The Blessed Trinity: A Simple Explanation

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The Blessed Trinity: A Simple Explanation

Postby Damian on August 7th, 2006, 2:51 pm 

Here's a smiple explication of the Christian doctrine of the "Trinity":

- God is love.

- Love is a relationship between a lover and a beloved.

- The term "trinity" means three in unity.

- The mystery of the Blessed Trinity is the mystery of Love in relationship with itself.

- The triune Godhead comprises God the Lover, God the Beloved, and God who is the Spirit of Love which unites the Two as One.

- These three - the Lover, the Beloved, and Love itself - constitute the triadic nature of God.

- Only love is real; Therefore only God exists.

:)
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Postby Ichibukai on August 8th, 2006, 5:39 am 

Well, if God is love, He needs object to be loved, especially if He exists from infinity to infinity.
How to resolve this? This is resolved by the fact that God is a Trinity. The Father loved the Son and the Spirit, and so goes the permutation.
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Postby Fuqin on August 8th, 2006, 11:35 am 

Here's a smiple explication of the Christian doctrine of the "Trinity":


Well the trinity of god is not so easily explained me thinks, at lest historically there were many arguments over this doctrine for and against, the most prominent figure in this was a presbyter called Arius a disciple of Lucian a student of Paul of Samosata, bishop of Antioch from 260 to 272.
Paul was an Adoptionist (Dynamic Monarchian). He taught that the Logos or Reason of God dwelt in the man Jesus. God "adopted" Jesus after his crucifixion. the Logos the essence of god was always with God but was >“MADE”< flesh “Jesus often distinguished himself from the father”. “only the father in heaven is good” etc…
Now the title son of God is also arguable, the angels and the prophets were all called sons of God (‘sons’ i.e. ‘adopted’ for reasons of likeness to God)
if it is argued in the case of Christ that this is a literal title then it is just as problematic as the connotation has an ontological expression the father comes before the son therefore Jesus is a creation of god not god himself
Arius in fact argued that Christ’s place in a ‘trinity’ would be better defined as a Brother of the Father.
However Since scripture makes no reference to such a construct of the god head it’s a mute point
Now the doctrine of the trinity was not finalized until 325 at Nicaea
The Nicaea creed here http://www.creeds.net/ancient/nicene.htm




From Brittanica.com,

"In his theological interpretation of the idea of God, Arius was interested in maintaining a formal understanding of the oneness of God. In defense of the oneness of God, he was obliged to dispute the sameness of essence of the Son and the Holy Spirit with God the Father, as stressed by the theologians of the Neoplatonic influenced Alexandrian school. From the outset, the controversy between both parties took place upon the common basis of the Napoleonic concept of substance, which was foreign to the New Testament itself. It is no wonder that the continuation of the dispute on the basis of the metaphysics of substance likewise led to concepts that have no foundation in the New Testament--such as the question of the sameness of essence (homoousia) or similarity of essence (homoiousia) of the divine persons."

It was 325 A.D. at Nicaea that the doctrine of the Trinity was rammed through by Athanasius (using Mafia tactics) in a Council that was overseen by the Emperor Constantine who, ironically enough, thought of himself as God-incarnate. (Constantine was a Sun Worshiper and only made an official conversion to "Christianity" on his deathbed). Roman coins of the period still portrayed the image of the sun God despite the alleged sudden adoption/conversion of Christianity. Many of those present at the Council Of Nicaea were opposed the doctrine of the Trinity, siding with Arius. Even after the Nicene Creed, the Trinity was still hotly debated for decades and centuries after.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE CHURCH AFTER NICAEA

325 AD - Constantine convenes the Council of Nicaea in order to develop a statement of faith that can unify the church. The Nicene Creed is written, declaring that "the Father and the Son are of the same substance" (homoousios). Emperor Constantine who was also the high priest of the pagan religion of the Unconquered Sun presided over this council.

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica:
"Constantine himself presided, actively guiding the discussions and personally proposed the crucial formula expressing the relationship of Christ to God in the creed issued by the council, `of one substance with the Father'."

The American Academic Encyclopedia states:
"Although this was not Constantine's first attempt to reconcile factions in Christianity, it was the first time he had used the imperial office to IMPOSE a settlement."

