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Monetary value[edit]

4 obols (about twelve cents)??? What cents? US cents? Roman cents? 200 cents? 2006 cents? Inflation? PPP? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 23:45, January 30, 2006 (UTC)

Origen and reincarnation[edit]

The following statement is biased and false : "The book Reincarnation in Christianity, by the theosophist Geddes MacGregor (1978) asserted that Origen believed in reincarnation. MacGregor is convinced that Origen believed in and taught about reincarnation but that his texts written about the subject have been destroyed. He admits that there is no extant proof for that position. The allegation was also repeated by Shirley MacLaine in her book Out On a Limb.

This cannot be confirmed from the existent writings of Origen. He was cognizant of the concept of reincarnation (metensomatosis "re-embodiment" in his words) from Greek philosophy, but he repeatedly states that this concept is no part of the Christian teaching or scripture."

See the letters of St. Jerome, especially "To Pammachius Against John of Jerusalem", and "Letter CXXIV. To Avitus."

In the former, point 16, Jerome says, "We want to know ...whether the doctrine of Origen is true, who said that all reasonable creatures, incorporeal and invisible, if they grow remiss, little by little sink to a lower level, and, according to the character of the places to which they descend, take to themselves bodies. (For instance, that they may be at first ethereal, afterward aërial.) And that when they reach the neighbourhood of earth they are invested with grossest bodies, and last of all are tied to human flesh; and that the demons themselves who, of their own choice, together with their leader the devil, have forsaken the service of God, if they begin to amend a little, are clothed with human flesh, so that, when they have undergone a process of repentance after the resurrection, and after passing through the same circuit by which they reached the flesh, they may return to proximity to God, being released even from aërial and ethereal bodies..."

More to the point, in the letter to Avitus, Jerome says :

"He maintains that after every end a fresh beginning springs forth and an end from each beginning, and that wholesale variation is possible; so that one who is now a human being may in another world become a demon, while one who by reason of his negligence is now a demon may hereafter be placed in a more material body and thus become a human being." (pt. 3)

"...and according to what they have done shall have special duties assigned to them in particular worlds.” Moreover, the very demons and rulers of darkness in any world or worlds, if they are willing to turn to better things, may become human beings and so come back to their first beginning. That is to say, after they have borne the discipline of punishment and torture for a longer or a shorter time in human bodies, they may again reach the angelic pinnacles from which they have fallen. Hence it may be shewn that we men may change into any other reasonable beings, and that not once only or on emergency but time after time; we and angels shall become demons if we neglect our duty; and demons, if they will take to themselves virtues, may attain to the rank of angels."" (pt. 3)

"...he has finally reasoned with much diffuseness that an angel, a human soul, and a demon—all according to him of one nature but of different wills—may in punishment for great negligence or folly be transformed into brutes. Moreover, to avoid the agony of punishment and the burning flame the more sensitive may choose to become low organisms, to dwell in water, to assume the shape of this or that animal; so that we have reason to fear a metamorphosis not only into four-footed things but even into fishes. Then, lest he should be held guilty of maintaining with Pythagoras the transmigration of souls, he winds up the wicked reasoning with which he has wounded his reader by saying: “I must not be taken to make dogmas of these things; they are only thrown out as conjectures to shew that they are not altogether overlooked.” " (pt 4)

These ideas are clearly in line with doctrines of reincarnation, and it is obvious why a reader would think Origen believed in, or at least took seriously the speculation of, reincarnation. The fact that Jerome says that Origen tries to distance himself from Pythagoras is only so that he will be taken seriously in a Christian context ; from what Jerome reports, the similarity is evident, and Jerome says so :

"In speaking thus he clearly pleads for the transmigration of souls as taught by Pythagoras and Plato." (pt. 7)

"In the third book the following faulty statements are contained. “If we once admit that, when one vessel is made to honour and another to dishonour,[1] this is due to antecedent causes; why may we not revert to the mystery of the soul and allow that it is loved in one and hated in another because of its past actions, before in Jacob it becomes a supplanter and before in Esau it is supplanted?”[1] And again: “the fact that souls are made some to honour and some to dishonour is to be explained by their previous history.” And in the same place: “on this hypothesis of mine a vessel made to honour which fails to fulfil its object will in another world become a vessel made to dishonour; and contrariwise a vessel which has from a previous fault been condemned to dishonour will, if it accepts correction in this present life, become in the new creation a vessel ‘sanctified and meet for the Master’s use and prepared unto every good work.’”[1] And he immediately goes on to say: “I believe that men who begin with small faults may become so hardened in wickedness that, if they do not repent and turn to better things, they must become inhuman energies;[1] and contrariwise that hostile and demonic beings may in course of time so far heal their wounds and check the current of their former sins that they may attain to the abode of the perfect. As I have often said, in those countless and unceasing worlds in which the soul lives and has its being some grow worse and worse until they reach the lowest depths of degradation; while others in those lowest depths grow better and better until they reach the perfection of virtue.” Thus he tries to shew that men, or rather their souls, may become demons; and that demons in turn may be restored to the rank of angels. In the same book he writes: “this too must be considered; why the human soul is diversely acted upon now by influences of one kind and now by influences of another.” And he surmises that this is due to conduct which has preceded birth." (pt. 8)

These letters of Jerome were based upon Origen's "First Principles", which Jerome had a copy of and could thus refer to. Obviously, he quotes Origen.

Origen speculates or postulates that the soul can pass into different kinds of bodies, from the most etherial to the lowest of beasts, and that this condition is due to conduct in past existences. Jerome himself summarizes that Origen's philosophy is Pythagorean in its doctrine of transmigration of souls.

