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Feb 2020

4:58 - You’ve mentioned that Constantinople was designed to be an iconic city, a divine image. Can you elaborate on any elements of that, or sources where we can learn more about the meaning behind the Byzantine-built environment or sacred patterns in urbanism in general?

6:56 - Hi Jonathan. God willing, I’m planning on becoming Orthodox this year. Unless I relocate and find a new job, the only tenable option for me is a Greek Orthodox church the next town over. Ideally I wish I could join the Russian Church. How important of an issue are these communal ecclesiastical issues for a new Orthodox? Can you expand on the schisms, why they occur and how they are resolved?

9:05 - How does one go about breaking down the negative principalities, patterns in our life?

10:35 - I really struggle to understand what Paul says on us being free from the Law of Moses and that God’s Law is now written on our heart, seemingly for us to work out for ourselves, then at the same time it still seems like we should follow certain Old Testament laws. What’s your understanding of this?

14:16 - In the last Q&A you said some legends say Merlin was the son of a dragon, and I some where he was the son of a devil or the son of a fairy. What pattern is he manifesting? Because it seems that he would ally himself with evil principalities rather than good ones, especially since in some legends he is involved in the subterfuge of Arthur’s birth and other mischievous acts.

17:28 - Can you explain the top left of this Prodigal Son icon, with the angels and seraphim as circles and wings?

18:49 - Hi Jonathan. What is the symbolism of private prisons, or more generally of the comodification of justice? If that’s still a bit narrow, could you talk more generally about what it means symbolically for something to be a commodity and how that might relate to the role of the government of the state? Thank you very much.

20:42 - Your talk in Boston was awesome. With so many Evangelicals in the audience I assume that they have a particular hunger for the Christian symbolic worldview. How many do you think eventually need a church that has a rich history of including the symbolic aspect of a biblical faith?

22:10 - I’ve been thinking about the Atonement and can’t help but read Colossians

2:13-14 through the lens of a Protestant penal substitutionary model, where God cancels our record of debt and nails it to the cross. How does the Orthodox tradition view that language? Thanks so much. Here are the verses for reference: “And you, who were dead in trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by cancelling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands; this he set aside, nailing it to the cross.”

26:17 - How do you handle critique of these hard to grasp ideas from fellow Orthodox Christians?

29:44 - What is the symbolic significance of pilgrimage? What is its purpose and how to do it right? Have you personally been on any pilgrimage that you would like to share with us?

33:31 - Is “Christian nationalism” a viable term? What are your thoughts on this ideology, something to embrace or steer clear of?

36:43 - Jonathan, I’m so sorry that you have to answer so many questions. Rod Dreher recently posted an article regarding the coronavirus, calling the situation a “China apocalypse.” If you still have the energy I would love to hear your thoughts on the symbolism of the coronavirus situation in China.

41:03 - I’m having troubles to understand the solution you gave to the **cuckolding **problem. Can you please briefly go over the solutions to the inevitability of paying tribute? To my understanding it seems there must be a part of an entity that is solely dedicated to atoning for or on behalf of the whole. I believe the priesthood as a scapegoat is a good example. The priesthood takes the pattern upon themselves and allow the people to move up the (???) mountain, as you speak of. As you righteously ascend, more (???) possibilities present themselves and we get closer to the truest idea of principle, in other words instead of women and children being given to one or a few men, it is a few men or one man giving themselves to the lord to continue with this ritual of atoning for the pattern, there is a gradual shift of responsibility from the many that cannot bear to the few or the one that can, the chances of the women and childen atoning for this reocuring pattern become less and less. Another way of solving of solving the problem of the outsider foreigner is acknowledging and venerating it to the highest status as possible. Am I misunderstanding the solutions you gave?

46:32 - I was born in the 80’s and a lot of cartoons I watched as a child had an orphan as a main character and hero. That trope seems to have disappeared in the cartoons I watch now with my nephew and nieces. What is the symbolism of the orphan in stories? What does the presence or absence of that trope in mainstream storytelling mean for our culture?

