and then say another and THEN he finally said that he would go along with whatever the Church said because it was clear from Tradition that the woman was more holy than any other human being on the face of the earth and had never been blemished by sin...from the earliest times of her becoming a person.

So you loose your reliable witness to his trust in the infallibility of the Church.
What a little lying won't accomplish:
Quote
The controversy continued, but the defenders of the opposing opinion were almost entirely confined to the members of the Dominican Order. In 1439 the dispute was brought before the Council of Basle where the University of Paris, formerly opposed to the doctrine, proved to be its most ardent advocate, asking for a dogmatical definition. The two referees at the council were John of Segovia and John Turrecremata (Torquemada). After it had been discussed for the space of two years before that assemblage, the bishops declared the Immaculate Conception to be a doctrine which was pious, consonant with Catholic worship, Catholic faith, right reason, and Holy Scripture; nor, said they, was it henceforth allowable to preach or declare to the contrary (Mansi, XXXIX, 182). The Fathers of the Council say that the Church of Rome was celebrating the feast. This is true only in a certain sense. It was kept in a number of churches of Rome, especially in those of the religious orders, but it was not received in the official calendar.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07674d.htm
That infallible church then went on to disown this, its own "ecumenical" council.

So it took Aquinas 620 years to change his mind.  

St. Thomas yielded to the Church's will on the Immaculate Conception in his own lifetime.

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« Reply #50 on: November 09, 2010, 01:02:52 PM »

Pardon me for my lack of academic knowledge of the issue, but isn't the Orthodox position regarding the meaning of the red-highlighted verses based upon the differences between how the Orthodox and Church of Rome understand the concept of ancestral sin?

From the time of the Synod of Carthage of 418, which was received by both Ephesus and the Second Council of Nicea, both the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church have understood the STAIN of original sin to be the darkening of the intellect and weakening of the will.

The teaching of the Immaculate Conception says that the Theotokos was conceived without the darkening of her intellect or the weakness of the will.

These are things that are granted to us in Baptism, and they are what God preserved the Theotokos from at the moment of her becoming a person.

This is the teaching of the Catholic Church, this used to be something that Orthodox understood as well, even if it was never expressed a dogma.  It is a part of tradition, east and west.

Mary
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« Reply #51 on: November 09, 2010, 01:03:35 PM »

The teaching of the Immaculate Conception teachings that the Theotokos was conceived without the darkening of her intellect or the weakness of the will.

Was she conceived without concupiscence?  I understand that that is the traditional Catholic teaching of the nature of original sin.
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« Reply #52 on: November 09, 2010, 01:05:47 PM »

The teaching of the Immaculate Conception teachings that the Theotokos was conceived without the darkening of her intellect or the weakness of the will.

Was she conceived without concupiscence?  I understand that that is the traditional Catholic teaching of the nature of original sin.

There are so many Orthodox ways of understanding concupiscence that I cannot begin to answer you without knowing more about your use of the term.

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« Reply #53 on: November 09, 2010, 01:12:17 PM »

The teaching of the Immaculate Conception teachings that the Theotokos was conceived without the darkening of her intellect or the weakness of the will.

Was she conceived without concupiscence?  I understand that that is the traditional Catholic teaching of the nature of original sin.

There are so many Orthodox ways of understanding concupiscence that I cannot begin to answer you without knowing more about your use of the term.



I would understand it, in an RC context, as Aquinas understands it.  But if you have another understanding, and many people do these days with the New Theology, please disclose it to us.
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« Reply #54 on: November 09, 2010, 01:17:58 PM »

The teaching of the Immaculate Conception teachings that the Theotokos was conceived without the darkening of her intellect or the weakness of the will.

Was she conceived without concupiscence?  I understand that that is the traditional Catholic teaching of the nature of original sin.

There are so many Orthodox ways of understanding concupiscence that I cannot begin to answer you without knowing more about your use of the term.



I would understand it, in an RC context, as Aquinas understands it.  But if you have another understanding, and many people do these days with the New Theology, please disclose it to us.

Please bring forward the text from Aquinas then.
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« Reply #55 on: November 09, 2010, 01:18:49 PM »

Chapter 232 has nothing to do with the Mother of God. Not one sentence in 232 mentions the Mother of God.
I do not believe you. Prove yourself.
I copied your quote. Stop playing these games.
Please tell me, why did you yourself translate a Spanish translation of the Compendium of Theology, when there are English and Latin versions available at hand?

You need to look around for Aquinas's "Brevis Summa de Fide."  I don't have it but only bits and pieces.

No comment about your own quote from Aquinas which totally supports what I have given you and destroys your allegation that I am lying?

The actual record of what St. Thomas did with this teaching was to say one thing and then say another and THEN he finally said that he would go along with whatever the Church said because it was clear from Tradition that the woman was more holy than any other human being on the face of the earth and had never been blemished by sin...from the earliest times of her becoming a person.

So you loose your reliable witness to his trust in the infallibility of the Church.
What a little lying won't accomplish:
Quote
The controversy continued, but the defenders of the opposing opinion were almost entirely confined to the members of the Dominican Order. In 1439 the dispute was brought before the Council of Basle where the University of Paris, formerly opposed to the doctrine, proved to be its most ardent advocate, asking for a dogmatical definition. The two referees at the council were John of Segovia and John Turrecremata (Torquemada). After it had been discussed for the space of two years before that assemblage, the bishops declared the Immaculate Conception to be a doctrine which was pious, consonant with Catholic worship, Catholic faith, right reason, and Holy Scripture; nor, said they, was it henceforth allowable to preach or declare to the contrary (Mansi, XXXIX, 182). The Fathers of the Council say that the Church of Rome was celebrating the feast. This is true only in a certain sense. It was kept in a number of churches of Rome, especially in those of the religious orders, but it was not received in the official calendar.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07674d.htm
That infallible church then went on to disown this, its own "ecumenical" council.

So it took Aquinas 620 years to change his mind.  

St. Thomas yielded to the Church's will on the Immaculate Conception in his own lifetime.


Evidently not, as Ineffibilus Deus claims the Church's will was the IC, and Aquinas breathed his last denying it.
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« Reply #56 on: November 09, 2010, 01:19:50 PM »


Again, please read the article and citations by Father Lev.  The Orthodox do not speak with one voice on this issue.


To be brutally honest I would not trust one quote presented by Fr Lev.  In those days he would have been dependent on Roman Catholic sources and we are simply too well aware, from articles and monographs published by Catholic Answers, that Catholics have no shame in altering, truncating and generally mutilating texts to suit their own agenda and bolster their dogma.  So you would need to provide the larger context of what Fr Lev is quoting before we would feel secure in his interpretation.  This is NOT a criticism of Fr Lev, he would have simply been a victim of the polemical machine operated by Rome.
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« Reply #57 on: November 09, 2010, 01:25:13 PM »

More on Concupiscence:

http://cantuar.blogspot.com/2009/06/romans-6-vs-romans-7-part-ii-original.html

Quote
Catholic theology, going back to St. Ambrose and St. Augustine, has identified Saint Paul's "law of sin" [Greek νόμος τῆς ἁμαρτίας] or "flesh" [Greek σὰρξ] with the concupiscence or inordinate desire that remains in Christians. Concupiscence is of itself not sinful and it is not a "sin nature" (contrary to the NIV translation of Romans 7). The process of sanctification is the battle against concupiscence.

For the Catholic, Romans 6 is talking about our redemption from sin via baptism (Rom 6:4-6) and Romans 7 is the inward struggle that we still fight on account of concupiscence.

Martin Luther and John Calvin rejected this Catholic understanding because they rejected the Catholic doctrine of original sin as it relates to concupiscence. Consequently, most Reformed Christians have never even heard of doctrine of concupiscence. For the Protestant tradition in general, "original sin = concupiscence" and "concupiscence = original sin". The doctrine of concupiscence is also the reason why Reformed Christians hold to "total depravity" while Catholics reject it. By equating original sin with concupiscence, the magisterial Protestant tradition emptied justification and baptism of their transformative power. Clearly, baptized believing Christians still struggle with inordinate desires. If this desire is identified as original sin per se, then the justified Christian is still inwardly devoid of righteousness - instead he must acquire Luther's imputed alien righteousness. Yet if we take the Catholic doctrine of concupiscence that states that concupiscence is not original sin, then we can have an inward transformation that makes us righteous.
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« Reply #58 on: November 09, 2010, 01:50:35 PM »

More on Concupiscence:

http://cantuar.blogspot.com/2009/06/romans-6-vs-romans-7-part-ii-original.html

Martin Luther and John Calvin rejected this Catholic understanding because they rejected the Catholic doctrine of original sin as it relates to concupiscence. Consequently, most Reformed Christians have never even heard of doctrine of concupiscence. For the Protestant tradition in general, "original sin = concupiscence" and "concupiscence = original sin". The doctrine of concupiscence is also the reason why Reformed Christians hold to "total depravity" while Catholics reject it. By equating original sin with concupiscence, the magisterial Protestant tradition emptied justification and baptism of their transformative power. Clearly, baptized believing Christians still struggle with inordinate desires. If this desire is identified as original sin per se, then the justified Christian is still inwardly devoid of righteousness - instead he must acquire Luther's imputed alien righteousness. Yet if we take the Catholic doctrine of concupiscence that states that concupiscence is not original sin, then we can have an inward transformation that makes us righteous.


