OrthodoxChristianity.net
August 01, 2014, 01:46:07 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Reminder: No political discussions in the public fora.  If you do not have access to the private Politics Forum, please send a PM to Fr. George.
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Pages: « 1 2 3 4  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Converts and Established Customs  (Read 9584 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Cowboy
Member
***
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 97



« Reply #135 on: August 31, 2006, 12:46:58 PM »

The personal relationship with God that is clearly stated by using the informal "Thou" instead of the formal "You."  Modern English doesn't even have a formal/informal distinction so that Orthodox element is completely lost.

Only a linguist or English teacher would know that "Thou" is informal and "You" is formal. I think that most people would say the opposite is true(uneducated Americans that we are).
Logged
CRCulver
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Church of Finland and Romanian Orthodox Church
Posts: 1,159


St Stephen of Perm, missionary to speakers of Komi


WWW
« Reply #136 on: August 31, 2006, 12:49:49 PM »

The personal relationship with God that is clearly stated by using the informal "Thou" instead of the formal "You."  Modern English doesn't even have a formal/informal distinction so that Orthodox element is completely lost.

The Uralic languages don't even distinguish between "he", "she", and "it" in the third person singular, along with a host of other differences from the Greek, and yet the Finnish Orthodox Church uses modern Finnish for its liturgy, the Russian Orthodox Church translated much hymnography into Mari, and my own patron St Stephen of Perm translated the writings of the Church into Komi. As I just said before in my last post, most of the arguments for retaining another language or some archaic form of English were soundly answered when St Cyril defeated the Trilingual heretics.

What results when one is so suspicious of translation is a worship of the text itself that is almost Protestant. Any given text on its own always contains ambiguities. However, the liturgy is, or at least should shouldn't be, always on its own, but rather accompanied by catechesis and homiletics that entirely clarify the meaning of the liturgy, regardless of how one-to-one a language is with the Greek.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2006, 12:53:19 PM by CRCulver » Logged
Anastasios
Webdespota
Administrator
Merarches
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Greek Old Calendarist
Posts: 10,440


Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Florina

anastasios0513
WWW
« Reply #137 on: August 31, 2006, 01:13:59 PM »

That's just the heresy of the trilinguals all over again. Crazy translations from certain scholars with agendas might not express Orthodox thought correctly, but any language is capable of expressing the beliefs of the Church, even English in its modern form.

Eh, don't throw labels of heresy around so easily there.  It would be heretical to say that English can't express a thought as well as Greek.  But to say that one register or form of English is just as good as another is not something I subscribe to, even though it seems to be something that linguistic relativists like to throw around.  Do you really think Ebonics can convey the thoughts of Orthodoxy as well as a standard American dialect, for instance?  Or, say we admit that all forms of language could express a thought potentially--that doesn't mean they are all of the same cultural approporiateness. Perhaps you are right and modern English can express the thoughts and we don't need to add thee and thou with the -eth and -est endings to be precise.  I think, however, that these archaisms and lofty registers add to the worship experience and help convey the thought in a different context than just using plain speech, even if it is standard educated speech.

Anastasios
Logged

Met. Demetrius's Enthronement

Disclaimer: Past posts reflect stages of my life before my baptism may not be accurate expositions of Orthodox teaching.

I served as an Orthodox priest from June 2008 to April 2013, before resigning for personal reasons
CRCulver
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Church of Finland and Romanian Orthodox Church
Posts: 1,159


St Stephen of Perm, missionary to speakers of Komi


WWW
« Reply #138 on: August 31, 2006, 01:25:53 PM »

Do you really think Ebonics can convey the thoughts of Orthodoxy as well as a standard American dialect, for instance?

Yes, of course. The only problem with using AAVE ("ebonics" is not used in the literature and is often considered pejorative as not only ebony-skinned people speak it now) is that it is not the standard language. Which is to say, in our diverse country, those who speak AAVE can understand the language of the media, while speakers of other forms cannot so easily understand AAVE. Therefore, for pastoral efficiency, it's best to use the language of the media. The same is done in Finland. No one here would deny that any given Finnish dialect is as capable of grand thoughts as the others, but because the dialects are so varied, a standard form is used.

Quote
Perhaps you are right and modern English can express the thoughts and we don't need to add thee and thou with the -eth and -est endings to be precise.  I think, however, that these archaisms and lofty registers add to the worship experience and help convey the thought in a different context than just using plain speech, even if it is standard educated speech.

