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Where are the examples?!
I've read about a lot of famous artists, scientist and philosphers being accused of heresy. But i find nothing about that in this text. Have i've been fed bs all this long?! Shouldn't there be a "group" for those people who have been accused of heresy as well as there is a group for those who for example killed themselves by means of immolation? Anyone who has worked with this article who can explain why notable examples have been left out?
A Purely Subjective Term
While we can discuss what may or may not be examples of heresy all day long, the FACT of the matter is that the whole discussion of what is or is not "heretical" is purely that of one's personal POV. History does not effectually command what was or was not "truth", it simply records who thought and said what as part of a specific "group thought" or POV. Protestants and our beliefs and doctrines ARE by definition "heretics" from the POV of the Roman Catholic Church. From the POV of Protestants, Roman Catholics are being heretical against the teachings of the Scriptures. From the POV of Christians, Jews are heretical.
It's all completely subjective.
The term itself is simply a pejorative, defamatory and demeaning label that we as Christians "stick" on anyone who disagrees with our POV. It's like calling someone "stupid" for a "fool" or whatever other demeaning label we can assign against another human being and child of God for believing what they do for whatever reason (especially when we ourselves have not fully investigated what another might think and why from their POV). One might consider the words of Messiah before applying the label "heretic" to another fellow brother or sister with whom we might disagree: "... Again, anyone who says to his brother, 'Raca,'[an Aramaic term of contempt] is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell. " (Matt. 5:22 ) --Solascriptura 11:13, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
- Agreed. This is discussed in the article and pretty clear. The Wikipedia:Lead section is not there to hammer home ideas that are deemed important with original and new content that is very detailed and highly specific. The Wikipedia:Lead section is a balanced summary of the article contents. If you want to add new content to the article about subjective POV, please integrate it into the existing body of the article which already talks about it. -- Stbalbach 13:49, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
- Just becasue a main article has been "established" doesn't mean it cannot be improved upon. There is nothing wrong with adding any content to draw attention to historical defining context. This emphasis is totally in keeping with the Wikipedia:Lead section that specifically states the necessity of the main article to set definitions. Contextual example using "detail" is important and such is used throughout many Wikipedia articles. The NPOV of this article is substanitively reduced without such emphasis and borders on violating Wikipedia's rules concerning bias. Perhaps you can suggest a more emphasized "subjective nature of the term" within main article that will please the both of us?? :) --Solascriptura 15:59, 1 July 2006 (UTC)
- Well the other problem what you wrote isn't all that clear. It's verbose and full of highly-specific material that needs a lot more space to fully explain, it's just not appropriate material for a lead section. There is no "pov" problem because the article is clear throughout on the subjective nature of the term. -- Stbalbach 03:15, 2 July 2006 (UTC)
The concept of heresy is not subjective at all. In any case, that's a highly controversial claim, and one that neither you, nor (so far as I know) anyone has ever given good reason to believe. I don't think this article should commit itself to such a controversial position. Isn't the point just to explain the meaning of the word? Can't we explain what a heresy is without taking a controversial position on some (alleged) fact about heresy? I think the language about heresy being a subjective term should be eliminated. -- Beau Branson —Preceding unsigned comment added by Beau Branson (talk • contribs) 19:29, 21 July 2008 (UTC)
- I agree with Beau Branson, it's not a subjective term. Facts are facts, there is a definite truth about everything, right or wrong, good or bad, and just because you have good intentions doesn't make it good. You're trying to say everything in life is subjective, which is not correct. Heresy is a simple term, St. Thomas defines heresy: "a species of infidelity in men who, having professed the faith of Christ, corrupt its dogmas." Theology10101 (talk) 00:45, 24 July 2008 (UTC)
- That's not so simple. Can we tell objectively if people who are called heretics are engaging in inidelity or corrupting dogmas? It's beyond the scope of Wikipedia to declare that some positions are or are not heretical, we can only point out things that some call heresy. --RLent (talk) 18:37, 27 February 2009 (UTC)
Simply stated heresy is a lie as defined by those who claim to know the whole truth. Therefore, heretics are liars who teach contrary to the truth. Blasphemy is an intentional premeditated insult to God. Apostasy is treason to the beliefs of a group to which one previously belonged. Jose Leo (Joseleo (talk) 05:00, 28 September 2010 (UTC))
- I am surprised that no one said this over a year ago, 1) Wikipedia is not a dictionary(we have wiktionary for that), 2) NPOV means fairly give the view of all majority non-undue reliable sources the same weight.
- For this article, these means that it should give the world the views of different major religions the same weight, not just explaining the meaning of the word. For example, you don't say what religion is heresy to Christians, but what is the point of view of Christians about heresy(i.e. what it deems to be heretic, e.g. claiming Jesus to be just another prophet or something instead of the son of God), and do this for any religion one can find independent sources for. —Preceding signed comment added by MythSearchertalk 14:56, 28 September 2010 (UTC)
The best definition I read of the word heresy looked at its Greek roots and defined it as a process whereas a young person would examine the various philosophies of their time to determine how to live their life thereafter. This of course is a praxis of independent thought, anathema to a Catholic church that insisted on doing the thinking for the faithful. Miklos Legrady. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Miklos legrady (talk • contribs) 08:06, 12 May 2012 (UTC)
Modern Heresy Examples
Further to the discussion some way down the page, I really do think these examples could be better. If the point is to show that 'heresy' can be used outisde of a purely religious context, using Darwin as an example will not do. What immediately springs to mind when seeing 'Darwin' and 'heresy' together is that of his status as a religious heretic, as seen by many Christians. Likewise with Copernicus; these were scientific challenges to religious orthodoxy and as such they were labelled religious heretics. Can not more modern examples be found, that do not involve religion at all? this is absurd — Preceding unsigned comment added by 184.108.40.206 (talk) 06:05, 6 March 2012 (UTC)
--Whamilton42 13:51, 18 May 2006 (UTC)
First of all, I think this is an excellent beginning for this article. I do think that Protestantism probably shouldn't be included in a list of heresies though. As a movement, from the Roman Catholic POV, I would guess that Protestantism involves both heresy and schism, two different offenses. It would be helpful to list specific heresies such as Arianism as such, as long as we identify who consideres them to be heretical. Such things should be bodies or systems of belief; the first three items on the list are good examples. (Arianism, Nestorianism, and I can't remember the third right now.) --Wesley
- It is given as a heresy in the Catholic Encyclopedia. It seems to me that at its beginnings Protestantism was a heresy, but modern Protestants aren't heretics. Does that makes sense? Only those who first opposed the doctrines of Rome were heretics. Oonce they left the Church they became schismatics.
- I don't think it's necessary to say who considers them heretical. Heresy is a legal judgement made by the Catholic Church. Afaik, no other church uses the term, but of course I could be wrong. --Dmerrill
- As far as I know, technically (from the RC POV), Anglicanism, Lutheranism, and Eastern Orthodox religions are schismatic; other Protestant churches (maybe not Calvinism?) are heretical, since they deny many or most tenets of RC-ism and have no link to apostolic succession.
- I do believe that the Roman Catholic and I know the Eastern Church do certainly believe that modern protestants are heretical. The Catholic church does accept some baptisms such as the Lutheran, Anglican but out of a sense of ecumnicism not because they view them as correct. The Eastern Church rejects all baptisms except the Catholic and this with some reservation. So why do I use baptism as a crtieria for the consideration of heresy? Baptism is the one sacrament accepted by every group of christains, or at least all that I can determine. Also the authority to baptise is based on something, some sort of perception of priesthood. For the Catholic and Eastern church this authority is Apostolic Succession, without which all sacramental administration is invalid and the doctrines leading to this invalid action are heretical.I am a protestant entering the RC church and have experienced this. And this is but one example --JWPhil
- As far as I know, technically (from the RC POV), Anglicanism, Lutheranism, and Eastern Orthodox religions are schismatic; other Protestant churches (maybe not Calvinism?) are heretical, since they deny many or most tenets of RC-ism and have no link to apostolic succession.
I guess if the CE lists it as such, and the list is attributed, than I guess I can't really argue with including it. I was thinking that just leaving the church is an act of schism, not by itself an act of heresy. A heresy is a teaching or idea. But I should probably go read the entry in the Catholic Encyclopedia. The Eastern Orthodox Church also uses the term, but with slightly different definitions. I don't think they would call it a "legal judgement" since they generally don't have as much "legal" thinking in their theology. I think that early church historians would use the term when discussing things like Arianism, using the term as it was used in the councils. --Wesley
- I just tried to put it in context by distinguishing the beliefs of early protestants as heresies, not the movement after the schism, or today. Tweak as needed. --Dmerrill
- But I think that's wrong. Catholics consider a a number
of Protestant beliefs to be heretical.
- True, but not Protestantism in general, just the particular beliefs. And the holding to that belief is only heresy when it is held by a Catholic. --Dmerrill
Does the Roman Catholic Church really reject the 'universal priesthood of all believers', or simply the idea that such a priesthood of all believers is incompatible with the ordained priesthood? IIRC, the Eastern Orthodox church manages to affirm both, by assigning different definitions and roles to the two priesthoods.