Thus it is evident that not only is there strong evidence for Origen's ideas about reincarnation, but even Geddes MacGregor apparently did not do his homework. While Origen's originals on this topic may have been destroyed, summaries and long quotations from the work exist in Jerome's letters, just as Celsus' work, while destroyed, exists in large part in quotations and summaries. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 04:15, February 6, 2006 (UTC)

Even if Jerome quoted the On First Principles it is not to vindicate or support Origen but to discredit him. It is Origen's practice to cite and mention ideas in his On First Principles for discussion that he does not himself hold to be true. It lies within the didactic scope of the work to familiarize the reader with false ideas so as to provide an anti-dote as well as establishing the truth. When we see several texts of Origen where he denounces reincarnation as false, yet Jerome quotes from On First Principles in support of Origen teaching reincarnation the most obvious explanation is that Jerome has selected a portion that does not give Origen's own opinion but that of an opponent quoted or referred to by Origen. It is also possible that Jerome has distorted Origen's actual argument as we know he has in fact done (Mark. J. Edwards Origen against Plato). The evidence gleaned from Jerome concerning Origen is quite simply demonstrably unreliable. Reincarnation was never part of Origen's teaching - as Origen himself says (as the article under discussion correctly quoted).

--Gregorios 03:29, 31 August 2007 (UTC)

There are two distinct viewpoints about the teachings of Origen: 1) as one in a line of Christian contributors, but with some ideas that were heretical and needed to be cleansed by the church 2) as one of the teachers/comforters that Jesus had promised to send (as in John14:26), who clarified the words of the Old and New Testaments and built bridges to Judaism and Platonism.

There are two undisputed facts about Origen that support the latter, but it has only been relatively recently that we have been able to study the full implications of his teachings with fear of severe repercussions from the church.

The research that he performed on the Hexapla is unparalleled in all of history and make him biblical scholar second to none (Remember, Jerome said in his own words that he should not read in his lifetime all that Origen had written.)
With unsurpassed knowledge of the texts, Origen critically and thoroughly analyzed all ideas associated with them to the point that not one single new idea has been introduced to Christianity since Origen.

We cannot forget to take into account the grave impact that the by the Emperor Justinian in 543 AD had on the people who held the beliefs taught by Origen and his vast writings on the subjects deemed heretical by the Emperor. It took the church 10 years to ratify this action by the Emperor, but they were not able to overturn Origen’s teachings with the same level of expertise with which they were written. Justinian destroyed the teachings cherished by free men and women, and replaced it replaced them with tyrannical teachings to control the mind and spiritual destiny of his subjects.

Origen brought to life the teachings that Jesus was persecuted for, and again, political power tried to destroy the message. What message is so dangerous that compels scribes, pharisees, and emperors to destroy it? Until we are able to face this question, Christianity will not be able to escape the chains that bind it.

I, therefore, suggest that the contributors of this article preserve the distinct views of Origen for the reader to make up there own minds. To close the research on the Greatest Christian teacher before it gets started would be a disservice to humanity. Shawn Murphy (talk) 12:57, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Reincarnation and Matthew[edit]

So much of what Origen wrote was destroyed, and much of what was left was “translated” to fit with the dogma of the time. (See the apology of Rufinus ) This is the case for book 8 of the Commentary on Matthew. It comes from a Latin translation out of the sixth century and it is clear that the translator only took what he wanted out of Origen’s work to suit his purposes. (See Hermann J. Vogt’s introduction to his German translation of the Commentary on Matthew.) Only books 10 to 17 are available to us in the original Greek, so we are unable to find Origen’s original teachings about the second coming of Elijah from this section.

The extent to which Rufinus' translations are doctored up doctrinally is relatively minimal as recent studies have shown (see the Origeniana convention publications and the works of R. E. Heine on the subject) and especially the recent finds (sixties if memory serves me right at Tura ? ) of Greek catena that we were able to compare to Rufinus' Latin translations. It is precarious to make an argument that Origen taught reincarnation but we just can't find it anymore - it lacks any strength to convince.

--Gregorios 03:42, 31 August 2007 (UTC)

When you look at what is missing from Origen’s commentary on John, you find that the discussion between Jesus and Nicodemus about reincarnation in John 3.2-21 is also missing. (Book 10 goes to John 2.25 and book 13 starts up again at John 4.13; books 11 and 12 are conveniently missing/destroyed.) Everything that directly supported his teaching of the Restoration of All Things was destroyed after the “The Anathematisms of the Emperor Justinian against Origen” in 543 AD. Shawn Murphy 22:03, 12 November 2006 (UTC)

Again one cannot establish an argument for the presence of something by noticing its absence. The lack of proof is not itself proof. An argument or assertion lacking proof is not considered proven by the absence of proof. Especially in the face of proof for a different opposing argument.

--Gregorios 03:42, 31 August 2007 (UTC)

There is enough modern and ancient evidence of reincarnation for us to keep the subject open for discussion. A conspiracy theory is hard to prove, you are right, but that does not mean that it should not be considered. If you consider the full body of Origen's work, as Edward Moore has done in his paper "Origen of Alexandria and apokatastasis: Some Notes on the Development of a Noble Notion", it become clear that the only way God can be seen as Good is for Him to to be infinitely patient with His children.

Please see additional comments above in the section “Origen and reincarnation”. The conspiracy theory is compelling when you we see how far the actions of the Roman Catholics strayed from the teachings of Jesus “Love thy neighbor as thyself”, after destroying a vast majority of Origen’s work to support their earthly power base. Shawn Murphy (talk) 13:34, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

Origen a church father[edit]

Please note that the article's claims that the Catholic Church does not consider Origen a Church Father are false. The Catholic Encyclopedia, found at, list's Origen as one of the Church Fathers. Unless there is proof otherwise, that claim should be removed from the article. -- John Tuturice —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talkcontribs) 13:49, July 12, 2006 (UTC)

