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In opposition of the old calendar ( Please no hate)

Discussion in 'The Ancient Way - Eastern Orthodox' started by Nick Moser, Nov 12, 2019.

  1. Nick Moser

    Nick Moser Member

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    This is an excerpt of Elder Paisios of Mount Athos on the “Old Calendarists”
    "The elder said: “It would have been good if this calendar difference did not exist, but it is not a matter of faith”. In the objections that the New Calendar was done by a Pope he would reply: “The new calendar was made by a Pope and the old one by an idolater,” meaning of course Julius Caesar. In order to understand the position of the Elder more clearly on the matter, the following incident is mentioned.
    An Orthodox Christian who was Greek in origin had lived with his family in the USA for many years. He had a serious problem, though. He was himself a “zealot” (old calendarist) whereas his wife and children followed the New Calendar. “We could not celebrate a feast together like a family”, he used to say. ??They would celebrate Christmas when for me was St. Spyridon’s Feast. When I had Christmas, they had St. John’s. And that was the least of our problems. The worst thing was to know, as they had been teaching us, that the NCs are heretics and will be damned."

    [​IMG]


     
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  2. ArmyMatt

    ArmyMatt Regular Member Supporter

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    that's not in opposition to the Old Calendar.
     
  3. ~Anastasia~

    ~Anastasia~ † Handmaid of God † CF Senior Ambassador Supporter

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    I tend to agree most with this part.


    I wonder if perhaps you are trying to decide who is "more right"? I know I tried to figure that out. What eventually came through for me is that communion in the one Lord is more important than dividing ourselves over something that is "not a matter of faith".

    For what it's worth, given complete choice, I would probably have chosen the old calendar. But the local parishes are on the new, and I need to be in Church. (And not with the attitude that I somehow know better than them.)


    Interesting thing happened to me. I have a Christmas cactus in my kitchen window. When I was looking at the issue of the calendar, my cactus bloomed on the new calendar Nativity. But then ... it bloomed again 13 days later on the old calendar Nativity.
     
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  4. AMM

    AMM A Beggar Supporter

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    I don't really mind which calendar the Church decides to use, but I do wish that it were agreed upon universally.
     
  5. peregrinus2017

    peregrinus2017 Active Member

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    It seems to me that Elder Paisios is critical of old calendarists, rather than the old calendar. Big difference.
     
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  6. tz620q

    tz620q Regular Member Supporter

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    I thought the Council of Nicaea settled this in 325 in their synodal letter that states:

    "We further proclaim to you the good news of the agreement concerning the holy Easter, that this particular also has through your prayers been rightly settled; so that all our brethren in the East who formerly followed the custom of the Jews are henceforth to celebrate the said most sacred feast of Easter at the same time with the Romans and yourselves and all those who have observed Easter from the beginning."
     
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  7. James4Christ 777

    James4Christ 777 Member

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    Yes Saint Paisos is critical of the schism of Old Calendarists, not necessarily the Old Calendar itself, and actually Saint Paisos is pretty much a traditionalist , yet never broke with the Canonical churches.
     
  8. ~Anastasia~

    ~Anastasia~ † Handmaid of God † CF Senior Ambassador Supporter

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    That was just about setting the date for Pascha (and we all really needed to be on the same page and still are).

    The new issue is whether or not to correct for the dates drifting over centuries - holding to the old calendar or switching to the new one that corrected for the slow drift. Since our years cannot be accurately plotted on any calendar.
     
  9. rusmeister

    rusmeister A Russified American Orthodox Chestertonian

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    My own thoughts, worth the paper they are printed on...

    Calendars are man-made things. They are secular. Temporal. The Church uses them because we operate in a temporal world. Calendars can change, and the change can be legitimate, as long as the change does not seek to overthrow/deny Christian teaching and/or human tradition or Holy Tradition. One given calendar is not itself Holy Tradition, but the means by which Orthodox practice is administered.
    Treating the calendar as a holy thing when it is not means making an idol out of it. That’s what insisting that the Church may use no other calendar adds up to.

