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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, 3DOP said:

Spammer, heh. I don't want to, you've spoiled the ending.

Thanks for all the good work and study. What a breath of fresh air. I didn't give it a like, but I liked a lot of what you said regarding transubstantiation. By the way, isn't the word "sacrament" a synonym for the English "mystery"? Take a look at Ep. 5:32 sometime. Most English translations use the word "mystery" where the Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible uses "sacrament". In that passage the church is not speaking of one of the seven sacraments or mysteries, but of another "mystery". I think we are okay with labelling the sacraments as mysteries, and that the Greek in Ep. 5:32 is probably better translated in English as mystery. The Latin Vulgate has translated the word as "sacrament".

" This is a great sacrament; but I speak in Christ and in the church.
Sacramentum hoc magnum est, ego autem dico in Christo et in Ecclesia. " Latin/English translation of Ep. 5:32

The Timaeus isn't an easy read and Plato doesn't think of 'matter' like we do.  For us, matter always takes a particular form and formless matter doesn't exist.  For Plato, preexistent matter just is preexistent formless 'stuff' or chaos out of which he imposes the Forms and mathematical order in order to create particulars, the inherent particles of which are triangular in their most fundamental components.  It's all pretty wild and weird.  The point is that Plato's demiurge DID NOT create particulars like the components of matter out of nothing at all, as in Catholic teaching.  They're created out of preexisting chaos, what Plato calls the 'Receptacle' in the Timaeus.  The Receptacle and its 'contents' are preexistent, i.e., eternal.  At least in the Timaeus, Plato could not be the origin of the Church's belief in ex nihilo creation.  

https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/plato-timaeus/

Ex nihilo also could not have come from Neoplatonism.  Plotinus posited a God who emanates matter out of himself.  We thus have three models of creation:

Ex materia (Plato, LDS teaching), Ex deus (Neoplatonism) and ex nihilo (Catholicism)

Yes, I think sacramentum is the Latin translation for  the Greek mysterion.  I speak neither language, but that's what I've come to understand in my readings.  Orthodox priests I've asked have affirmed this and, if memory serves, that's what I was taught in RCIA in 2008.  What's crucial about this is that at the deepest level, both sacramentum and mysterion mean the same thing: something material that's a means of grace, sanctified matter that both hides and makes present the ineffable God.

 

Edited by Spammer
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1 hour ago, 3DOP said:

It does not seem like this does much to help your cause. So let me get this straight. Plato is a materialist who denies the reality of matter? The Council Fathers were not really very keen on that concept of Plato either.

Where are you imagining that it says Plato was a materialist ?

It says the opposite 

Are you tired?

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Posted (edited)
37 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

Where are you imagining that it says Plato was a materialist ?

It says the opposite 

Are you tired?

I think the problem lies in understanding the nature of Plato's third realm, where the universals ‘dwell.’ Does this immaterial realm of abstractions ‘exist’ for Plato like we say that immaterial spirit exists independently of the material? My understanding of Plato is that the Third Realm doesn’t really ‘exist’ but is an intellectual ‘space’ that reason perceives, like immaterial mathematical laws. I think whether Plato was actually a materialist hinges on whether he thought the realm of abstractions exists independently of human minds. Maybe he wasn’t a materialist in the philosophical sense, but he was in the sense that he was not into ex nihilo. Formless matter is prexistent for Plato, which is the materialist creation theology I’m talking about - and IMO whether ex nihilo and the idea of immaterial, personal spirits comes from Greek philosophy is the crucial issue for the conversation in this thread. 

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2 hours ago, 3DOP said:

You are tired? It does seem tedious to make such an uproar over this word which led Plato to believe more like you than me. The Fathers of the Council obviously could use this word without caring what Plato believed about God. Wow. When Plato employed this terrible word, it didn't lead anywhere near the Creeds of the Catholic Church! It leaves me incredulous to have discovered that after all these years of being a Platonist by default since I am Catholic, Plato's "god", doesn't even remotely resemble the God of the creeds who created out of nothing. Amazing.

 

 

I would read some actual material about Plato rather than relying on Spammer or me to confuse you.

What terrible word did you have in mind?

