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“My experience within social media is that any observed problem within our culture that is presented will attract an immediate flood of proposed solutions. The belief in the solvability of all things is a foundation of the modern world. We are nurtured with an expectation of progress and solutions. When this turns out not to be the case, despair is a natural result. That same despair is a primary engine for modern anger. We want solutions. We believe that solutions are possible. When solutions fail to be enacted, we get angry. We blame. The world becomes divided into those who, like ourselves, advocate the right solutions, and those who are standing in the way of that progress we believe is always possible” (Father Stephen Freeman)

“The world and our life have become very complex. Most people can’t bear it. As a result, we try to oversimplify things, formulating interpretations, proposals, and solutions that might make sense. On social media, on the internet, as well as the comments on the news by trolls, these come close to being ‘magic’. Commentators show themselves to be absolutely convinced of the certainty of their truth. They have the air of a know-all. They feel that they comprehend the issue they’re dealing with so well that it can be resolved in ten words, nine of which are dismissive, demeaning or sarcastic. Even those who harbor ambitions as politicians formulate or espouse proposals and programs which, if implemented, would have little or nothing to do with the situation which, in theory, they want to reshape.” (Protopresbyter Themistoklis Mourtzanos)

“…the sons of thunder, James and John came to the Lord and asked for Him to grant them whatever they desire. It sounds very strange to us, as if they think of the Lord as a genie. And what do they ask for? They ask to be seated in glory one at the right and the other at the left of the Lord. We can commend them for their grand thinking and having faith that the Lord could share such gifts with them. But then our Lord lets them in on a little secret regarding His kingdom. Everything is upside down. In this world we have certain expectations of how things should work. We have certain ideas about how things need to be done to “accomplish goals” or to conquer our problems. Most of these ideas and solutions involve the use of human ingenuity or the use of force and the exercise of power. Alexander became great through his use of force and the exercise of his power. Napoleon was similar. Most historical leaders have followed this path. It is the path of the world. Yet the Lord offers a rebuke to His disciples and to all of us. In the kingdom, everything is truly upside down.” (Fr. James Guirguis)

“The inability to change is very frustrating. It is like St. Paul’s words in Romans Chapter 7. “For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.” This frustrating predicament leads us into one of two directions: 1) we will be resigned to accepting our character foibles; or 2) we will struggle to discipline ourselves and to tame them. The first way is self-deceptive and leaves us in our pain. The second never really works and usually replaces one pain for another. Both are so popularly enticing, though, that many authors have made millions offering their flavor-of-the-day solutions. These authors attempt to convince us that there is a way to find results and peace if only we would try their latest method. But true peace is not found in these approaches, nor do they provide a full…experience of God’s infinite love.” (Nick Papas)

“We too often err in our moral choices when we fail to notice that our solutions exclude God’s providence or may even compromise the truth. How many “successful” people routinely make these sorts of “convenient” choices!” (Dynamis 5/19/2021)


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