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aliciaf
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« on: March 29, 2011, 01:50:56 PM »

Can or should an Orthodox believer pray the Rosary used in the Catholic Church? 

If so, why?  If not, why not?

In Christ,
Alicia
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« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2011, 02:04:55 PM »

We've actually had this question come up a number of times before; it's sort of one of those recurring things people constantly want to know about.  Anyway, if you look at the bottom of the thread, you'll see where I've added the tag "rosary."  If you click on that, it'll give you a number of other threads that deal with the same subject.  It might be a good place to start reading, as you won't have to wait for people to find this thread and post new responses.
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« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2011, 02:20:27 PM »

Thanks very much.  I will read on.  I did a forum search on "rosary" and didn't find any posts.  Maybe I goofed somehow...

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« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2011, 02:32:55 PM »

Thanks very much.  I will read on.  I did a forum search on "rosary" and didn't find any posts.  Maybe I goofed somehow...

Alicia

Our Orthodox Priest allowed us to continue praying the Rosary as St. Seraphim of Sarov advocated a type of prayer similar to the Rosary. We adopted his version.

I have stored this somewhere on my hard drive. If I can find it, I will post it here.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2011, 02:33:38 PM by Maria » Logged

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« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2011, 03:17:53 PM »

I found this website that mentions the Rule of St. Seraphim:

http://www.angelfire.com/planet/parastos/seraphimrule2.html

Here is a website with lots of prayers that might interest you:

http://www.myriobiblos.gr/texts/english/prayerbook/main.htm
« Last Edit: March 29, 2011, 03:22:54 PM by Maria » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2011, 10:41:29 PM »

my spiritual Father has blessed me to say the rosary I simply replace the Fatima prayer with the Jesus prayer(and because I can't remember the apostles creed anymore I use the Nicaean creed) I never really used the mysteries anyways.
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« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2011, 11:28:18 PM »

Many Western Orthodox pray through a form of the Rosary. It can be a wonderful, life-giving devotion. A popular one is called "A Scriptural Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary" which you can get on Lulu.com for very cheap.
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« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2011, 01:03:42 AM »

My thoughts are that our spiritual lives should be guided by an Orthodox spiritual father, not by our own intellectual brilliance.  While "praying the rosary" is not criticised by Orthodoxy (to the best of my knowledge), like the West's "tradition" of Ash Wednesday, it is not a spiritual exercise or practice that developed or is practiced within Orthodox Christianity.  Thus, how could the spiritual benefits of the practice accrue to the faithful Orthodox, whose spiritual lives are nourished and grow within the life of the Orthodox Church?  I would suggest, with the approval of and under the guidance of a spiritual father, trying the practice of praying the Jesus Prayer, with the traditional prayer rope, which I think would be somewhat analogous to the Rosary.  I am not condemning the rosary, it's just that it isn't within Orthodox tradition, thus, an innovation, something that is not within an Orthodox Christian's humble perview to initiate.

Somewhat of a frame of reference for me in these matters, is some guidance Metropolitan Maximos of Pittsburgh offerred to me many years ago.  During the procession of the Cross within the Great Friday Reading of the 12 Passion Gospels service, at the suggestion of my parish priest at the time, from within the Sacristy, I would use a hammer and knock against a block of wood, mimicking the sound of nailing Christ to the Cross.  In a social gathering which was a part of our Metropolis Assembly, during Bright Week, a local priest prompted me to apprise His Eminence of this "practice."  His Eminence admonished me, if we wanted to, we could sit together and come up with all sort of dramatic practices to enhance the services, but we don't do that, all we have is our holy tradition which our church teaches we must adhere to.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2011, 01:21:54 AM by Basil 320 » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2011, 02:30:45 AM »

Thank you all for your advice.  This is a question I have had on my mind for some time. 

Basil, I do see your points about not adding something that is not within the Orthodox tradition.  I love the Jesus Prayer and repeat it regularly, especially upon waking and going to sleep, but I don't count any specific number of prayers or use a prayer rope.  I may think about adding that to my devotional practice. 

In Christ,
Alicia
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« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2011, 09:42:19 AM »

my spiritual Father has blessed me to say the rosary I simply replace the Fatima prayer with the Jesus prayer(and because I can't remember the apostles creed anymore I use the Nicaean creed) I never really used the mysteries anyways.

What's the Fatima prayer?
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« Reply #10 on: March 30, 2011, 09:53:00 AM »

FYI:

Fatima Prayer (Optional)
O my Jesus, forgive us of our sins. Save us from the fires of hell. Lead all souls into heaven, especially those in most need of thy mercy.

cited from website www.catholicity.com/prayer/rosary.html

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« Reply #11 on: March 30, 2011, 09:53:13 AM »

My thoughts are that our spiritual lives should be guided by an Orthodox spiritual father, not by our own intellectual brilliance.

