What is bigotry?

Jan 2014
2,261
Westmorland
Has the Spirit of God ceased to impart His transforming grace to the Church and through the Church? How can you know the Life of the Church if you don't partake to it? But when you see that people have been quickened by partaking to it, and if Life is what you seek, then you may want to partake to it too.
But the thing is, I did used to partake in it. I had a fairly religious upbringing and so I genuinely do understand what the life of the Church is and that people think God speaks to them through the Church. I just don't agree with it. Partly because you cannot get round the fact that everything you are taught about what God thinks and what God wants us to do comes from another person. From Man. And partly because you cannot get round the fact that if you go to a different Christian Church, you will be told something different about what God thinks and what God wants us to do. And the people in that Church will give precisely the same reasons that you do as to why their view is right and everyone else's (yours included) is wrong. If, as you argue, the grace of God essentially protects Church doctrine from being tainted by human fallibility, why does not every Christian Church promote precisely the same doctrine?
 

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,759
Romania
For someone to be ordained to priesthood he must be either married or monk, and normally no priest is allowed to marry, though some bishops wrongfully applied dispensations on priests' remarriage (concerning Romanian Orthodox Church, please see BOR – Divorced and/or Remarried Priests | RoeaNews.info). No woman has ever been ordained to priesthood in the Holy Church of Christ, not even the Holy Mother of God, who is the First Among the Saints.
 
Jan 2014
2,261
Westmorland
We Christians, such as Ficino and I, believe that the Church was created by God as the Body of Christ. It’s true that everything we believe comes, to some extent from others, but it also has touched our hearts and therefore comes from within us, causing us to believe it.

Everything you believe has come from other people, no?

BTW—the Church has two aspects: one is the spiritual Body of Christ, one, perfect and indivisible. The other is the Church composed of sinful people.
I should probably make it clear that I'm not criticising you or anyone else for being people of faith. That is your decision and good luck to you. But just because something has touched your heart doesn't make it objectively right for all of us. It just makes it subjectively right for you.

You are quite right that everything I believe comes from other people. But the difference is that I am not expected to believe unconditionally that what other people tell me is true. I can pick and choose what I believe and, wherever possible (and it isn't always), try to do so rationally. And where I can't do it rationally (either because I can't be bothered to check or because I am responding to something visceral) I have to be open to the fact that this is what is going on.

The problem with the dual aspect of the Church is that the one does not actually exist independently of the other It is only the agency of the sinful people that conveys to you the perfection of Christ.
 
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Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,759
Romania
I should probably make it clear that I'm not criticising you or anyone else for being people of faith. That is your decision and good luck to you. But just because something has touched your heart doesn't make it objectively right for all of us. It just makes it subjectively right for you.

You are quite right that everything I believe comes from other people. But the difference is that I am not expected to believe unconditionally that what other people tell me is true. I can pick and choose what I believe and, wherever possible (and it isn't always), try to do so rationally. And where I can't do it rationally (either because I can't be bothered to check or because I am responding to something visceral) I have to be open to the fact that this is what is going on.

The problem with the dual aspect of the Church is that the one does not actually exist independently of the other It is only the agency of the sinful people that conveys to you the perfection of Christ.
If it were possible for us to reach otherwise what makes the object of faith, then faith wouldn't have been required.

From St. John Chrysostom 7th Homily on St. Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians:

For (to proceed) he is a natural man, who attributes every thing to reasonings of the mind and considers not that he needs help from above; which is a mark of sheer folly. For God bestowed it that it might learn and receive help from Him, not that it should consider itself sufficient unto itself. For eyes are beautiful and useful, but should they choose to see without light, their beauty profits them nothing; nor yet their natural force, but even does harm. So if you mark it, any soul also, if it choose to see without the Spirit, becomes even an impediment unto itself.
As St. John of Karpatos beautifully wrote:

How can someone with little or no faith be made to realize that an ant grows wings, a caterpillar turns into a butterfly, and many other strange and unexpected things happen in nature, so that in this way he shakes off the sickness of unbelief and despair, himself acquires wings, and buds in spiritual knowledge like a tree? 'I am He', says God, 'who makes the dry tree flourish; I give life to the dry bones' (cf Ezek. 17:24; 37: 1-14).
 
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Jan 2014
2,261
Westmorland
Hmm. So what St John of Chrysostom is basically saying is "don't waste time thinking for yourself".

St John of Karpatos is talking nonsense. One doesn't need faith to be made to realise that an ant grows wings, as an evidence based approach clearly shows that to be true (at least for some ant species). Even in the days before biologists were able to explain why it happened, people could still see that it did happen, meaning they were using their rationality (not faith) when asserting that ants grew wings.
 
