OrthodoxChristianity.net
September 01, 2014, 04:13:56 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Reminder: No political discussions in the public fora.  If you do not have access to the private Politics Forum, please send a PM to Fr. George.
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Pages: 1 2 »  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Wrestling with literalism  (Read 5285 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Shiny
Site Supporter
Moderated
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Groucho Marxist
Jurisdiction: Dahntahn Stoop Haus
Posts: 13,267


Paint It Red


« on: May 07, 2011, 11:22:04 PM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?
Logged

“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

– St. Ambrose of Milan
celticfan1888
Production Operator - Chemtrusion
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholicism
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church of America
Posts: 3,026



« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2011, 12:10:29 AM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?

Thats a bit of an interesting issue. I'd maybe go read some early church fathers opinions on it. You will probably reach the conclusion that if you focus on everything in the bible literally it'll lose something about it. Although, there are parts (such as the story of the life of Christ) that are to be taken literally.

As long as your beliefs dont contradict church teachings, you should be okay.

I personally believe in a 14 billion year old universe and evolution, and I'm still fully an Orthodox Christian in my beliefs.
Logged

Forgive my sins.
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Faith: Agnostic
Posts: 29,571



« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2011, 12:16:14 AM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?

I suppose the short (and unsatisfactory) answer is spiritual discernment.  Undecided I also struggle with this stuff, especially as related to things like evolution.  And I think this issue is a significant one, but that's why we have the obligation--or should I say the blessing?--to listen to what knowledgable and God-inspired men have said down through the centuries. Sometimes a passage will be literal, sometimes not... sometimes it will be interpreted in three separate ways with equal validity. It is pointed out sometimes that prophecies often have two meanings--an immediate one, and one for the distant future. For all we know a passage might have twelve meanings. Or twenty four. Of course, that doesn't mean that all interpretations are valid: there are orthodox ones and then there are ones that we're pulling out of thin air. There may be one central and overriding meaning to a Scriptural passage, sure; but then there might also be other interpretations, which may be orthodox and helpful, but shouldn't take away from the main understanding of a passage.

Over the years I've come, mostly because of my skepticism, to see it as not about literalism vs. allegory vs. typology vs. [etc.], but rather, what can God say to us through the passage? I don't mean that in a "private interpretation" sort of way, but rather, what is God saying to us through the guidance of the Church (and by Church I also mean her tradition, which also means not just texts, but icons, liturgy, etc.)?  Take for example Gen. 3:21: "Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them."  Seems like a simple enough verse. They were naked, God gave them clothes. End of story. Yet this phrase "coats of skin" appears in the Fathers, not just talking about clothing, but also when they are discussing the anthropological ramifications of the fall. What was perhaps originally a simple phrase became an image and theological rallying point for all sorts of ideas. Did the author or authors of Genesis, or Jesus, or the Apostles, see profound anthropological meaning in this term? I dunno. But the Fathers did. It's not about whether they took the passage literally or not, but rather what they saw there in the depths.

I've read, and I believe, that Orthodox hermeneutics are not based on reason and understanding so much as insight and discernment. The mind is used, of course--after all, one of the things that being made "in the image of God" means is that we are rational and able to think. Still, if we let our mind have too much importance, at least when it comes to certain topics, then we can often go astray. Consider, for example, the quotes of St. John Chrysostom on the use of reason. He speaks of how reason and logic can't penetrate into certain areas of truth and reality. Might we not also say that there is a middle ground, though, where reason can help, but is merely one tool among many?

Don't think of it as: "I'm going to pick and choose based on what I think is right." Think of it more like: "I know that I play a part in understanding the Bible, but I'm going to try to understand a passage according to the wisdom given to the Church, which, for all it's flaws, is nonetheless guided by God". God can, of course, guide each of us individually, yet when left to our own devices we are probably more prone to error. But when we have twenty centuries of insights to dig through, we can probably understand a bit more clearly how to understand this or that passage. (And again, this is not to make any Church Fathers/Mothers infallible, but simply to say that the consensus patrum can be trusted, and certainly trusted more than our own thoughts. ... if only I could apply that to my life!  angel ).
Logged
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2011, 01:29:14 AM »

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xpHM5Wd7ppA&feature=player_detailpage#t=185s

Like Asteriktos said, there is the scholarly method, where one uses the Church fathers.  But there's also a personal reading of the Bible to see how it touches you.  This sense of reading the Bible in a prayerful manner is a daily spiritual exercise.  Some can use the Church fathers to aid in understanding how to deal with the Bible as a spiritual exercise rather than a scholarly way.  We do tend to forget that the Bible speaks to each of us in a personal manner.  With some guidance, one will be able to do this.

Once you understand this, then you can understand how the Church fathers saw the New Testament through the Old Testament.  Even St. Paul used allegory (i.e. Hagar and Sarah).  Now, of course, allegory doesn't always exclude the literal.  But at the same time, the Church has a faith, has dogmas, and these dogmas must be upheld.  If there is an understanding in the Scriptures that don't affect overall dogma, then I don't find it very hard for me to accept an alternative view.
Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
Nigula Qian Zishi
Administrator Emeritus, Retired Deacon, Inactive Poster, Active Orthodox Christian, Father, and Husband
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
Posts: 1,836


我美丽的妻子和我。

nstanosheck
WWW
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2011, 06:51:09 AM »

As Saint Basil the Great said, Genesis is to be taken literally.
Logged

在基督         My Original Blog
尼古拉         My Facebook Profile
前执事         My Twitter Page
jckstraw72
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 1,174



« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2011, 07:43:06 AM »

the great thing about Orthodoxy is that YOU dont have to decide. Stick to the Fathers.
Logged
akimori makoto
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Non-heretical Christian
Jurisdiction: Fully-sik-hektic archdiocese of Australia, bro
Posts: 3,126

No-one bound by fleshly pleasures is worthy ...


« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2011, 08:03:07 AM »

I don't mean to be inflammatory, but if Genesis is taken entirely literally then God has a mouth and hands and feet and is not able to find his creations when they hide from him in the bushes.

I know St John Chrysostom would be quite offended with the notion that God has hands and feet.

In my admittedly unschooled view, when the fathers say to take Genesis literally, they are often speaking against allegorising the historical part of the narrative out of existence -- the serpent wasn't really a serpent, the garden wasn't really a garden, the tree wasn't really a tree, the coats of skin weren't really coats of skin, &c., &c. This doesn't mean that the tree of life wasn't a type of the precious and life-giving cross or that Eve's temptation and fall is not emblematic of the same temptation and fall we play out on a daily basis.

I believe it was St Basil himself who commented that the six days of creation couldn't possibly have been six literal days, as morning and evening were not created until the second day and the sun and moon on the fourth.

Something more complicated is going on here ...
Logged

The Episcopallian road is easy and wide, for many go through it to find destruction. lol sorry channeling Isa.
bogdan
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Posts: 1,615



« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2011, 08:07:57 AM »

There is not a Dogmatic consensus in the Church of how literally Genesis should be taken. I tend to come closer to literal because I feel it has implications for the Incarnation and salvation (that is, Christ's redemption as the Second Adam makes the most sense if all people are actually descended from one man, and thereby Christ had to become every man if he was to save every man). Yet I can't shake the science either. Mostly I don't get hung up on it.

One point of view (not the only view) can be found in Jeannie Constantinou's podcast commentary of the Bible, based on the Fathers. Just search for Genesis in the field above the podcast list:

http://ancientfaith.com/podcasts/searchthescriptures

This podcast gives reasons for a more literal view:

http://ancientfaith.com/specials/christ_the_eternal_tao
« Last Edit: May 08, 2011, 08:12:30 AM by bogdan » Logged
Alpo
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox. With some feta, please.
Posts: 6,643



« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2011, 08:50:11 AM »

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

Does this distinction between the Antiochian and Alexandrian methods of interpretation apply to the present EO and OO churches?
Logged
celticfan1888
Production Operator - Chemtrusion
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholicism
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church of America
Posts: 3,026



« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2011, 09:14:40 AM »

As Saint Basil the Great said, Genesis is to be taken literally.

There are other saints who disagree with him...
Logged

Forgive my sins.
Iconodule
Uranopolitan
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA (Diocese of Eastern Pennsylvania)
Posts: 6,934


"My god is greater."


« Reply #10 on: May 08, 2011, 09:33:15 AM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.
Logged

"A riddle or the cricket's cry
Is to doubt a fit reply." - William Blake

Quote from: Byron
Just ignore iconotools delusions. He is the biggest multiculturalist globalist there is due to his unfortunate background.
Father H
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian--God's One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: UOCofUSA-Ecumenical Patriarchate
Posts: 2,611



« Reply #11 on: May 08, 2011, 02:55:01 PM »

The great thing about Orthodoxy is that there is a wide pasture to wander.  Scripture is polyvalent.  We may wander where we wish so long as it is within the sheepfold, within the "bounds set by the Fathers," and again, they give us a wide berth.   There have already been some very important points brought up:

1.  That we do not need to "decide" as one vs. the other.  Stick to the Fathers and stay within the pasture to feed, and you will be ok.
2.  This pasture has on the one end (in matters related to what is being discussed) the Antiochian tradition and on the other the Alexandrian tradition, provided again it is not in the heretical outskirts beyond the pasture (Nestorius, Eutyches on Incarnation, and others on other issues)

Logged
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #12 on: May 08, 2011, 04:42:49 PM »

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

Does this distinction between the Antiochian and Alexandrian methods of interpretation apply to the present EO and OO churches?

I don't see it as an EO/OO thing.  This is strictly Scriptural.  In fact, history shows, most of the Antiochian exegetical masters were Nestorian heretics anyway (Diodore, Theodore, Nestorius, and controversially Theodoret).  Most of the Alexandrian masters were quite revered in Orthodoxy.  It seems that to me at least, this shows a great importance in the Alexandrian method for our spirituality.
Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
Alpo
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox. With some feta, please.
Posts: 6,643



« Reply #13 on: May 08, 2011, 05:02:06 PM »

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

Does this distinction between the Antiochian and Alexandrian methods of interpretation apply to the present EO and OO churches?

I don't see it as an EO/OO thing.

And I didn't mean that either. Perhaps I should have phrased my question a little more clearly. I meant to ask whether the present Antiochian church still interprets Scriptures in a more literal way and whether the present Alexandrian church still interprets Scriptures in a more allergorical way.

EDIT: But then again it seems that you've already answered my question. Move along, folks. There's nothing to see... Lips Sealed
« Last Edit: May 08, 2011, 05:03:42 PM by Alpo » Logged
Father H
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian--God's One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: UOCofUSA-Ecumenical Patriarchate
Posts: 2,611



« Reply #14 on: May 08, 2011, 06:48:07 PM »

What you state here is ridiculous and needs repented of.   Sts. John Chrysostom, Gregory the Theologian, Gregory the Great, Gregory of Nyssa.  Your statement is just as absurd as someone stating that "most" of the Alexandrine school are heretics, and then listing Origen, Arius, Didymus the Blind, etc.   Please, think before your post next time. 

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

Does this distinction between the Antiochian and Alexandrian methods of interpretation apply to the present EO and OO churches?

