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Author Topic: Moscow's First Gay Pride Parade Disrupted by Police and Hecklers  (Read 40669 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: May 29, 2006, 05:01:10 AM »

Moscow's First Gay Pride Parade Disrupted by Police and Hecklers

By Peter Finn
Washington Post Foreign Service
Sunday, May 28, 2006; A16

MOSCOW, May 27 -- Riot police broke up an attempt by gays and lesbians to stage Moscow's first gay pride parade Saturday. Gay activists who attempted to lay flowers near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier outside the Kremlin wall and then assemble across from city hall were heckled and assaulted by skinheads, Orthodox Christians and radical nationalists.

Police said they had arrested about 120 people, both supporters and opponents of the parade. Gay activists were dragged away by riot police when they began speaking to reporters, but opponents of the parade, including a nationalist member of parliament, were allowed to speak and chant, "Moscow is not Sodom."

Several international activists and politicians traveled to Moscow in a show of support for Moscow's gays and lesbians. Volker Beck, a member of the German Parliament from the Green Party, marched with the group and was struck in the face by skinheads outside city hall. He was briefly detained after the incident. A Canadian journalist was also assaulted by opponents of the parade, who threw smoke bombs and eggs before police moved in to disperse them.

"Lesbians and gays have to cope with major problems in Russia," Beck said at a news conference earlier in the day. "There is a massive threat of violence, and it is also frightening that there is no clear support from the state for the rights of lesbian and gay citizens. On the contrary, the mayor of Moscow deprives people who advocate tolerance and equal rights of the freedom to demonstrate."

The city had banned the parade on the grounds that it was anathema to the values of most residents and therefore presented a threat of violence. A city court upheld the ban Friday.

Mayor Yuri Luzhkov said in a radio interview Friday that a gay parade "may be acceptable for some kind of progressive, in some sense, countries in the West, but it is absolutely unacceptable for Moscow, for Russia."

He added: "As long as I am mayor, we will not permit these parades to be conducted."

Homosexuality was decriminalized in Russia in 1993, but the gay community in Moscow remains largely underground. Some gay activists had objected to the parade, which was the culmination of a gay pride festival, saying it was likely to provoke a backlash that could damage efforts to build tolerance.

Other activists, backed by international supporters from the United States and Western Europe, decided to go ahead with the demonstration. Unable to march legally, they decided to place flowers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier on Saturday afternoon but to act as individual citizens to avoid being charged with staging an illegal protest.

A phalanx of riot police sealed off Alexander's Garden where the tomb is located. Women singing hymns and skinheads jostled with the several dozen gay activists when they arrived.

Nikolai Alexeyev, a leading gay rights activist, was arrested at the monument. "This is a great victory, an absolute victory -- look at what's happening," he shouted as he was taken away.

After the marchers were prevented from reaching the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, a small group of activists followed by an even larger crowd of reporters made their way to a square across from city hall where their opponents had already assembled.

"We are going to clean ourselves of the dirt of the last 15 years," said Nikolai Kuryanovic, a member of parliament for the nationalist Liberal Democratic Party of Russia, speaking at the foot of a monument to Yuri Dolgoruky, the founder of Moscow. "This provocation failed."

Riot police looked on as Kuryanovic spoke, but moved in as soon as Yevgenia Debryanskaya, a leading lesbian activist, began to speak to reporters just in front of Kuryanovic. She was dragged away.

Police also stood by as skinheads crowded around Beck and Scott Long of U.S.-based Human Rights Watch, who had unfurled a rainbow flag.

"The police were encouraging the skinheads," Long said. "It was disturbing but not surprising. Luzhkov spent months encouraging violence by his public homophobia."
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« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2006, 05:10:25 AM »

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Mayor Yuri Luzhkov said in a radio interview Friday that a gay parade "may be acceptable for some kind of progressive, in some sense, countries in the West, but it is absolutely unacceptable for Moscow, for Russia."

Kudos to the mayor and the Orthodox Christians that took to the streets to protests against the perverts bent on perverting yet another society any further. When the 'straights' take to the streets to profess their love for each and flaunt their sexuality in the public sphere, then at that point the gays may have a point...Until then lets keep it in the closet and away from the rest of us normal people.
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« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2006, 06:24:40 AM »

When the 'straights' take to the streets to profess their love for each other
Shouldn't a Christian not only be professing their Love, but actually practicing it?
A few weeks ago, I was stopped in the street by a young man with a guitar strapped to his back and a handful of pamphlets, who greeted me and invited me to a Bible Study. My first instinct was to walk on and pretend I didn't hear. But then, for some strange reason, I noticed that my Baptisimal Cross was hanging out of my shirt; and I thought to myself: "What if this young man saw it? What will he think of those who wear Crosses around their necks if they rudely ignore him?" So I stopped and chatted. At first he seemed eager to get me to come to his Bible Study, but as we talked about it and I explained that I was an Orthodox Christian, and what that meant to me, he became more relaxed about his insistence that I come to Bible Study, and we talked about Christianity. The conversation turned to the subject of "how do we know we are Christians?" and I was expecting him to say something like being "born again" or "saved", but he didn't. Instead, he pulled his guitar around to the front and started to sing a hymn! I can't remember the verses, but the Chorus stuck in my mind:
"And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love,
And they'll know we are Christians by our love"
He thanked me for stopping to chat, and I thanked him for surprising me and my expectations.
And his song got me thinking about Our Lord's words: "By this, all men shall know that you are my disciples, that you Love one another."
The evidence- (the only evidence worth anything not only to the world, but to Christ as well)- that we are Orthodox Christians, and that Christ dwells in us is our Love. A baptisimal certificate means nothing. During the Nazi occupation of Greece, Archbishop Damaskinos of Athens ordered all the clergy of the Church of Greece to issue Baptisimal Certificates to any Greek Jew to help them escape the Holocaust. So what showed true Christianity and discipleship of Christ- was it the Baptisimal Certificate or was it the Love which knew when to break the rules to save a fellow human being?
If Orthodox Christians are seen to have not only the same goals as neo-nazi fascist thugs, but the same techniques as them for spreading their beliefs, then where is the evidence that Christ is in them, and that they are His followers?

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« Reply #3 on: May 29, 2006, 11:29:51 AM »

Instead, he pulled his guitar around to the front and started to sing a hymn! I can't remember the verses, but the Chorus stuck in my mind:
"And they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love,
And they'll know we are Christians by our love"
   



We are one in the spirit, we are one in the Lord (2x)
And we pray that our unity will one day be restored,

(Chorus)

We will walk with each other, we will walk hand in hand (2x)
And together we'll spread the news that God is in our land,

(Chorus)

We will work with each other, we will work side by side (2x)
And we'll guard each man's dignity and save each man's pride,

(Chorus)

All praise to the Father, from whom all things come,
And all praise to Christ Jesus, His only Son,
And all praise to the Spirit Who makes us One,

(Chorus)

- that's the best of my recollection
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« Reply #4 on: May 29, 2006, 12:45:55 PM »

Kudos to the mayor and the Orthodox Christians that took to the streets to protests against the perverts bent on perverting yet another society any further. When the 'straights' take to the streets to profess their love for each and flaunt their sexuality in the public sphere, then at that point the gays may have a point...Until then lets keep it in the closet and away from the rest of us normal people.

As much as I think the 'parade' is horrible, they (authorities, etc.) could have taken a much more legal and dispassionate approach.  They could have prohibited the event and then arrested the participants for obstructing traffic and other things.  I can't support Orthodox Christians assaulting people in a civil non-military setting (not to say I'm happy about a military context either).
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« Reply #5 on: May 29, 2006, 02:59:28 PM »

I guess I need to work on being a better Christian then. I find it hard to have passion and sympathy for those that are willingly parading their sinful lifestyle in the streets when they know full well they would get a reaction out of people. It's like the KKK marching down the street in an African American neighborhood. I don't understand why they would want to change society when they are just as safe as heterosexuals practicing their lifestyle as they see fit. It's one thing to do it, but another to actually go out in the streets and shove it in people's faces. I believe in turning the other cheek, but at some point when you are being run over you have to say enough is enough. Maybe the good people of Moscow don't want their city to turn into another San Francisco, so why are they in the wrong when they disapprove of something they find abhorrent?
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« Reply #6 on: May 29, 2006, 03:05:56 PM »

To protest quietly is one thing, but to join in with a mob of nationlists in the spirit suggested by the reports appears anything but Christian. Reminds of the pro-life clergyman carrying a placard with the words, "God hates faggots". I was taught He hated sin, but faggots? Served with mushy peas they're lovely!
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« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2006, 03:29:17 PM »

Happened in Belgrade's first and -to date only gay parade- a few years ago. They set back gay activist plans back to medieval times. Actually, I have no problem with Gay parades, aslong as long as we get our Straight parades. Hell, they even have their own Gay and Lesbian Professional Soccer League in the US. Isn't that discrimination?
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« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2006, 03:58:36 PM »

Straight?

Homosexuals appear to use this to refer to heterosexuals. Criminals use it to refer to the law abiding. Why use euphemisms when more exact words exist?

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« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2006, 02:15:16 AM »

Kudos to the mayor and the Orthodox Christians that took to the streets to protests against the perverts bent on perverting yet another society any further. When the 'straights' take to the streets to profess their love for each and flaunt their sexuality in the public sphere, then at that point the gays may have a point...Until then lets keep it in the closet and away from the rest of us normal people.

Really.  You like seeing Orthodox Christians in the mix with "skinheads...and nationalists"?

Clearly homosexuality is a sin, but isn't violent opposition to a gay parade just as bad?  Like ozgeorge basically said, shouldn't the way to reach out be through love?  Am I the only one who finds it disturbing that Orthodox Christians are amoung extremist bigots? 
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« Reply #10 on: May 31, 2006, 08:47:19 AM »

ÂÂ  Am I the only one who finds it disturbing that Orthodox Christians are amoung extremist bigots?ÂÂ  

No. You're not the only one.
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« Reply #11 on: May 31, 2006, 04:18:30 PM »

Straight?

Homosexuals appear to use this to refer to heterosexuals. Criminals use it to refer to the law abiding. Why use euphemisms when more exact words exist?

If your referring to me, heres why. Do they call it the Homosexual Parade or Gay parade? Hence If it did exist, I dont think it would be called the heterosexual parade.
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« Reply #12 on: May 31, 2006, 05:02:58 PM »

No, not necessarily on anyones' case, just dislike the pirating by groups of perfectly good words because they are more comfortable being called this or that, and then allocating those outside their group a label of the groups' chosing.

Sorry if you felt I was getting at you, that was not my intention
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« Reply #13 on: June 01, 2006, 12:20:36 AM »

Quote
Clearly homosexuality is a sin, but isn't violent opposition to a gay parade just as bad?  Like ozgeorge basically said, shouldn't the way to reach out be through love?  Am I the only one who finds it disturbing that Orthodox Christians are amoung extremist bigots?

Well, I disagree with violence of course...The better course would be to actually outlaw any such public displays of people flaunting their sexuality in the public sphere if clearly the majority are that concerned about it. I'm kind of miffed why any person would want to do such a thing in the first place seeing that it should be something that is kept private. It's hard to believe that these people weren't aware of the dangerous situation they were getting themselves into; kinda like being naive enough to throw stones at a hornets nest and expecting nothing to happen.
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« Reply #14 on: June 01, 2006, 01:46:57 AM »

So, then do you also disagree with the civil liberties (such as the march on Washington) back during Martin Luther King's time?  Obivously, then, "the majority" was "concerned about it".

My point is, if we were to start outlawing "such public displays of people flauting their sexuality", where do we draw the line for other things?
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« Reply #15 on: June 01, 2006, 02:29:29 AM »

Quote
So, then do you also disagree with the civil liberties (such as the march on Washington) back during Martin Luther King's time?  Obivously, then, "the majority" was "concerned about it".

My point is, if we were to start outlawing "such public displays of people flauting their sexuality", where do we draw the line for other things?


Bad comparison, it has nothing to do with civil rights. I don't see the connection between being discriminated against for being born with the wrong skin color as compared to those that choose to engage in a dangerous alternative lifestyle putting your own health at risk. I have heard that many in the black community are tired of the gays using such silly comparisons that have no merit.








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« Reply #16 on: June 01, 2006, 03:05:34 AM »

Whether or not you find the comparison worthy, my point still stands that we walk on a fine line if we begin to censor people who are doing something relatively harmless just because we consider what they are parading for to be sinful.  Then again, it is Moscow, and not America.
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« Reply #17 on: June 01, 2006, 03:06:45 AM »

And I might add, the whole health risk thing is really over-dramatized.  The number one growing group of people with AIDS is white, heterosexual females.  Better get out my bubble, aye?
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« Reply #18 on: June 01, 2006, 10:09:46 AM »

As much as I think the 'parade' is horrible, they (authorities, etc.) could have taken a much more legal and dispassionate approach.ÂÂ  They could have prohibited the event and then arrested the participants for obstructing traffic and other things.ÂÂ  I can't support Orthodox Christians assaulting people in a civil non-military setting (not to say I'm happy about a military context either).
The authorities did prohibit the event. 
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« Reply #19 on: June 01, 2006, 01:09:55 PM »

The authorities did prohibit the event.ÂÂ  

If they knew it was going to take place anyways, then they should have been on hand to arrest those that chose to participate regardless.  Still, shame on those that were there to protest and used violent means who were not authority figures.
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« Reply #20 on: June 01, 2006, 05:27:30 PM »

"Am I the only one who finds it disturbing that Orthodox Christians are amoung extremist bigots?"

I find it deeply disturbing. Reaching out through love does not have to mean that you condone the sin. However, what really bugs me is that many Christians seem to think that homosexuality is somehow a worse sin than others. Of course, some of the attention is the result of a more liberal society, but at times I sense something else in the indignation. Some might think I am taking things too far here, but if we aren't careful, we might get stuck doing everything but look for the what-do-you-call-it in our own eyes.
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« Reply #21 on: June 01, 2006, 05:39:04 PM »

If they knew it was going to take place anyways, then they should have been on hand to arrest those that chose to participate regardless.ÂÂ  Still, shame on those that were there to protest and used violent means who were not authority figures.

So if they were authority figures, it would have been fine for you?
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« Reply #22 on: June 01, 2006, 05:41:53 PM »

So, then do you also disagree with the civil liberties (such as the march on Washington) back during Martin Luther King's time?ÂÂ  Obivously, then, "the majority" was "concerned about it".

My point is, if we were to start outlawing "such public displays of people flauting their sexuality", where do we draw the line for other things?
The homosexuals in Russia have their civil liberties, they are free to live in sin.  What they want is to have their cake and eat it.  They want to declare their lifestyle normal, and the next logical step is for them to then promote (ie flaunt) their lifestyle publicly.  The diseases of the west are gradually infecting the east.  All people want is rights, and noone wants any responsiblities.  A political party was formed in Holland yesterday which wants to legalise paedophilia for crying out loud.
Im quite dissapointed, but not really surprised, that the first reaction of many Christians here is not to be shocked that there was an attempt to hold an illegal celebration of degeneracy in the capital of Holy Russia, but to get self-righteous about how the protestors should have acted.  Needless to say, violence is not the answer, but the fact that a few people got slapped around is secondary to the significance of the struggle we are facing, in trying to prevent Orthodox Slav countries from succumbing to the illnesses of the secular west. ÂÂ
I understand that in America degeneracy such as pornography, adultery etc is passed off as normal, all in the name of freedom, and rights, if you Americans refuse to protest against it then so be it.  But in countries like Russia, Orthodox are not afraid of mobilising to counter the threat faced, instead of taking some morally superior highground, you should be supporting the protestors.  Those that assaulted the marchers were skinheads in any case, so do not be quick to condemn the believers.
By the sounds of it some of you are trying to justify a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah:

They were not ashamed to own it, and to prosecute their design by force and arms. The practice would have been bad enough if it had been carried on by intrigue and wheedling; but they proclaimed war with virtue, and bade open defiance to it. Hence daring sinners are said to declare their sin as Sodom, Isa. 3:9. Note, Those that have become impudent in sin generally prove impenitent in sin; and it will be their ruin. Those have hard hearts indeed that sin with a high hand, Jer. 6:15.

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« Reply #23 on: June 01, 2006, 07:29:46 PM »

Couple of observations:

The practice of unprotected anal sex is not something to be characterized as an "overblown health risk", especially when coupled with frequent changes of sexual partner - sometimes extremely frequent as in the activity known as warehousing.

The parades are desperately provocative and may present in some countries real challenges in terms of public offence leading to serious disorder. I agree however it is difficult to know how one might draw a line. The tendency though of certain western powers to try and 'bully' other nations into going along with their own rather permissive attitudes to such provocative behaviour is unsettling too, I opine.
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« Reply #24 on: June 01, 2006, 08:28:54 PM »

So if they were authority figures, it would have been fine for you?

Not really - didn't mean to imply it, but don't the police sometimes HAVE to use physical means to stop something?
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« Reply #25 on: June 01, 2006, 08:57:56 PM »

This is my first post here, so please forgive me for wading right into a controversial subject...

Clearly violence is wrong, but an appeal to the authorities to step in and enforce the will of the majority misses the mark as well.  Remember our persecuted brothers in the Middle East and around the world before we talk about the 'will of the majority.'  Surely the majority in many Islamic countries would not mind further persecution of Orthodox Christians...

The better response seems to me to be prayer and repentance for our own sins.  Try to set an example to help non-Orthodox see that there is a better way.  Attempting to use the government (or worse, skinheads) to enforce our positions reveals weakness rather than strength, IMO.
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« Reply #26 on: June 01, 2006, 09:45:21 PM »

This is my first post here, so please forgive me for wading right into a controversial subject...

welcome to the forum and enjoyÂÂ  Smiley
 
Quote
The better response seems to me to be prayer and repentance for our own sins.ÂÂ  Try to set an example to help non-Orthodox see that there is a better way.ÂÂ  Attempting to use the government (or worse, skinheads) to enforce our positions reveals weakness rather than strength, IMO.

Do you really think that by standing by and watching them impose their sins onto others (the "its ok to be Gay", theyre spreading sodomy), instead of formal confrontation will do any better?

Skinheads personally, are even worse. When I see a skinhead I have trouble holding myself back from making a comment about their stupid ideology and theories..

Forgive my sins,

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« Reply #27 on: June 01, 2006, 11:10:52 PM »

Thanks for the welcome, Sloga   Smiley
Quote
Do you really think that by standing by and watching them impose their sins onto others (the "its ok to be Gay", theyre spreading sodomy), instead of formal confrontation will do any better?

