The Tomos of Leo, Pope of Rome

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This is "unofficially" back?
2 hours of an exclusive 3 hour break throughout this entire day were dedicated to this forum, so don't you roll your eyes at me! lol

Pedro, my response to your last post will be quite simple, and no more than a reiteration of what I already said in my last post:

Regardless of Leo's subjective intentions, the fact of the matter is that both The Orthodox Church (“non-Chalcedonians”) and the Nestorian Church reasonably interpreted Nestorianism in Leo’s tome. When there is a dispute in terms of interpretation, as often happens with regards to legal contracts; the document must be analysed by the courts according to an objective criterion, such that the question to be answered becomes: “What would the reasonable person have reasonably interpreted from leo’s tome?”
There is nothing in the tome that clarifies a specific interpretation/connotation/implication of the expression “one person” over another. The alleged “context” which Augustine claims doesn’t exist; for the necessary context required is an appropriate definition of the hypostatic union in order to negate Nestorius “prosopic union” doctrine; just as St Cyril did before Chalcedon ever came into play. Leo's subjective intentions are irrelevant, for the documents received, and faith declared at an Ecumenical Council, are not only supposed to have some positive contribution to the Christological/Theological "developements" of the Church (and I contend Chalcedon did not nonetheless), but they're supposed to be a sword against the heretics.

Affirming that Christ is one person is simply an open blanket statement that allows Nestorians to get away with their heresy via a loophole; especially when many other statements made by Leo are certainly questionable and portray clear Nestorian implications; such that a mere affirmation of one person does not really vindicate the really questionable aspects of his tome. Why, for the life of me, would a legitimate Church council accept a document which employs language so confused and ambiguous, that a declared heretic and his entire heretical church are able to affirm acceptance of it along with the Chalcedonians? Take into account also, the point I’ve hammered in more than once now on this forum; that during this time it was NESTORIANISM that was STILL the ONLY real threatening heresy to the Church.ÂÂ By the mid fifth century it was STILL influential and growing fast DESPITE St Cyril’s Christology which was the Church’s strongest immune system to it. Chalcedon basically took down St Cyril’s shields, and gave them leo’s tome as their own weapon against us. Who knows where your Church would have ended up had it not called upon the latter councils to correct your Church’s errors made at Chalcedon?

Peace.
 

Pedro

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EkhristosAnesti said:
Leo's subjective intentions are irrelevant, for the documents received, and faith declared at an Ecumenical Council, are not only supposed to have some positive contribution to the Christological/Theological "developements" of the Church (and I contend Chalcedon did not nonetheless), but they're supposed to be a sword against the heretics.
I would call the anathamatizing of Nestorius and Eutyches both positive for the Church and a definitive sword against the heretics, wouldn't you?  A council, or any of the document associated with it, that formally condemns a certain heresy cannot, then, be said to adhere to said heresy.  One must always look at Chalcedon and the Tome through this lens as a starting point.

As for the split with your church and the oversimplified view of your beliefs, these are lamentable in the extreme.  Were there--I'm sure you do know, O poster with infinite time on his hands--attempts on the part of your church to straighten out our faulty understanding of your belief?

Who knows where your Church would have ended up had it not called upon the latter councils to correct your Church’s errors?
Well...we'd be missing out on a dynamic relationship with the Holy Spirit which eventually corrects such things, I guess!  :p
 

Deacon Lance

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"It is true Pope Leo speaks of "one person (prosopon)" of Christ but this term does not suffice, for the Nestorians used it to mean "mask," i.e. external unity.  There was a need to confirm the unity as a true and "hypostatic" union, which the tome lacks."

I do not believe the Assyrians used Prosopon as "mask" but used it because following the Antiochian School they used what they found in Scritpure.  Prosopon is used in scripture, Hypostases is not.
 

minasoliman

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Please allow me to try to give my objective understanding of the situation.

Both OO and EO are very "picky" in words and associated heresies towards them. I've read EO polemics that mentioned that St. Cyril "stopped" using "one physis" because "blessed Theodoret" corrected him and from that point onwards, his formulary of reunion with John of Antioch, which used two natures, became Cyrillian.

Obviously, this argument is nothing but an ignorant appeasement on the Chalcedonian side, and it's false in so many ways. Until death, St. Cyril continued to use "one nature." He was open-minded to different terminologies as long as the essence of faith was taught. Theodoret and St. Cyril were enemies up to St. Cyril's death, so it's HIGHLY unlikely St. Cyril took Theodoret's suggestions. Observe this letter that St. Cyril wrote to Acacius, bishop of Melitene:

