On the Self-Defense thread, Anastasios said this:
"Now if he does it to save someone else, this is noble, but the fact still remains that he took a life.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š Orthodox canons don't tend to take the rightness or wrongness of any given killing into account because regardless of whether it was right or wrong it still causes a change ontologically.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š You can not be guilty of something but still it will effect you; so if I take a life even for a good reason I have still ended a life and this will effect me.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š For instance, many people who have killed in self-defense still have nightmares about what happened due to the psychic changes.
Also, there is the question of scandal; if someone has killed it might cause scandal to let him be a priest.
The Byzantines would make people in their army do penance after killing someone in war.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š Now interestingly enough St Basil gives an exception for killing in war as far as if someone can become a priest afterwards.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š Perhaps this is due to the lack of choice involved.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š But regardless of whether killing in war is an impediment, the fact remains that any taking of life is to be followed by penance because of the effect and change this causes.ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š Whether what one did was justifiable or not doesn't seem to be taken into account in Orthodox canons."
An interesting thought came into my mind about this part though: "But regardless of whether killing in war is an impediment, the fact remains that any taking of life is to be followed by penance because of the effect and change this causes."ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š Is the penance assigned so much as to be a punishment for a sin?ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š Or is it to help strengthen a person in Christ during a possibly very difficult time (both mentally and spiritually)?ÃƒÆ’Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ãƒâ€š
(Please, no debating on this one