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Author Topic: Council of Chalcedon - Difference between EO & OO  (Read 934 times) Average Rating: 0
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psalm110
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« on: June 02, 2012, 12:53:25 PM »

Hi All,

Just trying to understand a clear cut view on the difference between the EO churches & OO churches - every year the Greek Orthodox Priests fight with the Armenian Orthodox priests, WHY??

The council of Chalcedon was about christology dont both sides agree correctly to the Characteristics of Christs Humanity & Divinity ??

http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Council_of_Chalcedon
We confess that one and the same Christ, Lord, and only-begotten Son, is to be acknowledged in two natures without confusion, change, division, or separation. The distinction between natures was never abolished by their union, but rather the character proper to each of the two natures was preserved as they came together in one person (prosopon) and one hypostasis.

Non-Chalcedon - Oriental Orthodox Churches - http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miaphysitism
Miaphysitism (or henophysitism) is an idea about the nature of Christ. The idea says that Jesus Christ had two different aspects, one godly, and one human. It says these two aspects are united in one nature. They are indistinguishable, and they co-exist. This is very close to the idea of dualism which says that the mind and the body are separate things that combine to make one unit, the person. In the case of miaphysitism, the separate things are Jesus' divine and human traits.

Can anyone shine some light to me regarding this issue ? Don't we both believe exactly the same thing ??
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« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2012, 01:22:59 PM »

we're answering all quickly here:
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,44875.0.html
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« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2012, 02:49:25 PM »

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



The writings of our father Saint Cyril are almost 1600 years old. There are no surprises, no rugs to pull, to "gotcha!" moments to uncover.  Saint Cyril teaches exclusively the teaching of One Nature of Christ, a Miaphysis, (not a monophysis). Mia implies a plurality albeit in full union, in the same context as the word communion.  Mia then encompasses the plurality of Christ being God and Man and yet perfectly preserves the sanctity and singularity of the Union of the Incarnation.  The Divine Nature of God the Word is unchanged through the Union, but the exists in unity with the Human Nature of Jesus Christ in the flesh of His Person (hypostasis).  Now here is the real crux of the debate, which separates Oriental and Orthodox/Latin Fathers interpretations.  Saint Cyril implied in his use of the term hypostasis at once to by synonomous with the term physis or nature. Hypostasis and nature are one concept in Cyrillian thought, though two aspects or perspectives.  The physis describes the nature or function, while the concept of hypostasis describes the form or under-lying reality.  Only later did Orthodox and Latin theologians decide to further clarify these terms by inserting a clear distinction in their uses, so that they are no longer considered synonomous.  When reading Cyril speak of One Nature, he is equally speaking of One Person.  Oriental Fathers explain after that this is because there is no abstract nature or physis, everything must exist hypostatically, that is in reality ( hypostasis can be translated as "that which has actual existence").  In this same way, obviously nothing that really exists (i.e., has a hypostasis or an underlying reality) lacks a design (i.e. a nature, physis).  Hence the term hypo (under) and stasis (reality, form, substance), which at once describes to actual form of something which exists while at once also implying how it exists or its underlying principles of existence.  For example, God is Divine, this is His Nature, however He does not abstractly exist, He actually exists, and so the Cyrillian fathers also describe God has having a spiritual hypostasis (form/person) which is the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, Three Persons with One Nature.  I know I am kind of stumbling like Eutyches here, but this is how it has been explained to me.  Saint Cyril always considered the term hypostasis (Person) to inherently include nature.  Hence the union of Natures as one.  They mutually exist together, they define each other.  The nature defines the manifested form (hypostasis) and the form is in perfect accordance with the nature (physis). This why the term is the hypo (under) stasis (reality) which is what Saint Cyril implies when he was quoted above

Quote
Himself raising the dead was raised from the dead, and being Life by Nature is said to quicken. And how again? After one manner and another. For the Same was raised from the dead and is said to be quickened after the Flesh, yet quickens and raises the dead as God. He suffers and does not suffer 40, after one manner and another: for He |229 suffers humanly in the Flesh as Man, He is impassible Divinely as God."

