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Author Topic: Death  (Read 2863 times) Average Rating: 0
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Ben
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« on: June 13, 2004, 02:29:28 PM »

The Catholic teaching on death and the hereafter is that if you die in the state of Grace and have lived a very good life, using the graces God has given you to overcome your temptations, repent of your sins, and submit to God's will, you go to Heaven. If you have lived a good life and die in the state of grace but are still in the need of some type of prufication of the temporal punishment that remains from your sin, you go to Purgatory and the eventually to Heave. And if you lived a horrible life, die in the state of mortal sin, and reject the graces God has given you, you go to Hell.

Now, from what I have been told the Eastern Orthodox teaching on death and the hereafter is that when you die you go through some type of purification and then rest in a place that is niether Heaven or Hell, but rather a fortaste of what is to come. For those who lived a good life and made good use of the the graces given to them by God it is a wondeful fortaste of peace and the glory of God, for those who lived a sinful life, never repentented, and refused God and his graces, it is a miserable state.

So, my question is what does the OOC teach on this most important issue?
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« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2004, 03:51:08 PM »

IMO, repent.
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Ben
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« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2004, 03:57:52 PM »

IMO, repent.

Huh Huh
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« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2004, 04:12:46 PM »

Once upon a time there was a man, who had become so learned that he was called a philosopher; but who had not paid proper attention to other things. He was crossing a river in a ferry-boat, at a place where the passage was not safe; but he was thinking only of his books, and of the pleasure which they gave him.

On the way across the river, the philosopher asked the ferryman, if he understood arithmetic. The man answered, that he had never heard of such a thing before. The philosopher told him he was very sorry, for he had lost a quarter of his life by his ignorance.

The philosopher then asked him, if he had learned mathematics. The boatman smiled, and said he knew nothing about it. The philosopher told him another quarter of his life had been lost.

The philosopher then put a third question to the boatman, and asked him if he understood astronomy. The boatman told him no; that he had never head of it before. The philosopher replied, that another quarter of his life had been lost.

Just at this moment the boat ran on a snag, and began to sink. The ferryman threw off his coat, and got ready to save himself by swimming. He then turned to the philosopher and asked him if he had learned to swim. The philosopher told him he did not. "Then" said the boatman, "the whole of your life is lost, for the boat is going to the bottom."
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Ben
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« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2004, 04:15:45 PM »

Ok, what does any of that have to do with the Oriental Orthodox teaching on death and the afterlife?
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« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2004, 04:23:09 PM »

[JOKER HAT ON]
I 'm demeaning the importance of your question as opposed to learning “swimming,” which is the whole point, no?

icxn
[/JOKER HAT OFF]
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Ben
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« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2004, 08:44:35 PM »

Don't any of you OO Christians have anything to say. Lol...the question was directed towards you guys!
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« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2004, 04:49:12 AM »

Pretty much the same as the EO I'd say from other discussions.

No purgatory - but we do pray each day:

"and when my soul departs my body, attend to me, and defeat the conspiracy of the enemies, and shut the gates of Hades, lest they might swallow my soul"

which suggests some thought of the same aerial attacks by the demons as the soul ascends to paradise.
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« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2004, 08:20:57 AM »

Peter,

Is that prayer from the Compline Service and specifically the prayer to the Theotokos?
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« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2004, 09:12:56 AM »

Hi icxn - yes it is.
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« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2004, 08:49:22 AM »

not in Compline, its in Vespers, but yes indeed, to the Panagia. 3rd short lintany after the Holy Gospel. (3rd is always directed to the Theotokos, anyway)
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« Reply #11 on: June 17, 2004, 08:54:03 AM »

I know this has nothing to do with the topic, just thought i'd add this:


Vespers 3rd short litany after Gospel:

Every iniquity I did with prudence and activity, and every sin I committed with eagerness and diligence, and of all torment and judgement I am worthy. Therefore, prepare for me the ways of repentance, O Lady the Virgin; for to you I appeal, and through you I seek intercession, and upon you I call to help me, lest I might be put to shame. And when my soul departs my body attend to me, and defeat the conspiracy of the enemies, and shut the gates of Hades, lest they might swallow my soul, O you, blameless bride of the true Bridegroom.