Yep, he is on all the lists. Someone had downgraded him a few weeks ago, but now it's fixed. You are encouraged to make these kinds of corrections yourself if you like. --Blainster 21:43, 12 July 2006 (UTC)
While I can't speak for the Roman Catholic Church, in the Eastern Orthodox Church there is a distinction made between a "Church Father" (or, more commonly in Orthodox parlance, "Holy Father") and a "Christian Teacher." A person must be a saint to be considered a Holy Father; those who have not been glorified as saints, but nonetheless whose writings (at least in part) can be beneficial to the Christian reader, are referred to as “Christian Teachers.” Origen is considered to be one such Christian Teacher. The Church separates the wheat from the chaff, gathering in what is useful and discarding the rest. This is the reason for II Constantinople’s condemnation of Origen and the others mentioned in the Three Chapters in 553 AD. This is part of the reason why only a portion of Origin's works survive: in the days before the printing press, Chistians had no reason to expend the money and energy copying out material that was of no benefit to them spiritually. MishaPan 19:08, 17 February 2007 (UTC)
I believe he is considered merely an ecclesiastical author by the Roman Catholic church. Philip Shaft states
In fact the Roman church excludes a Tertullian for his Montanism, an Origen for his Platonic and idealistic views, an Eusebius for his semi-Arianism, also Clement of Alexandria, Lactantius, Theodoret, and other distinguished divines, from the list of “fathers” (Patres), and designates them merely “ecclesiastical writers” (Scriptores Ecclastici). History of the Christian Church, vol 2, ch 13, sec 160, 5th paragraph.
However, Origen is often called a church father by protestants, who occasionally use the term to apply to all relatively orthodox early christian writers.--Blkgardner (talk) 02:33, 6 November 2008 (UTC)
There is some ambiguity in the Catholic Church. The term "Church Father" is not a canonical title but is one that is given through acclamation or some other informal process. So whether he is a church father or not is not as telling as the fact that he has is not a canonized saint or doctor of the church both of which are formal titles bestowed by the authority of the church. He has no feast days in the liturgical calendar as such. The fact that he is not one of the doctors of the church (East or West)is a reflection of the unreliabilty and or questionable nature of his orthodoxy. If he is considered a church father in the Catholic Encyclopedia this would not settle the issue since that source does not represent the authoritative magesterium of the church. However the Catholic church does consider him a father for his witness to the Apostolic Tradition. I think the article describing him as "reluctantly" being recognized as a father is about right. -- (talk) 08:14, 8 April 2009 (UTC)
Below is the relevant information from the Catholic Encyclopedia which refers to Origen's status as not being a Church Father. I have bolded the areas in question and I have referenced a link to the article. Stylteralmaldo (talk) 21:39, 25 March 2010 (UTC)
PER CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: In the last years of the fifth century a famous document, attributed to Popes Gelasius and Hormisdas, adds to decrees of St. Damasus of 382 a list of books which are approved, and another of those disapproved. In its present form the list of approved Fathers comprises Cyprian, Gregory Nazianzen, Basil, Athanasius, Chrysostom, Theophilus, Hilary, Cyril of Alexandria (wanting in one manuscript), Ambrose, Augustine, Jerome, Prosper, Leo ("every iota" of the tome to Flavian is to be accepted under anathema), and "also the treatises of all orthodox Fathers, who deviated in nothing from the fellowship of the holy Roman Church, and were not separated from her faith and preaching, but were participators through the grace of God until the end of their life in her communion; also the decretal letters, which most blessed popes have given at various times when consulted by various Fathers, are to be received with veneration". Orosius, Sedulius, and Juvencus are praised.
Rufinus and Origen are rejected. Eusebius's "History" and "Chronicle" are not to be condemned altogether, though in another part of the list they appear as "apocrypha" with Tertullian, Lactantius, Africanus, Commodian, Clement of Alexandria, Arnobius, Cassian, Victorinus of Pettau, Faustus, and the works of heretics, and forged Scriptural documents.
What difference does it make how the RCC or some branch of the Orthodox Group define "Church Father," etc. Wikipedia is not a branch of any such organization. Actually in any theological area the Bible is the ultimate authority. It does use the word "saint," and it uses it for all Christians! There is no special group of "saints" otherwise in the NT. So "Church Father" should be used in a general sense for an early writer in Christendom, that's all.(EnochBethany (talk) 01:38, 30 June 2010 (UTC))
It is worth noting that while Origen's writings have been critiqued more harshly at times, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd ed, 1997 cites five of Origen's works in support of its arguments in nine articles (750). His seminal contributions to the theological conversation are acknowledged, as well, by his inclusion in seven volumes of the Patrologia Graeca. Lambert OP (talk) 20:45, 3 July 2010 (UTC)

Is this necessary?[edit]

"himself preserved from harm as if by a miracle". Surely this is not appropriate? I won't change it yet, but I'm pretty sure that it should be removed. Ste175 10:41, 12 March 2007 (UTC)


"According to some traditions" . . . This sentence is using weasel words, isn't it? Why not just cite the source - Eusebius.

People lying[edit]

What is those naked people laying before Origen in Image:Origen2.jpg? Are they dead? Sleeping? Tired of taking dictation? -- 16:14, 5 June 2007 (UTC)

Sunbathing? (I like the dictation one better, though!). They'd have to be dead or acolytes/disciples of some sort, wouldn't they? Be nice if we could locate the picture originator. It may need to be replaced if we can't. It looks too peculiar to go uncommented. Must be online somewhere else. Student7 19:39, 6 June 2007 (UTC)
The alt attribute says: "Origen initiating neophytes into the death and re-birth experience". It seems suspect. Why would medieval people paint Origen preaching such a doctrine? Anyway the image is cropped and colorshifted. -- 08:20, 7 June 2007 (UTC)

Origen's influence on the later Church[edit]

There is an "ibid" in this section which doesn't, to me, have a clear antecedent. In the normal process of footnoting, "ibids" shouldn't appear anyway. Can someone help?

Also, "Shirley Maclaine" is quoted. Does she really have the theological credentials to be quoted in here? I think mine are equal to hers and I'm not quoted! If mention of her beliefs is allowed, I would like equal space!  :) Student7 13:47, 11 June 2007 (UTC)

Why is this opinion stated? "Reluctantly he remains a father of the church", Should this not be removed? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:51, 12 March 2008 (UTC)

I agree. I don’t see any relevance in that statement. --DavidD4scnrt (talk) 08:15, 12 April 2008 (UTC)

The relevance of the use of “reluctance” is explained in the section “Origen and reincarnation” above. Christianity cannot deny the unparalleled contributions of Origen, yet it cannot embrace all of his teachings.

