The Sight of God in the Theology of Saint Symeon the New Theologian [81]

Here, parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48, 49, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 69, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78, 79, 80.


Saint Symeon asks ghostual experience from the confessor priest.

The confessor cannot be „one inexperienced, lest through much cutting and through the cuts and the burnings which are not at their time throw you in the deep of despair or through his compassion beyond measure leave you ill…and so give you to eternal damnation”[1].

He must know to give canons, in correct mode, to his ghostual sons, through the fact that he sees, through the Ghost, their true interiority and possibility of understanding and straightening.

But the authentic confessor, as intercessor[2] at God of his sons, can do it in real mode, ie seizing interior Gods desire with those, just for that he is full of Holy Ghost and he knew into the feeling of soul, that he is loved as a friend of the Emperor of all[3].

For our Father, the confessor is the one who won real boldness to God through the sweats of his ascesis and which has become an authentic intercessor at God due to communion with This[4].

He knows and feels that is in him the Ghost of God and, in the same time, through This, he can see souls of others and he prays for them with the authenticity of a real intercessor.

But the confessor-intercessor to God not only that he asks mercy for his sons but he and receives it into consciousness, seeing, in gracial mode, the straightening or the unstraightening of his sons.

The passages from the Epistle 1, which discommode in large measure on the representatives of non-experimental theology, refers to the transmission of charisma of the forgiveness of sins in the Church.

The first of these is this: „That is allowable to a monk, which has no priesthood, to confess us, this thing you will find making himself by all, since has been given by God to His inheritance the garment and the attire of repentance and were named monks, as stays written in by God instilled writings of the Fathers…

But before these, only archiereuses have received the power to loose and to bind, through succession, from the Divine Apostles.

Once with the crossing of time the archiereuses, becoming reprobates, this frightening undertaking passed to the priests, who had a taintless life and were made worthy by the divine grace.

After which and they reaching mixed, and both archiereuses, as and priests likening the rest of the people and of those many who fall, as and now, in the ghost of wandering and of empty speaking and they perish, it passed, as said, at the chosen nation of God, ie at monks, not because it would have been taken from priests or archiereuses, but because these have alienated on themselves from it”[5].

The passage presented, read through immersion in its interior logic, speaks to us not about a crossing, in corpore, sacramental, of power to forgive the sins from archiereuses at monks, but about a crossing, preponderant, identifiable historical, of feeling of grace from archiereuses, then at priests and, in the end, at monks and we say, today, at the people of the Church.

And is not the word here about a transformation of sacramental priesthood into a popular priesthood, as in protestantism (how it would want to interpret this passage and those which we will quote in its prolongation) but about the keeping in Church of charisma and of science of authentic clearing of sins, which have it and know it the charismatic Fathers, bearers of God, which, through the receiving of confession of thoughts and through the noting of believers in the act of continual ascesis, under their advising,  make them cleanse themselves, in real mode, of passions.

Saint Symeon, as authentic priest of Church, who has felt and has saw the coming of priesthood’s  grace over him at his cheirotonia, he could not deny the cheirotonia and his cheirothesia into confessor, ie the coming of the Ghost in his being, when he experienced it into a direct mode and plenary.

But he could neither deny the historical reality of the Church and neither we cannot do this, as long as it is more than evident, that not all those who are cheirotoned feel and the presence of the Holy Ghost in them or have life of Saints.

When he speaks of the power to bind and to loose the sins he does not refer at the cheirothesic act, through which a priest becomes and confessor [felt as a pure formal sacramental act, if we do not feel how works the Holy Ghost through us] but at the charisma[6] which the Lord has given the Apostles and which these have conscientized it through a life of deep holiness[7].

The personal holiness, wants to say Saint Symeon, is the one receives the charisma of forgiveness of sins.

[1] Epistles, I, apud Ică jr. 3, p. 310.

[2] Idem, I, apud Idem, p. 311.

[3] Idem, I, apud Idem, p. 311-312.

[4] Idem, I, apud Idem, p. 312.

[5] Ibidem, apud Ibidem.

[6] Idem, I, apud Idem, p. 313.

[7] Idem, I, apud Idem, p. 314.

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