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Author Topic: Transcendental Awakening and Postcolonial blues  (Read 1219 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: January 27, 2014, 10:50:19 AM »

I'm not African, American, Black or Rasta by any sense but this idea of African spirituality which Ethiopian OOs have and to which Rastas can relate to seems silly, White and Western. Africa is a continent with numerous countries languages and cultures. How could there be any distinctly African spirituality and how could it be based on Ethiopia since it's but a single country and culture among many?

Often there is a transcendental awakening in the wake of oppression. Which even those who reaped the fruits of the said oppression attempt to co-opt it to make another buck by selling it to the oppressed.

The former oppressors also like to rush in a remind the everyone of their differences in such moments. For other examples see the recent Arab Spring.
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« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2014, 11:14:37 AM »

Often there is a transcendental awakening in the wake of oppression. Which even those who reaped the fruits of the said oppression attempt to co-opt it to make another buck by selling it to the oppressed.

Slavery was two centuries ago.

Jamaicans are hardly oppressed by da white man today, unless you buy into those pseudo-theories of nuts like Chomsky and his comrades.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 11:16:30 AM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2014, 11:17:26 AM »

Slavery was two centuries ago.

And yet you're still singing the postcolonial blues.
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« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2014, 11:17:32 AM »

Often there is a transcendental awakening in the wake of oppression. Which even those who reaped the fruits of the said oppression attempt to co-opt it to make another buck by selling it to the oppressed.

Slavery was two centuries ago.

Jamaicans are hardly oppressed by da white man today, unless you buy into those pseudo-theories of fringe nuts like Chomsky and his comrades.

Cyrillic you really have no idea what you are talking about. I am not sure what Chomsky nor his "comrades" nor Jamaicans have to do with it. You are a white man born into the heart of privilege built on the blood of Africans. Show a little more shame if not gratitude to those who still suffer on your behalf.
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« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2014, 11:35:48 AM »

Show a little more shame if not gratitude to those who still suffer on your behalf.

Africa and Jamaica aren't poor or suffering because of da white man. It's not like Africa wasn't dirt poor before colonialism. It surely wasn't a very nice concept in hindsight, but it isn't the cause of all Africa's evils. But yes, blaming is easy.

I have no reason to be ashamed of what some people did 200+ years ago  I've never owned a Jamaican.

You are a white man born into the heart of privilege built on the blood of Africans.

I seriously hope you're trolling.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 11:53:17 AM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2014, 12:06:07 PM »

Quote
Some of the comments I made here about St. Constantine, while I sympathize, I take back.  I venerate St. Constantine, who was a great man, despite his many weaknesses.  With that said, I don't see why not venerate Haile Selassie.

When was the canonization of Constantine accepted in the Coptic Church?

Quote
It's not like Africa wasn't dirt poor before colonialism.

Wrong. Africa has much of the minerals and metals in the world. among other riches.

If Africa was indeed so poor, why did the colorless people come to occupy it and milk it till this very day?   
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« Reply #6 on: January 27, 2014, 12:23:33 PM »

Show a little more shame if not gratitude to those who still suffer on your behalf.

Africa and Jamaica aren't poor or suffering because of da white man. It's not like Africa wasn't dirt poor before colonialism. It surely wasn't a very nice concept in hindsight, but it isn't the cause of all Africa's evils. But yes, blaming is easy.

I have no reason to be ashamed of what some people did 200+ years ago  I've never owned a Jamaican.

You are a white man born into the heart of privilege built on the blood of Africans.

I seriously hope you're trolling.

What do Jamaicans have to do with it again?

What does 200 years ago have to do with it? Certainly some "historian" such as yourself can appreciate events which occurred much longer than 200 years ago impact us today, otherwise why are you busying yourself with the writings of some marble farmers from over 2000 years ago?

Something more recent than 200 years and its immediate fallout not to mention its long term fall out:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Congo_Free_State#Humanitarian_disaster
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 12:23:52 PM by orthonorm » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: January 27, 2014, 12:27:00 PM »

If Africa was indeed so poor, why did the colorless people come to occupy it and milk it till this very day?   

I gotta find this model of relative wealth over the last 2000 years that was recently generated. Basically there is a 1:1 relationship with the decline of Africa's wealth to that of Europe's increase. North America's wealth surprisingly wasn't nearly as impacted by the exploitation of Africa given that North America primarily only robbed Africa of man power, and I say "only here" stomach in cheek.
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« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2014, 12:59:10 PM »

What do Jamaicans have to do with it again?

What does 200 years ago have to do with it? Certainly some "historian" such as yourself can appreciate events which occurred much longer than 200 years ago impact us today, otherwise why are you busying yourself with the writings of some marble farmers from over 2000 years ago?

I don't feel guilty about all those Romans my ancestors killed in the Batavian Revolt of 69 AD either.

Basically there is a 1:1 relationship with the decline of Africa's wealth to that of Europe's increase.

Even if that were true nobody alive today participated in the colonisation of Africa.

Wrong. Africa has much of the minerals and metals in the world. among other riches.

Has. Present tense.

Something more recent than 200 years and its immediate fallout not to mention its long term fall out:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Congo_Free_State#Humanitarian_disaster

How are people alive today responsible for what a crazy king did 100 years ago? Should Mongolians feel guilty about Genghis Khan and all his massacres? Ridiculous.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 01:06:42 PM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2014, 01:16:42 PM »

I'm not African, American, Black or Rasta by any sense but this idea of African spirituality which Ethiopian OOs have and to which Rastas can relate to seems silly, White and Western. Africa is a continent with numerous countries languages and cultures. How could there be any distinctly African spirituality and how could it be based on Ethiopia since it's but a single country and culture among many?

Often there is a transcendental awakening in the wake of oppression. Which even those who reaped the fruits of the said oppression attempt to co-opt it to make another buck by selling it to the oppressed.

The former oppressors also like to rush in a remind the everyone of their differences in such moments. For other examples see the recent Arab Spring.

If you expressed the same idea without all this talk about oppression I'd actually agree with you. You don't seem like a Socialist but the oppression talk makes you sound like one.

As for the latter part, I apply this same logic to my own culture too. I don't have any interest for upholding any White, Nationalist, European etc. discourse either.
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 01:27:55 PM by Alpo » Logged

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« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2014, 01:18:17 PM »

AN, do you by any chance have his autobiography as a PDF?

No, I have a hard copy.  I did a quick google search, but to no avail.

Cyrillic You're really out of your depth here and have absolutely no clue what you're talking about regarding color, so-called "race" and privilege in Jamaican society in the post-colonial era.  Further, your scornful and moronic use of "da" to approximate Jamaican speech is not appreciated.  Talk about trolling.  If you want to start a debate about post-colonial society in the West Indies or sub-Saharan Africa in politics, or the degree to which the Western powers make their presence felt in the post-colonial world, go ahead, but please keep your reactionary and puerile pontifications out of this thread.  They don't belong here.
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« Reply #11 on: January 27, 2014, 01:23:17 PM »

You're really out of your depth here and have absolutely no clue what you're talking about regarding color, so-called "race" and privilege in Jamaican society in the post-colonial era

Good thing I didn't talk about any of those things.

Further, your scornful and moronic use of "da" to approximate Jamaican speech is not appreciated.

Aren't Germans parodied with the "zeh" article, and the French with the "le"?

Talk about trolling.  If you want to start a debate about post-colonial society in the West Indies or sub-Saharan Africa in politics, or the degree to which the Western powers make their presence felt in the post-colonial world

You started the debate by throwing around terms like racism and imperialism and race-baiting western denominations.

but please keep your reactionary [...] pontifications out of this thread. 

