God Save the King! Monarchy as Ordained by God

As you all may know, things have been rather chaotic lately and there’s more than enough to talk about. 

However, today is the state funeral for Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.  So, I’m going to take the time to watch it.  

It is giving much time to think about monarchy, liberalism, and God’s will for mankind.  And so, I will write something in the near future about which government I believe I believe is best for our general happiness.  

Long story short:  given all that has been going on recently, I can honestly say that republicanism is not generating much happiness.  (I say this as a republican –and Republican–as well.)

I for one, am constantly astounded by her annual Christmas speech.  Would that a republican leader today could utter such profoundly Christian words to his nation.

If you’re interested, I highly recommend you to read each of these excellent pieces on the nature of monarchy that are written from an Orthodox perspective:  https://orthochristian.com/148251.html  and https://orthodoxreflections.com/god-save-the-king/

In the meantime, God save the King!

 

Comments

  1. She was more than the Monarch, she was also the head of the Church of England in a role similar to the Pope’s. I would suggest viewing her inauguration speech, it is filled with all the right things.

    But what happened in the next 70 years?

  2. Since the 1500’ who are the financiers of the monarchies and nations? Who really weaves the “web” of corruption, war, assassination, famine, rape, pillage, and every other evil we can think of? Of course, there is the City of London, too. A well oiled relationship exists between the monarchy and republic and the financial backers of war, famine, etc.

    • Gail Sheppard says

      Yep. Absolutely true.

      • Yep, and without the financial backing of London and New York financiers, the Bolsheviks would have fizzled out to nothing 100 years ago. It’s now well-known and documented that London was terrified of the power of Russia, therefore did what it could to help topple her.

        The queen seems like she was a nice lady, I pray for her and her family. But I find all this gushing over an English royal family to be bizarre.

        What’s the saying, when you don’t worship Christ, you’ll find anything else to worship. She oversaw the demise of Christianity in England, and the secularists call that “progress.” That’s pretty tragic, honestly.

        • “I find all this gushing over an
          English royal family to be bizarre.”

          When Germany’s BMW bought the Rolls-Royce Motors
          brand, the English humourist Alan Coren observed:
          “Rolls-Royce – the car that has always been advertised
          as being as British as the Royal Family…
          Now? It’s true!”

        • I asked an acquaintance of mine about this – a subject of His Majesty, though living in the States, and a ROCOR hieromonk to boot – and his only comment was “She watched us go from a third of the world, to third world, and said nothing. I won’t shed a tear. They were a financial monarchy that stole the throne from the Stuarts and will never be legitimate in my eyes.”

          I think his clan fought at Culloden.

          • The English were a race of free people
            until 1066 and the Battle of Hastings;
            after which William the Conqueror (aka: the Tanner’s B*stard)
            laid the edge of a sword across the collective throat of the
            Saxon Parliament and said: “I own all the land. Agree or die!”

            Thus the King of the English passed into history to be replaced
            by the King of England – of the land, not of the people
            who became mere property attached to said land.
            On this act of theft rests the sovereignty of the Crown;
            which is a peculiarly English doctrine and which, according
            to the Lord President of the Court of Session in Edinburgh
            has no counterpart in Scots Law.

            When Elizabeth succeeded her father George VI in 1952
            she adopted the style of EIIR (Elizabeth 2 Regina)
            for her Royal monogram deferring to Elizabeth Tudor.
            Said monogram began appearing on the red postboxes
            (which are cast-iron and dug nine feet into the ground)
            across the length and breadth of the country.
            While this was fine in England, Wales and Northern Ireland,
            it was not accepted by Scots to whom she was but ER,
            as Elizabeth Tudor never ruled north of the Tweed.

            When protests were made to the Palace, but ignored as being
            little more than ‘noises off-stage’ from the lesser orders,
            red pillar boxes in Scotland began to levitate themselves
            out of the ground (seemingly assisted by dynamite).

            After a rapid reappraisal of relevant matters at the Palace,
            the EIIR cypher was replaced by ER across Scotland.
            Thereafter, the red pillar boxes rested undisturbed…

          • Basil,
            Absolutely right. Not saying the Stuarts were the most upstanding people in their own right. But the throne was theirs. And after Culloden the throne committed atrocities against the Scots.

            Anyway, I’m pretty sure I know which hieromonk you’re talking about.

            • I was once informed (in a pub – Where else?)
              by Scoutmaster that only the Royal Family
              were entitled to wear the Royal Stewart Tartan.
              [According to Wikipedia: “Theoretically, this tartan should
              not be worn without the express permission of the Queen
              or now, presumably, the King].”

              My take on this (preferring the Scottish spelling) is that:
              “If they were Stewarts, they would not be there…”

              Anyway, you can buy it anywhere.
              KKK? Kilts? Karpets? Kurtains?
              Whaddaya want?

  3. Rest in peace, Queen Elizabeth II! Memory eternal!

    • Gail Sheppard says

      Memory eternal is usually reserved for the Orthodox and I doubt she will be resting in peace. As much as I enjoyed watching “The Crown,” there is a whole other side to the royal family that has been unfolding over the last couple of years, with eye witnesses, and it’s pretty horrific. Time will tell.

      • Yep! “Sir” Jimmy Savile…Say no more. Plus her father, Prince Philip, and her cousin who escorted her on her very last public appearance were all Freemasons, her cousin reportedly the highest ranking Freemason in the UK.

        She said a lot of lovely things in her Christmas addresses, but stops short of owning Christ as her “Lord and God” and the Incarnate God and Savior of the whole world. Everything she says could just as easily be said about another inspirational historic figure like Gandhi. Christ is (supposedly) our/her moral example. She has hidden the dark underbelly of the British monarchy well.

        Any monarchy that is not Orthodox (and not just nominally) is likely to be just another outpost of the satanic kingdom on earth. “Power corrupts…”

      • Oh, well. Sorry, Gail. I was just trying to be gracious.

  4. Mark E. Fisus says

    The British monarchy increased by decreasing. Real power is held by the Parliament, even the executive. You don’t want a real monarchy. The modern form of that is the Kim dynasty of North Korea. Hereditary ruler with actual absolute powers.

    • George Michalopulos says

      I gotta disagree with you there. The real problem is oligarchy and the only stop-gap against that is monarchy. Unfortunately.

      • Tim R. Mortiss says

        Ronald Syme, in “The Roman Revolution” (1939) said:
        “In all ages, whatever the form and name of government, be it monarchy, republic, or democracy, an oligarchy lurks behind the façade; and Roman history, Republican or Imperial, is the history of the governing class.”

        A monarchy without an oligarchy behind it is just one person alone on the beach, commanding at the sea to recede.

  5. Vladimir Moss did an excellent piece on the subject of whether an Orthodox Christian must be a monarchist. The long and short of it is that because of our history and the witness of the Church Fathers, Orthodox believers must at least be open to the idea of monarchy and not categorically dismissive of it. The tenor of what he presents, however, militates in favor of monarchism as the Christian form of government.

