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Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #45 on: August 14, 2017, 06:55:32 PM »
I think there was a lot more to the "violence (was there really comparatively much violence?) and socio-political debate" than a degree of Christological difference. Regardless, in my opinion that's all behind us and unity should be reestablished forthwith.
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Offline Diego

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #46 on: August 14, 2017, 11:01:05 PM »
I don't think anyone would argue that God died on the Cross! The common accusation of deicide given to the Jews supports that! I am not sure that accusation is fair (certainly not for ALL Jews down through the centuries forever, and possibly not even for the Jewish leaders THEN, who did not consider Christ God. However, an argument certainly COULD be made that the leaders then WERE guilty of it).

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #47 on: August 15, 2017, 01:02:30 PM »
Since Mina has more than adequately addressed the questions of the OP, I would simply like to point out one thing.

...I wish to start a CIVILIZED informative thread about why the Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox have differing views of the Christology from Chalcedon onwards, and how each communion considers itself to be legitimate....

For the Oriental Orthodox:

1. What was contradictory in the Tome of Leo about the Nature of Christ in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and the Church Fathers? Why? And, as a broader question, what exactly is different in the Nature of Christ between the Eastern and Oriental communions? (Is it because the Eastern Orthodox recognize the fact that Christ has two distinct natures, being fully God and fully man)?
2. How was the desposal of the Patriarch of Alexandria not seen as legitimate, and why? Was the Tome of Leo accepted by all at that time?
3. How does the Oriental Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Eastern Orthodox?

For the Eastern Orthodox:
1. How was the Tome of Leo NOT contradictory, in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and Church Fathers?
2. How was Chalcedon seen as legitimate and Ecumenical, in light of the hostility it provoked by Alexandria?
3. Did the Tome of Leo create a foreshadowing of Papal Infallibility, and why did the Eastern Church accept this?

While I realise the OP was not trying to be provocative, I can't help but notice that, in sets of questions that otherwise appear complementary, there is one that seems out of place.  Why are the EO's (or, for that matter, the RC's) claims to be the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church taken for granted, while the OO have to prove they meet some minimum standards? 

I don't blame the OP, I believe s/he is sincere in wanting to learn and understand.  But others have asked this and similar questions in the past, and I find the implications of such questions (as well as the questions that are not asked) troubling.  Asking the EO how they can claim to fulfill the credal four marks of the Church is at least an equally reasonable question. 
Please don't project meta-debates onto me.

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Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #48 on: August 15, 2017, 03:02:47 PM »
Since Mina has more than adequately addressed the questions of the OP, I would simply like to point out one thing.

...I wish to start a CIVILIZED informative thread about why the Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox have differing views of the Christology from Chalcedon onwards, and how each communion considers itself to be legitimate....

For the Oriental Orthodox:

1. What was contradictory in the Tome of Leo about the Nature of Christ in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and the Church Fathers? Why? And, as a broader question, what exactly is different in the Nature of Christ between the Eastern and Oriental communions? (Is it because the Eastern Orthodox recognize the fact that Christ has two distinct natures, being fully God and fully man)?
2. How was the desposal of the Patriarch of Alexandria not seen as legitimate, and why? Was the Tome of Leo accepted by all at that time?
3. How does the Oriental Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Eastern Orthodox?

For the Eastern Orthodox:
1. How was the Tome of Leo NOT contradictory, in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and Church Fathers?
2. How was Chalcedon seen as legitimate and Ecumenical, in light of the hostility it provoked by Alexandria?
3. Did the Tome of Leo create a foreshadowing of Papal Infallibility, and why did the Eastern Church accept this?

While I realise the OP was not trying to be provocative, I can't help but notice that, in sets of questions that otherwise appear complementary, there is one that seems out of place.  Why are the EO's (or, for that matter, the RC's) claims to be the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church taken for granted, while the OO have to prove they meet some minimum standards? 

I don't blame the OP, I believe s/he is sincere in wanting to learn and understand.  But others have asked this and similar questions in the past, and I find the implications of such questions (as well as the questions that are not asked) troubling.  Asking the EO how they can claim to fulfill the credal four marks of the Church is at least an equally reasonable question.

For Eastern Orthodox:

4. How does the Eastern Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Oriental Orthodox?
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
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Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #49 on: August 15, 2017, 03:04:24 PM »
Since Mina has more than adequately addressed the questions of the OP, I would simply like to point out one thing.

...I wish to start a CIVILIZED informative thread about why the Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox have differing views of the Christology from Chalcedon onwards, and how each communion considers itself to be legitimate....

For the Oriental Orthodox:

1. What was contradictory in the Tome of Leo about the Nature of Christ in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and the Church Fathers? Why? And, as a broader question, what exactly is different in the Nature of Christ between the Eastern and Oriental communions? (Is it because the Eastern Orthodox recognize the fact that Christ has two distinct natures, being fully God and fully man)?
2. How was the desposal of the Patriarch of Alexandria not seen as legitimate, and why? Was the Tome of Leo accepted by all at that time?
3. How does the Oriental Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Eastern Orthodox?

For the Eastern Orthodox:
1. How was the Tome of Leo NOT contradictory, in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and Church Fathers?
2. How was Chalcedon seen as legitimate and Ecumenical, in light of the hostility it provoked by Alexandria?
3. Did the Tome of Leo create a foreshadowing of Papal Infallibility, and why did the Eastern Church accept this?

While I realise the OP was not trying to be provocative, I can't help but notice that, in sets of questions that otherwise appear complementary, there is one that seems out of place.  Why are the EO's (or, for that matter, the RC's) claims to be the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church taken for granted, while the OO have to prove they meet some minimum standards? 

I don't blame the OP, I believe s/he is sincere in wanting to learn and understand.  But others have asked this and similar questions in the past, and I find the implications of such questions (as well as the questions that are not asked) troubling.  Asking the EO how they can claim to fulfill the credal four marks of the Church is at least an equally reasonable question.

For Eastern Orthodox:

4. How does the Eastern Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Oriental Orthodox?

By reuniting with the OO.
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

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Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline Alpha60

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #50 on: August 16, 2017, 07:34:13 PM »
I don't think anyone would argue that God died on the Cross! The common accusation of deicide given to the Jews supports that! I am not sure that accusation is fair (certainly not for ALL Jews down through the centuries forever, and possibly not even for the Jewish leaders THEN, who did not consider Christ God. However, an argument certainly COULD be made that the leaders then WERE guilty of it).

Of course God died on the cross, unless you want to argue Jesus Christ is not God.

The impassable divine nature, which in Chalcedonian Christology is in a hypostatic union with the assumed human nature of our Lord, did not die; in OO Christology I think we would say The Only Begotten Son and Word of God was Crucified for Us.  We would say his humanity died, and was resurrected by its union with the divine nature in the Incarnation.

But God most assuredly died, not in his immutable divinity, but in His assumed humanity, in the Prosopon of the Logos, the Messiah, Jesus, the Son. 

Jesus Christ is of one essence with the father, very God of very God, and he did die on the Cross.

You have to understand how the divinity and humanity are connected.  What Chalcedonians call the Hypostatic Union, what we call the Incarnation from the Human and Divine Natures, is of paramount importance.  Our Lord had to take all of humanity onto himself.  God being omnipotent, became a man through the Virgin Mary, was born, died and resurrected, facilitating an ontological change and glorification in the human nature.

If we say God did not die on the cross, we are rejecting Theopaschitism, and that, to me, is unacceptable; I see Theopaschitism as essential to Orthodoxy.  God is described even in his divinity as "Long Suffering"; through what you as a Chalcedonian call the Hypostatic Union God was able to experience the entire human existence including death, but being God, was able to swallow up death in victory, trampling down death by death.
"It is logical that the actions of the human race over time will lead to its destruction.  I, Alpha 60, am merely the agent of this destruction."

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #51 on: August 16, 2017, 07:39:33 PM »
I don't think anyone would argue that God died on the Cross! The common accusation of deicide given to the Jews supports that! I am not sure that accusation is fair (certainly not for ALL Jews down through the centuries forever, and possibly not even for the Jewish leaders THEN, who did not consider Christ God. However, an argument certainly COULD be made that the leaders then WERE guilty of it).

+1

I believe EO and OO are equally Orthodox because of the influence of our St. Severus on their Christology, Theology and liturgical practice.  The only real difference is that we venerate St. Severus and a few others, and they do not.  Conversely, we widely venerate their saints. And everyone venerates St. Isaac the Syrian, who was what is popularly called a Nestorian, and whose writings contain typically Church of the East (Nestorian) theological ideas such as universalism.

The hagiography of Mar Gregorios Bar Hebraeus by one of the many scholars of the Maronite Assemani family indicated the Nestorian Catholicos mourned the death of the Maphrian, and implied that the "Nestorians" immediately venerated him as a saint, even though he was a "Jacobite."
"It is logical that the actions of the human race over time will lead to its destruction.  I, Alpha 60, am merely the agent of this destruction."

- The computer Alpha 60, from Alphaville (1964) by Jean Luc Godard, the obvious inspiration for HAL-9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey. 

This signature is not intended to offend any user, nor the relatives of Discovery 1 deputy commander Dr. Frank Poole,  and crew members Dr. Victor Kaminsky, Dr. Jack Kimball, and Dr. Charles Hunter.

Offline Diego

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #52 on: August 16, 2017, 08:50:56 PM »
I don't think anyone would argue that God died on the Cross! The common accusation of deicide given to the Jews supports that! I am not sure that accusation is fair (certainly not for ALL Jews down through the centuries forever, and possibly not even for the Jewish leaders THEN, who did not consider Christ God. However, an argument certainly COULD be made that the leaders then WERE guilty of it).

Of course God died on the cross, unless you want to argue Jesus Christ is not God.

The impassable divine nature, which in Chalcedonian Christology is in a hypostatic union with the assumed human nature of our Lord, did not die; in OO Christology I think we would say The Only Begotten Son and Word of God was Crucified for Us.  We would say his humanity died, and was resurrected by its union with the divine nature in the Incarnation.

But God most assuredly died, not in his immutable divinity, but in His assumed humanity, in the Prosopon of the Logos, the Messiah, Jesus, the Son. 

Jesus Christ is of one essence with the father, very God of very God, and he did die on the Cross.

You have to understand how the divinity and humanity are connected.  What Chalcedonians call the Hypostatic Union, what we call the Incarnation from the Human and Divine Natures, is of paramount importance.  Our Lord had to take all of humanity onto himself.  God being omnipotent, became a man through the Virgin Mary, was born, died and resurrected, facilitating an ontological change and glorification in the human nature.

If we say God did not die on the cross, we are rejecting Theopaschitism, and that, to me, is unacceptable; I see Theopaschitism as essential to Orthodoxy.  God is described even in his divinity as "Long Suffering"; through what you as a Chalcedonian call the Hypostatic Union God was able to experience the entire human existence including death, but being God, was able to swallow up death in victory, trampling down death by death.

Wow! I never would have thought it possible: You and I AGREE on something!

