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Originally Posted by Embatl'dSeraphim
Originally Posted by Dr. Henry P.
What does "unequal pains" mean?

What does "mortal sin" mean? In this context, does it really matter?
Yes, because it seems the notion of "Hell" had not yet been defined by the Catholic Church. Obviously, there is a distinction between "Hell" and "Limbo," but that did not seem to be of concern to the Council of Florence. But the difference would refute your assumption that there is no difference between "culpa" and "reatum."

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it doesn't seem obvious at all to me that the Council of Florence defined what it meant by the word hell, nor has the Church since then clarified what Florence meant.
Is Hell in the council of Florence to be defined solely as the hell of the damned, or can hell also be understood in a different way as the limbo of the fathers, the place of the dead?

perhaps this is what mardukm meant?

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Originally Posted by Embatl'dSeraphim
Otherwise, whence is derived the notion of the "limbo of infants"?

Quite literally, a handwritten note in the margin (the "limbus").

Augustine scratched a note in the margin to the effect of, "what of newborn infants," questioning his own teaching on sin & baptism.

From this note in the limbus, the entire tower of cars of Limbo came about . . .

hawk

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Originally Posted by mardukm
Regardless of the definition of "Hell," the difference does refute the Orthodox objection, because it demonstrates that the Latin Catholic Church never taught that we are guilty of Adam's personal sin - which is what the Orthodox accusation is.

Guilty of it in Catholic teaching, I always thought, because Adam's personal sin passed into our nature?

"As the personal sin of Adam was transferred to his nature so does the sin of nature descend to the person. For that "which Adam performed as a person, he performed not without his nature. As a person he was Adam, by nature he was a man. By the person, therefore, nature was rendered sinful since in Adam, man — that is, his nature — sinned. This distinction is necessary, for Adam sinned, not because he was man (by virtue of his human nature), but because he committed sin with his personal will. With us it is reversed. As Adam personally sinned and forfeited justice, and in consequence also his nature so does the poverty of nature descend to us since nature exists only in persons, and no person can subsist without his nature. In Adam the person robbed nature of justice; and wretched nature transmits her wretchedness to our persons. Nature therefore, is of herself without justice, which she can receive only from the grace of God.

"From this we perceive how essentially original sin differs from that of Adam; that which with him was personal, with us is natural." ~ Anselm of Canterbury

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Originally Posted by Hieromonk Ambrose
Guilty of it in Catholic teaching, I always thought, because Adam's personal sin passed into our nature?

"As the personal sin of Adam was transferred to his nature so does the sin of nature descend to the person. For that "which Adam performed as a person, he performed not without his nature. As a person he was Adam, by nature he was a man. By the person, therefore, nature was rendered sinful since in Adam, man — that is, his nature — sinned. This distinction is necessary, for Adam sinned, not because he was man (by virtue of his human nature), but because he committed sin with his personal will. With us it is reversed. As Adam personally sinned and forfeited justice, and in consequence also his nature so does the poverty of nature descend to us since nature exists only in persons, and no person can subsist without his nature. In Adam the person robbed nature of justice; and wretched nature transmits her wretchedness to our persons. Nature therefore, is of herself without justice, which she can receive only from the grace of God.

"From this we perceive how essentially original sin differs from that of Adam; that which with him was personal, with us is natural." ~ Anselm of Canterbury

Nope, in fact that teaching is directly contradicted by the Catholic Church. We inherit the "poverty of Nature", but nowhere is it taught that a personal sin is passed on through nature, as if by being of that nature we all carry a personal sin. It seems that Anselm agrees with the Catholic position on this, namely that the personal sin of Adam removed the pristine quality from human nature, and thus passed on an impoverished human nature; this is much different from passing on personal sin (which is a contradiction in terms).

Peace and God bless!

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Originally Posted by Ghosty
Originally Posted by Hieromonk Ambrose
Guilty of it in Catholic teaching, I always thought, because Adam's personal sin passed into our nature?

"As the personal sin of Adam was transferred to his nature so does the sin of nature descend to the person. For that "which Adam performed as a person, he performed not without his nature. As a person he was Adam, by nature he was a man. By the person, therefore, nature was rendered sinful since in Adam, man — that is, his nature — sinned. This distinction is necessary, for Adam sinned, not because he was man (by virtue of his human nature), but because he committed sin with his personal will. With us it is reversed. As Adam personally sinned and forfeited justice, and in consequence also his nature so does the poverty of nature descend to us since nature exists only in persons, and no person can subsist without his nature. In Adam the person robbed nature of justice; and wretched nature transmits her wretchedness to our persons. Nature therefore, is of herself without justice, which she can receive only from the grace of God.

