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Канаева Э. Ю. Споры об исхождении Святого Духа в Константинополе в 30-х годах XIV в. // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия II: История. История Русской Православной Церкви. 2017. Вып. 74. С. 26-40. DOI: 10.15382/sturII201774.26-40
The article deals with an episode of the controversy focussed on the Filioque doctrine between the Eastern and Western Churches in the 30s of the 14th century. We put aside the issue of methodological differences between the participants of the debate and consider only its dogmatic content. We present the historical context and the interrelationship of sources. The reconstruction of Catholic argumentation based on the analysis of recently published original versions of the basic texts of their Orthodox opponents, Barlaam the Calabrian and St. Gregory Palamas (preserved only in Serbian-Church-Slavonic translation) is proposed. It is shown that in terms of content the argumentation of Barlaam and Palamas coincides in many aspects. Their main argument is based on the distinction between “natural” and “hypostatic” properties in the Trinity, as well as on the distinction between the eternal procession of the Holy Spirit and his descent to the creature. The only signifi cant difference between their positions is their perception of the Latins’ thesis of procession of the Holy Spirit from the Father and the Son, “as from the one Source”. This very difference caused the continuation of discussions on the Orthodox ground. We note the development in reasoning, proposed by both authors during the second stage of the discussion. It is concluded that Barlaam’s and Palama’s defense of the doctrine of the procession of the Holy Spirit “a solo Patre” starts from common points and that the negative assessment of Barlaam’s work by St. Gregory Palamas should not be associated with it’s dogmatic content, but with different methodological orientations of the authors, as well as with the Gregory’s misunderstanding of the Barlaam’s thesis.
Barlaam the Calabrian, Gregory Palamas, Filioque, East–West opposition, Antilatin polemic, 14th century, triadology, Catholicism

Kakridis J. Neko bi pomislio da se barem delimichno sachuva dogma o monarhiјi: antilatinski traktati Varlaama Kalabriјskog u srpskoslovenskomprevodu 14 veka // Dechani. U svetlu arheografskih istrazhivaњa. Beograd, 2012. P. 105–114.
Krasikov S. V. Mesto Nikifora Grigory v Vizantijskoj antilatinskoj polemike 30-x gg. XIV v.: Dis. …kand. ist. nauk. Ekaterinburg, 2000.
Barlaam Calabro. Epistole greche; i primordi episodici e dottrinari delle lotte esicaste / Studio introduttivo e testi a cura di G. Schiro. Palermo, 1954.
Barlaam Calabro. Opere contro i Latini / Introd., testo, trad. e note a cura di A. Fyrigos Citta del Vaticano, 1998.
Demetracopoulos J. A. Further Evidence on the Ancient, Patristic, and Byzantine Sources of Barlaam the Calabrian’s Contra Latinos // Byzantinische Zeitschrift. 2003. 96 (1). P. 83–122.
Fyrigos A. Dalla controversia palamitica alla polemica esicastica (con un’edizione critica delle Epistole greche di Barlaam). Roma, 2005.
Giannelli C. Un progetto di Barlaam per l’unione delle chiese // Miscellania Giovanni Mercati. Citta del Vaticano. 1946. 3. P. 157–208.
Ioannis Cantacuzeni eximperatoris historiarum libri IV / Schopen L., ed. (Corpus scriptorum historiae Byzantinae). Vol. 1. Bonn, 1828.
Kakridis Y., Taseva L. Gegen die Lateiner. Traktate von Gregorios Palamas und Barlaam von Kalabrien in kirchenslavischer U bersetzung. Freiburg i. Br., 2014 (Monumenta Linguae Slavicae Dialecti Veteris. Fontes et Dissertationes. Vol. 63).
Loenertz K. J. La Socie te des fre res pe re grinants. E tude sur l’Orient dommicain. Rome, 1937.
Meyendorff J. Les debuts de la controverse hesychaste // Byzantion. 1953. Vol. 23. P. 87–120.
Nicephori Gregorae historiae Byzantinae / I. Bekker, L. Schopen, ed. (Corpus scriptorum historiae Byzantinae). Vol. 1. Bonn, 1829.