Goodness gracious!  It seems that modern Catholics have no understanding of their traditional teaching and have simply thrust Aquinas out the back door.

2.1.82.3

"Whether original sin is concupiscence?

"...original sin is concupiscence, materially, but privation of original justice, formally."

http://www.newadvent.org/summa/2082.htm#article3
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« Reply #59 on: November 09, 2010, 02:13:15 PM »

More on Concupiscence:

http://cantuar.blogspot.com/2009/06/romans-6-vs-romans-7-part-ii-original.html

Martin Luther and John Calvin rejected this Catholic understanding because they rejected the Catholic doctrine of original sin as it relates to concupiscence. Consequently, most Reformed Christians have never even heard of doctrine of concupiscence. For the Protestant tradition in general, "original sin = concupiscence" and "concupiscence = original sin". The doctrine of concupiscence is also the reason why Reformed Christians hold to "total depravity" while Catholics reject it. By equating original sin with concupiscence, the magisterial Protestant tradition emptied justification and baptism of their transformative power. Clearly, baptized believing Christians still struggle with inordinate desires. If this desire is identified as original sin per se, then the justified Christian is still inwardly devoid of righteousness - instead he must acquire Luther's imputed alien righteousness. Yet if we take the Catholic doctrine of concupiscence that states that concupiscence is not original sin, then we can have an inward transformation that makes us righteous.


Goodness gracious!  It seems that modern Catholics have no understanding of their traditional teaching and have simply thrust Aquinas out the back door.

2.1.82.3

"Whether original sin is concupiscence?

"...original sin is concupiscence, materially, but privation of original justice, formally."

http://www.newadvent.org/summa/2082.htm#article3

 laugh  I thought as much Father.  You haven't got a clue what that signifies.

He says that concupiscence is original sin MATERIALLY....but [original sin is] privation of original justice FORMALLY....

Privation of original justice is the darkening of the intellect and weakening of the will...FORMALLY

The MATERIAL [real, practical] consequence of that privation of original justice is a disintegration of body and soul so that our desires are malformed toward evil, rather than toward the good, and that malformation of the bodily appetites will not be fully integrated with the good while in the body, until the time of the final judgment when our souls resume their natural connection to our glorified bodies.

Thus the Church teaches that in Baptism our original justice is redeemed with the illumination of the intellect and the strengthening of the will, so that by grace we can overcome that tendency to do evil.

We do not, of course, always use the graces God gave us, any more than Adam and Eve did when yielding to the temptations and trickery of the serpent in the garden.  In both cases our wills are still free, so that we do choose freely to be obedient or not.

So again the teaching of the Immaculate Conception is that she comes into being, as a person, with her intellect and will fully preserved from the blemish of the ancestral sin, as we are redeemed from it in Baptism.  HOWEVER: she remains in a fully human and disintegrated body with a fully human intellect and will,  and so she will die, and so she will experience the pangs of temptation, and she will need to choose each time to conform her fully human will to the divine will.  But she is by the grace of God never blemished by sin in any form.  I believe I can find words to that effect in some of the Marian homilies of the Fathers.  I'll look later.

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« Reply #60 on: November 09, 2010, 02:18:46 PM »

Personally I have no objections to the Immaculate Conception, for reasons I could go into.  I think it's an unfortunate reaction against Catholicism that comes from bitterness, not historical theology.
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« Reply #61 on: November 09, 2010, 02:25:06 PM »

Personally I have no objections to the Immaculate Conception, for reasons I could go into.  I think it's an unfortunate reaction against Catholicism that comes from bitterness, not historical theology.

Would you mind talking about it a bit?  I would understand fully if you'd rather not.

M.
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« Reply #62 on: November 09, 2010, 02:45:20 PM »

Personally I have no objections to the Immaculate Conception, for reasons I could go into.  I think it's an unfortunate reaction against Catholicism that comes from bitterness, not historical theology.

What St. Berhard reacting against "Catholicism?" I know he was a bitter opponent of us. This is history:
I don't think I can post a link to CAF under the rules here, and I can't post there under their "rules"  police Roll Eyes  police but I can post what I posted there before:

Bernard of Clarivaux (12th cent.):

The Mother of the Lord, you say, ought greatly to be honoured. You say well, but the honour of a queen loves justice. The royal Virgin does not need false honour, since she is amply supplied with true titles to honour and badges of her dignity. Honour indeed the purity of her flesh, the sanctity of her life, wonder at her motherhood as a virgin, adore her Divine offspring. Extol the prodigy by which she brought into the world without pain the Son, whom she had conceived without concupiscence. Proclaim her to be reverenced by the angels, to have been desired by the nations, to have been known beforehand by Patriarchs and Prophets, chosen by God out of all women and raised above them all. Magnify her as the medium by whom grace was displayed, the instrument of salvation, the restorer of the ages; and finally extol her as having been exalted above the choirs of angels to the celestial realms. These things the Church sings concerning her, and has taught me to repeat the same things in her praise, and what I have learnt from the Church I both hold securely myself and teach to others; what I have not received from the Church I confess I should with great difficulty admit. I have received then from the Church that day to be reverenced with the highest veneration, when being taken up from this sinful earth, she made entry into the heavens; a festival of most honoured joy. With no less clearness have I learned in the Church to celebrate the birth of the Virgin, and from the Church undoubtedly to hold it to have been holy and joyful; holding most firmly with the Church, that she received in the womb that she should come into the world holy. And indeed I read concerning Jeremiah, that before he came forth from the womb he was sanctified, and I think no otherwise of John the Baptist, who, himself in the womb of his mother, felt the presence of his Lord in the womb (S. Luke i. 41). It is matter for consideration whether the same opinion may not be held of holy David, on account of what he said in addressing God: In Thee I have been strengthened from the womb: Thou art He who took me out of my mother’s bowels (Ps. lxxi. 6); and again: I was cast upon Thee from the womb: Thou art my God from my mother’s belly (Ps. xxii. 10). And Jeremiah is thus addressed: Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest out of the womb I sanctified thee (Jer. i. 5). How beautifully the Divine oracle has distinguished between conception in the womb and birth from the womb! and showed that if the one was foreseen only, the other was blessed beforehand with the gift of holiness: that no one might think that the glory of Jeremiah consisted only in being the object of the foreknowledge of God, but also of His predestination.

3. Let us, however, grant this in the case of Jeremiah. What shall be said of John the Baptist, of whom an angel announced beforehand that he should be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb? I cannot suppose that this is to be referred to predestination or to foreknowledge. For the words of the angel were without doubt fulfilled in their time, as he foretold; and the man (as cannot be doubted) filled with the Holy Ghost at the time and place appointed, as he predicted. But most certainly the Holy Ghost sanctified the man whom He filled. But how far this sanctification availed against original sin, whether for him, or for that prophet, or for any other who was thus prevented by grace, I would not rashly determine. But of these holy persons whom God has sanctified, and brought forth from the womb with the same sanctification which they have received in the womb, I do not hesitate to say that the taint of original sin which they contracted in conception, could not in any manner take away or fetter by the mere act of birth, the benediction already bestowed. Would any one dare to say that a child filled with the Holy Ghost, would remain notwithstanding a child of wrath; and if he had died in his mother’s womb, where he had received this fulness of the Spirit, would endure the pains of damnation? That opinion is very severe; I, however, do not dare to decide anything respecting the question by my own judgment. However that may be, the Church, which regards and declares, not the nativity, but only the death of other saints as precious, makes a singular exception for him of whom an angel singularly said, and many shall rejoice in his birth (Luke i. 14., 15), and with rejoicing honours his nativity. For why should not the birth be holy, and even glad and joyful, of one who leaped with joy even in the womb of his mother?