"From this we perceive how essentially original sin differs from that of Adam; that which with him was personal, with us is natural." ~ Anselm of Canterbury

Nope, in fact that teaching is directly contradicted by the Catholic Church. We inherit the "poverty of Nature", but nowhere is it taught that a personal sin is passed on through nature, as if by being of that nature we all carry a personal sin. It seems that Anselm agrees with the Catholic position on this, namely that the personal sin of Adam removed the pristine quality from human nature, and thus passed on an impoverished human nature; this is much different from passing on personal sin (which is a contradiction in terms).

Dear Marduk,

Did you read Anselm attentively?

His first sentences say such a lot:

"As the personal sin of Adam was transferred to his nature so does the sin of nature descend to the person.

"For that "which Adam performed as a person, he performed not without his nature. As a person he was Adam, by nature he was a man.

"By the person, therefore, nature was rendered sinful since in Adam, man — that is, his nature — sinned."

So it was not, as you say "the personal sin of Adam removed the pristine quality from human nature, and thus passed on an impoverished human nature.." It is more serious than that. What is passed on by nature is sin. Adam's sin descends to every human being because his sin became part of human nature.

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Originally Posted by dochawk
Originally Posted by Embatl'dSeraphim
Otherwise, whence is derived the notion of the "limbo of infants"?

Quite literally, a handwritten note in the margin (the "limbus").

Augustine scratched a note in the margin to the effect of, "what of newborn infants," questioning his own teaching on sin & baptism.

From this note in the limbus, the entire tower of cars of Limbo came about . . .

hawk

Dear Hawk, this cpmment also, from Saint Augustine:

"But when we come to the punishment of infants, believe me I am in a very tight spot, nor do I find at all what I could answer." ~ Epistle 166. 6. 16


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Just remember how much Catholic (i.e., Latin) doctrine concerning original sin has peregrinated over the course of one and a half millennia.

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Originally Posted by StuartK
Just remember how much Catholic (i.e., Latin) doctrine concerning original sin has peregrinated over the course of one and a half millennia.

Along with doctrine on the afterlife, the trinity, Papal authority, etc.

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It's also worth noting that Anselm using "culpa," not "reatus."

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Originally Posted by Hieromonk Ambrose
Dear Marduk,

Did you read Anselm attentively?

His first sentences say such a lot:

"As the personal sin of Adam was transferred to his nature so does the sin of nature descend to the person.

"For that "which Adam performed as a person, he performed not without his nature. As a person he was Adam, by nature he was a man.

"By the person, therefore, nature was rendered sinful since in Adam, man — that is, his nature — sinned."

So it was not, as you say "the personal sin of Adam removed the pristine quality from human nature, and thus passed on an impoverished human nature.." It is more serious than that. What is passed on by nature is sin. Adam's sin descends to every human being because his sin became part of human nature.

Adam's sin did indeed affect the nature, which is all Anselm is saying. He nowhere says that personal sin is passed on, but even if he did his statements are not indicative of Latin Catholic doctrine on the matter, but are merely the writings of a lone theologian, and one who does not actually carry much weight in the Latin tradition to boot.

In Latin theology, sin is indeed passed on, but sin is a broad term that covers not only personal action but the deprivation of Grace and other effects following on personal sin. This is why the Catechism of Trent makes a distinction between "original and actual sin". In fact, St. Anselm even makes this very point in De Conceptu Virginali when he says "the sin of Adam was one thing but the sin of children at their birth is quite another, the former was the cause, the latter is the effect"; the personal sin of Adam is something other than original sin which is passed on.

I'm sorry Fr. Ambrose, but there's simply no way to make the Latin teaching out to be, or to have been, that the personal sin of Adam is passed down. Not only has the Church itself ruled otherwise, but even the greatest theologians have taught otherwise. smile

Peace and God bless!