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Posted (edited)
37 minutes ago, Spammer said:

I think the problem lies in understanding the nature of Plato's third realm, where the universals ‘dwell.’ Does this immaterial realm of abstractions ‘exist’ for Plato like we say that immaterial spirit exists independently of the material? My understanding of Plato is that the Third Realm doesn’t really ‘exist’ but is an intellectual ‘space’ that reason perceives, like mathematical laws. I think whether Plato was actually a materialist hinges on whether he thought the realm of abstractions exists independently of mind. 

I would suggest you read the allegory of the cave. All that we see before us is not real. It is like a movie. What we see are mere reflections of the Eternal Forms. Just as if what we all see is a movie, we exist in a round of appearances only and not the reality of what lies behind the appearances. And what lies Beyond those appearances are the Forms.

So we live in a world of virtual reality while the forms ARE the reality.

Nothing you see is real. Only the abstractions of what you see are real.

What we see as matter is simply a reflection of the forms as well.

So for Plato we exist in a world of Illusion. Nothing is real except the ideas and forms which are abstract and immaterial. He uses the analogy of a triangle. You can draw a triangle on a Blackboard but it is not a real triangle.

What is on the board exists in two Dimensions may have incorrect angles and imperfect straight lines Etc. It is not a true representation of the Form of a triangle.

The form of triangles was correctly deduced by Pythagoras, Plato would say, as an abstract entity which is not worldly or cannot exist in the world. It is in no way material. It is an abstract deduction of reason. Any material representation of the form must be in some ways incorrect. Matter is inferior to intellect and the world of forms.

Our world that we see is constantly changing so it is by definition not a perfect world. Perfection means completion and stasis and unchanging character.

So the LDS God who progresses is diametrically opposed to the platonic conception of an unchanging abstract God who does not exist in space and time. Again those differences Define what is meant by Transcendent versus vs. Immanent. For a God to be immanent, he cannot be Transcendent as a form of goodness. A God who changes cannot be perfect in this platonic conception.

So yes to use your terminology the realm of abstractions is totally independent from what humans who do not understand ideas like the allegory of the cave may think.

Those people are stuck in the world of Illusion without a clue of what is real, namely the forms.

Only the intellects of the philosopher Kings can begin to understand these matters.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Platonism

Quoting this link:

"Platonism, rendered as a proper noun, is the philosophy of Plato or the name of other philosophical systems considered closely derived from it. In narrower usage, platonism, rendered as a common noun, refers to the philosophy that affirms the existence of abstract objects, which are asserted to "exist" in a "third realm" distinct both from the sensible external world and from the internal world of consciousness, and is the opposite of nominalism.[1] Lower case "platonists" need not accept any of the doctrines of Plato.[1]

In a narrower sense, the term might indicate the doctrine of Platonic realism. The central concept of Platonism, a distinction essential to the Theory of Forms, is the distinction between the reality which is perceptible but unintelligible, and the reality which is imperceptible but intelligible. The forms are typically described in dialogues such as the Phaedo, Symposium and Republic as transcendent perfect archetypes of which objects in the everyday world are imperfect copies."

Edited by mfbukowski

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21 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

I would read some actual material about Plato rather than relying on Spammer or me to confuse you.

What terrible word did you have in mind?

I agree with this. I’m no philosopher. Don’t listen to me. Read some Plato.

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29 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

Where are you imagining that it says Plato was a materialist ?

It says the opposite 

Are you tired?

Why no, I am not tired now, thanks for your concern. I must admit that I could not finish mowing my yard in the Kansas heat this afternoon, and so I came to the discussion feeling pretty exhausted physically, but somehow now, I am feeling a lot better. On the contrary, I feel rather energized.

Where am I imagining that "it" says Plato was a materialist? I imagine that the "where" was here, on this message board, and the "it" was a person who identifies as Spammer. Until now, you have been consistently silent or occasionally confirmed that you agree with Spammer about what Plato believed about God and the Cosmos, and that it would in no way reflect the beliefs of the Fathers of Nicea. To this point, your strategy has been pretty limited to this thing about that word. Okay, you finally want to disagree with Spammer about what Plato believed about something. Maybe it touched a nerve that the question can be raised about whether Plato would fit in better with the LDS Cosmos than with the Catholic/Orthodox? I can't care much about that except the irony is rather appealing. It doesn't help you show how the Nicene Fathers were devoted to Plato, if he believed something else wacky, instead of your kind of materialism, that they also threw on the trashheap. It would remove the irony, and that would be disappointing considering how delicious it would be. But it fails utterly to demonstrate that there was some kind of undue attachment by the Nicene Fathers in favor of Plato and against the Gospel. If Plato believed in unreal matter or real matter doesn't matter. Heh. Creedal Christians reject Plato on that subject whatever he believed. It is beginning to appear that Plato thought more and more like you, and less and less like me than I had assumed. 