I wholeheartedly agree with this. It does, however, need to be noted that those of us in the Antiochian Church have been blessed by our Metropolitan (Philip) to make use of any devotions and customs so long as they "are not contrary to the Orthodox faith." Of course, Met. Philip is not our individual spiritual father, but his blessing is a top-down blessing, not stemming from our own intellectual brilliance.

Quote
While "praying the rosary" is not criticised by Orthodoxy (to the best of my knowledge), like the West's "tradition" of Ash Wednesday, it is not a spiritual exercise or practice that developed or is practiced within Orthodox Christianity.

Not exactly. If by "Orthodox Christianity" you mean the "Eastern spiritual tradition" then that would be true, but hopefully we can both agree that Orthodoxy proper is a much larger picture than that Smiley

The phrase dies cinerum (Day of Ashes) is found in all of the earliest manuscripts of the Gregorian Sacramentary and dates to at least the 8th century. We also have this passage from the English homilist Aelfric (950-1020 AD):

"We read in the books both in the Old Law and in the New that the men who repented of their sins bestrewed themselves with ashes and clothed their bodies with sackcloth. Now let us do this little at the beginning of our Lent that we strew ashes upon our heads to signify that we ought to repent of our sins during the Lenten fast." (emphasis added)

This tradition, without doubt, emerged within the undivided Church of the first millennium, and as such is proper for any and all Orthodox Christians, especially those of us blessed to worship according to the Western tradition.

Quote
Thus, how could the spiritual benefits of the practice accrue to the faithful Orthodox, whose spiritual lives are nourished and grow within the life of the Orthodox Church?  I would suggest, with the approval of and under the guidance of a spiritual father, trying the practice of praying the Jesus Prayer, with the traditional prayer rope, which I think would be somewhat analogous to the Rosary.  I am not condemning the rosary, it's just that it isn't within Orthodox tradition, thus, an innovation, something that is not within an Orthodox Christian's humble perview to initiate.

I suppose it also depends on what you mean by "Rosary" because it's much more than the prayer rope itself, but is rather a means of contemplating the mysteries of our Faith as they manifested in the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary. As Fr. John Meyendorff reminds us, "The Church does not canonize any particular form or method of devotion, but merely sanctions the holiness of those who have been able to express the reality of the Kingdom of God in their lives and in their words." It is well known that St. Seraphim of Sarov used a devotion that could, under any circumstances, be considered a Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary, replete with decades, meditations, prayers, etc.

This doesn't mean any form of the Rosary is proper for Orthodox Christians, but there are plenty of Orthodox options available for it.
« Last Edit: March 30, 2011, 09:55:05 AM by Sleeper » Logged
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« Reply #12 on: March 30, 2011, 08:46:24 PM »

When I do use the mysteries I use the mysteries from the Rosary of St. Seraphim....

1. The Birth of the Mother of God
2. The Presentation of the Mother of God
3. The Annunciation of the Lord's birth
4. The Meeting of the Mother of God and St. Elizabeth
5. The Birth of the Lord
6. The Prophecy of St. Simeon
7. The Flight into Egypt
8. The Boy-Christ among the doctors
9. The Wedding at Cana 
10.The Crucifixion of the Lord
11.The Resurrection of the Lord
12.The Ascension of the Lord into Heaven
13.Pentecost
14.The Dormition of the Virgin Mother of God
15. The Crowning of the Mother of God by the Blessed Trinity

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« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2011, 12:09:38 PM »

Can or should an Orthodox believer pray the Rosary used in the Catholic Church? 

If so, why?  If not, why not?

In Christ,
Alicia

They do pray the rosary prayer but they don't pray it in the fashion of the rosary.  Do you know what I mean by that?

If the Orthodox don't pray the rosary in the fashion the Catholics do it is because they don't have that tradition, or because they are against repetitive prayers.  At least, this is how I understand it.  Not because they don't pray to Mary or because they disprove of the the rosary prayer.

So "can" they, yes.  "Should" they is a matter of interpretation of scripture, and the admonition against repetitive prayers or prayer with much speaking.  I for one abandoned the rosary because I believe saying something 50 times is opening the door and inviting the devil in.  If that is not using much words then I don't know what is?  Honestly.
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« Reply #14 on: March 31, 2011, 12:26:05 PM »

Can or should an Orthodox believer pray the Rosary used in the Catholic Church? 

If so, why?  If not, why not?

In Christ,
Alicia

They do pray the rosary prayer but they don't pray it in the fashion of the rosary.  Do you know what I mean by that?