Since there is a Union of the human and divine, they exist for ever as one.  The original form and function of each remains, however they exist fully united as a miaphysis (a composite nature) through a singular hypostasis (the Person of Jesus Christ in the flesh). The Divine Word gives life to His own flesh (because human nature is not self-existing) while He exists forever through Human flesh because flesh is the hypostasis of His Human nature.  He has the qualities of both simultaneously existing and mutually interacting as a single composite.  The human is perfectly human, and remains such, but is united with the Divine, and the Divine remains perfectly divine while united to the human.  The objections which Oriental Fathers have with the Orthodox and Latins is the later distinctions theologically between the terms nature and person.  When the Oriental mind hears "two" in the context of natures, it automatically implies two persons (hypostases) which is Nestorianism.  Further, when Orthodox/Latins after the separation of the terms in the 400s hear to term one in the context of natures it cries of Apollinarianism or Eutychianism because they misunderstand Oriental conception of the Union as a miaphysis, a composite.  Of course in the past 150 years of ecumenical dialogue, we've sorted all this out so that today (a) many Oriental fathers seem to accept that the Latins and Orthodox are not suggesting Nestorianism in their language and (b) many Latins and Orthodox seem to accept that Orientals are not monophysites but are miaphysites, a term which they also seem to agree with.  Essentially, we've figured out how to bridge the semantic divide which was the crux of the problem all the way back with Saint Cyril and Pope Leo's Tome.


stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2012, 03:43:41 PM »

You might find this thread helpful:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,36721.0.html
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« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2012, 07:35:01 PM »

Hi All,

Just trying to understand a clear cut view on the difference between the EO churches & OO churches - every year the Greek Orthodox Priests fight with the Armenian Orthodox priests, WHY??

The council of Chalcedon was about christology dont both sides agree correctly to the Characteristics of Christs Humanity & Divinity ??

http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Council_of_Chalcedon
We confess that one and the same Christ, Lord, and only-begotten Son, is to be acknowledged in two natures without confusion, change, division, or separation. The distinction between natures was never abolished by their union, but rather the character proper to each of the two natures was preserved as they came together in one person (prosopon) and one hypostasis.

Non-Chalcedon - Oriental Orthodox Churches - http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miaphysitism
Miaphysitism (or henophysitism) is an idea about the nature of Christ. The idea says that Jesus Christ had two different aspects, one godly, and one human. It says these two aspects are united in one nature. They are indistinguishable, and they co-exist. This is very close to the idea of dualism which says that the mind and the body are separate things that combine to make one unit, the person. In the case of miaphysitism, the separate things are Jesus' divine and human traits.

Can anyone shine some light to me regarding this issue ? Don't we both believe exactly the same thing ??

Flee from looking into the abyss of Chalcedon! Just try to repent of your sins and be a faithful Christian.
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« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2012, 09:12:55 PM »

^ Some of the best advice I've seen anywhere on anything.
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« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2012, 06:51:07 AM »

From the above posts & gathering information we believe exactly the same thing regarding Our Lord Jesus Christ - Why do we have to be apart in this way ?.

Oriential Orthodox Churches
- Armenian Apostolic Church
- Coptic Orthodox
- Ethiopian Orthodox
- Syriac Orthodox
- Etc....

Believe the characteristics of Jesus Christ as FULLY God & FULLY Human - in UNITY

Eastern Orthodox Churches
- Greek Orthodox
- Bulgarian Orthodox
- Romanian Orthodox
- Russian Orthodox
- Etc....

Believe the characteristics of Jesus Christ as FULLY God & FULLY Human  - in UNITY

IS my prespective of this right ?
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Salpy
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« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2012, 11:23:05 AM »

Both Churches believe Christ is one Person Who is fully divine and fully human.

However:

There is a lot of bad history that has yet to be resolved.

There are people who refuse to believe that "the other side" believes the same as they do, and who will go into schism if union is achieved.

There is the issue of councils.  There are EO's who define the EO Church as a Church of 7 or 9 councils and they don't believe the OO's can be Orthodox without accepting 7 or 9 councils.  The OO's, on the other hand, won't accept at least some of the EO's councils because of very bad history, etc.

