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Author Topic: Was human nature corrupted by the Fall?  (Read 7604 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: November 21, 2011, 12:35:02 AM »

I had a discussion Friday with a Roman Catholic attending a Byzantine Catholic Church who is strongly considering converting to Eastern Orthodoxy (either through the OCA or the GOA). He had some interesting and unusual things to say about original sin. The most intriguing of these to me was his assertion that Eastern Orthodoxy teaches that human nature was not corrupted by the Fall. Man's nature was always good, but because man was born into a fallen world where it was possible that he die, man was inclined to sin.

So, in contrast to the Latin teaching that Adam fell, his nature was corrupted, and he passed a corrupted nature onto his children, which Christ then purified through his Incarnation, man's nature was never corrupted but merely the world in which men lived was corrupted.

Furthermore, he insisted that there was no belief in concupiscence in Orthodoxy - man is only inclined to sin because he is born into a fallen world where he is mortal.

Is this really Eastern Orthodoxy's teaching on original sin? It would be nice if I could tell him he is becoming a heretic to both our religions . . .

Hence, most simply, after Adam's sin, was human nature corrupted or was it not?

For clarity, Catholics acknowledge that human nature is, in itself, good, as it is a creation of God and God the Son assumed a human nature - meaning that it obviously cannot be an evil, however, because of the fall, man receives a human nature which is good, but at the same time corrupted.

As an anecdote, before serving in Great Vespers last night, I was praying from a booklet, "Orthodox Prayers before Communion" published by the Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery (we have them in the pews here), and I noticed that in St. Basil's prayer before communion he said, " . . . and through Your own Blood You have renewed our human nature which is corrupted by sin."

So, please, it would be most helpful to me if I could gain some Orthodox perspectives on this.
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« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2011, 10:09:07 AM »

I had a discussion Friday with a Roman Catholic attending a Byzantine Catholic Church who is strongly considering converting to Eastern Orthodoxy (either through the OCA or the GOA). He had some interesting and unusual things to say about original sin. The most intriguing of these to me was his assertion that Eastern Orthodoxy teaches that human nature was not corrupted by the Fall. Man's nature was always good, but because man was born into a fallen world where it was possible that he die, man was inclined to sin.

My priest just preached about this yesterday. He didn't say it's "possible" for us to die, but "inevitable". To answer your question, yes the fall corrupted human nature, that is why the Word became flesh to heal our nature.

Quote
I noticed that in St. Basil's prayer before communion he said, " . . . and through Your own Blood You have renewed our human nature which is corrupted by sin."

There's your answer.
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« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2011, 10:28:03 AM »

I had a discussion Friday with a Roman Catholic attending a Byzantine Catholic Church who is strongly considering converting to Eastern Orthodoxy (either through the OCA or the GOA). He had some interesting and unusual things to say about original sin. The most intriguing of these to me was his assertion that Eastern Orthodoxy teaches that human nature was not corrupted by the Fall. Man's nature was always good, but because man was born into a fallen world where it was possible that he die, man was inclined to sin.

So, in contrast to the Latin teaching that Adam fell, his nature was corrupted, and he passed a corrupted nature onto his children, which Christ then purified through his Incarnation, man's nature was never corrupted but merely the world in which men lived was corrupted.

Furthermore, he insisted that there was no belief in concupiscence in Orthodoxy - man is only inclined to sin because he is born into a fallen world where he is mortal.

Is this really Eastern Orthodoxy's teaching on original sin? It would be nice if I could tell him he is becoming a heretic to both our religions . . .
why would that be nice?

Hence, most simply, after Adam's sin, was human nature corrupted or was it not?

For clarity, Catholics acknowledge that human nature is, in itself, good, as it is a creation of God and God the Son assumed a human nature - meaning that it obviously cannot be an evil, however, because of the fall, man receives a human nature which is good, but at the same time corrupted.

As an anecdote, before serving in Great Vespers last night, I was praying from a booklet, "Orthodox Prayers before Communion" published by the Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery (we have them in the pews here), and I noticed that in St. Basil's prayer before communion he said, " . . . and through Your own Blood You have renewed our human nature which is corrupted by sin."

So, please, it would be most helpful to me if I could gain some Orthodox perspectives on this.
Not sure that the St. Basil prayer necessarily gives you what you are looking for:actual sin (versus ancestral sin) corrupts as well.
ORIGINAL SIN ACCORDING TO ST. PAUL - by the late V. Rev. Fr. John S. Romanides
http://romanity.org/htm/rom.10.en.original_sin_according_to_st._paul.01.htm
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« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2011, 10:29:12 AM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.
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« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2011, 10:57:25 AM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

Care to cite him or point out in what book/letter/whatever he is talking about the issue?
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« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2011, 11:00:14 AM »

Can't at the moment as I am working, but will do later if no-one else does.
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« Reply #6 on: November 21, 2011, 12:07:54 PM »

Fr. Peter's more familiar with St. Cyril's corpus so hopefully he'll be able to supply the exact quote, but that lines up with what I recall from On the Incarnation. With the Fall, human nature was separated from the Divine. Being separate from the Divine makes human nature corruptible (St. Paul's 'subject to the law of Sin and Death') but not inherently corrupt--that is, the corruption itself is not part of human nature but something that occurs at an individual level because our nature is corruptible.
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« Reply #7 on: November 21, 2011, 12:41:22 PM »

Can't at the moment as I am working, but will do later if no-one else does.
Thank you, Father. I much appreciate it.
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« Reply #8 on: November 21, 2011, 12:48:59 PM »

-- subscribe --
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« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2011, 12:57:51 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).
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« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2011, 01:51:15 PM »

I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught.alvin).

Touché. That's how most of the anti-Latin Orthodox polemics are. In the end we both believe that due to the Fall something happened to mankind. And that something was more than bodily mortality. Modern EOs just refuse to call it as "Original sin" or "corrupted nature".

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« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2011, 02:57:22 PM »

That's how most of the anti-Latin Orthodox polemics are.

Actually no one but the OP has really phrased this is an 'anti-' or even 'compared to' Latin thing. Most of the responses have simply focused on discussing what the actual Orthodox/Patristic teaching is--and neither St. Cyril nor St. Athanasius were influenced by Anti-Latin or Anti-Calvin concerns.

As for what difference if Original Sin= 'corruptible' vs. 'corrupt' makes:
If the impact of the Fall is simply that human nature was divided from the Divine -- which seperation results in corruptibility (at both a physical and moral level), then that means Christ as perfect God and perfect man, in His single Person wipes out that divide. He's not subject to Original Sin by definition.

If Original Sin=human nature is inherently corrupt, then additional intellectual exercises are necessary to explain how Christ could assume *our* human nature but His human nature was not corrupt.


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« Reply #12 on: November 21, 2011, 02:58:37 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.
Pelegianism?
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« Reply #13 on: November 21, 2011, 03:06:58 PM »

St Cyril is a Pelagian?

What?!
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« Reply #14 on: November 21, 2011, 03:39:35 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.
Pelegianism?

The Catholic Church teaches that the stain of original sin is a darkened intellect [nous] and a weakened will [concupiscence].   

Other results of the fall are that we are susceptible to pain and suffering, drawn to the vices with dishonesty and lust being ones that are mentioned directly, open to death and corruptibility, and out of sorts with nature:  Lions lie down with us to have us for lunch, hurricanes take our houses and our lives, etc.

I am not sure what you are saying here.

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« Reply #15 on: November 21, 2011, 04:11:14 PM »

Actually no one but the OP has really phrased this is an 'anti-' or even 'compared to' Latin thing. Most of the responses have simply focused on discussing what the actual Orthodox/Patristic teaching is--and neither St. Cyril nor St. Athanasius were influenced by Anti-Latin or Anti-Calvin concerns.

I wasn't referring to this discussion but overall atmosphere when discussing about differences of EOs and RCs. This thread is delightingly civilized for the time being.

Quote
If Original Sin=human nature is inherently corrupt, then additional intellectual exercises are necessary to explain how Christ could assume *our* human nature but His human nature was not corrupt.

Agreed. However nobody but Calvinists are saying that human nature is inherently corrupted in the sense that you seem to mean.
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« Reply #16 on: November 21, 2011, 04:59:04 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.
Pelegianism?

The Catholic Church teaches that the stain of original sin is a darkened intellect [nous] and a weakened will [concupiscence].   

Other results of the fall are that we are susceptible to pain and suffering, drawn to the vices with dishonesty and lust being ones that are mentioned directly, open to death and corruptibility, and out of sorts with nature:  Lions lie down with us to have us for lunch, hurricanes take our houses and our lives, etc.

I am not sure what you are saying here.

M.
If St. Cyril is teaching that human's are merely corruptible, not corrupted, and merely susceptible to death, not sentenced to die, then it places us all on equal footing with Adam and Eve, who before the fall, were corruptible, and susceptible to death, as obviously the serpent (and thus the Enemy) tricked them, causing them to be corrupted.

If we are on an equal footing as them as far as our relation to God and sin when we are born, it means that Pelagius was right.
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« Reply #17 on: November 21, 2011, 05:07:22 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.
Pelegianism?

The Catholic Church teaches that the stain of original sin is a darkened intellect [nous] and a weakened will [concupiscence].   

Other results of the fall are that we are susceptible to pain and suffering, drawn to the vices with dishonesty and lust being ones that are mentioned directly, open to death and corruptibility, and out of sorts with nature:  Lions lie down with us to have us for lunch, hurricanes take our houses and our lives, etc.

I am not sure what you are saying here.

M.
If St. Cyril is teaching that human's are merely corruptible, not corrupted, and merely susceptible to death, not sentenced to die, then it places us all on equal footing with Adam and Eve, who before the fall, were corruptible, and susceptible to death, as obviously the serpent (and thus the Enemy) tricked them, causing them to be corrupted.

If we are on an equal footing as them as far as our relation to God and sin when we are born, it means that Pelagius was right.

This is make-it-up-as-you-go theology. 

This is not at all Catholic teaching and I'll be darned if I can find it in Orthodoxy either.

I am not trying to be nasty but you need to go back to some very fundamental building blocks of Catholic teaching before this gets so far along you can't cut it loose.
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« Reply #18 on: November 21, 2011, 05:11:33 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.
Pelegianism?

The Catholic Church teaches that the stain of original sin is a darkened intellect [nous] and a weakened will [concupiscence].   

Other results of the fall are that we are susceptible to pain and suffering, drawn to the vices with dishonesty and lust being ones that are mentioned directly, open to death and corruptibility, and out of sorts with nature:  Lions lie down with us to have us for lunch, hurricanes take our houses and our lives, etc.

I am not sure what you are saying here.

M.
If St. Cyril is teaching that human's are merely corruptible, not corrupted, and merely susceptible to death, not sentenced to die, then it places us all on equal footing with Adam and Eve, who before the fall, were corruptible, and susceptible to death, as obviously the serpent (and thus the Enemy) tricked them, causing them to be corrupted.

If we are on an equal footing as them as far as our relation to God and sin when we are born, it means that Pelagius was right.

This is make-it-up-as-you-go theology. 

This is not at all Catholic teaching and I'll be darned if I can find it in Orthodoxy either.

I am not trying to be nasty but you need to go back to some very fundamental building blocks of Catholic teaching before this gets so far along you can't cut it loose.
Okay, I feel like you did not understand what I was saying. I do not agree with what I was saying, I was merely explaining how what Father Peter said may have sounded like Pelagianism to Papist (and to me).
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« Reply #19 on: November 21, 2011, 05:23:46 PM »

Our problem is not that we sin, but that we are separated from God.

There is no excuse for us to sin. We do not need to. We are not corrupt, we are corruptible. But we also lack the indwelling grace of God which was given to Adam and Eve. We are not in the same situation at all.

But we don't need to sin. Yet, even if we did not, we would still be separated from God and be spiritually dead.

Our problem is especially that we are separated from God in a living death, but secondarily, we are also personally liable to judgement and punishment because of our personal sin.
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« Reply #20 on: November 21, 2011, 05:29:38 PM »

Our problem is not that we sin, but that we are separated from God.

There is no excuse for us to sin. We do not need to. We are not corrupt, we are corruptible. But we also lack the indwelling grace of God which was given to Adam and Eve. We are not in the same situation at all.

But we don't need to sin. Yet, even if we did not, we would still be separated from God and be spiritually dead.

Our problem is especially that we are separated from God in a living death, but secondarily, we are also personally liable to judgement and punishment because of our personal sin.
So, being born separated from God and spiritually dead isn't a state of corruption?
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« Reply #21 on: November 21, 2011, 05:34:48 PM »

Our problem is not that we sin, but that we are separated from God.

There is no excuse for us to sin. We do not need to. We are not corrupt, we are corruptible. But we also lack the indwelling grace of God which was given to Adam and Eve. We are not in the same situation at all.

But we don't need to sin. Yet, even if we did not, we would still be separated from God and be spiritually dead.

Our problem is especially that we are separated from God in a living death, but secondarily, we are also personally liable to judgement and punishment because of our personal sin.
So, being born separated from God and spiritually dead isn't a state of corruption?

I do not think that the teaching is that we are born "dead" spiritually.  I think it is that we are born with a darkened intellect/nous...and in that way are not able to receive God's saving graces, for as I noted elsewhere, our very breath is a grace from God. 

So in that sense we are born blocked spiritually, which is not the same thing that is meant by "corruption"...The idea of corruption is that the body can feel pain, die and rot.  Baptism does not heal that...but Baptism does illuminate the eye of the soul so that we can receive and respond to God's saving graces.

M.
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« Reply #22 on: November 21, 2011, 06:05:10 PM »

Corruption does not mean that we can feel etc. That is corruptibility.

We are surely born spiritually dead because we lack the indwelling grace of God which is our life. This does not mean that we do not have a spirit, but life is only truly life in relation to God, otherwise it is mere existence, slowly experiencing dissolution.

To be physically alive is a gift of God, but is not the same as the indwelling grace of the Holy Spirit which Adam possessed.
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« Reply #23 on: November 21, 2011, 06:15:26 PM »

Corruption does not mean that we can feel etc. That is corruptibility.

We are surely born spiritually dead because we lack the indwelling grace of God which is our life. This does not mean that we do not have a spirit, but life is only truly life in relation to God, otherwise it is mere existence, slowly experiencing dissolution.

To be physically alive is a gift of God, but is not the same as the indwelling grace of the Holy Spirit which Adam possessed.

I don't think we disagree on corruption and corruptibility. 

I don't know if we would see eye to eye on the meaning of "nature"...that seems to be something of a moving target even within the Catholic system of theology, much less between OO and EO theologies.  That might impact on our understanding of corruption.

I hesitate to say that we are born spiritually dead, since Baptismal theology, east and west, weighs in so heavily with the idea that in the Baptismal waters, we go down into death with Christ and arise with him into illumination.  We die in Baptism only to be re-born in Christ.

If we are already dead, well then, there's no place to go.  So I prefer the idea that we are born with a darkened intellect.  I think that is also patristic in its origins but I don't know about the Oriental Orthodox.

I think I've made the distinction between the graces that save and the graces that animate here and in another thread.  It's a good point that bears repeating.

M.
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« Reply #24 on: November 21, 2011, 06:54:06 PM »

Corruption does not mean that we can feel etc. That is corruptibility.

We are surely born spiritually dead because we lack the indwelling grace of God which is our life. This does not mean that we do not have a spirit, but life is only truly life in relation to God, otherwise it is mere existence, slowly experiencing dissolution.

To be physically alive is a gift of God, but is not the same as the indwelling grace of the Holy Spirit which Adam possessed.
Ok. Now, can you explain to me how the Catholic teaching is different from this? Because from what I can tell you just explained exactly what I have been taught as a Catholic.
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« Reply #25 on: November 21, 2011, 07:00:38 PM »

Corruption does not mean that we can feel etc. That is corruptibility.

We are surely born spiritually dead because we lack the indwelling grace of God which is our life. This does not mean that we do not have a spirit, but life is only truly life in relation to God, otherwise it is mere existence, slowly experiencing dissolution.

To be physically alive is a gift of God, but is not the same as the indwelling grace of the Holy Spirit which Adam possessed.
Ok. Now, can you explain to me how the Catholic teaching is different from this? Because from what I can tell you just explained exactly what I have been taught as a Catholic.

If you read the CCC on original sin I think you'd have a hard time saying that the Catholic Church teaches that we are born spiritually "dead"...

Also there are theologies of Baptism which also mitigate against saying we are born "dead" in any way...otherwise we would not be illuminated and washed clean in Baptism...we'd be raised up from the dead instead...

M.
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« Reply #26 on: November 21, 2011, 08:02:20 PM »

I'm not sure about the way "corrupted" is being distinguished from "corruptible". We are responsible for our sins, but we were not subject to passions before the Fall. So something did change to our nature after the Fall. That could be what is meant by "corruptible", but often I have heard the term "corrupted" used to describe this state, and rejecting that term I think can lead to confusion. But I imagine we can all agree that our nature did not become evil in essence, if in fact that is what Calvin was teaching (not that I'm sure it was).

Fr Peter, when you get a chance, could you provide something from St Cyril?
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« Reply #27 on: November 21, 2011, 08:06:58 PM »

Corruption does not mean that we can feel etc. That is corruptibility.

We are surely born spiritually dead because we lack the indwelling grace of God which is our life. This does not mean that we do not have a spirit, but life is only truly life in relation to God, otherwise it is mere existence, slowly experiencing dissolution.

To be physically alive is a gift of God, but is not the same as the indwelling grace of the Holy Spirit which Adam possessed.
Ok. Now, can you explain to me how the Catholic teaching is different from this? Because from what I can tell you just explained exactly what I have been taught as a Catholic.

If you read the CCC on original sin I think you'd have a hard time saying that the Catholic Church teaches that we are born spiritually "dead"...

Also there are theologies of Baptism which also mitigate against saying we are born "dead" in any way...otherwise we would not be illuminated and washed clean in Baptism...we'd be raised up from the dead instead...

M.

Note:  It is true that there are theologies of baptism that speak of us dying with Christ and rising with him...the steps in the ancient baptismal fonts, and the emphasis on submersion are powerful symbols...But they are not symbols for the dead but for the living wounded.
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« Reply #28 on: November 21, 2011, 08:28:45 PM »

Corruption does not mean that we can feel etc. That is corruptibility.