I didn't mean to suggest that we do nothing, but rather that responding with force (including government) is probably even worse than doing nothing.  It makes it seem as though our moral position is based on forcing others to do what we want.  The Church's position on homosexuality is clear, and we should have the courage to state it and pray for those who disagree, but in my view that is enough.  Let people see our example and judge for themselves.
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« Reply #28 on: June 02, 2006, 01:33:55 AM »

Confrontation is probably worse than anything.ÂÂ  You can't force someone into believing something.ÂÂ  

How do we deal with this?ÂÂ  I don't believe we should stop them from having their gay parade.ÂÂ  I do believe we should educate OUR people on what it all means, and educate OUR children to understand why it is we believe what they're doing to be wrong.ÂÂ  We shouldn't be condoning joining up with skinheads and other extremists to fight a group of people who otherwise really cannot have an impact on our Church.ÂÂ  You know, "the gates of hell shall not prevail", and all that...remember?

edit: fixed a major typo, lol..
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« Reply #29 on: June 02, 2006, 01:41:07 AM »

The homosexuals in Russia have their civil liberties, they are free to live in sin.  What they want is to have their cake and eat it.  They want to declare their lifestyle normal, and the next logical step is for them to then promote (ie flaunt) their lifestyle publicly.  The diseases of the west are gradually infecting the east.  All people want is rights, and noone wants any responsiblities.  A political party was formed in Holland yesterday which wants to legalise paedophilia for crying out loud.
Im quite dissapointed, but not really surprised, that the first reaction of many Christians here is not to be shocked that there was an attempt to hold an illegal celebration of degeneracy in the capital of Holy Russia, but to get self-righteous about how the protestors should have acted.  Needless to say, violence is not the answer, but the fact that a few people got slapped around is secondary to the significance of the struggle we are facing, in trying to prevent Orthodox Slav countries from succumbing to the illnesses of the secular west. ÂÂ
I understand that in America degeneracy such as pornography, adultery etc is passed off as normal, all in the name of freedom, and rights, if you Americans refuse to protest against it then so be it.  But in countries like Russia, Orthodox are not afraid of mobilising to counter the threat faced, instead of taking some morally superior highground, you should be supporting the protestors.  Those that assaulted the marchers were skinheads in any case, so do not be quick to condemn the believers.
By the sounds of it some of you are trying to justify a modern day Sodom and Gomorrah:

They were not ashamed to own it, and to prosecute their design by force and arms. The practice would have been bad enough if it had been carried on by intrigue and wheedling; but they proclaimed war with virtue, and bade open defiance to it. Hence daring sinners are said to declare their sin as Sodom, Isa. 3:9. Note, Those that have become impudent in sin generally prove impenitent in sin; and it will be their ruin. Those have hard hearts indeed that sin with a high hand, Jer. 6:15.



They may want to have their cake and eat it too (that is, have everyone consider their lifestyle to be 'normal'), but they haven't succeeded in that anywhere, not even in America.  Granted, it is many places in the media - television, movies, music, etc - but the average person will tell you they don't believe that homosexuality is "ok" or "right".  I understand the notion of going along with being all cheery good with homosexuality, believe me; it's often thought of as an "enlightened" stance above other "bigotted" religious extremists.  But we have to also look at where this comes from - hate.  The pendulem is swinging the other way now.  The dominant mode of thought to be homosexual-hating/fearing people which was combined with a lot of ignorant fundamentalist doctrine being spewed has led many people to a) be wary of any religion, ESPECIALLY Christianity and b) as a consequence of A, to believe that anything the church teaches must, therefore, be unintuned with the people and with people's hearts.  We can't go about protesting like extremists, with signs such as "God hates fags" (I'm thinking of the recent group of nutcases that protested at a soldier's funeral).  We as Orthodox have a responsibility (at least I think so) to be removed from this crazy legalistic (not the L word!) extremist 'you're-going-to-hell' attitude that pervades so many "devoutly Christian" peoples.
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« Reply #30 on: June 02, 2006, 05:28:14 AM »

Im quite dissapointed, but not really surprised, that the first reaction of many Christians here is not to be shocked that there was an attempt to hold an illegal celebration of degeneracy in the capital of Holy Russia, but to get self-righteous about how the protestors should have acted.

That's how I feel as well.  Indeed, the freedom of speech rhetoric and self-righteousness have no place in Orthodoxy.  The people of Russia deserve respect, for they have endured the terror of Communism.  On the other hand, many in the West don't know the meaning of suffering (the author of the article included); I believe that they are in no position to dictate what is right and what is wrong for Russia. 

I commend the mayor of Moscow for fighting the evil ideology that is homosexuality.  Same goes to its fearless citizens who remind me of the people of Byzantium.

Oh Russia, how blessed and RESPONSIBLE are your people! 

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« Reply #31 on: June 02, 2006, 07:16:51 AM »

They may want to have their cake and eat it too (that is, have everyone consider their lifestyle to be 'normal'), but they haven't succeeded in that anywhere, not even in America.
They are pushing the boundaries day in day out.  In Britain, homosexual couples have the same rights as heterosexual married couples.  A practising lesbian priest of the Church of England is pushing to become a bishop.  These things are no longer seen as abnormal by secular society.

I understand the notion of going along with being all cheery good with homosexuality, believe me; it's often thought of as an "enlightened" stance above other "bigotted" religious extremists.ÂÂ  But we have to also look at where this comes from - hate.ÂÂ  The pendulem is swinging the other way now.ÂÂ  The dominant mode of thought to be homosexual-hating/fearing people which was combined with a lot of ignorant fundamentalist doctrine being spewed has led many people to a) be wary of any religion, ESPECIALLY Christianity and b) as a consequence of A, to believe that anything the church teaches must, therefore, be unintuned with the people and with people's hearts.ÂÂ  We can't go about protesting like extremists, with signs such as "God hates fags" (I'm thinking of the recent group of nutcases that protested at a soldier's funeral).ÂÂ  We as Orthodox have a responsibility (at least I think so) to be removed from this crazy legalistic (not the L word!) extremist 'you're-going-to-hell' attitude that pervades so many "devoutly Christian" peoples.
I dont think that protesting against it means that you are necessarily hateful of homosexuals in general, its just a case of making a stand for the moral standards we believe in, in our own societies.  It has to be made clear that these people are not going to impose their standards on us.  This is what these people ultimately want, and are getting in the west.  Then your children have to watch their degeneracy accross the media being passed off as completely normal.  Forgiving your personal enemies is one thing, but we have a duty to confont those that wish to change the nature of our societies for the worse. 
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« Reply #32 on: June 02, 2006, 07:17:26 AM »

They are pushing the boundaries day in day out.ÂÂ  In Britain, homosexual couples have the same rights as heterosexual married couples.ÂÂ  A practising lesbian priest of the Church of England is pushing to become a bishop.ÂÂ  These things are no longer seen as abnormal by secular society.
I dont think that protesting against it means that you are necessarily hateful of homosexuals in general, its just a case of making a stand for the moral standards we believe in, in our own societies.ÂÂ  It has to be made clear that these people are not going to impose their standards on us.ÂÂ  This is what these people ultimately want, and are getting in the west.ÂÂ  Then your children have to watch their degeneracy accross the media being passed off as completely normal.ÂÂ  Forgiving your personal enemies is one thing, but we have a duty to confront those that wish to change the nature of our societies for the worse.ÂÂ  
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« Reply #33 on: June 02, 2006, 07:22:14 AM »

Confrontation is probably worse than anything.ÂÂ  You can't force someone into believing something.ÂÂ  

How do we deal with this?ÂÂ  I don't believe we should stop them from having their gay parade.ÂÂ  I do believe we should educate OUR people on what it all means, and educate OUR children to understand why it is we believe what they're doing to be wrong.ÂÂ  We shouldn't be condoning joining up with skinheads and other extremists to fight a group of people who otherwise really cannot have an impact on our Church.ÂÂ  edit: fixed a major typo, lol..
If I turn up to an anti-war rally, there will be muslims and communists there.  Likewise there were Orthodox believers and skinheads protesting at the gay parade.  Thats what happens at protests, they draw people from all segments of society united on that one issue, doesnt mean they have anything else in common.
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« Reply #34 on: June 02, 2006, 11:20:25 AM »

In Britain plc the Law Commission is now considering the option of giving property and others rights to co-habiting couples. Here the balance has already swung too far and marriage under the gaze of Mr and Mrs Blair, ardent Christians apparently, ever under attack.
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« Reply #35 on: June 02, 2006, 01:04:23 PM »

They are pushing the boundaries day in day out.ÂÂ  In Britain, homosexual couples have the same rights as heterosexual married couples.ÂÂ  A practising lesbian priest of the Church of England is pushing to become a bishop.ÂÂ  These things are no longer seen as abnormal by secular society.
I dont think that protesting against it means that you are necessarily hateful of homosexuals in general, its just a case of making a stand for the moral standards we believe in, in our own societies.ÂÂ  It has to be made clear that these people are not going to impose their standards on us.ÂÂ  This is what these people ultimately want, and are getting in the west.ÂÂ  Then your children have to watch their degeneracy accross the media being passed off as completely normal.ÂÂ  Forgiving your personal enemies is one thing, but we have a duty to confont those that wish to change the nature of our societies for the worse.ÂÂ  

Personally, I think gay couples should be given the same rights by the state as straight couples.

That doesn't mean that every day citizens, no matter how much they protest, don't cock an eyebrow at least when they see two gay people together.  And if when further pressed, the idea of homosexuality no longer sounds like such an "OK" thing.  There are plenty, yes, but that plenty is far from the majority.

These things like lesbian priests (gasp, shock, firstly a FEMALE PRIEST!!!  Roll Eyes) pushing to become bishops are a result of corrupted sects of Christianity that have broken away from the body of Christ, and this is the result.  Like I said earlier, we as Orthodox should be removed from this type of insanity, which also means that we can't point to examples in other denominations and say "well, see!"  At least, not in this case.

Dude, all I have to say is your post really sounds like you hate gays.
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« Reply #36 on: June 02, 2006, 01:05:36 PM »

If I turn up to an anti-war rally, there will be muslims and communists there.ÂÂ  Likewise there were Orthodox believers and skinheads protesting at the gay parade.ÂÂ  Thats what happens at protests, they draw people from all segments of society united on that one issue, doesnt mean they have anything else in common.

I can't believe you're even coming up with excuses for that.  Those skinheads were probably THE REASON why it escalated in violence.  Do you think if you put yourself around mass negativity you will be able to maintain your cool for long?  If I show up at a protest and I see skinheads on my side, I'm probably going to rethink why I'm on that side of the fence.
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« Reply #37 on: June 02, 2006, 02:14:08 PM »

Personally, I think gay couples should be given the same rights by the state as straight couples.
Well If you want to live in a secular society that approves of such things thats fine, but I dont, and I dont apologise for it.

These things like lesbian priests (gasp, shock, firstly a FEMALE PRIEST!!!ÂÂ  Roll Eyes) pushing to become bishops are a result of corrupted sects of Christianity that have broken away from the body of Christ, and this is the result.ÂÂ  Like I said earlier, we as Orthodox should be removed from this type of insanity, which also means that we can't point to examples in other denominations and say "well, see!"ÂÂ  At least, not in this case.
How can you be 'removed from this type of insanity', when you want to live in such a society? I only mentioned the lesbian priest in response to your statement that homosexuality is not accepted as normal by western society.ÂÂ  Clearly if the supposed spiritual guardians of England have accepted this as normal, the rest of society accepted it a long time ago.

Dude, all I have to say is your post really sounds like you hate gays.
Is that supposed to make me go all defensive?  I never stated that anywhere, none of my points have had anything to do with hate.
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« Reply #38 on: June 02, 2006, 03:25:53 PM »

How can you be 'removed from this type of insanity', when you want to live in such a society?

"in the world but not of the world"

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« Reply #39 on: June 02, 2006, 03:32:03 PM »

Serbian Patriot,

It is not that any of us want to live in a society where homosexuality is rampant.  But speaking for myself, I feel that using the government to suppress it is counterproductive.  Firstly, if you push government to pass laws you like, eventually it will use those same powers to pass laws against you.  Let us not kid ourselves that the politicians of Russia (or any other country) are primarily concerned with the defense of Orthodoxy.  Serbs know as well as anyone what the promises of politicians are worth.

Secondly, I think that by outlawing and suppressing it, we harden the hearts of people practicing the homosexual lifestyle, as well as give a veneer of "oppressed minority" status to it.  This makes it much harder for people to examine how it really affects their own lives as well as others.  I think if we simply stated the Church's position clearly and with no attempt at coercion, people would better be able to see for themselves that Christianity offers a better path. 
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« Reply #40 on: June 02, 2006, 03:41:10 PM »

I can't believe you're even coming up with excuses for that.ÂÂ  Those skinheads were probably THE REASON why it escalated in violence.ÂÂ  Do you think if you put yourself around mass negativity you will be able to maintain your cool for long?ÂÂ  If I show up at a protest and I see skinheads on my side, I'm probably going to rethink why I'm on that side of the fence.
I really dont understand what the problem is?  So if I turned up to an anti-war rally, and there are communists and muslims there, do I reconsider why I turned up?  No, the reason would be the same regardless, I would be there standing up for the justice that I believe in.  During the bombings against Serbia, countless communists showed up to the demos trying to promote their cause and use the situation to their advantage.  That doesnt change why I was there, and its not going to stop me protesting the way I see fit.  It doesnt mean that Im going to turn into a communist or muslim, or that I even approve of them.  You must think that people are very fickle if you dont credit them with the ability to attend a protest without attacking people just because someone else is doing it. ÂÂ
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« Reply #41 on: June 02, 2006, 03:50:35 PM »

Serbian Patriot,

It is not that any of us want to live in a society where homosexuality is rampant.ÂÂ  But speaking for myself, I feel that using the government to suppress it is counterproductive.ÂÂ  Firstly, if you push government to pass laws you like, eventually it will use those same powers to pass laws against you.ÂÂ
Im not advocating the changing of any law, it is the homosexuals which want that.  Im advocating that we keep the present laws ie against the promotion of homosexuality etc.  You make it seem like I want to repress them. I accept that they can practise what they like, but it becomes a problem when they want to nomalise it, flaunt it, promote it etc.
Secondly, I think that by outlawing and suppressing it, we harden the hearts of people practicing the homosexual lifestyle, as well as give a veneer of "oppressed minority" status to it.
You are under the impression that I want to outlaw homosexuality.  I dont.  You cant outlaw it, we all have free will.  But they dont have the right to subvert the entire society.  Honestly some western cities look like down town Sodom, and you guys seem to want to tell other peoples that they should adopt your liberal free-for-all experiment which is leaving your entire society spiritually confused and lost.
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« Reply #42 on: June 02, 2006, 04:36:37 PM »

but it becomes a problem when they want to nomalise it, flaunt it, promote it etc.You are under the impression that I want to outlaw homosexuality.ÂÂ  I dont.ÂÂ  You cant outlaw it, we all have free will.ÂÂ  But they dont have the right to subvert the entire society.ÂÂ  Honestly some western cities look like down town Sodom, and you guys seem to want to tell other peoples that they should adopt your liberal free-for-all experiment which is leaving your entire society spiritually confused and lost.
I'm just curious.  What do believe to be logical consequences of "permitting them" to "flaunt" their homosexuality?

I'm also curious as to how the flaunting might subvert "the entire society"?

It's not that I necessarily disagree with you, however, these seem to be pretty broad suppositions and I'm curious as to understand why you seem to think these assumptions are so clear.

Also, I think the link between commies and skinheads is an unfair one (to commies).  Communist ideology (however flawed) is not centrally based upon hatred.
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« Reply #43 on: June 02, 2006, 08:40:04 PM »

Quote
Secondly, I think that by outlawing and suppressing it, we harden the hearts of people practicing the homosexual lifestyle, as well as give a veneer of "oppressed minority" status to it.

What oppression are you talking about?ÂÂ  In the Moscow demonstration, was anybody killed?

Quote
This makes it much harder for people to examine how it really affects their own lives as well as others.

There is no need for that experiment for it has failed in the West.ÂÂ  Homosexuality is evil to the core.ÂÂ  And rightly so, in the case of Moscow, it is deemed illegal by the authorities and is considered immoral by many.ÂÂ  Looking back to the history of the East, Orthodoxy operates best when its moral standards are upheld by the government and are widely supported by its citizenry.ÂÂ  When you see this happening in your nation, consider your country blessed (of course, the US does not count because it is not Orthodox).

Quote
I think if we simply stated the Church's position clearly and with no attempt at coercion, people would better be able to see for themselves that Christianity offers a better path.

Orthodoxy did not create the ordinance that supposedly "hardens the hearts of people practicing the homosexual lifestyle;" rather, the people of Russia are simply SUPPORTING the mayor's initiative.ÂÂ  Please don’t tell me that if you were in Russia, you would put up a demonstration seeking to change this!


 
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« Reply #44 on: June 02, 2006, 08:44:46 PM »

I'm just curious.ÂÂ  What do believe to be logical consequences of "permitting them" to "flaunt" their homosexuality?

I'm also curious as to how the flaunting might subvert "the entire society"?

The children are the victims.  They will grow up thinking that homosexuality is normal.
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« Reply #45 on: June 02, 2006, 08:49:10 PM »

Honestly some western cities look like down town Sodom, and you guys seem to want to tell other peoples that they should adopt your liberal free-for-all experiment which is leaving your entire society spiritually confused and lost.

And they have the nerve to say that Russia is wrong!
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« Reply #46 on: June 02, 2006, 10:32:35 PM »

I'm just curious.ÂÂ  What do believe to be logical consequences of "permitting them" to "flaunt" their homosexuality?

I'm also curious as to how the flaunting might subvert "the entire society"?


I agree with Patriot 100%.  Do you know what dehumanization is? As we live in a higher populated planet, we see and hear about murder more often. Becuase we hear about murder everyday now, we are becoming desensitized to it. Do you think society would react the same way as today if 100 years ago a father killed his whole family, chopped them up and hid them in his garage? Of course they would be in more greater shock and disgust than today. We hear about these events regularly and I'm sad to say we're even getting used to it. It is becoming..I wont say more "accepted" into society, but looked upon more lightlier than before.

The same thing is happening with homosexuality. By being exposed to all these situations, we are accepting them as a normal part of society. If you watch a regular TV show, almost every single popular show now has atleast one homosexual character. They are slowly but surely incorporating themselves into society.

What is even sadder than the whole homosexual incorporation into society thing is that if I state what I just said ^ to the public, I would be  automatically labelled as a Homophobe.
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« Reply #47 on: June 03, 2006, 06:28:18 AM »

I'm just curious.ÂÂ  What do believe to be logical consequences of "permitting them" to "flaunt" their homosexuality?

I'm also curious as to how the flaunting might subvert "the entire society"?

Im in the middle of exam week so I cant give you the most indepth analysis, but basically if you give people an inch they will take a mile.  There have to be standards which you dont compromise on.  The general pattern over the last century has shown things are sliding backwards.  Not only do some people here not want to make a stand, but they almost seem to be encouraging this trend.  The west is at the point now where adultery, pornography, homosexuality are not just allowed, they are seen as normal occurences.  Infact things have gone even further, they are not just seen as normal, but people take pride in them.  It is glorified in the media, it is becoming enshrined in law.  Things are slipping up badly.  You know you've got problems when even Orthodox believers are saying that gay pride parades should be allowed in Moscow and that they dont have a problem with people taking pride in, and celebrating their sin, flaunting it under their nose. 
Also, I think the link between commies and skinheads is an unfair one (to commies).ÂÂ  Communist ideology (however flawed) is not centrally based upon hatred.
Well the 2 are complete opposites, I just mentioned it to get my point accross that you can get a wide cross-section of society at one-issue demonstrations.  Im just disputing the idea that we are so morally superior or pure that we cannot attend a demo where such people will be present.  Are we also so weak that we cannot attend them without being subverted by their hate as a previous poster suggested.  Also another crucial point is that if Orthodox dont show their feelings, then the entire demonstration would be left to others, leaving us with no voice.
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« Reply #48 on: June 03, 2006, 01:18:53 PM »

Sadly, in secular societies today all kinds of overt sexual and sexualised behaviour is accepted without comment. The law could be less tolerant of overt behaviour but I would not simply single out 'homosexuals'. We even have a political party now in the Netherlands trying to start up and hoping to be represented in their Parliament. They want the age of consent brought down to 12 years, and eventually done away with. Their spokesperson argued in an interview I saw that children can both consent and say no according to their own wishes. When challenged, rightly in my view, by the interviewer the spokesperson refused to back down on this absurdity.

Advocates for 'homosexuality' appear to be over-represented in the media, performing arts and at times in academia. They appear to have an agenda and seem to be very successful.

