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« Reply #225 on: October 30, 2012, 02:01:08 AM »

You can't seriously believe that all 'Eastern' theology is exclusively 'apophatic' and all 'Western' theology is exclusively 'cataphatic', can you?

How, for example, is 'homoousios' any more or less apophatic than 'transubstantiation'?

For that matter, the Damascene teaches us that every cataphatic phrase can be stated in apophatic terms, and vice versa....
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« Reply #226 on: October 30, 2012, 02:01:41 AM »

which the Eastern Fathers held used Aristotelian philosophy rather than simply the terminology of the Greeks.

Which Eastern Fathers leveled this criticism against scholasticism?
St. Gregory Palamas and St. Mark of Ephesus to name just two Fathers.
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« Reply #227 on: October 30, 2012, 02:02:08 AM »

Look, can we admit that 'become' has many meanings? For example-- I can become a lawyer, a father, old, a corpse, 'a lion' (metaphorically), charcoal (by being burned), an amputee, etc....    These are all different meanings of 'become'.

When we say that the bread and wine become body and blood, there are several ways this can be understood. For example, it could be in the same sense that I become a lion, that is metaphorically. We both agree that this is incorrect, right?

Transubstantiation, given that it is a form of change not observed in nature (is that apophatic enough for you?), simply narrows down the type of change that is occurring-- it's not a metaphorical change, a mechanical change, nor a  change perceivable by the 5 senses (which would be a change in accidents), but it is a real change . But, the what-it-is does change-- bread and wine become true body and true wine, without some kind of simultaneous continued existence of bread and wine.

So yes, it is important to point out what kind of change occurs, to eliminate potentially heretical understandings of this change, which are common enough over the past 5 centuries, east and west.
?

I don't know of a single heresy on the Eucharist in the East in the past 19+ centuries.
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« Reply #228 on: October 30, 2012, 02:03:03 AM »

You can't seriously believe that all 'Eastern' theology is exclusively 'apophatic' and all 'Western' theology is exclusively 'cataphatic', can you?

How, for example, is 'homoousios' any more or less apophatic than 'transubstantiation'?

For that matter, the Damascene teaches us that every cataphatic phrase can be stated in apophatic terms, and vice versa....
Homoousios is most certainly used apophatically, because the Cappadocians, and the other fourth century Fathers, always insisted that we cannot know what the divine ousia is.  That Christ is proper to it, we know, but nothing else.  Or do you hold the Scholastic idea that we can know, but not comprehend, the ousia of God?
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« Reply #229 on: October 30, 2012, 02:05:04 AM »

which the Eastern Fathers held used Aristotelian philosophy rather than simply the terminology of the Greeks.

Which Eastern Fathers leveled this criticism against scholasticism?
St. Gregory Palamas and St. Mark of Ephesus to name just two Fathers.

Can you give citations for St. Mark or St. Gregory specifically criticizing scholasticism for using Aristotle?
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« Reply #230 on: October 30, 2012, 02:05:22 AM »

You can't seriously believe that all 'Eastern' theology is exclusively 'apophatic' and all 'Western' theology is exclusively 'cataphatic', can you?

How, for example, is 'homoousios' any more or less apophatic than 'transubstantiation'?

For that matter, the Damascene teaches us that every cataphatic phrase can be stated in apophatic terms, and vice versa....
Homoousios is most certainly used apophatically, because the Cappadocians, and the other fourth century Fathers, always insisted that we cannot know what the divine ousia is.  That Christ is proper to it, we know, but nothing else.  Or do you hold the Scholastic idea that we can know, but not comprehend, the ousia of God?



Uh.... But again, I could explain 'transubstantiation' in apophatic terms, as I did above, by pointing out that it's a unique type of change that we do not observe in nature and that it negates all the various types of change that are not proper to the Eucharist.
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« Reply #231 on: October 30, 2012, 02:06:40 AM »

Look, can we admit that 'become' has many meanings? For example-- I can become a lawyer, a father, old, a corpse, 'a lion' (metaphorically), charcoal (by being burned), an amputee, etc....    These are all different meanings of 'become'.

When we say that the bread and wine become body and blood, there are several ways this can be understood. For example, it could be in the same sense that I become a lion, that is metaphorically. We both agree that this is incorrect, right?

Transubstantiation, given that it is a form of change not observed in nature (is that apophatic enough for you?), simply narrows down the type of change that is occurring-- it's not a metaphorical change, a mechanical change, nor a  change perceivable by the 5 senses (which would be a change in accidents), but it is a real change . But, the what-it-is does change-- bread and wine become true body and true wine, without some kind of simultaneous continued existence of bread and wine.

