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Author Topic: Fill your life with hundreds of rituals and if you have time left, follow me!  (Read 7546 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: March 04, 2012, 04:00:10 PM »

Quote
Quote from: Ortho_Cat
Quote
Quote from: FountainPen
Where/when/by whom was the practice was first recorded?

Jesus was the first to take up his cross...we are called to follow him, and doing this reminds us of that.

We are told to take up our cross, not to perform ritualised hand movements merely to remind us of what Jesus did.

Why clog the Christian life with rituals piled high on top of one another and then to discuss how many times we're all supposed to do them or in what way we do them? Doesn't life have enough real challenges in it for you (the Church)? The world is going to hell in a handbasket while we all colours of robes, liturgies, incense and prostrations while we (the various Churches) could be discussing how we can organise ourselves to aid the current issues of drug abuse, alcoholism and promiscuity.

Good grief, that we should all fill our lives with rituals!
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« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2012, 04:02:52 PM »

Sunday of Orthodoxy homily from oh 5 years ago the priest, Fr. Frank Miloro from the ACROD said, not verbatim mind you, that while we have all these beautiful churches and services the most precious and glorious praise and worship (outside of liturgy) we can give to God is by following the mandates Christ set out in Matthew chapter 25, if we're not doing that than all the services and prostrations we do are just empty motions.   And you know what, Fr. Frank is 100% right because he didn't create that homily, he was just repeating what Christ said in Matthew ch. 25.  Probably the best homily I have ever heard.  If you ever get a chance, catch a homily from Fr. Frank or read some of Fr. Jonathan Tobias' writings, both are Carpatho-Russian Orthodox priests.
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« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2012, 04:15:10 PM »

*yawn*

I'm sorry, that broken record woke me up.

Yes, empty ritual is meaningless. Perhaps instead of pointing out what you believe to be empty ritual in another denomination, you perhaps go about having it removed from your own (I could point out many examples of empty ritual in whichever denomination you choose- Sunday church going to start with)? Or do you have a habit of going to other people's houses and complaining that the under-the-roll method of toilet paper hanging is more sanitary than the over-the-roll method?

And, of course, empty ritual is meaningless- not ritual in general. Just like in the OT the ritualistic sacrifice without obedience to go along with it meant nothing but done with obedience was something God honored, the sign of the cross or lighting a candle or the hundred of Orthodox rituals when done in the proper spirit can mean infinitely more than any number of low-church "Jesus is my co-pilot" acoustic guitar sing-alongs. Likewise, helping addicts and teaching abstinence-only sex ed to our high-school students means jack squat if not done to honor God.
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« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2012, 04:35:48 PM »

*yawn*

I'm sorry, that broken record woke me up.
Evidently not enough if your post below is anything to go by.

Quote
Yes, empty ritual is meaningless.
Ah i see, it's okay to fill our lives with ritual, so long as it is meaninful?

Quote
Perhaps instead of pointing out what you believe to be empty ritual...
I purposely didn't specify empty or meaninful because it's a false dichotomy as far as this is concerned.

Quote
...in another denomination, you perhaps go about having it removed from your own
I don't have a denomination, i don't go to a church building or belong to one.

Quote
(I could point out many examples of empty ritual in whichever denomination you choose- Sunday church going to start with)?
I'm sure you could. It's a good way of justifying what you do.

Quote
Or do you have a habit of going to other people's houses and complaining that the under-the-roll method of toilet paper hanging is more sanitary than the over-the-roll method?
No, that would be equally as mind-numbingly tedious as discussing robe colours, tones, crossing yourself and how many times you should sit and stand during a service!

Quote
And, of course, empty ritual is meaningless- not ritual in general. Just like in the OT the ritualistic sacrifice without obedience to go along with it meant nothing but done with obedience was something God honored,
Yes, and now the old has gone and the new has come.

Quote
...the sign of the cross or lighting a candle or the hundred of Orthodox rituals when done in the proper spirit can mean infinitely more than any number of low-church "Jesus is my co-pilot" acoustic guitar sing-alongs.
*yawn* Misfire.

Quote
Likewise, helping addicts and teaching abstinence-only sex ed to our high-school students means jack squat if not done to honor God.
Then do it and honour God.
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« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2012, 04:46:42 PM »

FountainPen,

I can only speak for myself, but these rituals help me, a grave sinner, to reorient my life on at least a weekly basis.  I suck.  I know I do.  I constantly find myself doing that which I do not want to do and not doing that which I want to.  These rituals help me to remember that.  If they help for but an hour before I fall again, that's an hour I spend with my mind on the Lord rather than the filth of my own mind.  Were my faith as great as yours, I would not need them. 

