Sober intoxication

  1. Lemma
  2. Νηφάλιος μέθη
  3. English
  4. Koutalis, Vangelis
  5. Conflict - Concepts of knowledge and modes of reasoning > Mysticism and Orthodox spiritual experience - Orthodox Anthropology - Culture and national identities - Ecumenism and dialogue > Westernism and anti-westernism
  6. 26-02-2017
  7. Symeon de la Jara [Author]. Sober intoxication
  8. Νηφάλιος μέθη - Athens: Agra, 1985.
  9. Eros - nooumena - phenomena - Western culture - Western humanism - Orthodox worldview
    1. <p>(Priestmonk) Symeon [(Ιερομόναχος) Συμεών] (1985). <em>Νηφάλιος μέθη</em>. Athens: Agra.</p>
    1. This short essay revolves around the concept of eros and the two opposite ways in which it could be signified. The sensible things provide a restless erotic intoxication to human desire. The desiring power of human beings is hopelessly consumed on the pleasures with which the sensible and intelligible things feed the human yearning for love. Only when what appears, the world of the phenomena, is ‘crucified’ and what can be thought of, the world of the nooumena, is buried, that is to say, when the carnal spirit becomes deadened,  both phenomena and nooumena are revealed in their real dimensions. Then, according to Symeon, it is the ‘really eros’ that is reinforced.

      The dilemma between the eros of what-is, the restless intoxication, and the really eros, the sober intoxication, can be expressed also in wider cultural terms. Western culture, a product itself of a deformed Christianity, corresponds to the first, whereas the Greek-Orthodox tradition corresponds to the latter. In the secularized Western worldview, the imitation of God is but a mirroring of the actually presented image: mimesis is only external. In the Orthodox worldview, mimesis is internal and spiritual, transcending the present. The tragedy of the Modern Greek mentality consists in the fact that Modern Greeks strive to embrace Western humanism, without however being able to drop out, once and for all, the Orthodox tradition.