Too bad St. Gregory didn't tell you, or anyone, that.Mardukm said:
No problem at all, but what does that have to do with your point?Mardukm said:Why is it so difficult for some EO to understand the difference between a state that is OF AND BY GRACE, and one that is due to self-sufficiency?ialmisry said:So should have this:
Except for God, there is no one who is without sin, or life-creating, or able to remit sin. Therefore, the new Adam must be not only Man, but also God. He is at the same time life, wisdom, truth, love, and mercy, and every other good thing, so that He might renew the old Adam and restore him to life through mercy, wisdom and righteousness. These are the opposites of the things which the author of evil used to bring about our aging and death. Today we celebrate the memory of those things that contributed, if only once, to the Incarnation. He Who is God by nature, the Co-unoriginate and Coeternal Word and Son of the Transcendent Father, becomes the Son of Man, the Son of the Ever-Virgin. "Jesus Christ the same yesterday and today, and forever" (Heb. 13: , immutable in His divinity and blameless in His humanity, He alone, as the Prophet Isaiah prophesied, "practiced no iniquity, nor deceit with His lips" (Is. 53: 9). He alone was not brought forth in iniquity, nor was He conceived in sin, in contrast to what the Prophet David says concerning himself and every other man (Ps. 50/51: 5). Even in what He assumes, He is perfectly pure and has no need to be cleansed Himself. But for our sake, He accepted purification, suffering, death and resurrection, that He might transmit them to us.
I would paste more of the context, but since St. Gregory expounds quite a bit on the paragraph above, there is the question of length. But for example, between your prooftext "unsulied nature" below and the paragraph quoted above:And why is it so hard for some EO to take a CONTEXTUAL reading of a text, instead of little snippets. You do that a lot, if not all the time.
How many times does St. Gregory have to spell it out for you?Except for God, there is no one who is without sin, or life-creating, or able to remit sin. Therefore, the new Adam must be not only Man, but also God. He is at the same time life, wisdom, truth, love, and mercy, and every other good thing, so that He might renew the old Adam and restore him to life through mercy, wisdom and righteousness. These are the opposites of the things which the author of evil used to bring about our aging and death.
Since I got my sons by God, as do the rest of us, I don't see how you are reading the IC into that. I don't know where you got your kids from. Mine are good, but I can telll you that they weren't immaculately conceived. Someone just quoted Chesterton the other day on original sin being the only dogma you can prove.Here is a passage from the Sermon which you have selectively missed:
BY GOD HIMSELF, the Mother of God was proclaimed and given to them as a child, so that from such virtuous parents the all-virtuous child would be raised. So in this manner, chastity joined with prayer came to fruition by producing the Mother of virginity
You tell us here how, if it is BY GOD, how can it be not OF GRACE?
Are we to conclude that Isaac was immaculately conceived? The Prophet Samuel? Samson?...
You are really stretching the "full of grace" clause. And another problem for you Manichean IC "prerogatives."Besides, in his Sermon on the Feast of the Dormition, St. Palamas explicitly tells us that the spiritual prerogatives of Mary are OF GRACE:
“ Actually, if Her soul, which was a habitation of God's grace, is borne up to heaven, forsaking the mundane, as becomes clear from many examples, and as we believe, how could that body which received within itself the Only-Begotten and Pre-eternal Son of God, the inexhaustible source of grace, and also showed forth His Body by giving birth to Him, not be carried up from earth to Heaven? ”
Does anyone know it exists?In any case, permit me to point out another section of the Sermon:
And truly, if the grateful woman (of whom the Gospel tells us), after hearing the saving words of the Lord, blessed and thanked His Mother, raising her voice above the din of the crowd and saying to Christ, "Blessed is the womb that bore Thee, and the paps Thou hast sucked" (Lk. 11:27), then we who have the words of eternal life written out for us, and not only the words, but also the miracles and the Passion, and the raising of our nature from death, and its ascent from earth to Heaven, and the promise of immortal life and unfailing salvation, then how shall we not unceasingly hymn and bless the Mother of the Author of our Salvation and the Giver of Life, celebrating Her conception and birth, and now Her Entry into the Holy of Holies?”
I would love to get a Sermon by St. Palamas on the Feast of the Conception, as he obviously considered it very important. That would probably settle the matter once and for all (as far as St. Palamas is concerned). Does anyone here have it?