All joking aside, absolutely God died on the Cross! I mean, as you said, not in his Divinity per se. But the fact that Christ DIED, literally died, this cannot be doubted.

"I believe in God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth. And in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried.

He descended into hell; on the third day he rose again from the dead; He ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God, the Father, Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead."


I know you are not fond of Mr. Luther, but he asks in the Small Catechism:

"What does this mean? I believe that Jesus Christ, true God, begotten of the Father from eternity, and also true man, born of the Virgin Mary, is my Lord,

who has redeemed me, a lost and condemned creature, purchased and won me from all sins, from death, and from the power of the devil; not with gold or silver, but with His holy, precious blood and with all his innocent suffering and death,

that I may be His own, and live under Him, in His Kingdom, and serve Him in everlasting righteousness, innocence, and awkwardness,

even as He is risen from the dead, lives and reigns to all eternity.

This is most certainly true."


I mean, there may be things about which we disagree, but the ONLY way God did not die on the Cross would be through a complete separation of the Two Natures! Even the thought of that is completely  crazy. Or through denying that Christ HAS a divine nature! That is also crazy.
« Last Edit: August 16, 2017, 08:53:36 PM by Diego »

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #53 on: August 16, 2017, 09:23:49 PM »
Here comes the Alpha60 post to end all Alpha60 posts.



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Well said.
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Offline Alpha60

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #54 on: August 17, 2017, 01:55:31 AM »
Since Mina has more than adequately addressed the questions of the OP, I would simply like to point out one thing.

...I wish to start a CIVILIZED informative thread about why the Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox have differing views of the Christology from Chalcedon onwards, and how each communion considers itself to be legitimate....

For the Oriental Orthodox:

1. What was contradictory in the Tome of Leo about the Nature of Christ in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and the Church Fathers? Why? And, as a broader question, what exactly is different in the Nature of Christ between the Eastern and Oriental communions? (Is it because the Eastern Orthodox recognize the fact that Christ has two distinct natures, being fully God and fully man)?
2. How was the desposal of the Patriarch of Alexandria not seen as legitimate, and why? Was the Tome of Leo accepted by all at that time?
3. How does the Oriental Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Eastern Orthodox?

For the Eastern Orthodox:
1. How was the Tome of Leo NOT contradictory, in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and Church Fathers?
2. How was Chalcedon seen as legitimate and Ecumenical, in light of the hostility it provoked by Alexandria?
3. Did the Tome of Leo create a foreshadowing of Papal Infallibility, and why did the Eastern Church accept this?

While I realise the OP was not trying to be provocative, I can't help but notice that, in sets of questions that otherwise appear complementary, there is one that seems out of place.  Why are the EO's (or, for that matter, the RC's) claims to be the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church taken for granted, while the OO have to prove they meet some minimum standards? 

I don't blame the OP, I believe s/he is sincere in wanting to learn and understand.  But others have asked this and similar questions in the past, and I find the implications of such questions (as well as the questions that are not asked) troubling.  Asking the EO how they can claim to fulfill the credal four marks of the Church is at least an equally reasonable question.

For Eastern Orthodox:

4. How does the Eastern Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Oriental Orthodox?

By reuniting with the OO.

I love you Porter.  Thats like the best answer possible.  :)

I wish the EP and MP could work up the nerve to just do it.  There are only a few autocephalous churches opposed to such a merger (I think just Serbia and Georgia, ROCOR, which is no longer autocephalous, and Metropolitan Seraphim of Piraeus, but not the entire Church of Greece).  I don't think they would break communion over it; in a worst case scenario, Georgia and Serbia might break communion, and Ethiopia might have a schism, but this would heal in a few decades, and in the interim, several other larger schisms such as those with Macedonia and Abkhazia could be resolved, and work could also progress towards a settlement regarding the church in the Ukraine (I lean towards a scenario like that in the US or Estonia, with individual parishes being allowed to affiliate with the Moscow or Kievan Patriarchate, because the politics are so complex).

I dont think any OO church would hold out entirely to a restoration of communion, but the Eritrean church is administratively stalled, and some Ethiopian monasteries might break away for a few years if Ethiopia directly concelebrated with the EO.

I think the workaround there is to have communion formally restored with the Copts, Syriacs and Armenians, and not immediately attempt a concelebration in Ethiopia; communion would be indirect, just as at present Jerusalem and Antioch are not directly in communion, or in the OO church, the Malankara church and the Jacobite church are not in communion with each other, but are in communion with all the other patriarchates.
"It is logical that the actions of the human race over time will lead to its destruction.  I, Alpha 60, am merely the agent of this destruction."

- The computer Alpha 60, from Alphaville (1964) by Jean Luc Godard, the obvious inspiration for HAL-9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey. 

This signature is not intended to offend any user, nor the relatives of Discovery 1 deputy commander Dr. Frank Poole,  and crew members Dr. Victor Kaminsky, Dr. Jack Kimball, and Dr. Charles Hunter.

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #55 on: August 17, 2017, 12:13:37 PM »
Since Mina has more than adequately addressed the questions of the OP, I would simply like to point out one thing.

...I wish to start a CIVILIZED informative thread about why the Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox have differing views of the Christology from Chalcedon onwards, and how each communion considers itself to be legitimate....

For the Oriental Orthodox:

1. What was contradictory in the Tome of Leo about the Nature of Christ in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and the Church Fathers? Why? And, as a broader question, what exactly is different in the Nature of Christ between the Eastern and Oriental communions? (Is it because the Eastern Orthodox recognize the fact that Christ has two distinct natures, being fully God and fully man)?
2. How was the desposal of the Patriarch of Alexandria not seen as legitimate, and why? Was the Tome of Leo accepted by all at that time?
3. How does the Oriental Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Eastern Orthodox?

For the Eastern Orthodox:
1. How was the Tome of Leo NOT contradictory, in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and Church Fathers?
2. How was Chalcedon seen as legitimate and Ecumenical, in light of the hostility it provoked by Alexandria?
3. Did the Tome of Leo create a foreshadowing of Papal Infallibility, and why did the Eastern Church accept this?

While I realise the OP was not trying to be provocative, I can't help but notice that, in sets of questions that otherwise appear complementary, there is one that seems out of place.  Why are the EO's (or, for that matter, the RC's) claims to be the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church taken for granted, while the OO have to prove they meet some minimum standards? 

I don't blame the OP, I believe s/he is sincere in wanting to learn and understand.  But others have asked this and similar questions in the past, and I find the implications of such questions (as well as the questions that are not asked) troubling.  Asking the EO how they can claim to fulfill the credal four marks of the Church is at least an equally reasonable question.

For Eastern Orthodox:

4. How does the Eastern Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Oriental Orthodox?

By reuniting with the OO.

I love you Porter.  Thats like the best answer possible.  :)

I wish the EP and MP could work up the nerve to just do it.  There are only a few autocephalous churches opposed to such a merger (I think just Serbia and Georgia, ROCOR, which is no longer autocephalous, and Metropolitan Seraphim of Piraeus, but not the entire Church of Greece).  I don't think they would break communion over it; in a worst case scenario, Georgia and Serbia might break communion, and Ethiopia might have a schism, but this would heal in a few decades, and in the interim, several other larger schisms such as those with Macedonia and Abkhazia could be resolved, and work could also progress towards a settlement regarding the church in the Ukraine (I lean towards a scenario like that in the US or Estonia, with individual parishes being allowed to affiliate with the Moscow or Kievan Patriarchate, because the politics are so complex).

I dont think any OO church would hold out entirely to a restoration of communion, but the Eritrean church is administratively stalled, and some Ethiopian monasteries might break away for a few years if Ethiopia directly concelebrated with the EO.

I think the workaround there is to have communion formally restored with the Copts, Syriacs and Armenians, and not immediately attempt a concelebration in Ethiopia; communion would be indirect, just as at present Jerusalem and Antioch are not directly in communion, or in the OO church, the Malankara church and the Jacobite church are not in communion with each other, but are in communion with all the other patriarchates.

What about the use of unleavened bread by the Armenians?

Also, I wonder the logic of "This might create a schism, but it will resolve itself in a couple of years." I mean, would that same logic apply to the Old Ritualists, or even the Roman Catholics?
I think it would be wiser to see what objections Georgia and Serbia would have to such a reunion, and try to solve that first, if possible. Maybe they would have some valid criticisms which it would be wise to fix first lest we do something completely wrong or miss something.

Unity is important, and this logic of "well, they'll get over it" is dangerous, as I think the Council of Crete has created more division than unity.

I think reunion with the OO would be great, but it should be done very carefully and shouldn't create schism.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2017, 12:26:36 PM by LivenotoneviL »
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #56 on: August 17, 2017, 12:21:48 PM »
That's the last thing that would be a sticking point. They're an ancient and faithful church that made a different local decision for reasons valid in their milieu.
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Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are near them you feel ecstatic and very happy

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #57 on: August 17, 2017, 12:29:31 PM »
That's the last thing that would be a sticking point. They're an ancient and faithful church that made a different local decision for reasons valid in their milieu.

I just wonder it in light of several Orthodox councils condemning such a proposition, and how more traditional EO Churches would react. I think it's an issue that should be debated nonetheless, and an issue that will be handled when we come to it.
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #58 on: August 17, 2017, 12:58:42 PM »
Condemning it for ourselves, yes. You have to understand the ancient privilege of places like Armenia and Georgia, some of the first Christian countries in the world, with comparatively huge and very faithful populations, and kept somewhat isolated by geography, language, or other circumstances. These churches are held in very high regard. I do think the unleavened bread is a non-issue. For that matter, I very, very much doubt, if the day should ever come that union with Rome were achieved on Orthodox terms, unleavened bread would be an issue with them, either.

Personally I think there should come a point where unity of communion can simply be declared (I can't say what that point would be), and then, after that, any further concerns addressed to a joint council. The same with Rome -- let the Bishop of Rome kiss the feet of his bishop brothers around the world, and then submit that see's magisteria, past and present, to a council.

And I, personally, think all that's lacking for union is the will on both sides.
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Offline rakovsky

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #59 on: September 05, 2017, 09:00:39 PM »
I wish to start a CIVILIZED informative thread about why the Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox have differing views of the Christology from Chalcedon onwards, and how each communion considers itself to be legitimate....

For the Eastern Orthodox:
1. How was the Tome of Leo NOT contradictory, in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and Church Fathers?
2. How was Chalcedon seen as legitimate and Ecumenical, in light of the hostility it provoked by Alexandria?
3. Did the Tome of Leo create a foreshadowing of Papal Infallibility, and why did the Eastern Church accept this?
1. The Tome taught that Christ kept and possesses both his human and divine natures. The preceding Nicene Council taught that Christ, the Son of God, was consubstantial or co-essential with His Father. That is, they shared the same substance or essence. By having and sharing the same substance or essence, they also have and share the divine nature.

Likewise, as fully man, Christ shares and has our human essence or substance, and human nature. Thus Christ shares in and possesses both the human and divine substances and essences.