So yes, it is important to point out what kind of change occurs, to eliminate potentially heretical understandings of this change, which are common enough over the past 5 centuries, east and west.
?

I don't know of a single heresy on the Eucharist in the East in the past 19+ centuries.

A) Cyril Lukaris

B) the influence of Protestant missionaries, especially in the Levant

C) modern converts from Protestantism with a weird hang-up about anything vaguely 'Latin'
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« Reply #232 on: October 30, 2012, 02:07:20 AM »

How, for example, is 'homoousios' any more or less apophatic than 'transubstantiation'?
How is "homoousios" more apophatic than "transubstantiation," it is more (or to be more precise, it is) apophatic because I cannot know at all what the ousia of God is, or what the term means, but you have told me what "transubstantiation" is, you have described precisely what it means, for you have said that it means that the substance of the bread and wine become the substance of the Body and Blood of Christ, while the accidents remain.  There is no mystery in that.  I admit that it is a form of gibberish if you do not accept Aristotelian metaphysics, but you have given a precise definition of what the term means and what happens when the elements are consecrated through the chanting of the Eucharistic anaphora.
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« Reply #233 on: October 30, 2012, 02:07:35 AM »

C) modern converts from Protestantism with a weird hang-up about anything vaguely 'Latin'

 Cheesy
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« Reply #234 on: October 30, 2012, 02:09:10 AM »

which the Eastern Fathers held used Aristotelian philosophy rather than simply the terminology of the Greeks.

Which Eastern Fathers leveled this criticism against scholasticism?
St. Gregory Palamas and St. Mark of Ephesus to name just two Fathers.

While David Bradshaw's book Aristotle East and West is by no means without fault, it does demonstrate the degree to which St Gregory Palamas was working within an Aristotelian framework. Much of the controversy over hesychasm was a debate between two distinct traditions of using Aristotle.  It was never over the validity of Aristotle as such....
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« Reply #235 on: October 30, 2012, 02:10:37 AM »

Are the Ecumenical Councils illegitimate because they define what happens in the Incarnation, using the Aristotelian tradition of metaphysics? (Even if you argue that the Fathers developed 'hypostasis' in a new direction, it's still being explicitly used in the sense of the Aristotelian 'primary substance', both by the Cappadocians and by the Chalcedonian fathers like Leontius, Justinian, St Anastasius the Sinaite, St John of Damascus, Theodore Abu Qurra, etc....)

So I was right! Now you venture to tell us that the incarnation too is no mystery, arguing that in saying Christ is made known in two natures, that the fathers of Chalcedon, and all later ecumenical councils meant to teach us by what metaphysical mechanism the incarnation itself occurred. It is a shame they did not use their divining powers to tell us by what mechanism the Son is generated: Gregory the Theologian would have loved to know.
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« Reply #236 on: October 30, 2012, 02:10:44 AM »

C) modern converts from Protestantism with a weird hang-up about anything vaguely 'Latin'
I know plenty of non-convert Orthodox who do not like Latin theological terms.  Cheesy

And a few of them have warned me about Orthodox Latin wannabes, who like to adopt as many Latin terms and practices as possible.  Cheesy
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« Reply #237 on: October 30, 2012, 02:11:16 AM »

How, for example, is 'homoousios' any more or less apophatic than 'transubstantiation'?
How is "homoousios" more apophatic than "transubstantiation," it is more (or to be more precise, it is) apophatic because I cannot know at all what the ousia of God is, or what the term means, but you have told me what "transubstantiation" is, you have described precisely what it means, for you have said that it means that the substance of the bread and wine become the substance of the Body and Blood of Christ, while the accidents remain.  There is no mystery in that.  I admit that it is a form of gibberish if you do not accept Aristotelian metaphysics, but you have given a precise definition of what the term means and what happens when the elements are consecrated through the chanting of the Eucharistic anaphora.


Dude, 'transubstantiation' no more requires comprehending the substance of the body and blood than 'homousios' requires understanding the divine substance. I mean, 'homoousios' makes the very cataphatic claim that the Son and the Father share the same substance.....
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« Reply #238 on: October 30, 2012, 02:13:10 AM »

Are the Ecumenical Councils illegitimate because they define what happens in the Incarnation, using the Aristotelian tradition of metaphysics? (Even if you argue that the Fathers developed 'hypostasis' in a new direction, it's still being explicitly used in the sense of the Aristotelian 'primary substance', both by the Cappadocians and by the Chalcedonian fathers like Leontius, Justinian, St Anastasius the Sinaite, St John of Damascus, Theodore Abu Qurra, etc....)