Everybody keeps using that word, but nobody knows what it means. Wikipedia (I know, bad source, but still) describes it as: "A reactionary is a person who holds political viewpoints that favor a return to a previous state (the status quo ante) in a society"

How did I do that in this thread?
« Last Edit: January 27, 2014, 01:27:52 PM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2014, 01:33:36 PM »

Good thing I didn't talk about any of those things.

Except here:

Jamaicans are hardly oppressed by da white man today

and here:

Jamaica [isn't] poor or suffering because of da white man.

And again, you don't know what you're talking about.

Aren't Germans parodied with the "zeh" article, and the French with the "le"?

Who did that here?  How is that relevant?

You started the debate with your throwing around of terms like racism and imperialism and race-baiting western denominations.

Wrong again.  I merely replied to Alpo's inquiry as to what the attraction to Ethiopian Orthodoxy among Afro-West Indians was.  Your reply to one of orthonorm's posts kicked off the debate.

Everybody keeps using that word, but nobody knows what it means. Wikipedia (I know, bad source, but still) describes it as: "A reactionary is a person who holds political viewpoints that favor a return to a previous state (the status quo ante) in a society"

How did I do that in this thread?

The definition is a little broader than that.  Look it up somewhere other than wikipedia and see in what other contexts the word might be applied to your trolling here.
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« Reply #13 on: January 27, 2014, 01:38:24 PM »

I merely replied to Alpo's inquiry as to what the attraction to Ethiopian Orthodoxy among Afro-West Indians was.  

Your response made sense as to how people are, think and act. But the idea itself still doesn't make any sense. Of course it's nice that people who feel themselves oppressed by the Western/White people find non-Western/non-White expressions of Orthodoxy but it as to the coherence of an idea of pan-African spirituality it doesn't hold water.
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« Reply #14 on: January 27, 2014, 01:41:58 PM »

Good thing I didn't talk about any of those things.

Except here:

Because saying that Jamaica isn't oppressed by the west and 'whites' is commenting about color or race in Jamaican society. But if you think I did make a comment about it I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

Who did that here?  How is that relevant?

I for one think this whole stuff about accents and articles is irrelevent, but you brought it up.

Everybody keeps using that word, but nobody knows what it means. Wikipedia (I know, bad source, but still) describes it as: "A reactionary is a person who holds political viewpoints that favor a return to a previous state (the status quo ante) in a society"

How did I do that in this thread?

The definition is a little broader than that.  Look it up somewhere other than wikipedia and see in what other contexts the word might be applied to your trolling here.

I know. In common parlence reactionary = someone who espouses ideas you don't like. Pretty much like the word troll. How telling that you used both words in the same sentence.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2014, 05:29:26 AM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #15 on: January 27, 2014, 01:59:17 PM »

This was split off from a thread about the possible canonization of HIM Haile Selassie.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20326.0.html
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« Reply #16 on: January 28, 2014, 05:25:15 AM »

The earth bears scars, and so does humanity. Wounds can be healed but the cicatrices run deep. The progeny of the oppressed must struggle to forgive and rise above the evils of history. And the progeny of the oppressors must never turn a blind eye to the scars that were inflicted by the crimes of the past; they must sacrificially reach out to lift the remnants of such suffering to the same heights to which they themselves aspire.

Christ said, "It is finished!" Yet we nevertheless meditate upon His passion and venerate His Cross. We do not say, "That was in the past, get over it." Rather, we recognize that His historical suffering heals and saves us today. There is redemption to be found in the horrors of history, but only if we have the courage to gaze intently upon those horrors without rationalization or excuse. I crucified my Lord. And I crucify my fellow man. I cannot heal myself or my world until I acknowledge these truths.


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« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2014, 09:35:03 AM »

please note cyrillic is from holland.
he doesn't mean to be racist.
they seem to read a different history there, from what i can see when i visit my friends and relatives.
i have seen plenty of examples of racism, even from children born after immigration who should know better (not realising their racist jokes discriminate against themselves).

he is not at all racist from a dutch perspective.
their views on race are very similar to mainstream british views from 30 years ago.

dear cyrillic, please note racism and imperialism is alive and well in the world.
you are unaware of much of it because it is not discussed in your country like it should be.
i think in a few years you will understand more; i know you read a lot.
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« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2014, 10:24:38 AM »

Your response made sense as to how people are, think and act. But the idea itself still doesn't make any sense. Of course it's nice that people who feel themselves oppressed by the Western/White people find non-Western/non-White expressions of Orthodoxy but it as to the coherence of an idea of pan-African spirituality it doesn't hold water.

I’m not saying it does or that it should, merely that it is a useful jumping off point for the Church to reach a particular population.  Also, do bear in mind that a deliberate effort was made by the slave masters of the English colonies to separate those Africans they enslaved and their descendants from any links to particular African societies.  When the tragedy of slavery was over, and institutionalized racism and “color lines” prevented the descendants of African slaves from fully integrating into many Western societies, some people, unable to hone in on a particular African past, began a very generalized search for some sort of African identity.  To that extent, even if the idea of some sort of idealized pan-African spirituality doesn't make any more sense than the idealized pan-Celtic or pan-Germanic fantasies of some other American populations, it is understandable.

Because saying that Jamaica isn't oppressed by the west and 'whites' is commenting about color or race in Jamaican society. But if you think I did make a comment about it I wouldn't lose any sleep over it.

You’re being thick, kid.  Your statements about Jamaica “not being poor and suffering” because of or “not being oppressed” by “the white man” is incaccurate because it doesn’t take into account the ways in which the post-colonial West has contributed to precisely those conditions in Jamaica on a number of levels.  Internally, for example there’s Edward Seaga and what he and others in a power structure reserved until very recently for those with white faces have done in terms of exploiting those who are known locally by the particular term of “sufferers” i.e. the black masses.  Externally, there are those Seaga and his cohorts have served abroad.  As I said, you really don’t know enough about Jamaica to have the conversation.  If you did, you wouldn’t have made such an ignorant statement to begin with, and yes, your general use of the term "the white man" as a synonym for the West was vague and broad enough to include all of the definitions I've mentioned above and more.  As someone who knows the country intimately – in both a personal and an academic sense – I can readily see that you don’t know what you’re talking about when it comes to Jamaica at all.  You’re just spouting empty and very general crap.  Now is that to say that the West – or the “white man” as you would have it – are entirely to blame for Jamaica’s problems?  By no means.  Anyone who asserted so would be just as off-base as you.  But again, you’re obviously not qualified to assess the ways in which "the white man" (and I really don't like the term, but use it simply because you've injected it into the discourse) have or haven’t contributed.

I for one think this whole stuff about accents and articles is irrelevent, but you brought it up.

Again, you’re wrong.  Behaving like a petulant child, you needlessly endeavored to lampoon African-American and Afro-Caribbean speech patterns in an insulting way.  I told you I didn't appreciate this, as I felt it had no place in a mature and civil conversation, and, though I don't follow your posts, I thought someone had mentioned that you were some sort of academic, and that isn't the level of discourse I'm accustomed to from such.  Then you went off on an irrelevant tangent about how “some people” do the same thing to the Germans and the French, which matters not at all because no one had done so in this thread.  You could've simply made your point without the gratuitous sarcasm and we could've had a mature discourse, even if we disagreed.  You claim to be an academic or a scholar of some sort, don't you?  Wouldn't that have been preferable to the nyah-nyah-nyah schoolyard stuff?

I know. In common parlence reactionary = someone who espouses ideas you don't like. Pretty much like the word troll. How telling that you used both words in the same sentence.