Children are vunerable and impressionable. But how the Russian Federation tackles these issues without failing into some major traps is something beyond my ken. Possibly others are more inspired than me?
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« Reply #49 on: June 04, 2006, 09:56:36 AM »

Before we Orthodox get too holier than thou about how "pure" Holy Russia is and how homosexuality is an outside influence on Russia by the corrupt West, have any of you studied Russian history and culture? Do you not know that Peter Tchaikovsky was gay (and flaming at that)? And he composed beautiful setting of the liturgy for the Orthodox Church, esp. his "Rejoice, O Virgin Theotokos." Anyone ever hear of Prince Yusepov (one of the assassignators of Rasputin)? He was as queer as the 3 dollar bill! Has no one here heard ever heard of the notorious male rape (sodomy) that goes on in the Russian Army? It's a terrible problem and apparently a right of initiation in many places. And as for Holy Byzantium, has anyone ever read Saint John Chrysostom's sermon on weddings? He counsels the residents of Constantinople not to invite the homosexual prostitutes to the marriage feasts for the entertainment of the guests. If Saint John had to mention that publically, you KNOW it was going on and wide spread.  Just some thoughts.
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« Reply #50 on: June 04, 2006, 10:19:06 AM »

The children are the victims.ÂÂ  They will grow up thinking that homosexuality is normal.

Not sure how true this is.

I grew up in a very liberal city with the second highest homosexual population in North America.  Gay pride parades were a staple, and preaching acceptance of the Gay lifestyle was common place.  However, I don't think that impacted me as a child.

To be clear, I disagree with the homosexuality (in as much as those who actively live the homosexual lifestyle), however, I do not *hate* homosexuals.  I also would never advocate violence against any homosexual or group of homosexuals.  On the flip side, I do agree with those about the gay pride parades, I do believe they are excessive.

I think my general attitude is that I need to get my self (and house) in order before I can start taking on the sins of others.  God knows, I have enough of my own to keep my plate full, that I need not worry about overly expressive homosexuals.
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« Reply #51 on: June 04, 2006, 10:26:29 AM »

I agree with Patriot 100%.ÂÂ  Do you know what dehumanization is? As we live in a higher populated planet, we see and hear about murder more often. Becuase we hear about murder everyday now, we are becoming desensitized to it. Do you think society would react the same way as today if 100 years ago a father killed his whole family, chopped them up and hid them in his garage? Of course they would be in more greater shock and disgust than today. We hear about these events regularly and I'm sad to say we're even getting used to it. It is becoming..I wont say more "accepted" into society, but looked upon more lightlier than before.

The same thing is happening with homosexuality. By being exposed to all these situations, we are accepting them as a normal part of society. If you watch a regular TV show, almost every single popular show now has atleast one homosexual character. They are slowly but surely incorporating themselves into society.

What is even sadder than the whole homosexual incorporation into society thing is that if I state what I just said ^ to the public, I would beÂÂ  automatically labelled as a Homophobe.
Let me ask you Sloga, do you take as strong a stance on pre-marital sex?

It's a genuine question which I like to ask of young men (about your age).  I often find (and this may not be the case with you) but many young males are very quick to condemn the homosexual acts of others, while condoning things like premarital sex?

I think you'll agree that among guys your age, often the only thing they talk about is "who they're going to sleep with next".  Essentially, making the act of sex, sport.  Are you as outraged by that type of talk or behavior?  How about on a Friday or Saturday night in Toronto, when the clubs are packed with 19-25 year old males whose sole ambition is to get a one night stand?  Do you find that dehumanizing?

You and I are both Serbs and I'm sure if you've got young Serbian friend (the way I did growing up), you are aware of what "normal" young Serbian guys are like.  Is that behavior any less sinful than a homosexual?  I knew a Serbian friend who kept a "score card" in his glove box; was he any better?

Somehow, I don't think we focus are "outrage" in the same ways where sin is concerned.
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« Reply #52 on: June 04, 2006, 01:29:49 PM »

Homosexuality is not new, in Russia or anywhere else. What is new is the push for it to be put on a moral, social, economic and legal footing with heterosexuality, e.g. Homosexual marriage or civil partnerships, etc.

Indeed somewhere here I have an excellent book on Confession by a Russian bishop which tackles this issue, and very sensibly in the case of youngsters.
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« Reply #53 on: June 04, 2006, 03:34:47 PM »

Let me ask you Sloga, do you take as strong a stance on pre-marital sex?

It's a genuine question which I like to ask of young men (about your age).ÂÂ  I often find (and this may not be the case with you) but many young males are very quick to condemn the homosexual acts of others, while condoning things like premarital sex?


Your 100% right. And yes, although I do condemn homosexual acts, I look at premarital sex differently. Both are sins however, I'm not going to say they arent. Being a homosexual by itself, is not a sin. Partaking in sodomy is a sin, let alone plus your doing it pre-maritally. However, pre-marital sex by its self is not a sin, only the timing of the sex. Both are definitly sins, but I would rather do the latter. What if you had pre-marital sex, not as a one night stand, but with a women you loved very much and have been living together for a long time, but for financial or other reasons have not been able to get married?

In the end I guess it comes down to whether you believe all sins are equally bad, or that some sins are worse than others.

Can I just point something out that I find interesting....between those two sins, which one does the government condemn more? Homosexuals are encouraged to partake in Gay activities and have safe sex (pre-marital). Pre-marital sex is overall condemned. In my school when we had sex-ed, they taught us that Abstinence is the best moral and intelligent option. If you MUST have sex, use a method of protection. But overall they would condemn it, wheras homosexuality is infact encouraged.
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« Reply #54 on: June 04, 2006, 09:27:27 PM »

Before we Orthodox get too holier than thou about how "pure" Holy Russia is and how homosexuality is an outside influence on Russia by the corrupt West, have any of you studied Russian history and culture? Do you not know that Peter Tchaikovsky was gay (and flaming at that)? And he composed beautiful setting of the liturgy for the Orthodox Church, esp. his "Rejoice, O Virgin Theotokos."  Anyone ever hear of Prince Yusepov (one of the assassignators of Rasputin)? He was as queer as the 3 dollar bill!

Nobody here is arguing that there are no gays in Russia.  Homosexuality dates back to ancient times and no country is spared.
 
Quote
Has no one here heard ever heard of the notorious male rape (sodomy) that goes on in the Russian Army? It's a terrible problem and apparently a right of initiation in many places.

As Orthodox, are we then going to tolerate the rape or condemn it publicly?
 
Quote
And as for Holy Byzantium, has anyone ever read Saint John Chrysostom's sermon on weddings? He counsels the residents of Constantinople not to invite the homosexual prostitutes to the marriage feasts for the entertainment of the guests.

Publicly condemning homosexuality is exactly what the mayor and the residents of Russia are doing.

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If Saint John had to mention that publically, you KNOW it was going on and wide spread.

Non sequitur.
 
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« Reply #55 on: June 04, 2006, 09:29:51 PM »

Quote
Violence Mars Romanian Gay March


Politics: 4 June 2006, Sunday.

Police in Romania's capital Bucharest has made dozens of arrests during a gay rights march on Sunday.

The homosexuals were attacked by violent protesters, and police had to use teargas to hold the latter at bay, media report.

People were throwing eggs, stones and plastic bottles at the gay campaigners, according to reports.

According to the AP, gay people from the UK, Spain and Serbia had turned up to support the Bucharest GayFest participants, who marched against discrimination and for legalizing gay marriages.

Homosexuality was fully decriminalised in Romania only five years ago, the BBC recalled.
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« Reply #56 on: June 04, 2006, 09:41:04 PM »

Not sure how true this is.

I grew up in a very liberal city with the second highest homosexual population in North America.  Gay pride parades were a staple, and preaching acceptance of the Gay lifestyle was common place.  However, I don't think that impacted me as a child.

But not everybody is like you.

Quote
I think my general attitude is that I need to get my self (and house) in order before I can start taking on the sins of others.  God knows, I have enough of my own to keep my plate full, that I need not worry about overly expressive homosexuals.

You're talking about your personal responsibilities.  Truly, God does not want us to be critical on the personal level.  However, this does not apply to our social responsibilities (Eph 6:12). ÂÂ
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« Reply #57 on: June 04, 2006, 09:49:33 PM »

Quote
It's a genuine question which I like to ask of young men (about your age).  I often find (and this may not be the case with you) but many young males are very quick to condemn the homosexual acts of others, while condoning things like premarital sex?

This is sad because pre-marital sex has become the norm.  Would you like homosexuality to be part of our everyday lives as well?
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« Reply #58 on: June 04, 2006, 09:57:17 PM »

Wow, same thing just happened in Romania? You would think that if the gays cared not to be pelted with eggs and rocks that they would find a better way to advance their message. Obviously, looking fruity marching down the street and throwing it in everyone's face has not worked so far. Do these people really want to go through all this trouble just to advance some left wing socio - political agenda? That garbage may fly in America, but looks like the traditional Orthodox countries aren't hearing it.
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« Reply #59 on: June 05, 2006, 04:12:44 AM »

"but looks like the traditional Orthodox countries aren't hearing it."

I still think this behaviour is outrageous. I don't understand why referring to the behaviour of the "traditional Orthodox countries" is so popular, as if it were model just because it is that of so called Orthodox Christians. These countries also have a long history of antisemitism, should we condone that as well? Throwing eggs and rocks at other people is not the kind of behaviour I would expect from those who call themselves Christians. Whatever happened to peaceful, serious dialogue?


I used to admire the Orthodox Church for its way of condemning homosexuality, but not disrespecting the homosexual individuals; I am not so sure anymore.
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« Reply #60 on: June 05, 2006, 06:25:41 AM »

I think the rock throwing and violence are simply manifestations of the frustrations people in Eastern Europe have. They have been thru so much change so rapidly in the past 10 years it makes their heads spin. They ARE much more used to a group consensus about things than individualistic, free-spirited Americans are anyway. And let's face it, this "in-your-face" American style protest parade fits into our American culture of rebellion a whole lot easier than it does in Eastern Europe. I am not excusing the violence. The violence is deplorable. But then, if you have ever seen a gay rights parade, many of them are deplorable too. We had our first gay rights parade here in my city (Greenville, SC) after the fundagelicals on the County Council passed an "ordinance" condemning gay people and saying they were not welcome to live here. It was quite mild and designed not to be grossly offensive. It consisted mainly of well behaved people marching and singing, much like the civil rights marches. There was opposition, but there was also a police barricade to keep the two groups separate. And there was no violence at all. I have no easy answer for the problems of Eastern Europe, and I'm not sure there is one.
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« Reply #61 on: June 05, 2006, 07:08:12 AM »

Your 100% right. And yes, although I do condemn homosexual acts, I look at premarital sex differently. Both are sins however, I'm not going to say they arent. Being a homosexual by itself, is not a sin. Partaking in sodomy is a sin, let alone plus your doing it pre-maritally. However, pre-marital sex by its self is not a sin, only the timing of the sex. Both are definitly sins, but I would rather do the latter. What if you had pre-marital sex, not as a one night stand, but with a women you loved very much and have been living together for a long time, but for financial or other reasons have not been able to get married?

Well, if you want an Orthodox Canonical response to this, St. Basil teaches in his Canons that Fornication is no start to marriage and that, in just such a case as you mention, the couple should be, if by any means necessary short of the death of one of the individuals, separated and forbidden to marry.

Quote
In the end I guess it comes down to whether you believe all sins are equally bad, or that some sins are worse than others.

Perhaps the way we should look at his is that they are not all equal, the one I commit is graver than the one my neighbour commits. I know that sounds like a bunch of pietistic dribble, but I'm sure my posts to this board should vindicate me of the accusation of pietism. Ultimately, such a system of thought is consonant with a merciful and Christian 'moral or ethical theology' (as abhorrent as the very concept of a 'moral theology' is).

Quote
Can I just point something out that I find interesting....between those two sins, which one does the government condemn more? Homosexuals are encouraged to partake in Gay activities and have safe sex (pre-marital). Pre-marital sex is overall condemned. In my school when we had sex-ed, they taught us that Abstinence is the best moral and intelligent option. If you MUST have sex, use a method of protection. But overall they would condemn it, wheras homosexuality is infact encouraged.

Premarital sex has been a right in this country for decades, the laws against sodomy were only overturned a matter of years ago (and are still on the books in many states), not only is fornication more socially accepted than sodomy, law also favours the former.

But not everybody is like you.

Do you have evidence that allowing freedom of assembly corrupts the minds of the youth? What are the statistics you have to present in your devence? Where is the direct, objective, and quantifyable evidence? Or are these simply baseless accusations, that are at least as old as the time of Socrates, being levied against your political enemies?

I believe on this issue, which to me has absolutely nothing to do with homosexuality and everything to do with Freedom of Speech and Assembly. I fear on this issue the immortal words of Voltaire (or actually Denis Diderot I believe, but it was Voltaire who made them famous) are most relevant:

'I may not agree with what you say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it.'
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« Reply #62 on: June 05, 2006, 07:28:41 AM »

I used to admire the Orthodox Church for its way of condemning homosexuality, but not disrespecting the homosexual individuals; I am not so sure anymore.

Don't judge Orthodoxy by what people say here. This may be an Orthodox Forum, and in my opinion, a very good one, but a forum is where (in theory at least) people of different views come together to exchange ideas. No one speaks for Orthodoxy here (as much as they may like to think they do! Wink)
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« Reply #63 on: June 05, 2006, 07:40:41 AM »

Perhaps the way we should look at his is that they are not all equal, the one I commit is graver than the one my neighbour commits.

I have always admired your knowledge GiC, but in my opinion, this is by far the wisest thing you have ever said.
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« Reply #64 on: June 05, 2006, 08:29:46 AM »


But not everybody is like you.
 
You're talking about your personal responsibilities.  Truly, God does not want us to be critical on the personal level.  However, this does not apply to our social responsibilities (Eph 6:12).
This is funny because I hear everyone imposing the "personal responsibility" argument when it seems convenient.  However, in the example you gave, it doesn't seem to be convenient, thus inapplicable.
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« Reply #65 on: June 05, 2006, 08:34:55 AM »

I have always admired your knowledge GiC, but in my opinion, this is by far the wisest thing you have ever said.

GIC,

    Have to echo the post of George. 

    I was actually surprised by the post, but to me, by far, one of your best.
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« Reply #66 on: June 05, 2006, 09:21:51 AM »

Tikhon: There might be more to this than meets the eye, but then many of our actions are the results of things working on a deeper psychological level, or just plain frustration. I can't imagine what life in Eastern Europe is like, and I live closer to it than most of you people. When I visited my father's relatives, I found the blatant antisemitism frightening, but I am hoping that things will change for the better. Many people have looked to the ideals, fashion and culture of the West (which is not completely rotten, but has serious flaws), and some have embraced everything, since it represents a kind of freedom. Now, it has been a while since the great collapse, but it is obvious that many things will take time. I am not quite sure that this rambling of mine has a point, I think I am trying to let you know that I can see the complexity of the situation.

Ozgeorge: Thanks for pointing that out, it is easy to forget. Smiley
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« Reply #67 on: June 05, 2006, 09:54:20 AM »

I too was taken by ozgeorge's contribution.

However what I see in Europe is a cleeping agenda,

Pride marches
successful lobbying for revised and new legislation
The demanding of and succeeding in getting teaching of homosexuality, the moral equivalence of homosexuality, the provision of teaching materials for the very young, etc., etc.

All this is meant, targetted and calculated to have an effect among the general population, and children.

Perhaps, the thinking element as opposed to the simply reactionary elements in Eastern Europe have picked up on these changes elsewhere and see such marches the thin edge of a wedge, which they either start to contest now or wait and find their own societies going the same way.

(But as to any notion of a present day Holy Russia - this is phantasy, and indeed some have previously suggested that Holy and Imperial Russia fell as punishment for the sinfulness of her peoples. What may also be resented is American neo-imperialism attempting to dictate how other societies will act, what laws and institutions they have and how they frame their democracies).
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« Reply #68 on: June 05, 2006, 11:15:48 AM »

Quote
Do you have evidence that allowing freedom of assembly corrupts the minds of the youth? What are the statistics you have to present in your devence? Where is the direct, objective, and quantifyable evidence? Or are these simply baseless accusations, that are at least as old as the time of Socrates, being levied against your political enemies?

Demonstrations are held to influence the minds of people, and when the media is involved, the message gets across to a variety of audiences.ÂÂ  In publicity, you don't need statistics to say that the youth will be the one most affected because they are the ones who are easily misled by propaganda.

Quote
I believe on this issue, which to me has absolutely nothing to do with homosexuality and everything to do with Freedom of Speech and Assembly.

How about freedom to express your opposition to sin, especially when you're the mayor?

Quote
I fear on this issue the immortal words of Voltaire (or actually Denis Diderot I believe, but it was Voltaire who made them famous) are most relevant:

'I may not agree with what you say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it.'

I think it was the devil himself who said that.  ÃƒÆ’‚ He wants people to tell lies and have other people defend it.

Anyway, if a person wants to say something blasphemous, would you defend to death his right to say it?


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« Reply #69 on: June 05, 2006, 12:14:15 PM »

GIC,

  ÃƒÆ’‚  Have to echo the post of George.  

  ÃƒÆ’‚  I was actually surprised by the post, but to me, by far, one of your best.

Ditto.
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« Reply #70 on: June 05, 2006, 02:49:42 PM »

Before we Orthodox get too holier than thou about how "pure" Holy Russia is and how homosexuality is an outside influence on Russia by the corrupt West, have any of you studied Russian history and culture?
Noone has said that there arent any homosexuals in Russia.  Clealy there are, or there wouldnt be a parade in the first place.


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« Reply #71 on: June 05, 2006, 02:58:38 PM »

"but looks like the traditional Orthodox countries aren't hearing it."

I still think this behaviour is outrageous. I don't understand why referring to the behaviour of the "traditional Orthodox countries" is so popular, as if it were model just because it is that of so called Orthodox Christians. These countries also have a long history of antisemitism, should we condone that as well? Throwing eggs and rocks at other people is not the kind of behaviour I would expect from those who call themselves Christians.
You're confusing things, who said it was Christians throwing eggs and rocks?ÂÂ  And whats with the anti-semitism, what does that have to do with this discussion?

Whatever happened to peaceful, serious dialogue?
Is this some kind of a joke, what are Christians supposed to debate with homosexuals for on th issue of a gay pride parade?ÂÂ  Either they get one or they dont, I dont see a compromise.ÂÂ  Niether would I want one.

I used to admire the Orthodox Church for its way of condemning homosexuality, but not disrespecting the homosexual individuals; I am not so sure anymore.
You're just making blanket statements, who disrespected homosexual individuals.ÂÂ  If thats what protesting their right to flaunt themselves means, then I'll also continue to disrespect peadophiles and other forms of degeneracy.ÂÂ  Whats with this hippie relativism, as if everyone deserves respect no matter their ideology or actions.
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« Reply #72 on: June 05, 2006, 03:12:16 PM »


Do you have evidence that allowing freedom of assembly corrupts the minds of the youth?
No one said freedom of assembley corrupts the minds of youth.ÂÂ  Rather glorification and normalisation of degeneracy corrupts the minds of youth.ÂÂ  Just look at what the media stands for, and how it has affected the way people live their lives, in most instances, for the worse.ÂÂ  I think you'll agree I dont need to wheel out statistics to prove this.

I believe on this issue, which to me has absolutely nothing to do with homosexuality and everything to do with Freedom of Speech and Assembly. I fear on this issue the immortal words of Voltaire (or actually Denis Diderot I believe, but it was Voltaire who made them famous) are most relevant:

'I may not agree with what you say, but I'll defend to the death your right to say it.'
Freedom of speech is not an issue here, homosexuals have a right to say what they like in Russia.ÂÂ  Likewise freedom of assembley is not really an issue either, they have the right to assemble in their gay clubs.ÂÂ  Fact is they were banned from holding a parade, and decided to break the law anyway.ÂÂ  Do you defend their right to break the law?
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« Reply #73 on: June 05, 2006, 05:44:43 PM »

Demonstrations are held to influence the minds of people, and when the media is involved, the message gets across to a variety of audiences.ÂÂ  In publicity, you don't need statistics to say that the youth will be the one most affected because they are the ones who are easily misled by propaganda.