I'd like to remind those who edit this page, and other pages referring to "heresies", that the Catholic historical position is a POV which must be noted as such when writing Wikipedia. It is disharmonious with NPOV to describe so-called "heretical" religious beliefs as being wrong, or un-Christian, or rejections of faith. (It is, of course, necessary to accurately report the Catholic POV that heresies exist and are such, though.) This applies equally to "historical" controversies as to more current issues such as Protestantism. --FOo
RK -- Could you please use α β γ type Greek character entities? (E.g.: αβγ ... χψω) The numerical ones are dependent upon your character map and do not display correctly on many browsers/platforms, whereas any conforming browser should display the "spelled out" ones correctly. These are also easier for others to read and understand in the page source than the numerical ones. --FOo
- Any conforming browser will display the numeric ones correctly too. They are Unicode, and don't depend on any browser-specific or platform-specific character map. (Of course, we should aim for things to work also on as many non-conforming browsers as possible, but I don't know which is best in that respect.) --Zundark 23:28 Feb 17, 2003 (UTC)
- Also, using HTML entities is going to (I think) restrict you to monotonic Greek, whereas words such as these are being quoted from historical, that is, polytonic Greek, right ?
heresy was considered an offense punishable by clerical or secular powers
- What, they punished heretics by giving them powers? -- Wapcaplet 05:27 6 Jul 2003 (UTC)
- Try substituting "authorities" for "powers". I'd change it in the article, but I don't think it's true: heresy could be discerned by religious inquisitions, but heretics were remanded to the secular authorities for punishment/execution on the grounds that the church did not "shed blood". -- Someone else 05:37 6 Jul 2003 (UTC)
- I've changed it to "heresy was considered a punishable offense". Short and uninformative, but hopefully accurate. :) -- Oliver P. 06:16 6 Jul 2003 (UTC)
"Heresy is a value-judgment" is a bit sappy, and passive tense is a symptom of dodging the issue as ever ("heresy was considered an offense punishable...") but there are certain axioms that need to be worked out here, and then set into the entry's opening paragraphs. Please treat the following as stubs to work on: The Catholic Encyclopedia has a useful long entry of "Heresy" as you may imagine: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07256b.htm Wetman 18:27, 4 Mar 2004 (UTC)
Heresy depends on dogma. Without promulgated dogma arrived at by ecumenical understanding and officially promulgated, no opinions are yet "heretical."
Heresy, like orthodoxy, evolves in history. (The opposing view, namely that dogma exists outside of time from the Beginning and is merely sequentially revealed needs to be expressed in its own paragraph.) No statements about what a community believes make sense outside a historical framework.
Heresy exists within theology
(Your axiom goes here)
to be added
- Thomas Aquinas wrote in his Summa Theologica that heretics deserve capital punishment. [] StopCultPropaganda 20:44, 21 Aug 2004 (UTC)
- The Christian countercult movement are the modern successors of the battle agains the heretics. StopCultPropaganda 20:44, 21 Aug 2004 (UTC)
- any number of people may claim the mantle of "modern successors of the battle against the heretics". The Christian countercult movement is just one, and in reality not even the most prominent. Wesley 04:06, 23 Aug 2004 (UTC)
I started trying to fix the bad history and speculation in the following paragraph, but I think it may be better off deleted.
- Since the orthodox church (really proto-orthodox) was originally just one group amongst many others (who all regarded themselves as followers of Jesus), calling these other versions of Christianity heresies seems slightly anachronistic if applied to groups who operated in or before the 3rd century (or perhaps even the early 4th century). Most of these creeds would have been seen at the time (by their followers at least) as being just as legitimate as the proto-orthodox group. The orthodox church succeded in a slow process of legitimation of its authority and was able to label all their enemies as heretics and persecute them (thus giving the term an association with illegitimacy). At the time the term was coined, it probably did not have nearly such negative associations (except among the proto-orthodox).
First, the "process of legitimation" was in full swing by middle to late first century when Paul wrote the epistles that comprise a large part of the New Testament. On many occasions, he defends his own apostleship, and urges Christians in various places to beware of false teachers, or of anything contrary to what was handed to them. The letters of John and Jude also warn of false teachers. Beyond these, Irenaeus of Lyons and Tertullian wrote their respective treatises against heresies in the second century. At the time Christianity was outlawed; the Church clearly managed to label its enemies as heretics without persecuting them. Assuming those two things always went together is what is anachronistic here. As for whether the word "heretic" had such negative associations, most or all of these writers used enough other, er, descriptive language to ensure the negative connotations were not lost on their readers. Besides, this article is primarily about heresy the concept, not heresy the word.
- The problem, Wesley, is that all the sources you quote you may quote because the dominant group, i.e. the Catholic Church, allowed it to exist. Archeological finds do not paint the picture that you show from the sources. Suppose L. Ron Hubbard had founded his church around the same time and managed to defeat the Orthodox Church; perhaps the only mainstream, surving documentation then would, unsurprisingly, show a tendency to discussing volcanos etc.
- So, what hypothetical sources might have existed to demonstrate that the "process of legitimation" was not in full swing by the middle to late first century? Or that John, Jude, Irenaeus, and Tertullian did not write against heresies in the first and second centuries? Are there specific archeological finds that show that Christians persecuted any of these heretics prior to the fourth century? Wesley 04:38, 10 Mar 2005 (UTC)
So, any objections to removing the paragraph, or suggestions for salvaging it? Wesley 03:47, 1 Sep 2004 (UTC)
- A good discussion of heresy contains a discussion of the historical unfolding of the orthodoxy that defines heresy. The sections is not specific or informative. Rather than just suppressing the section, can you recast it as a discussion of the unfolding of an orthodoxy, including your objections as you outline them here? Wetman 04:46, 1 Sep 2004 (UTC)
- I tried to follow your advice by discussing the unfolding of orthodoxy. While I'm sure my revisions will need some work to smooth over, I hope the result isn't wholly unsatisfactory. There are still some problems with the overall flow and structure of that Early Christianity section. Wesley 03:00, 5 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Several other religions have concepts of heresy. The Church of Scientology uses the term "squirreling" to refer to unauthorized alterations of its teachings or methods.
The Church of Scientology is a legal U.S. establishment of a cult. Many countries do not recognize the Church of Scientology as a religion and, in some cases, federal action has been taken to remove the Church of Scientology from their borders. This is a poor example for the Other religions section of heresy. Considering that there are many actual religions in the world, find something better and leave the Church of Scientology controversy to the Talk:Scientology group. Adraeus 21:01, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
- Let's see- the Church of Scientology is under 100 years old. Now, when the Catholic Church was about the same age, it managed to secure a legal vote(Nicaea) outlawing its enemies (Arianism), similar to the Church of Scientology getting court injunctions against its enemies. The Catholic Chuch made assumptions, many at the time considered 'out there'- the trinity, etc. The Church of Scientology has similar 'out there' concepts, overall resembling a form of Gnosticism. Saying that the Church of Scientology is less capable of using the concept 'heresy' is historical nearsightedness. 220.127.116.11
- Perhaps a cult that uses the concept of "heresy" is apropos in an entry Heresy. Wetman 21:14, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
- Or we could change the section title to Other organizations or Other belief systems in order to allow for a broader range of entries and retain the CoS instance. By the way, there is an interesting article titled On Beliefs and Belief Systems by Bob Eddy of the Institute of General Semantics which I recommend reading. Adraeus 01:46, 7 Sep 2004 (UTC)
(2004) The term heresy is increasingly used to mean the holding of ideas that are in fundamental disagreement with the status quo in any practice and branch of knowledge; thus, religion is not a necessary component of the term's definition. For example, Charles Darwin of evolution fame is considered a heretic of his day.