So I was right! Now you venture to tell us that the incarnation too is no mystery, arguing that in saying Christ is made known in two natures, that the fathers of Chalcedon, and all later ecumenical councils meant to teach us by what metaphysical mechanism the incarnation itself occurred. It is a shame they did not use their divining powers to tell us by what mechanism the Son is generated: Gregory the Theologian would have loved to know.

Internet problem-- I really can't tell if you're being sarcastic here.... In any case, no one now or ever has been talking about mechanisms.
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« Reply #239 on: October 30, 2012, 02:16:22 AM »

Are the Ecumenical Councils illegitimate because they define what happens in the Incarnation, using the Aristotelian tradition of metaphysics? (Even if you argue that the Fathers developed 'hypostasis' in a new direction, it's still being explicitly used in the sense of the Aristotelian 'primary substance', both by the Cappadocians and by the Chalcedonian fathers like Leontius, Justinian, St Anastasius the Sinaite, St John of Damascus, Theodore Abu Qurra, etc....)

So I was right! Now you venture to tell us that the incarnation too is no mystery, arguing that in saying Christ is made known in two natures, that the fathers of Chalcedon, and all later ecumenical councils meant to teach us by what metaphysical mechanism the incarnation itself occurred. It is a shame they did not use their divining powers to tell us by what mechanism the Son is generated: Gregory the Theologian would have loved to know.

Internet problem-- I really can't tell if you're being sarcastic here.... In any case, no one now or ever has been talking about mechanisms.

But you yourself just wrote that the Ecumenical Councils defined what happens in the incarnation. Next you will tell me that they have finally bested Eunomius by defining the very essence of God.
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« Reply #240 on: October 30, 2012, 02:17:09 AM »

How, for example, is 'homoousios' any more or less apophatic than 'transubstantiation'?
How is "homoousios" more apophatic than "transubstantiation," it is more (or to be more precise, it is) apophatic because I cannot know at all what the ousia of God is, or what the term means, but you have told me what "transubstantiation" is, you have described precisely what it means, for you have said that it means that the substance of the bread and wine become the substance of the Body and Blood of Christ, while the accidents remain.  There is no mystery in that.  I admit that it is a form of gibberish if you do not accept Aristotelian metaphysics, but you have given a precise definition of what the term means and what happens when the elements are consecrated through the chanting of the Eucharistic anaphora.


Dude, 'transubstantiation' no more requires comprehending the substance of the body and blood than 'homousios' requires understanding the divine substance. I mean, 'homoousios' makes the very cataphatic claim that the Son and the Father share the same substance.....
You would make a great Roman Catholic.  Cheesy
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« Reply #241 on: October 30, 2012, 02:23:25 AM »

So since St. Irenaeus and Pope St. Gelasius do not affirm transubstantiation, but actually reject such a description, does that make them heretics?  Especially St. Gelasius who explicitly rejected the idea that the substance of the bread and wine are changed, what does that mean about him?  Was he just wrong and the later (i.e., the 16th century) Roman Church was right?  Or was he not simply wrong but a true heretic?
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« Reply #242 on: October 30, 2012, 02:31:13 AM »

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun, I think you both have a hyper-determined understanding (bordering on trolling) of what is meant when someone is defining something, and this is taking this conversation in the direction of absurdity, so I'll just lay out the last of what I have to say here and maybe give up on trying to talk reasonably to people on the internet.

To wit,

No normal understanding of transubstantiation requires anyone to understand what the essence of something is. What's at stake rather is understanding the type of change that has occurred. If you can't get this distinction through your head, then I can't help you. Saying which kind of change occurred is not the same thing as describing the mechanism by which it occurred.

No serious, informed person would argue that the Fathers were not working creatively within the framework of neo-Platonic Aristotelianism. There are some differences in the ways that this tradition plays out in various Fathers and various writers, but certain basic things, such as the concepts of substance and accident, are pretty much the same across the early and Medieval tradition, Latin, Greek, or for that matter Syriac or Armenian. This stops being the case slowly in the Latin world from the 13th century and the Greek world from the 19th century. But, unless we're willing to accept this tradition as in some way valid and meaningful, the Ecumenical Councils and all of Orthodox Triadological and Christological discourse make no sense.


'Apophatic' does not mean 'we won't explain it'. It rather means using negative language to precisely locate where the mystery is. This is what the Christological definitions do, for example, in their mix of apophatic and cataphatic language. Transubstantiation does the same thing. It doesn't define the mechanism of the change, but rather by putting forward a type of change for which we have no natural analogy, it eliminates a whole host of erroneous conceptions of change.

