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Author Topic: Importance of Dogma/Doctrine  (Read 4026 times) Average Rating: 0
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FlickFlack
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« on: January 17, 2013, 06:14:05 AM »

How important is doctrine and dogma for salvation?How important is doctrine in the economy of salvation?Does one need to have comprehension and belief in all the Church dogmas in order to be saved? As I see dogma always causes divergences and fights, but where there is more tolerance and non-bigotism there is more love.Where is the place of love, peace and harmony in the equation of doctrine?I mean this question in the economy of human interactions and relationships. As I see it love can only exist in a community, communion, in sharing, etc, that is the reason why God is said to be a Trinity and Love, no?What say ye?
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« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2013, 06:51:20 AM »

Do not think I came to bring peace on earth, for I did not come to bring peace but a sword(of doctrin)  Wink
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« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2013, 08:44:35 AM »

Dogma and doctrine are expression of existential experience of God in the form of verbal structures.

It's as important as saying "I love you" often to those you actually love. The words are not what matter and even shouldn't be said if not really expressing something that is existentially true. Yet, saying them reafirms the experience and prevents errors and miscomunication. Remembering the words is also a way of finding stability in those dark moments of the soul when we loose contact with the existential truth behind them. We don't feel the experience anymore but we remember how it was verbalized and we can trust that. Finally, they can work as a map and ideal for those who have not yet achieved that experience to keep fighting for it, a compass and a horizon that gives us direction. The danger in all that is to think that the words are ends to themselves and not just means. Over-rationalization, idolatry of the human logos is an inherent danger.
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« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2013, 09:11:25 AM »

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St. John Chrysostom writes, "And, if we adhere to the true dogmas and are not concerned about our behavior, we will not have any kind of benefit; and in the same way, if we concern ourselves about our behavior and neglect true dogmas, we will receive no benefit for our salvation. If we want to be delivered from Gehenna and to gain the kingdom, we need to be adorned on both sides: correctness of dogmas and honorable living."

Prologue of Ohrid, January 14

In the Orthodox Church are found the true dogmas and the correct way of life leading to salvation.  Those in the Orthodox Church have no excuse for not knowing the true dogmas.  If we know the true dogmas taught by the Church and reject them, then we reject Christ through whom the true dogmas have been revealed.  For those outside of the Orthodox Church, who have neither the true dogmas or the way of salvation, we should pray for them.
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FlickFlack
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« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2013, 10:31:12 AM »

Do not think I came to bring peace on earth, for I did not come to bring peace but a sword(of doctrin)  Wink

how do you reconcile that with love and happiness?
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« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2013, 10:33:30 AM »

What is more important a correct living or dogmas?

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« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2013, 10:34:39 AM »

Did you not read the quote above by St. John Chrysostom?   Huh

Both are necessary for salvation - the true dogmas and a correct way of life.
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« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2013, 10:37:01 AM »

I don't think there are many who can believe fully all the doctrines of one Church, even the Church with complete acceptance and conviction in their heart.I wonder what is the key to true happiness, spiritual joy?Is anyone living it/experiencing it in here?
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« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2013, 10:41:12 AM »

Did you not read the quote above by St. John Chrysostom?   Huh

Both are necessary for salvation - the true dogmas and a correct way of life.

My friend not even the saints or blessed were perfect in their belief, weren't they now?

Can someone explain the philosophy and psychology of the importance of true and immaculate doctrine?And how can we know what truth is, without a circular reasoning?
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« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2013, 10:42:23 AM »

I don't think there are many who can believe fully all the doctrines of one Church, even the Church with complete acceptance and conviction in their heart.

Countless saints did, and countless other faithful souls living today do.

I wonder what is the key to true happiness, spiritual joy?Is anyone living it/experiencing it in here?

Read as many lives of saints as you can. You'll find the answer there.
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« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2013, 10:45:20 AM »


Can someone explain the philosophy and psychology of the importance of true and immaculate doctrine?And how can we know what truth is, without a circular reasoning?

All errors in Christian doctrine ultimately boil down to an imperfect/wrong understanding of what and who Christ is. Philosophy and psychology (particularly the latter!), being human constructs, have little or no value in evaluating Truth, which is a Person, Jesus Christ.
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« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2013, 10:46:05 AM »

I don't think there are many who can believe fully all the doctrines of one Church, even the Church with complete acceptance and conviction in their heart.

Countless saints did, and countless other faithful souls living today do.

I wonder what is the key to true happiness, spiritual joy?Is anyone living it/experiencing it in here?

Read as many lives of saints as you can. You'll find the answer there.

I need today's examples of living persons(on earth) such as you and I.
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« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2013, 10:47:28 AM »


Can someone explain the philosophy and psychology of the importance of true and immaculate doctrine?And how can we know what truth is, without a circular reasoning?

All errors in Christian doctrine ultimately boil down to an imperfect/wrong understanding of what and who Christ is. Philosophy and psychology (particularly the latter!), being human constructs, have little or no value in evaluating Truth, which is a Person, Jesus Christ.

So how does one discern the truth from lie and how does he get to know the truth?
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« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2013, 10:57:12 AM »


Can someone explain the philosophy and psychology of the importance of true and immaculate doctrine?And how can we know what truth is, without a circular reasoning?

All errors in Christian doctrine ultimately boil down to an imperfect/wrong understanding of what and who Christ is. Philosophy and psychology (particularly the latter!), being human constructs, have little or no value in evaluating Truth, which is a Person, Jesus Christ.

So how does one discern the truth from lie and how does he get to know the truth?

I see your faith and jurisdiction are eastern Orthodox
Do you belong to a parish?
Do you have a priest?
Do you seek confession and advice from him?
The questions your asking on here are hard to answer in this type of setting.
Can you tell us a little more about yourself?
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« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2013, 11:01:00 AM »


Can someone explain the philosophy and psychology of the importance of true and immaculate doctrine?And how can we know what truth is, without a circular reasoning?

All errors in Christian doctrine ultimately boil down to an imperfect/wrong understanding of what and who Christ is. Philosophy and psychology (particularly the latter!), being human constructs, have little or no value in evaluating Truth, which is a Person, Jesus Christ.

So how does one discern the truth from lie and how does he get to know the truth?

Do you go to church? Do you keep your eyes and ears open, taking in what the hymns say and the icons depict? Do you talk to your priest or Godparent about the matters you've raised on the forum?
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« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2013, 11:03:31 AM »

I don't think there are many who can believe fully all the doctrines of one Church, even the Church with complete acceptance and conviction in their heart.I wonder what is the key to true happiness, spiritual joy?Is anyone living it/experiencing it in here?

St. Silouan of Mt. Athos, and many other saints and Fathers, spoke of dogmatic consciousness as a fruit of the ascetic life.  In terms of the Gospels, the Lord said, "Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God."  Purity of heart and ceaseless prayer (which go together) lead a person to an experiential knowledge of the dogmatic truths; yet without faith in the true dogmas in the beginning, a person will not be able to live correctly or approach God properly in prayer.  The whole purpose of the dogmas is to reveal to man what he must know in order to live and pray as he should, that he might come to a true and experiential knowledge of God and save his soul.  For examples of lives lived well, and to see the fruit of faithfulness to the true dogmas, we have only to read the lives of the countless saints that have been glorified by God over the past two thousand years.  
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« Reply #16 on: January 17, 2013, 11:05:32 AM »


Can someone explain the philosophy and psychology of the importance of true and immaculate doctrine?And how can we know what truth is, without a circular reasoning?

