The Heavenly Powers


in Origen and the Life of the Stars

Published in print January 1994 | ISBN: 9780198263616
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191682612 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Early Christian Studies

The Heavenly Powers

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This chapter presents an evaluation of astral powers in moral terms and the subsequent impact of related debates. One idea which Origen adopted which is not present in Philo or any of the classical philosophical schools is the recognition of the possibility of evil in heaven. This view, which is of great importance in Origen in understanding the place of the stars in the divine economy, gradually developed in Hellenism and exerted a great influence on early Christianity. The first section examines the view of heavenly powers as good or as morally neutral. The second section considers the view of heavenly powers as morally evil from pagan, apocalyptic, and gnostic sources.

Keywords: Mithraism; heavenly powers; morally good; morally evil; Timaeus; apocalyptic sources

Chapter.  12608 words. 

Subjects: Early Christianity

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