Saturday, 11 April 2015

Anna Zhyrkova: Christ as Ontological Paradigm in Early Byzantine Thought

The Christological debates of 4th-6th century brought about two very interesting, even if easily overlooked, developments. First, resolving the problems of natures and wills in Christ required creating a conceptual framework in which individuality and individual beings can be spoken of without reducing them to mere instances of universals. Second, Christ became the ontological paradigm of individual being, used in these discussions. The papers proposed for the workshop highlight some crucial points of this conceptual innovation, discussing it mainly as a philosophical idea, still without detaching it from its theological sources.
First paper "Being, Structure, and Conflicting Sets of Properties in Cyril of Alexandria's Vision of Christ" (Sergey Trostyanskiy), discusses the ontological consequences of Cyril's introduction of Aristotelian and Neoplatonic elements into Christology.
Second paper, "From Christ to Human Individual-Shaping the Conception of Individual Existence in Neochalcedonian theology" (Anna Zhyrkova) elucidates the very process of conceptual transformation leading from Cyril, through John Grammaticus, to the mature proposals of Leontius of Byzantium.
Third paper, "Leontius of Jerusalem: Underlying Structures in Individual Entity" (Grzegorz Kotłowski), reflects on several points of Leontius' conception of individual being, comparing it to ones elaborated by other Neochalcedonians, and especially by Leontius of Byznatium.
Fourth paper, "Maximus' Confessor Attempts at Creating a Logic of Hypostases" (Marcin Podbielski), considers the reasons for and aims of Maximus' endeavors to propose a set of rules for being an individual, when individual is described through the notion of hypostasis and when Christ is used as the paradigm of hypostatical existence.

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