Wrong again about what was intended here by the term reactionary, kid.  Lots of people say things I don’t like.  That doesn’t make what they say reactionary.  What you said in this thread, however, was exactly that.  It was reactionary in that it was an excessive kneejerk reaction to the use of some terms and concepts you didn't like.  Instead of considering them in the context of the discussion (which was merely an attempt at answering Alpo's inquiry) and addressing them on their own merits or lack thereof (as Alpo has done, for example) you resorted to the parlance of the schoolyard.

As to the use of the term trolling, one assumes that you wanted a reaction with your standard issue diatribe.  That’s the very definition of trolling.  Like wearing a Giants jersey to an Eagles game (American football reference).  Perhaps that is not an accurate assessment of what you were doing though, and your vitriol prevented you from articulating a more substantive argument than the stock one you employed.

All cards on the table however, I was certainly doing a bit of deliberate trolling myself, albeit with a goal.  I certainly wasn’t interested in debating you, as nothing you’ve said was really worth refuting, and I usually make a deliberate effort to avoid political discussions on these boards because I come here to discuss the Church and not politics.  In fact, my addressing you had less to do with any points on which we might agree or disagree than with having the absurd and simplistic "arguments" you've been advancing since reply #110 excised from the Haile Selassie canonization thread and chucked into the sewer of the politics section where they belong.  Mission accomplished.

No hard feelings here, kid.  I don't care whether or not we agree.  I just didn't want that thread polluted any further, and now it won't be.  Smiley
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« Reply #19 on: January 28, 2014, 10:27:49 AM »

Woah, strong emotions going back and forth on this topic.
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« Reply #20 on: January 28, 2014, 12:32:12 PM »

“The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”

When Asians lament Genghis Khan, when Africans repent Hannibal, when Moslems renounce Mehmet, then I will apologize for Cortes.  Until then, they did their best, ours did better. 

Now it's their turn, until we remember our organized violence.

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« Reply #21 on: January 28, 2014, 12:38:27 PM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.
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« Reply #22 on: January 28, 2014, 12:47:05 PM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.
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« Reply #23 on: January 28, 2014, 01:46:26 PM »

“The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”

When Asians lament Genghis Khan, when Africans repent Hannibal, when Moslems renounce Mehmet, then I will apologize for Cortes.  Until then, they did their best, ours did better.  

Now it's their turn, until we remember our organized violence.


You missed the point. This isn't about feeling guilty for or moralizing dead people.
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« Reply #24 on: January 28, 2014, 01:47:53 PM »

Again, you’re wrong.  Behaving like a petulant child, you needlessly endeavored to lampoon African-American and Afro-Caribbean speech patterns in an insulting way.  I told you I didn't appreciate this, as I felt it had no place in a mature and civil conversation, and, though I don't follow your posts, I thought someone had mentioned that you were some sort of academic, and that isn't the level of discourse I'm accustomed to from such.  Then you went off on an irrelevant tangent about how “some people” do the same thing to the Germans and the French, which matters not at all because no one had done so in this thread.  You could've simply made your point without the gratuitous sarcasm and we could've had a mature discourse, even if we disagreed.  You claim to be an academic or a scholar of some sort, don't you?  Wouldn't that have been preferable to the nyah-nyah-nyah schoolyard stuff?

I'd be very surprised if there's one post on OCnet that meets academic criteria.

What if not childish is typing whole paragraphs when someone used an article you don't like? Your opposition to my mimickry of accents has been noted.

Besides. I don't see why sarcasm shouldn't have a place in debate. And repeatedly calling someone you disagree with a kid is hardly a way to get a mature discourse and is an ad-hominem at that. But don't worry, I won't be so silly and report you because you said something I didn't like  *wink*

Internally, for example there’s Edward Seaga and what he and others in a power structure reserved until very recently for those with white faces have done in terms of exploiting those who are known locally by the particular term of “sufferers” i.e. the black masses.

I must admit that I hadn't heard of him before, but it seems he was a democratically elected politician who came to power in a bankrupt state. Apparently he founded many social programs, including a school feeding program. I'm pretty sure that he isn't perfect, but he hardly sounds like the devil you paint him to be. He was elected witth a landslide and after his first term in office he was popular enough to be re-elected. But obviously you disagree with some of his policies, and that's fine. Don't go and blame whole nations and continents for that.

However, you missed my point entirely. It's not about Jamaica, or even Africa. It's about how no child should be held accountable for the sins of his father. Holding them responsible for things they did not do, like the Caribbean states are doing, is dispicable, disgusting and immoral. You can't go around blaming people living today for slavery or oppression of the past. Nobody should be made to feel guilty for something he or she didn't do and that's what I have been saying all along. In your righteous fury you apparently missed the point. Don't worry, it happens even to academic geniuses like yourself.

It was reactionary in that it was an excessive kneejerk reaction to the use of some terms and concepts you didn't like.  Instead of considering them in the context of the discussion (which was merely an attempt at answering Alpo's inquiry) and addressing them on their own merits or lack thereof (as Alpo has done, for example) you resorted to the parlance of the schoolyard.

I might have exaggerated a bit in my dislike of those terms and theories, but that hardly makes one a reactionary. At least not by any definition I was able to find in the dictionaries.

No hard feelings.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2014, 01:53:51 PM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #25 on: January 28, 2014, 02:12:15 PM »

“The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”

When Asians lament Genghis Khan, when Africans repent Hannibal, when Moslems renounce Mehmet, then I will apologize for Cortes.  Until then, they did their best, ours did better.  

Now it's their turn, until we remember our organized violence.


You missed the point. This isn't about feeling guilty for or moralizing dead people.

So...what is it about if not one of those two lofty goals?
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« Reply #26 on: January 28, 2014, 04:16:32 PM »

I'd be very surprised if there's one post on OCnet that meets academic criteria.

I'm not looking for a post that would make it into a peer-reviewed, refereed journal.  I just thought that you'd be above the ludicrous or the needlessly impolite.  To be honest, I've seen dozens of boneheads on here typing in their crude approximations of what they take to be "Negro dialect" and never felt the need to call them on it because they've never represented themselves to be anything other than crude boneheads.  From what I understood, you represented yourself to be something of a "scholar", so I held you to a bit of a higher standard.  My mistake.

What if not childish is typing whole paragraphs when someone used an article you don't like?

I don't think that endeavoring to make oneself understood when someone else has misinterpreted what they've written is childish.

Your opposition to my mimickry of accents has been noted

Hmmm...it's as simple as mimicry of accents to you with no pejorative implications whatsoever?  I doubt that, but then again, perhaps Mabsoota's post re: you is applicable here after all.

Besides. I don't see why sarcasm shouldn't have a place in debate.

Well, I've fought the urge to make Goldmember references throughout our discourse.  Wink

And repeatedly calling someone you disagree with a kid is hardly a way to get a mature discourse and is an ad-hominem at that. But don't worry, I won't be so silly and report you because you said something I didn't like  *wink*

Let's not put the cart before the horse, Sonny Jim.  The juvenile behavior preceded both the paternal references and the recourse to authority in terms of purging the Haile Selassie thread.

I must admit that I hadn't heard of him before, but it seems he was a democratically elected politician who came to power in a bankrupt state. Apparently he founded many social programs, including a school feeding program. I'm pretty sure that he isn't perfect, but he hardly sounds like the devil you paint him to be. He was elected witth a landslide and after his first term in office he was popular enough to be re-elected. But obviously you disagree with some of his policies, and that's fine. Don't go and blame whole nations and continents for that.

And how precisely did he secure those elections and come to power?  Most "First World" people could never imagine a world in which one of the major political parties recuited the street gangs - and then armed them with imported weapons - to ensure that individuals living in certain districts voted in certain ways, ways contrary to their own interests, but unfortunately, that was the reality in Jamaica for many years.  When the opposition party followed suit, "politics time" in Jamaica became synonymous with violence and death. People hated it when the election cycle rolled around, because that meant more relatives hacked to death with machetes or killed with imported M-1s (wonder where they got those?) until everyone agreed to play ball and secure a "landslide" for dear old Eddie.

