Original Sin


#1

What is the difference between the Eastern Orthodox definition of Original Sin, and the Catholic definition?

Also, what exactly is the difference between the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, and the Eastern belief that Mary is Immaculate?

How did these differences come to be?:confused:


#2

[quote=e-catholic]What is the difference between the Eastern Orthodox definition of Original Sin, and the Catholic definition?

Also, what exactly is the difference between the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, and the Eastern belief that Mary is Immaculate?
How did these differences come to be?:confused:
[/quote]

Like us Catholics the Orthodox call Adams first sin the Original sin but they do not teach that the guilt of it is passed down to all the descendents of Adam. They teach that as a result of the Original sin they must die. We inherit death, we all must die. They believe that this causes envy and greed and all other sin.
The Catholics believe that we inherit the guilt of Adam and Eve and we call it Original sin. This is the cause of death.

Since the Eastern Orthodox do not believe that Original sin is passed on through the generations they can not believe in the Immaculate Conception. However they do believe that Mary did inheret death. Even though they do not believe in the Immaculate Conception they do believe that Mary remain without sin all her life. Essentially they believe the same thing as the Catholics but there difference in the belief on Original Sin causes a difference in the belief on the Immaculate Conception. They also believe that Mary was assumed into Heaven, they call it the dormition of Mary.

I am not quite sure about the history of Original sin but I can tell you that Augustin believed that Original sin was passed down through the generations as guilt more like the Catholics. Likewise St. Jerome believed that original sin was inherited as attached to the soul kind of. Leo The Great also believed this.

Gregory of Nyssa does not look at it like this he does not think that the guilt is passed down. He believed that we inherited the weakness of our ansestors. I am not sure what the other eastern fathers believed though.

This is what the councils say

**CANON CX. (Greek cxii. bis) **
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[/size][size=2]**That infants are baptized for the remission of sins. **[/size]
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LIKEWISE it seemed good that whosoever denies that infants newly from their mother’s wombs should be baptized, or says that baptism is for remission of sins, but that they derive from Adam no original sin[/size], which needs to be removed by the layer of regeneration, from whence the conclusion follows, that in them the form of baptism for the remission of sins, is to be understood as false and not true, let him be anathema.
For no otherwise can be understood what the Apostle says, "By one man sin is come into the world, and death through sin, and so death passed upon all men in that all have “sinned,” than the Catholic Church everywhere diffused has always understood it. For on account of this rule of faith (regulam fidei) even infants, who could have committed as yet no sin themselves, therefore are truly baptized for the remission of sins, in order that what in them is the result of generation may be cleansed by regeneration.

I think there was always a difference though.

Hope this helps.


#3

There’s quite a bit on this and associated issues in the Eastern Catholics v Eastern Orthodox & the Orthodox Religions thread.

It gets pretty deep at points, well over my head :bowdown: but watch out, it has got pretty heated in there at times :eek:


#4

[quote=jimmy]Like us Catholics the Orthodox call Adams first sin the Original sin but they do not teach that the guilt of it is passed down to all the descendents of Adam. They teach that as a result of the Original sin they must die. We inherit death, we all must die. They believe that this causes envy and greed and all other sin. The Catholics believe that we inherit the guilt of Adam and Eve and we call it Original sin. This is the cause of death.
[/quote]

Wait a second, that is not what the catechism says:

[quote=Catechism of the Catholic Church, ¶ 405]Although it is proper to each individual, original sin does not have the character of a personal fault in any of Adam’s descendants. It is a deprivation of original holiness and justice, but human nature has not been totally corrupted: it is wounded in the natural powers proper to it, subject to ignorance, suffering and the dominion of death, and inclined to sin - an inclination to evil that is called concupiscence. Baptism, by imparting the life of Christ’s grace, erases original sin and turns a man back towards God, but the consequences for nature, weakened and inclined to evil, persist in man and summon him to spiritual battle.
[/quote]

I am pretty sure that this idea that we Catholics believe in inheritted guilt is something that some Orthodox polemicist invented and we have taken the bait and treated it as if we really do believe thusly. I am not at all convinced that the western and eastern understandings of original sin are really all that different. Even the Catholic Encyclopedia, which as others have pointed out, proceeds from a rather western-triumphalist starting point and shows no interest in being conciliatory towards eastern thinkers, is still quick to point out that “in a child original sin is distinct from the fault of Adam.”