4. The gift, therefore, which has certainly been conferred upon some, though few, mortals, cannot for a moment be supposed to have been denied to that so highly favoured Virgin, through whom the whole human race came forth into life. Beyond doubt the mother of the Lord also was holy before birth; nor is holy Church at all in error in accounting the day of her nativity holy, and celebrating it each year with solemn and thankful joy. I consider that the blessing of a fuller sanctification descended upon her, so as not only to sanctify her birth, but also to keep her life pure from all sin; which gift is believed to have been bestowed upon none other born of women. This singular privilege of sanctity, to lead her life without any sin, entirely befitted the queen of virgins, who should bear the Destroyer of sin and death, who should obtain the gift of life and righteousness for all. Therefore, her birth was holy, since the abundant sanctity bestowed upon it made it holy even from the womb.

5. What addition can possibly be made to these honours? That her conception, also, they say, which preceded her honourable birth, should be honoured, since if the one had not first taken place, neither would the other, which is honoured. But what if some one else, following a similar train of reasoning, should assert that the honours of a festival ought to be given to each of her parents, then to her grand-parents, and then to their parents, and so on ad infinitum? Thus we should have festivals without number. Such a frequency of joys befits Heaven, not this state of exile. It is the happy lot of those who dwell there, not of strangers and pilgrims. But a writing is brought forward, given, as they say, by revelation from on high, [A writing of this kind is attributed to an English abbot named Elsin in the works of Anselm. Watch out for those angels of light] as if any one would not be able to bring forward another writing in which the Virgin should seem to demand the same honours to her parents also, saying, according to the commandment of the Lord, Honour thy father and thy mother (Exod. xx. 12). I easily persuade myself not to be influenced by such writings, which are supported neither by reason nor by any certain authority. For how does the consequence follow that since the conception has preceded the birth, and the birth is holy, the conception should be considered holy also? Did it make the birth holy because it preceded it? Although the one came first that the other might be, yet not that it might be holy. From whence came that holiness to the conception which was to be transmitted to the birth which followed? Was it not rather because the conception preceded without holiness that it was needful for the being conceived to be sanctified, that a holy birth might then follow? Or shall we say that the birth which was later than the conception shared with it its holiness? It might be, indeed, that the sanctification which was worked in her when conceived passed over to the birth which followed; but it could not be possible that it should have a retrospective effect upon the conception which had preceded it.

6. Whence, then, was the holiness of that conception? Shall it be said that Mary was so prevented by grace that, being holy before being conceived, she was therefore conceived without sin; or that, being holy before being born, she has therefore communicated holiness to her birth? But in order to be holy it is necessary to exist, and a person does not exist before being conceived. Or perhaps, when her parents were united, holiness was mingled with the conception itself, so that she was at once conceived and sanctified. But this is not tenable in reason. For how can there be sanctity without the sanctifying Spirit, or the co-operation of the Holy Spirit with sin? Or how could there not be sin where concupiscence was not wanting? Unless, perhaps, some one will say that she was conceived by the Holy Spirit, and not by man, which would be a thing hitherto unheard of. I say, then, that the Holy Spirit came upon her, not within her, as the Angel declared: The Holy Spirit shall come upon thee (S. Luke i. 35). And if it is permitted to say what the Church thinks, and the Church thinks that which is true, I say that she conceived by the Holy Spirit, but not that she was conceived by Him; that she was at once Mother and Virgin, but not that she was born of a virgin. Otherwise, where will be the prerogative of the Mother of the Lord, to have united in her person the glory of maternity and that of virginity, if you give the same glory to her mother also? This is not to honour the Virgin, but to detract from her honour. If, therefore, before her conception she could not possibly be sanctified, since she did not exist, nor in the conception itself, because of the sin which inhered in it, it remains to be believed that she received sanctification when existing in the womb after conception, which, by excluding sin, made her birth holy, but not her conception.



7. Wherefore, although it has been given to some, though few, of the sons of men to be born with the gift of sanctity, yet to none has it been given to be conceived with it. So that to One alone should be reserved this privilege, to Him who should make all holy, and coming into the world, He alone, without sin should make an atonement for sinners. The Lord Jesus, then, alone was conceived by the Holy Ghost, because He alone was holy before He was conceived. He being excepted, all the children of Adam are in the same case as he who confessed of himself with great humility and truth, I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin hath my mother conceived me (Ps. li. 6).

8. And as this is so, what ground can there be for a Festival of the Conception of the Virgin? On what principle, I say, is either a conception asserted to be holy which is not by the Holy Ghost, not to say that it is by sin, or a festival be established which is in no wise holy? Willingly the glorious Virgin will be without this honour, by which either a sin seems to be honoured or a sanctity supposed which is not a fact. And, besides, she will by no means be pleased by a presumptuous novelty against the custom of the Church, a novelty which is the mother of rashness, the sister of superstition, the daughter of levity. For if such a festival seemed advisable, the authority of the Apostolic See ought first to have been consulted, and he simplicity of inexperienced persons ought not to have been followed so thoughtlessly and precipitately. And, indeed, I had before noted that error in some persons; but I appeared not to take notice of it, dealing gently with a devotion which sprang from simplicity of heart and love of the Virgin. But now that the superstition has taken hold upon wise men, and upon a famous and noble Church, of which I am specially the son, I know not whether I could longer pass it over without gravely offending you all. But what I have said is in submission to the judgment of whosoever is wiser than myself; and especially I refer the whole of it, as of all matters of a similar kind, to the authority and decision of the See of Rome, and I am prepared to modify my opinion if in anything I think otherwise than that See.
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/bernard/letters.lxviii.html

Bernard is also an opponent of the absolute papal power in the Church. As certainly as he recognizes the papal authority as the highest in the Church, so decidedly does he reprove the effort to make it the only one. Even the middle and lower ranks of the Church have their right before God. To withdraw the bishops from the authority of the archbishops, the abbots from the authority of the bishops, that all may become dependent on the curia, means to make the Church a monster (De consideratione., iii, Cool.

Btw, Bernard is no friend of ours:
I, for one, shall speak about those obstinate Greeks [i.e. Orthodox], who are with us and against us, united in faith and divided in peace, though in truth their faith may stray from the straight path.
De Consideratione, iii, 1. (btw, he refers to Ephraim as "diligent doctor," so he likes him).

One Vatican supporter said "St. Bernard realized his mistake in heaven," I asked "In 1153 or 1854?"

The IC makes nonsense of II Corinthians 5:21 "He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that
we might become the righteousness of God in Him."  That enough is heresy.



To the claim that in light of the words spoken by the saints making "my" history evident and it "first appearance" was much earlier than that; going all the way back to Genesis 3:15,  I replied "Do you mean the faulty translation thereof (the Masoret says "they": does that indicate that infinite regression implicit in the IC?).


And to the claim that the IC "fulfills" Gen. 3:15 in the new Eve, Our Lady, Mother of Life. And also verified by the Angelic Salutation, the connection between the Our Lady and the Ark, the various Liturgies, and the teachings of the Saints, and now the teaching authority of the Vatican, which prooftexts Gen. 3:15, I say "potuit, sed non decuit ergo non fecit."

As this thread is started by a Copt who has submitted to Rome, what I wrote about proof of the IC in the East to a Chaldean I think is also relevant:

Which is part of the point. You quote St. Ephrem. Now, none of the Eastern (or for that matter Western) Syrians believed in the IC. For the Easterners, this is especially relevant, as they denied her the title Theotokos. Now along comes the emessaries from the Vatican after a millenium of hymn writing, theology etc. and part (the majority?) of the Assyrians submit to the Vatican and become Chaldeans. No changes are made in the liturgy, hymns etc except to stick the name of the pope of Rome in the commemoration. So they go off blissfully unaware that things have changed. Some of the brightest go off to Rome, where of course they emulate the ways of the big sister (as Rome didn't give the Faith to Syria, mother sounds strange). When in Rome, do as the Romans do. So they pick up the idea of, say, the IC, along with other latinizations, and, eager to please, start reading it into things of their own tradition which they try to keep. Of course then, everything becomes crystal clear! Of course this referes to the IC! Ignoring, of course, that none of their forebares, who sang those same hymns, saw anything of the sort. Nor do those who remain outside of the Vatican's jurisdiction (the situation for all but the Maronites), who, because THEY have not changed their theology, and because the Vatican breaks lex orandi lex credendi, sing the same hymns, don't see the Vatican's theology in their common hymns. So then the accusation is that these change their theology just to spite the pope of Rome, as if they care what he says or thinks. The projection of this obsession with the Vatican sometimes knows no bounds.

We still say the same things. We don't mean what the Vatican claims by them.


