Reason and Theology - Response to Jay Dyer on Future Debates
#1


If any of you watch Taylor Marshall's videos on YouTube, you may know he recently interviewed Tim Flanders, a convert from EO to RC. This generated a lot of controversy, especially among Jay Dyer and his fans. Dyer began to derogatorily call Tim "Ned Flanders" both before and after he asked him for a debate, which Tim refused.

There comes a point where most would probably not tolerate constantly being insulted. Dyer's behavior online is deplorable and he justifies it by pulling quotes from Saints which appear to endorse insulting his opponents (https://twitter.com/Jay_D007/status/1194...92/photo/1)

Dyer and his fans have insulted the guys over at Reason and Theology, whose members come from a variety of backgrounds. They include Michael Lofton (received into both Catholic and Orthodox, but he leans more toward the Catholic position from my understanding), Erick Ybarra (Catholic), and Craig Truglia (Orthodox). Dyer has called Erick "Candy Ybarra" and his fans have mocked him for his weight. I don't know the details of Erick's personal life, but I think he has some health problems. Dyer has called Michael a "former wigger" and a fraud. Michael's wife and children are black (https://twitter.com/michaelloftonRT/stat...0134769664).

To be fair, I've seen Catholics be equally nasty (if not more so) to Jay, his fans, and even his girlfriend Jamie. With the latter, there have been attacks against her because she used to be into magic and the occult from my understanding. What she used to believe in is irrelevant now if she is a fully practicing Christian. There is a particularly nasty set of comments made against his girlfriend by this woman (https://twitter.com/Jay_D007/status/1218316646357651456). This woman (the one attacking Jay's girlfriend) clearly needs help and should apologize. It only makes Traditional Catholics look bad and leads to people "painting with a broad brush."

With that said, two wrongs don't make a right. I don't care which side started this nasty debacle, but even both Catholics and Orthodox agree Dyer's behavior is shameful.
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#2
Jay Dyer, while clearly an intelligent guy, is kind of a douchebag. This is most apparent when he "debates" people because he will constantly cite the absurd number of books he's read without really forming them into a coherent argument.

I won't lie, there's certainly some interesting stuff he's put out there. But it's clear that he has some sort of bone to pick with Catholicism.

I actually really loved the Taylor Marshall interview on Eastern Orthodoxy, and a lot of the points that were made, I thought, really drove the point home as to why it's ridiculous that the Orthodox claim to be "the Church" when they can't even manage to pull themselves together for an ecumenical council, let alone agree on doctrine.
"The Heart of Jesus is closer to you when you suffer, than when you are full of joy." - St. Margaret Mary Alacoque

'And he shall be as a tree that is planted by the waters, that spreadeth out its roots towards moisture: and it shall not fear when the heat cometh.' - Jeremias 17:8
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#3
The Reason and Theology channel and especially people like Jay Dyer have really started to make me think that theology should not be studied by laymen. Philosophy/Theology is a LIFE, and one that is heightened and separate from the ways of the world, not a tool to bash people over youtube.
"If your heart comes to feel a natural hatred for sin, it has defeated the causes of sin and freed itself from them. Keep hell’s torments in mind; but know that your Helper is at hand. Do nothing that will grieve Him, but say to Him with tears: ‘Be merciful and deliver me, O Lord, for without Thy help I cannot escape from the hands of my enemies.’ Be attentive to your heart, and He will guard you from all evil."

- St. Isaias the Solitary

"Constant action overcomes cold; being still overcomes heat. Purity
and stillness give the correct law to all under heaven."

- Tao Te Ching 45
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#4
(01-18-2020, 04:46 PM)Augustinian Wrote: I thought, really drove the point home as to why it's ridiculous that the Orthodox claim to be "the Church" when they can't even manage to pull themselves together for an ecumenical council, let alone agree on doctrine.

The Orthodox Church still has binding Councils.  They just aren’t called “Ecumenical” because the Christian Empire (“Oecumene”) no longer exists.  That Rome calls its Councils "Ecumenical" is simply hubris. 
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#5
(01-18-2020, 05:23 PM)Florus Wrote: The Reason and Theology channel and especially people like Jay Dyer have really started to make me think that theology should not be studied by laymen. Philosophy/Theology is a LIFE, and one that is heightened and separate from the ways of the world, not a tool to bash people over youtube.

I think theology can and should be studied by laymen, but it should be acknowledged that lay theologians should be viewed more as "amateurs" whereas theologians of the abbeys and religious orders are the "professionals."

That being said, Jay Dyer is an arrogant and mean-spirited Eastern schismatic who has never left the Baptist "church."

I don't get the attraction to him (I know it's because I'm dumb), he talks in circles and in tomes. He's too focused on talking about what he knows, instead of clearly and plainly stating his position. There's a term for that: a sophist.

That being said I really enjoy the Reason and Theology channel. It is a great vehicle to allow certain topics to be hashed out that is not being addressed by the mainstream.
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#6
(01-18-2020, 05:32 PM)PorphyriosK Wrote:
(01-18-2020, 04:46 PM)Augustinian Wrote: I thought, really drove the point home as to why it's ridiculous that the Orthodox claim to be "the Church" when they can't even manage to pull themselves together for an ecumenical council, let alone agree on doctrine.