#5

[quote=GrzeszDeL] Even the Catholic Encyclopedia, which as others have pointed out, proceeds from a rather western-triumphalist starting point and shows no interest in being conciliatory towards eastern thinkers, is still quick to point out that “in a child original sin is distinct from the fault of Adam.”
[/quote]

Oh don’t start me again on that Encylopedia!:banghead: :banghead: :banghead:


#6

[quote=JGC]There’s quite a bit on this and associated issues in the Eastern Catholics v Eastern Orthodox & the Orthodox Religions thread.

It gets pretty deep at points, well over my head :bowdown: but watch out, it has got pretty heated in there at times :eek:
[/quote]

See also the forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=10930 thread


#7

[quote=JGC]Oh don’t start me again on that Encylopedia!
[/quote]

Gosh, JGC, perhaps your concern with the Encyclopedia is a tad misplaced. After all, while I agree that its entry on Apostolic Succession was all wet, it is not obvious to me that it is such a bad source for information on (e.g.) Phillipine Duchesne or the Roman Curia. In any case, my point was that, even granting the pro-western bias of the encyclopedia, one still finds the encyclopedia speaking of original sin in terms that the east might fight more amenable, thus indicating that the idea that the west conceives of original sin without imputing Adam’s guilt to babies is not a mere ecumenical revision, but an understanding with pre-Vatican II roots.

In other words, I am using the encyclopedia simply as a historic tool, to establish what mainstream Roman Catholics thought about original sin back in the early part of the XX century. Surely this is not an objectionable recourse to the encyclopedia?


#8

[quote=GrzeszDeL]Gosh, JGC, perhaps your concern with the Encyclopedia is a tad misplaced. After all, while I agree that its entry on Apostolic Succession was all wet, it is not obvious to me that it is such a bad source for information on (e.g.) Phillipine Duchesne or the Roman Curia. In any case, my point was that, even granting the pro-western bias of the encyclopedia, one still finds the encyclopedia speaking of original sin in terms that the east might fight more amenable, thus indicating that the idea that the west conceives of original sin without imputing Adam’s guilt to babies is not a mere ecumenical revision, but an understanding with pre-Vatican II roots.

In other words, I am using the encyclopedia simply as a historic tool, to establish what mainstream Roman Catholics thought about original sin back in the early part of the XX century. Surely this is not an objectionable recourse to the encyclopedia?
[/quote]

I don’t know if you have seen any of my posts re this or the thread I started on it in the misc forum, the use of it for historical reference at that point in time is fine, it’s the indiscriminate use by some as if it is current teaching given its rather haughty / uncharitable tone and attitude that I have a problem with!

Apologies if any offence caused, the red mist descends at the mention of its name now!:o


#9

Thank you everyone for your replies. I would love to hear from anyone else who has input.


#10

[quote=GrzeszDeL]Wait a second, that is not what the catechism says:

I am pretty sure that this idea that we Catholics believe in inheritted guilt is something that some Orthodox polemicist invented and we have taken the bait and treated it as if we really do believe thusly. I am not at all convinced that the western and eastern understandings of original sin are really all that different. Even the Catholic Encyclopedia, which as others have pointed out, proceeds from a rather western-triumphalist starting point and shows no interest in being conciliatory towards eastern thinkers, is still quick to point out that “in a child original sin is distinct from the fault of Adam.”
[/quote]

If I am wrong then I retract what I said, I gues I may have fallen for the bait. It kind of releaves me a little because I did not like that idea that we would recieve the guilt for the sin of Adam. That was the only thing I did not like.


#11

[quote=e-catholic]Thank you everyone for your replies. I would love to hear from anyone else who has input.
[/quote]

I’ve been through this with GrzeszDeL on the Immaculate Conception thread and have shown, sorry Jimmy, that the RCC doctrine of Original Sin is still as it’s been since Augustine’s influence on the Church in the West, link here:

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=10930

The CCC makes it clear that the Councils of Trent, Florence, Orange and teachings of Augustine on this etc. are still in force, but you’ll need to read the small print for some of this.

There does seem to be a deliberate change of emphasis since Pope Paul VI to incorporate the Orthodox views, however, this emphasis comes across as disingenuous since the original doctrine is still in complete force.