Btw, Mardukm.  You posted:

Quote
Also, permit me to point out that, since the dogma of the IC refers to her spiritual conception, not her physical conception, it means Mary was just like us. She had a natural, unglorified body that was subject to corruption, aged and died. It is a non-Catholic misunderstanding of the dogma that causes them to claim that the dogma somehow makes Mary different from us

This is not true: the Vatican has the "Immortalist" school who believe she did not die, and that is within Vatican "orthodoxy."  That's quite different from us.

The IC as proclaime by the Vatican is heretical in at least the sense that it is, the Vatican states, to be believed on penalty of damnation and "shipwreck of faith."  No such necessity exists: to claim so is heresy.

So far, no one has given any reasons why the dogma is a heresy to such an extent that it is Church-dividing. I am wondering if any of my Orthodox brethren can add anything new to the topic of that thread.  We can discuss it here or if you so choose at the Catholic Answers website.

To address one thing:
IC isn't Church-dividing; we had lots of things that divided us before Old Rome added this to the mix.  Maybe if we cleared up all the other theological, dogmatic, and ecclesiological issues but left this one, then it may remain a Church-dividing issue, or it may not - who knows.  But until we get to that point (5th millennium after Christ?) we can't say that IC is a "Church-dividing" issue.  Heck, the only way that it's a dogmatic issue (and, hence, heresy) is in its fundamental presuppositions regarding humanity, not Mary.  For the Orthodox, nothing about the Panagia ("All-holy") is dogmatic unless it somehow relates to Christ and creation - that's one of our objections to IC as dogma, because it has nothing to do with our Lord, God, and Saviour Jesus Christ, so there's no reason to make it a compulsory belief for a Christian.
Thanks for the response!  I'm glad you don't think it is Church-dividing. It's just that those who leave the Catholic Church for EO'xy always invariably cite that as one of the reasons for them leaving.

It's interesting that you think the dogma has nothing to do with Christ.  That's actually the very reason that Catholics believe it IS a dogma - because it IS Christ centered.

And that's why it's Church-dividing.  One church is confused on what Christocentric is.

Quote
Unless anyone else has anything else to add, I guess there really is no good reason for stating that the dogma is heresy. 

There's a shock. Roll Eyes

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« Reply #63 on: November 09, 2010, 02:50:58 PM »

Forgive me Fr.Ambrose.
I can not focus on one topic but I am overwhelmed by too many sensory stimuli.
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« Reply #64 on: November 09, 2010, 03:01:10 PM »

I never knew that Byzantine Emperors gave homilies....
Indeed they did at times.
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« Reply #65 on: November 09, 2010, 03:09:53 PM »




What St. Berhard reacting against "Catholicism?" I know he was a bitter opponent of us. This is history:

Apparently Orthodox faithful can't cope with internal contradictions, or any variety in the teachings of individual saints.

M.
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« Reply #66 on: November 09, 2010, 03:16:00 PM »

Perhaps we should ask, keeping in with the Thomistic tune of this thread, I want to ask:
1. what is the reason for this "heretical" doctrine of the Immaculate Conception,
and
2.what is the Catholics' goal in propagating this "heretical" doctrine?
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« Reply #67 on: November 09, 2010, 03:19:51 PM »




What St. Berhard reacting against "Catholicism?" I know he was a bitter opponent of us. This is history:

Apparently Orthodox faithful can't cope with internal contradictions


Not having the experience, we aren't the experts at cognitive dissonance like the Vatican.

Quote
or any variety in the teachings of individual saints.
Variety yes, heresy no.
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« Reply #68 on: November 09, 2010, 03:33:28 PM »



Not having the experience, we aren't the experts at cognitive dissonance like the Vatican.

Really? Because, according to Fr. Amborse, your Churhc both believes in and rejects the doctrince of consubstantiation.
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« Reply #69 on: November 09, 2010, 04:19:49 PM »



Not having the experience, we aren't the experts at cognitive dissonance like the Vatican.

Really? Because, according to Fr. Amborse, your Churhc both believes in and rejects the doctrince of consubstantiation.
No, Fr. Ambrose has posted some Fathers may appear to favor consubstantiation, and others have denounced it explicitely: I know because I had to renounce it explicitely:
Quote
The Bishop questioneth the convert from the Lutheran Confession thus :

Dost thou renounce the false doctrine that, for the expression of the dogma touching the Procession of the Holy Ghost the declaration of our Saviour Christ himself: "who proceedeth from the Father" : doth not suffice ; and that the addition, of man's invention : " and from the Son " : is required ?

Answer. I do.

Bishop. Dost thou renounce the erroneous belief that in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist the bread is not transmuted into the Body of Christ, and doth not become the Body of Christ; and that the wine is not transmuted into the Blood of Christ, and doth not become the Blood of Christ; but that the presence of Christ's Body only for a short time doth touch the bread, which remaineth simple bread ?

Answer. I do.

Bishop. Dost thou renounce the erroneous belief of the teachers who do not accept as Sacraments Chrismation, Marriage, Anointing with Oil, and the Priesthood itself, and presume to administer Baptism and the Eucharist, never having received, through the laying-on of hands by a Bishop, that Ordination which hath been transmitted from one to another, even from the holy Apostles?

Answer. I do.

Bishop. Dost thou renounce the erroneous belief of the teachers who receive not the traditions of the Holy Church, reverence not the Saints, and deprive the dead of spiritual aid and the living of spiritual consolation, in that they reject prayers for the dead?

Answer. I do.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA456&dq=Hapgood%20Lutheran%20bread&ei=zqvZTL-sBs2TnAfy17TqCQ&ct=result&id=hVIXAAAAYAAJ&output=text

We have a thread on this
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,23647.msg374969.html#msg374969
and this
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,10540.msg146699/topicseen.html#msg146699
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« Reply #70 on: November 09, 2010, 04:25:46 PM »

Apparently Orthodox faithful can't cope with internal contradictions, or any variety in the teachings of individual saints.

M.


I have to say that's one of the more ironic statements I've heard in a while.  Shocked
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« Reply #71 on: November 09, 2010, 05:55:20 PM »

An ecumenical council will solve the problem.
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« Reply #72 on: November 09, 2010, 07:02:46 PM »

Personally I have no objections to the Immaculate Conception, for reasons I could go into.  I think it's an unfortunate reaction against Catholicism that comes from bitterness, not historical theology.

Would you mind talking about it a bit?  I would understand fully if you'd rather not.

M.

I view the Immaculate Conception as a legitimate theological opinion that is consistent with the Church’s understanding of Mary and her role in salvation.  Orthodoxy affirms, among other things, the following:

Mary’s role in salvation was revealed as early as the Fall (“I will put enmity between you and the woman…”)

Mary’s conception was miraculous and is celebrated as a feast day

Mary was dedicated to God by Joachim and Anna in thanksgiving for her birth

Mary is the Mother of God because she gave birth to Jesus who is fully God and man

Mary was “full of grace”, which the Greek word indicates as a continuing state of being as a result of a past action

Mary was betrothed to Joseph, who was her caretaker, but did not have sexual relations with him, remaining a virgin throughout her life

Mary was holy, pure, and blameless throughout her entire life

Mary was taken into heaven, body and soul, after her death

Mary is the Queen of Heaven by virtue of being the mother Christ, the King

Mary is our greatest human intercessor, whose prayers have assisted countless people, as revealed to many of the saints of the Church

If all this is true, then how would it be incorrect to extrapolate that Mary’s holiness began at conception?  While Orthodoxy doesn’t define original sin in the same way as the west, we would agree that it includes a corruption of our nature, which includes our reason, ability to make moral choices, and a propensity toward sin.  Mary could not have shared in that corruption if she was to live a life of perfect holiness as we say that she did.  This doesn’t mean that she didn’t struggle against temptation, experience physical suffering, or die, since Christ himself experienced all those things.  While conceived good, she was capable of further growth in holiness just as we all are, even after the end of our earthly lives.  This also doesn’t mean that she lacked free will to choose good over evil, since Adam had this capability before the fall.  It seems ridiculous to me to make a dogmatic stand against this idea when the overwhelming amount of our understanding of Mary is consistent with it.
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« Reply #73 on: November 09, 2010, 07:14:39 PM »

Personally I have no objections to the Immaculate Conception, for reasons I could go into.  I think it's an unfortunate reaction against Catholicism that comes from bitterness, not historical theology.

Would you mind talking about it a bit?  I would understand fully if you'd rather not.

M.

