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Author Topic: Schlock Icons  (Read 90433 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #1215 on: December 01, 2013, 06:00:08 PM »

Diptychs featuring the same saint or subject are not the norm, it kinda defeats the purpose. But, like icon bracelets, icon T-shirts and icon mugs, these things are made without due regard for what is proper.
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« Reply #1216 on: December 02, 2013, 08:23:02 PM »

LBK,
What is you opinion on these icons?


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« Reply #1217 on: December 02, 2013, 08:51:44 PM »

LBK,
Please explain this icon. What is the Archangel holding?
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« Reply #1218 on: December 02, 2013, 10:33:08 PM »

LBK,
What is you opinion on these icons?




I see the bead and sequin treatment as unnecessarily embellishments, similar to the placing of embossed silver or gold (often set with gemstones) on icons. It's an honest but misguided attempt to "beautify" icons. Gilding lilies, frou-frou and all that.  Wink

OTOH, there is a perfectly proper and authentic tradition of producing icons which are not painted, but fully embroidered. The best-known example is the plashchanitsa/epitaphios, which is embroidered on dark red cloth or velvet, depicting the Lamentation, with the troparion of Great Friday embroidered in the border. This cloth is draped over a tomb-shaped or sepulcher-shaped structure during the Vespers of Great Friday, and remains there until the Paschal Matins. It is venerated throughout this period, just as any painted icon would be:



Other embroidered icons are made for clerical vestments and altar cloths. The "look" of these is in keeping with the sober, sombre dignity of conventional painted icons, unlike the unfortunate gaudiness of the beaded icons posted.
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« Reply #1219 on: December 02, 2013, 10:39:23 PM »

LBK,
Please explain this icon. What is the Archangel holding?


The archangel is Michael, and he is holding a circular motif of the souls of the departed prior to the Final Judgement. In his right hand is his messenger's staff, not, as many mistakenly believe, a spear. He is an emissary of the heavenly court (royal household).
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« Reply #1220 on: December 02, 2013, 10:41:18 PM »

^Reminds me of something I found recently on ebay, where they put gold paint on a printed icon. Of course they also make sure to put "handpainted" in the auction title.

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« Reply #1221 on: December 02, 2013, 10:49:18 PM »

^Reminds me of something I found recently on ebay, where they put gold paint on a printed icon. Of course they also make sure to put "handpainted" in the auction title.



What finesse and precision we see, what delicacy of workmanship!  Shocked Shocked Shocked Tongue Tongue Tongue

There oughta be a law. Seriously.
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« Reply #1222 on: December 02, 2013, 10:54:04 PM »

^Reminds me of something I found recently on ebay, where they put gold paint on a printed icon. Of course they also make sure to put "handpainted" in the auction title.



What finesse and precision we see, what delicacy of workmanship!  Shocked Shocked Shocked Tongue Tongue Tongue

There oughta be a law. Seriously.
Oh no, something that sloppy does carry a certain amount of finesse, like the guy who spends 45 minutes making sure it looks like he's got bedhead before leaving for work.
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« Reply #1223 on: December 03, 2013, 12:21:30 AM »

^Reminds me of something I found recently on ebay, where they put gold paint on a printed icon. Of course they also make sure to put "handpainted" in the auction title.


If you are gonna get all aggressive with the gold paint, at least make it look good. That is the blobbiest (is that a word?) wreck I've ever seen.
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« Reply #1224 on: December 03, 2013, 02:04:00 AM »

LBK,
Please explain this icon. What is the Archangel holding?


The archangel is Michael, and he is holding a circular motif of the souls of the departed prior to the Final Judgement. In his right hand is his messenger's staff, not, as many mistakenly believe, a spear. He is an emissary of the heavenly court (royal household).

More on the souls the Archangel is holding, from the service for the feast of the Assembly of the Bodiless Powers:

Princes and Chiefs of the heavenly realms, of the high-throned and dread regions of the divine glory, Michael and Gabriel, Chief Captains and Ministers, with all the Bodiless Powers, who ever intercede with the Master on the world’s behalf, ask forgiveness of offenses for us, and that we may find mercy and grace on the day of judgement.