But the brethren at Antioch, understanding in simple thoughts only those from which Christ is understood to be, have maintained a difference of natures, because, as I said, divinity and humanity are not the same in natural quality, but proclaimed one Son and Christ and Lord as being truly one; they say His person is one, and in no manner do they separate what has been united. Neither do they admit the natural division as the author of the wretched inventions was pleased to think, but they strongly maintain that only the sayings concerning the Lord are separated, not that they say that some of them separately are proper to the son, the Word of God the Father and others are proper to another one again, the one from a woman, but they say that some are proper to His divinity and others are proper to His humanity. For the same one is God and man. But they say that there are others which have been made common in a certain way and, as it were, look towards both, I mean both the divinity and the humanity.
Therefore, is it not clear to all that they do not separate into two the one Lord Jesus Christ, when they say that it is necessary to apply the sayings proper to God to His divinity, and again the human ones to His humanity? They affirm, as I said, that he is the Word of God the Father, begotten before ages, and was born in recent days according to the flesh from the holy Virgin.
Notice the TERMINOLOGY used by St. Cyril. He mentions that the Word of God both was eternally begotten and born according to the flesh. He used the word "Word" as in case of prosopon. He saw the Antiochenes use the words "divinity" and "humanity" rather than "Word" and "man" or "Word" and "flesh." The misunderstanding in Chalcedon is precisely this. I always thought in the Tome that rather than saying this:

The activity of each form is what is proper to it in communion with the other: that is, the Word performs what belongs to the Word, and the flesh accomplishes what belongs to the flesh. One of these performs brilliant miracles; the other sustains acts of violence.
Perhaps, the Cyrillians in the council, including St. Dioscorus would be happy with this:

The activity of each form is what is proper to it in communion with the other: that is, the [divinity] performs what belongs to the [divinity], and the [humanity] accomplishes what belongs to the [humanity]. One of these performs brilliant miracles; the other sustains acts of violence.
May I add that even this alone does not suffice. For the party of Alexandria likes to stress what the prosopon does. Rather than saying "the divinity does this," we go further in saying "He does this through the divinity." Rather than "the humanity does this," it is preferrable for us to hear "He does this through the humanity." It is always the prosopon that is the center of all willing and acting, but to confess two centers of action is understood by us as serperation and therefore Nestorianism, which is obviously a misunderstanding.

Again, both EO and OO understandably prefer differing terminologies, but see the same faith professed.

Happy Ascension Feast! ;D

God bless.

Mina
 

idontlikenames

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Pedro said:
Acting independently? Hmm...not sure this is bad in and of itself. The divine is the divine, and there are certain things the human cannot do. Likewise, the human is what was destined to receive certain things.ÂÂ
hmmm....yeah....I'm not so sure that that first sentence in the quote above sounds very good......Christ was not a bipolar schizophrenic......He was ONE.  Everything that Christ's Human flesh did, His ENTIRE Person did.....Everything that Christ's Divinity did, His ENTIRE Person did.  When Christ died, a PERSON died, not a nature (natures don't "die", for it is an abstract....that's like saying the number 2 or "goodness" "dies" or "does such-and-such").  When Christ performed miracles, a PERSON performed miracles, not a nature.....for it is not in the "nature" of natures do "do" something, for abstract ideas cannot "do" something per se.....only HYPOSTASES can "do" something.
 

Augustine

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EA, EA, EA!

As you can see coptic orthodox boy; you’re left with a cop-out. We are given a speech concerning how the term may have been used and understood (which is not even entirely historically accurate mind you, but I don’t have the time to elaborate on that right now, nor is it of any significance or relevance to the point you were making), and then we are left with a cop-out argument that ambiguously refers to some sort of contextual data which supposedly saves the chalcedonian from the charge that Leo’s tome was Nestorian-prone. Essentially what Augustine is saying above, is: “well, some may have used the term 'person' heretically; however in the context of the tome, it is orthodox.”
First, I have to wonder...are you capable of being anything but rude?  I've tried so hard with you, forced myself to treat you like anything but a brat, and apologized profusely for my every failing...yet here you go again, being well...you!

Secondly, you're wrong here, plain and simple.  One of the problems with your (and your fellow non-Chalcedonians) argument, is that it just assumes a "Cyrillian supremecy"; that Christendom was not in a terribly confused state throughout this period (going right back to Nicea), and that there were indeed men which hindsight tells us were very much in agreement, yet who because of semantical differences (and the real errors of others, who they were confounded with by their misunderstanding opponents) found themselves in this or that "party" or "school".  I honestly have to wonder how broad your reading on the pre and early post Nicean period is, since it would appear to me everything is "Alexandria or bust".  And in this, you're woefully wrong, and this is fundamentally what is wrong with those non-Eutycian, but nonetheless anti-Chalcedonian Christians; they've made narrowness a cause for schism, whatever the sins of the Emperor or others may have been.

I would like however to add to Augustine's great job in proving your case, by further validating the crux of this matter, which is; that regardless of Leo's subjective intentions, the fact of the matter is that both The Orthodox Church (“non-Chalcedonians”) and the Nestorian Church reasonably interpreted Nestorianism in Leo’s tome.
Yes yes, and people also read Sabellianism into Nicea, and tri-theism/quasi-Arianism into the Capadoccians, etc. etc.  It became clear, eventually, that such fears were incorrect, and with time things got sorted out.  Unfortunately, this has yet to happen with the anti-Chalcedonians, who never seem to get tired of insisting St.Leo was a crypto-Nestorian.  Can't you just admit "hey, we goofed", and do what the rightly dividing Asiatic Fathers did regarding Nicea, and say "we accept it when rightly divided", and move on?