Personally, I dont think Political Demonstrations accomplish anything, other than making the participants feel like they've done something, but that's irrelevant, they should still be free to express themselves.

Quote
How about freedom to express your opposition to sin, especially when you're the mayor?

I most certainly support his right to express his opinion on any matter, but when he crosses the line from expressing his opinion to preventing the expression of the opinions of others, he's gone too far.

Quote
I think it was the devil himself who said that.  ÃƒÆ’‚ He wants people to tell lies and have other people defend it.

It works both ways, with both lies and truth. It is for each individual to determine which is which (yes, there is a measure of, gasp, responsibility that goes along with a free society).

Quote
Anyway, if a person wants to say something blasphemous, would you defend to death his right to say it?

Without hesitation.
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« Reply #74 on: June 05, 2006, 05:56:12 PM »

No one said freedom of assembley corrupts the minds of youth.ÂÂ  Rather glorification and normalisation of degeneracy corrupts the minds of youth.ÂÂ  Just look at what the media stands for, and how it has affected the way people live their lives, in most instances, for the worse.ÂÂ  I think you'll agree I dont need to wheel out statistics to prove this.

Oh, I do believe you need to wheel out statistics to prove you point, for as I said in my post above, I honestly dont believe that political demonstrations accomplish anything. Exposure and controversy perhaps, but I dont think it really affects people's thinking on the matter. As far as media goes, I believe media reflects culture, not vice versa. The goal of the media is to make money, not engineer society, and this is best accomplished by giving the people the product they want, not by creating controversy and trying to coerce people to change their views.

Quote
Freedom of speech is not an issue here, homosexuals have a right to say what they like in Russia.ÂÂ  Likewise freedom of assembley is not really an issue either, they have the right to assemble in their gay clubs.ÂÂ  Fact is they were banned from holding a parade, and decided to break the law anyway.ÂÂ  Do you defend their right to break the law?

Freedom of speech is the only issue here, I haven't been following this event, but, if as you say, the parade was prohibited by the state then our criticism should not be focused on the peaceful demonstrators (no matter how abhorrent their posistion may be to us) but on the oppressive state that attempted to prevent them from exercizing their freedom of expression. If Russia wants to pretend to be a western democracy (which they are, at the very least, pretending to be), and recieve all the political, diplomatic, and economic benifits associated with such a status, they have to be held accountable to the standards of western democracies, rather than being allowed to engage in Orwellian doublespeak...if they do not wish to be a western style democracy then that is their choice, but they will have to sacrifice the associated political, diplomatic, and economic benifits.
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« Reply #75 on: June 05, 2006, 05:59:08 PM »

they should still be free to express themselves.

GiC, I must again ask why you are so concerned with letting people do these things when the Empire you fondly look back to did not recognise freedom of speech or freedom of assembly.

I think you've made an idol out of "freedom".
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« Reply #76 on: June 05, 2006, 09:54:26 PM »

GiC, I must again ask why you are so concerned with letting people do these things when the Empire you fondly look back to did not recognise freedom of speech or freedom of assembly.

I think you've made an idol out of "freedom".

Indeed. Here's a good one about how the late great G.K. Chesterton would have responded to such nonsense today.

http://extremewisdom.blogs.com/extremewisdom/2005/01/via_brothersjud.html

TJ: We do believe in things: democracy, freedom....

GKC: Your thinking is irredeemably muddled. Those are means, not ends. You can't say you believe in democracy per se. You would have to tell me what you believe democracy can achieve. Besides, I think you're confusing liberty with libertinism, freedom -- as Milton said -- with licence. Freedom, for your generation, implies the removal of all constraint. That's not freedom but licentiousness; from a Christian point of view, it's nothing other than the complete removal of freedom. It is slavery to sin. You see, freedom only has meaning if it is accompanied by morality, if it implies a choice between good and evil. You can hardly blame the vast majority of the Arab world if they equate your freedom with immorality because they know that you no longer believe in good and evil. A few decades into my afterlife I met Viktor Frankl, and I greatly admired his notion that if the east coast of America has a statue of liberty, the west one desperately requires a statue of responsibility. The one without the other has no meaning. Talk all you want about human rights, gay rights, women's rights, - but I insist that you tell me what you think are the complementary human responsibilities, gay responsibilities, women's responsibilities. That is why I wrote in What's Wrong With The World that: "Most modern freedom is at root fear. It is not so much that we are too bold to endure rules; it is rather that we are too timid to endure responsibilities."


Emphasis is mine.ÂÂ  The last quote is from the real Chesterton.
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« Reply #77 on: June 05, 2006, 10:03:54 PM »

Quote
I think you've made an idol out of "freedom".

There is also a pragmatic end to this.  A growing number of Orthodox Christians live in America, Canada, Australia and Germany.  By the end of the year Romania and Bulgaria will be EU memebers (with Greece having been in EU for some time).  Once Serbia cleans up its act it is on the path to entering the EU.  Freedom is simply the way it is going to be for the forseeable future for MANY Orthodox Christians - we can either find ways for the Church to prosper in the Free world or watch our membership fall to nothing as nostalgia for the old Theocracies takes hold.   
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« Reply #78 on: June 05, 2006, 11:00:32 PM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123134#msg123134 date=1149559434]
Once Serbia cleans up its act it is on the path to entering the EU.
[/quote]

We will never "clean up our act", because we would be forced to clean up ours and everyone elses s*** by ourselves.(forgive me). We will not join the EU in the next 10 years, And I even hope that we will never join the EU.

Quote
Freedom is simply the way it is going to be for the forseeable future for MANY Orthodox Christians - we can either find ways for the Church to prosper in the Free world or watch our membership fall to nothing as nostalgia for the old Theocracies takes hold.

How can you be so, nearly blinded? Freedom is merely an illusion. How can freedom really exist when people are "forced" into freedom? You believe the western world is free because you have the choice to pick what movie you wanna watch tonight, what food you get to eat, publically display your sexual preference etc... freedom of expression cannot be complete freedom if you dont have an expression on topics since the government keeps you in the dark about half of them. Think about it, do you actually believe that you know 75% of the major issues going on in the world?

"Total Freedom" is the beginning of the end for not just Orthodox Christians, but all of mankind.
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« Reply #79 on: June 06, 2006, 12:34:02 AM »

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We will never "clean up our act", because we would be forced to clean up ours and everyone elses s*** by ourselves.(forgive me). We will not join the EU in the next 10 years, And I even hope that we will never join the EU.

Who is the we, I thought you lived in Canada? 

That aside, eventually a fair number of Serbs will be citizens of EU states either in Montenegro or Bosnia.  When the current roadblock with the EU is bypassed, I highly doubt Serbia will not want EU integration - but only time will tell. 

Quote
How can you be so, nearly blinded? Freedom is merely an illusion. How can freedom really exist when people are "forced" into freedom?

Rather than focus on a never ending debate about the merits of modern Western society, let's settle that by "freedom" I mean that which is defined as "freedom" in states such as America, Canada, Australia, the EU etc - regardless of whether that is true freedom.  The reality is NATO is the most power military alliance for the time being and that "freedom" will be the society in which MILLIONS of Orthodox Christians are/will be living.  Hence, my opinion, that the Church should focus on guiding those of un in those societies on how to be Orthodox within such societies - even to use the present situation for missionary work and expansion of Orthodoxy. 
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« Reply #80 on: June 06, 2006, 01:15:37 AM »

How can you force our idea of morality on people and still claim to be a democracy?
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« Reply #81 on: June 06, 2006, 01:41:04 AM »

How can you force our idea of morality on people and still claim to be a democracy?

Majority rules in democracy. Getting the majority of people to vote for a man who bans homosexual antics in the country's capital is perfectly democratic.  On the other hand, forcing a society to accept homosexual marriages against their will is not.

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« Reply #82 on: June 06, 2006, 01:46:41 AM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123143#msg123143 date=1149568442]
Who is the we, I thought you lived in Canada?ÂÂ  

That aside, eventually a fair number of Serbs will be citizens of EU states either in Montenegro or Bosnia.ÂÂ  When the current roadblock with the EU is bypassed, I highly doubt Serbia will not want EU integration - but only time will tell.ÂÂ  

Rather than focus on a never ending debate about the merits of modern Western society, let's settle that by "freedom" I mean that which is defined as "freedom" in states such as America, Canada, Australia, the EU etc - regardless of whether that is true freedom.ÂÂ  The reality is NATO is the most power military alliance for the time being and that "freedom" will be the society in which MILLIONS of Orthodox Christians are/will be living.ÂÂ  Hence, my opinion, that the Church should focus on guiding those of un in those societies on how to be Orthodox within such societies - even to use the present situation for missionary work and expansion of Orthodoxy.ÂÂ  
[/quote]

It's sad, but Orthodoxy has to face the inevitable.  Our toughest challenge is ahead of us.

Luke 18:8 
Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?

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« Reply #83 on: June 06, 2006, 02:04:38 AM »

Majority rules in democracy. Getting the majority of people to vote for a man who bans homosexual antics in the country's capital is perfectly democratic.ÂÂ  On the other hand, forcing a society to accept homosexual marriages against their will is not.



Exactly, hence "force".  In any case, even if you elect someone to office who supposedly holds our morals, that doesn't automatically mean s/he'll have the ability to change the force of law.
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« Reply #84 on: June 06, 2006, 02:49:41 AM »

Majority rules in democracy. Getting the majority of people to vote for a man who bans homosexual antics in the country's capital is perfectly democratic.ÂÂ  On the other hand, forcing a society to accept homosexual marriages against their will is not.

There is more to our form of government (which is technically a Constitutional Republic, if one cares about such technicalities) than simply mob rule. Part of ideal of government (the constitutional part) is that it will protect certain rights (such as the freedom of speech and expression) regardless of the opinion of the majority. These rights are not subject to the whims of the majority and are, by their very nature, unalienable. The violation of these rights undermines the legitimacy of the state and justifies the citizens to take whatever actions they deem necessary in order that said rights be restored. Paramount amongst these rights is the Freedom of Speech, which is absolute and should be protected regardless of majority opinion.
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« Reply #85 on: June 06, 2006, 02:58:35 AM »

GiC, I must again ask why you are so concerned with letting people do these things when the Empire you fondly look back to did not recognise freedom of speech or freedom of assembly.

I think you've made an idol out of "freedom".

That was a different time and a different era, even monarchies today (e.g. the UK) are compelled to accept the fundamental rights of the subjects of the realm. And concerning the Empire, she did offer far more rights and liberties to her Citizens than did most (any that I can think of) other contemporary governments. To directly compare the Empire of a thousand years ago with the states of today are absurd, as it would be absurd to directly compare the any government of that time with a modern, civilized, western state.

Finally, it should be noted that it was the Empire herself who pioneered the system of checks and balances and representative form of government that is the basis for ours, for the Empire was in her early and formative years ruled by the Senate and as a check against the authority of the upper classes there was the Tribune of Plebes with absolute veto power. Those these systems were later abused and fell into disuse, they were the basis of the Empire as they are the basis of our Government today.
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« Reply #86 on: June 06, 2006, 03:08:06 AM »

Quote
It's sad, but Orthodoxy has to face the inevitable.  Our toughest challenge is ahead of us

Hardly.  Most in Western states are simply indifferent to Orthodoxy.  I think that many Orthodox, in their nostalgia, lose sight of the the fact that for 300 years the Church prospered under the pagan Roman Empire.  I find it amazing that some people think so little of Orthodoxy, that they believe it must be protected by secular governments in order to survive.  Should we not have some faith that God will preserve the Church? ÂÂ

As a side note, in Fr. Seraphim Rose's biography it is mentioned that he lost much of his faith in Taoism when he mentor confided that were the oppresive measures of the Chinese government to continue, the faith could be eradicated.  Why do Orthodox people seem to think that if "Orthodox" governments cease to exist, the Church will also cease? ÂÂ
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« Reply #87 on: June 06, 2006, 04:12:20 AM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123159#msg123159 date=1149577686]Hardly.  Most in Western states are simply indifferent to Orthodoxy.  I think that many Orthodox, in their nostalgia, lose sight of the the fact that for 300 years the Church prospered under the pagan Roman Empire.  I find it amazing that some people think so little of Orthodoxy, that they believe it must be protected by secular governments in order to survive.  Should we not have some faith that God will preserve the Church? 
[/quote]

I never said that it wouldn't survive (God has assured us that it will).  Actually, I'm not concerned about the church's survival, but the quantity of souls that it can save once secularism or other anti-christian ideology becomes the authority.  Take the case of the churches of the middle east.  Both Syria and Egypt used to be very influential, and after converting to Islam, they are barely surviving today. 

Quote
Why do Orthodox people seem to think that if "Orthodox" governments cease to exist, the Church will also cease? 

You're the only one who said that.
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« Reply #88 on: June 06, 2006, 04:54:10 AM »

How can you force our idea of morality on people and still claim to be a democracy?
I have no respect for democracy anyway, at least not the western type.  Actually western democracy is no better than Islam, they both seek to impose their ideology on every nation of earth.  At least the muslims do it through conviction, whereas the hypocritcal western democracies do it through greed while claiming to do it for high ideals.  Both use violence to achieve their ends. Democracy is another form of relatavism.  If the majority decide that a triangle has four sides, or that homosexuality is normal, or that God doesnt exist, I couldnt care less. 
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« Reply #89 on: June 06, 2006, 05:01:56 AM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123143#msg123143 date=1149568442]
 Hence, my opinion, that the Church should focus on guiding those of un in those societies on how to be Orthodox within such societies - even to use the present situation for missionary work and expansion of Orthodoxy.ÂÂ  
[/quote]
Thats all well and good, but some posters on here seem to want to turn Orthodox in eastern Europe into impotent bystanders.  Just because you are a minority with no voice or influence in the west, it doesnt follow that we should welcome the secularization of our societies on the basis that the Church will survive anyway.  Ive no doubt the Church will survive no matter what, it doesnt mean that we should actively make things more difficult for ourselves.  God has and will send us enough challenges, without us having to concoct new ones of our own.
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« Reply #90 on: June 06, 2006, 10:04:42 AM »

Quote
Just because you are a minority with no voice or influence in the west, it doesnt follow that we should welcome the secularization of our societies on the basis that the Church will survive anyway.  Ive no doubt the Church will survive no matter what, it doesnt mean that we should actively make things more difficult for ourselves.

My point is that you are already fighting the wrong battle.  A growing diaspora, plus Greece, Romania and Bulgaria are/will be part of the EU or another similar Western society. 

Quote
God has and will send us enough challenges, without us having to concoct new ones of our own.

He has also sent us massive opportunities.  The apostles used the benefits of the Roman Empire (common language in Koine Greek, ease of transportation etc.) to convert an HOSTILE empire to Christianity.  There is no reason to not use the common languages of Western societies (English, but also German and French), improved transportation and information technology to evangelize. 
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« Reply #91 on: June 06, 2006, 10:15:36 AM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123178#msg123178 date=1149602682]
My point is that you are already fighting the wrong battle.ÂÂ  A growing diaspora, plus Greece, Romania and Bulgaria are/will be part of the EU or another similar Western society.ÂÂ  

He has also sent us massive opportunities.ÂÂ  The apostles used the benefits of the Roman Empire (common language in Koine Greek, ease of transportation etc.) to convert an HOSTILE empire to Christianity.ÂÂ  There is no reason to not use the common languages of Western societies (English, but also German and French), improved transportation and information technology to evangelize.ÂÂ  
[/quote]

Nicely put.  I think both you and SP are correct.  It's like the Yin and the Yang.
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« Reply #92 on: June 06, 2006, 12:04:07 PM »

Well, when I read the post about what happened in Romania, and saw Nacho's reply, I couldn't help thinking that it seemed a bit odd. I might have read too much into it, though.

If people want to , eh, "look fruity marching down the street", organizing protests where a mob-mentality might take over is not the way to go. Legalizing gay "marriage" , et cetera is definitely not the way to go either, I believe the question needs to be adressed on a different level.  In this case, I think the pen might be mightier than the egg and the rock. And yes, I do believe everyone deserves respect no matter their ideology or their actions. But then again, my mind clearly has been poisoned by hippie relativism, so what do I know.   Tongue
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« Reply #93 on: June 06, 2006, 04:48:22 PM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123178#msg123178 date=1149602682]
My point is that you are already fighting the wrong battle.ÂÂ  A growing diaspora, plus Greece, Romania and Bulgaria are/will be part of the EU or another similar Western society.ÂÂ  [/quote]

I dont understand why you keep bringing up Romania's and Bulgaria's integration so often. Does it mean that their livestyles will dramatically improve? not necassarily. The EU itself is in a bit of a shamble, look at the new EU constitution that has been thrown around like garbage. The EU looks alot like the Roman Empire to me; trying to rule lots of land and ethnicities. Well we obviously know it didnt work out very well now did it? And what on earth does a growing diaspora have to do with this?

Quote
There is no reason to not use the common languages of Western societies (English, but also German and French), improved transportation and information technology to evangelize.ÂÂ  

If you mean the anglosification of the world is OK, I must indeed ask you a question. How many languages can you speak fluently?
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« Reply #94 on: June 06, 2006, 05:47:50 PM »

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I dont understand why you keep bringing up Romania's and Bulgaria's integration so often.

Greece has a population of about 10 million.
Romania has a population of about 22 million.
Bulgaria has a population of about 7 million.

That is a large number of Orthodox Christians living in rapidly Westernizing societies, that is why I think it is important.  Keep in mind there are also large diaspora communities of various ethnicities with a large percentage of Orthodox Christians in Western Europe.  For the sake of those millions of Orthodox Christians, it is important to work on being Orthodox within a pluralistic society. 

Quote
IF you mean the anglosification of the world is OK,

You still arn't getting my point.  English is becoming the international lingua franca (at least for the time being) whether I or anyone else thinks it is ok.  Why not capitalize on that, like how the Apostles preached to the whole Roman Empire because of the linguistic dominance of Koine Greek?

Quote
How many languages can you speak fluently?

One with native level fluency.  If you lower the bar down from fluency to basic communication, I can get by in Greek.  Once I finish my studies at college, my goal is to have a very good grasp of Russian and German - but I'm just starting the intermediate level of studies in both of those.  I'm not sure the real point of your question, though. 
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« Reply #95 on: June 06, 2006, 06:10:48 PM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123223#msg123223 date=1149630470]

One with native level fluency.ÂÂ  If you lower the bar down from fluency to basic communication, I can get by in Greek.ÂÂ  Once I finish my studies at college, my goal is to have a very good grasp of Russian and German - but I'm just starting the intermediate level of studies in both of those.ÂÂ  I'm not sure the real point of your question, though.ÂÂ  

[/quote]

The point of my question is that if YOUR first language was not english, you would understand why many of us are against the TOTAL expansion of the english language. Sure more and more english is being spoken in europe, but the languages beforehand are becoming slowly obsolete. It's amazing to study how languages have become more anglosized over the years. It's easy for YOU to be for the expansion of English, when that is YOUR native language. Do have some sort of understand about what I'm talking about now? I guarentee you that one day the Slavonic Church language will be replaced by English. I just hope that I wont be around by then.

Quote
Greece has a population of about 10 million.
Romania has a population of about 22 million.
Bulgaria has a population of about 7 million.