Also, I have added references to Origen scholars who show that he did teach reincarnation; namely Robert Sträuli and Edward Moore so the Shirley Maclaine reference can be deleted. Shawn Murphy (talk) 15:31, 14 April 2008 (UTC)

WikiProject class rating[edit]

This article was automatically assessed because at least one WikiProject had rated the article as start, and the rating on other projects was brought up to start class. BetacommandBot 04:20, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

POV tag[edit]

This concerns POV tag cleanup. Whenever an POV tag is placed, it is necessary to also post a message in the discussion section stating clearly why it is thought the article does not comply with POV guidelines, and suggestions for how to improve it. This permits discussion and consensus among editors. This is a drive-by tag, which is discouraged in WP, and it shall be removed. Future tags should have discussion posted as to why the tag was placed, and how the topic might be improved. Better yet, edit the topic yourself with the improvements. This statement is not a judgement of content, it is only a cleanup of frivolously and/or arbitrarily placed tags. No discussion, no tag.Jjdon (talk) 21:31, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

Transmigration, et al[edit]

Okay, I can see where this is going now. The material that was footnoted explaining about Celsus, needs a better sub-footnote than Dodds. This is an internal link to Wikipedia which cannot substitute here as a sub-footnote. The Dodds article anyway, is totally unfootnoted, so no help there! (Otherwise you could just copy one of their footnotes here). So it needs a scholarly footnote from somewhere. Student7 (talk) 21:07, 31 July 2008 (UTC)

Student7 I do not understand you. Would you please fix it for me. I do the best I can. I took it for granite (no spell checker) the reader would know "Contra Celsus" by Origen presented Celsus' charges. I think people should know what Celsus said. The Dodds thing was an attempt to show how "magically irrational" the Greeks were. So you could understand Celsus. You can see this again (my last entries) when I brought up the Christian persecution as the blame for the Antonine Plague. [After the plague books were destroyed and higher learning became suspect. Books were dangerous they contained magic and sorcery.(And most likely some of them did). But to those frightened uneducated people, Christian and Pagan alike, you just destroyed books and those who read them. People who read and studied books were not to be trusted]. (This still goes on today) If you "can see where this is going" you are doing a lot better than I am. Kazuba (talk) 03:51, 2 August 2008 (UTC)

IIRC Dodds, a genuine and reliable scholar, whose major work is cited, ends his work pretty much with the fourth century BC. Does he even mention Celsus? This is during the Antonine enlightment; we need a source which makes this claim about this period, and applies to this author. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 03:41, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

Same teacher?[edit]

no section`

So is it unimportant that origen and plotinus had the same teacher? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:51, 12 September 2008 (UTC)

Is it possible that you are thinking of the other Origen? Origen the Pagan?Student7 (talk) 12:44, 12 September 2008 (UTC)


I did not notice the proposal to move. I thought that there was one main Origen, just like their are many "Aristotles" yet I suspect that if I reference "Aristotle" I will get the one from Athens even though I did not specify. He kind of predominates, as I think Origen does. Student7 (talk) 01:39, 3 October 2008 (UTC)

He does predominate, as you say. However, I believe that we should go after consistency in the pagenames – compare Augustine of Hippo, Irenaeus of Lyons, and more – and therefore I keep thinking the move was right. --Dampinograaf (talk) 07:34, 3 October 2008 (UTC)
We "consistently" refrain from disambiguating in article title when there is no reason to. WP:MOS is fairly consistent, I think. Ford MF (talk) 20:18, 4 October 2008 (UTC)
The actual article is and should be at Irenaeus; I'm not convinced that we shouldn't call Augustine Augustine, and disambiguate the Archbishop. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 03:33, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

The consensus reached at Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Origen was that that page should either be moved to Origen (disambiguation) or deleted, and in either case Origen of Alexandria be moved to Origen. Neither approach received the consensus, but what was rejected was the current status quo. I therfore propose that we simply choose the move option as the least dramatic. All in favour... — Gareth Hughes (talk) 14:48, 7 October 2008 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

Origen of AlexandriaOrigen — To return article name to primary topic. See preceding section of this page. — Deor (talk) 03:15, 8 October 2008 (UTC)


Feel free to state your position on the renaming proposal by beginning a new line in this section with *'''Support''' or *'''Oppose''', then sign your comment with ~~~~. Since polling is not a substitute for discussion, please explain your reasons, taking into account Wikipedia's naming conventions.
  • Support, especially since Alexandrian citizenship is open to question; this is the primary meaning of Origen. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 03:34, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Support per Wikipedia:Disambiguation#Is there a primary topic?. Origen is obviously and by far the primary topic. Ford MF (talk) 03:45, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Support. The disambiguation as cleaned up is only three-way, between someone who is truly famous, versus a contemporary of his about whom we know little apart from his name and that he was a philosopher, and a marginally notable band. No contest. Andrewa (talk) 04:02, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
Clean-up was hastily done; several links were removed that in effect point to different topics. --Dampinograaf (talk) 10:42, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
See discussion below. No change of vote. Andrewa (talk) 12:29, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Support, this is clearly the primary topic. --Rogerb67 (talk) 10:05, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Oppose: I remain convinced that, when talking about a person, the pagename should -as much as possible- be the full name. Consider what disambiguation pages are for: to lead those who are not sure. --Dampinograaf (talk) 10:42, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
    • The relevant policy pages contradict your conviction unambiguously: WP:NAME says "Titles should be brief without being ambiguous", WP:NCCN says "...use the most common name of a person or thing...", WP:NCP echoes WP:NCCN. This does not prove that your page move was wrong; interpretation and judgment is required. However the discussion will go better and your arguments are more likely to be accepted if you make them in reference to accepted policy, including if necessary WP:IAR. --Rogerb67 (talk) 11:47, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Support - the old Catholic Encyclopedia, which uses full titles when necessary, calls him only Origen. Ottava Rima (talk) 13:45, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
  • Neutral – the disambiguation page's AfD was closed as "no consensus," and the primary reason to get rid of the disambiguation page was that it was a spamlink-farm. Spam is no longer present; therefore, reason to remove the disambiguation page is moot. On the other hand, I doubt that "Origen of Alexandria" was his full name. Bwrs (talk) 18:03, 8 October 2008 (UTC)