Sinkewicz R. E. A new interpretation for the fi rst episode in the controversy between Barlaam the Calabrian and Gregory Palamas // Journal of Theological Studies. 1980. Vol. 31. P. 489–500.
Γρηγορίου τοE ΠαλαμI συγγράμματα / P. K. Chrestou, ed. Thessalonica, 1962. Vol. 1.
Σπουρλάκου-Ε^τυχιάδου Α. Ο αντιλατίνος Βαρλαάμ Καλαβρός. Οι πρός Λατίνους λόγοι του περί του Αγίου Πνεύματος και η σχετική διένεξη του με τον αγίο Γρηγόριο Παλαμά // Επιστημονική Επετήρις της Θεολογικής Σχολής. Αθήναι, 2006.
Канаева Э. Ю. «Ведь совершенно одно и то же "знать Бога" и "быть боговидцем"»: Варлаам Калабрийский о методе в богословии // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия I: Богословие. Философия. Религиоведение. 2019. Вып. 81. С. 50-68. DOI: 10.15382/sturI201981.50-68
This article examines the views of Barlaam the Calabrian on the methodology of theology and draws on his theological texts, namely the three consequent versions of the “Treatise against the Latins”, correspondence with St. Gregory Palamas, Barlaam’s works in Latin. The article raises the question about the sources and integrity of Barlaam’s position. It is shown that Barlaam took an antischolastic position and, rejecting Thomas Aquinas’ doctrine, perceived himself as a successor of St. Gregory the Theologian in his struggle agains the Eunomians. Barlaam followed St. Gregory not only in his criticism of the possibility of rational comprehension of God, but also in the positive aspects of his epistemology, i.e. the need of spiritual growth for theologian and acieving full knowledge of God after death. Rejecting the rational programme of the Latins by means of Aristotelian logic, the Calabrian borrows from St. Gregory the method of debate as well. Barlaam separates faith and knowledge, imposing on the latter the requirement of “touch” of the comprehended reality. The article discusses Barlaamian distinction of the “theologian by faith” and “theologian by knowledge”, which did not allow him to fi nd an effi cient solution to the main issue. The article also proposes a reconstruction of his views on the correlation between the capabilities of individual theologians and theology as a whole. Barlaam’s views on the impossibility of evidential theology on the model of Aristotelian science are systematised following the essential parts of the scientifi c proof, i.e. the object of reasoning, its structure, assumptions and conclusion. It is concluded that Barlaam’s views on scientifi c proof in theology correspond both to the position of Aristotle and to the patristic tradition. The article expounds on Barlaam’s views on the role of dialectics in theology and identifi es the terminological discrepancy that became a starting point in the confl ict between the Calabrian and St. Gregory Palamas. It is shown that after his conversion to Catholicism, Barlaam did not change his methodological guidelines. The article theorises about the relationship between these guidelines and his conversion.
Barlaam the Calabrian, method in theology, Byzantine logic, logic, anti-Thomism, Thomas Aquinas, dialectics, St. Gregory Palamas, Palamite controversy, faith and knowledge, history of theology, Byzantine philosophy
  1. Athanasopoulos C. (2015). “Demonstration (Απόδειξις) and its Problems for St Gregory Palamas: Some Neglected Aristotelian Aspects of St Gregory Palamas’ Philosophy and Theology”, in M. Knezevic (ed.) The Ways of Byzantine Philosophy. Alhambra (California), pp. 361–364.
  2. Beyer H.-V. (1999). “Der Syllogismus des Gregorios Palamas, der zeigt oder geradezu beweist, dass der Heilige Geist einzig vom Vater ausgeht” (Russian translation). Antichnaia drevnost’ I srednie veka, vol. 30, pp. 288–293.
  3. Beeley Ch. (2008). “Gregory of Nazianzus on the Trinity and Knowledge of God: In Your Light We Shall See Light”. Oxford Studies in Historical Theology, New York, pp. 105–113.
  4. Byden B. (2002). “ “To Every Argument There is a Counter-Argument”: Theodore Metochites’ Defence of Scepticism (Semeiosis 61)”, in K. Ierodiakonou (ed.) Byzantine Philosophy and its Ancient Sources, Oxford, pp. 183–218.
