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‘hie willbe expecially rae when the one who made ie che source of bing ‘el and che purposes and meanings he impart are definitive fr seal “The cons of the lg af beings open up che possibly of knowing acre in an ently diferent ways one fa ore contonamt wth ts tue lice within thei worldview If sacha pouty see al toon of {8 today—inlading, Taupe, mort Chitizne—the reson prabebly hs ‘much odo wich he eaent o which moderns ives both ance and puluricl There eden ares pervaive ands deeply ingrained chat forthe mose part we ae scarcely aware of them. Ye derite the grip that "modernity as upon or iaginations, innumerable cases, rom eal ‘tacope to the vial of consumer clare have led many day tase se we bound always to be modern? Docs not the posbliy le ope, even today, of eeconering + more holt sens of who we ae and of eur place vhs ate? I ha teal wht we sek, then we may Bind ha the ech Ing ofthe Grck Fathers, alien though I i, opens prc the dor for shih we hae ber sere HIERARCHY AND LOVE IN ST. DIONYSIUS THE AREOPAGITE Eric D. Perl ede ha human beng, as rationals peons, made “in che lmage and hens of God ae radially se ape fe and above leer bing is often pointed, with ome jc, a one ofthe major sources of rodays degradation ofthe natural environment. Ini exteme frm that ea implies that subbuman beings have o inne putpoe or value, and ‘isc oly for humane ruse for au ows ends. Consider for example the fellowing statement taken fom + discusion of human cning “The doning of shes, supercon, chicken and pgs poses ao chil problems becuse given thi sate, they ate meant for food, ad the ‘mote hey increase and miply the bets The aly objeecon fo a smal ong that as paved he way human closing.» The long of haran pos sto cial and rigs qesns for ‘nlite sheep, human cloner spposed co bea peson” ie. being endowed wih elf consiouoes, ile and wil being who an fd ine and never tobe teed lke 2 teans to some ates end bring chaise in mane, an mage Det ented to human dignity and Fundamental iedoms because ofthe vine ptk ia haber “This pethaps an extreme formulation, bat some version of th view i ‘ofc abut a tadonal Chany othe voile Judeo-Christian tron, and, eget har alo been eps by some Orthodox Chis tans T propose ro present che ithe or sath entry Church Father who ‘wrote under th ne of Se Dione the Arepagie a a witness against ‘his pson within the Orchodox radon. The may sean ad cic: ‘feral cs wel known that i was Dionysia who coined the wordy” (irri), whic has today become a fouclewer word connoingdomine- ‘on and exploation om the par ofthe superior and en and 2 thie for “mpomerment on the par of the infrie Inded ie spel che idea of| frat hierarchical sapeoty co ober beng ha I often bed o promo Is elation of them and thus be a chief Fo the le eas fdas “ecological ers” In fat, however, hieracy ax Dionysus underwands ie Impies precy he reverse” coatauty rather than opposition between higher and lower ondrs of beings and benecent and gael lve ether, than domination and subservience asthe telaion bere the “Aahough Dionysius his neon birnchis oly with reeence 2 the angie and ecesianal order, he explicly understands the whale of realy ar srsctaze of higher ad lowe, eater and ese, syperordiate tnd subootinate beings (On Divine Nomer IVA, 657Cs TV, 704; IV, 7040; IV.10, 708; 112, 709D; TVS, 713AB; V3, SI7AB)? Indeed, is {n On Divine Name, which oles a philosophical accoun of realy as a shoe rather han in On she Celi Hierarchy 0d On the Eee Hi ‘rer, ha he moat Filly develope the meray principles of birarchy Hire he consistently recognize five principal lvls of Beings: angel, humans, ional smal plas, and nonlving things (DN 15, 595D; 1M, 7008; Vi, 8168; V3, 817AB) This sequence is based on the casa ‘radon and, ined, on common sense. Fn there the baie dine ‘of animal, vegetable or mineral cha iin the revi ord) those Belage ‘hat merly cx, chose that ae ving, and those tha hae some form of ‘eomslous aware, The let group i then mbdvded into those whose ‘Suracteitc made f concours ar sense pereption, discursive rasa, ‘spd imlecion, eect that, anal animal humans, and angels, Tei vial wo ecanie that God, fr Diya, doc not sand shove the ogee t he peak ofthe racy aie were mezl the highest being (God is "bey tng” (yer) thas ot any being, even the highes, ‘esta being fr Donji, means something knowable, something com Prebensble, something distinc, deerlnate, te and therefore some thing created. God, thse, sae any meer of she oan of beings tren the fr” or “higher” bur irather dhe source cause ofthat ol “The Geead “us cause ofall being, but lel noting ae tancending all things ina manner beyond bing” (DN 15, $93). Gd i"noehing” in that, heir no any being, noe one ofthe tingrahaeaze? and isthe “case” fal ‘hinge ia hace presen al thing rhe connie dererminations or perfcions in ire of which they are what they ae ands az elgs. Ths he, for example, “hele of living things and being of beings (DN 13, ‘589C), He he cause oflving ching in hain all ving hinge be ibe ly which hey are ving i the cat of ings in hai al ings hee the being by which they ate being: God "aie war no wl Beno ce to be nr comes tobe nor wil come fo be; rater, he no, Bat he i being 10 beings Later et tena oi ou" (DN Vi B17D). But since thing it ‘made tbe i and 0 0 be, by ll he determinations o perfection that Icha. flows that aot ony Being and lie bt al the pectin of ll things are