That is a large number of Orthodox Christians living in rapidly Westernizing societies, that is why I think it is important

And what proof do you have that they are rapidly westernizing? When was the last time you've ever been to Sofia or Bucuresti? You are making extremely generalized assumptions. Joining the EU does not automatically significantly improve lives. Any current improvement in Romania is normal advancements that were just completely stagnated by Communism.
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« Reply #96 on: June 06, 2006, 07:05:30 PM »

Who just watched Dr Phil show on homosexuality ?
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« Reply #97 on: June 06, 2006, 07:29:16 PM »

Who just watched Dr Phil show on homosexuality ?

I did not, but I must say when I saw your line I did get quite a good chuckle.  A Serb watching Dr. Phil???  What is the world coming to??? j/k  Grin
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« Reply #98 on: June 06, 2006, 10:11:09 PM »

I did not, but I must say when I saw your line I did get quite a good chuckle.ÂÂ  A Serb watching Dr. Phil???ÂÂ  What is the world coming to??? j/kÂÂ  Grin

Tisina ti  Wink Actually I really dislike him. Whenever I do watch the show, I watch it so I can think of new ways to make fun of him  Cheesy  I just found it interesting because there was a priest there an he was telling Homosexuals that if they want to, if theyr eally want to, they can turn their lives around. It was interesting because the audience was clapping for him. I'd think the audience would be against him.

What do you watch SS99? Oprah Winfrey?  Tongue
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« Reply #99 on: June 06, 2006, 11:21:06 PM »

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The point of my question is that if YOUR first language was not english, you would understand why many of us are against the TOTAL expansion of the english language.

You point that out as if it is something that is self-evident among non-native English speakers, yet if that were so why is English the most commonly taught foreign language?

Quote
It's amazing to study how languages have become more anglosized over the years. It's easy for YOU to be for the expansion of English, when that is YOUR native language. Do have some sort of understand about what I'm talking about now?

I do understand that you are showing you don't really know much abour the history of languages.  Languages come into contact and share words, even grammar.  Latin dumped plenty of words around Europre when it was the international language, French did as well.  Classical Latin and Greek are the basis for many of the "English" technology vocabulary that is mostly international.  Arabic, Persian, Russian et al. have all contributed greatly to the languages of central Asia.  That's just the way languages and contacts work.  Eventually English will (most likely) be replaced as the international language whenever the next set of political super powers come into being. 

Since you seem to believe so firmly in "purifying" languages from foreign elements, how do you feel about the current linguistic reforms going on with Tatar and other languages within the former USSR? 

Quote
I guarentee you that one day the Slavonic Church language will be replaced by English. I just hope that I wont be around by then.

Not likely to happen in Slavic Orthodox nations.  But, in America - I certainly hope so. 

Some interesting and related stories...

Whem Khomiakov was in correspondence with Anglicans concerning Orthodoxy, he wrote in French - the international language of his day.

In one of the Optina Elder books, it is related that a Turk converted to Orthodoxy and became a monk at Optina.  He confessed and otherwise conversed in French.  I know that Elder Nektary spoke fluent French and was able to communicate Orthodox spirituality to those who would not have otherwise been able to understand Orthodoxy. 

Quote
And what proof do you have that they are rapidly westernizing?

Nothing of course that I say will be good enough.  The retort will simply be that I'm an American and can't understand the situation.  You have simply made up your mind that the Church should not accept the inevitable political situation and find a way to minister to people in spite of it. 
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« Reply #100 on: June 07, 2006, 03:35:24 AM »

Kudos to the mayor and the Orthodox Christians that took to the streets to protests against the perverts bent on perverting yet another society any further.

I can feel the Christian love in this post, I really can.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #101 on: June 07, 2006, 08:32:19 AM »

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I can feel the Christian love in this post, I really can.

I can feel the Christian love in this post, I really can.  Roll Eyes  Plank in eye?
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« Reply #102 on: June 07, 2006, 08:44:13 AM »

What do you watch SS99? Oprah Winfrey?ÂÂ  Tongue
Nah!  Nothing nearly as high classed as Oprah.  I'm more of a Jerry Springer kind of guy!  Shocked
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« Reply #103 on: June 07, 2006, 03:00:28 PM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123178#msg123178 date=1149602682]
My point is that you are already fighting the wrong battle.ÂÂ  A growing diaspora, plus Greece, Romania and Bulgaria are/will be part of the EU or another similar Western society.ÂÂ  [/quote]
I think it might be a losing battle in the short run, but its certainly not the wrong one.  Joining the EU may be inevitable, westernization may be inevitable, but for me the righteousness of the battle is not determined by whether victory is apparent or miniscule.  In any case the ultimate victory is assured.  As Saint Nikolai said: 'Two illogical philosphies: belief in ultimate victory without belief in God, and belief in God without belief in ultimate victory'.

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« Reply #104 on: June 07, 2006, 03:11:25 PM »

Well, when I read the post about what happened in Romania, and saw Nacho's reply, I couldn't help thinking that it seemed a bit odd. I might have read too much into it, though.

If people want to , eh, "look fruity marching down the street", organizing protests where a mob-mentality might take over is not the way to go. Legalizing gay "marriage" , et cetera is definitely not the way to go either, I believe the question needs to be adressed on a different level.  In this case, I think the pen might be mightier than the egg and the rock. And yes, I do believe everyone deserves respect no matter their ideology or their actions. But then again, my mind clearly has been poisoned by hippie relativism, so what do I know.  ÃƒÆ’‚ Tongue
Im glad you werent offended by my comment, and have taken it lightly.  It may have been put a bit disdainfully, but I believe its valid.  That aside, if you honestly believe that everyone deserves respect no matter their ideology or actions, this is fundamentally opposed to Christianity.  Good and evil are battling it out.  What respect can you have for evil people, how can everything that human nature is capable of producing be worthy of respect.  This is what I meant by hippie relativism.  You dont seem to have an idea of absolute right or wrong.  You seem to adhere to the liberal secular philosophy that there is no absolute right or wrong. 
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« Reply #105 on: June 07, 2006, 03:33:03 PM »

I think don't think Sleepyhead meant "everyone" as every possible human on the planet, but those within reason.  How you define that line, might be personal, as I think it would be impossible to "respect" a pedophile.  Needless to say, I don't put homosexuals in the same boat with pedophiles.
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« Reply #106 on: June 07, 2006, 04:02:50 PM »

No, everything that human nature is capable of producing is not worthy respect; if everything human nature is capable of producing would be worthy respect, then we would have to condone sins. However, I can't see how saying that everyone deserves respect would go against Christianity: if man is made in the image of God (now, I might have mixed things up here, but please bear with me), that alone would be a good enough reason to show respect, no matter how sinful the person's actions were. That does not mean that I don't consider their actions sinful. This might sound like nonsense to you, but I hope you get my point: respect the person, but not their sins.

In theory, this is very easy. I too would have great difficulty respecting a pedophile -  I understand that people want to do all kinds of things to sexual predators, but there is a line that I do not want to cross.
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« Reply #107 on: June 07, 2006, 04:24:39 PM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123259#msg123259 date=1149650466]
why is English the most commonly taught foreign language?
[/quote]

English has become one of the most universal languages through military expansion, colonization and total assimilation. That is infact the whole point of the Biritish Empire.

Quote
Since you seem to believe so firmly in "purifying" languages from foreign elements, how do you feel about the current linguistic reforms going on with Tatar and other languages within the former USSR? 


Ill tell you this. I am absolutely for the language purification, such as in Croatia. They have taken foreign originating words such as Avion (plane) and Telefon,  and are trying to replace them with slavic rooted words such as Zrakoplov and Brzozov. This will mean that when other slavic countries around croatia become completely assimilated, they will still be speaking their own language. By doing this they will not be isolating themselves from the world, because they still teach people english there. Obviously to become internationally successful you need to know english, but it is WITHIN the culture that I and many others oppose anglosization.

Quote
Nothing of course that I say will be good enough.  The retort will simply be that I'm an American and can't understand the situation.  You have simply made up your mind that the Church should not accept the inevitable political situation and find a way to minister to people in spite of it. 


Yup, looks like I've finally gotten that across to you Wink I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree from now on.
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« Reply #108 on: June 07, 2006, 04:26:52 PM »

No, everything that human nature is capable of producing is not worthy respect; if everything human nature is capable of producing would be worthy respect, then we would have to condone sins.
Exactly. A person earns respect through actions or intent.  Clearly if humans are capable of evil actions and sin then it follows that there will be some people that commit such actions and therefore do not deserve respect.  Obviously things are more complicated, everyone is somewhere inbetween, both sinning, and doing things worthy of praise.  Buts its not unreasonable to assume that on both ends there will be people for whom you can meaningfully say that you respect or not.  There has to be a distinction, otherwise we're back to the relativist view that there are no sins and therefore no virtues.  Now that you have clarified things a little, we are closer to agreeing, but I cannot understand why you would say everyone is worthy of respect if you dont mean EVERYONE? ÂÂ

However, I can't see how saying that everyone deserves respect would go against Christianity: if man is made in the image of God (now, I might have mixed things up here, but please bear with me), that alone would be a good enough reason to show respect, no matter how sinful the person's actions were. That does not mean that I don't consider their actions sinful.

In theory, this is very easy. I too would have great difficulty respecting a pedophile -ÂÂ  I understand that people want to do all kinds of things to sexual predators, but there is a line that I do not want to cross.
I think that you're using the word respect a little loosely.  To me it implies that someone has earnt it through positive actions, afterall you have to respect someone for what they stand for or do.  You're using it in the sense that we should have Christian goodwill to all souls, to the extent that we should pray for everyone.  I would agree with this, I want everyone to be redeemed.  This feeling should be unconditional, respect shouldnt.
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« Reply #109 on: June 07, 2006, 04:31:02 PM »

I probably am using the word a bit loosely; English isn't my first language.

It is late here, and I really only signed in again to edit my previous post, so I am going to be annoying and sign out again. Later, folks.
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« Reply #110 on: June 07, 2006, 04:44:55 PM »

I can feel the Christian love in this post, I really can.ÂÂ  Roll Eyes

I was eagerly anticipating the arrival of your 2 cents! Tongue
Since you're so opposed to opposing sin, and propose the answer is to sit on the fence and do nothing while things degenerate maybe you can explain the following.  Why did Jesus in the temple not just verbally chastise those using the holy place as a market to make material profit, but also physically overthrew the tables?  According to your logic he surely shouldnt have said or done anything.
You are mixing up two different concepts.  Speaking of his personal enemies Jesus said: 'forgive them they know not what they do'.  But for those that were corrupting society it was right and dutiful to chastise them instead of apathetically doing nothing.
You have things the wrong way round.  You consider it your right to 'forgive' those that sin against others, but not your duty to fight for whats right.  Infact you have no right to forgive those that have not transgressed against you personally, whereas you have a duty to defend whats right. ÂÂ
Doing nothing, declaring they are harmless and that we should love them merely hardens the arrogant prideful stance of these people.  For they see people with supposed conviction without the backbone to stand for something.
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« Reply #111 on: June 07, 2006, 04:55:31 PM »

Ill tell you this. I am absolutely for the language purification, such as in Croatia. They have taken foreign originating words such as Avion (plane) and Telefon,ÂÂ  and are trying to replace them with slavic rooted words such as Zrakoplov and Brzozov. This will mean that when other slavic countries around croatia become completely assimilated, they will still be speaking their own language. By doing this they will not be isolating themselves from the world, because they still teach people english there. Obviously to become internationally successful you need to know english, but it is WITHIN the culture that I and many others oppose anglosization.

It won't last, for better or worse artificial linguistic changes rarely do (one significant exception being the gender neutralization of language, but there is a strong cultural evolutionary force behind that which can work with, rather than against, the evolution of language (towards simplification in the indo-european language group)).

As a side note, just think how absurd it would be if English tried to remove all non-Anglo-Saxon/West Germanic influence. If we did we'd be reduced to eating 'Cow Wellington' or 'Pig Chops.' (Or is Chop of french influence? Maybe, we're not entirely certain, perhaps we should have to forbid it just to be on the safe side, but for the life of me I dont know what Anglo-Saxon word I'd use in its place...and is Wellington an Anglo-Saxon place name? Or can we attribute it to the Normands? I really dont know the answer to that one.)
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« Reply #112 on: June 07, 2006, 05:10:11 PM »

If we did we'd be reduced to eating 'Cow Wellington' or 'Pig Chops.'

Mmmmm...Cow Wellington...Pig Chops....
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« Reply #113 on: June 07, 2006, 05:49:32 PM »

It's almost impossible to remove foreign words, and not always worth the effort.  While at heart I am a romantic believer in "pure language" reality just doesn't work that way.  A basic book on the subject is "The Power of Babel" by I believe John McWorter (sp).  Languages evolve and borrow all the time.  It's viritually impossible to remove or prevent foreign words from coming in--Turkish was somewhat successful with removing Arabic words and the French Quebecans are doing ok with their efforts but they have draconian government policies mixed in with "flourish or die" seige mentalities.  Yet, these languages themselves have changed in the past century!  So, while I will always be an aficionado of Shakespearean English and Classical Greek (of course I just used a Spanish term!) I will go with the flow and use foreign words when it suits.  Those other states may be somewhat successful in their attempts but in the long run probably won't be totally successful, which means, if it's ok to have a few, why not more? And if something is assimilited, is it really still foreign?

Anastasios
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« Reply #114 on: June 07, 2006, 08:09:54 PM »

Quote
Yup, looks like I've finally gotten that across to you  I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree from now on.

Of course you are just as much an outsider (as someone living in Canada) to most situations in the Balkans as I am.  You are an insider to only one political idealogy (which is hardly ubiquitous) in Serbia.  Taking your nationalist idealogy to its conclusion means that nobody can understand any event that there were not "part of."  Yet this would destroy the entire field of history. 
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« Reply #115 on: June 07, 2006, 08:14:36 PM »

Quote
Ill tell you this. I am absolutely for the language purification, such as in Croatia. They have taken foreign originating words such as Avion (plane) and Telefon,  and are trying to replace them with slavic rooted words such as Zrakoplov and Brzozov. This will mean that when other slavic countries around croatia become completely assimilated, they will still be speaking their own language. By doing this they will not be isolating themselves from the world, because they still teach people english there. Obviously to become internationally successful you need to know english, but it is WITHIN the culture that I and many others oppose anglosization.

That is artificial and forced.  Only time will tell if it will work.  You still did not respond to my actual question.  Do you support the linguistic and cultural revivals of Tatars and others in Central Asia and their efforts to eleminate Russian influence?  Or more to the point how about Ukrainian and Belorusian nationalists - or even better yet Montenegrin nationalists?   
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« Reply #116 on: June 07, 2006, 10:04:03 PM »

Why did Jesus in the temple not just verbally chastise those using the holy place as a market to make material profit, but also physically overthrew the tables?  According to your logic he surely shouldnt have said or done anything.

That's an excellent example we all could emulate when dealing with society's illnesses.  In my mind, overthrowing tables and throwing eggs at demonstrators are symbolically equivalent.  They are both effective at emphatically declaring opposition to a collective misdemeanor without harming anybody by intention.
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« Reply #117 on: June 07, 2006, 10:25:40 PM »

[quote author=Νεκτάριος link=topic=9156.msg123436#msg123436 date=1149725394]
Of course you are just as much an outsider (as someone living in Canada) to most situations in the Balkans as I am.ÂÂ  [/quote]

Me = You ? I might be an outsider but how can I be just as much as an outsider as you when a) I am from there b) I am in constant contact with family and friends there c) I go there every second summer. Surely you were joking?

 
Quote
Do you support the linguistic and cultural revivals of Tatars and others in Central Asia and their efforts to eleminate Russian influence?  Or more to the point how about Ukrainian and Belorusian nationalists - or even better yet Montenegrin nationalists?


Why would I be against Tatar cultural revival? As long as it does not lead to an attempt to gain independance, I feel they fully deserve their right to reform. I doubt they will succeed because even the ethnicity "Tatar" is not clearly defined. Tatars in Eastern Europe, Caucasus, Siberia and Central Asia ahve genetic and ethnic differences. Its like doing a slavic cultural revival. Ukrainian Nationalists? Are you referring to Ukrainians attempting to break of the close connections with Russia? If you do, I have no problem. Ukrainians were not derived from Russians, but infact Russiand from Ukrainians. Russia needs to stop pretending to be the "Protector of Slavs", especially if they're not gonna follow up on it. Belorussian Nationalism? once again I dont even know what stances they take.

Montenegrin Nationalists I DO know about. Of course, that is such a minority of people it is nearly invisible. They dont even know what they want now. They got their independance, but theyve got no culture or language to re-instate because its all serbian. As the first Montenegrin rulers, Njegos said "I am a Serb. This is the Serbian land of Montenegro." They cant change history so...

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« Reply #118 on: June 07, 2006, 10:26:19 PM »

The local news must have gotten it wrong becase it was posted as "in Romania", not Moscow...unless both places had the same type of thing go on with the same response.
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« Reply #119 on: June 07, 2006, 10:29:34 PM »

both places had the same type of thing go on with the same response.
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« Reply #120 on: June 07, 2006, 11:33:29 PM »

Quote
Me = You ? I might be an outsider but how can I be just as much as an outsider as you when a) I am from there b) I am in constant contact with family and friends there c) I go there every second summer. Surely you were joking?

I'm not joking, and my comparison is not as far fetched as it initially seems.  You are an insider to only one group with one particular idealogy in the region.  You must agree that you are an outsider to the gypsy communities in the former Yugoslavia (unless of course you speak Romany and live among them).  Also you are an outsider to both Albanians living in Albania and the former Yugoslavia unless you speak Albanian and live as an Albanian among them.  That is what I am getting at, you are an insider - but only to one group in a region of many groups. 

Another angle is this:  I was born in America with English as my native language.  I am a member of the Republican party.  My views about topics like illegal immigration or my opinion of President Bush are thus affected by that.  My insider status actually hinders me from forming an objective point of view or seeing things from multiple perspectives. 

The other point to be made here is that people from the same region (even other Serbs!) have dramatically different perespectives on these topics.

Quote
Why would I be against Tatar cultural revival? As long as it does not lead to an attempt to gain independance, I feel they fully deserve their right to reform. I doubt they will succeed because even the ethnicity "Tatar" is not clearly defined. Tatars in Eastern Europe, Caucasus, Siberia and Central Asia ahve genetic and ethnic differences.

I was not being precise; I was speakly chiefly of the Volga Tatars.  I respect that you are consistent in not being hostile to the newfound Tatat nationalism.  I guess I see it as playing with matches and being surprised when a fire starts - i.e that once strong nationalist movements arise, separetist movements and violence are often to follow. 

Quote
Montenegrin Nationalists I DO know about. Of course, that is such a minority of people it is nearly invisible. They dont even know what they want now. They got their independance, but theyve got no culture or language to re-instate because its all serbian.

Many Russian nationalists will make these same claims about Ukraine - that Ukrainian is just a dialect of Russian, that they have no seperate identity of their own, etc.  The same has been said of Macedonians and others.  The creation of a national mythology for Montenegro is not that much different than any other nation's myths

In general, I do tend to agree that national and ethnic identities can be a positive thing.  But I will always strongly hold that the Orthodox Church ought to not sanctify the national myths of any nation.   

 
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« Reply #121 on: June 08, 2006, 01:29:47 AM »

Quote
I can feel the Christian love in this post, I really can.ÂÂ  Roll EyesÂÂ  Plank in eye?

Does the West really know what being a "Christian" is all about?ÂÂ  

Take it from a Catholic.

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/persecution/pch0060.html
One of the most important things my friend said to me was this: He believed that the people of the West have not been put to the test of Faith as have the Christian people of the East, and that we in the West are unprepared for great suffering. He wondered if we understood that the spirit of evil which had acted openly in the East was also at work in the West, and that terrible evils always follow when men turn away from God.

