Athanasius of Alexandria also called Athanasius the Great, Athanasius the Confessor or, He was known as Athanasius Contra Mundum (Latin for Athanasius Against the World). two earliest treatises Contra Gentes (Against the Heathens) and De Incarnatione (On the Incarnation), which were admittedly written about the. LibriVox recording of Contra Gentes, by Athanasius of Alexandria. Read by Jonathan Lange. Contra Gentes is the first of a two volume work. ATHANASIUS: CONTRA GENTES. TRANSLATION AND COMMENTARY CONTENTS OF THE ‘CONTRA GENTES’ Introduction (1). I. The origin of evil: man’s.

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Retrieved 14 March But as it is, setting justice aside, and dishonouring skill and art, they worship the products of skill and art, and when the man is dead that made them, they honour his works as immortalwhereas if they did not receive daily attention they would certainly in time come to a natural end. Athanasius Exiled Again Christianity. Thus in process of time an ungodly custom grown strong was kept as a law.

Or what sort of harmony would it be, again, if the heaven existed alone without the stars, or the stars without the heaven? For if it is an admitted truth about God that He stands in need of nothing, but is self-sufficient and self-contained, and that in Coontra all things have their being, and that He ministers to all rather than they to Him, how is it right to clntra as gods the sun and moon and other parts of creation, which are of no such kind, but which even stand in need of one another’s help?

For when the sun is under the earth, the earth’s shadow makes his light invisible, while by day the sun hides the moon by athhanasius brilliancy of his athanasuus.

Against the Heathen

However, the council also was directed against those who denied the divinity of the Holy Spirit, the human soul of Christ, and Christ’s divinity. Historical evidence, however, indicates that he was fluent in Coptic as well given the regions of Egypt where he preached.

For now the understanding of mankind leaped asunder from God ; and going lower in their ideas and imaginations, they gave the honour due to God first to the heaven and the sun and moon and the stars, thinking them to be not only gods, but also the causes of the other gods lower than themselves.

For from Zeus they have learned corruption of youth and adulteryfrom Aphrodite fornication, from Rhea licentiousness, from Ares murders, and from other gods other like things, which the laws punish and from which every sober man turns away.

Or how could one fail to pity them in this also, in that seeing, they worship them that cannot see, and hearing, pray to them that cannot hear, and born with life and reason, men as they are, call gods things which do not move at all, but have not even life, and, strangest of all, in that they serve as their masters beings whom they themselves keep under their own power? The Council Nice”passed twenty disciplinary canons for the better government of the Church. And instead of each having regard to its own nature and fighting with its neighbour, they recognise the Lord Who has united them, and are at concord one with another, being by nature opposed, but at amity by the will of Him that guides them.


He seems, then, to have been about thirty years of age. It focuses especially on pagan beliefs and worship concluding with a defense of the Christian view of God and creation — especially creation by the eternal Word. Or how, since the body lasts but for a time, does man imagine of things eternalso as to despise what lies before him, and desire what is beyond? But as to their second and as they say profounder defense, one might reasonably add as follows. The accession of Valens gave a fresh lease of life to the Arian party.

For he also, as long as he kept his mind to Godand the contemplation of Godturned away from the contemplation of the body. For the Sun is carried round along with, and is contained in, the whole heaven, and can never go beyond his own orbit, while the moon and athnaasius stars testify to the assistance given them by the Sun: For often the artist even when not seen is known by his works.

Eusebian bishops objected to the admission of Athanasius and other deposed bishops to the Council, except as accused persons to answer the charges brought against them. For, hating the adulterer who tampers with a wife of their own, they are not ashamed to deify the teachers of adultery ; and refraining from incest themselves they worship those who practise it; and admitting that the corrupting of children is an evilthey serve those who stand accused of it and do not blush to ascribe to those they call gods things which the athanazius forbid to exist even among men.

So that just as a man discussing about water and fire, and declaring their action, would not say that water burned and fire cooled, nor, if a man were discoursing about the sun and the earth, would he say the earth gave light, while the sun was sown with herbs and fruits, but if he were to say so would exceed the utmost height of madnessso neither would their writers, and especially the most eminent poet of all, if they really knew that Zeus and the others were gods, invest them with such actions as show them to be not gods, but rather men, and not sober men.


And even the latter would show the disorder of the whole, for left alone, and deprived of the help of the others, it would throw the whole out of gear, just as, if a conyra hand contta foot were left alone, that would not preserve the body in its integrity. In a council was held at Milan, where in spite of the vigorous opposition of a handful of loyal prelates among the Western bishops, a fourth condemnation of Athanasius was announced to the world.

Nor is this surprising. After a careful and detailed examination of the entire case, the primate’s innocence was proclaimed to the Christian world.

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Calms and windy blasts ought to take place at the same time. And as some of them might argue, that they are telling falsehoods about their licentious actions, but that in their praises, when they speak of Zeus athanassius father of gods, and as the highest, and the Olympian, and as reigning in heaven, they are not inventing but speaking truthfully ; this is a plea which not only myself, but anybody can refute.

Unless indeed they would say that it were, so to speak, in an equipoise, and the evil god capable of getting the better of the good God. But these and like things are not properties of Godbut rather of earthly bodies. The Indians moreover differ from the Arabs, the Arabs from the Ethiopiansand the Ethiopians from the Arabs in their idols. And spring makes winter give place, while summer will not suffer spring to outstay its proper limits, and it in its turn is forbidden by athwnasius to outstep its own season.

Contra Gentes

Please help support the mission of New Advent and get the full contents of this website as an instant download. Next, advancing further in evilthey came to celebrate as gods the elements and the principles of which bodies are composed, heat and cold and dryness and wetness. Be the first one to write a review. But for its knowledge and accurate comprehension, there is need of none other save of ourselves.

For in the general strife and conflict either all things would be destroyed, or the prevailing principle alone would appear. George, the usurping Bishop, was flung into prison and murdered. For the movement of the soul is the same thing as its life, just as, of course, we call the body alive when it moves, and say that its death takes place when it ceases moving.