48:25 - What does it mean that the altars of the Holy of Holies is now in the east, and the entrance or exit of the church is now in the west? Obviously this is related to what Christ is, but I can’t pinpoint exactly what. I have an insipid idea that the Christian church is something like the reflected image of the Jewish tabernacle, so Jesus brings the ark and the altar together into the east. This is still the west (???) that is in the tabernacle, just so far that it is flipped to the other side of the earth and now it’s the east. And the sunset in the west with the exit has to do with the final moment outward toward Zion

55:05 - Can you please speak to: “The mystery of the Kingdom of God has been granted to you, to those outside everything comes in parables so that they may look and see but not perceive, hear and listen but not understand, in order that they may not be converted and be forgiven.” What does this mean?

57:36 - Have you read any of the Catholic nouvelle théologie? Theologians like Henri de Lubac, Yves Congar, Jean Daniélou. What is your opinion on them and their influence on Catholicism? It seems that they were attempting to revive a sacramental ontology, not unlike your own work, and that you would find many points of agreement with them.

58:53 - First of all, thank you for all your work. I’d like to know your thoughts on the fulfilling of hedonistic desires and if it holds any place in a sober Christian worldview and lifestyle. I know you spoke on how there are exceptions within certain religions and cultures which I found to be informative. I would like to know your thoughts on how this topic could be understood specifically through the lens of Christianity. I hope this makes sense, hahaha!

1:03:15 - Is there a direct connection between the laws of Christian art and the laws of Christian culture (i.e. symbolic worldview)?

1:04:17 - What is the symbolism of the story of the Tower of Babel?

1:05:28 - Would you agree that one of the themes of the Old Testament is the independant nation of Israel being tyrannized by empires with universalizing ambitions like Egypt, Babylon, etc.? Does this tell us something about God’s vision for the scale of the polity? How does this jive with the Christian Eastern Roman Empire and its scale? I’m still reading about Byzantine themata and their administration, I don’t know much

1:08:12 - What do you think of dream analysis?

1:10:01 - Your idea of a resurrected Christianity as an answer to the meaning crisis resonated greatly with me. What are your thoughts on Jordan Hall and John Vervaeke’s concept of a religion that’s not a religion? Are these two frameworks compatible?

1:12:30 - I’ve noticed with some concern that determinism currently dominates online discussion of free will. Could you explain your basic position on the subject of humanity’s free will or lack thereof, or the position of the Church Fathers? It would be most helpful if you could explain how this will transcends the material world if you believe it does. Thank you.

1:16:06 - Is there a difference between the garments of skin provided by God and the teaching of the Watchers in the Book of Enoch?

1:20:00 - Do you think that there is a materialistic explanation of the miracles in the Bible or do you think like John Lennox that God feeds in a new event?

1:22:56 - What is the relationship between symbolic liturgy, esotericism and the modern notion of cult?

1:26:12 - What makes the Christian story the most important? Why can’t it sit on the shelf next to the Greek and Norse myths? co-exist

1:28:09 - Hello. Jews and Mormons share many of the Christian scriptures. Where and why do they go wrong, in spite of having the key to understand the patterns?

1:30:12 - Like Ethiopians and Armenians, certain ethnic groups took Christianity into their identity. What do you think a Jewish Christianity look like? Since there are some Jews today who believe in Christ today, even in Israel.

1:31:38 - How do you stop watching porn? Or how do you gain control of the passions? Also, what’s the symbolism of porn and why is it bad?

1:40:37 - I’m having trouble reconciling Satan as “the enemy” vs merely an accuser. Is it right to say evil/Satan has no subsistence beyond man’s imitation of man instead of God? In other words: Who is Satan?

1:44:10 - When you reference 19th century occultism does that include Mormonism? Can you expand on why you think those cults still exist today?

1:45:12 - You might not know, because Baltic countries are very small, but worship of pagan gods is just as real as going to the church. What do you think of Hinduism?

1:46:21 - Are you familiar with Kierkegaard’s thought and what is your opinion of him?