“Faith in Christ without undergoing healing in Christ is not faith at all.”
~ John Romanides
“So the work of the Church is therapeutic. It seeks to heal men’s sicknesses, mainly those of the soul, which torment them.”
Man fell from the heavenly state to the state of the devil’s deception and needs Christs healing, which is received through the church
How does this all relate to Metropolitan Hierotheos’ work?
Because our nous has been darkened, we are in need of healing. This healing, according to Hierotheos, is found in the church.
Why Christianity over other religions?
What is religion?
Though this is simplifying Metropolitan Hierotheos’ words, religion can be summed up one of two ways:
- There is a wall of separation between God and man, and religion helps man scale that wall to reach God.
- Man feels powerless in the universe and needs a mighty God to help him, man creates God.
Though there are many Christians and churches who definitely fall into one of those two summations, Metropolitan Hierotheos argues that “Christianity is higher. God is not a demanding God, or a fabricated God, but a Living Person in organic communion with man… Orthodoxy is not the ‘opium of the masses’, because it does not postpone the problem.”
What is the problem?
Our nous has been darkened. What darkens our nous?
Maybe its depression, (affects 350 million people world wide, according to WHO).
Maybe its anger.
Maybe its lust.
Maybe its one of numerous vices that man falls victim to.
We all have something that darkens our nous. We all are in need of healing. For me, a large part of my own healing is from depression. I am one of those 350 million people.
“Orthodoxy offers: life, transforms biological life, sanctifies and transforms societies.” Of course that occurs when Orthodoxy is lived in the right way in the Holy Spirit and in communion with God.
But Orthodox Churches are full of sinners!
Yes, and because our churches are filled with sinners, we are going to find sick people within its walls. But that is why the church exists. It is a hospital. And the healthy do not go to the hospital.
Christianity is not philosophy or religion, but therapy. The church helps to heal a person’s passions that they may attain communion and union with God. I know that I am in deep need of therapy. Because I’m not okay. and it’s okay to admit that.
Our spiritual lives are a dynamic journey. It begins with a purified image at baptism and continues with ascetic living aimed at theosis.
The Patristic tradition is neither a social philosophy nor an ethical system, nor is it religious dogmation; it is a therapeutic treatment. In this respect it closely resembles medicine, especially psychiatry. ~ John Romanides