I removed this here because "heresy" just is not used in this way by grown-ups, and the slightly tongue-in-cheek use of "heresy" in science, to make a point about its rigidly-held beliefs, has already been touched on in the Bob Bakker mention. More could be added to that comparison of "bad science" to religion. But there's nothing that scientists regard as "heretical" about Darwin, unless the word is to lose all point--- which may be the intention here. Wetman 10:13, 5 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Fortunately, the definition of the term heresy is gradually moving towards general applicability. Religion is not a necessary component of the definition. Wikipedia is not a podium for your personal beliefs. By the way, Charles Darwin was considered a heretic in his day as were Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, and others. Additionally, the definition of heresy as it applies in modern contexts is supported by etymological research. I'm re-adding the section regardless of your dogma and will continue to re-add it every time you remove it. Your removal was wrong and I suggest you refrain from speaking on behalf of "grown-ups." All you need is a [good dictionary] (  . If such a definition is alien to you or doesn't conform to your perception of the topic, then I think the term has met its objective. Adraeus
- Note the passive of non-attribution in the phrase Charles Darwin was considered a heretic in his day, Anglican bishops considered Charles Darwin a heretic, within the terms of the Church. That's the accurate statement. Wetman 21:58, 4 Oct 2004 (UTC)
00:34, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
- Darwin, Newton and Einstein could all be considered herectical in a religious sense depending on the readers views. Can you provide other examples where there are clearly no religious ties? Science and heresy have such a long a history it is confusing. But perhaps in business? Or some other modern usage of the word that doesnt involve science, then it might be more clear.Stbalbach
- The modern heresy definition does not directly concern religion. It concerns perceptions that are contrary to a popular opinion. As an answer to your question, I say there are far too many heretics in business, which is a social science, and other sciences to compose a complete list. For that reason, only persons who are known to many categories of people were included as an example of the definition. Here are a few not-so-well-known heretics: Henry Mintzberg, Zvi Bodie, Gerry McGovern talks about modern heresy, Clifford Stoll, 'maverick' is sometimes interchanged, and a quite a few more. The Internet is an amazing resource. Search it. Adraeus 02:29, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
- Well, then, why not put those in as modern examples instead of the scientific examples? I would do so, but you have already made it clear you would "re-add it every time you remove it". Stbalbach
- All examples are people from a scientific field. Business is a social science. As Wikipedia is a collaborative effort, we can create a categorical list of past and present heretics. I merely provided a starting point, however, I think it'd be best if we posted only exoteric and unambiguous examples. Adraeus 05:48, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
- Adraeus, you are wrong. For someone to be considered a heretic their views should contradict the dogma of those in their field. This is manifestly untrue in relation to Darwin, Newton, and Einstein. They had new ideas, but that isn't the same as heresy. If it was then all scientists, and most other acedemics would be heretics which is patently ridiculous. I will remove this absurd section from the article.Misodoctakleidist 19:06, 1 August 2007 (UTC)
- Well, then, why not put those in as modern examples instead of the scientific examples? I would do so, but you have already made it clear you would "re-add it every time you remove it". Stbalbach
- Darwin in particular is an Ambiguous example, clearly heretical to Christian Creationism (just ask the public schools in Georgia). Newton and Einstein less so, but could be seen as ambiguous. Why not choose an example of "heretic" that is clearly unambigious and exoterically non-religious? Stbalbach
- Charles Darwin is not an ambiguous example nor is Alfred Russel Wallace. Have you even read the Charles Darwin entry? Your orientation is incredibly pedantic. I could have used Leonardo da Vinci as an example and you'd object, "But the Church! The Church was involved in his history!" Let's get one thing straight: religion is a meme. It is a powerful and influential meme that has existed for centuries. Religion has affected many of the key figures of the modern world and to not use an example because of an association with religion would just simply be foolish. If you can come up with a better example, by all means, wiki away. Adraeus 11:46, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
It seems to me that this use of the term "heresy" — to refer, e.g., to a scientific innovator — is a metaphor. It is intended to allude to both the difference between the person's views and the mainstream, and the boldness of such a person in propounding these views despite their unpopularity or even despite forceful opposition. It is certainly a very colorful metaphor, and various writers have played upon it extensively, adding "inquisitions" and "orthodoxies" and so forth to stories about resistance to new or unproven ideas. (Consider Robert Anton Wilson's The New Inquisition for one example.)
(The metaphor is also, oddly enough, sometimes applied to innovators who were throughout their working lives considered respected parts of the establishment, such as Sir Isaac Newton, mentioned above.)
In any event, I have to wonder about the importance of describing metaphorical uses such as this in a Wikipedia article — particularly if the metaphor is so contentious. As silly as it may be to argue over whether Darwin "was" a scientific heretic (since it is only a metaphor anyway, since science, business, etc. do not operate by canon law) it may indicate that this is not a matter upon which Wikipedia needs to speak conclusively. —FOo 06:18, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Sorry, Fubar Obfusco, but that is incorrect. The described definition of heresy is not a metaphor. It is an actual definition. Webster: "heresy", Princeton WordNet: "heresy". The term heresy is not limited to religious contexts; thus, canon law and "respect" (refer: your comment about Isaac Newton) has nothing to do with this definition of heresy. Presenting an objective and unambiguous model of reality is within the scope of Wikipedia. If you choose to present a topic from one side, in this case religion, you've devalued Wikipedia.
This definition is a logical definition and applies to both religious and other contexts. heretic is defined as "a person who holds unorthodox opinions in any field (not merely religion.)" unorthodox has two similar definitions: a) "independent in behavior or thought" (with maverick and irregular as synonyms), and b) "breaking with convention or tradition." So now, heretic is defined as "a person who holds (irregular, maverick, unorthodox) opinions in any field ..." We also find that the antonym of unorthodox is orthodox which is defined as "adhering to what is commonly accepted" and orthodoxy as "a belief or orientation agreeing with conventional standards." Now we have heretical as "independent of behavioral or intellectual constraint imposed by conventional standards", heretic as "a person who holds opinions contrary to the status quo ..." and finally heresy as "a holding of ideas, not necessarily beliefs, that are in fundamental disagreement with the status quo in any practice and branch of knowledge" or as "any opinions or doctrines at variance with the official or orthodox position." Heresy can then be likened to a process of continual innovation. It is a constant disagreement with what is.
By the way, for those of you that are religionists simply arguing against what you perceive as an attack from science on a religious concept, understand this: science is not a competing religion. Adraeus 09:24, 6 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Stbalbach: I disagree with your addition to contemporary heresy in which you consistently refer to the usage of heresy as a metaphor. It is not a metaphor. It's merely an alternate definition often forgot by those too caught up in heresy's etymological religious roots. Adraeus 04:17, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
(Not able to refrrain from contributing to a lapsed controversy.) This modern use of the word belongs in a dictionary rather than in an encyclopedia entry. Heresy is used only very loosely of scientists etc as a graphic way of indicating divergence from what is standard (only by journalists sexing up a science column?), where it could be replaced with terms like radical, crackpot, maverick etc (each of course with differing tone and implication). But there is no phenomenon of "heresy" and it is not a label that will be used regularly of anyone. Notably 'heretic' is only used predicatively, not attributively: someone might say so-and-so's views were heresy (perhaps with slight mockery of "the establishment's" ruffled feathers), but when was the last time you heard anyone say we 'the heretic Dwarwin' or 'Heretics should not be given research grants.' Flounderer 23:42, 4 October 2005 (UTC)
I removed the bit about the Italian language calling "eretico" a Protestant, because it's simply false - the common word is "Protestante". Alfio 20:18, 9 Sep 2004 (UTC)
- Eretico was certainly the common expression when I lived in Florence in the 1960s, and "protestante" drew blanks. The suppression of information is often as informative as the information itself. Wetman 20:22, 9 Sep 2004 (UTC)
Article needs help
I can't even see the TOC because the opening overview has become as long as the article its self and scrolled the TOC off the screen. The first paragraph should be about 3 or 4 sentences that defines what it is and a high level broad overview with no details. The rest of it needs to be integrated into the article body. Stbalbach 20:55, 4 Oct 2004 (UTC)
- We'll be here to pick up any pieces that get dropped in the process. I've moved down the section on the extension of "heresy" using some material from the discussion above (rendered more NPOV) It helped a little... Wetman 21:31, 4 Oct 2004 (UTC)
- More moves to beef up parts of the body and free up space in the start. Wetman hope I understood your thoughts correctly in the recently added paragraph want to clarify.Stbalbach 22:31, 5 Oct 2004 (UTC)
"an opinion of private men different from that of the catholick and orthodox church" [Johnson], c.1225, from O.Fr. heresie, from L. hæresis, "school of thought, philosophical sect," used by Christian writers for "unorthodox sect or doctrine," from Gk. hairesis "a taking or choosing," from haireisthai "take, seize," middle voice of hairein "to choose," of unknown origin. The Gk. word was used in N.T. in ref. to the Sadducees, Pharisees, and even the Christians, as sects of Judaism, but in Eng. bibles it is usually translated sect. Meaning "religious belief opposed to the orthodox doctrines of the Church" evolved in L.L. in the Dark Ages. Heretic (c.1330) is ult. from Gk. hairetikos "able to choose," the verbal adj. of hairein Adraeus 04:18, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
Oxford English Dictionary v3 entry: "heresy"
- What a convoluted, ungainly and awkward way of putting it. Exactly what we need, obtuse 19th century language instead of clear and concise post-modern original 21st century prose from Wikipedians. I particularly like how quoting the OED v3 source makes it authoritative, as if the reader could not look it up in a more modern dictionary, relegating Wikipedia to only being authoritative to 1921 and earlier like some kind of dusty tomb with little value other than antiquarian. Stbalbach 14:43, 26 Oct 2004 (UTC)
- Regardless of when the dictionary was published, I hardly see it worthy for a wikipedia article to use a whole citation from a dictionary as its introductory paragraph. Surely an article of this size could stand to have a more sophisticated intro. Rod ESQ 22:34, 5 April 2006 (UTC)
request for justification
"Heretics do not define their beliefs as heretical; instead, heretics view opposing orthodoxy as heretical."
Please justify this claim that all heretics are unaware of their heresy. Moreover, if this claim is true then "orthodoxy" is a misnomer for simply different opinions. Note this statement's logic:
- Heretics view orthodoxy as heretical and are unaware of their heresy.
- Orthodoxists view heresy as heretical and are unware of their heresy.
- Thus, heresy and orthodoxy are both heretical and orthodox.
Clearly, the phrase that explains this logic is "what is to one is not to another." Shouldn't such "original research" be avoided? Adraeus 11:11, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
- I think the way it was phrased originally flowed better, the word "indeed" has more life and puts more emphesis than the word "instead" and the use of a ";" in a sentence breaks up the flow and train of thought and is more stark. It is a point of style not content. Stbalbach 16:40, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
- The addition of a semicolon is a matter of grammar. "Therefore" should never be left alone. "; therefore," is proper. Adraeus 22:36, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
- Heresy's existence depends upon a system of dogma. In the absence of dogma, all is simply personal opinion. So I have returned the edit a dogmatic authoritative system to an authoritative system of dogma. The system concerned here is a system of dogma, not other areas of systematic church organization.