There was no "loftiness" of -eth and -est in the Greek, it was just plain everyday language. The loftiness of liturgy comes in worshiping a supremely awesome God and partaking of the Flesh and Blood of the Crucified and Risen Lord. Thoughts of tweaking the language came only later.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2006, 01:27:07 PM by CRCulver » Logged
AMM
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Jurisdiction: ACROD
Posts: 2,076


« Reply #139 on: August 31, 2006, 02:21:09 PM »

To take it a step further, why stop at modern English? If you are in south central LA, why not do a liturgy in Ebonics? Ebonics IS a valid dialect of English even though most of us hate it, so why not liturgize in it if the claim is that people should not have to learn higher registers to worship?

Probably if for no other reason than any hierarch with two brain cells to rub together would understand that the time, effort and money required to produce such a translation of the required liturgical texts would be a colossal waste of time.  Just as when opening a mission the bishops don’t just randomly pick places and hope people show up.

Regarding the language issue, I apologize if I used the wrong terminology to describe the exact style of English used.  I’ll stick to just describing whatever the various styles are as archaic, denoting simply they are not the language that is used commonly today.

Perhaps there are people who can listen to the liturgy in archaic English, or read a prayer book printed in the same language and the meaning of the words is readily apparent to them.  I know some people who this doesn’t happen to be the case for though, both non native speakers of English and a couple of residents of my household who are under the age of seven.

I personally as I have said don’t have an issue with using archaic English; if there are people who like it and find it aids their worship, that’s great.  I like our services which are almost all in what I would call contemporary English with some Slavonic mixed in here and there.  My issue is with those who criticize churches that use languages other than English, but themselves use an archaic form of that language.

I’m not sure if I’m one of the “whiners”, but I can say I don’t believe Cowboy is “whining” if that was directed at him.  I may not agree with a good deal of what he is saying, but to me he clearly wants what he thinks is best for the church.
Logged
BoredMeeting
Loving the Life of a Council Member
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic Christian
Jurisdiction: Serbian Orthodox/OCA
Posts: 721



« Reply #140 on: August 31, 2006, 02:24:31 PM »

Only a linguist or English teacher would know that "Thou" is informal and "You" is formal. I think that most people would say the opposite is true(uneducated Americans that we are).
Well, I am neither so that rather disproves your initial assertion, doesn't it?

As to the other part, are you then suggesting that the Liturgy must be "dumbed down" for the poorly educated American masses to get it?  I would think that just pointing out what "Thou" really means would suffice.
Logged
Cowboy
Member
***
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 97



« Reply #141 on: August 31, 2006, 02:40:21 PM »

Well, I am neither so that rather disproves your initial assertion, doesn't it?

As to the other part, are you then suggesting that the Liturgy must be "dumbed down" for the poorly educated American masses to get it?  I would think that just pointing out what "Thou" really means would suffice.

I don't know a single soul who uses thee and thou in everday spoken language and I view teaching them the arcane formality of You vs Thou as a terrible waste of time. To me this would be just an unnecessary barrier to understanding the words of the Divine Liturgy. The Liturgy can be done in normal everday English without being "dumbed down".
Logged
Veniamin
Fire for Effect!
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA Diocese of the South
Posts: 3,372


St. Barbara, patroness of the Field Artillery


« Reply #142 on: August 31, 2006, 02:46:01 PM »

The Liturgy can be done in normal everday English without being "dumbed down".

No, it can't; everyday English is already dumbed down.  To avoid that effect, you're going to have to use a more formal, educated form of English than is the norm for everyday use.
Logged

Artillery adds dignity to what would otherwise be a vulgar brawl. ~Frederick the Great
CRCulver
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Church of Finland and Romanian Orthodox Church
Posts: 1,159


St Stephen of Perm, missionary to speakers of Komi


WWW
« Reply #143 on: August 31, 2006, 02:50:37 PM »

No, it can't; everyday English is already dumbed down.