2. The Patriarch of Alexandria had before Chalcedon already excommunicated the Patriarch of Constantinople and the Pope of Rome, declaring them heretics for Dyophysitism. He and Ephesus II (unrecognized by EOs) had deposed the Patriach of Antioch as well. Thus there was already a schism in the Church before Chalcedon began, with the EO Dyophysites and their hierarchs on one hand and the anti-Dyophysites and the Pope of Alexandria on the other. For those who accept Dyophysitism and the EO hierarchs' legitimacy in that schism, the ecumenicity of their subsequent Council at Chalcedon is acceptable and legitimate as well.

3. The Tome of Leo did not declare itself infallible, but rather a defense by the Pope of Dyophysitism. Papal Infallibility was a separate issue that came later, an open teaching that the Pope has the ability to speak on behalf of the whole church infallibly.
The ocean, infinite to men, and the worlds beyond it, are directed by the same ordinances of the Lord. ~ I Clement 20

Offline rakovsky

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #60 on: September 05, 2017, 09:22:55 PM »
LivenotoneviL,

You made a good point when you said:
From what I have found so far as it pertains to dyophysitism and miaphysitism, as a novice, I am hard pressed to really see what the difference is....

I mean, is there really a difference between the use of "one hypostasis of two fully distinct and inseparable natures in the Person of Jesus Christ" and the use of "one nature composed of two natures which are fully distinct yet inseparable in the Person of Jesus Christ?"
The idea that Christ has a human nature and a divine nature, and also has his own united nature I think can be complementary ideas. For example, the EOs' Tome of Leo explains how Christ has the two natures (dyophysitism), while it also speaks of the "divine and human nature" of Christ in the singular (miaphysitism). The debate therefore seems to boil down most to whether Chalcedon's teaching that Christ is "in two natures" (dyophysitism) is acceptable to both sides, not over whether one can speak of Christ as having his own nature in the singular (miaphysitism). Do you understand what I mean?
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Offline rakovsky

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #61 on: September 05, 2017, 09:27:56 PM »
4. How does the Eastern Orthodox fulfill the four marks of the Church in terms of being One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic compared to the Oriental Orthodox?
I think that my answer in #2 above touches on this. If one accepts that the Pope and the Patriarch of Constantinople were Orthodox in their theology and were excommunicated by the Pope of Alexandria for it even before Chalcedon, then I think one would say that the Pope and Patriarch of Constantinople were the orthodox, catholic side of that schism. Chalcedon practically made clear an already existing schism.
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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #62 on: September 05, 2017, 10:19:15 PM »
Here comes the Alpha60 post to end all Alpha60 posts.



Sometimes reality is too complex for oral communication. But legend embodies it in a form which enables it to spread all over the world.

Time is like a circle which is endlessly described. The declining arc is the past. The inclining arc is the future.  No-one has ever lived in the past. No-one will ever live in the future. The present is the form of all life.



Once we know the number one, we believe that we know the number two, because one plus one equals two. We forget that first we must know the meaning of plus.

The meaning of words and of expressions, is no longer grasped. An isolated word, or a detail of a design, can be understood. But the meaning of the whole escapes.  Everything has been said, provided words do not change their meanings, nor meanings their words.
Well said.

You did realize I was just quoting Alpha 60, the antagonist in the film Alphaville, right?  That entire post I composed, to gue thoroughly in my cheek, from random Alpha 60 quotes on a dare from RobS to "make the Alpha60 post that ends all Alpha60 posts."  I would have thought the screenshots of Alpha60's fan assembly and Dr. Leonard Nosferatu von Braun at his control station would have been enough of a hint, but, alas.

The peculiar thing is that so much of the abstract rambling of Alpha 60 in Godard's film, taken from the pages of books Jean Luc Godard owned or had encountered on General Semantics, and other modernist tropes he found terrifying, is oddly applicable to the EO/OO schism.  Its almost as though the throat-cancer stricken actor who played Alpha 60 using a primitive vocoder of the sort Stephen Hawking uses managed to prophesize rhe entire dialogue concerning Chalcedonian-Miaphysite reunion (and Chalcedonian-Assyrian reunion, for that matter).
« Last Edit: September 05, 2017, 10:20:31 PM by Alpha60 »
"It is logical that the actions of the human race over time will lead to its destruction.  I, Alpha 60, am merely the agent of this destruction."

- The computer Alpha 60, from Alphaville (1964) by Jean Luc Godard, the obvious inspiration for HAL-9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey. 

This signature is not intended to offend any user, nor the relatives of Discovery 1 deputy commander Dr. Frank Poole,  and crew members Dr. Victor Kaminsky, Dr. Jack Kimball, and Dr. Charles Hunter.

Offline Remnkemi

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #63 on: September 06, 2017, 07:44:29 PM »

I wish to start a CIVILIZED informative thread about why the Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox have differing views of the Christology from Chalcedon onwards, and how each communion considers itself to be legitimate....

For the Eastern Orthodox:
1. How was the Tome of Leo NOT contradictory, in light of the former Ecumenical Councils and Church Fathers?
2. How was Chalcedon seen as legitimate and Ecumenical, in light of the hostility it provoked by Alexandria?
3. Did the Tome of Leo create a foreshadowing of Papal Infallibility, and why did the Eastern Church accept this?
1. The Tome taught that Christ kept and possesses both his human and divine natures.
That is far from the only thing the Tome of Leo stated. You give an extremely flexible reading and explanation of the Tome and from what you wrote in your response to the second question, you give such a rigid (and inaccurate) reading of OO interpretation.

Quote
The preceding Nicene Council taught that Christ, the Son of God, was consubstantial or co-essential with His Father. That is, they shared the same substance or essence. By having and sharing the same substance or essence, they also have and share the divine nature.

Likewise, as fully man, Christ shares and has our human essence or substance, and human nature. Thus Christ shares in and possesses both the human and divine substances and essences.
You didn't answer the question. Pre-Chalcedon or post-Chalcedon - other than certain heretics like Arius, Apollonarius, and Eutyches, and their followers condemned in those councils - no one argued that Christ is not both divine and human. In response to these heresies, however, the previous councils and fathers never separated Christ's action into categories of divine action vs human actions as Leo's Tome did. Understood this way, it's not far fetched to see Leo's Tome as innovative and therefore contradictory to the councils and fathers.

Quote
2. The Patriarch of Alexandria had before Chalcedon already excommunicated the Patriarch of Constantinople and the Pope of Rome, declaring them heretics for Dyophysitism.
Where's Trump to tell you "WRONG"?

The patriarch of Alexandria excommunicated Flavian, patriarch of Constantinople, for not allowing or accepting Eutyches' revised confession of his faith as a sign of his repentance. The same patriarch of Alexandria excommunicated Leo, pope of Rome, for conspiring with the new emperor to illegally and unilaterally reject the decision of the previous emperor, in addition to supporting known Nestorians. Neither of these two condemnations have anything to do with a defense of dyophysitism.

Quote
He and Ephesus II (unrecognized by EOs) had deposed the Patriach of Antioch as well.
Domnus, Patriarch of Antioch, was the nephew of John of Antioch and joined his uncle to fight Cyril in favor of Nestorianism. He ordained a known Nestorian as bishops but the ordination was annulled by Emperor Theodosius II. He defends Ibas' Nestorian tendencies in opposition of Flavian. (You make it sound like Domnus and Flavian were buddies with a common enemy in Dioscorus). I can go on. What makes Domnus a real coward is that he condemns Eutyches, reverses his condemnation in Ephesus II and reverses again in Chalcedon. And he is the only bishop not reinstated by Chalcedon because he still voted for the condemnation of Flavian.

Don't give half the story and make it seem like pre-Chalcedonian schism were only due to dyophysitism.
 
Quote
Thus there was already a schism in the Church before Chalcedon began, with the EO Dyophysites and their hierarchs who defended Nestorianism and Nestorian bishops on one hand and the anti-dyophisites Nestorians and the Pope of Alexandria on the other who saw these Nestorian bishops for who they were, not retracting their previous decisions for political gain.
I fixed it for you. There is always more than one way to interpret history.

Quote
For those who accept Dyophysitism
If by dyophysitism you mean "two natures" and the double consubstantiality of Christ, then mostly everyone believes in dyophysitism, even OO. If by dyophysitism you mean the blurring of the hypostatic union and the double consubstantiality of Christ that seems dangerously close to Nestorianism and monophysitism, then who would want to accept that?

Quote
and the EO hierarchs' legitimacy in that schism,
As you can see above, the main hierarchs' legitimacy is debatable whether you agree or not.

Quote
the ecumenicity of their subsequent Council at Chalcedon is acceptable and legitimate as well.
To this day, I have yet to find one consistent definition of ecumenicity. It's hard to make the case for Chalcedon as acceptable and legitimate if there isn't even a unanimous definition of ecumenicity. But even if one does have a definition of ecumenicity (many have attempted), Chalcedon has a lot of loopholes and questionable actions that are swept under the rug to "affirm" its ecumenicity.

Quote
3. The Tome of Leo did not declare itself infallible, but rather a defense by the Pope of Dyophysitism.
That is only true from an EO prespective. From a RC prospective, it is the first chronological and unofficial example of papal infallibility. If you want to go by official ex cathedra teachings, there are only two doctrines: Immaculate Conception and St Mary's Assumption. So even by technical RC standards the Tome of Leo is not ex cathedra. But unofficially, it is ALWAYS given as an example of infallibility. Here is one example of a RC apologetic discussion that Chalcedon defended RC papal supremacy (and I believe has all the criteria for ex cathedra infallibility even if it is not explicitly declared).
 
Quote
Papal Infallibility was a separate issue that came later, an open teaching that the Pope has the ability to speak on behalf of the whole church infallibly.
[/quote]
Of course, infallibility is a 19th century RCC doctrine and it would not technically apply to the Tome. But Leo definitely viewed it as infallible and the bishops who cried out "Peter speaks through Leo" seem to have believed in some sort of papal infallibility. The OO bishops voiced their disagreement about the Tome, showing they didn't believe in any form of infallibility in the Tome or papal supremacy of Leo. 

And you didn't answer question #4.  :P :P

Offline youssef

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #64 on: September 06, 2017, 08:15:28 PM »
For the copte here do you knouw mina asaad kamel.

Offline rakovsky

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #65 on: September 06, 2017, 11:05:05 PM »
Dear Remnkemi,

In your message, you asked me two questions, to which I will reply:
QUESTION 1.
Quote
The Patriarch of Alexandria had before Chalcedon already excommunicated the Patriarch of Constantinople and the Pope of Rome, declaring them heretics for Dyophysitism.
Where's Trump to tell you "WRONG"?

The patriarch of Alexandria excommunicated Flavian, patriarch of Constantinople, for not allowing or accepting Eutyches' revised confession of his faith as a sign of his repentance. The same patriarch of Alexandria excommunicated Leo, pope of Rome, for conspiring with the new emperor to illegally and unilaterally reject the decision of the previous emperor, in addition to supporting known Nestorians. Neither of these two condemnations have anything to do with a defense of dyophysitism.
Trump does not seem especially religious, and if he is, then he belongs to the Presbyterian Church, which traditionally claims agreement with Chalcedon.