We are surely born spiritually dead because we lack the indwelling grace of God which is our life. This does not mean that we do not have a spirit, but life is only truly life in relation to God, otherwise it is mere existence, slowly experiencing dissolution.

To be physically alive is a gift of God, but is not the same as the indwelling grace of the Holy Spirit which Adam possessed.
Ok. Now, can you explain to me how the Catholic teaching is different from this? Because from what I can tell you just explained exactly what I have been taught as a Catholic.

If you read the CCC on original sin I think you'd have a hard time saying that the Catholic Church teaches that we are born spiritually "dead"...

Also there are theologies of Baptism which also mitigate against saying we are born "dead" in any way...otherwise we would not be illuminated and washed clean in Baptism...we'd be raised up from the dead instead...

M.
Wait . . . so now the Oriental Orthodox are the Calvinists?
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« Reply #29 on: November 21, 2011, 08:42:46 PM »

Corruption does not mean that we can feel etc. That is corruptibility.

We are surely born spiritually dead because we lack the indwelling grace of God which is our life. This does not mean that we do not have a spirit, but life is only truly life in relation to God, otherwise it is mere existence, slowly experiencing dissolution.

To be physically alive is a gift of God, but is not the same as the indwelling grace of the Holy Spirit which Adam possessed.
Ok. Now, can you explain to me how the Catholic teaching is different from this? Because from what I can tell you just explained exactly what I have been taught as a Catholic.

If you read the CCC on original sin I think you'd have a hard time saying that the Catholic Church teaches that we are born spiritually "dead"...

Also there are theologies of Baptism which also mitigate against saying we are born "dead" in any way...otherwise we would not be illuminated and washed clean in Baptism...we'd be raised up from the dead instead...

M.
Wait . . . so now the Oriental Orthodox are the Calvinists?

This is well in advance of the discussion, I'd say, and not accurate t'boot.

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« Reply #30 on: November 21, 2011, 08:53:46 PM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).
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« Reply #31 on: November 21, 2011, 09:06:15 PM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).

Why would we raise the question of personal sin guilt since neither the Catholic Church nor Orthodoxy teach or have ever taught that we carry the personal guilt of the Ancestor's sins...

It is one thing to indicate that the consequences of the fall pass on to each one of us personally, but that is NOT the same thing as speaking of personal guilt.

Sometimes that needs to be said in discussions such as these.

M.
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« Reply #32 on: November 21, 2011, 09:08:32 PM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).

Why would we raise the question of personal sin guilt since neither the Catholic Church nor Orthodoxy teach or have ever taught that we carry the personal guilt of the Ancestor's sins...

M.
I simply defined what the word "corruption" refers to, and made it clear that it does not refer to guilt or sin in the sense intended by the Council of Trent in its decree on "original sin."
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« Reply #33 on: November 21, 2011, 09:11:37 PM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).

Why would we raise the question of personal sin guilt since neither the Catholic Church nor Orthodoxy teach or have ever taught that we carry the personal guilt of the Ancestor's sins...

It is one thing to indicate that the consequences of the fall pass on to each one of us personally, but that is NOT the same thing as speaking of personal guilt.

Sometimes that needs to be said in discussions such as these.

M.

It's because the question of whether we inherit sin from Adam, or what it means to say we inherit sin from Adam, is his theological hobby-horse.
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« Reply #34 on: November 21, 2011, 09:20:53 PM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).

Why would we raise the question of personal sin guilt since neither the Catholic Church nor Orthodoxy teach or have ever taught that we carry the personal guilt of the Ancestor's sins...

It is one thing to indicate that the consequences of the fall pass on to each one of us personally, but that is NOT the same thing as speaking of personal guilt.

Sometimes that needs to be said in discussions such as these.

M.

It's because the question of whether we inherit sin from Adam, or what it means to say we inherit sin from Adam, is his theological hobby-horse.

I am aware.  And he claims for the western Church things that were never intended. 

Note: gratuitous nasty remark removed...sorry, Todd, I am trying to see you in a better light but old habits die hard.
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« Reply #35 on: November 21, 2011, 10:11:05 PM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).

Why would we raise the question of personal sin guilt since neither the Catholic Church nor Orthodoxy teach or have ever taught that we carry the personal guilt of the Ancestor's sins...

It is one thing to indicate that the consequences of the fall pass on to each one of us personally, but that is NOT the same thing as speaking of personal guilt.

Sometimes that needs to be said in discussions such as these.

M.

It's because the question of whether we inherit sin from Adam, or what it means to say we inherit sin from Adam, is his theological hobby-horse.
Not at all.  I simply reject the notion that sin or guilt can be inherited because those things are personal and not natural.  That said, I have not accused you of having a theological "hobby-horse" and I would appreciate the same courtesy.

Do I believe that the Latin bishops at Trent were correct when they asserted that a man inherits guilt (either as reatum or culpa) or sin?  Nope.
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« Reply #36 on: November 22, 2011, 01:16:16 AM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).

Why would we raise the question of personal sin guilt since neither the Catholic Church nor Orthodoxy teach or have ever taught that we carry the personal guilt of the Ancestor's sins...

It is one thing to indicate that the consequences of the fall pass on to each one of us personally, but that is NOT the same thing as speaking of personal guilt.

Sometimes that needs to be said in discussions such as these.

M.

It's because the question of whether we inherit sin from Adam, or what it means to say we inherit sin from Adam, is his theological hobby-horse.
Not at all.  I simply reject the notion that sin or guilt can be inherited because those things are personal and not natural.  That said, I have not accused you of having a theological "hobby-horse" and I would appreciate the same courtesy.

Do I believe that the Latin bishops at Trent were correct when they asserted that a man inherits guilt (either as reatum or culpa) or sin?  Nope.

It's especially irritating when a Catholic tries to show he's more Orthodox than the Orthodox. "Latin" bishops, indeed! Face it, they are YOUR bishops. If you think they're so heretical, just join us already! Wink

But actually I don't agree with you that we have to reject the idea of inheriting sin. There is just too much patristic support for it. What you could say is that the Church never taught that anyone is born with personal guilt or responsibility for original sin. Original sin is not an individual transgression that all newborns are held to be juridically guilty of, but it is a definitely sinful condition that requires cleansing in Baptism. I know elsewhere you have argued that Baptism does not cleanse sins in the case of newborns, but I don't think you produced any patristic evidence for this, and there is nothing in the Baptismal prayers that would lead anyone to conclude that newborns were not being cleansed of sin, and we have the decision of the Council of Carthage (which was accepted by the whole Church, lest you try to wriggle out of it by saying it was "Western" or "Augustinian") which says that anyone who denies babies are born in sin and require the cleansing of Baptism are under anathema.
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« Reply #37 on: November 22, 2011, 04:00:43 AM »

There is lots of patristic material which insists that infants are not being baptised for any sins at all. St Severus, following St Cyril, is clear that a child cannot be baptised for any other persons sins, and has no sins of his own to be baptised for.

I will try to sort out references for my comments today, but I am having a busy period. I know that some Fathers taught that a child was not liable for sin until many years old.

As far as I am aware the Fathers are clear that we are born mortal but not sinful, corruptible but not corrupted. That does not mean, as far as I can see, that the physical/mental aspects of our nature are not also affected by our environment.

We bear the consequences of the judgement passed against Adam. We are separated from God and devoid of the indwelling Holy Spirit and left to our natural mortality we are experiencing dissolution. But there is nothing sinful or inherently liable to judgement in our natural condition at birth. The problem is that we lack the Holy Spirit and even if we never sinned we would still lack the Holy Spirit, which is surely why St Seraphim urges us to acquire the Holy Spirit as the essence of the meaning of salvation?   
 
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« Reply #38 on: November 22, 2011, 09:27:06 AM »

We bear the consequences of the judgement passed against Adam. We are separated from God and devoid of the indwelling Holy Spirit and left to our natural mortality we are experiencing dissolution.

How does the nature of the condition of our nature that you describe not "miss the mark"?

We're not born responsible for our condition, but we are still born in this condition that came about as a result of our first parents transgression. The only way we can be healed of this condition is through Christ, into Whom we are baptized. We were seperated from God, we are united to Him in baptism. We were devoid of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, part of an Orthodox baptism is being "sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit". We were left to mortality and dissolution, we are given the promise of the resurrection having been buried with Him in baptism.

Unless you think that seperation from God, being devoid of the Holy Spirit, and death and dissolution is the "mark" that God has set for us. The fact is this is all sin. It's a condition and not an act, but it is still against the will of the God who "wills that none should perish".
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« Reply #39 on: November 22, 2011, 09:41:21 AM »

How can being born as we were created be 'missing the mark'?

We were created mortal. It is no sin to be mortal. It is no sin to be corruptible. This is how we were created. This is how Adam was created.

But he received the Holy Spirit, and the presence of the Holy Spirit granted immortality and incorruptibility. This was lost when Adam fell. But his nature was not corrupted, it simply returned to its natural state.

How can a state imposed by God be sin? The Fathers are clear. We are born mortal not sinful. The Fathers even state that it might be possible for a man to live all his life without sin, but that would not be the same as being saved.

A person who commits a crime may be put into prison. But they are guilty because of their crime, not where they are. Being in prison doesn't make a person guilty. A baby may be born to such a criminal and live in a prison under the restrictions of prison life, but it doesn't make the baby guilty of anything at all. If the baby grows and commits crimes then we could imagine that it might be considered guilty and not leave the prison on account of its own crimes. But if it does no crime at all it could still not leave the prison. It is in a state that is not dependent on itself but on the will of those with authority over it. It would not be guilty of crime, but it would be stuck in a state of penality.

You state 'this is all sin', but on what basis. Merely stating it is so does not make it so. If it were so then Christ is a sinner. The argument you make is in fact the same argument that Julian of Halicarnassus used.

How can our condition 'miss the mark' when it is God who imposed it? And he imposed it for our salvation and out of his love for us, as the Fathers teach. Sin has no existence apart from as an act of will. Therefore there is not a sinful condition apart from sinful acts.

We are born mortal, not sinful. We are born corruptible, not corrupted. We do that ourselves.

Most of the Fathers I have studied seem entirely positive about the state of babies before God. They need to be baptised to be united with Christ in his resurrection and NOT because they are considered sinful at all. I think one Father I found considered that the age of sin could be as late as 10, because sin is a matter of will and the unformed will of a child is not the same as that of an adult.
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« Reply #40 on: November 22, 2011, 11:31:23 AM »

Death isn't a possibilty that may or may not happen to us. It is a certainty. God didn't create Adam with the certainty of death, but only the possibility depending on his actions. We inherited Adam's fallen nature, not his pre-fallen nature. This doesn't make us personally responsible or willfull participants in the fall, but we bear the consequences. I'm not saying we're born with a willfull intent on rebellion or destined to eternal hell before being able to "earn" our way there, but we are born destined to die. We are born corrupted, babies born with diseases caused by their parents actions are still born with that disease regardless of who's fault it is. We're not born "sinful" (I didn't use that exact word), but receiving "the wages of sin".

What does it mean for Him Who knew no sin to become sin?

What does it mean for death to be the last enemy?

How is the last enemy defeated?

Are you saying that God wants for us to be seperated from Him, devoid of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, and subject to death and dissolution? Are you saying that it is ok for a person to be in this situation as long as it's not their fault, and the lack of fault somehow changes the reality of their situation?

A person who commits a crime may be put into prison. But they are guilty because of their crime, not where they are. Being in prison doesn't make a person guilty. A baby may be born to such a criminal and live in a prison under the restrictions of prison life, but it doesn't make the baby guilty of anything at all. If the baby grows and commits crimes then we could imagine that it might be considered guilty and not leave the prison on account of its own crimes. But if it does no crime at all it could still not leave the prison. It is in a state that is not dependent on itself but on the will of those with authority over it. It would not be guilty of crime, but it would be stuck in a state of penality.

Exactly. To use your analogy, salvation is our release from the penalty (which would include acquitting us from any personal crimes we have for the purpose of accomplishing our release), and in order to do this, He had to, without committing a crime, endure the penalty and be released from it Himself. Baptism is where our name gets attached to His release papers (without any record of crimes that we may or may not have committed). (And this is why everyone hates analogies. I promise I'm not Protestant.)
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« Reply #41 on: November 22, 2011, 12:07:13 PM »

Adam was created mortal. All created beings are mortal. It is a widely used definition of the Fathers.

Adam was given a gift, the breath of life, the Holy Spirit.

But this did not mean that he was not naturally mortal.

I am not sure what you mean by some of the post. This human situation is not culpable, until we sin, but it is a separation from God, and the Fathers insist that this situation was granted to us out of God's love. It is not OK. Did I say it was? But it is part of God's will for the restoration of communion with him. The Fathers say that our human spirit was preserved in immortality so that seeing the heavens in the distance it might always seek after God. This is God's will, that being separated from Him we might seek Him.

If you think that we are born corrupted, well I can only say this is not what the Fathers teach. Being destined to die is the definition of mortality. Which is what the Fathers teach. We are born mortal not sinful, corruptible and not corrupted.
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« Reply #42 on: November 22, 2011, 12:25:31 PM »

Do the fathers really teach that Adam was destined to die regardless of whether or not he personally sinned and ate the forbidden fruit?
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« Reply #43 on: November 22, 2011, 12:29:20 PM »

Sorry for breaking this up into two posts, I hit the post button and then saw something else. I didn't want to modify my post in case anyone was looking at or responding to my first post.

This human situation is not culpable, until we sin, but it is a separation from God,

Is this how Adam was created?
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« Reply #44 on: November 22, 2011, 12:30:53 PM »


We were created mortal. It is no sin to be mortal. It is no sin to be corruptible. This is how we were created. This is how Adam was created.


Here's the problem I think.  I don't know enough about Oriental Orthodox teachings to know if this is part of it but it certainly is not part of Eastern Orthodox or Roman Catholic teaching as I have learned them.

This is not a personal criticism of you Father.  I am sorry to be in a position to counter your assertion.

M.
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« Reply #45 on: November 22, 2011, 12:56:14 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

Father,

Ever-since Saint Augustine, the christian west had a tendency to believe in a "sin-nature". When we(EO) say corrupt nature, what we mean by it is death/decay or being mortal along with a tendency to sin. The west has a tendency to believe that one can only choose what their nature is and so if one has a sin-nature then the onlything they are able to choose is sin.
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« Reply #46 on: November 22, 2011, 01:04:34 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.
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« Reply #47 on: November 22, 2011, 01:11:49 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.

 Huh
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« Reply #48 on: November 22, 2011, 01:20:27 PM »

I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught.alvin).

Touché. That's how most of the anti-Latin Orthodox polemics are. In the end we both believe that due to the Fall something happened to mankind. And that something was more than bodily mortality. Modern EOs just refuse to call it as "Original sin" or "corrupted nature".

"If looks like a duck, swims like a duck..."

There is a difference and it's mostly because of the Augustinian tradition. Yes, the western church did take a modified or semi-Augustinian view after the death of Saint Augustine, and so we are close in our views, but we should at least know the differences. Because they are different.
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« Reply #49 on: November 22, 2011, 01:21:42 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.

 Huh

Do you disagree?

I'm actually writing a book that talks about this issue in passing:
http://orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com/2011/06/my-secondary-sources-for-book-im.html (my secondary sources)

http://orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com/2011/03/why-i-am-writing-book.html (why I'm writing a book)



And so I have a tendency to post on topics like these because the issues are still fresh in my head.
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« Reply #50 on: November 22, 2011, 01:26:19 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.

 Huh

Do you disagree?

Indeed I do.  With both you and Father.  I don't know how these kinds of ideas get started but they certainly are damaging when they take hold.

M.
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« Reply #51 on: November 22, 2011, 01:34:31 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.

 Huh

Do you disagree?

Indeed I do.  With both you and Father.  I don't know how these kinds of ideas get started but they certainly are damaging when they take hold.

M.

Do you disagree with what I said about Saint Augustine and his view of what happened to free will when Adam and Eve fell?

In his early christian years he did believe in the doctrine of free will, but after his ordination he started to believe in a form of soft determinism. Over the years his determinism became stronger and stronger. This is why there is more than one interpretation of the word Free Will. It is because of Saint Augustine's compatibilism that we now have more than one interpretation of free will.


But yes, Saint Augustine became a determinist.
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« Reply #52 on: November 22, 2011, 02:02:28 PM »


We were created mortal. It is no sin to be mortal. It is no sin to be corruptible. This is how we were created. This is how Adam was created.


Here's the problem I think.  I don't know enough about Oriental Orthodox teachings to know if this is part of it but it certainly is not part of Eastern Orthodox or Roman Catholic teaching as I have learned them.

This is not a personal criticism of you Father.  I am sorry to be in a position to counter your assertion.

M.

Will this work?


Theophilus (2nd century bishop of Antioch)
Theophilus to Autolycus: Book II
Chapter XXVII.—The Nature of Man.
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf02.iv.ii.ii.xxvii.html (the link)


"But some one will say to us, Was man made by nature mortal? Certainly not. Was he, then, immortal? Neither do we affirm this. But one will say, Was he, then, nothing? Not even this hits the mark. He was by nature neither mortal nor immortal. For if He had made him immortal from the beginning, He would have made him God. Again, if He had made him mortal, God would seem to be the cause of his death. Neither, then, immortal nor yet mortal did He make him, but, as we have said above, capable of both; so that if he should incline to the things of immortality, keeping the commandment of God, he should receive as reward from Him immortality, and should become God; but if, on the other hand, he should turn to the things of death, disobeying God, he should himself be the cause of death to himself. For God made man free, and with power over himself. That, then, which man brought upon himself through carelessness and disobedience, this God now vouchsafes to him as a gift through His own philanthropy and pity, when men obey Him. Apparently meaning, that God turns death, which man brought on himself by disobedience, into a blessing. For as man, disobeying, drew death upon himself; so, obeying the will of God, he who desires is able to procure for himself life everlasting. For God has given us a law and holy commandments; and every one who keeps these can be saved, and, obtaining the resurrection, can inherit incorruption."



You can go here to see if there is anything else that could be helpful in regards to this issue:
http://orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com/2010/11/free-will.html (my link of quotes in the area of free will)

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« Reply #53 on: November 22, 2011, 02:10:33 PM »

First of all I can't read it in pretty lime green print but I know the passage and it is NOT what Father had said at all...I can only deal with what people say and not what they might mean.


We were created mortal. It is no sin to be mortal. It is no sin to be corruptible. This is how we were created. This is how Adam was created.


Here's the problem I think.  I don't know enough about Oriental Orthodox teachings to know if this is part of it but it certainly is not part of Eastern Orthodox or Roman Catholic teaching as I have learned them.

This is not a personal criticism of you Father.  I am sorry to be in a position to counter your assertion.

M.

Will this work?


Theophilus (2nd century bishop of Antioch)
Theophilus to Autolycus: Book II
Chapter XXVII.—The Nature of Man.
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf02.iv.ii.ii.xxvii.html (the link)


"But some one will say to us, Was man made by nature mortal? Certainly not. Was he, then, immortal? Neither do we affirm this. But one will say, Was he, then, nothing? Not even this hits the mark. He was by nature neither mortal nor immortal. For if He had made him immortal from the beginning, He would have made him God. Again, if He had made him mortal, God would seem to be the cause of his death. Neither, then, immortal nor yet mortal did He make him, but, as we have said above, capable of both; so that if he should incline to the things of immortality, keeping the commandment of God, he should receive as reward from Him immortality, and should become God; but if, on the other hand, he should turn to the things of death, disobeying God, he should himself be the cause of death to himself. For God made man free, and with power over himself. That, then, which man brought upon himself through carelessness and disobedience, this God now vouchsafes to him as a gift through His own philanthropy and pity, when men obey Him. Apparently meaning, that God turns death, which man brought on himself by disobedience, into a blessing. For as man, disobeying, drew death upon himself; so, obeying the will of God, he who desires is able to procure for himself life everlasting. For God has given us a law and holy commandments; and every one who keeps these can be saved, and, obtaining the resurrection, can inherit incorruption."



You can go here to see if there is anything else that could be helpful in regards to this issue:
http://orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com/2010/11/free-will.html (my link of quotes in the area of free will)


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« Reply #54 on: November 22, 2011, 02:13:18 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.
Pelegianism?

Saint Cyril condemns Pelagianism either at the 3rd ecumenical council or in one of his writings. I recall a quote in where he said something. Hmm, But I agree with you that we weren't created mortal. Theophilus said we were created neither mortal or immortal. We became mortal at the fall.
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http://ancientchristiandefender.blogspot.com/
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« Reply #55 on: November 22, 2011, 02:15:10 PM »

First of all I can't read it in pretty lime green print but I know the passage and it is NOT what Father had said at all...I can only deal with what people say and not what they might mean.


We were created mortal. It is no sin to be mortal. It is no sin to be corruptible. This is how we were created. This is how Adam was created.


Here's the problem I think.  I don't know enough about Oriental Orthodox teachings to know if this is part of it but it certainly is not part of Eastern Orthodox or Roman Catholic teaching as I have learned them.

This is not a personal criticism of you Father.  I am sorry to be in a position to counter your assertion.

M.

Will this work?


Theophilus (2nd century bishop of Antioch)
Theophilus to Autolycus: Book II
Chapter XXVII.—The Nature of Man.
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf02.iv.ii.ii.xxvii.html (the link)


"But some one will say to us, Was man made by nature mortal? Certainly not. Was he, then, immortal? Neither do we affirm this. But one will say, Was he, then, nothing? Not even this hits the mark. He was by nature neither mortal nor immortal. For if He had made him immortal from the beginning, He would have made him God. Again, if He had made him mortal, God would seem to be the cause of his death. Neither, then, immortal nor yet mortal did He make him, but, as we have said above, capable of both; so that if he should incline to the things of immortality, keeping the commandment of God, he should receive as reward from Him immortality, and should become God; but if, on the other hand, he should turn to the things of death, disobeying God, he should himself be the cause of death to himself. For God made man free, and with power over himself. That, then, which man brought upon himself through carelessness and disobedience, this God now vouchsafes to him as a gift through His own philanthropy and pity, when men obey Him. Apparently meaning, that God turns death, which man brought on himself by disobedience, into a blessing. For as man, disobeying, drew death upon himself; so, obeying the will of God, he who desires is able to procure for himself life everlasting. For God has given us a law and holy commandments; and every one who keeps these can be saved, and, obtaining the resurrection, can inherit incorruption."



You can go here to see if there is anything else that could be helpful in regards to this issue:
http://orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com/2010/11/free-will.html (my link of quotes in the area of free will)



Sorry about the color, but I never said Father said that. I just quoted Theophilus to help you out. Unless, you disagree with Theophilus too? I know Calvinists who disagree with it, but I don't think you're a Calvinist.
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"loving one's enemies does not mean loving wickedness, ungodliness, adultery, or theft. Rather, it means loving the theif, the ungodly, and the adulterer." Clement of Alexandria 195 A.D.

http://ancientchristiandefender.blogspot.com/
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« Reply #56 on: November 22, 2011, 03:21:17 PM »

My friend's blog
http://classicalchristianity.com/2011/02/21/on-depraved-nature/ (On Depraved Nature)


and

http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm (rags of mortality)

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"loving one's enemies does not mean loving wickedness, ungodliness, adultery, or theft. Rather, it means loving the theif, the ungodly, and the adulterer." Clement of Alexandria 195 A.D.

http://ancientchristiandefender.blogspot.com/
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« Reply #57 on: November 22, 2011, 03:23:19 PM »

St Cyril is a Pelagian?

What?!
No, I was talking about your interpretation of St.Cyril's words.
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« Reply #58 on: November 23, 2011, 02:28:17 AM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).

Why would we raise the question of personal sin guilt since neither the Catholic Church nor Orthodoxy teach or have ever taught that we carry the personal guilt of the Ancestor's sins...

It is one thing to indicate that the consequences of the fall pass on to each one of us personally, but that is NOT the same thing as speaking of personal guilt.

Sometimes that needs to be said in discussions such as these.

M.

It's because the question of whether we inherit sin from Adam, or what it means to say we inherit sin from Adam, is his theological hobby-horse.
Not at all.  I simply reject the notion that sin or guilt can be inherited because those things are personal and not natural.  That said, I have not accused you of having a theological "hobby-horse" and I would appreciate the same courtesy.

Do I believe that the Latin bishops at Trent were correct when they asserted that a man inherits guilt (either as reatum or culpa) or sin?  Nope.

It's especially irritating when a Catholic tries to show he's more Orthodox than the Orthodox. "Latin" bishops, indeed! Face it, they are YOUR bishops. If you think they're so heretical, just join us already! Wink

But actually I don't agree with you that we have to reject the idea of inheriting sin. There is just too much patristic support for it. What you could say is that the Church never taught that anyone is born with personal guilt or responsibility for original sin. Original sin is not an individual transgression that all newborns are held to be juridically guilty of, but it is a definitely sinful condition that requires cleansing in Baptism. I know elsewhere you have argued that Baptism does not cleanse sins in the case of newborns, but I don't think you produced any patristic evidence for this, and there is nothing in the Baptismal prayers that would lead anyone to conclude that newborns were not being cleansed of sin, and we have the decision of the Council of Carthage (which was accepted by the whole Church, lest you try to wriggle out of it by saying it was "Western" or "Augustinian") which says that anyone who denies babies are born in sin and require the cleansing of Baptism are under anathema.
My faith as a Melkite Catholic is Orthodox, so I am not "trying" to be more Orthodox than the Orthodox; instead, I simply am theologically Orthodox.  That said, I must admit that I find it sad when Latins try to make the theological speculations of their Church's tradition into something universally binding when it is clear that those theories have no support in the pre-Augustinian Eastern Fathers.

I do not believe that anyone inherits guilt or sin, and what the local Council of Carthage taught about baptism is its own concern.  I will stick with the teaching of St. John Chrysostom, and the Eastern Fathers in general, who taught that babies are not conceived or born sinful.  The sin of Adam made all men mortal, and because men are mortal they tend to fall into sins, but - as I said earlier - no one is born sinful or guilty, and I see no reason to accept that Manichaean notion.
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« Reply #59 on: November 23, 2011, 02:34:22 AM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.
St. Augustine's views on predestination are confused, but I would not say that he himself rejected free will. 

Clearly St. Maximos, at least as far as predestination and free will are concerned, had a better approach, and it is sad that the West has not tried to assimilate his views on those hot button topics.
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« Reply #60 on: November 23, 2011, 10:16:39 AM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.
St. Augustine's views on predestination are confused, but I would not say that he himself rejected free will. 

Clearly St. Maximos, at least as far as predestination and free will are concerned, had a better approach, and it is sad that the West has not tried to assimilate his views on those hot button topics.

Saint Augustine understood free will in his later years in the same way Plotinus did.
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« Reply #61 on: November 23, 2011, 10:31:02 AM »

http://ancientchristiandefender.blogspot.com/2011/01/western-confusion-of-divine-energy-with.html (a quote about the issue from the Ancestral Sin book)


from pages 33 to 35 from the book The Ancestral Sin by Fr. John Romanides, translation by George S. Gabriel
 
Quote:
"In 431, the Holy Fathers of the Third Ecumenical Synod at Ephesus condemned Pelagianism and emphasized that death is unnatural and grace is of absolute necessity for salvation. The president of the Synod and chief polemicist against the heresies was St. Cyril of Alexandria, who wrote the following about the transmittal of the ancestral sin to the descendants of Adam: "But what can one say? Yes, Adam indeed fell and, having ignored the divine commandment, was condemned to corruptibility and death. But how did many become sinners because of him? What are his missteps to us? How could all of us who were not yet born be condemned together with him, even though God said, 'Neither the fathers shall be put to death because of their children nor the children because of their fathers, but the soul which sinneth shall be put to death? Surely, the soul that sins shall die. For we became sinners through Adam's disobedience in such a manner as this. He was created for incorruption and life, and the manner of existence he had in the garden of delight was proper to holiness. His whole mind was continuously seeing God while his body was tranquil and calm, and all base pleasures were still. For there was no tumult of alien disturbances in it. But since he fell under sin and slipped into corruptibility, pleasures and filthiness assaulted the nature of the flesh, and in our members was unveiled a savage law. Our nature thus became diseased by sin through the disobedience of one, that is, of Adam. Thus, all were made sinners, not as co-transgressors with Adam. which they never were, but being of his nature, they fell under the law of sin...In Adam, human nature fell ill and became subject to corruptibility through disobedience, and, therefore, the passions entered in."

The strong juridical character of Latin theology which led the West to the satisfaction theory of Anselm is absent from the Greek patristic tradition. In the East, the fall is understood to be a consequence of man's own withdrawal from divine life and the resulting weakness and disease of human nature. Thus, man himself is seen as the cause through his cooperation with the devil. In the West, all the evils in the world originate in the punitive divine will, and the devil himself is seen simply as God's instrument of punishment. The Greek Fathers look upon salvation from a biblical perspective and see it as redemption from death and corruptibility and as the healing of human nature which was assaulted by Satan. Therefore, they established the following principle as the touchstone of their christological teaching: "That which is not assumed is not healed, but that which is united to God is also saved." It is quite opposite in the West where salvation does not mean, first and foremost, salvation from death and corruptibility but from divine wrath. And the termination of the penalty of death and illnesses simply follows as a result of the satisfaction of divine justice. For the West, this is quite natural since, on the one hand, God is believed to punish all men with death while, on the other hand, it is man who provokes the punishment because he bears inherited guilt. Thus, according to the Western viewpoint, God did not become man in order "to abolish him who has the power of death," since it is God who is death's causative power, but to satisfy Himself to such a degree that He could look upon men with a somewhat more benevolent attitude and, at the Second Coming, lift the old death sentence from them."





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« Reply #62 on: November 23, 2011, 11:13:29 AM »

Thank you for this quote jnorm888.

I believe this answers the OP.
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« Reply #63 on: November 23, 2011, 11:50:26 AM »

Thank you for this quote jnorm888.

I believe this answers the OP.

Except for the fact that it absolutely distorts the teachings of the west in good Romanides Style.  It also not surprising to find Father G. translating.  He is also well known for his distortions.

However:  IF that kind of thing is useful to Orthodox converts in Orthodox America, far be it from me to say don't take that path.

Cheers!!   Cool
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« Reply #64 on: November 23, 2011, 12:28:26 PM »

Thank you for this quote jnorm888.

I believe this answers the OP.
Except for the fact that it absolutely distorts the teachings of the west in good Romanides Style.  It also not surprising to find Father G. translating.  He is also well known for his distortions.

However:  IF that kind of thing is useful to Orthodox converts in Orthodox America, far be it from me to say don't take that path.

Cheers!!   Cool

I was referring more to the quote that it contains from St Cyril specifically.
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« Reply #65 on: November 23, 2011, 12:49:36 PM »

Thank you for this quote jnorm888.

I believe this answers the OP.
Except for the fact that it absolutely distorts the teachings of the west in good Romanides Style.  It also not surprising to find Father G. translating.  He is also well known for his distortions.

However:  IF that kind of thing is useful to Orthodox converts in Orthodox America, far be it from me to say don't take that path.

Cheers!!   Cool

I was referring more to the quote that it contains from St Cyril specifically.

It is difficult to reconcile the quote from St. Cyril and the rest of the presentation in the final paragraph, without suggesting that distancing one's self from the west is far more important that seeking the truth.
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« Reply #66 on: November 23, 2011, 01:05:45 PM »

It is difficult to reconcile the quote from St. Cyril and the rest of the presentation in the final paragraph, without suggesting that distancing one's self from the west is far more important that seeking the truth.

That part by itself doesn't really give a clear answer to the OP. At least I don't see how it does.
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« Reply #67 on: November 23, 2011, 01:15:00 PM »

It is difficult to reconcile the quote from St. Cyril and the rest of the presentation in the final paragraph, without suggesting that distancing one's self from the west is far more important that seeking the truth.

That part by itself doesn't really give a clear answer to the OP. At least I don't see how it does.

No.  But the quote in itself, is more clear.
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« Reply #68 on: November 23, 2011, 11:48:43 PM »

Thank you for this quote jnorm888.

I believe this answers the OP.

Except for the fact that it absolutely distorts the teachings of the west in good Romanides Style.  It also not surprising to find Father G. translating.  He is also well known for his distortions.

However:  IF that kind of thing is useful to Orthodox converts in Orthodox America, far be it from me to say don't take that path.

Cheers!!   Cool

You are talking as if the west is a monolith. It isn't, and Fr. John Romanides is super cool! I personally don't see anything wrong with what he said. Now does this mean that the modern Roman Catholic church teach these things in her modern catechism? No!

But you guys never like it when we talk about Saint Augustine in general.
 
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« Reply #69 on: November 24, 2011, 02:44:22 AM »

Seems to me St Cyril, while quite explicitly denying that we are born co-transgressors with Adam, also quite explicitly maintains that we are born under the "law of sin". Now, if by "law of sin" St Cyril simply meant physical mortality, wouldn't he have said so? Seems rather that he actually meant "sin", i.e. we are born in sin. The only thing to understand is that by being born in sin we do not thereby say we are co-transgressors with Adam, if indeed this is what the Western tradition ended up teaching. In any case, Fr Romanides' theory that all sin arises out of the fear of physical death does not appear to be supported in that quotation.
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« Reply #70 on: November 24, 2011, 03:40:40 AM »

Seems to me St Cyril, while quite explicitly denying that we are born co-transgressors with Adam, also quite explicitly maintains that we are born under the "law of sin". Now, if by "law of sin" St Cyril simply meant physical mortality, wouldn't he have said so? Seems rather that he actually meant "sin", i.e. we are born in sin. The only thing to understand is that by being born in sin we do not thereby say we are co-transgressors with Adam, if indeed this is what the Western tradition ended up teaching. In any case, Fr Romanides' theory that all sin arises out of the fear of physical death does not appear to be supported in that quotation.

What about these quotes?
http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm (Rags of Mortality: Original Sin and Human Nature)
quote:
St. Cyril of Alexandria, for instance, observes: "Since [Adam] produced children after falling into this state, we, his descendants, are corruptible as the issue of a corruptible source. It is in this sense that we are heirs of Adam's curse. Not that we are punished for having disobeyed God's commandment along with him, but that he became mortal and the curse of mortality was transmitted to his seed after him, offspring born of a mortal source . . . So corruption and death are the universal inheritance of Adam's transgression" (Doctrinal questions and answers, 6). Elsewhere, commenting on St. Paul's teaching, he explains: "Human nature became sick with sin. Because of the disobedience of one (that is, of Adam), the many became sinners; not because they transgressed together with Adam (for they were not there) but because they are of his nature, which entered under the dominion of sin . . . Human nature became ill and subject to corruption through the transgression of Adam, thus penetrating man's very passions" (On Romans 5.18)."


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« Reply #71 on: November 24, 2011, 03:43:56 AM »

St Cyril seems to be saying the same thing again. In the second quotation, he again makes explicit that we are born under the dominion of sin. He does not say that we do not inherit sin in any way. And in the first quotation, he says that we inherit both corruption and death, i.e. not just death.
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« Reply #72 on: November 24, 2011, 04:09:13 AM »

elijahmaria,

Will you say that he is wrong too about the traditional view of the pre-Augustinian fathers? He is one of the leading academic authorities in the field.
page 274 from the book Gratia Et Certamen: The relationship between grace and free will in the discussion of Augustine with the so-called semi-pelagians by D. Ogliari
http://www.amazon.com/Gratia-Certamen-Relationship-Semipelagians-Theologicarum/dp/9042913517 (the link to the book on amazon)



Quote:
"Without indulging in theological speculations. and as a perfect disciple of the East, Cassian shared the optimistic outlook of the Greek theologians and (most probably under the influence of John Chrysostom) considered original sin as a simple "punishment" and not as a "sin", even less as an "inherited debt/guilt". The same expression peccatum originale, which appears only once in Cassian's work's, retains the traditional pre-Augustinian meaning, viz. that of the (original/first) sin of Adam (ursunde) which caused him and his stock the loss of incorruption and immortality as well as that of supernatural knowledge and eternal bliss, and the consequent enslavement to the devil."
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« Reply #73 on: November 24, 2011, 04:18:47 AM »

St Cyril seems to be saying the same thing again. In the second quotation, he again makes explicit that we are born under the dominion of sin. He does not say that we do not inherit sin in any way. And in the first quotation, he says that we inherit both corruption and death, i.e. not just death.

We believe we are born with a tendency to sin and so how is this different from Saint Cyril's use of the word "corruption"?

Don't we believe in both being born with a tendency towards sin(corruption) as well as being born mortal(death)?

Also, how is what Saint Cyril said any different from what Fr. John Romanides said after the quote?