What nonsense. If everyday English is "dumbed down", the koine of the early Church must have been thoroughly moronic.
Logged
aserb
asinner
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Self Ruled Antiochian Archdiocese
Posts: 1,188


« Reply #144 on: August 31, 2006, 03:00:14 PM »

Whilst all future replies on this post beist in Elizabethian English. Dost that please thou? Excuse me whilst I repair to the praetorium to rent thy clothes.
Logged

Save us o' Son of God, who art risen from the dead, as we sing to thee Alleluia!
Anastasios
Webdespota
Administrator
Merarches
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Greek Old Calendarist
Posts: 10,440


Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Florina

anastasios0513
WWW
« Reply #145 on: August 31, 2006, 03:01:48 PM »

Quote
There was no "loftiness" of -eth and -est in the Greek, it was just plain everyday language. The loftiness of liturgy comes in worshiping a supremely awesome God and partaking of the Flesh and Blood of the Crucified and Risen Lord. Thoughts of tweaking the language came only later.

From what I have read, the Fathers wrote and deliberately added archaisms (Atticisms) into the Patristic writings and liturgy.

Anastasios
Logged

Met. Demetrius's Enthronement

Disclaimer: Past posts reflect stages of my life before my baptism may not be accurate expositions of Orthodox teaching.

I served as an Orthodox priest from June 2008 to April 2013, before resigning for personal reasons
CRCulver
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Church of Finland and Romanian Orthodox Church
Posts: 1,159


St Stephen of Perm, missionary to speakers of Komi


WWW
« Reply #146 on: August 31, 2006, 03:07:18 PM »

From what I have read, the Fathers wrote and deliberately added archaisms (Atticisms) into the Patristic writings and liturgy.

The Fathers, being educated speakers of Greeks, would have of course been influenced by the literary language of their surroundings. However, all these creeped in centuries after the first Christians. Now, ordinarily calls for the Church to go "back to basics" are misguided, but here one can point to a long tradition in later times of the Church translating prayers and liturgy into the unadorned vernacular of converted peoples. Seriously, if St Stephan lovingly translated holy writings into a language that all the Muscovite elites called "primitive" and "ugly" (Komi didn't even get an exalted literary standard until hundreds of years later), why repeat the same misguided invective against the speech of everyday Americans?
« Last Edit: August 31, 2006, 03:09:05 PM by CRCulver » Logged
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #147 on: August 31, 2006, 03:24:47 PM »

From what I have read, the Fathers wrote and deliberately added archaisms (Atticisms) into the Patristic writings and liturgy.

Anastasios

Very true, the Liturgy is a far higher form of Greek than the Koine, and would have been a far more educated and anachronized form of the language than one would have encountered in everyday speech; a form of speech that most could understand fairly well, but that only the most educated could speak or write...somewhat similar to Early Modern English (Elizabethan) compared to current speech.

Oh, and one small note on english linguistics for this subject, most so-called anachronistic translations of the liturgy are not in Early Modern English, which is Elizabethan English, but rather Middle Modern English, which is Victorian English. There are no real linguistic divides between Elizabethan English and Modern English, they are both quite modern and pronounced very similarly. The divides between Old, Middle, and Modern English happened first with the Normand Conquest and the introduction of Old French into Old English creating Middle English, Middle English was never truly uniform because of the several and unique ways in which Old French and Old English could merge. The Beginning of Modern English actually came with Chaucer, who standardized the London dialect, which would, with a vowel shift (or possibly two, the jury's still out on that one) become Modern English within about a hundred years (Chaucer, though technically a Late Middle English writer, really had more in common with his Modern English counterparts than the Early Middle English writers). Ultimately, I question those who claim to be unable to read or understand something written in Middle Modern English, the language is almost identical to what you find in your local fishwrap, and I doubt such a person would even realize the greatest and most significant changes between Middle and Current Modern English (primarially the loss of the subjunctive and a minor decrease in other inflection)...heck, you still say I-me and he-him, what's so hard about thou-thee?
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
Panagiotis
Libertarian/Orthodox/Lush
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Greek Orthodox
Jurisdiction: The Phanar
Posts: 406


Advocating Liberty Since 1973


WWW
« Reply #148 on: August 31, 2006, 03:44:39 PM »

How about we use the language of the people and leave it at that? Just because a few radicals want to use ebonics or bastardize what is the normal tongue of English does not mean we have to bow down the whims of, say, 00.3% of the English speaking population.

Just my own thoughts.

