SMART: WHY THE EASTERN VALUE OF ORTHODOXY

—“Orthodoxy came before any written culture or urbanism had take root in those regions. As such, there was a syncretism with the local customs and religious practices, who’s traces remain visible to this day, in various folk and orthodox objects. The roman “invaders” where offering a higher level of culture, so we took it. There was no inquisition, no which hunts. Mass literacy, and the translation of the bible, occurred far latter here. (Around the 19th century, in 1899 it was at about 22% ), which is when some savvy writers, now part of our national cannon, started collecting our folklore and putting it in written form. So the folk and the church coexisted more or less harmoniously. Not that they could afford great conflicts and fanciful notions with the Turks knocking at our door. Every orthodox region has differences in art and architecture reflecting local folklore. I’d say it might have made us ‘meek’ these days, but I’m seeking to illuminate our attachment towards it. If “historical memory” begins with written records, then there was nothing (for us) before orthodoxy. Not a pagan “past”, so much as a pagan “amniotic fluid” surrounding our “orthodox” history. Note how this differs from the West’s situation.”— Dan Fodor

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