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Russian Religious Humanism and Orthodox Christianity

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The Eastern Orthodox Churches hearken back to the original forms of worship; for example, the Nicene Creed is viewed as created at the First Council of Constantinople in 381, in contrast to the Roman Catholic church, which uses the Nicene creed with the addition of the phrase 'and the Son' (see Filioque clause). This change is one of many causes for the Great Schism formalized in 1054 by simultaneous proclamations of "Anathema" from the collegial leadership of the Orthodox Churches in the East and the Bishop of Rome in the West. This emphasis on the use of the original "creed" is shared today by all Eastern Orthodox churches.

While some Eastern Orthodox Christians churches consider Roman Catholics to be heretics, the majority consider them in schism. Here is an interesting BBC interview by  Rowan Williams about Russian culture and Orthodox church (in Russian, see below) and Dostoevsky.  Short summary of ideas in English can be found in Telegraph note . The Catholic Church considers the Eastern Orthodox to be in schism and therefore not in full communion with the Holy See.

The Archbishop of Canterbury discusses a literary passion

Where Rowan Williams meets Dostoevsky

"The current rash of books hostile to religious faith will one day become an interesting subject for some sociological analysis. They consistently take a view of religion which, if taken seriously, would also evacuate a number of other human systems of meaning, including quite a lot of what they unreflectively think of as science. They treat religious belief almost as an aberration in a field of human rationality: a set of groundless beliefs about matters of fact, resting on - at best - faulty and weak argumentation. What they normally fail to do is to attend to what it is that religious people actually do and say - and also to attend to the general question of how systems of meaning actually work."

"Terrorism, child abuse, absent fathers and the fragmentation of the family, the secularisation and the sexualisation of culture, the future of liberal democracy, the clash of cultures and the nature of national identity - so many of the anxieties that we think of as being quintessentially features of the early 21st century are omnipresent in the work of Dostoevsky, his letter, his journalism and above all his fiction. The world we inhabit as readers of his novels is one in which the question of what human beings owe to each other is left painfully and shockingly open and there seems no obvious place to stand from which we can construct a clear moral landscape. Yet at the same time, the novels insistently and unashamedly press home the question of what else might be possible if we saw the world in another light, the light provided by faith."

  • Dostoevsky: Language, Faith and Fiction is published by Continuum at Ł16.99
  • And in Guardian (You can listen the whole interview):

    Rowan Williams talks Dostoevsky with Stuart Jeffries

    Link to this audio

    The Archbishop of Canterbury will face questions for only half an hour. So there won't be time to ask him about gay bishops, his touching fondness for early Incredible String Band songs or eyebrow grooming.

    Instead, we must focus on his book Dostoevsky: Language, Faith and Fiction. It's a learned literary-theological study that suggests not only do the great Russian's novels have a kenotic dimension (kenosis, roughly, is the spiritual emptying of one's will to become receptive to God) but also stresses what Russian Christianity inherited from the apophatic tradition (apophasis, roughly, is an inductive technique used by eastern Christians to demonstrate God's existence). So I scratch the question about who would win a beard-off between him and Dostoevsky.

    Instead, I ask why Rowan Williams took three months off last summer to write this book. What is the relevance of Dostoevsky for us Mammon-obsessed westerners in a credit crunch? And is the book the archbishop's riposte to all those monsters of triumphalist atheism such as Richard Dawkins, AC Grayling and Christopher Hitchens?

    Before the archbishop can answer, we have to hurry through Lambeth Palace's corridors for the photo-shoot in the chapel. As we go, Williams tells me he was hurt by the Guardian review of his book in which Andrew Brown wrote: "I wondered whether I was struggling through the worst prose ever written by a poet. [The archbishop has published several collections of poetry.] Sometimes the thought disintegrates entirely, like a jellyfish dropped in a jacuzzi."

    "He thinks I struggle with my sentences," says Williams. "Which is true, I do." He shrugs and throws me a hapless Norman Wisdom smile. This is classic Williams: accepting the wound rather than replying in kind. If it's any consolation, I tell Williams as we enter the chapel, I liked the book and am planning to re-read The Karamazov Brothers as a result. "Oh good," says Williams, mugging like an ecclesiastical Frankie Howerd. "That's reassuring." Sarcasm from an archbishop - this is a career first.

    Later in his study, he explains why he cast off his duties to write about a Russian novelist. "Both my predecessors have taken short periods of sabbatical and the general feeling was that before we got into the run up to the Lambeth Conference it might be quite a good idea to take some time out. I'd been reading around Dostoevsky for years and I thought, 'OK let's give myself a task and write the book.'"

    This underplays Williams' lifelong interest in Russian spirituality. He wrote his doctorate on Russian Christianity. Before that, Williams became obsessed with the religious themes of Dostoevsky's The Karamazov Brothers, which contains an episode he thinks was formative for his faith. In the Grand Inquisitor episode in Dostoevsky's masterpiece, Ivan Karamazov imagines Jesus's second coming. Christ has made his earthly return to 16th-century Seville at the inquisition's height. He does not stop the burning of heretics but is arrested for performing miracles and tomorrow morning will burn himself. The Inquisitor tells Jesus in his cell that the church has made humanity happy by hoodwinking it with miracle, mystery and authority. Christ, by contrast, offered the masses not happiness, but a more frightful gift, their freedom. The Inquisitor explains that the Son of God is too reckless a character to have around risking the church's good work.

    Admittedly this Inquisitor episode is Ivan's atheistic fantasy, but shouldn't Christ have challenged the inquisitor? Shouldn't he have behaved more like Christ in the Bible, who threw the moneylenders out of the temple? "If you pressed Dostoevsky on that he might have said: 'When Jesus starts throwing the Inquisitor out, Jesus becomes the Inquisitor himself.'" Instead, arguably, Jesus follows the more difficult path: that of clasping even those you might be expected to detest most to your heart. It's a path, we'll see, that Williams follows himself.

    Why was the moment when Jesus, perhaps out of compassion for the tormented Inquisitor, kisses the man and then is allowed to slip from his cell into the Seville night, possibly never to be seen again, so important for Williams? "Dostoevsky has no easy answers, but what struck me when I first read the Grand Inquisitor episode was there is absolutely no form of words that can give a solution to suffering. Absolutely none. That's why what ends the arraignment of the captive Jesus by the Grand Inquisitor is silence - and then Jesus kisses him. When I read it I had the dim sense that there was something very important in that what you look for in faith is not solutions but a certain relationship." And that's why Dostoevsky's appeal has endured for Williams: he offers no closure, no authorial master-voice, but an endless dialogue where no one wins the argument but everyone is connected. In the book, he writes that Dostoevsky's fiction is like divine creation, "an unexpected unfolding with no last word". That might make divine creation sound akin to natural selection, but it's how Williams sees God's universe.

    Throughout the book Williams stresses Dostoevsky's contemporary relevance. "I first read Devils [Dostoevsky's novel about a revolutionary cell led by a cynical manipulator] in about 1971 and one thing I remember very vividly still is that the depiction of radical students' meetings was horribly recognisable. The kind of arguments, the personalities, the obsessional quality of it.

    "In Devils you have a reduction of politics to management, and the giving-over of that management to people who have no moral hinterland. It rings a few bells in the contemporary world, because the person who emerges triumphant from that dreadful book is the manipulator-in-chief. When you don't have real shared values, real common goals in society, how do you avoid politics falling into the hands of the person who can push the most right buttons, but who has no particular goals or aims?" As the archbishop speaks, I can't get David Cameron's image out of my head.

    Dostoevsky is renowned for his remark, "Without God, everything is permitted." Does the archbishop agree? "He's saying not so much that without God everyone would be bad, as without God we have no way of connecting one act with another, no way of developing a life that made sense. It would really be indifferent whether we did this or that. And it's that sense of God being part of what you draw on to construct a life that makes sense."

    I take that to be a "yes", not least because Williams writes in the book, glossing Dostoevsky: "Only love directed towards the transcendent can generate effective unselfish love in the world." Is that his view? "At the end of the day, yes it is because I believe that's how the universe is. I believe that God has made the world such that this is what we're for. Even when [people] reject that at the ideas level, they can sense that's how it is, they can act as if there were an infinite. That's one of the things that keeps the world going."

    But the apparently barmy faith-based ethical systems in Dostoevsky, which Williams takes seriously, seem to make moral life unworkable. For example, I was struck by the way he treats a notorious deathbed scene in Karamazov where a character called Markel tells his mother: "Everyone is responsible for everyone in every way, and I most of all." I tell the archbishop that when I studied philosophy, this was held up as an absurdity by my teachers. How could one devise a practical moral system based on the impossible demand of being responsible for every one? "You're right - the way Markel talks about responsibility for all, it's not a practical programme. I don't think it's meant to be. In the long run Dostoevsky's world is one in which what's bad and destructive for Sri Lanka or Burundi or Guatemala is bad for humanity. Because there is this call to live your way into mutuality, there are no bounds to that."

    Williams says the doctrine of personalism that underscores much of Dostoevsky's work is important in this regard. What is personalism? "It's a tradition in Russian philosophy, hugely powerful, from Dostoevsky's friend Solovyov right through to some of the underground Russian writers of the Soviet days and a lot of the emigres. You have to have a way of telling the difference between a person and an individual. An individual is someone who occupies space. To be a person is to be someone who hears and answers, to be someone who doesn't occupy a territory but much more a place in a network.

    "Personalism says the human enterprise is about those exchanges and relations whereby we build one another up, we take responsibility for each other's flourishing." He takes this as key for Christian ethics. But is it also important as a critique of selfish western individualism right now? "Anything that challenges the idea that the primary imperative is always going to be the protection of my territory is bound to be."

    Recently, Williams cited Karl Marx in his critique of selfish capitalism. It was, to say the least, unexpected.

     "The idea that most struck me when I read Marx years ago was that unbridled over-ambitious capitalist ventures would lead you - in the jargon - to reify money. It's treated as though it has a life of its own and Marx is pretty sharp on that. He saw the capitalist error as rather like what he would see as the religious error - treating something as though it had a life of its own. For Marx, God is just a function of how we relate to each other, money is just a function of how we relate to one another. Now obviously I think he was wrong about God, but some of the things he said about money were right. He just put his finger on that temptation to treat what's actually within our reach and agency as if it's outside."

    The blurb says this book should be heartening to Christians. Is it? "I hope it encourages them to be aware that there are writers and thinkers who've plumbed the depths, who've looked at humanity in its shadows as well as its triumphs, but who still think it's worth sticking with the Christian gospel."

    Christians may also find encouragement from Williams' preface, which argues all those recent books hostile to religious faith will be tomorrow's sociological curios. He's presumably talking about Dawkins, Grayling and Hitchens. But aren't they thinking you're the sociological curio? "They undoubtedly are. The answer is not to say, 'Let's once and for all have the religious reply to it,' it's to go on patiently saying, 'Look, what is it that Christians who are not cheap or trivial are saying?' and work from there rather than the surface level.

    "In The Idiot, Prince Myshkin says, 'When I hear atheists talk about Christianity, I don't recognise what they're talking about.' I often feel when I read Richard Dawkins or Christopher Hitchens that this isn't quite it. I thought it might not do any harm to put down a marker about that and say: 'Here is a form of Christian engagement with the world and with the complexities of human experience that may be radically wrong but is not cheap or glib and any critique has to deal with this just as much as it has to deal with a southern baptist.'"

    He also tilts in the book at the pretensions of science, and by extension scientists such as Dawkins:

     "Science is a set of brilliantly successful methods producing brilliantly successful hypotheses about how things work. What it's not is a picture of reality. It will give you a very significant purchase on reality. But it's not an ethic, not a metaphysic. To treat it like that is a kind of idolatry."

    Our half-hour is up. As he signs my copy of his book, Williams tells me he invited the philosopher AC Grayling, baiter of the faithful, to the launch party. "I tell Williams that the last time I spoke to Grayling he was just about to publicly debate with Rabbi Julia Neuberger the motion We'd Be Better Off Without Religion. He won. "Oooh," says Williams, going all Frankie Howerd again, "I bet God's worried. 'Damn, I'd better retire.'"

    As he escorts me from his study, he tells me he admires Dawkins. "There's something about his swashbuckling side which is endearing." He invited atheism's high priest and his wife to a Lambeth Palace party last year. "They were absolutely delightful." Again, classic Williams: the better man being nice about his foe. There's nobody he won't clasp to his bosom. It can only be a matter of time he goes on the lash with Hitchens.

    But the real reason the Dawkins were invited is unexpected. "My son wanted to meet Mrs Dawkins." Why? "She was in Doctor Who." Really? "Oh yes. She played an assistant when Tom Baker was the Doctor." For a moment the archbishop looks like a greying sci-fi nerd. He would definitely win that beard-off.

    • On the web Listen to Rowan Williams talking to Stuart Jeffries

    Here is BBC interview (In Russian):

    Би-би-си Культура Роуэн Уильямс Я подумывал перейти в православие

    Архиепископ Кентерберийский Роуэн Уильямс в своей резиденции - Ламбетском дворце - ответил на вопросы корреспондентов Русской службы Би-би-си Натальи Рубинштейн и Лиз Барнс, а также директора Всероссийской библиотеки иностранной литературы в Москве Екатерины Гениевой.

    Би-би-си: Как вы заинтересовались русской культурой и, в частности, Достоевским, о котором вы написали книгу?

    Роуэн Уильямс: Интерес к русской культуре вообще и к Достоевскому в частности возник у меня еще в отрочестве после исторических фильмов Эйзенштейна "Иван Грозный" и "Александр Невский". А потом я надолго погрузился в русскую музыку. Позже я открыл для себя Достоевского и русскую литературу. В студенческие годы, когда я изучал теологию в Кембридже, я прочел многих русских философов и богословов. Всех важнее для меня стал Владимир Лосский, и я посвятил ему свою докторскую диссертацию. Такая вот длинная история у моего интереса к России.

    Би-би-си: Вы выросли в Уэльсе. А говорите ли вы по-валлийски?

    Р.У.: У нас дома говорили по-валлийски. Родители и бабушка с дедушкой переходили на родной язык довольно часто. Я не так хорошо говорю, как они. Но литературная традиция для меня важна не меньше, чем для них.

    Би-би-си: А сколько вообще вы знаете языков?

    Р.У.: Я читаю на девяти или десяти языках, но говорю только на трех.

    Екатерина Гениева: Почему вы решили именно сейчас написать книгу о Достоевском? В чем ваше послание нашему веку?

    Р.У.: С тех пор как вышла моя книга, меня спрашивали не раз: с какой стати современным людям сегодня читать Достоевского? В смысле - зачем его читать на Западе. Почему его читают в России - вопрос другой. Но только отчасти другой. Я бы на оба эти вопроса ответил так: Достоевский дважды представил нам образ мира, в котором отброшена твердая шкала ценностей и главным стала человеческая воля. А человеческая воля - вещь странная и дикая. И если она ничего не знает выше себя самой, и ничего, кроме себя, не любит, она превращается в разрушительную силу.

    Сперва Достоевский показал нам это на примере одного человека, ставшего преступником, - в "Преступлении и наказании". А потом он показал нам, как это происходит, когда в развитие действия включается некая политическая составляющая. Это - в романе "Бесы", самом, на мой взгляд, тревожном, полном смятения, его романе. И мне кажется, нам стоит спросить самих себя: как это приложимо к нашему собственному обществу.

    Индивид, живущий без любви, не знающий ничего, кроме себя самого, никому, кроме себя, и не будет нужен. А политика - если речь идет только о власти, о борьбе, соперничестве, завоевании - она становится смертоубийством. Достоевский метил сразу в две цели - в индивидуализм и в коллективизм, в ложный индивидуализм и в ложный коллективизм. Достоевский страшно неудобный автор для всякого политика, хоть для левого, хоть для правого: он неизменно сдирает всякую самонадеянность. И это, по-моему, важно.

    Е.Г.: Вы выбираете Достоевского как своего внутреннего собеседника? Он ведь настолько непохож на вас.

    Р.У.: Проблема личности Достоевского - проблема очень серьезная. В одной рецензии на мою книгу особо подчеркивалось, что Достоевский в своих журнальных и публицистических выступлениях - это совсем не тот диалогический и полифонический автор, какого мы знаем по романам. Напротив, Достоевский-публицист крайне нетерпим и фанатичен.

    Я вот, знаете, иногда спрашиваю сам себя, хотел бы я оказаться в поезде с Достоевским в одном купе? Но Достоевский подтверждает собою ту истину, что великий художник всегда на порядок больше собственной человеческой личности. Художник всегда шире того, что он знает или думает, что знает. У Достоевского-журналиста были ясные ответы на все вопросы. И он с презрением и издевкой расправлялся со своими оппонентами. Его пером водила ярость.

    Но, создавая роман, он не мог удержаться в рамках прямолинейной однозначности. Он слышал все многоголосие мира, он оркестровал полифонию. Это и отличает настоящего художника. И я думаю, что никакой художник не может быть сведен к его человеческой сути в узком смысле слова. Я вот только что закончил читать очень важную книгу о Шекспире покойного английского критика Тони Наттолла "Шекспир - мыслитель". В этой книге Наттолл все время показывает нам, как и что Шекспир думает в процессе творчества. Он не формулирует мысль, чтобы потом воплотить ее в драматическом герое. Нет, он мыслит, созидая. И Достоевский-романист делает точно то же самое.

