Τhe division of Christendom into the Greek East and the Latin West has its origins far back in history but its consequences still affect Europe, and thus western civilization. Philip Sherrard's study seeks to indicate both the fundamental character and some of the consequences of this division.
Τhe division of Christendom into the Greek East and the Latin West has its origins far back in history but its consequences still affect Europe, and thus western civilization. Philip Sherrard's study seeks to indicate both the fundamental character and some of the consequences of this division. He points especially to the underlying metaphysical bases of Greek Christian thought, and contrasts them with those of the Latin West; he argues persuasively that the philosophical and even theological differences, remote as they might seem from practical affairs, are symptoms of a deep divergence of outlook that has profoundly affected the history of ideas and hence the whole course of European history. He exemplifies this by comparing the relationships between the spiritual and temporal powers during the Byzantine period with those assumed by the medieval Papacy, by an analysis of the "Platonic reaction" of such figures as Gemistos Plethon, and by an exposition of the intellectual background of the Renaissance, the Reformation and, finally, of the modern western world. His concluding chapters discuss the impact of modern western ideas οn Greek life and letters during the last few centuries.
With an unusual knowledge of aspects of the thought of the Greek Church Fathers often neglected in the West, and a deep sympathy with their outlook in these matters, Philip Sherrard presents a point of view that may be unfamiliar, but should be of great concern, both to theologians and philosophers, and to historians and students of European civilization and indeed of world affairs in general.
Ο Philip Sherrard (1922-1995) υπήρξε συγγραφέας, ποιητής, μεταφραστής, ακαδημαϊκός, θεολόγος και πρεσβευτής της ελληνικής ορθόδοξης παράδοσης. Γεννήθηκε στην Οξφόρδη, σπούδασε στο Κέιμπριτζ και στο Λονδίνο και έζησε πολλά χρόνια στην Ελλάδα, στην Εύβοια, μαζί με τη σύντροφό του Denise Harvey. Πίστευε ότι ο μεταβυζαντινός πολιτισμός της Ελλάδας ήταν ουσιαστικά και οργανικά δεμένος με την πνευματική παράδοση της Ανατολικής Ορθόδοξης Εκκλησίας και αφιέρωσε μεγάλο μέρος της ζωής του στη μετάδοση αυτής της ιδέας, ιδιαίτερα στον τομέα της σύχρονης ελληνικής ποίησης. Το έργο του είναι πρωτοπόρο σε πολλούς τομείς και για πολλούς άνοιξε νέους δρόμους στον μύθο και τη φαντασία, καθώς και στη θεολογία. Η παρακαταθήκη του περιλαμβάνει μεταφράσεις προς τα αγγλικά έργων των Α. Σικελιανού, Κ. Π. Καβάφη, Γ. Σεφέρη και Ο. Ελύτη, οι οποίες άφησαν το στίγμα τους στα ελληνικά γράμματα στο εξωτερικό.
Philip Sherrard (1922-1995) was well-known for his many contributions to the understanding and promotion of the literature and thought of the Greek world. He was educated in Cambridge and London. Among his most notable works in this respect are the: "The Marble Threshing Floor: Studies in Modern Greek Poetry"; "The Greek East and the Latin West"; "Constantinople: the Iconography of a Sacred City"; "Athos, the Holy Mountain"; "The Pursuit of Greece"; "The Wound of Greece"; and his translations, in collaboration with Edmund Keeley, of the poetry of Cavafy, Sicelianos, Seferis and Elytis. He was also the translator and editor (with G. E. H. Palmer and Kallistos Ware) of "The Philokalia", a collection of texts by the spiritual masters of the Orthodox Christian tradition. A book of his own poetry was published in the last year of his life.
A profound, commited and imaginative thinker, his theological and metaphysical writings embrace a wide range of subjects, from the study of the division of Christendom into the Greek East and the Latin West, to the spiritualized potential of sexual love and the restoration of a sacred cosmology. He has spent part of his life in Evia, Greece.