    PS: North Korea is a totalitarian, communist government. Orthodox monarchy is not totalitarian since the state is not God but the Church has a say in matters of government (symphonia). Saudi Arabia is an Islamic monarchy, very authoritarian, yet not totalitarian. Putin’s Russia, Franco’s Spain – these are approximations of Christian monarchy. Though it is right to say that England is parliamentary de facto, I would never advocate such a toothless tiger. It’s a lie – simply window dressing, nostalgia and a tourist trap. One could make the argument that any system with a strong executive is really a true constitutional monarchy in that the power of the executive is that of a head of state, albeit restrained by a separation of powers.

    • Gail Sheppard says

      RE: “. . . because of our history and the witness of the Church Fathers, Orthodox believers must at least be open to the idea of monarchy and not categorically dismissive of it.”

      Good way of putting it.

    • “Orthodox monarchy is not totalitarian since the state is not God but the Church has a say in matters of government (symphonia).”

      I’d like to point out that the Russian Czars were nearly as repressive as the Bolsheviks were. They had Siberian gulags, secret police, and heavily curtailed freedoms such as freedom of speech. It’s true the Bolshevik Red Terror cranked it up to a higher degree, but it expanded upon a system of repression that already existed. Furthermore in Russia the Czar had full control over the Church, there hadn’t been a Patriarch of Moscow for 400 years prior to the ousting of Nicholas II.

      Some people may point to the Eastern Roman emperors as example of an Orthodox monarchay. However, Roman emperors were NOT monarchs. In Rome to be called a king was considered a grievous insult after their last king had been overthrown, a tradition that remained true all the way to the end which is why they invented the title emperor. In a monarchy there’s a clearly defined dynastic succession system which limits the bloodletting and intrigue. In the Roman imperial system there was no such thing, it was always based on strength. In this regard it has far more in common with how many post colonial African or post Soviet countries were ran than the traditional European monarchy system. If you had the strength to keep the throne being usurped under you, you could. But if you couldn’t you were either assassinated or had your eyes gouged out. While this lead to many very effective emperors it also lead to constant internal instability. The whole history of the empire from the end of the “5 good emperors” onward was plagued by near constant revolts and civil wars, often leading to an implosion of Roman power such as what had occurred after the Manzikert debacle. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Byzantine_revolts_and_civil_wars

      ” One could make the argument that any system with a strong executive is really a true constitutional monarchy in that the power of the executive is that of a head of state, albeit restrained by a separation of powers.”

      This was how Germany was run after it’s unification until the end of World War 1. The Kaiser was the executive with a legislative body responsible for various things. It worked well only as long as there was an effective Kaiser, unfortunately this was not always the case. Kaiser Wilhelm II got rid of an effective Prime Minister and single handedly ensured Germany was surrounded by enemies by 1914. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_the_German_Empire

      The biggest weakness of any of these kinds of imperial systems is that they can work well when you have capable leaders (Alexander II), but works very very badly when you have incompetent leaders (Wilhelm II, Alexanders III, Nicholas II, etc) as they are in for life and there’s no way to remove them short of murder or revolution.

      The biggest problem with America right now is that the system has become far too nationalized, people pay too much attention to the Federal level (which has too much power) and not enough to local elections. It used to be Senators were appointed by the states, which meant who you elected in your state government mattered quite a lot more. I also think that there should be ways to restrict the franchise, not on something arbitrary such as being a white man, but something else that anyone could do if they chose in order to ensure they have enough of a stake to care. Biden got elected because too many people who don’t pay attention and don’t have a stake in things working well blindly believed a scheming media, with women being by far the worst offenders. If we had a system vaguely like Starship Troopers where you had to earn the right to vote and participate in government, things might be very different.

      • “I’d like to point out that the Russian Czars were nearly as repressive as the Bolsheviks were.”

        No they weren’t. In fact it’s apples and oranges. About 5000 were executed during the entire reign of Nicholas II, most during the Revolution of 1905. Lenin himself conservatively estimated the number of death warrants he signed as 200,000.

        As to the Eastern Roman emperors, it is certainly a mixed bag but there is no doubt, as is demonstrated by Moss’s article I linked above, that the Church Fathers supported monarchy and rejected polyarchy (democracy). Inasmuch as we are the Church of the Fathers, that should be dispositive.

        While it may be true that imperial systems sometimes stray from the national interest into the personal interests of the emperors, you do sometimes get good government. Democracies and republics, on the other hand are not only not self correcting but, on the contrary, reliably degenerative. They all lead to anarchy, chaos, confusion, debauchery and eventual self destruction. Such governments are nothing more than government by the aggregate of the passions.

        • I do find it interesting that they would use the word monarchy, when as I have noted the Eastern Romans never viewed themselves as being in one in the way we think of it. The ideal of Res Publica didn’t die in the Roman mind when Caesar took over, it changed into what we would consider a banana republic today which made it very very different from the Czars. https://frjohnpeck.com/the-byzantine-empire-an-empire-or-a-republic/

          Moss’s article cites St Gregory the Theologian’s Sermon 29 section 2, but if we look at what he actually said a very different picture emerges.

          “The three most ancient opinions concerning God are Anarchia, Polyarchia, and Monarchia. The first two are the sport of the children of Hellas, and may they continue to be so. For Anarchy is a thing without order; and the Rule of Many is factious, and thus anarchical, and thus disorderly. For both these tend to the same thing, namely disorder; and this to dissolution, for disorder is the first step to dissolution.”

          He isn’t talking about Earthly governments at all, he’s talking about religions and the ancient Greek ideas of how they thought things were in heaven. As in chaotic polytheism.

          But Monarchy is that which we hold in honour. It is, however, a Monarchy that is not limited to one Person, for it is possible for Unity if at variance with itself to come into a condition of plurality; but one which is made of an equality of Nature and a Union of mind, and an identity of motion, and a convergence of its elements to unity — a thing which is impossible to the created nature — so that though numerically distinct there is no severance of Essence.

          NOW things become even clearer. He’s talking about monotheism, our idea that there is only one God with several persons – the Holy Trinity. Again, not talking about Earthly governments whatsoever he’s talking about the “government” of heaven. Same thing with Eusibius which is also quoted in Moss’s article. What he did was quote mine them and take them out of their context. We need to avoid falling into the same trap the Protestants do in taking things out of context to support our own ideas.

          So far from what’s been presented there is nothing to show that kingdoms on Earth are the way to go, and it would be a very strange thing to say given that Eastern Rome itself was never a kingdom and was never ruled by a king. This is why usurpation was a chronic problem.