At the end of this council, Constantine sided with Athanasius over Arius and exiled Arius to Illyria.

328 AD - Athanasius becomes bishop of Alexandria.

328 AD - Constantine recalls Arius from Illyria.

335 AD - Constantine now sides with Arius and exiles Athanasius to Trier.

337 AD - A new emperor, Contantius, orders the return of Athanasius to Alexandria.

339 AD - Athanasius flees Alexandria in anticipation of being expelled.

341 AD - Two councils are held in Antioch this year. During this council, the First, Second, and Third Arian Confessions are written, thereby beginning the attempt to produce a formal doctrine of faith to oppose the Nicene Creed.

343 AD - At the Council of Sardica, Eastern Bishops demand the removal of Athanasius.

346 AD - Athanasius is restored to Alexandria.

351 AD - A second anti - Nicene council is held in Sirmium.

353 AD - A council is held at Aries during Autumn that is directed against Athanasius.

355 AD - A council is held in Milan. Athanasius is again condemned.

356 AD - Athanasius is deposed on February 8th, beginning his third exile.

357 AD - Third Council of Sirmium is convened. Both homoousios and homoiousios are avoided as unbiblical, and it is agreed that the Father is greater than His subordinate Son.

359 AD - The Synod of Seleucia is held which affirms that Christ is "like the Father," It does not however, specify how the Son is like the Father.

361 AD - A council is held in Antioch to affirm Arius' positions.

380 AD - Emperor Theodosius the Great declares Christianity the official state religion of the empire.

381 AD - The First Council of Constantinople is held to review the controversy since Nicaea. Emperor Theodosius the Great establishes the creed of Nicaea as the standard for his realm. The Nicene Creed is re-evaluated and accepted with the addition of clauses on the Holy Spirit and other matters.

As you can see not so simple…..

Final note Trinitarian gods are nothing new and not exclusively Christian the trinity IMHO is just another one of the pagan institutions that invested some time with Christianity and became lodged 3 gods no matter how you look at it is still a polytheism not a monotheism
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Postby Damian on August 8th, 2006, 11:24 pm 

I agree. The historical development of the Christian doctrine of the Trinity is riddled with controversy and confusion. This is why I offered my simple explanation.

The eternal Logos is the Word of God or the Thought of God. And the Thought of God is the Son who is the reflection of the Father. God is Love and Love is self-creating because it is self-reflecting. The Son is God's Self.

The Trinity is not polytheistic but monotheistic because God is both the Creator and the Creation - the Father and the Son. And these three - the Creator, the Creation, and the Creating are One.
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Postby Fuqin on August 9th, 2006, 12:00 am 

The Trinity is not polytheistic but monotheistic because God is both the Creator and the Creation
why stop at 3 ?
I tend toward holistic thinking also but trinity implies three faces of god (hypostases) of calls there’s no problem with this on a mystic level’ the nature of God should be a mystery, or beyond human comprehension but when dealing with the logos a term applied to Jesus in the 4 century’ we come under the scrutiny of Hellenism- Greek thought and logic this is why the debate of the trinity arose in the first place’ before this there was no trinity with the exception of some pagan and Gnostic ideas,<(of cauls there world is almost wholly drenched it the mystic position)< however it was the light of logic that cast upon scripture ,drew the concept of the trinity out and simultaneously framed it as untenable .it also might be worthy to note that that the other two monotheisms Islam and Judah' tisk tisk ,the notion of a trinity as simply blasphemous.
However I don’t mind your love logic triangulation there is a simple family logic to be found there ‘and is something that did not go unnoted by many ancient beliefs –i.e. father, mother ,child- and can be found in the worlds oldest surviving religion Hinduism.
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Postby Damian on August 10th, 2006, 1:41 am 