Of course not, because St.Leo had the nerve to not be a slave to Alexandrian definitions, even when it turns out their origins indeed were questionable (ex. the phrase "one physis of God the Word Incarnate" is not from an authentic Athanasian document, but as even a quick investigation on this topic will reveal, was in fact Apollinarian in origin - hence why there were sincere, rightly understanding Christians who had reservations about St.Cyril's definition, at least to the point that it did little to safeguard against the views of men like Eutyces, etc.)

Also, something is left out of all of this - St.Leo, and Chalcedon affirmed Ephesus!  Thus, they were not alien statements, but understood to be part of the same catholic-tradition by those who accepted both.

One temptation which most are prone to (wherever they're coming from), is this very neat, candy-coated understanding of the history of the Fathers, and in particular, of the Ecumenical Councils.  Many, perhaps conditioned by the experience of Papism (where their later so called "Ecumenical Councils" were basically consultation sessions for the Pope, and once promulgated had all of the force of a dictate from on high), and believe that the "genuine" Councils were somehow received by all of right faith in an undifferentiated way.  This is not the case!  I cannot emphasize that enough - there are great Saints we all accept (or at least ought to), Fathers living near the time of the great Synods, for whom they did not have an appreciable effect, or even who met them with some serious reservations (though eventually, accepting them as rightly divided...though it was clear they were not particularly "happy" about the language utilized.)

Unfortunately, in our dialogue we have the problem of a clear rejection and schism over this matter, which did not persist for a few years, or a generation, but now for over 1000 years.  Sadly, it's my experience that while the "Chalcedonian" side has it's share of beligerance and ignorance, it's the "non-Chalcedonians" who are very inflexible in all of this - being "Cyrillian integrists" as it were, they simply have to find heresy where it's not.  I'm insisting on this appraisal, because it's one I've been guilty of in times past...it's a proud, evil spirit, and a fundamentally sectarian (and non-catholic) outlook.  If you find yourself having to justify schisms, secretly rejoicing in the sins of others, or anything like this, then you have a problem.  This is precisely why, as much as they have my sympathy in certain matters, I fled from the whole "Old Calendarist" milieu - because they're ultimatly schisms in search of a rationale, the original causes of their division no longer justifiable in light of how things have developed, or when examined in a historical context.

This is why, on a subliminal level perhaps, I find a lot similar between the Russian "Old Believers", modern Old Calendarists, and the anti-Chalcedonians.  While on a human level I can commend the faithfulness involved, it's counter to reality, and anti-catholic ("catholic" understood in the authentic sense, not as an alternative title for "papism".)

 

Doubting Thomas

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I've avoided this discussion since I admittedly haven't studied this issue as much as others here, but I thought I'd throw in my 2 cents.

First, one must realize that the Tome wasn't accepted uncritically, but was studied by the bishops present at Chalcedon who concluded that the faith of the Tome and that of St. Cyril were in substantial agreement despite differences in terminology.

Second, as pointed out by others, the council of Chalcedon explicitly reaffirmed Ephesus and condemned Nestorianism.

Third, the Definition of Chalcedon specifcally states that the two natures exist in one Person and subsistence (hypostasis). (Not merely a union in one "prosopon")

Finally, here's some other quotes from the Tome itself to provide some context:


"Accordingly while the distinctness of both natures and substances was preserved, and both met in one Person, lowliness was assumed by majesty, weakness by power, mortality by eternity; and, in order to pay the debt of our condition, the inviolable nature was united to the passible, so that as the appropriate remedy for our ills, one and the same "Mediator between God and man, the Man Christ Jesus," might from one element be capable of dying and also from the other be incapable. Therefore in the entire and perfect nature of very man was born very God, whole in what was his, whole in what was ours

He assumed "the form of a servant" without the defilement of sin, enriching what was human, not impairing what was divine: because that "emptying of himself," whereby the Invisible made himself visible, and the Creator and Lord of all things willed to be one among mortals, was a stooping down in compassion, not a failure of power.

Accordingly, the Son of God, descending from his seat in heaven, and not departing from the glory of the Father, enters this lower world, born after a new order, by a new mode of birth. After a new order; because he who in his own sphere is invisible, became visible in ours; He who could not be enclosed in space, willed to be enclosed; continuing to be before times, he began to exist in time; the Lord of the universe allowed his infinite majesty to be overshadowed, and took upon him the form of a servant; the impassible God did not disdain to be passible Man and the immortal One to be subjected to the laws of death."

"For the selfsame who is very God, is also very man; and there is no illusion in this union, while the lowliness of man and the loftiness of Godhead meet together. For as "God" is not changed by the compassion [exhibited], so "Man" is not consumed by the dignity [bestowed]."


