- related to: When was Clement of Alexandria published?
- Clement’s Early Life and Career
- Clement’s Intellectual Influences
- Clement’s Belief in Reincarnation
- Clement’s End in Palestine
- Clement’s Legacy on Faith and Philosophy
Born Titus Flavius Clemens in 150 A.D. his birth place was either Athens or Alexandria. Clement’s parents were pagan, and they provided him with a deep knowledge of paganism and Greek philosophy, knowledge easily available in these learned cities. Clement absorbed philosophy deeply, holding a great regard for Plato, but he rejected the Greek deities as morally unworthy. Rather than join a mystery religion, he opted for Christianity, which he believed had a righteous God who demanded holy life of his people. By 180 A.D. Clement was in Alexandria and soon his great learning led him to the headship of the catechetical school, which taught potential Christians. Alexandria was a scholar’s dream town: an intellectual ferment where Greek philosophy met with well-established rabbinical thinkers, and the trade routes from India to the Red Sea ports of Egypt had brought Buddhism and some knowledge of Hindu thought.
Notably, Clement and his pupil, Origen, later to become the foremost interpreter of Scripture of the ancient world, seem to have been believers in a cyclic world view, which the philosophy of Orphism and eastern scholars taught. By that time, Christians had become aware that they needed philosophy to analyse and expound their faith, and they were searching for the philosophy that suited their task. Clement, with his great philosophical depth, could draw upon a range of philosophical knowledge. There is no evidence that he drew on Indian thought, but he would have been aware of it because of the trade routes through Alexandria. One philosophy that entered the creative melting pot of Clement’s mind was Stoicism. Like Orphism, this held to a cyclic universe with a series of creations, though Clement and Origen did not hold to Stoicism’s belief in the eternal recurrence of the same events. The key Stoic concept was the Logos. The prologue of John’s Gospel used this so it had scriptural...
We are creatures of the Logos, declares Clement, according to his book Stromateis, and he pities us in our wanderings. These words foreshadow the words of the later Egyptian Synesius, who, according to Joseph Head and Sylvia Cranston, argues that we descend from the heavenly realms and unless we make it back at the first attempt, we must wander long in Earth’s lower regions. There are echoes of Clement here. Reincarnation fits well into a cyclic world view. Pope Sixtus’ 1586 condemnation of Clement, on the advice of Cardinal Baronius,cited Clement’s beliefs in a cyclic world view and an eternal creation as heresies. Contemporaries of the time knew that Clement wrote stories or speculations about worlds before Adam, but none of these writings survive. The condemnation also states that he was sympathetic to Docetism, the belief that Christ’s body was illusory, but this is untrue. He simply thought that Christ was a pure being, free of normal passions.
Scholars believe Clement died in 215 A.D, but first, he left Egypt for Palestine in the Severan persecution of 211 A.D. and Origen assumed the headship of the school. There is some suggestion that Clement moved to Cappadocia. Ultimately, whether he suffered excecution for his faith is unclear.
What marks Clement out is the belief that the Christian must be a true philosopher. Clashing with the Gnostics, who believed that they, as intellectual Christians, were superior to people with mere faith, Clement insisted that faith and philosophy must go together in the Christian life. Clement believed that the Christian must live an intellectually-respectable life. It is the Christian who is the true Gnostic, as he draws his knowledge from God and explores it through philosophy. Not all Clement’s views have stood the test of time, but his insight that Christianity must meld faith and philosophy is surely a challenge to those who uphold simple or blind faith, and uncritical obedience to church authorities.
Pope Clement the First. Pope Clement I (called CLEMENS ROMANUS to distinguish him from the Alexandrian), is the first of the successors of St. Peter of whom anything definite is known, and he is the first of the "Apostolic Fathers". His feast is celebrated 23 November. He has left one genuine writing, a letter to the Church of Corinth, and many ...
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Clement of Alexandria - The Origins of Christian Theoria Another Study on Oral Tradition. Guy Stroumsa published a collection of essays, Hidden Wisdom (SHR 1996), in which he investigates the existence of an oral tradition in the early Church. Stroumsa reviews a wealth of evidence drawn from the patristic writings to show a general ...
Note that Clement is referred to as "of Rome" to distinguish him from Clement of Alexandria, a leader of the catechetical school in the church at Alexandria, who lived a century later. Ad: My books and those Christian-history.org has published get great reviews.
The great and comprehensive posthumous edition of Lightfoot's "Clement of Rome" (which contains a photographic facsimile of the Constantinople MS.) was published in 1890 (2 vols. London). The Greek text and English translation are reprinted by Lightfoot, "The Apostolic Fathers" (1 vol., London, 1891).
In 1966 he had basically completed his study, but the result in the form of the scholarly book Clement of Alexandria and a Secret Gospel of Mark was not published until 1973 due to seven years of delay "in the production stage".
Clement of Alexandria constantly quotes it with reverence, and so does Origen, who held that the author was the Hermas mentioned by St. Paul, Rom., xvi, 14. He says the work seems to him to be very useful, and Divinely inspired; yet he repeatedly apologizes, when he has occasion to quote it, on the ground that "many people despise it".
Feb 04, 2021 · He spent the next fifteen years of his life preparing a major academic book on the subject titled Clement of Alexandria and a Secret Gospel of Mark, which was published by Harvard University Press in 1973.
Oct 18, 2014 · So Pope Clement and the Apostle John are both writing in the immediate aftermath of the Domitian persecution. This gives us a very precise date to work with: September 18, 96, the date of the Emperor Domitian’s assassination. As for the death of St. John, it obviously occurred later. The date 100 A.D. is the consensus (accepted even by those ...
- related to: When was Clement of Alexandria published?