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Discovered this gem from St. Basil regarding punishment for pedophiles

88Devin12

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Was very bored today, and started browsing through the canons of the church today, just to see what issues they had to deal with back then, and took a detour reading about Patristic teachings about homosexuality. I noticed this gem on a Catholic website with sayings from Church Fathers on homosexuality. It is from St. Basil of Caesarea:

“The cleric or monk who molests youths or boys or is caught kissing or committing some turpitude, let him be whipped in public, deprived of his crown [tonsure] and, after having his head shaved, let his face be covered with spittle; and [let him be] bound in iron chains, condemned to six months in prison, reduced to eating rye bread once a day in the evening three times per week.

After these six months living in a separate cell under the custody of a wise elder with great spiritual experience, let him be subjected to prayers, vigils and manual work, always under the guard of two spiritual brothers, without being allowed to have any relationship … with young people.” (St. Basil of Caesarea, in St. Peter Damien, Liber Gomorrhianus, op. cit. cols. 174f.)
http://www.catholicnews.sg/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2492%3Awhat-do-the-saints-say-about-homosexuality&catid=187&Itemid=509

If only we could follow this today.
 

minasoliman

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That is one of the most physically harsh canons I've ever read.  Thanks for that tidbit of history.
 

Maria

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88Devin12 said:
Was very bored today, and started browsing through the canons of the church today, just to see what issues they had to deal with back then, and took a detour reading about Patristic teachings about homosexuality. I noticed this gem on a Catholic website with sayings from Church Fathers on homosexuality. It is from St. Basil of Caesarea:

“The cleric or monk who molests youths or boys or is caught kissing or committing some turpitude, let him be whipped in public, deprived of his crown [tonsure] and, after having his head shaved, let his face be covered with spittle; and [let him be] bound in iron chains, condemned to six months in prison, reduced to eating rye bread once a day in the evening three times per week.

After these six months living in a separate cell under the custody of a wise elder with great spiritual experience, let him be subjected to prayers, vigils and manual work, always under the guard of two spiritual brothers, without being allowed to have any relationship … with young people.” (St. Basil of Caesarea, in St. Peter Damien, Liber Gomorrhianus, op. cit. cols. 174f.)
http://www.catholicnews.sg/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2492%3Awhat-do-the-saints-say-about-homosexuality&catid=187&Itemid=509

If only we could follow this today.
Wow! That might be a good deterrent.
 

hecma925

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It only applied to monks or clerics.  Too bad.
 

minasoliman

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hecma925 said:
It only applied to monks or clerics.  Too bad.
Well, that's probably because they were a city unto themselves.  Both those Christians who live within those cities, I'm sure some of them lived under the harsh laws of that city (if it was illegal).  That's my guess.
 

orthonorm

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88Devin12 said:
Was very bored today, and started browsing through the canons of the church today, just to see what issues they had to deal with back then, and took a detour reading about Patristic teachings about homosexuality. I noticed this gem on a Catholic website with sayings from Church Fathers on homosexuality. It is from St. Basil of Caesarea:

“The cleric or monk who molests youths or boys or is caught kissing or committing some turpitude, let him be whipped in public, deprived of his crown [tonsure] and, after having his head shaved, let his face be covered with spittle; and [let him be] bound in iron chains, condemned to six months in prison, reduced to eating rye bread once a day in the evening three times per week.

After these six months living in a separate cell under the custody of a wise elder with great spiritual experience, let him be subjected to prayers, vigils and manual work, always under the guard of two spiritual brothers, without being allowed to have any relationship … with young people.” (St. Basil of Caesarea, in St. Peter Damien, Liber Gomorrhianus, op. cit. cols. 174f.)
http://www.catholicnews.sg/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2492%3Awhat-do-the-saints-say-about-homosexuality&catid=187&Itemid=509

If only we could follow this today.
It shows the decadence of today's mores that we punish such persons much more severely. If there is one thing that we forgotten nearly completely in the 40-30 years is that all persons are sexual.

We lack any innocence so we pretend children are completely so have them bear it for the rest of us. We fetishize them so that we can engage in all the depravities we can imagine.

Just look at the restraint above.

Oh well.
 

