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Monophysitism (from the Greek monos meaning 'one, alone' and physis meaning 'nature') is the christological position that Christ has only one nature, as opposed to the Chalcedonian position which holds that Christ has two natures, one divine and one human. There are two major doctrines that can undisputedly be called monophysite (IPA: [məˈnɒfəsɪt]):

  • Eutychianism holds that the human nature of Christ was essentially obliterated by the Divine, "dissolved like a drop of honey in the sea".
  • Apollinarianism holds that Christ had a human body and human "living principle" but that the Divine Logos had taken the place of the nous, or "thinking principle", analogous but not identical to what might be called a mind in the present day.

The radical monophysitism of Eutyches, a presbyter and archimandrite at Constantinople, emerged as a response to Nestorianism. It was rejected at the Council of Chalcedon in 451 and is also rejected by the Oriental Orthodox Churches.

Later, monothelitism was developed as an attempt to bridge the gap between the monophysite and the Chalcedonian position, but it too was rejected by the Chalcedonians, despite at times having the support of the Byzantine Emperors and one of the Popes of Rome (Honorius I). Some are of the opinion that monothelitism was at one time held by the Maronites, but they, for the most part, dispute this, stating that the Maronite community has never been out of communion with the Roman Catholic Church.

Miaphysitism, the Christology of the Oriental Orthodox Churches, is sometimes considered a variant of monophysitism, but these churches view their theology as distinct from monophysitism and anathematize Eutyches.

[edit] See also

Acephali, Henotikon, the Three-Chapter Controversy

[edit] References

cs:Monofyzitismus de:Monophysitismus es:Monofisismo fr:Monophysisme hr:Monofizitstvo it:Monofisismo he:המינות המונופיזיסטית nl:Monofysitisme ko:단성설 ja:単性説 no:Monofysittisme pl:Monofizytyzm pt:Monofisismo ru:Монофиситы sk:Monofyzitizmus sr:Монофизитизам sv:Monofysitism fi:Monofysitismi tr:Monofizit


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