It is hardly conducive to good relations with other Christians, the Orthodox especially, to create a situation which gives rise to such confusion and upset in discussions such as these.

Under the terms of your ‘contract’ with the RCC you are required to give complete submission of will and intellect to these doctrines on faith and morals from the Pope and magesterium, the infallible teaching authority, even if you don’t have belief in them.

This RCC doctrine on Original Sin has coloured the perception of other Churches in the West and their belief in it is detrimental especially to the Orthodox in countries they send their evangelising teams, and, that includes the RCC which continues to proselytise its dogmas to the Orthodox. A bit more honesty from your Popes and magesterium wouldn’t come amiss here, the CCC from which GrzeszDeL takes his argument appears to be designed to create the wrong impression.


#12

[quote=Myhrr]The CCC makes it clear that the Councils of Trent, Florence, Orange and teachings of Augustine on this etc. are still in force, but you’ll need to read the small print for some of this.
[/quote]

Given that the Catechism also gives an explanation of the doctrine which does not jibe with your spin on it, would this not indicate that perhaps you are misreading Trent, Florence, etc? Incidentally, I am not sure that we might say that the canons of Orange are “in force.” Orange is simply a local council and is thus pretty low down the magisterial force scale. The teachings of Trent & Florence, however, are quite definitely irrevocably binding.

There does seem to be a deliberate change of emphasis since Pope Paul VI to incorporate the Orthodox views, however, this emphasis comes across as disingenuous since the original doctrine is still in complete force.

It is hardly conducive to good relations with other Christians, the Orthodox especially, to create a situation which gives rise to such confusion and upset in discussions such as these.

Under the terms of your ‘contract’ with the RCC you are required to give complete submission of will and intellect to these doctrines on faith and morals from the Pope and magesterium, the infallible teaching authority, even if you don’t have belief in them.

The “original doctrine” is in no wise meaningfully different from the formulation which Paul VI (or Pius XII for that matter) gives. You have yet to bring forward any magisterial documention which makes clear that (and I include the texts which you cited on the Immaculate Conception thread when I say that). There is nothing more than the work of some speculative theologians which holds that “original sin” means an actual culpable fault inherited by virtue of our descent from Adam. The magisterial documents which you cited most definitely do not define “original sin” as a positive fault. The “original sin” from which we must be “cleansed” is a mere privation.


#13

[quote=GrzeszDeL]Given that the Catechism also gives an explanation of the doctrine which does not jibe with your spin on it, would this not indicate that perhaps you are misreading Trent, Florence, etc? Incidentally, I am not sure that we might say that the canons of Orange are “in force.” Orange is simply a local council and is thus pretty low down the magisterial force scale. The teachings of Trent & Florence, however, are quite definitely irrevocably binding.
[/quote]

And I’m saying that is a direct influence from Paul VI, but as Pope John Paul II said, in the piece I quoted from, the councils of Trent etc need to be read and understood as confirming the basic doctrine of Original Sin as taught by the RCC, that it is an inherited guilt, a positive movement into a state of sinfulness from a state of grace. This is the RCC doctrine, you might not like it, but JPII answers you there also, which I carefully included in my extract from his teaching on this.

The “original doctrine” is in no wise meaningfully different from the formulation which Paul VI (or Pius XII for that matter) gives. You have yet to bring forward any magisterial documention which makes clear that (and I include the texts which you cited on the Immaculate Conception thread when I say that). There is nothing more than the work of some speculative theologians which holds that “original sin” means an actual culpable fault inherited by virtue of our descent from Adam. The magisterial documents which you cited most definitely do not define “original sin” as a positive fault. The “original sin” from which we must be “cleansed” is a mere privation.

Are you saying that Humani Generis and Pope John PauI II’s exposition on Original sin are not magesterium documents?

Please read my replies more carefully, Pope John Paul II has gone to great lengths to explain this teaching as being time-honoured and by revelation as held by your Church.