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orthonorm said:
It shows the decadence of today's mores that we punish such persons much more severely. If there is one thing that we forgotten nearly completely in the 40-30 years is that all persons are sexual.

We lack any innocence so we pretend children are completely so have them bear it for the rest of us. We fetishize them so that we can engage in all the depravities we can imagine.

Just look at the restraint above.

Oh well.
???
You think we punish them MORE severely?  Notwithstanding the need to relook at the overbroad definition of "sex offender" I think the punishment described isn't restraint... its a good place to start.  I hope you are not trying to make the argument that societies insistence on sexual restraint with children is misguided?  Of course children are sexual creatures, at least once puberty hits, but they lack the intellectual maturity required to have foresight and are susceptible to influence much more then adults.  Very few are naïve enough to think teenagers aren't having sex but this has nothing to do with consensual activity between people of a similar age.  This is about an adult taking advantage of a child.
 

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I do find it curious that the part being emphasized here (and almost reveling in) is the humiliation of it all, rather than the more restorative aspects that are (or at least should be) the goal of the "punishment." So, for those of us who find the giddy enjoyment of "spittle on the face" to be disturbing (cue the "You find that disturbing?! What about the kids?!" posts) I'll highlight the part that I'm very thankful was also part of the canon:

"After these six months living in a separate cell under the custody of a wise elder with great spiritual experience, let him be subjected to prayers, vigils and manual work, always under the guard of two spiritual brothers..."
 

TheTrisagion

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Sleeper said:
I do find it curious that the part being emphasized here (and almost reveling in) is the humiliation of it all, rather than the more restorative aspects that are (or at least should be) the goal of the "punishment." So, for those of us who find the giddy enjoyment of "spittle on the face" to be disturbing (cue the "You find that disturbing?! What about the kids?!" posts) I'll highlight the part that I'm very thankful was also part of the canon:

"After these six months living in a separate cell under the custody of a wise elder with great spiritual experience, let him be subjected to prayers, vigils and manual work, always under the guard of two spiritual brothers..."
+1

I like that although St. Basil's punishment seems harsh, the purpose of it is entirely restorative. He is not looking to punish for the sake of punishment, there is a reason for the punishment and way of redemption.
 

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The pedophile scandal hit the Roman Catholics the hardest, the same decade that our good Bishops started teaching that most sins are just psychological disorders and they're not really bad if you feel in your heart that you're doing the right thing. Oh, and that fasting and rigorous penance are not necessary for 'modern man'.

I don't think it's a coincidence.
 

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Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.

Punishment is for the sake of justice, for the protection of the innocent. Healing of the criminal comes as a second layer, if possible, if feasible.

There is no going round saying the canon intends to heal. It intends to express the concrete fact that the pedophile is despicable and puts him down to the right dignity that he deserves. This restoration of his right dignity and the right attitude of society towards him is what justice is about, correcting what was wrong (the attitude people had before, treating him as an honorable member of the clergy).

First he is treated as his chosen conduct made him worth of being treated. That is the justice of it, the restoration of right proportion and right attitude towards him. Then he is weakened and isolated so he cannot bring any harm to more victims. And only then, he is put under the vigilant council of two spiritual guides and very likely guards.

To honor that which is dishonarable is to dishonor what is honorable.
 

Cyrillic

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Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.

Punishment is for the sake of justice, for the protection of the innocent. Healing of the criminal comes as a second layer, if possible, if feasible.
Punishment has many uses. Healing is one, justice is another. Making sure others won't commit the same crime because they know they'll be punished is yet another. That isn't evil.
 

Jonathan Gress

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I see this is not a direct quote from St Basil; the actual source is Peter Damian, not an Orthodox saint. Does anyone have the original text by St Basil?
 

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Cyrillic said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.

Punishment is for the sake of justice, for the protection of the innocent. Healing of the criminal comes as a second layer, if possible, if feasible.
Punishment has many uses. Healing is one, justice is another. Making sure others won't commit the same crime because they know they'll be punished is yet another. That isn't evil.
Not at all. Punishment that does not achieve justice is worthless and leads to death in all forms. It may lead to healing, it may lead to prevention, but the essence of it is justice. Like a meal, it may have nice china, it may have nice music around, it's good if there is friendship involved, but if it has no food, it's not a meal at all.

