edited December 1969 in Random Issues
I am really confused about angels. God created angels without bodies and they are spirits but we depict as having wings and male bodies. We also see that they have diffrent personalities like gabriel is tempremental while michael is gentle,how far do these distnictions go?there are no female or male angels but we define them as masculine?


  • I found a link that seems to be informative...however, I suggest we get Father Peter's approval before trusting it.
  • or better yet just read the book "The Angels" by H.H Pope SHenouda lll:

    Sorry for only giving you reference.

  • I was also wondering how come there are no female angels? The book seems excellent. I will take a look, thanks for the link :)
  • I haven't read any of those sources but I've always assumed that our attribution of names and genders to angels and our images of them with two wings and human bodies was just symbolic. I mean, why should angels, supposedly existing before our universe (since Satan, a fallen angel was present when man was in Eden) have HEBREW names? And why should they have human bodies? Human bodies are built to be useful on Earth, we have mouths to eat food, ears to hear vibrations in the air, eyes to pick up electromagnetic radiation - why should angels need any of these things?

    Given all that, I've always assumed that angels were spiritual beings who we've given artistic form to, to help us imagine them.

  • Epchois nai nan,

    I would have to disagree with you that they are given these images simply to help us imagine them. I believe that aside from specific facial features and details, they do in fact have 2 wings and a body. Why else do we ascribe six wings to the seraphim saying with 2 they cover their faces, with 2 they cover their feet and with 2 they fly? What representation of the imagination would we need to ascribe six wings to them specifically unless in fact when they have appeared or presented themselves to us, that is in fact how they look? I think irrelevant of the fact that they are spirits they still have a "form" if you will. I don't think you can say the spirit is simply just this thing that exists. When St Mary appears to us, she is spirit yet she is still dipicted with human features such as a mouth ears and nose. Does she need these as a spirit? Surely not. Yet she still has them.

    I don't think it is necessary to attribute everything such as those features such as feet or ears or whatever simply due to a need. In fact you can still argue these features are needed even with angels. They have mouths to praise God with. Wings to get around. Ears to hear Gods command and voice. Eyes to see with etc. My two cents

    Pray for me.
  • angels don't have female names.
    as hh abba shenouda says they are without gender. they are not men, because that would imply they are human.
    in the Bible and the writings of the church fathers, the angels have male names, and in Christian icons of angels, they look male.
    if you see internet pictures of female angels, they are from other religions.
    the link from Christ's servant is great for more details  :)
  • Angels are depicted with wings to represent their ability to trans-locate instantly. However, they can not be in two places at once.  The form of angels are bodies of light.
  • [quote author=Chirsts' servant link=topic=10201.msg124811#msg124811 date=1292592913]
    or better yet just read the book "The Angels" by H.H Pope SHenouda lll:

    Sorry for only giving you reference.


    Thank you for this wonderful reference.  I have read it and will now study it.  There is a lot of very good material here. 
    I have been studying angels and archangels for years.  They are the beloved companions of God and whether or not we see them they can be nearby at any time.  Much of the material about angels has come to us from the Hebrews who wrote at great length about angels. 
  • Angels can take on the appearance of men when the occasion demands.When angels do appear, they generally appear in the form of men. In Genesis 18, Abraham welcomed three angelic guests who appeared at first to be nothing more than some travellers.
  • I wanted to just say:  I think my mother is an angel.
  • [quote author=ilovesaintmark link=topic=10201.msg125295#msg125295 date=1293196987]
    I wanted to just say:  I think my mother is an angel.

    The reality that people are personally touched by angels and come to have angelic traits is one of the basic facts of our Faith.
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