WARNING

NOT EVERYTHING THAT

CALLS ITSELF ORTHODOX IS

TRULY ORTHODOX


The above warning was given to me when I first met Orthodoxy in 1986. Today [2009] it is even more perilous, even more difficult to find the Royal Path. For one thing there is a far greater abundance of misinformation. And many materials are missing, and other materials are being rapidly rewritten. For another thing there are fewer than ever guides remaining on the Royal Path, especially who speak English. Hopefully this website will be a place where Newcomers to the Faith can keep at least one foot on solid ground, while they are "exploring."


blog owner: Joanna Higginbotham

joannahigginbotham@gmail.com

jurisdiction: ROCA under Vladyka Agafangel

who did not submit to the RocorMP union in 2007

DISCLAIMER



31 August 2013

Wounded by Love

Book Review
Wounded by Love
by Elder Porphyrios

Review written by "Arc Mode":



Thursday, 29 August 2013
World elders - World religion


We know from the many clear warnings of Christ's true saints, that a false church will arise and be integrated into the world religion of Antichrist. It follows therefore, that along with it's buildings, icons and clergy this false church must also have it's saints, prophets, miracle workers and teachers. Their sanctity however must be a fraud, their prophecies misguided, their miracles illusions and their teachings demonic. The spiritual life as taught by the Holy Fathers has been called a science of sciences, a repeatable experiment that every Christian must conduct within themselves, and so this teaching should be consistent no matter what time or place those ascetics struggled and recorded their experiences and wisdom. In the words of Saint Theophan the Recluse:

'The positive teaching of the Church serves to know whether a concept is from the Truth. This is a litmus test for all teachings. Whatever agrees with it, you should accept it, whatever does not - reject. One can do it without further deliberations.'

The cult of the Athonite 'elders' is inescapable for those caught in the fallen church. They have become the standard of holiness and most trusted teachers of the modern Orthodox Christian. Porphyrios, Paisios and Iakovos are the three big ones, although there are others whose names I forget. As the world orthodox churches draw nearer to ecumenical unity with the heterodox, and ultimately, every non-christian religion, the spiritual life of the people must first be adapted so as to complement, or at least not contradict, the spirituality of the emerging unified religion that is the inevitable outcome. It is my contention that the elders of world orthodoxy have made significant changes to the understanding of the nature of man and the spiritual life of the Christian, and that these changes are in line with what we would expect if they were indeed preparing those people for the acceptance of the world religion.

Here I will contrast some of the teachings of Porphyrios on the nature, effect and power of thoughts with similar doctrines found in New Age religion followed by the true understanding handed down by authentic Holy Fathers.

First, a quote from Porphyrios taken from the book - Wounded by Love: The Life and Wisdom of Elder Porphyrios (Found at The Orthodox Christian Information Center.)

'When we speak evil about someone, an evil power proceeds from within us and is transmitted to the other person, just as the voice is transmitted on sound waves, and in point of fact the other person suffers evil. It is something like the bewitchment of the evil eye, when someone has evil thoughts about others. This occurs through our own indignation. We transmit our evil in a mystical way. It is not God who provokes evil, but rather people’s wickedness. God does not punish, but our own evil disposition is transmitted to the soul of the other in a mysterious way and does evil.'

So, according to Porphyrios 'an evil power proceeds from within us and is transmitted to the other person, just as the voice is transmitted on sound waves.' 'We transmit our evil in a mystical way.'

First I want to point out that Porphyrios is not just describing the effect of speech, he is describing a separate power, something distinct from the person speaking and the person suffering the evil. From where does this power come? From within us, he says. He does not say we rouse the other persons passions, by expressing our malice, he claims that something else is transmitted mysteriously, like sound is through air, reaches the other person's soul and 'does evil.'

Now a quote from Khris Krepcik, who calls himself The Hooded Sage, a disciple of Stuart Wilde, one of the most famous and influential New Age gurus, describing what occurs between people through what he calls the 'Mental Fields.'

'On a multidimensional level, humans are nothing but etheric tubes of flowing energy. When humans come in contact with each other, those etheric tubes latch on to other people, and energy is transferred from one person to another.'
'People are constantly bombarded by the dark resonances of emotion and mind that are flying through the invisible holographic fields.'
'...any negative attitude or inner feeling towards another human being is the exact same thing as black magic on an energy level... Anger, anxiety, desire, disdain, envy, fear, greed, hatred, jealousy, lust, panic, rage, sadness, worry — any of it — they all create and project etheric blocks, binds, darkness, hits, and sickness onto others...'

With a more specific terminology, Khris Krepcik is describing exactly the same thing as Porphyrios: Negative feelings projected from within people are transmitted via the etheric, holographic fields and effect those around them.

