About this blog

This Blog is named after an ancient gnoseological riddle which hints hidden, disseminated, omnipresent wisdom.
I invite you to search, listen and observe with me for "the word of tree, whisper of stone, and humming together of the abyss and stars."


How I crashed the Open AI on my first encounter - asking questions about Greek vocabulary of love


I searched the Internet for articles on the Greek word AGAPE (love) and got really frustrated how oversaturated it was with shallow Christian philosophising, sermonising and unsubstantiated linguistics. I thought, now I know what is present on the Internet, let me now ask AI (my very first try of this thing) let me see how AI works with the stuff available to it on the Internet.

Well it struggled mightily, it was able to filter out most of the Christian lingo, but was clearly under the spell of those Christian resources and unable to liberate itself from Christian pseudolinguistics, and eventually it crashed.  

What is the meaning of the Greek word AGAPE?

The Greek word "agape" (ἀγάπη) generally refers to selfless, unconditional love or benevolent affection. It is often associated with the highest form of love, characterized by sacrifice, compassion, and care for others, regardless of their actions or circumstances. Agape love is not dependent on personal gain or reciprocation but is driven by a genuine concern and goodwill towards others. In some philosophical and theological contexts, it is seen as a divine or transcendent love that goes beyond human understanding.

Is there any other possible occasional meaning of the Greek word AGAPE beside selfless love?

Yes, the Greek word "agape" can also be used to refer to a meal or feast. In ancient Greek culture, an "agape" was a communal meal shared among friends or members of a community. It was often associated with a religious or social gathering where people came together to share food, fellowship, and celebrate. However, it is important to note that the primary and most common meaning of "agape" is indeed selfless love. The occasional meaning of a meal or feast is less common and may vary depending on the specific context.

Any other possible meaning of AGAPE besides selfless love and a meal?

No, in the Greek language, the word "agape" primarily carries the meanings of selfless love and a communal meal. These are the most commonly recognized and used meanings of the term. However, it is worth noting that words can sometimes have expanded or additional meanings in different contexts or as they evolve within a language. So while it is possible that "agape" may carry other meanings in certain specific contexts, these would be less widely known or used beyond the primary meanings mentioned earlier.

And what about AGAPAO as a verb?

"Agape" functions as a noun, whereas "agapao" is the verb form derived from it. "Agapao" carries the primary meaning of "to love" or "to show love" in a selfless and sacrificial way. It is used to describe the act of demonstrating unconditional love, kindness, and affection towards others. This verb form emphasizes the action or expression of love rather than the concept or feeling of love itself. It is often associated with the idea of active, intentional love that is not based on personal gain or selfish motives.  (NOTE - ANSWER TOOK SUBSTANTIALLY LONGER)

Can you compare AGAPE with other Greek words for love?

Certainly! In Greek, there are several words used to describe different types or aspects of love. Here are a few notable ones:

1. Eros (ἔρως): This word refers to passionate, romantic love or desire. It is often associated with the physical and sensual aspects of love.

2. Philia (φιλία): Philia denotes friendship or affectionate love between friends or family members. It conveys a sense of camaraderie, loyalty, and deep connection.

3. Storge (στοργή): Storge refers to natural affection or familial love, particularly the bond between parents and children or within a family unit. It emphasizes a sense of familiarity, protectiveness, and attachment.

4. Agape (ἀγάπη): As discussed earlier, agape signifies selfless, unconditional love that is characterized by compassion, care, and sacrifice. It is a higher form of love that is not dependent on personal gain or reciprocation.

While these words are distinct, it is important to note that they are not always mutually exclusive. Love in its entirety is a multi-dimensional concept and can often encompass various elements from these different types of love.

Can AGAPAO be used for objects?  Can you give examples?

While the primary usage of "agapao" is to describe love towards people, it can occasionally be used metaphorically to express deep fondness or devotion towards objects or activities. However, it is important to note that this usage is less common and may depend on context. Here are a few examples where "agapao" can be metaphorically applied to objects:

1. One may say, "I agapao this book" to indicate a deep love or admiration for a particular book, perhaps due to its profound impact on their life or personal attachment to its content.