Both sources I gave were official teachings of the Original Sin doctrine against speculative theologians, such as yourself I might add…

I’ve already given an example from the CCC which shows the “Pope and magesterium’s teaching” confirms the acceptance of Orange. From Post 20 of :The Immaculate Conception: An Eastern Doctrine:

CCC vatican.va/archive/catechism/p1s2c1p7.htm

406 The Church’s teaching on the transmission of original sin was articulated more precisely in the fifth century, especially under the impulse of St. Augustine’s reflections against Pelagianism, and in the sixteenth century, in opposition to the Protestant Reformation. … The Church pronounced on the meaning of the data of Revelation on original sin especially at the second Council of Orange (529)296 and at the Council of Trent (1546).297


#14

Humani Generis Pope Pius XII

“Now it is in no way apparent how such an opinion [as your speculative one] can be reconciled with that which the sources of revealed truth and the documents of the **Teaching Authority of the Church **propose with regard to original sin, which proceeds from a sin actually committed by an individual Adam and which through generation is passed on to all and is in everyone as his own.”[12]

  1. Cfr. Rom., V, 12-19, Conc. Trid., sess, V, can. 1-4.

“Nor is this all. Disregarding the Council of Trent, some speculative theologians] pervert the very concept of original sin, along with the concept of sin in general which is] as an offense against God, as well as the idea of satisfaction performed for us by Christ.”

ewtn.com/library/ENCYC/P12HUMAN.HTM

From the Summary of the Catechis on Original Sin given by Pope Paul II

II
2. The fact underlying the descriptive forms that really matters is of a moral nature and is imprinted in the very roots of the human spirit. It gives rise to a fundamental change in the human condition. Man is driven forth from the state of original justice and finds himself in a state of sinfulness—status naturae lapsae.

This is understood and taught by the RCC as a direct punishment from God for disobedience, because of God’s anger for this disobedience, it is a positive move into a state of sinfulness which is passed on by generation and is in everyone as his own inherited guilt.

John Paul II

It is a state in which sin exists and is marked by an inclination to sin. From that moment the whole history of humanity will be burdened by this state. In fact, the first human being (man and woman) received sanctifying grace from God not only for himself but as the founder of the human family for all his descendants. Therefore, through sin which set man in conflict with God, he forfeited grace (he fell into disgrace) even in regard to the inheritance for his descendants.

The world according to these infallible teachings is in a state of sinfulness, without grace. You’ll need to understand this basic concept before you read anything else describing Original Sin originating from the definitive doctrines of the RCC.

continued

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#15

Continued

John Paul II

IV

  1. Man in the beginning (in the state of original justice) spoke to the Creator with friendship and confidence in the whole truth of his spiritual/corporeal being, created in God’s image but he now has lost the basis of that friendship and covenant. He has lost the grace of sharing in God’s life: the good of belonging to him in the holiness of the original relationship of subordination and sonship. But sin has immediately made its presence felt in the existence and the whole comportment of the man and the woman: shame for their transgression and the consequent condition as sinners and therefore fear of God.

[size=2]This is the situation as your Church teaches, and as Pope Pius XII noted it is also speculative theology to deny Christ’s satisfaction as the saving of humanity from this utter state of sin. You might find yourself with sympathy for the more orthodox arguments of Pelagius… [/size]

Pope John Paul II

[size=2]4. The biblical texts on the universality and hereditary nature of sin as through “congenital” in nature in the state in which everyone receives it at the moment of conception from one’s parents, lead us to examine more directly the Catholic teaching on original sin. (Also quoted: Ps 50, Rom 3:9, 19; Eph 2:3)
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[size=2]Confirms the RCC doctrine as below, please note the local council Orange 329 is again given as is the Synod of Carthage 418, this is from your Infallible Teaching Authority of the Magesterium.[/size]
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Pope John Paul II
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[size=2]It is a case of a truth transmitted implicitly in the church’s teaching from the very beginning which became a formal declaration of the Magisterium in the XV Synod of Carthage in 418 and the Synod of Orange in 329, principally against the errors of Pelagius (DS 222-223; 371-372). Later, during the period of the Reformation, this truth was solemnly formulated by the Council of Trent in 1546 (DS 1510-1516). The Tridentine Decree on original sin expresses this truth in the precise form in which it is the object of faith and of the church’s teaching. We can therefore, refer to this Decree for the essential content of the Catholic dogma on this point.[/size]

V

  1. The Council of Trent solemnly expressed the Church’s faith concerning original sin. In the previous catechesis we considered that Council’s teaching in regard to the personal sin of our first parents. Now we wish to reflect on what the council says about the consequences of that sin for humanity.