Quote:
"In the East, the fall is understood to be a consequence of man's own withdrawal from divine life and the resulting weakness and disease of human nature. Thus, man himself is seen as the cause through his cooperation with the devil."


and

Quote:
"The Greek Fathers look upon salvation from a biblical perspective and see it as redemption from death and corruptibility and as the healing of human nature which was assaulted by Satan."


They are saying Saint Cyril isn't saying what Fr. John said after the quote, but how so?


Why is everyone hating on Fr. John Romanides?
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« Reply #74 on: November 24, 2011, 04:34:33 AM »

Just looking through my concordance, St Paul seems to make a strong tie between sin, death, and the Law. Anyway, sin reigns in death, and the wages of sin is death, so they seem complimentary to each other. St Paul makes a reference to his "body of death" in which sin dwells in Romans 7 that causes him to do that which he wills not to do. Once again, this along the now two quotes from St Cyril point to an answer of yes, Adam's fall corrupted his nature, out of which fallen nature we inherit our own nature.

Or as quoted

http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm (Rags of Mortality: Original Sin and Human Nature)
quote:
St. Cyril of Alexandria, for instance, observes: "Since [Adam] produced children after falling into this state, we, his descendants, are corruptible as the issue of a corruptible source. It is in this sense that we are heirs of Adam's curse. Not that we are punished for having disobeyed God's commandment along with him, but that he became mortal and the curse of mortality was transmitted to his seed after him, offspring born of a mortal source . . . So corruption and death are the universal inheritance of Adam's transgression" (Doctrinal questions and answers, 6). Elsewhere, commenting on St. Paul's teaching, he explains: "Human nature became sick with sin. Because of the disobedience of one (that is, of Adam), the many became sinners; not because they transgressed together with Adam (for they were not there) but because they are of his nature, which entered under the dominion of sin . . . Human nature became ill and subject to corruption through the transgression of Adam, thus penetrating man's very passions" (On Romans 5.18)."
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« Reply #75 on: November 24, 2011, 04:42:42 AM »

Just looking through my concordance, St Paul seems to make a strong tie between sin, death, and the Law. Anyway, sin reigns in death, and the wages of sin is death, so they seem complimentary to each other. St Paul makes a reference to his "body of death" in which sin dwells in Romans 7 that causes him to do that which he wills not to do. Once again, this along the now two quotes from St Cyril point to an answer of yes, Adam's fall corrupted his nature, out of which fallen nature we inherit our own nature.

Or as quoted

http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm (Rags of Mortality: Original Sin and Human Nature)
quote:
St. Cyril of Alexandria, for instance, observes: "Since [Adam] produced children after falling into this state, we, his descendants, are corruptible as the issue of a corruptible source. It is in this sense that we are heirs of Adam's curse. Not that we are punished for having disobeyed God's commandment along with him, but that he became mortal and the curse of mortality was transmitted to his seed after him, offspring born of a mortal source . . . So corruption and death are the universal inheritance of Adam's transgression" (Doctrinal questions and answers, 6). Elsewhere, commenting on St. Paul's teaching, he explains: "Human nature became sick with sin. Because of the disobedience of one (that is, of Adam), the many became sinners; not because they transgressed together with Adam (for they were not there) but because they are of his nature, which entered under the dominion of sin . . . Human nature became ill and subject to corruption through the transgression of Adam, thus penetrating man's very passions" (On Romans 5.18)."


How do you feel about Fr. John Romanides's interpretation of Saint Cyril?
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« Reply #76 on: November 24, 2011, 05:04:19 AM »

Also, how is what Saint Cyril saying different from what Fr. John Romanides said?

I didn't say it was different, only that his explanation of the quote didn't answer the OP as clearly as his quote from St Cyril. St Cyril's quote is very straight to the point about how the fall affected our nature, where Fr John's is more about comparing differing viewpoints. It might have it's place in explaining to people that we are saved from sin and death and that Christ's crucifixion (and resurrection) was for the purpose of defeating death and not just giving God an outlet for His anger so He can feel better, but that's not the question at hand in this thread.
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« Reply #77 on: November 24, 2011, 09:53:20 PM »

Dear Jnorm,

I will be blunt.  If I were back in the academy working, and I read one of Father John's treatises on the west, I would call him, in any review that I might do, an intellectual fraud.  He pads his texts with half truths and whole lies.  It's a mess trying to read him and he is largely ignored outside of a few Orthodox who think he walks on water.

Forgive me that I cannot and will not ever share your enthusiasm.

M.

elijahmaria,

Will you say that he is wrong too about the traditional view of the pre-Augustinian fathers? He is one of the leading academic authorities in the field.
page 274 from the book Gratia Et Certamen: The relationship between grace and free will in the discussion of Augustine with the so-called semi-pelagians by D. Ogliari
http://www.amazon.com/Gratia-Certamen-Relationship-Semipelagians-Theologicarum/dp/9042913517 (the link to the book on amazon)



Quote:
"Without indulging in theological speculations. and as a perfect disciple of the East, Cassian shared the optimistic outlook of the Greek theologians and (most probably under the influence of John Chrysostom) considered original sin as a simple "punishment" and not as a "sin", even less as an "inherited debt/guilt". The same expression peccatum originale, which appears only once in Cassian's work's, retains the traditional pre-Augustinian meaning, viz. that of the (original/first) sin of Adam (ursunde) which caused him and his stock the loss of incorruption and immortality as well as that of supernatural knowledge and eternal bliss, and the consequent enslavement to the devil."
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« Reply #78 on: November 24, 2011, 10:29:56 PM »

Quote
Our nature thus became diseased by sin through the disobedience of one, that is, of Adam. Thus, all were made sinners, not as co-transgressors with Adam. which they never were, but being of his nature, they fell under the law of sin...In Adam, human nature fell ill and became subject to corruptibility through disobedience, and, therefore, the passions entered in.
So, basically . . . .

The Orthodox teaching is that human nature was changed from being wholly good to being partially bad?

Unless the word "corrupted" means "wholly bad", then it would appear that my friend, the would-be-schismatic, is in error concerning what the Eastern Orthodox churches teach.
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« Reply #79 on: November 24, 2011, 11:00:29 PM »

Unless the word "corrupted" means "wholly bad", then it would appear that my friend, the would-be-schismatic, is in error concerning what the Eastern Orthodox churches teach.

I got the impression from what you wrote that your friend was saying that human nature itself was unaffected by the fall but the rest of creation was, and that being exposed to a fallen world is what corrupts us.

If this is true, then your friend has it backwards. The fall corrupted our nature. We inherit the fallen nature of our parents. It was the corruption of our nature that corrupted the rest of creation. That is why (biblically speaking) Adam died as consequence of the fall, Seth was made in the image of Adam, it was the fall that caused the earth to bring forth thistles, and St Paul writes that all of creation awaits the redemption of our bodies at the resurrection.

As far as what "corruption" means, it just means we're in the process of decay or being destroyed. We're subject to death, and death works in us to produce sin, which leads to death, and so on. As far as that ties into the changes brought about in our nature because of the fall, St Cyril has been quoted here as writing that we're born subject to death, under the dominion of sin, and subject to the passions. I think this is a pretty accurate description of what I have been taught and read, and it is well articulated.
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« Reply #80 on: November 24, 2011, 11:30:05 PM »

Unless the word "corrupted" means "wholly bad", then it would appear that my friend, the would-be-schismatic, is in error concerning what the Eastern Orthodox churches teach.

I got the impression from what you wrote that your friend was saying that human nature itself was unaffected by the fall but the rest of creation was, and that being exposed to a fallen world is what corrupts us.

If this is true, then your friend has it backwards. The fall corrupted our nature. We inherit the fallen nature of our parents. It was the corruption of our nature that corrupted the rest of creation. That is why (biblically speaking) Adam died as consequence of the fall, Seth was made in the image of Adam, it was the fall that caused the earth to bring forth thistles, and St Paul writes that all of creation awaits the redemption of our bodies at the resurrection.

As far as what "corruption" means, it just means we're in the process of decay or being destroyed. We're subject to death, and death works in us to produce sin, which leads to death, and so on. As far as that ties into the changes brought about in our nature because of the fall, St Cyril has been quoted here as writing that we're born subject to death, under the dominion of sin, and subject to the passions. I think this is a pretty accurate description of what I have been taught and read, and it is well articulated.
Thank you for your opinion. I don't think he truly understands what Orthodoxy teaches on the issue - Fr. Peter seems to have a different opinion, though - and I'd like to see how he interprets St. Cyril.
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« Reply #81 on: November 27, 2011, 09:16:18 PM »

I don't know if this will hurt or help but I'll wade in with this:

I learned this distinction thusly, and I welcome and ask for correction where I err.  Our nature is neither inherently "good" nor "evil," as "good" and "evil" are personal attributes, not natural ones.  Adam's nature was thus not ontologically different from ours, but it was illumined by the Divine Energies through communion with God.  This was lost in the fall -- the illumined nature, not the "good" or "incorrupt" nature.  This loss of the Divine Energies is what we would refer to as "corruption."

Christ restored the communion with God in His Person. In Him, the Divine Energies interpenetrated the human nature, and so in His Person, the nature was restored to a status of being illumined.  We commune with Christ's illumined nature and thereby through Him, the communion with God is restored, and so we also are illumined. 

As I understand it -- and again I welcome correction -- the nature is different in that it is illumined or not illumined depending on pre-fall, post-fall or post-incarnation.  But the ontological properties of the nature itself did not change.  That is how Christ could take on our human nature in all its "corruption" and yet not be considered sinful Himself.  It is not Pelagian, far from it.  Rather, it sets the ontology straight and avoids both the errors of Pelagius and Calvin.
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« Reply #82 on: November 28, 2011, 07:14:22 PM »

I think that the basic premise that human nature is neither good nor evil flies in the face of Scripture which says clearly that it is Good.

I don't know if this will hurt or help but I'll wade in with this:

I learned this distinction thusly, and I welcome and ask for correction where I err.  Our nature is neither inherently "good" nor "evil," as "good" and "evil" are personal attributes, not natural ones.  Adam's nature was thus not ontologically different from ours, but it was illumined by the Divine Energies through communion with God.  This was lost in the fall -- the illumined nature, not the "good" or "incorrupt" nature.  This loss of the Divine Energies is what we would refer to as "corruption."

Christ restored the communion with God in His Person. In Him, the Divine Energies interpenetrated the human nature, and so in His Person, the nature was restored to a status of being illumined.  We commune with Christ's illumined nature and thereby through Him, the communion with God is restored, and so we also are illumined. 

As I understand it -- and again I welcome correction -- the nature is different in that it is illumined or not illumined depending on pre-fall, post-fall or post-incarnation.  But the ontological properties of the nature itself did not change.  That is how Christ could take on our human nature in all its "corruption" and yet not be considered sinful Himself.  It is not Pelagian, far from it.  Rather, it sets the ontology straight and avoids both the errors of Pelagius and Calvin.
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« Reply #83 on: November 28, 2011, 07:51:25 PM »

I think that the basic premise that human nature is neither good nor evil flies in the face of Scripture which says clearly that it is Good.

Fair point.  What I'm trying to get across, I suppose, is that human nature is not equated to righteousness, nor to sinfulness.  Rather, righteousness and sinfulness are personal attributes.  I hope that clarifies rather than confuses the issue further.  Thank you for pointing out the error.
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« Reply #84 on: November 28, 2011, 08:17:56 PM »

I think that the basic premise that human nature is neither good nor evil flies in the face of Scripture which says clearly that it is Good.

Fair point.  What I'm trying to get across, I suppose, is that human nature is not equated to righteousness, nor to sinfulness.  Rather, righteousness and sinfulness are personal attributes.  I hope that clarifies rather than confuses the issue further.  Thank you for pointing out the error.

I think the distinction that you make here is a good one. 

I don't know that you made an error. 

Might be the difference between cross-eye dominance and left eye dominance.

If you know how you aim, you can generally aim at what you want to hit and hit what you are aiming at.

 Smiley

Just that not everyone is going to know how you got there... Cheesy
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« Reply #85 on: December 17, 2011, 12:58:11 PM »

I think that the basic premise that human nature is neither good nor evil flies in the face of Scripture which says clearly that it is Good.

I don't know if this will hurt or help but I'll wade in with this:

I learned this distinction thusly, and I welcome and ask for correction where I err.  Our nature is neither inherently "good" nor "evil," as "good" and "evil" are personal attributes, not natural ones.  Adam's nature was thus not ontologically different from ours, but it was illumined by the Divine Energies through communion with God.  This was lost in the fall -- the illumined nature, not the "good" or "incorrupt" nature.  This loss of the Divine Energies is what we would refer to as "corruption."

Christ restored the communion with God in His Person. In Him, the Divine Energies interpenetrated the human nature, and so in His Person, the nature was restored to a status of being illumined.  We commune with Christ's illumined nature and thereby through Him, the communion with God is restored, and so we also are illumined. 

As I understand it -- and again I welcome correction -- the nature is different in that it is illumined or not illumined depending on pre-fall, post-fall or post-incarnation.  But the ontological properties of the nature itself did not change.  That is how Christ could take on our human nature in all its "corruption" and yet not be considered sinful Himself.  It is not Pelagian, far from it.  Rather, it sets the ontology straight and avoids both the errors of Pelagius and Calvin.
That tremur you all just felt shaking the cosmos was me agreeing with EM.

Even the devil is ontologically good.  Evil has no ontological existence, just as darkness is the absence of light.  Evil is a parasite that has to live off of goodness as its host.
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« Reply #86 on: December 17, 2011, 01:03:14 PM »

First of all I can't read it in pretty lime green print but I know the passage and it is NOT what Father had said at all...I can only deal with what people say and not what they might mean.
Can I quote you on that?


We were created mortal. It is no sin to be mortal. It is no sin to be corruptible. This is how we were created. This is how Adam was created.


Here's the problem I think.  I don't know enough about Oriental Orthodox teachings to know if this is part of it but it certainly is not part of Eastern Orthodox or Roman Catholic teaching as I have learned them.

This is not a personal criticism of you Father.  I am sorry to be in a position to counter your assertion.

M.

Will this work?


Theophilus (2nd century bishop of Antioch)
Theophilus to Autolycus: Book II
Chapter XXVII.—The Nature of Man.
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf02.iv.ii.ii.xxvii.html (the link)


"But some one will say to us, Was man made by nature mortal? Certainly not. Was he, then, immortal? Neither do we affirm this. But one will say, Was he, then, nothing? Not even this hits the mark. He was by nature neither mortal nor immortal. For if He had made him immortal from the beginning, He would have made him God. Again, if He had made him mortal, God would seem to be the cause of his death. Neither, then, immortal nor yet mortal did He make him, but, as we have said above, capable of both; so that if he should incline to the things of immortality, keeping the commandment of God, he should receive as reward from Him immortality, and should become God; but if, on the other hand, he should turn to the things of death, disobeying God, he should himself be the cause of death to himself. For God made man free, and with power over himself. That, then, which man brought upon himself through carelessness and disobedience, this God now vouchsafes to him as a gift through His own philanthropy and pity, when men obey Him. Apparently meaning, that God turns death, which man brought on himself by disobedience, into a blessing. For as man, disobeying, drew death upon himself; so, obeying the will of God, he who desires is able to procure for himself life everlasting. For God has given us a law and holy commandments; and every one who keeps these can be saved, and, obtaining the resurrection, can inherit incorruption."



You can go here to see if there is anything else that could be helpful in regards to this issue:
http://orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com/2010/11/free-will.html (my link of quotes in the area of free will)
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« Reply #87 on: December 17, 2011, 01:11:32 PM »

That's how most of the anti-Latin Orthodox polemics are.

Actually no one but the OP has really phrased this is an 'anti-' or even 'compared to' Latin thing. Most of the responses have simply focused on discussing what the actual Orthodox/Patristic teaching is--and neither St. Cyril nor St. Athanasius were influenced by Anti-Latin or Anti-Calvin concerns.

As for what difference if Original Sin= 'corruptible' vs. 'corrupt' makes:
If the impact of the Fall is simply that human nature was divided from the Divine -- which seperation results in corruptibility (at both a physical and moral level), then that means Christ as perfect God and perfect man, in His single Person wipes out that divide. He's not subject to Original Sin by definition.

If Original Sin=human nature is inherently corrupt, then additional intellectual exercises are necessary to explain how Christ could assume *our* human nature but His human nature was not corrupt.
of course, that brings up another problem on the Latin side, the IC: if she was IC'd, then there is no reason why she should die.  Of course, the Latin Immortalists have no problem bringing that to its logical conclusion.
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« Reply #88 on: December 17, 2011, 01:13:56 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.
Pelegianism?

The Catholic Church teaches that the stain of original sin is a darkened intellect [nous] and a weakened will [concupiscence].   

Other results of the fall are that we are susceptible to pain and suffering, drawn to the vices with dishonesty and lust being ones that are mentioned directly, open to death and corruptibility, and out of sorts with nature:  Lions lie down with us to have us for lunch, hurricanes take our houses and our lives, etc.

I am not sure what you are saying here.

M.
If St. Cyril is teaching that human's are merely corruptible, not corrupted, and merely susceptible to death, not sentenced to die, then it places us all on equal footing with Adam and Eve, who before the fall, were corruptible, and susceptible to death, as obviously the serpent (and thus the Enemy) tricked them, causing them to be corrupted.

If we are on an equal footing as them as far as our relation to God and sin when we are born, it means that Pelagius was right.
Are you saying that the IC is Pelagian?
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« Reply #89 on: December 17, 2011, 01:23:18 PM »

It all depends upon what is meant by the word "corruption"? 

As I see, the word "corruption" refers to human mortality after the fall, but of course being mortal does not mean that a human being has inherited Adam's guilt or personal sin (see St. John Chrysostom, Third Baptismal Instruction, no. 6).

Why would we raise the question of personal sin guilt since neither the Catholic Church nor Orthodoxy teach or have ever taught that we carry the personal guilt of the Ancestor's sins...

It is one thing to indicate that the consequences of the fall pass on to each one of us personally, but that is NOT the same thing as speaking of personal guilt.

Sometimes that needs to be said in discussions such as these.

M.

It's because the question of whether we inherit sin from Adam, or what it means to say we inherit sin from Adam, is his theological hobby-horse.
Not at all.  I simply reject the notion that sin or guilt can be inherited because those things are personal and not natural.  That said, I have not accused you of having a theological "hobby-horse" and I would appreciate the same courtesy.