    Би-би-си: Ваша книга в оригинале называется: "Dostoevsky: Language, Faith and Fiction" (что дословно можно перевести как "Достоевский: язык, вера и вымысел"). Как бы вы перевели название на русский?

    Р.У.: О, это трудный вопрос! "Language" в заглавии для меня означает "дискурс", то есть весь процесс беседы и обмена мнениями. По-русски можно было бы сказать "слово", в том значении, в котором французы сказали бы "parole". За одним произнесенным словом всегда встает другое. И в процессе беседы в конечном счете наступает новый момент в отношениях. Я поставил на обложке книги эти три слова вместе, отчасти потому, что убежден: если вы поняли, что именно делает Достоевский как автор вымышленной истории, то вы поймете и то, как он понимал природу художественного слова. А, поняв, как он понимал природу слова, вы узнает кое-что и о вере.

    И для Достоевского, как и для меня самого, в конце концов открывается слово Божие. В последнем пределе наша связь с Богом, состоит в том, что Бог оставляет свободу человека в его собственных руках и дозволяет ему поступать по воле его. Я думаю, что мои размышления и представления во многом базируются на том, что я в течение многих лет читал у русских философов. Я, конечно, в книге часто ссылаюсь на Бахтина, но за Бахтиным есть еще и Лосев, замечательный и очень-очень сложный автор, а за ним, как кто-то уже указал, просматривается Выгодский. Language - язык; слово всегда развернуто, всегда открыто. Когда я впервые стал читать Лосева, я был восхищен у него ассоциациями с некоторыми философами византийской традиции, утверждавшими, что сущность действий Бога может быть нами понята через слово Божие. Вот все это, возможно, и заложено в названии книги.

    Би-би-си: Как вы представляете себе аудиторию, которой ваша книга окажется близка?

    Р.У.: Я об этом написал в предисловии. Я обращался вовсе не к одним специалистам по русской литературе. Я думал о читателях, интересующихся литературой, искусством романа, творческим поиском. Я хотел таких читателей, которые могут задуматься: нет ли в самом процессе художественного творчества чего-то, что некоторым образом проливает свет на то, как действует религиозная вера. И что интересно, некоторые здешние рецензенты подхватили этот намек, и отметили, что можно больше узнать о вере и религии, наблюдая за работой творческого сознания, чем из чтения иных богословских книг.

    Би-би-си: Кто вам близок из русских православных мыслителей?

    Р.У.: Я уже говорил о Владимире Лосском. Много лет он был в центре моих исследований. Вообще мое особое восхищение вызвали авторы серебряного века и религиозные мыслители этого периода. Я очень интересовался, например, Флоренским. Но также и Сергеем Булгаковым. Несколько лет назад я опубликовал о нем книгу, с приложением ряда его ранних работ в своем переводе.

    Я и сегодня считаю, что, при всех эксцентрических особенностях его мышления, отец Сергий Булгаков был один из величайших умов этого века. Кто еще, кроме него, мог писать на литературные темы, рассуждать о Достоевском, и одновременно писать по экономическим вопросам, и затем о Ницше и философии Ницше, и тут же об истории мистицизма, как Западного, так и восточного - и переплавлять все это в единую картину методом его собственного синтеза? Это был гигант.

    А в то же время - я знавал нескольких людей, которые знали его лично - человек огромной личной твердости, ясности и цельности. Так что к отцу Сергию Булгакову я возвращаюсь постоянно. И Лосского я продолжаю перечитывать. У меня есть много его неопубликованных работ, на которые я опирался в своих исследованиях. Флоренскому посвящено мое новое исследование, еще не законченное. И очень интересным для меня было появление нового поколения молодых русских интеллектуалов в 1980-90-е годы, людей, которые открыли для себя этот мир и, можно сказать, вросли в него. И среди них фигура огромного масштаба - отец Александр Мень, сумевший предложить нам свое собственное видение.

    Би-би-си: Вам никогда в голову не приходило самому перейти в православие?

    Р.У.: Приходило. Я действительно подумывал об этом, когда был молод. Но я также чувствовал, что в таком шаге таится некоторая опасность. Скорее всего, мне на самом деле очень хотелось стать русским! Но поскольку я урожденный валлиец, это было трудновато. Так что можно считать, что это была попытка разобраться в себе, познать самого себя.

    Е. Г.: Кто из героев Достоевского вам особенно близок?

    Р.У.: Я думаю о тех героях Достоевского, в которых я вижу светлое начало. Это герои непростые, неоднозначные. В некоторых из них свет проступает совершенно неожиданно, непредсказуемо, наперекор всему. Во многих отношениях для меня важнейший герой - Зосима, но я думаю и о Соне из "Преступления и наказания".

    Странная вещь происходит у меня с романом "Идиот". Там, по моему мнению, все герои тяжко травмированы, все до одного так глубоко ранены, что невозможно увидеть светлое начало. И поэтому "Идиот" для меня самый болезненный и мрачный роман. Сравните с "Бесами", где свет исходит из самых, казалось бы, неподходящих людей, но светлого там больше, чем в "Идиоте".

    Би-би-си: Что вы думаете о сегодняшних делах - русских и православных?

    Р.У.: Мы поддерживаем постоянные отношения с Русской Православной церковью. Но я чувствую, что внутри самой православной церкви ощущается напряжение. В ней есть люди, которые хотели бы воспользоваться всей полнотой возможностей, открывающихся в нынешнем более подвижном обществе, хотели бы переоткрыть заново то, что было заложено традицией. А с другой стороны, есть настороженность и подозрительность ко всему зарубежному, даже если это зарубежная православная церковь. И эти две силы внутри православной церкви, мне кажется, в настоящий момент резко противостоят друг другу. Человеку со стороны очень трудно говорить об этом. Но нам, друзьям Русской православной церкви, бывает больно видеть растущие в ней противоречия и разногласия. Я надеюсь, что в русской церкви победят отвага и доверие, глубоко, в сущности, ей присущие, и позволят отнестись к чужому или иностранному без страха и предубеждения.

    Би-би-си: Чувствуете ли вы, что хотели бы что-то привнести из православия в жизнь англиканской церкви как архиепископ?

    Р.У.: Есть две вещи, которые я очень хотел бы ввести в англиканскую философскую традицию. И первая из них - различение индивида и личности, которое глубоко разработано в русском персонализме, в частности, в трудах Владимира Лосского. Мы чаще говорим об индивидах, и не очень-то задумываемся в каких отношениях индивид находится с личностью. Индивид - часть рода, биологический или социальный атом. Личностью он может стать в ходе свободного волеизъявления, в познании себя, в развитии, в познании Бога.

    Когда я преподаю, или когда проповедую, мне приходится довольно часто разъяснять это простое обстоятельство: сам по себе индивидуум - еще не личность. И люди говорят: "О! Почему же я никогда прежде не думал об этом? Почему никто не сказал мне этого раньше?" Вот это тот элемент, который мне хотелось бы внедрить в англиканское сознание. А другой - но он, конечно, связан с первым - касается самого смысла существования церкви. Церковь отнюдь не просто место большого скопления народа; церковь ведь и есть то место, где развиваются связи и взаимоотношения, позволяющие индивиду дорасти до личности.

    Эту тему развивали не одни только православные авторы, хотя именно они ее начали на пороге XX века, но ее продолжили французские философы, да и американские тоже. Я вот знаком с греческим митрополитом Иоанном Зизиуласом. Он тоже разрабатывал эту тему. Но я думаю, митрополит Иоанн согласился бы с тем, что его собственное богословие стоит на плечах предшественников, таких как Лосский или Флоренский. Так что вот эти вещи мне хотелось бы внедрить здесь через преподавание и проповедь. Да ведь и то, что я написал о Достоевском - это все о том же.

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    [Oct 26, 2018] I expect further fallout once the confiscation of canonical Church property and buildings takes place in Ukraine

    Oct 26, 2018 | www.unz.com

    Epigon says: October 19, 2018 at 3:48 pm GMT

    One cannot fully grasp the significance of Autocephaly, Autonomy, Patriarchate status without being VERY WELL versed in Orthodox traditions, canon law and historical examples.

    It was a very contested and important issue in Medieval period, with both Bulgarians and Serbs rising to it, then falling down after being crushed by Byzantines and/or Ottomans.

    The Ottomans were very much sponsors of Greek Orthodoxy, imposing Greek clergy to local Orthodox populations of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem, the primary reason why Orthodoxy is practically extinct there today.

    The Ottomans also abolished Bulgarian and Serb national churches and subjugated them to Greeks in Constantinople.

    The path and procedure of elevating a national church and an episcope to the above mentioned ranks is strictly and precisely defined. Ecumenical Patriarch trampled over it.

    That is why other Autocephalus Churches will be opposed to it – hence, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church granted Autocephaly will not be in communion with the rest of them.

    I expect further fallout once the confiscation of canonical Church property and buildings takes place in Ukraine.

    EugeneGur, October 19, 2018 at 4:06 pm GMT

    It would be an exceedingly sad and ignominious end to see the lingering remnant of a glorious empire do give in to blackmail and foreign pressure.

    This is unfortunately true. This is also the prime motivation of the Head of the so-called Ukrainian Church of Kiev Patriarchy Filaret. That guy tried to become the Russian Patriarch but was defeated in the elections. Then he established that schismatic Ukrainian Church and was excommunicated by the Russian Orthodox Church, to which he belonged. He is also known for his support for the killings in Donbass, which isn't exactly christian of him.

    The problem, for him, is that the Ukrainian Church of Moscow Patriarchy has in its possession a number of churches and monasteries that Filaret covets. Specifically, he and his followers have the eyes on Kiev-Pecherskaya Lavra, or Church on caves. Lavra is a title given to monasteries for particular cultural achievements and religious significance. It dates from 11th century AD from the pre-Mongol times. It contains graves of the Russian princes, of Nestor (who created one of the earliest . historical chronicles), and of Petr Stolypin, the Russian Prime Minister in 1906-11.

    This is our common legacy, which doesn't in any way belong to those neo-Nazis scumbags. I am an atheist and I don't particularly care for specifically religious matters. But I do care about the cultural side of things, those nationalistic monkeys know nothing about.

    I hate to see Andreevskaya Church built by Rastrelli, the same architect that built the Winter Palace in St.Petersburg, given to that abomination of Filaret. I'd hate to see that happen to Lavra, as would the whole of Russia.

    In short, this is a lot more than a religious dispute – this is an attempt at destruction of our cultural roots. In essence, this is a continuation of what the German Nazis tried to do 70 years ago by other means.

    European-American , says: October 19, 2018 at 8:59 am GMT

    I would have appreciated a short explanation of what this is about, if anything.

    The post seems very long and starts with a 12th-century quotation which, though no doubt pertinent and interesting to people who know about this, is way above my head. What follows seems technical with a lot of obscure words.

    But the title was appealing Perhaps an introductory paragraph for people who only have the vaguest notion of the politics within the Orthodox Church(es?) would have been sufficient to let us follow rather than be utterly baffled.

    Just a suggestion I can probably survive without understanding this.

    Epigon , says: October 19, 2018 at 4:10 pm GMT
    @utu

    Anyway, he does not believe a word he wrote because he does not care about the church this way or another but he cares about the political aspect and how important it is for Russia or how important it is for Russia to make an issue out of it. I think it might be a sign he is moving up in the world. Good for him.

    My thoughts exactly.

    [Oct 26, 2018] UOC-MP (Filaret included) sided with Ukrainian state in the Civil war

    So Poroshenko wanted and got a church that is a lapdog of Ukrainian government. Nothing new here. Baltic states did the dame.
    Oct 26, 2018 | www.unz.com

    Mikhail says: Website October 20, 2018 at 10:02 pm GMT 700 Words @AP

    The Russian Orthodox Church seems to mirror the Russian State whom it serves, in not being openly at war with Ukraine but nevertheless working against it when doing so serves the interests of the Russian state. So its priests openly blessing NAF fighters as they go to kill Ukrainians have been sanctioned, OTOH Girkin was being helped by the Russian Orthodox Church and NAF fighters have been quietly given refuge in Moscow's churches (a Brazilian volunteer was found hiding in one on Kiev).

    Compared ot Filaret's church, the UOC-MP has been more neutral about the war in Donbass. The aforementioned priests bless soldiers in their (priests) area who seek such. Not on par with the comments UOC-MP (Filaret included) have made on the civil war. it can be said that Filaret and his church pray for those who kill rebel supporters.

    The aforementioned Brazilian sough refuge and was understandably given such, seeing the conditions people like him have faced when taken by the Kiev regime side.

    And the Russian patriarch is of course on excellent terms with Putin whom he serves and whom he awards. So as long as the Ukrainian Orthodox are under Moscow they are forced to pray to a Patriarch who serves and celebrates Putin. They would rather not be in such a situation. Moving them under Constantinople fixes this problem and returns them to Orthodoxy.

    Constantinople has made the problem worse by giving the Kiev regime and Filaret a premise (misguided that it is notwithstanding) to seize UOC-MP property. The Porky-Filaret tandem is one that many UOC aren't supportive of.

    He also added that the priests of the Sviatohirsk Lavra blessed his gang formation in 2014 at the beginning of hostilities in Donbas.

    According to him, he then hoped that the entire hierarchy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) would overtly support them, but this did not happen.

    Currently, Girkin has no doubt that a significant part of the UOC-MP will "run" to the autocephalous Ukrainian Church, and he even knows such bishops who are ready to do so.

    You earlier noted UOC-MP support/sympathy for the rebels. Nothing is stopping Onufry and others from the UOC-MP to break with the ROC-MP -- along the lines of Filaret. The UOC-MP faces much pressure from the Kiev regime and some nationalist elements.

    Veneration of Andrey Bogolubsky who sacked Kiev, slaughtered many of its inhabitants and generally treated Kiev as the crusaders treated Constantinople is another ridiculous thing that Ukrainian Orthodox are forced to put up with if they belong to Moscow's Church.

    What kind of veneration ? That attack was part of a civil war, with looting having been an unfortunate aspect. Sherman wasn't more civil towards Atlanta. neither was the Mongol conquest of Kiev and other parts of Rus.

    Their Church is riddled with KGB and FSB men at the highest levels (not that Filaret was different, of course). KGB/FSB are not hardcore Russian nationalists. But they, as does the ROC, serve the Russian state.

    Along the lines of saying that the Vatican has been riddled with Nazi sympathizers. No denying that the ROC-MP was very much compromised during the Soviet period. It's a very different and improved era.

    In comparison, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church seems more riddled with Bandera supporters.

    Well, if it wants to present itself as and truly be the All Rus Church and bearer of the Rus legacy that united all Eastern Slavs, that was forced to move to Vladimir and Moscow by the Polish annexation of Rus heartland, it would make sense to return to Kiev after Kiev was "liberated." But it didn't happen, this all Rus stuff was cheap propaganda, it remained Russia's Church (despite having gotten a bunch of Ukrainians as leaders in the 18th century).

    The directly above excerpted is cheap propaganda. Capitals of nations, sports teams, corporate businesses and other entities have been known to change their locale or main locale for a variety of reasons. Besides, occurrences like WW II and the present Kiev regime situation indicate that Russia is a more secure place.

    BTW, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church shifted its main office from Lviv to Kiev.

    Thim , October 21, 2018 at 4:28 pm GMT

    Moscow cannot do much, it is still too weak. The enemy seeks a war now. Surely they will take the churches by force, hoping for war now. Now is the time for wisdom.

    Mikhail says: Website

    October 22, 2018 at 3:10 pm GMT

    Gvosdev article follow-up

    Re: https://nationalinterest.org/feature/heres-whats-really-going-orthodox-church-ukraine-and-russia-33922

    Excerpt –

    I am starting to get annoyed at the number of commentators who have no background in Orthodox ecclesiology and scant knowledge of Byzantine, Ukrainian and Russian history or about the contemporary realities of religious life throughout the former Soviet Union. These pundits nevertheless feel confident to deliver sweeping pronouncements about the Ukrainian Orthodox Church situation and its ramifications for the Moscow Patriarchate and the Orthodox Church as a whole.

    A point that concerns some of what's said and not said in the above linked article. For example, it's not noted that Filaret Denisenko's drive for a completely separate Ukrainian Orthodox Church from the Moscow Patriarchate, came only after he didn't get a promotion within the Moscow Patriarchate. Up to that point, he was a firm believer in the Moscow Patriarchate having ties with the Orthodox Church in Ukraine, and Orthodox Churches from some other parts of the former USSR.

    Excerpt –

    Finally, there are those Ukrainian Orthodox who argue that Russian Orthodoxy is utterly separate and unrelated to Ukrainian Orthodoxy and point to events such as Andrey Bogolyubsky sack of Kiev in 1169 as early evidence of Russian-Ukrainian antagonism. Even those who might concede that Russian Orthodoxy developed as a result of the conversion of Kiev would point out that the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, certainly since the fifteenth century was evolving separately from the Russian Orthodox Church and that it was unjustly merged with the Russian Church, first during the Russian Empire, then the Soviet Union.

    Bogolyubsky's grandfather was a grand prince of Kiev. On two different occasions, his father had that very same title, during a period when Kiev went thru numerous grand princes. In short, Bogolyubsky had a claim to the Kiev throne. The aforementioned sack of Kiev by Bogolyubsky's forces wasn't so much of a foreign attack – but more along the lines of Sherman's razing of Atlanta. Bogolyubsky had the desire to simultaneously build and expand Rus, thereby explaining his presence in Suzdal, while feeling akin to Kiev.

