Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Nostalgia For the Future

Bishop Atanasije (Jevtic), in his essay "Christ – The Land of the Living," writes:
It is not that we, the young Orthodox faithful and theologians, the teachers of the Gospel and Orthodox theology, are so wise in our times. We simply remind others of what is the genuine, authentic Gospel of our Faith. We do not retreat into some conservatism. This is impossible to do, even if we wanted to. It would be a sham, a counterfeit and a failure, if we were to want to go backward. We say that our nostalgia for the Land of the Living is a future nostalgia, an eschatological nostalgia directed forward. It is not like the ancient Hellenic or Indian nostalgia, or any other nostalgia, which is entirely directed backward. Nostalgia means sorrow, pain for one's place of birth, for one's fatherland, for one's origin. But "our citizenship is in heaven," and our life is in heaven, as says the Holy Apostle Paul (Col. 3:1-4; Phil. 3:20). This is why we are nostalgic for the future, toward eschatology, toward the fullness that actually attracts us to itself – naturally to the measure that we are open to it, participate in it and partake of it.
From Christ – The Alpha and Omega, recently published by the Western American Diocese of the Serbian Orthodox Church.

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