Do I believe that the Latin bishops at Trent were correct when they asserted that a man inherits guilt (either as reatum or culpa) or sin?  Nope.

It's especially irritating when a Catholic tries to show he's more Orthodox than the Orthodox. "Latin" bishops, indeed! Face it, they are YOUR bishops. If you think they're so heretical, just join us already! Wink
LOL.  Given the current status of your jurisdiction, that's a bit rich.

IIRC, Apotheum has posted (here or CAF or Byzcath) why he doesn't join our bishops.  Not that I completely understand it, much less agree, but I can't dispute his sincerity.  Not to mention, his learning and erudition.

But actually I don't agree with you that we have to reject the idea of inheriting sin. There is just too much patristic support for it. What you could say is that the Church never taught that anyone is born with personal guilt or responsibility for original sin. Original sin is not an individual transgression that all newborns are held to be juridically guilty of, but it is a definitely sinful condition that requires cleansing in Baptism. I know elsewhere you have argued that Baptism does not cleanse sins in the case of newborns, but I don't think you produced any patristic evidence for this, and there is nothing in the Baptismal prayers that would lead anyone to conclude that newborns were not being cleansed of sin, and we have the decision of the Council of Carthage (which was accepted by the whole Church, lest you try to wriggle out of it by saying it was "Western" or "Augustinian") which says that anyone who denies babies are born in sin and require the cleansing of Baptism are under anathema.
Then there is the practical example that babies do die in the womb (besides being killed there  Cry Embarrassed Angry police), so they are under the reign of death.  The diffrence between children and adults comes out in the funeral service.
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« Reply #90 on: December 17, 2011, 01:28:37 PM »

We bear the consequences of the judgement passed against Adam. We are separated from God and devoid of the indwelling Holy Spirit and left to our natural mortality we are experiencing dissolution.

How does the nature of the condition of our nature that you describe not "miss the mark"?

We're not born responsible for our condition, but we are still born in this condition that came about as a result of our first parents transgression. The only way we can be healed of this condition is through Christ, into Whom we are baptized. We were seperated from God, we are united to Him in baptism. We were devoid of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, part of an Orthodox baptism is being "sealed with the gift of the Holy Spirit". We were left to mortality and dissolution, we are given the promise of the resurrection having been buried with Him in baptism.

Unless you think that seperation from God, being devoid of the Holy Spirit, and death and dissolution is the "mark" that God has set for us. The fact is this is all sin. It's a condition and not an act, but it is still against the will of the God who "wills that none should perish".
I would agree, as man was created to be in communion with God: without theosis there is no way to actualize the Image nor progress in the Likeness of Him in Whose Image and Likeness man was made.

I have to look up, but somewhere St. Simeon the New Theologian makes the point that Adam and Eve did die when they ate the fruit, and that they lived like zombies thereafter (not his words, but something to that effect.  IIRC, the image he uses has to do with them suffacating from a lack of breath/spirit (both Pneuma in Greek and RuuH in Semitic).
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« Reply #91 on: December 17, 2011, 01:36:20 PM »

Thank you for this quote jnorm888.

I believe this answers the OP.

Except for the fact that it absolutely distorts the teachings of the west in good Romanides Style.  It also not surprising to find Father G. translating.  He is also well known for his distortions.

However:  IF that kind of thing is useful to Orthodox converts in Orthodox America, far be it from me to say don't take that path.

Cheers!!   Cool
I wasn't aware that Fr. Romanides was an Orthodox convert in America.  You learn something new everyday.

Fr. Romanides (Memory Eternal!) sources his writings. Can you?
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« Reply #92 on: December 17, 2011, 01:44:06 PM »

Thank you for this quote jnorm888.

I believe this answers the OP.
Except for the fact that it absolutely distorts the teachings of the west in good Romanides Style.  It also not surprising to find Father G. translating.  He is also well known for his distortions.

However:  IF that kind of thing is useful to Orthodox converts in Orthodox America, far be it from me to say don't take that path.

Cheers!!   Cool

I was referring more to the quote that it contains from St Cyril specifically.

It is difficult to reconcile the quote from St. Cyril and the rest of the presentation in the final paragraph, without suggesting that distancing one's self from the west is far more important that seeking the truth.
Though not ontologically linked, neither are they mutually exclusive.

The final paragraph is spot on on Anselm, both on what led up to him, and what he led to (for one thing, Calvinism's T.U.L.I.P)
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« Reply #93 on: December 17, 2011, 01:49:46 PM »

That's how most of the anti-Latin Orthodox polemics are.

Actually no one but the OP has really phrased this is an 'anti-' or even 'compared to' Latin thing. Most of the responses have simply focused on discussing what the actual Orthodox/Patristic teaching is--and neither St. Cyril nor St. Athanasius were influenced by Anti-Latin or Anti-Calvin concerns.

As for what difference if Original Sin= 'corruptible' vs. 'corrupt' makes:
If the impact of the Fall is simply that human nature was divided from the Divine -- which seperation results in corruptibility (at both a physical and moral level), then that means Christ as perfect God and perfect man, in His single Person wipes out that divide. He's not subject to Original Sin by definition.

If Original Sin=human nature is inherently corrupt, then additional intellectual exercises are necessary to explain how Christ could assume *our* human nature but His human nature was not corrupt.
of course, that brings up another problem on the Latin side, the IC: if she was IC'd, then there is no reason why she should die.  Of course, the Latin Immortalists have no problem bringing that to its logical conclusion.

That is not true.  All humanity is subject to death, by nature.  The Immaculate Conception is a preservation from the spiritual death that is a consequence of the ancestral sin. 

She is preserved from having a darkened intellect and a weakened will, which is the result of the loss of original justice, but that is a spiritual loss. 

We die after we are baptised into Christ.  We die even after Jesus tramples down death by death.

She is not preserved from being human and human beings die.  She was preserved from corruption by another act of grace at the time of her Assumption where, after she died, she was taken bodily into heaven.

M.
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« Reply #94 on: December 17, 2011, 01:59:30 PM »

Dear Jnorm,

I will be blunt.  If I were back in the academy working, and I read one of Father John's treatises on the west, I would call him, in any review that I might do, an intellectual fraud.  He pads his texts with half truths and whole lies.  It's a mess trying to read him and he is largely ignored outside of a few Orthodox who think he walks on water.

Forgive me that I cannot and will not ever share your enthusiasm.

M.
Phycianess, heal thyself. And don't seek medical advice from "Dr." Spiteri:
Quote
FABRICATIONS ABOUT PROF JOHN S. ROMANIDES by CAPUCHINO PRIEST IANNI SPITERI
Response by Prof. George Metallinos of The University of Athens

Grievous fabrications about Father John S. Romanides, retired professor of the University of Thessaloniki, come from the pen of the Capuchin Priest Prof. Yannis Spiteris...[who]...1)...was born and lives on the Greek Island of Corfu. 2) He teaches Theology at a theological school in Rome. 3) He is the personal advisor to the Pope himself on Greek Orthodox Theology. Father Spiteris writes with the intention of not only informing Latins, but also the Orthodox WHICH theologians they should follow. Evidently the Vatican has problems with J. Romanides' theological and historical research....
http://www.romanity.org/mir/me02en.htm

btw, this is a nice tidbit
Quote
He resigned from Holy Cross in 1965 in protest over the removal of Father Georges Florovsky from the faculty by Archbishop Iacovos. Between 1965 and 1968 Father Romanides served as the pastor of Holy Apostles' Parish in Haverhill, Mass
And Fr. Rominides was on the Joint Commission of the Theological Dialogue between the Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches.  Don't think that they thought he walked on water, but they didn't (and don't) ignore him either.
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« Reply #95 on: December 17, 2011, 02:10:16 PM »

Dear Jnorm,

I will be blunt.  If I were back in the academy working, and I read one of Father John's treatises on the west, I would call him, in any review that I might do, an intellectual fraud.  He pads his texts with half truths and whole lies.  It's a mess trying to read him and he is largely ignored outside of a few Orthodox who think he walks on water.

Forgive me that I cannot and will not ever share your enthusiasm.

M.
Phycianess, heal thyself. And don't seek medical advice from "Dr." Spiteri:
Quote
FABRICATIONS ABOUT PROF JOHN S. ROMANIDES by CAPUCHINO PRIEST IANNI SPITERI
Response by Prof. George Metallinos of The University of Athens

Grievous fabrications about Father John S. Romanides, retired professor of the University of Thessaloniki, come from the pen of the Capuchin Priest Prof. Yannis Spiteris...[who]...1)...was born and lives on the Greek Island of Corfu. 2) He teaches Theology at a theological school in Rome. 3) He is the personal advisor to the Pope himself on Greek Orthodox Theology. Father Spiteris writes with the intention of not only informing Latins, but also the Orthodox WHICH theologians they should follow. Evidently the Vatican has problems with J. Romanides' theological and historical research....
http://www.romanity.org/mir/me02en.htm

btw, this is a nice tidbit
Quote
He resigned from Holy Cross in 1965 in protest over the removal of Father Georges Florovsky from the faculty by Archbishop Iacovos. Between 1965 and 1968 Father Romanides served as the pastor of Holy Apostles' Parish in Haverhill, Mass
And Fr. Rominides was on the Joint Commission of the Theological Dialogue between the Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches.  Don't think that they thought he walked on water, but they didn't (and don't) ignore him either.

The priest's historical work was a mess.  I certainly will ignore him.  There's too much to read and learn that IS good and IS reliable and IS accurate to waste time with a bitter pill like Father John.

Keep him...venerate him...canonize him...I don't care.  I don't like his work because it looks either foolish or dishonest and I don't care which it is frankly.

M.
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« Reply #96 on: December 17, 2011, 02:29:05 PM »

That's how most of the anti-Latin Orthodox polemics are.

Actually no one but the OP has really phrased this is an 'anti-' or even 'compared to' Latin thing. Most of the responses have simply focused on discussing what the actual Orthodox/Patristic teaching is--and neither St. Cyril nor St. Athanasius were influenced by Anti-Latin or Anti-Calvin concerns.

As for what difference if Original Sin= 'corruptible' vs. 'corrupt' makes:
If the impact of the Fall is simply that human nature was divided from the Divine -- which seperation results in corruptibility (at both a physical and moral level), then that means Christ as perfect God and perfect man, in His single Person wipes out that divide. He's not subject to Original Sin by definition.

If Original Sin=human nature is inherently corrupt, then additional intellectual exercises are necessary to explain how Christ could assume *our* human nature but His human nature was not corrupt.
of course, that brings up another problem on the Latin side, the IC: if she was IC'd, then there is no reason why she should die.  Of course, the Latin Immortalists have no problem bringing that to its logical conclusion.

That is not true.  All humanity is subject to death, by nature.  The Immaculate Conception is a preservation from the spiritual death that is a consequence of the ancestral sin.
 
Ineffibilis Deus and Muntificentissimus Deus make the conection.  We had that all out with Mardukm and his odd ideas, which you replicate here, in ignoring the plan text of your magisterial (they are magisterial, no?) texts:
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20612.msg328462.html#msg328462
The Early Church Fathers on the Immaculate Conception - Catholic/Orthodox Caucus
Stay Catholic ^

Posted on Sunday, February 11, 2007 5:54:59 PM by NYer

The Early Church Fathers believed that Mary was full of grace and thus sinless....

Hippolytus

He [Jesus] was the ark formed of incorruptible wood. For by this is signified that His tabernacle [Mary] was exempt from defilement and corruption (Orat. In Illud, Dominus pascit me, in Gallandi, Bibl. Patrum, II, 496 ante [A.D. 235]).

Gregory Nazianzen

He was conceived by the virgin, who had been first purified by the Spirit in soul and body; for, as it was fitting that childbearing should receive its share of honor, so it was necessary that virginity should receive even greater honor (Sermon 38 [d. A.D. 390]).



Theodotus of Ancrya

A virgin, innocent, spotless, free of all defect, untouched, unsullied, holy in soul and body, like a lily sprouting among thorns (Homily 6:11[ante A.D. 446]).

And here the false syllogism gets its start.

This is a false statement?  

Mary
It does not follow from that she was full of grace that she was therefore sinless, much less without ancestral sin, any more than for St. Stephen (Acts 6:Cool, or SS Elizabeth and Zachariah being "blamelss" (Lk 1:6) made them immaculate.

You cannot count Christ with the "fallen ones".. Christ is the only one that came out of heaven(John 3:13;1Cor 15:47).

This line that you are following here falls quickly off to one side or the other, Nestor or Arius.

Jesus took flesh from the Theotokos...corruptible flesh, capable of aging and of death.

The Immaculate Conception only refers to a spiritual freedom from the stain of original sin, not a physical freedom from ALL of the consequences of original sin, including death, pain and the possibility of corruption.  She was preserved, as a virgin, from the pain of child birth.  And she was preserved from bodily corruption upon her death by being raised up and assumed into heaven.
Btw, who is Nestor?

As for the rest:
No, just bringing out the difficulty of pinning you down for authoritative statements, and getting you to recognize the plain language of dogmatic statements (like the Magesterial Pronouncement of the Fifth Ecumenical Council: sorry, neither we nor the Vatican are the court of appeal from an Ecumenical Council), let alone the plain language of pronouncements on the IC.
Well, the "plain language" of the IC, if you want to debate it, should be interpreted according to the magisterial interpretations of the CC, not according to the whimsical interpretations of NON-Catholics, wouldn't you agree?

How about the learned interpretation of Catholics not in communion with the Vatican, bases on your magisterial inerpratations?
Dearest Father Ambrose,

Seriously -- the fact that you do not actually read my response makes your claims lose all credibility.  I already stated, specifically, that the "stain" of original sin does not refer to any of the tactile effects of the Fall, but only to the spiritual effects.  I don't know how you can assume I claimed that death is not a consequence of the Fall.

Let me spell this out more slowly:

The Fall had two consequences for mankind - 1) tactile/physical effects which include bodily/emotional infirmities, corruption and death. 2) spiritual effects which include loss of sanctifying grace, loss of original justice, and concupiscence.

In the Decree on Original Sin at the Council of Trent, the Church defined that in Baptism, mankind is "made innocent, without stain, pure...beloved sons of God."

Do you see the word "stain" in the definition, Father?  Do you see the connection?  "Stain" refers to the SPIRITUAL consequences of original sin, NOT the physical/tactile consequences (unless your innovative polemics are now going to claim that the Catholic Church teaches that Baptism means we can no longer die).

So when the dogma of the IC states that Mary was preserved from all STAIN of original sin, it is referring exclusively to the SPIRITUAL consequences of original sin, and is not making any reference to the physical/tactile consequences.  In other words, the dogma of the IC is not claiming that the Graces Mary received at the moment of the Immaculate Conception somehow freed her from death, or physical/emotional infirmities, or bodily corruption, etc.

Your fine distinction in the IC are not found in Ineffibilus Deus.  Are they a refinement?
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SUPREME REASON FOR THE PRIVILEGE: THE DIVINE MATERNITY

And indeed it was wholly fitting that so wonderful a mother should be ever resplendent with the glory of most sublime holiness and so completely free from all taint of original sin that she would triumph utterly over the ancient serpent. To her did the Father will to give his only-begotten Son -- the Son whom, equal to the Father and begotten by him, the Father loves from his heart -- and to give this Son in such a way that he would be the one and the same common Son of God the Father and of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It was she whom the Son himself chose to make his Mother and it was from her that the Holy Spirit willed and brought it about that he should be conceived and born from whom he himself proceeds.[1]
Nice inclusion of the error of the Filioque.

This of course, is the supreme problem for your read of the IC:Mary becomes Theotokos through her body.

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The Fathers and writers of the Church, well versed in the heavenly Scriptures, had nothing more at heart than to vie with one another in preaching and teaching in many wonderful ways the Virgin's supreme sanctity, dignity, and immunity from all stain of sin, and her renowned victory over the most foul enemy of the human race. This they did in the books they wrote to explain the Scriptures, to vindicate the dogmas, and to instruct the faithful. These ecclesiastical writers in quoting the words by which at the beginning of the world God announced his merciful remedies prepared for the regeneration of mankind -- words by which he crushed the audacity of the deceitful serpent and wondrously raised up the hope of our race, saying, "I will put enmities between you and the woman, between your seed and her seed"[13] -- taught that by this divine prophecy the merciful Redeemer of mankind, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, was clearly foretold: That his most Blessed Mother, the Virgin Mary, was prophetically indicated; and, at the same time, the very enmity of both against the evil one was significantly expressed. Hence, just as Christ, the Mediator between God and man, assumed human nature, blotted the handwriting of the decree that stood against us, and fastened it triumphantly to the cross, so the most holy Virgin, united with him by a most intimate and indissoluble bond, was, with him and through him, eternally at enmity with the evil serpent, and most completely triumphed over him, and thus crushed his head with her immaculate foot.[14]

Based on the Vulgate's mistransaltion of Genesis 3:15 (something the IC believers by the score still ignore).

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As if these splendid eulogies and tributes were not sufficient, the Fathers proclaimed with particular and definite statements that when one treats of sin, the holy Virgin Mary is not even to be mentioned; for to her more grace was given than was necessary to conquer sin completely.[24] They also declared that the most glorious Virgin was Reparatrix of the first parents, the giver of life to posterity; that she was chosen before the ages, prepared for himself by the Most High, foretold by God when he said to the serpent, "I will put enmities between you and the woman."[25] -- unmistakable evidence that she crushed the poisonous head of the serpent. And hence they affirmed that the Blessed Virgin was, through grace, entirely free from every stain of sin, and from all corruption of body, soul and mind; that she was always united with God and joined to him by an eternal covenant; that she was never in darkness but always in light; and that, therefore, she was entirely a fit habitation for Christ, not because of the state of her body, but because of her original grace.


They testified, too, that the flesh of the Virgin, although derived from Adam, did not contract the stains of Adam, and that on this account the most Blessed Virgin was the tabernacle created by God himself and formed by the Holy Spirit, truly a work in royal purple, adorned and woven with gold, which that new Beseleel made. They affirmed that the same Virgin is, and is deservedly, the first and especial work of God, escaping the fiery arrows the evil one; that she is beautiful by nature and entirely free from all stain; that at her Immaculate Conception she came into the world all radiant like the dawn. For it was certainly not fitting that this vessel of election should be wounded by the common injuries, since she, differing so much from the others, had only nature in common with them, not sin. In fact, it was quite fitting that, as the Only-Begotten has a Father in heaven, whom the Seraphim extol as thrice holy, so he should have a Mother on earth who would never be without the splendor of holiness.

