NEW MARTYRS OF THE TURKISH YOKE

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Pravoslavnik
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Re: NEW MARTYRS OF THE TURKISH YOKE

Postby Pravoslavnik » Mon 21 June 2010 2:57 am

Catherine,

Please understand. I am not a militaristic person, and I have never condoned or approved of many operations of the CIA and the American military-industrial complex. I disagreed openly with the American invasion of Iraq in March of 2003, and actually offended many of my friends and relatives at the time-- including some Orthodox Christian friends-- by criticizing the whole misguided initiative.

My interest in the history of Islamic jihad is of a more religious nature. Why was this scourge unleashed upon Orthodox Christendom?

Father Mark's comparison of Islam with Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonians is a good one. The kingdom of Judah was conquered by the Babylonians because of the sins and corruption of the priests and rulers of Judah. (St. John of Kronstadt and others foresaw that a similar affliction would befall Holy Russia as a result of the growing apostasy of the Russian aristocracy and intelligentsia at the turn of the last century.) Was this also true of Constantinople in 1453? And, how so?

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Re: NEW MARTYRS OF THE TURKISH YOKE

Postby jgress » Mon 21 June 2010 4:38 pm

The traditional explanation for the conquest of the City is the betrayal of the faith by the Emperor and hierarchy at the Council of Florence in 1439:

"Better the Turkish turban than the Papal tiara!"

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Re: NEW MARTYRS OF THE TURKISH YOKE

Postby Pravoslavnik » Tue 22 June 2010 3:26 am

JGress,

If, then, the Moslems were permitted by God to overthrow Byzantium because of the sins of the Orthodox Byzantines, how is it that the Roman Catholic Papacy was spared from the Islamic scourge?

To return to Father Mark's original argument, we must surely believe that we are not immune from Satanic affliction-- including Islamic jihad-- by virtue of Orthodox confession or righteousness.

Job was not afflicted because of his sins, but rather because he was righteous, and subjected to the wrath of Satan.

So, as I argued originally on this thread, our Church may be taken from us-- and we may be otherwise afflicted by Satan and his servants (Moslems, Bolsheviks, etc.) even if we choose to live a righteous, Orthodox life.

I mention this not as some dry, academic argument, but as an explanation of why there is currently no Old Calendar Orthodox Church left in my city other than the ROCOR-MP parish. There are communities in world history-- as in modern day Anatolia-- where the Orthodox Church has completely disappeared. To argue that this is because of our choices and/or sins does not seem theologically accurate to me-- although, Lord knows, my sins are countless..

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Re: NEW MARTYRS OF THE TURKISH YOKE

Postby Catherine5 » Tue 22 June 2010 5:44 am

Job was an isolated case of a soul being tested.

Clearly, God was on the side - painful as it is to hear this for you - of the Turks! One has to see clearly, not with blinders of ethnic or religious prejudice of surety that "WE are always in the right".
Maybe sometimes it's not quite what one assumes.
Have you gone to interview the Savior in Heaven to find out which side He was on in those years? Why do you instantly make the assumption that He prefers any particular group? I know that's a shocking statement to make.
You are educated, try to look objectively.
Here is another example where Turkish Sultans win over irrationally resisting Greek inhabitants. Maybe they just make bad decisions, why can't we simply acknowledge that? These officials were not ourselves, or our families, this all happened 650 years ago! Why do we carry all this baggage around from such a trauma that has very little in reality to do with any of us here today?

The prequel to the Turkish capture of Constantinople took place just 23 years earlier: March 29, 1430 compared with May 29, 1453.
The siege of Salonica, modern Thessaloniki in northern Greece.
We have a very civilized Sultan, Murat II, the father of Sultan Mehmet II, at the gates. He has given many notices to Salonica to surrender and be treated very nicely OR to keep resisting and face pillage. These were the rules of more civilized warfare at that time. He could have just attacked; after all, the city had in some form ALREADY submitted to him. But he waited for a reply.
We have his foe, the Greek Orthodox Archbishop Symeon, inside the gates. He refuses to see the obvious fact that his flock was determined to surrender the city.
The old Archbishop holds out - BUT ANGRY CROWDS DEMONSTRATE AGAINST HIM! They refused to believe his empty-sounding promises - I am taking this from the historical account, not a religious one - of a vague warrior coming to their aid on horseback.
[That never happened.]

