The Spiritual Staff of the Liberation of the New Israel

“ . . . You are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:4)

[1] It will be recalled that on the day before yesterday we proceeded to the fourth and final aspect of the understanding of our sacred struggle. We investigated the skill of fighting and overcoming our adversaries. In the course of the speech we were encountered by the Architect of the universe, the God of our Fathers, the Father-Mind, the Son-Logos, and Holy Spirit-Power: the one, indivisible, and unconfused Holy Trinity. Our Triune God descended to give us that which we desire, namely mind and reason and spiritual power. Mind, to understand what things are good and just; reason, to express these things; and power, to translate our knowledge into action. We called this perfect gift the staff of deification, for they who receive it become gods and have in them divine and invincible power. This staff, as we promised, is the subject of today’s speech, for by examining this staff we shall understand the practical method with which the task of 1821 is quickest and best completed.

I present before you this visible staff[2] upon which you see inscribed the words “nous (mind), logos (reason), and dynamis (power),” from which we can make the following analogy:

Mind : Reason : : Reason : Power

This analogy is the spiritual staff of the liberation of the New Israel, and it is this which we must now analyze and truly comprehend. From the first two terms of the analogy there emerges what is called science; from the other two, what is called art. What is science and what is art? Science is defined as ”the habit of understanding rationally.” Art is defined as “the habit of creating works according to reason which expresses mind” Thus while mind and reason beget science, reason and power beget art. In so far as the staff of the liberation of New Israel is mind and reason and power, its qualities are science and art.

But what is the nature of the science and art of which we here speak? For there are many sciences and arts, and each has its own objective. The objective of our science and art is the political feat of 1821, the task of the liberation and restoration of the whole of our race, of the whole Orthodox pleroma (fullness). Half of the staff, namely the science of the struggle, is already known, for we have understood the principles for which we are struggling, the enemies we are fighting, and the power with which we are waging our battle. The other half of the staff, namely the art of fighting and overcoming our adversaries, remains unknown. And in accordance with the rational law of understanding we must render the unknown known by means of that which is already known. By means of the science of the struggle we must learn the art of fighting.

Art in general has the logos relationship to science that a daughter has to her mother. For just as daughters are borne forth into the world by their mothers, so too are the arts borne forth by the sciences. The art of the struggle is of necessity brought forth by the science of the struggle. We can perceive this spiritual birth in clearer focus by imagining science as a woman in gestation presently approaching the time of her delivery. Now imagine me in the role of a mid-wife trying skillfully to bring to light the art of fighting from the matrix of the science of the battle. This is the spiritual birth which assures us of freedom and many blessings. Imagine again that just as a pregnant woman is considered as to who she is and the embryo within her womb cannot be seen before it is born, so too while we already behold science in gestation, we do not yet see the art which lies within its matrix.

Now how does the science in travail look to the eye of our mind? It appears to be committed to principles, and surrounding it there are ungodly people who envy and plot against the glory of these principles. But this science embraces within her the allied power of the Primary Being together with the terms of its alliance pact with God. Think of the terms of the pact as the matrix of the science in which there is contained the daughter which is still unseen. Thus we should pay careful attention to the conditions of the pact, for it is from these that we shall see the art emerging. What do these conditions tell us? The first one says: “Hear the voice of the Lord and walk in His ways”. The second term of our pact with God states: “Our enemies must be fought with judgment and righteousness.” This second condition is the orifice of the matrix from which the daughter hastens to emerge. Let us then turn our attention to this spiritual orifice, and to the voice of the second condition.

It is necessary to fight our enemies with judgment and righteousness, the trial in any case consists in the art of fighting; for without a trial we can neither judge our enemies nor fulfill righteousness. Thus the art of fighting, to which we here refer to as a kind of a trial, was born to us of the science of the struggle. The newly born infant, however, must be nourished and adorned with the thoughts of its mother, science, in order that its salutary power may flourish. We shall now consider the matter of the nourishment and development of this spiritual child.

