Here is Romanides' idea, first resumed, then quoted:
"Romanides sees St Augustine as the great antagonist of Orthodox thought. Romanides claims that, although he was a saint, Augustine did not have theoria. Many of his theological conclusions, Romanides says, appear not to come from experiencing God and writing about his experiences of God; rather, they appear to be the result of philosophical or logical speculation and conjecture.[note 3] Hence, Augustine is still revered as a saint, but, according to Romanides, does not qualify as a theologian in the Eastern Orthodox church."
John Romanides : [discussion of saint] Augustine of Hippo
Looking up "note 3":
 A basic characteristic of the Frankish scholastic method, mislead by Augustinian Platonism and Thomistic Aristotelianism, had been its naive confidence in the objective existence of things rationally speculated about. By following Augustine, the Franks substituted the patristic concern for spiritual observation, (which they had found firmly established in Gaul when they first conquered the area) with a fascination for metaphysics. They did not suspect that such speculations had foundations neither in created nor in spiritual reality. No one would today accept as true what is not empirically observable, or at least verifiable by inference, from an attested effect. So it is with patristic theology. Dialectical speculation about God and the Incarnation as such are rejected. Only those things which can be tested by the experience of the grace of God in the heart are to be accepted. "Be not carried about by divers and strange teachings. For it is good that the heart be confirmed by grace," a passage from Hebrews 13.9, quoted by the Fathers to this effect.
Looking up "7":
FRANKS, ROMANS, FEUDALISM, AND DOCTRINE/EMPIRICAL THEOLOGY VERSUS SPECULATIVE THEOLOGY Father John S. Romanides
Now, what is the central problem?
"No one would today accept as true what is not empirically observable, or at least verifiable by inference, from an attested effect."
And when exactly did St Augustine or St Thomas Aquinas differ from this method, either the object of knowledge is seen, heard, smelled, tasted, felt, or it is inferred from sth other which is so and which is effect of it?
By the way, verifying that the directly verified "x" is indeed effect of the inferred "y" is a bit trickier than Romanides imagined.
What if it is instead the effect of "z" which has not yet been proposed as inference?
What if it is instead the effect of "w" which is also directly verified, but not linked to the directly verified "x" in the common paradigm?
Well, how exactly do we figure out which inferrences are valid and which aren't?
By being good scholastics, which is precisely what Romanides opted out from. What he rejected as a Frankish and ultimately Augustinian aberration.
So, scholastically speaking, is there something wrong with the sentence quoted already twice which I now quote a third time?
"No one would today accept as true what is not empirically observable, or at least verifiable by inference, from an attested effect."
Yes, there is. "No one would today accept as true" - not only is the "no one" part presented as a fact, when probably it is not, but also "today" is presented as a reliable criterium. What died Owen Barfield (an esotoric, but on at least one item less heterodox than Romanides) call this kind of attitude? "Chronological snobbery". Did this attitude of Barfield's bear fruit? Yes, C. S. Lewis' conversion to Christianity (incomplete since he didn't become a Catholic) would have been impeded indefinitely, if he had not learned from Owen Barfield that Chronological snobbery is wrong. And C. S. Lewis can in turn give us mor reliable information than Romanides about the Latin West, whether Frankish or Anglo-Saxon. Including on St. Thomas Aquinas. Or on Bishop Tempier.
Hans Georg Lundahl
St. Cecily, Virgin and Martyr
"And C. S. Lewis can in turn give us mor reliable information than Romanides"
Shall be :
"And C. S. Lewis can in turn give us more reliable information than Romanides"
I cannot agree upon this argument that Romanides is wrong. The principle of verification is valid and Orthodox Xtianity is founded on this principle. Otherwise, one would have to accept the same premise that Eunomius of Cyzicus et al. worked on. The Hypostatic nature of the Trinity makes it impossible to say anything about it unless verified. This is what Hypostasis means, some that is inexhaustible by descriptive predicates. Aquinas apparently did not accept this since for him 'sermon de deo' depends on predicable discourse. Thus it turns out that deus is predicative in nature. 'These' is as well. But with the Divine Hypostases we are at a level beyond predicable discourse, beyond linguistic being altogether. In Augustine, admittedly, there is a prelapsarian level where this is true. But in the post-lapsarian situation, signs signify in a different way. Aquinas wanted to include that level of signification to embrace the consecrated hearsay of religion. Romanides, rightly regards religion as a dis-ease. Without cure of this dis-eased state, the soul is unable to enter the process of theosis which St. Athanasius tells us motivates the Incarnation. Frankish Xtianity does not accept theosis and the concept of the Divine Energies which underlie it. It is in fact a new religion, whose effect has even influenced people calling themselves orthodox. E.g., the patriarchs of Constantinople since Mellitus and his successor Athenogoras. Why a genuine Orthodox Xian would commune in churches under this patriarchate is a mystery. You might as well go whole hog and communicate in auditoria of the Franco-Roman sect. Romanises was dealing with this problem along with other thinkers like Photios Kontaglou, who though not a theologian understood well the principle of Romaiosyne with which Romanies was operating. Xtianity is a cure of the disease of the old law, which of necessity moved on a general and universal level, which excluded countenancing of Hypostatic reality—the reality of concrete facts and the individual. These latter can only be countenanced ontologically after verification. Reasoning and hearsay is insufficient. The Hypostatic reality cannot be captured by a name, even the name 'agents' (unbegotten) as Eumonius and Aetius believed. As Gregory of Nysa tells us, Eunomius believed that when one knows the referent of the name 'agenetos' one knows God as He knows Himself. Augustine through no fault of his own did not understand the Greek term 'hypostasis.' in De Trinitate he admits as much. The Frankish theologians also being ignorant of Greek ignored this incapacity on his part. But this ignorance explains much, even his radical differentiation between pre and postlapsarian semiotics and its disastrous effect. For instead of verifying the nature of divine reality as has been done by great saints like St. Gregory Palamas, he had to resort to a rational account, a story, if you will, which ended up in Frankish theology as an answer to the question Cur Deus Homo? It was a question already answered in St. Athanasius De Incarnatione that opened the door to the glorification of the saints beyond the moral heroes of Frankish sectarianism.