But I do.

Please forgive me for my weakness.
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« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2012, 04:54:22 PM »

...these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
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« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2012, 04:56:35 PM »

The unescapable reality I've discovered is that life IS a ritual.
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« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2012, 04:59:03 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?

Besides, I would bet money that if you spent any prolonged amount of time with a drug addict, you would find that there is a lot you can actually learn from them.

...these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.

You stole that quote from Somebody didn't you...

I think it fits the context of this discussion perfectly.
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« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2012, 05:06:49 PM »

Life is a delight if done rite.
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« Reply #9 on: March 04, 2012, 05:09:10 PM »

I don't have a denomination, i don't go to a church building or belong to one.

Doesn't sound like Christianity to me. You're not a member of a body (or THE Body) if you don't assemble/re-member. Your version sounds like dismembrance.
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« Reply #10 on: March 04, 2012, 05:17:38 PM »

*yawn*

I'm sorry, that broken record woke me up.
Evidently not enough if your post below is anything to go by.

Quote
Yes, empty ritual is meaningless.
Ah i see, it's okay to fill our lives with ritual, so long as it is meaninful?

Quote
Perhaps instead of pointing out what you believe to be empty ritual...
I purposely didn't specify empty or meaninful because it's a false dichotomy as far as this is concerned.

Then you apparently either don't understand "ritual" or "meaning". Plenty of rituals are commanded, even in the New Testament, and even by our Lord. I'll expand on this more at the appropriate point in your response.
...in another denomination, you perhaps go about having it removed from your own
I don't have a denomination, i don't go to a church building or belong to one.
I see. You're a homeless person complaining about how we rich folk don't really need fancy plumbing. Or roofs. Or food that doesn't come from a dumpster.


(I could point out many examples of empty ritual in whichever denomination you choose- Sunday church going to start with)?
I'm sure you could. It's a good way of justifying what you do.
i wouldn't say "justifying". I would say "pointing out a simple fact of being human". Rituals exist, not because God needs them, but because humans do. Rituals are a simple fact of human existence, and every healthy person has hundreds they go through each day- from brushing teeth at regular intervals and on. And even teeth brushing can be done to the honor of God.

Or do you have a habit of going to other people's houses and complaining that the under-the-roll method of toilet paper hanging is more sanitary than the over-the-roll method?
No, that would be equally as mind-numbingly tedious as discussing robe colours, tones, crossing yourself and how many times you should sit and stand during a service!
If you don't wish to discuss these things (or at the very least to find out why we do them, as opposed to labeling everything that seems odd "ritual", in this context a useless and judgmental word) then why post on an Orthodox web-site at all? If the only reason you are here is to judge us for discussing these things (oh no! People who are interested in Church Singing are discussing TONES! And look at those nasty music majors discussing SCALES! And how dare a guitarist discuss STRINGS!) then you might as well be coming to our house and commenting on our toilet paper roll hanging method. I hereby promote you to Chief Toilet-paper Roll Inspector Fountain Pen (abbreviated CTPRI), and as such you shall be known from here-on out (by me, anyway)!
And, of course, empty ritual is meaningless- not ritual in general. Just like in the OT the ritualistic sacrifice without obedience to go along with it meant nothing but done with obedience was something God honored,
Yes, and now the old has gone and the new has come.
And with the new has come new ritual- the Eucharist (commanded by our Lord in every Gospel but St John's, explained thoroughly in St John's Gospel, commanded again by St Paul), Baptism (commanded by our Lord, called the "new circumcision" by St Paul, etc), ordination (started by our Lord with the Apostles, done by the Apostles in the book of Acts, instructions given by St Paul), Church attendance (St Paul, traditionally, or the author of the Hebrews since tradition is a mean stupid-head who smells), and so on and so forth.