"Accordingly, on account of this unity of Person which is to be understood as existing in both the natures, we read, on the one hand, that "the Son of Man came down from heaven," inasmuch as the Son of God took flesh from that Virgin of whom he was born; and on the other hand, the Son of God is said to have been crucified and buried, inasmuch as he underwent this, not in his actual Godhead; wherein the Only-begotten is coeternal and consubstantial with the Father, but in the weakness of human nature. Wherefore we all, in the very Creed, confess that" the only-begotten Son of God was crucified and buried," according to that saying of the Apostle, "for if they had known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of Majesty."

"Not undeservedly, therefore, was he pronounced blessed by the Lord, and derived from the original Rock that solidity which belonged both to his virtue and to his name, who through revelation from the Father confessed the selfsame to be both the Son of God and the Christ."

"...that the properties of the Divine and the human nature might be acknowledged to remain in him without causing a division, and that we might in such sort know that the Word is not what the flesh is, as to confess that the one Son of God is both Word and flesh."

--It seems that these quotes, despite lacking some of the more precise Greek terminology, would be hard to reconcile with Nestorianism emphasizing as they do the unity of the Incarnate Divine Subject.

 

cizinec

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First, EA, I'd like to say "thanks" for your posts.  I think they are interesting.

I must, however, disagree with your method of textual analysis.  I think you've fallen prey to Derrida's trap.  He believed that readers should look only at the text on the page and not try to understand what the writer was trying to communicate.  He had a very unhealthy distrust of communication through written language, but that's another topic.

I don't agree that the Tome says what you claim it says.  If you want to completely ignore the context, as you do, then I wouldn't have enough knowledge of what Pope Leo was saying to make a decision.  Context is incredibly important for even the most inane statements.

Why, for the life of me, would a legitimate Church council accept a document which employs language so confused and ambiguous, that a declared heretic and his entire heretical church are able to affirm acceptance of it along with the Chalcedonians?
Using this logic we are required to condemn the parts of canonical Scripture which heretics have used.  Since the heretics affirm Scripture we must reject it. ÂÂ

Obviously that's not what you're arguing, but if heretics' understanding of Scripture can be twisting the meaning of the text, why can't heretics' understanding of the Tome of Leo be just as twisted?

What in the end are we trying to get at here.  The OOs say that the Tome of Leo says and means A and that, therefore, everyone who holds to the Tome of Leo believes A.  EOs say the Tome of Leo does not say A and that they don't believe A. ÂÂ

Regardless of what the Tome actually says, can the OOs here, then, agree that EOs don't believe A because they expressly denounce A?
 

Anastasios

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Ah, finally what I have always wanted for this board, a real EO-OO debate. This is great. I am enjoying this one immensely. It's too bad that the other two guys who used to debate this issue could never handle this level of maturity and instead resorted to trying to silence the other poster via administrative complaints and lots of insults. I've got to hand it to you guys, you are really making me proud. Thanks!!

Anastasios
 

Pedro

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Mina,

minasoliman said:
May I add that even this alone does not suffice.  For the party of Alexandria likes to stress what the prosopon does.  Rather than saying "the divinity does this," we go further in saying "He does this through the divinity."  Rather than "the humanity does this," it is preferrable for us to hear "He does this through the humanity."  It is always the prosopon that is the center of all willing and acting, but to confess two centers of action is understood by us as serperation and therefore Nestorianism, which is obviously a misunderstanding.
This is, quite possibly, the most thoughtful and considerate non-chalcedonian statement on the subject I've read.  The words in bold are especially important, as this is what Chalcedonians confess.  There is one person--though I worded it poorly above (thanks for calling me on that, idontlikenames)--who is the center of action, but it's important to stress His movement through one of His natures (or, as you put it, his humanity) at certain tmes, and His movement through His other nature (his divinity) at other times.

Anastasios said:
Ah, finally what I have always wanted for this board, a real EO-OO debate. This is great. I am enjoying this one immensely. It's too bad that the other two guys who used to debate this issue could never handle this level of maturity and instead resorted to trying to silence the other poster via administrative complaints and lots of insults. I've got to hand it to you guys, you are really making me proud. Thanks!!
::Sniff::  I luv you, too, man!!  ;)
 

Stavro

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- The Tome:

- The text that Doubting Thomas provided , although contributing positively to the discussion, does not provide anything to excuse for Leo of Rome for opting to use a Nestorian language that has been received very positively by the Nestorian party. In no place does Leo of Rome affirm more than what Nestorius "invented" before, and nor does "one person" say anything about the type of union that existed in the one incarnate nature of the Lord. Again, and as EA indicated in previous posts, Nestorians do not object to the use one person in reference to the Lord as long as it means a mask or a union such as in marriage. Such is the blasphemy of Theodore, Diodore and Theodret.

