Whoa! Benjamin, you are opening up my mind to completely new ideas. You must either be a super-liberal foolish, or a very highly-illuminated orthodox guru.
So you're saying that the church didn't have this list of seven sacraments from day one? I thought this was a tradition recieved directly from the apostles.
In my mind there is no doubt that my tonsuring as a monk was just as much one of the holy Mysteries/Sacraments as my baptism and my ordination.
This is the tradition I received from my Church, from my bishop, from the monk and archimandrite who tonsured me on a snowy winter night in the presence of dozens of monks and nuns and this tradition is held by every single monk and nun I have ever met, whether in Serbia or on Mount Athos -- and I am not inclined to reject what my brethren believe. (Nor will I muddy the waters by an attempted distinction between Sacraments and Sacramentals which is bringing in a Roman Catholic distinction unknown to the Orthodox.)
There is no Council accepted by the Orthodox which has defined or limited the Sacraments to seven. The entire Tradition works against such an idea.
Has anyone here mentioned that the first official pronouncement of 7 and only 7 Sacraments in the West is found at the Council of Florence as late as the 15th century. Prior to that the number in the West wavered a great deal and at one time it was as high as 15. The Eastern Church continues on, without being hampered by any Council to the contrary, in that same happy and nebulous numerical state which we shared with Catholics until the 15th century.
I think that someone here once quoted an Australian Catholic Byzantine monk and here are his words again:
"The sacraments are essentially the irruption into
time and space of the Mystery of Salvation, that is,
the Mystery of God's love and life.
"The mysteries are described as the Divine touching
the Created, a kind of grace-filled event, having
nothing to do with the whatness, whereness, whenness
of the happening. Rather, it marks God's creation
of a new reality -- as in a new creature in Christ Jesus."http://www.hrmonline.org/