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This Journal explores the vital connections between knowledge, Page 4 ethics and faith, on the interdisciplinary evaluated. In this spirit Volume 2, Issue 3, of January , is divided into two parts, with the first Section dedicated to Dogmatic Theology Studies, and the second focusing on the Studies of Education, Morality and Spirituality. Part I of the volume comprises six manuscripts highlighting different themes of Orthodox Dogmatic Theology.
These articles exemplify and analyze the role of theology in the Church and society. We thank you in advance for your kind support!
January Editor Ph. Consequently, a theologian of the Church is not the rational man, however great his achievements may be, but the spiritual man, who has the experience of the Saints, namely who has tasted and is living the states of purification, illumination and deification. Disconnected from the reality of the spiritual life, a theologian becomes a false prophet. Actually, there is no existence more tragic than the one of a theologian, on any education level, teaching things to which he is not connected on the inside, by the heart, and which he does not accept or believe.
If such a thing means failure for any science, however, for the area of Theology it is directly suicidal. In fact, the lack of the Orthodox and ecclesial way of thinking and living makes the person theologizing in the area of the Orthodoxy dangerous, because as an officially recognized teacher of Orthodox Theology, he functions as a representative of the Church tradition, while he is nothing but a false prophet.
And, while, probably, the science of philology is not endangered by an unlearned philologist or the science of law by an unjust legist, the science of theology is logically denied in the person of its servant who is an unbelieving or atheist theologian and creates very great obstacles in the way of the accomplishment of the redeeming mission of the Church in the world.
Keywords: Orthodoxy, salvation, theologian, purification, illumination, deification, Church, Faculty of Theology, theological education. The theology1 of the Orthodoxy The word about God anticipates some knowledge about God. This is how Saint Gregory the Theologian defines the principles of ecclesial gnoseology.
According to him, theologizing is a premise of those experienced and tried in contemplation namely in the vision of God and, first of all, of those who have purified their soul and their body, or are purifying it, in the most adequate manner . God is known according to the extent to which man has seen Him or has experienced theosis. The communion with the uncreated divine glory, as participation to the mystery of the Church, leads man to all the truth .
For the Orthodoxy there is no other way of knowing God6. The theology of the one who has seen God is prophetic. The fact of prophesying is identified, as it is known from the Holy Scripture, with that of theologizing . Yet, in Universities, what is cultivated is Theology as a science, the highest of sciences, according to the oath of Doctor in Theology, also taken in our Faculties [from Greece].
University theology is considered actual and true science  and an immense social conquest of Christianity , namely a social recognition of the Church. However, it is known that enumerating Theology among the sciences is a heritage of the medieval Rationalism and completely foreign to the patristic conscience itself . Therefore, what does Theology, taught at university level, research, where does it introduce and what education can it offer?
The Revelation of the Pentecost cannot be researched scientifically and be formulated using created notions and words. It is knowledge of a different kind, spiritual knowledge namely holy-spiritual , which one cannot receive except behaving and being as a child And it is not in the works of the thoughts, but it can be tasted from grace Since no one can acquire it by learning Avva Isaac the Syrian . With the one experiencing theosis, revelation and understanding are identical .
As it has been mentioned, Theology as speaking about God is not a science, since the methods used by all the sciences are not in the position to approach the God of faith . It is about the traces left in the historical time by the human part of the divine-human Body of the Church.
The theological science, in all its possible expressions, is searching, drawing conclusions, critically rehabilitating, studying and interpreting all these testimonies or drawing on them in the uninterrupted dialogue between the Church and the world .
Consequently, the part of the historical presence of the Church, which can be researched using the means of science and can be perceived rationally, is the topic of the theological scientific research and is offered as scientific theology. It is to this frame that the education offered in the Faculties of Theology also belongs.
It is easy to understand that this work is all the more efficient to the extent to which the theologian-professor embodies the universal way of living of the Church.
The ecclesiality of theological education Theology, in all its manifestations, is a function of the Church. Its space is the body of the Church . This is why it has been characterized as the science of sciences .
Despite the Western influences regarding the contemporary things, even since the Antiquity, the Faculties of Theology have belonged to the Church, although there have also been centrifugal tendencies, which confirm the ecclesiality of Theology. Theology, as scientific tuition, never received any place among the Higher Education Foundations, as it was considered a premise of the Church body . Its teachers were usually clerics and monks, as Theology was made up of the life of the Church .
This connection between theological education and the Church will continue during the post-Byzantine period and will materialize in the creation of the Faculty of Theology of the Ionian Academy, actually the first Greek Faculty of Theology 24 , but also in the birth of her spiritual daughter, the Faculty of Theology of Halki Yet, one cannot understand theological science and theology in an Orthodox manner without being aware that the Orthodox scientist does not cease to be a Church limb in the place of his service, working in his own — special and independent — way, yet for the building of the Church body see 1 Cor.
When this awareness is weakened, then the theologian- scientist, though he may stand out as a scientific authority, by wonderful achievements, in the domain of philology, philosophy, history or archeology, is not, however, a theologian of the Church .
Our theological education is not simply religious, but ecclesial. In our tradition, the function of the place of worship and the function of school are interrelated, as it is demonstrated, actually, by the venerable figure of Saint Photios the Great, patriarch of Constantinople, who, being by excellence an example of teacher and theologian of the Church, united in his person and made these two ecclesial types of service shine brightly.
The ecclesiality of theological education means especially the living filial relation of its bearers to the bishop and the local Church. The bishop, as a center of the life of the local Church, cannot remain indifferent to the function of theological education, yet the theological world, as a whole, cannot disconsider the bishop, since the Orthodox conscience has established: no one shall do without the bishop any of the things that belong to the Church .