No, no one is blaming whole nations or continents for Mr. Seaga, but there are those abroard who had a vested interest in his coming to power (and remaining there) because they felt that recently independent Jamaica was moving too closely into Cuba's orbit, and it would be better to spill gallons of Jamaican blood than to let that happen.

But Seaga is peripheral to the conversation.  I only brought him up because your remarks that

Jamaicans are hardly oppressed by da white man today

and:

Jamaica [isn't] poor or suffering because of da white man.

Were simplistic and demonstrably false.

However, you missed my point entirely. It's not about Jamaica, or even Africa. It's about how no child should be held accountable for the sins of his father. Holding them responsible for things they did not do, like the Caribbean states are doing, is dispicable, disgusting and immoral. You can't go around blaming people living today for slavery or oppression of the past. Nobody should be made to feel guilty for something he or she didn't do and that's what I have been saying all along. In your righteous fury you apparently missed the point....

I didn't miss your point.  I asserted that it was peripheral (at best) to the thread in which you launched into this tirade in the first place.  Alpo asked why a certain group of people were attracted to Ethiopian and Coptic Orthodoxy.  Others offered an explanation.  You then began your tiresome little spiel above, parroting the usual arguments advanced again the strawman statements you've introduced above.  I never said anything about reparations, ancestral sin, "white guilt", holding the collective feet of the West to the fire or anything else.  I merely said that your introduction of these concepts and then attempts at refuting them had no place in a thread about whether or not Haile Selassie should be canonized.

Don't worry, it happens even to academic geniuses like yourself

Yes, even academic geniuses sometimes have to watch people argue with themselves.  In fact, you're not even the first one of the day.  On the way into work, I saw a guy on a streetcorner doing the same thing.

I might have exaggerated a bit in my dislike of those terms and theories, but that hardly makes one a reactionary. At least not by any definition I was able to find in the dictionaries.

Here's what mine says:

reactionary (rɪˈækʃənərɪ ; -ʃənrɪ) adjective 1. of, relating to, or characterized by reaction, especially against radical political or social change


You know, like arguments one has with oneself about reparations for slavery, or extreme reactions to the mere mention of terms like "racism" or "imperialism", even when utilized in context to answer someone's inquiry about a third party's motives and not advanced as part of a political argument.

No hard feelings.

Of course not, my dear lad.  Wink
« Last Edit: January 28, 2014, 04:21:20 PM by Antonious Nikolas » Logged

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« Reply #27 on: January 28, 2014, 11:56:14 PM »

You are a white man born into the heart of privilege built on the blood of Africans.

I seriously hope you're trolling.

Aren't your parents filthy rich corporation owners?
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« Reply #28 on: January 29, 2014, 03:29:44 AM »

“The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”

When Asians lament Genghis Khan, when Africans repent Hannibal, when Moslems renounce Mehmet, then I will apologize for Cortes.  Until then, they did their best, ours did better.  

Now it's their turn, until we remember our organized violence.


You missed the point. This isn't about feeling guilty for or moralizing dead people.

So...what is it about if not one of those two lofty goals?

The point is to see that:

1. Those living in third world countries, and many people even in our own, are circumscribed by circumstances vastly worse than ours, which are largely out of each individual's control (and historical background as to why this is so is helpful).
2. That, following the teachings our our Church, as well as common decency, those of us who, by divine providence working through evil regimes and systems, have come to be in positions of relatively more wealth and freedom, owe as due honor to mankind and God, to seek to alleviate such circumstances where possible; not merely through individual acts, not merely through local (political) acts, but even through cosmopolitical acts.

« Last Edit: January 29, 2014, 03:30:08 AM by NicholasMyra » Logged

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« Reply #29 on: January 29, 2014, 08:39:48 AM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.

Show me how most Africans or Asians are benefiting from the exploits of Hannibal or Genghis Khan, in the way most West European countries today continue to benefit from the effects of colonialism and slavery.
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« Reply #30 on: January 29, 2014, 08:54:16 AM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.

Show me how most Africans or Asians are benefiting from the exploits of Hannibal or Genghis Khan, in the way most West European countries today continue to benefit from the effects of colonialism and slavery.

Your moral logic is seriously confused. If you commit a crime, you are responsible whether or not you materially benefit from it. And if we're going to go with the idea of collective guilt and make all whites responsible for the sins of fellow whites, then all Asians are responsible for the sins of fellow Asians and all Africans are responsible for the sins of fellow Africans. At this point collective guilt starts to seem pretty silly, doesn't it?
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« Reply #31 on: January 29, 2014, 08:56:53 AM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.

Show me how most Africans or Asians are benefiting from the exploits of Hannibal or Genghis Khan, in the way most West European countries today continue to benefit from the effects of colonialism and slavery.

Your moral logic is seriously confused. If you commit a crime, you are responsible whether or not you materially benefit from it. And if we're going to go with the idea of collective guilt and make all whites responsible for the sins of fellow whites, then all Asians are responsible for the sins of fellow Asians and all Africans are responsible for the sins of fellow Africans. At this point collective guilt starts to seem pretty silly, doesn't it?

You missed the point. Thankfully NicholasMyra said it quite well.
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« Reply #32 on: January 29, 2014, 09:15:05 AM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.

Show me how most Africans or Asians are benefiting from the exploits of Hannibal or Genghis Khan, in the way most West European countries today continue to benefit from the effects of colonialism and slavery.

Your moral logic is seriously confused. If you commit a crime, you are responsible whether or not you materially benefit from it. And if we're going to go with the idea of collective guilt and make all whites responsible for the sins of fellow whites, then all Asians are responsible for the sins of fellow Asians and all Africans are responsible for the sins of fellow Africans. At this point collective guilt starts to seem pretty silly, doesn't it?

You missed the point. Thankfully NicholasMyra said it quite well.


I don't think I missed the point, actually. The way you and NM express yourselves makes it clear you're trying to guilt others into acting a certain way, using the left-wing rhetoric of Third Worldism and victim politics. There are other ways to express the same exhortation to charity without succumbing to leftist groupthink.
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« Reply #33 on: January 29, 2014, 11:36:19 AM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.

Show me how most Africans or Asians are benefiting from the exploits of Hannibal or Genghis Khan, in the way most West European countries today continue to benefit from the effects of colonialism and slavery.

Hannibal:  Well, all those North Africans got their fields plowed with yummy, nutritious salt for free.
Khan:  They got that nice silk road.  We kinda undone that with our ships and such, though...  And before that we started making our own silk, but you get the picture!

If Hannibal had won, I'll bet his direct descendants would have benefited greatly from Carthage's unrestricted trade in the Mediterranean.  (Not all Africans, of course, but I don't really think my ancestors - Germans and Irish - benefited all that much from Rome's victory, except for the German half which got some neat shiny stuff to invade later on down the road.)  The Khan's people benefited from his conquests until the Russians pushed them further and further back into Siberia.

Keep in mind that the Romans beat Hannibal around 2200 years ago and the Russian conquest of Siberia was 4 or 5 hundred years ago.  As European power declines (the process started 70 years ago - significantly more recently) we will see more of the benefits that other cultures get from our demise.  Unless of course there is a net loss, but it's not politically correct to talk about that sort of thing. 

In response to NM's point, I'd just as soon let them conquer us based on their own strengths, rather than us tying one hand behind our backs and smashing our foreheads into the wall before the fight even starts.
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« Reply #34 on: January 29, 2014, 12:09:57 PM »

“The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact; non-Westerners never do.”