    The initial Polish occupation of much of modern day Ukrainian territory, played a role in whatever differing characteristics developed, with Orthodox Christian identity within what had comprised Rus. Upon Russia's victory over Poland and the former's gathering of Rus territory (which Poland occupied), there was no wide scale opposition by the ancestors of modern day Ukrainians, with being under the same Orthodox Church as Russia.

    For President Vladimir Putin, major defections from the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate would represent one of the clearest rejections of his view that Ukrainian and Russians form a single people and civilization; it would, in essence, be Ukrainians voting with their feet to reject that proposition. On the other hand, if President Poroshenko's government begins to use administrative pressures to compel priests and parishes to break their ecclesiastical ties to Moscow, this could prove politically destabilizing both in Ukraine and complicate its relations with the West.

    For the Ukrainian nationalist advocacy being pursued by Poroshenko, the presence of a Ukrainian Orthodox Church that's loosely affiliated with the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, is a rejection of the agenda to separate Ukraine from Russia as much as possible.

    Regarding that view is this piece concerning attitudes in Ukraine about Russia:

    https://insomniacresurrected.com/2018/10/21/ukrainian-opinion-of-russia-improves-and-it-is-bad-apparently/

    Excerpt –

    Stepan Khmara is ashamed almost 50% of his countrymen, despite the war, still positively have positive attitude towards Russia. He thinks that half of the country are good 'Little Russians' and 'Moskovske bydlo'. He invokes history from the Holodomor and Soviet takeover of Western Ukraine. He bemoans the fact that even in Western Ukraine, 31% of the respondents also had positive attitude towards Russia.

    A recent RFE/RL article says that most of Ukraine's Orthodox Christian faithful follow the Orthodox Church with loose ties to the Moscow Patriarchate.

    https://www.rferl.org/a/long-russia-s-patriarch-kirill-blames-istanbul-orthodox-church-for-schism-/29553467.html

    Whatever the case is, a noticeable number in that area follow that church. Can imagine the outcry in some circles if an effort was made to eliminate the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church on the basis of having an imperial legacy with Poland that involved the suppression of the Orthodox Church.

    Mikhail , says: Website October 22, 2018 at 9:19 pm GMT

    Splendidly excellent reply to the idiotic Tom Rogan Washington Examiner article:

    http://theduran.com/how-other-jurisdictions-view-constantinoples-actions-in-ukraine/

    [Oct 22, 2018] The Empire splits the Orthodox world possible consequences by The Saker

    Notable quotes:
    "... First, all Churches are equal, there is no Pope, no "historical see" granting any primacy just as all the Apostles of Christ and all Orthodox bishops are also equals; ..."
    "... Second, crucial decisions, decisions which affect the entire Church, are only taken by a Council of the entire Church, not unilaterally by any one man or any one Church. ..."
    "... These are really the basics of what could be called "traditional Christian ecclesiology 101" and the blatant violation of this key ecclesiological dogma by the Papacy in 1054 was as much a cause for the historical schism between East and West (really, between Rome and the rest of Christian world) as was the innovation of the filioque itself. ..."
    "... His Most Divine All-Holiness the Archbishop of Constantinople, New Rome, and Ecumenical Patriarch ..."
    "... Some point out that the Patriarch of Constantinople is a Turkish civil servant. While technically true, this does not suggest that Erdogan is behind this move either: right now Erdogan badly needs Russia on so many levels that he gains nothing and risks losing a lot by alienating Moscow. ..."
    "... No, the real initiator of this entire operation is the AngloZionist Empire and, of course, the Papacy (which has always tried to create an " Orthodoxerein Ukraine" from the "The Eastern Crusade" and "Northern Crusades" of Popes Innocent III and Gregory IX to the Nazi Ukraine of Bandera – see here for details). ..."
    "... On a more cynical level, I would note that the Patriarch of Constantinople has now opened a real Pandora's box which now every separatist movement in an Orthodox country will be able to use to demand its own "autocephaly" which will threaten the unity of most Orthodox Churches out there. ..."
    "... What the AngloZionist Empire has done is to force each Orthodox Christian and each Orthodox Church to chose between siding with Moscow or Constantinople. This choice will have obvious spiritual consequences, which the Empire couldn't give a damn about, but it will also profound political and social consequences which, I believe, the Empire entirely missed ..."
    "... Make no mistake, what the Empire did in the Ukraine constitutes yet another profoundly evil and tragic blow against the long-suffering people of the Ukraine. In its ugliness and tragic consequences, it is quite comparable to the occupation of these lands by the Papacy via its Polish and Lithuanian agents. But God has the ability to turn even the worst horror into something which, in the end, will strengthen His Church. ..."
    "... Another reason to hate the Catholic Church:The Catholic Church= Mike Pompeo mentored by Papal Advisor Harvard Law Professor Mary Ann Glendon ..."
    Oct 21, 2018 | www.unz.com

    In previous articles about this topic I have tried to set the context and explain why most Orthodox Churches are still used as pawns in purely political machinations and how the most commentators who discuss these issues today are using words and concepts in a totally twisted, secular and non-Christian way (which is about as absurd as discussing medicine while using a vague, misunderstood and generally non-medical terminology). I have also written articles trying to explain how the concept of "Church" is completely misunderstood nowadays and how many Orthodox Churches today have lost their original patristic mindset . Finally, I have tried to show the ancient spiritual roots of modern russophobia and how the AngloZionist Empire might try to save the Ukronazi regime in Kiev by triggering a religious crisis in the Ukraine . It is my hope that these articles will provide a useful context to evaluate and discuss the current crisis between the Patriarchate of Constantinople and the Moscow Patriarchate.

    My intention today is to look at the unfolding crisis from a more "modern" point of view and try to evaluate only what the political and social consequences of the latest developments might be in the short and mid term. I will begin by a short summary.

    The current context: a summary

    The Patriarchate of Constantinople has taken the official decision to:

    Declare that the Patriarch of Constantinople has the right to unilaterally grant autocephaly (full independence) to any other Church with no consultations with any the other Orthodox Churches. Cancel the decision by the Patriarch of Constantinople Dionysios IV in 1686 transferring the Kiev Metropolia (religious jurisdiction overseen by a Metropolite) to the Moscow Patriarchate (a decision which no Patriarch of Constantinople contested for three centuries!) Lift the anathema pronounced against the "Patriarch" Filaret Denisenko by the Moscow Patriarchate (in spite of the fact that the only authority which can lift an anathema is the one which pronounced it in the first place) Recognize as legitimate the so-called "Ukrainian Orthodox Church – Kiev Patriarchate" which it previously had declared as illegitimate and schismatic. Grant actual grand full autocephaly to a future (and yet to be defined) "united Ukrainian Orthodox Church"

    Most people naturally focus on this last element, but this might be a mistake, because while illegally granting autocephaly to a mix of nationalist pseudo-Churches is most definitely a bad decision, to act like some kind of "Orthodox Pope" and claim rights which only belong to the entire Church is truly a historical mistake. Not only that, but this mistake now forces every Orthodox Christian to either accept this as a fait accompli and submit to the megalomania of the wannabe Ortho-Pope of the Phanar, or to reject such unilateral and totally illegal action or to enter into open opposition. And this is not the first time such a situation has happened in the history of the Church. I will use an historical parallel to make this point.

    The historical context:

    The Church of Rome and the rest of the Christian world were already on a collision course for several centuries before the famous date of 1054 when Rome broke away from the Christian world. Whereas for centuries Rome had been the most steadfast bastion of resistance against innovations and heresies, the influence of the Franks in the Church of Rome eventually resulted (after numerous zig-zags on this topic) in a truly disastrous decision to add a single world ( filioque - "and the son" in Latin) to the Symbol of Faith (the Credo in Latin). What made that decision even worse was the fact that the Pope of Rome also declared that he had the right to impose that addition upon all the other Christian Churches, with no conciliar discussion or approval. It is often said that the issue of the filioque is "obscure" and largely irrelevant, but that is just a reflection of the theological illiteracy of those making such statements as, in reality, the addition of the filioque completely overthrows the most crucial and important Trinitarian and Christological dogmas of Christianity. But what *is* true is that the attempt to unilaterally impose this heresy on the rest of the Christian world was at least as offensive and, really, as sacrilegious as the filioque itself because it undermined the very nature of the Church. Indeed, the Symbol of Faith defines the Church as "catholic" (Εἰς μίαν, Ἁγίαν, Καθολικὴν καὶ Ἀποστολικὴν Ἐκκλησίαν") meaning not only "universal" but also "whole" or "all-inclusive". In ecclesiological terms this "universality" is manifested in two crucial ways:

    First, all Churches are equal, there is no Pope, no "historical see" granting any primacy just as all the Apostles of Christ and all Orthodox bishops are also equals; the Head of the Church is Christ Himself, and the Church is His Theadric Body filled with the Holy Spirit. Oh I know, to say that the Holy Spirit fills the Church is considered absolutely ridiculous in our 21 st century post-Christian world, but check out these words from the Book of Acts: " For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us " (Acts 15:28) which clearly show that the members of the Apostolic Council in Jerusalem clearly believed and proclaimed that their decisions were guided by the Holy Spirit. Anyone still believing that will immediately see why the Church needs no "vicar of Christ" or any "earthly representative" to act in Christ's name during His absence. In fact, Christ Himself clearly told us " lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen " (Matt 28:20). If a Church needs a "vicar" – then Christ and the Holy Spirit are clearly not present in that Church. QED.

    Second, crucial decisions, decisions which affect the entire Church, are only taken by a Council of the entire Church, not unilaterally by any one man or any one Church.

    These are really the basics of what could be called "traditional Christian ecclesiology 101" and the blatant violation of this key ecclesiological dogma by the Papacy in 1054 was as much a cause for the historical schism between East and West (really, between Rome and the rest of Christian world) as was the innovation of the filioque itself.

    I hasten to add that while the Popes were the first ones to claim for themselves an authority only given to the full Church, they were not the only ones (by the way, this is a very good working definition of the term "Papacy": the attribution to one man of all the characteristics belonging solely to the entire Church). In the early 20 th century the Orthodox Churches of Constantinople, Albania, Alexandria, Antioch, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Poland, and Romania got together and, under the direct influence of powerful Masonic lodges, decided to adopt the Gregorian Papal Calendar (named after the 16 th century Pope Gregory XIII). The year was 1923, when the entire Russian Orthodox Church was being literally crucified on the modern Golgotha of the Bolshevik regime, but that did not prevent these Churches from calling their meeting "pan Orthodox". Neither did the fact that the Russian, Serbian, Georgian, Jerusalem Church and the Holy Mountain (aka " Mount Athos ") rejected this innovation stop them. As for the Papal Calendar itself, the innovators "piously" re-branded it as "improved Julian" and other such euphemism to conceal the real intention behind this.

    Finally, even the fact that this decision also triggered a wave of divisions inside their own Churches was not cause for them to reconsider or, even less so, to repent. Professor C. Troitsky was absolutely correct when he wrote that " there is no doubt that future historians of the Orthodox Church will be forced to admit that the Congress of 1923 was the saddest event of Church life in the 20th century " (for more on this tragedy see here , here and here ). Here again, one man, Ecumenical Patriarch Meletius IV (Metaxakis) tried to "play Pope" and his actions resulted in a massive upheaval which ripped through the entire Orthodox world.

    More recently, the Patriarch of Constantinople tried, once again, to convene what he would want to be an Orthodox "Ecumenical Council" under his personal authority when in 2016 (yet another) "pan Orthodox" council was convened on the island of Crete which was attended by the Churches of Alexandria , Jerusalem , Serbia , Romania , Cyprus , Greece, Poland , Albania and of the Czech Lands and Slovakia. The Churches of Russia, Bulgaria, Georgia and the USA (OCA) refused to attend. Most observers agreed that the Moscow Patriarchate played a key role in undermining what was clearly to be a "robber" council which would have introduced major (and fully non-Orthodox) innovations. The Patriarch of Constantinople never forgave the Russians for torpedoing his planned "ecumenical" council.

    Some might have noticed that a majority of local Churches did attend both the 1923 and the 2016 wannabe "pan Orthodox" councils. Such an observation might be very important in a Latin or Protestant context, but in the Orthodox context is is absolutely meaningless for the following reasons:

    The theological context:

    In the history of the Church there have been many "robber" councils (meaning illegitimate, false, councils) which were attended by a majority of bishops of the time, and even a majority of the Churches; in this article I mentioned the life of Saint Maximos the Confessor (which you can read in full here ) as a perfect example of how one single person (not even a priest!) can defend true Christianity against what could appear at the time as the overwhelming number of bishops representing the entire Church. But, as always, these false bishops were eventually denounced and the Truth of Orthodoxy prevailed.

    Likewise, at the False Union of Florence, when all the Greek delegates signed the union with the Latin heretics, and only one bishop refused to to do (Saint Mark of Ephesus), the Latin Pope declared in despair " and so we have accomplished nothing! ". He was absolutely correct – that union was rejected by the "Body" of the Church and the names of those apostates who signed it will remain in infamy forever. I could multiply the examples, but what is crucial here is to understand that majorities, large numbers or, even more so, the support of secular authorities are absolutely meaningless in Christian theology and in the history of the Church and that, with time, all the lapsed bishops who attended robber councils are always eventually denounced and the Orthodox truth always proclaimed once again. It is especially important to keep this in mind during times of persecution or of brutal interference by secular authorities because even when they *appear* to have won, their victory is always short-lived.

    I would add that the Russian Orthodox Church is not just "one of the many" local Orthodox Churches. Not only is the Russian Orthodox Church by far the biggest Orthodox Church out there, but Moscow used to be the so-called "Third Rome", something which gives the Moscow Patriarchate a lot of prestige and, therefore, influence. In secular terms of prestige and "street cred" the fact that the Russians did not participate in the 1923 and 2016 congresses is much bigger a blow to its organizers than if, say, the Romanians had boycotted it. This might not be important to God or for truly pious Christians, but I assure you that this is absolutely crucial for the wannabe "Eastern Pope" of the Phanar

    Who is really behind this latest attack on the Church?

    So let's begin by stating the obvious: for all his lofty titles (" His Most Divine All-Holiness the Archbishop of Constantinople, New Rome, and Ecumenical Patriarch " no less!), the Patriarch of Constantinople (well, of the Phanar, really), is nothing but a puppet in the hands of the AngloZionist Empire. An ambitious and vain puppet for sure, but a puppet nonetheless. To imagine that the Uber-loser Poroshenko would convince him to pick a major fight with the Moscow Patriarchate is absolutely laughable and totally ridiculous. Some point out that the Patriarch of Constantinople is a Turkish civil servant. While technically true, this does not suggest that Erdogan is behind this move either: right now Erdogan badly needs Russia on so many levels that he gains nothing and risks losing a lot by alienating Moscow.

    No, the real initiator of this entire operation is the AngloZionist Empire and, of course, the Papacy (which has always tried to create an " Orthodoxerein Ukraine" from the "The Eastern Crusade" and "Northern Crusades" of Popes Innocent III and Gregory IX to the Nazi Ukraine of Bandera – see here for details).

    Why would the Empire push for such a move? Here we can find a mix of petty and larger geostrategic reasons. First, the petty ones: they range from the usual impotent knee-jerk reflex to do something, anything, to hurt Russia to pleasing of the Ukronazi emigrés in the USA and Canada. The geostrategic ones range from trying to save the highly unpopular Ukronazi regime in Kiev to breaking up the Orthodox world thereby weakening Russian soft-power and influence. This type of "logic" shows a fundamental misunderstanding of the Orthodox world today. Here is why:

    The typical level of religious education of Orthodox Christians is probably well represented by the famous Bell Curve: some are truly completely ignorant, most know a little, and a few know a lot. As long as things were reasonably peaceful, all these Orthodox Christians could go about their daily lives and not worry too much about the big picture. This is also true of many Orthodox Churches and bishops. Most folks like beautiful rites (singing, golden cupolas, beautiful architecture and historical places) mixed in with a little good old superstition (place a candle before a business meeting or playing the lottery) – such is human nature and, alas, most Orthodox Christians are no different, even if their calling is to be "not of this world". But now this apparently peaceful picture has been severely disrupted by the actions of the Patriarch of Constantinople whose actions are in such blatant and severe violation of all the basic canons and traditions of the Church that they literally force each Orthodox Christian, especially bishops, to break their silence and take a position: am I with Moscow or with Constantinople?

    Oh sure, initially many (most?) Orthodox Christians, including many bishops, will either try to look away or limit themselves to vapid expressions of "regret" mixed in with calls for "unity". A good example of that kind of wishy washy lukewarm language can already be found here . But this kind of Pilate-like washing of hands ("ain't my business" in modern parlance) is unsustainable, and here is why: in Orthodox ecclesiology you cannot build "broken Eucharistic triangles". If A is not in communion with B, then C cannot be in communion with A and B at the same time. It's really an "either or" binary choice. At least in theory (in reality, such "broken triangles" have existed, most recently between the former ROCA/ROCOR, the Serbian Church and the Moscow Patriarchate, but they are unsustainable, as events of the 2000-2007 years confirmed for the ROCA/ROCOR). Still, no doubt that some (many?) will try to remain in communion with both the Moscow Patriarchate and the Constantinople Patriarchate, but this will become harder and harder with every passing month. In some specific cases, such a decision will be truly dramatic, I think of the monasteries on the Holy Mountain in particular.

