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The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - Historian - 02-06-2012

I think members of the Eastern Churches are jealous of St. Thomas, a Latin writer.

Everything he has written is worthy of study. Nobody else has written a comprehensive work that one can study to gain knowledge of God and the Faith. Also, in spite of the written works, he lived a life more holy and with more mystical experiences and purity than almost all other saints.

With his works, one can get answers.

Luke 12:2 Wrote:For there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed: nor hidden, that shall not be known

The ease of obtaining those answers may irk those who expect it to be difficult.




Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - INPEFESS - 02-06-2012

I have long-suspected this, but I admit that I can't prove it. In this sense, it is not a completely objective suspicion.


Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - formerbuddhist - 02-06-2012

In all the studies I've done on Eastern Orthodoxy I have never seen anything but mockery and disdain for St. Thomas Aquinas. I'm not saying every Orthodox or Eastern Catholic individually disdains him and his theology but I have never seen any kind words about him. St. Augustine usually gets the same derision but some like the late Father Seraphim Rose actually had some nice things to say about him (Augustine).


Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - Vetus Ordo - 02-06-2012

The contempt for Thomas and Augustine in the East is really disheartening, especially among those who profess to be Catholics.

The constant vitriol belies that close-minded attitude that's unfortunately so idiosyncratic of churches who build their own identities upon national rivalries, anti-Roman sentiments and a superstitious attachment to mutable ecclesiastical traditions.


Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - INPEFESS - 02-06-2012

(02-06-2012, 12:58 AM)formerbuddhist Wrote: In all the studies I've done on Eastern Orthodoxy I have never seen anything but mockery and disdain for St. Thomas Aquinas. I'm not saying every Orthodox or Eastern Catholic individually disdains him and his theology but I have never seen any kind words about him. St. Augustine usually gets the same derision but some like the late Father Seraphim Rose actually had some nice things to say about him (Augustine).
(02-06-2012, 01:04 AM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: The contempt for Thomas and Augustine in the East is really disheartening, especially among those who profess to be Catholics.

The constant vitriol belies that close-minded attitude that's unfortunately so idiosyncratic of churches who build their own identities upon national rivalries, anti-Roman sentiments and a superstitious attachment to mutable ecclesiastical traditions.

Yes, and I find this attitude particularly strange in light of the fact that Roman Catholics don't treat Eastern theologians this way. They have different ways of approaching and respecting the same subject, so their should be mutual respect amongst them. I don't see hatred for St. John Chrysostom just because of his methodology. The approach of the East makes far less sense to a Latin Catholic than the approach of the West does to an Eastern Catholic, yet it is the Latin theologians who are contemptuously reviled. To me, the bitter hatred is absolutely unreasonable.


Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - Melkite - 02-06-2012

(02-06-2012, 12:35 AM)su Wrote: I think members of the Eastern Churches are jealous of St. Thomas, a Latin writer.

It's not jealousy.  It's that his and St. Augustine's writings, *at least on the surface* are expressed in a way that an Easterner would naturally find troublesome.  We don't think from a scholastic point of view, period.  Naturally, someone who writes in a thoroughly scholastic manner, his writings will not be very comfortable or agreeable to someone who doesn't think in the same manner.  We're no more jealous of him then we think you are of St. John Chrysostom, which is, not at all.

Quite frankly, Westerners, in praising so highly Augustine and Aquinas, disdain every other father and theologian of the entire Church.  That is off-putting.  And several of you have said so yourself that this is what the Church does.  The Church has made Augustine's teaching on grace it's own.  The Church has made Aquinas' theology its own.  It's as if with one fell swoop the Latins have thrown out all the rest of Christian theology like yesterday's trash.  Even if Aquinas and Augustine are as great as you say, do you really wonder at why Easterners aren't eager to froth at the mouth over them when you pay no heed to our theological heavyweights?  I mean, seriously, in one breath you tell us that Augustine and Aquinas are far and away better than anything we've got, and that everything we have to offer in comparison is basically hopelessly inferior, and in the next breath, question why we don't give them any heed.  Even if they are the best, seriously, get over yourselves.  It's the same as any real world scenario.  If you spend all your time bragging about how awesome you are and how much better you do things than everyone else around you, are you surprised when you find yourself sitting alone at the lunch table every day?


Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - Melkite - 02-06-2012

(02-06-2012, 01:20 AM)INPEFESS Wrote: Yes, and I find this attitude particularly strange in light of the fact that Roman Catholics don't treat Eastern theologians this way. They have different ways of approaching and respecting the same subject, so their should be mutual respect amongst them. I don't see hatred for St. John Chrysostom just because of his methodology. The approach of the East makes far less sense to a Latin Catholic than the approach of the West does to an Eastern Catholic, yet it is the Latin theologians who are contemptuously reviled. To me, the bitter hatred is absolutely unreasonable.

Even if it's not what you mean, when you say things like "Aquinas is by far the best theologian the Church has ever known, and nothing from any other Fathers, except maybe Augustine, even remotely compare to him," you kind of come across as contemptuously reviling everyone else.


Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - Silouan - 02-06-2012

Yes, we must never forget the first great commandment of trad Catholicism:

1) Thou shalt never criticize Aquinas or Augustine......


Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - Vetus Ordo - 02-06-2012

I've never seen anyone here revile and sneer at the Eastern Doctors of the Church. That would be unthinkable, especially for people who consider themselves traditional Catholics.

On the other hand, almost every month or so we have tirades of hatred and even scorn towards St. Augustine or St. Thomas, calling legitimate theological concepts "bullshit," accusing these Doctors of the Church of contradicting Scripture and finally, if that wasn't enough, accusing fellow Catholics of idolatry by saying that we burn incense at these saints altars. This behaviour is not merely unbecoming of true Catholics but belies diabolical disorientation.

Yes, the Saints aren't infallible, not even the Doctors of the Church, but we can't treat them with the contempt and vitriol that some of you, like Melkite, do. It seems the one thing that glues Easterners together is their childish anti-Romanism. I couldn't live like that.


Re: The Eastern Churches and St. Thomas Aquinas - Melkite - 02-06-2012

(02-06-2012, 01:50 AM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: I've never seen anyone here revile and sneer at the Eastern Doctors of the Church. That would be unthinkable, especially for people who consider themselves traditional Catholics.

I not sure everyone on FE is aware that the Eastern Doctors belonged to a church of a different rite.  A significant portion of that lack of sneer as you describe it may be due to ignorance.  All that aside, saying Aquinas is by far the most important theologian the Church has ever known, and making his theology that of the Church. to the exclusion of every other, IS reviling and sneering at the Eastern fathers, even if you're not being overtly rude about it.