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You seem extremely confused. Is it western or Eastern? Because at some points you call it a western innovation, and other times Easter, even Hindu. So you have to first be honest with yourself before you can expect to come around here and lie your way through an academic discussion. And in reference to removal of prayers, I would need specific references. I know of some prayers that have been changed, but not many that I support. Further, the idea is that theosis is not anti-biblical. It may be anti-biblical if not interpreted properly, but that is why we have the fathers which, as Orthodox followers, we must read, comprehend and live.
The book “Mans Deification?!” is an awful book if I’ve ever seen one. The first bullet point is Nestorian. It assumes that you can eat the flesh of God without eating his body. If this line is to be read as it is, it leads to an extremely Nestorian understanding of the body of Christ as being flesh to the exclusion of the divinity, which inhabits it. I don’t care who wrote it. It is unacceptable.
If we are obedient to the teachings of the church, we will read the words of the church, and not limit them to the words of one man. For the love of the living God people, Pope Shenouda is a man. His view is not the churches view. It does not define what the faithful much believe.
You say that in theological issues we should be precise. Before precise, we need to be honest and educated. We need to have our priorities straight. We need to know what we are talking about. Defending the late Patriarch at the expense of true theology is dishonest and uneducated. The book “Man’s Deification?!” is one long proof text of the bible. It sets up straw men arguments from cover to cover with no regard for biblical interpretation through the light of our Orthodox tradition of the fathers, and prayers of the church. Further, mans deification begs the question of Theosis. The writer (as H.H. referenced many of his opponents in his writings) will make such arguments as this.
1) "If a person -supposedly- eats the divine nature, and this nature abides in him, he will become -through the communion- a god,"
2) Then he will mockingly say that everyone should bow down to him for being a god
3) Therefore we dont eat the divine nature.
This sort of reasoning is extremely laughable. It literally mocks a prime tenet of Christianity in an attempt to disprove it.
If theosis is hindu, then Abba Athanasius is a hindu, such as St. Cyril the defender of the faith. If Theosis is Hinduism Sts Basil, Gregory and Bulus el Bushi are hindu gurus of the highest degree. But it is not. Pope Shenouda’s book runs in opposite directions to the fathers as has been shown in the previous posts. I do commend you on the nerve and bravery it took to post words from mans’ deification after sayings of the Holy Fathers have been posted that pronounce extreme judgment on the words of that book.
As regards the Rev. Pishoy Salama, his PhD. Is not in theology (but of course you wouldn’t mention that.) It is in family counseling with his PhD. Thesis being on Intercultural Married Couples in the Coptic Church. Nothing to do with Theosis, so his opinion on this topic carries just about as much weight as Steven Hawking does. He absolutely has no grasp on the view of salvation since he sees that there is a difference between the ultimate goal in EO and OO spirituality. Some sort of quasi-separation between salvation and deification. Is he serious? This is un-intelligence and dishonesty to the most disgusting degree. And forgive me for being upset but it is exactly theological dishonesty like this that has disgraced our church and insults my God. I don't care how hard it was getting a PhD. The idea his it has nothing to do with theology as pertains our discussion. It is indeed very perceptive of you to identify that I do not like him. But I am also not one to cover up my feelings in the interest of political correctness. I respect the rank of pristhood, but Priest Pishoy Salama is incorrect on this and on so much more that makes him in grave danger of misleading the flock and becoming a wolf to the flock.
What he describes in this piece is Nirvana of sorts. He has taken no thought to actually and honestly look at theosis in the EO church. Absolute disgraceful dishonesty is not hidden by the black cloth, and the black cloth will not stop be from calling out this dishonesty. Can someone stop this man?
ReturnOrthodoxy said:Whats his PhD in?
In the other thread on missionary, you presented a lot of texts with lots of questionable theories and never responded. This topic seems to be heading in the same direction. I will respond more fully later.
But I will point out one thing you wrote:
"Again, when we speak about this important subject, this is not where we're going - the complete deification. Deification means man becoming God or a full God or part of the divinity of God."
This is a game of erroneous semantics. Theosis, literally comes from he Greek meaning "union with God", not becoming divine. Secondly, Deification is the process of becoming divine. It is not the process of becoming humanly righteous or the process of becoming miracle workers. You excluded any possibility of becoming divine in part or in full. If you believe that man cannot become deified in any possibility other than works, please respond how to understand Psalm 82:6-7. "I said, “You are gods, And all of you are children of the Most High. But you shall die like men, And fall like one of the princes.”
King David is obviously speaking to humans because he says you shall die like men. Obviously the divine nature cannot die. But he says “you are gods, and all of you are children of the Most High.” If there is no possibility of deification, then there is no possibility to become children of the Most High? And if there is no possibility to become children of the Most High, how can he say “You are gods”?
If you imply that we become gods by works mirroring the divine righteousness and divine authority, then you have completely removed the power of God’s grace and promise. Before St Peter tells us we may be partakers of the divine nature, he says “by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises”. When we were given great and precious promises (which we all know are the sacraments given to us by adoption), we become partakers of the divine nature. It’s not the other way around. We are not rewarded to be partakers of the divine nature in response to sharing works with the divinity. And how is it even possible to share works with the divinity? By definition, there is no work a human can do that can make him a partaker of the divine nature, since the works of the divine nature are beyond humans.
So If by works we become gods, then how do we interpret Psalm 82?
Copticmission wrote: “But in the Eastern Orthodox tradition, they take it even a bit farther, to say that after our salvation there's one more step, which is being completely and totally dissolved in the divinity of God - a total union between our humanity and His divinity because when you add a drop of water in an ocean, this drop of water will not change the nature of the ocean.”
Here’s another example of wrong information you are presenting. Give us one reference where the Eastern Orthodox tradition says theosis is like adding a drop of water in an ocean. Rather the phrase “like adding a drop of water in an ocean” is taken from Eutychianism which “holds that the human and divine natures of Christ were fused into one new single (mono) nature: His human nature was "dissolved like a drop of honey in the sea". (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monophysitism)
You wrote, “In theological issues we should be precise. “ Now who is not being precise in theological issues?
copticmission said:I am only saying what the Church teaches and what the Church says about the new age doctrine. Even if people dont understand the issue, that's the blessing of obedience. The Church had theologians discuss this issue and they have said that it is a heresy.
I am only saying what the Church teaches and what the Church says about the new age doctrine. Even if people dont understand the issue, that's the blessing of obedience. The Church had theologians discuss this issue and they have said that it is a heresy.
53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. 54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. 57 As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. 58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.