    A change from one calendar to another would and should decide that, for example, the 16th Sunday after Pentecost and Sunday of St Savva the Venerable (or whoever) gets skipped as a one-time event necessary for the extremely rare event of adapting to a new calendar. Saying that this cannot be done seems like idolatry to me.

    I’m open to correction from our Tradition.
     
  10. buzuxi02

    buzuxi02 Veteran

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    Unfortunately this is precisely what the new calendar has done changed holy tradition and the ethos of its laity. Here is one blatant example:
    Party Like the Greeks This New Year by Making Vasilopita

    Vasilopita | Greek Lucky New Year’s Cake

    The Vasilopita is a Greek New Years good luck Cake???? Well under the new calendar that's precisely what it is and even the nuns baking them with the secular new years imprinted on them. Meanwhile New years in the church is September 1. And much of the laity have no idea it commemorates a miracle of St.Basil the Great when he was appointed to redistribute a surplus of taxes.

    What was the purpose of adopting the revised julian calendar in 1930 Alexandria? To differentiate the Greeks from the Copts??? No it was to re-align greek culture towards an Anglo- western trajectory.
    Ever wonder why greek women do not wear headscarves in church for the past 90 years???, Look to the adoption of the new calendar, I'll leave it at that.
     
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2019
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  11. buzuxi02

    buzuxi02 Veteran

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    Actually he was not as critical as he is made out. He was critical of hearsay things coming from old calendarists. But he was also critical when they came from new calendarists as well, where he initially labeled them as "unionists" (after 1967) that struck the first blow.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2019
  12. rusmeister

    rusmeister A Russified American Orthodox Chestertonian

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    Your concerns sound reasonable. I do indeed notice what you point about about headscarves (and not only). It is fashionable among some Russian women in Moscow. I know of a church quite close to the Kremlin where those women proudly declare their rejection of the tradition.

    My main thought in dialog is, how are such things the fault of the calendar, rather than of people? The calendar is a man-made tool meant to align us with the actual solar year and the change of the seasons, and it has been steadily and gradually departing from that factual correspondence.

    I certainly agree that in all of my observations, the Greeks do seem to be the swiftest to disdain any small-t tradition that is not about promoting Greek culture. It was part of what drove my mother away from Orthodoxy into the arms of Islam, so the worldliness of the church she found near her home did play a role in that. But I don’t see the calendar as being the cause. At the most, a drive to change the calendar, not because it was ceasing to correspond to reality, but because it was a rejection of tradition, WOULD be a problem, but one of pride, and not a matter of “which calendar?”.

    But again, I do hear you on the modern rejection of good traditions within the Church, resulting in a variety of evils and errors. That DOES strike VERY close to home for me.
     
  13. ArmyMatt

    ArmyMatt Regular Member Supporter

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    Elder Cleopa says that if there is a judgment, it will only be for those who changed the calendar, not those who have been on it since.
     
  14. ~Anastasia~

    ~Anastasia~ † Handmaid of God † CF Senior Ambassador Supporter

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    Yes basically my choice is ... accept the new calendar or reject the (local) Church. It seemed to me that rejecting the Church (or thinking I was more right/pious than her leaders) would be by far the greater sin ...

    (I know such a mindset would be very damaging to me personally, while the exact day I celebrate this or that has little bearing on the particular condition of my soul.)

    Thankfully I'm not responsible for the calendar.
     
  15. InnerPhyre

    InnerPhyre Well-Known Member

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    The calendar had to be changed because the Julian calendar was flawed in that a solar year is not exactly 365 days but rather 365 days, 5 hours and several minutes, which seems a negligible difference and in terms of a human lifespan it is. The extra five hours per year add up though and after centuries if not corrected, those cumulative hours will skew that accuracy of the calendar to the point where you will end up with summer in December in the northern hemisphere for several centuries. Changing the calendar was a matter of science and anyone who thinks the Julian Calendar is somehow holy and “better” is making an idol out of the entire thing for absolutely no reason. The only reason for not adopting the Gregorian Calendar was the notion that anything that comes out of the West post schism is to be mistrusted regardless of whether it’s a purely scientific advancement and not a religious one. Furthermore how insane is it to govern your secular life according to the Gregorian calendar and your religious life according to the Julian?
     