    On a more cynical level, I would note that the Patriarch of Constantinople has now opened a real Pandora's box which now every separatist movement in an Orthodox country will be able to use to demand its own "autocephaly" which will threaten the unity of most Orthodox Churches out there. If all it takes to become "autocephalous" is to trigger some kind of nationalist uprising, then just imagine how many "Churches" will demand the same autocephaly as the Ukronazis are today! The fact that ethno-phyetism is a condemned heresy will clearly stop none of them. After all, if it is good enough for the "Ecumenical" Patriarch, it sure is good enough for any and all pseudo-Orthodox nationalists!

    What the AngloZionist Empire has done is to force each Orthodox Christian and each Orthodox Church to chose between siding with Moscow or Constantinople. This choice will have obvious spiritual consequences, which the Empire couldn't give a damn about, but it will also profound political and social consequences which, I believe, the Empire entirely missed .

    The Moscow Patriarchate vs the Patriarchate of Constantinople – a sociological and political analysis

    Let me be clear here that I am not going to compare and contrast the Moscow Patriarchate (MP) and the Patriarchate of Constantinople (PC) from a spiritual, theological or even ecclesiological point of view here. Instead, I will compare and contrast them from a purely sociological and political point of view. The differences here are truly profound.

    Moscow Patriarchate Patriarchate of Constantinople
    Actual size Very big Small
    Financial means Very big Small
    Dependence on the support of the Empire and its various entities Limited Total
    Relations with the Vatican Limited, mostly due to very strongly
    anti-Papist sentiments in the people
    Mutual support
    and de-facto alliance
    Majority member's outlook Conservative Modernist
    Majority member's level of support Strong Lukewarm
    Majority member's concern with Church rules/cannons/traditions Medium and selective Low
    Internal dissent Practically eliminated (ROCA) Strong (Holy Mountain, Old Calendarists)

    From the above table you can immediately see that the sole comparative 'advantage' of the PC is that is has the full support of the AngloZionist Empire and the Vatican. On all the other measures of power, the MP vastly "out-guns" the PC.

    Now, inside the Ukronazi occupied Ukraine, that support of the Empire and the Vatican (via their Uniats) does indeed give a huge advantage to the PC and its Ukronazi pseudo-Orthodox "Churches". And while Poroshenko has promised that no violence will be used against the MP parishes in the Ukraine, we all remember that he was the one who promised to stop the war against the Donbass, so why even pay attention to what he has to say.

    US diplomats and analysts might be ignorant enough to believe Poroshenko's promises, but if that is the case then they are failing to realize that Poroshensko has very little control over the hardcore Nazi mobs like the one we saw last Sunday in Kiev . The reality is very different: Poroshenko's relationship to the hardcore Nazis in the Ukraine is roughly similar to the one the House of Saud has with the various al-Qaeda affiliates in Saudi Arabia: they try to both appease and control them, but they end up failing every time. The political agenda in the Ukraine is set by bona fide Nazis, just as it is set in the KSA by the various al-Qaeda types. Poroshenko and MBS are just impotent dwarfs trying to ride on the shoulders of much more powerful devils.

    Sadly, and as always, the ones most at risk right now are the simple faithful who will resist any attempts by the Ukronazi death-squads to seize their churches and expel their priests. I don't expect a civil war to ensue, not in the usual sense of the world, but I do expect a lot of atrocities similar to what took place during the 2014 Odessa massacre when the Ukronazis burned people alive (and shot those trying to escape). Once these massacres begin, it will be very, very hard for the Empire to whitewash them or blame it all on "Russian interference". But most crucially, as the (admittedly controversial) Christian writer Tertullian noticed as far back as the 2 nd century " the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church ". You can be sure that the massacre of innocent Christians in the Ukraine will result in a strengthening of the Orthodox awareness, not only inside the Ukraine, but also in the rest of the world, especially among those who are currently "on the fence" so to speak, between the kind of conservative Orthodoxy proclaimed by the MP and the kind of lukewarm wishy washy "decaf" pseudo-Orthodoxy embodied by the Patriarchate of Constantinople. After all, it is one thing to change the Church Calendar or give hugs and kisses to Popes and quite another to bless Nazi death-squads to persecute Orthodox Christians.

    To summarize I would say that by his actions, the Patriarch of Constantinople is now forcing the entire Orthodox world to make a choice between two very different kind of "Orthodoxies". As for the Empire, it is committing a major mistake by creating a situation which will further polarize strongly, an already volatile political situation in the Ukraine.

    There is, at least potentially, one more possible consequence from these developments which is almost never discussed: its impact inside the Moscow Patriarchate.

    Possible impact of these developments inside the Moscow Patriarchate

    Without going into details, I will just say that the Moscow Patriarchate is a very diverse entity in which rather different "currents" coexist. In Russian politics I often speak of Atlantic Integrationists and Eurasian Sovereignists. There is something vaguely similar inside the MP, but I would use different terms. One camp is what I would call the "pro-Western Ecumenists" and the other camp the "anti-Western Conservatives". Ever since Putin came to power the pro-Western Ecumenists have been losing their influence, mostly due to the fact that the majority of the regular rank and file members of the MP are firmly behind the anti-Western Conservative movement (bishops, priests, theologians).

    The rabid hatred and fear of everything Russian by the West combined with the total support for anything anti-Russian (including Takfiris and Nazis) has had it's impact here too, and very few people in Russia want the civilizational model of Conchita Wurst, John McCain or Pope Francis to influence the future of Russia. The word "ecumenism" has, like the word "democracy", become a four letter word in Russia with a meaning roughly similar to "sellout" or "prostitution". What is interesting is that many bishops of the Moscow Patriarchate who, in the past, were torn between the conservative pressure from their own flock and their own "ecumenical" and "democratic" inclinations (best embodied by the Patriarch of Constantinople) have now made a choice for the conservative model (beginning by Patriarch Kirill himself who, in the past, used to be quite favorable to the so-called "ecumenical dialog of love" with the Latins).

    Now that the MP and the PC have broken the ties which previously united them, they are both free to pursue their natural inclinations, so to speak. The PC can become some kind of "Eastern Rite Papacy" and bask in an unhindered love fest with the Empire and the Vatican while the MP will now have almost no incentive whatsoever to pay attention to future offers of rapprochement by the Empire or the Vatican (these two always work hand in hand ). For Russia, this is a very good development.

    Make no mistake, what the Empire did in the Ukraine constitutes yet another profoundly evil and tragic blow against the long-suffering people of the Ukraine. In its ugliness and tragic consequences, it is quite comparable to the occupation of these lands by the Papacy via its Polish and Lithuanian agents. But God has the ability to turn even the worst horror into something which, in the end, will strengthen His Church.

    Russia in general, and the Moscow Patriarchate specifically, are very much in a transition phase on many levels and we cannot overestimate the impact which the West's hostility on all fronts, including spiritual ones, will have on the future consciousness of the Russian and Orthodox people. The 1990s were years of total confusion and ignorance, not only for Russia by the way, but the first decade of the new millennium has turned out to be a most painful, but also most needed, eye-opener for those who had naively trusted the notion that the West's enemy was only Communism, not Russia as a civilizational model.

    In their infinite ignorance and stupidity, the leaders of the Empire have always acted only in the immediate short term and they never bothered to think about the mid to long term effects of their actions. This is as true for Russia as it is for Iraq or the Balkans. When things eventually, and inevitably, go very wrong, they will be sincerely baffled and wonder how and why it all went wrong. In the end, as always, they will blame the "other guy".

    There is no doubt in my mind that the latest maneuver of the AngloZionist Empire in the Ukraine will yield some kind of feel-good and short term "victory" ("peremoga" in Ukrainian) which will be followed by a humiliating defeat ("zrada" in Ukrainian) which will have profound consequences for many decades to come and which will deeply reshape the current Orthodox world. In theory, these kinds of operations are supposed to implement the ancient principle of "divide and rule", but in the modern world what they really do is to further unite the Russian people against the Empire and, God willing, will unite the Orthodox people against pseudo-Orthodox bishops.

    Conclusion:

    In this analysis I have had to describe a lot of, shall we say, "less than inspiring" realities about the Orthodox Church and I don't want to give the impression that the Church of Christ is as clueless and impotent as all those denominations, which, over the centuries have fallen away from the Church. Yes, our times are difficult and tragic, but the Church has not lost her "salt". So what I want to do in lieu of a personal conclusion is to quote one of the most enlightened and distinguished theologians of our time, Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos , who in his book "<A title="https://www.amazon.com/Mind-Orthodox-Church-Hierotheos/dp/9607070399/" onclick="trackOutboundLink('https://www.amazon.com/Mind-Orthodox-Church-Hierotheos/dp/9607070399/?tag=unco037-20');" href="https://www.amazon.com/Mind-Orthodox-Church-Hierotheos/dp/9607070399/?tag=unco037-20" '="">The Mind of the Orthodox Church" (which I consider one of the best books available in English about the Orthodox Church and a "must read" for anybody interested in Orthodox ecclesiology) wrote the following words:

    Saint Maximos the Confessor says that, while Christians are divided into categories according to age and race, nationalities, languages, places and ways of life, studies and characteristics, and are "distinct from one another and vastly different, all being born into the Church and reborn and recreated through it in the Spirit" nevertheless "it bestows equally on all the gift of one divine form and designation, to be Christ's and to bear His Name. And Saint Basil the Great, referring to the unity of the Church says characteristically: "The Church of Christ is one, even tough He is called upon from different places". These passages, and especially the life of the Church, do away with every nationalistic tendency. It is not, of course, nations and homelands that are abolished, but nationalism, which is a heresy and a great danger to the Church of Christ.

    Metropolitan Hierotheos is absolutely correct. Nationalism, which itself is a pure product of West European secularism, is one of the most dangerous threats facing the Church today. During the 20 th century it has already cost the lives of millions of pious and faithful Christians (having said that, this in no way implies that the kind of suicidal multiculturalism advocated by the degenerate leaders of the AngloZionist Empire today is any better!). And this is hardly a "Ukrainian" problem (the Moscow Patriarchate is also deeply infected by the deadly virus of nationalism). Nationalism and ethno-phyletism are hardly worse than such heresies as Iconoclasm or Monophysitism/Monothelitism were in the past and those were eventually defeated. Like all heresies, nationalism will never prevail against the " Church of the living God " which is the " the pillar and ground of the truth " (1 Tim 3:15) and while many may lapse, others never will.

    In the meantime, the next couple of months will be absolutely crucial. Right now it appears to me that the majority of the Orthodox Churches will first try to remain neutral but will have to eventually side with the Moscow Patriarchate and against the actions of Patriarch Bartholomew. Ironically, the situation inside the USA will most likely be particularly chaotic as the various Orthodox jurisdictions in the USA have divided loyalties and are often split along conservative vs modernizing lines. The other place to keep a close eye on will be the monasteries on the Holy Mountain were I expect a major crisis and confrontation to erupt.

    With the crisis in the Ukraine the heresy of nationalism has reached a new level of infamy and there will most certainly be a very strong reaction to it. The Empire clearly has no idea what kind of dynamic it has now set in motion.


    Sai Baba Sufi , says: October 19, 2018 at 7:25 am GMT

    Same problem with Muslim Ummah. Are we Persian Muslims/Turkish Muslims/Malay Muslims/Arab Muslims/Kazakh Muslims or just Muslims as One entity?

    Accepting The "One" means dilution of the "Many" and accepting the "many" means dilution of the "one". Man can never escape dialectics or at least strike a right balance except by the grace of God.

    Sergey Krieger , says: October 19, 2018 at 10:58 am GMT
    Religion is opium for masses. Whom Sacker is kidding? Those попы care for nothing but power , influence and money. Church as a whole has nothing to do with highest power if that power is actually exist. They are mere humans who pull the wool in front of people's eyes. They are also anything but austere. Check Patriarch Kirill watches and cars. They do not need Empire to start bikering among themselves for said power and money.
    Johnny Rottenborough , says: Website October 19, 2018 at 11:07 am GMT
    Nationalism, which itself is a pure product of West European secularism, is one of the most dangerous threats facing the Church today

    On the other hand, Christianity, a product of effete idealism, is one of the most dangerous threats to the survival of the West. Christianity works hand-in-glove with our stinking governments, providing the moral and spiritual authority for the mass immigration and Islamization which are destroying Western nations. Christianity could have allied itself with the people but it chose, instead, to betray us. It is the enemy of the white race. To the Church, nationalism is a threat. To whites, nationalism is our saviour.

    Anonymous [346] Disclaimer , says: October 19, 2018 at 12:33 pm GMT
    Ultimately the cause of this split of the Orthodox Church is Satan. And of course Satan's loyal servants running the AngloZionist Empire. Catholic writer E. Michael Jones does a great job explaining the real forces at play in the modern world (in his books and talks- see video below).

    Btw, to all the pagan atheist commenters, take a bow. The oligarchs of the AngloZionist Empire applaud you. They need you useful idiots to further destroy and divide Christian civilization. You've swallowed their Darwinian atheistic bullshit hook, line & sinker. https://www.amazon.com/Jewish-Fables-Darwinism-Materialism-other/dp/1980698627/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1539952267&sr=8-7&keywords=E+Michael+jones

    Anonymous [346] Disclaimer , says: October 19, 2018 at 12:40 pm GMT
    More E. Michael Jones. Good stuff.
    War for Blair Mountain , says: October 19, 2018 at 12:51 pm GMT
    The Catholic Pope is obviously a filthy, stinking, homosexual pig-as are his Cardinals. I was born and raised Irish Catholic. Catholic Schools all the way. The Protestant Churches no better. Deep South Evangelical Christianity is a Cargo Cult that worships a Jewish State.
    Giuseppe , says: October 19, 2018 at 1:18 pm GMT

    As for the Papal Calendar itself, the innovators "piously" re-branded it as "improved Julian" and other such euphemism to conceal the real intention behind this.

    Russia finally changed to use of the Julian calendar to be in line with the European practice (alas, too late) just as Europe was changing from the Julian to the Gregorian calendar. If the ROC places such importance on the calendar, why won't it revert to following the calendar in use prior to Peter I's reforms of 1700, the year he forced the Julian calendar on Russia (with not even one full month's notice)?

    War for Blair Mountain , says: October 19, 2018 at 2:18 pm GMT
    Another reason to hate the Catholic Church:The Catholic Church= Mike Pompeo mentored by Papal Advisor Harvard Law Professor Mary Ann Glendon .

    Pompeo the Cockroach .as it .(Mike Pompeo is an it, as is that other well known BLATARIA .Hillary Clinton) .is known to the residents of Satan's filthy stinking reeking toilet bowl waaaaaaaaay down in putrid HELL!!!!!!!

    Don't mind the split infinitive they are really quite alright .only a girly boy grammar NAZI!!! would shriek about it ..

    nickels , says: October 19, 2018 at 4:27 pm GMT
    Guitar masses in Cathedral of Christ the Saviour or bust.

    On another note, while the historical claim to Ukraine by Moscow is not really at questions, the Ukrainians certainly had cause to turn to Germany in WWII, given that the alternative was the Reds. Their side of this tale is always painted as neo-facism, which their actions in 2014 certainly did not help, but I do have to wonder about their story in this tale, independent of their horrific and despicable Western backers.

    fitzhamilton , says: October 19, 2018 at 5:06 pm GMT
    @Johnny Rottenborough Yeah. It's amazing how the West has survived almost two millennia of Christian domination. How did those effete Christians manage to convert the heathen tribes, turn back the Muslims, then colonize and convert over half the world? How did modern science and technology arise and evolve to such heights in a Christian context? Christians are such pansies, it's odd that so many of them have so many children.. How do they manage to prosper and survive? Inexplicable.
    Johnny Rottenborough , says: Website October 19, 2018 at 5:35 pm GMT
    @fitzhamilton fitzhamilton -- Yesterday's achievements are undeniable. Equally, today's betrayal is undeniable. At some point during the last century, Christianity turned against the white race.
    FB , says: October 19, 2018 at 7:13 pm GMT
    Wow what an amazing article the detail that Saker brings to this subject is breathtaking. I had to scramble for the dictionary to find out that 'Phyletism' or 'ethnophyletism' [from the Greek ethnos 'nation' and phyletismos 'tribalism'] is the conflation between Church and nation [sounds bad...]

    'Monophysitism' the apparently wrong belief among some that 'Christ' has a single [mono] nature as opposed to the 'correct' interpretation of his divine and human duality [again, very bad...]

    So I heaved a sigh of relief when the author noted that these and other heresies [such as iconoclasm...ie the breaking of icons] were eventually 'defeated' [WHEW]

    And who could forget the Battle of the Calendars

    'In the early 20th century the Orthodox Churches of Constantinople, Albania, Alexandria, Antioch, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Poland, and Romania got together and, under the direct influence of powerful Masonic lodges, decided to adopt the Gregorian Papal Calendar (named after the 16th century Pope Gregory XIII).