  5. Demetracopoulos J. (2003). “Further Evidence on the Ancient, Patristic, and Byzantine Sources of Barlaam the Calabrian’s Contra Latinos”. Byzantinische Zeitschrift, vol. 96, pp. 83–122.
  6. Fruchtel L., Stahlin O., Treu U. (Hrsgg.) (1960, 1970). Clemens Alexandrinus, II, III. Berlin.
  7. Fyrigos A. (ed.) (1998). Barlaam Calabro. Opere contro i Latini. Citta del Vaticano.
  8. Fyrigos A. (2005). Dalla controversia palamitica alla polemica esicastica (con un’edizione critica delle Epistole greche di Barlaam). Rome.
  9. Gilson E. La Philosophie au Moyen Age (Russian translation 2004).
  10. Henry P., Schwyzer H.-R. (eds.) (1964–1982). Plotini Opera. Oxford.
  11. Kakridis Y., Taseva L. (2014). Gegen die Lateiner. Traktate von Gregorios Palamas und Barlaam von Kalabrien in kirchenslavischer Übersetzung. Freiburg i. Br.
  12. Kanaeva E. (2018). “Vzgliad odnogo bogoslova na primat papy s dvukh storon: evoliutsiia vzgliadov Varlaama Kalabriiskogo” [“The Twofold Approach of One Theologian to the Papal Primacy: the Evolution of Barlaam the Calabrian’s Views”]. Vestnik Russkoi khristianskoi gumanitarnoi akademii, vol. 19/1. pp. 140–145 (in Russian).
  13. Kanaeva E. (2017). “Spory ob iskhozhdenii Sviatogo Dukha v Konstantinopole v 30-kh godakh XIV v.” [The Debate about the Procession of the Holy Spirit in Constantinople in the 30s of the 14th Century”]. Vestnik Pravoslavnogo Sviato-Tikhonovskogo gumanitarnogo universiteta. Series II: Istoriia. Istoriia Russkoi Pravoslavnoi Tserkvi, vol. 74, pp. 26–40 (in Russian).
  14. Kislas Th. (2001). “Introduction”, in Th. Kislas (ed.) Nil Cabasilas. Sur le Saint-Esprit. Paris.
  15. Meyendorff J. (1955). “Un mauvais theologien de l’unite: Barlaam le Calabrais”, in 1054–1954: L’Eglise et les Eglises. Etudes et travaux off erts a Dom Lambert de Beaudouin. Chevetogne, vol. 2, pp. 47–64.
  16. Meyendorff J. (1962). “Epistolai pros Akindynon kai Barlaam” [“Epistles to Gregory Akindynos Barlaam”], in P. K. Chrestou (ed.) Gregorioy toy Palama syggrammata, Thessaloniki, vol. 1, pp. 203–312 (in Greek).
  17. Podskalsky G. (2001). “Il signifi cato di Barlaam per l’Ortodossia Bisantino-Slava (da un punto di vista cattolico), in A. Fyrigos (ed.) Barlaam Calabro. L’uomo, l’opera, il pensiero. Atti del convegno internazionale Reggio Calabria-Seminara-Gerace 10–12 dicembre 1999. Rome, pp. 13–25.
  18. Pospelov D. (2009). “Antitomizm v Vizantiiskoi Imperii kontsa XIV stoletiia (prepodobnyi Kallist Angelikud)” [Anti-Thomism in the Byzantine Empire in the Late 14th Century (St. Callistos Angelikoudes)]. Vlast’, vol. 8, pp. 167–169 (in Russian).
  19. Romanides J. (1960–1961). “Notes on the Palamite Controversy”. Greek Orthodox Theological Rewiew, vol. 6, pp. 186–205.
  20. Schiro G. (1959). O Barlaam kai e philosophia eis ten Thessaloniken kata to dekaton tetarton aiona [Barlaam and Philosophy in Thessaloniki in the 14th century]. Thessalonike (in Greek).
  21. Sinkewicz R. (1981). “The “Solutions” Addressed to George Lapithes by Barlaam the Calabrian and their Philosophical Context”. Mediaeval Studies, Toronto, vol. 43, pp. 151–217.
