Barlaam from Calabria, Epistle 1 to Gregory Palamas, 354-8
Barlaam of Calabria, Epistle 1 to Gregory Palamas, 354-8. Τῷ σοφωτάτῳ καὶ λογιωτάτῳ καὶ ἐν Χριστῷ πνευματικῷ μοι πατρὶ καὶ ἀδελφῷ κῦρι Γρηγορίῳ τῷ Παλαμᾷ
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1.354-8: ἐπεὶ δὲ ὅπερ ἐστὶ τοῖς γεωμέτραις ἀρχὴ καὶ κοινὴ ἔννοια καὶ ἀξίωμα, τοῦθ᾽ ἡμῖν ὑπάρχει ἑκάστη τῶν ἀποφάνσεων ὅσαι ἡμῖν περὶ τῶν θείων ὑπὸ τῶν ἁγίων ἀνδρῶν ἀπεφάνθησαν. οὐδεμίαν ἄρ᾽ αὐτῶν πειρᾶσθαι χρὴ ἐκ συλλογισμοῦ λαβεῖν, ἀλλὰ πρὸς ἑκάστην ἔχειν βέλτιον ἢ κατ᾽ ἀπόδειξιν.
Barlaam Calabro, Epistole Greche - I primordi episodici e dottrinari delle lotte esicaste, [Testi 1], ed. G. Schirò, Palermo, Istituto Siciliano di Studi Buzantini e Neogreci, 1954, p.243.
Summary - Description:
Barlaam explains that just as the geometricians (i.e. mathematicians) have common principles and axioms, thus we (theologians) hold as true what the holy fathers have decided before us. This passage is directly relevant to one of the main arguments by which Barlaam accuses Gregory Palamas, that of the method of Theology. Barlaam, who was a supporter of the dialectic method, stated that what comes from God cannot be proven, and is beyond proof and evidence, in contrary to Palamas who by the demonstrative method as an approach to dogma, used the theological methods and terminology of older Church fathers.
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