    I'm sure the Saker will be relieved to know that despite this temporary setback, the Julian Calendar [after Julius Ceasar] did eventually prevail as well being today the universal calendar of astronomy, science, the military, and software coding heck even GPS uses it see the Julian Day

    [Once again, the forces of the Redeemer prevail]

    And then of course we have the centuries of intrigue and betrayals all those treacherous 'robber councils' etc it is perhaps worth mentioning also the original such apostolic act of denial, and eventually repentance that of St Peter

    All's well that ends well

    A. -H. , says: October 20, 2018 at 2:11 am GMT

    First, the petty ones: they range from the usual impotent knee-jerk reflex to do something, anything, to hurt Russia to pleasing of the Ukronazi emigrés in the USA and Canada.

    That is true.

    Canada : Celebrating Nazis Is Wrong. Period.

    "On Sunday, April 22, on the eve of the G7 Summit in Toronto, Freeland hosted a brunch in her private home. In attendance that day were all the Foreign Ministers from the G7 countries, with a plus one in the form of Pavlo Klimkin, Foreign Minister of Ukraine. No, Ukraine is definitely not a member of the G7, but Freeland wanted Klimkin front and center to make sure he put the ongoing crisis in Ukraine at the top of the G7 Summit agenda.

    That's all well and good, as a lit powder keg such as Ukraine in the middle of Europe, polarized between NATO and nuclear-armed Russia is certainly a global concern. Freeland has also never denied the fact that she is proud of her Ukrainian-Canadian roots."

    "Eduard Dolinsky, director of the Ukrainian Jewish Committee told the Times of Israel that this Nazi parade was "a scandalous event that should not be allowed to happen in Ukraine in which murderers of Jews and others are glorified."

    Andrew Srulevitch, director of European Affairs at the Anti-Defamation league wrote on Twitter, "Ukrainian leaders need to condemn such marches, where Ukrainian extremists celebrate Ukrainian Nazi SS divisions (1st Galician), giving Nazi salutes in uniform in the middle of a major Ukrainian city."

    http://espritdecorps.ca/on-target-4/celebrating-nazis-is-wrong-period

    FB , says: October 20, 2018 at 4:39 am GMT
    @MeMyselfandI You must be new here our Potatohead Pete is still trying to figure out what day it is
    Anonymous [346] Disclaimer , says: October 20, 2018 at 5:20 am GMT
    @RadicalCenter

    "Little bitch for the devil" would seem to describe Catholic priests these days, not ol' WBM.

    Haha, you're so adorable. Such a loyal hasbara of the Christ-hating oligarchs pushing the anti-Catholic bullshit narrative. Prof. Philip Jenkins/Baylor U./John Jay College/et al. have done all kind of studies and analysis and have shown that the rates of sexual predation/predators is proportionally lower among Catholic clergy than in public education and even among Protestant denominations. But since these entities are loyal to the oligarchs and the AngloZionist Empire you'll never see them targeted with this kind of bullshit propaganda. Not that that matters to you, RadicalCenter. Now go off and post shit about how Assad is a monster who gasses his own people and the U.S. is in Syria only to fight ISIS.

    Felix Keverich , says: October 20, 2018 at 8:26 am GMT
    I'm from Russia and here is my prediction: there will be no "religious conflict" in the Ukraine. Instead, churches belonging to ROC will be one by one expropriated by Ukrainian regime. The locals are powerless bydlo , and will do as they are told. They would embrace Satanic church, if this is what the authorities told them to. Authority in the Ukraine is derived from violence, not faith.
    SeekerofthePresence , says: October 20, 2018 at 7:23 pm GMT
    Somebody(s) in the State Dept, CIA, MI6, Mossad got to Bartholomew. Ultimate object in splitting Ukraine Church is to divide the country and bring it or most of it into NATO. This scheme is so diabolical as to be the work of Antichrist. Natoization of Ukraine could easily result in WWIII. God have mercy on us all. Спаси и сохрани.
    Sarah Toga , says: October 21, 2018 at 12:34 am GMT
    Interesting article – vital information! Can anyone possibly imagine the MSM or even so-called conservative outlets giving any degree of clear discussion of what is happening in the Orthodox Church? Personally, I think the real issue among denominations is learning and understanding the Biblical languages, translating to the modern tongues. The over-use of Latin (instead of Greek, Hebrew) led the Bishops of Rome to some regrettable mis-steps.

    For Western Christians who care about the Holy Word, this site is encouraging for Christians who are disgusted with the cucks and diversity cultists taking over their denominations (i.e., Russell Moore in the SBC, etc): Faith and Heritage dot com

    Wally , says: October 21, 2018 at 7:26 am GMT
    @A. -H. LOL
    This is how lying Jews & their neo-Marxist shills try to win all arguments. said: "Eduard Dolinsky, director of the Ukrainian Jewish Committee told the Times of Israel that this Nazi parade was "a scandalous event that should not be allowed to happen in Ukraine in which murderers of Jews and others are glorified." Andrew Srulevitch, director of European Affairs at the Anti-Defamation league wrote on Twitter, "Ukrainian leaders need to condemn such marches, where Ukrainian extremists celebrate Ukrainian Nazi SS divisions (1st Galician), giving Nazi salutes in uniform in the middle of a major Ukrainian city." "

    ... ... ...

    jilles dykstra , says: October 21, 2018 at 7:47 am GMT
    " most Orthodox Churches are still used as pawns in purely political machinations "

    Who is the pawn of whom is open for discussion. When reading these words I remember seeing Putin in an orthodox church, in a ceremony showing his respect for the church, not looking very happy. Religions have tremendous impacts, as we saw in 1979, when the Islam was able to drive away the USA's puppet shah from Iran. The USA is still fighting the consequences.

    jilles dykstra , says: October 21, 2018 at 7:53 am GMT
    @fitzhamilton See the explanation in Felipe Fernández-Armesto, 'Civilisations', London, 2000 And no relation with christianity.
    jilles dykstra , says: October 21, 2018 at 7:56 am GMT
    @A. -H. " as a lit powder keg such as Ukraine in the middle of Europe, polarized between NATO and nuclear-armed Russia "
    Deliberately created by the EU, with NATO support, I suppose. Redundant organizations seek new goals.
    Jeff Stryker , says: October 21, 2018 at 10:47 am GMT
    @jilles dykstra They rang Putin up and asked if he could please invade Ukraine to give them an excuse for tax payers. Weirdly enough, Ukraine was Clinton's obsession and not Trump's. She became particularly obsessed with Russians, for some reason, following the election.
    Epigon , says: October 21, 2018 at 11:31 am GMT
    @byrresheim If Russians are to be blamed for Holodomor, who is to be blamed for Red Terror and 1921-1922 Russia famine, which was worse than Holodomor?
    Anon [132] Disclaimer , says: October 21, 2018 at 11:49 am GMT
    @Seraphim Christianity is universalist/globalist according to the L' Internationale Jew who started it.

    • Go therefore and make disciples of all nations . Matthew 28:19
    • Proclaimed in his name to all nations . Luke 24:47
    • For Jewgod so loved the whole universe [kosmos] that the universe [kosmos] might be saved through Jewgod. John 3:16-17

    Tribalism is close-family nationalism. Natal, the root word of nation, means related by birth. If you're against people liking to associate politically their birth-related kin, you're bellyaching at the wrong website.

    jacques sheete , says: October 21, 2018 at 1:04 pm GMT
    @Sergey Krieger

    Those попы care for nothing but power , influence and money.

    Funny how people get all bound up in arcana when that's really what's always going on.

    Anonymous [365] Disclaimer , says: October 21, 2018 at 1:13 pm GMT
    @War for Blair Mountain You ask, "Why does the Working Class Native Born White American population of the American South worship Israel and Jews in general?"

    Because the book they're carrying into church today and pounding into their kids' heads states:

    • John 4:22 " We worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews ."
    • Acts 3:25 "He said to Abraham, 'Through your offspring all peoples on earth will be blessed.'"
    • Romans 1:16 "The Jew first."
    • Romans 9:4 "The people of Israel, chosen."
    • Romans 15:27 "For if the Gentiles have shared in the Jews' spiritual blessings, they owe it to the Jews to share with them their material blessings."
    • Philippians 3:3 "For it is we [Christians] who are the Circumcision."
    • Philippians 3:20 "But our citizenship is in Jewheaven." (which is the Israeli capital city Jerusalem, Rev. 21:2)

    Yet some of these Jew-worhipers still have the chutzpah to allege that "there is no "Judeo-Christianity," apparently because the exact terminology judeo-christian isn't found in the Jew Testament. Believing that only a Jewish Rabbi can save a white man from being a bad, bad boy worthy of a roasting in hell by a Jewgod has consequences.

    Jeff Stryker , says: October 21, 2018 at 2:54 pm GMT
    @jacques sheete Islam would have spread to Europe if Christianity had not been around.
    Robjil , says: October 21, 2018 at 5:04 pm GMT
    @Jeff Stryker Nuland is the one who rang up and asked if the US could please invade Ukraine with Banderite genocidal crazies. Nuland's taking of Ukraine with a few bags of cookies was the greatest bargain since the Native Americans sold Manhattan for trinkets, worth 24$, to Dutch. A few decades later, the Dutch themselves made a huge mistake by giving away New York to the British.

    Here is the video of Ms. Nuland's call, that may lead to WIII. Is she a new Helen of Troy that launched a thousand ships. She also states the lovely phrase F ** k the EU at the end of the coup talk. Lovely century we live in. Where is the peace and love that we were promised in 1960s, 1970s?

    Abdul Alhazred , says: October 21, 2018 at 5:53 pm GMT
    Unfortunately Saker's attack upon the Filioque plays right into the hands of the oligarchy's drive to destroy mankind by denying man's abilities and potential as a being made in the image of God.

    It is Lyndon LaRouche and associates who correctly identify the Filioque as essential in the flowering of the Renaissance and the rise of the Nation-State, of that Platonic Christian Republican revival based upon the dignity of humanity.

    Here is a short on the Filioque Doctrine:

    https://larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1990/eirv17n40-19901019/eirv17n40-19901019_032-the_filioque_doctrine.pdf

    A book review on why the Eastern Churches deny the Filioque, to which the question might be asked- Is the Saker an adherent to the Moscow as the Third Rome prophecy?

    https://larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1983/eirv10n36-19830920/eirv10n36-19830920_049-why_the_eastern_rites_reject_the.pdf

    The following essay situates the Filioque as relevant to the defense of Christianity, of Western Civilization in struggles similar to what we are experiencing today, as basically the same operations are being run.

    https://larouchepub.com/eiw/public/1990/eirv17n40-19901019/eirv17n40-19901019_030-black_legend_hides_the_truth_abo.pdf

    Anon [132] Disclaimer , says: October 21, 2018 at 5:54 pm GMT

    Metropolitan Hierotheos is absolutely correct. Nationalism, which itself is a pure product of West European secularism,

    Its not. Christianity is't even 2,000 year old, and has as its core a foreign mythology (hence its gravity toward anti-nationalism). Nationalism is as old as civilization.

    is one of the most dangerous threats facing the Church today.

    So? Who said that the Church takes precedent over civilization and tribe? Who says that is the greater good?

    From where I sit, our nations are now moral and demographic hellholes and the Church played no small role in opening the door to that situation. Where is the Church's evidence of a net good outcome?

    If the Church wanted to assure its survival, then it needed to facilitate holiness on Earth via promulgation of a morality that successfully defended that state of man.

    At the moment, we have the opposite of that and that isn't because we didn't or don't have enough Church. The pre-Christians would have never allowed things to progress to this state out of spiritual pressure to be weak in the face of those who hate us and are incompatible with civilization.That path was the path of the Church.

    During the 20th century it has already cost the lives of millions of pious and faithful Christians

    Okay, Jew-commie apologist. Laying the results of the 20th century on those that rose to defend the world from who you cite below both insults the intelligence of your readers and reduces the integrity of your total argument.

    (having said that, this in no way implies that the kind of suicidal multiculturalism advocated by the degenerate leaders of the AngloZionist Empire today is any better!).

    You will have one or the other. No middle ground is possible. If you say its possible and reduce nationalism but fail to defend against the communists, then you are their tool. Also, I don't see any visible Anglo power. Only Jewish power.

    And this is hardly a "Ukrainian" problem (the Moscow Patriarchate is also deeply infected by the deadly virus of nationalism).

    You've yet to describe how nationalism is a deadly virus. In response to my claim, I suspect another round of vague logic and accusations that omit history.

    Like all heresies, nationalism will never prevail against the "Church of the living God"

    It seems misplaced for the Church to outlaw a specific political stance when it provides no defense against (and even facilitates) its antipode. If the church involves itself in life and death politics, then it must accept the consequences. Period. It would better serve God and the nations by remaining neutral. That it has not done that, an fights more zealously against nationalism, reveals its actual use.

    Second, you have no idea what the words mean that you use. You put on the air of a knowledgeable armchair theologian, but have restricted yourself to Christian dogma and myth that has always used occluded language. You have no idea what the phrase "living God" means. You take florid sounding language and use it as a rhetorical device. What I know about the "living god" is that he dies as a matter of course. This occurs after his maturity. You will see this again, the unholy growth will stop, and holiness will return to the world.

    which is the "the pillar and ground of the truth" (1 Tim 3:15) and while many may lapse, others never will.

    "Never" isn't an oft used concept in Christianity. In fact, the Bible is a tale of cycles. While your current political ideology is moral and spiritual poison, perhaps you can be saved and so I'm kindly warning you to be prepared for them.

    Cyrano , says: October 21, 2018 at 6:15 pm GMT
    Whoever said that religion is opium for the masses was onto something. Although, the Ukrainians looked intoxicated even without this latest controversy over religion. They believe that the west is in love with them. Let me clear something for them: The west (its elites) are not in the business of love. They are in the business of using people. The western elites don't love even their own people, let alone the Ukrainians.

    This is the current school of "thought" of the western elites: To love your own kind is racist. To pretend to love every other kind is pinnacle of humanism. Or as I like to call it – degeneracy.

    The truth is, the western elites don't love anybody except themselves They are just too stupid to realize that they are unsustainable by themselves. If they destroy their base of people like them – they are done. All their money wouldn't be able to buy them a ticket on the newest Elon Musk rocket headed to another inhabitable planet and away from the wretched earth that they in their stupidity destroyed.

    Anon [260] Disclaimer , says: October 21, 2018 at 9:38 pm GMT
    @Art That's a flowery synopsis of Christianity that, while popular among Jew-worshipers, doesn't square with what the Jewsus character actually said.

    Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. Matthew 10:34

    Ludgwig von Mises summed up Christianity much more accurately.

    [Jesus] rejects everything that exists without offering anything to replace it. He arrives at dissolving all existing social ties . The motive force behind the purity and power of this complete negation is ecstatic inspiration and enthusiastic hope of a new world. Hence his passionate attack upon everything that exists. Everything may be destroyed because God in His omnipotence will rebuild the future order . The clearest modern parallel to the attitude of complete negation of primitive Christianity is Bolshevism. The Bolshevists, too, wish to destroy everything that exists because they regard it as hopelessly bad.

    (Socialism, p. 413)

    Think Peace? You got Jesus wrong, and he explicitly stated so.


    [Oct 21, 2018] As an aside about aliases, the first thing that comes to my mind when everyone has more than one name isn't Al Capone, but the Russian communists

    Oct 21, 2018 | awfulavalanche.wordpress.com
            • Ryan Ward says: October 18, 2018 at 14:36 The reason for the names is that all Orthodox bishops are also monks. Most of the time, people chosen to be bishops were monks already, but if not, they are tonsured as monks as part of the process of becoming a bishop. The thing is, part of the process of becoming a monk is taking a new name. The new name is meant to reinforce the idea that a monk "dies to the world". So Joe Blow is now dead, while Dmitrios Blow begins a new life in the monastery (or as the bishop, as the case may be). I believe occasionally monks who become bishops sometimes take a new name again, which makes things more complicated.

              As an aside about aliases, the first thing that comes to my mind when everyone has more than one name isn't Al Capone, but the Russian communists. The commonalities between the two (which include a number of other features as well) might be part of the reason why the Church and the Party never got along with each other. They had too much in common not to be competitors 😉

    [Oct 21, 2018] Warning to Russian Tourists: Skip Athos This Year!

    Notable quotes:
    "... "Mount Athos is commonly referred to in Greek as the "Holy Mountain" (Ἅγιον Ὄρος Hágion Óros) and the entity as the "Athonite State" (Αθωνική Πολιτεία, Athoniki Politia). Other languages of Orthodox tradition also use names translating to "Holy Mountain" (e.g. Bulgarian and Serbian Света гора Sveta gora, Russian Святая гора Svyatya gora, Georgian მთაწმინდა). In the classical era, while the mountain was called Athos, the peninsula was known as Acté or Akté (Ἀκτή). ..."
    "... Mount Athos has been inhabited since ancient times and is known for its nearly 1,800-year continuous Christian presence and its long historical monastic traditions, which date back to at least 800 A.D. and the Byzantine era. Today, over 2,000 monks from Greece and many other countries, including Eastern Orthodox countries such as Romania, Moldova, Georgia, Bulgaria, Serbia and Russia, live an ascetic life in Athos, isolated from the rest of the world. The Athonite monasteries feature a rich collection of well-preserved artifacts, rare books, ancient documents, and artworks of immense historical value, and Mount Athos has been listed as a World Heritage site since 1988." ..."
    Oct 21, 2018 | awfulavalanche.wordpress.com

    October 16, 2018 by yalensis Dear Readers:

    Hopefully this will be my last piece on religion, at least for a while. I am hoping to return to more secular subjects, like astronauts, opera, and perhaps even the escape from Sobibor. (Although, if the Mummy Apocalypse starts in Kiev, then all bets are off, just warning y'all )

    Saint Sophia Cathedral in Constantinople: Can't go there any more

    However, I did want to give at least a quantum of closure to the Autocephaly story. The Russian Church Synod reacted surprisingly firmly yesterday (a lot of people thought they would be too chicken to go that far, but they did, so bravo to them!), so there was a complete split with Constantinople, and a declaring of the latter to be " Raskolniki ", aka Splitters. From the Russian POV, Constantinople is now Churcha Non Grata . Believers of the True (=Canonical) Orthodox Faith are informed they are not to pray or take communion in any Churches under the jurisdiction of the Constantinople Patriarch, Bartholomew. Good to know. Being an atheist, raised in a sovok-type family, I never set foot in a church anyhow, nor took communion. But were I ever to do that (highly dubious), it certainly wouldn't be in Constantinople! Not so long as that Banderite-loving SOB is in charge, so there!