It never was a major feast day, unlike her birth and entry into the Temple.
I'll take that challenge of your little snippet.Mardukm said:
Not sullied by actual sin. Like it means when we say "Most Pure," "Spotless," and anyother number of like epithets applied to her in the services of the Church. More below on this snippet.“Now He finds a Handmaiden perfectly suited to these needs, the supplier of HER OWN UNSULLIED NATURE, the Ever-Virgin now hymned by us…”Tell me, what else could the word “UNsullied nature” mean?
Why not? That's the logical conclusion of this illogical syllogism.Also:“So, in order to render the Virgin worthy of this sublime purpose, God marked this ever-virgin Daughter now praised by us, from before the ages, and from eternity, choosing Her from out of His elect.”
Did God “choose” her at the Annunciation? Obviously not, so she must have possessed her “unsullied Nature” before that time.
Did God “choose” her when she was 10 years old? Obviously not, because St. Palamas says she was already sanctified before then.
Did God “choose” her when she entered the Temple? Obviously not, because not only does St. Palamas say that she was chosen from Eternity, but also that she was ALREADY sanctified when she entered the Temple.
“They have now led this truly sanctified child of God, now the Mother of God, this Virgin into the Temple of God. And She, being filled with Divine gifts even at such a tender age”
I have read interpretations that say that God sanctified her from Eternity, but I don’t agree.
If you are going to read the IC into St. Gregory, you are going to have to be consistent. And conclude that from Seth to the Theotokos, that they were all IC'd.
Nor by redeemed by a redemption not yet sacrificed. That's why the righteous had to wait in Hades. If the Theotokos had died before her Son, she would have been awaiting Him there (if she was IC'd, she would have gone to Heaven alive)Someone can’t be sanctified unless that person comes into existence.
You repeat that phrase "unsullied nature" although St. Gregory Palamas does not, but skip over his "Except for God, there is no one who is without sin" that he does repeat, and expound on.Rather, she was sanctified from the moment of her existence, sanctified for the very purpose, as St. Palamas states, of having the “unsullied nature” from whom Jesus himself would derive his own spotless nature.
It also doesn't deal with the issue, as St. Gregory does, of "Except for God, there is no one who is without sin."Understand that the dogma of the IC does not even go this far. The dogma does not dogmatize this matter of which St. Palamas speaks – that is, the “WHY” of the matter - but only dogmatizes the mere fact that she had, in Palamas’ words, an “unsullied nature.”
Let's continue the quote:Mardukm said:“Now He finds a Handmaiden perfectly suited to these needs, the supplier of HER OWN UNSULLIED NATURE, the Ever-Virgin now hymned by us…”ialmisry said:
“But it was impossible to unite that Most High Nature, Whose purity is incomprehensible for human reason, to a sinful nature before it had been purified. Therefore, for the conception and birth of the Bestower of purity, a perfectly spotless and Most Pure Virgin was required.”
If the Theotokos was IC'd, there remains nothing left for purification. "Except for God, there is no one who is without sin, or life-creating, or able to remit sin. Therefore, the new Adam must be not only Man, but also God."Today we celebrate the memory of those things that contributed, if only once, to the Incarnation. He Who is God by nature, the Co-unoriginate and Coeternal Word and Son of the Transcendent Father, becomes the Son of Man, the Son of the Ever-Virgin. "Jesus Christ the same yesterday and today, and forever" (Heb. 13:8), immutable in His divinity and blameless in His humanity, He alone, as the Prophet Isaiah prophesied, "practiced no iniquity, nor deceit with His lips" (Is. 53: 9). He alone was not brought forth in iniquity, nor was He conceived in sin, in contrast to what the Prophet David says concerning himself and every other man (Ps. 50/51: 5). Even in what He assumes, He is perfectly pure and has no need to be cleansed Himself. But for our sake, He accepted purification, suffering, death and resurrection, that He might transmit them to us.
Your interpretation has a problem with Scripture (He made Him Who knew no sin to become sin for us) and exposes why the IC is Pelagian.Note that he does not say that the Virgin Mary was purified (which begs the question of when she herself was purified). Rather, he says that the NATURE was purified. Our nature was purified, according to St. Palamas, by the creation of a woman who was “UNSULLIED” in her nature.