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« Reply #243 on: October 30, 2012, 02:32:38 AM »

Apotheoun, I'm perfectly happy with popes and saints getting stuff wrong or using language I'm not too keen on. Unlike you, I'm not Catholic....
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« Reply #244 on: October 30, 2012, 09:57:55 AM »

Quote
  In other words, you could say:  The Eucharist is transubstantiation;

Huh? No. Transubstantiation is a technical term for the exact type of change which occurs when the bread and wine become body and blood, which is not a synonym for 'Eucharist'.

This discussion of different types of change is no different from the interminably long an Aristotelian-inspired discussions of the different types of mixture within the context of the Christological controversies....
Ah, so it does describe the mechanism (for lack of a better word) of the change in the Eucharist.  In other words, it is an attempt to pry into the mystery and define it.  You have now made it obvious why Orthodox reject the term, and see Rome's attempt to make it a dogma problematic.

Thank you.
You are arguing against the Catholic teaching and defending the Eastern Orthodox stance. What's weird about this? YOU'RE CATHOLIC.
Apotheoun's attitude towards Catholicism and Orthodoxy is a perfect example of LARPing. His idiosyncratic approach to the faith is just that, idiosyncratic.
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« Reply #245 on: October 30, 2012, 09:59:26 AM »

Quote
  In other words, you could say:  The Eucharist is transubstantiation;

Huh? No. Transubstantiation is a technical term for the exact type of change which occurs when the bread and wine become body and blood, which is not a synonym for 'Eucharist'.

This discussion of different types of change is no different from the interminably long an Aristotelian-inspired discussions of the different types of mixture within the context of the Christological controversies....
Ah, so it does describe the mechanism (for lack of a better word) of the change in the Eucharist.  In other words, it is an attempt to pry into the mystery and define it.  You have now made it obvious why Orthodox reject the term, and see Rome's attempt to make it a dogma problematic.

Thank you.
You are arguing against the Catholic teaching and defending the Eastern Orthodox stance. What's weird about this? YOU'RE CATHOLIC.

He's a spiritual tourist.
Yup. He's basically created his own set of beliefs and judges both Churches by that rule.
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« Reply #246 on: October 30, 2012, 10:01:11 AM »

Quote
  In other words, you could say:  The Eucharist is transubstantiation;

Huh? No. Transubstantiation is a technical term for the exact type of change which occurs when the bread and wine become body and blood, which is not a synonym for 'Eucharist'.

This discussion of different types of change is no different from the interminably long an Aristotelian-inspired discussions of the different types of mixture within the context of the Christological controversies....
Ah, so it does describe the mechanism (for lack of a better word) of the change in the Eucharist.  In other words, it is an attempt to pry into the mystery and define it.  You have now made it obvious why Orthodox reject the term, and see Rome's attempt to make it a dogma problematic.

Thank you.
You are arguing against the Catholic teaching and defending the Eastern Orthodox stance. What's weird about this? YOU'RE CATHOLIC.
I am an Orthodox Catholic.  Cheesy
This would be true except that you profession is neither.
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« Reply #247 on: October 30, 2012, 10:01:57 AM »

Quote
  How does the definition, "a change by which the bread and wine really becomes body and blood but maintain the physical properties of bread and wine," exclude consubstantiation? 

See, we're demonstrating the necessity of the precision afforded by 'transubstantation here', since I meant "becomes body and blood and ceases to be bread and wine".......
No, we're showing why speculation upon the holy mysteries tends to lead to heresy.  I think it is wisest to stay with the what is affirmed by the Apostolic and Patristic Tradition and not try to solve the mysteries of faith as if they are mathematical equations.

I think that one should simply affirm that the Eucharist is the Body and Blood of Christ, and leave it at that, but if you must add more than you can add what St. Irenaeus said, which - to paraphrase him - is that the Eucharist contains both an earthly and a heavenly reality, because what he said has the added benefit of coordinating well with what Pope St. Gelasius said when he denied a substantial change in the elements.
Do you believe that the Latins are heretical?
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« Reply #248 on: October 30, 2012, 01:25:05 PM »

How, for example, is 'homoousios' any more or less apophatic than 'transubstantiation'?
How is "homoousios" more apophatic than "transubstantiation," it is more (or to be more precise, it is) apophatic because I cannot know at all what the ousia of God is, or what the term means, but you have told me what "transubstantiation" is, you have described precisely what it means, for you have said that it means that the substance of the bread and wine become the substance of the Body and Blood of Christ, while the accidents remain.  There is no mystery in that.  I admit that it is a form of gibberish if you do not accept Aristotelian metaphysics, but you have given a precise definition of what the term means and what happens when the elements are consecrated through the chanting of the Eucharistic anaphora.


