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Author Topic: St Cyril Letter 53: "in two natures"  (Read 3424 times) Average Rating: 0
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Severian
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« on: July 04, 2011, 11:50:27 AM »

Well, firstly, I would like to say hi! After nine months or so of reading the various posts on this site I decided to join. Now, I hope I am not violating forum rules, I don't want to start a polemical thread, but, I was just wondering how my fellow Oriental Orthodox interpret the following passage of a letter from St Cyril to Sixtus of Rome:

"Even though by the nature of his humanity Christ is one in both natures and from both natures"
~ St. Cyril Letter 53


In this letter St Cyril teaches that Christ is "from two natures" and "in two natures", so I wasn't sure how we interpreted this letter of his. Please be respectful to each other. I DO NOT want another EO-OO christological debate, I want a friendly discussion between fellow Christians.

The letter is from "Fathers of the Church Letters of Cyril of Alexandria 51-110", translated by John I. McEnerney and it can be found here: http://books.google.com/books?id=7-NktOwEjYMC&printsec=frontcover&dq=cyril+of+alexandria+letters+51&hl=en&ei=DN0RTt_mB4rAgQfd48zLDQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCgQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false

(Sorry, my computer will not let me hyperlink)

Thank You,
Severian
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« Reply #1 on: July 04, 2011, 11:59:25 AM »

I'll refrain from answering now, as I'm Chalcedonian Orthodox, but I found a lot of similar ideas expressed in Pope St. Cyril's "On the Unity of Christ."
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« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2011, 12:10:15 PM »

Hi Severian,

Welcome!

The Oriental Orthodox Fathers were never opposed to a particular form of Christological language per se; their concern was always context. The two main contexts in which Christological discussion is generally had, are: 1) theoretical abstraction, and, 2) concrete reality. Christological discussion in the latter context demands greater strictness in language than the former.

Naturally, then, when I clicked your link in search of the excerpt you pasted, my primary interest was in the context of the statement. Unfortunately, the particular letter from which you have quoted is fragmentary and so does not provide us with that context. As the edition of the text you present makes clear, the original letter contained passages preceding the one at hand which have unfortunately not stood the test of time.
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« Reply #3 on: July 04, 2011, 12:15:24 PM »

Thank you all for your replies. I agree completely, I knew that this letter might be problematic because it is a mere fragment. So to be 100% sure, it wasn't "in two natures" per se which bothered the OO fathers, but, the manner and context it was expressed at Chalcedon? I have read the writings of St. Severus and St. Dioscorus and on some occasions they make mention of "two natures", but never "in two natures".

In Christ,
Severian
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« Reply #4 on: July 04, 2011, 03:47:51 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

I agree with others here, this translation must be suspect, and when we examine where it comes from we find a potential for bias.  The editor of this volume is Catholic, and he is relying on an "original" text from a Cardinal Mai, also a Catholic, and neither could be respectively assumed to have the same mindset as Cyril intended.  See the very clutch matter of studying Cyrilian Christology is to take in the context of the language and theology which was contemporary to Saint Cyril himself, we must never succumb to anachronism. 

If Chalcedonian Catholics translated this text which we see saying something we do not normally attribute to Cyril, I would assume its safe to assume that this is merely some kind of misunderstanding or mistranslation.  I know of no other places where Cyril affirmed the words "in two natures" which is precisely the crux of the debate here, as the OO base our Christology on the concept of Cyrialian langauge of "from two natures" which implies the Union, where as "in two natures" leaves open a slippery slope of potential division or distinction.  No while even the Catholic Church today teaches that there is "no distinction or separation" the word "in" clearly leaves open such interpretations for the future, and has supported them in the past, where as in OO we affirm the language of "From two natures" because there is no way to imply a distinction after the Union.  The Incarnation is a Cyrilian union FROM two natures and after the Union there in Cyrialian language there is simply "the one, incarnate Nature of God" and in the context of "One" surely then there is no room to speak of two. 