I view the Immaculate Conception as a legitimate theological opinion that is consistent with the Church’s understanding of Mary and her role in salvation.  Orthodoxy affirms, among other things, the following:

Mary’s role in salvation was revealed as early as the Fall (“I will put enmity between you and the woman…”)

Mary’s conception was miraculous and is celebrated as a feast day

Mary was dedicated to God by Joachim and Anna in thanksgiving for her birth

Mary is the Mother of God because she gave birth to Jesus who is fully God and man

Mary was “full of grace”, which the Greek word indicates as a continuing state of being as a result of a past action

Mary was betrothed to Joseph, who was her caretaker, but did not have sexual relations with him, remaining a virgin throughout her life

Mary was holy, pure, and blameless throughout her entire life

Mary was taken into heaven, body and soul, after her death

Mary is the Queen of Heaven by virtue of being the mother Christ, the King

Mary is our greatest human intercessor, whose prayers have assisted countless people, as revealed to many of the saints of the Church

If all this is true, then how would it be incorrect to extrapolate that Mary’s holiness began at conception?  While Orthodoxy doesn’t define original sin in the same way as the west, we would agree that it includes a corruption of our nature, which includes our reason, ability to make moral choices, and a propensity toward sin.  Mary could not have shared in that corruption if she was to live a life of perfect holiness as we say that she did.  This doesn’t mean that she didn’t struggle against temptation, experience physical suffering, or die, since Christ himself experienced all those things.  While conceived good, she was capable of further growth in holiness just as we all are, even after the end of our earthly lives.  This also doesn’t mean that she lacked free will to choose good over evil, since Adam had this capability before the fall.  It seems ridiculous to me to make a dogmatic stand against this idea when the overwhelming amount of our understanding of Mary is consistent with it.


The problem is IC imputes the holiness upon her. She is not all that great in reality because she was sinless because God says so. Whereas the Orthodox Church says she is sinless because she chose to be sinless, just like any of us could do if we truly loved God (and we don't, not as much as she did).

This teaching, which seemingly has the aim of exalting the Mother of God, in reality completely denies all Her virtues. After all, if Mary, even in the womb of Her mother, when She could not even desire anything either good or evil, was preserved by God’s grace from every impurity, and then by that grace was preserved from sin even after Her birth, then in what does Her merit consist? If She could have been placed in the state of being unable to sin, and did not sin, then for what did God glorify Her? if She, without any effort, and without having any kind of impulses to sin, remained pure, then why is She crowned more than everyone else?

There is no victory without an adversary.

The righteousness and sanctity of the Virgin Mary were manifested in the fact that She, being “human with passions like us,” so loved God and gave Herself over to Him, that by Her purity She was exalted high above the rest of the human race. For this, having been foreknown and forechosen, She was vouchsafed to be purified by the Holy Spirit Who came upon Her, and to conceive of Him the very Saviour of the world. The teaching of the grace-given sinlessness of the Virgin Mary denies Her victory over temptations; from a victor who is worthy to be crowned with crowns of glory, this makes Her a blind instrument of God’s Providence.

It is not an exaltation and greater glory, but a belittlement of Her, this “gift” which was given Her by Pope Pius IX and all the rest who think they can glorify the Mother of God by seeking out new truths. The Most Holy Mary has been so much glorified by God Himself, so exalted is Her life on earth and Her glory in heaven, that human inventions cannot add anything to Her honor and glory. That which people themselves invent only obscures Her Face from their eyes.


- St John of Shanghai and San Francisco
http://preachersinstitute.com/2010/06/24/the-error-of-the-immaculate-conception/
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« Reply #74 on: November 09, 2010, 07:22:13 PM »

An ecumenical council will solve the problem.

there is nothing to solve.  That's the problem with the IC.
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« Reply #75 on: November 09, 2010, 07:40:35 PM »

Personally I have no objections to the Immaculate Conception, for reasons I could go into.  I think it's an unfortunate reaction against Catholicism that comes from bitterness, not historical theology.

Would you mind talking about it a bit?  I would understand fully if you'd rather not.

M.

I view the Immaculate Conception as a legitimate theological opinion that is consistent with the Church’s understanding of Mary and her role in salvation.  Orthodoxy affirms, among other things, the following:

Mary’s role in salvation was revealed as early as the Fall (“I will put enmity between you and the woman…”)

Mary’s conception was miraculous and is celebrated as a feast day

Mary was dedicated to God by Joachim and Anna in thanksgiving for her birth

Mary is the Mother of God because she gave birth to Jesus who is fully God and man

Mary was “full of grace”, which the Greek word indicates as a continuing state of being as a result of a past action

Mary was betrothed to Joseph, who was her caretaker, but did not have sexual relations with him, remaining a virgin throughout her life

Mary was holy, pure, and blameless throughout her entire life

Mary was taken into heaven, body and soul, after her death

Mary is the Queen of Heaven by virtue of being the mother Christ, the King

Mary is our greatest human intercessor, whose prayers have assisted countless people, as revealed to many of the saints of the Church

If all this is true, then how would it be incorrect to extrapolate that Mary’s holiness began at conception?

Her holiness isn't any more at issue than that of St. John the Baptis, about whom nearly all of the above also applies, the being taken into heaven being an obvious exception which we'll deal with below.

Quote
While Orthodoxy doesn’t define original sin in the same way as the west, we would agree that it includes a corruption of our nature, which includes our reason, ability to make moral choices, and a propensity toward sin.  Mary could not have shared in that corruption if she was to live a life of perfect holiness as we say that she did.

Why not?

Quote
 This doesn’t mean that she didn’t struggle against temptation, experience physical suffering, or die,

why did she die then?

Quote
since Christ himself experienced all those things.

He do so by choice, emptying Himself. Why did she?

2 Corinthians 5:21 “For he made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

Quote
While conceived good, she was capable of further growth in holiness just as we all are, even after the end of our earthly lives.  This also doesn’t mean that she lacked free will to choose good over evil, since Adam had this capability before the fall
she was conceived after the Fall and before the Incarnation.

1 Corinthians 15:22 "For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive."

Quote
.  It seems ridiculous to me to make a dogmatic stand against this idea when the overwhelming amount of our understanding of Mary is consistent with it.
Then there was no need of the Incarnation, as it was accomplished at His mother's conception.
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« Reply #76 on: November 09, 2010, 07:49:44 PM »

I could swear we dealt with this here before. Maybe Fr. Ambrose will remember.

Just to start off
Quote
The Academy of Kiev, with Peter Moghila, Stephen Gavorsky and many
others, taught the Immaculate Conception in terms of Latin theology.

St. Peter Movila's catechism was written in Latin (he was Romanian): translated into Greek with Latinisms edited out, it was adopted by the Council of Iasi (Jassy) and then at the Synod of Jerusalem for all Orthodoxy. I don't recall the IC in the corrected version: if it was in the Latin version (was it?) and removed at the insistence of the Orthodox in council, what would that tell you about Orthodoxy's view of the IC?
any response?

Like I said, we came across Fr. Lev before.
The Immaculate Conception and the Orthodox Church

By Father Lev Gillet

From Chrysostom, Vol. VI, No. 5 (Spring 1983), pp. 151-159.

Rather odd that someone who complained that
you will find more cradle Orthodox in sympathy with and comprehending the Immaculate Conception than you will find most Orthodox converts who tend to take their protestant biases with them.
to offer us something from a convert from the Vatican to Orthodoxy as representative of what Orthodox believe.

We've met Fr. Gillet several times before, e.g.:
Good news!  I found St. Palamas' sermon relating to the IC.

http://www.orthodox.net/sermons/feasts-of-the-theotokos_+entry-of-the-theotokos+by-saint-gregory-palamas.html

A few things I found interesting:

1) His understanding of how the IC came about is nothing like the comment given by Father Ambrose earlier.  Palamas did not claim that there were generations that grew to holiness of which Mary was the pinnacle.  He simply says that one can trace the lineage of this holiness down through the ages.  So St. Palamas' understanding is not really that drastic, but I suppose it is contingent upon opponents of the IC to make Palamas' understanding as unpalatable as possible.

If you trace your way back to the quote I provided you will see that it comes from Fr Lev Gillet.   Fr Lev was a Roman Catholic priest and monk who became Orthodox back in the day.   He remained so devoted to Roman Catholicism, continuing to spend large amounts of time in European Catholic monasteries and lecturing all over Europe in favour of union that there was speculation he had never converted to Orthodoxy at all and he was a Roman implant or double agent sent by the Vatican to undermine Orthodoxy.  So he had no great axe to grind against the Immaculate Conceoption by misrepresenting Gregory Palamas.

Dear brother Isa,
Hello all,
Welcome back.