Any additional comments:

From the survey above:

Clean-up was hastily done; several links were removed that in effect point to different topics. --Dampinograaf (talk) 10:42, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

Of the three links you've added, I agree that two should be there, but neither Adamantius (Pseudo-Origen) nor Penitence of Origen have any more chance then the existing links of challenging the primary usage, and Adamantius (journal) probably shouldn't be there. Are you really claiming that it's ever referred to as Origen rather than as Adamantius? Andrewa (talk) 12:29, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

It should be a See also, here. If anyone searches for "Origen", they will eventually find it that way.
Agree. It's not a meaning of Origen which we need to disambiguate, and therefore not relevant to this discussion. But it is helpful to have it mentioned on the DAB page, if we need to have the DAB page for other reasons, as is the case here. Andrewa (talk) 20:01, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

Also from the survey:

I remain convinced that, when talking about a person, the pagename should -as much as possible- be the full name. Consider what disambiguation pages are for: to lead those who are not sure. --Dampinograaf (talk) 10:42, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

As has been noted above, this is a very big departure from current policy. I suggest you spell out your reasons, and also the scope of the proposal. Would we also move Paul McCartney, for example? Andrewa (talk) 12:29, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

If you play it blindly by the book, then you'll have a lot of moving to do! Just a few examples: Eusebius of Caesarea >Eusebius (how many Eusebiusii does the average Wikipedian know) – Hippolytus of Rome to Hippolytus (same question).

I should stress that I'm talking about persons only. --Dampinograaf (talk) 13:07, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
Each case is necessarily unique and needs to be taken on its merits; the examples you mention are possible. It will indeed be a lot of work to make every article comply with every policy, but there are many contributors, and the deadlines are long. --Rogerb67 (talk) 17:13, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
I do not believe Hippolytus of Rome is the primary meaning of Hippolytus; if there is one, it's Theseus' son, not the doubtful martyr who happened, by pure coincidence, to be also dragged to death by horses. Septentrionalis PMAnderson 19:07, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
It is clear that the consensus is for the main article to be at Origen and the little-know at Origen (disambiguation). One editor moved the article without discsussion, and is the only one opposing it. Everyone else here felt it to be wrong, and the more important issue was to remove the spam. The AfD was more a distraction as we couldn't agree whether to delete the disambiguation page or not. I think it's fairly harmless in its present position. Whereas it had been moved to a more prominent position than the article all readers would be looking for. — Gareth Hughes (talk) 19:46, 8 October 2008 (UTC)
Agree that we seem to have rough consensus already, but I think it would be best to wait for the normal discussion period to expire, see below. Andrewa (talk) 01:18, 9 October 2008 (UTC)
I'm not suggesting we play it blindly by the book. But ignoring the book is no wiser. Andrewa (talk) 19:57, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

And the consensus is:[edit]


Thanks to all who intervened in the brief discussion

  • initiated 8 October, 03:15:24
  • closed 8 October, 19:31:54

Sometimes the deadlines are very short indeed.

Good luck to the editor(s) who are – following the precedent set so quickly, and the excellent arguments used in the discussion – going to move Paul the Apostle to Paul, possibly after adjusting Paul (disambiguation). Paul "is obviously and by far the primary topic", is it not?

--Dampinograaf (talk) 23:59, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

It's still listed at WP:RM. I guess we could invoke the snowball clause but I'd prefer to see the normal period of discussion expire, owing to the strong feelings expressed and the slightly involved history with the AfD and all.

Disagree that Paul should be moved. Strongly suggest reading WP:POINT and perhaps also the Wikipedia creed if you're even considering making it a formal proposal. Andrewa (talk) 01:14, 9 October 2008 (UTC)

Media junk[edit]

In the meantime, we seem to have gotten rid of all the games, media, etc. that were supposedly named after Origen! Right! And a tip of the hat to whoever did it! Can we keep the article clean of them in the future? What likelihood is it that anything popular and secular would be deliberately named after him? Student7 (talk) 00:38, 9 October 2008 (UTC) C

Location of Caesarea Maritima[edit]

The location of this city is in Israel. See, for example, Wikipedia own article on the topic which is linked in the article BTW: Caesarea Maritima. Student7 (talk) 12:37, 5 February 2009 (UTC)

we need a reliable third-party source that confirms this. see WP:SPS.  —Chris Capoccia TC 12:44, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
The point is, it wasn't in Israel when Origen died there. See, for example, Rainer Maria Rilke, where the infobox gives his birthplace as Prague, Bohemia—not Prague, Czech Republic. I didn't make the change to "Palestine," but it seems right to me, and it certainly wasn't vandalism. Deor (talk) 13:16, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
This is not rocket science or opinion. Nor is it a matter of paying somebody to place a reference someplace. This is fact. As I mentioned I traveled there last year through Israel to get there. It is a port. How many ports do the Palestinians have?????? Not very many, I can assure you. There is a reason for that. Here are a bunch of references I first ran across in google. a reference,the "Israel" may refer to ancient Israel unfortunately,maybe this one too, I haven't yet found one that says "Palenstine." Where are you finding that reference? another ref, yet another. Student7 (talk) 22:15, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
I re-read your reply which I should have done earlier. I see your point. I'm not sure Palestine existed then. Judea or Samaria maybe? Your are right, we need a reference. Student7 (talk) 22:19, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
The actual name of the Roman province was Syria Palaestina, but Palestine is where it's discussed in Wikipedia. Deor (talk) 22:40, 5 February 2009 (UTC)
If you have a footnote, why not change it to Syria Palestina and let the redirect take the reader where it may? "Palestine" seems to be taking sides (if you read the discussion page for Palestine). It sounds funny to English-speaking ears (that is discussed as well). BTW, you can also change the redirect though that might result in a discussion! Student7 (talk) 13:13, 6 February 2009 (UTC)
I've restored "Palestine" and cited the Rainy source added by Chris Capoccia, which says "Caeserea (in Palestine)." Deor (talk) 15:19, 6 February 2009 (UTC)

His torture and death[edit]