This doctrine so filled the minds and souls of our ancestors in the faith that a singular and truly marvelous style of speech came into vogue among them. They have frequently addressed the Mother of God as immaculate, as immaculate in every respect; innocent, and verily most innocent; spotless, and entirely spotless; holy and removed from every stain of sin; all pure, all stainless, the very model of purity and innocence; more beautiful than beauty, more lovely than loveliness; more holy than holiness, singularly holy and most pure in soul and body; the one who surpassed all integrity and virginity; the only one who has become the dwelling place of all the graces of the most Holy Spirit. God alone excepted, Mary is more excellent than all, and by nature fair and beautiful, and more holy than the Cherubim and Seraphim. To praise her all the tongues of heaven and earth do not suffice.

And then, there is the problem of squaring your read of the IC with Munificentissimus Deus:
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3. Actually God, who from all eternity regards Mary with a most favorable and unique affection, has "when the fullness of time came"(2) put the plan of his providence into effect in such a way that all the privileges and prerogatives he had granted to her in his sovereign generosity were to shine forth in her in a kind of perfect harmony. And, although the Church has always recognized this supreme generosity and the perfect harmony of graces and has daily studied them more and more throughout the course of the centuries, still it is in our own age that the privilege of the bodily Assumption into heaven of Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, has certainly shone forth more clearly.

4. That privilege has shone forth in new radiance since our predecessor of immortal memory, Pius IX, solemnly proclaimed the dogma of the loving Mother of God's Immaculate Conception. These two privileges are most closely bound to one another. Christ overcame sin and death by his own death, and one who through Baptism has been born again in a supernatural way has conquered sin and death through the same Christ. Yet, according to the general rule, God does not will to grant to the just the full effect of the victory over death until the end of time has come. And so it is that the bodies of even the just are corrupted after death, and only on the last day will they be joined, each to its own glorious soul.

5. Now God has willed that the Blessed Virgin Mary should be exempted from this general rule. She, by an entirely unique privilege, completely overcame sin by her Immaculate Conception, and as a result she was not subject to the law of remaining in the corruption of the grave, and she did not have to wait until the end of time for the redemption of her body.

6. Thus, when it was solemnly proclaimed that Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, was from the very beginning free from the taint of original sin, the minds of the faithful were filled with a stronger hope that the day might soon come when the dogma of the Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption into heaven would also be defined by the Church's supreme teaching authority.

12. But those whom "the Holy Spirit has placed as bishops to rule the Church of God"(4) gave an almost unanimous affirmative response to both these questions. This "outstanding agreement of the Catholic prelates and the faithful,"(5) affirming that the bodily Assumption of God's Mother into heaven can be defined as a dogma of faith, since it shows us the concordant teaching of the Church's ordinary doctrinal authority and the concordant faith of the Christian people which the same doctrinal authority sustains and directs, thus by itself and in an entirely certain and infallible way, manifests this privilege as a truth revealed by God and contained in that divine deposit which Christ has delivered to his Spouse to be guarded faithfully and to be taught infallibly.(6) Certainly this teaching authority of the Church, not by any merely human effort but under the protection of the Spirit of Truth,(7) and therefore absolutely without error, carries out the commission entrusted to it, that of preserving the revealed truths pure and entire throughout every age, in such a way that it presents them undefiled, adding nothing to them and taking nothing away from them. For, as the Vatican Council teaches, "the Holy Spirit was not promised to the successors of Peter in such a way that, by his revelation, they might manifest new doctrine, but so that, by his assistance, they might guard as sacred and might faithfully propose the revelation delivered through the apostles, or the deposit of faith."(Cool Thus, from the universal agreement of the Church's ordinary teaching authority we have a certain and firm proof, demonstrating that the Blessed Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption into heaven- which surely no faculty of the human mind could know by its own natural powers, as far as the heavenly glorification of the virginal body of the loving Mother of God is concerned-is a truth that has been revealed by God and consequently something that must be firmly and faithfully believed by all children of the Church. For, as the Vatican Council asserts, "all those things are to be believed by divine and Catholic faith which are contained in the written Word of God or in Tradition, and which are proposed by the Church, either in solemn judgment or in its ordinary and universal teaching office, as divinely revealed truths which must be believed."(9)

14. Christ's faithful, through the teaching and the leadership of their pastors, have learned from the sacred books that the Virgin Mary, throughout the course of her earthly pilgrimage, led a life troubled by cares, hardships, and sorrows, and that, moreover, what the holy old man Simeon had foretold actually came to pass, that is, that a terribly sharp sword pierced her heart as she stood under the cross of her divine Son, our Redeemer. In the same way, it was not difficult for them to admit that the great Mother of God, like her only begotten Son, had actually passed from this life. But this in no way prevented them from believing and from professing openly that her sacred body had never been subject to the corruption of the tomb, and that the august tabernacle of the Divine Word had never been reduced to dust and ashes. Actually, enlightened by divine grace and moved by affection for her, God's Mother and our own dearest Mother, they have contemplated in an ever clearer light the wonderful harmony and order of those privileges which the most provident God has lavished upon this loving associate of our Redeemer, privileges which reach such an exalted plane that, except for her, nothing created by God other than the human nature of Jesus Christ has ever reached this level.

17. In the liturgical books which deal with the feast either of the dormition or of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin there are expressions that agree in testifying that, when the Virgin Mother of God passed from this earthly exile to heaven, what happened to her sacred body was, by the decree of divine Providence, in keeping with the dignity of the Mother of the Word Incarnate, and with the other privileges she had been accorded. Thus, to cite an illustrious example, this is set forth in that sacramentary which Adrian I, our predecessor of immortal memory, sent to the Emperor Charlemagne. These words are found in this volume: "Venerable to us, O Lord, is the festivity of this day on which the holy Mother of God suffered temporal death, but still could not be kept down by the bonds of death, who has begotten your Son our Lord incarnate from herself."(11)

18. What is here indicated in that sobriety characteristic of the Roman liturgy is presented more clearly and completely in other ancient liturgical books. To take one as an example, the Gallican sacramentary designates this privilege of Mary's as "an ineffable mystery all the more worthy of praise as the Virgin's Assumption is something unique among men." And, in the Byzantine liturgy, not only is the Virgin Mary's bodily Assumption connected time and time again with the dignity of the Mother of God, but also with the other privileges, and in particular with the virginal motherhood granted her by a singular decree of God's Providence. "God, the King of the universe, has granted you favors that surpass nature. As he kept you a virgin in childbirth, thus he has kept your body incorrupt in the tomb and has glorified it by his divine act of transferring it from the tomb."(12)

20. However, since the liturgy of the Church does not engender the Catholic faith, but rather springs from it, in such a way that the practices of the sacred worship proceed from the faith as the fruit comes from the tree, it follows that the holy Fathers and the great Doctors, in the homilies and sermons they gave the people on this feast day, did not draw their teaching from the feast itself as from a primary source, but rather they spoke of this doctrine as something already known and accepted by Christ's faithful. They presented it more clearly. They offered more profound explanations of its meaning and nature, bringing out into sharper light the fact that this feast shows, not only that the dead body of the Blessed Virgin Mary remained incorrupt, but that she gained a triumph out of death, her heavenly glorification after the example of her only begotten Son, Jesus Christ-truths that the liturgical books had frequently touched upon concisely and briefly.

21. Thus St. John Damascene, an outstanding herald of this traditional truth, spoke out with powerful eloquence when he compared the bodily Assumption of the loving Mother of God with her other prerogatives and privileges. "It was fitting that she, who had kept her virginity intact in childbirth, should keep her own body free from all corruption even after death. It was fitting that she, who had carried the Creator as a child at her breast, should dwell in the divine tabernacles. It was fitting that the spouse, whom the Father had taken to himself, should live in the divine mansions. It was fitting that she, who had seen her Son upon the cross and who had thereby received into her heart the sword of sorrow which she had escaped in the act of giving birth to him, should look upon him as he sits with the Father. It was fitting that God's Mother should possess what belongs to her Son, and that she should be honored by every creature as the Mother and as the handmaid of God."(17)

22. These words of St. John Damascene agree perfectly with what others have taught on this same subject. Statements no less clear and accurate are to be found in sermons delivered by Fathers of an earlier time or of the same period, particularly on the occasion of this feast. And so, to cite some other examples, St. Germanus of Constantinople considered the fact that the body of Mary, the virgin Mother of God, was incorrupt and had been taken up into heaven to be in keeping, not only with her divine motherhood, but also with the special holiness of her virginal body. "You are she who, as it is written, appears in beauty, and your virginal body is all holy, all chaste, entirely the dwelling place of God, so that it is henceforth completely exempt from dissolution into dust. Though still human, it is changed into the heavenly life of incorruptibility, truly living and glorious, undamaged and sharing in perfect life."(18) And another very ancient writer asserts: "As the most glorious Mother of Christ, our Savior and God and the giver of life and immortality, has been endowed with life by him, she has received an eternal incorruptibility of the body together with him who has raised her up from the tomb and has taken her up to himself in a way known only to him."(19)

26. Often there are theologians and preachers who, following in the footsteps of the holy Fathers,(20) have been rather free in their use of events and expressions taken from Sacred Scripture to explain their belief in the Assumption. Thus, to mention only a few of the texts rather frequently cited in this fashion, some have employed the words of the psalmist: "Arise, O Lord, into your resting place: you and the ark, which you have sanctified"(21); and have looked upon the Ark of the Covenant, built of incorruptible wood and placed in the Lord's temple, as a type of the most pure body of the Virgin Mary, preserved and exempt from all the corruption of the tomb and raised up to such glory in heaven. Treating of this subject, they also describe her as the Queen entering triumphantly into the royal halls of heaven and sitting at the right hand of the divine Redeemer.(22) Likewise they mention the Spouse of the Canticles "that goes up by the desert, as a pillar of smoke of aromatical spices, of myrrh and frankincense" to be crowned.(23) These are proposed as depicting that heavenly Queen and heavenly Spouse who has been lifted up to the courts of heaven with the divine Bridegroom.

28. Thus, during the earliest period of scholastic theology, that most pious man, Amadeus, Bishop of Lausarme, held that the Virgin Mary's flesh had remained incorrupt-for it is wrong to believe that her body has seen corruption-because it was really united again to her soul and, together with it, crowned with great glory in the heavenly courts. "For she was full of grace and blessed among women. She alone merited to conceive the true God of true God, whom as a virgin, she brought forth, to whom as a virgin she gave milk, fondling him in her lap, and in all things she waited upon him with loving care."(26)

29. Among the holy writers who at that time employed statements and various images and analogies of Sacred Scripture to Illustrate and to confirm the doctrine of the Assumption, which was piously believed, the Evangelical Doctor, St. Anthony of Padua, holds a special place. On the feast day of the Assumption, while explaining the prophet's words: "I will glorify the place of my feet,"(27) he stated it as certain that the divine Redeemer had bedecked with supreme glory his most beloved Mother from whom he had received human flesh. He asserts that "you have here a clear statement that the Blessed Virgin has been assumed in her body, where was the place of the Lord's feet. Hence it is that the holy Psalmist writes: 'Arise, O Lord, into your resting place: you and the ark which you have sanctified."' And he asserts that, just as Jesus Christ has risen from the death over which he triumphed and has ascended to the right hand of the Father, so likewise the ark of his sanctification "has risen up, since on this day the Virgin Mother has been taken up to her heavenly dwelling."(28)

30. When, during the Middle Ages, scholastic theology was especially flourishing, St. Albert the Great who, to establish this teaching, had gathered together many proofs from Sacred Scripture, from the statements of older writers, and finally from the liturgy and from what is known as theological reasoning, concluded in this way: "From these proofs and authorities and from many others, it is manifest that the most blessed Mother of God has been assumed above the choirs of angels. And this we believe in every way to be true."(29) And, in a sermon which he delivered on the sacred day of the Blessed Virgin Mary's annunciation, explained the words "Hail, full of grace"-words used by the angel who addressed her-the Universal Doctor, comparing the Blessed Virgin with Eve, stated clearly and incisively that she was exempted from the fourfold curse that had been laid upon Eve.(30)

31. Following the footsteps of his distinguished teacher, the Angelic Doctor, despite the fact that he never dealt directly with this question, nevertheless, whenever he touched upon it, always held together with the Catholic Church, that Mary's body had been assumed into heaven along with her soul.(31)

32. Along with many others, the Seraphic Doctor held the same views. He considered it as entirely certain that, as God had preserved the most holy Virgin Mary from the violation of her virginal purity and integrity in conceiving and in childbirth, he would never have permitted her body to have been resolved into dust and ashes.(32) Explaining these words of Sacred Scripture: "Who is this that comes up from the desert, flowing with delights, leaning upon her beloved?"(33) and applying them in a kind of accommodated sense to the Blessed Virgin, he reasons thus: "From this we can see that she is there bodily...her blessedness would not have been complete unless she were there as a person. The soul is not a person, but the soul, joined to the body, is a person. It is manifest that she is there in soul and in body. Otherwise she would not possess her complete beatitude.(34)

33. In the fifteenth century, during a later period of scholastic theology, St. Bernardine of Siena collected and diligently evaluated all that the medieval theologians had said and taught on this question. He was not content with setting down the principal considerations which these writers of an earlier day had already expressed, but he added others of his own. The likeness between God's Mother and her divine Son, in the way of the nobility and dignity of body and of soul - a likeness that forbids us to think of the heavenly Queen as being separated from the heavenly King - makes it entirely imperative that Mary "should be only where Christ is."(35) Moreover, it is reasonable and fitting that not only the soul and body of a man, but also the soul and body of a woman should have obtained heavenly glory. Finally, since the Church has never looked for the bodily relics of the Blessed Virgin nor proposed them for the veneration of the people, we have a proof on the order of a sensible experience.(36)

34. The above-mentioned teachings of the holy Fathers and of the Doctors have been in common use during more recent times. Gathering together the testimonies of the Christians of earlier days, St. Robert Bellarmine exclaimed: "And who, I ask, could believe that the ark of holiness, the dwelling place of the Word of God, the temple of the Holy Spirit, could be reduced to ruin? My soul is filled with horror at the thought that this virginal flesh which had begotten God, had brought him into the world, had nourished and carried him, could have been turned into ashes or given over to be food for worms."(37)

35. In like manner St. Francis de Sales, after asserting that it is wrong to doubt that Jesus Christ has himself observed, in the most perfect way, the divine commandment by which children are ordered to honor their parents, asks this question: "What son would not bring his mother back to life and would not bring her into paradise after her death if he could?"(38) And St. Alphonsus writes that "Jesus did not wish to have the body of Mary corrupted after death, since it would have redounded to his own dishonor to have her virginal flesh, from which he himself had assumed flesh, reduced to dust."(39)

36. Once the mystery which is commemorated in this feast had been placed in its proper light, there were not lacking teachers who, instead of dealing with the theological reasonings that show why it is fitting and right to believe the bodily Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into heaven, chose to focus their mind and attention on the faith of the Church itself, which is the Mystical Body of Christ without stain or wrinkle(40) and is called by the Apostle "the pillar and ground of truth."(41) Relying on this common faith, they considered the teaching opposed to the doctrine of our Lady's Assumption as temerarious, if not heretical. Thus, like not a few others, St. Peter Canisius, after he had declared that the very word "assumption" signifies the glorification, not only of the soul but also of the body, and that the Church has venerated and has solemnly celebrated this mystery of Mary's Assumption for many centuries, adds these words of warning: "This teaching has already been accepted for some centuries, it has been held as certain in the minds of the pious people, and it has been taught to the entire Church in such a way that those who deny that Mary's body has been assumed into heaven are not to be listened to patiently but are everywhere to be denounced as over-contentious or rash men, and as imbued with a spirit that is heretical rather than Catholic."(42)

37. At the same time the great Suarez was professing in the field of mariology the norm that "keeping in mind the standards of propriety, and when there is no contradiction or repugnance on the part of Scripture, the mysteries of grace which God has wrought in the Virgin must be measured, not by the ordinary laws, but by the divine omnipotence."(43) Supported by the common faith of the entire Church on the subject of the mystery of the Assumption, he could conclude that this mystery was to be believed with the same firmness of assent as that given to the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin. Thus he already held that such truths could be defined.

38. All these proofs and considerations of the holy Fathers and the theologians are based upon the Sacred Writings as their ultimate foundation. These set the loving Mother of God as it were before our very eyes as most intimately joined to her divine Son and as always sharing his lot. Consequently it seems impossible to think of her, the one who conceived Christ, brought him forth, nursed him with her milk, held him in her arms, and clasped him to her breast, as being apart from him in body, even though not in soul, after this earthly life. Since our Redeemer is the Son of Mary, he could not do otherwise, as the perfect observer of God's law, than to honor, not only his eternal Father, but also his most beloved Mother. And, since it was within his power to grant her this great honor, to preserve her from the corruption of the tomb, we must believe that he really acted in this way.

potuit, decuit ergo fecit all over again.

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39. We must remember especially that, since the second century, the Virgin Mary has been designated by the holy Fathers as the new Eve, who, although subject to the new Adam, is most intimately associated with him in that struggle against the infernal foe which, as foretold in the protoevangelium,(44) would finally result in that most complete victory over the sin and death which are always mentioned together in the writings of the Apostle of the Gentiles.(45) Consequently, just as the glorious resurrection of Christ was an essential part and the final sign of this victory, so that struggle which was common to the Blessed Virgin and her divine Son should be brought to a close by the glorification of her virginal body, for the same Apostle says: "When this mortal thing hath put on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: Death is swallowed up in victory."(46)

40. Hence the revered Mother of God, from all eternity joined in a hidden way with Jesus Christ in one and the same decree of predestination,(47) immaculate in her conception, a most perfect virgin in her divine motherhood, the noble associate of the divine Redeemer who has won a complete triumph over sin and its consequences, finally obtained, as the supreme culmination of her privileges, that she should be preserved free from the corruption of the tomb and that, like her own Son, having overcome death, she might be taken up body and soul to the glory of heaven where, as Queen, she sits in splendor at the right hand of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages.(48)
44. For which reason, after we have poured forth prayers of supplication again and again to God, and have invoked the light of the Spirit of Truth, for the glory of Almighty God who has lavished his special affection upon the Virgin Mary, for the honor of her Son, the immortal King of the Ages and the Victor over sin and death, for the increase of the glory of that same august Mother, and for the joy and exultation of the entire Church; by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory.