I don't see it as an EO/OO thing.  This is strictly Scriptural.  In fact, history shows, most of the Antiochian exegetical masters were Nestorian heretics anyway (Diodore, Theodore, Nestorius, and controversially Theodoret).  Most of the Alexandrian masters were quite revered in Orthodoxy.  It seems that to me at least, this shows a great importance in the Alexandrian method for our spirituality.
Logged
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #15 on: May 08, 2011, 06:56:22 PM »

What you state here is ridiculous and needs repented of.   Sts. John Chrysostom, Gregory the Theologian, Gregory the Great, Gregory of Nyssa.  Your statement is just as absurd as someone stating that "most" of the Alexandrine school are heretics, and then listing Origen, Arius, Didymus the Blind, etc.   Please, think before your post next time. 

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

Does this distinction between the Antiochian and Alexandrian methods of interpretation apply to the present EO and OO churches?

I don't see it as an EO/OO thing.  This is strictly Scriptural.  In fact, history shows, most of the Antiochian exegetical masters were Nestorian heretics anyway (Diodore, Theodore, Nestorius, and controversially Theodoret).  Most of the Alexandrian masters were quite revered in Orthodoxy.  It seems that to me at least, this shows a great importance in the Alexandrian method for our spirituality.

You're wrong Father.  First, St. Gregory Nazienzen and St. Gregory of Nyssa (I'm amazed you even chose this St. Gregory because he was more Origenistic than Origen himself!) were more Alexandrian in their upbringing.  If anything, they St. Gregory Nazienzen is the one (along with St. Basil) who compiled Origen's Philokalia.  St. Didymus the Blind (a saint in our church) was chosen by St. Athanasius to head the school at his time, and very beloved by St. Athanasius.  St. Athenagoras, St. Clement of Alexandria, and even St. John Chrysostom was not as strictly Antiochian as his own teacher Diodore and his friend Theodore were.

So, no, I'm not repenting of anything.  I haven't even mentioned Eustathius or Lucian.  And Arius was answered back by pro-Origen people like St. Athanasius.

There's a clear pattern in history with Antiochian exegetes.  With Alexandrian exegesis, there was no pattern, it was sporadic.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2011, 07:02:57 PM by minasoliman » Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
Father H
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian--God's One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: UOCofUSA-Ecumenical Patriarchate
Posts: 2,611



« Reply #16 on: May 08, 2011, 09:08:39 PM »

Let us take a look at a few facts:  

1.  The primary heresy of the 1st Ecumenical Council was brought about by an Alexandrian heretic, Arius
2.  The two primary heresies dealt with by the second ecumenical council were brought about once again by heretics from the Alexandrian school, Apollinarianism and pneumatomachianism (the majority of the latter's supporters were former Arians, rallied by Macedonius).  

I actually favor Alexandrian modes of thought and speech in many areas of theology, but your imbalance here I cannot tolerate, especially when you espouse and try to spread your falsehoods.   You cut off by your poison a portion of the pasture that has been given to the Flock of God by the Holy Fathers by making broad statements that are simply not true.  


What you state here is ridiculous and needs repented of.   Sts. John Chrysostom, Gregory the Theologian, Gregory the Great, Gregory of Nyssa.  Your statement is just as absurd as someone stating that "most" of the Alexandrine school are heretics, and then listing Origen, Arius, Didymus the Blind, etc.   Please, think before your post next time.  

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

Does this distinction between the Antiochian and Alexandrian methods of interpretation apply to the present EO and OO churches?

I don't see it as an EO/OO thing.  This is strictly Scriptural.  In fact, history shows, most of the Antiochian exegetical masters were Nestorian heretics anyway (Diodore, Theodore, Nestorius, and controversially Theodoret).  Most of the Alexandrian masters were quite revered in Orthodoxy.  It seems that to me at least, this shows a great importance in the Alexandrian method for our spirituality.

You're wrong Father.  First, St. Gregory Nazienzen and St. Gregory of Nyssa (I'm amazed you even chose this St. Gregory because he was more Origenistic than Origen himself!) were more Alexandrian in their upbringing.  If anything, they St. Gregory Nazienzen is the one (along with St. Basil) who compiled Origen's Philokalia.  St. Didymus the Blind (a saint in our church) was chosen by St. Athanasius to head the school at his time, and very beloved by St. Athanasius.  St. Athenagoras, St. Clement of Alexandria, and even St. John Chrysostom was not as strictly Antiochian as his own teacher Diodore and his friend Theodore were.

So, no, I'm not repenting of anything.  I haven't even mentioned Eustathius or Lucian.  And Arius was answered back by pro-Origen people like St. Athanasius.

There's a clear pattern in history with Antiochian exegetes.  With Alexandrian exegesis, there was no pattern, it was sporadic.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2011, 09:09:58 PM by FatherHLL » Logged
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #17 on: May 08, 2011, 11:27:50 PM »

Let us take a look at a few facts:  

1.  The primary heresy of the 1st Ecumenical Council was brought about by an Alexandrian heretic, Arius
2.  The two primary heresies dealt with by the second ecumenical council were brought about once again by heretics from the Alexandrian school, Apollinarianism and pneumatomachianism (the majority of the latter's supporters were former Arians, rallied by Macedonius).  

I actually favor Alexandrian modes of thought and speech in many areas of theology, but your imbalance here I cannot tolerate, especially when you espouse and try to spread your falsehoods.   You cut off by your poison a portion of the pasture that has been given to the Flock of God by the Holy Fathers by making broad statements that are simply not true.  