This is what has always upset we OO in this debate.  We simply cannot even conceive of two natures any longer, rather this is merely a feet of intellectual and imaginary exercise.  There is only ONE Nature after the Incarnation, the God-Man Jesus Christ without any distinction or separation, an argument which both EO, OO, and even RC mutually seem to agree.  It is the semantics that we debate over..

This is a semtanics debate about what Cyril intended to say, but I think from the context of dozens of Cyrilian literature examples, we can assume that Saint Cyril never intended to use the words "in two Natures" and so the above quoted letter surely is a mistranslation.  As to the deeper matters, really we are arguing the same thing in slightly different ways, and so we probably across Orthodoxy should begin to see our sameness rather than try to splinter off perpetual differences that may not even exist in actual form but rather are formless formalities Wink

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #5 on: July 04, 2011, 04:04:35 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

I agree with others here, this translation must be suspect, and when we examine where it comes from we find a potential for bias.  The editor of this volume is Catholic, and he is relying on an "original" text from a Cardinal Mai, also a Catholic, and neither could be respectively assumed to have the same mindset as Cyril intended.  See the very clutch matter of studying Cyrilian Christology is to take in the context of the language and theology which was contemporary to Saint Cyril himself, we must never succumb to anachronism. 

If Chalcedonian Catholics translated this text which we see saying something we do not normally attribute to Cyril, I would assume its safe to assume that this is merely some kind of misunderstanding or mistranslation.  I know of no other places where Cyril affirmed the words "in two natures" which is precisely the crux of the debate here, as the OO base our Christology on the concept of Cyrialian langauge of "from two natures" which implies the Union, where as "in two natures" leaves open a slippery slope of potential division or distinction.  No while even the Catholic Church today teaches that there is "no distinction or separation" the word "in" clearly leaves open such interpretations for the future, and has supported them in the past, where as in OO we affirm the language of "From two natures" because there is no way to imply a distinction after the Union.  The Incarnation is a Cyrilian union FROM two natures and after the Union there in Cyrialian language there is simply "the one, incarnate Nature of God" and in the context of "One" surely then there is no room to speak of two. 

This is what has always upset we OO in this debate.  We simply cannot even conceive of two natures any longer, rather this is merely a feet of intellectual and imaginary exercise.  There is only ONE Nature after the Incarnation, the God-Man Jesus Christ without any distinction or separation, an argument which both EO, OO, and even RC mutually seem to agree.  It is the semantics that we debate over..

This is a semtanics debate about what Cyril intended to say, but I think from the context of dozens of Cyrilian literature examples, we can assume that Saint Cyril never intended to use the words "in two Natures" and so the above quoted letter surely is a mistranslation.  As to the deeper matters, really we are arguing the same thing in slightly different ways, and so we probably across Orthodoxy should begin to see our sameness rather than try to splinter off perpetual differences that may not even exist in actual form but rather are formless formalities Wink

stay blessed,
habte selassie

That's exactly what I was thinking, out of all the writings of St Cyril I have read he never uses the phrase "in two natures" which is why I was initially suspicious of this letter. This could very well be a Chalcedonian interpolation. The whole basis of Cyrilline christology is "from two natures" & "one incarnate nature" where the divinity and humanity can be distinguished "en theoria mono" (in theory alone). Consider these passages for example:
   
          ‘Whenever the manner of the incarnation is closely considered, the human mind doubtlessly sees the two ineffably and unconfusedly joined to each other in a union: but the mind in no wise divides them after they have been united, but believes and admits strongly that the one from both is God and Son and Christ and Lord.’

and:
          “Wherefore, we say that the two natures were united, from which there is the one and only Son and Lord, Jesus Christ, as we accept in our thoughts; but after the union since the distinction into two is now done away with, we believe that, there is one physis of the Son” ~ St Cyril letter 40

Thank you for contributing Habte Selassie.