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11 minutes ago, 3DOP said:

Why no, I am not tired now, thanks for your concern. I must admit that I could not finish mowing my yard in the Kansas heat this afternoon, and so I came to the discussion feeling pretty exhausted physically, but somehow now, I am feeling a lot better. On the contrary, I feel rather energized.

Where am I imagining that "it" says Plato was a materialist? I imagine that the "where" was here, on this message board, and the "it" was a person who identifies as Spammer. Until now, you have been consistently silent or occasionally confirmed that you agree with Spammer about what Plato believed about God and the Cosmos, and that it would in no way reflect the beliefs of the Fathers of Nicea. To this point, your strategy has been pretty limited to this thing about that word. Okay, you finally want to disagree with Spammer about what Plato believed about something. Maybe it touched a nerve that the question can be raised about whether Plato would fit in better with the LDS Cosmos than with the Catholic/Orthodox? I can't care much about that except the irony is rather appealing. It doesn't help you show how the Nicene Fathers were devoted to Plato, if he believed something else wacky, instead of your kind of materialism, that they also threw on the trashheap. It would remove the irony, and that would be disappointing considering how delicious it would be. But it fails utterly to demonstrate that there was some kind of undue attachment by the Nicene Fathers in favor of Plato and against the Gospel. If Plato believed in unreal matter or real matter doesn't matter. Heh. Creedal Christians reject Plato on that subject whatever he believed. It is beginning to appear that Plato thought more and more like you, and less and less like me than I had assumed. 

Sorry I still don't understand any of this. I still don't know what the secret word is or what you are saying

I have done my best.

Have a good evening.

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I think I’ve confused things a bit for 3DOP. I called Plato a materialist. That was imprecise. I don’t mean philosophical materialism - only the material exists. My intent in using the word was to classify Plato with those, like the LDS church, who also believe matter is eternal. I hope I didn’t confuse things too much with my imprecision. Like I said, I’m no philosopher.

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12 minutes ago, Spammer said:

I agree with this. I’m no philosopher. Don’t listen to me. Read some Plato.

 

35 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

I would read some actual material about Plato rather than relying on Spammer or me to confuse you.

What terrible word did you have in mind?

Thanks for the advice guys. I don't care about learning about Plato. I am only interested in the damage that can be done to my faith if Council Fathers could be shown to have an undue attachment to Plato that blinded them to the truths of the Gospel. It is becoming apparent that the entire evidence against the Council Fathers, doesn't in the least rely on proposing that they adopted Plato's actual beliefs about God. Rather, because I am seeing for the first time that the entire case rests on a word that can be translated into English as "substance", "nature", or "essence", which as a bonus, is used in Scripture ("divine nature"), I could not be interested to learn any more about Plato. I am satisfied with what you guys say.

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10 minutes ago, Spammer said:

I think I’ve confused things a bit for 3DOP. I called Plato a materialist. That was imprecise. I don’t mean philosophical materialism - only the material exists. My intent in using the word was to classify Plato with those, like the LDS church, who also believe matter is eternal. I hope I didn’t confuse things too much with my imprecision. Like I said, I’m no philosopher.

No problem Spammer. I think it started when I expressed surprise that Plato has to be classified with those who hold that matter is eternal. This is still in the starkest contrast to what I have been taught as a Catholic. It still makes the claim that the Council Fathers were in love with Plato less tenable.

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41 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

Sorry I still don't understand any of this. I still don't know what the secret word is or what you are saying

I have done my best.

Have a good evening.

I am sorry too. Maybe you will do better another time.

Good night.

 

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Posted (edited)
51 minutes ago, 3DOP said:

 

Thanks for the advice guys. I don't care about learning about Plato. I am only interested in the damage that can be done to my faith if Council Fathers could be shown to have an undue attachment to Plato that blinded them to the truths of the Gospel. It is becoming apparent that the entire evidence against the Council Fathers, doesn't in the least rely on proposing that they adopted Plato's actual beliefs about God. Rather, because I am seeing for the first time that the entire case rests on a word that can be translated into English as "substance", "nature", or "essence", which as a bonus, is used in Scripture ("divine nature"), I could not be interested to learn any more about Plato. I am satisfied with what you guys say.