    In 2017 Greece was the second most popular destination for Russian tourists.

    So, I have this piece by Alina Nazarova , which lays out the rules of conduct of this new religious war. The rules were laid out by Archbishop ( Протоиерей ) Igor Yakimchuk, who is the liaison to the public of the Moscow Patriarch. According to Igor: The Synod says its decision must be obeyed by all members of the canonical Russian Orthodox Church. The following churches and cathedrals are forbidden to worshipers: All the functioning churches in Stamboul, that one single Christian church in Antalya (Turkey); the ones on Crete, and on the islands of Dodecanese in Greece. Some of these areas coincide with vacation spots beloved of Russian tourists. Of course, they can still go to the beach, that's not the issue. They could even go inside a church probably, as a tourist, you know, like gazing at the ikons. The issue is that they cannot light candles, participate in the mass, or take communion. If they disobey these rules, then the punishment will be as follows:

    If any member of the priesthood violates above rules, then he would be subject to прещение , which is defined as a traditional form of disciplinary punishment employed in Russian churches. The punishment ranges from a slap on the wrist, to a demotion, to full-blown Anathema.

    But what about the lay persons? What would be their punishment if they disobeyed Archbishop Igor? "Repentance in the confessional" [do Orthodox have a confessional like Catholics? I didn't even know that ] for disobeying the Church," Igor elucidates. But What About The Grace-Giving Fire?

    People who have been through a divorce know what it's like that "day after" the fateful words are spoken. That's when people ponder and start tallying up their losses. Like, who gets the dog. How am I going to feed myself? etc etc.

    Similarly, in this "divorce" between Russia and Constantinople, which only happened yesterday, the Russian side in particular is coming to grips with what it lost in this process. Not that there are regrets: It had to be done. But one cannot paste on a happy face and just pretend there are no negative consequences.

    Miracle Flame of Jerusalem

    So, I have this other piece , also by Alina Nazarova, which concerns the Grace-Giving Fire. Apparently there is this Fire, sort of the mystical version of the Olympic Flame. It's a Miracle-Flame that never goes out, no matter how many fire extinguishers you spray it with! This flame normally resides in Jerusalem, but every Easter it is brought to Russia. People were worried that the split with Constantinople will affect this. But Moscow Patriarch Kirill's Press Secretary Alexander Volkov reassures believers that the fire will arrive on schedule. Since it travels directly from Jerusalem, it will not be affected by the Schism.

    What will be affected, however, are other miraculous artifacts and relics which arrive in Moscow every Easter, by special delivery from Tsargrad, aka Constantinople! "The bringing of these holy relics is something that the two churches arrange between themselves," Volkov explains. Adding that this is not going to be possible any more, for obvious reasons. But the good news is that the Sacred Flame will still be arriving on schedule next Easter, like always. Whew, I was worried about that! [Actually, I never heard of it before ]

    The Elephant In The Room

    But now we get to the Elephant in the room: Mount Athos . Of all the things that the Russian Church is sacrificing, and the price that it has to pay for its principled decision: Barring believers from making the pilgrimage to Mount Athos is perhaps the most painful of all. See, Athos was the one glorious ace in Bartholomew's deck of cards. He boldly played it and the Russian Church boldly called his bluff. And yet with open eyes, knowing that this loss will be painful for them. When asked about this specifically, Igor confirmed that, yes, the Russian Church Synod has forbidden believers of the canonical church to go to Mount Athos. At all. Not even as tourists.

    Not that the place even welcomes tourists. I have this wiki entry which explains how this thing works. Athos is the Eastern Orthodox equivalent of the Vatican. It is an independent polity within the Greek Republic, subject to its own laws, and home to 20 monasteries. All of which are under the direct jurisdiction of Schismatic Patriarch Bartholomew.

    Mount Athos monks doing their shtick

    wiki: "Mount Athos is commonly referred to in Greek as the "Holy Mountain" (Ἅγιον Ὄρος Hágion Óros) and the entity as the "Athonite State" (Αθωνική Πολιτεία, Athoniki Politia). Other languages of Orthodox tradition also use names translating to "Holy Mountain" (e.g. Bulgarian and Serbian Света гора Sveta gora, Russian Святая гора Svyatya gora, Georgian მთაწმინდა). In the classical era, while the mountain was called Athos, the peninsula was known as Acté or Akté (Ἀκτή).
    Mount Athos has been inhabited since ancient times and is known for its nearly 1,800-year continuous Christian presence and its long historical monastic traditions, which date back to at least 800 A.D. and the Byzantine era. Today, over 2,000 monks from Greece and many other countries, including Eastern Orthodox countries such as Romania, Moldova, Georgia, Bulgaria, Serbia and Russia, live an ascetic life in Athos, isolated from the rest of the world. The Athonite monasteries feature a rich collection of well-preserved artifacts, rare books, ancient documents, and artworks of immense historical value, and Mount Athos has been listed as a World Heritage site since 1988."

    wiki goes on to say that, when Greece joined the European Union, the special status of Athos was codified as an exception to the usual EU rules of "free movement of peoples", namely: "The free movement of people and goods in its territory is prohibited, unless formal permission is granted by the Monastic State's authorities, and only males are allowed to enter."

    That last point being important, as the EU normally frowns on gender-based discrimination. But this is a church matter, so they make an exception, just like they do with the Catholics. So, the only issue here is those Russian males who want to go to one of the monasteries on Athos and do whatever it is they do in there. They can't do that any more! As Archbishop Igor noted, "Tourists don't go to Athos anyhow." Which is why my blogpost title is tongue-in-cheek, in case anyone was wondering

    In conclusion: Mount Athos : This was NATO's ace card, and they played it well! Gotta give credit to the enemy, when he makes a clever play. NATO and the Banderites thought to force Russia into Zugzwang. However, the Russian Church responded also with a clever (and highly principled) if forced move. Now we wait to see what happens next! Posted in Religion | Tagged Alexander Volkov , Archbishop Igor Yakimchuk , Mount Athos | 15 Comments

    [Oct 21, 2018] Byzantium (Almost) Recognizes Banderite Church Part III

    Notable quotes:
    "... An aged man is but a paltry thing , ..."
    "... A tattered coat upon a stick, unless ..."
    "... Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing ..."
    "... For every tatter in its mortal dress, ..."
    "... Nor is there singing school but studying ..."
    "... Monuments of its own magnificence; ..."
    "... And therefore I have sailed the seas and come ..."
    "... To the holy city of Byzantium. ..."
    "... Stauropygia is a status given to Orthodox monasteries, laurels and fraternities, as well as to cathedrals and spiritual schools, making them independent of the local diocesan government and subordinated directly to the patriarch or synod. The literal translation of "the installation of the cross" indicates that in the stauropegic monasteries the cross was planted by the patriarchs with his own hands. Stavropigial status is the highest. ..."
    Oct 21, 2018 | awfulavalanche.wordpress.com

    Posted on October 14, 2018 by yalensis An aged man is but a paltry thing ,
    A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
    Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
    For every tatter in its mortal dress,
    Nor is there singing school but studying
    Monuments of its own magnificence;
    And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
    To the holy city of Byzantium.

    (William Butler Yeats, "Sailing to Byzantium")

    Dear Readers:

    And so we continue with this Byzantine saga. Since the story seems to have frozen a bit over the weekend, we have a little time to catch up on our Sunday Bible reading, before the fires of religious zeal truly ignite in earnest -- probably tomorrow! What we have here, folks, is nothing less than an Historical Whammy. Nothing less than the reversal of Russia's victory of 1686, which brought the Kiev Metropolitan under the authority of the Moscow Patriarch.

    Step #1 in this historical rollback was the decision of the Constantinople synod to remove the anathemas of Filaret and Macarius. Step #2 was the decision to restore something called " Stauropygia " in Kiev. It sounds like this has something to do with Storing Pigs, but no. Stauropygia ( σταυροπηγία ) is another one of those fancy Greek words. Online definition: Stauropygia is a status given to Orthodox monasteries, laurels and fraternities, as well as to cathedrals and spiritual schools, making them independent of the local diocesan government and subordinated directly to the patriarch or synod. The literal translation of "the installation of the cross" indicates that in the stauropegic monasteries the cross was planted by the patriarchs with his own hands. Stavropigial status is the highest.

    Mummy Apocalypse starts tomorrow!

    All of which is, of course, just another clever ruse on the part of Father Bart to insert his tentacles into the Ukraine and grab some real estate. According to the Skripunov piece that I linked, Bart already has his wish-list drawn up, of monasteries and other assets whose title will pass from Moscow to him. For example, last Monday (October 8), his Exarch Ambassadors were already roaming around various Ukrainian cathedrals, measuring the drapes and the mummies, and so on.

    So, what else did the Sinuous Synod decree? Well, if I am reading this timeline correctly (and I could be wrong), the 3-day Synod at Constantinople started on Thursday and Friday, broke for the weekend, and will resume Monday (tomorrow) with its final decision on Ukrainian Autocephaly.

    Giving Russian Superhero President Vladimir Putin one last desperate attempt and 24 hours (channel Kiefer Sutherland!) to pull off an actual miracle and avert this catastrophe. Perhaps by an 11th-hour blackmailing of Patriarch Bartholomew!

    Erdoğan: No Backsies!

    One might have thought (and one did think at the time) that Putin would have included a kick in the groin to Patriarch Bartholomew as part of the package-deal he concocted with Turkish President Erdoğan. That was a few weeks back, when Russia promised not to bomb the jihadists out of Idlib, after all. Which jihadis included a strong Turkish contingent. One might have assumed there would be a secret clause in this deal, whereby the Turkish Sultan would rein in Bart's Banderite ambitions. But no . The Turkish Sultan is no paltry old man! And he seems to have made out like a bandit, if not a Banderite, even though Putin was the one holding all the good cards at the time.

    Peskov: "I will defend them, from behind this chair!"

    Still, let's give the Russian government at least some credit for rushing quickly to lock the barn door after the horse has already escaped. According to the Moshkin piece, which I linked above: After the Emergency Meeting of his security team 2 days ago, President Putin (well, not Putin himself, but his spokesperson Dmitry Peskov) flounced onto the stage trilling the usual aria: "If developing events should turn into the groove of illegal actions, then of course, just as Russia defends the interests of the Russian-speaking people [in the Ukraine], then by the same token it will defend the interests of Orthodox Believers." But then hastening to add that Moscow's reactions will remain strictly non-violent: "Using exclusively political and diplomatic tools."

    What tools, pray say, Dmitry? Well, some pro-Russians are grasping at the weak straw hope that Putin can convince Erdoğan to do a backsie on the Idlib deal. For example, everybody knows that Bartholomew is good friends with Fethullah Gülen , of whom Erdoğan is no fan; in fact, the former attempted (with American help) to overthrow the latter, back in 2016. Failing in his coup attempt, Gülen now lives in exile in America, where he works for the CIA. As does Patriarch Bartholomew, from his lair in Stamboul! Meanwhile, Kirill Frolov, Head of the Association of Othodox Experts, told reporter Moshkin that he hopes the Russian government will expose these connections between Gülen and Bartholomew. One also hopes the Russian government will put both men together, side by side, and then give them a simultaneous (two-footed) jump kick to the groins. (And I wish I could have written that sentence in Old Church Slavonic, because then I would get to use the Dual Declension for "two groins", I think it would be something like орѣхома .) But that probably is not going to happen.

    Bartholomew and Gülen: A jump kick to the groins?

    Another line of inquiry, according to Frolov, is the well-known connection between Constantinople Exarch Rudnik (aka Ilarion) with Chechen militants. In fact, back in the day, Ilarion acted as the Emissar of Lead Terrorist Shamil Basaev ! Who had much blood on his hands, including the children of Beslan.

    And a third line of inquiry being Denisenko himself (aka Filaret) and his well-known ties with the neo-Nazi Banderite parties. As if exposing these nefarious connections will somehow shock the Europeans. Who already know all this stuff anyhow, and are cheering these guys on. This is their team after all!

    Next, Frolov warns what is going to happen next [probably starting tomorrow]: "The most dangerous people around are those who are trying to lull us with fairy tales of the type, Nothing horrible has happened, there will be no seizures of churches, see in the missive of the Constantinople Patriarch he even specified that there will be no seizures! This type of Constantinople 'peace-making' is of the same variety of the website 'Peacemaker' [a Banderite website that maintains a hit-list of enemies of the Ukrainian regime targeted for assassination – yalensis]". Frolov goes on to predict, that the SBU and the irregular Banderite military formations will soon begin the land seizures. He also warns that the life of canonical Metropolitan Onufriy (who remains loyal to the Moscow Patriarchate) may be in danger.

    Kurt Volker: Has reason to gloat.

    One sector of unexpected hope (for Russia) is the Vatican reaction. The Pope of Rome #1 is, amazingly, not only not behind these events, but even appears to hold the Ukrainian Autocephalites in extreme disdain. Thus, it may behoove all good Christian folk to remember that the Roman Pope is Infallible! (When one agrees with his opinions.)

    Meanwhile, a grinning-like-Cheshire-Cat Kurt Volker , American Special Rep to the Ukraine, has welcomed recent events like the Second Coming of Christ. Kurt and his patrons are already licking their chops, building Monuments to Their Own Magnificence, and planning the violent land grabs to come. And warning with crocodile laughter, that any violence that does happen, will all be on Moscow: "I hope there are no protests or violence instigated [in Ukraine] as a result of this decision [Ukrainian autocephaly] – that would be tragic," Volker opined self-righteously . Adding smugly that Putin "has lost Ukraine" once and for all.

    Oh well As Humphrey Bogart used to say, "We will always have Crimea!"

    [Oct 21, 2018] Poroshenko refused the Russian Orthodox Church any rights in Ukraine because of "the XVII century annexation".

    Oct 21, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com

    Moscow Exile October 14, 2018 at 1:17 am

    11:05 6 931

    Порошенко отказал РПЦ в правах на Украину из-за "аннексии XVII века"

    Poroshenko refused the Russian Orthodox Church any rights in Ukraine because of "the XVII century annexation".
    The President of Ukraine has announced to an audience believers in Kiev that a decision of the Ukraine Orthodox Church Ecumenical Patriarchate has confirmed the illegality of the "annexation" of the Keiv metropolis. The ROC has no rights in the Ukraine, he said


    Poroshenko with his pet patriarch.

    The Russian Orthodox Church has never had any Orthodox Church canonical rights in the Ukraine, said Petro Poroshenko. The President of the Ukraine stated this before thanksgiving prayers on St. Sophia Square in Kiev, informs "Interfax-Ukraine".

    "The Ecumenical Patriarchate has at last declared Moscow's end of the XVII century annexation of the Keiv metropolis as illegal. They clearly and unequivocally stated that the Russian Orthodox Church has no canonical rights of the Orthodox Church in the Ukraine" said the Ukrainian leader. Poroshenko stressed that "the Ukraine has not been, is not and will not be canonical territory of the Russian Church".

    The President of Ukraine reminded that Patriarch Kirill [of the ROC -- ME] prays for the Russian military at every service, which, Poroshenko said, " kills Ukrainian soldiers and civilians. And in the Ukraine, unfortunately, we have churches that still recognize Patriarch Kirill's authority How can churches in which prayers are said for a patriarch who prays for the Russian army be called Ukrainian?" he asked the believers.

    Moscow Exile October 14, 2018 at 1:19 am
    The church will be reunited after you have been strung up on a Maidan lampost, Valtsman!
    Moscow Exile October 14, 2018 at 1:35 am
    On October 11, a Synod meeting of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople decided to "proceed to the granting of Autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine." The Synod revoked a legally binding status of the 1686 letter, which empowered the Patriarch of Moscow to ordain the Metropolitan of Kiev. In addition, the Synod decided to re-establish the office of the Stavropegion of the Ecumenical Patriarch in Kiev, which means its head would be subordinate directly to the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. Moreover, the Synod lifted anathema from the heads of two non-canonical churches in Ukraine – Filaret of the Kiev Patriarchate, and Makary of the Ukrainian Autocephalous Church.

    The Russian Orthodox Church and other local Orthodox Churches view these decisions as hostile and illegitimate and warn they might trigger a split within the Eastern Orthodox Church.