2. Similarly, someone may say, "I agapao this painting" to express a significant appreciation and emotional connection to a specific work of art.

3. One could also use "agapao" to describe love for an activity or hobby. For instance, someone might say, "I agapao playing the piano" to convey a deep passion and enjoyment for playing the instrument.

It should be noted that while the metaphorical usage of "agapao" for objects is possible, it is not as common as expressing love towards people or living beings.

Would you know what was the old (Homeric and possibly pre-Homeric) meaning of AGAPAO?

Yes, in ancient Greek literature, particularly in Homeric and pre-Homeric texts, the word "agapao" had a slightly different meaning compared to its later Christian and philosophical interpretations. In these early contexts, "agapao" was often used to convey a sense of preference, attachment, or fondness for someone or something, rather than denoting selfless, sacrificial love as it came to be understood later.

In the Homeric poems, such as the Iliad and the Odyssey, "agapao" is used to express affection, favor, or even desire. It can refer to the love between family members, as seen in the relationship between Odysseus and his son Telemachus. Additionally, it may be used to describe the desire or fondness that gods have for a mortal, or the attachment a king might have for his loyal subjects.

Over time, as Greek philosophical and theological thought evolved, the concept of "agape" took on deepened significance, moving towards a more selfless and universal understanding of love. This development is prominent in the New Testament of the Bible, where "agape" is often associated with divine or unconditional love.

So, while the early meaning of "agapao" included elements (ENDED MID-SENTENCE)

I read that AGAPAO meant "fond greeting". Is it so?


An error occurred. Either the engine you requested does not exist or there was another issue processing your request. If this issue persists please contact us through our help center at https://help.openai.com.

So I did not learn anything new. To the contrary, the first answers were shallow and banal. When prompted and asked about deeper meanings it struggled a little but eventually brought some correct answers (yet not particularly poignant and revealing). And when I asked a question it did not know, it pretended to crash...

And here is a link to a short video about this exchange and some more information.




Should Women Be Silent?


Apostle Paul supposedly wrote to his mission church in Corinth:

Women should be silent in the churches.

They are not permitted to speak.

They should be subjugated

just as the Law says.

And if they have any question,

they should ask their husbands at home. 

Because it is shameful for a woman

to speak in church. (1 Cor 14:34f)

This is the holy mantra of all the Christian misogynists. They all use and abuse this short biblical passage of two verses, to justify their rejection of ordination of women, keeping them from being pastors or priests.

But with biblical scholars of 19 and 20th centuries I am certain that this verse was not written by Paul.


Firstly it simply does not make sense in the historical context of Paul’s churches.

            We know that Paul worked closely with women. Some women were leaders in his mission churches. In the letter to Philippians he, for instance, mentions Euodia and Syntyche, two women, as church leaders.

            And in the letter to Romans in the final salutation he mentions several women as important members and leaders of the church. A number of whom he named as co-workers and especially there is Junia, who is being called a fellow apostle - the highest rank among the ministers of the earliest church.


Secondly it does not make sense within the context of Paul theology.

            Because in Paul’s eschatology driven theology - in expecting a new divine order coming any moment - Paul rejected all superficial (cultural and social) human distinction.

There is no longer Jew or Greek,

there is no longer slave or free,

there is no longer male and female;

indeed all are one in Christ Jesus.

To quote a well known passage from the letter to Galatians 3:28

            But furthermore, the simplistic argument from the Law (They should be subjugated just as the Law says.) does not fit at all with the Paul’s theology of the Law.

For the genuine Paul, the Law was the theological force of the past. It was superseded by Christ. To quote Paul directly: Christ is the end of the Law (Rom 10:4) Or Paul from his letter to Galatians Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law (Gal 3:13). There is simply no other place in the genuine Pauline letters with this kind of argument from the Law.


Finally, there are serious textual reasons indicating that Paul did not write these two verses.

            These two verses are clearly an example of an interpolation. Some early scribe who was copying the letter inserted this misogynistic instruction into the existing text of the letter. It very likely happened in the late 2nd century. One sign that it is an interpolation is the fact that if you leave this passage out, the text actually reads better, it flows more smoothly.

