There are two issues that need to be addressed here:
1) The fact there can be no reconciliation whatsoever between Orthodox Dogmatic Theology and Rastafarian emperor/man-worship.
2) An honest interpretation of HIM’s response to the Rastafarian perception of him, and hence his integrity as an Ethiopian Orthodox Christian.
The second clause of the second point is fundamental, because despite the fact I believe HIM to have been an honest and faithful Oriental Orthodox Christian who would never have thought of blasphemously attempting to usurp the glory and honour due to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit alone, you must realise that HIM is not the arbiter of Truth; rather, the Orthodox Church is, and hence the Orthodox Church dictates the standard by which HIM is to be measured. In this respect, by virtue of 1), even if we were to assume for arguments sake that HIM ever gave any sort of a hint of approval of the Rastafarian conception of him, he would necessarily have to be deemed a liar.
In your first post on this forum you stated:
I do not want to abandon Rastafari, but the teachings of my God and King point me towards Orthodoxy.
I urge you to consider in honesty and humility all that has been said to you thus far, and to respond positively to your divinely inspired inclinations towards Orthodoxy. Realise however, that an honest embrace of Orthodoxy will necessitate the rejection and disavowel of your Rastafarian doctrine; they’re mutually exclusive. You have suggested elsewhere that you personally know of certain individuals who were baptised into the Ethiopian Orthodox Church whilst maintaining their allegiance to HIM as to a god. I have no reason to doubt the honesty of your personal account, but allow me to say quite bluntly that these individuals are living a lie, and they have blasphemed their Orthodox baptism. Their culpability may be increased or reduced relative to their intent, knowledge and will, as well as the role the Ethiopian priests in question may have played in allowing such a misfortunate incident to occur, but the ultimate truth and reality is that the Sacrament of Baptism is the putting on of Christ and hence an embrace of His Truth that is encompassed by the Orthodox Church; The Truth that directly opposes the Rastafarian conception of HIM.
By tradition, Ethiopian rulers, take the title of "King of Kings, Lord of lords, Conquering Lion of the tribe of Judah" as the titles of the throne;
Ethiopian emperors inherit the above title by tradition (as you admit). It thus signifies nothing with respect to their ontological nature or their individual personal identity, but rather their earthly imperial position/function. To say that it does is to misunderstand Ethiopian culture; the very misunderstanding HIM expressly appointed Archbishop Yeshaq to correct upon his visit to Jamaica.
these are the same titles given to the returned Messiah.
So what? What kind of logic or reason would compel you to draw the outlandish conclusion that the emperors of Ethiopia must therefore be re-incarnations of Christ?
Furthermore, how can HIM be the “returned Messiah” when a) he spoke of the Crucified Messiah as an independent person to whom his own faith was due, b) he died, whereas the Resurrected Messiah is immortal, even in His Humanity, and c) he fulfilled nothing that even closely resembled the Bibilically depicted return of the Messiah as understood within the Tradition of the Orthodox Church.
The English translation of the name Haile Selassie is Power/Might of the Trinity.
Most, if not all, Ethiopian Orthodox Christians bear such names as a symbolic honour of their Christian Faith. The Jews likewise bore such symbolic names indicative of a certain attribute or characteristic of God. HIM is merely honouring the Holy Trinity by adopting it as his name.
He showed the people that he is a manÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¦ Selassie I was born of mother and fatherÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¦ he never said that a human cannot be God.
Notice the context of HIM’s response; he is asserting that he is a mere man and mortal in response to the Rastafarian conception of him. Evidently therefore, considering his words in the immediate context of the interview itself, he is asserting himself as a man and mortal contrary to the Rastafarian view, thus implicitly yet clearly denying the Rastafarian conception of him by virtue of their false divine characterisation of him, regardless of any admission on their behalf of his simultaneous humanity. He is thus essentially claiming mere humanity.
This is the only honest way to interpret HIM’s words. Listen to the Scriptures that HIM honoured: “Do not put your trust in princes, in mortal men, who cannot save. When their spirit departs, they return to the ground” (Psalm. 146:3-4)
Onto the more important issue however, which relates to point 1) as stipulated in my introduction. Can a human be God according to Orthodox Christianity? Well, certainly not in the sense that you describe:
I and I can be God, but only by being One with Jah. I and I can't be God separate from Jah, as two gods. But I and I can only join with Jah, to be One with him, as One God.
According to Orthodox Christianity, we have the potential to achieve the likeness of God by His Grace, but we certainly cannot be as He is by nature. There are only Three Persons that co-exist in the One existence of God, and that thus share the Divine Nature: The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit. Period.
We do not become fourth, fifth, sixth, and so on members of the Godhead. To believe so is utterly incompatible with dogmatic Orthodox Theology. It is not open for question or debate. You must make your choice. Either you recognise the One True God, and submit to Him through His Holy Church and reap the benefits of this: being in His Image and Likeness, or you keep worshipping a mere man who expressly denied the perception you maintain of him in the false hope that Satan himself once held i.e. the hope to become God in nature, and reap the consequences of this: eternal death.
This statement shows I that no man, not even the Son of Man Jesus Christ, emanated (or came out) from God. Jesus Christ was born of his mother Mary, and by his destiny and livity became One with Jah.
This one statement involves principles pertinent to heresies anathematised by each and every one of the Three Ecumenical Councils of the Oriental Orthodox Church. The metaphysical Person and hence fundamental identity of the historical Christ, The Word, pre-existed His Incarnation eternally as God. As we say in the Nicaean Creed, He was “begotten of the Father before all agesÃƒÆ’Ã‚Â¢ÃƒÂ¢Ã¢â‚¬Å¡Ã‚Â¬Ãƒâ€šÃ‚Â¦God out of God...” Christ was eternally One with the Father, as the Gospel of St John says: “In the beginning was The Word, and The Word was with God, and The Word was God”; in other words: before the existence of time (and hence in eternity), the Word co-existed with the Father, yet was One with the Father for He shared in His Divinity.
Christ did not become One with the Father; He eternally was and is One with the Father.
Simply put, no one can "become" God; such a notion directly contradicts a fundamental attribute of God's very nature: eternal immutability.
They made the excuse that because Jesus was born differently, that it was possible for him to live this way, but not for us, because we are born from mother and father.
According to Orthodox Dogma, the reason Christ was sinless was by virtue of the union between His Divinity and Humanity, and this very union itself was only possible according to a Virgin birth. Thus, the above statement makes very little sense within the framework of Orthodox doctrine.
The official position of the EOTC outside the Caribbean is expressly against "emperor worship".
The official position of the EOTC is not geographically relative. The Dogma of the Church as expressed through her Tradition which encompasses the Scriptures, the Fathers, and the Councils, expressly denies the worship of anything or anyone other than The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
The official position of the EOC on dogmatic issues can be read upon at the following link:http://www.ethiopianorthodox.org/english/maindoctrines/thefivemysteries.htm