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Author Topic: The Benedictine Order and me  (Read 14151 times) Average Rating: 0
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Anastasios
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« Reply #45 on: January 15, 2005, 08:06:31 PM »



Do you know why?

I don't know the details but I believe Phil does.  It isn't anything really juicy; mostly just a routine change of administration.

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« Reply #46 on: January 15, 2005, 08:11:02 PM »



Right, it says right there for Canada and Europe, NOT America. He was transferred OUT of America and to Canada and Europe. Look here: http://www.indianorthodoxchurch.org/america.html ---> Mar Barnabas is Metropolitan of the USA.


http://www.indianorthodoxchurch.org/americanDiocese.html
 
Just look at his picture and its caption and tell me who my bishop is.

"In 1975 Rev. Fr. K.C. Thomas was elevated as a bishop by name His Grace Thomas Mar Makarios. In 1976 the parishes in America and Canada were brought under a new Diocese called "Bombay Diocese". The Managing Committee and the Holy Episcopal Synod declared establishment of the
American Diocese in January 1979. His Holiness Baselios Mar Thoma Mathews I, Catholicos and Malankara Metropolitan came to America in July 1979, and the American Diocese was established officially by His Holiness presiding over the enthronement ceremony of His Grace Thomas Mar Makarios as the first Metropolitan.
During the 1980s, several parishes purchased their own church buildings for their worship services and other activities. Currently, about half of our parishes own their church buildings. The American Diocese is one of the 22 Dioceses of the Indian Orthodox Church with headquarters in Kottayam, Kerala in India and His Holiness Baselios Mar Thoma Mathews II as the supreme head of the Church."




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« Reply #47 on: January 15, 2005, 08:16:04 PM »

From the very website you just linked me to:

"Currently, there are about ten thousand Indian Orthodox Christians in the United States. There are 66 parishes assisted by 78 priests and 9 deacons in the American Diocese. The head of the American Diocese, also known as the Diocesan Metropolitan is His Grace Mathews Mar Barnabas."

Repeat: your parish seems to be in a SPECIAL circumstance whereby you commemorate Mar Makarios and not the Metropolitan of America, Mar Barnabas.

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« Reply #48 on: January 15, 2005, 08:17:12 PM »

Further proof: http://www.indianorthodoxchurch.org/DiocesanNews.html
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« Reply #49 on: January 15, 2005, 08:17:29 PM »

Why would I email an unofficial website and ask them if they represent the official church? It seems that Metropolitan Mar Makarios is trying to make it look like he is still in charge in the USA.
It isn't anything really juicy; mostly just a routine change of administration.

Making a false website to claim false authority would be rather "juicy" to me.
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« Reply #50 on: January 15, 2005, 08:17:58 PM »

http://indianorthodoxchurch.photosite.com/Album1/ad-barnabas.html
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« Reply #51 on: January 15, 2005, 08:19:05 PM »




Making a false website to claim false authority would be rather "juicy" to me.


No, he was the legitimate bishop, and it appears that he simply never took the website down and never updated it after he was transferred.  Maybe it was made by one of his priests under him and he doesn't even know about it.

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« Reply #52 on: January 15, 2005, 08:19:51 PM »

Repeat: your parish seems to be in a SPECIAL circumstance whereby you commemorate Mar Makarios and not the Metropolitan of America, Mar Barnabas.

But I seriously doubt that Mar Makarios would do this against the will of the diocese.
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« Reply #53 on: January 15, 2005, 08:22:44 PM »



But I seriously doubt that Mar Makarios would do this against the will of the diocese.

Which I did not even SUGGEST. I said it was in a SPECIAL circumstance, not that it was ILLEGITIMATE. He probably made a deal with the catholicos based on his special relationship with the convert parishes, and this was probably accepted by all.

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« Reply #54 on: January 15, 2005, 08:26:11 PM »

I'm sorry if I rashly read in to your posts. I just love Mar Makarios enough that it is hard for me to tolerate anything that even sounds like an accusation of scandal.

As far as I know, you are right about his special relationship to us as a convert church. Grin
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« Reply #55 on: January 15, 2005, 08:39:33 PM »

I'm sorry if I rashly read in to your posts. I just love Mar Makarios enough that it is hard for me tolerate anything that even sounds like an accusation of scandal.