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« Reply #1225 on: December 03, 2013, 02:14:19 AM »

The best-known example is the plashchanitsa/epitaphios, which is embroidered on dark red cloth or velvet, depicting the Lamentation, with the troparion of Great Friday embroidered in the border. This cloth is draped over a tomb-shaped or sepulcher-shaped structure during the Vespers of Great Friday, and remains there until the Paschal Matins. It is venerated throughout this period, just as any painted icon would be:

Just to supplement your excellent summary: in the Greek practice the Epitaphios is placed on the Holy Table near the end of the Matins of Great and Holy Saturday (just after it brought back into the Church following the procession around the building).  I'm not sure if the Slavs then observe the same custom, but it is then left on the Holy Table until just before the Vespers for the feast of the Ascension of our Lord.

While it at times seems odd to me (because of its particular execution in parishes), frequently the Epitaphios cloth is displayed inside a glass encasement in the Church when it is not used.  This phenomenon supports your description of it being worthy of veneration and maintaining the sobriety of the other traditional iconography (as does the Epitaphios's common ancestry with the Antimension and Aer).
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« Reply #1226 on: December 03, 2013, 02:30:49 AM »


Just to supplement your excellent summary: in the Greek practice the Epitaphios is placed on the Holy Table near the end of the Matins of Great and Holy Saturday (just after it brought back into the Church following the procession around the building).  I'm not sure if the Slavs then observe the same custom, but it is then left on the Holy Table until just before the Vespers for the feast of the Ascension of our Lord.

The Slavs do this as well.

Quote
While it at times seems odd to me (because of its particular execution in parishes), frequently the Epitaphios cloth is displayed inside a glass encasement in the Church when it is not used.  This phenomenon supports your description of it being worthy of veneration and maintaining the sobriety of the other traditional iconography (as does the Epitaphios's common ancestry with the Antimension and Aer).

I have only seen the enclosing of the Epitaphios in a frame in Greek churches. Another difference is the Russian tradition of a plashchanitsa for the Dormition of the Mother of God, depicting the icon, or sometimes, a simpler composition of just the reposed Virgin, with the words of the troparion of the feast embroidered in the border. The usual colors are blue for the cloth, and silver or white for the lettering and embellishments.
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« Reply #1227 on: December 03, 2013, 08:24:52 AM »



Who's the saint in the lower right?
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« Reply #1228 on: December 03, 2013, 08:36:08 AM »


He is St Archippus, and he was the keeper of a church at Colossae, which became the site of a miracle worked by Archangel Michael. This is depicted in the lower right corner of the icon. Here's the story of the miracle:

At this church of the holy Chief Commander Michael, a certain pious man by the name of Archippus served for sixty years as church custodian. By his preaching and by the example of his saintly life he brought many pagans to faith in Christ. With the general malice of that time towards Christians, and especially against Archippus, the pagans thought to destroy the church in order to prevent people from coming to that holy place of healing, and at the same time kill Archippus.

Toward this end they made a confluence of the Lykokaperos and Kufos Rivers and directed its combined flow against the church. St Archippus prayed fervently to the Chief Commander Michael to ward off the danger. Through his prayer the Archangel Michael appeared at the temple, and with a blow of his staff, opened a wide fissure in a rock and commanded the rushing torrents of water to flow into it. The temple remained unharmed. Seeing such an awesome miracle, the pagans fled in terror. Archippus and the Christians gathered in church glorified God and gave thanks to the holy Archangel Michael for the help. The place where the rivers plunged into the fissure received the name “Chonae”, which means “plunging.”


(Source: http://oca.org/saints/lives/2013/09/06/102517-commemoration-of-the-miracle-of-the-archangel-michael-at-colossa )
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« Reply #1229 on: December 03, 2013, 09:05:56 AM »

Are there other icons where the souls of the departed are depicted that way?
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« Reply #1230 on: December 03, 2013, 09:16:36 AM »

Are there other icons where the souls of the departed are depicted that way?

I can't think of any right now, but there are icons of Patriarch Abraham, and of the first three patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac and Jacob), which show the souls of the righteous in their bosom (embrace):



This depiction can also be seen in icons of the feast of All Saints.

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« Reply #1231 on: December 03, 2013, 09:18:31 AM »

That's nice and unexpected.  But to the bosom of Isaac and Jacob, too?
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« Reply #1232 on: December 03, 2013, 09:23:13 AM »

That's nice and unexpected.  But to the bosom of Isaac and Jacob, too?