As you see, I introduced into my speech the image of art offspring and its birth so that I may clearly indicate to you in a tangible way that the first practical method which l have to advocate for the success of our sacred struggle follows naturally from the rational principles of the struggle, and from the terms of the pact which the allied power of the Most High imposes upon us. Since the practical method I cited above is of such a lofty origin, it leads smoothly and directly to the very goal of our struggle, as we shall see as soon as we nurture its development, as soon as, figuratively speaking, we nourish and embellish the art which has been born to us of science.

The method which we have set forth for the salvation of our fatherland and the annihilation of our enemies is called a trial. We shall analyze and develop the trial by asking: what are its constituent parts or elements? In every trial one necessarily observes these four things: 1) judges; 2) defendants; 3) the laws according to which the Judges reach their verdict; 4) the lawyers for the defense and the lawyers for the prosecution who enlighten the judges as to how the laws apply to their particular cases in point. We must also add to these four constituent parts of the courtroom and the trial the listeners in attendance whose sympathy is with either this or that defendant. These are the things which are generally observed at a trial.

The form of the trial is defined according to the nature of the defendants. For example, if the defendants are merchants the trial is then concerned with matters of commerce, and the courtroom assumes the analogous atmosphere. But if the defendants are thieves or another kind of criminals, the trial is called a penal one, and the courtroom becomes a criminal court. If the defendants are soldiers, the trial is called a court martial and the courtroom, a military tribunal. In short, the quality of the courtroom and the trial depends upon the nature and the quality of the defendants.

Let us now ask, who are the defendants in the symbolical trial which we are staging for the success of the goal we have in mind? They are the cup of the wisdom of God, and the cup of the “great harlot,” or more simply said, the Christian philosophy of Greece, and the anti-Christian philosophy of the schools of the West. Such being the defendants, who should be the judges? They should obviously be philosophers and scholars, such as admittedly are the professors of the University of Athens; and any other persons well versed in philosophical science. According to what laws shall they make their judgment? Clearly according to the laws of logic by which the truth is proven to be such and falsehood is censured.

Now since a trial also calls for lawyers, who shall be the lawyers for the defendants? Because in my judgment I know and believe that the Christian philosophy of Orthodox Greece is in the right, in the trial I shall present a scientific statement in her defense, indicating the reasons for which her philosophy professes the truth, while that of the West is false. If anyone else knows and believes things contrary to my tenets, let him speak in behalf of modern Western philosophy, indicating the reasons why the philosophy he espouses is truthful and ours is false. Justice and the law grant the defendant the right to give an account of himself, as they also grant one who wills to speak in behalf of the defendant the right to do so. We do not wish to condemn Western philosophy and to remove it from our schools before the statements in its defense are presented and heard. Should the philosophy of the West be proven rational and just, we shall be the first to honor it. Should it be proven to be unjust, however, it must suffer a lawsuit and it must stop wronging us.[3]

From the analysis of such a symbolical trial, it becomes evident that the first practical means I present for the success of our sacred struggle is the formation of a scientific tribunal comprised of the faculty of our University and any other persons who are outstanding in science. The purpose of this tribunal is to judge the defendants in accordance with the unchangeable laws of logic and to return the verdict with regard to the true philosophy and the false one – the cup of the Wisdom of God and that of the ”great harlot.” In this manner, it shall become obvious whether the Greek people bear the truth before nations and kings and the sons of Israel, as will it ensure that our rights of the eternal truth shall no longer be disgracefully trodden upon. Once the tribunal has been set up by the decision and will of the minister of justice, and all interested persons have gathered to see the truth confirmed, the day of the trial is set.

Before being seated, the judges take the following oath:

“I swear upon my sacred conscience and upon right reason that I will declare my opinion for the truth and against falsehood, being consistent with the scientific reasons of proof and with the inner witness of my conscience.”

After the statements pro and con are set forth and the jury has weighed these arguments in accordance with the laws of logic, the judges return their verdict. Behold now, art, the child of science, has developed and already looks large. But we still have to adorn her with the precious stones of science and its why and wherefore so that all her beauty and power may shine forth. For beauty too is power.