As far as I know, you are right about his special relationship to us as a convert church. Grin

The situation in America is difficult and tumultuous. It's not really a wonder that there is confusion in these times.  I certainly have nothing against Mar Makarios, a courageous bishop who "thinks outside of the box." Smiley

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« Reply #56 on: January 15, 2005, 08:43:26 PM »

a courageous bishop who "thinks outside of the box." Smiley

What do you mean?
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« Reply #57 on: January 15, 2005, 08:43:44 PM »



It does sound a little ethocentric to insist that Eastern thought is superior to Western thought in everything and anything, not that I am accusing anyone of this.

It's not Eastern thought. It's Orthodox thought-- and Orthodoxy can be Western, too. The Western Church Fathers had the same approach to things.

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« Reply #58 on: January 15, 2005, 10:00:10 PM »

I'm somewhat offended by the 'tone' of some of the admonishments of Matthew here.  None of us know him.  We've just read a few things he's written.  We certainly can't say that he shouldn't be allowed to receive the Eucharist. 

Basically it is not the place of anyone here to 're-educate' Matthew.  That is not the purpose of an internet discussion forum.  No one here is entitled to give him spiritual direction. 

Matthew will sort all of this out with the help of real people in his life.   

BTW, if these kinds of lectures had been directed at me (and they have been in the past) I would regard them as a kind of religious bullying.  He's obviously at a place in his life when he's trying to sort things out and believe me, none of us have been 'sent by God' to 'set him on the straight and narrow.' 

So let's let him be. 
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« Reply #59 on: January 15, 2005, 10:02:10 PM »

I'm somewhat offended by the 'tone' of some of the admonishments of Matthew here. None of us know him. We've just read a few things he's written. We certainly can't say that he shouldn't be allowed to receive the Eucharist.

Basically it is not the place of anyone here to 're-educate' Matthew. That is not the purpose of an internet discussion forum. No one here is entitled to give him spiritual direction.

Matthew will sort all of this out with the help of real people in his life.

BTW, if these kinds of lectures had been directed at me (and they have been in the past) I would regard them as a kind of religious bullying. He's obviously at a place in his life when he's trying to sort things out and believe me, none of us have been 'sent by God' to 'set him on the straight and narrow.'

So let's let him be.

Thank you for your kindness and slowness to judgement. May peace be upon you and with thy spirit.
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« Reply #60 on: January 15, 2005, 10:25:19 PM »

I'm sorry Jennifer, I thought Matthew had asked for our opinions. Is there some other meaning to the word at the end of his first (lengthy, autobiographical) post, "Discuss..."?
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« Reply #61 on: January 15, 2005, 10:59:22 PM »

I'm sorry Jennifer, I thought Matthew had asked for our opinions. Is there some other meaning to the word at the end of his first (lengthy, autobiographical) post, "Discuss..."?

The topic of this discussion is intended to be the Benedictine Order itself, not the supposed foolishness of my decision making. Wink

My intention is to have the members of the board share their view of the Order from an Orthodox perspective.

I, for one, am impressed by how "Orthodox" the Order really is.
But then again, I'm an Orthodox Christian and not an Orthodox triumphalist. (No offense intended to any of the members of this board.)
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« Reply #62 on: January 15, 2005, 11:07:02 PM »

What sense does it make to discuss the Benedictine Order if you are a member of the Orthodox Church now ?

Posting it in this board makes little sense to me, unless there is a agenda to be pursued.

JB

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« Reply #63 on: January 15, 2005, 11:09:32 PM »

Posting it in this board makes little sense to me, unless there is a agenda to be pursued.

The agenda is to probe the Order from an Orthodox perspective to find what we share in common.
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« Reply #64 on: January 15, 2005, 11:13:14 PM »

Then request it to be relocated to the Orthodox/Catholic discussion board.

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« Reply #65 on: January 15, 2005, 11:19:53 PM »

Then request it to be relocated to the Orthodox/Catholic discussion board.

james

But then it would be moderated.
If that would be best then that is my request.
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« Reply #66 on: January 16, 2005, 12:59:42 AM »

I'm somewhat offended by the 'tone' of some of the admonishments of Matthew here. None of us know him. We've just read a few things he's written. We certainly can't say that he shouldn't be allowed to receive the Eucharist.

You're right, his priest should determine that.

Quote
Basically it is not the place of anyone here to 're-educate' Matthew. That is not the purpose of an internet discussion forum. No one here is entitled to give him spiritual direction.