And furthermore some early manuscripts, predominantly from the western tradition, actually attach this instruction at the end of the chapter fourteen. Such textual instability is always an indication of the early suspicions about this text’s authenticity.  


So these are historical, theological, and textual reasons for serious doubts about the apostolic authority of these two verses. And that is something worth repeating, repeating, and repeating to all the Christian misogynists. Because women played an important role in the early church (unlike in Hellenistic Judaism and in Orthodox Judaism until today, unlike Roman Church and Eastern Orthodox Churches, unlike Christian fundamentalists and traditionalists throughout the centuries and also until today).

            In reality, the inclusion of women in the ministry was something which went back all the way to Jesus and his group of disciples. Join us this Sunday as we continue reading biblical passages unique to Luke. Among the evangelists it was especially Luke who lifted up and defended the role of women in the early church.


Video version of this blog: https://youtu.be/vFfoJYaG8Zw


Adveniat Regnum Tuum - Your Kingdom Come

The Lord's Prayer in Luke from Codex Sinaiticus

When I am reading and translating the New Testament (the Greek Bible) I like to use a method which is called dynamic equivalence. That is an approach in which we are not translating word for word, but rather trying to capture the original meaning and intention. Let us now try this method and translate the Lord’s Prayer from the socio-economic context of the first century Palestine into our modern American idiom. What prayer would Jesus teach his disciples in our days?

 Loving God of the highest authority.

I translate “loving God” because “father” has now way too patriarchal of an aftertaste. On the other hand Heavenly Parent of some translations is way too familial. In the first century “father” was a figure of authority. Loving God seems to me like a reasonable balance between familiarity and respect.

 May what you stand for be the measure for everything.

That is my attempt to convey and translate to modern idioms the concept of holiness and divine kingdom.

 May the world be shaped as your love will have it.

Translating a petition which asks for the divine rule(divine will) to come from Heaven down to Earth.

Preserve for us and future generations enough for everyone to live:
with fresh air to breathe, clean water to drink, a blue planet to inhabit.

In the Ancient Near East devastating famines were a regular occurrence and for many people in Jesus’ times their food security was a daily concern.
In our world the food security is also a painful reality, but is caused and simultaneously overshadowed by a human caused environmental devastation.

 May our society be organized fairly, without anyone crushed by debt or need.

The original text clearly spoke about the debt-forgiveness. All other words (sins, trespasses etc.) strive to translate Greek OFEILÉMA (likely the original Aramaic root HWB) which was debt/obligation/anything owed. This is my attempt to provide idiomatic meaning of forgiveness of debts within the context of social justice.

Let the police and courts treat people justly,
regardless of their class, nationality or race.

The original text requested a protection from “being handed over to judgement/trial” either to the corrupt Jewish(Herodian) authorities or even more probably to the occupying Roman power - those were the evil powers of those days. In our times when, prisons are disproportionally filled with black men, the poor and the mentally ill, I believe ours is an accurate contextual translation.

With thanks we now submit ourselves under your bright and loving rule for ever.
And together we say - So be it!

The closing doxology is not biblical and I took freedom to translate it from the broader Greek context translating “kingdom, power and glory” and final Semitic “amen”.

And so here is our translation of the Lord’s Prayer. In Advent Season let us to stop and think about and hopefully also act to bring about the coming (advent) of the divine justice from the ideal world (heaven, divine realm) to our daily lives.

Loving God of the highest authority:
May what you stand for
be the measure for everything.

May the world be shaped
as your love will have it.

Preserve for us and future generations
enough for everyone to live:
with fresh air to breathe,

clean water to drink,
and a blue planet to inhabit.

May our society be organized fairly,
without anyone crushed by debt or need.

Let the police and courts treat people justly,
regardless of their class, nationality or race.

With thanks we now submit ourselves
under your bright and loving rule for ever.

And together we say – Let it be so! 


Homily on different translations of the Lord's Prayer  can be found here: Praying Lord's Prayers