- What makes matters worse, is the fact that the Tome confirm the separation of the persons with separate everything. One takes torture, and the other is glorfied by miracles. It leaves no doubt that the Tome of Leo of Rome, refusing to affirm the one incarnate nature, in words or by explanation, and then separating the Lord in two persons,is not orthodox. Even Grillmeier, the man who rewrote history in the favor of Chalcedonians, confessed the miserable job by Leo of Rome.

Leo of Rome Orthodoxy:

To counter the remaining claim of the EO that Leo of Rome was just confused, to excuse him of Nestorianism, let us see how far this confusion goes:

- Leo of Rome was associated with heretics, and heretics gained exoneration by his aid and support. Theodret is a condemned heretic, and his case needs more attention than that of Theodore and Ibas, although he is no more dangerous than the last two blasphemers.
Theodret:- ÂÂ
- Is a clear Nestorian before CHalcedon, and his attack on the twelve chapters of St.Cyril, the true Pillar of Faith, does not lack publicity.

- The anathema against him was renewed by a LAWFUL church council, whose decisions has to be reversed by another church council. Because Leo of Rome is the inventor of Papal infallability and Roman SUpremacy, he abrogated Tradition as he did in his Tome and accepted Theodret in coomunion while under anathema. EO claim they reject Papal Supremacy and Infallability, while they defacto accept it by supporting the actions and teachings of Leo unconditionally. Leo did not intend to have any discussion regarding his Tome, he intended it to be the words of St.Peter and those of the Vicar of Christ.

- After Chalcedon, Thedoret remained Nestorian and his letter to John of Agae just explain it beautifully. He once again confirms that his christology won the day ( which christology is it, do you think ?) and explains that the synodal letter that affirm one person is in accordance to their heretical belief. It shows that the exoneration he obtained is nothing but a joke that came into reality by the pressure of the Roman delegation and a vicious emperor and his bedcompanion, Pulcharia. It is worth mentioning that Theodret, the Nestorian, was part of the synodal committee after his entertaining exoneration. .

- Leo of Rome, after he sealed his victory in Chalcedon by admitting Ibas, Theodore, Thedoret and their teaching back into the church, sends a very gentle letter to Thedoret, rebuking him for being so slow in renouncing Nestorianism. Leo of Rome knew all along that his best friend is a Nestorian, yet he took it upon himself to admit him back into the church while he knew he was a Nestorian.

- In reference to the part of the exoneration of Thedoret in CHalcedon, the minutes of the council are better consulted. It is entertaining. During the first days Thedoret refused in unmistakable terms to anathemize Nestorius or Nestorianism. He refused to do so during the whole council, yet he was admitted to the council in the capacity of an accuser of St.Dioscoros, later martyred by the Chalcedonians. The council in this case took the model of the council of Tyre that admitted heretics to accuse St.Athanasius.

- The highlight of the Theodret case is his actual exoneration. Just seconds before he rejected Nestoirus in a half-hearted anathema, he refused to do so and confirmed his Nestorian beliefs. Desparate to be admitted to the council, he utters a vague anathema against Nestorius without actually explaining what he anathamized, and immediately he is part of the synodal committee that examined the Tome to be in accordance to St. Cyril's teachings and that drafts the synodal letters and renders the synod's theological decisions .

Sorry, too much to condemn Leo of Rome. Whether by his Tome or by his association with heretics, Leo of Rome has left himself without excuses by his teachings and his actions. ÂÂ
 

cizinec

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I was reading this thread just wondering where it was going to turn nasty.
Well, there's a lunchbox in the fridge at my office that has so much mold growing on it, it has grown outside the box and onto the strap and onto everything else in the fridge.  The cleaning people refuse to clean it.
 

Stavro

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One of the problems with your (and your fellow non-Chalcedonians) argument, is that it just assumes a "Cyrillian supremecy"; that Christendom was not in a terribly confused state throughout this period (going right back to Nicea), and that there were indeed men which hindsight tells us were very much in agreement, yet who because of semantical differences (and the real errors of others, who they were confounded with by their misunderstanding opponents) found themselves in this or that "party" or "school".
- As evident from this part, the problem with the forum member Augustine and with many Chalcedonian, is that they treat christianity as an ideology and not as the truth. To Augustine and others, Orthodoxy is nothing but competing ideologies and ideas, lacking the true understanding of what Orthodoxy really means. We confirm the Apostolic Faith, we do not try to reconcile what we do not understand with rhetorical statements and ideological efforts that produces in the end Arianism ( courtesy of Antioch ) , Macdonianism (courtesy of Antioch) and Nestorianism ( courtesy of Antioch), the school with which the Chalcedonian identify after Chalcedon totally eliminated the Alexandrian theology from its books.