Regarding law and punishment, "Cesar" or the "sword", justice first. The law is not for mercy, just like mercy should not be legalistic.

Punishments and "justice" made to heal criminals or to show our "mercy" in the public square is an evil inversion of values, putting the criminal as the victim (of society, of ignorance, of a bad childhood) and the innocent and victims as just tangential accidents in the whole imbroglio. Compensation of the victims if possible, restoration of right treatment toward the criminal (shaming him, and humiliating him if he so deserves), contention of the criminal to protect other potential victims, and only then we should think about trying to "resocializing" them.
 

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Jonathan Gress said:
I see this is not a direct quote from St Basil; the actual source is Peter Damian, not an Orthodox saint. Does anyone have the original text by St Basil?
It seems to be a quote of St. Basil quoted by Peter Damian. I suppose you could look the quote up in an edition of Peter Damian's book and see if the quote is sourced.
 

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I see orthonorm's point. People treat pedophilia as the worst crime of all, even worse than mass murder, and one that is uniquely unforgivable, and I suspect it's because it makes us feel better about ourselves and our own perversions and other sins. "Well, at least we're not pedophiles, so let's go torture them to death since we're so righteous!" That's why prisoners, hardly a righteous lot, make a point of persecuting pedophiles.

This "canon" (if it really is a canon; it sounds more like a blend of a secular punishment and a canonical penalty) seems harsh, but ends with a plan for restoring the criminal to God's grace through repentance. The way some people now talk of pedophiles, they deny the possibility of repentance.
 

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Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.
lol...

Job 5:17 "Behold, happy is the man whom God reproves; therefore despise not the chastening of the Almighty. 18 For he wounds, but he binds up; he smites, but his hands heal.
 

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Inquirer said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.
lol...

Job 5:17 "Behold, happy is the man whom God reproves; therefore despise not the chastening of the Almighty. 18 For he wounds, but he binds up; he smites, but his hands heal.
lol you think that correlation is causation... :)

I will not enter exegetical proof-reading because that can "prove" anything. But think for a moment what we are talking about. If we concentrate on the criminal, that is what we will foster in society. Committing a crime will always be a regretable mistake but, hey, we are all humans after all, eh?

The state and the law, even eclesiastical law, may even consider salvation - as this canon does if it's real - but it cannot for the sake of considering salvation not be what a law is, and no law is effective if there is no punishment for breaking it or if this punishment does not effect *justice*.
 

TheTrisagion

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Fabio Leite said:
Cyrillic said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.

Punishment is for the sake of justice, for the protection of the innocent. Healing of the criminal comes as a second layer, if possible, if feasible.
Punishment has many uses. Healing is one, justice is another. Making sure others won't commit the same crime because they know they'll be punished is yet another. That isn't evil.
Not at all. Punishment that does not achieve justice is worthless and leads to death in all forms. It may lead to healing, it may lead to prevention, but the essence of it is justice. Like a meal, it may have nice china, it may have nice music around, it's good if there is friendship involved, but if it has no food, it's not a meal at all.

Regarding law and punishment, "Cesar" or the "sword", justice first. The law is not for mercy, just like mercy should not be legalistic.

Punishments and "justice" made to heal criminals or to show our "mercy" in the public square is an evil inversion of values, putting the criminal as the victim (of society, of ignorance, of a bad childhood) and the innocent and victims as just tangential accidents in the whole imbroglio. Compensation of the victims if possible, restoration of right treatment toward the criminal (shaming him, and humiliating him if he so deserves), contention of the criminal to protect other potential victims, and only then we should think about trying to "resocializing" them.
And what is justice?  How do you obtain justice for such a crime? Is 5 years in prison justice?  10? 50?
 

Inquirer

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Fabio Leite said:
Inquirer said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.
lol...

Job 5:17 "Behold, happy is the man whom God reproves; therefore despise not the chastening of the Almighty. 18 For he wounds, but he binds up; he smites, but his hands heal.
lol you think that correlation is causation... :)
Very well. Judith 8:27: But esteeming these very punishments to be less than our sins deserve, let us believe that these scourges of the Lord, with which like servants we are chastised, have happened for our amendment, and not for our destruction.