Revising this to incorporate your criticism: A better antithesis in the quote above would be "Heretics do not define their own beliefs as heretical; in fact, minorities in matters of dogma may even hold the majority in error, thus heretical. in other words, movements which have been called heretical that is to say, incorrect may make the very same charge against the mainstream church." Any further objections to this evolving disambiguation? --Wetman 20:45, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
- Sounds good; however, "indeed" seems to more POVish than "instead" since, like Stbalbach said, "indeed" is an intensifier. "Indeed" is also used as an expression of surprise, skepticism and irony. Further complicating matters is the definition of "indeed" as "in truth." Whose truth? Your truth? My truth? Roman Catholic truth? "Truth" is too flimsy a word. "Instead" fits better. I continue to maintain my objection to "heretics do not define their beliefs as heretical" for there exist many heretics who know what they do is contrary to the status quo. For instance, many businesses are founded with a unique competitive advantage which is sometimes the opposite of what is. Think Microsoft Windows versus Redhat Linux. I don't think the claim that (all) heretics are unaware of their "contrariness" is valid. It seems to be a generalization. Adraeus 22:42, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
- The remark about Robert Bakker's Dinosaur Heresies title makes this point, that for rhetorical effect, a revisionist may describe himself as a "heretic." Edit the passage in the article, though, to make it strong enough to suit you. --Wetman 23:38, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
I do not think that the discussed sentence means, "Heretics don't think they are weird or different from the mainstream." Rather, I think what is meant is, "The movements which have been called heretical -- that is to say, incorrect -- make the very same charge against the mainstream church."
One implication of this is that, in the ancient church, both "heretics" and "orthodox" believed religious truth to be singular and absolute, rather than multiple and relative as many people believe today. Thus, in order to believe a "heresy" one must at the same time believe that the "orthodox" position is incorrect in both facts and morals -- that the mainstream church believes something false and is being led astray by its leaders. --FOo 23:09, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
Yes. But isn't this implicit in the "an authoritative system of dogma" part? Make the point more strongly if you want. --Wetman 23:38, 28 Nov 2004 (UTC)
- An article should not be in both a category and its subcategory, for example Microsoft Office is in Category:Microsoft software, so should not also be in Category:Software.
An outside comment
I have not involved in any discussions about this article. It looks to me to a good, neutral, well-balanced article. Robert McClenon 01:34, 23 July 2005 (UTC)
I propose moving the discussion from Talk:C.S. Lewis#Possible heretic? to here, in the hope that it may prove more fruitful if discussed in this venue. There is a lot of material there, much of it very chatty - but it involves a new user, whom I hope will be extended the customary grace and guidance toward productive Wikiness if allowed to continue the discussion here. Any objection? — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 02:00, 2 September 2005 (UTC)
|The content of Talk:C._S._Lewis#Possible_heretic? was merged into Heresy. That page now redirects here. For the contribution history and old versions of the redirected page, please see ; for its talk page, see here.|
Im surprised that there is nothing on the recent discovery that Lewis may not have been a Christian at all! If one really goes through all of his writings and centers it together, one can easily find that it was a broad mix of Taoism, Catholic tradition and philosophical jargon. In several pages alone, in Mere Christianity, Lewis depicts Christianity as the "climax of the human mind", as if its the final stage in man's enlightenment process. In several books he denies the Christian doctrine, denies the Bible being literal truth, preaches an uber-universalist way of salvation and says that man is an animal. Now I know that the first reaction to alot of people in here is going to be to his defense and that its his way of interpretation. But even the most liberal of Christians would tell you that CS Lewis was way off on plenty of things.
The man is a heretic and nothing more.
- I'm sorry you feel that way--I can't tell if you're suggesting that the article should be changed? I can envision a section on "reactions to Lewis" that quotes a few Christian thinkers--certainly most of them speak highly of him, but the inclusion of one or two who feel the way you do would be appropriate. I think we'd need to be clear, though, that the vast majority of Protestants and Catholics think very highly of Lewis--his books are sold in large numbers in every Christian bookstore I've ever been in, and most of the Christians I know have read and enjoyed at least a few of his books.
- Your attack on his orthodoxy does seem odd to me, I admit. Taoism only really appears in The Abolition of Man, and there he's clearly using it for illustrative purposes, I think. I've never found his writing at all jargony. And Catholic tradition....well, that includes the sources of the faith in the ancient Church, so I guess I don't see how it makes someone a heretic. Certainly if you look at his letters, his autobiography, the comments of those who knew him, his writings in response to the death of his wife, etc., it's clear that Christianity infused his life. You may disagree with him on some points of doctrine, and you may find those doctrines important, but I think you're vastly overstating the case for him not being a Christian. I'm sure I could put him in a room with you and find that you shared dozens of beliefs about the nature of God and man, etc. But I guess that's beside the point--I'll focus on the article. If you have suggestions for how the article ought to be changed, I'd be interested in seeing them here. Jwrosenzweig 14:47, 30 August 2005 (UTC)
- But even the most liberal of Christians would tell you that CS Lewis was way off on plenty of things. The man is a heretic and nothing more. - Oof, laying the lumber to CS Lewis! It is true that he did say and held all the beliefs you mentioned, but those particular words can be twisted against him when taken out of context. Let's take them one by one, and I'll show you what I mean.
- Taoism - Tao is the Chinese word for "way" or "way of the universe". Taoism isn't any kind of rival religion because it says nothing about a god. Lewis incoporates the word "Tao" when talking about the universal natural law. The doctrine of natural law is certainly Christian starting with St. Paul (definitely not a heretic) and expanded by St. Thomas Aquinas (is he a heretic?). Lewis just uses the word Tao to express that same concept with fewer letters. Also using the word Tao shows that Eastern philosophy has the same concept as Western/Christian philosophy. Buddhism is opposed to Taoism in this way because the Buddhist gets meaning and value from himself. Meaning/morality/value flows out of the Buddhist. For the Taoist, meaning/morality/value exists outside of us and we are judged by this external standard. Christianity is like Taoism in this respect and existentialism is like Buddhism. East and West these same principles are found everywhere.
- Lewis depicts Christianity as the "climax of the human mind", as if its the final stage in man's enlightenment process. - He gets this from G.K. Chesterton's (self-proclaimed Catholic... another heretic?) book The Everlasting Man. Their point is that humans always had a spiritual need or yearning that we can trace back to ancient pagan religions. But then when Christianity debuted, it happened to fulfill that yearning in a true and real sense. Zoroastrians would partake in eating the blood and body of their deity... even though that deity didn't actually exist. Christians do the same thing with the one living God. The legends of Buddha say that he was conceived in a virgin (by an elephant). Jesus was conceived inside a virgin by the Holy Spirit. The Jews sacrificed a goat/lamb to atone of their sinfulness. Jesus was sacrificed for all of our sins. The pagan "corn-king" religions celebrated the annual resurrection of the corn god every spring. Christians celebrate the resurrection of Christ every spring. In a phrase, with Christianity, the myths came true.
- In several books he denies the Christian doctrine, denies the Bible being literal truth - He does deny the complete inerrancy of the Bible, yes. So did St. Jerome (who wrote the latin Vulgate... is he a heretic?), Origin (heretic?), and Calvin (heretic?). Luther (definitely a heretic by Pope Leo X's standards, but a Christian to all Protestants) wanted to throw Revelations and Esther out completely. I'm not certain that believing Biblical inerrancy is a Christian requirement... it's not in the Apostle or Nicene Creed. Are there other "Christian doctrines" you were wondering about?
- preaches an uber-universalist way of salvation - He's not as universalist as George MacDonald (also heretic?). Lewis does say (in the Problem of Pain, I think) that he would get rid of the doctrine of damnation if he could. But logically, he cannot. If God is going to save us, is He going to save us even against our will? No, because that would not be salvation. In The Great Divorce he tells a story how people from Hell (the gray town) can change their ways and stay in Heaven. But he also implies that many stay in Hell and never leave it. And there is also a reference that one day there would be a permanent judgment.
- and says that man is an animal - This is an unChristian belief? Doesn't Aquinas (is he a heretic, now?) define human beings "rational animals"? Doesn't St. Paul (not a heretic) preach that we will have a bodily resurrection in the afterlife rather than "souls going to Heaven"? You've lost me here.
- From the previous, it seems to me that CS Lewis can only be considered a heretic if you define Christianity as ascribing to Biblical inerrancy, and final, everlasting, judgment immediately upon a person's death. I don't think that Christianity as a whole can be defined as such... although certain denominations would be defined in that way. Most people would define Christianity based on the the Apostle's and maybe the Nicene Creeds. No doubt that Lewis believed those. Personally, I prefer to define Christianity as the community of believers who seek a closer relationship to Jesus Christ, which means Lewis is unhesitatingly Christian and one of last century's most helpful writers in terms of bringing other people to their own relationships with Christ. David Bergan 19:22, 30 August 2005 (UTC)
- As a matter of fact, even the Chinese version of the Narnia series is published by a Christian group.
