Hymn Blessed Art Thou, O Church , for lo! Translating the texts composed in one language into another language is always challenging. But translating poetry is someplace between extremely challenging and nearly impossible.
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Shelves: anthropology , eschatology , the-holy-fathers Ephrem the Syrian, Hymns on Paradise. SVS Press. Sebastian Brock gives an outstanding introduction to the thought-world of Ephrem the Syrian. At the risk of people crying Harnack Thesis, Brock teaches you how to view reality as a Semite. Brocks introduction is doubly good, for St Ephrems mindset is not always easy to crack.
This is the best way to explain the problem. For the Hellenized Greek, priority was given to the Form or the Real. Whether Ephrem would have agreed or not, we dont know.
But Ephrem the Syrian, Hymns on Paradise. But instead of Forms, in Ephrem we see symbols. Further, Ephrem often moves from individual to corporate to individual without telling the reader. There is a symbolic link between the material and spiritual realms.
Hayla kasya: hidden power, meaning. The Greek philosopher defined a term by its opposite, which implied a limit to both.
Not so with a Semitic thinker like Ephrem. Ephrem will then juxtapose paradoxical statement on the circumference. Raza: symbol. Actually participates in some sense with the spiritual reality.
Kasyutha: hiddenness. That which is to be revealed in Christ. Galyutha: an objective reality but can only be experienced in a hidden way. The garment of words. God, who is inacessible, puts on names.
This is the point at which Adam and Even, presumably after death, could not cross Hymns Hymn 5 is particularly poignant. Mar Ephrem is telling us of a vision he had of paradise.
There is the famous passage of nature and scripture 5. He has some wonderful suggestions on metaphysics concerning the Unseen Realm. He continues this theme in Hymn 8. The soul on earth sees through the body. The body needs the soul to live and the soul too requires the body to see and here 8. We even get rare humor though Ephrem probably intended it in all seriousness.
He is describing the climate of paradise in contrast to earth.
The Hymns on Faith
Ephrem was born around the year in the city of Nisibis, Mesopotamia modern Nusaybin , Turkey , then-recently acquired by Rome. The Christian community used the Syriac dialect. The culture included pagan religions, Judaism and early Christian sects. Jacob , the second bishop of Nisibis,  was appointed in , and Ephrem grew up under his leadership of the community.
Ephrem the Syrian
Shelves: anthropology , eschatology , the-holy-fathers Ephrem the Syrian, Hymns on Paradise. SVS Press. Sebastian Brock gives an outstanding introduction to the thought-world of Ephrem the Syrian. At the risk of people crying Harnack Thesis, Brock teaches you how to view reality as a Semite. Brocks introduction is doubly good, for St Ephrems mindset is not always easy to crack. This is the best way to explain the problem.
Hymns on Paradise
He was a prolific author, composing over four hundred hymns, several metrical homilies, and at least two scriptural commentaries. His extensive literary output warrants mention alongside other well-known fourth-century authors, such as Gregory of Nazianzus and Basil of Caesarea. His voice opens to the reader a fourth-century Christian world perched on the margins between the Roman and Persian Empires. Ephrem is known for a theology that relies heavily on symbol and for a keen awareness of Jewish exegetical traditions. Yet he is also our earliest source for the reception of Nicaea among Syriac-speaking Christians. It is in his eighty-seven Hymns on Faith - the longest extant piece of early Syriac literature - that he develops his arguments against subordinationist christologies most fully. They reveal an author conversant with Christological debates further to the west, but responding in a uniquely Syriac idiom.