ORTHODOXY AS THERAPY: ORTHODOXY’S THERAPEUTIC METHODS

My beloved brothers and sisters in Christ God,

CHRIST IS IN OUR MIDST! HE WAS, IS, AND EVER SHALL BE.

ORTHODOXY AS THERAPY: ORTHODOXY’S
THERAPEUTIC METHODS

By Protopresbyter George Metallinos, Dean of the Athens
University School of Theology.

The purpose of the Church’s presence in the world–AS A COMMUNION IN CHRIST–IS MAN’S CURE; THE RESTORATION OF HIS HEART-CENTERED COMMUNION WITH GOD: in other words, of his NOETIC FACULTY. According to Professor Father John Romanidis (of blessed memory), "the Patristic tradition is neither a social philosophy nor a system of morals, nor a religious dogmatism; IT IS A THERAPEUTIC METHOD. In this context, it is very similar to medicine and especially psychiatry. The NOETIC ENERGY of the soul that prays mentally and incessantly inside the HEART is a natural INSTRUMENT, which everyone passes and is in need of therapy. Neither philosophy nor any of the known positive or social sciences can cure this INSTRUMENT. This is why the incurable cases are not even aware of this INSTRUMENT’S EXISTENCE.

The need for man to be cured IS A PAN-HUMAN ISSUE, related firstly TO THE RESTORATION OF EVERY PERSON TO HIS NATURAL STATE OF EXISTENCE, through the reactivation of the third mnemonic faculty. However, it also extends to man’s social presence. In order for man to be in communion with his fellow man as a brother, his self-interest (which is the long run acts as self-love) MUST BE TRANSFORMED INTO SELFLESSNESS: LOVE…DOEST NOT ASK FOR RECIPRECATION" (1 Corinthians 13:8). SELFLESS LOVE EXISTS; IT IS THE LOVE OF THE TRIADIC GOD (Romans 5:8; 1 John 4:7), WHICH GIVES EVERYTHING WITHOUT SEEKING ANYTHING IN EXCHANGE. That is why Christian Orthodoxy’s social ideal is NOT "COMMON POSSESSIONS" but the "LACK OF POSSESSIONS," as a willed resignation from any sort of demand. ONLY THEN CAN JUSTICE BE POSSIBLE.

The therapeutic method that is offered by the Church IS THE SPIRITUAL LIFE; THE LIFE OF IN THE HOLY SPIRIT. Spiritual life is EXPERIENCED AS AN EXERCISE (ASCESIS) AND A PARTICIPATION IN THE UNCREATED GRACE, THROUGH THE HOLY MYSTERIES (SACRAMENTS). ASCESIS is THE VIOLATION OF OUR SELF-RULED AND INANIMATE THROUGH SIN NATURE, WHICH IS COURSING HEADLONG INTO A SPIRITUAL OR ETERNAL DEATH, I.E. THE ETERNAL SEPARATION FROM THE GRACE OF GOD. ASCESIS aspires TO VICTORY OVER OUR PASSIONS, WITH THE INTENTION OF CONQUERING THE INNER SUBSERVIENCE TO THOSE PESTIFEROUS FOCAL POINTS OF MAN AND PARTICIPATING IN Christ’s Cross and His Resurrection.

The Christian who is PRACTICING SUCH RESTRAINT UNDER THE GUIDANCE OF HIS THERAPIST-SPIRITUAL FATHER becomes receptive to Grace, which he receives through his participation in the Mysteriake Zoe (Sacramental life) of the ecclesiastic corpus. There cannot be any un-exercising Christian, just as there cannot be a cured person who does not follow the therapeutic advice that the doctor prescribed for him. (Source: Orthodox Heritage)

_____________
"The devil does not hunt those who are lost; HE HUNTS AFTER THOSE
WHO ARE AWARE, THOSE WHO ARE CLOSE TO GOD. HE TAKES TRUST
IN GOD FROM THEM, AND BEGINS TO INFLICT THEM WITH SELF-
ASSURANCE, LOGIC, THINKING, CRITICISM. Therefore, we should NOT
trust our logical minds" (Saint Paisios the Athonite).

_________________

"Glory Be To GOD
For
All Things!"

– Saint John Chrysostomos

+ + +

With sincere agape in His Holy Diakonia (Ministry),
The sinner and unworthy servant of God

+ Father George

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: