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Joined: Dec 2003
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I just got back from a Natural Health Seminar and met a couple of white-clad woman monastics from the Indian Oriental Orthodox Church (Malabar?)

Anyway they said that the early Church Fathers and the ancient church taught Reincarnation and Universalism.

Except for Tertullian and Origen, I was not aware of any other Church Fathers who taught unOrthodox things like that.

So, I was wondering if any of you are aware of where they got those teachings as I did not think that the Bible even suggested those ideas either.

p.s. If this is in the wrong forum, will the mods kindly move it? Thanks.

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It sounds to me like you've met a couple of new-age followers of the �Church-of-the-East � Yoga of Jesus� (NOT to be confused with the Assyrian/Ancient Church of the East). These people are based in India and believe in both reincarnation and universalism (amongst numerous other new-age notions). Contrary to how they attempt to present themselves, they are not by any stretch of the imagination Orthodox Christians (Oriental or otherwise). (BTW � these are the same folks behind �Monastery Icons.�) Hope you steer clear of them.


~Isaac

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St. Gregory of Nyssa is often linked with Universalism. FWIW, here are some links that support this linkage:
http://www.tentmaker.org/biographies/nyssa.htm
http://jmm.aaa.net.au/articles/15459.htm
http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/oso/public/content/religion/0198270224/toc.html

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Quote
Originally posted by Elizabeth Maria:
Anyway they said that the early Church Fathers and the ancient church taught Reincarnation and Universalism.

Except for Tertullian and Origen, I was not aware of any other Church Fathers who taught unOrthodox things like that.
I would recommend obtaining a copy this book:

From Death to Life: The Christian Journey [amazon.com]

It is called "From Death to Life: The Christian Journey" By Christoph von Cardinal Schonborn. In this text he addresses the charge of reincarnation against Oriegen (it evidently originated (no pun intended) with a misreading by St. Jerome). He also addresses at length the notion of reincarnation and how it was regarded by the Fathers as completely antithetical to the Christian Gospel. (He notes that in the East, where it has much deeper roots, reincarnation is a cycle of punishment from which one should seek to be delivered - but in the West among New Age devotees it has been recast as a cycle of enlightenment and development.)

I cannot locate my copy of this text at the moment, otherwise I would share a few citations from the Fathers.

He also does a marvellous treatment of theosis which is well worth reading.

Definitely a must have for the library (and for reading!)!

Gordo


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