I think what you say summarizes the crux of the matter for me. A mountain is made out of a terminological molehill - the appropriation and use of the Greek ousia is interpreted to mean that Catholic theology is founded on Greek philosophy. That’s a ridiculous assertion. All there is is the shared use of similar terminology in reference to the divine but what pagan Greeks and Catholics mean by the same terms is radically different!  It’s the same thing with John’s use of logos in his gospel. Logos in John does not mean what logos means in Plato and Aristotle. But wait! John uses logos. He must have based his teaching on the philosophy of pagan Greeks. Guess what? Ousia is also found in the New Testament Greek. But it doesn’t mean there what the philosophers meant. Obviously. Same with John’s use of logos.  Context is key.

Sure, Catholics use the Greek philosophical term translated as substance but no Greek philosopher meant what Aquinas meant when he used substance in an attempt to use language to represent the immaterial, divine spirit who made everything out of nothing who is really present in the bread and wine of the Eucharist. Concluding that the use of similar terminology is evidence that Catholic theology rests on Greek philosophy only works if you remove the Creed from its Catholic context, which is centuries older than the Creed.

Edited by Spammer

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Spammer said:

I think I’ve confused things a bit for 3DOP. I called Plato a materialist. That was imprecise. I don’t mean philosophical materialism - only the material exists. My intent in using the word was to classify Plato with those, like the LDS church, who also believe matter is eternal. I hope I didn’t confuse things too much with my imprecision. Like I said, I’m no philosopher.

No, matter is an illusion for Plato 

The only things real are forms. Please read the links I have quoted that say that clearly 

Matter is not eternal in any way, any more than your shadow is on a sunny day. 

Only ideas are eternal 

Edited by mfbukowski

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Spammer said:

Sure, Catholics use the Greek philosophical term translated as substance but no Greek philosopher meant what Aquinas meant when he used substance in an attempt to use language to represent the immaterial, divine spirit who made everything out of nothing who is really present in the bread and wine of the Eucharist.

What do you think "trans-SUBSTANTIA-tion means?

The appearance of bread and wine remain while the SUBSTANCE changes into the flesh of Christ 

Alchemy on the other hand sought to swap the appearances of lead with those of gold while keeping the metallic substance

I don't know that any Greek philosopher actually tried to make those kinds of switches. But the idea that they could be switched is part of the separation between substance and appearances.

And if you don't believe me, here are Catholic apologists saying the same thing

 

Edited by mfbukowski

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Posted (edited)
44 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

No, matter is an illusion.

The only things real are forms. Please read the links I have quoted that say that clearly 

Matter is not eternal in any way, any more than your shadow is on a sunny day. 

Only ideas are eternal 

I just remembered that we’ve been here before. I dug up our old conversation on this very same topic back in 2015. Has it been that long!?  I’ll paste what I said then below. If you recall, you did some digging and said the Timaeus is open to interpretation. I agree, though I haven’t changed my mind since then. I still don’t see ex nihilo in Plato.

My old post follows. You asked for something from the Timaeus and this is what I posted:

Creation in the Timaeus is the work of the demiurge (section 28), who brings order and harmony out of disorder (30a, 53,a-b, 69b-c), or who organizes or imposes a structure on preexistent chaos ('matter' unorganized).  Sections 30, 48-53, and 69 contain the exposition on the process. 

For example, from section 53, which describes the process whereby the first step in organizing primordial chaos (matter unorganized) is marking out and imposing the four kinds of geometrical forms (Plato's 'atoms') on it:

"So it was also with the Four Kinds when shaken by the Recipient: her motion, like an instrument which causes shaking, was separating farthest from one another the dissimilar, and pushing most closely together the similar; wherefore also these Kinds occupied different places even before that the Universe was organized and generated out of them. Before that time, in truth, all these things were in a state devoid of reason or measure, but when the work of setting in order this Universe was being undertaken, [53b] fire and water and earth and air, although possessing some traces of their own nature, were yet so disposed as everything is likely to be in the absence of God; and inasmuch as this was then their natural condition, God began by first marking them out into shapes by means of forms and numbers. And that God constructed them, so far as He could, to be as fair and good as possible, whereas they had been otherwise..."