All errors in Christian doctrine ultimately boil down to an imperfect/wrong understanding of what and who Christ is. Philosophy and psychology (particularly the latter!), being human constructs, have little or no value in evaluating Truth, which is a Person, Jesus Christ.

So how does one discern the truth from lie and how does he get to know the truth?

Do you go to church? Do you keep your eyes and ears open, taking in what the hymns say and the icons depict? Do you talk to your priest or Godparent about the matters you've raised on the forum?

Yes I go to Church from time to time.My priest doesn't really answer intellectual questions.I thought this was a forum.Is there any problem?And how does that answer my question?
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« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2013, 11:11:00 AM »

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Do you go to church? Do you keep your eyes and ears open, taking in what the hymns say and the icons depict?

You didn't answer the bolded part.  Wink
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« Reply #18 on: January 17, 2013, 11:32:04 AM »

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Do you go to church? Do you keep your eyes and ears open, taking in what the hymns say and the icons depict?

You didn't answer the bolded part.  Wink

No, I actually close my eyes and put my headphones ON when that happens.
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« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2013, 11:35:14 AM »

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Do you go to church? Do you keep your eyes and ears open, taking in what the hymns say and the icons depict?

You didn't answer the bolded part.  Wink

No, I actually close my eyes and put my headphones ON when that happens.

How then do you expect to learn what is Truth? Going to church isn't about pleasing your mother.
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FlickFlack
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« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2013, 11:47:42 AM »

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Do you go to church? Do you keep your eyes and ears open, taking in what the hymns say and the icons depict?

You didn't answer the bolded part.  Wink

No, I actually close my eyes and put my headphones ON when that happens.

How then do you expect to learn what is Truth? Going to church isn't about pleasing your mother.

I was being sarcastic.

Of course I pay attention to the hymns and the litany.Yet I am not a constant day by day church attendant, not even a sunday by sunday one.

And we are rated the lowest iq country in Europe!Priests here don't answer intelectual questions Cheesy.The majority to which I was weren't expecting these kind of questions and tried to change the subject.

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« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2013, 11:52:34 AM »

@LBK

Yet that was an OFFTOPIC red herring type of thing from your part, than doesn't answer my questions as how one is supposed to discern the truth , WITHOUT circular reasoning and how one gets to conscientize the truth.

And you didn't answer what the psychologies and philosophies of immaculate doctrine are.

Doctrine is a intelectual thing.Psychology and philosophy are things of the mind.Psychology is even a science of the mind.
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FlickFlack
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« Reply #22 on: January 17, 2013, 11:54:03 AM »

I don't think there are many who can believe fully all the doctrines of one Church, even the Church with complete acceptance and conviction in their heart.I wonder what is the key to true happiness, spiritual joy?Is anyone living it/experiencing it in here?

St. Silouan of Mt. Athos, and many other saints and Fathers, spoke of dogmatic consciousness as a fruit of the ascetic life.  In terms of the Gospels, the Lord said, "Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God."  Purity of heart and ceaseless prayer (which go together) lead a person to an experiential knowledge of the dogmatic truths; yet without faith in the true dogmas in the beginning, a person will not be able to live correctly or approach God properly in prayer.  The whole purpose of the dogmas is to reveal to man what he must know in order to live and pray as he should, that he might come to a true and experiential knowledge of God and save his soul.  For examples of lives lived well, and to see the fruit of faithfulness to the true dogmas, we have only to read the lives of the countless saints that have been glorified by God over the past two thousand years.  


Thanks for your reply.

What is the psychology and philosophy of immaculate doctrine?
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« Reply #23 on: January 17, 2013, 11:55:34 AM »

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Do you go to church? Do you keep your eyes and ears open, taking in what the hymns say and the icons depict?

You didn't answer the bolded part.  Wink

No, I actually close my eyes and put my headphones ON when that happens.

How then do you expect to learn what is Truth? Going to church isn't about pleasing your mother.

I was being sarcastic.

Of course I pay attention to the hymns and the litany.Yet I am not a constant day by day church attendant, not even a sunday by sunday one.

And we are rated the lowest iq country in Europe!Priests here don't answer intelectual questions Cheesy.The majority to which I was weren't expecting these kind of questions and tried to change the subject.



Then go looking for a priest who is prepared to answer your questions.
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« Reply #24 on: January 17, 2013, 11:57:17 AM »

What is the psychology and philosophy of immaculate doctrine?

I'd love to answer your question if only I could understand it. What do you mean exactly? What do mean by immaculate doctrine and how can doctrine have a psychology?

James
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« Reply #25 on: January 17, 2013, 12:04:51 PM »

I'd be interested to know, first of all, how you are defining "happiness," and why you think that is what faith is supposed to be.
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« Reply #26 on: January 17, 2013, 12:13:20 PM »

I'd be interested to know, first of all, how you are defining "happiness," and why you think that is what faith is supposed to be.

Being blessed in life and satisfied.Having a vivid, sunny colourful life.
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« Reply #27 on: January 17, 2013, 12:51:04 PM »

I'd be interested to know, first of all, how you are defining "happiness," and why you think that is what faith is supposed to be.

Being blessed in life and satisfied.Having a vivid, sunny colourful life.

Then you are doomed to disapointment and disillusionment.
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« Reply #28 on: January 17, 2013, 01:04:51 PM »

It's always sunny in Philadelphia Smiley(see my jurisdiction)
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« Reply #29 on: January 17, 2013, 05:18:31 PM »

Some questions are idiotic.
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« Reply #30 on: January 17, 2013, 05:25:35 PM »

"Brethren, do not be children in understanding--however, in malice be babes. But in understanding be mature."--St Paul (1 Cor 14:20).

A good understanding of doctrine and dogma is important for several reasons. First and foremost, because without any doctrine or dogma, how can you possibly know God? Doctrine and dogma teach us truths about God and help us to come closer to Him, but without it, we have no direction and can easily fall into heresy or dangerous beliefs, since there is no standard to judge things by. I think this is why St. Paul tells us to be mature in understanding. Secondly, I don't think God likes a slacker--and I assume that would mean an intellectual slacker as well.
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« Reply #31 on: January 17, 2013, 10:41:54 PM »

Do not think I came to bring peace on earth, for I did not come to bring peace but a sword(of doctrin)  Wink

how do you reconcile that with love and happiness?

My reference to doctrine as being the sword which causes division was directed towards what you had said about dogma always causing divergences and fights,  how then can we harmonize this?  I would claim that any sound doctrine would always lead to self-emptying, a turning away from self-centered love and happiness seeking, to a self-sacrificing love of the other; a constant willing of the well being of the other even at the expense of ones self.  Any "system", "teaching", "doctrine", "dogma", or "rule" which doesn't have this as its end is useless.  At this point is where the need for doctrinal unified community comes in, where every member finds his own joy and true self in the face of the other.
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« Reply #32 on: January 18, 2013, 04:08:13 AM »

If dogma is so important why do the Apostles rarely mention any dogmatic declarations within their epistles?
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« Reply #33 on: January 18, 2013, 10:01:50 AM »

If dogma is so important why do the Apostles rarely mention any dogmatic declarations within their epistles?