Yes, from all eternity according to you logic. Those promoting the semi-incarnation of the Blessed Virgin will appreciate the argument.Note also that this is BY GRACE, not that Mary was in and of herself sufficient to have an unsullied nature.
If we are to apply your logic to St. Gregory, it would seem not:Finally, note also that a purified nature is not identical to a glorified (i.e., divinized) nature. Mary’s body was not glorified until her Dormition/Assumption (actually, many – not all- Fathers say her body was glorified at the Annunciation). Though our nature was purified in Mary, it was only in Christ that it was glorified (i.e., actually transformed).
Now, when Righteous Joachim and Anna saw that they had been granted their wish, and that the divine promise to them was realized in fact, then they on their part, as true lovers of God, hastened to fulfill their vow given to God as soon as the child had been weaned from milk. They have now led this truly sanctified child of God, now the Mother of God, this Virgin into the Temple of God. And She, being filled with Divine gifts even at such a tender age, ... She, rather than others, determined what was being done over Her. In Her manner She showed that She was not so much presented into the Temple, but that She Herself entered into the service of God of her own accord, as if she had wings, striving towards this sacred and divine love. She considered it desirable and fitting that she should enter into the Temple and dwell in the Holy of Holies.
Therefore, the High Priest, seeing that this child, more than anyone else, had divine grace within Her, wished to set Her within the Holy of Holies. He convinced everyone present to welcome this, since God had advanced it and approved it. Through His angel, God assisted the Virgin and sent Her mystical food, with which She was strengthened in nature, while in body She was brought to maturity and was made purer and more exalted than the angels, having the Heavenly spirits as servants. She was led into the Holy of Holies not just once, but was accepted by God to dwell there with Him during Her youth, so that through Her, the Heavenly Abodes might be opened and given for an eternal habitation to those who believe in Her miraculous birthgiving.
So it is, and this is why She, from the beginning of time, was chosen from among the chosen. She Who is manifest as the Holy of Holies, Who has a body even purer than the spirits purified by virtue, is capable of receiving ... the Hypostatic Word of the Unoriginate Father. Today the Ever-Virgin Mary, like a Treasure of God, is stored in the Holy of Holies, so that in due time, (as it later came to pass) She would serve for the enrichment of, and an ornament for, all the world. Therefore, Christ God also glorifies His Mother, both before birth, and also after birth.
Watch out for that log.Once again, I ask why it is so difficult for some EO to take contextual readings of things, but are so habitual about taking only taking little snippets from the sources.
Interesting: how do you deny that He sanctified from all eternity? Your snippets repeat that, wheras they don't repeat "unsullied."Mardukm said:“ Therefore, the coeternal and identical Image of goodness, Preeternal, transcending all being, He Who is the preexisting and good Word of the Father, moved by His unutterable love for mankind and compassion for us, put on our image, that He might reclaim for Himself our nature which had been dragged down to uttermost Hades, so as to renew this corrupted nature and raise it to the heights of Heaven. FOR THIS PURPOSE, He had to assume a flesh that was BOTH NEW AND OURS, that He might refashion us from out of ourselves. ”ialmisry said:Where's that here?Mardukm said:3) St. Palamas, like St. Proclus of Constantinople in the fifth century, makes an intimate and causal connection between Mary's sinlessness and Jesus' own. This is pretty interesting because not even the Catholic dogma of the IC admits that much (though many indeed contend that the dogma of the IC at least implies it).
And again, answered above.And again:
“ Therefore, God deigned to receive our nature from us, hypostatically uniting with it in a marvellous way. But it was impossible to unite that Most High Nature,Whose purity is incomprehensible for human reason, to a sinful nature before it had been purified. Therefore, for the conception and birth of the Bestower of purity, a perfectly spotless and Most Pure Virgin was required.”
Stashko, a log smiley anywhere?Once again, I ask why it is so difficult for some EO to take contextual readings of things, but are so habitual about taking only little snippets from the sources.