          • A couple of interesting historical facts. The British monarch is, literally, anointed by the head of the Church of England during the installation process, I believe the last of the monarchs who do this and the practice of which dates to Byzantine times. The second concerns Prince Phillip’s mother, who was Orthodox. She pretty much lived in isolation in an apartment I believe was in Buckingham palace. There is some thought as to whether she was schizophrenic. She lived in a small apartment in Athens during the war and dedicated herself to feeding the poor. She became a nun around that time and is buried on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem. Please correct me if any of this is incorrect.

      • Cyprian Perkins says

        Just reading Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn will disabuse one of the idea that the Czars were anywhere near as oppressive as the Soviets.

  6. Deacon John Kern says

    I hope to one day live in a Monarchy for all eternity

  7. As someone who was once ardently Orthodox and have now left the church (and thankfully not having to abide the internal drama. Al-Zehlaoui’s antics have given me enough reason to stay far away and regret I ever wasted my time with that denomination) I watched the Queen’s funeral and look at this website with puzzlingly.

    It occurred to me that the American rightist obsession with royalty is mostly about cultures that still pretend that they believe in their professed values and institutions.

    Orthodoxy in America is a great example of this.

    I understand monarchy. But it is foreign to American culture. And Americans that yearn for it in the 21st century, to me, are about as weird as Orthodox converts who wear kilts and attend services based on Greek typika.

    I agree that monarchy is “better” than republicanism. I also agree that Zeppelins are better than airplanes and MacBooks are better than Windows computers, but the world didn’t make the “better” choice in those situations either.

    The Byzantine emperor isn’t coming back, guys. And while I’m certain the monarchy of the UK will last long after I molder in the dust, it is on its way out and eventually the UK will become a republic.

    It’s as inevitable as the West becoming more secularized. Some of us, however, have learned to accept it.

    • Why did you leave, and where did you go?

      • I left Orthodoxy for a myriad of reasons (unprofessional clergy, episcopal corruption, lack of financial transparency, monastic fetishism, obsessing over minutiae while neglecting the trivial, a fixation on fasting rather than approaching food with a sense of thanksgiving and wellness), but mostly because I eventually realized that it was an ethnoreligion for Greeks, Arabs, and Slavs.

        Irish need not apply, so to speak.

        Alexander Schmemann once said that people tend to impress their own philosophies onto Orthodoxy for their own justification. Some people join it in order to find their politics justified. Some people join it to feel justified for leaving their previous religious confessions.

        After over a decade of being in it I left. I attempted to go back to my previous religious tradition but after over a decade of being in church every Sunday and most feast days, I felt I had enough for one life time. And quite frankly, I was tired and fatigued from belonging to religious confessions obsessed with being “right” rather than “righteous.”

        Now my Sundays are filled with brunches with friends, tennis games, and spending time with what really matters: my family.

        • Antiochene Son says

          Your friends, games and family are not going to be there when you stand before God at the dread judgment. That is the only universal reality — and if you were Orthodox for 10 years you know that — and I’m sorry to see you’re not interested in preparing for it.

        • My prayers for you, “Bubba.” The emergency room is bloody and chaotic but the Hospital and His Medicine – Christ – is here for you.

          • Thanks, but not thanks. If the Orthodox Church is the only “emergency room” that Christ can provide, then something is really, truly wrong.

            It isn’t an emergency room. It’s an insane asylum.

        • The Holy Spirit led me to join the Orthodox Church, as best as I can understand, and some people had no problem with that (and some people had a big problem with it), but I followed the leading in my spirit, not what others tried to convince me of.

          Then a time came (years of pain really) when I got swept away somewhere else, like Mary Poppins. Well, I did this journey under my own power but never could have predicted it. The Holy Spirit blows where it may and the sheep know the voice of their Shepherd.

        • unprofessional clergy

          Define unprofessional.

          episcopal corruption

          Like the televangelists that are sitting in jail right now for embezzlement?

          lack of financial transparency

          This is true, just like everywhere else.

          monastic fetishism

          Monasteries keep the faith anchored in its roots. It also gives people a chance to spend their days being closer to God than would otherwise be possible in the world. Asceticism also has its foundation in the Bible, this is the same type of life St John the Baptist lead.

          obsessing over minutiae while neglecting the trivial

          Such as? If something is “trivial” then by definition isn’t it minutiae?

          a fixation on fasting rather than approaching food with a sense of thanksgiving and wellness)

          Except that they go together. Fasting by the way is also a biblical practice.

          but mostly because I eventually realized that it was an ethnoreligion for Greeks, Arabs, and Slavs.

          Irish need not apply, so to speak.

          Really? I go to a “Greek” parish but there’s barely any Greeks there, the vast majority of the people who go there are converts from all kinds of backgrounds. 75% of the Antiochene jurisdiction’s parishioners are converts, in other words not Arabs. There’s fairly large portions of non-ethnic converts in other jurisdictions too, and it’s a growing proportion.

          After over a decade of being in it I left. I attempted to go back to my previous religious tradition but after over a decade of being in church every Sunday and most feast days, I felt I had enough for one life time.

          I’m sorry you’ve burned out, but maybe this is part of the problem. If you just view Orthodoxy as a denomination and not what it actually is, the church of the Bible, then you certainly didn’t take in and internalize it’s teachings. Love of God is what keeps you in it, which means submitting yourself to its teachings.

          And quite frankly, I was tired and fatigued from belonging to religious confessions obsessed with being “right” rather than “righteous.”

          Being right is just as important as being righteous. The Bible makes it very clear the importance of maintaining correct teachings and not straying from what was taught. Only one organization gives you the chance to be both, Orthodoxy. Nothing else is intellectually consistent.

          Now my Sundays are filled with brunches with friends, tennis games, and spending time with what really matters: my family.

          And you couldn’t go to church with your family and spend time in worship together? Share a brunch afterwards (you do know we don’t have breakfast before communion, right?)? Have tennis games later on?

          It’s as inevitable as the West becoming more secularized. Some of us, however, have learned to accept it.

          This was from the other post but I think it needs addressing here. This was prophesied, and prophecy is what proves Orthodox Christianity to be true. Apostasy, especially into atheism or agnosticism, is spiritually very dangerous. I’ve come from that background, there’s nothing but emptiness that awaits you.

          • This was from the other post but I think it needs addressing here. This was prophesied, and prophecy is what proves Orthodox Christianity to be true. Apostasy, especially into atheism or agnosticism, is spiritually very dangerous. I’ve come from that background, there’s nothing but emptiness that awaits you.

            I don’t think secularization proves that Orthodoxy is true anymore than the end of the world would be heralded by Arabs building “tall towers” in the desert (according to Muhammad). The world changes. Besides, most churches believe that secularization is “a sign of the times.” So what?

            And you couldn’t go to church with your family and spend time in worship together? Share a brunch afterwards (you do know we don’t have breakfast before communion, right?)? Have tennis games later on?