I'm sure the hymns of the Sunday before the Nativity, which commemorates them, would have something to say about it. I'll see what I can come up with.  Smiley
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« Reply #1233 on: December 03, 2013, 10:35:27 AM »


Just to supplement your excellent summary: in the Greek practice the Epitaphios is placed on the Holy Table near the end of the Matins of Great and Holy Saturday (just after it brought back into the Church following the procession around the building).  I'm not sure if the Slavs then observe the same custom, but it is then left on the Holy Table until just before the Vespers for the feast of the Ascension of our Lord.

The Slavs do this as well.
I've seen it more often (and prefer it) that the Epitaphios is placed in the tomb again in the center of the Church after the procession of Great and Holy Saturday (i.e. Friday evening) and left there (with people taking vigil in shifts, chanting the NT or Psalms) until Paschal Matins (i.e. Saturday evening).  The clergy, gathered around the tomb, during the Ode "Do not lament Me," at the point where "for I shall arise..." is sung, elevate the Epitaphios and process with it into the sanctuary and place it on the Altar.
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« Reply #1234 on: December 03, 2013, 10:37:58 AM »


Just to supplement your excellent summary: in the Greek practice the Epitaphios is placed on the Holy Table near the end of the Matins of Great and Holy Saturday (just after it brought back into the Church following the procession around the building).  I'm not sure if the Slavs then observe the same custom, but it is then left on the Holy Table until just before the Vespers for the feast of the Ascension of our Lord.

The Slavs do this as well.
I've seen it more often (and prefer it) that the Epitaphios is placed in the tomb again in the center of the Church after the procession of Great and Holy Saturday (i.e. Friday evening) and left there (with people taking vigil in shifts, chanting the NT or Psalms) until Paschal Matins (i.e. Saturday evening).  The clergy, gathered around the tomb, during the Ode "Do not lament Me," at the point where "for I shall arise..." is sung, elevate the Epitaphios and process with it into the sanctuary and place it on the Altar.

This. No carrying shroud on paschal procession.
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« Reply #1235 on: December 03, 2013, 04:13:21 PM »

Are there other icons where the souls of the departed are depicted that way?

I can't think of any right now, but there are icons of Patriarch Abraham, and of the first three patriarchs (Abraham, Isaac and Jacob), which show the souls of the righteous in their bosom (embrace):



This depiction can also be seen in icons of the feast of All Saints.



Beautiful icon! Smiley There's something very restful and peaceful about it...
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« Reply #1236 on: December 05, 2013, 01:08:31 AM »

I think I recall the icon which is the subject of this post being put up on this thread before (or perhaps the unusual icons thread) and condemned as schlock.

http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2012/12/the-vision-of-theotokos-communing-weary.html



Very nice story. Perhaps a reminder to those of us who go too far in our rigidity out of ignorance.
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« Reply #1237 on: December 05, 2013, 01:25:39 AM »

I think I recall the icon which is the subject of this post being put up on this thread before and condemned as schlock.

http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2012/12/the-vision-of-theotokos-communing-weary.html



Very nice story. Perhaps a reminder to those of us who go too far in our rigidity out of ignorance.

On the contrary, Antonis. We are to "test the spirits", are we not? Where in received and accepted Orthodox tradition and doctrine does it refer to the Mother of God as a priest and minister of the Eucharist? Or even a deaconess in the ancient sense of the word? If she were, this would be a free ticket to those advocating for the priestly ordination of women.  Tongue Indeed, an Orthodox female priesthood would have been instituted from the earliest centuries of the Christian era if this image reflected Orthodox teaching. It is telling that it was not.

Iconography is not about “pious custom” or “what feels right”, or even "what a particular saint saw in a dream or vision", when this is contrary to accepted doctrine and theology. Our saints are not infallible. Iconography is about theology and doctrine, of expressing the Mysteries, the things of God which cannot be fully known and comprehended by mere human minds. If adherence to what the Church teaches is "rigidity", then I'm happy to be guilty as charged.
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« Reply #1238 on: December 05, 2013, 01:39:32 AM »

I trust generations of monks of a holy lavra as being better "testers of spirits" than I do single posters on internet forums, regardless of who they are. "Fall back on the Tradition of the Church, except when it's one I don't like." As for being caught up in the Mother of God not being a priest, I think this is a case of intellectual orthodoxy getting in the way of Orthodoxy. There are many things in our Church that may seem thoroughly unorthodox to our rigid orthodox, yet are perfectly Orthodox. Perhaps when we get beyond our own minds (I know I desperately need to) and become true theologians by experience we will fully understand it.