- Your hatred and disrespect to the Alexandrian, although unfounded, is understood. Arius, Macedonius, Eusebius, Nestorius hated Alexandria. The lack of understanding of history and how the school of Alexandria was managed manifests itself in the posts of yours. Antioch was dominated by some philosophers outside the control of any church, while Alexandria was under the direct supervision of the Church, leading to exclusion of any non-Orthodox teaching. As for Rome and the West in general, there is no prominent theologians who emerged from there. As long as Rome followed Alexandria, it was orthodox. ÂÂ

- What does the phrase " and the real errors of others, who they were confounded with by their misunderstanding opponents " mean and who does it refer to ? How can a heretic who committs a real error be confounded by somebody's else misunderstanding ? What about his error and how was it misunderstood ? It is either a sound teaching that is misunderstood, or an error that is understood and then confronted.

- The christology of St.Cyril is indeed supreme to all other christological attempts such as those of the school of Antioch or the christology of Leo of Rome. The reason is not the supreme thought and genius of St.Cyril, who is a genius in his own right who rivals Athanasius in glory, it is only because he was expressing the Apostolic Faith, confirming it without any new inventions or human efforts to explain what no human kind can grasp. God reveals such mysteries, and we just confirm them.

I honestly have to wonder how broad your reading on the pre and early post Nicean period is, since it would appear to me everything is "Alexandria or bust". ÂÂ
It is Orthodoxy or bust. Would you please indicate where in pre or early Nicean period, or even during or after the council  of Chalcedon, the Alexandrian fell into heresy ? If not, and you will not be able to produce one single piece of evidence, then Orthodoxy is one and the same with what Alexandria always expressed.

they've made narrowness a cause for schism, whatever the sins of the Emperor or others may have been.
You are not familiar with the current OO/EO relations. The OO are ready for a union once your patriarchs and bishops can agree on one position. Is it too much to ask to have one representative position for the EO? Fairness, not narrowness, should prompt the EO to apologize for their crimes and massacres against the OO, yet this was forgiven in an effort to reconcile the two parties. Note the apology that is requested for the sack of 1204. It is the arrogance and the internal divisions of the EO that makes any union impossible, yet you ignore your own state and opt to label us as narrow minded.

St.Cyril accepted the repentence of John of Antioch, and allowed him liberity in using terms as long as they are checked by many Orthodox terminology and as long as the content is the same. We follow the example of the great Cyril, the man who saved the World from Nestorianism before Chalcedon brought it back.

Of course not, because St.Leo had the nerve to not be a slave to Alexandrian definitions,
.... he opted out to be a follower of Theodret, a confirmed Nestorian. I agree that he wanted to make a unique theology for himself, a copy-paste one from Antiochian theologians, for it would not fit his Papal claims and views, being the father of Roman Papacy and Infallability, to follow Alexandria. Whatever his reasons were, we ended up with the Tome. Again, Orthodoxy is not a pool of ideologies in which you go fish, it is one truth that has been delivered once and only once to the apostles ( Jude 3).

Let us also examine the effect of refusing to follow Alexandria. Blessed Julius, as long as he followed Alexandria, conquered Arianism. Blssed Sextus and Celestine, as long as they followed Alexandria, maintained the unity of the christian world and defeated Nestorianism. Liberius drifted, and fell into Arianism, Leo choose to follow Theodret, and caused the schism.

Also, something is left out of all of this - St.Leo, and Chalcedon affirmed Ephesus
No, it did not, it abroagted Ephesus. For you info, Ephesus was summoned to take the case of Nestorianism and ended with an anathema against him and all those who shared his views and teach his blasphemy. Chalcedon abroagted Ephesus by the following actions:

- Exonerated heretics such as Thedoret, Theodore and Ibas and accepted their teachings as perfectly orthodox. These men are Nestorian, and their teachings Nestorian as well. Your own ancestors in the 5th council of Constaninople admitted the mistakes of CHalcedon and anathemized the writings of these three Nestorians, one of them you call blessed. Till now, you could not defend CHalcedon on this issue and this obvious contradiction in your history ? Which one of your holy councils, the 4th or the 5th, is wrong ?

- Admitted heretics into the synodal committee to render theological decisions.

- Accepted the Tome of Leo of Rome which invited back Nestorianism. Theodret, a champion of Nestorianism and friend of Leo of Rome, was among the committee that examined the Tome's orthodoxy. ÂÂ

yet who because of semantical differences
It is not a case of semantic differences, it is a case of genuine differences in christology. This is beyond the EO/OO debate, it is a rejection of the revisionist attempts to portray the history of the church as nothing but misunderstandings and ideological debates, void of truth.
CHalcedonians and non-Chalcedonians understood each other perfectly, and they continued in discussions long after Chalcedon. Leaders from both sides were men of intelligence and knowledge and understood each other perfectly.

For example, Chalcedon , after careful examination of the letter of Ibas of Edissa , found it to be orthodox. The same letter, after careful examination by the 5th council, was found heretical. Semantics is not the culprit here in this obvious contradiction that is amplified by the acceptance of the writings of Theodret and Theodore and then rejecting them as well. The letter is the same in both councils, and those who judged it spoke the same language and shared the same "tradition".