Ecclesial education viewed as premise of ecclesiality Ecclesiality cannot be perceived separately from life in Christ, expressed as faithfulness to the tradition of the Church. Intellectual knowledge does not make a theologian outstanding, nor can Theology be perceived as a research or professional concern, without premises, with topics in relation to the Church and its faith.
This is something that Page 8 any scientist could do. Theology, as university branch and school teaching, cannot be separated from the ecclesial experience, from the authentic theologizing of the Church.
The issue has already been debated with acuity in the 14th century and was solved irrevocably for our tradition. The theological scientific work carried out, however high and impressive, does not initiate in the Church experience, but supposes it.
The more ecclesial the theological education provided in an educational institution is, the more it maintains and facilitates the access to the Church life. The integration of the theologian-scientist in the tradition of the Saints creates an ecclesial and ecclesiocentric way of living and being. What else [can this mean], naturally, but this: that salvation is redeeming both in knowledge and in dogmas, according to Saint Gregory Palamas, namely we should think the same things as the Prophets, the Apostles, the Fathers, simply as all those by means of whom the Holy Spirit confesses that He has spoken both about God and about His creations .
Actually, there is no other existence more tragic than that of the theologian, from any education level, teaching things to which he is not connected on the inside, through his heart, and which he does not accept or does not believe.
While such a thing means failure for any science, in exchange, for the area of Theology it is directly suicidal. Actually, the absence of the Orthodox and ecclesial way of thinking and being makes the person theologizing in the Orthodox area dangerous, because as an officially-appointed teacher of Orthodox Theology, he operates as a representative of the Church tradition, while he is nothing else but a false prophet. And, while, probably, the science of philology is not endangered by an uneducated philologist or the science of law by the unjust legist, the science of theology is logically denied in the person of its servant [who is] an unfaithful or atheist theologian and creates very great obstacles in the way of the accomplishment of the redeeming mission of the Church in the world.
Yet, theological education, as it has been said, has a reason to be only if, by all its activity, helps the work of the Church. It is, certainly, a fact that the contribution of an authentic ecclesial education is possible only within the limits of the patristic spirit and can never be identified with moralist and pietist teachings, literally corrupting the pastoral work of the Church. The aim of ecclesial education is not to shape moral and useful and, actually, comfortable people, but to integrate the believer in the spiritual life of the Church, which is patristically expressed by the living of the states of purification, illumination and deification theosis for instance, see The Prayer of Saint Symeon the New Theologian in the Order for Receiving the Divine Communion: those who ardently repent, You clean them with Your tender mercies and illumine them and unite them with the light.
Usually, the scientific character of academic Theology is emphasized, certainly self- importantly, with an obvious or hidden underestimation of the pastoral service of the Church. Yet, Schleiermacher has not been unjust when he placed Theology among the positive sciences, due to its practical aim .
A Faculty of Theology, and, similarly, school theological education , does not make Saints. They [these two] can, however, if they remain within their educational limits, guide towards the experience of the Saints, source of Theology, and to the method of healing- theosis deification of the human being by the work of the Page 9 deifying and healing divine grace.
In this point, important distinctions could be made: what kind of faith and tradition are offered by theological education; how is salvation, nevertheless, lived as participation to the mystery of the Church, as life, experience, action.
These distinctions are necessary and ought to be well clarified, because a just research of and a correct contribution to the fact what faith and tradition can lead to complete full and just true integration into how one ought to live [faith and tradition].
Actually, also the fact how faith ought to be lived is offered, on the one hand, empirically, but it is also taught by a specialist professor and scientist, namely by the experienced Confessor or Father, who is truly a Father only as man who has experienced theosis, in other words, as pneumatophore  see I Cor. The theologian-professor scientist when he is Orthodox introduces theoretically in the tradition; the theologian-professor scientist, having spiritual and pastoral experience, integrates in the practices of tradition.
The pastoral science of the Church, as a therapeutic-ascetic science, is fundamentally a medical-therapeutic science and uses the method of pure science, namely observation and experiment. Seeing the uncreated divine glory is the scientific observation, while surrendering oneself to the therapeutic education of the Church is equal to the experiment, because it can lead to the experience of those who have been deified, namely to theosis deification.
The use of medical terms in a patristic manner for the pastoral service of the Church doctor, medical healing, and spiritual hospital for the Church represents a confirmation of this reality . Therefore, very useful for the work of the Faculties of Theology and, in general, for theological education is to remember the fact that Pastoral and Dogmatic Theology are identical in the patristic tradition, since the destination of the second is the integration on the way of theosis, its premise being the therapeutical power and mission of the dogma the Orthodox dogma assures the possibility of salvation, namely of theosis.
The Orthodox theologian, researcher or teacher of scientific Theology, has the duty to be a theologian of the Church tradition, namely he has to have inner premises, of the heart, not sentimentalistic, but existential, to be able to see his topic from the inside. In this way, he is the one speaking in the Spirit of God 1 Cor. His work becomes an extension of the pastoral work of the Church and offers Christ Himself, namely the embodied All-Truth, by the means and methods of his science.
Scientific theological research is, by itself, unfaithful , but this does not mean that the theologian researcher is unloosed of being faithful to the Church life, or that he can interrupt the living connection to it. Because, in this case, it is the theologian himself who gets to be unfaithful and excuses himself from his ecclesial obligations, working, however, caught in other, heavier and, anyway, tyrannical connections. The dynamism of ecclesial education in theological education Ecclesiastical education, by the inspiration of the Orthodox Church thinking and morals, not just does not oppress the scientific character of the theological work, but even reinforces it, and is multilaterally profitable for it.
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