You clearly don't understand what dogmas are. They existed long before they were defined by the Councils, some of them even in ancient Israel (the unity of God, Creation, Providence, eschatology, prophecy, judgement and retribution, even the resurrection of the dead in later Judaism). The core dogmas of Orthodoxy are all rooted the New Testament - just have a look at the Nicene Creed. The Epistles contain dogmatic declarations, even if they belong to a different genre than the Conciliar horoi. Orthodoxy is defined by St. Vincent of Lerins as that which has been believed in the Church "everywhere, always, by everyone."     
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« Reply #34 on: January 18, 2013, 10:14:32 AM »

The epistles are replete with teachings that constitute dogma and theology of the Christian faith.  Orthodox Church dogma as such is based on scripture and was propounded by Ecumenical Synods (Councils), after the time of the Apostles.  Church dogma is considered what the church always knew, but had not yet articulated as dogma.

It is my understanding that church dogma, the basic, common understanding of "the faith," is necessary for salvation.  Other of the church's "theological teachings, "theologoumena," are not necessarily required for salvation.  Note the importance of the unity of faith expressed throughout the Divine Services of the Church, we pray for our bishop to "rightly impart the Word of Thy Truth;" "Entreating for the unity of the faith, let us commend ourselves and one another and our whole life unto Christ of God;";" "We have beheld the true light..we have found the true faith, worshiping the divided Trinity..."  What is "Thy truth;"  "the unity of the faith;" what is the "true light," the "true faith?" It is the common understanding and belief of the dogma of the church.

At Baptism we are asked, "Do you believe in him?"  Response: "I believe in him as King and God."  And then, the sponsor or he/she who is to be newly illumined recites the "Symbol of Faith," the Creed, which is dogma propounded by the 1st and 2nd Ecumenical Synods, accepted by the greater church, and ratified by a subsequent Ecumenical Synod; thus it is the "infallible" teaching of the church.

I believe it is in ROCOR's formula, perhaps other of the "Holy Churches," that acknowledgement of acceptance of the teachings of the 7 Ecumenical Synods is part of the formula for the Sacrament of Holy Chrismation.  I recently took the Oath of Office for the Parish Council of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America, wherein the oath requires acknowledgement to uphold the "dogma and teachings of the Ecumenical Councils."
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« Reply #35 on: January 18, 2013, 10:50:19 AM »

I don't think there are many who can believe fully all the doctrines of one Church, even the Church with complete acceptance and conviction in their heart.

Countless saints did, and countless other faithful souls living today do.

I wonder what is the key to true happiness, spiritual joy?Is anyone living it/experiencing it in here?

Read as many lives of saints as you can. You'll find the answer there.

I need today's examples of living persons(on earth) such as you and I.

Check out the book Everyday Saints-- true stories about living persons. Some stories from the book are posted online.
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« Reply #36 on: January 18, 2013, 04:28:34 PM »

Quote
Do you go to church? Do you keep your eyes and ears open, taking in what the hymns say and the icons depict?

You didn't answer the bolded part.  Wink

No, I actually close my eyes and put my headphones ON when that happens.

How then do you expect to learn what is Truth? Going to church isn't about pleasing your mother.

I was being sarcastic.

Of course I pay attention to the hymns and the litany.Yet I am not a constant day by day church attendant, not even a sunday by sunday one.

And we are rated the lowest iq country in Europe!Priests here don't answer intelectual questions Cheesy.The majority to which I was weren't expecting these kind of questions and tried to change the subject.



Then go looking for a priest who is prepared to answer your questions.

If you will go to www.oca.org the website of the Orthodox Churh in America, Fr. John Matusiak  will answer your questions if submitted to him. The answers are posted on their website. This is one of many options available to you to get real answeres from an educated clergyman versus the lay answers we provide on the forum. We would love you to share his response her  with us as well.
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« Reply #37 on: January 18, 2013, 07:14:08 PM »

If dogma is so important why do the Apostles rarely mention any dogmatic declarations within their epistles?

Because they had already delivered it to them orally assumably at the time that they ministered to them and established the Churches. The epistles just addressed particular issues which arose in the Church at the time. That being said, they still do directly ORDER us to adhere and stand firm to the dogma that they originally delivered to us and not to deviate from it--several times in fact.

"Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle."-2 Thessalonians 2:15

"Brethren, do not be children in understanding--however, in malice be babes. But in understanding be mature."-1 Corinthians 14:20

"Now I praise you, brethren, that you remember me in all things and keep the traditions just as I delivered them to you."-1 Corinthians 11:2

"But even if we or an Angel from Heaven preach any other Gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be acccursed. As we have said before, now so I say again, if anyone preaches any other Gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed!"-Galatians 1:8-9
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« Reply #38 on: January 18, 2013, 07:23:24 PM »

If dogma is so important why do the Apostles rarely mention any dogmatic declarations within their epistles?

Because they had already delivered it to them orally assumably at the time that they ministered to them and established the Churches. The epistles just addressed particular issues which arose in the Church at the time. That being said, they still do directly ORDER us to adhere and stand firm to the dogma that they originally delivered to us and not to deviate from it--several times in fact.

"Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle."-2 Thessalonians 2:15

"Brethren, do not be children in understanding--however, in malice be babes. But in understanding be mature."-1 Corinthians 14:20

"Now I praise you, brethren, that you remember me in all things and keep the traditions just as I delivered them to you."-1 Corinthians 11:2

"But even if we or an Angel from Heaven preach any other Gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be acccursed. As we have said before, now so I say again, if anyone preaches any other Gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed!"-Galatians 1:8-9

accursed?!? for another gospel?!? that's not very nice, you might hurt someones feelings.
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« Reply #39 on: January 18, 2013, 07:36:58 PM »

If dogma is so important why do the Apostles rarely mention any dogmatic declarations within their epistles?

Because they had already delivered it to them orally assumably at the time that they ministered to them and established the Churches. The epistles just addressed particular issues which arose in the Church at the time. That being said, they still do directly ORDER us to adhere and stand firm to the dogma that they originally delivered to us and not to deviate from it--several times in fact.

"Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle."-2 Thessalonians 2:15

"Brethren, do not be children in understanding--however, in malice be babes. But in understanding be mature."-1 Corinthians 14:20

"Now I praise you, brethren, that you remember me in all things and keep the traditions just as I delivered them to you."-1 Corinthians 11:2

"But even if we or an Angel from Heaven preach any other Gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be acccursed. As we have said before, now so I say again, if anyone preaches any other Gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed!"-Galatians 1:8-9

accursed?!? for another gospel?!? that's not very nice, you might hurt someones feelings.

Oh teh noes!!!11 We might offend the heathen religions. We better brush over the words of the Apostles and like go pray with all them because we all like luv Jesus <3!!!111

/false ecumenistic Evangelical teenage girl
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« Reply #40 on: January 18, 2013, 08:01:38 PM »

Do not think I came to bring peace on earth, for I did not come to bring peace but a sword(of doctrin)  Wink

how do you reconcile that with love and happiness?

My reference to doctrine as being the sword which causes division was directed towards what you had said about dogma always causing divergences and fights,  how then can we harmonize this?  I would claim that any sound doctrine would always lead to self-emptying, a turning away from self-centered love and happiness seeking, to a self-sacrificing love of the other; a constant willing of the well being of the other even at the expense of ones self.  Any "system", "teaching", "doctrine", "dogma", or "rule" which doesn't have this as its end is useless.  At this point is where the need for doctrinal unified community comes in, where every member finds his own joy and true self in the face of the other.