            One of the reasons why I am no longer Orthodox is my family isn’t Orthodox. None of them. Now I no longer have to celebrate Easter or Christmas on a different date. And speaking of breakfast, now I no longer have to endure migraine headaches in the morning because I’ve deprived myself of nutrients so I can receive Holy Communion. And many Orthodox Christians, especially those in ROCOR, would probably claim playing tennis on a Sunday is “frivolous.”

            Being right is just as important as being righteous. The Bible makes it very clear the importance of maintaining correct teachings and not straying from what was taught. Only one organization gives you the chance to be both, Orthodoxy. Nothing else is intellectually consistent.

            If you think Orthodoxy is intellectually consistent and that being right is important just as much as righteousness, you really need to re-read Matthew 23. Try reading your Bible instead of censing it.

            I’m sorry you’ve burned out, but maybe this is part of the problem. If you just view Orthodoxy as a denomination and not what it actually is, the church of the Bible, then you certainly didn’t take in and internalize it’s teachings. Love of God is what keeps you in it, which means submitting yourself to its teachings.

            Again, this statement could be applied to a myriad of Christian (or so called) denominations claiming to be “true.” Many Roman Catholics and Mormons would find contention.

            Really? I go to a “Greek” parish but there’s barely any Greeks there, the vast majority of the people who go there are converts from all kinds of backgrounds. 75% of the Antiochene jurisdiction’s parishioners are converts, in other words not Arabs. There’s fairly large portions of non-ethnic converts in other jurisdictions too, and it’s a growing proportion.

            I am quite sure that the Antiochians, despite having numerous convert and celibate clergy (Fr. Nicholas Belcher, for example, springs to mind), will instead bring over a bishop from “The Old Country” rather than raising up someone who reflects this “diverse tapestry” that is Orthodox Christianity in the Americas.

            Except that they go together. Fasting by the way is also a biblical practice.

            Fasting is Biblical. However, the “Byzantine” (see what I did there?!) fasting calendar has nothing to do with the Bible anymore than as Schememann described it the “vaudeville show” of miters, omophorions, and cassocks. If anything it has more to do with Hellenism, Turkokratia, and Platonic navel gazing.

            Such as? If something is “trivial” then by definition isn’t it minutiae?

            Read Matthew 23. One would almost think that he’s talking to Orthodox Christians rather than Pharisees.

            Monasteries keep the faith anchored in its roots. It also gives people a chance to spend their days being closer to God than would otherwise be possible in the world. Asceticism also has its foundation in the Bible, this is the same type of life St John the Baptist lead.

            Cenobitic monasticism again has little to do with the Bible. Nazirite vows were only for a specific amount of time. The number of monastic saints in the Orthodox calendar compared to married ones is proof of monastic fetishism. But that’s neither here nor there.

            This is true, just like everywhere else.

            Wrong. Even the Episcopal Church gets audited by EY so that they can be held accountable to their parishioners as well as find ways to save or improve their finances. A bishop refusing to have an independent audit is unconscionable and just raises suspicion.

            Like the televangelists that are sitting in jail right now for embezzlement?

            If anything, to me, this is just proof to run far away from organized religion. But if these past weeks involving Joseph haven’t taught you anything, then you’re pretty hopeless.

            Define unprofessional.

            I dunno. Let’s see.

            Would a bishop sticking his penis where it doesn’t belong define “unprofessional?”

            Would a bishop who, apparently according to Gail, possesses a “monastic mindset,” own a $2.2 million dollar home in Idaho with a married woman be defined as “unprofessional?”

            Would a bishop (not Joseph) who got drunk in Traverse City, Michigan, and then decide to stick his hands where they don’t belong be defined as “unprofessional?”

            Illumined, your responses remind me of countless people in Orthodoxy I encountered in my home parish and beyond, who when faced with these issues, would just suck their teeth, sigh, and say, “Ugh. Well, this is the Church that Christ founded.”

            Did it ever occur to you if this is the best Jesus can do, then maybe, just maybe, something is really wrong?

            • Gail Sheppard says

              Seriously, stop with the “you” messages. – It’s OK to have issues with something but don’t target the Faith or anyone connected to it is with broad, unsupported statements like about Metropolitan Joseph’s sex life. Not appropriate.

            • Antiochene Son says

              Bubba says: “However, the “Byzantine” (see what I did there?!) fasting calendar has nothing to do with the Bible”

              Fasting on Wednesdays and Fridays was established in the first century, so . . . Sola Scriptura means pretty much nothing, as was fasting during Lent. Yes a system of relaxing the fast on certain feast days was developed later, but that’s marginal. . .

        • Bubba, do you still believe in our Lord Jesus Christ?
          If yes, then why, instead of going to his Church, (the body of Christ), are your “Sundays filled with brunches with friends, tennis games, and spending time with what really matters: your family”?
          You know that Sunday is not ours but God’s.
          And what REALLY matters MOST is Christ:
          “He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” (Matth.10,37)

    • “…as weird as Orthodox converts who wear kilts “.

      I am an Orthodox convert and I wear a kilt.
      Why is this weird?

  8. I also find it hilarious that Greek Orthodox Christians, who practice a religion that is really a kind of gerontocratic autocracy, are fawning over a constitutional monarchy that springs forth from Anglo-Saxon concepts of common law and representative rule. One could make a great argument that the American republic, the first truly working republic since the last days of the Roman Republic, is an extension of what was continued with the Magna Carta.

    The British constitution is very much indicative of a covenantal culture which Americans, by virtue of their Anglo roots, share.

    Orthodoxy doesn’t share that which is why in my opinion the idea that the future of American Christianity is Orthodoxy is laughable. Americans, like the English who became mostly Protestant, raise their eyebrow at tyrants and despots. A casual reading of Voltaire’s notes on the British people will state more on this.

    Orthodoxy is definitely not a “we hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal” kind of religion. As I always said when I was Orthodox, the best documentary on Byzantine ecclesial politics is Mario Puzo’s “The Godfather.”

    • As much as I love the Constitution of the United States, “All men are created equal” is not a Christian concept.

      I’m sad you left the Church but can empathize, honestly. If you dwell on the political antics of those who govern the organizational structures of the faith, it’s extremely difficult to look past the kingdom of man and behold the Kingdom of God. But this is the same in any religion, Bubba. It’s all Godfather stuff, whether you’re Mormon, Muslim, Mennonite, or Mainstream Protestant. If you aren’t firmly tethered to the Church thru the Sacraments, it’s easy to get disheartened. Many of us on this blog have experienced profound anguish and legitimate trauma over the actions of Orthodox hierarchs. Personally, I have chosen to stay in the faith regardless of the Godfather stuff because it is the only church in which I can be fully immersed in the sacramental life of worshipping the Trinity.

      • Antiochene Son says

        The constitution has some good ideas, but overall it’s a bunch of post-renaissance federalist garbage shoved down the throats of Americans in a quiet coup. Patrick Henry warned us.

      • Very well said Christine. Very well said.

      • Christine:

        I am glad that the Church offers you some solace, peace, and comfort.