- Another fact, Taoism is not even a well blow religion and is mixed with a lot of Buddism and Buddism is basically a twisted India Mythology. Buddism claims that everyone that follows the same path Buddha does, would be enlighted and never claimed to be a deity, so it should not really be considered a religion at all(other than having people believed him as a deity even though it is kinda against his own sayings) Taoism itself is more heretic in Christian ways but again, the founder himself did not say anything about deities and himself being related to god or anything else, in fact, he is just a philosophor no more or less than any other. Therefore, I don't see the reason behind using that to accurse Lewis being a heretic.
- Sounds just like people saying the computer being the mark of the beast because the monitor and the mouse are related to forehead and hand. Or people saying The book Davinci Code is true where the author himself never claim the story to be true but there are readers somehow does. No logical reason could be seen behind the complaint and therefore more information is needed.
- MythSearcher 17:10, 30 August 2005 (UTC)
Mythsearcher, you are a number. Although I find that you are my brother in Christ and I would gladly wish to debate this topic in a place where there is more room. For some reason it seems like we're crammed in here. Do you have AIM or Yahoo Messenger? Anyways I will address some of the issues here. First off, I am a Reformed Calvinist Christian, so I am about as conservative as you can get with the Bible, and you can see why I think CS Lewis is a heretic. BUT, and a big BUT, it should be noted that I am very, very careful with who I label a heretic. When it comes to the majority of the people you listed as "possible" heretics, really only Lewis stands out as a real heretic. I feel the others were misguided or wrong, but not heretics. When it comes to Lewis, he is in a class all on his own. For one, I do have to ask, what your definition is of salvation, the Word of God, creation, and free will? I feel that if we get these out of the way it will better the debate. For now I leave you with a piece right out of Mere Christianity, pg.208-209. Dont know how to sign in and stuff, so just call me Anon.
"There are people in other religions who are being led by God's secret influence to concentrate on those parts of their religion which are in agreement with Christianity, and who thus belong to Christ without knowing it. For example a Buddhist of good will may be led to concentrate more and more on the Buddhist teaching about mercy and to leave in the background (though he might still say he believed) the Buddhist teaching on certain points. Many of the good Pagans long before Christ's birth may have been in this position."
- It is easy to sign. Just use four tildes, squiggles like this: ~~~~. Get an account - it's easy, free, and for all practical purposes anonymous. Signing in also gives you a place to carry out debates (if they are ultimately geared toward improving an article), and it gives us a place to greet you in a more friendly fashion. For my part, let me see if I might soften your views a bit. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** \
- Lewis doesn't know; but he hopes that it's true, that people who do not have the benefit of the gospel nevertheless may be given the truth under shadows and mysteries, sufficient to prepare them for the gospel, and provisional for them until the gospel comes to them. Lewis suggests that this "may have been" the position of some "good Pagans" before Christ's birth. I assume that he's referring to Acts 17, where Paul says that there was a time when God "overlooked ignorance".
- In these days, we are told that all men everywhere are being called to repent and believe in Jesus Christ, so that there is only one way of salvation to be declared under heaven by which men must be saved: not Buddha, but only Christ. We know how we are to work, therefore. We are to declare the gospel, and that there is no salvation whatsoever except within the profession of the Christian religion, and we must not teach that other religions are ways toward God. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** \
- At the same time, Calvin named several sources for knowledge of God apart from Jesus Christ that could be available to all human beings, but he was clear that only in Jesus Christ could one gain saving knowledge of God. In a similar way Jesus says about Abraham, that "Abraham saw my day and rejoiced", suggesting that the faith Abraham placed in the covenant that God made with him was ultimately faith in Christ. Abraham believed in Christ "without knowing it", in other words. Lewis's speculation takes this one step farther, and suggests that God may grant knowledge of Jesus Christ under hidden figures, analogous to the way that he granted knowledge of himself through figures in the covenant with the Jews.
- He's not differing with the view held by many in the history of the church from very early times, that although salvation is in none other than in Jesus Christ, and although salvation is not ordinarily found outside of the visible church, and cannot be embraced except through the Christian religion, perhaps God keeps people for himself by some hidden way of which we have no permission to speak confidently, and perhaps Christ has been made known in a kind of seed-form, in shadowy terms, provisional until the gospel comes to do away with ignorance and half-truths. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** \
- So, although you would be on solid ground excluding Lewis from preaching in a confessional Reformed church, I'm not sure that you would get far putting him outside of the visible church as a layman, even a Reformed church. His views suggesting that the Christian religion may be known and believed unaware is not orthodox Calvinist doctrine; but I doubt that the view held by a layman would come under scrutiny for "heresy" charges. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 00:09, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
- Are you calling him a heretic of the Christian religion or only your denomination? David Bergan 14:49, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
- Sorry, I do not use both AIM and Yahoo messenger, and I prefer a place like here where the debate is open to the public so that others can correct my poor English :)
- My definition of salvation is having eternal life in Heaven by the side of God. By having free will, human can choose if he/she wanted to follow the Bible teachings which is being the word of God, and have salvation, or just simply ignore the fact after being told the Gospel and have eternal death.
- I am from a Christian background where I have education in Alliance primary and secondary schools but I go to a Baptist Church since I was born. In my point of view, there are things that were unexplaint(or at least unclear) in the Bible. For example, this long term debate about how people before Christ was born possibly be saved? Did they all recieved damnation just because they were born in a time when the only hope of salvation, Jesus, was not there yet? In fact, there is an answer to this question in the Bible. In the old testament, if a man followed God's way and pleased God by being good (for example, following the ten commentments) They could be called Just and recieved salvation (or at least eternal life according to the Bible where they reappeared in the new testament with Jesus in some situations)
- This could lead to a more complicated position about people that had never heard of Christ before they die. For example, there are still a lot of third world countries that are so remote that almost no contacts are possible. This have became a major problem and I believe that God, the most just and holy, will not let these people be damned just because they were not given a chance. I believed that God will give them a chance so that they can decide if they want to be damned or not. However, it is still not fair for them to hear the Gospel without anyone spreading the word to them. It is impossible in human understandable terms how the Gospel be able to spread to a place without a human who knew it bringing it there.
- Thus, there could be assumed that God has his own way of working and saving those without a chance. And I believed that Lewis was just suggesting the good philosophical thinking of other cultures might be the work of God and was used to determined the ones that should or should not be saved, just like the people in the old testament.
- Of course, this is not a way of rejecting the Gospel and does not apply to anyone who have properly heard of the Gospel. It is just a step by step inference by similarity, and Lewis seems to be just suggesting this is a possible way of how God works. No body knows, and thus no sure conclusion could be given.
- Also, I have just talk with a missionary about heresy because I was modifying the article in the chinese site. Heretic churches of Christianity normally contains one or more of the following traits: 1) Believing in a book other than the Bible and placing it in the same or even higher level than the Bible. 2) Do not believe in some of the Bible teachings. 3) One person (usually the leader of the Heretic church) is in a higher position than any other believers, sometimes even to a point where believers start to idolize that person in place of God. 4) Band/Resist believers from going to other Christian churches that are of different branch. 5) Insisting the saying of one's self is the truth and declaring all other churches' are wrong.
- Since Lewis only suggested a possible and at least sounds probable idea and did not insist that he is true but only hopes that it is, he does not fall into the 5th argument and no record showing him being in the other 4. (Since his suggestion falls into situation not mentioned in the Bible and thus also not falling into the 2nd argument)
- by the way, I do not quite understand the phrase "you are a number" can anyone explain it to me?