Here is a comprehensive commentary about that verse(Matthew 10:34) which also seemed to cover other questions here such as ones happiness being fullfilled.

http://bible.cc/matthew/10-34.htm

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary
10:16-42 Our Lord warned his disciples to prepare for persecution. They were to avoid all things which gave advantage to their enemies, all meddling with worldly or political concerns, all appearance of evil or selfishness, and all underhand measures. Christ foretold troubles, not only that the troubles might not be a surprise, but that they might confirm their faith. He tells them what they should suffer, and from whom. Thus Christ has dealt fairly and faithfully with us, in telling us the worst we can meet with in his service; and he would have us deal so with ourselves, in sitting down and counting the cost. Persecutors are worse than beasts, in that they prey upon those of their own kind. The strongest bonds of love and duty, have often been broken through from enmity against Christ. Sufferings from friends and relations are very grievous; nothing cuts more. It appears plainly, that all who will live godly in Christ Jesus must suffer persecution; and we must expect to enter into the kingdom of God through many tribulations. With these predictions of trouble, are counsels and comforts for a time of trial. The disciples of Christ are hated and persecuted as serpents, and their ruin is sought, and they need the serpent's wisdom. Be ye harmless as doves. Not only, do nobody any hurt, but bear nobody any ill-will. Prudent care there must be, but not an anxious, perplexing thought; let this care be cast upon God. The disciples of Christ must think more how to do well, than how to speak well. In case of great peril, the disciples of Christ may go out of the way of danger, though they must not go out of the way of duty. No sinful, unlawful means may be used to escape; for then it is not a door of God's opening. The fear of man brings a snare, a perplexing snare, that disturbs our peace; an entangling snare, by which we are drawn into sin; and, therefore, it must be striven and prayed against. Tribulation, distress, and persecution cannot take away God's love to them, or theirs to him. Fear Him, who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. They must deliver their message publicly, for all are deeply concerned in the doctrine of the gospel. The whole counsel of God must be made known, Ac 20:27. Christ shows them why they should be of good cheer. Their sufferings witnessed against those who oppose his gospel. When God calls us to speak for him, we may depend on him to teach us what to say. A believing prospect of the end of our troubles, will be of great use to support us under them. They may be borne to the end, because the sufferers shall be borne up under them. The strength shall be according to the day. And it is great encouragement to those who are doing Christ's work, that it is a work which shall certainly be done. See how the care of Providence extends to all creatures, even to the sparrows. This should silence all the fears of God's people; Ye are of more value than many sparrows. And the very hairs of your head are all numbered. This denotes the account God takes and keeps of his people. It is our duty, not only to believe in Christ, but to profess that faith, in suffering for him, when we are called to it, as well as in serving him. That denial of Christ only is here meant which is persisted in, and that confession only can have the blessed recompence here promised, which is the real and constant language of faith and love. Religion is worth every thing; all who believe the truth of it, will come up to the price, and make every thing else yield to it. Christ will lead us through sufferings, to glory with him. Those are best prepared for the life to come, that sit most loose to this present life. Though the kindness done to Christ's disciples be ever so small, yet if there be occasion for it, and ability to do no more, it shall be accepted. Christ does not say that they deserve a reward; for we cannot merit any thing from the hand of God; but they shall receive a reward from the free gift of God. Let us boldly confess Christ, and show love to him in all things.
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« Reply #41 on: January 18, 2013, 11:15:00 PM »

If dogma is so important why do the Apostles rarely mention any dogmatic declarations within their epistles?

Because they had already delivered it to them orally assumably at the time that they ministered to them and established the Churches. The epistles just addressed particular issues which arose in the Church at the time. That being said, they still do directly ORDER us to adhere and stand firm to the dogma that they originally delivered to us and not to deviate from it--several times in fact.

"Therefore, brethren, stand fast and hold the traditions which you were taught, whether by word or our epistle."-2 Thessalonians 2:15

"Brethren, do not be children in understanding--however, in malice be babes. But in understanding be mature."-1 Corinthians 14:20

"Now I praise you, brethren, that you remember me in all things and keep the traditions just as I delivered them to you."-1 Corinthians 11:2

"But even if we or an Angel from Heaven preach any other Gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be acccursed. As we have said before, now so I say again, if anyone preaches any other Gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed!"-Galatians 1:8-9

accursed?!? for another gospel?!? that's not very nice, you might hurt someones feelings.

Oh teh noes!!!11 We might offend the heathen religions. We better brush over the words of the Apostles and like go pray with all them because we all like luv Jesus <3!!!111

/false ecumenistic Evangelical teenage girl

You've got your stereotyping wrong. Evangelicals ain't that ecumenistic. Though plenty of mainstream Christians are like that.
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« Reply #42 on: January 19, 2013, 01:48:53 AM »

How important is doctrine and dogma for salvation?  How important is doctrine in the economy of salvation?



This reminded of what something I learned from Vladimir Lossky.

For Orthodox there no separation of dogma and salvation.  It's important to be well grounded in Orthodox dogma if one is to advance in the spiritual life, which is mystical in its nature. 

Does one need to have comprehension and belief in all the Church dogmas in order to be saved?



To 'be saved'?  Only God knows and then I guess we will all know at the final judgement.  Sometimes simplicity is better.  A person doesn't have to be an intellectual to be a saint. 

As I see dogma always causes divergences and fights, but where there is more tolerance and non-bigotism there is more love.Where is the place of love, peace and harmony in the equation of doctrine?I mean this question in the economy of human interactions and relationships. As I see it love can only exist in a community, communion, in sharing, etc, that is the reason why God is said to be a Trinity and Love, no?What say ye?

 


I can love everyone, but I can't be in everyone's community.  It is not bigoted to be a Christian, to recite the Creed, to live our faith.  Where the Holy Trinity is, there is love.  I say Holy Trinity, because I don't know exactly how that all works between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I am a simpleton. 

The Church defended the dogmas as the truth.  It is the springboard for our life in Christ.  Without it, we could go off anywhere, and we see people do this all the time. 

Here a tidbit from Lossky:

"...Unlike gnosticism, in which knowledge for its own sake constitutes the aim of the gnostic, Christian theology is always in the last resort a means: a unity of knowledge subserving an end which transcends all knowledge.  This ultimate end is union with God or deification, the "Theosis" of the Greek Fathers.  Thus, we are finally led to a conclusion which may seem paradoxical enough: that Christian theory should have an eminently practical significance; and that the more mystical it is, the more directly it aspires to the supreme end of union with God.  All the development of the dogmatic battles which the Church has waged down the centuries appears to us, if we regard it from the purely spiritual standpoint, as dominated by the the constant preoccupation which the Church has had to safeguard, at each moment of her history, for all Christians, the possibility of attaining to the fullness of the mystical union...." 

From : The Mystical Theology of the Eastern Church
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« Reply #43 on: January 19, 2013, 04:49:37 AM »

I'd be interested to know, first of all, how you are defining "happiness," and why you think that is what faith is supposed to be.

Being blessed in life and satisfied.Having a vivid, sunny colourful life.

We love everything brilliant on earth:  gold, silver, precious stones, crystal, bright clothing—why, then, do we not love the future glory to which the Lord calls us?  Why do we not aspire to shine like the sun?  Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father, (Matt 13:43).  It is because we have perverted the nature of our soul by sin, and have attached ourselves to earth instead of to heaven, to corruptible things instead of to incorruptible ones; because we love earthly, transitory, perishable, and seductive splendor.  But why is there such a love for everything bright in us?  Because our soul was created for heavenly light, and was originally all light, all radiance; thus light is inborn in it, the feeling and desire for light are inborn in it.  Direct this aspiration to seeking for heavenly light!

 

St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ
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« Reply #44 on: January 19, 2013, 01:14:14 PM »

How important is doctrine and dogma for salvation?  How important is doctrine in the economy of salvation?