Dude, 'transubstantiation' no more requires comprehending the substance of the body and blood than 'homousios' requires understanding the divine substance. I mean, 'homoousios' makes the very cataphatic claim that the Son and the Father share the same substance.....
You would make a great Roman Catholic.  Cheesy
You would make a great Eastern Orthodox.
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« Reply #249 on: October 30, 2012, 01:30:18 PM »

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun, I think you both have a hyper-determined understanding (bordering on trolling) of what is meant when someone is defining something, and this is taking this conversation in the direction of absurdity, so I'll just lay out the last of what I have to say here and maybe give up on trying to talk reasonably to people on the internet.

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun are two greatly respected posters (at least by me). If anyone's trolling it's you trying to force latin doctrines on us.


You would make a great Eastern Orthodox.

This. I wonder how any Eastern Catholic could venerate St. Mark of Ephesus since it was his dying wish that the Eastern Catholics shouldn't do so (or at least pray for his soul).


Apotheoun's attitude towards Catholicism and Orthodoxy is a perfect example of LARPing. His idiosyncratic approach to the faith is just that, idiosyncratic.

Welcome to the magical world of the Orthodox in Communion with Rome types. They (and the Melkites in general) seem to think they have a time machine which makes them in communion with 8th century Rome.
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« Reply #250 on: October 30, 2012, 01:39:51 PM »

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun, I think you both have a hyper-determined understanding (bordering on trolling) of what is meant when someone is defining something, and this is taking this conversation in the direction of absurdity, so I'll just lay out the last of what I have to say here and maybe give up on trying to talk reasonably to people on the internet.

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun are two greatly respected posters (at least by me). If anyone's trolling it's you trying to force latin doctrines on us.

Completely ridiculous. How is he trying to force anything on you? Cut the hysterics.

Before people make any more dumb comments about Samn, take the time to read his blog, which excellent and unique: : http://araborthodoxy.blogspot.com
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« Reply #251 on: October 30, 2012, 01:44:02 PM »

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun, I think you both have a hyper-determined understanding (bordering on trolling) of what is meant when someone is defining something, and this is taking this conversation in the direction of absurdity, so I'll just lay out the last of what I have to say here and maybe give up on trying to talk reasonably to people on the internet.

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun are two greatly respected posters (at least by me). If anyone's trolling it's you trying to force latin doctrines on us.

Completely ridiculous. How is he trying to force anything on you? Cut the hysterics.

Before people make any more dumb comments about Samn, take the time to read his blog, which excellent and unique: : http://araborthodoxy.blogspot.com

I'm not hysteric, in fact, you're the one sounding hysteric now.
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« Reply #252 on: October 30, 2012, 01:45:57 PM »

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun, I think you both have a hyper-determined understanding (bordering on trolling) of what is meant when someone is defining something, and this is taking this conversation in the direction of absurdity, so I'll just lay out the last of what I have to say here and maybe give up on trying to talk reasonably to people on the internet.

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun are two greatly respected posters (at least by me). If anyone's trolling it's you trying to force latin doctrines on us.

Completely ridiculous. How is he trying to force anything on you? Cut the hysterics.

Before people make any more dumb comments about Samn, take the time to read his blog, which excellent and unique: : http://araborthodoxy.blogspot.com

I'm not hysteric, in fact, you're the one sounding hysteric now.

So, how is Sam forcing Latin doctrine on you?  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #253 on: October 30, 2012, 01:47:24 PM »

This thread reminds me of when I expressed reservations about the essence/energies distinction in Eastern Orthodoxy. The hypocrisy here is appalling.
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« Reply #254 on: October 30, 2012, 01:47:32 PM »

'Apophatic' does not mean 'we won't explain it'. It rather means using negative language to precisely locate where the mystery is. This is what the Christological definitions do, for example, in their mix of apophatic and cataphatic language. Transubstantiation does the same thing. It doesn't define the mechanism of the change, but rather by putting forward a type of change for which we have no natural analogy, it eliminates a whole host of erroneous conceptions of change.

But in using the term transubstantiation, you have made a natural analogy. You posit that the body of Christ, whatever it is, has a what-it-is, which replaces and fully consumes the what-it-is of the bread and wine, whatever they are. In an attempt to provide stability for and closure upon our understanding of the mystery of mysteries, you have resorted to appealing to the concept of being. But immediately upon specifying the manner of change as being a change in being, you open a whole can of worms by opening the mystery up to further speculation, which has been validated by the shoving of the mystery into the framework of being. So then what becomes of the remaining accidents? Do they inhere in the what-it-is of the body of Christ? Do they remain without subject? And more importantly how, by eating the remaining accidents, do we become deified? Is it because the body of Christ has become locally present where the accidents are to be found? How is an essence made locally present without manifesting its own form and energies, such as the form and energies of flesh and blood? What is the nature of the body of Christ? Is it His hypostasis? His two natures?

