Duality

November 14, 2019

"...the Church’s perspective is not dualistic, but rather sees that the spiritual and material parts of man are both in need of transfiguration and redemption. Man is not saved without the body; through the body he has his being and life. Our quest is not a mental salvation that we seek in the Church through our thoughts about God; such thinking is rationalistic Scholastic theology and can result in a schism of soul and body, perverting our perception of reality." (Archimandrite Sergius)

 

 “The early centuries of Christianity reveal a Church that was a stranger to these dualistic notions. The “either/or” mentality was rejected over and over again in favor of mystery and paradox. The Church embraced a “both/and” revelation of God. Christians proclaim that Christ is both God and man. A complete paradox!” (Jonathan Jackson)

 

“In the delusion of modern individuality we blithely assume that we act alone in all we do. Life is so much more complicated! What I am certain of, in the midst of all this, is that our struggle against sin and the besetting issues of our lives is never just about ourselves. If we inherit a burden within our life, so our salvation, our struggles with that burden, involve not only ourselves but those who have gone before as well as those who come after. We struggle as the “Whole Adam” (in the phrase of St. Silouan).” (Father Stephen Freeman)

 

“Our Orthodox faith does not teach the duality of body and soul, but rather that the whole of man is made up of both soul and body. Since the soul is the whole man, we do not put the emphasis of our being on the soul at the expense of the body. Because of this teaching, we see the Mysteries (Sacraments) sanctify the whole person, who is made up of both soul and body. The body is not some sort of housing for the soul, for because of Christ’s resurrection, we have the possibility of resurrection.” (Abbot Tryphon)

 

“Because man has a soul—a reality common to all men—one’s individual spirituality can therefore progress only in a divinized fullness or community, which is the Church…the Church is not an institution but a spiritual organism, connected to Christ, her head. As individual members we are part of this organism and share in its life. We die outside this Body. Individual spirituality outside the fullness of the Church is very difficult.” (Kevin Allen)

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