disputes merely about words must not be suffered to divide those who think alike.”

the Alexandrian school, where hermeneutics came from [thanks to Origen], you can see the root of this way of interpretation -

“Concerning theological terms, the Alexandrian School uses Greek philosophical terms to explain Christian doctrines, because of the existing world-wide Greek culture, and in order to deal with the philosophers and heretics. But the Alexandrians were not enslaved to these terms. This is what St. Athanasius explains when he states that

disputes merely about words must not be suffered to divide those who think alike.”

1700 years ago, people debated over words just like today, and forget about the meaning _behind_ the words. The Alexandrian school attempted to alleviate that issue by interpreting allegorically, “symbolically”, and most importantly, looking into the context within which the writings were written, in an attempt to “see through the author’s eyes”. We think of this as very modern but it’s not, which is something I think is marvelous.

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