One may ask, why is it necessary that the suggested academic tribunal be set up, and that the scientific trial to which we here refer take place? In response to this question, we have three reasons why this should indeed be so: The first reason is that the practical method which I advocated is a natural outcome of the rational principles of our struggle, and we cannot reject this outcome without previously denying the principles for which we are fighting. The second reason is that through such a practical method a great danger to which Hellenism is already exposed is anticipated or averted. The third reason is that by employing the method we expounded above, we can easily attain to our desired goal. We must elaborate upon the three reasons cited above.

As we said in the previous discourse, techne (art) is defined as ”the habit of acting rationally, and doing works having the stamp of mind upon them”. This is why Plato calls techne (art) “echonoe.” According to this definition the art of fighting must also project and do those works which bear within them the mind of the science of warfare. In other words, it is altogether necessary that the practical method with which we seek to overcome the enemy be produced by means of all our theoretical scientific principles, emerging naturally from the latter as the outcome from a principle. Let us, therefore, inquire as to whether the formation of the academic tribunal for censuring falsehood plainly and for confirming the truth is based upon those truths we were taught by the science of the struggle.

We saw that the principles for which we are fighting are our holy faith in Christ and the freedom of our fatherland. We pointed out that faith in Christ is but the very just claim of the truth, and that the freedom of the fatherland consists in the unhampered activity which is in accordance with the just claims of the truth. While the rights of the truth are admittedly being violated and trodden upon, the freedom of the fatherland is suppressed and in bondage. What then must be done to satisfy the truth which has been wronged and to attain to the free exercise of our rights? We must do that which every person who has been wronged does. Everyone who has been wronged takes to court the person who did him injustice, and having proven his rights before the judges, he receives justice according to the law. Since the truth is suffering injustice in that it is not being accepted, while falsehood which is contrary to everything just is being accepted, it is wholly necessary that the truth take falsehood to court. Upon proving its own rights, the truth must win the loyalty of souls which falsehood now unjustly claims.

As you see, the practical method I have set forth before you is a necessary consequence of the principle for which we are struggling. But also with regard to the enemies we are combating to destroy, we must first receive the verdict against them. For just as apprehended criminals are not done away with by the law enforcement agency before they are tried and convicted, so too we must attack all our enemies, but only after we have tried them and have made the verdict known to all peoples. The terms of our alliance pact with God also impose this imperative upon us.

Thus all three aspects of the knowledge of our struggle from the fourth aspect, i.e. the formation of the philosophical tribunal and the philosophical trial for the plain censure of falsehood and the confirmation of the truth. This practical or technical method contains the whole mind of its mother, science, and no one can reject or disapprove of the method without rejecting or refuting the theory which underlies our struggle. Inasmuch as this theory is quite valid and appropriate we do well in urging its realization. It is necessary that the measures I have proposed that we take be carried out as quickly as possible so that the great danger which now threatens Hellenism may be averted. We must clearly delineate the nature of this danger.

As we indicated in one of the previous addresses, by “Hellenism” we mean those lofty truths and principles for which the Greek race has now been contesting for nineteen centuries. These truths were demonstrated scientifically before your eyes. It was proved that while Christ is the God-Man, the first creative Cause of all things is the one and indivisible and unconfused Holy Trinity, the Father-Mind, the Son-Logos, and the Holy Spirit-Power. These two truths are so closely inter-woven, that he who denies one of the truths necessarily denies the other also; and he who confesses one of the truths necessarily confesses the other also. These two truths are the very essence of Hellenism, for the Greek race has been championing and bearing witness to these two truths for nineteen centuries. If we today deny these two truths, we condemn our past, we deny our glorious future, we lose all meaning for our existence, and in short, we commit suicide and disgracefully destroy ourselves.