After Abp Symeon's repose in 1429, the resistance to the Turks - already weak - crumbled. But some Greek leaders were stubborn and did not surrender.

A polite Sultan Murat II gave them even an EXTRA last chance, sending a batch of Christian messengers to plead one more time before he launched battle.
Did the people in charge ask for God's will here? Certainly not, for there was unnecessary bloodshed due to the obstinacy of those few officials and mercenary soldiers who refused to surrender.
Most of the PEOPLE were FOR surrender.

Fortunately, the Greek Archbishop of the next city to be besieged, Jannina, got the message from Salonica and made a better decision to peacefully acquiesce.
As a result, as the best historian of this era writes,
"Jannina remained an important centre of Hellenic learning throughtout the Ottoman period:
indeed, one of Murad's generals actually founded a Christian monastery there."

Prav, can you imagine a Christian general founding a Sufi tekke even TODAY, 660 years later?
How enlightened was that to have done at THAT time then?! THERE ARE MANY EXAMPLES OF kindness, toleration and cooperation shown by Turkish rulers to Greek citizens. But THESE are never allowed to creep into any of the stories that are passed down by folklore and religious stories such as those you mentioned.
The actual truth of the matter of those martyrs is that the Ottoman authorities stayed away purposely from getting involved in making such decisions.
They would hand the person over to his own Church, not decide for them to be put to death. They were very reluctant, and often good-natured, to boot!
I'm not saying they were perfect; some Pashas were corrupt in terms of money. But they weren't normally vicious or vindictive...as they have been wrongly portrayed by the stories.

I contest there were many reasons why God permitted the Ottomans to win. Clues may be found in their wise rulership, excellent military abilities to defend the borders of the Empire, and basic fairness.
Byzantium had been reduced to little outside the outskirts of Constantinople and some areas of the Morea. I remember I traveled far out of my way, out of a certain sense of historical nostalgia, to see the last kingdom to hold out there, Mystras.

How can ANY ONE of us know for sure God's designs and why He favors anyone ? We can only speculate.
The ancients always felt that whoever won a battle was favored by the gods.
If true, then the Ottomans won fair and square and with maybe God's blessing.
I know that rankles everyone.

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Re: NEW MARTYRS OF THE TURKISH YOKE

Postby jgress » Tue 22 June 2010 2:14 pm

Pravo, you are right that God sends afflictions both for our sins and also so that we may win crowns. Now, I think most of the Orthodox population of the City remained faithful to the Fathers, but the Emperors and the Bishops still supported the Pope. This means that everybody in the city was punished by God for the sins of their leaders. This is not at all an unusual occurrence. The same kind of thing happened in Russia: millions of faithful Orthodox were punished for the sins of their heretical leaders (not the faithful Tsar, but his Masonic ministers). The same scourge at the same time destroys the wicked and glorifies the faithful.

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Re: NEW MARTYRS OF THE TURKISH YOKE

Postby Pravoslavnik » Wed 23 June 2010 3:28 am

Catherine wrote:


"Clearly, God was on the side - painful as it is to hear this for you - of the Turks! One has to see clearly, not with blinders of ethnic or religious prejudice of surety that "WE are always in the right. Maybe sometimes it's not quite what one assumes. Have you gone to interview the Savior in Heaven to find out which side He was on in those years? Why do you instantly make the assumption that He prefers any particular group?"


Catherine,

Good Lord! What are you saying here? Do you imagine as well that God was "on the side" of the Satanic Bolsheviks who destroyed the Holy Churches and monasteries of Russia?

The Orthodox Church is the Body of Christ. How could God possibly "be on the side of those Moslems who have destroyed His own most precious Body?

You may as well argue that God was "one the side" of the Sanhedrin during His own trial and crucifixion!

How could God, the Christ, possibly be "on the side" of Mohammed-- who blasphemed the sacred teachings of Christ by claiming that he, Mohammed, was the Holy Spirit, the Paraclete, foretold by Christ to His Apostles? What utter blasphemous nonsense!

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Re: NEW MARTYRS OF THE TURKISH YOKE

Postby jgress » Wed 23 June 2010 12:18 pm

Catherine won't be participating in this forum anymore.


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