In the aftermath of Ephesus II, the OO Emperor Theodosius announced that Ephesus II "has justly condemned Flavian ... for ... adherence to [Nestorianism]. Theodosius endorses the council's decrees and ordered... any bishops tainted by the heresy of Flavian... to be deposed". And the Dictionary of Christian Biography by Henry Wace quotes Dioscorus as announcing at Chalcedon:
Quote
Dioscorus, still undaunted, said, "The reason why Flavian was condemned was plainly this, that he asserted two natures after the incarnation. I have passages from the Fathers, Athanasius, Gregory, Cyril, to the effect that after the incarnation there were not two natures, but one incarnate nature of the Word. If I am to be expelled, the Fathers will be expelled with me. I am defending their doctrine; I do not deviate from them at all; I have not got these extracts carelessly, I have verified them" (ib. vi. 684; see note in Oxf. ed. of Fleury, vol. iii. p. 348).

Pope Leo rejected the decisions of Ephesus II, approved by the previous emperor, for being uncanonical. Even at the council of Ephesus II itself, the Papal legate announced that they "Contradicted" the decision of that council. Later, the EO signers of Ephesus II themselves testified that they were forced to sign Ephesus II's decision by threats of persecution. Pope Leo was thus on the dyophisite side of the schism. So as you said above, he was excommunicated by Dioscorus for rejecting Ephesus II, approved by the last emperor. Ibas and Theodoret, are not known as Nestorians in the eyes of the EO tradition, but rather considered as Dyophysites. The OOs' accusations against them were investigated at our Fifth Ecumenical Council.

QUESTION 2.
Quote
Quote
For those who accept Dyophysitism
If by dyophysitism you mean "two natures" and the double consubstantiality of Christ, then mostly everyone believes in dyophysitism, even OO. If by dyophysitism you mean the blurring of the hypostatic union and the double consubstantiality of Christ that seems dangerously close to Nestorianism and monophysitism, then who would want to accept that?

Let's check what some EO, OO, and Nestorian sources say that Dyophysitism means.

The article "Doctrine of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church" on an Ethiopian Church website defines the teaching of Dyophysitism this way:
Quote
Dyophysites teach that, after the union, Christ retained the natures of
divinity and humanity in His one Person
in such a way that He ate food, slept, laughed, suffered, walked as man in the human nature, but healed the sick and resuscitated Lazarus as God in the divine nature. Thus He is one Person in two natures of humanity and divinity. The wrongly called Monophysites reject the allegation that they teach one Nature and one Person in Christ.
http://www.dskmariam.org/artsandlitreature/litreature/pdf/doctorinoftheethiopianorthodoxchurch.pdf

The Mekane Selam Ethiopian Tewahdo Church describes Dyophysitism this way:
Quote
The Ethiopian church followed the Coptic (Egyptian) church (now called the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria) in rejecting the Christological decision issued by the Council of Chalcedon in 451 ce that the human and divine natures of Jesus Christ were equally present in one person without commingling. Opposed to this dyophysitism, or two-nature doctrine, the Coptic and Ethiopian churches held that the human and divine natures were equally present through the mystery of the Incarnation within a single nature.
http://mekaneselam.org/

The Orthodox Wikipedia says:
Quote
The alternative response, which eventually became Byzantine dogma, was dyophysitism. This states that Christ has two natures, but emphasizes that they are not separated: Christ is fully one person (ὑπόστασις hypostasis).
https://orthodoxwiki.org/Miaphysitism


The Nestorian website Nestorian.org says that it means a belief in "two natures in Christ":
Quote
The Antiochenes spoke of two natures in Christ, so they came to be known as Dyophysites (from the Greek duo physis, "two natures")
http://www.nestorian.org/nestorian_theology.html

The EO theologian John McGuckin describes Dyophysitism as follows, considering it compatible with St. Cyril's Miaphysitism:
Quote
Mia physis can coexist as an important (and common element of universal Christian Orthodoxy) along with the dyo physeis, without being logically contradictory)... we can equally be (Chalcedonian) dyophysites and affirm that the Incarnate Lord has two physeis, even two unconfused natures or ousiai, but in the Incarnation made inseparably one by him, within the single divine hypostasis of the Word who is the sole subject of his Manhood and his Divinity unified in himself. ... And in the Chalcedonian dyophysite language we affirm that the Single Lord unites two perfectly intact natures (Godhead and Humanity) which are irrefragably and mysteriously made One in the unificative energy of his own single person...  Therefore it is by no means incompatible with Orthodoxy, rather necessary for a fuller confession of the faith, to assert the correctness of both the Cyrilline Miaphysite formula and the Chalcedonian definition: Mia physis and dyo-physeis.
https://ortodoksistenpappienliitto.files.wordpress.com/2015/02/ortodoksia_53_mcguckin.pdf

I find that Eastern Orthodox theology meets any of the underlined definitions of the term "Dyophysitism".

In case LivenotoneviL is interested in my responses to your other portrayals of what I wrote, I am happy to respond.
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Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #66 on: September 09, 2017, 09:01:02 AM »
Here's my fundamental question:

I think the Oriental Orthodox have a problem in how Pope Leo the Great assigns unique roles to each aspect of the Nature of Christ (for example, how it was the humanity of Christ which felt the pain of the cross, and it was the Divinity of Christ which rose Lazarus from the dead). They see this as Nestorian in that it "divides up" the Person of Christ into two people.

However, I ask the question: What is the purpose of having two unique and distinct natures which are in union (as both Dyophysitism and Miaphysitism hold) if there is no difference in their functions? I mean, if both natures are equally capable of performing the same exact roles, can we really say that Christ has two natures? Isn't that the point of having two natures - because they contribute different aspects to the Person of Christ?

And I still don't see how such a view would be Nestorian from what I've studied so far - because in my years of Roman Catholic education and studying Holy Orthodoxy, I have not once thought that there were two "beings" in Christ.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 09:04:15 AM by LivenotoneviL »
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Offline Ainnir

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #67 on: September 09, 2017, 09:22:58 AM »
Here's my fundamental question:

I think the Oriental Orthodox have a problem in how Pope Leo the Great assigns unique roles to each aspect of the Nature of Christ (for example, how it was the humanity of Christ which felt the pain of the cross, and it was the Divinity of Christ which rose Lazarus from the dead). They see this as Nestorian in that it "divides up" the Person of Christ into two people.

However, I ask the question: What is the purpose of having two unique and distinct natures which are in union (as both Dyophysitism and Miaphysitism hold) if there is no difference in their functions? I mean, if both natures are equally capable of performing the same exact roles, can we really say that Christ has two natures? Isn't that the point of having two natures - because they contribute different aspects to the Person of Christ?

And I still don't see how such a view would be Nestorian from what I've studied so far - because in my years of Roman Catholic education and studying Holy Orthodoxy, I have not once thought that there were two "beings" in Christ.

I could be on tenuous ground here, but the bolded sounds like there's not really a full union between the two.  Sort of like they don't communicate, or there's at least a partial wall between the two.  And maybe that's right, or maybe it's not.  It strikes me as odd, though...to think that Christ felt pain in His physical body, yet his Divine nature did not comprehend it (or "feel" it).  Or that when Christ verbally called Lazarus from the tomb, his humanity had nothing to do with that resurrection.  And then if there is really some sort of separation to the point where one nature performs an action while the other nature sits on the sidelines, what do we say about theosis?  How could it ever be full, if the only way it is even possible is through the union of natures in the person of Christ?  The extent of that union would limit the extent of theosis, in other words (or so it seems to me).
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Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #68 on: September 09, 2017, 10:28:34 AM »
The problem the Oriental Orthodox mainly and rightly recognize in the writings of Pope St. Leo is the Nestorian sounding way of expressing the distinction of natures in Christ. Around the time of the Council of Chalcedon, many Alexandrians of the time and still, the Oriental Orthodox Church use the word 'nature' to signify concrete reality, construct of existence - hypostasis, while others such as the Antiochians of that time and today's Eastern Orthodox define nature as a set of essential characteristics of concrete realities of the same kind and because the terms that were employed in theological discussions were flexible and used in various ways during the fifth and sixth centuries, saying that, for example, the human nature suffered in the cross (Tome of Leo) is problematic, because, it sounds as if by equating 'physis' with 'hypostasis' and saying that Christ is 'in two natures', there are two hypostases, centers of existence in Christ. So, the thing is, what does one mean when he says:
“...For each form does what is proper to it with the co-operation of the other; that is the Word performing what appertains to the Word, and the flesh carrying out what appertains to the flesh. One of them sparkles with miracles, the other succumbs to injuries.” (The Tome of Leo)
 “...The form of a slave by which the impassible Godhead fulfilled a pledge of mighty loving-kindness , is human weakness which was lifted up into the glory of the divine power.”
Without clarifying what one means with these "forms", there is much room for misinterpretation of what Pope Leo meant with that. Here's another one:
“...In our one Lord Jesus Christ, the true Son of God and man, the person of the Word and of the flesh is one, and both beings have their actions in common.” (From the letter to the Monks of Palestine)
Here, it is spoken of "both beings", as if two realities- the Word and the flesh. So it's very confusing stuff. Yet, elsewhere, Pope Leo says:
“...Whatever therefore Christ received in time, He received in virtue of His manhood, on which are conferred whatsoever it had not. For according to the power of the Word, all things that the Father has the Son also has indiscriminately, and what in the form of a slave He received from the Father, He also Himself gave in the form of the Father.”  (From the letter to the Monks of Palestine)
So that form of God in Christ Leo speaks of is 'the form of the Father'. Now, in the Trinity, since the three hypostases are distinct from each other, each person of the Holy Trinity is in each other not as one reality, as one hypostasis, but as in one divine ousia. So, when Christ says that he is in the Father, it is in regards to nature and substance that he says so (John 14:11,20 ; 10:38, etc...) Therefore, this 'form of the Father' is understood as manifestation of the divine power in accordance with which Christ's divinity is properly preserved. Similarly it is with the form of the slave that means human weakness. Yet, this isn't clear at all from the manner in which the Pope speaks. Furthermore:
“...The Only-begotten of the Most High Father entered on such a union with human humility, that, when He took the substance of our flesh and soul, He remained one and the same Son of God.” (Sermon On the Passion, XII)
 “...A Deity which, by the co-operation of the functions of true flesh, showed not only itself in Manhood, but also Manhood in itself; for the old, original wounds in man's nature could not be healed, except by the Word of God taking to Himself flesh from the Virgin's womb, whereby in one and the same Person flesh and the Word co-existed.” (On Lent, VIII)
“...In declaring the only-begotten Son of God to have been so born of the blessed Virgin's womb... without the reality of human flesh being united to the Word, he departs...” (Letter to Julian Bishop of Constantinople)
And:
“...True God and true man were combined to form one Lord.” (Sermon On the Feast of the Nativity, I)
“...You who truly is Son of man is also truly Son of the living God: You, I say, true in Godhead, true in flesh and one altogether” (Letter to Ephesus II)
Firstly, he speaks of Christ, the self-same person before the Incarnation, even so after the Incarnation and then he speaks of natures forming one person, as one Lord. This is really unclear, because one person somewhere signifies the self-same person and it is used as one reality elsewhere. Yet, this is the way Leo expressed his opinions...
Then again, the difference of the natures in Christ is in no way taken away from the union, because otherwise, why is this called the Incarnation? What is there to Christ's work of salvation if he is not both God and man? Of course there is difference in the natures' functions, since the godhead is impassible, manhood is an embodiment of passability, the godhead is invisible, in the flesh, God became visible and tangible, etc, etc...Yet, they are without separation, so that,
“...The power of His Godhead...was inseparable from His manhood under the veil of our weakness” (On the Feast of Nativity, II)
“...The Word of God appeared clothed in flesh, and That which had never been visible to human eyes began to be tangible to our hands as well.” (On the Feast of the Nativity, VI)
 “...While each substance had its own properties, there was no difference in the power of either.” (On the Feast of Epiphany, I)
“...The inviolable Word not being separated from the passible flesh, the Godhead may be understood as in all things partaker with the flesh and flesh with the Godhead.” (On Lent, VIII)
“...No sort of division ever arose between the Divine and the human substance, and through all the growth and changes of His body, the actions were of one Person the whole time.” (Letter to the Monks of Palestine)
“...Just as true manhood existed in His Godhead, so true Godhead existed in His Manhood.” (Homily on the Transfiguration)
And many others...
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline minasoliman