Fuqin wrote:
The Trinity is not polytheistic but monotheistic because God is both the Creator and the Creation
why stop at 3 ?
I tend toward holistic thinking also but trinity implies three faces of god (hypostases) of calls there’s no problem with this on a mystic level’ the nature of God should be a mystery, or beyond human comprehension but when dealing with the logos a term applied to Jesus in the 4 century’ we come under the scrutiny of Hellenism- Greek thought and logic this is why the debate of the trinity arose in the first place’ before this there was no trinity with the exception of some pagan and Gnostic ideas,<(of cauls there world is almost wholly drenched it the mystic position)< however it was the light of logic that cast upon scripture ,drew the concept of the trinity out and simultaneously framed it as untenable .it also might be worthy to note that that the other two monotheisms Islam and Judah' tisk tisk ,the notion of a trinity as simply blasphemous.
However I don’t mind your love logic triangulation there is a simple family logic to be found there ‘and is something that did not go unnoted by many ancient beliefs –i.e. father, mother ,child- and can be found in the worlds oldest surviving religion Hinduism.


You have brought up a lot of issues here and I am not sure how to respond to your objections. However, I shall try my best.

Before I do that, however, I think it may be appropriate to provide you with some background information. My primary influence is not the Bible but "A Course In Miracles". So my personal beliefs do not necessarily reflect or speak for classical or traditional Christianity.

Let's address some of the issues you posed.

1) Hypostasis

The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary provides the following two definitions for the term "hypostasis" which I feel are relevant to the discussion at hand:

- the substance or essential nature of an individual
- person 3...one of the three modes of being in the Trinitarian Godhead as understood by Christians

I was taught as a Catholic that the Trinity comprises three persons...The Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit. And that these three are one.

I concur with this definition.

2) Mysticism

Yes, I agree that the Trinity is a mystery and the knowledge of its truth can only be experienced through intuitive or mystical insight.

mysticism = "the belief that direct knowledge of God, spiritual truth, or ultimate reality can be attained through subjective experience"...source Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary.

I subscribe to mysticism.

3) Logos

The term "logos" has multiple meanings. One meaning is "word". It is translated as such in the KJV Bible.

"In the beginning was the Word (Logos), and the Word (Logos) was with God, and the Word was God." John 1:1

Other definition of the term "logos" are as follows:

- the universal law or rational principle underlying all reality
- the moral law
- the divine power which is present in everything
- divine reason

The Logos has affinity with the concept of the "Tao". It is also associated with the Dialectic - the threefold movement of thought.

The eternal Logos was the basis for Stoicism.

Why is it a problem that early Christianity adopted this term? Because it introduced "logic" into a faith based movement? Faith and reason do not necessarily preclude each other. Remember that the Logos is "Divine Reason".

4) Gnosticism

Gnosticism is the belief that the phenomenal world is ultimately unreal and that liberation comes through the "gnosis" (Divine Knowledge). According to this definition, I subscribe to gnosticism.

5) Blasphemy

Yes, I am aware that Judaism and Islam do not share the doctrine of the Trinity with Christianity. So what? This is blasphemy? I believe in a trinitarian Godhead. But even if my conception of the Godhead is incorrect, I do not believe the Deity will condemn me for holding such a concept. Is this your belief?

6) Love Triangulation

I would not call my definition of the Trinity a "Love Triangulation". This appears to have a negative connotation. However, I will admit, that from the point of view of the lower self or ego, it may appear to be a "love triangle."

The Course says, "Your identification is with the Father and with the Son. It cannot be with One and not the Other. If you are part of One you must be part of the Other, because They are One.The Holy Trinity is holy because It is One." ACIM T-8.IV.8,6-10
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Postby Fuqin on August 10th, 2006, 2:26 am 

**But even if my conception of the Godhead is incorrect, I do not believe the Deity will condemn me for holding such a concept. Is this your belief?

No certainly not !
my stance is mystic atheism as I have recently come to understand it! I reject the theistic attempts of universal or in theological terms “catholic” theologies, theories, theosophies, that place a frame work around things Like ‘God’ for me a true mystic should know better than to attempt a formalization ‘particularly with words’ of the inexpressible’ its fine to discus such things’ but doctrines/dogmas etc ( and the triune for me is one such dogma) is completely tied down to the frailty of the human mind ,I may see the truth in it’ but it is still a paradigm of MANkind’s and so in our finite understanding we can never understand the infinite. nor dose today’s truth hold ground in the accumulative process of truth seeking ,’today’s truth is tomorrows lie’ note the emphasis on the man in MANkind this is because ‘there in’ is a telling, misdeed of patriarchal ignorance with regard to the ideal of completeness,

However you say you subscribe to the mystic position, at lest then we may partially understand one another,

Oh triangulation wasn’t a good term your right
Perhaps what I meant was a tri-tangent 1+1=3 any how regards fuqin
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Postby Damian on August 10th, 2006, 4:53 pm 

Fuqin wrote:
**But even if my conception of the Godhead is incorrect, I do not believe the Deity will condemn me for holding such a concept. Is this your belief?