        However, I think that if I had a choice to live in the Byzantine Empire or the United States in its current form — I’d choose the United States.

        The way I now see it, Orthodoxy is an ossified faith and culture that comes from a time and place where despotic men vied for power with other men in a very cut throat atmosphere. I come from a Methodist background, and to be completely honest, I’ve never seen the kind of corruption and just plain nastiness in the Methodist Church that I have experienced in the Orthodox Church.

        Orthodoxy is feudal and it comes from a feudal time. It doesn’t really have a place in modernity and just kind of sticks out like a sore thumb. Maybe it would work in Westeros, I guess. Cersei Lannister could never hold a candle to Ss. Irene or Theodora.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Bubba, to believe that the US at present is in any meaningful sense a “free republic” is naive. The Bill of Rights

        • I, for one, am comforted by the fact that Orthodoxy doesn’t have a place in modernity, regardless of the era of said modernity.

          • Hello Brian,
            I pray you are correct, but it does seem Orthodoxy is swinging green globalist leftist, and/or whatever one wishes to categorize Putin as. If the first is the case, then it will partner with modernity and all it has to offer, or what will follow Putin.(remember no one lives, nor rules forever)

            At some point we must ask, how far will Orthodoxy have to go, until it is just too corrupt on a wholesale level to continue with, or are we just stuck(with nowhere else to go to)? If the majority of laity, clergy, and top Orthodox leaders keep going along without walking away, protest, or worse, leadership without rebuke to heresy, corruption, “new” traditions, then in the end, who/whom, what are we following?

            I am on the fence, still Orthodox, but without a parish. After years and years of pinching my nose, and looking the other way, I just don’t like what I see, nor want to participate. The final straw of course was when 90% of Orthodoxy declared we are NON ESSENTIAL during a very bad flu season. Cherry on top they even pushed vaccines upon us, some bishops declared it a sin not to vaccinate! Since 2020, the slaps/smell just keep coming, look no further than scandals reported here, and Hellenscope.

            Orthodoxy’s partnership with governments, some Islamic, some fascist, or powerful globalist, atheist and leftist billionaires, have made most of our Orthodox leaders puppets. Some of these puppet-masters are very evil.

            We are one step behind the Roman Catholics, who looked away, while children were abused on grand systematic rotation of abusers.(Just for starters)?They? apologized, but other than billions of dollars given out to the truly abused, and of course fake accusers, the wheels on the bus continue. Not helping matters the pope is a leftist globalist.(maybe Marxist) Billions have been handed out, crumbs go back 360 degree, and spread out again to their masters, and master plan. Maybe full Alphabet soup, trans-minors and all?

            All this, AND our poor brothers in New York and Istanbul are lamenting the ?near completion? after over 20 years, of the $100,000,000 shrine,(maybe more$?) as they will have to find new crumbs to replace the shrine’s old crumbs.

            • Solidarity Priest says

              Forgive me, Dino. Please don’t let the devil drive you away. We have Our Lord’s promise that the gates of hell will not prevail against His Church. Walk away from the local parish, if you must. But don’t quit. My late father died without a church burial. His excuse for abandoning the faith was some corrupt priest in Ukraine or Siberia in the early years of the last century. I know I offended you and others in the past, when I posted here under another name. I pray for you daily, along with Gail and George, as well as others I offended. May God Bless you and strengthen you.

              • Gail Sheppard says

                Thank you, Father. We need your prayers.

              • George Michalopulos says

                Very well said, SP.

              • Solidarity Priest,
                Thank you Father, but you have done nothing to ask me for forgiveness.

                Yes the devil most likely is playing me as well, but my Love and Faith in The Holy Trinity, and the prayers from our Theotokos will sustain me for now, I pray.

                Naturally I always pray for our clergy, and the Church.

                Sorry about your father, but what has/is happened/happening to Orthodoxy, is much larger than a single priest your father was angry with. Please forgive me, but maybe you are correct, and he was looking for an excuse.

                I am not looking for an excuse to leave. I am sincerely heart broken that I no longer attend any church. The pressure I receive from my family outside my home is hard as well. My wife trusts my judgment, but is heartbroken too, which makes this twice as hard and stressful.

                Something had to be done. This is the path I as one man have chosen. For now.

                • Dino,

                  My heart goes out to you brother. There are indications of repentance. It is still possible. Continue to pray for our clergy.

                  Burningbushbrotherhood dot com

                  I ignored the certificate out of date warning for that link. It’s a legit site, but no new posts after January 2022. Perhaps you had seen the open letter they wrote, which was posted here in August 2021. I think it may be a bit easier to defy gov’t powers that be in the US than in the UK. I still found a parish after it became too heartbreaking to stay in the one I was in. I don’t know how long that will last. It may depend on how far our Bishops allow our Priest to follow his conscience, and what direction they go from here. They are under a lot of pressure to capitulate again to culture after taking a solidly pro-life stance in the wake of the Supreme Court ruling repealing Roe v. Wade. There is one of Elder Ephraim’s monasteries within driving distance for me.

        • Unlike many, I’m not an admirer of the British monarchy. Despite its PR machine striving to keep her late Majesty’s image untarnished, I have no romantic illusions of what it is.

          Comparing living in the Byzantine Empire vs. modern US seems a bit of a non sequitur, since it is arguably the values of the Church and the gospel it has preserved that has produced the best aspects of modern culture and even the expectations of order in Creation that have led to methods of empirical science yielding modern technology and comforts. Comparing the Orthodox Church with the Methodist denomination also seems another logical leap. One has endured 20 centuries of what should have been in every era mortal assaults from within and without and is still producing Saints while the other is spiritually insipid, moribund and irrelevant after only a little more than three. I was raised Methodist and love the church of my youth. It embraced for a while the attractive Mere Christianity of CS Lewis. But that Methodist Church was rapidly trading and has now spent what it had retained from Holy Tradition for a bowl of deviant cultural pottage.

          I have been looking into the dark recesses of the American experiment, product of an Enlightenment which values have now fully permeated Western culture and are destroying it from within. What we have all known and loved of this culture—the luxury of leisure, fruit of prosperity, time with family & friends—seems to have rapidly crumbled, revealing great swathes of it to have been either based on the vestiges of moral sensibilities and family traditions fruit of an earlier more faith-filled age, or an illusion of freedom now giving way to an underlying pestilence that has brought us into bondage to our increasingly depraved and unrestrained appetites and is now poised to completely destroy us while we have been entertaining ourselves to death with fantasies—like those still dancing on the deck of a rapidly sinking Titanic.

          I think if you saw as clearly the rottenness and power struggles under the surface of our cultural institutions—especially the institutions of power—you would feel as repulsed as you did when encountering the power struggles and nastiness in our Church. Moreso, because it would suddenly become clear how many forgotten and invisible people this dream has disenfranchised at home and abroad, sacrificed for our comfort, and that there is no escape from this anywhere except in Christ.

