Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Georges Florovsky, fully Georges Vasilievich Florovsky

Russian Eastern Orthodox Priest, Theologian, Hisotiran and Ecumenist

"Tradition is the witness of the Spirit; the Spirit’s unceasing revelation and preaching of good tidings… It is, primarily, the principle of growth and regeneration."

"Orthodoxy is summoned to witness. Now more than ever the Christian West stands before divergent prospects, a living question addressed also to the Orthodox world… The ‘old polemical theology' has long ago lost its inner connection with any reality. Such theology was an academic discipline, and was always elaborated according to the same western 'textbooks.' A historiosophical exegesis of the western religious tragedy must become the new 'polemical theology.' But this tragedy must be reendured and relived, precisely as one's own, and its potential catharsis must be demonstrated in the fullness of the experience of the Church and patristic tradition. In this newly sought Orthodox synthesis, the centuries-old experience of the Catholic West must be studied and diagnosed by Orthodox theology with greater care and sympathy than has been the case up to now… The Orthodox theologian must also offer his own testimony to this world—a testimony arising from the inner memory of the Church—and resolve the question with his historical findings."

"Through reaching towards and accepting the Holy Spirit we become eternally God’s. In the Church our salvation is perfected; the sanctification and transfiguration, the theosis of the human race is accomplished."

"God moves toward man and embraces him by His own “grace” and action, without leaving that light unapproachable, in which He eternally abides. "

"Patristic writings are respected indeed, but more as historical documents than as books of authority. Numerous patristic references or even quotations are still usual in our theological essays and textbooks. But so often these old texts or quotations are simply interpolated into a scheme borrowed elsewhere. As a matter of fact, the conventional schemes of our theological textbooks came from the West, partly from Roman sources, partly from Reformed ones. Patristic texts are kept and repeated. The patristic mind is too often completely lost or forgotten."

"In the Fathers no conflict is observed or expressed between Faith and Reason; rather, the conflict is between Faith and Stupidity."