What you state here is ridiculous and needs repented of.   Sts. John Chrysostom, Gregory the Theologian, Gregory the Great, Gregory of Nyssa.  Your statement is just as absurd as someone stating that "most" of the Alexandrine school are heretics, and then listing Origen, Arius, Didymus the Blind, etc.   Please, think before your post next time.  

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

Does this distinction between the Antiochian and Alexandrian methods of interpretation apply to the present EO and OO churches?

I don't see it as an EO/OO thing.  This is strictly Scriptural.  In fact, history shows, most of the Antiochian exegetical masters were Nestorian heretics anyway (Diodore, Theodore, Nestorius, and controversially Theodoret).  Most of the Alexandrian masters were quite revered in Orthodoxy.  It seems that to me at least, this shows a great importance in the Alexandrian method for our spirituality.

You're wrong Father.  First, St. Gregory Nazienzen and St. Gregory of Nyssa (I'm amazed you even chose this St. Gregory because he was more Origenistic than Origen himself!) were more Alexandrian in their upbringing.  If anything, they St. Gregory Nazienzen is the one (along with St. Basil) who compiled Origen's Philokalia.  St. Didymus the Blind (a saint in our church) was chosen by St. Athanasius to head the school at his time, and very beloved by St. Athanasius.  St. Athenagoras, St. Clement of Alexandria, and even St. John Chrysostom was not as strictly Antiochian as his own teacher Diodore and his friend Theodore were.

So, no, I'm not repenting of anything.  I haven't even mentioned Eustathius or Lucian.  And Arius was answered back by pro-Origen people like St. Athanasius.

There's a clear pattern in history with Antiochian exegetes.  With Alexandrian exegesis, there was no pattern, it was sporadic.

Father,

I don't know what falsehoods you are implying when you were in fact giving the Gregories of the Church a sense that they were Antiochian in exegetical practice.  I'm sorry to say, but there's nothing more poisonous than when most scholars agree that the FOUNDERS of the Antiochian exegesis were vial heretics themselves.  They're not even respected to begin with.  Origen at least has a respected status of the Church, and even he is not given the honor of founding the Alexandrian school.

And Arian is an interesting case.  Certainly, he's an Alexandrian priest, but when the Church of Alexandria has a history and a tradition of deans and educated bishops and patriarchs, then you have to wonder what more about this person who comes from the Alexandrian Church?  As it turns out, some seem to see Arianism as an outshoot of some Lucian of Antioch, who is a controversial person in the history of the Church.  And then I didn't even mention Paul of Samasota, who also hated the Alexandrian approach of scripture.

As for Apollinarius, indeed he was of the Alexandrian tradition, and was a heretic.  But he was no founder of the Alexandrian tradition.  And certainly the Alexandrian school herself did not hesitate to condemn this man either.

Don't get me wrong.  If those who use Antiochian exegesis and still maintain Orthodoxy, I am not one to condemn them.  But it's amazing that those who were strongholds of Antiochian exegesis were also associated with strong heresy.  And it's not like the Alexandrians rejected literalism in the important parts of theology either.  So this offshoot of Antiochian exegesis which really developed as an anti-Alexandrian movement if anything really has more controversial roots than its Alexandrian counterpart.

There's no imbalance in what I said.  Yes, my conclusions to what is a better exegetical technique is an opinion of mine especially for spirituality, but facing the facts is only a poison if you can't handle the facts.
Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
Nigula Qian Zishi
Administrator Emeritus, Retired Deacon, Inactive Poster, Active Orthodox Christian, Father, and Husband
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
Posts: 1,836


我美丽的妻子和我。

nstanosheck
WWW
« Reply #18 on: May 09, 2011, 12:30:01 AM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.
Logged

在基督         My Original Blog
尼古拉         My Facebook Profile
前执事         My Twitter Page
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Faith: Agnostic
Posts: 29,571



« Reply #19 on: May 09, 2011, 12:47:28 AM »

Now for something different... *cough*  angel

I've heard that the Antiochian method of interpretation involved taking Scripture literally, or historically, or accepting the "plain meaning" of it. Is this so? If it is, I wonder about St. John Chrysostom's connection to it. It is possible that St. John followed such a method of interpretation, perhaps often (I have certainly not read all of his works, and when I do read him it's not like I'm evaluating the specifics of his interpretive approach). Nonetheless, some interpretations of St. John that I have come across seem to be the opposite of a literal or historical or "plain meaning" interpretation.

For example, in St. John Chrysostom's interpretation of the passage in Matt. 11 (Homily 36 on Matthew), where St. John the Baptist sends disciples to Jesus to ask him "Are you He that should come, or do we look for another?" St. John Chrysostom says, contrary to what the text seems to imply, that John the Baptist did not really need to ask the question for his own benefit, but rather pretended to ask as a bit of trickery for the benefit of others. And then we find a similar interpretation of St. John Chrysostom (Homily 2 on Galatians) regarding the apparent argument between Sts. Peter and Paul in Gal. 2. St. John Chrysostom says that it would be a "superficial reading" to take the passage at face value, and that the two apostles had planned and acted out a "scheme" for the benefit of others.

Am I misunderstanding the Antiochian interpretive method? Are these just exceptions to the rule in St. John? Thoughts?
« Last Edit: May 09, 2011, 12:49:58 AM by Asteriktos » Logged
akimori makoto
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Non-heretical Christian
Jurisdiction: Fully-sik-hektic archdiocese of Australia, bro
Posts: 3,126

No-one bound by fleshly pleasures is worthy ...


« Reply #20 on: May 09, 2011, 01:02:26 AM »

It is better to think of the School of Antioch as being anti-allegorical, rather than literalist.

