----- Original Message -----
From: "Olga Mitrenina" <>
Sent: Saturday, October 01, 2005 8:52 AM
Subject: [paradosis] Re: Reply of Lourie to Moss (with my reply to that)
> Vladimir, here is a reply to you that Father Gregory posted in his
> As for HOCNA, I believe you demonise in the same manner you demonise
> Father Gregory.
Certain kinds of activity are defined by the Holy Fathers as being precisely demonic. One of them is sexual perversion. Another is heresy. If St. Polycarp called the heretic Marcion "first-born son of Satan", thereby "demonising" him, then I think we are justified in calling their latter-day descendants something similar (although I have not in fact done so).
> PS See the reply below
> Dear Vladimir,
> thank you for posting this here. my address is hgr @ sp.ru .
> unfortunately, this is a bit difficult to explain you this joke,
> because there is a need to explain you previously what the joke is by
> definition. please, take it as it is: I explained you the real meaning
> of my words, and it is enough to understand what I mean.
I find this very obscure. However, I will not pursue it... As I said before, I don't think I misunderstood you.
And I note your silence with regard to your relations with HOCNA...
As regards humour in matters of the utmost seriousness, I find it out of place. I was born into a nation which is famous for its sense of humour, and into an ecclesiastical (Anglican) culture, the primary characteristic of which is to make a joke of everything. Often one laughs - but then one feels guilty about it afterwards.
Have you noticed that one of the characteristics of today's demonised ecumenist culture is a tendency to laugh at almost everything? The "Toronto blessing" reduced people to helpless quivering lumps of flesh. Then their laughs turned to animal noises...
I prefer a culture that takes serious things seriously. That is the culture into which I want to be acculturated.
Of course, I am not against the occasional joke even in Church matters. Your fellow name-worshipper, Fr. Michael Ardov, is often very amusing, and I laughed a lot when he used to visit us. And yet I understand those who criticise him for joking too much...
If only you were only a joker! But unfortunately I know that you are serious even when you are joking. And the perpetual smile on that upper lip of yours can drop so easily and quickly into a snarl... There is a serious purpose to your sardonic, often scatological humour, just as there was to the humour of that supreme pervert and perverter of a whole generation, Lord Byron. It is like the sugar on a bitter pill - it enables your underlying teaching to go down more easily: laugh, open wide now, and swallow the words of the deceiver of souls!
And this kind of humour has the advantage that you can always disown your words when people begin to take them literally...
So I am on my guard against it. And perhaps it's just as well if I don't always understand it (I am not the only one).
Call me humourless if you like. There are worse insults.
Jesus wept - I don't remember that He ever laughed. In fact, he said: "Woe to them that laugh".
And what did your favourite, St. Ignaty Brianchaninov, say about these words? "Woe unto them that laugh now! These are the words of Christ! This is a decree that proceeds from God! It is impossible to set it aside by an excuse whatsoever. Judging yourself and scrutinizing yourself, you will see that every word spoken or written in the spirit of this world places its mark upon your soul, by which souls are sealed unto the prince of this world..." (Letter to Fr. Anthony Bochkov, August 11, 1864).