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #69 on: September 09, 2017, 10:31:44 AM »
Here's my fundamental question:

I think the Oriental Orthodox have a problem in how Pope Leo the Great assigns unique roles to each aspect of the Nature of Christ (for example, how it was the humanity of Christ which felt the pain of the cross, and it was the Divinity of Christ which rose Lazarus from the dead). They see this as Nestorian in that it "divides up" the Person of Christ into two people.

However, I ask the question: What is the purpose of having two unique and distinct natures which are in union (as both Dyophysitism and Miaphysitism hold) if there is no difference in their functions? I mean, if both natures are equally capable of performing the same exact roles, can we really say that Christ has two natures? Isn't that the point of having two natures - because they contribute different aspects to the Person of Christ?

And I still don't see how such a view would be Nestorian from what I've studied so far - because in my years of Roman Catholic education and studying Holy Orthodoxy, I have not once thought that there were two "beings" in Christ.

If you notice my "best argument" scenario, it is a contemplation of the aspects of these two natures apart from the hypostatic union.  But once you have the hypostatic union, you CANNOT separate the actions of the two.  The main purpose of the incarnation is to make one humanity and divinity, to make one all of us with the Father.  Therefore, as Ainnir explained, the other nature is just as involved in the action as the former.  The divinity is not liable to suffering or passion, but in union with humanity, the divinity is involved in making these passions and sufferings salvific for all humanity.  Likewise, Christ used His deified flesh to transfigure, to resurrect Lazarus, to walk on water, etc.  That's why we rejected the Tome, because at best, it was not clear whether Pope Leo described them "en theoria" or not, a central point in Cyrillian Christology.  In 1964, EOs in dialogue with OOs said that the intention of the Tome was "en theoria".  That's the best argument in defense of the Tome, but again, OOs historically did not see it that way.
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Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #70 on: September 09, 2017, 10:37:03 AM »
I could be on tenuous ground here, but the bolded sounds like there's not really a full union between the two.  Sort of like they don't communicate, or there's at least a partial wall between the two.  And maybe that's right, or maybe it's not.  It strikes me as odd, though...to think that Christ felt pain in His physical body, yet his Divine nature did not comprehend it (or "feel" it).  Or that when Christ verbally called Lazarus from the tomb, his humanity had nothing to do with that resurrection.  And then if there is really some sort of separation to the point where one nature performs an action while the other nature sits on the sidelines, what do we say about theosis?  How could it ever be full, if the only way it is even possible is through the union of natures in the person of Christ?  The extent of that union would limit the extent of theosis, in other words (or so it seems to me).

The thing is, Leo writes these, too:
“...Nature does indeed express its real existence by actions that distinguish it, but neither separates itself from connection with the other. Nothing is wanting there on either side; in the majesty the humility is complete, in the humility the majesty is complete: and the unity does not introduce confusion, nor does the distinctiveness destroy the unity. The one is passible, the other inviolable; and yet the degradation belongs to the same Person, as does the glory... God took on Him whole Manhood, and so blended the two Natures together by means of His mercy and power, that each Nature was present in the other, and neither passed out of its own properties into the other.” (On the Passion, III)
“...The Invisible made His substance visible, the Intemporal temporal, the Impassible passible: not that power might sink into weakness, but that weakness might pass into indestructible power.” (On the Resurrection II)
“...Majesty took on humility, strength weakness, eternity mortality: and for the paying off of the debt belonging to our condition the inviolable nature was united with the passible nature” (The Tome of Leo; On the Feast of the Nativity, I)
“...The Godhead and the manhood being right from the Virgin's conception so completely united that without the manhood the divine acts, and without the Godhead the human acts were not performed.” (Letter to the Monks of Palestine)
“...Though the Creator and the creature, the Inviolable God and the passible flesh, are absolutely different, yet the properties of both substances meet together in Christ's one Person in such a way that alike in His acts of weakness and of power the degradation belongs to the same Person as the glory.” (On the Passion XI)
“...He Who was made in the midst of all is the same as He through Whom all things were made. He Who is arrested by the hands of wicked men is the same as He Who is bound by no limits. He Who is pierced with nails is the same as He Whom no wound can affect. Finally, He Who underwent death is the same as He Who never ceased to be eternal, so that both facts are established by indubitable signs, namely, the truth of the humiliation in Christ and the truth of the majesty; because Divine power joined itself to human frailty to this end, that God, while making what was ours His, might at the same time make what was His ours. " (On the Passion XVII)
“...The Word...becoming flesh so united the Divine Nature with the human ...by lowering His Nature to the uttermost has raised our nature to the highest.” (On the Feast of the Apostle Peter and Paul)
“...The Creator Himself was wearing the creature which was to be restored to the image of its Creator.” (On the Passion, III)
Etc...
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline minasoliman

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #71 on: September 09, 2017, 10:40:22 AM »
Thank for these quotes.  I appreciate the defense of Pope Leo.  At the same time, I think it's safe to say MOST OOs at the time were not privy to his other writings. So as far as OOs were aware, this is strictly his Tome.

But this brings up another good point.  There are some writings I think EOs did not have of OOs.  For instance, ancient Chalcedonians demonstrated a terrible lack of knowledge on the Julianist debate with St. Severus.  If they had access to those writings of St. Severus, they would be impressed with how sophisticated his belief are not just on the nature of Christ, but also on the will and energy.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 10:42:29 AM by minasoliman »
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Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #72 on: September 09, 2017, 10:50:21 AM »
There are some writings I think EOs did not have of OOs.  For instance, ancient Chalcedonians demonstrated a terrible lack of knowledge on the Julianist debate with St. Severus.  If they had access to those writings of St. Severus, they would be impressed with how sophisticated his belief are not just on the nature of Christ, but also on the will and energy.

That goes without saying, otherwise, no such problems such as Monotheletism or Monoenergism (EO problems) would have ever arised in such a way as they did, although there was much more stuff involved with that. There was ignorance from the Chalcedonian side not only in such sophisticated writings, but also in primary elements of faith in the writings of Severus of Antioch, visibly demonstrated by the anathemas against him for Nestorianism (Although he anathematized Chalcedon exactly because he thought it was such) and Eutychianism (With disregard to his debates with Julian and Sergius)
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #73 on: September 09, 2017, 12:11:41 PM »
The problem the Oriental Orthodox mainly and rightly recognize in the writings of Pope St. Leo is the Nestorian sounding way of expressing the distinction of natures in Christ. Around the time of the Council of Chalcedon, many Alexandrians of the time and still, the Oriental Orthodox Church use the word 'nature' to signify concrete reality, construct of existence - hypostasis, while others such as the Antiochians of that time and today's Eastern Orthodox define nature as a set of essential characteristics of concrete realities of the same kind and because the terms that were employed in theological discussions were flexible and used in various ways during the fifth and sixth centuries, saying that, for example, the human nature suffered in the cross (Tome of Leo) is problematic, because, it sounds as if by equating 'physis' with 'hypostasis' and saying that Christ is 'in two natures', there are two hypostases, centers of existence in Christ. So, the thing is, what does one mean when he says:
“...For each form does what is proper to it with the co-operation of the other; that is the Word performing what appertains to the Word, and the flesh carrying out what appertains to the flesh. One of them sparkles with miracles, the other succumbs to injuries.” (The Tome of Leo)
 “...The form of a slave by which the impassible Godhead fulfilled a pledge of mighty loving-kindness , is human weakness which was lifted up into the glory of the divine power.”
Without clarifying what one means with these "forms", there is much room for misinterpretation of what Pope Leo meant with that. Here's another one:
“...In our one Lord Jesus Christ, the true Son of God and man, the person of the Word and of the flesh is one, and both beings have their actions in common.” (From the letter to the Monks of Palestine)
Here, it is spoken of "both beings", as if two realities- the Word and the flesh. So it's very confusing stuff. Yet, elsewhere, Pope Leo says:
“...Whatever therefore Christ received in time, He received in virtue of His manhood, on which are conferred whatsoever it had not. For according to the power of the Word, all things that the Father has the Son also has indiscriminately, and what in the form of a slave He received from the Father, He also Himself gave in the form of the Father.”  (From the letter to the Monks of Palestine)
So that form of God in Christ Leo speaks of is 'the form of the Father'. Now, in the Trinity, since the three hypostases are distinct from each other, each person of the Holy Trinity is in each other not as one reality, as one hypostasis, but as in one divine ousia. So, when Christ says that he is in the Father, it is in regards to nature and substance that he says so (John 14:11,20 ; 10:38, etc...) Therefore, this 'form of the Father' is understood as manifestation of the divine power in accordance with which Christ's divinity is properly preserved. Similarly it is with the form of the slave that means human weakness. Yet, this isn't clear at all from the manner in which the Pope speaks. Furthermore:
“...The Only-begotten of the Most High Father entered on such a union with human humility, that, when He took the substance of our flesh and soul, He remained one and the same Son of God.” (Sermon On the Passion, XII)
 “...A Deity which, by the co-operation of the functions of true flesh, showed not only itself in Manhood, but also Manhood in itself; for the old, original wounds in man's nature could not be healed, except by the Word of God taking to Himself flesh from the Virgin's womb, whereby in one and the same Person flesh and the Word co-existed.” (On Lent, VIII)
“...In declaring the only-begotten Son of God to have been so born of the blessed Virgin's womb... without the reality of human flesh being united to the Word, he departs...” (Letter to Julian Bishop of Constantinople)
And:
“...True God and true man were combined to form one Lord.” (Sermon On the Feast of the Nativity, I)
“...You who truly is Son of man is also truly Son of the living God: You, I say, true in Godhead, true in flesh and one altogether” (Letter to Ephesus II)
Firstly, he speaks of Christ, the self-same person before the Incarnation, even so after the Incarnation and then he speaks of natures forming one person, as one Lord. This is really unclear, because one person somewhere signifies the self-same person and it is used as one reality elsewhere. Yet, this is the way Leo expressed his opinions...
Then again, the difference of the natures in Christ is in no way taken away from the union, because otherwise, why is this called the Incarnation? What is there to Christ's work of salvation if he is not both God and man? Of course there is difference in the natures' functions, since the godhead is impassible, manhood is an embodiment of passability, the godhead is invisible, in the flesh, God became visible and tangible, etc, etc...Yet, they are without separation, so that,
“...The power of His Godhead...was inseparable from His manhood under the veil of our weakness” (On the Feast of Nativity, II)
“...The Word of God appeared clothed in flesh, and That which had never been visible to human eyes began to be tangible to our hands as well.” (On the Feast of the Nativity, VI)
 “...While each substance had its own properties, there was no difference in the power of either.” (On the Feast of Epiphany, I)
“...The inviolable Word not being separated from the passible flesh, the Godhead may be understood as in all things partaker with the flesh and flesh with the Godhead.” (On Lent, VIII)
“...No sort of division ever arose between the Divine and the human substance, and through all the growth and changes of His body, the actions were of one Person the whole time.” (Letter to the Monks of Palestine)
“...Just as true manhood existed in His Godhead, so true Godhead existed in His Manhood.” (Homily on the Transfiguration)
And many others...