So, when the fathers of the Antiochian School say the "plain meaning" of the words should be held to, what they mean is that the factual or historical meaning of the words shouldn't be allegorised away. This does not mean that the true meaning of a particular scripture is automatically that which is most obvious on the surface.

While an allegorical interpretation might hold that the rivers demarcating the Garden of Eden were not really rivers but instead signify virtues of particular kinds (ie: paradise exists where those virtues intersect), a "plain meaning" approach might hold that they were in fact rivers, while not excluding that they might hold other meaning of spiritual significance for us.

St John says it is ridiculous to believe that God has hands and feet (the "plain meaning" of the Genesis account) but, in so doing, he is not allegorising. He is saying that the scripture is telling us a truth about God's act of creation in a way that is accessible to humans but is not to be taken literally. This is not the same thing as allegory, where the thing in question is held to have not actually happened but to be symbolic of some other reality.

Hope this helps a little?
Logged

The Episcopallian road is easy and wide, for many go through it to find destruction. lol sorry channeling Isa.
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Faith: Agnostic
Posts: 29,571



« Reply #21 on: May 09, 2011, 01:12:28 AM »

Yes, thank you for explaining the distinction/difference Smiley
Logged
akimori makoto
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Non-heretical Christian
Jurisdiction: Fully-sik-hektic archdiocese of Australia, bro
Posts: 3,126

No-one bound by fleshly pleasures is worthy ...


« Reply #22 on: May 09, 2011, 01:18:59 AM »

Yes, thank you for explaining the distinction/difference Smiley

I'm not sure what I've said is definitive!
Logged

The Episcopallian road is easy and wide, for many go through it to find destruction. lol sorry channeling Isa.
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Offline Offline

Faith: Agnostic
Posts: 29,571



« Reply #23 on: May 09, 2011, 01:25:45 AM »

Yes, thank you for explaining the distinction/difference Smiley

I'm not sure what I've said is definitive!

Well, whatever the case may be, it helped me understand things better Smiley
Logged
Father H
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian--God's One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: UOCofUSA-Ecumenical Patriarchate
Posts: 2,611



« Reply #24 on: May 09, 2011, 09:47:42 AM »

Fair enough.   It is obvious from your response that your initial post was not meant to be polemical but was of conviction.  I appreciate your other responses, especially this last one.  I suppose our disagreement here is natural as one of us is a proponent of Chalcedon and the other is not.   Obviously the Chalcedonian position is that there must be a balance between the Alexandrian and Antiochian traditions, whereas the non-Chalcedonian approach favors the Alexandrian tradition.   We do, after all, deeply share a respect for the Holy Fathers of the Alexandrian tradition who have been strongholds of Orthodoxy.   I still think it an exaggeration when you say that those of the Antiochene tradition are almost all heretics.   But then again, after some dialogue, it became clear that you would not define some of the Holy Fathers as Antiochene that otherwise are counted as such or could be counted as such.   So, in the end, we admire and follow the same Holy Fathers, and reject the same heresies.   Good enough for me.  Thank you for putting up with my "heavy hand" on the matter  police   Christ is Risen!



Let us take a look at a few facts:  

1.  The primary heresy of the 1st Ecumenical Council was brought about by an Alexandrian heretic, Arius
2.  The two primary heresies dealt with by the second ecumenical council were brought about once again by heretics from the Alexandrian school, Apollinarianism and pneumatomachianism (the majority of the latter's supporters were former Arians, rallied by Macedonius).  

I actually favor Alexandrian modes of thought and speech in many areas of theology, but your imbalance here I cannot tolerate, especially when you espouse and try to spread your falsehoods.   You cut off by your poison a portion of the pasture that has been given to the Flock of God by the Holy Fathers by making broad statements that are simply not true.  


What you state here is ridiculous and needs repented of.   Sts. John Chrysostom, Gregory the Theologian, Gregory the Great, Gregory of Nyssa.  Your statement is just as absurd as someone stating that "most" of the Alexandrine school are heretics, and then listing Origen, Arius, Didymus the Blind, etc.   Please, think before your post next time.  

This monk used to be an atheist, who later became a Coptic monk (as you see here).  Here, he explains how he doesn't see the spiritual usefulness of the Antiochian method of interpretation (the literalism of the Bible) and finds the Alexandrian method more spiritually edifying for himself:

Does this distinction between the Antiochian and Alexandrian methods of interpretation apply to the present EO and OO churches?

I don't see it as an EO/OO thing.  This is strictly Scriptural.  In fact, history shows, most of the Antiochian exegetical masters were Nestorian heretics anyway (Diodore, Theodore, Nestorius, and controversially Theodoret).  Most of the Alexandrian masters were quite revered in Orthodoxy.  It seems that to me at least, this shows a great importance in the Alexandrian method for our spirituality.

You're wrong Father.  First, St. Gregory Nazienzen and St. Gregory of Nyssa (I'm amazed you even chose this St. Gregory because he was more Origenistic than Origen himself!) were more Alexandrian in their upbringing.  If anything, they St. Gregory Nazienzen is the one (along with St. Basil) who compiled Origen's Philokalia.  St. Didymus the Blind (a saint in our church) was chosen by St. Athanasius to head the school at his time, and very beloved by St. Athanasius.  St. Athenagoras, St. Clement of Alexandria, and even St. John Chrysostom was not as strictly Antiochian as his own teacher Diodore and his friend Theodore were.

So, no, I'm not repenting of anything.  I haven't even mentioned Eustathius or Lucian.  And Arius was answered back by pro-Origen people like St. Athanasius.

There's a clear pattern in history with Antiochian exegetes.  With Alexandrian exegesis, there was no pattern, it was sporadic.