I don't think adherence to the teaching of the Church is "rigidity," I think unbending adherence to our own intellectual ideas of what the Church teaches is rigidity. Some will never admit their error.
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« Reply #1239 on: December 05, 2013, 03:59:22 AM »

I trust generations of monks of a holy lavra as being better "testers of spirits" than I do single posters on internet forums, regardless of who they are. "Fall back on the Tradition of the Church, except when it's one I don't like." As for being caught up in the Mother of God not being a priest, I think this is a case of intellectual orthodoxy getting in the way of Orthodoxy. There are many things in our Church that may seem thoroughly unorthodox to our rigid orthodox, yet are perfectly Orthodox. Perhaps when we get beyond our own minds (I know I desperately need to) and become true theologians by experience we will fully understand it.

I don't think adherence to the teaching of the Church is "rigidity," I think unbending adherence to our own intellectual ideas of what the Church teaches is rigidity. Some will never admit their error.

Would you venerate this image, whose inscription is Bestower of the Gifts, in good conscience? The Mother of God vested in episcopal vestments, and holding a chalice? Would you regard it as expressing the established and universal Orthodox teachings on the Mother of God?

http://pravicon.com/images/icons/2/2753.jpg

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« Reply #1240 on: December 05, 2013, 04:04:08 AM »

Would you finally get that direct links to pictures on pravicon do not work?
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« Reply #1241 on: December 05, 2013, 04:31:37 AM »

Would you finally get that direct links to pictures on pravicon do not work?

Links embedded within the img function do not work with certain browsers. Plain links to the image do work.  police
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« Reply #1242 on: December 05, 2013, 04:51:31 AM »

Would you finally get that direct links to pictures on pravicon do not work?

Links embedded within the img function do not work with certain browsers. Plain links to the image do work.  police

Not for me.
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« Reply #1243 on: December 05, 2013, 04:58:27 AM »

Would you finally get that direct links to pictures on pravicon do not work?

Links embedded within the img function do not work with certain browsers. Plain links to the image do work.  police

Not for me.

OK then, try this link:

http://i1326.photobucket.com/albums/u652/LBK11/2753_zpsb150a018.jpg

Let me know if it doesn't work.

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« Reply #1244 on: December 05, 2013, 05:01:47 AM »

It works.
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« Reply #1245 on: December 05, 2013, 05:04:49 AM »

It works.

Thank you.
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« Reply #1246 on: December 05, 2013, 08:41:09 AM »

I trust generations of monks of a holy lavra as being better "testers of spirits" than I do single posters on internet forums, regardless of who they are. "Fall back on the Tradition of the Church, except when it's one I don't like." As for being caught up in the Mother of God not being a priest, I think this is a case of intellectual orthodoxy getting in the way of Orthodoxy. There are many things in our Church that may seem thoroughly unorthodox to our rigid orthodox, yet are perfectly Orthodox. Perhaps when we get beyond our own minds (I know I desperately need to) and become true theologians by experience we will fully understand it.

I don't think adherence to the teaching of the Church is "rigidity," I think unbending adherence to our own intellectual ideas of what the Church teaches is rigidity. Some will never admit their error.

Would you venerate this image, whose inscription is Bestower of the Gifts, in good conscience? The Mother of God vested in episcopal vestments, and holding a chalice? Would you regard it as expressing the established and universal Orthodox teachings on the Mother of God?

http://pravicon.com/images/icons/2/2753.jpg


No, because (as far as I know) such a witness of the Mother of God does not exist in the Church and she is not a bishop. There are no such problems with the one I linked, though.
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« Reply #1247 on: December 05, 2013, 06:47:12 PM »

I trust generations of monks of a holy lavra as being better "testers of spirits" than I do single posters on internet forums, regardless of who they are. "Fall back on the Tradition of the Church, except when it's one I don't like." As for being caught up in the Mother of God not being a priest, I think this is a case of intellectual orthodoxy getting in the way of Orthodoxy. There are many things in our Church that may seem thoroughly unorthodox to our rigid orthodox, yet are perfectly Orthodox. Perhaps when we get beyond our own minds (I know I desperately need to) and become true theologians by experience we will fully understand it.