  22. Sinkewicz R. (1982). “The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God in the Early Writings of Barlaam the Calabrian”. Mediaeval Studies, vol. 44, pp. 181–242.
  23. Usacheva A. (2018). “The Contact Theories of Epistemology in Aristotle and Gregory Nazianzen: “Then Shall I Know, Even as Also I am Known”” (1 Cor 13.12), in A.-Ch. Jacobsen, A. Usacheva (eds.) The Hermeneutic, Institutional and Textological Principles of Early Christian Discourse. Frankfurt am Main, pp. 8–15.
  24. Usacheva A. (2018). “Who Knows His Aristotle Better? Apropos of the Philosophical Polemics of Gregory Nazianzen against the Eunomians”, in G. Bady, D. Cuny (eds.) Les polemiques religieuses du Ier au IVe siecle de notre ere, Paris, pp. 407–420.
Kanaeva Elga
Place of work: St. Tikhon’s Orthodox University for the Humanities; 6 Likhov per eulok, Moscow, 127051, Russian Federation;
Post: executive editor;
ORCID: 0000-0001-8909-8371;
Email: mvereskov@list.ru.
Канаева Э. Ю. Восприятие наследия Фомы Аквинского в византийском богословии периода начала исихастских споров // Вестник ПСТГУ. Серия I: Богословие. Философия. Религиоведение. 2020. Вып. 87. С. 11-25. DOI: 10.15382/sturI202087.11-25
This article studies the fi rst episode in the encounter of Eastern theologians with theology of Thomas Aquinas (as it was presented by papal legates) which took place in the 1330s. It shows that of the two Orthodox authors, Barlaam and St. Gregory Palamas, the former took a harshly negative position, whereas the latter was positive. Barlaam, Thomas, and Palamas had similar views on natural theology which they considered to be possible, but Barlaam did not share Thomas’s opinion about the possibility of building the “sacred doctrine” (doctrina sacra) as an Aristotelian science. The article discusses Barlaam’s critical arguments against Thomas. It demonstrates that, on the one hand, Barlaam did not know many important points of Thomas’s theology (the theory of subalternation, the use of names “by analogy”), but, on the other hand, he found a number of weak points in his opponent’s reasoning (the problem of uniqueness and causality in theology). It is concluded that Barlaam had no acquaintance with the original texts of Thomas but used their interpretation. In a dispute with Barlaam, Gregory Palamas fi rst defended the possibility of building dogmatic theology as a science; at this stage he was methodologically close to Thomas using his own syllogisms of the procession of the Holy Spirit, but during the dispute he reshaped his position. Although at this stage of the development of his system, his proposed “demostration above demostration» did not became a programme, but the beginning of developing a question about the relationship between the essence and energy in God marked not only introducing the problems of Hesychasm to the discussions, but also made up a new step in the search for a way of including the reason into the process of cognition of theological truths. The article also concludes that Barlaam succeeded in playing the role of a critic of his opponents’ systems, which furthered their development. However, he himself did not manage to create his own synthesis.
Barlaam the Calabrian, method in theology, Byzantine logic, logic, anti-Thomism, Thomas Aquinas, dialectics, St. Gregory Palamas, Palamite controversy, faith and knowledge, history of theology, Byzantine philosophy
  1. Beyer H.-V. (1999) “Der Syllogismus des Gregorios Palamas, der zeigt oder geradezu beweist, dass der Heilige Geist einzig vom Vater ausgeht”. Antichnaia drevnost’ i srednie veka, 30, pp. 288–293 (Russian translation).
  2. Borodai T. (transl.) (2004) Thomas Aquinas. Summa contra gentiles. Moscow (Russian translation).
  3. Chenu M.-D. OP (1969) La Théologie comme science au XIIIe siècle. 3ème edn. Paris.
  4. Chenu M.-D. OP (1984) “Position de la theologie”, in Chenu M.-D. (ed.) La parole de Dieu. I La Foi dans l’intelligence. Paris.