  2. In this regard, the Tridentine Decree states first of all: Adam’s sin has passed to all his descendants, that is to all men and women as descendants of our first parents and their heirs in human nature already deprived of God’s friendship.

  • From:

SUMMARY OF CATECHESIS ON ORIGINAL SIN
Pope John Paul II

**
ewtn.com/library/PAPALDOC/JP2ORSIN.HTM**
**

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#16

[left]

posted by **Myhrr **[/left]
[left]Under the terms of your ‘contract’ with the RCC

[/left]
[left]My contract with the RCC? My ‘contract’ if you want to call it that is with Christ. And Christ made it clear that He wished us to submit to the authority of the Church. Since Christ is the church (Col 1:18), I submit my will to Christ. [/left]
[left] [/left]
[left]Carry on with discussion of original sin. [/left]


#17

Good for you. However, the RCC claims that its bishop of Rome is the head of the Church in place of Christ, I was referring to that particular ‘contract’.

This is clearly seen in RCC confirmation as being the connection between the confirmed and the bishop confirming and through that to the RCC, since his validity as a bishop of the RCC is only through obedience to the Pope who claims to be the head of the Church.

Are you saying that you’ve by-passed this and gone direct to Christ for authority?


#18

Myhrr,
Original sin is supposed to be the topic. I tried to start a new thread and lost all my work:banghead: But if you wish to continue the discussion on Is the pope the head of the church or is Christ? (Or some such title), we can continue this discussion if you wish.

posted by GrzeszDeL
I am pretty sure that this idea that we Catholics believe in inheritted guilt is something that some Orthodox polemicist invented and we have taken the bait and treated it as if we really do believe thusly. I am not at all convinced that the western and eastern understandings of original sin are really all that different.

I believe the discussion was whether or not this is actually true or not, of which I think GrzeszDeL is much more qualified to answer your posts than I can even come close to.


#19

Some members of the Orthodox Church will tell you that the Orthodox don’t believe in original sin. If you run into that, ask if the Orthodox teach that all men and women are immaculately conceived.

Indeed, in guilt I was born, and in sin my mother conceived me.
Psalm 51:7 (New American Bible)

Footnote to Psalm 51, 7: The penitent offers the fact of his innate sinfulness partly as a mitigating circumstance and partly as a humble acknowledgment of his profound corruption. Catholic tradition sees in this passage a foreshadowing of the basic Christian doctrine of original sin, which was not clearly revealed before the time of Christ. Cf Rom 5, 12-19; Eph 2, 3 [indent]Rom 5, 12-19: Therefore, just as through one person sin entered the world, and through sin, death, and thus death came to all, inasmuch as all sinned – for up to the time of the law, sin was in the world, though sin is not accounted when there is no law. But death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who did not sin after the pattern of the trespass of Adam, who is the type of the one who was to come. But the gift is not like the transgression. For if by that one person’s transgression the many died, how much more did the grace of God and the gracious gift of the one person Jesus Christ overflow for the many. And the gift is not like the result of the one person’s sinning. For after one sin there was the judgment that brought condemnation; but the gift, after many transgressions, brought acquittal. For if, by the transgression of one person, death came to reign through that one, how much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of justification come to reign in life through the one person Jesus Christ. In conclusion, just as through one transgression condemnation came upon all, so through one righteous act acquittal and life came to all. For just as through the disobedience of one person the many were made sinners, so through the obedience of one the many will be made righteous.

Eph 2, 3: All of us once lived among them in the desires of our flesh, following the wishes of the flesh and the impulses, and we were by nature children of wrath, like the rest.
[/INDENT]


#20

[quote=MariaG]Myhrr,
Original sin is supposed to be the topic. I tried to start a new thread and lost all my work:banghead: But if you wish to continue the discussion on Is the pope the head of the church or is Christ? (Or some such title), we can continue this discussion if you wish.

I believe the discussion was whether or not this is actually true or not, of which I think GrzeszDeL is much more qualified to answer your posts than I can even come close to.
[/quote]

I meant to say my question was an aside, not wanting to detract from the subject, but I was quite taken with your description so if you do continue this I’d be interested.

GrzeszDeL informed me that he would be away from his computer for a week and unable to reply to my reply, so we’ll have to wait for his response.


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