“SPECULATION” IN THE GARB (ON THE THEOLOGICAL AND ANTHROPOLOGICAL DOCTRINE OF PATRIARCH NIKON)
Authors: S. K. Sevastyanova
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The article “'Speculation' in the Garb (On the theological and anthropological doctrine of Patriarch Nikon)” is dedicated to the study of the spiritual (notional) value of the episcopal vestments, which gives Patriarch Nikon in connection with his polemic on the issue of Gaza with Metropolitan Paissy Ligarid. The study of the composition of the library of New Jerusalem Monastery, founded by Patriarch Nikon, found that he knew the writings of Byzantine Fathers commentators’ liturgy, liturgical actions, objects, and the episcopal vestments and used them in his explanations. But two sources were for the patriarch of the most authoritative, published in the Moscow printing house in 1655–56, the book, “Blueprint” and the work of St. Gregory of Sinai
“On the Church Authorities”. Metropolitan of Gaza claimed that the garment is an emblematic image of the moral qualities of the priest. Of the virtues that the bishop should have, he singled out meekness, truth, patience and chastity. Keeping with the teachings of the Holy Fathers, Patriarch Nikon characterized as an integral part of his spiritual and corporeal beings. As the Metropolitan of Gaza, as Patriarch Nikon, considered no different Christian piety and fidelity to the Orthodox Church, of the symbolism of the episcopal vestments revealed through the characterization of the moral qualities of the Metropolitan. Following the Holy Fathers, Patriarch Nikon claimed that the bishop during the liturgy symbolically likened to Christ. Therefore, the spiritual content of the episcopal vestments, he saw through the three pillars of the spiritual foundation of the Church: the fruits of the Holy Spirit (as a set of Christian virtues), the gifts of the Holy Spirit (as a special thanksgiving, served by a priest), and the Holy Mysteries that feed them. By building their own theological and anthropological study of the fruit of the Holy Spirit as the robes of Christ, Patriarch Nikon gave an explanation of the spiritual meaning of the following elements set episcopal vestments: alb, stole, cuffs, belt, epigonaty, wand, cloak (or sakkos) omophorion, cross, Panagia, miter. Liturgical garments as a mirror of the soul and the spiritual transformation of the priest, two topics that complemented and helped open the main topic of debate Patriarch
Nikon with his opponent, the superiority of the priesthood over the kingdom. The rise of the priesthood, Nikon
understood as the rise of religious rank, this idea vigorously and persistently carried out in his reform efforts.
The idea of the rise of the priesthood as the embodiment of all spiritual penetrating the Russian Orthodox
culture and way of life, consistent with the interpretation of the patriarch of the speculative value vestments as
a bishop, the highest in the degree of the church hierarchy. Invested for the divine liturgy a bishop symbolizes
the head of the Orthodox kingdom, the kingdom of Orthodox Christians, for whom it represents the spiritual
and moral ideal, embodied in Christ.
Keywords: Patriarch Nikon, Metropolitan of Gaza Paissy Ligarid, the bishop’s vestments, liturgical
interpretation of the founding fathers of the Byzantine commentators, “Objection”.