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This has been discussed numerous times and my detailed comments are in the archives. In short, nowhere does the Catholic Church teach that the personal sin of Adam is passed on. The issue often arises because of an incomplete understanding of the Latin term "guilt". Guilt, in Latin, has two major definitions. Joe (for example) steals a car is 'guilty' of a personal crime (sin) for stealing. His wife and children are 'guilty' of the same crime because they suffer the consequences of his crime (Joe is now in jail and his wife and kids are hungry because he no longer works to support them, not to mention their shame in being related to someone who committed crime).

An easy to remember understanding of this (and, yes, it is not high theology nor is it intended to be) is to say that there are two kinds of guilt. Once can be guilty of 'doing the crime' and one can be guilty of 'doing the time'. Only Adam is guilty of 'doing the crime' of original sin (no one can inherit that type of guilt). But we do inherit the guilt of 'doing the time' (we inherit mortality and a fallen human nature & world). Of course, in English speaking countries this second usage of the term 'guilt' is not common so it always causes confusion.

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Dearest Father Ambrose,

Originally Posted by Hieromonk Ambrose
Originally Posted by Ghosty
Originally Posted by Hieromonk Ambrose
Guilty of it in Catholic teaching, I always thought, because Adam's personal sin passed into our nature?

"As the personal sin of Adam was transferred to his nature so does the sin of nature descend to the person. For that "which Adam performed as a person, he performed not without his nature. As a person he was Adam, by nature he was a man. By the person, therefore, nature was rendered sinful since in Adam, man — that is, his nature — sinned. This distinction is necessary, for Adam sinned, not because he was man (by virtue of his human nature), but because he committed sin with his personal will. With us it is reversed. As Adam personally sinned and forfeited justice, and in consequence also his nature so does the poverty of nature descend to us since nature exists only in persons, and no person can subsist without his nature. In Adam the person robbed nature of justice; and wretched nature transmits her wretchedness to our persons. Nature therefore, is of herself without justice, which she can receive only from the grace of God.

"From this we perceive how essentially original sin differs from that of Adam; that which with him was personal, with us is natural." ~ Anselm of Canterbury

Nope, in fact that teaching is directly contradicted by the Catholic Church. We inherit the "poverty of Nature", but nowhere is it taught that a personal sin is passed on through nature, as if by being of that nature we all carry a personal sin. It seems that Anselm agrees with the Catholic position on this, namely that the personal sin of Adam removed the pristine quality from human nature, and thus passed on an impoverished human nature; this is much different from passing on personal sin (which is a contradiction in terms).

Dear Marduk,

Did you read Anselm attentively?

His first sentences say such a lot:

"As the personal sin of Adam was transferred to his nature so does the sin of nature descend to the person.

"For that "which Adam performed as a person, he performed not without his nature. As a person he was Adam, by nature he was a man.

"By the person, therefore, nature was rendered sinful since in Adam, man — that is, his nature — sinned."

So it was not, as you say "the personal sin of Adam removed the pristine quality from human nature, and thus passed on an impoverished human nature.." It is more serious than that. What is passed on by nature is sin. Adam's sin descends to every human being because his sin became part of human nature.
Yes, I did read it attentively. And that is why I believe your interpretation is wrong. You focus on the word "sin." But the term you neglect is the word "personal." Adam's sin was personal. What we inherit is sin, but it is not Adam's personal sin, but "natural sin." That's exactly what St. Anselm states.

It is important to understand that there is a difference between the Eastern and Western understanding of sin. Eastern theology understands "sin" only in terms of personal action. But Western theology defines sin as "the state of separation from God." Basically, you need to interpret the Western concept of original sin according to its own teaching of "sin," not according to the Eastern concept of "sin." If we keep trying to impose each others' theology on the other party, we will never understand each other.

Humbly,
Marduk

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Originally Posted by Embatl'dSeraphim
It's also worth noting that Anselm using "culpa," not "reatus."
I didn't see the word "guilt" in the text that Father Ambrose gave. Are you talking about some other text?

Blessings

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Originally Posted by mardukm
Basically, you need to interpret the Western concept of original sin according to its own teaching of "sin," not according to the Eastern concept of "sin." If we keep trying to impose each others' theology on the other party, we will never understand each other.

Maybe this is the reason why there will never be union. Catholic theology has become so attentuated that the Orthodox are simply unable to grasp it and cannot shake off the suspicion that it is erroneous. In all the years of reading your (Marduk's) quite complex theological explications, much of it has simply gone over my head. I cannot grasp it.

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