Sorry, I couldn't disagree more. Leaving matters of opinion aside, he has stated several errors of fact. Those should be corrected. Matthew makes claims. We don't agree with his claims, so we disagree. This is what a message board is for.  We all need more education.

Quote
Matthew will sort all of this out with the help of real people in his life.

We are real people. I have made many friendships online that have carried over to the "real world." I find your dichotomy between internet life and real life to be too extreme. Certainly we shouldn't rely solely or primariily on internet advice, but it can be helpful.

Quote
BTW, if these kinds of lectures had been directed at me (and they have been in the past) I would regard them as a kind of religious bullying. He's obviously at a place in his life when he's trying to sort things out and believe me, none of us have been 'sent by God' to 'set him on the straight and narrow.'

I find your use of the term "bullying" to be so all-pervasive as to be unuseful. Certainly there is such a thing as using religion to bash people but that has not happened here. Matthew has made statements that are factually incorrect and solicited opinions. He has gotten those. And no, I don't believe you that God doesn't send people online to help others get straightened out because I credit some people that I have met online to helping me a great deal.  You are limiting God.  People have questions, and we are real people who can give some advice.  Sometimes it's dangerous to rely solely on your parish because frankly one's parish could be the problem.

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So let's let him be.

So we should let him continue believing things that are factual errors or could be leading him down the wrong path (as determined by the Church, not us individually)?

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« Reply #67 on: January 16, 2005, 01:07:19 AM »

Jennifer,

Could you please expand on what you think the purpose of a religious discussion forum should be? And also, if you were in someone else's shoes, and saw that someone was posting things that are contrary to the teachings of Orthodoxy as you understood them, what would you do? Leave it be?  Don't we have an obligation to point things out to people if they are espousing something that is incorrect?

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« Reply #68 on: January 16, 2005, 02:44:11 AM »

OK, here's my $0.02:
If you are truly intersted in a monastic vocation, work your way through at least 2 years of junior college. Follow this with a year or two of living on your own, supporting yourself and being responsible for for your own schedule, living expenses, home, and paying off any debts you incured in school.
Technically you're old enough to enter a religious community, but any community that has a clue wouldn't accept a candidate who didn't have some "life experience" after high school. If any community is willing to accept an 18 year old novice who just graduated high school, turn around and RUN (fast!). Spending some time just living on your own is how you will get to know yourself, and honestly discern whether or not you are called to a religious community ( and if so, what type of community).
Remeber, religous life isn't all enlightened theological conversation, flawless liturgy and wise superiors. It's also hours of hard work; scrubbing floors, raking leaves, washing dishes etc.
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« Reply #69 on: January 16, 2005, 02:39:26 PM »

Sorry, I couldn't disagree more. Leaving matters of opinion aside, he has stated several errors of fact. Those should be corrected. Matthew makes claims. We don't agree with his claims, so we disagree. This is what a message board is for. We all need more education.

It's possible to disagree without 'judgment,' e.g. without commenting on his "foolishness" or "spiritual immaturity."  if he says something wrong, inform him that his position is not that of the Orthodox Church but leave out the personal remarks. 

Quote
We are real people. I have made many friendships online that have carried over to the "real world." I find your dichotomy between internet life and real life to be too extreme. Certainly we shouldn't rely solely or primariily on internet advice, but it can be helpful.

You're not real people to him as no one here has a friendship with him online, let alone real life. 

Quote
I find your use of the term "bullying" to be so all-pervasive as to be unuseful. Certainly there is such a thing as using religion to bash people but that has not happened here. Matthew has made statements that are factually incorrect and solicited opinions. He has gotten those. And no, I don't believe you that God doesn't send people online to help others get straightened out because I credit some people that I have met online to helping me a great deal. You are limiting God. People have questions, and we are real people who can give some advice. Sometimes it's dangerous to rely solely on your parish because frankly one's parish could be the problem.

It's possible to believe that God might send someone on-line to 'guide' someone, however, we get in trouble when we believe that we are sent by God to straighten people out. 

If he asks questions, answer them and leave out the personal judgment. 

When I use the term "bullying" what I mean is that there is a personal judgment involved.  Bullying is all about tearing people down.  It's not simply, "you're wrong," but "you're stupid and spiritually immature." 

One of the things I've learned in life is that good sincere people can be wrong.  They're not wrong because they're stupid or immature or not good people.  On religious boards, too often it's assumed that being "wrong" is a personal failing. 