But perhaps you would object by saying that transubstantiation is not meant to subject the mystery to the framework of being. But in that case, you would again make it an empty utterance, since such a denial would mean that the term does not specify the manner of change. And if you try to take refuge in the term homoousion, I would ask, what was meant by the term homoousion? That the Father and the Son, and the relationship between them can be grasped by claiming that they are the same kind of beings which we see around us, which have an essence and an hypostasis? Of course, I would suspect you would rightfully reject such impiety.

So perhaps then you would try to take refuge in saying that the term homoousion similarly makes no claim as to how the Father and Son are one, only stating the fact, and that therefore the use of meaningless words like transubstantiation is justified. But this does not hold, because if one restates the term homoousion in terms of what the word is intended to exclude (that is, homoousion excludes the possibility of that the Son is heteroousion and also certain implications homoiousion) one will see that it is not meant to define the manner of unity, but only that it affirms the fact that Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are one God. By contrast, when we examine only one term alone which transubstantiation is designed to exclude, consubstantiation, it immediately becomes clear that the term indeed aims to define the manner of the change, by excluding the possibility that the essence of the bread remains.

Do you see then? The term itself carries an inherent meaning which encroaches upon explaining the unexplainable by way of privation. Hence we must either qualify that it does not explain how the Eucharistic change happens (which robs the term transubstantiation of its meaning and makes the term nonsensical), or we must admit that we use the term to pry into that which cannot be explained. We are simply better off not using it.
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« Reply #255 on: October 30, 2012, 01:48:49 PM »

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun, I think you both have a hyper-determined understanding (bordering on trolling) of what is meant when someone is defining something, and this is taking this conversation in the direction of absurdity, so I'll just lay out the last of what I have to say here and maybe give up on trying to talk reasonably to people on the internet.

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun are two greatly respected posters (at least by me). If anyone's trolling it's you trying to force latin doctrines on us.

Completely ridiculous. How is he trying to force anything on you? Cut the hysterics.

Before people make any more dumb comments about Samn, take the time to read his blog, which excellent and unique: : http://araborthodoxy.blogspot.com

I'm not hysteric, in fact, you're the one sounding hysteric now.

So, how is Sam forcing Latin doctrine on you?  Roll Eyes

Forcing might be too strong a word, but so is calling Cavaradossi and Apotheoun trolls. Happy now?

This thread reminds me of when I expressed reservations about the essence/energies distinction in Eastern Orthodoxy. The hypocrisy here is appalling.

Please elaborate.
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« Reply #256 on: October 30, 2012, 01:49:15 PM »

Why is everyone saying essence/accidents instead of substance/accidents?
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« Reply #257 on: October 30, 2012, 01:49:34 PM »

Fight!!!  Ban!!!  Oh, wait, wrong forum  Grin
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« Reply #258 on: October 30, 2012, 01:53:53 PM »

Please elaborate.
I felt that the essence/energies distinction, which goes beyond what the pre-schism Church believed about the Godhead (that God is a Trinity) was unnecessary and attempted to delve too deeply into the mystery of God. I was freaked out on by a slew of people that claimed the teaching was orthodox and quite necessary. Yet, the same argument as I used is used by many Eastern Orthodox on here as to why transubstantiation is unnecessary at best and heretical at worst.
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« Reply #259 on: October 30, 2012, 01:54:19 PM »

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun, I think you both have a hyper-determined understanding (bordering on trolling) of what is meant when someone is defining something, and this is taking this conversation in the direction of absurdity, so I'll just lay out the last of what I have to say here and maybe give up on trying to talk reasonably to people on the internet.

Cavaradossi and Apotheoun are two greatly respected posters (at least by me). If anyone's trolling it's you trying to force latin doctrines on us.

Completely ridiculous. How is he trying to force anything on you? Cut the hysterics.

Before people make any more dumb comments about Samn, take the time to read his blog, which excellent and unique: : http://araborthodoxy.blogspot.com

I'm not hysteric, in fact, you're the one sounding hysteric now.

So, how is Sam forcing Latin doctrine on you?  Roll Eyes

Forcing might be too strong a word, but so is calling Cavaradossi and Apotheoun trolls. Happy now?