I cited two of the facts mentioned related to his torture and death. I cited Church History in Plain Language, Second Edition by Bruce L. Shelley. I do not know how to format it into a wiki link so I did so as I would in a term paper. This book makes no mention how he was tortured though. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Joshualeasure (talkcontribs) 16:25, 28 June 2009 (UTC)


Placed this tag today because of various language used throughout article, example: "In Origen the Christian Church had its first theologian in the highest sense of the term. Attaining the pinnacle of human speculation, his teaching was not merely theoretical, but was also imbued with an intense ethical power. To the multitude to whom his instruction was beyond grasp". Also text of this sort lacks citation. (talk) 11:26, 1 September 2009 (UTC)

I agree that the subsection you are quoting seemed to be a bit overreaching. I tried modifying it a little bit. Still needs work and citations. You've placed a label on the entire article. Is it all that bad? Just glancing through it, it didn't seem that way.Student7 (talk) 12:40, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

"Christian Reincarnation"[edit]

The material added in this edit appears to have been a verbatim lift from the book Reincarnation for the Christian (1974) by Quincy Howe, and thus a copyvio. The replacement of much of the material with direct quotations from the Commentary on Matthew didn't really solve the problem, as it still left one copyvio paragraph and still constituted an intrusive interruption in the biographical section of the article. If any material on reincarnation is deemed necessary in the article, it should go in the "Views" section and should be based on a summary of reliable secondary sources. Deor (talk) 17:02, 7 February 2010 (UTC)


I'm not sure the edit needs to be altered, but just wanted to be sure that we all understood that the term "neoplatonism" was invented after-the-fact; that it still was based on the teachings of Plato, and maybe not, for Origen, Plotinus. Student7 (talk) 18:10, 12 September 2010 (UTC)

Universal salvation[edit]

"Origen supported the early Church Fathers majority position on Universal Salvation, a position held by the most respected of the Church Fathers and 4 of the six schools of thought. The doctrines of the Apostles were now under attack and was overturned by a state-influenced Church under Constantine. In its place, the church began to teach the tradition of eternal torment. The position on Universal Salvation was the majority position of the Early Church Fathers until the 5th century. It was at this time Origen was declared a heretic."

Some problems with this: -the idea that universal salvation was the majority position of the Church Fathers is controversial; -equating it with 'the doctrines of the Apostles' goes beyond controversial to the language of an universalist polemic; -Origen was not declared a heretic in the 5th century but the 6th; -and he was not declared a heretic for his doctrines on universal salvation anyway! Our article links to the anathemas against him; of the 15 statements, only two even touch on it - one condemning "the fabulous pre-existence of souls .... the monstrous restoration which follows from it", the other the idea "that in this pretended apocatastasis, spirits only will continue to exist, as it was in the feigned pre-existence". The whole thrust of the anathemas is condemning the idea that matter is evil and humans (and the sun and moon!) were originally pure spirits who acquired bodies through sin -- the apocatastasis here is more the idea that we will go back to being pure spirits.

Since there is essentially nothing in this paragraph that isn't either POV or factually incorrect, I think deleting it wholesale is the right way to go, but I'll wait a bit in case someone else sees things in it worth salvaging. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:55, 9 February 2011 (UTC)

Did Origen teach Christ is the LORD?[edit]

Here's from his commentary on the Gospel of John 2:47-54:

But he who is on the white horse is called "Faithful," (Rev 19:11) not so much because he trusts as because he is trustworthy, that is, he is worthy of being trusted, for according to Moses, the Lord is faithful and true. (Deut 32:4)

You might want to add this reference somewhere... (talk) 20:33, 19 February 2011 (UTC)

Huh? Chrysologus (talk) 21:29, 14 June 2011 (UTC)]
But isn't the question whether or not Origen taught that Christ was LORD = YHWH (Yahweh), rather than whether Origen taught that Christ was Lord (master, boss)? In the NT the word kyrios is used both for master/boss and for YHWH, the tetragrammaton. For example, when Rom. 10:13 quotes Joel it says: "πᾶς γὰρ ὃς ἂν ἐπικαλέσηται τὸ ὄνομα κυρίου σωθήσεται; "For whosoever shall call upon the name of YHWH shall be saved." When the NT quotes the OT, kyrios is used for YHWH (Yahweh). Now if one has a reference where Origen applies Rom. 10:13 to Christ, that would be evidence. English Bible translations routinely use LORD (4 caps) to stand for YHWH and Lord to stand for Adonai or Lord in a lesser sense. (EnochBethany (talk) 16:11, 3 February 2012 (UTC))

Instance of Ambrose?[edit]

In the paragraph "Extant commentaries of Origen" I suspect what the author meant was not "at the instance of Ambrose" but "at the insistence of Ambrose". I'm a newbie, so I'd rather not change this, but rather let others make the call. Pianomoose (talk) 02:23, 30 May 2011 (UTC)

It's an obscure but legitimate use of the word instance. Chrysologus (talk) 21:29, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

Complete re-write[edit]

As the note at the top of the page says, this article does not meet Wikipedia's standards. This is unfortunate, given how important Origen is for the fields of theology and biblical studies. I have completely re-written the introductory material. No doubt it can use further improvement, including the addition of citations, though the material there can be found in many, many works about Origen. I doubt that I will have the patience to re-write the entire article, so I hope that someone else who knows something about Origen will help re-write this to bring it up to snuff. Chrysologus (talk) 21:29, 14 June 2011 (UTC)

to do[edit]

  • The lead is way too long. 5 or 6 sentences should be plenty.
  • Check the text for WP:copyvio a lot of it looks "cut and pasted".
Be Bold J8079s (talk) 03:38, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
Agreed, re: length. I have moved much of the material to the biographical section and elsewhere. Chrysologus (talk) 13:32, 17 June 2011 (UTC)
Still too long I suggest this;

Origen (Greek: Ὠριγένης Ōrigénēs), or Origen Adamantius, 184/5–253/4,[1] was an early Christian Alexandrian scholar and theologian, and one of the most distinguished writers of the early Church. As early as the fourth century, his orthodoxy was suspect, in part because he believed in the preexistence of souls. However, thanks to the works of such 20th-century scholars as Henri de Lubac, SJ, and Jean Daniélou, SJ, his reputation as a first-rate theologian has been rehabilitated, and today he is widely regarded as one of the so-called Church Fathers.[2]

Origen excelled in multiple branches of theological scholarship. Old and New testament.