I have thought long and hard upon this simple insight of his, and I have come to believe it is a profound warning to us all. As the Godless materialism of the secularized democracies now seeks to flood into the East, new dangers arise, grave dangers to the soul. It would be a tragedy if Western materialism were mistaken for authentic human freedom. Of course, a decent reasonable level of material well-being is a good thing. But the Western pursuit of pleasure, luxury, and endless entertainments (combined with indifference to God and more and more outright rebellion against God) can create new forms of evil in human societies. Man falls into forgetfulness so easily. East and West, we can be deluded into thinking that the human person is no more than a clever, talking beast. We can lose the whole truth about man. And the end result of this is to degrade man to the level of an object, a thing which can be disposed of by the arbitrary will of political systems. By the same token, if man becomes a consumer without conscience, he degrades himself as well as others to the level of objects.

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« Reply #122 on: June 08, 2006, 04:05:03 AM »

It seems like you were right, which means that my English still needs improving. Ow.   Lips Sealed

We (as in "society") need a serious debate about these issues*. Such a debate can not be held if the side that is supposed to represent moral values keeps on throwing things at those being criticized; why not work for a change of attitude using other means? Is it problematic because you fear it would be a step towards condoning these sins? Let me remind you that it certainly doesn't have to imply that we change our minds about the sinfulness of homosexuality. I am talking about presenting a serious alternative.
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« Reply #123 on: June 08, 2006, 04:56:26 AM »

It seems like you were right, which means that my English still needs improving. Ow.  ÃƒÆ’‚ Lips Sealed

We (as in "society") need a serious debate about these issues*. Such a debate can not be held if the side that is supposed to represent moral values keeps on throwing things at those being criticized; why not work for a change of attitude using other means? Is it problematic because you fear it would be a step towards condoning these sins? Let me remind you that it certainly doesn't have to imply that we change our minds about the sinfulness of homosexuality. I am talking about presenting a serious alternative.

Well I have nothing against debating with them, but if this implies compromise then I find that unacceptable.  I mean compromise as regards to promoting their values, if you can call them values, teaching that it is normal in schools etc.  When you talk about a serious alternative I dont think we need to reinvent the wheel, the alternative is the same now as it always was: the path of repentance and prayer.  You might think that to be wishful thinking, but what other alternative is there to sin?
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« Reply #124 on: June 08, 2006, 10:41:15 AM »

Does the West really know what being a "Christian" is all about?ÂÂ  

Take it from a Catholic.

http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/persecution/pch0060.html
One of the most important things my friend said to me was this: He believed that the people of the West have not been put to the test of Faith as have the Christian people of the East, and that we in the West are unprepared for great suffering. He wondered if we understood that the spirit of evil which had acted openly in the East was also at work in the West, and that terrible evils always follow when men turn away from God.

I have thought long and hard upon this simple insight of his, and I have come to believe it is a profound warning to us all. As the Godless materialism of the secularized democracies now seeks to flood into the East, new dangers arise, grave dangers to the soul. It would be a tragedy if Western materialism were mistaken for authentic human freedom. Of course, a decent reasonable level of material well-being is a good thing. But the Western pursuit of pleasure, luxury, and endless entertainments (combined with indifference to God and more and more outright rebellion against God) can create new forms of evil in human societies. Man falls into forgetfulness so easily. East and West, we can be deluded into thinking that the human person is no more than a clever, talking beast. We can lose the whole truth about man. And the end result of this is to degrade man to the level of an object, a thing which can be disposed of by the arbitrary will of political systems. By the same token, if man becomes a consumer without conscience, he degrades himself as well as others to the level of objects.


So Christianity is about being miserable? Hmmm...and I always thought that something about Christ, Mercy, and Love were the fundamental elements. I guess if we 'love' our neighbour we'll do our best to make them suffer.
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« Reply #125 on: June 08, 2006, 12:05:02 PM »

I always thought that something about Christ, Mercy, and Love were the fundamental elements.

Faith without works is dead.

Quote
I guess if we 'love' our neighbour we'll do our best to make them suffer.

That's not the point.  The Russians know what suffering is, and they fear that their children would undergo the same trials should they react passively to secularization.  On the other hand, Americans live in pleasure, so they don't feel any urgency to oppose evil--at least not yet.
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« Reply #126 on: June 08, 2006, 03:05:45 PM »

Well I have nothing against debating with them, but if this implies compromise then I find that unacceptable.  I mean compromise as regards to promoting their values, if you can call them values, teaching that it is normal in schools etc.  When you talk about a serious alternative I dont think we need to reinvent the wheel, the alternative is the same now as it always was: the path of repentance and prayer.  You might think that to be wishful thinking, but what other alternative is there to sin?

No, I don't consider that wishful thinking at all. I agree.  Smiley
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« Reply #127 on: August 06, 2006, 06:14:29 AM »

Just want to say: hi!
From probably the first gay orthodox who's contributing here.

By the way, you all seem to feel superior over 'me'.
But didn't Christ teach you (and me) to be the littlest.
Christ didn't rule with violence and prejudice.
He loved. And still loves me (and you?). Despite all my sins. And believe me: I perform greater sins than my being gay.
Homosexuality doesn't undermine society. Prejudice, hate, not loving your neighbour etc. does.
But it's nice to know that my brothers/sisters rather would love to bash me than love and accept me.
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« Reply #128 on: August 06, 2006, 09:02:41 AM »

Just want to say: hi!
Hi! and welcome.

From probably the first gay orthodox who's contributing here.
Well, actually you are not. There are three other friends of ours on the forum who have identified as same-sex attracted.


By the way, you all seem to feel superior over 'me'.
But didn't Christ teach you (and me) to be the littlest.
Christ didn't rule with violence and prejudice.
He loved. And still loves me (and you?). Despite all my sins. And believe me: I perform greater sins than my being gay.
Homosexuality doesn't undermine society. Prejudice, hate, not loving your neighbour etc. does.
But it's nice to know that my brothers/sisters rather would love to bash me than love and accept me.
Now who is making sweeping generalisations? Wink
If you had actually bothered to read through the posts in this thread from the beginning (and you obviously haven't), you will find a very broad spectrum of opinions on this issue, many of which agree with the sentiments you have posted in the rest of your initial post.
I can understand that this is a sensitive issue for you, and so I can see why you might come in with all guns blazing and shoot from the hip with your first post, but you have to see that such behaviour is not being fair to the many posters who would not disagree with your opinion. This is not the way to reach a point of mutual understanding.
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« Reply #129 on: August 06, 2006, 09:56:26 AM »

hi again

you're right ...
 I was just very very mad.
Browsing the internet for something positive about being gay and orthodox.
All I found was condemnation, prejudice etc. etc.
read some posts here and all I found was negative.
Some even understood the orthodox protestors and molestors in Moscow.
And that's why i couldn't hold myself again.
I am from the Netherlands and there is more nuance in thinking about it.

But it was for a good cause i wrote this, otherwise I wouldn't know there were more gay here ...

So thanks for correcting me on this
And for those i grieved: forgive me!

PS.: Would really love to stay in contact with you ozgeorge and the other 3 :-)
Mail me please.

by the way: talking about 'all', I don't mean everyone. Just the ones who do condemn me.
Just as in prayer when I talk about sins in general. I am not personally doing all these things, but live in a general sinful world.
So not everyone is meant when i say 'all'.
Hope you understand what i want to say here.
But again: sorry for hurting anyone's feelings.
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« Reply #130 on: August 06, 2006, 10:21:31 AM »

Welcome Rebel Prince!
 ÃƒÆ’‚  ÃƒÆ’‚  No, you are not the first or only gay Orthodox poster on this forum. I, too, am gay and Orthodox. However, I hope I may offer the following suggestions:
 ÃƒÆ’‚  ÃƒÆ’‚  1. Don't let being "gay" define who you are as a human being. There's more to life than that. I am attracted to the same sex. I admit that. But that doesn't define who I am. Its a passion I suffer from. Put it in perspective.
 ÃƒÆ’‚  ÃƒÆ’‚  2. If we don't chose to be gay (and I don't think we do), how can we possibly have any "pride" in being gay? One has reasonable pride for things one has attained and accomplished in life. If we simply awaken to the fact that we suffer from same sex attraction during puberty, how can we be proud of that? To me it makes no more sense than being "proud" of being left-handed, blue-eyed, diabetic etc. This doesn't mean we have to hate ourselves for being gay. I think such an attitude is very unhealthy. But I think it is best to have a dispassionate and sober attitude toward being gay.
     3. I also think we gay people must admit that on SOME level we have an affliction. Something went wrong somewhere. I have no idea what causes homosexuality, but if everyone were like us, the human race would die out. You don't have to torment yourself with guilt over that. I don't. But at some level something's gone wrong. I think we gay people honestly need to admit that. Something about us is profoundly abnormal.
     4. This may seem a nuanced point, but the Orthodox Church does NOT condemn gay people. Now, there might be some homophobic Orthodox that do. You need to distinguish between Protestant fundamentalists here and Orthodox Christianity. The Orthodox Church does not teach (nor has it ever taught) that God hates those who suffer from same sex attraction. Please get that clear! God loves us just as much as He loves everyone else. God does not hate those who suffer from the sinful passions. And all human beings have some sinful passions that they struggle with. The nuanced point here is that the Orthodox Church will not give its blessing upon those that engage in same sex PRACTICE. In other words, the Orthodox Church does NOT condemn us for our sexual orientation. We can't control that. That comes from deep within us. We are attracted to whom we are attracted. Period. But we CAN indeed choose whom we will have sexual union with. That does lie within our power. And that's all the Orthodox Church asks us to do as gay people: be continent. Be chaste.
     5. And remember, if from time to time, we fall into patterns of gay sex, it is simply the best thing to pick ourselves up, avail ourselves of the Sacrament of Repentance, and begin walking the path of chastity again anew. It's really the only way.
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« Reply #131 on: August 06, 2006, 10:35:01 AM »

Hi Tikhon

You have some good points ...
Except I am not suffering!

There is no difference between being gay and acting gay.
That's a very unnatural border (sorry for my english). And very unloving.

And do u mean that God loves me more when I have sex with another anonymous man once ... and then feel sorry for it and ask his forgivenes? And forgiveness for what? For what should I feel sorry?
I didn't ask for being gay. But now I accepted that fact I am proud to be! So yes: pride!
I have to be proud. To show that I have the right for my own place in this world.

I dont scream it from any rooftop that I am gay. But I am not ashamed also.
And I am not sleeping around with many men - I guess many people believe gays do.
I have a man. In the Netherlands we can mary. And I did. I love my man.
And nno-one wil send me away when I want to visit him when he might be in hospital.
I can inherit, when he might die (May god forbid) and not his family, but the man he chose to live with.

And still God loves me. I know He does. Believe me.

Where does this idea come from He doesn't.
The Bible? read again!
Churchfathers? They are talking about mollestors, not about me, loving my man.
...
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« Reply #132 on: August 06, 2006, 11:51:13 AM »

Rebelprince,
I suggest you pick up the recent issue (I think an issue or two ago) of AGAIN magazine where this topic is discussed.  Matter of fact, Fr. Thomas Hopko has written a book on the subject recently.
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« Reply #133 on: August 06, 2006, 12:19:50 PM »

somewhere i read this:

Up against traditional interpretations of the first Christians’ Bible, the Council of Jerusalem listened to the testimony of Peter, Paul and others who had witnessed God’s Spirit moving in those unclean “by nature,” just as He was moving in them.  Rogers calls this “a relevant biblical analogy” for today’s homosexual issues in the church.  He’s absolutely right.
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« Reply #134 on: August 06, 2006, 02:09:30 PM »

It doesn't seem to me that there is debate that the Spirit will move in whomever It chooses; God is beyond-free to use whomever as His instruments.  I think Tikhon provided the best advice and care for your concerns, and did it from a position of empathy and sympathy (i.e. he's gone through many of the same experiences).

You may not get sympathy, though, if you're response to Tikhon and others is to start questioning the validity of the Bible or the interpretation of the Bible by people who are sympathetic to your plight.
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« Reply #135 on: August 06, 2006, 04:47:15 PM »

sorry - again - for hurting anyones feelings ...
That was never my intention ...

And for anyone who might hurt mine ... you are forgiven ...

And I am never questioning the validity of the bible.
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« Reply #136 on: October 08, 2006, 01:04:10 PM »

Hi Tikhon

You have some good points ...
Except I am not suffering!
You accept it is a sin, yet you are not suffering?

There is no difference between being gay and acting gay.
That's a very unnatural border (sorry for my english). And very unloving.
Of course there is a difference.  Having same sex attractions and commiting sodomy are 2 different things.  I think Im correct in stating that Fr. Seraphim Rose suffered from same sex attractions, and look at him, he became a monk.  He overcame those passions, but the first step was acknowledging he had a problem.

And do u mean that God loves me more when I have sex with another anonymous man once ... and then feel sorry for it and ask his forgivenes? And forgiveness for what? For what should I feel sorry?
I didn't ask for being gay. But now I accepted that fact I am proud to be! So yes: pride!
You claim you are Orthodox, you trangress Gods law, and then you ask for what should you be sorry? 


I have to be proud. To show that I have the right for my own place in this world.
You seem to have a complex, why on earth do you feel you have to show anyone you have the right for your own place in this world? God put you here, if you had enough confidence and humility you would realise that other people cant judge you, God will.  And pride is not a virtue.

I dont scream it from any rooftop that I am gay. But I am not ashamed also.
And I am not sleeping around with many men - I guess many people believe gays do.
I have a man. In the Netherlands we can mary. And I did. I love my man.
And nno-one wil send me away when I want to visit him when he might be in hospital.
I can inherit, when he might die (May god forbid) and not his family, but the man he chose to live with.
You are clearly not Orthodox if you are 'married' to a man.
And still God loves me. I know He does. Believe me.
Believe me when I say that you are repelling God with your impure behaviour, not allowing him to reach you because of your pride and refusal to acknowledge you're doing anything wrong.  How can God help you when you cant even accept you need his help? 
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« Reply #137 on: October 08, 2006, 09:08:30 PM »

I didn't ask for being gay. But now I accepted that fact I am proud to be! So yes: pride!
I have to be proud. To show that I have the right for my own place in this world.

No one says you dont have the right to to exist on this world. No one here (atleast not me) is saying you chose to be gay. But mind telling me why you "have to be proud"? I'm a little eager to know why you brought up the word pride so many times in such less span of words...

Quote
And still God loves me. I know He does. Believe me.

I know he loves you too. He loves all of his children, really. Even the serial killing mass murderers... (no, I'm not comparing them to homosexuals, but you get my point...hopefully without offense.)

Really, now I'd like to ask, what church did you get married in? Somehow, I doubt it is an Orthodox church, but then again I could be wrong.

Peace be with all of God's children,
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« Reply #138 on: October 13, 2006, 10:37:53 AM »

Gay Pri de started in response to the overwhelming prejudice in society.  In response to police harrassment and entrapment.  In reponse to many terrible things.   It is not Pride in the sense of hubris
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« Reply #139 on: October 13, 2006, 02:31:30 PM »

There can be no pride in what should only bring shame to a Christian.
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« Reply #140 on: October 14, 2006, 12:02:43 AM »

and shame to Christians is often bigotry and prejudice
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« Reply #141 on: October 17, 2006, 10:33:30 AM »

and shame to Christians is often bigotry and prejudice
So we cannot separate ourselves from what God Himself has called "abomination" without others calling us bigots?

So be it! Jesus told us that the world would hate us as it hated Him first.

And don't be fooled into thinking that those who hate Him and revel in their sin will stop at just name calling.
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« Reply #142 on: October 18, 2006, 11:02:00 AM »

There are correct ways to do things, including telling someone they are doing something wrong. Not everyone will carry this out correctly, but that doesn't change the core truth-the behavior is wrong.  I can call my child down from running out into the road-I can scream at them and beat them with a stick or I can correctly chastise them for behavior that is incorrect and unsafe.  The core truth remains the same whether I handled it correctly or not. You can't change the core truth by being proud of your incorrect behavior.  You can't change truth by lamenting someone's incorrect reponse to your incorrect behavior.  The trouble is that your conscience is seared enough to comfortably hide behind the whole gay pride movement.   

being gay was never intended by the creator, so it's NEVER going to be the ideal.  You can paint yourself naked and pink, put rainbow stickers on your rear end and march down the road- but it's still not the ideal your Father had for you. This Gay Pride movement is just a clever entrapment by the enemy. As long as your proud of your brokeness, you won't see it for what it is.
And no, for all those that want to attack me, I don't for one minute think sexual brokenness is just limited to the gay/lesbian community. I just get sick of tiptoeing around the blunt Naked truth in any situation Roll Eyes
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« Reply #143 on: October 21, 2006, 10:28:49 AM »

So we cannot separate ourselves from what God Himself has called "abomination" without others calling us bigots?

So be it! Jesus told us that the world would hate us as it hated Him first.

And don't be fooled into thinking that those who hate Him and revel in their sin will stop at just name calling.

   Like  Fred Phelps and his group?  No, they don't stop at name calling.  They picket funerals of people who have died of AIDS and now they picket funerals of soldiers. Orthodox Christians have nothing in common (or should not) with such a group.  We have all heard the name calling against gay people and deep prejudices.  We have to root that out if we call ourselves even Christians let alone Orthodox Christians.
  No, those who hate gay people don't stop at name calling.  They bash and kill also.  We should make a stand against that also!
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« Reply #144 on: October 21, 2006, 11:38:24 AM »

I know what bripat22 is saying. I have an acquaintance who for some years who sent me anti-homosexual newsletters every other day, telling me about how the gays were destroying our world, etc. I realized he had no love for the people he was against but instead simply hated them; they were the "other" he could use to make himself feel righteous. Then illegal immigrants came to the forefront and now they're the people making the world end. I said, Lord please don't let a gay illegal immigrant ever run in to this man or this man might kill the fellow!

On the flip side, I do find the idea that it is now "ok to be gay" to be distressing because it allows people that may be sitting on the fence about things (most people are not 100% straight or gay, but instead have a spectrum of sexual stimuli that can be influenced by a variety of factors) to then see it preached that it's ok to engage in gay sex and life, and they may in fact act out on it, whereas when it was taboo they might have restrained themselves more strictly.  Yes, this caused people pain, but so did straight people marrying people they didn't really want to, so did people going into careers they hated because their parents forced them, or living in places with no chance of escape.  Life is generally more freer in all regards now, and this can be good, but it can also be bad because it allows our licentiousness on all fronts freer reign.

I only hope that we can continue to oppose homosexual propoganda WITHOUT hating these people whom we should love, and I also don't understand the revulsion that some people get when they think of gay people.  People are people. They once were cute babies, they have family and friends, and more importantly they have souls.  We can't ever think of these people as anyone else than possible future Orthodox Christians, and treat them as such.

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« Reply #145 on: October 21, 2006, 07:59:13 PM »

whereas when it was taboo they might have restrained themselves more strictly. 
Fornication and adultery were once taboo also. A couple living together who were unmarried was once taboo, but now it is the norm. Why is it that we don't lament these cases of the socialization of sin as much? Why do we focus on the sin of homosexuality? The word I keep hearing is "Abomination", but adultery is an abomination, fornication is an abomination.

I only hope that we can continue to oppose homosexual propoganda WITHOUT hating these people whom we should love,
But if we don't equally oppose the propaganda which has acheived the acceptable status of heterosexual fornication and adultery, our double standard will show the depths of our hypocracy.