God-e-them, making chem eo be by making them what they ae, so tht God is noe only beng in belngs and fein Living things but “ll things nal dings [te panto pal” (DN 17, 596C) Hence God is at anyenebcing but "all beings and none of being” (DNS, $960) o beter, “al eng inal sings and nothing in any” (DN VIL3, 872A). He all thing i all hogs im thas the woe content of any being and ch the ‘whole being isl Godot nthe diferente way that contest ‘hat being, and bef nothing in any, in chat he noc hil any one Being Alisingithd fom other sone member within the whole. Conscquaty, (God ia once and iden transcendent and immanent: anced, In tat he ae any being, not ncaded within the whale of ely a7 ‘member thee immanent in tat he eamedisly presen al ching {hel cansiee determinations and thus ae the wile of wht they ar God, therefore, dos nor sand tthe head ofthe hiarchy of being but rather tanscends and permeates hat enti hierarchy. "Te godnest ofthe Godhead which i beyond ll things extends fs the highest and mos er erable ales co the la bd ail abore al the higher no outpping is ‘xcllnce norte lowe going beoad i containment” (DNTV, 870), ‘Gods immaiaely present oll thing the, i the manner appropri to cach: in ooiving thing be pen a eign ving things he pre fas if, concious things bel presen a wide, that conse “he divine name ofthe Good, manifeing the whale procesons of the cus ofall things extended boo being and wo non-being [Le frler maze and ie above beings and above nonings Tat of being is extended tal beings andi show all blogs. That oe ‘extended coal Iiving things ands above ving ching That of wisdom US entended to all ileal and ratonal and senativebenge andi hove all hese cng. (DNV, 8158) “This muse noe taken to mea chat che higher evel lack the character perfaions ofthe lower, ar chough plants partite in Goa a if rather {han as beingand animals parpt inhi swim ater hana bing ‘dif, Rahe, the higher orders poses the perfesons ofthe loner ons in 2 eminent way. Living thing, in peste Ie, ato poses Beng and Sonsious higs in posesingwisiom, alo poses being and ie But snc che divine inlets [angel lo ac ina wy] above other beings and ive (na way above the ether ving ching, and ‘bin and know fin way] abo sense and exon. hey ae ener wth Good, puting in an erinene way nd esvng fom it more and greter is lkewise etal beings excel sea one, having moe by the eminenee of reson, andthe later xe oer living things] by seston, and living things excel mere ing by i And. the things which parcpae more inthe one and nite {ving God ae clos to him and more divine than there. (DN V3, S75) Asch indica lof hse pins inl, eo, ei and ‘igre in hghr ta ier ode of pups In God oo Gol pecs in tgs fn pans finance snot pera ‘Sg Se ther he igh mde fing proper ning ing di {nc ornate ont’ Cosco nor operded Seige the igher mde ofbeng di prope em 3 Conus eg he hgh oe herein che cr precio ote angl ch ghd ony ef cnet CF nd ing, Comey i ages mode bg an ew, ‘ui sige ode fi hn tin fp ite es mode ‘tacn anima connie snd he ms big enim ngs “lec wk meow inasimland puts cousin id ie Whar Dons ys ft aks ngs ps crc all leroy Jat st ier) preeminent Setting proper ofthe wc otha pst cn ote net inthe wb lc ny’ (On te Clea ry IL 5558) the pop’ perecoofafte Lind fing there ae igh and ood othe mine die pence hat conse te wi ofl ces Dyin sy ll kings prt in Go alo, hat ‘since mane spo nk “The Cod iat se cre ‘mie 070 king hin oh they je ing a ike emia i ol by iaminatns aaop To ah ef bag (DNL, 58D seo DNV, 99D. The aloo llumiacos” St pri he tre preton often aks of bing theyre appoint ngs eae 2 plant, 2s ene is oan annals zaom ito alumna, a intlltion eto hangs is proper way of Being of being god, of parcipaing in God, In ‘the hierarchy of begs, hen we Sd noe dscontny, stag each evel ere characterized by perfection ally diferent fom the other, ut aber tn attculted contnaum of higher and lower modes ofthe same divine presence that constitutes all thing Nothing absolutely devoid of ie snd ‘hough living fora pan, sit ee eno of thinking, and mere exe ing fora tone ss ser mode of thinking and living Mere being we may ‘3, life and though, in the mode in which che ar found in wae, and Imei i Being and lif in the mode in which these are fund In peng Te fallow, cherefre, tha all hings all vel the eas speck of dst no less than che reset ofthe erin ar theophaies the media man fetation and preeace of God, in szonger and weiker ways and conse quently hat the ue ranseaden,inacesible Gd ean and mt be cen od known inal things, God iskoown both though knowledge and shough unknowing And fim ther iba inellecon and eon and knowles touch ing and sease-peepion snd opinion and nmagaton aad are and allocher things and be snlther hough aspen nor and, Aad hhels not any of being, ori be knowin aay of being. And be sl things inal dhings 2d noeking in any, and ei know alr all sd © none fom any. (DN VIL3, 8728) “Te dey his indent, would be att ake seriou thee feeaton, the absolute dependence ad derivation of al thing fm God. God's cctve {etvi, which Is God himself, exzends to all hinge, and this activi it ‘beeen, provident love orl hings, noc umans and angel alone “he cause af al things, through exces of goons, loves all hing makes all ehings erect ll thing, stain all ching, severe all things: andthe divine lve goody af good, rough the good. For love, che very benefit of beings, pee-eistng in exces inthe Good, id nor permit io remala unpeedacie in il bt moved it pro