The First Phase

Marcus Plested

in Orthodox Readings of Aquinas

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199650651
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191745225 | DOI:

Series: Changing Paradigms in Historical and Systematic Theology

The First Phase

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This chapter takes us to the heart of the matter, beginning with Thomas' first Byzantine translators, Demetrios and Prochoros Kydones. Prochoros receives special attention as the author of a treatise generally assumed to be a Thomist critique of the Palamite essence-energies distinction and understanding of the nature of the light revealed on Thabor at the Transfiguration of Christ. Prochoros' position on these and related matters are found to be significantly different in key respects from that of Aquinas. Prochoros' condemnation in 1368 cannot, therefore, be read as a condemnation of Thomism on the part of the Orthodox. The chapter also explores the sympathetic and discerning use of Aquinas by a number of prominent Palamite theologians: John VI Kantakuzene, Theophanes of Nicaea, and Neilos Kabasilas. Issues addressed include an attempt to recruit Thomas to the anti-filioque cause and a nuancing of the essence-energies distinction in broadly Thomist terms.

Keywords: Demetrios Kydones; Prochoros Kydones; John VI Kantakuzene; Theophanes of Nicaea; Neilos Kabasilas; Nicholas Kabasilas; transfiguration; Thomas Aquinas; Philotheos Kokkinos

Chapter.  19766 words. 

Subjects: History of Christianity

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