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Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,759
Romania
Hmm. So what St John of Chrysostom is basically saying is "don't waste time thinking for yourself".

St John of Karpatos is talking nonsense. One doesn't need faith to be made to realise that an ant grows wings, as an evidence based approach clearly shows that to be true (at least for some ant species). Even in the days before biologists were able to explain why it happened, people could still see that it did happen, meaning they were using their rationality (not faith) when asserting that ants grew wings.
My impression is that you don't understand either of the two passages, despite the fact that such a thing doesn't require faith.
 

Ficino

Ad Honorem
Apr 2012
6,759
Romania
@Peter Graham

From St. Maximus the Confessor's Ambiguum 48 to John on St. Gregory of Nazianzus' words "Whatever is a fleshly and nourishing part of the Word, together with the intestines and hidden recesses of the intellect, will be eaten and given up to spiritual digestion." (Or. 45.16), about the eating of the Paschal Lamb (in On Difficulties in the Church Fathers: The Ambigua, Vol. II, p. 217-223, tr. Nicholas Constas):

Knowing, then, that we have this natural longing for God, that great teacher exhorts and invites all through his teaching to partake of the spiritual food of the Lamb that was slain on our behalf, counseling us to maintain the Lamb’s members distinctly and usefully in their unbroken and unconfused organization, lest we be condemned for breaking and tearing asunder the harmonious arrangement of the divine body — either because we eat of the flesh of the Lamb and Word overconfidently, if such eating be beyond our ability, or profanely, if it be averse to our ability — but let each of us, according to his ability rank, and the grace of the Spirit that has been given to him, partake of the divine Word in conformity with the meaning of each of His parts.

For example, the head shall be partaken of by whosoever possesses, from indemonstrable first principles, a faith whose rational principles of theology are entirely free, for it is on the basis of such faith that the whole body of the virtues and knowledge is knit together and grows with spiritual growth. The ears shall be partaken of by whosoever spiritually receives the divine words with knowledge, and because of these words becomes in actual deeds submissive and obedient to God unto death. The eyes shall be partaken of by whosoever beholds creation spiritually, and blamelessly gathers together all the principles pertaining to sensation and intellect for the singular fulfillment of the glory of God. The breast shall be partaken of by whosoever has filled his heart with theological contemplations, like the great Evangelist John, and like an inexhaustible source he piously pours forth, for the benefit of those eager to learn, the reason and mode in which the providence of the universe is comprehended. The hands shall be fittingly partaken of by whosoever does not carry out the work of the commandments carelessly or indifferently, but has the whole of his soul's energy for practical exercise ready and resolute for fulfilling the divine laws. The stomach shall be partaken of by him whose fecundity of soul is ceaselessly productive, and so he abounds with spiritual contemplations, and never quenches the burning desire of his dispassionate appetite for intercourse with the Divine. The intestines shall be appropriately partaken of by whosoever shall probe into, by means of a more hidden inquiry and knowledge, the depths of the mind of God, taking his fill of ineffable mysteries.

My discourse will dare to venture something even greater. Of the lower members of the Word let him partake chastely who stands in the strength of his reason when confronting matter, and who together with his soul keeps his flesh perfectly undefiled, and who by means of the virtues completely forms within it the whole Word who became flesh. Of the thighs let him partake who has reason set in authority over the passionate part of his soul, and who has completely uprooted its propensity toward matter. Of the knees let him partake who providentially bends down in compassion to those who have fallen and are weak in faith, thereby imitating the gracious condescension to us of the Word. Of the shanks and feet, moreover, let him partake whose soul has unshakeable and immovable footings in faith, virtue, and knowledge, and whose aim is to hasten to the prize of his higher calling and who together with the Word leaps over the hills of ignorance and bounds over the mountains of evil.

But who would be able to enumerate all the aspects of God our Savior, which exist for our sake, and according to which He has made Himself edible and participable to all in proportion to the measure of each? For in addition to all these, the Lord has locks of hair, a nose, lips, throat, shoulders, fingers, and whatever else belongs to our human frame that may be applied to Him metaphorically. Proper and profitable communion in these is attained by those who assimilate each member in fight of the spiritual meaning signified by each. In this manner, according to that holy and great teacher, the Lamb of God "is eaten, and given up to spiritual digestion," assimilating to Himself, through the Spirit, those who partake of Him, for He guides and transposes each one to the place in the body that corresponds to the member that was spiritually eaten by him, so that in a way befitting His love of mankind the Word, who is in all things, might take on substance, though He alone transcends nature and mind.
 
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Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
31,336
T'Republic of Yorkshire
Proselytising is not permitted on Historum - to white, trying to make other people believe in the same religion or religious tenets as you.

You're entitled to your faith. What you're not entitled to, on this site, is to demand other people believe as you do.
 
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