This reminded of what something I learned from Vladimir Lossky.

For Orthodox there no separation of dogma and salvation.  It's important to be well grounded in Orthodox dogma if one is to advance in the spiritual life, which is mystical in its nature. 

If salvation is a state of being, than what you need most is to be.I've met a lot of people including clergy who were well grounded in the letter of the Orthodox dogma but were spiritually unevolved.

Quote
Does one need to have comprehension and belief in all the Church dogmas in order to be saved?



To 'be saved'?  Only God knows and then I guess we will all know at the final judgement.  Sometimes simplicity is better.  A person doesn't have to be an intellectual to be a saint. 

There are a lot of Orthodox who know well the letter of Orthodxy, but when you make them explain their faith they are incapable in doing so.They have no comprehension and besides this letter turns them into self-righteous, judgemental, fearful, extremists bigots.

Quote
As I see dogma always causes divergences and fights, but where there is more tolerance and non-bigotism there is more love.Where is the place of love, peace and harmony in the equation of doctrine?I mean this question in the economy of human interactions and relationships. As I see it love can only exist in a community, communion, in sharing, etc, that is the reason why God is said to be a Trinity and Love, no?What say ye?



I can love everyone, but I can't be in everyone's community.  It is not bigoted to be a Christian, to recite the Creed, to live our faith.  Where the Holy Trinity is, there is love.  I say Holy Trinity, because I don't know exactly how that all works between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I am a simpleton. 

What I am saying is that dogma can and usually stays in the way of human interactions and human love, on tends to give a judgemental flair in human relationships.

Quote
The Church defended the dogmas as the truth.  It is the springboard for our life in Christ.  Without it, we could go off anywhere, and we see people do this all the time. 

Here a tidbit from Lossky:

"...Unlike gnosticism, in which knowledge for its own sake constitutes the aim of the gnostic, Christian theology is always in the last resort a means: a unity of knowledge subserving an end which transcends all knowledge.  This ultimate end is union with God or deification, the "Theosis" of the Greek Fathers.  Thus, we are finally led to a conclusion which may seem paradoxical enough: that Christian theory should have an eminently practical significance; and that the more mystical it is, the more directly it aspires to the supreme end of union with God.  All the development of the dogmatic battles which the Church has waged down the centuries appears to us, if we regard it from the purely spiritual standpoint, as dominated by the the constant preoccupation which the Church has had to safeguard, at each moment of her history, for all Christians, the possibility of attaining to the fullness of the mystical union...." 

From : The Mystical Theology of the Eastern Church

What will be the criteria of the Judgement : what we believe of God or our human relationships? What is the difference between gnosticism and Christian(Orthodox) theology?
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« Reply #45 on: January 19, 2013, 01:16:22 PM »

I'd be interested to know, first of all, how you are defining "happiness," and why you think that is what faith is supposed to be.

Being blessed in life and satisfied.Having a vivid, sunny colourful life.

We love everything brilliant on earth:  gold, silver, precious stones, crystal, bright clothing—why, then, do we not love the future glory to which the Lord calls us?  Why do we not aspire to shine like the sun?  Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father, (Matt 13:43).  It is because we have perverted the nature of our soul by sin, and have attached ourselves to earth instead of to heaven, to corruptible things instead of to incorruptible ones; because we love earthly, transitory, perishable, and seductive splendor.  But why is there such a love for everything bright in us?  Because our soul was created for heavenly light, and was originally all light, all radiance; thus light is inborn in it, the feeling and desire for light are inborn in it.  Direct this aspiration to seeking for heavenly light!

 

St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ

What is this correct doctrine suppose to impart and give to our lives?

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« Reply #46 on: January 19, 2013, 01:51:50 PM »

What is this correct doctrine suppose to impart and give to our lives?

Taste and see.

Your persistent interrogations and flippant dismissal of simple faith as a hopelessly "circular" and irrational affair do not seem to come from a sincere desire for knowledge, but come across as rather disgusting.

If you take this pragmatic approach to faith, it has little if anything at all to offer. You'd be better off practicing some Oriental New Age crap to enhance your positive thinking and temporary well-being. True Christianity is "the narrow and sorrowful path". It doesn't bring you worldly advantages, joy and rosy 'feelings', but a lot of heartache and suffering. Hell first, heaven later...

"If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me." (Matthew 16, 24)

"All who want to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." (2 Timothy 3, 12)

"Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh. (...) But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation. Woe to you who are full now, for you will be hungry. Woe to you who are laughing now, for you will mourn and weep. Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets." (Luke 6)
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« Reply #47 on: January 19, 2013, 02:08:55 PM »

What is this correct doctrine suppose to impart and give to our lives?

Taste and see.

Your persistent interrogations and flippant dismissal of simple faith as a hopelessly "circular" and irrational affair do not seem to come from a sincere desire for knowledge, but come across as rather disgusting.

If you take this pragmatic approach to faith, it has little if anything at all to offer. You'd be better off practicing some Oriental New Age crap to enhance your positive thinking and well-being in this world. True Christianity is "the narrow and sorrowful path". It doesn't bring you worldly advantages, joy and rosy 'feelings', but a lot of heartache and suffering. Hell first, heaven later...

"If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me." (Matthew 16, 24)

"All who want to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." (2 Timothy 3, 12)

"Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh. (...) But woe to you who are rich, for you have received your consolation. Woe to you who are full now, for you will be hungry. Woe to you who are laughing now, for you will mourn and weep. Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets." (Luke 6)

Why should we want heartache, sorrow and sorrowful things?

You said Hell first heaven later.When is this later?

*No one forces you to read my posts or more to reply to them.If you are disgusted by them turn your sight in a different location.

*If you continue with this cheap bickering I might consider putting you on permanent Ignore.
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« Reply #48 on: January 19, 2013, 02:22:57 PM »

Why should we want heartache, sorrow and sorrowful things?

You said Hell first heaven later.When is this later?

"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it." (Mattew 13)

*If you continue with this cheap bickering I might consider putting you on permanent Ignore.

Now that would be a terrible loss for me, I assure you.

Pray tell me, why is my bickering cheap and why are your questions precious?
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« Reply #49 on: January 19, 2013, 02:39:31 PM »

Why should we want heartache, sorrow and sorrowful things?

You said Hell first heaven later.When is this later?

"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it." (Mattew 13)

Non-answer.

Quote
*If you continue with this cheap bickering I might consider putting you on permanent Ignore.

Now that would be a terrible loss for me, I assure you.

Pray tell me, why is my bickering cheap and why are your questions precious?

In a civilized forum people should discuss ideas not people and not get into personal Adhominem attacks, masked trolling and bickering.

I will take your replies with a grain of salt.
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« Reply #50 on: January 19, 2013, 02:40:43 PM »

Quote
Why should we want heartache, sorrow and sorrowful things?

We should desire the Kingdom of God, but the path that leads to it is narrow and full of harships.



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« Reply #51 on: January 19, 2013, 02:42:13 PM »



Pray tell me, why is my bickering cheap

because in general every bickering is cheap.
Quote
and why are your questions precious?

because I am 100xtimes more spiritually evolved than you.
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« Reply #52 on: January 19, 2013, 02:46:28 PM »

because I am 100xtimes more spiritually evolved than you.

Lawl.
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« Reply #53 on: January 19, 2013, 02:52:45 PM »

Why should we want heartache, sorrow and sorrowful things?

You said Hell first heaven later.When is this later?

"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it." (Mattew 13)

Non-answer.

