The concept of Adam’s sin in Cyril of Alexandria

Bernard Jarosław Marciniak

Wyższa Szkoła Filologii Hebrajskiej w Toruniu


Abstract

No work of Cyril devoted to exclusively Adam’s sin was preserved. Though in entire of his exegetical and pastoral production repeatedly this theme which one of patterns of his theology constitutes appears. According to Cyryl, Satan caused with jealousy took the man to the sin hitting the emotional sphere in order after all to take the man for falsifying the intellect. Tempting which consists in showing pleasure, is a modus operandi of the Satan which having an influence on an affective sphere after all he causes that the logic of this sphere is winning the logic of the intellectual sphere and a superiority in action is taking over making the man – animal rationale – less rationale, and more animale. This concept is dismissing Cyril oneself for Philo’s research, according to which for the figure in telling about the first sin they are symbolizing Adam and Eve’s two hierarchized spheres of one man: appropriately the intellectual sphere and the affective sphere. In his deliberations about the sin of the first parents Cyril also refers to elements of the biblical description (Genesis 1-3), so as: the heavenly commandment, the tree of getting to know the good and evil and its fruit. Cyril is reflecting also about the phenomenon of the snake and the issue of the woman, which created in order to be a help for the man, showed herself to be – how Cyril is describing her – with „intermediary of the sin”. The Alexandrian is also giving some thought to the inborn knowledge of the first people and the concept acquaintances of the good and evil. As the being and relevant aspects of the sin of the first people Cyril – referring to the Pauline tradition – is listing the insubordination, disregarding, the betrayal of the Holy Spirit, the lack of the circumspection, the exaggerated love of the body or exaggerated cherishing pleasure. Cyril – what was indicated in the article – very much willingly is using the metaphor of Egypt (Exodus), seeing, the symbol of the sin in it particularly in the days of patriarchs, of particularly Adam’s sin.

Keywords:

original sin, Adam’s sin, sin of Eva, Cyril of alexandria, first fall, the tree of the kowlegde of good and evil

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Published
2013-01-25


Marciniak, B. J. (2013). The concept of Adam’s sin in Cyril of Alexandria. Vox Patrum, 59, 269–293. https://doi.org/10.31743/vp.4030

Bernard Jarosław Marciniak 
Wyższa Szkoła Filologii Hebrajskiej w Toruniu



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