While you are at it, IIRC you promised some things on other IC threads. Can you pick up where you left off there? e.g.
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,3237.msg283679/topicseen.html#msg283679
Thanks. I’ll get to it soon

I quoted a whole list of Eastern Fathers in the old IC thread, and the only response I got was “you are misinterpreting them,” but with no explanations of how I was doing so. Oh well.

on my trip down memory lane, to discover that "whole list of Eastern Fathers in the old IC thread, with the only response “you are misinterpreting them,” but with no explanations of how Mardukm was doing so," I haven't found any yet, but I am coming across interesting things.
You mean this?
Quote
Except for God, there is no one who is without sin, or life-creating, or able to remit sin. Therefore, the new Adam must be not only Man, but also God. He is at the same time life, wisdom, truth, love, and mercy, and every other good thing, so that He might renew the old Adam and restore him to life through mercy, wisdom and righteousness. These are the opposites of the things which the author of evil used to bring about our aging and death.
How many times does St. Gregory have to spell it out for you?
Oh! Sorry! St. Palamas is obviously referring to one who is without sin NATURALLY - i.e., not by Grace.
If it is so obvious, you of course can quote St. Gregory's words to that effect, no?
Yes, he stated that Mary's very nature was unsullied by sin THROUGH GRACE.

"Except for God there is no one who is without sin, except those who are without sin by grace."

No, I missed that in the sermon.

Btw, others also commented on the "quote" of St. Gregory Palamas, which is germaine in the extreme to the OP of this new thread:
No one has yet proven that it is heresy or that it is not a legitimate theologoumenon.
LOL! Does "legitimate theologoumenon" mean "almost doctrine".  laugh
I know what you mean. Other than saying St. Gregory "may" have taught it, which I have yet to see, nothing has been shown. But, apparently, it has been taught since the times of the Apostles....
ialmisry i read some homilies of Palamas about Mary , he is as good as any catholic theologian ; I can see how he could easily believe the IC.I would dare to say that he might exalt Mary even more.While i didn`t read his view on her birth I can`t say clear but I incline to believe he was one of the IC fans.

...in his 65 published Mariological homilies, developed an entirely original theory about her sanctification. On the one hand, Palamas does not use the formula “immaculate conception” because he believes that Mary was sanctified long before the “primus instans conceptionis“, and on the other, he states quite as categorically as any Roman theologian that Mary was never at any moment sullied by the stain of original sin. Palamas’ solution to the problem, of which as far as we know, he has been the sole supporter, is that God progressively purified all Mary’s ancestors, one after the other and each to a greater degree than his predecessor so that at the end, eis telos, Mary was able to grow, from a completely purified root, like a spotless stem “on the limits between created and uncreated”. (4)

http://curiosus002.livejournal.com/2287.html
And I commented on the source, Fr. Lev Gillet.
Quote
reproduce it here once again because I am of the strong opinion that
IF we can resolve this particular issue between us, Catholic and
Orthodox, will find the rest or our differences beginning to melt as
though they were never there in any real way.

Alas, with development of doctrine the Vatican has already gone on to Co-Redemptrix and after that no doubt the Quasi-Incarnation of the Uncreated Immaculate Conception.  Do we want to go down that wide road with them?  It would seem the the Bernard and Bonventure's of the East were more successful.

The idea that is attributed to St. Gregory, that of the constant line of preparation in the line of Mary, is of course Orthodox. And many of the ideas expressed in the link are too.  However, there isn't much distinction being made between general All-Holiness, and the specific question of Ancestral Sin:the former does not necessarily mean the latter.

Some other interesting bits:
Quote
The Academy of Kiev, with Peter Moghila, Stephen Gavorsky and many
others, taught the Immaculate Conception in terms of Latin theology. A
confraternity of the Immaculate Conception was established at Polotsk
in 1651. The Orthodox members of the confraternity promised to honour
the Immaculate Conception of Mary all the days of their life. The
Council of Moscow of 1666 approved Simeon Polotsky's book called The
Rod of Direction, in which he said: "Mary was exempt from original sin
from the moment of her conception".

St. Peter and the Academy, as is well, know were censured for their Latin views: the catechism was approved only after the Council of Iasi revised it, over St. Peter's protests.

Polotsk, isn't that the headquarters of our friend Joasaphat Kuntsevych?

As for the Old Ritualists, somewhere here we had something on the claim that they believed in the IC.
Quote
More recently still,
Metropolitan Anthony then Archbishop of Volkynia, wrote against the
"impious heresy of the immaculate and virginal conception of the Most
Holy Mother of God by Joachim and Anne." It was a theologian of the
Old Believers, A. Morozov, who had to point out to the archbishop that
he did not know what he was talking about
As I posted above, there are those among the Vatican's followers promoting the conception of the Virgin without the intercourse of her parents.  Perhaps the Metropolitan DOES know what he is talking about.
We had been warned about Fr. Lev:
Good news!  I found St. Palamas' sermon relating to the IC.

http://www.orthodox.net/sermons/feasts-of-the-theotokos_+entry-of-the-theotokos+by-saint-gregory-palamas.html

A few things I found interesting:

1) His understanding of how the IC came about is nothing like the comment given by Father Ambrose earlier.  Palamas did not claim that there were generations that grew to holiness of which Mary was the pinnacle.  He simply says that one can trace the lineage of this holiness down through the ages.  So St. Palamas' understanding is not really that drastic, but I suppose it is contingent upon opponents of the IC to make Palamas' understanding as unpalatable as possible.

If you trace your way back to the quote I provided you will see that it comes from Fr Lev Gillet.   Fr Lev was a Roman Catholic priest and monk who became Orthodox back in the day.   He remained so devoted to Roman Catholicism, continuing to spend large amounts of time in European Catholic monasteries and lecturing all over Europe in favour of union that there was speculation he had never converted to Orthodoxy at all and he was a Roman implant or double agent sent by the Vatican to undermine Orthodoxy.  So he had no great axe to grind against the Immaculate Conceoption by misrepresenting Gregory Palamas.
This seems to have been one of the seeds which blossomed into this present thread:
Your interpretation obviously contradicts the constant teaching of the Church on the sinlessness of Mary, St. Jeremiah,
Sinless of Jeremiah?  Another novelty? I've never heard that one.
Oh! I guess that is only a Tradition in the Oriental Church.  That's from St. Athanasius.
You won't mind if I get that from someone in the Oriental Tradition, like Mina or Ekhristosanesti?

Btw, when do we celebrate the IC of St. Jeremiah?


and St. John the Forerunner.
Don't recall that one either, though the Gospel tells us that his parents were "blameless" and "rigthteous before God."
Same with this one.  The Oriental Tradition is from St. Athanasius.  Both are contained in his writing against the Arians (I think it's Book 3).

Mind providing the quote, or at least a sure reference?

Btw, I've looked a little into Pope St. Athanasius' writings and haven't come up with the sinlessness of  SS Jeremiah or St. John. Or the IC.

Of course, now you have a problem as the definition (i.e. the part that supposed is without question is "infallible) of Ineffibilis Deus says "by a singular grace and privilege granted by Almighty God," (singulari Omnipotentis Dei gratia et privilegio) the Theotokos was IC'd.  If SS. Jeremiah and John are in on that, it's not singular now, is it?
The singular grace was that she received it at conception.  St. Jeremiah and the Forerunner received the grace of sinlessness in their mother's womb.

Oh?  Where did the Theotokos' conception take place?

I didn't respond only because I thought any apostolic Christian reading that would immediately see the error of your interpretation.
Ditto.
You're responding now, and I've refuted you.

LOL.  I'll let the readers decide that.

Btw, Salpy is an Apostolic Christian
Yes, like Salpy:
If you want to go to CAF, there is a father deacon there named Diak who has had contact with an Armenian priest who personally believes in the IC.  As your Catholicos states, it is not an article of Faith in your Church, but that's all he says about it.

So there's this discussion forum where someone says they know a priest who believes in IC.  That means nothing.  I wish I had a dollar for every Protestant I know who says they know someone who knows a priest who forbids people from reading the Bible. 

Even if this "father deacon" (obviously not an Armenian Orthodox--we don't call our deacons that) really does know a priest who said he believes that, it means nothing.  One priest doesn't represent the Church.  Also, as I said, a lot of Armenians mistake the phrase "Immaculate Conception" to mean something other than what it means in your Church.  Indeed the title of this thread indicates that it is misunderstood by many.  Especially with non-native speakers of English, you get people who think it means the Mother of God was conceived in a miraculous way (as in her parents were very old and infertile,) or they think it means the Virgin Birth of Christ.  I wasn't there for the conversation that took place between this deacon and the priest.  So I can't tell you what he really believes.  All I know is that this is not a teaching of our Church. 

Do you think the words "do not accept as an article of faith" precludes anyone believing it, albeit as theologoumenon (i.e., not as an article of Faith)?