I don't particularly care what some person on the Internet thinks is "one of the most evil ideas that ever came up". I know in my own experience that God smites in order to heal. Sometimes you have to saw off the tumor to survive.
 

Jonathan Gress

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Fabio Leite said:
Inquirer said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.
lol...

Job 5:17 "Behold, happy is the man whom God reproves; therefore despise not the chastening of the Almighty. 18 For he wounds, but he binds up; he smites, but his hands heal.
lol you think that correlation is causation... :)
You're still thinking like a Catholic. It's not "either/or": punishment is not just either retributive or therapeutic. I think part of the therapeutic value of punishment is when the one being punished recognizes its retributive aspect, i.e. he should understand the gravity of his sin, that he deserves punishment, and by this means be brought to tears and repentance.
 

Fabio Leite

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Inquirer said:
Fabio Leite said:
Inquirer said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.
lol...

Job 5:17 "Behold, happy is the man whom God reproves; therefore despise not the chastening of the Almighty. 18 For he wounds, but he binds up; he smites, but his hands heal.
lol you think that correlation is causation... :)
Very well. Judith 8:27: But esteeming these very punishments to be less than our sins deserve, let us believe that these scourges of the Lord, with which like servants we are chastised, have happened for our amendment, and not for our destruction.

I don't particularly care what some person on the Internet thinks is "one of the most evil ideas that ever came up". I know in my own experience that God smites in order to heal. Sometimes you have to saw off the tumor to survive.
To saw off a tumor is not a punishment. Pains and sufferings that bring healing are not punishment.

Spitting on someone's face just because the person deserves it when before the person was treated with unjust honor, may not heal this person, but it is justice. Unless you mean it heals society, by recreating proper relations between people and that individual. In that case I'd agree.
 

Fabio Leite

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TheTrisagion said:
Fabio Leite said:
Cyrillic said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.

Punishment is for the sake of justice, for the protection of the innocent. Healing of the criminal comes as a second layer, if possible, if feasible.
Punishment has many uses. Healing is one, justice is another. Making sure others won't commit the same crime because they know they'll be punished is yet another. That isn't evil.
Not at all. Punishment that does not achieve justice is worthless and leads to death in all forms. It may lead to healing, it may lead to prevention, but the essence of it is justice. Like a meal, it may have nice china, it may have nice music around, it's good if there is friendship involved, but if it has no food, it's not a meal at all.

Regarding law and punishment, "Cesar" or the "sword", justice first. The law is not for mercy, just like mercy should not be legalistic.

Punishments and "justice" made to heal criminals or to show our "mercy" in the public square is an evil inversion of values, putting the criminal as the victim (of society, of ignorance, of a bad childhood) and the innocent and victims as just tangential accidents in the whole imbroglio. Compensation of the victims if possible, restoration of right treatment toward the criminal (shaming him, and humiliating him if he so deserves), contention of the criminal to protect other potential victims, and only then we should think about trying to "resocializing" them.
And what is justice?  How do you obtain justice for such a crime? Is 5 years in prison justice?  10? 50?
If one is traveling from the US to Mexico, there may be doubts about where the exact borders between the countries are. There may even be areas where there are disputes between the two countries regarding a couple of kilometers. But no one discusses where Wahsington or Mexico City are.

What I mean by that, is that the discussion of an exact proportion does not at all invalidate the fact that punishing the person for some considerable amount of time in prison is necessary. And precisely because it requires human discernement to give that precise number of years that there are juries and judges. They are the human factor among blind laws, the ones able to analize case by case, what law addresses impersonaly just in terms of principles.
 

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Fabio Leite said:
Inquirer said:
Fabio Leite said:
Inquirer said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.
lol...

Job 5:17 "Behold, happy is the man whom God reproves; therefore despise not the chastening of the Almighty. 18 For he wounds, but he binds up; he smites, but his hands heal.
lol you think that correlation is causation... :)
Very well. Judith 8:27: But esteeming these very punishments to be less than our sins deserve, let us believe that these scourges of the Lord, with which like servants we are chastised, have happened for our amendment, and not for our destruction.