...the sign of the cross or lighting a candle or the hundred of Orthodox rituals when done in the proper spirit can mean infinitely more than any number of low-church "Jesus is my co-pilot" acoustic guitar sing-alongs.
*yawn* Misfire.
Well, let's see what we can infer by your comments so far- no ritual, Low Church, check (to the point of being No Church, as you have indicated previously in this comment). "Jesus is my co-pilot" theology, what naturally follows "absolutely no rituals, x(another ritual) is far more important" thinking, check. I'm sorry, do your sing-alongs have electric guitar? Wow, so your (insert whatever non-church meeting group [assuming you have one, and aren't just a "worshiping the Lord in the privacy of my own home" non-church person, which I would hope you are not, because the Bible says absolutely nothing about that and commands Church attendance] gathering is called here) has finally moved in to the 1990s- how progressive. Oooh, or maybe you do drum circles! Seriously, its all nice that you take our reductio ad absurdums of your hyper-low-church (henceforth known as no-Church) philosophy as somehow missing the mark of whatever you consider yourself to be, but saying things like "I am not a Protestant/I have never been to an acoustic guitar sing-along/etc" is not winning points in an argument when all you use are Protestant acoustic sing-along cliche's. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, floats on water like a duck, and flies like a duck, I am hardly going to think it is anything other than a duck, no matter how much it insists that it is, indeed, an ardvaark.
Likewise, helping addicts and teaching abstinence-only sex ed to our high-school students means jack squat if not done to honor God.
Then do it and honour God.
Ooooh, snappy. You so win. Oh, wait, helping addicts and teaching abstinence only sex ed are rituals. And the only ways you can help addicts and teach abstinence-only sex ed are by teaching rituals (prayer, cold-showers, etc).  Hmmmm, you just kind of proved my point entirely. No, nevermind. I win.

 Ah, who cares.

Score keeping is SooooooOOOOO ritualistic  Roll Eyes

EDIT: A few words added to develop and clarify a point
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« Reply #11 on: March 04, 2012, 05:22:13 PM »

FountainPen,

I can only speak for myself, but these rituals help me, a grave sinner, to reorient my life on at least a weekly basis.  I suck.  I know I do.  I constantly find myself doing that which I do not want to do and not doing that which I want to.  These rituals help me to remember that.  If they help for but an hour before I fall again, that's an hour I spend with my mind on the Lord rather than the filth of my own mind. 

The same goes for me.

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« Reply #12 on: March 04, 2012, 05:45:31 PM »

*yawn*

I'm sorry, that broken record woke me up.
Evidently not enough if your post below is anything to go by.

Quote
Yes, empty ritual is meaningless.
Ah i see, it's okay to fill our lives with ritual, so long as it is meaninful?

Quote
Perhaps instead of pointing out what you believe to be empty ritual...
I purposely didn't specify empty or meaninful because it's a false dichotomy as far as this is concerned.

Then you apparently either don't understand "ritual" or "meaning". Plenty of rituals are commanded, even in the New Testament, and even by our Lord. I'll expand on this more at the appropriate point in your response.
Is crossing yourself commanded? No, i didn't think so.

Quote
...in another denomination, you perhaps go about having it removed from your own
I don't have a denomination, i don't go to a church building or belong to one.
I see. You're a homeless person complaining about how we rich folk don't really need fancy plumbing. Or roofs. Or food that doesn't come from a dumpster.
How original. A man who swings to extremes to try and make a useless point.

I'm not homeless, but if i were, i would be in good company for the Son of Man had nowhere to lay His head!

Quote

(I could point out many examples of empty ritual in whichever denomination you choose- Sunday church going to start with)?
I'm sure you could. It's a good way of justifying what you do.
i wouldn't say "justifying". I would say "pointing out a simple fact of being human". Rituals exist, not because God needs them, but because humans do. Rituals are a simple fact of human existence, and every healthy person has hundreds they go through each day- from brushing teeth at regular intervals and on. And even teeth brushing can be done to the honor of God.
Exactly and if man had his way, we would fill our lives with more and more of them, in the name of religion of course.

Quote
Or do you have a habit of going to other people's houses and complaining that the under-the-roll method of toilet paper hanging is more sanitary than the over-the-roll method?
No, that would be equally as mind-numbingly tedious as discussing robe colours, tones, crossing yourself and how many times you should sit and stand during a service!
If you don't wish to discuss these things (or at the very least to find out why we do them,
i did ask in the other thread about the origins of crossing yourself the first example of it recorded. That's how this thread started. I'm not in the habit of starting threads by making up quotes from another poster.

Quote
...as opposed to labeling everything that seems odd "ritual",
Never said it seemed odd.

Quote
why post on an Orthodox web-site at all?
Because it's Monday tomorrow.

Quote
If the only reason you are here is to judge us for discussing these things (oh no! People who are interested in Church Singing are discussing TONES! And look at those nasty music majors discussing SCALES! And how dare a guitarist discuss STRINGS!) then you might as well be coming to our house and commenting on our toilet paper roll hanging method. I hereby promote you to Chief Toilet-paper Roll Inspector Fountain Pen (abbreviated CTPRI), an as such you shall be known from here-on out (by me, anyway)!
Name calling so early in a thread Former Reformer?