Quote
So we should let him continue believing things that are factual errors or could be leading him down the wrong path (as determined by the Church, not us individually)?
Anastasios

"Let him continue believing things..."  Do you see the problem with that statement?  "Let him believe" as if you get to dictate what he believes.  We don't get to decide what he believes. 
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« Reply #70 on: January 16, 2005, 02:43:52 PM »

Jennifer,

Could you please expand on what you think the purpose of a religious discussion forum should be? And also, if you were in someone else's shoes, and saw that someone was posting things that are contrary to the teachings of Orthodoxy as you understood them, what would you do? Leave it be? Don't we have an obligation to point things out to people if they are espousing something that is incorrect?

Anastasios

The purpose of discussion forum is to *discuss* things.   It's not to pass spiritual judgment on people we only know from a few hundred words they've written.
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« Reply #71 on: January 16, 2005, 04:50:12 PM »

The novice period is at least three years so that would enough time for me to get to know myself, even for me to change my mind if I find that it is not the right vocation for me.

Now about all the work involved: To work is to pray.
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« Reply #72 on: January 16, 2005, 05:11:33 PM »

Jennifer, thank you for your open-mindedness and slowness to judgement.

I honestly hope that there is an Orthodox "equivalent" to this statement in the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

"1782 Man has the right to act in conscience and in freedom so as personally to make moral decisions. "He must not be forced to act contrary to his conscience. Nor must he be prevented from acting according to his conscience, especially in religious matters."
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« Reply #73 on: January 16, 2005, 05:43:38 PM »

"Orthodoxy is primarily liturgical. It informs and enlightens the people not so much by sermons and the teaching of norms and laws but by liturgical services themselves which give a foreshadowing of transfigured life. It likewise teaches the people through the examples of saints and instills the cult of holiness. But the images of saints are not normative; to them is granted the graceful enlightenment and transfiguration of creation by the action of the Holy Spirit. This, not being the normative type for Orthodoxy, makes it more difficult for the ways of human life, for history; it makes it less attractive for any kind of organization and for cultural creativity. The hidden mystery of the Holy Spirit's activity upon creation has not been actually realized by the ways of historical life. Characteristic for Orthodoxy is FREEDOM. This internal freedom may not be noticed from the outside but it is everywhere present. The idea of freedom as the foundation of Orthodoxy was developed in Russian religious thinking of the XIX and XX centuries. The admission of the freedom of conscience radically distinguishes the Orthodox Church from the Catholic Church. But the understanding of freedom in Orthodoxy is different from the understanding of freedom in Protestantism. In Protestantism, as in all Western thought, freedom is understood individualistically, as a personal right, preserved from encroachment on the part of any other person, and declaring it to be autonomous. Individualism is foreign to Orthodoxy, to it belongs a particular collectivism. A religious person and a religious collective are not incompatible with each other, as external friend to friend. The religious person is found within the religious collective and the religious collective is found within the religious person. Thus the religious collective does not become an external authority for the religious person, burdening the person externally with teaching and the law of life. The Church is not outside of religious persons, opposed to her. The Church is within them and they are within her. Thus the Church is not an authority. The Church is a grace-filled unity of love and freedom. Authoritativeness is incompatible with Orthodoxy because this form engenders a fracture between the religious collective and the religious person, between the Church and her members. There is no spiritual life without the freedom of conscience, there is not even a concept of the Church, since the Church does not tolerate slaves within her, but God wants only the free. But the authentic freedom of religious conscience, freedom of the spirit, is made evident not in an isolated autonomous personality, self-asserted in individualism but in a personality conscious of being in a superpersonal spiritual unity, in a unity with a spiritual organism, within the Body of Christ, i.e. the Church. My personal conscience is not placed outside and is not placed in opposition to the superpersonal conscience of the Church, it is revealed only within the Church's conscience. But, without an active spiritual deepening of my personal conscience, of my personal spiritual freedom, the life of the Church is not realized, since this life cannot be external to, nor be imposed upon, the person. Participation in the Church demands spiritual freedom, not only from the first entry into the Church, which Catholicism also recognizes, but throughout one's whole life. The Church's freedom with respect to the State was always precarious, but Orthodoxy always enjoyed freedom within the Church. In Orthodoxy freedom is organically linked with Sobornost', i.e. with the activity of the Holy Spirit upon the religious collective which has been with the Church not only during the times of the Ecumenical Councils, but at all times. Sobornost' in Orthodoxy, which is the life of the Church's people, never had any external juridical signs. Not even the Ecumenical Councils enjoyed indisputable external authority. The infallibility of authority was enjoyed only by the whole Church throughout her whole history, and the bearers and custodians of this authority were the whole people of the Church. The Ecumenical Councils enjoyed their authority not because they conformed with external juridical legal requirements but because the people of the Church, the whole Church recognized them as Ecumenical and genuine. Only that Ecumenical Council is genuine in which there was an outpouring of the Holy Spirit; the outpouring of the Holy Spirit has no external juridical criteria, it is discerned by the people of the Church in accordance with internal spiritual evidence. All this indicates a nonnormative nonjuridical character of the Orthodox Church. Along with this the Orthodox consciousness understands the Church more ontologically, i.e. it doesn't see the Church primarily as an organization and an establishment, not just a society of faithful, but as a spiritual, religious organism, the Mystical Body of Christ. Orthodoxy is more cosmic than Western Christianity. Neither Catholicism nor Protestantism sufficiently expresses the cosmic nature of the Church, as the Body of Christ. Western Christianity is primarily anthropological. But the Church is also the Christianized cosmos; within her, the whole created world is subject to the effect of the grace of the Holy Spirit. Christ's appearance has a cosmic, cosmogonic significance; it signifies somehow a new creation, a new day of the world's creation."
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« Reply #74 on: January 16, 2005, 06:59:47 PM »