Now, you might say, in Porphyrios' defense, that he mentions speech. Maybe he just means the negativity we speak that other people hear? But he specifically says this transmission is like sound through the air, so it must be distinct from speech. And in another quote he confirms his belief in energy transference by thought when he claims:

'There is an invisible life, the life of the soul. This is very powerful and can have effect on the other, even if we are miles apart. This also happens with the curse, which is a power that works evil. But if, conversely, we pray with love for someone, whatever the distance that separates us, the good is transmitted. So distances do not affect the power of good and evil. We can transmit these across boundless distances. Solomon the Wise says this very thing: ‘The noise of murmurings shall not be hidden.’ The noise of our soul is transmitted mysteriously and affects the other, even if we don’t say a word. Even without speaking we can transmit good or evil, irrespective of the distance which separates us from our neighbor. What is not expressed generally has greater power than words.'

There can be no doubt that the spiritual reality that Porphyrios describes is the same reality that The Hooded Sage, Khris Krepcik describes. We can only assume that both of these 'spiritual guides' were engaging in similar spiritual practices, encountering the same unseen reality, taking it to be the true understanding of how the spiritual realm works, and passing this teaching on to their students as the genuine way of spiritual life.

So let's contrast this with what the Holy Fathers taught about the nature of thoughts and their power. From St John Damascene's, 'Exact exposition of the Orthodox faith' Book II Chapter XIX

Concerning Thought 
'The faculty of thought deals with judgments and assents, and impulse to action and disinclinations, and escapes from action: and more especially with thoughts connected with what is thinkable, and the virtues and the different branches of learning, and the theories of the arts and matters of counsel and choice. Further, it is this faculty which prophesies the future to us in dreams, and this is what the Pythagoreans, adopting the Hebrew view, hold to be the one true form of prophecy. The organ of thought then is the mid-ventricle of the brain, and the vital spirit it contains.'

Nothing about a mysterious power to project good or evil remotely.

Now Saint Maximus the Confessor, a giant of ascetical theology, whose teachings on the nature of thoughts and their effects are an Orthodox standard.

'If we detect any trace of hatred in our hearts against any man whatsoever for committing any fault, we are utterly estranged from love for God, since love for God absolutely precludes us from hating any man.'
'Stop defiling your flesh with shameful deeds and polluting your soul with wicked thoughts; then the peace of God will descend upon you and bring you love.'
'Do not befoul your intellect by clinging to thoughts filled with anger and sensual desire. Otherwise you will lose your capacity for pure prayer and fall victim to the demon of listlessness.'

'When the intellect associates with evil and sordid thoughts it loses its intimate communion with God.'

In the writings of Saint Maximus we find the true doctrine of the power of a person's thoughts. They only have the power to affect the one who thinks them. If we consent to impassioned thought, and carry out in deed the malice we feel, either by word or deed, then we harm the other person. Otherwise, the result of malice or hatred in the soul only has the effect of cutting that person off from God's grace.

For a man supposedly in possession of great discernment and the gifts of seeing into the soul of those who came to him for help, Porphyrios was clearly not able to discern the true nature of the human soul or the spiritual world. If he had been possessed of the same Holy Spirit that had illumined Holy Fathers like Saint Maximus, he would have understood the soul's nature in the same way as they understood it.

Of course, the True Orthodox understanding is the only doctrine that makes sense anyway. What kind of world would we be forced to inhabit if everything we thought and felt was transmitted to our environment? It would not be possible to conduct a spiritual struggle in the way the Fathers describe, by working back from deeds and words to dealing with impassioned thinking. It would not seem fair for God to not allow us to choose between the thoughts we accept and those we reject in order to change the way we interact with people and the world. We would have no choice but to do constant harm, even involuntarily, especially at the beginning of our struggle when such impassioned thoughts are powerful and difficult to control.

If it is possible to transfer energy by thought, why are the lives of the saints not full of accounts of these powers? Why did Christ and the Apostles not mention them? Why do we not find the sin of thought transference in the guides to confession?

Because it doesn't exist and has never been a natural power of man. God did not create us telepathic, and there is no separate, impersonal force that can be projected from person to person in a mysterious way without the cooperation of the demonic realm by a deceptive appearance. In fact, the elders of world orthodoxy very rarely mention demons at all, and why would they? Who needs demons, angels or even God himself if men are able to generate and project mysterious powers, sharing good and evil without the benefit of grace or even speech?

This is the crux of the emerging spirituality. Everything is centered on man, God is distant and uninvolved, impersonal forces dominate the mind and soul, and 2000 years of Holy Wisdom is superseded by a handful of old men, in direct contact with fallen spirits, promoted as elders and guides by a church deep in apostasy.


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