Either we "speak out" against every sin in society or none.
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« Reply #146 on: October 21, 2006, 11:51:42 PM »

On the flip side, I do find the idea that it is now "ok to be gay" to be distressing because it allows people that may be sitting on the fence about things (most people are not 100% straight or gay, but instead have a spectrum of sexual stimuli that can be influenced by a variety of factors) to then see it preached that it's ok to engage in gay sex and life, and they may in fact act out on it, whereas when it was taboo they might have restrained themselves more strictly.

Fornication and adultery were once taboo also. A couple living together who were unmarried was once taboo, but now it is the norm. Why is it that we don't lament these cases of the socialization of sin as much? Why do we focus on the sin of homosexuality? The word I keep hearing is "Abomination", but adultery is an abomination, fornication is an abomination.

It would seem to me that the greater problem here is our dependence on social pressure to enforce Christian morality. If we conforms to Christian morality because of social pressure and fear of what our neighbours may think of us, rather than out of love of God and desire to become closer to Him, is there any virtue to our restraint? Or do we merely added the sins of pride and vainglory to the other sins that we have already commited in our hearts?
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« Reply #147 on: October 22, 2006, 02:05:58 AM »

I know what bripat22 is saying. I have an acquaintance who for some years who sent me anti-homosexual newsletters every other day, telling me about how the gays were destroying our world, etc. I realized he had no love for the people he was against but instead simply hated them; they were the "other" he could use to make himself feel righteous. Then illegal immigrants came to the forefront and now they're the people making the world end. I said, Lord please don't let a gay illegal immigrant ever run in to this man or this man might kill the fellow!

On the flip side, I do find the idea that it is now "ok to be gay" to be distressing because it allows people that may be sitting on the fence about things (most people are not 100% straight or gay, but instead have a spectrum of sexual stimuli that can be influenced by a variety of factors) to then see it preached that it's ok to engage in gay sex and life, and they may in fact act out on it, whereas when it was taboo they might have restrained themselves more strictly.  Yes, this caused people pain, but so did straight people marrying people they didn't really want to, so did people going into careers they hated because their parents forced them, or living in places with no chance of escape.  Life is generally more freer in all regards now, and this can be good, but it can also be bad because it allows our licentiousness on all fronts freer reign.

I only hope that we can continue to oppose homosexual propoganda WITHOUT hating these people whom we should love, and I also don't understand the revulsion that some people get when they think of gay people.  People are people. They once were cute babies, they have family and friends, and more importantly they have souls.  We can't ever think of these people as anyone else than possible future Orthodox Christians, and treat them as such.

Anastasios

What an  amazingly insightful post.  I wish I could have written lots of it, and there's very little here that I would  have written differently if I'd had the presence of mind to jot something down this eloquent.  I probably would have just added more about needing to love homosexuals and anyone else exactly as they are, and that we should realize how excluded the Church can make homosexuals feel at times.  It's a very difficult issue. 

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« Reply #148 on: October 22, 2006, 10:17:40 PM »

Anastasios

I think your post was the most thoughtful and insightful of this thread.  Definitely more light then heat!
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« Reply #149 on: October 22, 2006, 10:29:34 PM »

Fornication and adultery were once taboo also. A couple living together who were unmarried was once taboo, but now it is the norm. Why is it that we don't lament these cases of the socialization of sin as much? Why do we focus on the sin of homosexuality? The word I keep hearing is "Abomination", but adultery is an abomination, fornication is an abomination.
But if we don't equally oppose the propaganda which has acheived the acceptable status of heterosexual fornication and adultery, our double standard will show the depths of our hypocracy.

Either we "speak out" against every sin in society or none.

I agree entirely George. I'm glad we see eye to eye on this one. Smiley
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« Reply #150 on: October 22, 2006, 11:27:31 PM »

An aside; Moscow had thier other 'first gay pride parade" in 1991 and another "first gay pride parade" in 1995. After three of them I  think can move on to 'second".
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« Reply #151 on: October 24, 2006, 10:17:31 AM »

The word I keep hearing is "Abomination", but adultery is an abomination, fornication is an abomination.
God called homosexuality an abomination but He did not apply the term to the other sins that you listed.

I'll stick with God's opinion on the matter, thank you very much.
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« Reply #152 on: October 24, 2006, 10:45:01 AM »

God called homosexuality an abomination but He did not apply the term to the other sins that you listed.

I'll stick with God's opinion on the matter, thank you very much.
OK, then I hope you don't eat shrimp or lobster or crab or oysters or mussels or scollops, because that is also an "abomination" according to the same book of the Bible (see Leviticus 11:9-12), and I know how important is is for you to "stick with God's opinion" on matters.
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« Reply #153 on: October 24, 2006, 11:49:52 AM »

OK, then I hope you don't eat shrimp or lobster or crab or oysters or mussels or scollops, because that is also an "abomination" according to the same book of the Bible (see Leviticus 11:9-12), and I know how important is is for you to "stick with God's opinion" on matters.
Perhaps you should familiarize yourself with Acts 15 so that you can be familiar with Christian teachings on the matter. Yeah, the food regulations were fulfilled but the teachings on sexual morality continue to be applied unchanged.
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« Reply #154 on: October 24, 2006, 05:47:48 PM »

I suppose Patristic interpretation would be more helpful than personal interpretation... Don't exclude the modern-day writers and fathers of the Church..

I just think this is going nowhere fast.
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« Reply #155 on: October 24, 2006, 05:58:06 PM »

God called homosexuality an abomination but He did not apply the term to the other sins that you listed.

I'll stick with God's opinion on the matter, thank you very much.

Ah, of course, the sins of our neighbour are always greater than our own, and in that spirit let us pray that prayer that our Lord gave us, 'God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.'

But in actuallity there are many things declared an abonimation to God by the scriptures:

These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.

A false balance is abomination to the LORD: but a just weight is his delight.

They that are of a froward heart are abomination to the LORD: but such as are upright in their way are his delight.

Lying lips are abomination to the LORD: but they that deal truly are his delight.

Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.

Furthermore, even in the very Chapter of Leviticus that was being addressed above, Adultery (specifically, sleeping with your neighbour's wife) is called an abomination. As to what God's opinion is, if I may be so presumptuous as to opine on the same, any sin is a transgression of His Will, any sin is an abomination.
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« Reply #156 on: October 25, 2006, 10:08:11 AM »

Ah, of course, the sins of our neighbour are always greater than our own...
That might be true for someone who is attempting to deny their own status as a sinner, as the homosexual activists are doing.

They are attempting to overrule God because they want to take pride in their sin.
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« Reply #157 on: October 25, 2006, 10:29:32 AM »

you don't know too many gay people.....if you knew them you would know their struggles and the faith of many
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« Reply #158 on: October 25, 2006, 10:35:31 AM »

you don't know too many gay people.....if you knew them you would know their struggles and the faith of many
Let it go bripat. What can you possibly say to someone who states that the sins of others are greater than his own- like the Pharisee said of the Publican in the Temple, but who was it that went home justified before God?
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« Reply #159 on: October 25, 2006, 11:13:13 AM »

you don't know too many gay people.....if you knew them you would know their struggles and the faith of many
There's a huge difference between someone who stuggles against their sinful nature and someone who parades down the street celebrating their sin. The topic IS about their parade, you know, not about someone struggling against sin.

What can you possibly say to someone who states that the sins of others are greater than his own...

Who said that?
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« Reply #160 on: November 06, 2006, 09:42:20 AM »

According to this news report today: http://www.metimes.com/storyview.php?StoryID=20061106-054314-7986r a gay march is scheduled in Jerusalem and the Fundamentalist Christians, Jews and Moslems have been staging protests (sometimes violent ones) for days. However, what struck me was the brief mention in the article of what the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of jerusalem had to say on the matter:

Yet some religious leaders have adopted a more cautious approach, seeing the matter as one for the local authorities regardless of their theological stance.
"We're not supposed to interfere into matters which are primarily the concern of local political authorities," Greek Orthodox Patriarch Theophilos said, who rejected overtures from some rabbis to join up against the march.
"Our position, as a Church, as a religious institution is that homosexuality or anything which is related to this behavior is condemned according to the Bible. But the person by no means can be treated in a negative way."

I found this to be a sane voice in a sea of passion.
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« Reply #161 on: November 06, 2006, 10:02:11 AM »

I found this to be a sane voice in a sea of passion.
It's good to know that the Church keeps speaking the truth on the matter.

I read this morning that a group of "ultra-Orthodox" Jews are threatening violence since the civil authorities in Israel will take no further action against the parade.
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« Reply #162 on: November 06, 2006, 10:22:17 AM »

"Our position, as a Church, as a religious institution is that homosexuality or anything which is related to this behavior is condemned according to the Bible. But the person by no means can be treated in a negative way."
[/color][/i]

Considering that homosexual behaviour can traditionally be punished by imprisonment in Orthodox countries, with the Church's approval, this smacks of "I'm okay, you're okay" compromise.
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« Reply #163 on: November 06, 2006, 11:10:53 AM »

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« Reply #164 on: November 06, 2006, 11:22:33 AM »

Considering that homosexual behaviour can traditionally be punished by imprisonment in Orthodox countries, with the Church's approval, \

 to our shame
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« Reply #165 on: November 06, 2006, 11:41:10 AM »

Considering that homosexual behaviour can traditionally be punished by imprisonment in Orthodox countries, with the Church's approval, this smacks of "I'm okay, you're okay" compromise.

I doubt that approach led to many sincere conversions.
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« Reply #166 on: November 11, 2006, 01:03:14 PM »

Jerusalem holds gay pride rally

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/6135778.stm

The event highlights deep divisions between Israeli communities
A controversial gay pride rally has taken place in Jerusalem despite calls from religious leaders to ban it.

About 4,000 gay men, lesbians and civil rights supporters gathered at the Hebrew University stadium.

Security was tight in the city with 3,000 Israeli police drafted in to stop clashes between the demonstrators and orthodox Jews.

About 30 gay protesters who tried to march illegally through the city were arrested by Israeli police.

The proposed march was cancelled by Israeli police on Thursday after Palestinian threats to attack Israel after the shelling in Gaza in which 18 Palestinian civilians were killed.
   
Event organisers agreed to move the event to the stadium after Israeli police said they needed to divert forces to deal with the security threat.

Permission for the proposed march through Jerusalem had provoked controversy because of religious Jewish views of homosexuality as an abomination.

Religious sensibilities

Ultra-orthodox Jews clashed with Israeli police earlier this week after calling for the march to be cancelled, saying it defiled the holy city.

The proposed march was also criticised by the Muslim and Christian religious communities.

The Vatican called for it to be scrapped for fear of offending "the sensibilities of religious communities".

As the event got under way, thousands of gay people poured into the stadium to hear a series of speeches.

Many wore T-shirts celebrating their sexuality while others held banners and flags. One banner read: "There are different ways to be a Jew."

Two men dressed as sperm handed out condoms to participants.

One man at the rally told that the BBC that "that people need to be more accepting of homosexuality".

The four-hour event passed off without any reports of violence.

At last year's march, three participants were injured when they were stabbed by an orthodox Jew who opposed the event.

This year's gathering had already been postponed because of the conflict with Lebanese Hezbollah guerrillas during the summer.
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« Reply #167 on: November 13, 2006, 09:05:32 AM »

Two men dressed as sperm handed out condoms to participants.
And some suggest that we should be ashamed of our opposition to sin? Not very likely.
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« Reply #168 on: November 13, 2006, 09:16:40 AM »

And some suggest that we should be ashamed of our opposition to sin? Not very likely.

I fail to see any problem with the sentence of which you decided to make an example. Perhaps you prefer the unchecked spread of disease and pestilence, but all sane and rational people will agree that this is one area where we have made substantial progress over past civilizations; progress that no one in their right mind would want to see reversed.
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« Reply #169 on: November 13, 2006, 11:41:23 AM »

Perhaps you prefer the unchecked spread of disease and pestilence...
That's just a bit of a stretch there. If you wish to give tactic approval to a group encouraging sinful behavior, that is your right, but kindly do so without hurling outrageous condemnations at those who chose not to remain silent.
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« Reply #170 on: November 13, 2006, 01:57:35 PM »

Condoms are there to allow promiscuity with no strings attached.
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« Reply #171 on: November 13, 2006, 04:55:14 PM »

Condoms are there to allow promiscuity with no strings attached.

You are right. They should be banned. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #172 on: November 13, 2006, 06:35:18 PM »

That's just a bit of a stretch there. If you wish to give tactic approval to a group encouraging sinful behavior, that is your right, but kindly do so without hurling outrageous condemnations at those who chose not to remain silent.

My apologies if I am slightly disturbed by people who oppose the containment of disease on account of so-called moral reasons.

Condoms are there to allow promiscuity with no strings attached.

This is, of course, proven by the fact that prior to the widespread use of condemns sexual promiscuity did not exist.
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« Reply #173 on: November 13, 2006, 07:55:18 PM »

Well, promiscuity has even more of a reason to exist now. Now it's just "harmless" fun.
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« Reply #174 on: November 13, 2006, 09:59:52 PM »

Well, promiscuity has even more of a reason to exist now. Now it's just "harmless" fun.

Promiscuity's previous existence did not seem to lack, despite the absence of this new found reason. I fear you have confused cause and effect. Sexual promiscuity is as old as the human species, even as old as biological life, in fact it is even much older than the moral codes that condemn it, thus to blame it on condoms is absurd. It could possibly argued that condoms result from sexual promiscuity, but in the context of history to say that it is a cause of said promiscuity is absurd. All that condoms cause is a decrease in the propagation of disease; hardly a cause that any reasonable person would be up in arms against.
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« Reply #175 on: November 14, 2006, 12:54:23 AM »

I never said condoms cause promiscuity.

That said, condom use certainly does encourage promiscuity, for it helps allow the promiscuous to avoid the consequences that come from such behavior (which is precisely what condoms are designed for). The fear of pregnancy and venereal disease can discourage promiscuity.

Under no circumstances is condom use justified; it is antithetical to God's plan for sexual union, which is procreation in the context of monogamous marital love.
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« Reply #176 on: November 14, 2006, 01:17:26 AM »

I never said condoms cause promiscuity.

That said, condom use certainly does encourage promiscuity, for it helps allow the promiscuous to avoid the consequences that come from such behavior (which is precisely what condoms are designed for). The fear of pregnancy and venereal disease can discourage promiscuity.

LOL...this is great, they do not cause...oh wait, they do cause. Ignoring the theological abhorrent concept that we should discourage sin by use of fear, you have presented no evidence that condoms cause (or insert the word 'encourage' if you like, logically they're fairly comprable in this situation) sexual promiscuity. If necessary I can provide evidence for the fact that the use of condoms reduces the spread of disease. Now, I ask you to provide support for your claim, that condoms somehow increase sexual activity. What studies or research have you come across to support this proposition? Because, quite frankly, I don't buy it...I don't really think that Homo Sapiens are any more sexually promiscuous than they have been at any other time in the last 100,000 years.

Quote
Under no circumstances is condom use justified; it is antithetical to God's plan for sexual union, which is procreation in the context of monogamous marital love.

Gibberish. This is nothing but Roman Popery, the absurdities of which have been dismissed in more than one thread on this board.
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« Reply #177 on: November 14, 2006, 01:49:23 AM »

Under no circumstances is condom use justified;
Even if they save lives? Please tell me you're kidding....
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« Reply #178 on: November 14, 2006, 04:52:26 AM »

Even if they save lives? Please tell me you're kidding....

GreekisChristian's disrespectful rhetoric deserves no response, and it will receive none. I doubt he even desires a serious response.

As for your question, from a personal moral standpoint, no. Condoms prevent the union of sperm and egg, which is what God designed sex for. It is thus a form of Onanism. What kind of sexual union is there when it is not open to life?

I am glad that people are spared terrible diseases through condom use, but at no point should the Church recommend it. It should stick to the truth: Avoiding sexual sin renders condom use unnecessary. The Church needs to guide people to chastity, not accept unchastity and counsel condom use. Leave the condom promotion and distribution to secular authorities, which are not bound to teach the moral law.

Respectfully, for the Church to accept condom use is to compromise with today's world, in my view.
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« Reply #179 on: November 14, 2006, 05:01:01 AM »

As for your question, from a personal moral standpoint, no. Condoms prevent the union of sperm and egg, which is what God designed sex for. It is thus a form of Onanism. What kind of sexual union is there when it is not open to life?

So if someone has a medical condition that renders them unfertile, they should stop have relations with thier spouse?

I am glad that people are spared terrible diseases through condom use, but at no point should the Church recommend it. It should stick to the truth: Avoiding sexual sin renders condom use unnecessary. The Church needs to guide people to chastity, not accept unchastity and counsel condom use. Leave the condom promotion and distribution to secular authorities, which are not bound to teach the moral law.

Respectfully, for the Church to accept condom use is to compromise with today's world, in my view.

Oh, I guess healthcare providers who have contracted HIV or Hep-C by being splattered with blood or stuck w/ contaminated needles were just being "unchaste". I guess they just stop having relations w/ thier spouses or have "procreative" sex that results in thier spouse and any child that they concieve in being infected also.


Oh, well, when life hands you a lemon....make lemon AIDS!
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« Reply #180 on: November 14, 2006, 06:15:42 AM »

The Church needs to guide people to chastity, not accept unchastity and counsel condom use.
lubeltri,
I don't think anyone here is advocating unchastity. The reality is, though, people have always had to deal with temptations to unchastity, and often failed- the Bible is full of stories where people were unchaste, and indeed, the geneology of Our Lord Jesus Christ includes people who were unchaste. In St. Matthew's geneology of the ancestors of Our Lord, he lists among Christ's ancestors:
1) Tamar who conceived through incest with her father-in-law;
2) Rahab who was a prostitute, and
3) Bathsheba who was an adultress.

Unchastity is a powerful passion which is difficult to overcome for many (if not most). People will stumble, but thanks be to God who in His mercy allows repentance.

Imagine for a minute that you are the father of a teenage son. Let's say that your son does not agree with your ideas about chastity. Would you tell him not to use condoms in the hope that he would remain chaste? Will you be pleased if, by not using condoms, he contracted the HIV virus? Of course you wouldn't! In the same way, if the Church forbids and opposes the production and provision of condoms, she is condemning to death those who fall into sin.

It's not about promoting unchastity, it's about saving lives. Millions are dying of AIDS in Africa, millions of infants have been left orphaned because of the AIDS crisis there. In countries where there was a rapid reponse to the AIDS crisis (such as Australia) which responded with education programs promoting safer sex, ans safer injecting drug use, AIDS has been, for the most part, controlled. This was not the case in Africa, which is why we have the disaster which exists there now.

George
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« Reply #181 on: November 15, 2006, 04:18:02 PM »

Quote from: BoredMeeting
That's just a bit of a stretch there. If you wish to give tactic approval to a group encouraging sinful behavior, that is your right, but kindly do so without hurling outrageous condemnations at those who chose not to remain silent.

My apologies if I am slightly disturbed by people who oppose the containment of disease on account of so-called moral reasons.

I accept your apology for twisting my words into the nonsensical falsehood that you posted against me.
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« Reply #182 on: November 15, 2006, 04:18:58 PM »

I don't think anyone here is advocating unchastity.

I believe it is quite clear that the two men in their funny little costumes were doing exactly that.
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« Reply #183 on: November 15, 2006, 06:22:07 PM »

I believe it is quite clear that the two men in their funny little costumes were doing exactly that.
Thank you for your opinion.
My opinion is that they were promoting safer sex.
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« Reply #184 on: November 15, 2006, 06:26:44 PM »

Thank you for your opinion.
My opinion is that they were promoting safer sex.
Wow. Are you serious? Or is this satire.
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« Reply #185 on: November 15, 2006, 06:32:45 PM »

Wow. Are you serious? Or is this satire.