  16. rusmeister

    rusmeister A Russified American Orthodox Chestertonian

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    I have more sympathy with this view. But I do think the concerns of people who disagree ought to be seriously considered. I would not give "science" as a reason to order anything in the Church, and I agree fully with people like buzuxi who complain about worldliness and kowtowing to the world within the Church, but it does seem to me that your chief point here is right - it DOES mean Pascha in the late fall or winter in the end, and that's not an issue of following the world, but of admitting the fallen human origin of the calendar itself.

    Personally, I am driven by the factual need to concelebrate the New Year in particular with unbelieving family out of love, but to pretend to fast in the last couple of weeks of the Nativity Lent for the sake of solidarity with the Church as well. But it's already a broken fast, unreal, and of little value to me, and THAT is because of this calendar split. It need not be so. But there it is. But that's a separate issue from the one of the loss of relationship of the old calendar to its admitted purpose: identifying and ordering the seasons.
     
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  17. buzuxi02

    buzuxi02 Veteran

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    The reason for this is due to secular holidays irregardless of which calendar. New Years is in September1/13 NOT in January. But this affects new calendarists more. In America we must break the fast to stuff ourselves on Thanksgiving. Orthodoxy does not dispense entirely with the fast even for her own feast days but for secular holidays she eliminates her own practise. Also the fast is again broken on Christmas Eve and many times before this due to numerous christmas parties thrown by both the nominal Orthodox majority and by our secular friends. Christmas has become a purely consumer secular shopping holiday with alcohol drinking thrown in. At the same time the sacred cutting of the Vasilopita for the feast of St. Basil the Great has become a secular Good Luck cake that even atheists have adopted. The spiritual rot the new calendar has wrought is astounding to say the least.
     
  18. prodromos

    prodromos Senior Veteran Supporter

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    That is one aspect I actually appreciate. The early Church had a much greater struggle to separate from the secular, or rather pagan feast days. The above situation allows us a small taste of the issues they faced.
     
  19. nicholas123

    nicholas123 New Member

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    Because we do not have an eucharistic worldview anywhere. Saint Paul says it is natural that women wear headscarves, not that it is "traditional". Unless we rekindle the flames of communion with nature, that is to say, to consider the human as a part of creation as anything else, Orthodoxy will continue to decline and degenerate. That was the common worldview in the ancient and medieval world.
    The seasons are to be commemorated as a gift to help our communion and salvation in God and an accurate calendar is important. I have read the original the documents and they explicitly say it is to help integration with the roman church, that I do not defend. Yet, I neither defend your will-to-power based worldview - for they are simply the other side of the ecumenist coin.
     
  20. buzuxi02

    buzuxi02 Veteran

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    Why would it be insane? Every religion on earth EXCEPT For western christianity does just that. The Jews have their own calendar, as do the Chinese as do the Copts as do the Iranians.
    For example should the Church change the great indiction from Sept 1 to Jan1 and in Asia change it to coincide with the Chinese New year spring festivals?
    Dont get me wrong the Church of Greece does just this. The feast of the protection of the Mother of God was transferred to Oct 28 to coincide with the secular WW2 National holiday of Oxi.
    The state transferred Greek Independance Day from April 5 to March 25th to coincide with the feast of the Anunciation etc....But there are now many secular non-Orthodox Greeks that want to seperate these holidays. So in the name of the new calendar someday Greeks will be having national parades and festivals during holy week.

    This concept of organizing ones life based on the business calendar is a strawman argument especially in light that all these countries are secular and do not take into account liturgical practises and whichever calendar you use will have conflicts of interest. The old calendar though has less conflicts of interest.
     
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