If we have in our midst various systems of deception which take away from the souls of our people, especially our youth, commitment to these two principles of Hellenism, is not the danger which imperils Hellenism quite evident? Is it not rather obvious that our race is being brought unawares to the brink of disaster? But I can assure you, and you yourselves all know it, that many teachers of delusion are working for the destruction of the Greek nation, teachers who are themselves Greeks. With falsehoods and delusions they rob the heritage of our Fathers from the souls of our youth, and our young people turn out to be corrupters and murderers of the race, and slander Hellenism as a falsehood and a superstition.

In Constantinople, which is the center of Hellenism, the evil has greatly advanced and is destroying the faith of our fellow countrymen. You know for yourselves how far the evil has grown here also. I can tell you, as one who well knows the latest developments in Constantinople, that various associations or fraternities have recently been organized there, each of which proposes to be of benefit to society. Many of these organizations were formed not for social welfare, but rather because they are fashionable. And many people join these fraternities simply because it is the fashion to do so. Among these organizations, there stands out the so-called philosophical society which is wholly motivated by an anti-Christian spirit. In imitation of this association, many young people have organized their own society in which they do nothing else but extol the writings of irreligious and godless Renan and Voltaire, and do other such foolish things.

It is important that we realize how far the evil is progressing, in no way restrained, and that all the young generation is receiving such an irreligious, atheistic, and anti-Hellenic nurture. What shall be the outcome of this state of affairs? After many years go by when those people who still remain faithful to our heritage have passed away, and they have left behind them children with a corrupt mind and heart, shall not the outcome be the destruction and annihilation of our whole race? But how must we as quickly as possible avert this impending disaster? With the method that was expounded above, by the formation of the philosophical tribunal and the academic trial. It shall become clear from the following that this method is both rational and scientific.

Think of these systems of deception which are plotting against Hellenism as resembling thieves and bandits. Now what do thieves and bandits do in society? They steal the citizens’ money, and often murder them too. Should theft be permitted to be perpetrated freely and to go unpunished while on the increase, it would threaten to bring about the destruction and the dissolution of society. Not only are thieves closely pursued and apprehended for the purpose of repelling this danger, but also criminal courts are set up to do away with the criminals by trial. Who is it that disparages or offers resistance to the setting up of a criminal court, saying that this is unlawful or that it bears no fruit? No one certainly. The systems and instruments of deception, however, are robbing the souls of our fellow citizens, instead of money, the truth which is the most precious thing of all; and instead of this ephemeral life, they are taking away life eternal from our people.

Therefore, if thieves and bandits who steal money and take this temporal life away from people should be tried and done away with in order to save society, how much more should the same be done to those formidable thieves and bandits of the spirit, who rob men of the truth and deprive them of eternal life? And if the criminal court is a rational and effective means of ridding society of persons committing petty larceny, how much more rational and fruitful shall the scientific tribunal be in doing away with those guilty of spiritual grand larceny? Whoever belittles or impedes the organization of a criminal court is clearly a criminal himself and a friend of crime. In the same manner, whoever discredits or obstructs the organization of the philosophical tribunal clearly belongs to the tanks of the great criminals and thieves, since he is wilfully a friend of deception and wills the destruction, rather than the salvation, of both himself and people like him. Let us now also take a look at the salutary results which shall necessarily follow after the scientific tribunal.

We all admit that a state of agreement brings unity and strength to a nation, while dissension contrarily brings division, paralysis, and weakness. Our nation at the present time, because of the deceptive ideologies which have infiltrated us, has no unity and strength, but rather, division and weakness. One part of our nation believes that we must pursue the fulfillment of our aspirations with faith in Christ and in His name. Another part of our nation, perverted by foreign teachings, believes that we should reject our faith in Christ as a superstition of the Middle Ages, and espouse this or that deceptive system of belief which they extol as a new kind of wisdom.

Imagine a large army upon a battlefield, whose leaders are in disagreement; while one orders the army to march to a certain place, another commands that it go elsewhere. One officer commands the army to march to the right, another officer, to the left, etc. While one part of the army obeys the voice of one officer, another part obeys the order of still another officer. Thus the army’s maneuvers are confused and all order is disrupted. Can such an army ever hope for deliverance and victory? Yet it is the image of such an army that our nation presents today.