And then, what about the interpretation of those canonized by the Vatican, and those who teach with its authority?


I am afraid this is NOT an inaccurate understanding of the immaculate Comecption:
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The Immaculate Conception and the Co-redemptrix        
Written by Mark Miravalle    
December 01 2007  
Page 1 of 6
On February 17, 1941, the "Property" of the Immaculata, Fr. Maximilian Kolbe, was arrested by the Nazi Gestapo, eventually leading to his martyrdom in Auschwitz. During the few hours before his arrest, Fr. Maximilian was inspired to write the heart of his unparalleled mariological ponderings regarding the "Immaculate Conception."

The following are excerpts from this last written testimony:

IMMACULATE CONCEPTION: These words fell from the lips of the Immaculata herself. Hence, they must tell us in the most precise and essential manner who she really is.

Since human words are incapable of expressing divine realities, it follows that these words: "Immaculate," and "Conception" must be understood in a much more beautiful and sublime meaning than usual: a meaning beyond that which human reason at its most penetrating, commonly gives to them . . . Who then are you, O Immaculate Conception?

Not God, of course, because he has no beginning. Not an angel, created directly out of nothing. Not Adam, formed out of the dust of the earth (Gen. 2:7). Not Eve, molded from Adam's rib (Gen. 2:21). Not the Incarnate Word, who exists before all ages, and of whom we should use the word "conceived" rather than "conception." Humans do not exist before their conception, so we might call them created "conception." But you, O Mary, are different from all other children of Eve. They are conceptions stained by original sin; whereas you are the unique Immaculate Conception.

. . . Creatures, by following the natural law implanted in them by God, reach their perfection, become like him, and go back to him. Intelligent creatures love him in a conscious manner; through this love they unite themselves more and more closely with him, and so find their way back to him. The creature most completely filled with this love, with God himself, was the Immaculata, who never contracted the slightest stain of sin, who never departed in the least from God's will. United to the Holy Spirit as his spouse, she is one with God in an incomparably more perfect way than can be predicated of any other creature.

What sort of union is this? It is above all an interior union, a union of her essence with the "essence" of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit dwells in her, lives in her. This was true from the first instance of her existence. It is always true; it will always be true.

In what does this life of the Spirit in Mary consist? He himself is uncreated Love in her; the Love of the Father and of the Son, the Love by which God loves himself, the very love of the Most Holy Trinity. He is a fruitful Love, a "Conception." Among creatures made in God's image the union brought about by married love is the most intimate of all (cf. Mt. 19:6). In a much more precise, more interior, more essential manner, the Holy Spirit lives in the soul of the Immaculata, in the depths of her very being. He makes her fruitful, from the very instance of her existence, all during her life, and for all eternity.

This eternal "Immaculate Conception" (which is the Holy Spirit) produces in an immaculate manner divine life itself in the womb (or depths) of Mary's soul, making her the Immaculate Conception, the human Immaculate Conception. And the virginal womb of Mary's body is kept sacred for him; there he conceives in time—because everything that is material occurs in time—the human life of the Man-God. (1)

In a 1933 Letter from Nagasaki, St. Maximilian explains further that in the name, "Immaculate Conception," the Mother also gives us the secret of her very nature:

In her apparition at Lourdes she does not say: "I was conceived immaculately," but "I am the Immaculate Conception." This points out not only the fact that she was conceived without original sin, but also the manner in which this privilege belongs to her. It is not something accidental; it is something that belongs to her very nature. For she is Immaculate Conception in (her very) person. (2)

The uncreated Immaculate Conception and the created Immaculate Conception. The Divine Spirit and the human spouse perfected in His grace are united by an interior, essential union. Uncreated love conceives and dwells within the depths of her soul, and she becomes His quasi-incarnation. (3) For this reason, as St. Maximilian tells us, Mary is also the Mediatrix of all graces and gifts of the Spirit:

The union between the Immaculata and the Holy Spirit is so inexpressible, yet so perfect, that the Holy Spirit acts only by the Most Blessed Virgin, his Spouse. This is why she is Mediatrix of all grace given by the Holy Spirit. And since every grace is a gift of God the Father through the Son and by the Holy Spirit, it follows that there is no grace which Mary cannot dispose of as her own, which is not given to her for this purpose. (4)

Does St. Maximilian go too far in speaking in this manner of the wonders of the Immaculate Conception? Or does he say too little? The Mariology disclosed by the saint of the Immaculata, generous and profound as it is, in no way exhausts the mystery of the Immaculate Conception. His unrivaled pneumatological discoveries prepare the way for a new comprehension of the inseparability of the Uncreated Immaculate Conception with the created Immaculate Conception. But the mystery continues. The brilliance of St. Maximilian's methodology in his return to Trinitarian Mariology specific to the Holy Spirit also propels us to ponder more deeply the other relationships of the Immaculata with her Triune God.

Perhaps least developed of these, from a Trinitarian perspective, is the relationship between the Immaculate Conception and the Heavenly Father. The Father-daughter relationship is one of the most precious of human relationships, and no other relationship captures more the love of the Creator for creation, and the appropriate reciprocal love of creation for the Creator than the relationship between the Eternal Father and Mary Immaculate. At the heart of this union of Perfect Daughter to Perfect Father, which represents and exemplifies how every creature should be united to its Creator, is the stainlessness and fullness of grace possessed by the Immaculate Daughter. This "stainless-fullness" is given to her by the Eternal Father through the Spirit and in view of the foreseen merits of the Son, which is the foundation of her perfect response of fiat-love to everything given to her and asked of her by her "Abba," God the Father of all mankind.

As the example of St. Maximilian makes clear, the dogmatic proclamation of the Immaculate Conception in 1854 does not end its doctrinal development, but rather encourages more unveiling and more appreciation of its sacred mystery. Certainly Contemporary Mariology would do well to follow the example of St. Maximilian in striving to incorporate a more Trinitarian perspective and methodology in relation to the Blessed Virgin if we seek to be true to the full glory of Mary Immaculate....
http://www.motherofallpeoples.com/articles/general-mariology/the-immaculate-conception-and-the-co-redemptrix.html

Care to admit or deny Kolbe and Miravalle?


Quote
I'm sure you would not want me to critique an EO doctrine based on my own NON-EO point of view, but rather on what the EOC herself teaches, correct?

Claiming that the East taught the IC, you already critique EO dogma based on your Latin view on what Orthodoxy, EO and OO, herself teaches.

She is preserved from having a darkened intellect and a weakened will, which is the result of the loss of original justice, but that is a spiritual loss. 

We die after we are baptised into Christ.  We die even after Jesus tramples down death by death.

She is not preserved from being human and human beings die.  She was preserved from corruption by another act of grace at the time of her Assumption where, after she died, she was taken bodily into heaven.

M.
"original justice", "imputed righteousness", "sanctifying grace,"....amazing how scholasticism's hair splitting has rendered the simplicity of the Gospel threadbare.
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« Reply #97 on: December 17, 2011, 02:51:03 PM »


That is not true.  All humanity is subject to death, by nature.  The Immaculate Conception is a preservation from the spiritual death that is a consequence of the ancestral sin.
 
Ineffibilis Deus and Muntificentissimus Deus make the conection.  We had that all out with Mardukm and his odd ideas, which you replicate here, in ignoring the plan text of your magisterial texts:


This is baloney.  The teaching of the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption are two separate teachings about two separate graces given to the Mother of God.

The preservation of the Immaculate Conception, had it been both a spiritual and material preservation of her human nature, would have precluded any need for the second grace of the Assumption.

We die and rot even though we have been baptised into life by the Incarnation who trampled down death by death.  However holy we become, we rot.  Some few are preserved but they are not always the most holy and it is by a particular grace that they do not rot away to dust.

Your critique does not hold up.  I know you need it to so I don't expect you to change but you really are wrong.

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« Reply #98 on: December 17, 2011, 02:58:39 PM »

Dear Jnorm,

I will be blunt.  If I were back in the academy working, and I read one of Father John's treatises on the west, I would call him, in any review that I might do, an intellectual fraud.  He pads his texts with half truths and whole lies.  It's a mess trying to read him and he is largely ignored outside of a few Orthodox who think he walks on water.

Forgive me that I cannot and will not ever share your enthusiasm.

M.
Phycianess, heal thyself. And don't seek medical advice from "Dr." Spiteri:
Quote
FABRICATIONS ABOUT PROF JOHN S. ROMANIDES by CAPUCHINO PRIEST IANNI SPITERI
Response by Prof. George Metallinos of The University of Athens

Grievous fabrications about Father John S. Romanides, retired professor of the University of Thessaloniki, come from the pen of the Capuchin Priest Prof. Yannis Spiteris...[who]...1)...was born and lives on the Greek Island of Corfu. 2) He teaches Theology at a theological school in Rome. 3) He is the personal advisor to the Pope himself on Greek Orthodox Theology. Father Spiteris writes with the intention of not only informing Latins, but also the Orthodox WHICH theologians they should follow. Evidently the Vatican has problems with J. Romanides' theological and historical research....
http://www.romanity.org/mir/me02en.htm

btw, this is a nice tidbit
Quote
He resigned from Holy Cross in 1965 in protest over the removal of Father Georges Florovsky from the faculty by Archbishop Iacovos. Between 1965 and 1968 Father Romanides served as the pastor of Holy Apostles' Parish in Haverhill, Mass
And Fr. Rominides was on the Joint Commission of the Theological Dialogue between the Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches.  Don't think that they thought he walked on water, but they didn't (and don't) ignore him either.

The priest's historical work was a mess.  I certainly will ignore him.
Sic Maria dixit. +December 17, 2011.

Unfortunately, that can't be peer reviewed, nor cited as proof, nor sourced as an authority.  Especially when backed, well, backed by nothing.

There's too much to read and learn that IS good and IS reliable and IS accurate to waste time with a bitter pill like Father John.
Well, judging from you posts, if you are spending all that time "to read and learn that IS good and IS reliable and IS accurate," you are keeping it all to yourself.  Seems rather gnostic.

If you wasted 1/10 of your time engaging the likes of Fr. John of blessed memory, even to point out where and how he is wrong, you would have something worth reading.  Heck, if you wasted 1/100 of your time, you would have nearly 60 posts worth reading, instead of thousands of ranting posts saying nothing more than assertions of "not true! not true!"

Keep him
we shall
...venerate him
we do.
...canonize him...
God, Who is glorified in His saints, does that.
I don't care.
As Peter Jennings told Bill Clinton "it is very obvious you do care very deeply."
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,139214,00.html

I don't like his work because it looks either foolish or dishonest and I don't care which it is frankly.
well then, we should give your criticisms all the consideration due them
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« Reply #99 on: December 17, 2011, 03:19:28 PM »


That is not true.  All humanity is subject to death, by nature.  The Immaculate Conception is a preservation from the spiritual death that is a consequence of the ancestral sin.
 
Ineffibilis Deus and Muntificentissimus Deus make the conection.  We had that all out with Mardukm and his odd ideas, which you replicate here, in ignoring the plan text of your magisterial texts:


This is baloney.  The teaching of the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption are two separate teachings about two separate graces given to the Mother of God.
Was your supreme pontiff Pius XII from Bologna?  Was this the slice of baloney you are refering to?
Quote
These two privileges are most closely bound to one another.
That was served up (as EVERYONE agrees, or are you a dissident voice?) straight from "the cathedra."

You will have to take it up with your "magisterium."

The preservation of the Immaculate Conception, had it been both a spiritual and material preservation of her human nature, would have precluded any need for the second grace of the Assumption.
Your supreme pontiffs et alia specifically say it "was" a spiritual and material preservation of her human nature.  That that doesn't make anysense in view of the Assumption, is the point, and your problem.

We die and rot even though we have been baptised into life by the Incarnation who trampled down death by death.  However holy we become, we rot.  Some few are preserved but they are not always the most holy and it is by a particular grace that they do not rot away to dust.
Again, you fight is with your "supreme pontiff," his "infallibity," and his "magisterium":
Quote
5. Now God has willed that the Blessed Virgin Mary should be exempted from this general rule. She, by an entirely unique privilege, completely overcame sin by her Immaculate Conception, and as a result she was not subject to the law of remaining in the corruption of the grave, and she did not have to wait until the end of time for the redemption of her body..
there plenty of others in positions of authority to teach, who cite the existence of "incorruptible saints" as proof of the Assumption, applying the Vatican's maxim of "potuit, decuit, ergo fecit" as they beg the question, but I know that would just get into a pointless (and endless) discussion (again) of your "magisterium" and what is "authentic catholic teaching" or whatever ecclesiastical weasel words you are moved to use.

Your critique does not hold up.  I know you need it to so I don't expect you to change but you really are wrong.
You have that rather reversed. But then again, that is nothing new, now, is it?
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« Reply #100 on: December 17, 2011, 03:24:12 PM »

These two privileges are most closely bound to one another[/size].

Quote
That was served up (as EVERYONE agrees, or are you a dissident voice?) straight from "the cathedra."

You will have to take it up with your "magisterium."


"Closely bound" does NOT mean "identical"...

You missed the part where the "magisterium" says that her human nature is no less human than yours or mine...That they say explicitly so I guess you'd not want to post that part...eh?

M.
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« Reply #101 on: December 17, 2011, 03:28:44 PM »

These two privileges are most closely bound to one another[/size].

Quote
That was served up (as EVERYONE agrees, or are you a dissident voice?) straight from "the cathedra."

You will have to take it up with your "magisterium."


"Closely bound" does NOT mean "identical"...

You missed the part where the "magisterium" says that her human nature is no less human than yours or mine...That they say explicitly so I guess you'd not want to post that part...eh?

M.
LOL. Evidently you don't "want to post that part," as you haven't.

"2" is not identical with "4," but closely bound "2+2" and "=4" follows.
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« Reply #102 on: December 17, 2011, 03:32:57 PM »

These two privileges are most closely bound to one another[/size].

Quote
That was served up (as EVERYONE agrees, or are you a dissident voice?) straight from "the cathedra."

You will have to take it up with your "magisterium."


"Closely bound" does NOT mean "identical"...

You missed the part where the "magisterium" says that her human nature is no less human than yours or mine...That they say explicitly so I guess you'd not want to post that part...eh?

M.
LOL. Evidently you don't "want to post that part," as you haven't.

I leave that for you, in your good will, to find as you have found the rest.
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« Reply #103 on: December 17, 2011, 03:37:23 PM »

These two privileges are most closely bound to one another[/size].

Quote
That was served up (as EVERYONE agrees, or are you a dissident voice?) straight from "the cathedra."

You will have to take it up with your "magisterium."


"Closely bound" does NOT mean "identical"...

You missed the part where the "magisterium" says that her human nature is no less human than yours or mine...That they say explicitly so I guess you'd not want to post that part...eh?

M.
LOL. Evidently you don't "want to post that part," as you haven't.

I leave that for you, in your good will, to find as you have found the rest.
sorry, I don't do the homework for those I'm schooling.
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« Reply #104 on: December 27, 2011, 03:45:59 AM »

So can we as Orthodox say that Christ inherited our fallen humanity/human nature? Also, what do our RC brethren/sistren think about this statement?
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« Reply #105 on: December 27, 2011, 11:24:05 AM »

So can we as Orthodox say that Christ inherited our fallen humanity/human nature? Also, what do our RC brethren/sistren think about this statement?

The Catholic Church would say that he took human flesh from his mother, and he died and was buried till his third day resurrection. 

So either he died because he was subject to death by his human nature...Or he perfected his flesh at his conception and then un-perfected it so he could die.

Which makes more sense to you?  What does Orthodoxy teach about that?
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« Reply #106 on: December 27, 2011, 12:32:14 PM »

So can we as Orthodox say that Christ inherited our fallen humanity/human nature? Also, what do our RC brethren/sistren think about this statement?

The Catholic Church would say that he took human flesh from his mother, and he died and was buried till his third day resurrection. 

So either he died because he was subject to death by his human nature...Or he perfected his flesh at his conception and then un-perfected it so he could die.

Which makes more sense to you?  What does Orthodoxy teach about that?
The whole Kenosis thing proving a problem, huh?
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« Reply #107 on: December 27, 2011, 12:41:13 PM »

So can we as Orthodox say that Christ inherited our fallen humanity/human nature? Also, what do our RC brethren/sistren think about this statement?

The Catholic Church would say that he took human flesh from his mother, and he died and was buried till his third day resurrection. 

So either he died because he was subject to death by his human nature...Or he perfected his flesh at his conception and then un-perfected it so he could die.

Which makes more sense to you?  What does Orthodoxy teach about that?
The whole Kenosis thing proving a problem, huh?

Not at all.

Does Orthodoxy teach that Jesus un-perfected himself? 

Is that the meaning you give to kenosis?

When the holy men and women of Orthodoxy empty themselves what does that mean?  Is the nature of their flesh made something other than human?
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« Reply #108 on: December 27, 2011, 01:33:39 PM »

So can we as Orthodox say that Christ inherited our fallen humanity/human nature? Also, what do our RC brethren/sistren think about this statement?

The Catholic Church would say that he took human flesh from his mother, and he died and was buried till his third day resurrection. 

So either he died because he was subject to death by his human nature...Or he perfected his flesh at his conception and then un-perfected it so he could die.

Which makes more sense to you?  What does Orthodoxy teach about that?
The whole Kenosis thing proving a problem, huh?

Not at all.

Does Orthodoxy teach that Jesus un-perfected himself?

Is that the meaning you give to kenosis?
No, but you seem to assUme it
When the holy men and women of Orthodoxy empty themselves what does that mean?  Is the nature of their flesh made something other than human?
Because of the incarnation, no.
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« Reply #109 on: December 27, 2011, 01:44:05 PM »

So can we as Orthodox say that Christ inherited our fallen humanity/human nature? Also, what do our RC brethren/sistren think about this statement?

The Catholic Church would say that he took human flesh from his mother, and he died and was buried till his third day resurrection.  

So either he died because he was subject to death by his human nature...Or he perfected his flesh at his conception and then un-perfected it so he could die.

Which makes more sense to you?  What does Orthodoxy teach about that?
The whole Kenosis thing proving a problem, huh?

Not at all.

Does Orthodoxy teach that Jesus un-perfected himself?