This was what I was trying to express in point, and you expressed it much more clearly. I did not want to suggest that the two natures are indeed acting like two different hypostases.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 12:12:12 PM by LivenotoneviL »
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline rakovsky

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #74 on: September 09, 2017, 12:16:36 PM »
Dear LivenotoneL
Here's my fundamental question:

I think the Oriental Orthodox have a problem in how Pope Leo the Great assigns unique roles to each aspect of the Nature of Christ (for example, how it was the humanity of Christ which felt the pain of the cross, and it was the Divinity of Christ which rose Lazarus from the dead). They see this as Nestorian in that it "divides up" the Person of Christ into two people.
Does Leo's Tome really put it in those terms, like "His humanity felt the pain of the cross"?

Isn't what Leo is doing is saying that Christ has both two natures and Leo shows this by matching up both kinds of Christ's experiences with the two kinds of natures? This would be like explaining that Christ suffered and died because he was human, had humanity, and still kept fully his human nature, not because of his immortal divine nature.


The ocean, infinite to men, and the worlds beyond it, are directed by the same ordinances of the Lord. ~ I Clement 20

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #75 on: September 09, 2017, 12:30:36 PM »
Here's my fundamental question:

I think the Oriental Orthodox have a problem in how Pope Leo the Great assigns unique roles to each aspect of the Nature of Christ (for example, how it was the humanity of Christ which felt the pain of the cross, and it was the Divinity of Christ which rose Lazarus from the dead). They see this as Nestorian in that it "divides up" the Person of Christ into two people.

However, I ask the question: What is the purpose of having two unique and distinct natures which are in union (as both Dyophysitism and Miaphysitism hold) if there is no difference in their functions? I mean, if both natures are equally capable of performing the same exact roles, can we really say that Christ has two natures? Isn't that the point of having two natures - because they contribute different aspects to the Person of Christ?

And I still don't see how such a view would be Nestorian from what I've studied so far - because in my years of Roman Catholic education and studying Holy Orthodoxy, I have not once thought that there were two "beings" in Christ.

I could be on tenuous ground here, but the bolded sounds like there's not really a full union between the two.  Sort of like they don't communicate, or there's at least a partial wall between the two.  And maybe that's right, or maybe it's not.  It strikes me as odd, though...to think that Christ felt pain in His physical body, yet his Divine nature did not comprehend it (or "feel" it).  Or that when Christ verbally called Lazarus from the tomb, his humanity had nothing to do with that resurrection.  And then if there is really some sort of separation to the point where one nature performs an action while the other nature sits on the sidelines, what do we say about theosis?  How could it ever be full, if the only way it is even possible is through the union of natures in the person of Christ?  The extent of that union would limit the extent of theosis, in other words (or so it seems to me).

I'm not a theologian....so I could be way off base (which, if I am, please correct me - I don't want to accidentally be a heretic), but in both miaphysitism and dyophysitism, the two natures are in complete union with each other, but the two natures aren't mixed together together.

Let me demonstrate my understanding of dyophysitism
 
Has anybody used Photoshop or GIMP before? I personally understand the natures of Christ by means of analogy to Photoshop or GIMP in terms of how I comprehend it.

I'll use images of GIMP for this instance.

https://image.ibb.co/koCRbv/1.png

I imagine that Christ's Nature can be kind of viewed as two separate layers of an image which form one image (Hypostasis)

Notice how there are two "layers" on the right.

Imagine the red layer is Christ's Divine Nature, and imagine the yellow layer as Christ's human nature.

The two layers are completely distinct, but in the main image itself they are in union with each other (I made the layers transparent).


What you cannot do is say that the layers are completely mixed together so that they form one layer (i.e., there is one mixture of a human nature and there is no distinction)
https://image.ibb.co/bFrV3a/2.png

Now let's imagine that Christ is wounded physically and He is affected (as indicated by the blue marks)

https://image.ibb.co/jhohGv/3.png

You'll notice that only the human nature is affected in the layers to the right, with the Divine nature being untouched. However, the Person of Christ as a whole is affected in the Hypostasis, both human and Divine. They "cooperate together" so to speak. One nature clearly affects the other, even if the experiences were of one nature and not the other.

This is the metaphor and image I've used in my head to understand Christ, and if I am incorrect, someone, PLEASE correct me. I really, really don't want to be a Nestorian heretic. PLEASE!
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 12:37:04 PM by LivenotoneviL »
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #76 on: September 09, 2017, 12:31:57 PM »
Dear LivenotoneL
Here's my fundamental question:

I think the Oriental Orthodox have a problem in how Pope Leo the Great assigns unique roles to each aspect of the Nature of Christ (for example, how it was the humanity of Christ which felt the pain of the cross, and it was the Divinity of Christ which rose Lazarus from the dead). They see this as Nestorian in that it "divides up" the Person of Christ into two people.
Does Leo's Tome really put it in those terms, like "His humanity felt the pain of the cross"?

Isn't what Leo is doing is saying that Christ has both two natures and Leo shows this by matching up both kinds of Christ's experiences with the two kinds of natures? This would be like explaining that Christ suffered and died because he was human, had humanity, and still kept fully his human nature, not because of his immortal divine nature.


"...For each form does what is proper to it with the co-operation of the other; that is the Word performing what appertains to the Word, and the flesh carrying out what appertains to the flesh. One of them sparkles with miracles, the other succumbs to injuries."

I didn't put it in the best of words; the two aren't separated, but each nature co-operated with each other.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 12:35:10 PM by LivenotoneviL »
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #77 on: September 09, 2017, 12:34:36 PM »
Although it wasn't exactly something like "His humanity felt the pain of the cross", Pope Leo writes in his famous Tome thus:
"...If therefore he (Eutyches) receives the Christian faith, and does not turn away his ears from the preaching of the Gospel: let him see what was the nature that hung pierced with nails on the wooden cross, and, when the side of the Crucified was opened by the soldier's spear, let him understand whence it was that blood and water flowed, that the Church of God might be watered from the font and from the cup..."

Yet, the clarification of this is not further down the Tome, but he explains what he means by this before the statement above:
"It is not part of the same nature to be moved to tears of pity for a dead friend, and when the stone that closed the four-days' grave was removed, to raise that same friend to life with a voice of command: or, to hang on the cross, and turning day to night, to make all the elements tremble: or, to be pierced with nails, and yet open the gates of paradise to the robber's faith: so it is not part of the same nature to say, I and the Father are one, and to say, the Father is greater than I.  For although in the Lord Jesus Christ God and man is one person, yet the source of the degradation, which is shared by both, is one, and the source of the glory, which is shared by both, is another. For His manhood, which is less than the Father, comes from our side: His Godhead, which is equal to the Father, comes from the Father."

So yeah, it is because tangibility and passability are proper to human nature that he may speak that way, although taken by themselves, saying that the human nature was hung pierced on the cross is really problematic and Nestorian sounding. Without being familiar with Leo, one can easily interpret him in many ways.
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #78 on: September 09, 2017, 12:41:47 PM »
Although it wasn't exactly something like "His humanity felt the pain of the cross", Pope Leo writes in his famous Tome thus:
"...If therefore he (Eutyches) receives the Christian faith, and does not turn away his ears from the preaching of the Gospel: let him see what was the nature that hung pierced with nails on the wooden cross, and, when the side of the Crucified was opened by the soldier's spear, let him understand whence it was that blood and water flowed, that the Church of God might be watered from the font and from the cup..."

Yet, the clarification of this is not further down the Tome, but he explains what he means by this before the statement above:
"It is not part of the same nature to be moved to tears of pity for a dead friend, and when the stone that closed the four-days' grave was removed, to raise that same friend to life with a voice of command: or, to hang on the cross, and turning day to night, to make all the elements tremble: or, to be pierced with nails, and yet open the gates of paradise to the robber's faith: so it is not part of the same nature to say, I and the Father are one, and to say, the Father is greater than I.  For although in the Lord Jesus Christ God and man is one person, yet the source of the degradation, which is shared by both, is one, and the source of the glory, which is shared by both, is another. For His manhood, which is less than the Father, comes from our side: His Godhead, which is equal to the Father, comes from the Father."

So yeah, it is because tangibility and passability are proper to human nature that he may speak that way, although taken by themselves, saying that the human nature was hung pierced on the cross is really problematic and Nestorian sounding. Without being familiar with Leo, one can easily interpret him in many ways.

I still want to find an answer to this - is the problem with Leo the Great for many Orientals the fact that there is an interpretation which says it was "just the human nature" alone that died on the cross, not both natures? Christ was impacted fully as a person being fully God and fully man, but I wonder how you can keep the natures distinct if both natures don't have unique properties to it - surely the source of feeling pain and suffering is the human nature, as God Himself in solely His Divine Nature couldn't experience physical pain or physical sensations, right?
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #79 on: September 09, 2017, 12:43:13 PM »
The two layers are completely distinct, but in the main image itself they are in union with each other (I made the layers transparent).

