Basic Theological Principles of Perfect Interpersonal Communion in Contemporary Orthodox Theological Comprehension

Thursday, July 17, 2014: 9:00 AM
Room: 315
Oral Presentation
Sergey CHURSANOV , Department of Systematic Theology and Patrology, St. Tikhon Orthodox University, Moscow, Russia
To be persuasive for an orthodox Christian both theoretical reflections and practical implications concerning the social questions of Church life need clear theological substantiation. Grounding on main theological doctrines occupies a special place among the means of attaining such validity for orthodox Christian mind. Present paper is devoted to the consideration of the consequences of the number of basic aspects of the doctrine on God as the Holy Trinity for understanding of Church life by orthodox Christians. These consequences include the understanding of the personal way of being, and orthodox perception of perfect interpersonal relations and perfect communion.

It is the appreciation of human being as the image of God, which guides orthodox Christian to establishing a linkage between the doctrine on the Holy Trinity and his or her vision of proper Church life. In the sociological context of clarifying the significance of Trinitarian doctrine for orthodox perception of perfect Church life, a special attention is paid in the present paper to the so-called social understandings of the image of God in human community. This methodological approach makes it possible to deduce from the doctrine on the Holy Trinity four basic principles of Christian comprehension of perfect interpersonal communion and proper constitution of the social aspects of Church life. These four Trinitarian principles suggested and characterized in the present paper are unity in difference, personal cause, personal fullness, and free giving.