Father,

I don't know what falsehoods you are implying when you were in fact giving the Gregories of the Church a sense that they were Antiochian in exegetical practice.  I'm sorry to say, but there's nothing more poisonous than when most scholars agree that the FOUNDERS of the Antiochian exegesis were vial heretics themselves.  They're not even respected to begin with.  Origen at least has a respected status of the Church, and even he is not given the honor of founding the Alexandrian school.

And Arian is an interesting case.  Certainly, he's an Alexandrian priest, but when the Church of Alexandria has a history and a tradition of deans and educated bishops and patriarchs, then you have to wonder what more about this person who comes from the Alexandrian Church?  As it turns out, some seem to see Arianism as an outshoot of some Lucian of Antioch, who is a controversial person in the history of the Church.  And then I didn't even mention Paul of Samasota, who also hated the Alexandrian approach of scripture.

As for Apollinarius, indeed he was of the Alexandrian tradition, and was a heretic.  But he was no founder of the Alexandrian tradition.  And certainly the Alexandrian school herself did not hesitate to condemn this man either.

Don't get me wrong.  If those who use Antiochian exegesis and still maintain Orthodoxy, I am not one to condemn them.  But it's amazing that those who were strongholds of Antiochian exegesis were also associated with strong heresy.  And it's not like the Alexandrians rejected literalism in the important parts of theology either.  So this offshoot of Antiochian exegesis which really developed as an anti-Alexandrian movement if anything really has more controversial roots than its Alexandrian counterpart.

There's no imbalance in what I said.  Yes, my conclusions to what is a better exegetical technique is an opinion of mine especially for spirituality, but facing the facts is only a poison if you can't handle the facts.
Logged
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #25 on: May 09, 2011, 10:08:34 AM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You're right.  The Church should have never abandoned Orthodox belief that the first three centuries of Church tradition believed on the idea that angels bringing forth offspring through humans.
Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #26 on: May 09, 2011, 10:09:43 AM »

Fair enough.   It is obvious from your response that your initial post was not meant to be polemical but was of conviction.  I appreciate your other responses, especially this last one.  I suppose our disagreement here is natural as one of us is a proponent of Chalcedon and the other is not.   Obviously the Chalcedonian position is that there must be a balance between the Alexandrian and Antiochian traditions, whereas the non-Chalcedonian approach favors the Alexandrian tradition.   We do, after all, deeply share a respect for the Holy Fathers of the Alexandrian tradition who have been strongholds of Orthodoxy.   I still think it an exaggeration when you say that those of the Antiochene tradition are almost all heretics.   But then again, after some dialogue, it became clear that you would not define some of the Holy Fathers as Antiochene that otherwise are counted as such or could be counted as such.   So, in the end, we admire and follow the same Holy Fathers, and reject the same heresies.   Good enough for me.  Thank you for putting up with my "heavy hand" on the matter  police   Christ is Risen!

Truly He is risen!
Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
Shanghaiski
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 7,969


Holy Trinity Church of Gergeti, Georgia


« Reply #27 on: May 09, 2011, 02:19:04 PM »

I've found nothing even remotely questionable about Blessed Theodoret of Cyrrhus' Biblical commentaries. He appears very much in line with St. John Chrysostom, and more prolific.

Anyway, as regards literalism vs. allegory, it's a both/and thing, not an either/or thing, even in the now defunct "schools" of Alexandria and Antioch. Orthodoxy embraces paradox and ambiguity in many cases and is not afraid of not having a single answer for every little thing. That said, to counter those of today who are, essentially, relativists and antinomians, the Church, through the fathers and saints, is not afraid of being direct and stating clearly what are her teachings. In the end, both problems--the desire for an answer to every little thing and the rejection of answers--are solved by submitting to the Church and humbling one's mind.
Logged

Quote from: GabrieltheCelt
If you spend long enough on this forum, you'll come away with all sorts of weird, untrue ideas of Orthodox Christianity.
Quote from: orthonorm
I would suggest most persons in general avoid any question beginning with why.
Nigula Qian Zishi
Administrator Emeritus, Retired Deacon, Inactive Poster, Active Orthodox Christian, Father, and Husband
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
Posts: 1,836


我美丽的妻子和我。

nstanosheck
WWW
« Reply #28 on: May 09, 2011, 04:35:33 PM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You're right.  The Church should have never abandoned Orthodox belief that the first three centuries of Church tradition believed on the idea that angels bringing forth offspring through humans.

That was a belief, not THE belief. Just like the many new wrong beliefs of today, like "The Old testament is just an allegory". see http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2011/05/another-orthodox-misreading-of-old.html
Logged

在基督         My Original Blog
尼古拉         My Facebook Profile
前执事         My Twitter Page
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #29 on: May 09, 2011, 05:06:12 PM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You're right.  The Church should have never abandoned Orthodox belief that the first three centuries of Church tradition believed on the idea that angels bringing forth offspring through humans.

That was a belief, not THE belief. Just like the many new wrong beliefs of today, like "The Old testament is just an allegory". see http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2011/05/another-orthodox-misreading-of-old.html

It was THE belief for the first three hundred years of Christianity.  And certainly the Old Testament if not understood through the eyes of the New Testament becomes what?  If not an allegory, I don't know what else you want to call it.  But be my guest, and take the Pharisaical standard.

Love the double standard.

