Monday, March 30, 2015

Anthropos

Since the beginning of time mankind has tried to evaluate its position in the world, within creation. Who are we? What are we? What is our role and place in this world? What is the purpose of our life? According to the philosophical or religious beliefs of someone, these questions receive very distinct and unique answers. How does Christianity understand these questions? What is an Anthropos? This is a large topic; nevertheless, below is an interesting answer to this questions: 


‘Anthropos is radically different from all other created beings by his ability to transcend himself. Gregory of Nyssa thus ridicules the philosophers who thought they were glorifying man by saying that he was a microcosm. From the biblical perspective, man infinitely surpasses the world by the spirit of life, that divine spark, that God breathed into him. Man (Anthropos) was created after all the other creatures but in line with God’s eternal project, a project which sin can disturb but not totally destroy. In this divine plan, man is destined to reign over the world, explore it, and delight in the beauty of the cosmos. Such a royal dignity implies a profound solidarity. In the words of Gregory Nyssa, humanity is a “free mirror” which by turning toward God the Sun receives and communicates light. If humanity separates itself from God and wanders away from him, man and the world are plunged into darkness.’[1]   



[1] Behr-Sigel, Elisabeth, The Ministry of Women in the Church, (California, Oakwood Publications, 1991), p. 84. 

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