I don't think adherence to the teaching of the Church is "rigidity," I think unbending adherence to our own intellectual ideas of what the Church teaches is rigidity. Some will never admit their error.


Would you venerate this image, whose inscription is Bestower of the Gifts, in good conscience? The Mother of God vested in episcopal vestments, and holding a chalice? Would you regard it as expressing the established and universal Orthodox teachings on the Mother of God?

http://pravicon.com/images/icons/2/2753.jpg


No, because (as far as I know) such a witness of the Mother of God does not exist in the Church and she is not a bishop. There are no such problems with the one I linked, though.


Where is the witness of the Church that the Mother of God is a priest and minister of the Eucharist?
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« Reply #1248 on: December 05, 2013, 08:55:01 PM »

I already answered that in my first reply. Further, she was not vested as a priest in his vision. Still, I do not doubt the symbolic significance of his vision. Again, I trust the discernment of generations of monks from this lavra AND their bishops over the scruples of internet experts. Our personal insistence on orthodoxy often seems to overshadow Orthodoxy.

But I already said that and it was ignored.
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« Reply #1249 on: December 05, 2013, 09:27:24 PM »

I already answered that in my first reply. Further, she was not vested as a priest in his vision. Still, I do not doubt the symbolic significance of his vision. Again, I trust the discernment of generations of monks from this lavra AND their bishops over the scruples of internet experts. Our personal insistence on orthodoxy often seems to overshadow Orthodoxy.

But I already said that and it was ignored.


This is what you said in that post:
Quote

As for being caught up in the Mother of God not being a priest, I think this is a case of intellectual orthodoxy getting in the way of Orthodoxy.

I ask again: Where is the witness from established and universally-accepted Orthodox tradition (from hymnography, from scripture, from the historic iconographic deposit, from patristic writings, from pronouncements from ecumenical and synodal councils) that the Mother of God is held up as a priest and minister of the Eucharist?
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« Reply #1250 on: December 05, 2013, 09:45:46 PM »

Is every miracle of the Church written about in numerous hymns, commented on by numerous fathers, or detailed by our holy councils?

No.

Again:

Quote
Further, she was not vested as a priest in his vision. Still, I do not doubt the symbolic significance of his vision. Again, I trust the discernment of generations of monks from this lavra AND their bishops over the scruples of internet experts.
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« Reply #1251 on: December 05, 2013, 10:02:47 PM »

Is every miracle of the Church written about in numerous hymns, commented on by numerous fathers, or detailed by our holy councils?

No.

Again:

Quote
Further, she was not vested as a priest in his vision. Still, I do not doubt the symbolic significance of his vision. Again, I trust the discernment of generations of monks from this lavra AND their bishops over the scruples of internet experts.

Whether she is vested or not is almost beside the point. She is administering the Eucharist, something consistently and unwaveringly the privilege and duty of clergy.

A very large chunk of Orthodox hymnographic, patristic and hymnographic deposit is dedicated to the Mother of God. She is spoken of in the most fulsome terms, yet, in their wisdom, the sainted hymnographers, iconographers and Fathers have never spoken of her as a priest. Surely, such an important symbolic status for the Mother of God would have been proclaimed and extolled, in the same way that the many OT prefigurations that have found their fulfillment in her are in our hymns, prayers and icons, such as the Burning Bush, the East Gate, the Uncut Mountain, and many more.

Furthermore, the statement "He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate" was added to the creed to indicate that the Crucifixion was not simply an allegorical or symbolic event, but one that occurred in a specific time and place.  Similarly, the idea of saying that the Mother of God was a symbolic priest and minister of the Eucharist is, at best, just incorrect pious tradition.  At worst, it's straddling the gnostic concepts of undercutting the reality of Christ's mission and the occurrences.
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« Reply #1252 on: December 05, 2013, 10:31:05 PM »


Just say she's an eucharistic minster, and problem solved. Wink
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« Reply #1253 on: December 05, 2013, 10:59:12 PM »

Quote
Whether she is vested or not is almost beside the point. She is administering the Eucharist, something consistently and unwaveringly the privilege and duty of clergy.
Yep.

