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"Sociology of ontology": the significance of social aspects of the struggle for the Symbol of Faith at the First Ecumenical Council

07.10.2020
1707

The process of adopting the Nicheo-Constantinople Creed is well documented and studied in modern literature. As a rule, it becomes the subject of research in religious studies or theological discourses. However, he also raises philosophical problems. Interdisciplinary research allows us to see in the theoretical dispute about the central provisions of the Christian doctrine as a tool in the struggle for church authority and power: the "copyright" on the ontological basis of the church's teaching automatically increased the importance of its owners in the church hierarchy. Given the growing cultural influence of the church, the confrontation between opposing groups at the first Ecumenical Council was an important milestone in the struggle for the right to form the central meanings of a new social reality, as well as the identities and institutions based on it. The article analyzes the factors that ensured the victory of the party of Alexander-Athanasius and led, in the end, to the adoption of the orthodox Creed. This victory was due to: 1) the tradition of the Alexandrian theological school; 2) the political influence of the emperor, who took the side of Alexander-Athanasius; 3) a more successful linguistic formula for fixing confessional foundations. But the strategic victory of the Christian “ontological canon” was ensured by the approval of the procedure for its general acceptance in the form of the Creed, which became a single semantic standard, generally binding for the entire church. Its development strategy was determined by the winning party, and the function of the church now included the duty to closely monitor its observance, uncompromisingly suppressing all worldview alternatives, tabooing them as heresy. The foregoing allows us to conclude about the importance (inevitability) of social conditions for the approval of the "ontological canon". It can be reasonably assumed that such dependence concerns not only Christian social reality.

Key words: ontology, Creed, social reality, meaning, church, orthodoxy, heresy

DOI: 10.22250 / 2072-8662.2020.3.69-77

read the full text of the article in Russian here: https://religio.amursu.ru/index.php/ru/new-archive/2-articles/998-sotsiologiya-ontologii-znachenie-sotsialnykh-aspektov-borby-za-simvol -very-na-pervom-vselenskom-sobore