"The principle of verification is valid"
The problem in this is, how do you prove scholasticism did not consider it so?
Here is the Summa Theologica in English:
Here are several works by St. Thomas Aquinas in Latin (supposing you are fully literate):
S. THOMAE DE AQUINO
Now, you show me from here WHERE exactly in his work St. Thomas is failing the principle of verification?
Because, if you don't, you have repeated a glib accusation by invoking a principle your adversary may not have violated.
APPLY your principle of verification to what Romanides said of St. Thomas, please!
"Frankish Xtianity does not accept theosis"
False. Look up what Sanctifying grace means.
"and the concept of the Divine Energies which underlie it"
The concept of uncreated energies is to Latin Christianity, since AD 400, somewhat suspect of the Priscillianist heresy.
"... This one God and one Trinity is of divine substance. The Father is not the Son, but hath a Son who is not tha Father. The Son is not the Father but the Son of God of the nature of the Father. There is also the Holy Ghost, who himself* is neither Father nor Son, but proceeding from the Father and the Son. Therefore is unborn the Father, born the Son, the Paraclete not born but proceeding from the Father and the Son. ... Beyond this we believe no nature to be divine, whether angels whether spirits, whether of some virtue*** that would be believed to be God. ...
My own translation available here of a creed issued in AD 400 by First Council of Toledo (while St Martin was alive, and well before either Franks or Visigoths invated Roman Empire or major parts of it). The Latin original with a Spanish translation (copied to my page are available on the page I link to on it, namely here:
Concilio de Toledo I
This is of course enough to shut up the plappering of Romanides on filioque not being popular before Franks.
I am thinking that you follow the religion of the Franks, Swabians, Saxons, Goths, etc. and it is in your bones. Far be it from me to dissuade from your ancestral beliefs. Aidan Nichols OP in Light from the East experiences difficulty with Romanides as well.
But I cannot say that such beliefs are consonant with Christianity, at least, as I know it. "Sanctifying grace'≠'theosis.'
I do not know whether you are familiar with David Bradshaw's Aristotle East & West. Particularly in the chapter on Palamas & Aquinas Bradshaw has presented an argument for why your equation of the two lacks merit. Orthodox distinguish within theotic (theotes. cf. St. Pau Romans 1:20; cf. Col. 2:9) distinction between the unseen ground (theotēs=aorata) of divinity, also called 'ousia' and the divine Enereiai, unfolding in a timeless fashion from that ground and proceeding through the Hypostatic to schetic reality. The Divine realm in other words is music or theotic, hypostatic and schetic or relational, given the nomen divinum 'Immanu-El' or God with us, where 'with' signifies a relation. So much is summed up in St. John of Damascus On the Orthodox Faith. 'Error!' say the Franks for the divine nature is simple. 'No error!' say the Orthodox for the laws of logic do not concern the divine realm, which transcends them. Thus we are engaging in a dialogue of the deaf. After all, the laws of logic in no way prevent one from admitting that the Divine Ousia comprises energeiai, even while being simple.
The Visigoths entered in 376 AD and the influence of the Germanic tribes remained until the death of St. Boniface in AD 754. Meanwhile, the Germanization or perhaps you would prefer to say the in-culturalization got underway and was substantially complete by the eleventh century. You are assuming a hermeneutic continuity; whereas what is at issue is whether there is a break. I maintain that there is a break once the Germanic tribes come on the scene. Romanides does too. The result was in fact a new religion fashioned on the myth of continuity. It is the same myth of continuity proposed by Pope Benedict XV between pre-Vatican 2 Frankism and post-Vatican 2 Frankism. That break was underway once the King of the Franks was murdered in 1789 an event, which caused the disappearance of any appearance of a government continuous with the so-called Western Roman empire. I mean the rise of Napoleon. There is a direct line in this break to Vatican 1 and 2. Pope Benedict XV created the fanstasy that, although his sect failed to accept the violence of the terror that ensued in 1789, it embraced the American Revolution of 1776. Any reader of Simon Schama's remarkable book Citizen knows that 1789 and 1776 are one in the same phenomenon. There is a hermeneutic rupture between Frankish Xtianity before those events and after. Vatican 2 was simply the end result. Similarly, the Council of Florence and its rejection by the Orthodox was the end result of successive hermeneutic breaks, which had occured centuries before. There is no continuity between Frankish Xtianity and Ancient Xtianity of the seven œcumenical councils. Once a thought is set down in writing it is free from its original intention and can be construed in ways different from that intention.