My problem here is that I don't know what the word "theologoumenon" means.  I've seen the word a few times since I have been here, but I don't know what it is.  I've only seen it used by EO's.

With regard to what individual Armenians believe, there are Armenians out there who believe in just about anything.  There was a guy at my church a few years ago who got involved with some Oneness Pentecostals and then started going around telling people that it is acceptable in the Armenian Church to not believe in the Holy Trinity.  I am also sure that the Armenian Vassula crowd believes in IC, as well as all the other Latin innovations that my Church has rejected over the centuries.  One of those ladies likes to go around telling people that the Pope in Rome is the "vicar of Christ," whatever that means.

Is that what theologoumenon means?  Is it a fancy Greek word for BS?  If that is the case, then yes, it's theologoumenon.  What it is not, however, is a legitimate teaching of my Church.
Speaking of legitimate teaching, the Feast of the Conception of St. Anne is cited as proof for the Eastern belief in the IC. Yet not a peep of this in the Fathers.
In any case, permit me to point out another section of the Sermon:
And truly, if the grateful woman (of whom the Gospel tells us), after hearing the saving words of the Lord, blessed and thanked His Mother, raising her voice above the din of the crowd and saying to Christ, "Blessed is the womb that bore Thee, and the paps Thou hast sucked" (Lk. 11:27), then we who have the words of eternal life written out for us, and not only the words, but also the miracles and the Passion, and the raising of our nature from death, and its ascent from earth to Heaven, and the promise of immortal life and unfailing salvation, then how shall we not unceasingly hymn and bless the Mother of the Author of our Salvation and the Giver of Life, celebrating Her conception and birth, and now Her Entry into the Holy of Holies?
I would love to get a Sermon by St. Palamas on the Feast of the Conception, as he obviously considered it very important.  That would probably settle the matter once and for all (as far as St. Palamas is concerned).  Does anyone here have it?

Does anyone know it exists?

It never was a major feast day, unlike her birth and entry into the Temple.
Did you ever find those sermons on the Conception of St. Anne?  Any sermon by any Father on that event?
No. Like I said, the only ones I could find from Medieval times were from the English Church. I was hoping to find one from the Eastern Church, but have not.
Hmmmm.  And what do we conclude from that.....
As Father Ambrose stated, it's possible your Church might have gone around destroying the manuscripts in the 19th century.
LOL.  By that time most of them had been carted away to the West.

Rather odd, since the apologists point to the Feast of the Conception of St. Anne, confused in the West as the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, is pointed to as the "proof" that the Orthodox believed the IC-before, of course, the Great Purge and Destruction of Dogma of the 19th century in the East  Roll Eyes-that no Patristics can be found for the day. Lex orandi....

Fr. Ambrose also responded
As Father Ambrose stated, it's possible your Church might have gone around destroying the manuscripts in the 19th century.

O Lord, forgive me, I've done it again, used British irony with an American audience and found it goes right over their heads.  When will I learn not to speak British to non-Brits?

Development of doctrine should be another thread. It is not the topic of discussion here.

I would see development of doctrine as germane to this discussion though.   Obvioulsly there was a significant development of doctrine with the IC, from the outright denials by Bernard of Clairvaux, Thomas Aquinas and the Dominicans (as well as Teresa of Avila's divine revelation of its falsity) to its present status as a dominant dogma.

And there is the reverse side of the coin - the degradation and destruction of doctrine, which some here believe has taken place in Orthodoxy where the IC was once believed and has now been abandoned.
 Huh

Undetered, Mardukm proceed to turn the absence of evidence into evidence of presence
Nevertheless, the teaching is still evident in other sermons (such as the one we discussed from St. Palamas.

You speak as if you proved it was in St. Gregory's speech.  It's not.

I might add, IIRC, we never did get other sermons of St. Gregory e.g. on the conception of St. Anne.  And AFAIR and as far as I see now, every alleged proof in St. Gregory's sermon was shown by us to not to be so.

Another is the one from St. Andrew of Crete that I quoted earlier - and there are others as well as other proofs [such as the existence of a Brotherhood of the Immaculate Conception in the Ukraine]).


Aren't the Ukrainians the largest group in the East who have submitted to the Vatican?

I don't think the EO would do that, and Fr. Ambrose I'm sure was joking around.  Maybe the simple answer is that the Sermons have never been translated and put on the Net.
I'll buy that, once you give some indication that any sermons were preached on the Conception of St. Anne.

We have, as far as I have seen, never seen an explanation of this absence of sermons on the Feast of the Conception of St. Anne, the inadvertant seed of the IC, taken from the East but genetically modified and planted and grown in England, whence it spread like kudzu over the West.

But regardless of St. Palamas, no one has addressed any of the other quotes since the fifth century from EASTERN Fathers that explicitly assert that Mary was formed or created without stain.

Oh, yes we have:
Nope.  You're referring to statements that give to Mary some magnanimous titles.  I was referrring, as I stated, to the quotes I gave that EXPLICITLY state that Mary was formed or created without stain.  I believe brother Papist even gave one from your favorite Saint, too.  No responses then, no responses now.

No, I think it more explidient (i.e. less a waste of my time) to point out that all the East never saw the IC in all those quotes that Vatican sees, especially after the English translations.  And then there's that fact that the Conception of St. Anne never became a major feast day, as opposed to the Birth, Entry into the Temple, Conception/Annunciation and the Dormition.

As Father Ambrose points out, it is amazing how us EO, OO and even Nestorians got together and wipped the IC from our collective ecclesiastical memory.  A conspiracy not even Dan Brown would imagine....
"More expedient" doesn't equate to "true."  Would you like me to give you JUST A FEW of those quotes to see if you can rationalize them away just for the sake of "expedience?"
Knock yourself out.
As far as I've seen on that thread, Mardukm did not give me ANY of those quotes.  If he gets around to it, Lord willing, I will post as I have, as I had, on St. Gregory Palamas.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2010, 07:57:21 PM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #77 on: November 09, 2010, 08:31:33 PM »

Forgive me Fr.Ambrose.
I can not focus on one topic but I am overwhelmed by too many sensory stimuli.


Of course you are forgiven.   Although I detest being called things wrongly, I don't feel animosity towards whoever is doing it.  Let's pray for one another.
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« Reply #78 on: November 09, 2010, 08:36:27 PM »


It seems ridiculous to me to make a dogmatic stand against this idea when the overwhelming amount of our understanding of Mary is consistent with it.

The belief of the Orthodox is that Mary the Mother of God was conceived in the same state as all humans.   It would be kind of ridiculous for us NOT to oppose an heretical dogma which teaches otherwise.
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« Reply #79 on: November 09, 2010, 09:14:38 PM »



Not having the experience, we aren't the experts at cognitive dissonance like the Vatican.

Really? Because, according to Fr. Amborse, your Churhc both believes in and rejects the doctrince of consubstantiation.
No, Fr. Ambrose has posted some Fathers may appear to favor consubstantiation, and others have denounced it explicitely: I know because I had to renounce it explicitely:
Quote
The Bishop questioneth the convert from the Lutheran Confession thus :

Dost thou renounce the false doctrine that, for the expression of the dogma touching the Procession of the Holy Ghost the declaration of our Saviour Christ himself: "who proceedeth from the Father" : doth not suffice ; and that the addition, of man's invention : " and from the Son " : is required ?

Answer. I do.

Bishop. Dost thou renounce the erroneous belief that in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist the bread is not transmuted into the Body of Christ, and doth not become the Body of Christ; and that the wine is not transmuted into the Blood of Christ, and doth not become the Blood of Christ; but that the presence of Christ's Body only for a short time doth touch the bread, which remaineth simple bread ?

Answer. I do.

Bishop. Dost thou renounce the erroneous belief of the teachers who do not accept as Sacraments Chrismation, Marriage, Anointing with Oil, and the Priesthood itself, and presume to administer Baptism and the Eucharist, never having received, through the laying-on of hands by a Bishop, that Ordination which hath been transmitted from one to another, even from the holy Apostles?

Answer. I do.

Bishop. Dost thou renounce the erroneous belief of the teachers who receive not the traditions of the Holy Church, reverence not the Saints, and deprive the dead of spiritual aid and the living of spiritual consolation, in that they reject prayers for the dead?