Jennifer,

Thanks for clearing up your position. I can agree with what you say.

Anastasios
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« Reply #75 on: January 16, 2005, 07:11:31 PM »

Jennifer, thank you for your open-mindedness and slowness to judgement.

I honestly hope that there is an Orthodox "equivalent" to this statement in the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

"1782 Man has the right to act in conscience and in freedom so as personally to make moral decisions. "He must not be forced to act contrary to his conscience. Nor must he be prevented from acting according to his conscience, especially in religious matters."

Well of course Orthodoxy is against coercion. But no one here is coercing you... no Catholic would say that it goes against the Catechism to attempt to convince someone of something. Coercing you would be physically forcing you to go to the ROCOR monastery or so on. Stating an opinion is not. But I do agree that some of what has been said has been spiritual judgment on you that is not kosher, IMO. That's also un-Orthodox, but because we shouldn't judge-- not because we shouldn't coerce people.

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« Reply #76 on: January 16, 2005, 07:18:16 PM »

Whatever....

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« Reply #77 on: January 16, 2005, 07:32:48 PM »

Matthew, the quote you posted is absolutely correct... this distinction between the non-Orthodox Western view of freedom and the Orthodox view of freedom is best seen, IMO, in the difference between "The Grand Inquisitor" of Ivan Karamazov and the discources of Fr. Zossima, both from The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky. Ivan, with his Western education, sees a dichotomy between individual freedom, without guidance or help from anyone, the individual self choosing between easy darkness and difficult goodness, and totalitarianism, overpowering authority, where no one is given the choice to make and instead accepts bread, miracles, and authority. Fr. Zossima, on the other hand, does not see this polarity-- because he has an Orthodox phronema. He sees freedom not as the choice of the individual between bread, comfort, and happiness and 'the right choice,' where most are left behind-- a cold world of individual choice and the test of the individual-- but instead he sees freedom in self-renunciation and self-emptying (kenosis) for the sake of all Creation and all mankind. Not the rejection of bread for the ascent of the self, but the call of the self to obedience and self-denial so that one might live for all Creation and take bread as a gift of God and not an entitlement. Not an uphill battle against evil, where one is left alone and cold, with a choice between comfort and goodness, but a joyous proclamation of the freedom from SELF, the freedom IN others, the freedom not of choosing between good and evil (that is only license, not liberty) but the freedom of living in Christ's good. Fr. Zossima's is a world where miracles do not bring faith (and therefore are an impediment to pure 'freedom'), but faith brings miracles, where a living communion of bread and God feeds our hunger and our souls and teaches us to lose ourselves in God and each other, where the cross we each must carry is not one of a constant choice between cold truth and warm falsehood, but one of perpetual self-giving and obedience-- which is to say, love-- for the good of all of God's cosmos. And that's why I love Dostoevsky. Cheesy

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« Reply #78 on: January 16, 2005, 09:16:45 PM »

The author of the quote I provided was a Russian communist:

"Nikolai Alexandrovich Berdyaev was born at Kiev in 1874 of an aristocratic family. He commenced his education in a military school and subsequently entered the University of Kiev. There he accepted Marxism and took part in political agitation, for which he was expelled. At twenty-five he was exiled from Kiev to the north of Russia and narrowly escaped a second period of exile shortly before the Revolution. Before this, however, he had broken with Marxism in company with Sergius Bulgakov, and in 1909 he contributed to a symposium which reaffirmed the values of Orthodox Christianity. After the October Revolution he was appointed by the Bolshevists to a chair of philosophy in the University of Moscow, but soon fell into disfavour for his independent political opinions. He was twice imprisoned and in 1922 was expelled from the country. He settled first in Berlin, where he opened a Russian Academy of Philosophy and Religion. Thence he moved to Clamart near Paris, where he lectured in a similar institution. In 1939 he was invited to lecture at the Sorbonne. He lived through the German occupation unmolested. After the liberation, he announced his adhesion to the Soviet government, but later an article by him published in a Paris (Russian) newspaper, criticising the return to a policy of repression, was tantamount to a withdrawal of this. He died at Clamart March 24, 1948."
http://www.chebucto.ns.ca/Philosophy/Sui-Generis/Berdyaev/essays/allenbio.htm.

However, that doesn't make his words any less truthful or meaningful.
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« Reply #79 on: January 16, 2005, 09:34:08 PM »

Yes, I am familiar with Berdayev... no one challenged the truth of the quote, so why the rush to defend it?

Marjorie
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« Reply #80 on: January 16, 2005, 09:44:01 PM »

Matthew you write:

[I know this may sound shocking to some that a committed Orthodox Christian would consider joining a Roman Catholic monastery. ]

Then immediately contradict it by stating -

[Please don't get me wrong, getting a full ride to college alone is not good reason to join the monastic life. However, this seems like a better option than joining an Orthodox monastery that cannot pay for my education and where I'd have thousands of dollars of college debt with no way of paying for it.]

A committed Orthodox could never make a statement such as this. Monasticism is not based on education or tuition fees.  It's a way of life centered in prayer and solitude.

The Orthodox definition of Monasticism -

A way of life that leads one to greater perfection than is possible in secular surroundings.  A monk or nun seeks personal sanctification in monasticism, which began sometime in the third century when hermits went into the Egyptian desert.  Later, St Anthony introduced a simple rule of life among the desert dwellers.  Monasticism was introduced into the west sometime after the fourth century.

Monasticism in the Orthodox Church - men and women who enter monastic life in Orthodoxy devote their entire lives to God.  The word 'monastic' means solitary, and in the monastery one focuses primarily on union with the Almighty God.  Monastics follow what is called the "Angelic Life".

Monasticism is seen as the 'jewel' of Orthodoxy and it would be unthinkable to imagine the church without its witness.  Monasticism allows the church to regain her focus and remember what is important in life and what it means to live for God alone.

Monks are traditionally the guardians of the faith, and even priests in secular life regularly go to monastics for spiritual guidance because they understand the value of their witness.

Your reasoning regarding entering a Monastery or anything but the Orthodox concept of what a monk and a monstic life is.  So I have to question your classifying yourself as a committed Orthodox.  Or an Orthodox Catholic for that matter.

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« Reply #81 on: January 16, 2005, 11:10:58 PM »

Do you really want to know why I am a little hesitant to join an Orthodox monastery with two people?

Firstly, I do not want to confess a "monophysite" heresy that I do not even believe to be heresy.

Secondly and worsely, living the rest of my life with them, that would be hard.
If it were a larger monastery, I could just blend in. But only two? They'd be so close to me that they could look in to my soul and see the scars of sin. And that is scary.

However, if I visit Vashon and fall in love with it, there is no chance that I would even think of joining St. Martin's.
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« Reply #82 on: January 16, 2005, 11:13:56 PM »

Yes, I am familiar with Berdayev... no one challenged the truth of the quote, so why the rush to defend it?

Marjorie

When I quoted Kierkegaard, someone said something along the lines of, "That isn't an Orthodox source. Why do you cloud your mind with non-Orthodox thought? etc. etc. etc."