  5. Demetracopoulos J. (2012) “The Influence of Thomas Aquinas on Late Byzantine Philosophical and Theological Thought: À propos of the Thomas de Aquino Byzantinus Project”. Bulletin de Philosophie Medievale, vol. 54, pp. 101‒124.
  6. Eremeev A., Iudin A. (transl.) (2002) Thomas Aquinas. Summa theologiae. Moscow (Russian translation).
  7. Fyrigos A. (1980) “Quando Barlaam Calabro conobbe il concilio di Lione II (1274)?” Rivista di studi bizantini e neoellenici, vols 17‒19, pp. 247‒265.
  8. Fyrigos A. (ed.) (1998) Barlaam Calabro. Opere contro i Latini. Citta del Vaticano.
  9. Fyrigos A. (2004) “Tomismo e antitomismo a Bisanzio (con una nota sulla Defensio S. Thomae adversus Nilum Cabasilam di Demetrio Cidone)”, in Molle A. (ed.) Tommaso d’Aquino († 1274) e il mondo bizantino. Venafro.
  10. Fyrigos A. (2005) Dalla controversia palamitica alla polemica esicastica (con un’edizione critica delle Epistole greche di Barlaam). Rome.
  11. Jenkins J. I. (1997) Knowledge and faith in Thomas Aquinas. Cambridge.
  12. Kakridis Y., Taseva L. (2014) Gegen die Lateiner. Traktate von Gregorios Palamas und Barlaam von Kalabrien in kirchenslavischer Übersetzung. Freiburg i. Br.
  13. Kanaeva E. (2019) “Ved’ sovershenno odno i to zhe “znat’ Boga” i “byt’ bogovidtsem””: Varlaam Kalabriiskii o metode v bogoslovii” [“It is Exactly the Same to Know God and to Be a Seer of God”: Barlaam the Calabrian on the Method in Theology”]. Vestnik Pravoslavnogo Sviato-Tikhonovskogo gumanitarnogo universiteta. Seriia I: Bogoslovie. Filosofiia. Religiovedenie, 81, pp. 50‒68 (in Russian)
  14. Khristov I. (2016) “Bytie i sushchestvovanie v diskussii sv. Grigoriia Palami i Varlaama” [Being and Existence in the Debate between St. Gregory Palamas and Barlaam], in G. Kapriev, I. Bei, S. Markov, S. Ribolov, S. Tutekov (eds) Sovremennaia bolgarskkaia patrologiia. Sbornik statei [Contemporary Bulgarian Patristic Studies. A Collection of Papers]. Kiev, pp. 125‒136 (in Russian).
  15. Kislas Th. (2001) “Introduction”, in Th. Kislas (ed.) Nil Cabasilas. Sur le Saint-Esprit. Paris.
  16. Krasikov S. (2004) “Grigorii Palama kak zashchitnik aristotelevskikh sillogizmov” [Gregory Palamas in Defence of Aristotelian Syllogisms]. Mir pravoslaviia, 4, pp. 125‒131 (in Russian).
  17. Meyendorff J. (1962) “Epistolai pros Akindynon kai Barlaam” [Epistles to Gregory Akindynos Barlaam], in P. K. Chrestou (ed.) Gregorioy toy Palama syggrammata, Thessaloniki, vol. 1, pp. 203–312 (in Greek).
  18. Papadopulos S. G. (1974) “Thomas in Byzanz. Thomas-Rezeption und Thomas-Kritik in Byzanz zwischen 1354 und 1435”. Theologie und Philosophie, 49, pp. 274‒305.
  19. Plested M. (2012) Orthodox Readings of Aquinas. Oxford.
  20. Rosental C. J. (2004) The Reconciliation of Faith and Reason in Thomas Aquinas. Doctoral Dissertation. University of Massachusetts.
  21. Sinkewicz R. (1981) “The “Solutions” Addressed to George Lapithes by Barlaam the Calabrian and their Philosophical Context”. Mediaeval Studies, Toronto, 43, pp. 151–217.
Kanaeva Elga
Place of work: St. Tikhon’s Orthodox University for the Humanities; 6 Likhov pereulok, Moscow, 127051, Russian Federation;
Post: executive editor;
ORCID: 0000-0001-8909-8371;
Email: mvereskov@list.ru.