Answer. I do.
http://books.google.com/books?pg=PA456&dq=Hapgood%20Lutheran%20bread&ei=zqvZTL-sBs2TnAfy17TqCQ&ct=result&id=hVIXAAAAYAAJ&output=text

We have a thread on this
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,23647.msg374969.html#msg374969
and this
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,10540.msg146699/topicseen.html#msg146699

I sort of wish the RCC required people to specifically renounce their former beliefs as Protestants that go against RC teaching. I suppose we do something similar when we declare in front of the congregation that we believe everything that the RCC teaches before being confirmed, but I think it would be cool to formally renounce specific heretical teachings. Of course, I am a bit bitter about my Protestant past so I think such a formal renunciation would have possibly been a way to heal from that.
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« Reply #80 on: November 09, 2010, 11:46:21 PM »

Personally I have no objections to the Immaculate Conception, for reasons I could go into.  I think it's an unfortunate reaction against Catholicism that comes from bitterness, not historical theology.

I am not anti-Catholic and I reject the IC.  Metropolitan Kallistos (Ware), who is considered to be quite moderate (liberal heretic, according to the zealots  Roll Eyes ) also rejects it.  While some may reject it simply because Roman Catholics believe it, I doubt that is the case for the majority.  Orthodox believers in person are very different than the internet variety, in my experience. 
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« Reply #81 on: November 10, 2010, 12:00:23 AM »

I'd like to see Mary's response to Reply #3 since it is on a less "academic" tangent with the goal to repudiate the "proof by reason" (Reason being the child of the Renaissance and Enlightenment) cited in links from the New Catholic Encyclopedia....

I didn't intend to rehash old discussions since I'm a recent participant on these Catholic threads....

Reason and logic and rational thinking were the hallmarks of the patristic Fathers.   If we begin with the absolutely false premise that reason is a product of the enlightenment while all else is inspired theology, then I really cannot address the issue because the fundamental premises are absurdities.

But the Enlightenment / Scholastics can't answer the question on why the first child of King David and Bathsheba died and the second child became King Solomon, an ancestor of the Virgin Mary.  Instead, Scholastics, like Dunn Scotus, can change one word and create infallible dogmas that former Eastern Orthodox Churches had to accept when they started commemorating the Pope.
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« Reply #82 on: November 10, 2010, 12:10:21 AM »

Some of the patristic Fathers are every bit the scholastic that later scholars of the west were.  In fact the idea of the western university was brought to Italy from Greece.

University of Bologna was founded in 1088 and is recognized as the world's first University.  The Pandidakterion in Constantinople was founded in 425 even though it didn't use the word University.  After the Schism, Europe needed its own Universities after being cut off from the East.

These kinds of slap-dash generalizations have no real meaning at all and are the lazy-man's gun to shoot down any real dialogue based upon real people, real events and truly determinative ideas.

You can embrace or reject the mess created by the Enlightenment.   Smiley
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« Reply #83 on: November 10, 2010, 12:51:51 AM »

Some of the patristic Fathers are every bit the scholastic that later scholars of the west were.  In fact the idea of the western university was brought to Italy from Greece.

University of Bologna was founded in 1088 and is recognized as the world's first University.  The Pandidakterion in Constantinople was founded in 425 even though it didn't use the word University.  After the Schism, Europe needed its own Universities after being cut off from the East.

These kinds of slap-dash generalizations have no real meaning at all and are the lazy-man's gun to shoot down any real dialogue based upon real people, real events and truly determinative ideas.

You can embrace or reject the mess created by the Enlightenment.   Smiley
or wallow in it. Sad
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« Reply #84 on: November 10, 2010, 12:57:00 AM »

I'd like to see Mary's response to Reply #3 since it is on a less "academic" tangent with the goal to repudiate the "proof by reason" (Reason being the child of the Renaissance and Enlightenment) cited in links from the New Catholic Encyclopedia....

I didn't intend to rehash old discussions since I'm a recent participant on these Catholic threads....

Reason and logic and rational thinking were the hallmarks of the patristic Fathers.   If we begin with the absolutely false premise that reason is a product of the enlightenment while all else is inspired theology, then I really cannot address the issue because the fundamental premises are absurdities.


For the Fathers reason was only the means, not the end nor the basis.  The Scholastics, making it an end unto itself (e.g. the number of angels on a pin question), laid the groundwork for dispensing with revelation as happened in the "Enlightenment," and the mess that has all created.

Some of the patristic Fathers

Can you name names.

Quote
are every bit the scholastic that later scholars of the west were.  In fact the idea of the western university was brought to Italy from Greece.
We know that. What's your point?

Quote
These kinds of slap-dash generalizations have no real meaning at all and are the lazy-man's gun to shoot down any real dialogue based upon real people, real events and truly determinative ideas.
Can you come up with real quotes from real authorities (Fr. Lev being of questionable autority) of the truly determinative ideas of the Church's teaching?
« Last Edit: November 10, 2010, 12:57:51 AM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #85 on: November 10, 2010, 01:33:07 AM »

For those who are not aware of it today is the day of Duns Scotus who was beatified by Pope John Paul II in 1993.  One is pleased to note that now, being in the heavenly realms, Scotus is repentant of the error he encouraged with regard to the Immaculate Conception.  

Hubris

No hubris, dear Mary but just common sense.  The IC is either true or false.  Scotus' far-fetched attempt to explain the mechanics is either true or false.

If it is false, then he has repented of his error long ago and found God's mercy.


And if it is true then there was nothing for him or for me to repent.
If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. I John 1:8
Jesus said to them: If you were blind, you should not have sin: but now you say: We see. Your sin remaineth. John 9:41.
Then Jesus said to those Jews, who believed him: If you continue in my word, you shall be my disciples indeed. and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free. John 8:31-2.

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And for you to declare, at this point in time, some esoteric and infallible knowledge that we have repented or need to repent of it is hubris.
Father isn''t claiming anything estoric: just the plain, manifest truth. And mercy: Duns Scotus dying outside of the Orthodox communion of the Catholic Church, there is no guarentee he made it upstairs,

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Go back and read Father Lev's article.  Orthodoxy is not of one voice on the issue.
That the unconverted mutterings of Fr. Lev have failed to resonate among the Orthodox tells us otherwise.  I've only heard Ultramontaniist repeating them in their echo chamber.

we've read it. Several times already.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2010, 01:33:50 AM by ialmisry » Logged

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« Reply #86 on: November 10, 2010, 02:58:28 AM »

Let us pray for Mary, and more specifically for her finances.  Word has come through that her 'puter is ill and she cannot use the keyboard.
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« Reply #87 on: November 10, 2010, 11:45:35 AM »

I appreciate your responses, and I could offer a rejoinder, but I don't think it would be helpful given how polarized this discussion is.  God bless,

Don
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« Reply #88 on: November 11, 2010, 02:00:57 PM »

I appreciate your responses, and I could offer a rejoinder, but I don't think it would be helpful given how polarized this discussion is.  God bless,

Don

Dear Don,

I very much appreciate your comments and elaboration of your understanding of the issues at hand.  We know, of course, that you are not alone in your estimations.

Eventually our bishops will be able to make more clear statements to Orthodox believers that will put something of a stop against the most vigorous of the negative confusion that is evident on the part of some Orthodox discussants in discussion threads such as this one. 

It has always been my expectation that the continued celebration of the Marian feasts in Orthodoxy will suffice for the teaching that the Mother of God is patently more holy than any other human being who ever has walked, walks and will walk the face of the earth and that she was so from the most early moments of he becoming.

That will be sufficient I am certain.

In any event I particularly appreciate your courage.

Mary
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« Reply #89 on: November 11, 2010, 02:54:28 PM »

I appreciate your responses, and I could offer a rejoinder, but I don't think it would be helpful given how polarized this discussion is.  God bless,

Don

Dear Don,

I very much appreciate your comments and elaboration of your understanding of the issues at hand.  We know, of course, that you are not alone in your estimations.

Eventually our bishops will be able to make more clear statements to Orthodox believers that will put something of a stop against the most vigorous of the negative confusion that is evident on the part of some Orthodox discussants in discussion threads such as this one.


They already have, e.g.:
Quote
XIII. The one holy, catholic and apostolic Church of the seven Ecumenical Councils teaches that the supernatural incarnation of the only-begotten Son and Word of God, of the Holy Ghost and the Virgin Mary, is alone pure and immaculate; but the Papal Church scarcely forty years ago again made an innovation by laying down a novel dogma concerning the immaculate conception of the Mother of God and ever-Virgin Mary, which was unknown to the ancient Church (and strongly opposed at different times even by the more distinguished among the papal theologians).
http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/ecumenism/encyc_1895.aspx

Quote
It has always been my expectation that the continued celebration of the Marian feasts in Orthodoxy will suffice for the teaching that the Mother of God is patently more holy than any other human being who ever has walked, walks and will walk the face of the earth and that she was so from the most early moments of he becoming.

That will be sufficient I am certain.
But not enough for us to accept the innovation of the IC.
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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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