When Asians lament Genghis Khan, when Africans repent Hannibal, when Moslems renounce Mehmet, then I will apologize for Cortes.  Until then, they did their best, ours did better.  

Now it's their turn, until we remember our organized violence.


You missed the point. This isn't about feeling guilty for or moralizing dead people.

So...what is it about if not one of those two lofty goals?

The point is to see that:

1. Those living in third world countries, and many people even in our own, are circumscribed by circumstances vastly worse than ours, which are largely out of each individual's control (and historical background as to why this is so is helpful).
2. That, following the teachings our our Church, as well as common decency, those of us who, by divine providence working through evil regimes and systems, have come to be in positions of relatively more wealth and freedom, owe as due honor to mankind and God, to seek to alleviate such circumstances where possible; not merely through individual acts, not merely through local (political) acts, but even through cosmopolitical acts.



I agree with this.
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« Reply #35 on: January 29, 2014, 12:16:52 PM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.

Show me how most Africans or Asians are benefiting from the exploits of Hannibal or Genghis Khan, in the way most West European countries today continue to benefit from the effects of colonialism and slavery.

Your moral logic is seriously confused. If you commit a crime, you are responsible whether or not you materially benefit from it. And if we're going to go with the idea of collective guilt and make all whites responsible for the sins of fellow whites, then all Asians are responsible for the sins of fellow Asians and all Africans are responsible for the sins of fellow Africans. At this point collective guilt starts to seem pretty silly, doesn't it?

You missed the point. Thankfully NicholasMyra said it quite well.


I don't think I missed the point, actually. The way you and NM express yourselves makes it clear you're trying to guilt others into acting a certain way, using the left-wing rhetoric of Third Worldism and victim politics. There are other ways to express the same exhortation to charity without succumbing to leftist groupthink.


I agree with this.
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« Reply #36 on: January 29, 2014, 12:30:21 PM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.

Show me how most Africans or Asians are benefiting from the exploits of Hannibal or Genghis Khan, in the way most West European countries today continue to benefit from the effects of colonialism and slavery.

Your moral logic is seriously confused. If you commit a crime, you are responsible whether or not you materially benefit from it. And if we're going to go with the idea of collective guilt and make all whites responsible for the sins of fellow whites, then all Asians are responsible for the sins of fellow Asians and all Africans are responsible for the sins of fellow Africans. At this point collective guilt starts to seem pretty silly, doesn't it?

You missed the point. Thankfully NicholasMyra said it quite well.


I don't think I missed the point, actually. The way you and NM express yourselves makes it clear you're trying to guilt others into acting a certain way, using the left-wing rhetoric of Third Worldism and victim politics. There are other ways to express the same exhortation to charity without succumbing to leftist groupthink.
how the bourgeois love charity. like soup kitchens . but they hate redistribution or justice.
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« Reply #37 on: January 29, 2014, 12:32:34 PM »

In Orthodoxy, we certainly believe that our material fortune is in the hands of God, and that God can take away as easily as He can give. So it's certainly true that we should not be complacent or self-satisfied in our material wealth, even if we have earned it by honest labor and prudent living. We also believe that we have an obligation to give alms, i.e. to give to others in need, whether spiritual or material need, according to our ability. This holds regardless of how responsible the needy may be for their own situation.

The danger with victimhood rhetoric is that it lets whole groups of people off the hook. We do not believe that the poor are absolved of moral responsibility, or that they have a right to demand what they haven't earned. There's a difference between an obligation to give, which is Christian, and a right to take, which is socialist and anti-Christian. When you allow some people to claim the mantle of sacred victimhood and unaccountability, they start to think they can just vote themselves other people's money and all the rest.

So I object to talk of "evil systems" and how we are all profiting off of evil, as if there are groups of people out there who are completely innocent. It's barking up the wrong tree. The world lies in sin, but this goes for everybody, everywhere. If you replace capitalism with communism, the system will be just as evil, so long as the people participating in it have not repented.
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« Reply #38 on: January 29, 2014, 12:34:28 PM »

When Asians lament Genghis Khan

Eh? I would say the majority of us are not exactly fans.

We're lumping all Europeans and all Africans into one, in the spirit of Ekwalitie I am unilaterally making all Asians into one monolithic group.

Show me how most Africans or Asians are benefiting from the exploits of Hannibal or Genghis Khan, in the way most West European countries today continue to benefit from the effects of colonialism and slavery.

Your moral logic is seriously confused. If you commit a crime, you are responsible whether or not you materially benefit from it. And if we're going to go with the idea of collective guilt and make all whites responsible for the sins of fellow whites, then all Asians are responsible for the sins of fellow Asians and all Africans are responsible for the sins of fellow Africans. At this point collective guilt starts to seem pretty silly, doesn't it?

You missed the point. Thankfully NicholasMyra said it quite well.


I don't think I missed the point, actually. The way you and NM express yourselves makes it clear you're trying to guilt others into acting a certain way, using the left-wing rhetoric of Third Worldism and victim politics. There are other ways to express the same exhortation to charity without succumbing to leftist groupthink.
how the bourgeois love charity. like soup kitchens . but they hate redistribution or justice.

Well in an ideal universe we'd have an Orthodox monarch enforcing distributist economic policies, but until that day, we have to content ourselves with doing our charity personally and not making other people do it for us. That is, if we have a functioning conscience.
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« Reply #39 on: January 29, 2014, 12:57:53 PM »

but they hate redistribution or justice.

Interesting principles. Too bad they're polar opposites.

And how is it justice to punish people for something they didn't do?
« Last Edit: January 29, 2014, 12:58:03 PM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #40 on: January 29, 2014, 01:01:02 PM »

Quote
Well in an ideal universe we'd have an Orthodox monarch enforcing distributist economic policies
it's not what i mean, but setting  standards so not of this world is just an excuse to accept the present order.
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« Reply #41 on: January 29, 2014, 01:46:38 PM »

how the bourgeois love charity. like soup kitchens . but they hate redistribution or justice.

i agree with this!
(slightly shocked about that)
 Wink

if you look at how rich west european countries are benefitting from poor east european migrant labour, i think this is a clear example of what you describe.
(have decided not to totally derail the thread by talking about the huge topic of theology in migration)
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« Reply #42 on: January 29, 2014, 01:53:29 PM »

Quote
Well in an ideal universe we'd have an Orthodox monarch enforcing distributist economic policies
it's not what i mean, but setting  standards so not of this world is just an excuse to accept the present order.

The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then. The world itself will be fixed without any effort on our part.

This is not trying to say we should forget about charity and almsgiving, but to remind us what charity and almsgiving are for. They are for our own spiritual good.
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« Reply #43 on: January 29, 2014, 02:06:29 PM »

Quote
Well in an ideal universe we'd have an Orthodox monarch enforcing distributist economic policies
it's not what i mean, but setting  standards so not of this world is just an excuse to accept the present order.

The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then. The world itself will be fixed without any effort on our part.

This is not trying to say we should forget about charity and almsgiving, but to remind us what charity and almsgiving are for. They are for our own spiritual good.

Jonathan I appreciate your self awareness and honesty.

God have mercy on you.
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« Reply #44 on: January 29, 2014, 02:11:56 PM »

Quote
The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then. The world itself will be fixed without any effort on our part.
Sounds like Calvinism on a universal scale.  

Quote
This is not trying to say we should forget about charity and almsgiving, but to remind us what charity and almsgiving are for. They are for our own spiritual good.