    See: Attempts to destroy canonical Orthodoxy in Ukraine will fail -- Patriarch Kirill

    [Oct 21, 2018] Reply

    Oct 21, 2018 | thenewkremlinstooge.wordpress.com


    Moscow Exile October 18, 2018 at 8:39 pm

    Anatoly Karlin in today's RI on the Patriarch of Constantinople:

    The Istanbul Patriarch Plays at Pope and Falls Under Anathema
    "Now is the perfect time for Russia to reemerge as the Third Rome and take leadership of Orthodox Christendom"

    Comparing the power relationship of the Roman Pope at the time of the 1054 Great Schism between the Western and Eastern (Orthodox) churches with the power relationship that exists now between the Patriarch of Constantinople and the Patriarch of the Russian Eastern Orthodox Church in Moscow, Karlin writes:

    As quasi-monarch of the European core, who could command European kings to crawl to him on their knees in penance, the Pope [in 1054] could afford to forget the "pares" part of "primus inter pares". In contrast, Bartholomew I – His Most Divine All-Holiness the Archbishop of Constantinople, New Rome, and Ecumenical Patriarch, not to mention reserve officer in the Turkish Army – is ensconced in an infidel country and presides over a local flock of a few hundred ageing Greeks This is something that Bartholomew I has patently ignored with his disastrous decision to enter communion with Ukrainian schismatics.

    Karlin points out, as did Zhirinovsky the other day in the state Duma, that if carried out, then this illegal revocation of the Synodal letter of 1686, which granted the Patriarch of Moscow the right to ordain the Metropolitan of Kiev, could only lead to the autocephaly of those seven eparchies that were under Kiev church jurisdiction before 1686, namely those of Kiev, Chernigov, Lutsk, Lvov, Przemysl, Polotsk, and Mogilev, all situated in what is now west and central Ukraine, parts of Poland and Belorussia.

    Kiev church jurisdiction would then not apply to Kharkov, which in 1685 was within the Russian Empire, as was the then Novorossiya.

    Karlin ponts out that if the Constantinople revocation goes through, then the Patriarch of Constantinople would have just as many rights over the bulk of what is now eastern Ukraine as he has over the Eastern Orthodox Church in Vladivostok – namely none!


    Bartholomew I – not in his Turkish army officer uniform!


    Valtsman greets Bartholomew


    Bartholomew with his pal Joe in Istanbul

    The shit hit the Orthodox fan when Bartholomew bestowed upon kiddie-fondler Biden the highest award bestowed by the Greek Orthodox Church, the Athenagoras Human Rights Award.

    Biden is a pro-abortionist, pro-sterilization and "gay" rights campaigner. He also professes to be a Roman Catholic.

    Moscow Exile October 18, 2018 at 10:38 pm
    re. the above linked RI Karlin article, I think Anatoly must have had an attack of the typos, as often happens to me, when writing this paragraph:

    It would be an exceedingly sad and ignominious end to see the lingering remnant of a glorious empire do give in to blackmail and foreign pressure. We can only hope that God will not punish them as severely as for the Council of Florence ,

    which, I daresay, should have read as follows:

    It would be an exceedingly sad and ignominious end to see the lingering remnant of a glorious empire give in to blackmail and foreign pressure. We can only hope that God will not punish them as severely as did the Council of Florence.

    The "glorious empire" that he refers to is Byzantium.

    As regards the Council of Florence, which took place when Europe was under severe threat from the Ottoman Empire, Byzantium and its capital Constantinople, the "City of Caesar" (aka Царьград [Tsar'grad] in Russian -- "City of Caesar"), then being the remnant of the Eastern Roman empire and situated at the immediate receiving end of said threat, and when reunification of the Eastern and Western churches was mooted so as to help face the Ottoman onslaught :

    The Council had meanwhile successfully negotiated reunification with several Eastern Churches, reaching agreements on such matters as the Western insertion of the phrase "Filioque" to the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed ["and of the son": the Nicene Creed, in using this term, implied that the "Holy Ghost" came from the "Father (and the Son)", which, of course, is anathema to the doctrine of the Holy Trinity, because they are all the same, three-in-one, aren't they, and which phrasing immediately led to the Great Schism:

    Et in Spiritum Sanctum, Dominum et vivificantem:
    qui ex Patre ⟨Filioque⟩ procedit
    Qui cum Patre, et Filio simul adoratur, et cum glorificatur.

    I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord, the giver of life,
    who proceedeth from the Father ⟨and the Son⟩.
    Who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified.

    ME, ] the definition and number of the sacraments, and the doctrine of Purgatory.

    Another key issue was papal primacy, which involved the universal and supreme jurisdiction of the Bishop of Rome over the whole Church, including the national Churches of the East (Serbian, Greek, Moldo-Wallachian, Bulgarian, Russian, Georgian, Armenian etc.) and nonreligious matters such as the promise of military assistance against the Ottomans.

    The final decree of union was a signed document called the Laetentur Caeli, "Let the Heavens Rejoice".

    Some bishops, perhaps feeling political pressure from the Byzantine Emperor, accepted the decrees of the Council and reluctantly signed. Others did so by sincere conviction, such as Isidore of Kiev, who subsequently suffered greatly for it. Only one Eastern Bishop, Mark of Ephesus, refused to accept the union and became the leader of opposition back in Byzantium.

    The Russians, upon learning of the union, angrily rejected it and ousted any prelate who was even remotely sympathetic to it, declaring the Russian Orthodox Church as autocephalus (i.e., as having its "own head").

    Despite the religious union, Western military assistance to Byzantium was ultimately insufficient, and the fall of Constantinople occurred in May 1453 -- Wiki .

    Non of this arsing around about the gods and their pecking order in Asgard, of course, where Woden is the boss and Thor came from Mrs. Woden (Frige in Old English) after old Woden had humped her. There were other godly Woden offspring as well, and other lesser gods.

    Waes hael!

    🙂

    Moscow Exile October 18, 2018 at 11:19 pm
    Another of Bart's pals pays him a visit:

    FFS!!!

    yalensis October 19, 2018 at 7:51 am
    Karlin's article about the autocephaly is admittedly good. But every time I link to RI I feel like I have to take a shower afterwards. What a piece of work it is (along with Unz), cesspools of Jew-hating and Red-baiting. Not to mention the usual claque of holocaust-deniers and neo-Nazis.
    Moscow Exile October 19, 2018 at 9:06 am
    I feel the same way. I am trying my best to avoid it but I regularly have a snoop to see if there is anything worthwile there and I think Karlin's piece on the wheelings and dealings as regards the Constantinople patriarch are interesting.
    Mark Chapman October 19, 2018 at 9:51 am
    But who's the overall winner? The west, overwhelmingly Christian and rubbing its hands in enjoyment of the writhing and quarreling among the Orthodoxy, and the deepening of the rift between Russia and Ukraine.
    Patient Observer October 19, 2018 at 3:13 pm
    Many doubt that the West is Christian, much less overwhelmingly. But, yes, whatever they are, they may well be rubbing their hands in glee for the moment.
    kirill October 19, 2018 at 3:36 pm
    No friends is better than bad friends. Let Ukrstan wallow in pig shit. Given the history of the last 1000 years, it will reach total dissolution at one point.
    Moscow Exile October 20, 2018 at 2:48 am
    But the Ukraine has always had religious dissent between east and west, Uniate and Eastern Orthodox, ever since that time when the seeds of Ukrainian nationalism were planted by the Roman Catholic Austro-Hungarian Empire in the 19th century, when Austria was scared shitless of Russian imperial expansion westwards into the vacuum then being created by the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, into teritories that k.u.k Austria deemed to be its own patch.

    The situation was not helped in any way post-WWII by the UkSSR having "Polish" Ukrainians (Galitsians, mostly) tagged onto what Svidomites believe to be that territory that is the direct descendant of "Kievan" Rus'.

    And in the 17th/18th centuries, when what is now that part of the Ukraine situated mostly west of the Dnepr was part of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Eastern Orthodox Church was given a hard time by the Catholic authorities and serious attempts were made to persuade Orthodox Christians to "Latinize".

    "Uniate" Yukies are raised to hate the Moskali Orthodox Church and its faithful. I know: I've met such "Uniates", even sat at the same table with them when on holiday in the former UkSSR. They suck-holed up to me because they thought I was a typically English wanker that supports them. The same happens to me regularly here with Rubberduckians (some of my son's pals are such) and Kreakly .

    I know a Ukrainian woman doctor from Odessa, an ethnic Russian who is ROC, who tells me that when she, as a child, was visiting Lvov with her mother, they were walking around a an RC cathedral in that city, when they were asked by irate Lvov worshippers to leave the church after they had been overheard speaking in Russian to each other. That happened in the 1970s.

    In the early days of the present Ukrainian civil war, it was very noticible (to me, at least) how Uniate murderers engaged in the ethnic cleansing of Eastern Ukraine during their so-called anti-terrorist operations, had dangling from their tunic pockets Uniate rosary beads.


    Как записаться в батальон "Донбасс"
    How to sign up for the Donbass Battalion

    Furthermore, the evil bastard who kicked the whole ATO off, the "Bloody Pastor", is a Baptist.

    There are a lot of Baptists in Banderastan.

    Patient Observer October 20, 2018 at 9:09 am
    Baptists are everywhere. Met some in Romania during a family visit many years ago. They are the tip of the spear in spreading Western values. Most Orthodox Romanians have a good laugh at these shiny people high on Jesus.
    Moscow Exile October 20, 2018 at 9:39 am
    Same here, though I know one Russian Baptist who is a decent bloke -- reformed sinner, boozer, womanizer etc. Get's his fix now on Jesus -- but he's OK.

    Way back when McDonald's were not long arrived at Pushkin Square, some of my English class used to attend English language discussion clubs that had begun to spring up in Moscow cafés as the expat community here began to grow. However, after a short while, some of my former class told me they had stopped attending these clubs because of friendly, beaming US citizens there who were constantly approaching them , wishing to inform them of the "Good News" of jesus dying for their sins in order that their souls be saved.

    The Baptist Task force had landed!

    Patient Observer October 20, 2018 at 10:01 am
    Basically, they are another NGO.

    A sort-of friend, US born but with a strong western Ukrainian heritage, told me that he hopes that Christianity will spread to Russia. We stopped talking about such matter but we both know what we think of each other. Actually, that friendship has essentially ended as he was simply insincere on just about everything.

    Mark Chapman October 20, 2018 at 9:10 am
    Western Ukraine is only useful to the west as an exporter of nationalistic and religious hate: nobody really wants it, to absorb such a loose cannon into its own society and state. Even the Poles don't want it – who in their right mind would want to take on a big bunch of underemployed working-age men who have accustomed themselves to a lawless state, compelled only by its own politically-unacceptable beliefs, with no gun control? I can't imagine what could go wrong there.

    The west likes to keep West Ukraine a simmering hotbed of violence and rage, because it helps to keep the rest of rump Ukraine committed to an anti-Russian course. As is usual when NATO embarks upon a course of meddling and tweaking, it gives no thought whatsoever to the potential unintended consequences of liberating fascist nationalist sentiment and allowing it to form doctrine and formulate policy. Note to NATO – these people now have the bit in their teeth, and cannot be expected to go back to being simple farmers and postal clerks and switchboard operators. They like walking around carrying automatic weapons and playing war all day long. For them, the war will never end until either Russia capitulates to them – another way of saying never – or they are wiped out. NATO opened the Ukrainian Pandora's box, and let out all the ugliness and evil, and the first thing it did was to gang up on Hope, hidden in the bottom, and strangle the life out of it. There will not be any putting the Nazis back in their box.

    Which is precisely why Russia should just dump what's left of Ukraine to its fate. Pull out all investment, send the guest workers home, seal the borders and conduct scrupulous immigration checks to prevent Ukrainians from entering Russia. Move those borders up to the current limits of Novorossiya – not colonizing it with Russians, it should keep the same inhabitants, but using it as a buffer state to keep the non-ethnic-Russian Ukrainians out. No trade with Ukraine, let NATO subsidize it. It would collapse in nothing flat. Make sure Russia has no further responsibility for it. It's sad that the NATO experiment was so successful at turning Slavs against one another, but in the end it will have its punishment as it is forced to accept the lunatics as its own.

    [Oct 19, 2018] Ukrainian religious shism as a part of color revolution

    Attempt to split the church were pretty much predictable, as it increases the level of sovereignty of the Ukrainian state. So Poroshenko position is logical.
    The problem here that there are not that many believers in eastern part of Ukraine. But there is substantial number of Uniate believers in Western part of Ukraine.
    Notable quotes:
    "... Could it be that the Vatican is the principal force behind the 2014 Maidan uprising in Kiev, the regime-change operation in Ukraine, as a part of its millennium-old war against Russian Orthodoxy? ..."
    "... a very clear way the textbook activities of color revolution conducted by that most powerful and respectable institution of soft power, a religious university - the Ukrainian Catholic University - with its own media group, its own business academy, and funding and contacts with many "philanthropies" from the west. It's also headed by an American bishop, with a substantial provenance and respected standing in US elite circles. ..."
    "... The Catholic Church is losing its hold over the masses, losing its power, and yet continues with its war against the Orthodox side of the schism, and doubles down on tools of domination, experimenting in Ukraine and some other eastern European countries with ways to control a society - a clear threat to western Europe if it could but see it. ..."
    Oct 19, 2018 | www.moonofalabama.org

    Grieved , Oct 19, 2018 12:08:14 AM | link

    Could it be that the Vatican is the principal force behind the 2014 Maidan uprising in Kiev, the regime-change operation in Ukraine, as a part of its millennium-old war against Russian Orthodoxy?

    The Saker is carrying a long article by Russian author Aleksandr Voznesensky, translated heroically by Ollie Richardson and Angelina Siard. It's cross-posted from StalkerZone, but there are some comments on Saker, and I know we can link there, so here goes:
    How the Vatican Is Preparing to Launch a Religious War in Ukraine with the Help of the Constantinople Patriarchate and the Uniates

    The article is a keeper - I recommend bookmarking it for reference if nothing else. It details the events leading up to and following the Maidan, and illustrates in a very clear way the textbook activities of color revolution conducted by that most powerful and respectable institution of soft power, a religious university - the Ukrainian Catholic University - with its own media group, its own business academy, and funding and contacts with many "philanthropies" from the west. It's also headed by an American bishop, with a substantial provenance and respected standing in US elite circles.

    Although the article is long, it's very readable, and well translated.

    Towards the end, it poses a view that I had never considered, but which resonates with the trajectory of the more secular US empire. The Catholic Church is losing its hold over the masses, losing its power, and yet continues with its war against the Orthodox side of the schism, and doubles down on tools of domination, experimenting in Ukraine and some other eastern European countries with ways to control a society - a clear threat to western Europe if it could but see it.

    I don't understand much about the recent moves of the Church in Ukraine, but anyone can see how fraught are the faithful because of these lawless acts. I often forget the old battle by Rome against Constantinople, but I have every inclination to believe it completely. This article does a splendid job of detailing it and making it very visible.

    [Sep 29, 2018] Most Christians are not aware that in the latter part of the 16th century, early Lutheran Reformers close colleagues and followers of Martin Luther set in motion an eight year contact and correspondence with the (then) Ecumenical Patriarch, Jeremias II of Constantinople.

    Sep 29, 2018 | www.unz.com

    Cagey Beast , says: Website August 10, 2017 at 3:50 pm GMT

    Seeing Orthodoxy and Martin Luther mentioned in the same place reminded me of the amusing history of early Lutheran contacts with the eastern Church:

    Most Christians are not aware that in the latter part of the 16th century, early Lutheran Reformers -- close colleagues and followers of Martin Luther -- set in motion an eight year contact and correspondence with the (then) Ecumenical Patriarch, Jeremias II of Constantinople. The outcome might have changed the course of Christian history. Kevin Allen speaks with scholar Dr Paraskeve (Eve) Tibbs about this fascinating and largely unknown chapter in post-Reformation history.

    http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/aftoday/early_lutheran_orthodox_dialog_after_the_reformation

    From Wittenberg to Antioch
    September 16, 2007 Length: 32:12

    A fascinating interview with Fr. Gregory Hogg, an Antiochian priest in Western Michigan. Fr. Gregory was a Missouri Synod Lutheran pastor and professor for 22 years before coming to Orthodoxy.
    [...]

    http://www.ancientfaith.com/podcasts/aftoday/early_lutheran_orthodox_dialog_after_the_reformation

    Long story short, the western reformers were too argumentative and lawyerly for the Patriarch of Constantinople to take. He essentially said "please stop writing to me".

    [Apr 19, 2017] What would Jesus disrupt? Clearly the banks. He would be all about debt forgiveness.

    Notable quotes:
    "... Cynicism does derive from Socrates; from that part of the Socratic approach that questions community norms so aggressively that they have to kill you to shut you up. As for Socrates, so for Jesus. ..."
    "... What would Jesus disrupt? Clearly the banks. He would be all about debt forgiveness. http://www.michael-hudson.com/2017/01/the-land-belongs-to-god/ ..."
    "... I believe Lambert's point was exactly that: that the money-changers should be thrown out of the temple; that Blankfein is not doing "God's work"; that the whole article was a depiction of the deliberate debauchery of the Christian message by conflating it with material enterprise. That article in the links was a spiritual horror show. ..."
    "... Has someone written a good book on the history of usury? When did it become acceptable in the Christian dominated US? Islam bans it. Shakespeare talked about it. Our founders lamented their usurious debts. Think I read somewhere that the Zionists pledged, after WW2, to get out of banking altogether? ..."
    Apr 19, 2017 | www.nakedcapitalism.com
    PhilM, April 17, 2017 at 12:10 pm

    "What have I to do with thee, woman?"