You're confusing Pelagianism (which the IC is) and Manicheasm. Manichean refers to your novel approach of limiting the IC to her spirit and not her body, although your sources, including this one, repeatedly refer to her body. Quite some blinders, do they come with the log?Mardukm said:Hahaha! You’ll have to explain that one for everyone here. I said that Grace is required by the Virgin Mary. How is that Manichean? You are creative, but not a very good apologist.ialmisry said:
I'd comment, but can you give any context to your little snippet?BTW, here’s another IC quote from an EO Saint:
The constraints of infertility were destroyed -- prayer, upright manner of life, these rendered them fruitful; the childless begat a Child, and the childless woman was made an happy mother. Thus the IMMACULATE FRUITION issuing forth from the womb occurred from an infertile mother, and then the parents, in the first blossoming of Her growth brought Her to the temple and dedicated Her to God.
Archbishop St. Andrew of Crete
Again, context?Btw, fruitfulness begins at conception, not birth, in case anyone is going to argue that this passage refers only to an immaculate birth.
I've already accounted for these "proof texts," that no one dreamed were IC until 1853.I wish I had more time to give more quotes from the numerous EO saints who expressed belief in the IC.
someone in submission to the VaticanHere’s a discussion by Alexander Roman
on the IC, commenting on its historic acceptance in certain circles of Orthodoxy.
The article goes on to document Latinization and infestation of Orthodoxy by heretical Western Theology:However, even before this theological position was proclaimed as a binding dogma on all Catholics by Rome, there was strong, local devotion to it throughout the Catholic world centuries before.
Btw, Bonaventure denied the IC, calling it "that foreign doctrine."The Immaculate Conception also came to be reverenced in Orthodox countries, especially during the height of the Baroque period in the Kyivan Church and also by Greeks, as Father John Meyendorff has shown.
The Ukrainian Saint Demetrius of Rostov, for example, belonged to an Orthodox Brotherhood of the Immaculate Conception (for which he was called before an Orthodox Synod to give account).
St Demetrius and others of his day prayed the rosary, recited the Hail Mary at the turn of each hour, the Little Office of the Virgin Mary and even the Psalter of the Mother of God composed by St Bonaventure. His “Easternized” prayer in honour of the Sorrows of the Mother of God survives in many Orthodox prayerbooks today as the “Tale of the Five Prayers!”
I guess St. John was ICed too then.The Kyivan Orthodox Brotherhoods of the Immaculate Conception likewise took the bloody vow and produced Western-style depictions of Our Lady of Grace and their invocation was, “Most Immaculate Theotokos, save us!” This was a play on the “Panaghia” or “All-Holy” invocation to the Virgin Mary that is a refrain in so many liturgical services (“All Holy Theotokos, save us!”)Despite the acceptance of this doctrine in certain Orthodox circles, the fact remains that the doctrine itself was not acceptable to the Eastern Churches. Very often, Roman Catholic commentators have attacked Orthodoxy for refusing to accept this doctrine for, otherwise, this must mean that Orthodox Christians believe the unspeakable – that the Mother of God was conceived in and contracted Original Sin . . .
The crux of the matter here lies, however, not in a disagreement over Mary’s total sinlessness and holiness from her Conception.
In fact, the East does indeed affirm Mary’s All-holiness in its liturgical tradition. The liturgical celebration, and that from early times, of the Conception of St Anne ALREADY means that the Mother of God was a saint at her Conception and was sanctified by the Spirit as the Temple of the Most Holy Trinity – only feasts of saints may be celebrated, after all!
(The same holds true for John the Baptist, whose Conception is ALSO celebrated in the calendar of the Orthodox Church.)
Interesting for a site called "Ukrainian Orthodoxy," its team has:http://www.ukrainian-orthodoxy.org/articles/catholic/holymother.htm
Dr. Alexander Roman [email@example.com], an erudite and prolific
member of the Ukrainian Catholic Church has contributed a large number of
articles which are on this site.
I'd be curious if there is one after the 19th century. It's never been a major feast day. Telling.Lastly, I would like to repeat an earlier request: Does anyone have a link to a sermon by an Eastern Father on the Feast of the Conception prior to the 19th century? The only one I could find online was a 14th century sermon from the English Church by John Mirk (the English Church was the first one in the Western Patriarchate to accept the Eastern Feast of the Conception) which gives its miraculous circumstances, as well as a vision by someone from Mary that her Conception should be honored.
And when is the Vatican going to square its dependence on "visions" with the Lord's words "Only an evil and perverse generation seeks a sign"?