We do these things not to gain merit or to improve ourselves, but rather to love as we have been loved.  The Kingdom of God is among us.  If we fail to love Christ in those around us, neither will we love Him when He comes in glory.  
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« Reply #45 on: January 29, 2014, 02:19:46 PM »

Quote
The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then. The world itself will be fixed without any effort on our part.
Sounds like Calvinism on a universal scale.  

Quote
This is not trying to say we should forget about charity and almsgiving, but to remind us what charity and almsgiving are for. They are for our own spiritual good.

We do these things not to gain merit or to improve ourselves, but rather to love as we have been loved.  The Kingdom of God is among us.  If we fail to love Christ in those around us, neither will we love Him when He comes in glory.  

I think we actually mean the same thing.

Quote
not so much because of anxiety for the poor but because I care for your souls. For they [the poor] will have some comfort, if not from you, yet from some other quarter; or even if they be not comforted, but perish by hunger, the harm to them will be no great matter. In what way did poverty and wasting by hunger injure Lazarus? But none can rescue you from hell, if you obtain not the help of the poor.

St John Chrysostom, Homilies on John, 37.3
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« Reply #46 on: January 29, 2014, 02:20:25 PM »

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Well in an ideal universe we'd have an Orthodox monarch enforcing distributist economic policies
it's not what i mean, but setting  standards so not of this world is just an excuse to accept the present order.

The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then. The world itself will be fixed without any effort on our part.

This is not trying to say we should forget about charity and almsgiving, but to remind us what charity and almsgiving are for. They are for our own spiritual good.

Jonathan I appreciate your self awareness and honesty.

God have mercy on you.

Um, thanks?
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« Reply #47 on: January 29, 2014, 02:23:28 PM »

Quote
The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then. The world itself will be fixed without any effort on our part.
Sounds like Calvinism on a universal scale.  

Quote
This is not trying to say we should forget about charity and almsgiving, but to remind us what charity and almsgiving are for. They are for our own spiritual good.

We do these things not to gain merit or to improve ourselves, but rather to love as we have been loved.  The Kingdom of God is among us.  If we fail to love Christ in those around us, neither will we love Him when He comes in glory.  

I think we actually mean the same thing.

Quote
not so much because of anxiety for the poor but because I care for your souls. For they [the poor] will have some comfort, if not from you, yet from some other quarter; or even if they be not comforted, but perish by hunger, the harm to them will be no great matter. In what way did poverty and wasting by hunger injure Lazarus? But none can rescue you from hell, if you obtain not the help of the poor.

St John Chrysostom, Homilies on John, 37.3

Upon further reflection I think you're right.  If only hierarchical disputes could be resolved so easily!

Id have to read the whole sermon.  But I don't think that the giving of alms without love is any good at all.  It is the motivation, rather than the thing, that counts.  See Paul, 1 Cor. 13.  
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« Reply #48 on: January 29, 2014, 02:32:41 PM »

Quote
The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then. The world itself will be fixed without any effort on our part.
Sounds like Calvinism on a universal scale.  

Quote
This is not trying to say we should forget about charity and almsgiving, but to remind us what charity and almsgiving are for. They are for our own spiritual good.

We do these things not to gain merit or to improve ourselves, but rather to love as we have been loved.  The Kingdom of God is among us.  If we fail to love Christ in those around us, neither will we love Him when He comes in glory.  

I think we actually mean the same thing.

Quote
not so much because of anxiety for the poor but because I care for your souls. For they [the poor] will have some comfort, if not from you, yet from some other quarter; or even if they be not comforted, but perish by hunger, the harm to them will be no great matter. In what way did poverty and wasting by hunger injure Lazarus? But none can rescue you from hell, if you obtain not the help of the poor.

St John Chrysostom, Homilies on John, 37.3

Upon further reflection I think you're right.  If only hierarchical disputes could be resolved so easily!

Id have to read the whole sermon.  But I don't think that the giving of alms without love is any good at all.  It is the motivation, rather than the thing, that counts.  See Paul, 1 Cor. 13.  

Actually check out this whole essay:

http://www.incommunion.org/2007/05/09/st-john-chrysostom-and-the-problem-of-wealth/

Sometimes I think St John does sound almost revolutionary, e.g. here:

Quote
Let us therefore, both poor and rich, cease from taking the property of others. For my present discourse is not only to the rich, but to the poor also. For they too rob those who are poorer than themselves. And artisans who are better off, and more powerful, outsell the poorer and more distressed, tradesmen outsell tradesmen, and so all who are engaged in the market-place. So that I wish from every side to take away injustice.

But he seems to be not only saying that the marketplace promotes an evil love of money, but also that this evil permeates all who participate. I.e. it is not the typical Marxist vision of an oppressive capitalist class and an innocent working class, but everyone is corrupted.

I suppose the real thing I'm concerned about is making excuses for ourselves. Rich people like to talk about how they earned their wealth through hard work and use it as an excuse to avoid giving freely, while poor people out of envy for the wealth of others talk loftily of social justice and redistribution. In either case, we see people making excuses for their passions.
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« Reply #49 on: January 29, 2014, 02:32:54 PM »


The point is to see that:

1. Those living in third world countries, and many people even in our own, are circumscribed by circumstances vastly worse than ours, which are largely out of each individual's control (and historical background as to why this is so is helpful).
2. That, following the teachings our our Church, as well as common decency, those of us who, by divine providence working through evil regimes and systems, have come to be in positions of relatively more wealth and freedom, owe as due honor to mankind and God, to seek to alleviate such circumstances where possible; not merely through individual acts, not merely through local (political) acts, but even through cosmopolitical acts.


Is the bolded portion of your statement an explicit teaching or, more specifically, an explicit focus of the Church's teaching?

My question doesn't judge whether it is or isn't a focus, but it does imply that the answer, at least to me, is not as readily apparent as your statement claims.  Could you provide examples or explanations of this portion of the teaching on this?
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« Reply #50 on: January 29, 2014, 02:58:55 PM »


Actually check out this whole essay:

http://www.incommunion.org/2007/05/09/st-john-chrysostom-and-the-problem-of-wealth/

Sometimes I think St John does sound almost revolutionary, e.g. here:

Quote
Let us therefore, both poor and rich, cease from taking the property of others. For my present discourse is not only to the rich, but to the poor also. For they too rob those who are poorer than themselves. And artisans who are better off, and more powerful, outsell the poorer and more distressed, tradesmen outsell tradesmen, and so all who are engaged in the market-place. So that I wish from every side to take away injustice.

But he seems to be not only saying that the marketplace promotes an evil love of money, but also that this evil permeates all who participate. I.e. it is not the typical Marxist vision of an oppressive capitalist class and an innocent working class, but everyone is corrupted.

I suppose the real thing I'm concerned about is making excuses for ourselves. Rich people like to talk about how they earned their wealth through hard work and use it as an excuse to avoid giving freely, while poor people out of envy for the wealth of others talk loftily of social justice and redistribution. In either case, we see people making excuses for their passions.

Thank you for bringing this to our attention!

It is so easy to misread the Holy Scripture to justify our own world views. That is why we need the Church to guide us.

St. John and St. Paul are indeed revolutionary. Their teachings continue to stir the consciences of men and women if they are open to the Holy Spirit.
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« Reply #51 on: January 29, 2014, 03:10:05 PM »


Actually check out this whole essay:

http://www.incommunion.org/2007/05/09/st-john-chrysostom-and-the-problem-of-wealth/

Sometimes I think St John does sound almost revolutionary, e.g. here:

Quote
Let us therefore, both poor and rich, cease from taking the property of others. For my present discourse is not only to the rich, but to the poor also. For they too rob those who are poorer than themselves. And artisans who are better off, and more powerful, outsell the poorer and more distressed, tradesmen outsell tradesmen, and so all who are engaged in the market-place. So that I wish from every side to take away injustice.