Quote
A very large chunk of Orthodox hymnographic, patristic and hymnographic deposit is dedicated to the Mother of God. She is spoken of in the most fulsome terms, yet, in their wisdom, the sainted hymnographers, iconographers and Fathers have never spoken of her as a priest. Surely, such an important symbolic status for the Mother of God would have been proclaimed and extolled, in the same way that the many OT prefigurations that have found their fulfillment in her are in our hymns, prayers and icons, such as the Burning Bush, the East Gate, the Uncut Mountain, and many more.
She wasn't a priest.

Quote
Furthermore, the statement "He was crucified for us under Pontius Pilate" was added to the creed to indicate that the Crucifixion was not simply an allegorical or symbolic event, but one that occurred in a specific time and place.
Yep.  
Quote
Similarly, the idea of saying that the Mother of God was a symbolic priest and minister of the Eucharist is, at best, just incorrect pious tradition.  At worst, it's straddling the gnostic concepts of undercutting the reality of Christ's mission and the occurrences.
She is not a symbolic priest, and that is not what this icon depicts. It depicts a vision of a novice and his elder in which the Theotokos refuses to commune said novice. Perhaps we should look beyond our obsession with the minutia and see the message.

For instance, my mind immediately went to the Panagia's role as a mediatrix of Grace, and her dispensing the Gifts as dispensing Grace. Perhaps I am entirely off-base, this is just one possibility and I could be (read: am likely to be) entirely wrong. My point is that I am not a theologian by experience, and thus could not possibly fully understand such things by my intellect and think it would be arrogant of me to assert my opinion over generations of noetically illumined and their bishops (whose opinion is the one that truly matters). As we may read from the article:

Quote
And the Saint replied to him: "That which you saw was for your correction. The brothers are informed that the Panagia sanctifies them to be worthy at every celebration to commune of the Divine Mysteries."

Since then and henceforth, therefore, he toiled more and ate less, and living thus with blessed obedience, he was made worthy of heavenly blessedness.
The fruits are present.  Smiley

Quote
Just say she's an eucharistic minster, and problem solved.
Cheesy
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« Reply #1254 on: December 05, 2013, 11:11:13 PM »

Quote
For instance, my mind immediately went to the Panagia's role as a mediatrix of Grace, and her dispensing the Gifts as dispensing Grace. Perhaps I am entirely off-base, this is just one possibility and I could be (read: am likely to be) entirely wrong.

An icon is not merely religious art. An icon must proclaim what is consistent with Orthodox teaching, accepted by the entire Church as proper. The administration of the Eucharist is a distinctive and profound act, and one which the Church has never ascribed to the Mother of God. One man's vision, even if he be a saint, does not trump the accepted testimony of the Church, and certainly does not warrant the painting of an "icon" describing it.

The painting of an icon confers the doctrinal imprimatur of the Church upon what is depicted, where what is depicted conforms with Orthodox teaching. This entire thread is filled with examples of "icons", many painted in good faith, which do not conform with Orthodox teaching. This image is one of them. I'm not denying the saint saw the vision, but to elevate it to the level of accepted universal Orthodox teaching through the painting of an "icon" of it is simply wrong.


Quote
My point is that I am not a theologian by experience, and thus could not possibly fully understand such things by my intellect and think it would be arrogant of me to assert my opinion over generations of noetically illumined and their bishops (whose opinion is the one that truly matters).

The view of one bishop, or even a group of saints, does not trump the accepted testimony of the Church. Orthodoxy does not hold to the infallibility of saints or clergy.
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« Reply #1255 on: December 05, 2013, 11:13:39 PM »

She is not a symbolic priest, and that is not what this icon depicts. It depicts a vision of a novice and his elder in which the Theotokos refuses to commune said novice. Perhaps we should look beyond our obsession with the minutia and see the message.

For instance, my mind immediately went to the Panagia's role as a mediatrix of Grace, and her dispensing the Gifts as dispensing Grace. Perhaps I am entirely off-base, this is just one possibility and I could be (read: am likely to be) entirely wrong. My point is that I am not a theologian by experience, and thus could not possibly fully understand such things by my intellect and think it would be arrogant of me to assert my opinion over generations of noetically illumined and their bishops (whose opinion is the one that truly matters).

I don't really have an issue with this icon.  It is the depiction of a particular phenomenon associated with the monastery where this icon can be found.  Should the painter have chosen a non-iconographic style to paint that image?  Sometimes, I think our theology of icons prevents us from seeing icons as art.    