The answer is there's no such thing as cheap grace and instant gratification in Christianity. If you are convinced that it is indeed 'the pearl of great price' and it's worth all you have, then you joyfully put yourself through hell to get it. And that hell you'll experience as a foretaste of heaven here on earth. "Later" is when the kingdom comes and the pyramid of this world is turned upside-down. Then the last shall become the first, the ones who mourn now will laugh, the meek will inherit the earth, those persecuted for righteousness and for Christ's sake will be acknowledged by him in front of the Father, and so forth.

I will take your replies with a grain of salt.

In Romanian we say you must eat a sackful of salt together till you get to know someone...
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« Reply #54 on: January 19, 2013, 02:56:22 PM »

because I am 100xtimes more spiritually evolved than you.

I am happy for you. The Christian ideal is to be "poor in spirit", though... So don't mind if I take that as a compliment.  Wink
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« Reply #55 on: January 19, 2013, 03:00:21 PM »



In Romanian we say you must eat a sackful of salt together till you get to know someone...

I already ate enough salt with you. IGNORED! untill when I feel to...
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« Reply #56 on: January 19, 2013, 03:05:23 PM »

FF :  "...If salvation is a state of being, than what you need most is to be.I've met a lot of people including clergy who were well grounded in the letter of the Orthodox dogma but were spiritually unevolved.

Just being is not salvation.  And how are you qualified to know enough about anyone else to pronounce someone as "spiritually unevolved"?  You know everything about that person, what they've suffered, what they face, their weaknesses and strengths, you know their private thoughts, their most inward insecurities, you know how their earthly life will end?  You really know a lot!  Are you SURE you don't really have a secret fondness for 'judgemental bigoted' types?

FF:  "...There are a lot of Orthodox who know well the letter of Orthodxy, but when you make them explain their faith they are incapable in doing so.They have no comprehension and besides this letter turns them into self-righteous, judgemental, fearful, extremists bigots...."

Ah, so you expect an Orthodox to perform explanations to you like a dog doing tricks?  You are very powerful indeed to 'make them explain their faith'.  Now it is becoming more clear to me why you are not getting much conversation from a priest. 

Yes, Orthodox people are sinners and imperfect just like everyone else.  Various people apply themselves to various degrees to the practice of their faith.  There will be wheat and tares.  God knows all this and has expressed this perfectly throughout the Bible.  That's another good thing about Lent and the prayers St. Ephrem: 

Oh Lord and Master of my life, give not to me the spirit of sloth, meddling, lust for power, idle talk.

But a spirit of chastity, humility, patience and love, bestow up me Thy servant.

O Lord King, grant me to see mine own failings, and not to condemn my brother; for blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages.

It's also why we pray Psalm 50 a minimum of two times a day. 


FF:  "...What I am saying is that dogma can and usually stays in the way of human interactions and human love, on tends to give a judgemental flair in human relationships...."

My experience in the practice of the Orthodox faith has shown me that the only way for me to love people is through Christ.  There is a difference between parsing right from wrong type of 'judgment' and condemnation.  You seem to be mixing the terms, and would prefer a totally relativistic view of life, where everything must be acceptable to us, or else we are faulty.  It's a false dichotomy, and ironically, your view is the more intolerant view.

FF:  "...What will be the criteria of the Judgement : what we believe of God or our human relationships? What is the difference between gnosticism and Christian(Orthodox) theology?..."

Ask God about His judgement which is His alone.  Pray everyday, with all your heart.  Remember God in every breath you take.  Love God with all your heart mind soul body your entire being and your neighbor as yourself.

I will not be a dog doing tricks for you, but gnostics basically see the world and flesh as evil, the higher spiritual plane as good.  There was supposedly some hidden knowledge that would be secretly passed to initiates.  Nobody knows what that 'secret' stuff was, but it was the basis for the old gnostics.  There are still gnostic texts surviving, like the Pistis Sophia.  You can get a copy and read for yourself.  There may be even free copies online.  The modern day versions are variously expressed, but would be like a New Age proponent who insists that someone has to be initiated into the mysteries by a master or adept to reach enlightenment. 

Christianity is not based on 'secret knowledge' but is open to everyone.  Priests are not gurus.  God is 'everywhere present and fills all things', so there is appreciation and gratitude to God for this creation an for our very lives, which find their greatest expression when lived in union with God.  The Orthodox Church has the best map to get to union with God, only people have to use the map, not sit on it. 
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« Reply #57 on: January 19, 2013, 03:09:52 PM »

I'd be interested to know, first of all, how you are defining "happiness," and why you think that is what faith is supposed to be.

Being blessed in life and satisfied.Having a vivid, sunny colourful life.

We love everything brilliant on earth:  gold, silver, precious stones, crystal, bright clothing—why, then, do we not love the future glory to which the Lord calls us?  Why do we not aspire to shine like the sun?  Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father, (Matt 13:43).  It is because we have perverted the nature of our soul by sin, and have attached ourselves to earth instead of to heaven, to corruptible things instead of to incorruptible ones; because we love earthly, transitory, perishable, and seductive splendor.  But why is there such a love for everything bright in us?  Because our soul was created for heavenly light, and was originally all light, all radiance; thus light is inborn in it, the feeling and desire for light are inborn in it.  Direct this aspiration to seeking for heavenly light!

 

St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ

What is this correct doctrine suppose to impart and give to our lives?




Try it and find out!   
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« Reply #58 on: January 19, 2013, 03:34:51 PM »

FF :  "...If salvation is a state of being, than what you need most is to be.I've met a lot of people including clergy who were well grounded in the letter of the Orthodox dogma but were spiritually unevolved.

Just being is not salvation.  And how are you qualified to know enough about anyone else to pronounce someone as "spiritually unevolved"?  You know everything about that person, what they've suffered, what they face, their weaknesses and strengths, you know their private thoughts, their most inward insecurities, you know how their earthly life will end?  You really know a lot!  Are you SURE you don't really have a secret fondness for 'judgemental bigoted' types?

I meant a certain state of being, and being in that state, not just merely being.

Quote
FF:  "...There are a lot of Orthodox who know well the letter of Orthodxy, but when you make them explain their faith they are incapable in doing so.They have no comprehension and besides this letter turns them into self-righteous, judgemental, fearful, extremists bigots...."

Ah, so you expect an Orthodox to perform explanations to you like a dog doing tricks?  You are very powerful indeed to 'make them explain their faith'.  Now it is becoming more clear to me why you are not getting much conversation from a priest.  

No, I expect spiritual people to actually know what they speak, not to merely repeat certain memorised slogans.

Quote
Yes, Orthodox people are sinners and imperfect just like everyone else.  Various people apply themselves to various degrees to the practice of their faith.  There will be wheat and tares.  God knows all this and has expressed this perfectly throughout the Bible.  That's another good thing about Lent and the prayers St. Ephrem:
Oh Lord and Master of my life, give not to me the spirit of sloth, meddling, lust for power, idle talk.

But a spirit of chastity, humility, patience and love, bestow up me Thy servant.

O Lord King, grant me to see mine own failings, and not to condemn my brother; for blessed art Thou unto the ages of ages.

It's also why we pray Psalm 50 a minimum of two times a day.  

I am not judging Orthodoxy.I speak of a specific religious behaviour I noticed from my frame of reference(I am Orthodox,I've been Orthodox for decades,born into an Orthodox country).I didn't say that this happens only in Orthodoxy or that all Orthodox are like that.



Quote
FF:  "...What I am saying is that dogma can and usually stays in the way of human interactions and human love, on tends to give a judgemental flair in human relationships...."

