Church Life

On the Trinity

Can I worship the Holy Trinity without understanding the Holy Trinity? Of course I can. In fact, I can do nothing else. In order to do so, I don’t need to philosophize about it. I don’t need words like, for example, kataphasis or apophasis, etc. I will simply pray to the Holy Trinity in the traditional, orthodox way, using the service-books of the Church, in accordance with Her customs. When I do so, my nous will start to recognise God and my dianous will realise what is happening. However, it is still good to understand metaphysics, as much as I can, but even if only to reject metaphysics. Why? For the sake of apologetics; and to avoid making mistakes in one’s own reasoning. Orthodox worship is pragmatic, tried and true. I receive it through the Church from the saints, those experts in prayer who have gone before me. I don’t care about any systematic description of this orthodox way of prayer. Rather, I let this pattern of prayer inform my soul and body. When that happens, I praise and glorify God the Father, my Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, the All-Holy Trinity. I give thanks, I confess my sins, I ask for all the things we need. This is not a performance. If, sometimes, with the powers of my soul and body, I do not praise or glorify God, nor be thankful, nor be penitent, nor ask for what we need, but am only going through the motions of prayer, with neither understanding nor comprehension, then at least let me be honest about it. Let me not be a hypocrite. Without the engagement of the powers of my soul and body, I am only ‘acting-out’ being a man at prayer. Let me not claim any virtue in such an act, such a vain enactment of theatrical dogma. At such empty times, let me not stuff my head with with any systems of dogmatic thought that justify my emptiness. If I cannot recognise God with my nous, then at least let me recognise my own sin. When that happens, then at least prayer might begin again, and the powers of my soul and body begin to get involved with God the All-Holy Trinity, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit once more.