He said "bordering on trolling" which is different and a quite fair assessment. Apotheoun and Cavaradossi show no willingness to seriously engage with the important historic points that Samn has raised. And Apotheoun's "You would make a great Roman Catholic" is definitely trolling. I am still waiting for Apotheoun's citations of where St. Mark of Ephesus or St. Gregory Palamas denounce the scholastics for employing Aristotelian philosophy.
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« Reply #260 on: October 30, 2012, 03:11:18 PM »

Look, let me explain the reasons why I'm troubled when Orthodox criticize the concept of transubstantiation on the grounds that it's too "Latin" or too "Aristotelian".

First of all, this fits into the pattern of knee-jerk anti-Latinism that often mars popular Orthodox apologetics. Whether something is used by the Latins has no bearing on whether it is true or not.

Third, by rejecting anything that smacks of 'Aristotelianism' one runs the risk of rejecting much of the Orthodox theological heritage, including virtually all Orthodox Christological and Triadological language. Saying that the Fathers didn't use Aristotle is simply evidence that you don't really have much of an understanding of the philosophical background to the Fathers and the Ecumenical Councils or of how the Aristotelian tradition evolved in the Patristic period.

Fourth, and perhaps most importantly, some people on this forum, and elsewhere, in their fear of anything 'Latin' seem to have embraced Lutheran or other heretical understandings of the Eucharist.

Fifth, rejecting transubstantiation amounts to a rejection of the main ways that Orthodox have responded to Protestantism, which very early on they had to do, despite what some people here have claimed about Orthodoxy somehow being immune to threats from Protestantism. From St Peter Mogila to Fr Michael Pomazansky, we can find many, many examples of Orthodox theologians who are happy to use this language, either exclusively or alongside other language. I've read quite a lot of anti-Latin polemic and prior to the second half of the 20th century, I can't find a single Orthodox writer who identifies transubstantiation as one of the differences between the Orthodox and the Latins, in contrast to the dozens who identify Orthodox acceptance of transubstantiation as one of the chief differences with Protestants. To reject transubstantiation means to reject 400 years of Orthodox theological tradition, something I'm not at all prepared to do!
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« Reply #261 on: October 30, 2012, 03:22:41 PM »

Fantastic post Samn! And yes he has quite an interesting blog.

Could the Orthodox have a phobia of approaching theology in an Aquinatic fashion? I think it's important to note that while a scholastic approach may be beneficial in understanding something, we must reserve some caution not to equate that with divine revelation. I have no problem with folks using Aristotlellian language and concepts to use as descriptors, that being said.

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« Reply #262 on: October 30, 2012, 03:32:15 PM »

Fantastic post Samn! And yes he has quite an interesting blog.

Could the Orthodox have a phobia of approaching theology in an Aquinatic fashion? I think it's important to note that while a scholastic approach may be beneficial in understanding something, we must reserve some caution not to equate that with divine revelation. I have no problem with folks using Aristotlellian language and concepts to use as descriptors, that being said.

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« Reply #263 on: October 30, 2012, 03:42:04 PM »

Fantastic post Samn! And yes he has quite an interesting blog.

Could the Orthodox have a phobia of approaching theology in an Aquinatic fashion? I think it's important to note that while a scholastic approach may be beneficial in understanding something, we must reserve some caution not to equate that with divine revelation. I have no problem with folks using Aristotlellian language and concepts to use as descriptors, that being said.

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That is not what you said last night.
Are we going to approach last night apophatically?  Wink

Psst, I know you have me confused with someone else. Wink
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« Reply #264 on: October 30, 2012, 03:49:28 PM »

Look, let me explain the reasons why I'm troubled when Orthodox criticize the concept of transubstantiation on the grounds that it's too "Latin" or too "Aristotelian".

First of all, this fits into the pattern of knee-jerk anti-Latinism that often mars popular Orthodox apologetics. Whether something is used by the Latins has no bearing on whether it is true or not.

Third, by rejecting anything that smacks of 'Aristotelianism' one runs the risk of rejecting much of the Orthodox theological heritage, including virtually all Orthodox Christological and Triadological language. Saying that the Fathers didn't use Aristotle is simply evidence that you don't really have much of an understanding of the philosophical background to the Fathers and the Ecumenical Councils or of how the Aristotelian tradition evolved in the Patristic period.

Fourth, and perhaps most importantly, some people on this forum, and elsewhere, in their fear of anything 'Latin' seem to have embraced Lutheran or other heretical understandings of the Eucharist.