If the Orthodox don't pray the rosary in the fashion the Catholics do it is because they don't have that tradition, or because they are against repetitive prayers.  At least, this is how I understand it.  Not because they don't pray to Mary or because they disprove of the the rosary prayer.

So "can" they, yes.  "Should" they is a matter of interpretation of scripture, and the admonition against repetitive prayers or prayer with much speaking.  I for one abandoned the rosary because I believe saying something 50 times is opening the door and inviting the devil in.  If that is not using much words then I don't know what is?  Honestly.


Actually, that's not correct at all.  We have no admonition against repetitive prayers; in fact, one of the foundations of the Orthodox spiritual life is the repetition of the Jesus Prayer to the point that we (ideally) do it unconsciously and without ceasing.

The Orthodox objections to the rosary are more often grounded in the rosary's use of the imagination in meditating upon the mysteries.  Another objection, although one less commonly presented, is that the rosary places too much emphasis on prayer to the Theotokos and too little on prayer to the Lord (as in 10 Hail Marys to every 1 Our Father) and that those should perhaps be inverted.
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« Reply #15 on: April 04, 2011, 12:03:07 PM »


Actually, that's not correct at all.  We have no admonition against repetitive prayers; in fact, one of the foundations of the Orthodox spiritual life is the repetition of the Jesus Prayer to the point that we (ideally) do it unconsciously and without ceasing.

The Orthodox objections to the rosary are more often grounded in the rosary's use of the imagination in meditating upon the mysteries.  Another objection, although one less commonly presented, is that the rosary places too much emphasis on prayer to the Theotokos and too little on prayer to the Lord (as in 10 Hail Marys to every 1 Our Father) and that those should perhaps be inverted.

Hi Veniamin, thank you for correcting me.  I think I was confusing the Eastern Orthodox with the Oriental Orthodox.  The O.O. don't practice repetitive prayers correct?

You are right about the Jesus Prayer being an example of repetitive praying.
So how do the Orthodox interpret Matthew 6:7?  My Orthodox study bible says it is "vain" that is censured, not "repetition".
But that is weak because then the bible would have said don't pray vainly?  The word repetition comes from "many words" in the Latin translation does it not?  Vain has nothing to do with the quantity of words and so how can they ignore the word "repetition"?

I agree about the emphasis being misplaced on the Mother of God.  But I can't speak to the use of the imagination and if that is good or bad.  One thing that concerns me about the rosary is that the imagination is used to contemplate certain aspects of the life of Christ at the exclusion of others.  I think that emphasis could distort the mind if it is the sole reference to Jesus and scripture isn't read in its entirety.

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« Reply #16 on: April 04, 2011, 12:28:59 PM »


Actually, that's not correct at all.  We have no admonition against repetitive prayers; in fact, one of the foundations of the Orthodox spiritual life is the repetition of the Jesus Prayer to the point that we (ideally) do it unconsciously and without ceasing.

The Orthodox objections to the rosary are more often grounded in the rosary's use of the imagination in meditating upon the mysteries.  Another objection, although one less commonly presented, is that the rosary places too much emphasis on prayer to the Theotokos and too little on prayer to the Lord (as in 10 Hail Marys to every 1 Our Father) and that those should perhaps be inverted.

Hi Veniamin, thank you for correcting me.  I think I was confusing the Eastern Orthodox with the Oriental Orthodox.  The O.O. don't practice repetitive prayers correct?

You are right about the Jesus Prayer being an example of repetitive praying.
So how do the Orthodox interpret Matthew 6:7?  My Orthodox study bible says it is "vain" that is censured, not "repetition".
But that is weak because then the bible would have said don't pray vainly?  The word repetition comes from "many words" in the Latin translation does it not?  Vain has nothing to do with the quantity of words and so how can they ignore the word "repetition"?

I agree about the emphasis being misplaced on the Mother of God.  But I can't speak to the use of the imagination and if that is good or bad.  One thing that concerns me about the rosary is that the imagination is used to contemplate certain aspects of the life of Christ at the exclusion of others.  I think that emphasis could distort the mind if it is the sole reference to Jesus and scripture isn't read in its entirety.

Leisa

My thoughts on the matter of repetitive prayers for what it's worth:

The Jesus Prayer when prayed correctly with attention, love, and purity of heart under obedience to a spiritual father is different than saying prayers like a mantra where one's mind becomes a vacuum.

The dangers of using one's imagination is that of an overactive imagination where one visualizes and thinks that one sees the Theotokos, Christ, or the Saints.

Bowing down or making prostrations while venerating the icon of Christ when saying the Jesus Prayer helps one keep attentive.

« Last Edit: April 04, 2011, 12:31:43 PM by Maria » Logged

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