The Fallen World & the Power of Sin

Abstract artwork depicting the eternal struggle between good and evil, represented by contrasting colors and intense movements.

The Fallen World and the Influence of Sin

In theological terms, our world is marked by sin and mortality, which shape every aspect of life. Sin has a powerful influence, and its presence can be seen all around us.

The Struggle of Good and Evil

Despite the goodness that exists in the world, there is an ongoing battle between good and evil. Acts of charity and philanthropy face constant challenges as they combat the forces of evil. It is evident that our world does not fully reflect the sacred presence of righteousness.

Humanity’s Estrangement and Dependence on Sin

Orthodox theology asserts that humanity has become deprived of freedom, lacking sanctity, and dependent on sinfulness. This view is not pessimistic but rather a reflection on the reality of the world we live in. Even our bodies, once created beautifully, now bear the effects of sin and mortality.

The Universal Impact of the Fall

The entire world is affected by the consequences of the fall. It is not limited to certain individuals or places but permeates everything, including knowledge. Recognizing our lack of ultimate freedom goes against the prevailing belief in human rights, emphasizing the need for spiritual effort and struggle to attain true freedom.

Gnosis and Epignosis: Knowledge and Awareness

Orthodox theology distinguishes between natural knowledge (gnosis) and spiritual knowledge (epignosis). While humans have a natural capacity to discern good from evil, true knowledge comes through personal experience of divine grace. Spiritual knowledge does not contradict faith but confirms it, leading to a contemplative faith.

The Reality of Evil and Mortality

All of humanity, saints and sinners alike, exists in a world deeply affected by evil and mortality. In Orthodox theology, this is referred to as “the fall of Adam” rather than “original sin.” Understanding sin and mortality influences our perception of concepts like freedom and justice.

Freedom and Faith

Orthodox understanding of freedom is closely linked to faith. Faith empowers individuals to submit to an inner voice that objective facts cannot validate. Freedom and rights are complex concepts that require equal respect for all people and segments of society, without exclusion or discrimination.

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