No certainly not !
my stance is mystic atheism as I have recently come to understand it! I reject the theistic attempts of universal or in theological terms “catholic” theologies, theories, theosophies, that place a frame work around things Like ‘God’ for me a true mystic should know better than to attempt a formalization ‘particularly with words’ of the inexpressible’ its fine to discus such things’ but doctrines/dogmas etc ( and the triune for me is one such dogma) is completely tied down to the frailty of the human mind ,I may see the truth in it’ but it is still a paradigm of MANkind’s and so in our finite understanding we can never understand the infinite. nor dose today’s truth hold ground in the accumulative process of truth seeking ,’today’s truth is tomorrows lie’ note the emphasis on the man in MANkind this is because ‘there in’ is a telling, misdeed of patriarchal ignorance with regard to the ideal of completeness,

However you say you subscribe to the mystic position, at lest then we may partially understand one another,

Oh triangulation wasn’t a good term your right
Perhaps what I meant was a tri-tangent 1+1=3 any how regards fuqin


The Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary provides the following three definitions of "mysticism":

- "the experience of mystical union or direct communion with ultimate reality reported by mystics."

- "the belief that direct knowledge of God, spiritual truth, or ultimate reality can be attained through subjective experience (as intuition or insight)"

- "vague speculation : a belief without sound basis" or "a theory postulating the possibility of direct and intuitive acquisition of ineffable knowledge or power"

Atheism is usually defined as the belief that there is no God or the disbelief in God's existence.

Also, many associate atheism with materialism - the philosophical belief that ultimate reality is the physical or "matter/energy".

Theology is of course the "study of God".

Of course, as a theist, I identify ultimate reality as God.

Now, I have a couple of questions for you.

- What is a "mystic atheist"?

- Why does an atheist come to a theological forum dedicated to "God talk"?
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Postby Fuqin on August 10th, 2006, 7:51 pm 

What is a "mystic atheist"?
I have and do experience the mystery of life!
I realize the general use of the term atheist means I don’t believe in God ‘Indeed’ I don’t !
A further clarification of my position here> bulleti ... php?t=1902
Also you may want to Google’ Spinoza’
Now as I have explained though its obvious you cant grasp it Atheism-is anti-theistic ‘theism’ being the formularization of God to which my religion is apposed for logical political and philosophical reasons.
Can I not be Buddhist and an atheist can I not follow the Tao and be an atheist? Can I not have a sole without a God? More latter –maybe
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Postby Damian on August 11th, 2006, 1:04 am 

Also you may want to Google’ Spinoza’
Now as I have explained though its obvious you cant grasp it Atheism-is anti-theistic ‘theism’ being the formularization of God to which my religion is apposed for logical political and philosophical reasons.
Can I not be Buddhist and an atheist can I not follow the Tao and be an atheist? Can I not have a sole without a God? More latter –maybe


Spinoza espoused a form of pantheism (the belief that all is God). Pantheism is a theistic belief not an atheistic one.

Atheism is an "anti-theistic theism"? Is this the godless god?

Atheism is a religion?

Are you a Buddhist? a Taoist?
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Postby Fuqin on August 11th, 2006, 1:47 am 

*Spinoza espoused a form of pantheism (the belief that all is God).

>Quit right god is logically materially present God is all.
*Atheism is an "anti-theistic theism"? Is this the godless god?

>No it’s the un-constructed God.
*Atheism is a religion?

>It can be But that’s a matter for the individual
*Are you a Buddhist? a Taoist?

> no but I am sympathetic to some of the teachings.
>> truth can be found anywhere.
:wink:
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