But he seems to be not only saying that the marketplace promotes an evil love of money, but also that this evil permeates all who participate. I.e. it is not the typical Marxist vision of an oppressive capitalist class and an innocent working class, but everyone is corrupted.

I suppose the real thing I'm concerned about is making excuses for ourselves. Rich people like to talk about how they earned their wealth through hard work and use it as an excuse to avoid giving freely, while poor people out of envy for the wealth of others talk loftily of social justice and redistribution. In either case, we see people making excuses for their passions.

Thank you for bringing this to our attention!

It is so easy to misread the Holy Scripture to justify our own world views. That is why we need the Church to guide us.

St. John and St. Paul are indeed revolutionary. Their teachings continue to stir the consciences of men and women if they are open to the Holy Spirit.

Is this where I am not allowed to bring up that some people appealing to the Church are in fact outside it to show the formal argument they are using is fallacious?

We used to be able to do such things, I have no idea now.
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« Reply #52 on: January 29, 2014, 03:28:20 PM »

how the bourgeois love charity. like soup kitchens . but they hate redistribution or justice.

i agree with this!
(slightly shocked about that)
 Wink

if you look at how rich west european countries are benefitting from poor east european migrant labour, i think this is a clear example of what you describe.
(have decided not to totally derail the thread by talking about the huge topic of theology in migration)

Would be better if we worried more about adequately paying our own workers and then keeping cheap labour out.  I have no problem with hanging those who hire foreign labour when local could have done the job.  Or, at the very least, dispossessing them.
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« Reply #53 on: January 29, 2014, 08:37:49 PM »

The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then.
Whatever truth is done on the earth today, whatever justice is done on the earth today, and whatever mercy is done on the earth today, will shine perpetually from the New Jerusalem. Nothing worthy is lost.

St. Paul said, whatever you eat, whatever you drink, whatever you do, do it to the Glory of God. There are no exceptions. There is no realm of Caesar, or the physical world, or business, or secularism, or the privacy of one's own home, or far off country, or any such manichean ordering of our reality such that pockets of impenetrable forsakenness are permitted to exist, and must be avoided as if they were somehow sacred.
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« Reply #54 on: January 29, 2014, 10:03:14 PM »

Well in an ideal universe we'd have an Orthodox monarch

Lord, forbid!
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« Reply #55 on: January 30, 2014, 08:36:16 AM »

The desire to remake the present order is prideful and misguided. The world is fallen, so we must reject it, not try to vainly fix it. In the end, Christ will come and renew the world and what we have to worry about is how we will be judged then.
Whatever truth is done on the earth today, whatever justice is done on the earth today, and whatever mercy is done on the earth today, will shine perpetually from the New Jerusalem. Nothing worthy is lost.

St. Paul said, whatever you eat, whatever you drink, whatever you do, do it to the Glory of God. There are no exceptions. There is no realm of Caesar, or the physical world, or business, or secularism, or the privacy of one's own home, or far off country, or any such manichean ordering of our reality such that pockets of impenetrable forsakenness are permitted to exist, and must be avoided as if they were somehow sacred.

I think we're talking past each other. What I'm talking about is this kind of "tikkun olam" notion of us being needed to save the world ourselves. What this does in practical spiritual terms is deflect the goal of our good deeds from humbly following Christ's commandments to a very prideful and self-exalted vision of ourselves as the world's saviors, without Christ.
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« Reply #56 on: January 30, 2014, 01:10:32 PM »


I think we're talking past each other. What I'm talking about is this kind of "tikkun olam" notion of us being needed to save the world ourselves. What this does in practical spiritual terms is deflect the goal of our good deeds from humbly following Christ's commandments to a very prideful and self-exalted vision of ourselves as the world's saviors, without Christ.
I don't know why you'd bring up something that nobody has thus far mentioned.
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« Reply #57 on: January 30, 2014, 02:05:40 PM »


I think we're talking past each other. What I'm talking about is this kind of "tikkun olam" notion of us being needed to save the world ourselves. What this does in practical spiritual terms is deflect the goal of our good deeds from humbly following Christ's commandments to a very prideful and self-exalted vision of ourselves as the world's saviors, without Christ.
I don't know why you'd bring up something that nobody has thus far mentioned.

augustin said something about the need to challenge the present order or something along those lines. I was cautioning against a revolutionary interpretation, which I think is related to the popular notion in progressive and Kabbalistic strands of modern Judaism of "redeeming the world".
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« Reply #58 on: January 30, 2014, 07:16:19 PM »

I think we're talking past each other. What I'm talking about is this kind of "tikkun olam" notion of us being needed to save the world ourselves.

Well who else is going to do it? God gave us the ability to fix it so why not actually do something? Sounds like Calvinism not to.

Quote
What this does in practical spiritual terms is deflect the goal of our good deeds from humbly following Christ's commandments


No it doesn't. Ever think that perhaps Christ's commandments consists in doing good and helping the world around us? Ever read the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus? You're setting up a false dichotomy of "works" or "following Christ's commandments" which IMHO echoes Protestant thought.

Quote
...to a very prideful and self-exalted vision of ourselves as the world's saviors, without Christ.

No one ever said anything about isolating Christ out of it. I'd glorify Christ through helping the world.

Your nonchalant, quasi-Stoic attitude toward suffering is something that disturbs me greatly. I don't see what better way to serve Christ than by helping to save the world around us. This should be our ultimate goal--not merely the pick-n-choose religious-right goal of giving to charity when we feel like it because it gives us a giddy feeling inside--but our true goal, to save the world around us through Christ.
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« Reply #59 on: January 30, 2014, 07:27:33 PM »

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« Reply #60 on: January 30, 2014, 07:41:02 PM »

This should be our ultimate goal--not merely the pick-n-choose religious-right goal of giving to charity when we feel like it because it gives us a giddy feeling inside--but our true goal, to save the world around us through Christ.

I posed a similar question to Nick, but is this an explicit teaching of the Church, or is this an interpretation?  Where does this come from?
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« Reply #61 on: January 30, 2014, 07:42:20 PM »

This should be our ultimate goal--not merely the pick-n-choose religious-right goal of giving to charity when we feel like it because it gives us a giddy feeling inside--but our true goal, to save the world around us through Christ.

I posed a similar question to Nick, but is this an explicit teaching of the Church, or is this an interpretation?  Where does this come from?

The commandment to love one another as Christ loved us. How can you love the world if you let it remain a dump?
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« Reply #62 on: January 30, 2014, 08:03:49 PM »

Quote
the teachings our our Church...to seek to alleviate such circumstances...even through cosmopolitical acts.

Is the bolded portion of your statement an explicit teaching or, more specifically, an explicit focus of the Church's teaching?

My question doesn't judge whether it is or isn't a focus, but it does imply that the answer, at least to me, is not as readily apparent as your statement claims.  Could you provide examples or explanations of this portion of the teaching on this?

Cognomen,

Sorry I didn't see your post earlier. By "our Church's teaching", what I mean is the following:

1. It is the teachings of the Scriptures
2. As interpreted and expounded upon by certain Fathers (e.g. Sts. John Chrysostom, Basil the Great, among others) who exhorted the people to act accordingly.
3. Has impacted societies in which the Church was a significant influence to varying degrees; on an individual level, on the level of of a larger political entity, and between political entities.
4. Should impact societies in which the Church is a significant influence to varying degrees; on an individual level, on the level of of a larger political entity, and between political entities.

This is, of course, the contested belief of my faction; which, by my understanding, is true.
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« Reply #63 on: January 30, 2014, 09:15:06 PM »

The commandment to love one another as Christ loved us. How can you love the world if you let it remain a dump?