Is that the meaning you give to kenosis?
No, but you seem to assUme it
When the holy men and women of Orthodoxy empty themselves what does that mean?  Is the nature of their flesh made something other than human?
Because of the incarnation, no.

You are the donkeyedited for language -username! section moderator - -u-me here.

I was asking a question.


EM, please watch your language, I had to modify it again.  This is the public warning. -username! sectionmoderator[color/]
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« Reply #110 on: December 27, 2011, 02:18:36 PM »

Does Orthodoxy teach that Jesus un-perfected himself?

I think the word used by the fathers of the Church describing this is usually translated as "condescension" and literally means "to be cast down together with". That is, He took the flesh of His mother in it's state of being subject to the passions and death, never gave in to temptation or let His passions rule over Him, endured death, and fully restored our nature in His resurrection in glory. Without using words like "unperfected", I say that scripturally speaking, it is written that He became like us in all things except for sinning, was made a little lower than the angels, and that He who knew no sin became sin. And then there is the old saying that whatever was not assumed was not healed.

So can we as Orthodox say that Christ inherited our fallen humanity/human nature?

I've seen that phrase used before by Met Kallistos Ware.
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« Reply #111 on: December 27, 2011, 03:03:46 PM »

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

While I don't believe the Catholic Church intentionally teaches that human nature was corrupted by Sin in the most literal sense, I am quite sure many Catholics have mistakenly gleamed this interpretation and so it has become a common misconception.  I would suppose that the Catholic fathers agree very much with the Orthodox fathers in the sense not that human nature has become corrupted in the concrete, tangible sense, rather since the Fall of Mankind the potentiality and propensity for Sin was introduced in the nature of humankind, indeed the nature of all of Creation.  Both human nature and Creation remain perfect in static, but we know by experience of life that life is not static, it is in motion.  In the static sense of any given instant moment, human nature is not corrupted in any kind of tangible sense (i.e. inclined towards Sin) rather there is perpetually a potentiality for Sin.  Again, sin as explained by other posters above is a momentary separation from God.  When we are separated from God by Sin, we experience the pains of Sin.  But these pains do not corrupt our nature in some kind of cosmic or eternal sense. 
If this were indeed the case, then Baptism would be an instant becoming of perfection rather then a process of gradual perfecting, and further how could explain the fact that we continue to find ourselves in Sin after our  Baptisms? If sin was only the consequence of a tangibly corrupted nature, then mechanically it should seem logical that Sin would cease to exist after the Grace of God inherent in the Mystery of Baptism and Holy Communion restores human nature. 
However Sin is not a matter of mechanics or logistics, we do not Sin because our human nature was mechanically distorted, marred, or corrupted, rather because the corruption introduced into the Creation and Human nature is not a permanent state of Sin, it is the potentiality to Sin.  It is entering Sin into the dice-roll and variable equations of our lives.  Before Adam and Eve accepted the invitation to Sin, Sin simply did not exist in human nature.  Afterwards, human nature has been forever altered towards this potentiality and propencity to Sin, but we are not all universally condemned in Sins we have yet to commit.  That is what I believe folks mistakingly interpret as a "corrupted nature" in that they assume that the effects of Sin were to distort or corrupt in some kind of mechanical or tangible way the nature and reality of being a human being.  Sin is not our nature, Sin is simply something we have the ability to do.  Our Nature has been altered to allow for Sin to exist and occur, this is true, but Sin has not destroyed our nature.  Baptism does not necessarily restore Human nature in a permanent or mechanical sense so much as it infuses through Synergy the Grace of God to OVERCOME our potentiality for Sin.  If Sin is a possible variable, Baptism does not remove the variable rather it negates or cross-cancels it out by Grace. 

That being said, the Orthodox Fathers then teach that our physical and spiritual nature was not inherently corrupted by Sin, and I feel that in many respects the Catholic Fathers and theologians would agree, its in the popular piety and commoner theology that we find this mix up.

It is like my signature states, "Evil is not a being, it is an accident." St John of Damascus

Stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #112 on: December 27, 2011, 03:16:38 PM »

Does Orthodoxy teach that Jesus un-perfected himself?

I think the word used by the fathers of the Church describing this is usually translated as "condescension" and literally means "to be cast down together with". That is, He took the flesh of His mother in it's state of being subject to the passions and death, never gave in to temptation or let His passions rule over Him, endured death, and fully restored our nature in His resurrection in glory. Without using words like "unperfected", I say that scripturally speaking, it is written that He became like us in all things except for sinning, was made a little lower than the angels, and that He who knew no sin became sin. And then there is the old saying that whatever was not assumed was not healed.



Yes.  This is what I have been taught as well as a Catholic.  Jesus takes on fallen nature and redeems it, but while in the process of redeeming it, he is subject to it in terms of being susceptible to death.

The flesh he takes from his mother is subject to death just as the flesh of his mother is subject to death.

And to take it aaaallllll the way back to the issue of the Immaculate Conception, the Mother of God is preserved from the "stain" of original sin but remains fully human susceptible, in the flesh, to corruption and death and pain and suffering and aging and illness.

Tradition tells us that she did not suffer in childbearing nor did she corrupt in the tomb.  But she was spared those things by grace and not nature.
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« Reply #113 on: December 27, 2011, 03:28:58 PM »

So can we as Orthodox say that Christ inherited our fallen humanity/human nature? Also, what do our RC brethren/sistren think about this statement?

The Catholic Church would say that he took human flesh from his mother, and he died and was buried till his third day resurrection. 

So either he died because he was subject to death by his human nature...Or he perfected his flesh at his conception and then un-perfected it so he could die.

Which makes more sense to you?  What does Orthodoxy teach about that?
The whole Kenosis thing proving a problem, huh?

Not at all.

Does Orthodoxy teach that Jesus un-perfected himself?

Is that the meaning you give to kenosis?
No, but you seem to assUme it
When the holy men and women of Orthodoxy empty themselves what does that mean?  Is the nature of their flesh made something other than human?
Because of the incarnation, no.

You are the ass-u-me here.

I was asking a question.
And you already got the answer.
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« Reply #114 on: December 27, 2011, 03:44:01 PM »

Does Orthodoxy teach that Jesus un-perfected himself?

I think the word used by the fathers of the Church describing this is usually translated as "condescension" and literally means "to be cast down together with". That is, He took the flesh of His mother in it's state of being subject to the passions and death, never gave in to temptation or let His passions rule over Him, endured death, and fully restored our nature in His resurrection in glory. Without using words like "unperfected", I say that scripturally speaking, it is written that He became like us in all things except for sinning, was made a little lower than the angels, and that He who knew no sin became sin. And then there is the old saying that whatever was not assumed was not healed.



Yes.  This is what I have been taught as well as a Catholic.  Jesus takes on fallen nature and redeems it, but while in the process of redeeming it, he is subject to it in terms of being susceptible to death.

The flesh he takes from his mother is subject to death just as the flesh of his mother is subject to death.
Uh, no.  He never became subject to ancestral sin, and hence never subject to death just as His mother was subject to death.

And to take it aaaallllll the way back to the issue of the Immaculate Conception, the Mother of God is preserved from the "stain" of original sin but remains fully human susceptible, in the flesh, to corruption and death and pain and suffering and aging and illness.
IOW the IC is devoid of meaning.  We knew that.

Tradition tells us that she did not suffer in childbearing
That is due to the nature of her Son, not hers.

nor did she corrupt in the tomb.  But she was spared those things by grace and not nature.
By her nature, she wasn't spared death.
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Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
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                           and both come out of your mouth
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« Reply #115 on: December 27, 2011, 03:51:44 PM »

Does Orthodoxy teach that Jesus un-perfected himself?

I think the word used by the fathers of the Church describing this is usually translated as "condescension" and literally means "to be cast down together with". That is, He took the flesh of His mother in it's state of being subject to the passions and death, never gave in to temptation or let His passions rule over Him, endured death, and fully restored our nature in His resurrection in glory. Without using words like "unperfected", I say that scripturally speaking, it is written that He became like us in all things except for sinning, was made a little lower than the angels, and that He who knew no sin became sin. And then there is the old saying that whatever was not assumed was not healed.



Yes.  This is what I have been taught as well as a Catholic.  Jesus takes on fallen nature and redeems it, but while in the process of redeeming it, he is subject to it in terms of being susceptible to death.

The flesh he takes from his mother is subject to death just as the flesh of his mother is subject to death.
Uh, no.  He never became subject to ancestral sin, and hence never subject to death just as His mother was subject to death.

By her nature, she wasn't spared death.

Uh...nobody said she was.

And the man Jesus certainly did die and he didn't un-do his humanity to do so. 

Unless you think that Resurrection is just a random word.
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« Reply #116 on: December 27, 2011, 03:55:33 PM »

If mary was born immaculate (born into the pre-fall state) and she didn't sin, then why did she die?
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« Reply #117 on: December 27, 2011, 04:00:54 PM »

If mary was born immaculate (born into the pre-fall state) and she didn't sin, then why did she die?

For the same reason we die after the Illumination of Baptism, after Christ Redeemed our human nature by assuming it, dying and rising again...after He trampled down death by death.

Death is a condition of the flesh after the fall.

The Immaculate Conception means that the Mother of God was born already illumined with a strengthened will...It is with reference to the spiritual stain left in the Person after the fall.

The flesh is not healed till the resurrection of the body...

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« Reply #118 on: January 02, 2012, 05:31:32 AM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.

 Huh

Do you disagree?

Indeed I do.  With both you and Father.  I don't know how these kinds of ideas get started but they certainly are damaging when they take hold.

M.


Saint Augustine eventually saw the fall as destroying free will:
The Enchiridion on Faith, Hope and Love
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1302.htm (The Enchiridion on Faith, Hope and Love)
quote:
""But this part of the human race to which God has promised pardon and a share in His eternal kingdom, can they be restored through the merit of their own works? God forbid. For what good work can a lost man perform, except so far as he has been delivered from perdition? Can they do anything by the free determination of their own will? Again I say, God forbid. For it was by the evil use of his free-will that man destroyed both it and himself. For, as a man who kills himself must, of course, be alive when he kills himself, but after he has killed himself ceases to live, and cannot restore himself to life; so, when man by his own free-will sinned, then sin being victorious over him, the freedom of his will was lost."






It's by no coincidence that all the western men(Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine) I named above believed the way they did. All of them were following the Augustinian tradition.



The older Saint Augustine got the more he started to sound like this.
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« Reply #119 on: January 02, 2012, 12:16:01 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.

 Huh

Do you disagree?

Indeed I do.  With both you and Father.  I don't know how these kinds of ideas get started but they certainly are damaging when they take hold.

M.


Saint Augustine eventually saw the fall as destroying free will:
The Enchiridion on Faith, Hope and Love
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1302.htm (The Enchiridion on Faith, Hope and Love)
quote:
""But this part of the human race to which God has promised pardon and a share in His eternal kingdom, can they be restored through the merit of their own works? God forbid. For what good work can a lost man perform, except so far as he has been delivered from perdition? Can they do anything by the free determination of their own will? Again I say, God forbid. For it was by the evil use of his free-will that man destroyed both it and himself. For, as a man who kills himself must, of course, be alive when he kills himself, but after he has killed himself ceases to live, and cannot restore himself to life; so, when man by his own free-will sinned, then sin being victorious over him, the freedom of his will was lost."






It's by no coincidence that all the western men(Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine) I named above believed the way they did. All of them were following the Augustinian tradition.



The older Saint Augustine got the more he started to sound like this.

Wow!! You are ripping this out of context and reading into things that are not there.  This is NOT the teaching of total depravity. 

Hannah Arendt...a Jewish scholar without an axe to grind...saw more of the truth in St. Augustine than you demonstrate here.  It's the influence of Father John and it is a bad one because it is inaccurate.

M.
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« Reply #120 on: January 15, 2012, 03:49:27 PM »

St Cyril is very clear that we do not inherit a corrupted nature, but that it is mortal and corruptible.

I found this quote on the web: http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/dogmatics/golubov_rags_of_mortality.htm

Quote
It can be said that while we have not inherited the guilt of Adam's personal sin, because his sin is also of a generic nature, and because the entire human race is possessed of an essential, ontological unity,[12] we participate in it by virtue of our participation in the human race. "The imparting of Original Sin by means of natural heredity should be understood in terms of the unity of the entire human nature, and of the homoousiotitos [13] of all men, who, connected by nature, constitute one mystic whole. Inasmuch as human nature is indeed unique and unbreakable, the imparting of sin from the first-born to the entire human race descended from him is rendered explicable: 'Explicitly, as from the root, the sickness proceeded to the rest of the tree, Adam being the root who had suffered corruption'" [St. Cyril of Alexandria].[14]

I do not understand the distinction. I honestly feel like the Orthodox reaction against this is a well-meaning attack of the straw-man of total depravity, which John Calvin taught. This quote, from Archpriest Golubov, seems to agree that the entirety of humanity has been corrupted - which is what I understood Latins to mean when we say that human nature was corrupted. Not that the state of being human became an evil, but that all men, while men, of which being one is good, also were twisted to be inclined to sin and evil and were born lacking communion with the divine - a situation which needs rectification.

No Catholic teaches that the state of being human is evil - humans are not totally depraved and unable to please God (thanks for that one, Calvin).

Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine. Saint Augustine went further than the other fathers before him in the area of what happened at the fall. He believed that free will was lost at the fall. the other church fathers didn't teach that.

 Huh

Do you disagree?

Indeed I do.  With both you and Father.  I don't know how these kinds of ideas get started but they certainly are damaging when they take hold.

M.


Saint Augustine eventually saw the fall as destroying free will:
The Enchiridion on Faith, Hope and Love
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1302.htm (The Enchiridion on Faith, Hope and Love)
quote:
""But this part of the human race to which God has promised pardon and a share in His eternal kingdom, can they be restored through the merit of their own works? God forbid. For what good work can a lost man perform, except so far as he has been delivered from perdition? Can they do anything by the free determination of their own will? Again I say, God forbid. For it was by the evil use of his free-will that man destroyed both it and himself. For, as a man who kills himself must, of course, be alive when he kills himself, but after he has killed himself ceases to live, and cannot restore himself to life; so, when man by his own free-will sinned, then sin being victorious over him, the freedom of his will was lost."






It's by no coincidence that all the western men(Calvin, Luther, Jansen, John Wesley, James Arminius as well as alot of other people in the christian west got it from Saint Augustine) I named above believed the way they did. All of them were following the Augustinian tradition.



The older Saint Augustine got the more he started to sound like this.

Wow!! You are ripping this out of context and reading into things that are not there.  This is NOT the teaching of total depravity. 

Hannah Arendt...a Jewish scholar without an axe to grind...saw more of the truth in St. Augustine than you demonstrate here.  It's the influence of Father John and it is a bad one because it is inaccurate.

M.

It's not out of context! Everyone and their grandmother knows Saint Augustine came up with the doctrine called "Total Inability!"  You obviously don't understand what Calvinists teach nor what other western Christians teach in regards to this issue!

Total depravity does not mean utter depravity. It does not mean that someone is the worse they could possibly be. No, look at what real calvinists have to say about the issue!

http://www.monergism.com/thethreshold/articles/onsite/augustinewill.html (Augustine's Doctrine of the Bondage of the Will)

quote:
Quote
"
Augustine argued that there are four states, which are derived from the Scripture, that correspond to the four states of man in relation to sin: (a) able to sin, able not to sin (posse peccare, posse non peccare); (b) not able not to sin (non posse non peccare); (c) able not to sin (posse non peccare); and (d) unable to sin (non posse peccare). The first state corresponds to the state of man in innocency, before the Fall; the second the state of the natural man after the Fall; the third the state of the regenerate man; and the fourth the glorified man.

Augustine's description of the person after the fall "not able not to sin (non posse non peccare)" is what it means for humanity to have lost the liberty of the will. Fallen man's will is free from coercion yes, but not free from necessity... ie. he sins of necessity due to a corruption of nature.

With this in mind we better understand the following statements of Augustine:"


 




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"loving one's enemies does not mean loving wickedness, ungodliness, adultery, or theft. Rather, it means loving the theif, the ungodly, and the adulterer." Clement of Alexandria 195 A.D.

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« Reply #121 on: January 15, 2012, 05:59:31 PM »

I had a discussion Friday with a Roman Catholic attending a Byzantine Catholic Church who is strongly considering converting to Eastern Orthodoxy (either through the OCA or the GOA). He had some interesting and unusual things to say about original sin. The most intriguing of these to me was his assertion that Eastern Orthodoxy teaches that human nature was not corrupted by the Fall. Man's nature was always good, but because man was born into a fallen world where it was possible that he die, man was inclined to sin.

So, in contrast to the Latin teaching that Adam fell, his nature was corrupted, and he passed a corrupted nature onto his children, which Christ then purified through his Incarnation, man's nature was never corrupted but merely the world in which men lived was corrupted.

Furthermore, he insisted that there was no belief in concupiscence in Orthodoxy - man is only inclined to sin because he is born into a fallen world where he is mortal.

Is this really Eastern Orthodoxy's teaching on original sin? It would be nice if I could tell him he is becoming a heretic to both our religions . . .
why would that be nice?

Hence, most simply, after Adam's sin, was human nature corrupted or was it not?

For clarity, Catholics acknowledge that human nature is, in itself, good, as it is a creation of God and God the Son assumed a human nature - meaning that it obviously cannot be an evil, however, because of the fall, man receives a human nature which is good, but at the same time corrupted.

As an anecdote, before serving in Great Vespers last night, I was praying from a booklet, "Orthodox Prayers before Communion" published by the Holy Myrrhbearers Monastery (we have them in the pews here), and I noticed that in St. Basil's prayer before communion he said, " . . . and through Your own Blood You have renewed our human nature which is corrupted by sin."

So, please, it would be most helpful to me if I could gain some Orthodox perspectives on this.
Not sure that the St. Basil prayer necessarily gives you what you are looking for:actual sin (versus ancestral sin) corrupts as well.
ORIGINAL SIN ACCORDING TO ST. PAUL - by the late V. Rev. Fr. John S. Romanides
http://romanity.org/htm/rom.10.en.original_sin_according_to_st._paul.01.htm

Agree that wouldn`t be nice.. I also think that you(WetCatechumen) might be misrepresenting him.. Orthodoxy does not believe that we inherit any guilt from Adam, but the consequences of his sin... Orthodoxy does not believe in Original Sin, but Ancestral Sin... Orthodoxy is less legalistic and more realistic..
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