          That way of escape from this temptation is beautifully portrayed in “Man of God”, the life of St. Nektarios of Aegina. I highly recommend you watch that film. This is as true in its own way in the life of the late Bishop Dimitri (Royster) of the OCA, whose relics were discovered incorrupt and who awaits future recognition of the sanctity those closest to him saw and felt. The wonder is not the corruption in the institutions of Church—that is ubiquitous wherever there are humans. The wonder is the proof of Christ’s enduring condescension and Presence with us in the Saints. It is them (and no earthly monarchy) to whom we all must turn our attention if we desire to be saved. We are living, and have always lived, in treacherous times, because as images of God we have a mortal enemy far stronger than we are.

        • Bubba,

          I think you need to be further red pilled before you consider Orthodoxy again, if you are ever inclined to. ” . . . [Orthodoxy] comes from a time and place where despotic men vied for power with other men in a very cut throat atmosphere.” Obviously, you do not understand how the world around you works. I too would rather live here in America than in 14th century Asia Minor. But that is purely because of the technological advances rather than the social system.

          America is ruled by oligarchs every bit as cutthroat as any medieval clique. They do not care one whit about how much barbarian (non-Western) blood they spill (see Iraq and Afghanistan). They fix elections and engage in political assassinations both abroad and at home:

          https://www.conservapedia.com/Hillary_Rodham_Clinton
          https://www.conservapedia.com/Clinton_body_count

          These are just a taste from one of the more recklessly brutal American politicians. These types of skeletons lie in the pasts of . . . well, a number of prominent American politicians.

          The remarkable thing about America (and the West) is the sheer depth of the veneer of subterfuge (and faux sophistication), alienation and dystopia which makes the ancients and medieval people seem so remote and primitive. We, of course, are no different save for the advances in technology and medicine. Delusions that we are more morally evolved should be dispelled by the experience of the last century.

          Part of the problem, the alienation, stems from our secularism. It is a depressing ideology which bleeds the reality of the ideologue of all color and warmth. The only allegiance that one could have to such a system is some misbegotten conviction that it is based on empirical reality. However, the God hypothesis is becoming ever stronger given what we know about the odds of the design manifest in the perceivable world.

        • But Orthodox Christianity offers the opportunity to be with Christ, all the time. To be with Him sacramentally.

          If one is not grasping and embracing this concept as an Orthodox Christian but is rather focusing on history and politics and intrigue and the hierarchical administrative leadership drama, etc., then one misses the entire point of the faith.

          Christ did die on the Cross and rise three days later to give us beautiful liturgies and four-part harmony or Byzantine chant. He destroyed death to allow us to live in Him and with Him, now and forever.

          As one of my favorite priests told me a long time ago, if icons are not drawing us closer to God, then they are merely pieces of wood.

      • ‘ “All men are created equal” is not a Christian concept. ‘

        Created? No, not at first… but:

        Gal 3:28
        There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free,
        there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.

        [KJV]

        1 Cor 12:13
        For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body,
        whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free;
        and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

        [KJV]

    • Antiochene Son says

      I don’t know, I believed America and its culture was gay trash long before I became Orthodox.

      • Yes, that’s a good way of summing it up in a phrase. One reason I joined the Church was the conscious awareness that its center of gravity is not the West. Western liberalism is like an acid which eats away and destroys everything immersed in it. It is animated by an evil ideology bastardized from the so-called “Enlightenment”. And so it is necessary to reject the whole package if one is to adopt an Orthodox mindset unless one is comfortable with irreconcilable differences. “Bubba Gump” is right in a way. I’m not sure what jurisdiction he was in but it’s possible he’s a victim of ultra-Hellenism. But there’s something else there too. Given his value system, he was in the wrong place. If he is unwilling to change, then peace to him. We let the dead bury their dead.

        As for America, it is an abysmal train wreck so of course it will not choose Orthodoxy any time soon. It is worse than the pagans of old, who had a certain sense of decency and honor. Yet when Tammany Hall collapses under its own weight, the only alternative will be authoritarian right wing rule. Returning to a dysfunctional two party system will only roll the clock back a decade and reset the board for the same endgame. After the ascension of the hard right, America will be much more open to Orthodoxy. But it has to regain some minimal sense of decency first.

        • Gail Sheppard says

          He called it a denomination and not a jurisdiction. I’ve never heard of someone who is “ardently Orthodox” use that term, but I guess it’s possible you could make that mistake.

          • Orthodoxy *is* a denomination of Christianity just like Catholics, Methodists, Episcopalians, etc. At least that is the way Pew and even the US Census views you all.

            Let’s not play “No True Scotsman,” Gail. One could deduce after you and George’s broad proclamations about Joseph’s innocence and “monastic mindset,” that ya’ll are about as full of dung as a Christmas goose.

            • “Orthodoxy *is* a denomination of Christianity
              just like Catholics, Methodists, Episcopalians, etc.”

              To a Protestant, that is true, but not to the Orthodox;
              to whom Orthodoxy is Christianity.

            • To call the Orthodox Church a “denomination” is ahistorical. Pew and the US Census are imprecise instruments to say the least. They have no religious authority or scholarly credibility in terms of this kind of definition.

              • Gail Sheppard says

                Thanks, Karen. – My point is that one who has spent any amount of time in the Orthodox Church would not use the term denomination.

            • Protestants divide into “denominations”, a concept that came about in the 1500s. Of course the secular government of a Protestant-dominated country will use terminology it understands, but it’s not a source to be taken seriously on such matters.

              It’s wrong to call any branch (a term I’m hesitant to use but for brevity’s sake) of Apostolic Christianity a “denomination”, be it Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, or any other group that can trace their bishops’ lineage back to the Church. No matter which of those bodies you view as being the truest continuation of the Church, the correct term for breakaway groups is “schismatic”, an important distinction because, insofar as they’ve continued the Church’s sacramental practices and reject any heresy, they can be, and frequently are, incorporated back by administrative fiat.

              “Denominations”, on the other hand, possess an entirely different ecclesiology that has nothing to do with the Church founded by Jesus Christ. Having no valid clergy, there’s no question of reunification, their existing hierarchies are non-transferable, and they are all received as laymen upon joining any Apostolic Christian body.

              • Peter, yes, you’re absolutely correct. The framework for understanding Christ and the Church is entirely different when talking about western protestant Christians vs. traditional/Apostolic (generally Eastern) Christianity.

                The words in English are often the same, but what they mean is entirely different. Much of what comes out of Western popular culture when it talks about “Christianity” takes as a foundational assumption that you’re using the framework that Anglicanism, Lutheranism, Presbyterianism, Southern Baptists, etc., come from. Orthodoxy doesn’t work that way.

