The Neo-Palamite synthesis of F. Dumitru Staniloae

  • Adrian Agachi

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


The thesis provides ground-breaking information in what concerns the contribution made by a well-known Romanian scholar to the Palamite studies in the twentieth century. The introduction contains a detailed literature review which helps to the understanding of the fact that Fr. Dumitru Stăniloae has not been solely a systematic theologian as the majority of scholars present him nowadays but, also, a very important Patristic scholar. The first chapter analyses critically for the first time the importance and the shortcomings of his monograph dedicated to Gregory Palamas (1938). The second chapter focuses on the principal aspects of his Neo-Palamite synthesis contained in his work entitled The Ascetical and Mystical Life of the Orthodox Church (1947, reprinted in 1973), where he used the Palamite insights as basis for subjects as apophaticism, deification and method of pure prayer in Orthodoxy. The third chapter focuses on his most famous work entitled Orthodox Dogmatic Theology (1973), where he developes his Neo-Palamite synthesis on subjects such as the relation between angels and humans in the realm of creation, the importance of the Palamite distinction between the essence and energies of God and the significance of the human being as image of God. The fourth chapter is concentrated on two other important books entitled Jesus Christ: The Light of the World and the Deifier of the Human Being (1993) and God’s Immortal Image (1987). In these, Stăniloae discusses at large the importance of the divine light and its eschatological meaning and develops the concept about the human being as image of God. The final chapter is dedicated to four significant studies in which Stăniloae discusses three main aspects of Palamas’works, namely the Mariology, Triadology and the relation between nature and grace. The fourth study is dedicated to modern Western interpretations of Palamas.
Date of Award1 Jun 2012
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Winchester
SupervisorAndreas Andreopoulos (Supervisor) & Neil Messer (Supervisor)

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