The only possible conclusion is that one of the councils is wrong, and because the Holy Spirit does not err or fall into heresy and correct Himself after 102 years, one of the councils is unholy. Do not ask Non-Chalcedonians to accept a council that accepted heretical teachings and that your own church rejected afterwards, and I cannot understand how EO can act surprised because Orthodox would not accept SUCH blasphemy in 451 a.d., when your church did reject it afterwards .

Now, if you want to move beyond "confessing" councils and actually examining the content of faith of each group, then the approach it totally different and the results more promising.
 

Doubting Thomas

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Stavro said:
- The Tome:

- The text that Doubting Thomas provided , although contributing positively to the discussion, does not provide anything to excuse for Leo of Rome for opting to use a Nestorian language that has been received very positively by the Nestorian party. In no place does Leo of Rome affirm more than what Nestorius "invented" before, and nor does "one person" say anything about the type of union that existed in the one incarnate nature of the Lord.
I don't see how it's Nestorian when Leo kept reaffirming the unity of the Divine Subject (eg. "selfsame", etc--re-read the other bolded words). The comments distinguishing the two natures was in response to the Eutychian errors. So despite not using the phrase "one hypostasis", those who read the Tome--and ratified the Definition of Chalcedon--understood that is what Leo meant.
Again, and as EA indicated in previous posts, Nestorians do not object to the use one person in reference to the Lord as long as it means a mask or a union such as in marriage. Such is the blasphemy of Theodore, Diodore and Theodret.
But as I stated above, the Definition of Chalcedon explicitly states that the two natures exist in "one person and subsistence (hypostasis). "One hypostasis" is not "Nestorian", but is instead a repudiation of Nestorius.

What makes matters worse, is the fact that the Tome confirm the separation of the persons with separate everything. One takes torture, and the other is glorfied by miracles.
No, it confirms the distinction of natures, not the "separation of persons". No where does the Tome discuss "two persons".
It leaves no doubt that the Tome of Leo of Rome, refusing to affirm the one incarnate nature, in words or by explanation, and then separating the Lord in two persons,is not orthodox.ÂÂ
But you're begging the question that "one incarnate nature" was actually the best formula, when in fact it may not have been considering its Apollinarian origins and its abuse at the hands of Eutyches. (I think Augustine has more than adequately pointed that out).ÂÂ

 

cizinec

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Stavro,

You and EA appear to hold that written words must have absolute rule over all meaning, including the intent of the message.  You use definitions as you have defined them and not as defined in Chalcedon or by others when they were discussing the Tome of Leo.

Is this the case?

I think I could understand what you were saying if you claimed that the Tome of Leo is Nestorian, but Chalcedon failed to understand what he was saying and defined words differently than Pope Leo and were, therefore, fooled.  Okay.  That's a point of discussion.  Saying, "You guys are Nestorians even though you don't believe anything Nestorian" is just weirdly argumentative. 

Do you think that I believe in calling the Theotokos only Christotokos and that Christ had two hypostases because I am not OO?  I'm telling you that we don't believe that.  You sound like you are telling me that we do, in fact, believe what we are telling you we don't. 

If what you say is true and Chalcedon put the approval on Nestorianism, then why wasn't there a big hugging session with the Assyrian Church?  Why wasn't there recommunion with them?
 

minasoliman

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Personally, as an OO, I would like to give my personal and humble opinion that this was in fact a misunderstanding and that both families remained Orthodox even if there was a "failure" to understand one another and solidify the schism, but before I go on explaining how I interpret history, I like to ask Augustine something.

Dear Augustine,

Earlier you said that some anti-Chalcedonians were in fact "mixers" of the natures of Christ. But then you go on saying that we should not be stuck on the pride of each school of thought.

I want to get the record straight here, brother. Do you believe that some of our OO fathers, such as Dioscorus, Timothy Aelurius, Severus, Philoxenos, etc. were Eutychians or heretics in some way or do you believe that the non-Chalcedonians have misunderstood the Chalcedonians, but remained Orthodox in faith up until today?

Answering this question may help me to try to understand the debate without further getting into polemics.

Thank you and God bless.

Mina
 
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First, I have to wonder...are you capable of being anything but rude?
I’m sorry you interpret it like that; you shouldn’t. I just have an intolerance towards flawed arguments; it’s nothing personal, believe me. Calling me a Cyrillian snob isn't very tasteful either; I consider that disrespectful and rude. It's best just to deal with the arguments without taking it personally, because I dont want to sit here and point out hypocricy as well.

I have no other reason to be a faithful adherent of Cyrillian Christology, apart from the fact that it was his Christology that was vindicated at a true and genuine Ecumenical Council. I have no other reason to be a faithful adherent to Alexandrian Christology other than the fact that such Christology has proven its stability and strength against heresy throughout history; being developed by the great Alexandrian father St Cyril, who based his Christology on the great Alexandrian father St Athanasius, who in turn based his Christology on the great Alexandrian fatherÂÂ Origen...it was this Christology that was vindicated at a true and  genuine Ecumenical council.ÂÂ Ecumenical councils don't undermine each other; The Holy Spirit does not reconsider His position; He does not dicard or compromise that which He already established as the standard by which the Church's Orthodoxy would be measured.