- MythSearcher 15:30, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
First off what is a "good" pagan? Second, what is a Buddhist of good will? Why did Lewis claim that good pagans before Christ were in the same boat of reaching heaven if they just concentrate on those "truths" that reflect the teachings of Christ? Obviously he means this, if he used the good willed Buddhist as an example of a non-Christian who belongs to Christ without knowing him(Christ). He does not even mention if the Buddhist comes to Christ or not, just that if his focus is on the truths that reflect Christ then he is of God's without knowing anything about Christ. Remember, that he says that they are being led by God's secret influence,(The Holy Spirit?). But not to Christ just the good parts of religion. This is CS Lewis's message throughout most of his books. That Christianity is another step that man has taken in his evolutionary pattern of life, and that it is the final revelation. It is not one truth for all ages to come but a culmination of several truths finally revealed. Do not get me wrong I believe that man is granted common grace and God lets man discover truth about the world through his expierences, but these truths do not amount to anything close to revealed truth about God at all. Man's nature is corrupted by sin and thus cannot and will not seek after the one true God. He will always twist it to his own liking to follow after his own will. CS Lewis is pushing the envelope when he suggests that there is/was something inherent inside us to discover these truths. I mean obviously he believes that the teachings of Buddha reflect the teachings of Christ, simply because they spoke about mercy. But this is wrong because both are similar in thier appearence but in contect are radically different, and achieve different ends. And if God's word and meaning is truth, than the Buddhist teaching is falsehood. Buddha just gathered it from the expierences throughout his life but there wasnt that foundation built on God. So CS Lewis is wrong to suggest there are Buddhists of good will, or that there are good pagans, or that anyone can know or come to God(heaven) and not perish if they just concentrate on those teachings that reflect Christ's teaching. - Anon
- I guess this is at least better than the extremists who consider Lewis a Satanist and Witch, subtly promoting magic through the Narnia series. DJ Clayworth 15:56, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
Mythseeker have it your way. I meant that you were a number because its obvious that the Church has bought in hook line and sinker that there are other possible ways of reaching heaven because they feel its not fair that God "excluded" them from the prize of salvation. First off, brother, we as fallen sinful humans do not deserve one iota of God's free grace.All throughout the Bible, the Holy Book explains that we are in no position to ask or grant oursevles or anyone else merited favor in the eyes of God. The Lord is soverign in who he displays his mercy on. You see Myth, there is not one that seeks after God. All have fallen and are under condemnation. So the Lord does not condemn someone for not believing in Christ he gives them over to thier depraved mind because they are sinful. To say that it isnt fair that someone hasnt heard the Gospel in a remote place half way accross the world is foolish. There was a time when this very contintent including Central and Suuth America heard nothing of the word and people accepted Christ. The same goes for where ever the Gospel was preached. Second, where in the Bible does it speak of following the law or 10 commandments that that is the easy road to salvation? The whole point of the law was to introduce sin. Read the book of Romans chapters 1-9 and it will all make sense to you, I guarantee it. I would also challenge your position on free will as well. I do not believe that humans have the free will that humans have defined through thier own philosophy. Read Daniel 4: 30-35 and then read Romans 9. Pharoah was raised for the very purpose so that God would harden his heart, and God would be glorified. Also it is written that the older will serve the younger and Jacob I loved but Esau I hated. So it was not by any works of man, before their birth, so that God's stance on election might stand. -Anon
- David Bergan, a "heretic" is someone (especially a teacher) who takes "part" of what the church teaches, and for the rest teaches something else (a heretic is a chooser). C.S. Lewis was not a heretic; because, what he taught was not contrary to the formal or the practical teaching of the Anglican church.
- Furthermore, to call someone a heretic is a charge of a kind of crime. If he was found guilty of that crime by his church, then it would belong in this article. But as it is, this is only Anon's personal opinion.
- Finally, you asked about my church. In my church, if he were a minister or an elder holding those views, there would probably be questions asked about how his views square with the Confession of Faith, which says that it is "pernicious" to teach that there is salvation except in the profession of the Christian religion. A very generous reading of Lewis (as I've given above) might construe him as merely suggesting the possibility that God may have given ways of knowing him savingly, to those who have not yet received the gospel. In my opinion, that probably wouldn't fly for someone holding office in my church - even though he's worded his speculation in a careful way. But this still doesn't make him a heretic. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 16:12, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
Hold on you guys. Im not calling him a heretic in the lets burn him at the stake, Spanish Inquisition way. I am refering to his horrible distortion of the Biblical view of salvation. Even if it is speculation, it is still a horrible distortion because the Bible clearly corrects this matter. The problem with Lewis is that he also belives in another distortion, that the Bible is full of error. This alone makes his view on God less than it should be. The heresies just spring up from these points. - Anon
- The point is that, "heresy" is not a matter of opinion or point of view, and the charge of "heresy" doesn't belong in the article about him. You can describe his views of salvation, and his ideas about errors in the Bible, and you can explain how they are seen as incorrect or offensive, but you can't call him a heretic for these things unless you can show that he has been found to be out of line with the teaching of his church. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 19:01, 31 August 2005 (UTC)
It doesnt matter about his church. The basic concepts of the Bible are universal. If a church cannot stand on the basic principle of salvation in Christ alone, then what makes it so Christian in the first place? If anything he shouldnt be touted off as an apologist for Christianity by evangelical bookstores and communities. His disdain for the evangelical movement shocked me. Norman Geisler even questioned this man's theology on several accounts and found him to be in error in several places.
- Anarchistic views aside, it does matter what his church says, if you want to call him a heretic in an encyclopedia. However, it is perfectly appropriate to note that he is found in error by other Christians. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 00:42, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
- There have been some misunderstanding in what I want to say, I guess. What I meant is for people who died without a single chance of hearing the Gospel, do they have a slightest chance of salvation? I do not argue about anyone who has a chance of hearing it, all I focus on is the fact that there are por souls that never have the chance to hear it but are as good as they can be in terms of what they can hear. For example, Noah, Job, Abraham, and all prophets which appeared in the old testament, all have not hear the word of Christ, but according to the Bible, Matthew 17:3, Mark 9:4, Luke 9:30 both Moses and Elias appeared and talked to Jesus.
- Were they given a chance to hear the Gospel after their mortal life? Or following God's word is sufficient before the born of Christ? We do not know the exact terms, but the truth is they were saved. In the same matter, Lewis seems to only explain what he guessed, but also he expressed that he is not sure of it. Yes, we are not in the position in saying who would be granted the favour of God, but guessing does not seem to hurt, does it?
- In a different way of seeing things, that will be viewed as heresy by most of the Christian community that are not familiar with other so call religions, Taoism and Buddism are both not religions and thus just philosophy of life, following the ways in those philosophy does not mean practicing heresy as long as one does not treat them as a religion and does not act against what the Bible says one should act. (Though I really suspect how one can live a Christian life and a Taoism or Buddism life at the same time without only taking the Christian part out of the other two.)
- Humans like to reason things, and however God's plan is, guessing the possiblity of how people without a single chance of hearing the Gospel will be able to recieve salvation will always exsist, until the very end of the world.
- Since we are not in the position and the right to ask or grant oursevles or anyone else merited favor in the eyes of God. We are not in the position and have no right in claiming anyone who lived a seemingly Christian life (but maybe with some error) as heretic or any of his/her guesses as heresy.
- MythSearcher 03:01, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
How can you not know what is meant by Moses, Abraham and Elias all being saved before Christ? God quoted them as righteous because it was always about grace and faith with him. Christ was God and came down to break the bounds between Jew and Gentile and save the world as one. Before Christ, salvation was for the Jew only(and those that came into the faith), for it is written several times in the Old Testament that God saves, turn to him and be saved, more so than in even the New Testament! When God said that he would send down a servant and a messenger Isaiah 53, he meant himself in the form of his son Jesus Christ, God in the flesh. So believing in Jesus after his death is the same as what Moses, Abraham and the Israelites believed as well. Mythseeker, are you sure you are a Baptist? I mean these things are pretty clear in your denomination. Paul is even asked, I believe in Romans 3 on the topic of those who dont hear the Gospel, and he answers that blessed are the messengers that bring good news, which means that God sends out those whom he called to gather whom he is calling. So salvation is a matter up to God and saving plan, not for us to wonder about "poor" souls. Remember that you were once a "poor" soul who didn't know Christ. What is the difference between you in a first world country and someone in a third world country? You are both from the same lump of clay that is sinful in God's eyes and must be made righteous in his sight through his own saving grace. It's just God granted his unmerited favor upon you at the particular time and place before he did another particular soul in say, India. Its still the same thing, you just want to make yourself the author of your salvation, so you place your will and "authority" to chose over God's grace, then you direct that stolen authority and ask why it isnt fair that some one so "lower" than yourself has not been given the chance to make the same choice you so "suredly" made. The reason I am calling CS Lewis a deviator and a heretic is because the Bible so clearly preaches on all of these answers and are lucid and clear. Lewis just chose to warp them to favor his own philosophy because he couldn't deal with the fact that people were going to hell. So he lowered his standard of God and decided that the Bible was in error and possibly not the inerrent word of God. He casted down God's soverignty over his creation and made up a speculation that God was at the will of human thought and experience because man has "truths" that reflect Christ's truth, and thus merited favor into heaven without acknowledging the Creator and Savior. It's heretical and flying in the face of the scripture. -Anon
"Anarchistic views aside, it does matter what his church says, if you want to call him a heretic in an encyclopedia." Lets say I was a Marxist and I began to question Marx's view of Communism as a science that will happen. Then from there, I believed that the worker will not unite under workers solidarity because from my experience that hasnt happened yet, so I deviate a litte from this. Then from that last point,I reject Marx as a science all together and opt for direct action to bring about this proletariat nation now instead of waitng for capitalism to run its course. And last from the rest of the points, I reject his view of a nation being illegitimate and even a little on his stance on private property. ...would this still make me a Marxist, even though I denied the basic tenets of what made me a Marxist? I would not be a Marxist anymore I would be a Fascist or a Syndicalist. This is what I mean with Lewis, from one deviation come several, til his doctrine sounds un-Christian and heretical. -Anon
Ok, guys, this is Anon. I am finally signed up. My new name is JudeObscure84
- Anon, You say 'Lewis just chose to warp them in favor of his own philosophy'; but actually, he just chose catholic tradition (you might say, he chose tradition over scripture). You might argue that catholic tradition warps the scriptures, but it would be misleading to say that this is Lewis's invention. He also holds the catholic view about the limited inerrancy of scripture, thought several books and stories were non-historical, etc. As I said before, he is not a Calvinist; that's clear. Is this what you mean by "heretic"? Then perhaps it would be better to describe his deviation, and attribute those who believe him to be in error, who believe that he is (in their opinion) a heretic. Get your focus onto how to write the article, please, and away from trying to persuade people of your perspective; regardless of how correct you might be, that's not what we're doing here. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** \
- MythSearcher, we might privately entertain the hope that we have not understood correctly; but the ordinary word for this "hope" in the face of what Scripture seems to pretty plainly teach, is "doubt". I would call Lewis a pious doubter. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 04:42, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
- "doubt" sounds like the correct word, since doubt is not bad, it means "not sure" or "not enough faith". However, it is far better than "not believing in".