Here you go, another blog:

http://fatherstephen.wordpress.com/category/scripture/
« Last Edit: May 09, 2011, 05:10:04 PM by minasoliman » Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
Shiny
Site Supporter
Moderated
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Groucho Marxist
Jurisdiction: Dahntahn Stoop Haus
Posts: 13,267


Paint It Red


« Reply #30 on: May 10, 2011, 12:00:27 AM »

I don't get this, why would there be all these distinct interpretations than what the author originally intended? Since Genesis has so many similarities with other creation myths, couldn't the author just borrowed from them? How do we know what the original author's intention was?
Logged

“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

– St. Ambrose of Milan
celticfan1888
Production Operator - Chemtrusion
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholicism
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church of America
Posts: 3,026



« Reply #31 on: May 10, 2011, 12:05:18 AM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You're right.  The Church should have never abandoned Orthodox belief that the first three centuries of Church tradition believed on the idea that angels bringing forth offspring through humans.

That was a belief, not THE belief. Just like the many new wrong beliefs of today, like "The Old testament is just an allegory". see http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2011/05/another-orthodox-misreading-of-old.html

I'm guessing you aren't very scientific then.
Logged

Forgive my sins.
Nigula Qian Zishi
Administrator Emeritus, Retired Deacon, Inactive Poster, Active Orthodox Christian, Father, and Husband
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
Posts: 1,836


我美丽的妻子和我。

nstanosheck
WWW
« Reply #32 on: May 10, 2011, 12:33:43 AM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You're right.  The Church should have never abandoned Orthodox belief that the first three centuries of Church tradition believed on the idea that angels bringing forth offspring through humans.

That was a belief, not THE belief. Just like the many new wrong beliefs of today, like "The Old testament is just an allegory". see http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2011/05/another-orthodox-misreading-of-old.html

I'm guessing you aren't very scientific then.

Yes, scientific theory is not my religion like some others who post here.
Logged

在基督         My Original Blog
尼古拉         My Facebook Profile
前执事         My Twitter Page
celticfan1888
Production Operator - Chemtrusion
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholicism
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church of America
Posts: 3,026



« Reply #33 on: May 10, 2011, 12:39:03 AM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You're right.  The Church should have never abandoned Orthodox belief that the first three centuries of Church tradition believed on the idea that angels bringing forth offspring through humans.

That was a belief, not THE belief. Just like the many new wrong beliefs of today, like "The Old testament is just an allegory". see http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2011/05/another-orthodox-misreading-of-old.html

I'm guessing you aren't very scientific then.

Yes, scientific theory is not my religion like some others who post here.

It isn't mine either, I'm just using common sense is all. You can't tell me God doesn't do works through natural means. You don't need to be passive aggressive, it isn't very nice.
Logged

Forgive my sins.
Father H
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian--God's One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: UOCofUSA-Ecumenical Patriarchate
Posts: 2,611



« Reply #34 on: May 10, 2011, 08:40:10 AM »

I don't get this, why would there be all these distinct interpretations than what the author originally intended? Since Genesis has so many similarities with other creation myths, couldn't the author just borrowed from them? How do we know what the original author's intention was?

The original author's intentions have nothing to do with it, if by "original authors" we are referring to the prophets/prophetic scribes who wrote them down.   But of course we know that they are not the "authors."   If the Holy Spirit is the author it is completely irrelevant what the prophet's intentions were.  Your ultimate question then becomes "how do we know the Holy Spirit is the author of these books."  I'm sure that the Holy Spirit did not need to borrow from another creation myth.  Even the epic of gilgamesh is a hard sell for me.  Why on earth would one assume that this predated the story of early Genesis?  The only thing that any similarities tell us is that epic itself is a morphed form of an older account passed down verbally previously for who knows how long before someone wrote it down with their embellishments.  G and E may or may not have as "parents" the same proto-story.   But this tells us nothing since many people can take a proto-story as a base to create their own story.   If the author of E thought it was made up anyway, he simply created his own tale with elements from proto-G/E.   In other words, the existence of E has absolutely no bearing nor can it tell us anything of the relation of G to proto-G (which we do not have record of as it was oral).     
Logged
jckstraw72
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 1,174



« Reply #35 on: May 10, 2011, 09:03:51 AM »

I don't get this, why would there be all these distinct interpretations than what the author originally intended? Since Genesis has so many similarities with other creation myths, couldn't the author just borrowed from them? How do we know what the original author's intention was?

Genesis is really not very similar to other creation myths. Bp. Michael Dahulich teaches in his Israel's Origins class that its actually pretty painstakingly demythologized.
Logged
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #36 on: May 10, 2011, 09:38:31 AM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You're right.  The Church should have never abandoned Orthodox belief that the first three centuries of Church tradition believed on the idea that angels bringing forth offspring through humans.

That was a belief, not THE belief. Just like the many new wrong beliefs of today, like "The Old testament is just an allegory". see http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2011/05/another-orthodox-misreading-of-old.html

I'm guessing you aren't very scientific then.

Yes, scientific theory is not my religion like some others who post here.

It's not my religion either.  It's a form of common sense.  It's as common sense as knowing the color of my pants.  If you want to deny that your pants have color, then that's your psychotic preference.

Don't misconstrue my beliefs.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2011, 09:39:19 AM by minasoliman » Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
Iconodule
Uranopolitan
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA (Diocese of Eastern Pennsylvania)
Posts: 6,934


"My god is greater."


« Reply #37 on: May 10, 2011, 01:06:22 PM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You misunderstand me. I am speaking of the tendency to view and understand the creation without understanding its spiritual underpinning and meaning, ie the materialist or deist view that the universe can be understood without assistance from divine revelation. St. Nikolai calls this a "literal reading of nature", and compares it to people studying letters of the alphabet without understanding that the letters represent sounds and words. It's this literalist reading of nature that causes us these uncomfortable questions about how to interpret the scriptures.

