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Good book on Orthodoxy for someone from Latin rite background?


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#1 Jose Delgado

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 07:28 PM

His peace be with you,

What would be a good book/website/document to help me understand Orthodox Theology from a Western mindset. If that is at all possible :)

I miss having an Earthly Church to go to and I am unable to return to the Latin Rite. Although I still retain a lot of the Augustinian (Predestination) and Thomistic (Logic and Reason) thought.

Thanks and my apologies if I missed a prior thread on this matter.

Jose

#2 Max Percy

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 01:14 AM

Vladimir Lossky-- The Mystical Theology of the Eastern Church

#3 Ryan

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 02:47 AM

I believe the difference between East and West in gravely exaggerated for polemical purposes, and also as a kind of advertising gimmick. This rhetoric can perhaps be useful to gain some attention and begin talking about differences, but it soon becomes more of an obstacle. On many essential matters there is not much difference at all. I think someone with a "Western mindset" can simply read the Orthodox Fathers and understand them without needing a third party to interpret it for him.

The Lossky recommendation is not bad, but take some of the claims about the East-West duality ("We have become different men") with a grain of salt. From there I would start reading some basic church fathers- a really good book to start with is Christology of the Later Fathers.

#4 Joel Haas

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 01:10 PM

Jose,

Although he is not an Orthodox Christian, my old professor Dr. James Payton has written a book entitled Light From the Christian East. It is a very 'sympathetic' introduction, in that the goal is not to critique Orthodoxy from a Western perspective. Rather, the goal is to help people with a 'Western mindset' gain a deeper understanding of Orthodox Theology, as you desire to do. There is also Eastern Orthodoxy Through Western Eyes by Donald Fairbairn, which is also very 'sympathetic' while yet adding his own critiques at the end of the book. Neither of these will be as *deeply* Orthodox as Lossky's book mentioned above, but they are perhaps the most 'gentle' (yet helpful) books on the market.

Edited by Joel Haas, 19 October 2012 - 01:25 PM.
Added link for second book


#5 Owen Jones

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 03:15 PM

For the best distinctions, read Fr. John Romanides, although it times he is very polemical against the Roman Church under the influence of Charlemagne and the Franks. There are a number of excellent essays on the web if you Google him. Especially, I would recommend googling "Romanides Patristic Theology" It will take you to his web page with five excellent short essays.

#6 Jose Delgado

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Posted 19 October 2012 - 03:18 PM

Max, Ryan, Joel and Owen,

Thanks for your replies!

#7 Jose Delgado

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Posted 20 October 2012 - 07:02 PM

I'd like to add that I'd like to attend an Eastern Orthodox Divine Liturgy, I'm in North Texas. Is there one in particular that you might suggest?

Are EO Churches like Catholic, in the sense that there are different rites? If so, what would the differences be?

Thanks for your time.

Gloria in excelsis Deo!

#8 Ryan

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Posted 20 October 2012 - 07:46 PM

The vast majority of Orthodox churches use the "Byzantine rite," with the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom as the usual liturgy. There's a tiny handful of "Western rite" Orthodox churches which primarily appeal to converts from Anglican or Roman Catholic traditions. You can see what churches are in your area by going here: http://orthodoxyinamerica.org

In terms of which parish to suggest, it would probably be best to visit a parish that conducts services in a language you understand, if there be one.

#9 Mary Lanser

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Posted 20 October 2012 - 08:36 PM

In terms of texts I would recommend:

1. The Face of God by Archbishop Joseph M. Raya [who is a Melkite Archbishop in communion with Rome...or was...eternal rest]

2. The Compassion of the Father by Father Boris Bobrinskoy [a Russian priest working, in exile, in France through most of his ministerial life to the present and a powerful soul and Orthodox voice]

These are not at all listed in order of importance. If it were possible to read both simultaneously, I'd say go for it!! <smile> I love them both and have benefited greatly from both.

They may be difficult to come by but try the used books at amazon and other venues on the Internet and if all that fails, due to either scarcity or expense, then try Inter-library Loan. They are worth the effort.

M.

#10 Jose Delgado

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Posted 24 October 2012 - 04:37 PM

Thanks again for your recommendations.

I did not have success at Half Price Books in finding Lossky's book and I have not found it for Kindle. After reading from the suggested authors I decided to read Lossky first.

On that subject, I noticed that Lossky has another book titled: Orthodox Theology: An Introduction. Any difference in which one I should read first?

In the mean time I have the following 2 books in the kindle format:

Orthodoxy and Heterodoxy by Rev. Fr. Andrew Stephen Damick

and

The Way of a Pilgrim, translated by Helen Bacovcin.

God Bless,

Jose

#11 Ryan

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Posted 24 October 2012 - 05:24 PM

On that subject, I noticed that Lossky has another book titled: Orthodox Theology: An Introduction. Any difference in which one I should read first?


I looked at this book before and, as far as I could tell, everything in it was in The Mystical Theology... so I think you can skip it.

#12 Dan L.

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Posted 24 October 2012 - 08:20 PM

There are not different rites, but because of the scattered way that different ethnic groups migrated to the USA, parishes will fall under a wide variety of jurisdictions (i.e. Russian, Serbian, Antiochian, Greek...) There will be differences between them, but not hugely significant. The biggest thing would probably be language. If you go to a more ethnic parish, less of it will be in English. I personally am partial to Antiochian as my local parish is completely in English, whereas the other ones in my area are not, but that might not be the case for you.

#13 Max Percy

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Posted 30 October 2012 - 06:36 PM

Here is a link for 1/2 priced Lossky's Mystical Theology

http://www.amazon.co...&condition=used

Orthodox Theology by Lossky is fine, my preference is just Mystical Theology

Edited by Max Percy, 30 October 2012 - 06:38 PM.
poorly written, not thought out, demonstrates poster's idiocy


#14 Jose Delgado

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Posted 07 November 2012 - 09:35 PM

Here is a link for 1/2 priced Lossky's Mystical Theology

http://www.amazon.co...&condition=used

Orthodox Theology by Lossky is fine, my preference is just Mystical Theology


Thanks Max! Just got it :)




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