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« Reply #6 on: July 04, 2011, 09:58:41 PM »

Accusing a scholar of false and prejudicial translation is a serious charge. Mere appeal to their confessional disposition as the basis of this charge may suffice to appease lay OO concerns, but do not expect such an argument to be taken seriously in academic discourse where nothing less than engagement with the original text to support such a charge would reasonably be expected.

There is no doubt that St Cyril was not in the habit of distinguishing between the two natures, that he found such to be fraught with dangers and that he emphatically favoured as being more reliable and accurate language of unity. However, he was a reasonable man, and was thus willing to make concessions to those that he perceived to be using language of two natures in a safe and sufficiently qualified manner. A prime example of the manner in which St Cyril made such a concession and thereby permitted language distinguishing the two natures is the Formula of Reunion (433) with John of Antioch, which St Dioscorus of Alexandria endorsed. In that Formula we have perhaps the most explicit support for the idea that distinguishing the natures is fine so long as it is done in theological contemplation alone:

For we know the theologians make some things of the Evangelical and Apostolic teaching about the Lord common as pertaining to the one person, and other sayings they divide as to the two natures, and attribute the worthy ones to God on account of the Divinity of Christ, and the lowly ones on account of his humanity [to his humanity].

In Fr Peter Farrington's article, 'The Orthodox Christology of St Severus of Antioch', he writes of St Severus that, despite his opposition to Chalcedon he always remained as tolerant and irenic as possible, being willing even to accept the phrase 'in two natures' as long as the union of Divinity and humanity in Christ was confessed.

In an article on St Severus' objection to the Council of Chalcedon by Tenny Thomas (another OO academic), he writes:
At best, argues Severus, the ‘in two natures’ of the Council of Chalcedon could mean ‘two united natures after the union’...

This all goes to confirm the fact that our concern is not with language per se but with context. The 'in two natures' of Chalcedon was problematic not simply because of the words 'in two natures' but because the context of that formula did not, as far as our Fathers were concerned, sufficiently exclude an heterodox interpretation of that phrase that seemed rampant at the time.
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« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2011, 12:06:53 AM »

Accusing a scholar of false and prejudicial translation is a serious charge. Mere appeal to their confessional disposition as the basis of this charge may suffice to appease lay OO concerns, but do not expect such an argument to be taken seriously in academic discourse where nothing less than engagement with the original text to support such a charge would reasonably be expected.

Oh, don't get me wrong! I wasn't accusing the scholar himself of adding to St Cyril's words, I certainly wouldn't want to commit character assassination. I felt one of two things could have happened with the following text:
1. Something was misunderstood from the original Greek over the course of 1500 years
2.I read some where in an article by HE Metropolitan Bishoy that:
"Patriarch Macedonius [I.e. Constantinople's Chalcedonian Patriarch], who had definite leanings towards Chalcedon. The Chalcedonians in the capital made a collection of edited excerpts from Cyril, in an attempt to show that Cyril himself supported the Chalcedonian account of the two natures. This work was apparently given to Macedonius, who gave it to the emperor. Severus, in turn, wrote his Philalethes, giving the true context of the quotations from Cyril. Relations between Severus and Macedonius steadily deteriorated. Macedonius'"

I had thought a Chalcedonian during the fifth century could have twisted St Cyril's words. I certainly wouldn't accuse Mr. McEnerney himself of falsely mistranslating St Cyril. If I lent myself to that interpretation I am sorry, I am new here and I will choose my words more carefully next time. And, yes I knew that it wasn't "dyo physis" per se which bothered us, but, the way we felt Chalcedonians expressed it. Sorry for the misunderstanding.
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« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2011, 12:13:36 AM »

The article by HE Metropolitan Bishoy I mentioned was called "Saint Severus of Antioch His life and Christology". It can be found on his website
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« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2011, 12:57:18 AM »