                This past week marked the 100th anniversary of the Massacre/Burning at Smyrna (modern day Turkey), which was the end of any significant Christian presence in Asia Minor. Many English, American, French, and other western warships sat in the harbor and watched as hundreds of thousands of Eastern Orthodox Christians – including tens of thousands of women and children – were burned/martyred by the Muslims. There are several Orthodox bishops from this event who are now canonized saints, those who died (martyred, hung, butchered, burned, buried alive) with their flocks 100 years ago this week.

                Why did these western “Christian” states just sit by and watch this happen and do nothing? Because they didn’t want to offend the new Turkish state, which was in the final stage of winning the Greek-Turkish war of 1919-1922 and might be a profitable business partner in the future.

                Excellent overview of this terrible event by the American-Serbian Orthodox writer Serge Trifkovic:
                https://chroniclesmagazine.org/web/smyrna-a-melancholy-centennial/

                May the Holy New Martyrs of Smyrna pray for us.

        • Antiochene Son says

          I’ve seen much worse in my WASP denomination of origin than I have in the Orthodox Church. The parish of my youth was literally everything bad everyone says Greek Orthodox people are, except they were WASPs.

          I truly don’t understand this deep seated need that some people have to “fit in.” I have never experienced that feeling in my life, but I really feel bad for those who do experience this, it must be really hard to even exist as a moderately normal human being. Fitting in certainly not the message of the Gospel.

  9. Nice try but the only quote I see which admits of the dual meaning to which you refer is that of St. Gregory. Go back and read Eusebius and the others and they are all clearly referring to human monarchy. St Gregory’s quote only brings out the fact that we see God’s kingdom “on earth as it is in heaven”; i.e., earthly authority should parallel or correspond to heavenly authority. He goes on to describe the properties of one Trinitarian God, but which sect of Greeks were anarchists/atheists? Some have attempted to make anarchists out if the Cynics, but Diogenes was no atheist. St. Gregory’s words only make sense if he is talking initially about human order and then spiraling off into the divine.

    • Nice try but the only quote I see which admits of the dual meaning to which you refer is that of St. Gregory

      Well I posted a link to sermon 29 in it’s entirety, please show me from that sermon where it is, and please copy and paste so a word search is easier.

      Go back and read Eusebius and the others and they are all clearly referring to human monarchy.

      Again, Caesars weren’t monarchs, no more so than people like Putin or Mobutu. If he had called Constantine a king he would have been tossed in prison because it would have delegitimized his reign.

      St Gregory’s quote only brings out the fact that we see God’s kingdom “on earth as it is in heaven”; i.e., earthly authority should parallel or correspond to heavenly authority.

      That part of the Lords Prayer means everything that happens is according to the will of God, nothing else. Living by it is something all of us should do our best to do.

      St. Gregory’s words only make sense if he is talking initially about human order and then spiraling off into the divine.

      The sermon is a response to Arianism, the first sentence makes it quite clear. That’s who the “opponents” were because it was still a problem.

      but which sect of Greeks were anarchists/atheists?

      Epicurans. If you’re an Atheist (and I’m speaking from personal experience) you can’t believe there is anything guiding the events of the universe since there is no God or gods, hence it’s chaos and anarchy since no one is in charge.

      • I can see where you get the idea that St. Gregory was only referring to divine monarchy since he ends up describing it in the quote in question. I still believe, however, that he started out with a rejection of Greek polytheism and polyarchy (democracy) as different manifestations of the same disorder.

        “The three most ancient opinions concerning God are Anarchia, Polyarchia, and Monarchia. The first two are the sport of the children of Hellas, and may they continue to be so. For Anarchy is a thing without order; and the Rule of Many is factious, and thus anarchical, and thus disorderly. For both these tend to the same thing, namely disorder; and this to dissolution, for disorder is the first step to dissolution.”

        Insisting that St. Gregory is only speaking about deity seems, while not baseless, at least specious. Is he referring to the rule of many gods as being factious? Is he asserting that the rule of many gods leads to their disorder and dissolution (like perhaps Ragnarok in Asatru)? That part of the passage makes much more sense if he is talking about both human order and divine order. It is a feature of modernism that it is quick to separate the two. In the mind of the Fathers, these unities were sections of a whole cloth along with the internal monarchy of Christ in the believer.

        The Orthodox believe in a divine monarchy (“Heavenly King”), an earthly Orthodox monarchy (Emperor or Tsar-Batyushka) and an internal, individual monarchy of Christ in the soul of the believer (the Kingdom of Heaven/God). When all these align, they produce the Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven and internal theosis (salvation). Removing the middle piece, the earthly monarchy, rends what is otherwise a seamless garment of grace.

        Nonetheless, you also asserted that the other Church Fathers were also only speaking of divine monarchy, not human monarchy, in the quotes that Moss offered:

        Thus Bishop Eusebius of Caesarea wrote: “The example of monarchical rule there is a source of strength to him. This is something granted to man alone of the creatures of the earth by the universal King. The basic principle of kingly authority is the establishment of a single source of authority to which everything is subject. Monarchy is superior to every other constitution and form of government. For polyarchy, where everyone competes on equal terms, is really anarchy and discord. This is why there is one God, not two or three or even more. Polytheism is strictly atheism. There is one King, and His Word and royal law are one.”

        Archbishop Theophan of Poltava writes: “St. Isidore of Pelusium, after pointing out that the God-established order of the submission of some to other is found everywhere in the life of rational and irrational creatures, concludes from this: ‘Therefore we are right to say that the matter itself – I mean power, that is, authority and royal power – are established by God.

        St. Theodore the Studite wrote: “There is one Lord and Giver of the Law, as it is written: one authority and one Divine principle over all. This single principle is the source of all wisdom, goodness and good order; it extends over every creature that has received its beginning from the goodness of God…, it is given to one man only… to construct rules of life in accordance with the likeness of God. For the divine Moses in his description of the origin of the world that comes from the mouth of God, cites the word: ‘Let us create man in accordance with Our image and likeness’ (Genesis 1.26). Hence the establishment among men of every dominion and every authority, especially in the Churches of God: one patriarch in a patriarchate, one metropolitan in a metropolia, one bishop in a bishopric, one abbot in a monastery, and in secular life, if you want to listen, one king, one regimental commander, one captain on a ship. And if one will did not rule in all this, there would be no law and order in anything, and it would not be for the best, for a multiplicity of wills destroys everything.“- https://www.orthodoxchristianbooks.com/articles/273/must-an-orthodox-christian-be-a-monarchist/

        I think you are mistaken in this. Also, it ought to be enough that the Church offered no form of democratic or truly republican (representative or parliamentary) government from its inception to the modern age. The thought of implementing democracy seems never to have seriously occurred to it.

        Again, referring to Moss:

        * * *

        After all, did not the Lord Himself say that we should give to Caesar, a king, what is Caesar’s (Matthew 22.21)? And did not the Apostle Peter say: “Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme, or to governors…” (I Peter 2.13-14)? And did not the Apostle Paul say: “Let every soul be subject to the higher authorities. For there is no power that is not of God: the powers that be are ordained by God… For he is the minister of God to thee for good” (Romans 13.1, 4)?