- We can move to a more Biblical way of seeing things here.
- Is he the God of Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also: Seeing it is one God, which shall justify through faith. Roman 3:29~30
- We can see that God is not just the God of Jews, but God of all nations, in Roman 4, we can see that it is the believe in God that was counted unto Abraham for righteousness. If it is so, than do God work in a similar way in other Nations?
- Furthermore, in Roman 3:24 Human is being justified freely by Jesus grace through the redemption that is in Jesus. We all saved because Jesus died for us, we do not deserve it but he did it anyway. All of us were sinful, but all of us are justified, freely, by the redemption of Jesus. It does not matter which country we are in, but why I brought out the third world country case is because there are even people nowadays that never have a chance in hearing the Gospel. (and obvious enough that if everyone is given the chance, it will be the return of Jesus Christ and end of the world, and it is no so yet, so there must be someone on earth that have not heard of the Gospel yet.) Because of this "Justified freely" claim, shouldn't everyone, including the ones that had not have a chance to hear about Gospel, should also be given a chance? Again, I do not claim how they are given the chance, but I do guess, or doubt that Lewis' suggestion would be of one of the many possibilities and by suggesting that does not make him fall into the heretic catagory but a philosophor position.
- In fact, in my point of view, not only the ones that have been rightful in other religions, but all people in all nations that died before having a chance to know about the Gospel might have a chance after their death in knowing and recieving salvation. I do not know by what means but it sounded reasonable that way. Not because of anyone's merit of being good, that they could be saved, but because God wanted to save everyone and therefore giving them a chance before they are eternally damned without hearing the Gospel.
- Doubt could lead us to a more complete religion. Protestant doubted the catholic church ways, and have reformed churches to be more Christ oriented. There should always be doubters so that we could view what we believe in different angles, and actually understand more. Are doubters necessarily heretics? Nay, doubters are often the ones that understand more than ordinary believers.
- I do not call myself a Baptist because it is becoming harder and harder to understand which denomination is which. Especially after someone claiming themselves as Baptist in America doubted the "God knows all"(including knowing the future) fact I see in the Bible and started calling me a southern Baptist. I am a Christian, no more, no less.
- I believe in God, Christianity, and Five solas.
- MythSearcher 06:20, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
- While all this theological discussion is fascinating although very scary for this liberal Anglican who now understands that he is doomed to burn in Hell, albeit in good company with Lewis, any number of saints and philanthropists, all the Popes etc., it is not advancing the progress of this article and is making the Talk page difficult to navigate. Could you please take this elsewhere or focus on the Wikipedia article and how it should be changed. Dabbler 11:17, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
Ok, here's my question. Why are we supposed to believe that the Bible is 100% inerrant? I've invested 1.5+ years into trying to answer this question, and no one has been able to show me an answer. This question seems primary in order to understand the questions of salvation. David Bergan 14:33, 1 September 2005 (UTC)
Ok So many questions to address so little time. First off lets start off with the fact that the Bible is inerrant because God said that we would worship him in Spirit and in truth. The Spirit meaning the Holy Spirit which guides us to the truth found in his Gospel and Word(Bible). The Holy Spirit guides one to choose Christ, because as it is written in Epeshians 2, we were all by nature children of wrath, fit for condemnation. Our nature is polluted and we need to be given a new one. There is no rightfull religion, there is none that has a truth close to God, for it is just experiences that people had through life that reflect thier sinful state. A law comes into practice because people were deviating from that principle in the first place. Law came in to this world to condemn sin. For the Gentiles were a law unto themselves, the law written into thier hearts, thier conscience bearing witness. So the Roman Empire can come up with a law that reflects the reality of expierence but it doesn't make it true or Holy because it doesnt reflect the righteous purpose based on a foundation built upon the true God. Instead it is a result of man's sinful state that that particular law had to be put into place in the first place. The reason behind that particular law could come in a dozen forms besides that of which is unto God. So humans work on the correspondence of truth, constantly observing before they realize whats going on and then act in the sense of thier own desires of how to handle a problem. A human knows right from wrong in his own (worldly)sense, because he makes himself the author of good and bad, but he does not know TRUE right from wrong because he does not know God, the author of ALL that is truly good. God has to reveal that truth to you and instill it in you with his seal of the Holy Spirt, now showing you true good and evil, based upon the righteous judge to determine that; God. So in essense you have true free will. The human concept of free will is both relatative and absolute, at the same time, if you can follow the scenerio. Romans chapters 1-3 explains all this. Humans are not the author of good for they know not good, for it is written that NO one is righteous, no one is good, not one. All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Next, God is not only a God for all nations, he is the God for all nations because he created them. He split the masses are ordains nations and gives them majesty. Remember that Jesus said to Pilate that he only has power because it was granted to him by the Father. No one is outside of God's domain, for it is also written that a man plans his way but God directs his steps. So God is the God of both Jew and Gentile, but chose to reveal himself to the Jew first so that t hey may bring about the Messiah to usher in the Gentiles into his adopted family. The genitles are a branch grafted into the tree of life. So you are not getting it Mythseeker, no one is deserving of anything that God grants to those he decides to grant his mercy on. No you, not me, not no one. God was patient and long suffering, seeing sin take it's toll with all horror and amazement, restraining it and letting it loose. He has made all things new. See you keep thinking that you deserve this because you keep asking that people should deserve the chance to hear his word and be let to choose. But we are all children of wrath, fit for condemnation. Our nature was to reject God from the get go, God is the only one that can revive the polluted being that we are,so we can choose in the first place. So it is He that you are directing these questions to, not I. You are basicallty asking him, "God why didnt you save all those before your Son, why did you just choose the Israelites to be your chosen people and not the guy far from Israel on the other side of the world?" "That would've been fairer." As if you can question his soverignty and mercy, and can find a better solution to fit everyone or rather find an excuse to fit everyone on the same boat. So to say that God give them a chance after death is also foolish, because then why would God reveal his truths here on earth and rely on faith,when he could just wait for everyone to die so he can reveal himself to them, and then let them choose right then and there? There would be no faith, and you can count grace and mercy out because who's gonna say no? And even if they did say no to God, then that proves that man is so depraved in his thinking that he cannot come to God and needs something to push him to do so. So either God fails to grant grace on a convert (even after death which is a pretty weak God), because the human did not choose, or God chose not to grant grace to him at all, by revealing himself to him so that he would willingly choose him. - Anon
Mythseeker, if you believe in the 5 solas then you are on the right track. But if Lewis remained in his state of believing what he believed than I dont know if he really knew Christ. I am not trying to say that he is not saved, for that is not my judgement to call, but I can see that his books do deviate from nearly everything the Reformers were saying. I mean the Reformers were really just pioneers of ushering back the basic concepts of Christianity and doing away with tradition. This is written about all through the Bible, about people coming in and placing thier traditions over the Word of God, and denying Sola Scriptura. - Anon
Talk from C.S. Lewis moved here
Since we were discussing about heresy, it seems to be more appropriate to discuss here than there.
Anon, I am not saying we or anyone deserve the right to be chosen or be given a chance. I am just suggesting that God is so merciful that he will give a chance to everyone, everyone meaning you, me, people who have heard of the Gospel, and everyone that never had a chance of hearing it. Notice the different in saying "we deserve it" and "he is merciful enough to give it to us, and everyone else.". I know it sounds silly to say that they are given a chance after their death, but no body knows what God will do, and God have better plans than we do, and in him, nothing is impossible. He may just let the people who die without hearing the Gospel live a short after life and in it, they have a chance of hearing the Gospel, and is granted their chance, by God, to believe in him and have salvation. I do NOT know this, I just suggest that is one of the many possiblities that God may do, and can do. I am not trying to judge, question, tempt or doubt why God let those people suffer eternally without giving them a chance which they deserve. Instead, I am suggesting and have faith that since God is so merciful, he will have some type of plan, a plan of which no body knows how, when, where, what, to give a chance to everyone.
From what I believe I have read, it seems like Lewis, is also only suggesting the same thing but in a less broad version. He seems to suggested that God work in a different way than my suggestion above, where people are not given a chance after their death, but a chance before their death. This chance that Lewis have suggested, is the other philosophies that have a lot in common with the teachings in the Bible. I do not really favour the idea much, but I do believe that this is just a thought, or a thought process, that he is also trying to suggest one of the possibilities that God may do, and thus, I really doubt he is a heretic and at most just a little out of the way and thinking creatively at the moment when he was writing the book.
MythSearcher 01:38, 2 September 2005 (UTC)
Arminianism POV additions
If those who insist on adding Arminianism as part of the list of Christian heresies, it is only then fair and NPOV to add also Calvinism and even Theosis. Same goes for those who are going to insist on adding one or both of the other two.
Either they are all listed, none are, or there is a list of "disputed theologies" that different Christian groups see as heresy but others do not.