Some of his teachings quickly became controversial.

Add a little filler but the rest should be in the body of the page


  1. ^ Crouzel, Henri (2003). The New Catholic Encyclopedia. Gale. 
  2. ^ For instance, Pope Benedict XVI, in his Wednesday catecheses from March 7, 2007, to June 25, 2008, on the Church Fathers, devoted two talks to him.

The unnecessary re-write of this introduction and the course ahead[edit]

It has come to the attention of many of us that a Wiki user named Chrysologus has taken it upon him or herself to wipe out the Origen introduction contributions of a number of other scholarly types. No offence intended, but Chrysologus wiping out the longstanding introduction to Origen was a very unwise move to make, and when Wikipedia reviews what he/she has done, if it comes to that, they will likely reverse his/her overly heavy handed erasing of the editing and contributions of fair-minded academics who had contributed to this page faithfully over the past many years. This introduction is for important aspects of Origen's contributions to the religion of Christianity - with prudent acknowledgement of his life simpliciter - and any other tack would be disastrously unadvised. With this in mind, no one should doubt Chrysologus' wish to help the page; but in destroying years of amendments and contributions, we are now faced with repairing what took years of agreement to come to, and will continue to be amended as new evidence comes to light, one can only imagine. We all know Crouzel, we can all quote in depth from his work, but even Crouzel is not the "end" of Origenic studies, and to insist otherwise is mistaken. Origen's life and work is constantly being brought into clearer focus, and this from a number of quarters, all of which deserve to be heard and judged by the aggregate, as the former introduction was, over the course of years. If someone wishes to undo Chrysologus' overly zealous wiping out of the Origen Wiki intro, I would not dispute it, but perhaps the seasoned veterans can simply just add or take away a bit here or there where needed, and make the intro more what it had become, versus what one person deemed it should be.

Furthermore, no one should take it upon themselves to do a complete re-write of the Origen page as Chrysologus suggested above. To do so would defeat the point of Wikipedia altogether. This page is meant to be a source for general information and further academic studies on Origen. Let none of us go so wrong as to pretend we own the last word on Origen, or any other subject. Saintorigen (talk) 09:18, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

I'm happy to see that someone else here shares my passion for Origen. I think that between the two of us and others this article can be improved. You're probably right that my initial go at this was "over-zealous," but, after all, it is Wikipedia's motto to be bold! I'd be very happy to see others continue to make changes and even to restore some things that I may have deleted or reworked too hastily.
I must, however, politely re-affirm my commitment to seeing this entire article re-written (not by me personally, though!). It is not for no reason that the top of the page informs us that this article does not meet Wikipedia's standards. I agree with whoever added that assessment and it's precisely why I issued my exhortation to improve -- boldly -- this article. I look forward to working together with others toward the common aim of bringing this important article up to snuff. Chrysologus ([[User

talk:Chrysologus|talk]]) 14:11, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

Well, we get these re-writes from time to time. I kind of gulped too. On the other hand, we did leave that tag up. Kind of an invitation to do "something." We probably shouldn't leave generic tags with no specific templates up for more than a few months on "relatively" non-controversial topics. After a couple of months, editors with general tags need to be forced/requested to be more specific, either by individual sentence/paragraph tagging or in the discussion, point by point. Student7 (talk) 20:04, 17 June 2011 (UTC)

File:Origen2.jpg Nominated for Deletion[edit]

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Was Origen a Priest?[edit]

Quote: "Caesarea, where he was heartily welcomed and was ordained a priest." There is no citation to substantiate that claim. Since the NT has no Christian class called "priests" at all (but all Christians are a kingdom of priests), the question arises as to when did the class of "priests" arise? I wonder if the correct word that belongs in this article is presbyteros or presbyter (elder). To be sure our modern English word "priest" is probably a corruption of the Greek word presbyteros, but "priest" has a quite different denotation from elder. The Greek word for priest is hiereus, but there is special hiereus class in the NT among Christians. Interestingly enough, in the NT a qualification for being a presbyteros is to be the husband of one wife. At any rate, unless someone has a citation to support this claim, it ought to be removed. (EnochBethany (talk) 16:03, 3 February 2012 (UTC))

All intelligences created equal by God ?[edit]

If it's true that Origen stated that all rationale beings were created equal in mental power or abilities, losing part of them in connection to the severity or absence of a sin in their line, this would enter in conflict with the Bible statement, that with no place for doubt, says that mankind was created "Slightly inferiors to angels". There are several quotations linking to "The Catholic Encyclopedia"; this is a very well intentioned attempt to summarize religious knowledge, but it seems lacking a feature that not long ago was considered imprescindible for a work to be fully trusted by Roman Catholics: the "Nihil Obstat" - No inconvenients -, meaning that the text was reviewed by an Episcopal authority, who gives his approval to the work. A comic feature of the "Catholic Encyclopedia" is that the cover for the CD-ROM containing its texts, depicts a blonde haired, blue eyed Jesus Child, that evenmore, is amazingly similar to the face of the journalist, a long time character in CNN, Lou Dobbs. ??? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Jgrosay (talkcontribs) 19:45, 28 February 2012 (UTC)


As an aside, it seems odd that Philo of Alexandria gets one brief mention in this article. Origen is the only reason we still have Philo's complete works and he was a major influence on Origen. But that's not my main reason posting.

The Philo article needs lots of work and I wanted to advertise this on relevant talk pages. Please check it out and chip in if you can. You can reply to my section on the Talk:Philo page if you want to discuss. Thanks. Mnnlaxer (talk) 16:25, 21 December 2012 (UTC)

Two introductions?[edit]

What has happened to the introductory paragraph? Someone has re-written it so that it now has two paragraphs that repeat a lot of the same information! Can these edits be rolled back? (talk) 19:21, 2 May 2013 (UTC)

Nevermind. I made the changes myself (above comment is me). Feel free to complain or change it.