I don't particularly care what some person on the Internet thinks is "one of the most evil ideas that ever came up". I know in my own experience that God smites in order to heal. Sometimes you have to saw off the tumor to survive.
To saw off a tumor is not a punishment. Pains and sufferings that bring healing are not punishment.

Spitting on someone's face just because the person deserves it when before the person was treated with unjust honor, may not heal this person, but it is justice. Unless you mean it heals society, by recreating proper relations between people and that individual. In that case I'd agree.
I only suffer if God allows me to. Therefore if my sufferings (which, are either given by God or given by someone else but allowed by God) lead to my healing, I would say that my punishment has amended me. Like Judith said.

Humiliating someone can totally heal them. What better cure for arrogance?
 

TheTrisagion

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Fabio Leite said:
TheTrisagion said:
Fabio Leite said:
Cyrillic said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.

Punishment is for the sake of justice, for the protection of the innocent. Healing of the criminal comes as a second layer, if possible, if feasible.
Punishment has many uses. Healing is one, justice is another. Making sure others won't commit the same crime because they know they'll be punished is yet another. That isn't evil.
Not at all. Punishment that does not achieve justice is worthless and leads to death in all forms. It may lead to healing, it may lead to prevention, but the essence of it is justice. Like a meal, it may have nice china, it may have nice music around, it's good if there is friendship involved, but if it has no food, it's not a meal at all.

Regarding law and punishment, "Cesar" or the "sword", justice first. The law is not for mercy, just like mercy should not be legalistic.

Punishments and "justice" made to heal criminals or to show our "mercy" in the public square is an evil inversion of values, putting the criminal as the victim (of society, of ignorance, of a bad childhood) and the innocent and victims as just tangential accidents in the whole imbroglio. Compensation of the victims if possible, restoration of right treatment toward the criminal (shaming him, and humiliating him if he so deserves), contention of the criminal to protect other potential victims, and only then we should think about trying to "resocializing" them.
And what is justice?  How do you obtain justice for such a crime? Is 5 years in prison justice?  10? 50?
If one is traveling from the US to Mexico, there may be doubts about where the exact borders between the countries are. There may even be areas where there are disputes between the two countries regarding a couple of kilometers. But no one discusses where Wahsington or Mexico City are.

What I mean by that, is that the discussion of an exact proportion does not at all invalidate the fact that punishing the person for some considerable amount of time in prison is necessary. And precisely because it requires human discernement to give that precise number of years that there are juries and judges. They are the human factor among blind laws, the ones able to analize case by case, what law addresses impersonaly just in terms of principles.
If I understand you correctly, after raping a child, justice is achieved by putting the offender in a government run facility which provides for all his needs until an arbitary date has been reached at which time he can be released and justice is thereby accomplished.

I think I'll go with St. Basil's recommendation.
 

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TheTrisagion said:
Fabio Leite said:
TheTrisagion said:
Fabio Leite said:
Cyrillic said:
Fabio Leite said:
Punishment for the sake of "healing" is one of the most evil ideas that ever came up.

Punishment is for the sake of justice, for the protection of the innocent. Healing of the criminal comes as a second layer, if possible, if feasible.
Punishment has many uses. Healing is one, justice is another. Making sure others won't commit the same crime because they know they'll be punished is yet another. That isn't evil.
Not at all. Punishment that does not achieve justice is worthless and leads to death in all forms. It may lead to healing, it may lead to prevention, but the essence of it is justice. Like a meal, it may have nice china, it may have nice music around, it's good if there is friendship involved, but if it has no food, it's not a meal at all.

Regarding law and punishment, "Cesar" or the "sword", justice first. The law is not for mercy, just like mercy should not be legalistic.

Punishments and "justice" made to heal criminals or to show our "mercy" in the public square is an evil inversion of values, putting the criminal as the victim (of society, of ignorance, of a bad childhood) and the innocent and victims as just tangential accidents in the whole imbroglio. Compensation of the victims if possible, restoration of right treatment toward the criminal (shaming him, and humiliating him if he so deserves), contention of the criminal to protect other potential victims, and only then we should think about trying to "resocializing" them.
And what is justice?  How do you obtain justice for such a crime? Is 5 years in prison justice?  10? 50?
If one is traveling from the US to Mexico, there may be doubts about where the exact borders between the countries are. There may even be areas where there are disputes between the two countries regarding a couple of kilometers. But no one discusses where Wahsington or Mexico City are.