Natural science has obvious practical benefits, but its limitations become more felt the more it approaches the significant questions of life, such as the creation of the world, human nature, etc. I might compare it to magnetic north on a compass- magnetic north is very helpful for getting our bearings, but if we are traveling long distances, we also need a map (divine revelation) to adjust our path for true north. The common attitude toward natural philosophy is to accept its findings as "common sense", regardless of the subject matter- it is like someone stumbling through the wilderness with only a compass. The further he hikes, the wider off the mark he will be, until he is very lost. At some point we need to make a choice- the map says north is one way and the compass says another. The compass has helped us to reach this place but now we need to trust the map more.
Logged

"A riddle or the cricket's cry
Is to doubt a fit reply." - William Blake

Quote from: Byron
Just ignore iconotools delusions. He is the biggest multiculturalist globalist there is due to his unfortunate background.
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #38 on: May 10, 2011, 01:15:19 PM »

As St. Nicolai of Zicha tells us, we also need to re-examine our "literal" approach to the material creation.

No we do not. When we re-examine for modern takes contrary to the Traditions of the Church, we become Protestants.

You misunderstand me. I am speaking of the tendency to view and understand the creation without understanding its spiritual underpinning and meaning, ie the materialist or deist view that the universe can be understood without assistance from divine revelation. St. Nikolai calls this a "literal reading of nature", and compares it to people studying letters of the alphabet without understanding that the letters represent sounds and words. It's this literalist reading of nature that causes us these uncomfortable questions about how to interpret the scriptures.

Natural science has obvious practical benefits, but its limitations become more felt the more it approaches the significant questions of life, such as the creation of the world, human nature, etc. I might compare it to magnetic north on a compass- magnetic north is very helpful for getting our bearings, but if we are traveling long distances, we also need a map (divine revelation) to adjust our path for true north. The common attitude toward natural philosophy is to accept its findings as "common sense", regardless of the subject matter- it is like someone stumbling through the wilderness with only a compass. The further he hikes, the wider off the mark he will be, until he is very lost. At some point we need to make a choice- the map says north is one way and the compass says another. The compass has helped us to reach this place but now we need to trust the map more.

I feel this is a well-reasoned approach towards natural science, and I have absolutely no problem with what you wrote here.  If anything, it's a prudent approach that I well admire and wish all would follow.
« Last Edit: May 10, 2011, 01:17:13 PM by minasoliman » Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
CBGardner
Site Supporter
High Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 618


Ask w/ tears, seek w/ obedience, knock w/ patience


« Reply #39 on: May 10, 2011, 01:24:37 PM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?

Can't it be both literal and allegorical? Don't let others convince you that you can't be a young earth, genesis narrative believer without being a science hating, gun toting, southerner.
Logged

Authentic zeal is not directed towards anything but union in Christ, or against anything but our own fallenness.

"Beardliness is next to Godliness."- Asteriktos
celticfan1888
Production Operator - Chemtrusion
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholicism
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church of America
Posts: 3,026



« Reply #40 on: May 10, 2011, 01:33:23 PM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?

Can't it be both literal and allegorical? Don't let others convince you that you can't be a young earth, genesis narrative believer without being a science hating, gun toting, southerner.

Wow, way to stereotype southerners...
Logged

Forgive my sins.
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Moderator
Toumarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 11,061


Strengthen O Lord the work of Your hands(Is 19:25)


WWW
« Reply #41 on: May 10, 2011, 01:35:52 PM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?

Can't it be both literal and allegorical? Don't let others convince you that you can't be a young earth, genesis narrative believer without being a science hating, gun toting, southerner.

Wow, way to stereotype southerners...
I think he thinks we think that way.  Tongue
Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
celticfan1888
Production Operator - Chemtrusion
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholicism
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church of America
Posts: 3,026



« Reply #42 on: May 10, 2011, 01:37:53 PM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?

Can't it be both literal and allegorical? Don't let others convince you that you can't be a young earth, genesis narrative believer without being a science hating, gun toting, southerner.

Wow, way to stereotype southerners...
I think he thinks we think that way.  Tongue

Obviously so. lol. I have to go buy some chew and tune my banjo now. Wink
Logged

Forgive my sins.
CBGardner
Site Supporter
High Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 618


Ask w/ tears, seek w/ obedience, knock w/ patience


« Reply #43 on: May 10, 2011, 01:40:30 PM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?

Can't it be both literal and allegorical? Don't let others convince you that you can't be a young earth, genesis narrative believer without being a science hating, gun toting, southerner.

Wow, way to stereotype southerners...
I think he thinks we think that way.  Tongue

All I know about what you gentlemen think, is posted above. I'm surprised that neither of you seem to have heard the stereotype I laid out above, though? It is tossed around quite a bit in the current cultural scene. My grand parents are from Texas and Florida so I have nothing against the South.
Logged

Authentic zeal is not directed towards anything but union in Christ, or against anything but our own fallenness.

"Beardliness is next to Godliness."- Asteriktos
jckstraw72
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 1,174



« Reply #44 on: May 10, 2011, 01:41:13 PM »

Due to my Protestant upbringings, I have trouble wrestling with things in the Bible as allegorical. Where exactly is the line drawn? Am I at fault, on a scientific basis, to take everything in the Genesis account literally? How does one pick and choose what is real and what is allegory?

Can't it be both literal and allegorical? Don't let others convince you that you can't be a young earth, genesis narrative believer without being a science hating, gun toting, southerner.

thank you! Creationists usually are immediately stereotyped as being anti-science, which is just absurd. i've never met anyone who's actually anti-science.
Logged
Tags: allegory 
Pages: 1 2 »  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.184 seconds with 74 queries.