The Orthodox Church still has binding Councils.  They just aren’t called “Ecumenical” because the Christian Empire (“Oecumene”) no longer exists.  That Rome calls its Councils "Ecumenical" is simply hubris. 

Anyone want to talk about the 'Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church'?  :laughing: One of the ancient Patriarchates and three other Patriarchates, including the largest Eastern Orthodox Church in the world simply refused to attend.

As I've said many times before, they are a rudderless ship with no captain, no pilot, and no steersman.
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#7
(01-18-2020, 09:30 PM)jovan66102 Wrote: As I've said many times before, they are a rudderless ship with no captain, no pilot, and no steersman.[/size]

Well at least they are sailing in circles, instead of having a captain and crew who are hell-bent on foundering the barque.
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#8
(01-18-2020, 09:30 PM)jovan66102 Wrote:
(01-18-2020, 05:32 PM)PorphyriosK Wrote:
(01-18-2020, 04:46 PM)Augustinian Wrote: I thought, really drove the point home as to why it's ridiculous that the Orthodox claim to be "the Church" when they can't even manage to pull themselves together for an ecumenical council, let alone agree on doctrine.

The Orthodox Church still has binding Councils.  They just aren’t called “Ecumenical” because the Christian Empire (“Oecumene”) no longer exists.  That Rome calls its Councils "Ecumenical" is simply hubris. 

Anyone want to talk about the 'Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church'?  :laughing: One of the ancient Patriarchates and three other Patriarchates, including the largest Eastern Orthodox Church in the world simply refused to attend.

As I've said many times before, they are a rudderless ship with no captain, no pilot, and no steersman.
There you go again. And how's that rudder of yours working out for you?  

Christ is our Captian and the Holy Spirit is our Rudder, guiding the Church.  We cling to Holy Tradition, to the Fathers and the Councils.  Rome continues to be an innovator and "updater" of tradition till there's nothing left.
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#9
Jay Dyer does come off like an arrogant jerk a lot of the time but at least as far as I can see his arguments using presuppositional apologetics attacking classical foundationalism and his explanation of Essence/Energies vs. Absolute Divine Simplicity are spot on and excellent, as are his talks on St. John of Damascus. 


Regarding the so called "Great and Holy Council", one reason I am firmly Orthodox is precisely for the ecclesiology. I've been convinced for years that the real Achilles Heel in Catholicism IS the top down papal structure. The fact that the "Great and Holy Council" was rejected by many  within Orthodoxy proves to me that there is no super bishop who can foist novelties on the Church as a whole and demand obedience.  Its a blessing. 

There's not been a real need for an Ecumenical Council for centuries.  All the real theological questions pertaining to Christology and Triadology was hammered out in the first millennium.  

All that being said, I like Jay for his pretty serious theology but his haughtiness is very off putting at times.  I've really never seen anyone in recent memory so thoroughly and convincingly argue for proper Christology in light of the Fathers or go book by book explaining St. John of Damascus or St. Gregory Palamas the way he does. 

Laymen certainly can do theology,  it shouldn't just be for academics.  In both modern Orthodoxy and Catholicism it is often the academics that are the most liberal,  just look at, say,  Kalistos Ware, Hilarion Alfayev or the "Public Orthodoxy" crew to see that in action on the Orthodox side.
Walk before God in simplicity, and not in subtleties of the mind. Simplicity brings faith; but subtle and intricate speculations bring conceit; and conceit brings withdrawal from God. -Saint Isaac of Syria, Directions on Spiritual Training


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#10
(01-18-2020, 09:08 PM)austenbosten Wrote:
(01-18-2020, 05:23 PM)Florus Wrote: The Reason and Theology channel and especially people like Jay Dyer have really started to make me think that theology should not be studied by laymen. Philosophy/Theology is a LIFE, and one that is heightened and separate from the ways of the world, not a tool to bash people over youtube.

I think theology can and should be studied by laymen, but it should be acknowledged that lay theologians should be viewed more as "amateurs" whereas theologians of the abbeys and religious orders are the "professionals."

...

That being said I really enjoy the Reason and Theology channel.  It is a great vehicle to allow certain topics to be hashed out that is not being addressed by the mainstream.

Yeah that's fair, I've done my fair share of studying theology both in private and academically, but I can't help but feel that this is nothing compared to actually living the life. It seems wrong to me that anybody can pick up fathers and read them outside of a religious context, and it feels even weirder that we have so many self proclaimed experts debating things on youtube that would originally be reserved for men living apart from the world in an ascetical context.

To reply to FB's point: neither do I think we should leave theology to the academics, I think the treatment of theology as a purely academic field does disservice to it as well.
"If your heart comes to feel a natural hatred for sin, it has defeated the causes of sin and freed itself from them. Keep hell’s torments in mind; but know that your Helper is at hand. Do nothing that will grieve Him, but say to Him with tears: ‘Be merciful and deliver me, O Lord, for without Thy help I cannot escape from the hands of my enemies.’ Be attentive to your heart, and He will guard you from all evil."

- St. Isaias the Solitary

"Constant action overcomes cold; being still overcomes heat. Purity
and stillness give the correct law to all under heaven."

- Tao Te Ching 45
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