I will stop here before I get into an essay...

Peace.
 
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Just to quickly answer Doubting Thomas,

But as I stated above, the Definition of Chalcedon explicitly states that the two natures exist in "one person and subsistence (hypostasis). "One hypostasis" is not "Nestorian", but is instead a repudiation of Nestorius.
As long as the terms aren’t defined or made in an express context which clarifies their intended implication for all, then there is really nothing in the Chalcedonian definition that repudiates Nestorianism.

Regarding the term “hypostasis”, Nestorius didn’t generally employ it; his three basic terms were ousia, physis, and prosopon. Of these three terms, Nestorius could only conceive of a union of prosopon, and not ousia or physis. Regarding the manner in which Nestorius could manipulate the term hypostasis, Professor Frances Young states: “[Nestorius] recognizes that the term is ambiguous, even stating that Cyril’s phrase ‘hypostatic union’ could be acceptable if it meant…a union of prosopon.” (From Nicea to Chalcedon, page 236)

Employing a term that is in itself ambiguous to the heretic, such that the heretic is given leeway with regards to how he can interpret it, to the extent he can still conform such ambiguous expressions with his vile heresy; is simply a bow to that heresy. That's what Chalcedon was; a bow to Nestorianism.

The two vital and significant features absent from Chalcedon, which would refute Nestorianism beyond reasonable doubt are:

a) Affirming that The Word is the subject of Christ’s Incarnate experiences. This is directly CONTRADICTED by Leo, who divides “The Word” from "the flesh", regarding them as separate centres of action and hence consciousness.
b) The defining of the hypostatic union in the same manner St Cyril did in his defense against Nestorians misinterpretation of the “hypostatic union” phrase. The "One physis" formula, despite the arguments of the ignorant; has implications regarding NOT the confusion of ousia's, but rather the nature of the hypostatic union.

No, it confirms the distinction of natures, not the "separation of persons". No where does the Tome discuss "two persons".
I’m sorry, Leo doesn’t need to be so explicit as to express the phrase “two persons”; for it is an obvious implication of the quotation to which Stavro was responding. Natures DO NOT PERFORM ACTION. The performance of an action recquires a PERSONAL SUBJECT. Leo depicts The Word as the centre of one independent set of actions (divine), and depicts the flesh as the centre of another independent set of actions (human) — the practical effects of this are clearly not simply a "distinction of natures”.

But you're begging the question that "one incarnate nature" was actually the best formula, when in fact it may not have been considering its Apollinarian origins and its abuse at the hands of Eutyches.
Re: The oft repeated “Apollinarian origin” charge:

This is a mere claim sir. Please provide us with your evidence.

Assuming for arguments sake that it were true, homoousion was used by the Gnostic heretics way before the Council of Nicea ever adopted it to explain that Christ was “of the same substance (homoousion) with the father”. It was even conciliarly condemned (council of Antioch) in A.D. 268 because it was then used in a heretical context by Paul of Samosata. Regardless of all this, the homoousion expression now stands as a pillar of Orthodoxy regardless of its past misuse.

Furthermore, Apollinarian’s only heresies were a denial of Christ’s soul, and communicatio idiomatum, however he did NOT teach that the humanity of Christ was somewhat divine as many claim — and so again, assuming for arguments sake that he did adopt the formula; his heresies were not a result or the corollary of the mia physis forumula, but rather independent of it.

Re: Eutyches — I’m stil waiting for someone to prove for me where Eutyches ever affirmed the One physis formula in an heretical context. The testimony of his enemies was as inconsistent as his own. They had an agenda, and he was just old, confused, and delirious.

Furthermore, if you only have ONE sole figure whom you can refer to, with regards to the manipulation of the mia physis formula, then you have indeed proven that it is a strong Orthodox formula. Can you even see the irony in your argument here? In case you didn't get it, allow me to reiterate; ONE SOLE FIGURE out of hundreds and hundreds of thousands (millions?) throughout the period in which the term was employed in an Orthodox context; manipulates the formula, and you think this is evidence of its weakness, rather than its strength? You mean, as opposed to the expressions employed at Chalcedon, which were manipulated by an ENTIRE heretical church for centuries? Come on now, give us a break here...

In his letter to Bishop Succensus, Saint Cyril wrote:

For not only in the case of those who are simple by nature is the term ‘one’ truly used, but also in respect to what has been brought together according to a synthesis, as man is one being, who is of soul and body. For soul and body are of different species and are not consubstantial to each other, but united they produce one Physis of man, even though in the considerations of the synthesis the difference exist according to the nature of those which have been brought together into a unity. Accordingly they are speaking in vain who say that, if there should be one incarnate Physis  ‘of the Word’ in every way and in every manner it would follow that a mixture and a confusion occurred as if lessening and taking away the nature of man.’

Peace.
 
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