Part of the reason I thought a (5th century) Chalcedonian might have changed the text is because it is the only time I have ever heard St Cyril speaking of Christ as "in two natures". If it were really a part of his vocabulary you would *think* he would use the phrase more often. Just to be 100% clear (because I certainly would not want to falsely accuse a scholar) I did not accuse Mr. McEnerney of mistranslating the text, I had thought that an ancient Chalcedonian could have forged the text to vindicate Chalcedon. Assuming my first assumption was correct, it would not be the first time a Chalcedonian attributed a certain quote to a Father to support their own confessional prejudices. For example a Chalcedonian attributed this passage to Saint Timothy Aelurus:

"Cyril... having excellently articulated the wise proclamation of Orthodoxy, showed himself to be fickle and is to be censured for teaching contrary doctrine: after previously proposing that we should speak of one nature of God the Word, he destroyed the dogma that he had formulated and is caught professing two Natures of Christ" [Timothy Ailouros, "Epistles to Kalonymos," Patrologia Graeca, Vol LXXXVI, Col. 276; quoted in The Non Chalcedonian Heretics, p. 13]."

When in fact we know this quote cannot be from Saint Timothy! Patrick Gray, a scholar on the Christological controversies, says: "Leontius... ending with a curious citation, allegedly, but impossibly from Timothy Aelurus."

I have read of several Chalcedonians in the fifth century who wrongly attributed several passages to other OO fathers like Sts. Severus & Dioscorus, I just thought that this fragmentary letter of St Cyril's, where he uses a phrase unheard of in his vocabulary, could have been yet another result of a Chalcedonian attributing texts to certain Fathers just to support their own views. Again I would just like to apologize and further clarify what I had originally meant. Thank you!
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« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2011, 12:47:12 PM »

"That Christ is One" (known under the SVS title of "On the Unity of Christ") was written probably around 438AD (St. Cyril reposed in 444AD) and thus represents St. Cyril's mature reflection of a lifetime of theological discourse on the the topic of the nature of Christ.  It is later than both the Council of Ephesus and the Formula of Reunion with John of Antioch. Clearly, the work emphasizes a traditional Cyrillian Christology of "one nature" terminology.


Quote
“We say that there is one Son, and that he has one nature even when he is considered as having assumed flesh endowed with a rational soul. As I have already said, he has made the human element his own. And this is the way, not otherwise, that we must consider that the same one is at once God and man…Godhead is one thing, and manhood is another thing, considered in the perspective of their respective and intrinsic beings, but in the case of Christ they came together in a mysterious and incomprehensible union without confusion or change. The manner of this union is entirely beyond conception. ..if anyone says that when we speak of the single nature of God the Word incarnate and made man we imply that a confusion or mixture has occurred, then they are talking utter rubbish. No one could convict us of saying this by the force of proper arguments.”

Quote
“Well, do we not say that a human being like ourselves is one, and has a single nature, even though he is not homogeneous but really composed of two things, I mean soul and body? And if someone takes the flesh on its own, separating its unity with its own soul, and divides what was one into two, have they not destroyed the proper conception of a man?”
the force of proper arguments.”

Quote
“For there is only one Son, the Word who was made man for our sake. I would say that everything refers to him, words and deeds, both those that befit the deity, as well as those which are human. Just as we say that the flesh became his very own, in the same way the weakness of that flesh became his very own in an economic appropriation according to the terms of the unification. So, he is "made like his brethren in all things except sin alone" (Heb 2: 17). Do not be astonished if we say that he has made the weakness of the flesh his own along with the flesh itself.”

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« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2011, 12:51:01 PM »

@Fr. Kyrillos
I knew St Cyril's "On the Unity of Christ" was written towards the end of his life and he never uses "in two natures", only his traditional Cyrillian terminology, which was yet another reason I raised an eyebrow at this letter. Thanks for posting.  Smiley

Seeking your prayers,
Severian
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« Reply #12 on: July 05, 2011, 02:58:25 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Accusing a scholar of false and prejudicial translation is a serious charge. Mere appeal to their confessional disposition as the basis of this charge may suffice to appease lay OO concerns, but do not expect such an argument to be taken seriously in academic discourse where nothing less than engagement with the original text to support such a charge would reasonably be expected.