The disordered state of the universe, the state before time when "all these things were in a state devoid of reason or measure", is the preexistent chaos upon which the Demiurge imposes the mathematical forms to initiate the organization. From the Stanford piece below, "The argument from 47e3 to 52d4 gives Timaeus both the spatial matrix in which to situate, and the material substratum from which to constitute, the universe that he will fashion after its eternal model.The fashioning, however, is the process of bringing order to what was, prior to and apart from the Craftsman's intervention, a thoroughly disorderly state of affairs, and so the physical account begins with a description of that disorderly, “god-forsaken” (53b3–4) initial state." 

I see no ex nihilo in the Timaeus.

http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Plat.+Tim.+53&fromdoc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0180

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/plato-timaeus/

Edited October 17, 2015 by Spammer

Edited by Spammer

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, mfbukowski said:

What do you think "trans-SUBSTANTIA-tion means?

The appearance of bread and wine remain while the SUBSTANCE changes into the flesh of Christ 

Alchemy on the other hand sought to swap the appearances of lead with those of gold while keeping the metallic substance

I don't know that any Greek philosopher actually tried to make those kinds of switches. But the idea that they could be switched is part of the separation between substance and appearances.

 

Yes, I know all that. The problem is that transubstantiation - Aquinas’s attempt to use Greek philosophy to account for how the bread and wine become Jesus - is a Latin thing exclusively. If that’s evidence of Greek philosophy introducing doctrinal corruption, that only applies to the Latin Church. Yet, the non-Latin Catholic churches also believe that the bread and wine are changed into Jesus and have from the early days of church. They didn’t get it from Aristotle, who they reject, along with Aquinas. So which Greek philosopher did they get the idea from?

Also, St Justin Martyr called the change ‘transmutation’ in 165 ad. It’s the same idea Aquinas tried to account for 1100 years later using Aristotle’s substance terminology. Ignatius of Antioch defended the same idea 55 years before Justin. Where did they get the idea, if not from the apostles, which Irenaeus stated was the case in 180 ad?  Btw Irenaeus said he got it from Polycarp (Ignatius’s pal), who got it from the Apostle John - who recorded Jesus’s Eucharistic discourse in John 6. Interesting stuff, don’t you think? Can you document a different provenance, linking the doctrine to a pagan Greek other than Aristotle?

 

 

 

Edited by Spammer
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38 minutes ago, Spammer said:

I just remembered that we’ve been here before. I dug up our old conversation on this very same topic back in 2015. Has it been that long!?  I’ll paste what I said then below. If you recall, you did some digging and said the Timaeus is open to interpretation. I agree, though I haven’t changed my mind since then. I still don’t see ex nihilo in Plato.

My old post follows. You asked for something from the Timaeus and this is what I posted:

Creation in the Timaeus is the work of the demiurge (section 28), who brings order and harmony out of disorder (30a, 53,a-b, 69b-c), or who organizes or imposes a structure on preexistent chaos ('matter' unorganized).  Sections 30, 48-53, and 69 contain the exposition on the process. 

For example, from section 53, which describes the process whereby the first step in organizing primordial chaos (matter unorganized) is marking out and imposing the four kinds of geometrical forms (Plato's 'atoms') on it:

"So it was also with the Four Kinds when shaken by the Recipient: her motion, like an instrument which causes shaking, was separating farthest from one another the dissimilar, and pushing most closely together the similar; wherefore also these Kinds occupied different places even before that the Universe was organized and generated out of them. Before that time, in truth, all these things were in a state devoid of reason or measure, but when the work of setting in order this Universe was being undertaken, [53b] fire and water and earth and air, although possessing some traces of their own nature, were yet so disposed as everything is likely to be in the absence of God; and inasmuch as this was then their natural condition, God began by first marking them out into shapes by means of forms and numbers. And that God constructed them, so far as He could, to be as fair and good as possible, whereas they had been otherwise..."

The disordered state of the universe, the state before time when "all these things were in a state devoid of reason or measure", is the preexistent chaos upon which the Demiurge imposes the mathematical forms to initiate the organization. From the Stanford piece below, "The argument from 47e3 to 52d4 gives Timaeus both the spatial matrix in which to situate, and the material substratum from which to constitute, the universe that he will fashion after its eternal model.The fashioning, however, is the process of bringing order to what was, prior to and apart from the Craftsman's intervention, a thoroughly disorderly state of affairs, and so the physical account begins with a description of that disorderly, “god-forsaken” (53b3–4) initial state." 