Quote
And, of course, empty ritual is meaningless- not ritual in general. Just like in the OT the ritualistic sacrifice without obedience to go along with it meant nothing but done with obedience was something God honored,
Yes, and now the old has gone and the new has come.
And with the new has come new ritual- the Eucharist (commanded by our Lord in every Gospel but St John's, explained thoroughly in St John's Gospel, commanded again by St Paul), Baptism (commanded by our Lord, called the "new circumcision" by St Paul, etc), ordination (started by our Lord with the Apostles, done by the Apostles in the book of Acts, instructions given by St Paul), Church attendance (St Paul, traditionally, or the author of the Hebrews since tradition is a mean stupid-head who smells), and so on and so forth.
You're referencing things that are commanded again. Can you show me where crossing yourself is commanded?

Quote
...the sign of the cross or lighting a candle or the hundred of Orthodox rituals when done in the proper spirit can mean infinitely more than any number of low-church "Jesus is my co-pilot" acoustic guitar sing-alongs.
*yawn* Misfire.
Well, let's see what we can infer by your comments so far- no ritual, Low Church, check (to the point of being No Church, as you have indicated previously in this comment). "Jesus is my co-pilot" theology, what naturally follows "absolutely no rituals, x(another ritual) is far more important" thinking, check. I'm sorry, do your sing-alongs have electric guitar? Wow, so your (insert whatever non-church meeting group [assuming you have one, and aren't just a "worshiping the Lord in the privacy of my own home" non-church person, which I would hope you are not, because the Bible says absolutely nothing about that and commands Church attendance] gathering is called here)
I gather.

Quote
...has finally moved in to the 1990s- how progressive. Oooh, or maybe you do drum circles!
Nope

Quote
Seriously, its all nice that you take our reductio ad absurdums
You forgot the customary italics.

Quote
of your hyper-low-church (henceforth known as no-Church) as somehow missing the mark of whatever you consider yourself to be, but saying things like...
*yawn* ranting

 
Quote
"I am not a Protestant/I have never been to an acoustic guitar sing-along/etc" is not winning points in an argument when all you use are Protestant acoustic sing-along cliche's. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, floats on water like a duck, and flies like a duck,
*zzz* babbling

Quote
I am hardly going to think it is anything other than a duck, no matter how much it insists that it is, indeed, an ardvaark.
Are you done? Phew!

Quote
Likewise, helping addicts and teaching abstinence-only sex ed to our high-school students means jack squat if not done to honor God.
Then do it and honour God.
Ooooh, snappy. You so win. Oh, wait, helping addicts and teaching abstinence only sex ed are rituals. And the only ways you can help addicts and teach abstinence-only sex ed are by teaching rituals (prayer, cold-showers, etc).  Hmmmm, you just kind of proved my point entirely. No, nevermind. I win.

Ah, who cares.
Apparently you do given how much you have to say.
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« Reply #13 on: March 04, 2012, 05:49:27 PM »

I don't have a denomination, i don't go to a church building or belong to one.

Doesn't sound like Christianity to me. You're not a member of a body (or THE Body) if you don't assemble/re-member. Your version sounds like dismembrance.

I'm passed caring what it sounds like to other people.

I gather.

I am part of The Body.
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« Reply #14 on: March 04, 2012, 05:53:55 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?


It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission
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« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2012, 05:56:42 PM »

FountainPen,

I can only speak for myself, but these rituals help me, a grave sinner, to reorient my life on at least a weekly basis.  I suck.  I know I do.  I constantly find myself doing that which I do not want to do and not doing that which I want to.  These rituals help me to remember that.  If they help for but an hour before I fall again, that's an hour I spend with my mind on the Lord rather than the filth of my own mind.  Were my faith as great as yours, I would not need them. 

But I do.

Please forgive me for my weakness.

False humility doesn't suit you Schultz. Maybe you should get your mind off yourself then you wouldn't need all your rituals.
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« Reply #16 on: March 04, 2012, 05:59:02 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?
It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission

So now it's in mutual exclusion to making disciples and baptizing (a ritual)?
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« Reply #17 on: March 04, 2012, 05:59:41 PM »

I'm passed caring what it sounds like to other people.

I gather.

I am part of The Body.

When hands are cut-off they are thrown into the flames. Or fed to the trolls as chum.
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« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2012, 06:02:24 PM »

I'm passed caring what it sounds like to other people.

I gather.

I am part of The Body.

When hands are cut-off they are thrown into the flames. Or fed to the trolls as chum.
I am no more "cut off" from the rest of the body than your OOs are from your EOs  Wink
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« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2012, 06:03:47 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?
It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission

So now it's in mutual exclusion to making disciples and baptizing (a ritual)?

What "it"? Be specific.
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« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2012, 06:05:12 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?