Oh, don't get me wrong! I wasn't accusing the scholar himself of adding to St Cyril's words, I certainly wouldn't want to commit character assassination. I felt one of two things could have happened with the following text:
1. Something was misunderstood from the original Greek over the course of 1500 years
2.I read some where in an article by HE Metropolitan Bishoy that:
"Patriarch Macedonius [I.e. Constantinople's Chalcedonian Patriarch], who had definite leanings towards Chalcedon. The Chalcedonians in the capital made a collection of edited excerpts from Cyril, in an attempt to show that Cyril himself supported the Chalcedonian account of the two natures. This work was apparently given to Macedonius, who gave it to the emperor. Severus, in turn, wrote his Philalethes, giving the true context of the quotations from Cyril. Relations between Severus and Macedonius steadily deteriorated. Macedonius'"

I had thought a Chalcedonian during the fifth century could have twisted St Cyril's words. I certainly wouldn't accuse Mr. McEnerney himself of falsely mistranslating St Cyril. If I lent myself to that interpretation I am sorry, I am new here and I will choose my words more carefully next time. And, yes I knew that it wasn't "dyo physis" per se which bothered us, but, the way we felt Chalcedonians expressed it. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

Part of the reason I thought a (5th century) Chalcedonian might have changed the text is because it is the only time I have ever heard St Cyril speaking of Christ as "in two natures". If it were really a part of his vocabulary you would *think* he would use the phrase more often..

 I just thought that this fragmentary letter of St Cyril's, where he uses a phrase unheard of in his vocabulary, could have been yet another result of a Chalcedonian attributing texts to certain Fathers just to support their own views. Again I would just like to apologize and further clarify what I had originally meant. Thank you!

I agree completely, I think Ekhristos has misunderstood us.

I was by no means suggesting a nefarious plot by the translators to distort St Cyril intentionally, rather its simple.

We know from our studies of St Cyril that he seemed to have never used such language, rather always seemed to be quite insistent on the "one Nature" formula and from this we could assume that if we find what seems to be only a single instance which is an accepted fragment, from an obscure letter, and is only two lines at that, and was translated and edited TWICE by Catholics, we can assume that several layers of bias may have caused an UNINTENTIONAL translation error.  As has been pointed out, this fragment may not even be written by Cyril, it may be misconstrued, mislabeled, mis-transcribed, mistranslated, etc etc over 1500 years....

My point was this, as a historian, if I find an obscure primary source document which seems to disagree with the usual character of its author, then I would examine it.  If I find that it is an obscure fragment that has been translated by folks with an obvious bias, than I would assume there may be a translation misunderstanding,  not necessarily intentional, but rather perhaps out of bias.  A good Catholic translating the text, assuming these fragments are in fact legitimate, may have simply mistranslated the "in" and the "from" or this fragment itself could be so fragmented as to be unable to be properly translated, and the translators here may have had to take a bit of "poetic license" to account for a bad copy, missing letters/texts, etc etc..

I never intended to imply that this mistranslation was intentional or trying to discredit St Cyril or to discredit or defame the translators, rather, it seems obvious that this is an instance of a mistranslation or misunderstanding, accidental or otherwise.

Though Ekhristos does make a valid point about the Reunion documents, I hadn't taken that into consideration.  I suppose the real question for us to ask is there anywhere else we find St Cyril using the language "in two natures" because I have never seen such before, though I admit my old Greek is not so good Wink

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2011, 03:01:22 PM »

@Habte Selassie
I had a very similar sentiment.  Smiley
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« Reply #14 on: July 06, 2011, 09:44:00 PM »

Welcome to the forum, Severian!   Smiley
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« Reply #15 on: July 06, 2011, 09:49:41 PM »

Welcome to the forum, Severian!   Smiley
Thanks  Smiley
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« Reply #16 on: July 09, 2011, 02:56:31 AM »

Of course it is possible that the text has been mistranslated. It is possible also that it is a forgery. Unlike HabteSelassie, I am no historian, but I am however involved in a field of study which requires me to constantly consider and assess alternative and competing arguments of limitless kinds and to determine which is the most objectively reasonable and persuasive as a matter of logic and sense in consideration of the available evidence.