There is the issue of what to do with saints who are condemned by "the other side."  It's easy to say anathemas should just be lifted, but then some will say that is like admitting the Church Fathers were wrong in anathematizing them in the first place, and not everyone wants to admit their Church Fathers made a mistake.

There is the issue of differences in rites.  The OO's have preserved a lot of the ancient local rites, and consequently have a lot of diversity in their practices.  EO's are more uniform in practice, and at least a few will want the OO's to conform, which the OO's won't.

Whatever.  I'm one of those who is hoping and praying for unity.  A lot of things have to be ironed out though, before that happens.  As Shanghaiski advised, however, I wouldn't get too caught up in the Chalcedon issues, as they get very contentious and unpleasant.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2012, 11:27:54 AM by Salpy » Logged

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« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2012, 07:15:06 PM »

Both Churches believe Christ is one Person Who is fully divine and fully human.

However:

There is a lot of bad history that has yet to be resolved.

There are people who refuse to believe that "the other side" believes the same as they do, and who will go into schism if union is achieved.

There is the issue of councils.  There are EO's who define the EO Church as a Church of 7 or 9 councils and they don't believe the OO's can be Orthodox without accepting 7 or 9 councils.  The OO's, on the other hand, won't accept at least some of the EO's councils because of very bad history, etc.

There is the issue of what to do with saints who are condemned by "the other side."  It's easy to say anathemas should just be lifted, but then some will say that is like admitting the Church Fathers were wrong in anathematizing them in the first place, and not everyone wants to admit their Church Fathers made a mistake.

There is the issue of differences in rites.  The OO's have preserved a lot of the ancient local rites, and consequently have a lot of diversity in their practices.  EO's are more uniform in practice, and at least a few will want the OO's to conform, which the OO's won't.

Whatever.  I'm one of those who is hoping and praying for unity.  A lot of things have to be ironed out though, before that happens.  As Shanghaiski advised, however, I wouldn't get too caught up in the Chalcedon issues, as they get very contentious and unpleasant.

A most excellent summary, Salpy!

It's good to learn, but better to have some more solid direction in that than what one could get over the Internet. If you have an Orthodox parish and priest already, well and good. If you're inquiring into Orthodoxy, find an Orthodox parish and priest and stick with them. Later, when you've got a feel for your church and direction from your priest, you can look into the broader picture.

Making friends with OO, if you're EO, can also be a good introduction to both similarities and differences. The dividing lines are very subtle, but they're there.
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« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2012, 03:12:05 AM »

We really need some official reunion. The whole issue with receiving Mysteries from each other makes it really hard and confusing. Like, what about people who are EO and the only Orthodox Church around is OO? What are they supposed to do? If they receive the Mysteries from that Church then they could be exocommunicated for a little while from the EO Church and vice versa. I've also heard of people who have had to switch from EO to OO and vice versa because of whichever type of parish was closer to them. I personally prefer EO better because I like the Russian Church but I also love the OO Church because of the extreme piety I see among them.
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« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2012, 06:57:37 AM »

I am for UNION, does not the Holy Spirit reside in both churches, it does! so what is stopping us from joining together? The Holy Spirit only dwells in the Truth we both are the true church, we deserve to be one not afflicted by politics which have split us.
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« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2012, 10:59:28 AM »

I am for UNION, does not the Holy Spirit reside in both churches, it does! so what is stopping us from joining together? The Holy Spirit only dwells in the Truth we both are the true church, we deserve to be one not afflicted by politics which have split us.

You presume far too much.
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If you spend long enough on this forum, you'll come away with all sorts of weird, untrue ideas of Orthodox Christianity.
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« Reply #12 on: June 07, 2012, 04:49:40 AM »

I am for UNION, does not the Holy Spirit reside in both churches, it does! so what is stopping us from joining together? The Holy Spirit only dwells in the Truth we both are the true church, we deserve to be one not afflicted by politics which have split us.

You presume far too much.

Why do you presume only one church is the truth ?.
I don't presume, I believe and I've seen enough to believe both churches are true.
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