It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission

To me, making the sign of the cross helps me to focus my thoughts on Jesus Christ as I'm going about my life. It's not exclusively about His death. So wouldn't keeping my mind on Christ also help me to remember the Great Commission?

How do you feel about wearing a cross around your neck? That's another example of using the cross to remember Christ.
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« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2012, 06:06:16 PM »

How many rituals do you regularly practice that are actually commanded?

Direct commands.

List please...
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« Reply #22 on: March 04, 2012, 06:08:21 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?


It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission

To me, making the sign of the cross helps me to focus my thoughts on Jesus Christ as I'm going about my life. It's not exclusively about His death. So wouldn't keeping Christ on my mind also remind me of the Great Commission?

How do you feel about wearing a cross around your neck? That's another example of using the cross to remember Christ.

Every person we meet in life is a reminder of Christ. It's the only reminder we need.

Doesn't Orthodoxy teach that everone is a reflection of the image of God? Or something similar (I don't think i have that entirely correct)

No i don't wear a cross.
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« Reply #23 on: March 04, 2012, 06:08:36 PM »

All of them. Christ speaks to us through more than the pages of the one book you limit Him to.
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« Reply #24 on: March 04, 2012, 06:13:55 PM »

FountainPen,

I can only speak for myself, but these rituals help me, a grave sinner, to reorient my life on at least a weekly basis.  I suck.  I know I do.  I constantly find myself doing that which I do not want to do and not doing that which I want to.  These rituals help me to remember that.  If they help for but an hour before I fall again, that's an hour I spend with my mind on the Lord rather than the filth of my own mind.  Were my faith as great as yours, I would not need them. 

But I do.

Please forgive me for my weakness.

False humility doesn't suit you Schultz. Maybe you should get your mind off yourself then you wouldn't need all your rituals.

Nothing false about it, I'm sad to say.  

But thank you for exhibiting your clairvoyance.  It's another example of your spiritual advancement that you can read my heart.

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« Reply #25 on: March 04, 2012, 06:14:26 PM »

All of them. Christ speaks to us through more than the pages of the one book you limit Him to.

I don't limit him to one book.

Christ is The Word. He is a person able to communicate however he wishes.
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« Reply #26 on: March 04, 2012, 06:18:07 PM »

FountainPen,

I can only speak for myself, but these rituals help me, a grave sinner, to reorient my life on at least a weekly basis.  I suck.  I know I do.  I constantly find myself doing that which I do not want to do and not doing that which I want to.  These rituals help me to remember that.  If they help for but an hour before I fall again, that's an hour I spend with my mind on the Lord rather than the filth of my own mind.  Were my faith as great as yours, I would not need them.  

But I do.

Please forgive me for my weakness.

False humility doesn't suit you Schultz. Maybe you should get your mind off yourself then you wouldn't need all your rituals.

Nothing false about it, I'm sad to say.  

But thank you for exhibiting your clairvoyance.  It's another example of your spiritual advancement that you can read my heart.



I don't need to read your heart, your own words suffice which i emboldened. People aren't usually sarcastic when they are being genuinely humble. If you can't own your own words honestly, then that's your problem sadly, not mine.
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« Reply #27 on: March 04, 2012, 06:19:05 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?
It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission
So now it's in mutual exclusion to making disciples and baptizing (a ritual)?
What "it"? Be specific.

Ritual in general. Crossing oneself, vestments, having a form used for conducting regular prayer services and celebrations of the sacraments, having buildings set aside for the purpose of conducting worship as a local church community, etc. Everything you are condemning and setting in opposition to doing things like helping those in need (which you just admitted aren't in mutual exclusion of each other) and now fulfilling the great commission which is to make disciples by baptizing (a ritual in itself) them and teaching them to do what Christ commanded (not to leave the other undone).

You're making "either/or"s out of "both/and"s.
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« Reply #28 on: March 04, 2012, 06:28:15 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?
It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission
So now it's in mutual exclusion to making disciples and baptizing (a ritual)?
What "it"? Be specific.

Ritual in general. Crossing oneself, vestments, having a form used for conducting regular prayer services and celebrations of the sacraments, having buildings set aside for the purpose of conducting worship as a local church community, etc. Everything you are condemning and setting in opposition to doing things like helping those in need (which you just admitted aren't in mutual exclusion of each other) and now fulfilling the great commission which is to make disciples by baptizing (a ritual in itself) them and teaching them to do what Christ commanded (not to leave the other undone).

You're making "either/or"s out of "both/and"s.

Can you list only those commanded? Or i should say, will you?
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« Reply #29 on: March 04, 2012, 06:28:38 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?