I am not referring to you though. Smiley
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« Reply #83 on: January 16, 2005, 11:26:35 PM »

I remember one Berdayev quote I heard in a lecture by Fr. Thomas Hopko I quite like.  Something along the lines of "Bread for yourself  is a material problem, but bread for your brother is a spiritual problem."
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« Reply #84 on: January 17, 2005, 02:25:56 AM »

Quote
However, if I visit Vashon and fall in love with it, there is no chance that I would even think of joining St. Martin's.

my 2 cents: i dont know that much about monasticism, to be sure, but something tells me there is more to joining a monastery and choosing that life than "falling in love" with a specific monastery, or getting the right feeling when visiting...it isnt like choosing a college, which ironically seems to be the obvious parallel i see for how u are approaching it. i feel like the call to monastacism is something that occurs, and then a period of discernment should take place (i.e. you live in the "real" world for a while to test the feeling you think may be a calling, to see if it lasts), and THEN you look for the kind of monastic community that suits the type of work for God you are called to do. i could be wrong, but i feel like such a calling would be all consuming, and the considerations you are describing to us, that you have, would not exist. that, at least, is how i have always viewed monasticism, at least how i figured such a calling would occur for me (for the record, i havent had the calling, but these are just my wayward thoughts on the matter).

granted, visiting a monastery for a short period of time, and living the life as the monastics do, i do believe has great value, both for people who sense they may have the calling and for those who think they probably dont. i am not discouraging you from such a visit - but seeking to join is a different story, and in my opinion (which of course u dont have to take) requires a lot more than falling in love with a specific monastery. i do believe the period of discernment is key, tho.
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« Reply #85 on: January 17, 2005, 02:37:17 AM »



my 2 cents: i dont know that much about monasticism, to be sure, but something tells me there is more to joining a monastery and choosing that life than "falling in love" with a specific monastery, or getting the right feeling when visiting...

I already know in my heart that the religious life is right for me, and have known this since eighth grade. This may change once I experience it but right now, my heart is set on it as my God-given vocation.

By falling in love, I mean with the Russion Orthodoxy of the monastery, a Church that I have no experience in.
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« Reply #86 on: January 17, 2005, 03:59:19 AM »

Quote
I already know in my heart that the religious life is right for me, and have known this since eighth grade.

You may feel it is right for you, but as others have said, you need true spiritual discernment and guidance from a spiritual director, which I hope that you seeking, because spiritual direction is a necessity before you commit the rest of your life to monasticism.

Quote
By falling in love, I mean with the Russion Orthodoxy of the monastery, a Church that I have no experience in.

Orthodoxy is Orthodoxy, whether it be Greek, Russian, Serbian, or Ukrainian, etc., but perhaps you just meant Orthodoxy as it is practiced in a monastery, where it envelops every aspect of your life.

Have you ever worshipped with an Eastern Orthodox community? If not, you should visit a few churches (especially ones of the ROCOR), as the monastery that you are so enamoured with is under it's jurisdiction.

Does your spiritual father know about your inclinations to monasticism?

In Christ,
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« Reply #87 on: January 17, 2005, 05:07:19 AM »


If it were a larger monastery, I could just blend in. But only two? They'd be so close to me that they could look in to my soul and see the scars of sin. And that is scary.


This is precisely what a monk should desire. Becoming a monk should not be a case of "blending in" as if you give up being a person and become an individual among a mass of individuals. Rather, it is for the perfecting of the person, each of whom is unique and worthwhile.

John
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« Reply #88 on: January 18, 2005, 11:17:26 AM »

One might suggest that one cannot truely know the Monastic life until one has lived it.  Rather like marriage there is the fantasy of what it is like and then there is the day-to-day *living* it that isn't all sweetness and easy and glowing.  It's like the difference that C. S. Lewis writes about between Love and "Being in Love".  The Romance of something is not the Reality in living it.   

I have also read the saying re the Religious Life that "The House chooses the nun/monk" not the other way around.

Some suggested reading:  "A Right to be Merry" and "Forth and Abroad"  by Sister Mary Frances, a cloistered Poor Clare
"I Leap Over the Wall" by Monica Baldwin (who was a nun for ove 20 years in the first half of the 20th century)
"In this House of Brede" by Rumer Godden, fiction, but based on a real monestary of Benedictine nuns
Thomas Merton's autobiography

And for a source for others to look for: "Veil and Cowl: Writings from the World of Monks and Nuns" edited by James B. Simpson, an
Episcopal Priest

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« Reply #89 on: January 18, 2005, 12:05:08 PM »

Thomas Merton's autobiography

Great book!
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