My point was simple and I think quite fair. Reasonable questioning of the authenticity of a translation demands no less than engagement with the original text. How has the text been mistranslated? What is a better translation, and why? Mere appeal to the possibility of mistranslation based simply upon consideration of the translator's confessional bias is just weak conjecture.
 
As to the reasonability of the suggestion that the text is a forgery, I would think that there needs to be more than mere appeal to historical partisan claims of forgery generally with respect to documents by the same author. Is there anything about the particular document in question apart from the particular phrase in contention that would betray the character of St Cyril's style of writing? Is there anything about the document that betrays St Cyril's historical context? Does the document in question have any history of polemical employment?

All the questions raised above effectively impose a rather heavy burden of proof on those making the associated claims.

In my opinion, it is a much better argument to say simply that in the absence of context the isolated passage is not capable of being used to support an anti-OO position.

Needless to say, the idea that St Cyril may have used the phrase in contention once (and, there is indeed no other work of his in which he has ever used the preposition 'in' to qualify any sort of expression of a duality of natures) does not support the idea that it is generally a good or acceptable phrase. This is especially so when we consider that the phrase in question was used in a private letter to an individual, who also happened to be a bishop of Rome, who also happened to have a primary interest in reconciling St Cyril and the Orthodox with John of Antioch and other Syrian dissidents of Ephesus 431 at the time.
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« Reply #17 on: July 09, 2011, 03:00:26 AM »

Of course it is possible that the text has been mistranslated. It is possible also that it is a forgery. Unlike HabteSelassie, I am no historian, but I am however involved in a field of study which requires me to constantly consider and assess alternative and competing arguments of limitless kinds and to determine which is the most objectively reasonable and persuasive as a matter of logic and sense in consideration of the available evidence.

My point was simple and I think quite fair. Reasonable questioning of the authenticity of a translation demands no less than engagement with the original text. How has the text been mistranslated? What is a better translation, and why? Mere appeal to the possibility of mistranslation based simply upon consideration of the translator's confessional bias is just weak conjecture.
 
As to the reasonability of the suggestion that the text is a forgery, I would think that there needs to be more than mere appeal to historical partisan claims of forgery generally with respect to documents by the same author. Is there anything about the particular document in question apart from the particular phrase in contention that would betray the character of St Cyril's style of writing? Is there anything about the document that betrays St Cyril's historical context? Does the document in question have any history of polemical employment?

All the questions raised above effectively impose a rather heavy burden of proof on those making the associated claims.

In my opinion, it is a much better argument to say simply that in the absence of context the isolated passage is not capable of being used to support an anti-OO position.

Needless to say, the idea that St Cyril may have used the phrase in contention once (and, there is indeed no other work of his in which he has ever used the preposition 'in' to qualify any sort of expression of a duality of natures) does not support the idea that it is generally a good or acceptable phrase. This is especially so when we consider that the phrase in question was used in a private letter to an individual, who also happened to be a bishop of Rome, who also happened to have a primary interest in reconciling St Cyril and the Orthodox with John of Antioch and other Syrian dissidents of Ephesus 431 at the time.
Good point, fair enough. But, I did cite an essay from HE Metropolitan Bishoy which states that some Chalcedonians did in fact edit some of St. Cyril's works. I know it isn't very scholarly to accuse a document of interpolation/forgery without the original text, but, even if the charge of forgery or mistranslation raised by Habte and myself was wrong, it certainly isn't unjustified. Think of it this way:

1.) It's a fragmentary letter. Only three or sentences survive and of these three sentences, the last sentence just so happens to support the Chalcedonian position

2.) The phrase used in this letter is a phrase unheard of in St. Cyril's vocabulary

3.) There is no context to further analyze what St. Cyril meant when he said this

I have also never heard Chalcedonian apologists use this in there arguments against Miaphysite Orthodoxy in favor of the Chalcedonian definition

In Christ,
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« Reply #18 on: July 09, 2011, 06:09:43 AM »

The Greek fragment and Latin translation in Migne both say 'in both'. I don't see it as a problem. It's a fragment, it has the authority of a fragment as compared to all of the complete works and letters.
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« Reply #19 on: July 09, 2011, 10:19:37 AM »

The Greek fragment and Latin translation in Migne both say 'in both'. I don't see it as a problem. It's a fragment, it has the authority of a fragment as compared to all of the complete works and letters.
Well thanks for clearing that up, so we have come to a conclusion that St. Cyril did in fact write this, however, it is still a fragmentary letter so I honestly don't think it's authoritative.
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« Reply #20 on: July 09, 2011, 10:40:32 AM »

I'm not in any position to say whether it is by St Cyril or not. It is Migne, that is all. You'd have to dig a lot deeper to see where it came from.
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« Reply #21 on: July 09, 2011, 08:36:09 PM »

I'm not in any position to say whether it is by St Cyril or not. It is Migne, that is all. You'd have to dig a lot deeper to see where it came from.
Well thanks for clearing that up, so we have come to a conclusion that St. Cyril did in fact write this, however, it is still a fragmentary letter so I honestly don't think it's authoritative.
Sorry, you are right, let me correct myself; Edit: It is quite possible he wrote this, but, we don't know for sure, this passage is in a fragmentary letter with no context and thus it is not authoritative.
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« Reply #22 on: July 24, 2011, 01:23:50 AM »

Quote from: Severian
But, I did cite an essay from HE Metropolitan Bishoy which states that some Chalcedonians did in fact edit some of St. Cyril's works
I am sorry, for get that I even wrote this. Geez, what was I thinking when I posted this!

God bless,
Severian
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« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2012, 03:14:00 PM »

What a shame, I made myself look like a complete idiot on the very first topic/post I made on this forum. Tongue       

I cannot believe it has already been a full year. Feels like just a few months ago. Lord have mercy!

Oh yeah, and Thread resurrection!

EDIT: Changed emoticon
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« Reply #24 on: July 27, 2012, 07:35:27 AM »

Happy One Year, Severian. You've really helped make this an awesome forum!
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« Reply #25 on: July 27, 2012, 09:42:36 AM »

^Thank you very much. Smiley
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« Reply #26 on: July 27, 2012, 04:45:50 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Happy One Year, Severian. You've really helped make this an awesome forum!

Amen to that!

stay blessed,
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« Reply #27 on: July 28, 2012, 03:42:24 PM »

^Thank you too, Habte. Smiley
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« Reply #28 on: February 21, 2013, 12:53:07 PM »

Well, firstly, I would like to say hi! After nine months or so of reading the various posts on this site I decided to join. Now, I hope I am not violating forum rules, I don't want to start a polemical thread, but, I was just wondering how my fellow Oriental Orthodox interpret the following passage of a letter from St Cyril to Sixtus of Rome:

"Even though by the nature of his humanity Christ is one in both natures and from both natures"
~ St. Cyril Letter 53


In this letter St Cyril teaches that Christ is "from two natures" and "in two natures", so I wasn't sure how we interpreted this letter of his. Please be respectful to each other. I DO NOT want another EO-OO christological debate, I want a friendly discussion between fellow Christians.