It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission

To me, making the sign of the cross helps me to focus my thoughts on Jesus Christ as I'm going about my life. It's not exclusively about His death. So wouldn't keeping Christ on my mind also remind me of the Great Commission?

How do you feel about wearing a cross around your neck? That's another example of using the cross to remember Christ.

Every person we meet in life is a reminder of Christ. It's the only reminder we need.

Doesn't Orthodoxy teach that everone is a reflection of the image of God? Or something similar (I don't think i have that entirely correct)

No i don't wear a cross.

I agree that every human being is a reminder of Christ. But do I think of that whenever I see someone? No, unfortunately. So I need other aids. If there are multiple aids, rituals, reminders that I can use to help set my mind on Christ, I don't see how it could be a bad thing.

I do think that a person can try to implement too many rituals at once, leaving them overwhelmed and preoccupied with steps, rather than setting their heart on Christ like the ritual is intended for. The ritual is then a hindrance, rather than an aid. But I think it varies from person to person where that line is.
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« Reply #30 on: March 04, 2012, 06:36:54 PM »

How many rituals do you regularly practice that are actually commanded?

Direct commands.

List please...

For starters we are commanded to baptize, have Communion, the apostles were given the authority (in John) and acted on that authority (1 and 2 Corinthians) to forgive men their sins in His name, Acts records the apostles and their disciples as keeping the hours of prayer, and also the apostles giving the gift of the Holy Spirit by the laying on of hands to those who had been baptized but had not received it yet. Those given the authority as bishops, presbyters, and deacons in the Church only received that authority either directly from an apostle or someone apointed by the apostles to do so. And this is just what is directly done in the NT, without even touching the continued use of vestments or allowance for a building set aside for worship as found in the OT.

This is liturgical worship based in the sacraments and hours of prayer under the oversight of someone appointed to preside over these rituals by someone with the proper authority. It is both commanded and done in the NT.

Just a reminder, none of this is to the exclusion of fulfilling the commands to love your neighbor and help those in need.
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« Reply #31 on: March 04, 2012, 06:38:43 PM »

In the interests of avoiding "I quoted/you quoted-quote list longer than the actual post" syndrome, I hope no one minds if I redact the back and forth a little.

Is crossing yourself commanded? No, i didn't think so.
Well, we (that is the Orthodox posters) could certainly point out certain verses that could be interpreted that way (as happened on the original thread you were on).
Quote
How original. A man who swings to extremes to try and make a useless point.
I didn't realize it was extremism to use analogy.
Quote
I'm not homeless, but if i were, i would be in good company for the Son of Man had nowhere to lay His head!
Would that were the type of homelessness of which I speak. The Son of Man had nowhere to lay His, but He left to prepare a mansion, of which the earthly Church is the visible foundation.

Quote
Exactly and if man had his way, we would fill our lives with more and more of them, in the name of religion of course.
Which is why threads such as the one you had previously posted in can be a good thing, if seen in the proper light. Crossing oneself for a reason is a good thing, crossing oneself just because someone else in the parish thinks you should have is bad. Just like eating and drinking Communion for the wrong purposes can lead to damnation and death.

Quote
i did ask in the other thread about the origins of crossing yourself the first example of it recorded. That's how this thread started. I'm not in the habit of starting threads by making up quotes from another poster.
And yet you did not engage the discussion that followed your question, but instead started a thread blasting "ritual". William answered your question- Tertullian mentioned it in the 2nd century, stated it was part of the Apostolic oral teaching, and it was such an extremely wide-spread practice at that time that he considered it a fair example of the type of Apostolic oral teaching that cannot be found in Scripture that his opponents argued against. Heretics always want to keep the discussion centered on "Scripture alone" (please note- that does not label you or anyone else as a heretic, it is just an observation that every heretical group- groups that any Trinitarian Christian could consider heretical- has appealed to Scripture and argued against the introduction of so much as a single word not found in Scripture).

Quote
Never said it seemed odd.
Okay, but were it common place you would never think to comment.
why post on an Orthodox web-site at all?
Because it's Monday tomorrow.
ROFL  laugh laugh laugh That is perhaps the best reason I have heard in the history of the internet.

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Name calling so early in a thread Former Reformer?
You call it "name-calling", I call it "assigning a title to go with your promotion", Chief TPRI Fountain Pen, ma'am.

Quote
You're referencing things that are commanded again. Can you show me where crossing yourself is commanded?
Mark 8:34-35 (NIV) Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said, "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it." We can argue as to whether or not this meant using the sign of the cross, but the Apostles thought the practice important enough to pass on.