Fifth, rejecting transubstantiation amounts to a rejection of the main ways that Orthodox have responded to Protestantism, which very early on they had to do, despite what some people here have claimed about Orthodoxy somehow being immune to threats from Protestantism. From St Peter Mogila to Fr Michael Pomazansky, we can find many, many examples of Orthodox theologians who are happy to use this language, either exclusively or alongside other language. I've read quite a lot of anti-Latin polemic and prior to the second half of the 20th century, I can't find a single Orthodox writer who identifies transubstantiation as one of the differences between the Orthodox and the Latins, in contrast to the dozens who identify Orthodox acceptance of transubstantiation as one of the chief differences with Protestants. To reject transubstantiation means to reject 400 years of Orthodox theological tradition, something I'm not at all prepared to do!

Tell me, do you typically describe Christ as being out of two natures and as one incarnate nature? Or do you normally confess that the Word is of similar substance with the Father without variation?
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« Reply #265 on: October 30, 2012, 03:50:05 PM »

Regarding Aquinas, I think we need to be very careful about criticizing his method as such, since in many ways it very closely resembles that of the Orthodox Fathers from the time of Chalcedon on who had a very close engagement with Aristotelian/Porphyrian logic in order to defend the (neo-) Chalcedonian understanding of the Incarnation. I've already mentioned some such Fathers-- Leontius, Justinian, Anastasius the Sinaite, St John of Damascus. The Arab Orthodox tradition is especially rich in theological engagement with Aristotelian philosophy-- you can see for yourself as most of Theodore Abu Qurra's works are now easily available in John Lamoreaux's excellent translation, and some of the works of the great 11th century example of Arab Orthodox 'scholasticism', Abdallah ibn al-Fadl, are slowly trickling into availability in English. So, much of what gets called 'scholasticism' at least in terms of engagement with Aristotle really had its origins in the East and not in some kind of preternaturally defective 'Latin mentality.'

In terms of Orthodox engagement with Aquinas, I think that it's more prudent to recognize first of all that he's working within an intellectual tradition that's not so distant from the broad sweet of the Orthodox tradition, but that he did make certain philosophical moves that are just plain wrong, such as his understanding of divine simplicity, which in any case he's taking whole hog from Avicenna. David Bradshaw's book Aristotle East and West, which is somewhat blemished by its needlessly polemical and anti-Latin to the point of being borderline-paranoid afterward, nevertheless does an excellent job of demonstrating that the significant differences between Aquinas and St Gregory Palamas go back to their making use of divergent strains of the Aristotelian tradition.....
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« Reply #266 on: October 30, 2012, 03:51:08 PM »

Look, let me explain the reasons why I'm troubled when Orthodox criticize the concept of transubstantiation on the grounds that it's too "Latin" or too "Aristotelian".

First of all, this fits into the pattern of knee-jerk anti-Latinism that often mars popular Orthodox apologetics. Whether something is used by the Latins has no bearing on whether it is true or not.

Third, by rejecting anything that smacks of 'Aristotelianism' one runs the risk of rejecting much of the Orthodox theological heritage, including virtually all Orthodox Christological and Triadological language. Saying that the Fathers didn't use Aristotle is simply evidence that you don't really have much of an understanding of the philosophical background to the Fathers and the Ecumenical Councils or of how the Aristotelian tradition evolved in the Patristic period.

Fourth, and perhaps most importantly, some people on this forum, and elsewhere, in their fear of anything 'Latin' seem to have embraced Lutheran or other heretical understandings of the Eucharist.

Fifth, rejecting transubstantiation amounts to a rejection of the main ways that Orthodox have responded to Protestantism, which very early on they had to do, despite what some people here have claimed about Orthodoxy somehow being immune to threats from Protestantism. From St Peter Mogila to Fr Michael Pomazansky, we can find many, many examples of Orthodox theologians who are happy to use this language, either exclusively or alongside other language. I've read quite a lot of anti-Latin polemic and prior to the second half of the 20th century, I can't find a single Orthodox writer who identifies transubstantiation as one of the differences between the Orthodox and the Latins, in contrast to the dozens who identify Orthodox acceptance of transubstantiation as one of the chief differences with Protestants. To reject transubstantiation means to reject 400 years of Orthodox theological tradition, something I'm not at all prepared to do!

Tell me, do you typically describe Christ as being out of two natures and as one incarnate nature?


In accordance with the Council of 553, Christ is one hypostasis and prosopon in and out of two natures.
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« Reply #267 on: October 30, 2012, 03:51:34 PM »


Tell me, do you typically describe Christ as being out of two natures and as one incarnate nature?

Where does that question come from?
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« Reply #268 on: October 30, 2012, 03:58:17 PM »

For reasons I can't follow, he seems to want to know if I'm a Severian or not.....
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« Reply #269 on: October 30, 2012, 04:24:53 PM »

For reasons I can't follow, he seems to want to know if I'm a Severian or not.....

There can be only one true Severian on this forum.
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