Orthodox Church: its History, Doctrine, and Spiritual Culture .

The Orthodox (generally) do not regard themselves as exotic. If they have come to Orthodoxy from other forms of Western Christian tradition, or from secular atheism, they often are tempted to regard themselves as exotic for a while, but it soon wears off. Apparently, however, many external observers do still retain that perspective, and it can often tempt the Orthodox to live up to it by posing as exotic: a dangerous state of affairs which postcolonial theory has put its finger on already as subalternism, or that state where a small group with a residual minority consciousness tries to live up to expectations foisted on it by the dominant hegemonic powers of the age.1 The Christian Orthodox, as they have been encountered relatively rarely, in the flesh, in the ordinary experience of most Western Christians, are certainly a strange encounter. The root presuppositions, and the basic style of worship and attitude that are so familiar in many forms of Western Christian practice, seem different here. If the Orthodox feature in the public eye of the media at all, it is usually with a view to the strange rituals of a church that has a very ancient liturgical style, and often uses languages that outsiders do not remotely understand.
The temptation to categorize the Eastern Orthodox as romantically exotic is a powerful one, and is often a fate wished on them by those who hold them in kind regard and who value many of the things Orthodoxy represents in Christian history, such as faithfulness to tradition, endurance under suffering, and reverence in wor- ship. Those who are less enamoured of Orthodoxy look at it from the perspective of their own philosophies, ideologies, and orthodoxies, and sometimes censure it as reactionary, exclusive, patriarchal, rigid in its doctrines and liturgy. Rarely, however, do either its critics who dislike it, or its non-Orthodox friends who cherish it,2 have much awareness of the wider context of what an Orthodox articulation of the church and society would be on its own terms. This book tries to set out such a vision. It is offered as a sustained essay in Orthodox history, theology, and culture, and offered as much to the Orthodox reader who wishes to enter into a discussion of his or her own tradition as it is to a general reader who might simply wish to gain a deeper understanding of where the Orthodox came from, and what they claim to represent.
But running throughout all the sections of this book is the message that exotic, the Orthodox Church is not rather, it is a full-blooded community of the faithful

Authors: Ayomide Oche Aderemi

Date: 2021

Upload Date: 9/29/2021 4:36:55 PM

Format: epub

Pages: 20



Language: English



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