samedi 8 février 2014

Origen also made a Commentary on Romans, including of course 1:19 and 1:20

1) Romans 1:20 and Dawkins, Richard, 2) Origen also made a Commentary on Romans, including of course 1:19 and 1:20

He is not contradicting St Thomas. He is not saying the Philosophy of the Philosophers was their folly, but rather the fact that in spite of their Philosophy they continued to practise idolatry to please the idolaters in the people (while the convinced such may have been fewer than the Philosophers and anonymous such supposed). And though Origen in the passages I read does not mention what Josephus said about Abraham, they were unlike him, since he by a Philosophical reasoning very like to theirs turned away from idolatry completely and was prepared to suffer persecution for it.

So, the fault of the Philosophers was not Philosophising, but keeping their Philosophy a kind of Masonic little secret. All the while adapting outwardly to the wisdom received by the contemporary idolatrous world. Which means that their Philosophical books are not the dirt about them, not what St Paul was condemning.

Other thing.

Gregory Palamas and "Constantinople Five (ter)" say even the blessed in Heaven do not see God's nature, only His energies. Rome condemns precisely this point and perhaps one or two more, leaving a lot of other points in Palamas perfectly licit from a Catholic perspective, but yes, this point Rome condemned. Origen is neutral or rather slightly in favour of Rome:

Ignotum autem Dei intelligendum est ratione substantiae eius uel naturae ; cuius quae sit proprietas puto non solum nos homines sed et omnem lateat creaturam; The unknown thing of God is however to be understood by reason of His Substance or Nature ; the propriety whereof, which it be, I consider to be hidden not only to us men but also to all creature;
aut si aliquando tantus erit naturae rationabili profectus in hanc quoque possit peruenire notitiam est nosse. or else it is to be known1 whether at any time such a great progress shall belong to the nature endowed with reason [that]2 it shall be able to come to the knowledge thereof.
Tale enim aliquid mihi sperandum uidetur ex his quae a saluatore dicuntur quia For suchlike a something seems to me to be hoped out of these which are said by the Saviour, that3
filium nemo nouit nisi pater ; neque patrem quis nouit nisi filius et cui uoluerit filius reuelare. Noone knoweth the Son, excepting the Father ; and noone knoweth the Father excepting the Son and to whom the Son shall have willed to reveal [Him].4
Non enim addidisset : cui uoluerit filius reuelare ; nisi sciret esse aliquos quibus reuelare uelit. For not would he have added : and to whom the Son shall have willed to reveal [Him]4 ; if He had not known there are some to whom He would want to reveal [Him].4
From Book I, chapter 19, § 6, Latin text by Rufinus.

Origène, Commentaire sur l'Épître aux Romains, Tome I, Livres I - II, 532 Sources Chrétiennes, p. 242

The English translation is mine. I might have looked for an extant translation especially for the Gospel quote, but I wanted to illustrate what kind of difficulty translation from Latin involves and that it does not make for an impossible task. I gave a very oldfashioned English, more or less pre-Enlightenment and learned, since that prose is often molded on literal translations of Latin or Greek texts, that is precisely what I am giving too.

Hans-Georg Lundahl
Bpi, Georges Pompidou
St John of Matha


1 it is to be known = est nosse

2 [that] = supplied, I see a text lacking any word for it, but sometimes "ut" is left out, like in Seneca

3 quia = that (like οτι and unlike Classical Latin)

4 [Him] = object is in Latin text supplied as identical to "patrem" through context, but English in such a case wants a word to express it, as a kind of placeholder, which is superfluous in Latin.

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