Sunday, January 20, 2013

Gems From the Treasury: January 14-18, 2013

Glory to Jesus Christ!  This week's quotes on Gems From the Treasury came from Book III of St. Clement of Alexandria's Stromateis (Miscellanies).

1/14/13: "We are not to live amorally. We are, so far as possible, to purify ourselves from passions and lusts, and take care of our soul."--III.42 (5)
1/15/13: "It is impossible for those who are still under the direction of their passions to receive true knowledge of God."--III.43 (1)
1/16/13: "Ignorance of God is displayed by one's living."--III.43 (1)
1/17/13: "The tree is known by its fruits, not by its flowers...True knowledge is discerned from the fruits of behavior, not from the flower of theory."--III.44 (2)
1/18/13: "Better to be healthy than to be ill and talk about health. Better for there to be light than to be chattering about light."--III.57 (4)

Next week's quotes are from the Enzira Sebhat, or Harp of Glory, described as "An Alphabetical Hymn of Praise for the Ever-Blessed Virgin Mary from the Ethiopian Orthodox Church."  In some senses, it seems to be an Ethiopian equivalent to the Byzantine Akathist Hymn to the Theotokos, although the structure is very different.

St. Clement of Alexandria, pray for us!

Nota Bene: All the quotes from St. Clement of Alexandria are from the translation of Books I-III of the Stromateis by John Ferguson for the Fathers of the Church series published by the Catholic University of America.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Gems From the Treasury: January 7-11, 2013

Christ is baptized!  This week's quotes on Gems From the Treasury come from the Proslogion (Proslogium) of St. Anselm of Canterbury.

1/7/13: "I will long after Thee in seeking Thee, I will find Thee by loving Thee, I will love Thee in finding Thee."--Proslogion I
1/8/13: "[My soul] is both darkened in itself, and dazzled by is both obscured by its own insignificance, and overwhelmed by Thy infinity."--Proslogion IV
1/9/13: "If there are many great delights in delectable things, what and how great is the delight in Him Who has made these delectable things."--Proslogion XXIV
1/10/13: "Love the one good in which are all goods, and it sufficeth....There, there is whatever ye love, whatever ye desire."--Proslogion XXV
1/11/13: "I pray, O God, to know thee, to love thee, that I may rejoice in thee...may I at least advance...until that joy shall come to the full."--Proslogion XXVI

Next week's quotes are from Book III of the Stromateis (Miscellanies) by St. Clement of Alexandria.  Though this section of the work is heavily centered on discussing marriage (with, for instance, Chapters 1-53 of Book III refuting various heresies that disparage the body, marriage, or the marital act), the quotes I am selecting are more general quotes about living the Christian life, particularly in the moral realm.

St. Anselm of Canterbury, pray for us!

Nota Bene: All the quotes from St. Anselm's Proslogion come from the edition of his Basic Writings translated by S.N. Deane and published by Open Court Classics.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Gems From the Treasury: December 31, 2012 - January 4, 2013

Christ is baptized! This week's quotes on Gems From the Treasury come from different Byzantine liturgical hymns during this Nativity season.

12/31/12: "Your Nativity, O Christ our God, has shed the light of knowledge upon the world....O Lord, glory to You!"--Troparion of the Nativity (December 25)
1/1/13: "You fulfilled the Law by accepting to be circumcised in the flesh...Glory to Your goodness, O Word!...Glory to Your ineffable condescension!"--Troparion of the Circumcision (January 1)
1/2/13: "The Virgin gives birth to the Transcendent in Essence...For to us is born a New Child, who is God from all eternity."--Kontakion of the Nativity (December 25)
1/3/13: "[David, Joseph, and James] offer their hymns of praise, for the crown of glory of their relationship with Christ fills them with joy."--Kontakion of the Sunday after the Nativity (December 26-31)
1/4/13: "Make ready, Zebulon, and prepare Nephtali!  And you, Jordan River, stop your flow and receive...the Master coming to be baptized."--Troparion of the Forefeast of the Theophany (January 2-4)

Next week's quotes come from St. Anselm of Canterbury's Proslogium (Proslogion).  Though this work is more well-known from putting forth the eleventh-century saint and philosopher's famous ontological argument for the existence of God, it also contains beautiful words relating to the Christian's relationship with God, since St. Anselm's starting point for his work is faith (fides quarens intellectum, "faith seeking reason/intelligence," as he famously described his method).

St. John the Forerunner, who baptized Christ in the Jordan, pray for us!

Nota Bene: All the quotes from Byzantine liturgical hymns used this past week come from The Horologion published by the Melkite Eparchy of Newton's Sophia Press, pp. 884-889.