My experience in the practice of the Orthodox faith has shown me that the only way for me to love people is through Christ.  There is a difference between parsing right from wrong type of 'judgment' and condemnation.  You seem to be mixing the terms, and would prefer a totally relativistic view of life, where everything must be acceptable to us, or else we are faulty.  It's a false dichotomy, and ironically, your view is the more intolerant view.

Just look at people that judge others based on their denominational affiliation as lost, accursed,subhuman,outsider,etc.
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FF:  "...What will be the criteria of the Judgement : what we believe of God or our human relationships? What is the difference between gnosticism and Christian(Orthodox) theology?..."

Ask God about His judgement which is His alone.  Pray everyday, with all your heart.  Remember God in every breath you take.  Love God with all your heart mind soul body your entire being and your neighbor as yourself.

I will not be a dog doing tricks for you, but gnostics basically see the world and flesh as evil, the higher spiritual plane as good.  There was supposedly some hidden knowledge that would be secretly passed to initiates.  Nobody knows what that 'secret' stuff was, but it was the basis for the old gnostics.  There are still gnostic texts surviving, like the Pistis Sophia.  You can get a copy and read for yourself.  There may be even free copies online.  The modern day versions are variously expressed, but would be like a New Age proponent who insists that someone has to be initiated into the mysteries by a master or adept to reach enlightenment.  

Christianity is not based on 'secret knowledge' but is open to everyone.  Priests are not gurus.  God is 'everywhere present and fills all things', so there is appreciation and gratitude to God for this creation an for our very lives, which find their greatest expression when lived in union with God.  The Orthodox Church has the best map to get to union with God, only people have to use the map, not sit on it.  


The two questions are connected.Will the judgement be based on a particular doctrine belief or on a theistic humanist relationship?

Gnosticism is a religious philosophy/theology that ascribes to "salvation" through a special knowledge.That is why I asked what is the difference between Gnosticism and Christian theology.And the question still stands.
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« Reply #59 on: January 19, 2013, 03:42:40 PM »

I already ate enough salt with you. IGNORED! untill when I feel to...

One compliment after another!

"You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot." (Matthew 5, 13)
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« Reply #60 on: January 19, 2013, 03:51:15 PM »

Gnosticism is a religious philosophy/theology that ascribes to "salvation" through a special knowledge.That is why I asked what is the difference between Gnosticism and Christian theology.And the question still stands.

"This is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent." (John 17, 3)
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« Reply #61 on: January 19, 2013, 03:54:27 PM »

Can somebody tell that guy he is out of my centre of attention?  police
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« Reply #62 on: January 19, 2013, 04:14:02 PM »

because I am 100xtimes more spiritually evolved than you.

And here is the key problem.
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« Reply #63 on: January 19, 2013, 04:23:27 PM »

I'd be interested to know, first of all, how you are defining "happiness," and why you think that is what faith is supposed to be.

Being blessed in life and satisfied.Having a vivid, sunny colourful life.

We love everything brilliant on earth:  gold, silver, precious stones, crystal, bright clothing—whOy, then, do we not love the future glory to which the Lord calls us?  Why do we not aspire to shine like the sun?  Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father, (Matt 13:43).  It is because we have perverted the nature of our soul by sin, and have attached ourselves to earth instead of to heaven, to corruptible things instead of to incorruptible ones; because we love earthly, transitory, perishable, and seductive splendor.  But why is there such a love for everything bright in us?  Because our soul was created for heavenly light, and was originally all light, all radiance; thus light is inborn in it, the feeling and desire for light are inborn in it.  Direct this aspiration to seeking for heavenly light!

 

St. John of Kronstadt, My Life in Christ

What is this correct doctrine suppose to impart and give to our lives?



I would imagine it is supposed to bring a person into a fully realized relationship with the Trinity through the person of Jesus of Nazareth. At the risk of making you upset and trying to bait and switch the question, I would suggest asking the question, what is correct doctrin supposed to impart and give to the Trinity. Maybe it would be more accurate to say what could it(correct doctirne) give BACK to the Trinity, seeing as everything you have came from God anyway.
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« Reply #64 on: January 19, 2013, 04:30:18 PM »

@Ashman618

Is that in antithesis with worldly bliss?

No switch and baits here please. Smiley

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« Reply #65 on: January 19, 2013, 04:48:17 PM »

@Ashman618

Is that in antithesis with worldly bliss?

No switch and baits here please. Smiley



Is a fully realized relationship with Jesus directly opposed to worldly bliss hmmmm... That's difficult to answer!

I'm sorry I can't field this one, I'm not qualified to give an genuinely Orthodox answer


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« Reply #66 on: January 19, 2013, 05:07:13 PM »

What do you mean by "wordly bliss?"
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« Reply #67 on: January 19, 2013, 05:17:32 PM »

What do you mean by "wordly bliss?"

Things of the world.
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« Reply #68 on: January 19, 2013, 05:23:47 PM »



I meant a certain state of being, and being in that state, not just merely being. [quote}

And how do you reach that state of being in your estimation?

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« Reply #69 on: January 19, 2013, 05:31:28 PM »

I'm sorry, to all. 

I really don't understand how to use this method of corresponding.  I cannot seem to get the quote thing down so a conversation can be tracked and posted in order, and it becomes too time consuming. 

I also don't understand why an "Orthodox person, raised in an Orthodox country" is posting in a convert issues area of the forum to inform Orthodox here that they are judgmental and bigoted for being Orthodox. 

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« Reply #70 on: January 19, 2013, 05:35:32 PM »

I'm sorry, to all.  

I really don't understand how to use this method of corresponding.  I cannot seem to get the quote thing down so a conversation can be tracked and posted in order, and it becomes too time consuming.  

I also don't understand why an "Orthodox person, raised in an Orthodox country" is posting in a convert issues area of the forum to inform Orthodox here that they are judgmental and bigoted for being Orthodox.  



I did not post to inform anyone anything.I posted because I needed to be informed.In case you haven't noticed my posts on this thread are questions.I thought I started this thread in the Faith Issue section.Perhaps the Mods moved it?
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« Reply #71 on: January 19, 2013, 05:37:29 PM »

I'm sorry, to all. 

I really don't understand how to use this method of corresponding.  I cannot seem to get the quote thing down so a conversation can be tracked and posted in order, and it becomes too time consuming. 

I also don't understand why an "Orthodox person, raised in an Orthodox country" is posting in a convert issues area of the forum to inform Orthodox here that they are judgmental and bigoted for being Orthodox. 



I don't think he is talking about all orthodox christians. I just think he has some concerns about certain aspects of Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #72 on: January 19, 2013, 05:47:02 PM »

I tried to answer you before, and apparently I am not clear enough in my communication.

Your original question was about the importance of dogma/doctrine, not to call me and others to account for your interpretation of other people's behavior in who knows what country even.  I have no idea what has occurred in your life, but I'm sorry that you feel so bad about Orthodoxy now, and I'm sorry I'm so lousy with this computer format.



I'll put you in Paschal red:

FF:  I am not judging Orthodoxy.I speak of a specific religious behaviour I noticed from my frame of reference(I am Orthodox,I've been Orthodox for decades,born into an Orthodox country).I didn't say that this happens only in Orthodoxy or that all Orthodox are like that.

FF further states: The two questions are connected.Will the judgement be based on a particular doctrine belief or on a theistic humanist relationship?

