TABOR - Tradition and Contemporaneity in the Romanian Orthodox Church
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The Authenticity of the Human Nature from the Perspective of the Spiritual Mission of the Church

Having embedded the image of God within itself, human nature possesses structurally and ontologically the divine grace, being thus able to fulfill the freedom of the One who Himself is the Absolute Good. Being intrinsic to the human nature, divine grace is part of the definition encompassing the image of God within man, and the spirit receives its work in creative concurrence, similar to an eye that concurrently receives sunbeams or to morning glories which, naturally, open in the face of blessing sunbeams, fulfilling their mission. Divine grace perfects the human spirit through this synergic communication, in order to restore it to the primordial image or to complete authenticity, in continuous becoming.

As a result, if the holiness of the image of God is intrinsic to the human spirit, the sin, being extrinsic, falsifies it, being a sickness which distorts it, in other words, an existential failure that brings death.

This is why, when searching and determining human authenticity, we need to take into account that, in the context of misleading appearances in a world governed by sin and death, as well as by the confusion of the impulses originated in the depths of human nature which carries along the wounds of sins as deceptive temptations, the man loses the sobriety of his decisions and his will in such a way that his strength for self-determination becomes relative due to the desires which assert themselves as blind necessities, being able to create, through their irrationality and insatiableness, an "altera natura", which distorts and falsifies the true nature of man. This invalidates the authenticity of freedom, which was meant to render to man the aura of the dignity intrinsic to the image of God, conferred in the process of creation as ontological fulfillment, as αὐτοκράτης - "a being that is sovereign to and independent from the other beings that are subject to the immutable laws of necessity".

At the same time, virtue, as a life of grace, rendering authenticity to human nature, makes the world, which is disbanded and confused by the abnormality of sin and by the triumph of degradation, be inhabited by as many spiritual people as possible, who always show a firm character and who are capable to responsibly behave "in the name of God", thus truly being the soul who gives life and power to the human society.


Keywords: authentic, instinct, affect, sense, Christ, grace, image, virtue