Although the great difference remains in natural characteristics, it is only essential, not existential, meaning that Christ doesn't have two hypostases, since the union with flesh endowed with soul is fully wholesome and a real compact of the form of God and the form of a slave results from the Incarnation as said from Leo:
“...The Word of God... with the purpose of delivering man from eternal death, became man: so bending Himself to take on Him our humility without decrease in His own majesty, that remaining what He was and assuming what He was not, He might unite the true form of a slave to that form in which He is equal to God the Father, and join both natures together by such a compact that the lower should not be swallowed up in its exaltation nor the higher impaired by its new associate.” (On the Feast of the Nativity, I)

Because the difference of natures is only essential and pertains to the natural properties, it is to be marked only in thinking, since in reality, divinity and humanity, God and man are one.
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #80 on: September 09, 2017, 12:48:47 PM »
The two layers are completely distinct, but in the main image itself they are in union with each other (I made the layers transparent).

Although the great difference remains in natural characteristics, it is only essential, not existential, meaning that Christ doesn't have two hypostases, since the union with flesh endowed with soul is fully wholesome and a real compact of the form of God and the form of a slave results from the Incarnation as said from Leo:
“...The Word of God... with the purpose of delivering man from eternal death, became man: so bending Himself to take on Him our humility without decrease in His own majesty, that remaining what He was and assuming what He was not, He might unite the true form of a slave to that form in which He is equal to God the Father, and join both natures together by such a compact that the lower should not be swallowed up in its exaltation nor the higher impaired by its new associate.” (On the Feast of the Nativity, I)

Because the difference of natures is only essential and pertains to the natural properties, it is to be marked only in thinking, since in reality, divinity and humanity, God and man are one.


I should elaborate that the image represents reality, in which the two layers cannot be separated. If you draw on the image itself, it affects both layers of the image, even if by means of natural properties (only one layer) one is affected, it affects both layers in the image as a whole. The image is "one" so to speak in the color of orange, which is both yellow and red.

I think the word "completely" is too strong

Or maybe I'm just a Nestorian from ignorance and need to be corrected. Is there anything wrong with this metaphor in terms of how I conceive this idea of the one image (or Hypostasis) of Christ? Is there anything problematic (from even a Miaphysite perspective?)

As my history teacher would say, I am just a "Sesame-Street kid" visual learner.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 12:58:33 PM by LivenotoneviL »
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Offline rakovsky

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #81 on: September 09, 2017, 12:54:35 PM »
Dear Ainnir,
Here's my fundamental question:

I think the Oriental Orthodox have a problem in how Pope Leo the Great assigns unique roles to each aspect of the Nature of Christ (for example, how it was the humanity of Christ which felt the pain of the cross, and it was the Divinity of Christ which rose Lazarus from the dead). They see this as Nestorian in that it "divides up" the Person of Christ into two people.

However, I ask the question: What is the purpose of having two unique and distinct natures which are in union (as both Dyophysitism and Miaphysitism hold) if there is no difference in their functions? I mean, if both natures are equally capable of performing the same exact roles, can we really say that Christ has two natures? Isn't that the point of having two natures - because they contribute different aspects to the Person of Christ?

And I still don't see how such a view would be Nestorian from what I've studied so far - because in my years of Roman Catholic education and studying Holy Orthodoxy, I have not once thought that there were two "beings" in Christ.

I could be on tenuous ground here, but the bolded sounds like there's not really a full union between the two.  Sort of like they don't communicate, or there's at least a partial wall between the two.  And maybe that's right, or maybe it's not. It strikes me as odd, though...to think that Christ felt pain in His physical body, yet his Divine nature did not comprehend it (or "feel" it). 
Do you think it is clearer when we say that Christ felt pain and died in accordance with his being human and his humanity, rather than because Christ was God and divine, having an undying divine nature?

One of the reasons theologians get into this is to explain how a person can be God, who is immortal, and yet die nonetheless. Wouldn't one answer be to assign of the person's mortal human experiences to his being human: his human qualities, humanity, and human nature? That is, to provide the answer: "Yes, a divine person felt pain and died, but it was because this person was also human, with a human nature, and his pain and death is a specific part of his being human, his humanity"?


You asked two questions:
Quote
1. And then if there is really some sort of separation to the point where one nature performs an action while the other nature sits on the sidelines, what do we say about theosis? 

2. How could it ever be full, if the only way it is even possible is through the union of natures in the person of Christ?  The extent of that union would limit the extent of theosis, in other words (or so it seems to me).
1. Chalcedon's Faith Statement says that the two natures are united inseparably. But the Tome, accepted at Chalcedon still says that some actions are specific to each nature. Miraculously resurrecting a human, for example, is a divine, miraculous action. Chalcedonians explain theosis, and how the two natures are related, through the hypostatic union, and the union of the two natures in one Person, Christ. And a believer performs union in the human-divine Christ through communion and salvation, so their own personal qualities become like divine ones. Believers are not God Himself through theosis, but rather become "God-like", or "like God".

2. Do regular humans' theosis not become 100% full in that we don't become God Himself, but remain human?
Anyway, if theosis is supposed to be full and humans become fully god-like, I don't see the extent of the union restricting the extent of theosis to less than full, as the two natures are fully in the hypostatic union of two natures in only one hypostasis and person.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 12:54:52 PM by rakovsky »
The ocean, infinite to men, and the worlds beyond it, are directed by the same ordinances of the Lord. ~ I Clement 20

Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #82 on: September 09, 2017, 12:59:06 PM »
I still want to find an answer to this - is the problem with Leo the Great for many Orientals the fact that there is an interpretation which says it was "just the human nature" alone that died on the cross, not both natures? Christ was impacted fully as a person being fully God and fully man, but I wonder how you can keep the natures distinct if both natures don't have unique properties to it - surely the source of feeling pain and suffering is the human nature, as God Himself in solely His Divine Nature couldn't experience physical pain or physical sensations, right?
It is never said that just the human nature died on the cross alone, not to even mention the fact that people die, not natures, also the Orientals fully recognize the unique properties pertaining to the natures of Christ, they just have their favorite way of speaking of mia physis and of two natures en theoria. This isn't a problem at all, since because, if as I said before, the difference of natures is essential and thus marked only in thinking (See the Fifth Ecumenical Council), one construct of existence of Christ, one compound reality and subsistence preserves its full integrity as the God-man as one and the self-same person. The natures simply signify what essential characteristics something possesses that are to be found the same in another kind.
Even St. Leo, with his problematic way of expressing himself properly, says that all the actions were of one person the whole time.  (Letter to the Monks of Palestine)
All of the properties of either nature belong to Christ, to Him (One). Properties are to be distinguished, but not to be separated, and since distinguishing natural properties is something proper to intellect, it is in there that we might elaborate how something is divine and how something is human. 
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #83 on: September 09, 2017, 01:27:23 PM »
I still want to find an answer to this - is the problem with Leo the Great for many Orientals the fact that there is an interpretation which says it was "just the human nature" alone that died on the cross, not both natures? Christ was impacted fully as a person being fully God and fully man, but I wonder how you can keep the natures distinct if both natures don't have unique properties to it - surely the source of feeling pain and suffering is the human nature, as God Himself in solely His Divine Nature couldn't experience physical pain or physical sensations, right?
It is never said that just the human nature died on the cross alone, not to even mention the fact that people die, not natures, also the Orientals fully recognize the unique properties pertaining to the natures of Christ, they just have their favorite way of speaking of mia physis and of two natures en theoria. This isn't a problem at all, since because, if as I said before, the difference of natures is essential and thus marked only in thinking (See the Fifth Ecumenical Council), one construct of existence of Christ, one compound reality and subsistence preserves its full integrity as the God-man as one and the self-same person. The natures simply signify what essential characteristics something possesses that are to be found the same in another kind.
Even St. Leo, with his problematic way of expressing himself properly, says that all the actions were of one person the whole time.  (Letter to the Monks of Palestine)
All of the properties of either nature belong to Christ, to Him (One). Properties are to be distinguished, but not to be separated, and since distinguishing natural properties is something proper to intellect, it is in there that we might elaborate how something is divine and how something is human.

The idea of only the man dying would be Nestorian, and would make no sense in the context of Christ being the "ultimate sacrifice."

I think a problem however as it pertains to reunion would be the very Monophysite influenced writings of some of their saints (for example, Pope Dioscorus who is alleged to have written that it is blasphemy to say Christ had human blood.), which as such has had one could assume an influence on their theology.
Not to mention culture.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 01:29:38 PM by LivenotoneviL »
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #84 on: September 09, 2017, 01:41:01 PM »
1. Chalcedon's Faith Statement says that the two natures are united inseparably. But the Tome, accepted at Chalcedon still says that some actions are specific to each nature. Miraculously resurrecting a human, for example, is a divine, miraculous action. Chalcedonians explain theosis, and how the two natures are related, through the hypostatic union, and the union of the two natures in one Person, Christ. And a believer performs union in the human-divine Christ through communion and salvation, so their own personal qualities become like divine ones. Believers are not God Himself through theosis, but rather become "God-like", or "like God".

2. Do regular humans' theosis not become 100% full in that we don't become God Himself, but remain human?
Anyway, if theosis is supposed to be full and humans become fully god-like, I don't see the extent of the union restricting the extent of theosis to less than full, as the two natures are fully in the hypostatic union of two natures in only one hypostasis and person.

More than action being specific to each nature, it is more like every action being proper to its corresponding nature or rather, manifestation of power of nature. In this way, one doesn't make it look like the word 'specific' limits the power of the two natures and their union in the Incarnation.

Being God the Word Incarnate, Christ still retains the fullness of divinity in addition to the newly assumed human nature. Just as the Word interpenetrates the flesh and gives to it in virtue of the personal, hypostatic union divine grace and resurrection of the glorious image and likeness of God unto man, so in baptism, just as the Word veiled himself with his flesh, we wear ourselves with such divine grace-filled flesh. From Leo again:
“...The flesh of Christ is the veil of the Word, wherewith every one is clothed who confesses Him unreservedly.” (Public Letter to Constantinople)
After that, just as the Word deified the flesh without destroying its proper natural abilities, so in our case, we work towards deification without magic or total destruction, but by assuming divine grace, and just as Christ raised our nature to the highest, so are we, partakers by nature of his humanity, partakers of the divine nature with the uncreated grace and partakers of the reality of Christ himself, so that as God, he is all in all. Leo:
“...The Word...becoming flesh so united the Divine Nature with the human ...by lowering His Nature to the uttermost has raised our nature to the highest.” (On the Feast of the Apostle Peter and Paul)
“...While each substance retained its own properties, God neither held aloof from the suffering of His body nor was made passible by the flesh, because the Godhead which was in the Sufferer did not actually suffer.” (On the Passion XVII)
“For He is at once both eternal from His Father and temporal from His mother, inviolable in His strength, passible in our weakness: in the Triune Godhead, of one and the same substance with the Father and the Holy Spirit, but in taking Manhood on Himself, not of one substance but of one and the same person,so that He was at once rich in poverty, almighty in submission, impassible in punishment, immortal in death.” (Letter to Julian Bishop of Constantinople)

"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #85 on: September 09, 2017, 01:50:25 PM »
I think a problem however as it pertains to reunion would be the very Monophysite influenced writings of some of their saints (for example, Pope Dioscorus who is alleged to have written that it is blasphemy to say Christ had human blood.), which as such has had one could assume an influence on their theology.
Not to mention culture.