Gnosticism is a religious philosophy/theology that ascribes to "salvation" through a special knowledge.That is why I asked what is the difference between Gnosticism and Christian theology.And the question still stands.



The question does not stand in my opinion, because I'm not God.  Even the Church will not say that everyone outside the Church is lost to God.  St. Paul says we judge those inside, God judges those outside.  We don't know in others words, but within our Church we are accountable to each other.


You may want to start a new thread in a more appropriate area of the forum if you want to do a comparative religion/philosophy question on gnosticism and Christianity.

The moderators can decide if that is really a convert issue. 


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« Reply #73 on: January 19, 2013, 06:06:49 PM »

I'm sorry, to all.  

I really don't understand how to use this method of corresponding.  I cannot seem to get the quote thing down so a conversation can be tracked and posted in order, and it becomes too time consuming.  

I also don't understand why an "Orthodox person, raised in an Orthodox country" is posting in a convert issues area of the forum to inform Orthodox here that they are judgmental and bigoted for being Orthodox.  



I did not post to inform anyone anything.I posted because I needed to be informed.In case you haven't noticed my posts on this thread are questions.I thought I started this thread in the Faith Issue section.Perhaps the Mods moved it?


So a bunch of people tried their best to answer.  

How is dogma / doctrine important to salvation?  Because Christ is our salvation.  There is nothing outside of God.  

In summary, outside Orthodox dogma, there are many ideas about the person of Christ.  They usually err either in making too much of the God aspect, or too little of the human aspect.  It was a lot even for the disciples to understand Jesus Christ.  

Nobody is guaranteed salvation in Orthodoxy.  Look at the icon of the Ladder of Divine Ascent from St. Catherine's Monastery at Sinai : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:The_Ladder_of_Divine_Ascent_Monastery_of_St_Catherine_Sinai_12th_century.jpg


Look who is being hooked and pulled off the ladder by demons.  This is a difficult way to navigate, but don't forget, as you show mercy, so will God show mercy to you.

 

I wish I were better person to answer your question fully, but I thought I would try because I truly believe Christ is the Way, and the Sacraments of the Church are what help us navigate this most difficult path.

For example, who gets to see God?  The pure in heart.  Am I pure in heart?  NO.  So I keep praying, practice my faith, ask God for help, confess my sins, and participate in the Eucharist, which means Thanksgiving.  I approach in great humility, because I know things that happen during the Divine Liturgy that are truly awesome and outside this material realm.  Ultimately it is God's mercy on me, but that doesn't mean I don't have to yoke my will to His to the greatest extent of my ability.

Thank you for considering my words, and for your patience with my terrible computer skills.

Edit: to put in shorter link to the icon of the Ladder of Divine Ascent.  I hope it is acceptable to put that link there.
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« Reply #74 on: January 19, 2013, 06:14:22 PM »

I'm sorry, to all.  

I really don't understand how to use this method of corresponding.  I cannot seem to get the quote thing down so a conversation can be tracked and posted in order, and it becomes too time consuming.  

I also don't understand why an "Orthodox person, raised in an Orthodox country" is posting in a convert issues area of the forum to inform Orthodox here that they are judgmental and bigoted for being Orthodox.  



I did not post to inform anyone anything.I posted because I needed to be informed.In case you haven't noticed my posts on this thread are questions.I thought I started this thread in the Faith Issue section.Perhaps the Mods moved it?


okay well, it seems that some of your questions come off as "when did you stop beating your wife?" or something to that effect.
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« Reply #75 on: January 19, 2013, 07:20:07 PM »

...because I am 100xtimes more spiritually evolved than you.


 Shocked Woooah.....

Tread vigilantly partner--you are demonstrating pride, which is the total anti-thesis of Christian spirituality. The former--what you call being "spiritually evolved"--is rather what we would call spiritual deception and delusion coming from the Devil, whereas the latter--humility, meekness, full of love--is what we would call true spiritual evolution.
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« Reply #76 on: January 19, 2013, 08:06:02 PM »

Why should we want heartache, sorrow and sorrowful things?

You said Hell first heaven later.When is this later?

"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it." (Mattew 13)

Non-answer.

The answer is there's no such thing as cheap grace and instant gratification in Christianity. If you are convinced that it is indeed 'the pearl of great price' and it's worth all you have, then you joyfully put yourself through hell to get it. And that hell you'll experience as a foretaste of heaven here on earth. "Later" is when the kingdom comes and the pyramid of this world is turned upside-down. Then the last shall become the first, the ones who mourn now will laugh, the meek will inherit the earth, those persecuted for righteousness and for Christ's sake will be acknowledged by him in front of the Father, and so forth.

I will take your replies with a grain of salt.

In Romanian we say you must eat a sackful of salt together till you get to know someone...

I like that .

In Greek there is a dance called how we grind the pepper together. Wink And it is usually played very late when everyone has had a few and it can go on forever.
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« Reply #77 on: January 20, 2013, 12:12:29 AM »

What do you mean by "wordly bliss?"

Things of the world.

So, happiness for you is ease in this life, wealth, the fulfillment of sensual desires.

Something Herod, Stalin, and Rand can all agree on.
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« Reply #78 on: January 20, 2013, 12:49:46 AM »

FlickFlack (though I would much prefer to address you by your Christian name)-

Since it would seem that the answers and suggestions you find here, or within your parish community for that matter, do not satisfy your questions, may I suggest the possibility of visiting an Orthodox monastery within your area and seeking counsel with an Elder of that monastery? You are in Greece, from what I gather? If so, where?

I would strongly suggest doing this under the guidance of your Priest and that, moreover, these are the sort of thoughts that are probably best addressed (to your priest, or perhaps to a monastic Elder or Priest of his designation) within the context of confession, as the Lord is present in a special way within the sacrament.

It would also be fitting to humbly pray to the Lord and the Mother of God to please show you the truth.

It would be helpful to learn more about you and your circumstances, especially your relationship to your church community, in order for anyone here to better advise you on these matters.

May God guide you.
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« Reply #79 on: January 20, 2013, 12:50:42 AM »

In Greek there is a dance called how we grind the pepper together. Wink And it is usually played very late when everyone has had a few and it can go on forever.

Would that be Πώς το τρίβουν το πιπέρι?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b342Ridjdvs

I've read that it's a carnival song associated with the Vlachs and some curious fertility ceremonies:

http://www.aglaiakremezi.com/articles/general/clean-monday-unusual-greek-vegetarian-feast.html
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« Reply #80 on: January 20, 2013, 07:14:43 PM »

In Greek there is a dance called how we grind the pepper together. Wink And it is usually played very late when everyone has had a few and it can go on forever.

Would that be Πώς το τρίβουν το πιπέρι?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b342Ridjdvs

I've read that it's a carnival song associated with the Vlachs and some curious fertility ceremonies:

http://www.aglaiakremezi.com/articles/general/clean-monday-unusual-greek-vegetarian-feast.html

Yes , and in Greek the word Vlachi is meant to mean stupid greek hillbilly
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« Reply #81 on: January 20, 2013, 07:21:20 PM »

Something Herod, Stalin, and Rand can all agree on.

Stalin led an ascetic life.
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Holy Trinity Church of Gergeti, Georgia


« Reply #82 on: January 20, 2013, 08:26:06 PM »

Something Herod, Stalin, and Rand can all agree on.

Stalin led an ascetic life.

Well, that is true. But, in a way, he feasted on people and enjoyed power. But he was a complex man.
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« Reply #83 on: January 21, 2013, 01:31:40 AM »

Closing this topic as going off topic.

Thomas
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