But here's some drive-by theology: the Body and Blood of Christ which we receive in the Eucharist is Christ's flesh, Mary's flesh, and our flesh.  Affirming the truth of those claims in their proper degree does not necessitate bad theology.    
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« Reply #1256 on: December 05, 2013, 11:55:53 PM »

She is not a symbolic priest, and that is not what this icon depicts. It depicts a vision of a novice and his elder in which the Theotokos refuses to commune said novice. Perhaps we should look beyond our obsession with the minutia and see the message.

For instance, my mind immediately went to the Panagia's role as a mediatrix of Grace, and her dispensing the Gifts as dispensing Grace. Perhaps I am entirely off-base, this is just one possibility and I could be (read: am likely to be) entirely wrong. My point is that I am not a theologian by experience, and thus could not possibly fully understand such things by my intellect and think it would be arrogant of me to assert my opinion over generations of noetically illumined and their bishops (whose opinion is the one that truly matters).

I don't really have an issue with this icon.  It is the depiction of a particular phenomenon associated with the monastery where this icon can be found.  Should the painter have chosen a non-iconographic style to paint that image?  Sometimes, I think our theology of icons prevents us from seeing icons as art.    

But here's some drive-by theology: the Body and Blood of Christ which we receive in the Eucharist is Christ's flesh, Mary's flesh, and our flesh.  Affirming the truth of those claims in their proper degree does not necessitate bad theology.    
I agree completely.

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« Reply #1257 on: December 06, 2013, 12:02:42 AM »

She is not a symbolic priest, and that is not what this icon depicts. It depicts a vision of a novice and his elder in which the Theotokos refuses to commune said novice. Perhaps we should look beyond our obsession with the minutia and see the message.

For instance, my mind immediately went to the Panagia's role as a mediatrix of Grace, and her dispensing the Gifts as dispensing Grace. Perhaps I am entirely off-base, this is just one possibility and I could be (read: am likely to be) entirely wrong. My point is that I am not a theologian by experience, and thus could not possibly fully understand such things by my intellect and think it would be arrogant of me to assert my opinion over generations of noetically illumined and their bishops (whose opinion is the one that truly matters).

I don't really have an issue with this icon.  It is the depiction of a particular phenomenon associated with the monastery where this icon can be found.  Should the painter have chosen a non-iconographic style to paint that image?  Sometimes, I think our theology of icons prevents us from seeing icons as art.    

But here's some drive-by theology: the Body and Blood of Christ which we receive in the Eucharist is Christ's flesh, Mary's flesh, and our flesh.  Affirming the truth of those claims in their proper degree does not necessitate bad theology.    
I agree completely.



The key words in Mor's statement are "in the proper degree". The iconographic portrayal of the Mother of God as minister of the Eucharist is not in the proper degree, far from it. It proclaims her as being something she never was, and something she still isn't.
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« Reply #1258 on: December 06, 2013, 12:33:10 AM »

The key words in Mor's statement are "in the proper degree". The iconographic portrayal of the Mother of God as minister of the Eucharist is not in the proper degree, far from it. It proclaims her as being something she never was, and something she still isn't.

But this begs the question about the original vision, LBK.  If the monk in question was granted this vision in order to teach him a particular lesson, why not depict it as it occurred?  Why does he get to see our Lady distributing Communion and describe the vision to others, and yet it can't be painted?  Surely God is in his heaven, knowing what he's doing?  Or does the vision not come from God? 
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« Reply #1259 on: December 06, 2013, 12:40:51 AM »

The key words in Mor's statement are "in the proper degree". The iconographic portrayal of the Mother of God as minister of the Eucharist is not in the proper degree, far from it. It proclaims her as being something she never was, and something she still isn't.

But this begs the question about the original vision, LBK.  If the monk in question was granted this vision in order to teach him a particular lesson, why not depict it as it occurred?  Why does he get to see our Lady distributing Communion and describe the vision to others, and yet it can't be painted?  Surely God is in his heaven, knowing what he's doing?  Or does the vision not come from God? 

What I know is that icons are to depict what is in harmony with what the whole Church teaches. I also know that visions are to be regarded with great caution, irrespective of whether they are seen by saints, monastics or laymen. It is one thing to show in an icon the Mother of God handing back St Nicholas of Myra's omophorion which had been stripped from him at the Council of Nicea, and quite another to show her as minister of the Eucharist.
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