    Christ was apparently a true cynic. See the wikipedia article on Cynicism before judging that; it's not original with me. Cynicism was open in its denunciation of all human convention. Nevertheless, it was non-violent, so "bringing a sword" means not the waging of organized war, but rather is a metaphor of conflict between those who support conventional morality and those who support the Cynical way of life; if indeed those were Jesus's words (if there were any words of Jesus, for that matter), as they are mostly incompatible with the rest of his speech.

    Cynicism does derive from Socrates; from that part of the Socratic approach that questions community norms so aggressively that they have to kill you to shut you up. As for Socrates, so for Jesus.

    It's amazing the doors that open onto the understanding of Christianity once its Cynical features are recognized, and the neo-Platonist frosting that was applied by Paul, and the forces of order later on, is demoted. The cake is actually quite inspirational; the frosting, pretty revolting. But the natural selection of ideas, that process which favors the survival of ideas that enhance power and authority, has decisively suppressed the Cynical core.

    UserFriendly , April 17, 2017 at 2:14 pm

    What would Jesus disrupt? Clearly the banks. He would be all about debt forgiveness. http://www.michael-hudson.com/2017/01/the-land-belongs-to-god/

    AbateMagicThinking but Not money , April 17, 2017 at 9:51 am

    Re: What would Jesus disrupt? (just the question, not the linked article)

    Wasn't there something about money changers in the temple? My view is that Forex is the great threat to whatever commonwealth anyone lives in – if not now, sooner or later. Always cheaper elsewhere.

    So I reckon Jesus would disrupt the system of foreign currency exchange. I imagine that something more turbulent than disrupting the equilibrium of Forex trader's desks would be involved. Now, that would be a miracle!

    PhilM , April 17, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    Jesus rendered unto Caesar those things which are Caesar's. He was getting the money-changers out of the temple, not getting rid of them altogether. The spiritual path is not material, or military, it is in the mind and the soul. People cannot pursue a material, political, or social agenda of any kind, even one of redistribution, and still be truly "Christian," as Christ would have had it. They must give all they have and find their way in poverty. They must abandon judgment of the actions of their fellows. Just as Diogenes lived in a barrel, but did not much care about the decor of the Athens' St Regis lobby one way or another.

    Ultimately the message was that to be poor and angry is to be a slave twice over; to be poor and happy is to be free of the chains of both wealth and resentment. Hence also the point that the poor are always with you; that has come up often here, and the real message is missed: that the most important thing is not necessarily to help the poor, but to be among them: to eliminate concern for material things from life entirely. The same goes for pain; turning the other cheek is not metaphorical; it is a statement that suffering imposed by others has only the meaning one gives it, and to deny that meaning is to deny them power over your mind.

    I'm not saying that all of that is right, or even arguable; I'm just saying that I think the philosophical basis of it should be considered more profoundly, and given more respect, than it often is, when it is used for political polemic.

    I believe Lambert's point was exactly that: that the money-changers should be thrown out of the temple; that Blankfein is not doing "God's work"; that the whole article was a depiction of the deliberate debauchery of the Christian message by conflating it with material enterprise. That article in the links was a spiritual horror show.

    HopeLB , April 17, 2017 at 7:22 pm

    Has someone written a good book on the history of usury? When did it become acceptable in the Christian dominated US? Islam bans it. Shakespeare talked about it. Our founders lamented their usurious debts. Think I read somewhere that the Zionists pledged, after WW2, to get out of banking altogether?

    [Apr 17, 2017] Ostara, Ishtar And A Happy Easter Walk

    Notable quotes:
    "... Just as the day of rest was a spiritual discipline that demonstrated there is more to life than production and consumption - and so was a threat to every narrative of power and control... ..."
    "... The spring festival was originally a fertility celebration, so the bunnies connection runs deep. And shallow. ..."
    Apr 17, 2017 | www.moonofalabama.org
    Ostara, Ishtar And A Happy Easter Walk

    Easter echoes the eons old human festivity to celebrate the March exquinox (in the northern hemisphere) and the arrival of spring. The dark and cold days of winter are gone. The bright time of fertility has come.

    Today's fertility symbols of Easter, the egg and the hare, relate to the old Germanic fertility goddess Eostre (Ostara). Ishtar, a Mesopotamian goddess of love, stepped down into the underworld of death but was revived. The Christian resurrection of Jesus is probably a transformation of this older hopeful tale.

    When the Christian message spread from its eastern Mediterranean origin its incorporation of old local gods and fables helped to convert the multi-theistic societies to the new monotheistic * believe. The gods of the pre-Christian religions were not completely discarded but their tales transformed to support the new united message the Christian preachers were spreading.

    But whatever. - It is spring, the darkness vanishes and it is my favored holiday. This year the Julian and Gregorian calendars coincide. We thus follow the Russian Barbarians and wish us all

    Happy Easter


    Faberge egg with spring flowers and music box- bigger

    Please join me, v. Goethe and Dr. Faust in our traditional Easter Walk:

    Look from this height whereon we find us
    Back to the town we have left behind us,

    Where from the dark and narrow door
    Forth a motley multitude pour.

    They sun themselves gladly and all are gay,
    They celebrate Christ's resurrection to-day.

    For have not they themselves arisen?
    From smoky huts and hovels and stables,
    From labor's bonds and traffic's prison,
    From the confinement of roofs and gables,
    From many a cramping street and alley,
    From churches full of the old world's night,
    All have come out to the day's broad light.
    ...
    How it hums o'er the fields and clangs from the steeple!
    This is the real heaven of the people,
    Both great and little are merry and gay,
    I am a man, too, I can be, to-day.

    * The Christian Trinity , the three aspects of the one God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit, is a doctrinaire addition of the 4th century. It just adds an explanatory layer on top of the Abrahamic core of the monotheistic Christian message.

    Glorious Bach | Apr 16, 2017 7:41:48 AM | 1

    Hope, always hope--even in this dreariest of mean times.
    Jen | Apr 16, 2017 7:52:22 AM | 2
    Happy Easter to all and may we celebrate more Happy Easters to come!

    Thanks B for reminding us that as long as we continue to celebrate Easter and remember what it represents, we are also celebrating hope, the possibility of renewal and setting humanity on a path towards peace and away from greed, violence, exploitation and lack of care for our fellow humans, animals and other travellers on this planet.

    John Merryman | Apr 16, 2017 8:15:44 AM | 3
    Actually the Trinity was one of the earliest pantheistic traditions incorporated and the most foundational to Christianity, as it incorporated the Greek Year Gods, essentially past, present and future. (Father, Son, Holy Spirit)
    A good book on the subject;
    http://www.gutenberg.org/files/30250/30250-h/30250-h.htm
    John Merryman | Apr 16, 2017 8:19:09 AM | 4
    Of course, the Catholic Church, as the eternal institution, didn't really care for a foundational concept of renewal and did its best to fudge the message. Which they did a good job of, resulting in the need for Luther to push the reset button.
    John Merryman | Apr 16, 2017 8:27:01 AM | 6
    Then again the essential fallacy of monotheism is that absolute is basis, not apex, so a spiritual absolute would be the essence of sentience, from which consciousness rises, not an ideal of wisdom and judgement from which it fell. The new born babe, not the wise old man.

    It's just socially effective to assert the laws are given, rather than emergent with the processes they describe. The assumptions are still deeply embedded in western culture, even if the folk concepts have faded.

    Frosty | Apr 16, 2017 8:55:06 AM | 7
    sonnet 114

    Or whether doth my mind, being crowned with you,
    Drink up the monarch's plague, this flattery?
    Or whether shall I say, mine eye saith true,
    And that your love taught it this alchemy,
    To make of monsters and things indigest
    Such cherubins as your sweet self resemble,
    Creating every bad a perfect best,
    As fast as objects to his beams assemble?
    O! 'tis the first, 'tis flattery in my seeing,
    And my great mind most kingly drinks it up:
    Mine eye well knows what with his gust is 'greeing,
    And to his palate doth prepare the cup:
    If it be poisoned, 'tis the lesser sin
    That mine eye loves it and doth first begin.

    William Shakespeare

    fast freddy | Apr 16, 2017 9:11:27 AM | 8
    Christianity proclaims that it is righteous and it is at war with (battling) ALL the other religions which are deemed to be (at best) false. The adherents to these other religions are misled (at best) or evil. Christianity says that it cannot tolerate (must destroy) evil. Accordingly, one day the king of Christianity will return to rule the world.

    Islam offers up the same story.

    What a perfect formula we have for fomenting war. Inspiring youths to kill for their (faith) religion.

    Religion is a fundamental component in the justification of mass murder. It's been used this way for centuries and it has not ebbed.

    les7 | Apr 16, 2017 12:24:55 PM | 11
    Just as the day of rest was a spiritual discipline that demonstrated there is more to life than production and consumption - and so was a threat to every narrative of power and control...

    So the resurrection is a symbol that the alternative narrative of the Kingdom of Heaven does triumph over the fear and death we all live in. Not only does the Kingdom of Heaven out-survive death, it transforms it. The resurrection narrative does not defeat the powers of this world through conflict. It 'outlives' them, most especially with those eternal qualities of mercy, forgiveness, life, light, and yes, love.

    May we all celebrate this day and the lives of those who have pointed us all to a life of wholeness.

    thank you b, for this site and for your work to host it.

    Blessings!

    John Merryman | Apr 16, 2017 1:08:03 PM | 14
    Curtis,

    Lol. The spring festival was originally a fertility celebration, so the bunnies connection runs deep. And shallow.

    Piotr Berman | Apr 16, 2017 1:11:18 PM | 15
    I checked and indeed, you can find Russian greeting cards "Happy Easter", but that seems to be copied from the West. More standard is to greet people on that day with words "Christ has resurrected", and post cards have those words but there are also other, less religious versions. From Holy Internet: " Traditional Easter greeting is Христос воскрес! (Christ is risen!) and the response is Воистину воскрес! (In truth He is risen!) ".
    smuks | Apr 16, 2017 1:43:24 PM | 16
    There was a nice cartoon in the paper yesterday:

    A muslim couple walk past a shop, there's eggs & stuff and a big sign reading 'Happy Easter'.
    One of them to the other: 'From what I understand, some rabbit was born to them...'

    Happy Easter!

    John Merryman | Apr 16, 2017 2:29:48 PM | 17
    I think the next phase change of human evolution will involve a switch back from the linear, growth oriented view of the last several thousand years, to a more cyclical, thermodynamic conceptual foundation.

    For instance, we think of time as the point of the present moving past to future, but the reality is change turning future to past. Tomorrow becomes yesterday because the earth turns. Events have to occur, in order to be determined.

    Alan Watts used the example of a boat and its wake, as analogy, in that the wake doesn't steer the boat, the boat creates the wake. Events are first in the present, then in the past.

    This makes time an effect of activity, similar to temperature, color, pressure, etc.

    If you consider the actual, physical manifestation of time and history, this concept on which human culture is based, it is residue in the present state. What is measured as time; duration, is the state of the present, as events form and dissolve.

    The overwhelming physical reality is the thermodynamic convection cycles/feedback loops in which we evolved. They underlay all aspects of biology and civilization. Right now, you might say we are at the crest of an enormous wave and it's mostly foam and bubbles, with a massive undertow.

    fast freddy | Apr 16, 2017 2:52:32 PM | 19
    Something biblical for Christians to ponder:

    Everyone whom had died remains dead and knows and senses nothing. http://biblehub.com/ecclesiastes/9-5.htm

    There is NO afterlife for ANYONE without the second resurrection which you await.

    There is no purpose for a second resurrection if everyone who has died gets a free pass to a glorious afterlife.

    Check it out.

    Curtis | Apr 16, 2017 7:15:24 PM | 23
    The Christians of the Middle East must be very resilient to withstand the onslaught.

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/syria-horrific-onslaught-on-aramaic-christian-community-of-maaloula-at-hands-of-western-backed-moderate-terrorists/5585352

    james | Apr 17, 2017 12:24:33 AM | 24
    thanks for the easter reminder, amidst everything else that is being focused on.. new beginnings which we surely do need... looking for new leaders to pave a new direction here at this moment and don't see anything on the horizon yet..
    Curtis | Apr 17, 2017 12:44:41 PM | 31
    It's shameful what has happened to Christians in the Middle East. In the west, I've only heard the Catholics say anything about this.
    http://buchanan.org/blog/will-christianity-perish-birthplace-126816

    Chomsky on Religion

    YouTube

    Noam Chomsky discusses religion and terrorism at his MIT office on April 23, 2010.

    sandhua1

    No, he is actually an atheist. He is telling history of the liberation theology, which though a religious movement, was based on extreme pacifism & empathy for the poor & suffering (Jesus Christ's original teachings). He is talking about how Christianity was hijacked by the rich in 3rd century and exploited to suit their own agenda at the expense of the poor. If someone talks about a good aspect of religion, it doesn't automatically mean he is a moron. I am agnostic atheist & agree with him.

    SendInTheChickens

    i'm going off hitchens bit by bit. he doesn't have half the skill of observation this man has. it was reading hitch 22 that started my disenchantment. there's a slight clumsiness in his use of english that reveals a lack of sensitivity: not a lack of facility, by any means; simply a lack of poetic flair. but worst for me was the way he talked about that kid who was killed in afghanistan. it was so gushingly full of praise that it felt like a campaign speech - an emblem of jingoism.

    [Dec 08, 2011] molitva-pered-vladimirskoj-iko

    О спасении державы Российской и утолении раздоров и нестроений

    Утоли шатания и раздоры в земли нашей, отжени от нас зависти и рвения, убийства и пианства, разжжения и соблазны, попали в сердцах наших всяку нечистоту, вражду и злобу, да паки вси возлюбим друг друга и едино пребудем в Тебе, Господе и Владыце нашем, якоже повелел еси и заповедал еси нам.

    Помилуй нас, Господи, помилуй нас, яко исполнихомся уничижения и несмы достойни возвести очеса наша на небо. Помяни милости, яже показал еси отцем нашим, преложи гнев Твой на милосердие и даждь нам помощь от скорби.

    [Dec 08, 2011] Политика и спасение души

    Православие и мир

    Вторая (оборотная) часть проблемы состоит в том, существует ли такая форма политического режима или государственного правления, которая в большей степени, нежели остальные, может способствовать спасению души? Вопрос этот весьма и весьма дискуссионен. Отмечу лишь один его аспект, точнее, одну опасность. Очень часто человек или группа людей, стремясь найти и воплотить в жизнь идеальную, с их точки зрения, форму правления, приходят к тому, что пытаются построить Царство Божие на земле. С начала истории человечество сталкивается с подобными попытками: от возникновения учения о тысячелетнем Царстве Христовом на земле (хилиазм) и ряда феодальных монархий до общин анабаптистов, от псевдоматериалистических (а на самом деле утопистских) социальных режимов до современного общества потребления. Такие попытки в корне расходятся с евангельским посланием, которое бескомпромиссно говорит о том, что на этой земле никакие политические, общественные или экономические инициативы не могут изменить того факта, что мир во зле лежит (1 Ин 5:19) и Царство Мое не от мира сего (Ин 18:36). Известный русский философ Владимир Соловьев говорил, что государство не может привести людей в рай, но оно должно стараться удержать их от падения в ад.

    [Feb 05, 2011] Zhuravli/Cranes

    [Jan 07, 2011] Russian Christian Songs

    [Jan 17, 2009] Videoclips

    [Dec 27, 2008] Lord, have mercy!

    [Dec 27, 2008] russian polyphonic chants (XVII c.)

    [Dec 26, 2008] NEVA ENSEMBLE singing two Russian Orthodox songs - Decor St Petersburg - Russia Church Храм Спаса на Крови - ''Our Savior on Spilled Blood''

    Christmas in Moscow

    [Dec 23, 2008] Chesnokov, great Russian Church composer (1877-1944).

    [Dec 22, 2008] Rachmaninov's church music

    [Dec 21, 2008] Miller

    [Dec 2, 2008] Russian polyphonic chants

    [Dec 1, 2008] The Nicene Creed sung by Orthodox Church Choir (NJ)

    [Feb 07, 2007] www.orthodoxlogos.com -- Online Bookstore

    Logos based in the Netherlands is an online Orthodox bookstore having as its mission to provide a full spectrum of Orthodox Christian materials in four languages, namely in English, French, Dutch and Russian.

    During the last years it became more and more apparent that Orthodox Christianity is increasingly spreading around Western Europe and other Non-Orthodox countries of the world. Unfortunately, much of the immense amount and depth of Orthodox materials remains virtually inaccessible to the majority of readers in Western parts of the world. This is due to the fact that the books are printed by many different and often small publishers in different countries and are being distributed in limited amounts.

    Logos would like to provide the opportunity to have full access to such materials and to allow the interested to read, watch and listen the Orthodox materials in his or her native language. Therefore, the future plans of the bookstore are to add more languages to the bookstore's catalogue. In this way the growth of the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and His Church according to the Orthodox Christian tradition through the written word as well as icons and liturgical songs will be made more accessible.

    A significant part of the profit from the bookstore sales will be used for the development of Orthodox Christianity in Western Europe and in particular for the development of the newly acquired Russian Orthodox Church in Amsterdam. The information about the church can be found at www.orthodox.nl.

    [Feb 07, 2007] Orthodox Christian morality today -- Commentary on moral issues

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