What I mean by that, is that the discussion of an exact proportion does not at all invalidate the fact that punishing the person for some considerable amount of time in prison is necessary. And precisely because it requires human discernement to give that precise number of years that there are juries and judges. They are the human factor among blind laws, the ones able to analize case by case, what law addresses impersonaly just in terms of principles.
If I understand you correctly, after raping a child, justice is achieved by putting the offender in a government run facility which provides for all his needs until an arbitary date has been reached at which time he can be released and justice is thereby accomplished.

I think I'll go with St. Basil's recommendation.
You don't understand it correctly. :) I started on this thread actually agreeing with the "harshness" of the punishment and not just because it is about pedophily.A criminal's time in prison is an act of protection of future potential victims besides achieving justice. And yes, I see some prisons in the developed world that look like hotels and that is absurd. It shouldn't be the human pigsty it is in my country, but certainly not a comfortable hostel to pass time. Part of the the punishment in the canon includes forced labor. I think it's a just idea.

Justice is achieved by: public exposition of the crime, so the person is treated according to his/her real character and not according to the fake persona used to hide and prey on the victims. And also by deprivation of previous honors (the canons mentions that)This is particularly necessary for *everyone* who has some kind of larger public job: clergy, politicians, lawyers, doctors. For example, a politician who is found guilty of embezzlement or corruption should be deprived of his "honor" by being revoked his rights to work in any level of government, in or for state agencies or organs, to hold any public offices for life, and if owning a company, this company should never be hired by any level of government. It's a person who should never ever again get near tax payer money.

 

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We had such a discussion not too long ago, and someone came up with an economic theory of justice. You should look up that thread since most of what you bring up has already been discussed there.
 

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Cyrillic said:
Jonathan Gress said:
I see this is not a direct quote from St Basil; the actual source is Peter Damian, not an Orthodox saint. Does anyone have the original text by St Basil?
It seems to be a quote of St. Basil quoted by Peter Damian. I suppose you could look the quote up in an edition of Peter Damian's book and see if the quote is sourced.
Peter Damian lived in the 11th century in Italy.  At the time it was the practice to quote from Church Fathers from memory citing the original or not.
Is there any evidence the punishment was followed in 11th century Italy?  Was the punishment part of the Byzantium legal conde?  If it was in the Orthodox Church canons it would be known.
 

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Orest said:
Cyrillic said:
Jonathan Gress said:
I see this is not a direct quote from St Basil; the actual source is Peter Damian, not an Orthodox saint. Does anyone have the original text by St Basil?
It seems to be a quote of St. Basil quoted by Peter Damian. I suppose you could look the quote up in an edition of Peter Damian's book and see if the quote is sourced.
Peter Damian lived in the 11th century in Italy.  At the time it was the practice to quote from Church Fathers from memory citing the original or not.
Modern editors source those kind of quotes.
 

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Cyrillic said:
Orest said:
Cyrillic said:
Jonathan Gress said:
I see this is not a direct quote from St Basil; the actual source is Peter Damian, not an Orthodox saint. Does anyone have the original text by St Basil?
It seems to be a quote of St. Basil quoted by Peter Damian. I suppose you could look the quote up in an edition of Peter Damian's book and see if the quote is sourced.
Peter Damian lived in the 11th century in Italy.  At the time it was the practice to quote from Church Fathers from memory citing the original or not.
Modern editors source those kind of quotes.
Right. People didn't care much about citation or plagiarism because, if you were teaching with the authority of the Church, your listeners could just trust that you were teaching the truth. The details of who said what exactly were unimportant. But Peter Damian is not a Church authority for us, so I'd like to hear what St Basil said from his mouth.
 