Blessings,
Panagiotis
Logged


"The first condition for the establishment of perpetual peace is the general adoption of the principles of laissez-faire capitalism"
-Ludwig Von Mises
GiC
Resident Atheist
Site Supporter
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Mathematician
Posts: 9,490



« Reply #149 on: August 31, 2006, 03:50:32 PM »

How about we use the language of the people and leave it at that? Just because a few radicals want to use ebonics or bastardize what is the normal tongue of English does not mean we have to bow down the whims of, say, 00.3% of the English speaking population.

Just my own thoughts.

Blessings,
Panagiotis

I have a better idea, why not just use Greek, the language in which the Liturgy was written...and that would have the added benifit of making this argument moot Wink
Logged

"The liberties of people never were, nor ever will be, secure, when the transactions of their rulers may be concealed from them." -- Patrick Henry
BoredMeeting
Loving the Life of a Council Member
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic Christian
Jurisdiction: Serbian Orthodox/OCA
Posts: 721



« Reply #150 on: September 01, 2006, 08:08:46 AM »

...I view teaching them the arcane formality of You vs Thou as a terrible waste of time.
And how many seconds would it take to communicate this? 45? Maybe 60? Some waste!
To me this would be just an unnecessary barrier to understanding the words of the Divine Liturgy. The Liturgy can be done in normal everday English without being "dumbed down".
How is learning about the formal "Thou" an obstacle? Removing the understanding does remove the implied personal relationship with God, ergo an Orthodox teaching is diminished.

What is the great fear of educating these allegedly simple-minded Americans to help them understand the Liturgy a little better?

I certainly support the idea of doing the Liturgy in English (although an occasional litany in Slavonic or Greek reminds us that this Liturgy is bigger and older than any of us in the here and now) but that doesn't mean we have to drop to the lowest common denominator. That sort of thinking is what lead the Latins to their guitar masses.
Logged
CRCulver
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Church of Finland and Romanian Orthodox Church
Posts: 1,159


St Stephen of Perm, missionary to speakers of Komi


WWW
« Reply #151 on: September 01, 2006, 08:15:15 AM »

Removing the understanding does remove the implied personal relationship with God, ergo an Orthodox teaching is diminished.

As I said before, plenty of languages don't have a one-to-one mapping with Greek. Where are your complaints about Finnish, Mari, or Komi, which are "gender-neutral" by nature? But even if the understanding can't be represented in the liturgy, it can be explained through circumlocution during catechesis and subsequent teaching of the flock.

Quote
but that doesn't mean we have to drop to the lowest common denominator.

You seem to think that an obsolete form of English is automatically "superior" to modern literary language, which is of course a fallacy. Languages don't degrade over time. Modern English has its own formal register which is just as suitable for today's liturgy as Elizabethan English was in its time.

Quote
That sort of thinking is what lead the Latins to their guitar masses.

No, the thinking represented here led to the successful evangelization of dozens of convert peoples. The writings of the Church were not translated into an archaizing form of Slavonic (though stagnation happened latter), Komi, Mari, Aleut, or the languages of Africa were now great gains are had.
Logged
BoredMeeting
Loving the Life of a Council Member
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catholic Christian
Jurisdiction: Serbian Orthodox/OCA
Posts: 721



« Reply #152 on: October 11, 2006, 08:04:49 AM »

As I said before, plenty of languages don't have a one-to-one mapping with Greek. Where are your complaints about Finnish, Mari, or Komi, which are "gender-neutral" by nature?
And as I replied before, I'll deal with those when someone attempts to inject them into my English service book. Until then, I'll satisfy myself with fighting the dumbing-down of Liturgical English.
Logged
AMM
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Jurisdiction: ACROD
Posts: 2,076


« Reply #153 on: October 11, 2006, 09:37:27 AM »

Seriously, if St Stephan lovingly translated holy writings into a language that all the Muscovite elites called "primitive" and "ugly" (Komi didn't even get an exalted literary standard until hundreds of years later), why repeat the same misguided invective against the speech of everyday Americans?

Aside from St. Stephen, remember that St. Makarii of Glukharev was censured and punished for attempting to translate the Bible in to modern spoken Russian in the 19th century.  St. Makarii noted at the time that while the Koran was available in modern Russian, the Bible was not.

What should be obvious is that the vast majority of the church favors church languages, in both the services and the texts.  Be it Slavonic, Byzantine Greek, or Middle/High/Old/Whatever English.
Logged
Tags:
Pages: « 1 2 3 4  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.084 seconds with 46 queries.