Chrysologus (talk) 20:02, 2 May 2013 (UTC)

"There is significant evidence" - source for 'significant'?[edit]

I fact tagged "There is significant evidence[citation needed] that some of Origen's books were intentionally mistranslated into Latin due to religious bias, and that he taught reincarnation in his lifetime." This was removed and sources added that show evidence. However, there is no source that says "there is significant evidence" which is why I added the fact tag. I'm at 2RR and replacing my fact tag would be 3RR which is getting close to edit warring, but we should not claim significant evidence without sources making that specific claim. Dougweller (talk) 19:32, 24 December 2013 (UTC)


His name is spelled here in Greek Ώριγένης, whereas in Migne it is Ώριγένους. Is the former an incorrect latinisation or is either correct?Ocyril (talk) 20:13, 7 April 2014 (UTC)

Ώριγένους is just declined in the genitive, it's the same word as the nominative Ώριγένης. --Atethnekos (DiscussionContributions) 20:31, 7 April 2014 (UTC)
In other words, on the title pages of Migne's Origen volumes, ΟΡΙΓΕΝΟΥΣ ΤΑ ΕΥΡΙΣΚΟΜΕΝΑ ΠΑΝΤΑ has roughly the same meaning as the Latin translation beneath it, ORIGENIS OPERA OMNIA—that is, "The Complete Works of Origen". Deor (talk) 20:47, 7 April 2014 (UTC)

Lede addition undue[edit]

  • 21:04, 23 August 2014 by Lipsio (Added statement, with references, that the sixth ecumenical council upheld the previous ecumenical council's anathemas against Origen (even though the latter may be spurious).)
  • 19:43, 24 August 2014 by Telpardec (Undid revision 622516959 by Lipsio - addition contrary to its own sources and section →‎Anathemas (544, 553): 553CE was 5th, not 6th - (image left :)
  • 20:07, 24 August 2014 by Lipsio (Origen was condemned by sixth ecumenical council by its upholding the fifth's anathemas (whether or not the fifth's anathemas are authentic)Undid revision 622642885 by Telpardec (talk))
  • 20:22, 24 August 2014 by Lipsio (Supplied quote from the sixth ecumenical council in an attempt to halt the editing war.)

My removal of the addition was based on information available at that time. Note that the 1st reference, , redirected to: which only mentions Origen in the 5th ecumenical council section. The 2nd reference, Price's work on the council of 553CE, does not mention the 6th ecumenical council AFAICT. With the quote supplied by the 4th edit above, the following was found:

Wherefore this our holy and Ecumenical Synod having driven away the impious error which had prevailed for a certain time until now, and following closely the straight path of the holy and approved Fathers, has piously given its full assent to the five holy and Ecumenical Synods (that is to say, to that of the 318 holy Fathers who assembled in Nice against the raging Arius; and the next in Constantinople of the 150 God-inspired men against Macedonius the adversary of the Spirit, and the impious Apollinaris; and also the first in Ephesus of 200 venerable men convened against Nestorius the Judaizer; and that in Chalcedon of 630 God-inspired Fathers against Eutyches and Dioscorus hated of God; and in addition to these, to the last, that is the Fifth holy Synod assembled in this place, against Theodore of Mopsuestia, Origen, Didymus, and Evagrius, and the writings of Theodoret against the Twelve Chapters of the celebrated Cyril, and the Epistle which was said to be written by Ibas to Maris the Persian), renewing in all things the ancient decrees of religion, and chasing away the impious doctrines of irreligion.

— "The Definition of Faith."
NPNF2-14. The Seven Ecumenical Councils
Christian Classics Ethereal Library

@Lipsio: It is evident that there was no especial condemnation of Origen in the sixth ecumenical council. That council merely gave its "assent" to the previous five synods, mentioning the name of "Origen" in the parenthetical list by way of reference only. It was a minor note during the last session (XVIII) of the synod – hardly a footnote in history. The lede/intro generally should summarize the "most important points" from the body of the article. That sixth council is not mentioned in the body, and it is not important enough for the lede even if it was added to the body after the Origen#Anathemas (544,553) section.
Cheers. —Telpardec  TALK  00:54, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

It is *NOT* "a minor note" or "hardly a footnote in history"!
It is part of the Definition of Faith which is what Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholics, etc., consider infallible! And this would naturally be done by the council's last session. Thus, it is doctrine in these churches that Origen is a heretic, even if that means acceptance of the authenticity of the fifth ecumenical council's anathemas against him.
"The 2nd reference, Price's work on the council of 553CE, does not mention the 6th ecumenical council" Yes, and thus I referenced him concerning only the fifth ecumenical council, "although in recent times the full conciliar authority of the latter council's canons against Origen has been called into question."
Please explain you deletion, or I will revert it, albeit making most of it a footnote since, as you rightly note, an entire paragraph "is not important enough for the lede"; it only grew that long in an attempt to stop your deletions. Vincent J. Lipsio (talk) 15:16, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

Asceticism and castration - subheading[edit]

It is surely misleading to have his 'castration', about which the article currently states that there is doubt, paired (in the subheading) with his 'asceticism' which is not held to be similarly doubtful by the article in its current state. (talk) 16:52, 16 November 2014 (UTC)

"Origen in the 1970s"[edit]

This subsection has bloated beyond any usefulness it once had, and its location has become disruptive.

It seems to have started out as a brief (but not brief enough) mention of a theosophist's 1978 claim that Origen believed in reincarnation, a claim popularized by Shirley MacLaine (who has since disappeared from the article), followed by a non-brief-enough counter-claim. Largely through the efforts of User:NickLaz777, it has ballooned to a long argument that Origen really did believe in reincarnation which takes up 10% of the article.

Could somebody who has a sense of the history of this article, and of Origen, please evaluate whether this needs to stay in the article at all. If it does, please move it from its current location. It has very, very little to do with the 1970s and nothing at all to do with "Origen's influence on the later church". — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:40, 12 January 2015 (UTC)

I've deleted it. One Theosophist + a lot of OR = not notable. Mangoe (talk) 19:09, 11 April 2016 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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