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TheTrisagion said:
Sleeper said:
I do find it curious that the part being emphasized here (and almost reveling in) is the humiliation of it all, rather than the more restorative aspects that are (or at least should be) the goal of the "punishment." So, for those of us who find the giddy enjoyment of "spittle on the face" to be disturbing (cue the "You find that disturbing?! What about the kids?!" posts) I'll highlight the part that I'm very thankful was also part of the canon:

"After these six months living in a separate cell under the custody of a wise elder with great spiritual experience, let him be subjected to prayers, vigils and manual work, always under the guard of two spiritual brothers..."
+1

I like that although St. Basil's punishment seems harsh, the purpose of it is entirely restorative. He is not looking to punish for the sake of punishment, there is a reason for the punishment and way of redemption.
+2

Jonathan Gress said:
I see orthonorm's point. People treat pedophilia as the worst crime of all, even worse than mass murder, and one that is uniquely unforgivable, and I suspect it's because it makes us feel better about ourselves and our own perversions and other sins. "Well, at least we're not pedophiles, so let's go torture them to death since we're so righteous!" That's why prisoners, hardly a righteous lot, make a point of persecuting pedophiles.

This "canon" (if it really is a canon; it sounds more like a blend of a secular punishment and a canonical penalty) seems harsh, but ends with a plan for restoring the criminal to God's grace through repentance. The way some people now talk of pedophiles, they deny the possibility of repentance.
+1

I especially agree with the part that it is a blend of secular and canonical penalties.

Punishment for justice seems like a necessary evil at the moment, which is what secular penalties really concentrate on.  I would hope in reading a canon for penalty, it should lean on the side of chastising the person for his/her betterment, not necessarily justifying the hurts of others.
 

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PeterTheAleut said:
What is justice if not a glorified sense of revenge?
That's why I consider it a necessary evil for now in most societies.
 

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orthonorm said:
It shows the decadence of today's mores that we punish such persons much more severely. If there is one thing that we forgotten nearly completely in the 40-30 years is that all persons are sexual.
Actually, many studies will routinely label about 2-3% of the American population as having no sexual disposition whatsoever.
 

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scamandrius said:
orthonorm said:
It shows the decadence of today's mores that we punish such persons much more severely. If there is one thing that we forgotten nearly completely in the 40-30 years is that all persons are sexual.
Actually, many studies will routinely label about 2-3% of the American population as having no sexual disposition whatsoever.
Only that which is radically sexual can be asexual. But my greater point was lost on nearly everyone as usual.
 

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Jonathan Gress said:
I see orthonorm's point. People treat pedophilia as the worst crime of all, even worse than mass murder, and one that is uniquely unforgivable, and I suspect it's because it makes us feel better about ourselves and our own perversions and other sins. "Well, at least we're not pedophiles, so let's go torture them to death since we're so righteous!" That's why prisoners, hardly a righteous lot, make a point of persecuting pedophiles.

This "canon" (if it really is a canon; it sounds more like a blend of a secular punishment and a canonical penalty) seems harsh, but ends with a plan for restoring the criminal to God's grace through repentance. The way some people now talk of pedophiles, they deny the possibility of repentance.
My point is more like: Let's engage in every debauchery possible, because at least we are not children.

Just lile people around here need saints who lead lives they don't so they can lead the lives they do.

 

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PeterTheAleut said:
What is justice if not a glorified sense of revenge?
But..there are a multitude of Scriptural references to justice, often accompanying mercy. Are you claiming that God's justice is nothing more than a "glorified sense of revenge"?

Revenge does not seem to be equated with justice in Isaiah for example:"For the Lord is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for him." Isaiah 30:18 and Isaiah 1:17 "Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow's cause."
 

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orthonorm said:
But my greater point was lost on nearly everyone as usual.
You're so deep, bro.

 

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Nephi said:
orthonorm said:
But my greater point was lost on nearly everyone as usual.
You're so deep, bro.

Rather I am almost entirely superficial. All the Sturm und Drang and deep spirituality that accompanies it can be left behind. Devin's interiority interests me as much as the subjective experience of a fern. His behaviors are much more interesting and telling.

The implied strictness of the good ol' days, a false fiction, and the desire to return to it says enough about him for me.

No matter how confused his post might be however does allow the space to discuss the contemporary stupidity about child sexuality and the hysteria surrounding children having sex amid a culture where sex is always happening, it is practically a social injunction.
 
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