Markus Vinzent's Blog

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Eckhart's Latin Sermon XVI - English translation

As I am working on the relation between Eckhart and Pseudo-Chrysostom's Opus imperfectum in Matthaeum, I had to translate Eckhart's Latin sermo XVI which is entirely based on this spurious, but extremely interesting Patristic work. As there is no available English translation, here follows the text with my own translation:

'Omnis qui irascitur fratri suo reus erit iudicio' Matth. 5.[1]

◊163◊ Chrysostomus super isto verbo: »si ira non fuerit, nec doctrina proficit nec iudicia stant nec crimina compescuntur. Iusta ergo ira mater est disciplinae«.  Unde littera Chrysostomi habet sic: 'qui irascitur fratri suo sine causa'. Et sequitur in Chrysostomo: »iracundia quae cum causa est nec est iracundia, sed iudicium. Iracundia enim proprie intelligitur commotio passionis. Qui autem cum causa irascitur, ira illius iam non ex passione est, sed ex causa, ideo iudicare dicitur, non irasci«. Hoc Chrysostomus, et consonat illud Psalmi:  'irascimini et nolite peccare'. Item Augustinus X De civitate dei: »Stoicis non placet passiones cadere in sapientem«. Peripatetici vero has »in sapientem <LW4:156> cadere« dicunt, »sed moderatas rationique subiectas«, sicut cum »ita praebetur misericordia, ut iustitia conservetur«. »In disciplina christiana non tamen quaeritur utrum pius animus irascatur« »aut tristetur, sed unde«. Hoc Augustinus.  Hieronymus autem super Matth. 5 dicit: »'qui irascitur fratri suo'. In quibusdam codicibus additur 'sine causa'. Ceterum in veris definita sententia est et ira penitus tollitur«. Si enim iubemur« »orare pro persequentibus, omnis irae occasio tollitur. Radendum est ergo 'sine causa', quia 'ira viri iustitiam dei non operatur'«. 

◊164◊ Rursus Augustinus libro Retractationum c. 18 sic ait: »illud dicimus intuendum quid sit irasci fratri suo, quoniam non fratri irascitur, qui peccato irascitur fratris; qui ergo fratri, non peccato irascitur, sine causa irascitur«.  Idem XIV De civitate dei: »irasci fratri, ut corrigatur, nullus sanae mentis reprehendit«. »Huiusmodi enim motus de amore boni et de sancta caritate venientes vitia dicenda non sunt, cum rectam rationem sequantur«. Hoc  Augustinus.  <LW4:157>

◊165◊ Adhuc Chrysostomus ubi supra: »quando homo irascitur et non vult facere quod ira compellit, caro eius irata est, animus autem eius non est iratus.  Ergo multi sunt quorum caro irascitur, anima autem non irascitur«. »Puto autem: non de iracundia carnis loquitur Christus, sed de spiritu« dicit, »nec enim est possibile, ut caro non turbetur, quia 'sapientia carnis inimica est in deum'«. Beda super Matth. 5: 'nisi abundaverit' etc. in omni concordat cum Chrysostomo, ut addatur 'sine causa'. Item Chrysostomus super Matth. 5 de 'mandatis istis minimis' dicit: »non irasci difficile est, quia naturaliter in hominibus iracundia est plantata dicente Iob: 'homo natus de muliere plenus iracundia'«. Littera est Chrisostomi. Hugo super regulam Augustini: »ne ira crescat in odium« dicit: »nulli irascenti ira sua videtur iniusta«.  'Reconciliari fratri tuo'. Quasi dicat: per hoc sit tibi frater. Quod si frater, omnia sua diligis et ipsis frueris ut fratris tui; omnia sua tua ut fratris.

Anyone who is angry with his brother will be subjected to judgement (Matth. 5:22)
◊163◊ Chrysostom [says] on this saying: ‘If there were no anger, no doctrine emerged, no judgement would stand, no crime could be prevented. Just anger, therefore, is the mother of order’. Therefore, the wording of Chrysostomus has it the following way: ‘Who is angry with his brother for no reason’ (Matth. 5:22). And it follows in Chrysostom: ‘Anger that exists for a reason is no anger, but judgement. Because anger is properly understood as motion of passion. Who, however, is angry for a reason, his anger does surely not derive from passion, but from reason, and, therefore, is called judging, not being angry’. So far Chrysostom who is consonant with that Psalm [4:5]: Be angry, but do not sin. Augustine, too [says] in book 10 of The City of God: ‘The Stoics do not agree that the passions befall a wise one’, while the Peripatetics say that they do ‘befall a wise one’, but that ‘they [the passions] are moderated by and subjected to the mind’, as, for example, when ‘one shows mercy in a way that justice is preserved’. ‘In Christian teaching, however, one does not ask whether or not a pious soul is angry or sad, but why’. So far Augustine. Jerome, then, says on Matth. 5: ‘Who is angry with his brother. In certain manuscripts, it is added “for no reason”. On the other side, in reliable ones, the final sentence excludes all inner anger’. If, then, we are asked ‘to pray for those who persecute, every occasion for anger is excluded. Hence, “for no reason” has to be rased off, because “the anger of man does not produce the justice of God”’ [James 1:20].
◊164◊ Augustine, again, in the book Retractations, ch. 18 says as follows: ‘We say it has to be taken into account, what it is that makes angry with one’s brother, because the one is not angry with a brother who is angry with the sin of the brother; who, therefore, is angry with a brother, not with the sin, is angry for no reason’. The same [states] in [book] XIV of The City of God, that ‘to be angry with a brother, in order to be corrected, will by no healthy mind be reprehended’. ‘In this way, namely, where motion derives from the love of the good and holy grace, it cannot be called a vice, as it follows the right reason’. So far Augustine.
◊165◊ Furthermore, Chrysostom [says], as further above: ‘When a human being is angry and does not want to do what anger compels him to do, his body is angered, his mind, however is not angered. There are, therefore, many whose body is angered, whereas the soul is not angered’. ‘I believe, however, Christ is not speaking about the anger of the body, but’ speaks ‘of that of the mind’, as it is not possible that the body is not touched, for the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God [Rom. 8:7]’. Bede on Matth. 5[:20] concords entirely with Chrysostom: ‘Unless [your rightesness] exceeds’, when he adds ‘for no reason’. In addition, Chrysostom says on Matth. 5[:19]: The least of these commandments: ‘It is difficult, not to become angry, because anger is naturally planted into human beings, as Job says: human beings, born from a mother, are full of anger [Job 14:1]’, so far Chrysostom literally. Hugh [of St. Victory] says about the rule of Augustine ‘that anger should not grow into hate’: ‘To nobody who is angry does his anger seem to be unjust’. Reconcile yourself with your brother [Matth. 5:24], as if he said: Hereby he may your brother. So that, if he is a brother, love all what is his and enjoy what is his as your brother's. All that is his is yours, as of a brother's.

[1] Eckhart, Sermo XVI nn. 163-5 (LW IV 155,1-157,13).


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