Although I doubt such statements have really come from Pope Dioscorus, the Incarnation, being the ultimate paradox allows that you may say anything crazy and still be right. For example:
As per communicato idiomatum, indeed, Christ doesn't have human blood, but that is in his divinity, not in his flesh (Again, it is just assigning roles of actions in thinking only to its proper natures that could be reasonable speaking, not actual Nestorianism here), for human blood, although it has become the property of a divine self-same person, is still proper to human nature when nature is understood in its essential way. For although Christ is one subsistence, if one wants, many crazy sounding things may be said and you are still right. Since Christ is a fully human person and he still fills all things in the universe as per his divine energies, being God, it could be said that the man Jesus fills everything in existence or that the man Jesus has created the first man on earth, and many stuff like this.

What about culture, though? I don't think there is anything wrong with that...
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #86 on: September 09, 2017, 01:52:40 PM »
I think a problem however as it pertains to reunion would be the very Monophysite influenced writings of some of their saints (for example, Pope Dioscorus who is alleged to have written that it is blasphemy to say Christ had human blood.), which as such has had one could assume an influence on their theology.
Not to mention culture.

Although I doubt such statements have really come from Pope Dioscorus, the Incarnation, being the ultimate paradox allows that you may say anything crazy and still be right. For example:
As per communicato idiomatum, indeed, Christ doesn't have human blood, but that is in his divinity, not in his flesh (Again, it is just assigning roles of actions in thinking only to its proper natures that could be reasonable speaking, not actual Nestorianism here), for human blood, although it has become the property of a divine self-same person, is still proper to human nature when nature is understood in its essential way. For although Christ is one subsistence, if one wants, many crazy sounding things may be said and you are still right. Since Christ is a fully human person and he still fills all things in the universe as per his divine energies, being God, it could be said that the man Jesus fills everything in existence or that the man Jesus has created the first man on earth, and many stuff like this.

What about culture, though? I don't think there is anything wrong with that...


Humans...and maybe bread choice.
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #87 on: September 09, 2017, 02:47:01 PM »
I think a problem however as it pertains to reunion would be the very Monophysite influenced writings of some of their saints (for example, Pope Dioscorus who is alleged to have written that it is blasphemy to say Christ had human blood.), which as such has had one could assume an influence on their theology.
Not to mention culture.

Although I doubt such statements have really come from Pope Dioscorus, the Incarnation, being the ultimate paradox allows that you may say anything crazy and still be right. For example:
As per communicato idiomatum, indeed, Christ doesn't have human blood, but that is in his divinity, not in his flesh (Again, it is just assigning roles of actions in thinking only to its proper natures that could be reasonable speaking, not actual Nestorianism here), for human blood, although it has become the property of a divine self-same person, is still proper to human nature when nature is understood in its essential way. For although Christ is one subsistence, if one wants, many crazy sounding things may be said and you are still right. Since Christ is a fully human person and he still fills all things in the universe as per his divine energies, being God, it could be said that the man Jesus fills everything in existence or that the man Jesus has created the first man on earth, and many stuff like this.

What about culture, though? I don't think there is anything wrong with that...

Another way to approach this statement could be that since blood is a symbol of human life in the Old Testament, at the Incarnation, the human blood that became God the Word's property is not human blood, merely, that is, but it was deified and though still human, it is sanctified by divine uncreated grace and light, thus deifying the life of the fallen human up until then and making his blood salvific, gaining divine properties while human essence remains what it is.
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26

Offline LivenotoneviL

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #88 on: September 09, 2017, 03:06:54 PM »
I think a problem however as it pertains to reunion would be the very Monophysite influenced writings of some of their saints (for example, Pope Dioscorus who is alleged to have written that it is blasphemy to say Christ had human blood.), which as such has had one could assume an influence on their theology.
Not to mention culture.

Although I doubt such statements have really come from Pope Dioscorus, the Incarnation, being the ultimate paradox allows that you may say anything crazy and still be right. For example:
As per communicato idiomatum, indeed, Christ doesn't have human blood, but that is in his divinity, not in his flesh (Again, it is just assigning roles of actions in thinking only to its proper natures that could be reasonable speaking, not actual Nestorianism here), for human blood, although it has become the property of a divine self-same person, is still proper to human nature when nature is understood in its essential way. For although Christ is one subsistence, if one wants, many crazy sounding things may be said and you are still right. Since Christ is a fully human person and he still fills all things in the universe as per his divine energies, being God, it could be said that the man Jesus fills everything in existence or that the man Jesus has created the first man on earth, and many stuff like this.

What about culture, though? I don't think there is anything wrong with that...

Another way to approach this statement could be that since blood is a symbol of human life in the Old Testament, at the Incarnation, the human blood that became God the Word's property is not human blood, merely, that is, but it was deified and though still human, it is sanctified by divine uncreated grace and light, thus deifying the life of the fallen human up until then and making his blood salvific, gaining divine properties while human essence remains what it is.

The quote in question is from Saint Emperor Justinian, who claimed that Dioscorus said in a letter from Gangros to Alexandria:

"Unless the blood of Christ is by nature the blood of God and not of man, how will it differ from the blood of he-goats, young bulls, and heifers? These are earthly and corruptible, and the blood of men is also earthly and corruptible by nature.
And you have to be very careful here, which is why I don't even want to draw connections between the two natures. But as for the blood of Christ, we will never say it belongs to one of those who is [earthly and corruptible] by nature."

If this is a true letter, this is obvious heresy. However, we here have to trust Justinian.

I also would warn you about drawing connections between the two natures. You might be right, but I want to avoid discussing this, because a similar train of thought is what led Sergei Bulgakov to believe that Mary's human nature was deified by the presence of God in her womb, a condemned heresy.

Also, don't go Transubstantiation on us!
« Last Edit: September 09, 2017, 03:07:39 PM by LivenotoneviL »
"Our wickedness shall not overpower the unspeakable goodness and mercy of God; our dullness shall not overpower God's wisdom, nor our infirmity God's omnipotence."
-Saint John of Kronstadt

Offline andi.zhgaba3

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Re: Chalcedon...
« Reply #89 on: September 09, 2017, 03:50:06 PM »
I think a problem however as it pertains to reunion would be the very Monophysite influenced writings of some of their saints (for example, Pope Dioscorus who is alleged to have written that it is blasphemy to say Christ had human blood.), which as such has had one could assume an influence on their theology.
Not to mention culture.

Although I doubt such statements have really come from Pope Dioscorus, the Incarnation, being the ultimate paradox allows that you may say anything crazy and still be right. For example:
As per communicato idiomatum, indeed, Christ doesn't have human blood, but that is in his divinity, not in his flesh (Again, it is just assigning roles of actions in thinking only to its proper natures that could be reasonable speaking, not actual Nestorianism here), for human blood, although it has become the property of a divine self-same person, is still proper to human nature when nature is understood in its essential way. For although Christ is one subsistence, if one wants, many crazy sounding things may be said and you are still right. Since Christ is a fully human person and he still fills all things in the universe as per his divine energies, being God, it could be said that the man Jesus fills everything in existence or that the man Jesus has created the first man on earth, and many stuff like this.

What about culture, though? I don't think there is anything wrong with that...

Another way to approach this statement could be that since blood is a symbol of human life in the Old Testament, at the Incarnation, the human blood that became God the Word's property is not human blood, merely, that is, but it was deified and though still human, it is sanctified by divine uncreated grace and light, thus deifying the life of the fallen human up until then and making his blood salvific, gaining divine properties while human essence remains what it is.

The quote in question is from Saint Emperor Justinian, who claimed that Dioscorus said in a letter from Gangros to Alexandria:

"Unless the blood of Christ is by nature the blood of God and not of man, how will it differ from the blood of he-goats, young bulls, and heifers? These are earthly and corruptible, and the blood of men is also earthly and corruptible by nature.
And you have to be very careful here, which is why I don't even want to draw connections between the two natures. But as for the blood of Christ, we will never say it belongs to one of those who is [earthly and corruptible] by nature."

If this is a true letter, this is obvious heresy. However, we here have to trust Justinian.

I also would warn you about drawing connections between the two natures. You might be right, but I want to avoid discussing this, because a similar train of thought is what led Sergei Bulgakov to believe that Mary's human nature was deified by the presence of God in her womb, a condemned heresy.

Also, don't go Transubstantiation on us!

Sorry, but I don't think there is anything heretical about this, as long as understood in its proper way. As I said before, without thoroughly knowing Leo's way of expression and thinking, one can easily take him for a heretic. Even so it is with about anyone who embodies a complex, but beautifully expressed theology. Now, taking it part by part:

1. "...Unless the blood of Christ is by nature the blood of God and not of man, how will it differ from the blood of he-goats, young bulls, and heifers? These are earthly and corruptible, and the blood of men is also earthly and corruptible by nature..." As we have said, Christ is consubstantial with us in his humanity, it's just that ever since the first moment of the Incarnation, his humanity, his flesh and his soul are deified, not by change or mutation or transubstantiation, but by grace and glory. He is not merely a human, a mere man, even a Nestorian can tell you this. Christ is the self-same person just as before the Incarnation, even so after it, meaning that he is still the second person of the Holy Trinity, God the Word. That means that the flesh endowed with soul assumed in the Incarnation is fully God's property, so in virtue of this it is said that Christ's blood is God's blood and not merely an earthly blood. Simply put in words, he is just no longer only God, but fully God and fully man, perfect God and perfect man, but hat doesn't take his divinity away. Even the scriptures say:
"The first man was of the dust of the earth; the second man from heaven." (1 Corinthians 15:47)
2. "...And you have to be very careful here, which is why I don't even want to draw connections between the two natures." Nothing wrong here, and indeed, one has to be really careful with such matters.
3. "...But as for the blood of Christ, we will never say it belongs to one of those who is [earthly and corruptible] by nature." It's the same thing again, God the Word is by nature divine, since that is the nature he has eternally belonged to. In his divinity, God doesn't have blood, but rather the person and the subsistence of God that has become the subsistence of flesh has blood and that this is in his flesh, in his humanity. Yet pay attention when Pope Dioscorus says "it belongs to one of those who is..." so that he is not a mere sacrifice like those of the Old Testament. Plain and simple. I don't see heresy here, unless you want to see it purposefully, in healthy ignorance or in wickedness, otherwise I would dare say.

As for the transubstantiation thing, we are not the Roman Catholic, so please...
"God created man to be immortal and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Death entered the universe only through the devil’s envy." Wisdom 2:23-24

"For God made not death: nor has he pleasure in the destruction of the living." Wisdom 1:13

"For you love all the things that are and hate nothing which you have made: for never would you have made any thing if you had hated it." Wisdom 11:24

"You spare all things, for they are yours, O Lord and lover of life." Wisdom 11:26