Quote
You forgot the customary italics.
That I did. I have a grandfather demanding his dinner (I'm not starving him, he's just impatient- the other night we took him to a restaurant and he started pounding his fork on the table calling for his food less than five minutes after the waitress walked away), it's kind of hard to pay special attention to the coding. I'm amazed I kept the quote tags straight.


Ah, who cares.
Apparently you do given how much you have to say.


Awww, how cute- you took a little phrase completely out of context and made a snappy rejoinder based off it that is a complete non sequitur! And you say you're not a Protestant....
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« Reply #32 on: March 04, 2012, 06:41:00 PM »

I am sorry, but people are not born with the knowledge of what is right and wrong.  About the only instinct that a baby is born with is to suck on an pap, and some are to stupid to do that without some effort expended (I have seen that myself).  The rituals are NOT in place of fulfilling the command of God.  They are an aid to TEACHING one how to fulfill the commands of God.  Keep in mind that many of the Church's rituals predate universal literacy, and far predate the invention of the printing press.  They were never intended to supercede the example given by Christ, but to instruct people to know Christ and follow His example.  Have some become meaningless?  Sadly, for many they have.  However, the Fathers teach us that we gain the Grace to perform the virtues by practicing them.  One thing that we all can do is pray.  Not all of us have riches to give, or even good words to give.  However, by practicing the rituals of the Church WHILE KEEPING MINDFUL OF WHAT THEY MEAN, we can channel the Grace of God into us that will allow us to do those things of which the OP speaks.  Fountain Pen, believe me, I know how you feel and I fight that battle over and over again.  I am fighting it now.  For me, and this does not mean that it is for everyone, practicing some of the rituals focus my mind on the things that I should be doing.  I am weak and often need this.  Not everyone does.

BTW - on a lighter note, I love writing with fountain pens.  They are all that I use.
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« Reply #33 on: March 04, 2012, 06:44:31 PM »

Quote
Quote from: Ortho_Cat
Quote
Quote from: FountainPen
Where/when/by whom was the practice was first recorded?

Jesus was the first to take up his cross...we are called to follow him, and doing this reminds us of that.

We are told to take up our cross, not to perform ritualised hand movements merely to remind us of what Jesus did.

Why clog the Christian life with rituals piled high on top of one another and then to discuss how many times we're all supposed to do them or in what way we do them? Doesn't life have enough real challenges in it for you (the Church)? The world is going to hell in a handbasket while we all colours of robes, liturgies, incense and prostrations while we (the various Churches) could be discussing how we can organise ourselves to aid the current issues of drug abuse, alcoholism and promiscuity.

Good grief, that we should all fill our lives with rituals!

from this perpective, why even go to church at all? Why have baptism or communion services? Aren't they all just rituals? Shouldn't we just be out helping the poor and working towards world peace?
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« Reply #34 on: March 04, 2012, 06:45:05 PM »

Why does doing "ritual movements" like the sign of the cross have to be put in mutual exclusion of helping drug addicts and feeding the hungry?


It doesn't. But if you fill your time and thoughts with more and more of them, then you're not spending that time thinking about and acting on what we are commanded to do -- re:The Great Commission

To me, making the sign of the cross helps me to focus my thoughts on Jesus Christ as I'm going about my life. It's not exclusively about His death. So wouldn't keeping Christ on my mind also remind me of the Great Commission?

How do you feel about wearing a cross around your neck? That's another example of using the cross to remember Christ.

Every person we meet in life is a reminder of Christ. It's the only reminder we need.

Doesn't Orthodoxy teach that everone is a reflection of the image of God? Or something similar (I don't think i have that entirely correct)

No i don't wear a cross.

I agree that every human being is a reminder of Christ. But do I think of that whenever I see someone? No, unfortunately.
Delphine, do you think it's only because you are practiced in thinking of Christ when you see other things like crosses and icons etc? The moment you see a cross you think of Christ, so do i, it's a standard form of identification for Christians.

Quote
So I need other aids. If there are multiple aids, rituals, reminders that I can use to help set my mind on Christ, I don't see how it could be a bad thing.
This is how i see that it could be a bad thing.

If i am walking along repeating (all or partof) the Jesus prayer to myself, i am not looking outward on the people i am passing because my mind is occupied. Instead of being ready for the moment that an opportiunity to speak or help arises and having an expectation that it will, i am concentrating on my internal dialogue.

Quote
I do think that a person can try to implement too many rituals at once, leaving them overwhelmed and preoccupied with steps, rather than setting their heart on Christ like the ritual is intended for. The ritual is then a hindrance, rather than an aid. But I think it varies from person to person where that line is.
Yes, and i'm not advocating being ritual free -- if indeed that were even possible -- but possibly staying with only those that are direct commands from God to do. Not adding many more to life.
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« Reply #35 on: March 04, 2012, 06:46:18 PM »

practicing some of the rituals focus my mind on the things that I should be doing.

