\What are the Similiarities and Differences in Western and Eastern Theology?

Greetings to those posting and or reading this thread,

Perhaps the best question is to ask.

What councils are considered to be ecumenical Churches by the Catholic Church? A list would be helpful.

Once that list is obtained, Why are these councils not considered ecumenical by the Orthodox Church? Do the Eastern Churches consider these Ecumenical councils as Ecumenical.

God Bless,
Anathama Sit

Anethema Sit, the word i didn’t remember last night is Theosis and not deification.

It means that we can come to share in the energies of God but not the essence of God. Latin Catholics teach this too but emphasise it less.
We can never become God or Gods like the Mormons teach.

Greetings Andrewstx,

Ahhh yes I ran into that word for the first time in the Face of God. I like the book and hope to start resuming it later today.

Do you mind if I add you as a friend?

God Bless,
Anathama Sit


Very well done, every word! While I share only an excerpt of your full post here, that was solely for brevity and not for lack of agreement or acclaim WRT the other parts of your response.

Again, nicely put!

Yes, AS, as I had shared with you privately at one point, Theosis is at the heart of Eastern religious life.

Glad to see you are progressing in your read of +Kyr Raya’s Face of God. He explains it all with great inspiration!

Please do.

Now on councils, Orthodox would say that there have been no Ecumenical Councils since the church was divided since the great schism. The idea being that the west by itself cannot be Ecumenical since ecumenical means universal.

I’m sure that is clear as mud, and I NEVER intend to offend anyone, it’s justn this *#%$ stroke I had that prevents me from expressing myself clearly.

So…appologies to all.

Greetings ByzCathCantor,

There are some questions about the book that I would like to ask off thread, I just wanted to ask about them because they seem to be stated wierdly in the book and I need an Eastern Catholic to show me what exactly he is saying.

I will be PM’ing you one of these days with the questions if you don’t mind.

Theosis - now correct me if I am wrong, this does not say that all of the world will be redeemed to God even those who died in mortal sin and or the devil and evil spirits? How does this work with Theosis?

God Bless,
Anathama Sit

In one word, Theosis, through which we aim to restore ourselves to our original state in creation, made in God’s image and likeness (when all else fails, start at the beginning - Genesis 1).


Greetings Andrewstx,

No this is succinctly put and very simply put. Right now I need simple and succint replies, lest I get confused and I go and cower back in my corner until I can get things sorted out again. :smiley:

You guys have been amazing. Thank you.

God Bless,
Anathama Sit

No, Theosis is not an answer but a process, the individual journey in faith by which we strive to become more like God and restore ourselves to our original state in creation, that is, to more perfectly reflect that we were created in God’s image and likeness.

If that were true, the Catholic Church wouldn’t hold Nicea to be ecumenical. :wink:

I don’t have a list, but the reason the Orthodox Church wasn’t involved is we either repudiated them outright (Florence), or we weren’t involved on any level (Vatican II). The list of ones that had Orthodox involvement which were repudiated is far shorter than the list of councils in which we had no involvement.

Greetings ByzCathCantor,

Thanks for the straigthening out on Theosis. I like this, it’s like a breath of fresh air.

God Bless,
Anathama Sit

Historically at least the first seven Councils that are accepted as ecumenical by both Catholics and Orthodox were NOT called by the Pope and were NOT presided over by him. In fact, Nicaea I, which formed the “first draft” of the Creed that both Catholics and Orthodox recite at Mass/Divine Liturgy, wasn’t even called by a religious authority. It was called by the Emperor Constantine. The original seven Councils likewise not held in Rome, but in the East because the issues being resolved were problems that arose in the East. The Pope of Rome was not even present at those Councils. That being said, he did send delegates. The Pope’s approval of the Council was seen as necessary, not because it is his job to put the final stamp of approval on the decrees of a Council, but because without him the College of Apostles would be incomplete, just as without the Patriarch of Antioch, or Jerusalem, or Constantinople, etc., the College of Apostles is incomplete.

So the standard that the Pope alone may call and/or preside over an Ecumenical Council is simply historically false.

This is a place we would disagree. The approval of the pope was not seen as necessary.

Ooooo!!! If you want to talk about Kyr Raya and/or his book “Face of God,” do feel free to contact me as well. Kyr Raya is one of my personal heroes, and “Face of God” is one of my all-time favorite books. :thumbsup:

Greetings Phillip Rolfes,

I will remember that as well. Perhaps I should start a thread to ask questions, I don’t want any debating in that thread though.

You guys have all been good about NOT debating. Thank you.

God Bless,
Anathama Sit

Why would the approval of the Pope not be necessary in order for a Council to be Ecumenical? As head of one of the original five Patriarchates, I would believe that his approval would be every bit as necessary as, say, the approval of His All Holiness the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople.

Again, with regards to Councils, I believe the most fundamental question should not be whether or not a Council is Ecumenical, but whether or not it is “orthodox,” i.e. does not contain error. Even Roman theologians are not in agreement on what makes a Council ecumenical, and Pope Paul VI himself referred to the 14 post-Schism Councils as “General Synods of the West.” Eastern (Byzantine) Catholics do not celebrate these Councils because, frankly, the East was not involved (except in a few, such as Lyons, Florence, Vatican I, and Vatican II). Liturgically the Byzantine East only venerates the first seven Councils. “As we pray, so we believe,” as the saying goes. :shrug: But Eastern Catholics do recognize the orthodoxy of the 14 “General Synods of the West.”

Nine_Two, although you are correct that the Orthodox did not participate in Vatican II, it would be wrong to assume that Orthodox representatives were not present. They were just not permitted to participate in the proceedings. :frowning:

That being said, however, Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras did say to the Melkite Greek Catholic Patriarch, Maximos IV, that he spoke on behalf of Orthodoxy at the Council. An interesting sentiment to be sure.

But the purpose of this thread was not to discuss Councils and which are or are not ecumenical. It was to discuss the differences in Eastern and Western theology. I believe we should get that back on track, and possibly open a new thread discussing ecumenical councils. :thumbsup:

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