        Although democracy was known to the ancient world from the example of the Classical Greeks, it was not common, and since the Nativity of Christ it had given way everywhere to monarchy. The Church saw this development as providential: “When Augustus reigned alone upon earth, the many kingdoms of men came to an end: and when Thou wast made man of the pure Virgin, the many gods of idolatry were destroyed. The cities of the world passed under one single rule; and the nations came to believe in one sovereign Godhead. The peoples were enrolled by the decree of Caesar; and we, the faithful, were enrolled in the Name of the Godhead, when Thou, our God, wast made man. Great is Thy mercy: glory to Thee.”[1]

        When the holy Apostle wrote that “there is no power that is not of God”, and that the emperor was “the minister of God”, he wrote as the subject of a monarchical State to co-subjects of the same State, in which all authority from the emperor to the local governors and magistrates (besides the Roman senate) was established on the principle of one-man-rule. This principle became still more firmly established when the Roman empire became Christian.

        * * *

        Not only does the argument against monarchy fail, the argument for democracy or representative government also fails for lack of any support in the scriptures or Fathers.

        Now, one can personally favor a republic, though I do not take seriously at all the assertion that the Eastern Roman Empire was actually a republic. That twists the word beyond all reasonable meaning. For instance, even the opponents of the faux constitutional monarchy in the UK are styled “republicans”. Any Christian monarchy is going to be oriented to service of the public interest (res publica) notwithstanding being an autocracy. That is part of the notion of symphonia.

        You are, of course, entitled to your opinion. Here is another spirited defense of Orthodox monarchy, with scriptural and patristic quotes:

        https://ryanphunter.wordpress.com/2015/06/05/in-this-great-service-a-theological-and-political-defense-of-monarchy/

  10. Epicurus was an atheist and perhaps one can attribute that to his entire philosophical school. And there were other Greek philosophers who held personally to atheism or at least a rejection of the Greek pantheon. In any case, St. Gregory is speaking ambiguously of both human and divine order. He generalizes about their natural effects and outcome without respect to whether it is in heaven or on earth.

  11. Monarchy rules. Christ is King.

  12. One of the earliest examples of a Christian King
    being appointed by the Church was in 574 AD,
    when Colum Cille of Iona (St Columba)
    installed Aedan McGabrain as King of Dal Riata.

    The Holy Man did not wish to do this. For one thing,
    he didn’t like Aedan and he wasn’t the obvious candidate.
    But after an angel had beat him about the head for
    three successive nights, he agreed to perform the rite;
    and Aedan was duly installed (and accepted) as King.

    Interestingly, when Pepin the Short (Mayor of the Palace)
    chose to ditch the Merovingians and become King himself,
    he seems to have acted on the advice of an Irish monk
    who told him that he needed Royal Unction to become King.
    This advice was based on the Collectio Canonum Hibernensis
    which is a collection of Irish Canon Law; one of the compilers
    of which was Cú Chuimne of Iona – see the connection?

    Although Pepin was first anointed in Soissons in 751 AD,
    he got re-dubbed three years later by Pope Stephen II
    “the first recorded crowning of a civil ruler by a Pope”.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pepin_the_Short#Assumption_of_power

    • George Michalopulos says

      Thank you Brendan for this wonderful discourse! I will run this by my Godson –also named Columba–about this. (BTW, he runs Orthocelt, one of the tabs above.)

  13. I don’t know why anyone even bothered trying to reason with this Bubba fella. He abandoned Christ for brunches and tennis matches, for crying out loud. Why? Because he chose to ignore the 99% of good that is in the Church and focus on the 1% which is bad or ridiculous, and used that, as well as some stupid and meaningless comments by Schmemann, to justify seeking after comfort, pleasure, and not having to struggle through the difficulties of spiritual life.

    Giving up salvation for “brunches and tennis” is the epitome of the weak and effeminate bourgeois man.

    • Plus, it’s not logic or reason that ever brings someone to Christ or to the Church. Contrary to popular belief — and contrary to what Western thought relies upon — this is not something that you can “argue” someone into.

      The nous must be touched. It’s that receptive quality of our souls where we can recognize that something is “of God” or “from God.” Yes, we have to answer and move forward with it and do our part, but our nous must be touched, and we must allow it to be touched, in order for us to see God and His truths.

      I’ve learned far more and grown far more spiritually during the quiet, reflective, meditative, prayerful times before my icons than I’ve ever grown in response to any “logical reasoning” or “persuasion.” But reasoning/discursive thought often does help put into words those spiritual truths that can be difficult to sometimes otherwise put into words.

      It’s my opinion that relying on logic/reason and denouncing the “nous” has been the fatal flaw of post-Enlightenment western Christianity. I truly believe this is a big reason why mainstream Western Christianity fizzled out.

      Post-enlightenment Western Christianity (both Catholic and Protestant) never trusted anything that didn’t come from discursive reasoning — meaning that it didn’t/doesn’t trust the nous — and we see where this approach led to. Western Christianity “reasoned” itself into buying that transgendered lesbians can be bishops, that Christ’s death and resurrection aren’t really that big a deal, that God blesses sodomy, that we shouldn’t honor His Mother, etc. It’s all total hogwash, but this is where relying solely on discursive reasoning gets you.

      • Gail Sheppard says

        Men who are trapped by their minds have a hard time letting the nous come forward I’ve noticed. Someone once ask Jordan Peterson if the resurrection was real and he said, “I don’t know, I’d have to study it. Ask me in 3 months.”

        When your mind is the only vehicle you think you have to navigate the world, you have a hard time letting your nous come to the fore.

    • Gail Sheppard says

      I would normally not post something like this, but Basil is making a good point. Some people come on this blog to distract us from talking about other things. Bubba may be one of them. You all were great to reach out to him. Unless any of you have a problem with this, we’re going to give it a rest for awhile.

  14. Jocelyn Lembeque says

    The byzantine/tzarist Two Headed Eagle was therefore not a monarchy! On Reddit Orthodox Politics, Sept 24, 2022, Monarchist_Weeb1917 confirmed
    Islamic governance comes from Byzantium “prefer the style of government Iran
    has except replace the Ayatollah & mullahs with Patriarch & bishops” Ibn
    Warraq, Ohlig, Puin and Toynbee show that the Arab conquerors of the seventh
    century were Syriacs not from the Hijaz, who three centuries later invented
    Islam from miaphysic mythology and that their choice of 622 was really the
    collapse of the Sassanids. When Nesselrode sent Porphy Uspensky to
    dehellenize the Antiochians in 1843-47, they melded with monophysites leading
    to Skoptozy Russians circumcizing their women. This eventally sparked Aflaq
    to create the nazi Ba’ath party of Saddam and Assad.

  15. Solidarity Priest says

    Oh boy! Here we go again!