<sigh>
I wish people would actually read threads (and not simply the last post) before deciding to post in them......
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,9156.msg138264.html#msg138264

I know that the age of internet has contributed to people's attention span being limited to that of a tse-tse fly, but I think we should make an effort nonetheless.
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« Reply #186 on: November 15, 2006, 08:56:18 PM »

Wow. Are you serious? Or is this satire.
I fear that it was not satire. It is a shame when some Christians will not stand against those that call evil good.
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« Reply #187 on: November 15, 2006, 09:12:31 PM »

I fear that it was not satire. It is a shame when some Christians will not stand against those that call evil good.

So is saving people from disease and death from AIDS evil in and of itself, or only when we're talking about saving Africans from those?
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« Reply #188 on: November 15, 2006, 09:20:19 PM »

I fear that it was not satire. It is a shame when some Christians will not stand against those that call evil good.
I happen to agree with OzGeorge here.  Could you please show me where he has called evil good in this thread?

Back in the late 1970's there was a call-in radio program which featured a woman named Doctor Ruth.  The program was geared towards college students and Dr Ruth talked about and answered questions about sex.  One of Dr Ruth's favorite questions was "Do you use condoms?"
During one show a Protestant minister called in and started going after her about how disgusting her show was, how it should be taken off the air, etc., and how he didn't want his children listening to her.  To this she responded, "If you don't want your children to listen to Dr Ruth, tell them 'Don't listen to Dr Ruth'."  The minister answered that children didn't always listen to their parents.  To which she responded, "Well, if they aren't listening to you, than maybe it is important that they listen to me!"
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« Reply #189 on: November 16, 2006, 03:11:54 AM »

<sigh>
I wish people would actually read threads (and not simply the last post) before deciding to post in them......
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,9156.msg138264.html#msg138264

I know that the age of internet has contributed to people's attention span being limited to that of a tse-tse fly, but I think we should make an effort nonetheless.
Nice Charitable response.  Wink
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« Reply #190 on: November 16, 2006, 03:13:26 AM »

So is saving people from disease and death from AIDS evil in and of itself, or only when we're talking about saving Africans from those?
If you are not in a committed marriage, if you have AIdS, you should not be having sex at all. Condomes just allow people to do what they want without having to restrain themselves.
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« Reply #191 on: November 16, 2006, 06:55:25 AM »

"If you don't want your children to listen to Dr Ruth, tell them 'Don't listen to Dr Ruth'."  The minister answered that children didn't always listen to their parents.  To which she responded, "Well, if they aren't listening to you, than maybe it is important that they listen to me!"
LOL! Cheesy
I love that one!

If you are not in a committed marriage, if you have AIdS, you should not be having sex at all.
Thank you for your opinion, which makes absolutely no sense since it assumes that:
A) You know that you are carrying the HIV virus, and
B) You subscribe to Judeo-Christian type moral values.
So the only way your theory would work is if everyone was tested for HIV every day and was a believer in a Faith with forbids extramarital sex. And since you have no control over these two criteria, and the reality is that they are never going to be realised, what you are suggesting makes no sense. Condoms, on the other hand, do make sense if you are not going to abstain from sex. This has already been discussed at length on this thread, by myself and others, in response to similar statements such as yours, so I suggest (in charity Wink) that you take the time to read what has been said rather than just go in circles.
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« Reply #192 on: November 16, 2006, 09:25:03 AM »

So is saving people from disease and death from AIDS evil in and of itself, or only when we're talking about saving Africans from those?
I see that trying to put words in my mouth has become a pattern here.

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« Reply #193 on: November 16, 2006, 09:25:26 AM »

Shock and scandal would probably be the most effective rhetorical tool at this point, unfortunately I have to tone it down a bit because our censors and thought police would look unfavourably on that (as they did a little while back with my wonderful collection of islamic cartoons Grin), so here goes, I am sure, nothing...

It would seem that those who oppose the use of condoms do so under a misconception. It would appear from the past few posts that they believe that simply because a condom is put on prior to sexual intercourse that the decision to put a condom on is made before the decision to have sexual relations. However, I doubt that many people wake up in the morning, put a condom on when they put their socks on and then decide, 'Hey, I'm wearing a condom perhaps I should go out and have extramarital intercourse.' No, in the words of my favourite one-liner from Crimson Tide 'You don't put on a condom unless you're gonna (insert traditional Anglo-Saxon term for "have sexual intercourse" here)!'

When someone decides whether or not to wear a condom the decision to have sex is already made. Thus, the decision to use a condom is not a decision about sex, rather it is a decision about sanitation, disease control, and saving lives.
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« Reply #194 on: November 16, 2006, 09:27:53 AM »

Quote from: BoredMeeting
I fear that it was not satire. It is a shame when some Christians will not stand against those that call evil good.

I happen to agree with OzGeorge here.  Could you please show me where he has called evil good in this thread?
I was referring to the two men in their little costumes encouraging others to commit sodomy and several posters who cannot bring themselves to state that such encouragement is wrong.
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« Reply #195 on: November 16, 2006, 09:31:02 AM »

I was referring to the two men in their little costumes encouraging others to commit sodomy and several posters who cannot bring themselves to state that such encouragement is wrong.

I see my previous post went unnoted. But to sum up, they were not encouraging sodomy, if someone is going to engage in sodomy they will do so with or without condoms. All these gentlemen were doing is trying to curtail the spread of disease, they were probably doing far more good than the vast majority of people on this board will ever do.
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« Reply #196 on: November 16, 2006, 09:34:46 AM »

I was referring to the two men in their little costumes encouraging others to commit sodomy and several posters who cannot bring themselves to state that such encouragement is wrong.

Wow, now "damage control" is "encouragement."  So basically, if people aren't going to keep their flies zipped, we should stand by and say they deserve whatever diseases follow?
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« Reply #197 on: November 16, 2006, 10:12:21 AM »

When someone decides whether or not to wear a condom the decision to have sex is already made. Thus, the decision to use a condom is not a decision about sex, rather it is a decision about sanitation, disease control, and saving lives.
BINGO!
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« Reply #198 on: November 16, 2006, 01:00:30 PM »


B) You subscribe to Judeo-Christian type moral values.

The point is, the Church operates under the assumption that these "Judeo-Christian type moral values" are objectively true and universal. Thus it should not be in the business of promoting condom use. The Church should be focused on the hereafter, not sacrificing eternity for worldly concerns. Secular states or other religions can promote condom use, but the Church should not wink at fornication among its flock.
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« Reply #199 on: November 16, 2006, 01:06:37 PM »

I see my previous post went unnoted. But to sum up, they were not encouraging sodomy, if someone is going to engage in sodomy they will do so with or without condoms. All these gentlemen were doing is trying to curtail the spread of disease, they were probably doing far more good than the vast majority of people on this board will ever do.

Considering that condoms are far from fullproof in protecting HIV transmission during sodomy, I would discourage anal sex altogether.
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« Reply #200 on: November 16, 2006, 03:32:00 PM »

...they were probably doing far more good than the vast majority of people on this board will ever do.
Speak for yourself, John.
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« Reply #201 on: November 16, 2006, 04:37:22 PM »

Considering that condoms are far from fullproof in protecting HIV transmission during sodomy, I would discourage anal sex altogether.
Firstly, you still stand much better chances of not contracting HIV wearing a condom than not. Secondly, it is not simply anal sex which is risky, vaginal sex carries an equal risk, so shouldn't we discourage vaginal sex also?
I think, the problem with the position held by you and boardmeeting is that you have confused your aversion to homosexuality (which is commendable) with handing out medical advice based on that morality rather than science (which is reprehensible). The problem with focussing on HIV as "the gay plague" and making it a moral issue (eg thinking that "discouraging anal sex" reduces the incidence) is precisely why there is now a disaster in Africa- because people were not properly informed and advised to take precautions.
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« Reply #202 on: November 16, 2006, 05:17:16 PM »

My point, Ozgeorge, is that it is not for the Church to dispense medical advice. It is there to speak for morality, and it would compromise its mission to be promoting condom use and handing out condoms. Let secular authorities and groups, not bound by that mission, to get in the condom business. It would be scandalous for a Church that recognizes condoms as birth control and thus wrong to be promoting condom use.
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« Reply #203 on: November 16, 2006, 05:26:11 PM »

My point, Ozgeorge, is that it is not for the Church to dispense medical advice.
I absolutely agree. So then you can see that discouraging anal sex simply on the basis of HIV transmission (as you suggested) is ridiculous since vaginal sex, by the same logic, should also be discouraged. Therefore, the Church should hold no opinion about people using condoms to prevent HIV and other STD's.
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« Reply #204 on: November 16, 2006, 05:47:44 PM »

The Church should simply say that chastity and monogamy are the only moral option.

The point about preventing HIV and anal sex---I was just making the point that anal sex is an extremely risky activity, and condoms reduce the risk of transmission, but they still fail quite often (much less so with vaginal sex). It's still risky (which is why they are now calling it "safer" sex, since it is still not exceedingly safe). As a doctor or medical authority, I would discourage anal sex period, with or without a condom.
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« Reply #205 on: November 16, 2006, 05:56:36 PM »

(much less so with vaginal sex)
Huh evidence?
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« Reply #206 on: November 16, 2006, 06:16:14 PM »

Well, this is hardly the place to have a medical discussion, but I would think some of the reasons would be obvious (though probably not appropriate to describe on this forum).

Some are mentioned here. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anal_sex#Risks.2C_safer_sex_and_HIV
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« Reply #207 on: November 16, 2006, 06:18:48 PM »

Huh evidence?

I just took a second look at your post. Perhaps you are thinking I wrote that condoms are less effective with vaginal sex? I should have been clearer. Condoms are more effective with vaginal than anal (though, of course, they still can fail). The risk of fluid transfer is greater in the rectum, and condoms are more prone to slippage or damage when inserted in someone's bottom.
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« Reply #208 on: November 16, 2006, 06:37:06 PM »

My point, Ozgeorge, is that it is not for the Church to dispense medical advice. It is there to speak for morality, and it would compromise its mission to be promoting condom use and handing out condoms. Let secular authorities and groups, not bound by that mission, to get in the condom business.

Of course, the issue presented is two secular people handing out condoms, they wern't being handed out in Church during the divine liturgy.

Quote
It would be scandalous for a Church that recognizes condoms as birth control and thus wrong to be promoting condom use.

Speak for yourself, not for the Church as a whole. I and many I know and know of in the Church, at all levels, support birth control.

Well, this is hardly the place to have a medical discussion, but I would think some of the reasons would be obvious (though probably not appropriate to describe on this forum).

And why isn't this the place for a medical discussion that is relevant to the thread at hand? Do you honestly believe that modern medicine is so evil that it cannot even be mentioned in polite company? Throughout history physical and spiritual medicine operated side by side in the Church who ran most the hospitals and cared for the sick. Today too many of us are caught up in the dark ages for us to even be looked to as a viable caregiving institution.
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« Reply #209 on: November 16, 2006, 07:02:07 PM »

Of course, the issue presented is two secular people handing out condoms, they wern't being handed out in Church during the divine liturgy.

Speak for yourself, not for the Church as a whole. I and many I know and know of in the Church, at all levels, support birth control.

And why isn't this the place for a medical discussion that is relevant to the thread at hand? Do you honestly believe that modern medicine is so evil that it cannot even be mentioned in polite company? Throughout history physical and spiritual medicine operated side by side in the Church who ran most the hospitals and cared for the sick. Today too many of us are caught up in the dark ages for us to even be looked to as a viable caregiving institution.

You clearly misunderstand me. Perhaps you are not reading closely.

First of all, I was not speaking of your church, I was speaking of mine (Catholic), where the immorality of contraception is a point of faith. Obviously there is no longer consensus in Orthodoxy. If you feel the Orthodox church should promote condom use, that is your business, none of mine.

I was avoiding description not because I am "caught up in the dark ages" of antipathy to "evil" medicine but because it would entail the discussion of details of anal sex---rectums, micro-tears, etc.---which others may not feel comfortable reading.



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« Reply #210 on: November 16, 2006, 07:46:23 PM »

Speak for yourself, not for the Church as a whole. I and many I know and know of in the Church, at all levels, support birth control.

Even the most liberal advice I've read for married couples holds that the use of birth control is to be decided in consultation with one's spiritual father, who may very well say no. Because the role of deciding these belongs with one's spiritual father, it's inappropriate for you to be calling for their use here.
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« Reply #211 on: November 16, 2006, 08:08:43 PM »

Even the most liberal advice I've read for married couples holds that the use of birth control is to be decided in consultation with one's spiritual father, who may very well say no. Because the role of deciding these belongs with one's spiritual father, it's inappropriate for you to be calling for their use here.

Usually I agree with GiC on many, but not all, things.  Mr. Culver's right here.
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« Reply #212 on: November 16, 2006, 10:53:02 PM »

Even the most liberal advice I've read for married couples holds that the use of birth control is to be decided in consultation with one's spiritual father, who may very well say no. Because the role of deciding these belongs with one's spiritual father, it's inappropriate for you to be calling for their use here.

Then you clearly haven't spoken with the true liberals in the Church. I personally see no reason to discourage birth control at all. Now we should certainly condemn extramarital affairs, but if these affairs are going to happen anyway, it's certainly preferable they happen while birth control is being used. As to within the context of marriage, it's always helpful to speak with one's spiritual father, but I see no reason why a couple is incapable of considering their situation and deciding what is best.
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« Reply #213 on: November 16, 2006, 10:55:22 PM »

Usually I agree with GiC on many, but not all, things.  Mr. Culver's right here.

Well, it probably doesn't help that I have drifted a bit to the left over the past couple years. Though don't expect me to join the ACLU anytime soon Wink
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« Reply #214 on: November 16, 2006, 11:10:58 PM »

Back when the Church of England was debating birth control in the 1920s, Gilbert Keith Chesterton weighed in on it:

"What is quaintly called Birth Control . . . is in fact, of course, a scheme for preventing birth in order to escape control."

"Normal and real birth control is called self control."

"Birth Control is a name given to a succession of different expedients by which it is possible to filch the pleasure belonging to a natural process while violently and unnaturally thwarting the process itself."

"We can always convict such people of sentimentalism by their weakness for euphemism. The phrase they use is always softened and suited for journalistic appeals. They talk of free love when they mean something quite different, better defined as free lust. But being sentimentalists they feel bound to simper and coo over the word "love." They insist on talking about Birth Control when they mean less birth and no control. We could smash them to atoms, if we could be as indecent in our language as they are immoral in their conclusions."
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« Reply #215 on: November 17, 2006, 12:21:21 AM »

Good post, lubeltri,

Pro-'choice"; Right to Choose; Women's Rights (I love that one...aren't 50% prevented children female? 50% aborted children female?)
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« Reply #216 on: November 17, 2006, 02:07:06 AM »

Actually, female unborn and female infants are snuffed out more often than males across the world. In many countries, females have less value. Women's rights indeed!

You're right about euphenisms, Αριστοκλής. One current one I really detest: "marriage equality."
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« Reply #217 on: November 17, 2006, 10:07:53 AM »

I personally see no reason to discourage birth control at all.
You are certainly entitled to your opinion, even though it goes against the official teachings of the Orthodox Church. People place themselves outside of the Church everyday. We can only pray that they do not come to the end of this life there.
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« Reply #218 on: November 17, 2006, 10:19:02 AM »

You are certainly entitled to your opinion, even though it goes against the official teachings of the Orthodox Church. People place themselves outside of the Church everyday. We can only pray that they do not come to the end of this life there.

Please, tell me, of which Patriarchal Encyclical am I in violation? Which Synod of the Holy and Great Church of Christ am I contradicting? The Church has no position on the matter, and the Church should have no position on the matter; it is a medical and scientific, not theological, issue. I fear that it is you who are pretending to speak for the Church, when the Church remains silent. So who made you the spokesperson for the Synod of Constantinople?
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« Reply #219 on: November 17, 2006, 11:37:30 AM »

You are certainly entitled to your opinion, even though it goes against the official teachings of the Orthodox Church. People place themselves outside of the Church everyday. We can only pray that they do not come to the end of this life there. 

Methinks you mean that there are Fathers who condemn the practice, no that it is "official."  Regardless of your or my position on birth control, you'll actually have to provide proof that it is "official teaching" of the Church by producing Synodal decrees and providing the context information for the synods: i.e. who was there, was this accepted as universal or is it local, etc.  Even encyclical letters will do, but they only apply within a particular area, and so you'll have to document that.

If we do our due diligence in matters like this, then our positions will be strengthened beyond hope of defeat.
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« Reply #220 on: November 17, 2006, 11:49:24 AM »

Please, tell me, of which Patriarchal Encyclical am I in violation? Which Synod of the Holy and Great Church of Christ am I contradicting?

Are you married? Have you discussed the issue with your spiritual father? If the answer to both questions is no, what business do you have making statements about the use of birth control?
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« Reply #221 on: November 17, 2006, 12:04:24 PM »

The Church has no position on the matter, and the Church should have no position on the matter; it is a medical and scientific, not theological, issue. I fear that it is you who are pretending to speak for the Church, when the Church remains silent. So who made you the spokesperson for the Synod of Constantinople?

Just quoting their teachings, actually. The Church has not remained silent on homosexuality nor birth control. You can deny knowledge of their teachings, but denying that their teachings exist in another matter entirely.

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Why do you sow where the field is eager to destroy the fruit? Where there are medicines of sterility? Where there is murder before birth? You do not even let a harlot remain a harlot, but you make her a murderess as well. Do you see that from drunkenness comes fornication, from fornication adultery, from adultery murder? Indeed, it is something worse than murder and I do not know what to call it; for she does not kill what is formed but prevents its formation. What then? Do you contemn the gift of God, and fight with His laws? What is a curse, do you seek as though it were a blessing? Do you make the anteroom of birth the anteroom of slaughter? Do you teach the woman who is given to you for the procreation of offspring to perpetrate killing? That she may always be beautiful and lovable to her lovers, and that she may rake in more money, she does not refuse to do this, heaping fire on your head; and even if the crime is hers, you are the cause. Hence also arise idolatries. To look pretty many of these women use incantations, libations, philtres, potions, and innumerable other things. Yet after such turpitude, after murder, after idolatry, the matter still seems indifferent to many men--even to many men having wives. In this indifference of the married men there is greater evil filth; for then poisons are prepared, not against the womb of a prostitute, but against your injured wife. Against her are these innumberable tricks, invocations of demons, incantations of the dead, daily wars, ceaseless battles, and unremitting contentions.
{St. John Chrysostom, Homily 24 on the Epistle to the Romans (PG 60:626-27) }
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« Reply #222 on: November 17, 2006, 09:08:33 PM »

Are you married? Have you discussed the issue with your spiritual father? If the answer to both questions is no, what business do you have making statements about the use of birth control?

Only to counter the atrocious and immoral opposition to birth control; if none spoke in opposition to it, you are correct that there would be no need for me to defend it. But so long as people oppose the use of birth control there is a moral obligation for rational people to speak up in its defence, lest poor fool come to harm by listening to this dark age advice. Fortunately, we are coming to a point in our society where birth control is universally accepted, except for a few fundamentalists on the extreme fringe; so in this context the reason for my arguing for birth control is simply intellectual self-pleasuring (like most things we discuss on this site). Cheesy

Just quoting their teachings, actually. The Church has not remained silent on homosexuality nor birth control. You can deny knowledge of their teachings, but denying that their teachings exist in another matter entirely.

You provided the private opinion, and while it is the private opinion of an intelligent man. It must be understood that he lived in an era that was deprived of the medical and scientific knowledge we now enjoy, thus making his opinion uninformed at best. Furthermore, it's still a private opinion. It's not even an encyclical, it's merely a homily, it was promulgated by no synod. Surely you understand the requirements for a belief to become binding dogma. So where is the synodal condemnation of Birth Control?
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