That is the reason Orthodoxy does not base itself on texts, pace Romanides. After all, as St. John Chrysostom tells us in his commentary on Matthew, when the Apostles were sent forth, they did not go out with any scriptural texts at all, except those written on the fleshy tablets of their hearts. Orthodoxy Christianity rests upon the divine therapeia of the heart, not the sickness of religion. Frankish Xtianity is a religion and is as Romanides says, 'a neuro-biological disease.' This is plain. All we have to do is read the daily newspapers relating the events of the Francisan pontificate. They simply repeat what we have known for the past half century. By their fruit, ye shall know them.
"between the unseen ground (theotēs=aorata) of divinity, also called 'ousia' and the divine Enereiai, unfolding in a timeless fashion from that ground and proceeding through the Hypostatic to schetic reality."
As said, since condemnation of Priscillianism in AD 400, this is suspect to Latins - well before there were Franks around.
"So much is summed up in St. John of Damascus On the Orthodox Faith."
Would you mind giving reference?
"The Visigoths entered in 376 AD and the influence of the Germanic tribes remained until the death of St. Boniface in AD 754."
Let's check the reference, shall we?
"The Visigoths emerged from earlier Gothic groups (possibly the Thervingi) who had invaded the Roman Empire beginning in 376 and had defeated the Romans at the Battle of Adrianople in 378."
Adrianople is far closer to Constantinople than to Toledo, right?
"The Visigoths first settled in southern Gaul as foederati to the Romans – a relationship established in 418. However, they soon fell out with their Roman hosts (for reasons that are now obscure) and established their own kingdom with its capital at Toulouse. They next extended their authority into Hispania at the expense of the Suebi and Vandals."
So, this was still after First Council of Toledo.
"I maintain that there is a break once the Germanic tribes come on the scene. Romanides does too. The result was in fact a new religion fashioned on the myth of continuity. It is the same myth of continuity proposed by Pope Benedict XV between pre-Vatican 2 Frankism and post-Vatican 2 Frankism."
You have a problem. While we trads can pinpoint a break that Ratzinger choses to deny, you can't pinpoint the break you pretend (with Romanides) happened.
Btw, antipope Ratzinger is called "Benedict XVI" (16!) by those accepting him as Pope or Pope Emeritus.
Benedict XV was elected after outbreak of World War in 1914.
"Any reader of Simon Schama's remarkable book Citizen knows that 1789 and 1776 are one in the same phenomenon."
That is possible and it is one possible ground on which to take issue with Vatican II.
Another one is saying 1776 may have had a bad ideology, much of it, but did incidental good to Catholics (who in England were not emancipated to 1830).
"Similarly, the Council of Florence and its rejection by the Orthodox was the end result of successive hermeneutic breaks, which had occured centuries before."
On one of the sides, yes.
You claim the chaos of Germanic tribes invading caused one ... we can as easily claim Iconoclasm did, from which the West was largely spared.
"Once a thought is set down in writing it is free from its original intention and can be construed in ways different from that intention."
A man can intend a thought in one way not foreseeing other applications, but God who knows all can't.
Therefore, God can arrange so that texts are perfectly fine in whatever direction you apply them. He's the one author who can do so.
"After all, as St. John Chrysostom tells us in his commentary on Matthew, when the Apostles were sent forth, they did not go out with any scriptural texts at all, except those written on the fleshy tablets of their hearts."
The Gospel of St Matthew was not written yet (and it was the first writing of NT) and the Torah was readily available whereever they went in the Holy Land. AND Our Lord had tought them how to read it.
"Orthodoxy Christianity rests upon the divine therapeia of the heart, not the sickness of religion."
Thank you, I think I have already heard more than enough Orthodox brag about having health.
"Frankish Xtianity is a religion and is as Romanides says, 'a neuro-biological disease.' This is plain."
What is plain is that Romanides abused the category of disease, which is a medical concept, in order to take on his religious adversaries, from his religious point of view, which (not unlike some Evangelicals) denies being a religion.
"All we have to do is read the daily newspapers relating the events of the Francisan pontificate. They simply repeat what we have known for the past half century. By their fruit, ye shall know them."
Are you calling Bergoglio a Frank or an heir of St Thomas Aquinas? I'm not. Also not calling him either Jesuit or Pope.
Its okay. You're right
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