The Sight of God in the Theology of Saint Symeon the New Theologian. Introduction

Rev. D.Th. Dorin Octavian Picioruş

The Sight of God

in the Theology of

Saint Symeon the New Theologian

Theology for Today




Rev. D.Th. Dorin Octavian Picioruş

The Sight of God

in the Theology of

Saint Symeon

the New Theologian

(Doctoral Thesis)

Theology for Today





The present thesis is an anttempt to synthetic presentation, in same time, of the steadfast and the dynamic character of the experience and the orthodox thinking.

Any pnevmatical reality and theological theme must to be rethoughted, updated in dimension of the present, for to be an active factor of dynamism in our personal and community life.

But the theological updation does not require and the dilution of the Church’s teaching, but her perception of the real parameters of orthodox experience.

Because pnevmatical experience is the foundation of the theological elaborations and it is that keeps us in the Church, as people of alive and lucid faith, with attention to changes our world.

Our thesis being developed insed of the discipline Orthodox Dogmatic Theology, in the Systematics department, our theme will be discussed in this regime of  research.

Theme the sight of God will be presented as part of personal soteriology, intending to put in evidence, in a systematic and concise mode, Saint Symeon the New Theologian contribution to this question.

We consider that experience and theology developed who is known as the third theologian of the Church are a norm and a true guide in our research.

Choise theme came from a deep inner need, from the desire to deepen of the coordinates the symeonian theology, which, unfortunately, are to little discussed at academic level.

Knowledge the experience and theology of Saint Symeon we seems a huge benefit for our theologians and belivers, as long as we confront, directly, with the consequences of secularization and globalization depersonalized.

As a protective shield to the erosion of membership ecclesial consciousness and understanding person and interpersonal relations, Saint Symeon proposes us a theology of experience, in which God descends to man, showing him His glory, for the man to raise by Him at the level Trinity, to open him the trinitarian communion.

And this, because Symeon sees man as having its center of gravity in God and not in himself.

Closure of the human in self, in a subjective perspective can not present a mystical experience, a personal experience with God, but for Symeon the true relantioship with God means the communion of man with God, in and through His glory, as the ecstatic sight.

Subscribing in the personalist lode of the Church Orthodox Fathers, Saint Symeon the New Theologian takes together the interpersonal and objective character of our relantionship with God.

Therefore, for he the orthodox believer experiment uncreated and eternal grace of God not to close itself and not break the Church community.

The sight of God is not escape from time and we can not force our being it to occur but is lifting us by God, through His glory, to fill us with brightness of His glory, and for that this thing would make us become fervent belivers in the frame life of the Church.

Fundamental consequence of God’s vision is a life full of dynamism and dedication to serve the Church, a continuous search for us to have a holy life, namely so many positive attributes for the life of the Church and society in which we exist.

Therefore, choosing this theme we consider an everyone’s gain, a ecclesial gain, because symeonian theology is a continuous recourse to experience, equilibrium and fidelity to Church Tradition.

Our work will consist of three distinct chapters but with internal links between them.

The first chapter will threat the problem of the biblical and patristic premises of man’s deification and of the sight of God in orthodox theology.

We shall seek to show that the seen world are a rational and spiritual foundation, because is personal creation of the divine Logos by Whom all things are made [pa,nta di Auvtou/ evge,neto, John: 1, 3 acc. GNT].

Rational and spiritual foundation of the world must be seen in relation to the existence of God’s uncreated energies, which penetrate and support all existences, both the visible and invisible.

Because man can share the grace in the Church and God’s grace penetrate in real mode of the human being we can speak, in the same time, about the sight of God and the deification, both with internal link between them.

The second chapter will threat the theme of God’s sight to Saint Symeon the New Theologian and its implications in personal salvation, this chapter shall be essential chapter of the thesis.

In this chapter, after an introduction to the ecstatic terminology of the Saint Symeon, we present connections experience God’s sight with triadology, christology, pneumatology, ecclesiology, sanctology and eschatology.

Step by step we shall show how advised and as organic include Symeon in the Church’s teaching and experience, because his own experience affirm and not refute the Father’s theology.

As a servant of the Divine Liturgy and the Mysteries of the Church, as abbot of the monastery, as a writer and theologian, as a confessor of the orthodox faith and as a man unjustly persecuted for the depth of his theology and of his love for Church Tradition and for Saints of God, Saint Symeon proves, be deeds and word, that fulfill his own theology. Therefore he remained as a landmark authentic of life, experience and theology for our Church.

The third chapter will have the teme reception theology of glory in orthodox space and the importance her assume in the postmodern world.

Here we shall discuss the theology sight of God to the Father Professor Dumitru Stăniloae, our beloved and venerable theologian, considered, on rightly word, the great theologian of the twentieth century, together with the theology of glory to Professor Vladimir Lossky, which was apreciated very warm in the West for his patristic updates in the domain of the mystical theology.

Last sequence of our work will focus on the human condition in postmodernity and will be a brief discussion on how you can save an orthodox beliver, of various ideological traps, through experience and theology of the Church.

We thanks the Father Professor Dumitru Popescu, our coordinator, for special attention which has given us and for the real support and the vision of ensemble that gave us.

Together with his Holiness and his effective support, decisive in systematization of the theological informations, we could develop this thesis, which we hope will be helpful to those who will consult it.

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