This reminds me of a conversation I had with someone last week.
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« Reply #36 on: March 04, 2012, 06:50:00 PM »

Quote
Quote from: Ortho_Cat
Quote
Quote from: FountainPen
Where/when/by whom was the practice was first recorded?

Jesus was the first to take up his cross...we are called to follow him, and doing this reminds us of that.

We are told to take up our cross, not to perform ritualised hand movements merely to remind us of what Jesus did.

Why clog the Christian life with rituals piled high on top of one another and then to discuss how many times we're all supposed to do them or in what way we do them? Doesn't life have enough real challenges in it for you (the Church)? The world is going to hell in a handbasket while we all colours of robes, liturgies, incense and prostrations while we (the various Churches) could be discussing how we can organise ourselves to aid the current issues of drug abuse, alcoholism and promiscuity.

Good grief, that we should all fill our lives with rituals!

from this perpective, why even go to church at all? Why have baptism or communion services? Aren't they all just rituals? Shouldn't we just be out helping the poor and working towards world peace?

Some are commands; many are not.
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« Reply #37 on: March 04, 2012, 06:51:55 PM »

FountainPen, when you're done projecting onto us the image you would like to have of us, do you promise to actually listen to us as we explain our point of view to you?
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« Reply #38 on: March 04, 2012, 06:53:03 PM »


This thread
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« Reply #39 on: March 04, 2012, 06:54:53 PM »

All of them. Christ speaks to us through more than the pages of the one book you limit Him to.

I don't limit him to one book.

Christ is The Word. He is a person able to communicate however he wishes.

The Orthodox believe that He speaks to them through the various aspects of the Church (tradition in the case of the Sign of the Cross) and commands we follow the various liturgical acts and rites in that way.
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« Reply #40 on: March 04, 2012, 06:57:06 PM »

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FountainPen - I did ask in the other thread about the origins of crossing yourself the first example of it recorded. That's how this thread started. I'm not in the habit of starting threads by making up quotes from another poster.
And yet you did not engage the discussion that followed your question,
I couldn't, it's against forum rules. You wouldn't want me to get banned now would you?


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« Reply #41 on: March 04, 2012, 06:59:11 PM »

FountainPen, when you're done projecting onto us the image you would like to have of us, do you promise to actually listen to us as we explain our point of view to you?


That's the second time you've asked me this and yet you don't follow through with anything to say!

Do you have nothing to say?
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« Reply #42 on: March 04, 2012, 07:04:57 PM »

All of them. Christ speaks to us through more than the pages of the one book you limit Him to.

I don't limit him to one book.

Christ is The Word. He is a person able to communicate however he wishes.

The Orthodox believe that He speaks to them through the various aspects of the Church (tradition in the case of the Sign of the Cross) and commands we follow the various liturgical acts and rites in that way.
"Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship."
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if Christ does and says x. And someone else does and says not x and you are ever in doubt, follow Christ.

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« Reply #43 on: March 04, 2012, 07:08:01 PM »

Priest: Then, when he had come and fulfilled the whole of the divine dispensation for us, on the night that he was given up, or, rather, gave himself up for the life of the world, he took bread in his holy, pure and blameless hands and, when he had blessed it, hallowed it and broken it, he gave it to his disciples saying "take, eat, this is my body, which is broken for you for the remission of sins".

People: Amen.

Priest: In like manner, when the supper was ended, he took the cup and gave it to his disciples saying "drink of this, all of you, this is my blood of the new covenant, which is shed for you and for many for the remission of sins".

People: Amen.

Priest: Remembering, therefore, this our Saviour's command, and everything that has come to pass for us: the cross, the tomb, the resurrection on the third day, the ascension into heaven, the sitting at the right hand and the second and glorious coming again -- your own of your own, we offer unto you, on behalf of all and for all.

----------------------------------------------

Where's the problem?
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« Reply #44 on: March 04, 2012, 07:11:35 PM »

All of them. Christ speaks to us through more than the pages of the one book you limit Him to.

I don't limit him to one book.

Christ is The Word. He is a person able to communicate however he wishes.

The Orthodox believe that He speaks to them through the various aspects of the Church (tradition in the case of the Sign of the Cross) and commands we follow the various liturgical acts and rites in that way.
"Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship."

I don't get your point. You agree that a Sola Scriptura approach to determining liturgical practice is wrong, right?
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