Valer 05:35, 8 January 2006 (UTC)
- I agree; when was Arminianism ever declared to be heresy? KHM03 02:12, 19 January 2006 (UTC)
I just wish to restress, since an incertion of Double Predestination (under "Predestination") was missed in the list of heresies, that unless we are going to list Calvinism, Arminianism, and Theosis ALL TOGETHER as heresies, then no one is to put in just one or two. To do so is blatantly POV and has NO PLACE in wikipedia. Valer 03:46, 6 May 2006 (UTC)
A resolution of the English House of Commons: "Whosoever shall bring in innovation of religion, or by favour or countenance seek to extend or introduce Popery or Arminianism, or other opinion disagreeing from the true and orthodox Church, shall be reputed a capital enemy to this Kingdom and Commonwealth."  --Henrygb 15:12, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
Incomplete Maimonides quote
It seems that whoever quoted Maimonides neglected to quote in full (hopefully accidentally). I hope to have a complete quote accurately translated and in the article soon. Until then, three commas representing "etc." will, I hope, suffice.
Any comments or corrections of my translation would be appreciated and welcome. Shykee 20:59, 4 April 2006 (UTC)Shykee
A Purely Objective Term
This section deals with heresy as having an objective sense, and indeed that being the only one that makes any sense. Thanks to those who wrote the article and the comments above, some of which I have reused without acknowledgement.
Short restrictive definition: "Heresy" in this section is used to refer to religious heresy; the religion involved is Christianity by default (because I can't write about any other form); and the etymology is the Greek "choice" root. This definition may have extension to other beliefs, including heresies, changing the POV and other internal references mutatis mutandem.
Heresy as a serious matter: The early Christians were prepared to associate death with heresy; its appearance being evidence of spiritual death on the part of the perpetrator, and often were willing to exact the corresponding physical death upon those so found doing. Later Christians tended to associate the physical death as the correct response and either take the spiritual death as read or ignore it entirely. Whether this physical punishment was in any cases justified is not addressed here: the conclusion is that heresy was always considered a very serious matter. This response - excommunication, "giving over to Satan", or torture and capital punishment - within a community that taught the abhorrence of physical responses and had love as its primary motivator, shows that the alternative before the Christians was the "death" of the heresy or the "death" of orthodox Christianity (see later for the use of "orthodox").
Heresy as both a cause and an effect: The doctrine of heresy is not as an independent phenomenon, but is part of the chain: false doctrine → heresy → schism (see Litany, Book of Common Prayer, for an example of this). Heresy is the effect of false doctrine; heresy is the cause of schism. False doctrine is therefore to be stamped out as possibly generating heresy; "choice" of modes of worship and so on are logically based on opinions about what doctrine to follow. Sects and schisms will follow if this is not done. Furthermore heresy is not false doctrine, and the article would possibly gain by having this pointed out more fully. This is the first objective use of the term "heresy".
Orthodoxy as the key concept: A doctrine that is false must be false according to some standard of truth. A doctrine that is true according to that standard is defined as "orthodox". If orthodoxy is to vary with the point of view, then there can be no such thing as heresy, nor by extension any such thing as orthodoxy, and this whole article must be called into question as representing nothing whatever (see "A Purely Subjective Term" above).
A purely objective term: There must therefore be a standard of truth against which judgement may be made. It follows that there must be an independent standard of orthodoxy. This provides a purely objective view of orthodoxy, and defines heresy in purely objective terms. Since subjective views lead to the denial of the existence of heresy, false doctrine becoming an opinion as equally valid as another, and schism becoming a natural right, this is the only view that makes sense. What can this objective, independent viewpoint be? That of God. There can be none other, for if He is the originator of the faith then He is the repository of orthodoxy. If any other is acknowledged, then the risk of error - error in doctrine being the generator of heresy, notably - must be present. Since Jesus Christ claims to be Truth personified, we shall no doubt find out all the answers when we see Him.
Historical orthodoxy: Historically, appeals to orthodoxy have been appeals to an understanding of the doctrines of the "early Church". This was regarded as being absolutely orthodox in the teachings of the Apostles (not necessarily elsewhere as can be read in the Pauline Epistles: false doctrines would creep in and heresy was an ever-present menace). In the absence of Apostles appeals had been made to an "Apostolic Succession" on the one hand, and the Bible on the other. However, the debate is much older than the Reformation or the Great Schism; it was not lawful for the Apostles to teach something that Christ did not teach them, and the same applies to their successors. The basis of historical orthodoxy is given by Vicentius Liricensis as "the general consent of the faithful in all ages", thus ruling out innovation and appealing to apostolic origins. He goes on to anathematize the teaching of error in an exhortation to "keep what has been entrusted to you, not what you have invented; what is accepted, not what you have imagined." "In ipsa item catholica ecclesia magnopere curandum est ut id teneamus quod ubique, quod ab omnibus creditum est... Administrare ergo aliquid Christianis Catholicis, praeter id quod acceperunt, nunquam licuit, nunquam licet, nunquam licebit;... Depositum custodi. Quid est depositum? id est quod tibi traditum est, non quod a te inventum; quod accepisti, non quod excogitasti; rem non ingenii, sed doctrinae; non usurpationis privatae, sed publicae traditionis; rem ad te perductam, non a te prolatam; in qua non auctor debes esse, sed custos; non institutor, sed sectator; non ducens sed sequens." Vicentius Liricensis, Bibliotheca Patrum vol X pp 103-111.
Jeremynicholas 15:17, 27 August 2006 (UTC)
- Human claims that this or that doctrine is heresy is heresy is subjective. It's true that according to certain standards labeled "orthodox" that some doctrines are labeled heresy. But that's still subjective. It doesn't matter if the group making applying the label is larger or more highly regarded than the group to which the label is applied. Short of knowing the mind of God, there's no way for the term heresy to be anything but subjective, it can only be applied within a given context.--RLent 21:06, 9 July 2007 (UTC)
Simply stated heresy is a lie as defined by those who claim to know the whole truth. Therefore, heretics are liars who teach contrary to the truth. Blasphemy is an intentional premeditated insult to God. Apostasy is treason to the beliefs of a group one previously belonged to. Jose Leo (Joseleo (talk) 04:55, 28 September 2010 (UTC))
hello everyone can you tell me a hertic example please thankyou very much........................................................................................................
Proposal to factor out "Christian heresies" and "Orthodox Judaism" sections
I propose that we shorten this article by removing the "Christian heresies" and "Orthodox Judaism" sections replacing them with summaries. The text in the removed sections would then be moved to new articles with approximately the same names as the deleted sections.
It's not that this article is too long as it could get really long if we discussed Christian heresies in any detail. One motivation that I have is that I am working on the History of Christianity and History of the Papacy articles. It would be more natural to reference an article on Christian heresies than to reference this article which describes heresy as a general concept.
--Richard 01:02, 10 February 2007 (UTC)
- No objections sounds like a good idea. The only problem would be the number of "What links here.." that might need to be changed. Also recommend new article be Christian heresy (singular) as that is the convention. -- Stbalbach 16:41, 10 February 2007 (UTC)
Heretics is a book by GK Chesterton, if there is an article on it, than "Heretics" should link there, not be redirected here.
I have removed the paragraph:
In Christianity, heresy is a "theological or religious opinion or doctrine maintained in opposition, or held to be contrary, to the Roman Catholic or Orthodox doctrine of the Christian Church, or, by extension, to that of any church, creed, or religious system, considered as orthodox. By extension, heresy is an opinion or doctrine in philosophy, politics, science, art, etc., at variance with those generally accepted as authoritative."Oxford English Dictionary
Which uses the follwing reference: Oxford English Dictionary
Which does not give a definition of heresy and in my opinion gives catholic PoV. --Île_flottante~Floating island Talk 12:50, 6 August 2009 (UTC)
- No, its pretty good as far as I can see. But perhaps if you'd cricize more specifically, there might be improvements to make. Regarding Christianity, all branches have named all other branches "heretics". I believe the situation is similar within Islam. Rursus dixit. (mbork3!) 11:59, 24 January 2012 (UTC)
Francis Bacon imprisoned for heresy?
The article claims that Bacon was imprisoned for 'years' because 'his curiosity and investigations were considered heretical'. My understanding is that Bacon was imprisoned for a few days, for taking bribes. Does anybody have the cited book? Can you verify the claim? Thanks, 18.104.22.168 (talk) 20:37, 29 December 2011 (UTC) ocanter
The quote attributed to Isaac Asimov is actually from
Marcello Truzzi, Ph.D.
The Child of Opinion [sic]
As given the article like many western prejudices excludes the discussion of Heresy in Islam, in Chinese and Indian Religions, and in African and Indegenous Cultures.
Heresy as a concept, independent of the culture of a specific religion.
"Wikipedia: Ibn Kathir."
Ibn Kathir for example is one of the most well known islamic teachers of law.
Anyone who has a few mosques in their city or town can peruse the shelves for a copy of one or more of Ibn Kathir's works.
according to wikipedia he was an inquisitor into heresy in the 900s in Syria, an inquisition began in the 700s.
He is as influencial in Islam as Augustine or Aquinas are in Christianity.
Much has changed since claims were made that the article lacks a neutral point of view. The disputants have moved on? Most of this talk section is obsolete and probably should be archived. Help, Prince Wikipedian.22.214.171.124 (talk) 22:13, 26 June 2012 (UTC)
Status in November 2012
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