Since such then is our state of affairs, is it in our interest to launch an attack against our enemy, and can one hope for victory to come out of such confusion and disorder, before we cure our own illness of dissension? We must, therefore, at all costs come to an agreement. But how can we achieve this? Through force? By means of persecutions? With a civil war? Perish the thought! These means of attaining an agreement rather aggravate dissension; they bring on destruction, rather than salvation. Who denies his own belief, even though it be false, to espouse that of another, by being forced, persecuted, and fought to do so? What reason or what experience can convince us that coercion can bring about agreement and harmony between people? Reason and our daily experience of life, however, convince us that agreement is easily achieved through sound reasoning and scientific proof. Once the truth is proven rationally, it leads all differing and dissenting minds to concord.

Thus, given that the scientific tribunal returns its verdict in support of the truth and against falsehood, everyone–the young and the aged, men and women, teachers and students alike–in short, the whole nation shall espouse the confirmed truth. Having come to be of one mind, our nation shall be found to be whole and powerful. While we shall be most frightening to our enemies. we shall be most beloved to our friends. A scientific dogma, issued by the University of Athens and scientifically confirming that Christ is the truth itself, can immediately instill faith in all the souls which today lack it. Upon the restoration of faith, there shall also be restored love for one another, for the latter is inseparable from the former. A true faith expressed through love can perform all the illustrious and glorious deeds.

I am in no way grieved nor disheartened because today we are in want of money and weapons and the other human means with which to fight our barbaric foe. I am grieved and disheartened because I see that the hearts of most of our people are empty of the true faith in Christ and love. If this spiritual vacuum is filled, I am certain that even without weapons and fleets and armies we can annihilate our adversary, for our apparent weakness shall become our great and inconquerable might. I shall make this questionable statement quite credible by means of the following example:

Imagine before the eye of your mind a gentle and noble virgin who, although weak physically, is good and beautiful in both body and soul. Imagine then that a powerful, cruel, and blood-thirsty man is beating this lovely and frail young girl with a club. Before such a sight, would we not defend the weak maiden with all our might, and would we not condemn that inhuman barbarian and tear him asunder for his heinous crime? Greece adorned with moral beauty, the beauty of science and the arts, shall appear in the eyes of the other nations as that noble young maiden, beaten and dishonored by the barbarian Turk. Their power shall forthwith become our power, and the barbarian enemy shall very quickly vanish from the face of the earth.

The moral beauty which springs from faith in Christ and love is a far greater power than all armies and navies put together. And if we arm ourselves with such power, we shall have no need for the material forces we lack today. This is the reason why I am not sorrowful over our want of material means and forces, but rather, for our want of that moral beauty and moral power which comes from faith in Christ and love of Christ. We shall make this truth clearer and more comprehensible when we expound upon the third reason of science with which the art of fighting is adorned.

[1] Delivered August 23, 1866.

[2] Makrakis walked with a staff bearing this inscription.

[3] Makrakis in all seriousness challenged the Greek intellectuals of h1s time to such a public tribunal at which he would debate with them on the superiority of Greek philosophy to the philosophy of the modem western schools. Since they refused his invitation, he wrote a book entitled Christian Philosophy or Debate Between the Philosophy of Greece and That of the School of the West. It was first published 1n 1924. It was translated into English by Denver Cummings and published 1955 under the title The Trial Between the Philosophy of Greece and That of the Western Schools. He gives the arguments 1n behalf of the empiricism and idealism of western philosophy which led to western materialism and gives a magnificent and forceful presentation of the fullness of philosophical truth in Christ and in the Logos philosophy of Greece from antiquity through the Christian era.

1 Comment

  1. Thank you Sir Jonathan for this important knowledgeable for me and others to share with.
    On Mon, Nov 22, 2021, 12:57 PM Apostolos Makrakis wrote:
    > Jonathan Photius posted: ” “ . . . You are with me; your rod and your > staff, they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:4) [1]It will be recalled that on the > day before yesterday we proceeded to the fourth and final aspect of the > understanding of our sacred struggle. We investigated the ” >


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