I'm familiar with the commandment.  The Church seems to have specific focuses on how we are to do this though, and I have not encountered "saving the world" as part of this.  I think I understand what you mean, but responding to what you've written, we aren't supposed to love the world.
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« Reply #64 on: January 30, 2014, 09:29:57 PM »

I think I understand what you mean, but responding to what you've written, we aren't supposed to love the world.
On my understanding, that world is the cosmos, the order of things, belonging to this age.

So an exhortation to deny the world and bear witness to the Kingdom of God, can be interpreted to mean that we should practice the cosmos of the Kingdom of God over-and-against the order of things as we have received them in this age.

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« Reply #65 on: January 30, 2014, 09:35:13 PM »

Quote
the teachings our our Church...to seek to alleviate such circumstances...even through cosmopolitical acts.

Is the bolded portion of your statement an explicit teaching or, more specifically, an explicit focus of the Church's teaching?

My question doesn't judge whether it is or isn't a focus, but it does imply that the answer, at least to me, is not as readily apparent as your statement claims.  Could you provide examples or explanations of this portion of the teaching on this?

Cognomen,

Sorry I didn't see your post earlier. By "our Church's teaching", what I mean is the following:

Thanks for the response; I figured you just missed it.

Quote
1. It is the teachings of the Scriptures

Would you mind directing me to references exhorting us to act cosmopolitically?

Quote
2. As interpreted and expounded upon by certain Fathers (e.g. Sts. John Chrysostom, Basil the Great, among others) who exhorted the people to act accordingly.

I'm familiar with some of their writings on the subject, particularly St. John Chrysostom's, but I don't recall the more political side of things.  I'll have to revisit.

Quote
3. Has impacted societies in which the Church was a significant influence to varying degrees; on an individual level, on the level of of a larger political entity, and between political entities.
4. Should impact societies in which the Church is a significant influence to varying degrees; on an individual level, on the level of of a larger political entity, and between political entities.

If we can attribute these two points to the first two, then I have little reservation about them.  I'm not sure I'm able to make the connection yet.  And while I agree with you from the "common decency" and sense of utilitarian benefit perspective, I still have a difficult time concluding this is an explicit teaching of the Church.

Perhaps I'm reading too much into what you meant by cosmopolitical.  But if I accurately judged what you meant by it, I don't see that call as being readily apparent in Scriptures, hymnology, prayers, etc.  Instead, it seems to be something of a take on the Social Gospel (minus the clearly odd teaching about preparing for the Second Coming bit).  Not that I disagree that there was a social message to Christ and the Church's teaching, but I'm uncomfortable with labeling inferences and interpretations as Church teaching.  I'm not accusing you of doing this, just trying to get more information about this perspective.

Quote
This is, of course, the contested belief of my faction; which, by my understanding, is true.

How do you mean "faction" in this case?
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« Reply #66 on: January 30, 2014, 09:41:52 PM »

I think I understand what you mean, but responding to what you've written, we aren't supposed to love the world.
On my understanding, that world is the cosmos, the order of things, belonging to this age.

So an exhortation to deny the world and bear witness to the Kingdom of God, can be interpreted to mean that we should practice the cosmos of the Kingdom of God over-and-against the order of things as we have received them in this age.


Ok, I think I understand.  Can it not easily become a mass of confusion, with various interpretations of how to go over-and-against the order of things, and what those things are, though (I suppose that can be asked about almost everything related to broader Xtianity)?
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« Reply #67 on: January 31, 2014, 08:57:15 AM »

I think we're talking past each other. What I'm talking about is this kind of "tikkun olam" notion of us being needed to save the world ourselves.

Well who else is going to do it? God gave us the ability to fix it so why not actually do something? Sounds like Calvinism not to.

Quote
What this does in practical spiritual terms is deflect the goal of our good deeds from humbly following Christ's commandments


No it doesn't. Ever think that perhaps Christ's commandments consists in doing good and helping the world around us? Ever read the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus? You're setting up a false dichotomy of "works" or "following Christ's commandments" which IMHO echoes Protestant thought.

Quote
...to a very prideful and self-exalted vision of ourselves as the world's saviors, without Christ.

No one ever said anything about isolating Christ out of it. I'd glorify Christ through helping the world.

Your nonchalant, quasi-Stoic attitude toward suffering is something that disturbs me greatly. I don't see what better way to serve Christ than by helping to save the world around us. This should be our ultimate goal--not merely the pick-n-choose religious-right goal of giving to charity when we feel like it because it gives us a giddy feeling inside--but our true goal, to save the world around us through Christ.

As Mor once said, you're cute when you try to do theology.

Seriously, though, this is about the internal motivations for following Christ's commandments, not whether or not you should follow His commandments and love your neighbor and care for the poor. If your internal motivations are skewed, your good deeds have no salvific value, so you'd better be sure your motivations are correct.

We have prophecies in Revelation and the saints that basically tell us the world will get worse and worse and more and more sinful and further from God. This kind of indicates that nothing you personally do is going to fix this cosmic situation; only Christ at His Second Coming will fix it. All you can do is work out your own salvation by battling against the temptations of the world. Part of that involves battling avarice by giving freely of your wealth and possessions; part of that involves battling envy by not desiring the wealth and good fortune of others. If you can save yourself, that's really the best you can hope for. Don't get self-important, prideful ideas that you are going to be responsible for fixing the world's ills, ideas which harm rather than help the goal of salvation.

NM has a point that in truly Christian societies of the past, like Byzantium or Russia during certain periods of history, you could observe a real world effect of everyone struggling to live according to Christ's commandments. You did start to see improvements in society and how people in general treated each other and themselves, not to mention the increase in piety and love of God. But even then they didn't exactly perfect the world, and those periods were short-lived. And we only observe those effects because each individual Christian was struggling to work out his own salvation, and moreover they had a Christian ruler who was obedient to the Church's teaching.
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JamesR
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« Reply #68 on: January 31, 2014, 08:16:21 PM »

Seriously, though, this is about the internal motivations for following Christ's commandments, not whether or not you should follow His commandments and love your neighbor and care for the poor. If your internal motivations are skewed, your good deeds have no salvific value, so you'd better be sure your motivations are correct.

So you think that wanting to respect God's Creation--His other Icons made in His image and likeness--as my internal disposition is a really incorrect motivation?

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We have prophecies in Revelation and the saints that basically tell us the world will get worse and worse and more and more sinful and further from God. This kind of indicates that nothing you personally do is going to fix this cosmic situation; only Christ at His Second Coming will fix it.

Doesn't mean we still shouldn't try to fix it. I don't believe that our world is doomed because to believe so IMHO seems anti-Incarnational--denying that Christ redeemed the world. Besides, even if we fail, we still should try to do the right thing because it's the right thing to do. Period. Most of us will probably remain unsaved yet God still came to us. We ought to repeat the same thing.

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All you can do is work out your own salvation by battling against the temptations of the world.

Part of working out our own Salvation consists in helping to fix the world around us, which, IMHO, isn't as dark and twisted as you and the Calvinists make it out to be. Whatever has been assumed has been saved.

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If you can save yourself, that's really the best you can hope for.

That's entirely opposed to the message of the Gospel and Christ's ultimate commandment to love one another, to the point of laying down your own life for them.

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Don't get self-important, prideful ideas that you are going to be responsible for fixing the world's ills

Well who else is going to do it if no one else acts?

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...ideas which harm rather than help the goal of salvation.

Capitalist propoganda?
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You're really on to something here. Tattoo to keep you from masturbating, chew to keep you from fornicating... it's a whole new world where you outsource your crosses. You're like a Christian entrepreneur or something.
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James, you have problemz.
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