Thursday, 7 May 2015

Anna Zhyrkova: Leontius of Jerusalem: Underlying Structures in Individual Entity

This paper has a dual purpose. It aims to show the peculiarity of the ontology of the individual that Leontius of Jerusalem builds for his Christological doctrine. Then, on this basis and on the basis of a philological comparison with the writings of Leontius of Byzantium, it offers arguments to support a distinction between those two authors.
Leontius of Jerusalem’s conception of the individual is rooted in his attempt to justify orthodox Christological doctrine, opposed by numerous heterodox views. While himself a Neochalcedonian theologian, he was suspicious of embracing Aristotelian and Neoplatonic views in theology without any conceptual analysis and philosophical revision. In particular, he strongly opposed adopting the Porphyrian view of the individual as a collection of properties. He replaced this with his own original conception of the individual and of hypostasis, elucidated through the notion of stasis.
The absence of this conception from the works now attributed to Leontius of Byzantium makes it difficult to identify him with the author of the texts ascribed to Leontius of Jerusalem. Even more may be said about differences in how they write: in respect of word usage, the grammatical constructions employed, and their ways of building sentences. A comparison that takes into account the conclusions of both philosophical and philological analyses will furnish new insights into the issue of the chronological relation between the works those authors are credited with.

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