Thursday, February 27, 2020

Mysticism (1 of 3)

By Archbishop Anastasios of Tirana, Durrës and All Albania

Definition – Characteristics

The purpose of mysticism is an experiential, existential quest, direct relationship and spiritual union with God or the divine. This is sought with concentration, prayer, dispassion, contemplation and ecstasy. Mysticism is usually the intuitive element in the religious experience and manifests itself in almost all religions, from the primitive to the most highly-developed. Sometimes it springs up in the stony regions of external piety, giving fresh impetus to religious sentiment.

Because of the variety of forms it has assumed in the history of religions and the contradictory features it has been imbued with, there is no generally accepted definition. As a rule, mysticism, which expresses people’s immediate relationship with and experience of the Numinous, differs from the arcane occult and from apocryphal beliefs and techniques.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Nationalism in the Conflict Between Muslims and Romans

By Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou

The relationships and conflicts between religions have been analyzed many times, particularly between Islam and Christianity. Many angles can be examined on this issue, but in this article I would like to focus on the catalytic importance of nationalism in the conflict between Islam and Romiosini.

Monday, January 6, 2020

The Muslim Woman Who Dove To Retrieve the Holy Cross

The following event was reported in the Turkish media in February of 2003.

Nick Magginas
February 2003
Hurriyet Daily

This years Theophany in Constantinople had a surprise to it. The incident occurred in the historic suburb of the City called Yesilkoy, in the area of the airport. In this suburb the Treaty of San Stefano (03/03/1878) was signed between the Ottoman Empire and Russia.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Was John Chrysostom an Anti-Semite?

The Protection of Christians from Judaism

By Stylianos Papadopoulos

Like almost all ecclesiastical writers, Chrysostom also wrote about the Jews. Those who wrote against the Jews before Chrysostom were primarily the apologist Apelles (whose text was lost), Justin (Dialogue With Trypho), Tertullian and Pseudo-Cyprian. Later Philastrius of Brescia wrote about them and more occasionally by Eusebius of Caesarea, Athanasius the Great and the Cappadocian Fathers. The other writers, his predecessors and his contemporaries, only occasionally referred to the Jews with judgments.

Chrysostom has eight short texts, which record his homilies to the flock of Antioch in the years 386 or 387. Often these texts contain harsh expressions about the Jews and, above all, a critique of their ceremonies and customs, and of their religious behavior during the days of the Old Testament, the New Testament, and the Church. Of course, his criticism is not more severe than that of the Prophets and Christ himself against the Jews. But his own criticism has prompted a fierce reaction from older and contemporary writers, many of whom attribute to Chrysostom a harsh anti-Semitism, which allegedly influenced Christian writers from the fifth century onward.

Thursday, November 7, 2019

Why Hasn't the Tomb of Mehmed the Conqueror Been Opened?

By Nikos Heiladakis

While the cinematic success of Fatih 1453 has broken all records for movie ticket sales in Turkey, which has been blamed even by Turkish historians for major historical inaccuracies, once again the issue of Mehmed the Conqueror's tomb and all the possible mysteries hidden there have entered into public debate, which for many is a big taboo for Turkey's very existence.

In an important interview with the Turkish daily Hurriyet on April 15, 2012, Turkish writer Ahmet Ümit presented his new book, To Kill the Sultan, a historical novel about the life of Mehmed the Conqueror. He states that there is a need to finally open his grave in order to investigate exactly what happened at his death. According to the author of the work, To Kill the Sultan, Mehmed the Conqueror probably did not die naturally but was poisoned. This fact is of great importance to Ahmet Ümit because if it proves to be the case, then, as the Turkish author argued, a major taboo will collapse Turkey's very existence. Indeed, Ahmet Ümit called Fatih's poisoning a "historical stain" and did not hesitate to even request a histological examination to determine the true cause of his death.