I see no ex nihilo in the Timaeus.

http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Plat.+Tim.+53&fromdoc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0180

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/plato-timaeus/

Edited October 17, 2015 by Spammer

We haven't even been discussing ex nihilo. I don't have to look it up

I know that Plato's position was like that of Parmenides which is that nothing comes from nothing. 

But that has nothing to do with substance. It's purely a logical construct

Ex nihilo nihilo fit

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nothing_comes_from_nothing

But that has nothing to do with substance theology

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40 minutes ago, mfbukowski said:

We haven't even been discussing ex nihilo. I don't have to look it up

I know that Plato's position was like that of Parmenides which is that nothing comes from nothing. 

But that has nothing to do with substance. It's purely a logical construct

Ex nihilo nihilo fit

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nothing_comes_from_nothing

But that has nothing to do with substance theology

I thought we were discussing the more general issue of whether/ how Greek philosophy influenced church doctrine? 

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, Spammer said:

I thought we were discussing the more general issue of whether/ how Greek philosophy influenced church doctrine? 

To do that we need to speak only of those areas where there WAS influence, right?

How can we discuss how it changed Doctrine in areas where it did not change Doctrine?

Aristotle is the one that came up with the idea of an unmoved mover., not Plato 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unmoved_mover

Edited by mfbukowski

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6 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

To do that we need to speak only of those areas where there WAS influence, right?

How can we discuss how it changed Doctrine in areas where it did not change Doctrine?

Aristotle is the one that came up with the idea of an unmoved mover., not Plato 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unmoved_mover

Alright, so keeping the focus on how introducing substance theology changed church doctrine, which doctrine(s) do you think were changed?

Do you mean Transubstantiation? If so, there was no change in doctrine. All that changed with Aquinas was a change in terminology used in the Latin Church’s descriptions of how the bread and wine are also the Body and Blood of Christ. The underlying doctrine (Eucharist=Jesus) was the same before and after Aquinas introduced ‘substance’ and ‘accidents’ into church discourse, the exact same doctrine accepted by the Eastern churches that rejected Aquinas’s terminology.

Edited by Spammer

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1 hour ago, Spammer said:

Alright, so keeping the focus on how introducing substance theology changed church doctrine, which doctrine(s) do you think were changed?

Do you mean Transubstantiation? If so, there was no change in doctrine. All that changed with Aquinas was a change in terminology used in the Latin Church’s descriptions of how the bread and wine are also the Body and Blood of Christ. The underlying doctrine (Eucharist=Jesus) was the same before and after Aquinas introduced ‘substance’ and ‘accidents’ into church discourse, the exact same doctrine accepted by the Eastern churches that rejected Aquinas’s terminology.

Well then we had Aristotle with ex nihilo caused by the nature of substance as unmoving, needing Something to kick it into gear.

And the Trinity with consubstantial persons.

And I would of course debate the literalness intended in "this is my body" requiring transubstantiation. 

But other than those 3 core doctrines, we are pretty much in the clear. ;)

 

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Posted (edited)

I notice that Catholic Answers puts forth very weak arguments for transubstantiation, in my opinion.

Tertulian:

"Then, having taken the bread and given it to His disciples, He made it His own body, by saying, This is my body, that is, the figure of my body. A figure, however, there could not have been, unless there were first a veritable body. An empty thing, or phantom, is incapable of a figure. If, however, (as Marcion might say,) He pretended the bread was His body, because He lacked the truth of bodily substance, it follows that He must have given bread for us. It would contribute very well to the support of Marcion’s theory of a phantom body…"

Again an argument relying on substance

I think all the quotes they use in this article get them into more problems than they relieve.

https://www.catholic.com/magazine/online-edition/did-tertullian-and-st-augustine-deny-the-real-presence

and then this quote, making your point, 

"As far as the term transubstantiation is concerned, it is true that the term was not used authoritatively by the Church until the famous “Definition of Faith” of the 4th Lateran Council in AD 1215. However, this is simply the term the Church used to define a belief that goes back to the inspired words of Christ himself. It describes the biblical belief that the “substance” or “nature” of bread and wine at the Liturgy are transformed into the body and blood of Christ, while the “accidents” or “appearances” of bread and wine remain. The Fathers used multiple ways to communicate this truth even if they did not use the term “transubstantiation.”

Biblical belief in substance when the word appears only once in a whole different context? 

But still the best argument they have is still substance?

Edited by mfbukowski

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