Compline 3rd short litany after Gospel:

O pure Virgin, overshadow your servant with your instant help, and keep the waves of evil thoughts away from me, and raise up my ailing soul for prayer and vigil, for it has gone into a deep sleep. For you are a capable, compassionate and helpful mother, the bearer of the Fountain of Life, my King and my God, Jesus Christ, my hope.


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« Reply #12 on: June 17, 2004, 05:43:43 PM »

Yes, I'd remembered it was vespers after I had posted. I need to pray that every day.
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Ben
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« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2004, 10:33:31 PM »

I need to pray that every day.

As do I!
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« Reply #14 on: June 21, 2004, 01:16:26 PM »

Ben,
There are a few things about death in the thread "Life after Death" at the Faith forum. And in the links mentioned there is even more.

Shiloah
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« Reply #15 on: June 21, 2004, 09:59:47 PM »

Thanks Shiloah! I am on my way to check it out now. Smiley
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« Reply #16 on: June 22, 2004, 02:42:25 AM »

This is not a topic that I have recently read upon to give comments off-hand. My  Church's (Syriac Orthodox Church) teaching is closer to the EO position although I am not certain about the foretaste part. Catholic concept of a purgatory is a later Catholic invention and has been a stumbling block in the ecumenical dialogue between them and other Orthodox as well as Protestant churches.

Syriac Orthodox Church was very cautious to avoid the creeping in of ideas like purgatory (=Purification place). Bar Ebroyo, a Syraic scholer has captured a book by a Theologian Hierotheos from the monks and hid it for many years and then produced a new version of it, because it was containing ideas like purgatory, Sanctification of all etc.

This is a topic of interest to me as well. Of course, recently many people have written about the topic, but I don't believe that these are well grounded in the works of our fathers. If I find anything definitive I will share with you all.
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Ben
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« Reply #17 on: June 22, 2004, 03:25:25 AM »

Yes please do share anything definitive that you may find.
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« Reply #18 on: June 23, 2004, 05:49:24 AM »

While I was thinking on this subject, myself comes up with the following. It may not be as per any OO church faith, but based on Holy Bible. And want to share with the community for the comments. Please feel free to comment

The clinical death is not the final end of human. The death is separating the body and the soul only and the both returns to their origins. The body buried in its origin becomes sand later in due course and the soul returns to God, from where it was originated.

On the Day of Judgment all bodies and the souls will be united before sending them for eternal blessings or wrath. (Refer St. Matthew 25:46, St. John 3: 16, 36) Very few souls will only reach with cent percent purity, as they were so virtuous and divine while on earth. All other souls will be like handicapped newborn infants reaching God with lesser perfection like 90%, 80%, 70%, and 60% like that.

After the separation of the soul from the physical body also, the souls could grow in spirituality because of their own efforts (refer Ezekiel 18:21-24) or with the help of the people on earth like the relatives of the departed. (like Holy Eucharist, Prayers conducted for the departed, Alms giving, Fasting etc)  In such cases the percentage of the spirituality of a particular soul could be increased. That is why the Holy Church is insisting to pray for the departed. (refer Romans 5:18, I Peter 3:19, St. John 17:20, St. Luke 7:14-15)

Heaven and earth are to be understood as two types of experiences rather than places. Heaven is supposed to be the place where God dwells and God dwells everywhere. At the same time God won’t be there in a wicked man’s mind (heart).

All human beings fall to the trap of Satan and they would leave away the love. If a man is without love (of God as the one explained in I Corinthians 13:1-12) he will be in the experience of hell. All those who are keeping enmity, hatred, depression, anger etc will be in the experience of hell and all those who are producing and enjoying the fruits of the Spirit will be in the experience of heaven.

So the experience of being in heaven and hell starts when human beings are in the physical bodies itself.
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