The letter is from "Fathers of the Church Letters of Cyril of Alexandria 51-110", translated by John I. McEnerney and it can be found here: http://books.google.com/books?id=7-NktOwEjYMC&printsec=frontcover&dq=cyril+of+alexandria+letters+51&hl=en&ei=DN0RTt_mB4rAgQfd48zLDQ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CCgQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false

(Sorry, my computer will not let me hyperlink)

Thank You,
Severian

The second half of Saint Cyril's works (his later works), the works in where he writes letters to other regions of the Church explaining himself. Is the bases of what is called in our(EO) tradition Cyrilian Chalcedonianism. It's pretty much based on the second half of his works(writings).

This is also why our(E.O.) 5th council made it legal for us(E.O.) to use both "in" as well as "of/from" two natures. We also understand Saint Cyril's Mia-Physis(one nature) terminology as being one reality / one subject / one concrete Identity / one hypostasis.

We disagree with the idea that Mia-Physis (one nature) means One Essence.
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« Reply #29 on: July 05, 2013, 11:44:50 PM »

I would like to thank both the Lord and the OC.net community for a wonderful two years on this message board. I love ya guys!

EDIT: Thanks, Salpy.
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« Reply #30 on: July 05, 2013, 11:51:49 PM »

Happy anniversary!
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« Reply #31 on: January 01, 2014, 05:10:44 AM »

A post more appropriate for the private forum, and the discussion following it, was moved there:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,55767.new.html#top
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« Reply #32 on: January 01, 2014, 05:55:32 AM »

I tried to find where exactly this fragment originated from. Apparently its only source is a single manuscript of Leontius of Byzantium who was almost a professional debater against Non-Chalcedonians. None of the Cyril-manuscripts have it. It's very dubious whether St. Cyril is really the author of that fragment.

Here is the text of the fragment with ex. Leont. vat. written in the margin. Migne copied this edition.
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« Reply #33 on: January 01, 2014, 03:14:20 PM »

I tried to find where exactly this fragment originated from. Apparently its only source is a single manuscript of Leontius of Byzantium who was almost a professional debater against Non-Chalcedonians. None of the Cyril-manuscripts have it. It's very dubious whether St. Cyril is really the author of that fragment.

Here is the text of the fragment with ex. Leont. vat. written in the margin. Migne copied this edition.
Thank you very much for this information. It's nice to know even after 2.5 years. Lol. Cheesy
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« Reply #34 on: January 03, 2014, 04:07:19 PM »

Anytime "one nature" occurs, John I. McEnerney puts "one phusis" instead so as to not sound "Monophysite". In every other instance he uses the English, nature.
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« Reply #35 on: January 04, 2014, 12:29:31 PM »

I tried to find where exactly this fragment originated from. Apparently its only source is a single manuscript of Leontius of Byzantium who was almost a professional debater against Non-Chalcedonians. None of the Cyril-manuscripts have it. It's very dubious whether St. Cyril is really the author of that fragment.

Here is the text of the fragment with ex. Leont. vat. written in the margin. Migne copied this edition.

I'm so envious that you can read that stuff! Is it just from a florilegium or part of a treatise?
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« Reply #36 on: January 04, 2014, 12:39:02 PM »

I tried to find where exactly this fragment originated from. Apparently its only source is a single manuscript of Leontius of Byzantium who was almost a professional debater against Non-Chalcedonians. None of the Cyril-manuscripts have it. It's very dubious whether St. Cyril is really the author of that fragment.

Here is the text of the fragment with ex. Leont. vat. written in the margin. Migne copied this edition.

I'm so envious that you can read that stuff! Is it just from a florilegium or part of a treatise?

From a treatise. There's no extent florilegium written by Leontius of Byzantium.
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« Reply #37 on: January 06, 2014, 01:32:02 PM »

Thanks, Cyrillic
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« Reply #38 on: July 09, 2014, 12:53:15 AM »

Lol, what an idiot that Severian.
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« Reply #39 on: July 09, 2014, 01:46:04 AM »

Happy 3 years Severian!  This one should be a charm
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« Reply #40 on: July 09, 2014, 02:21:07 AM »

^Thanks. We'll see...
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