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Word Study: ‘Philotimo’

There is beauty found in all languages, as language does not only allow communication and the conveyance of ideas, but language teaches us how a culture thinks and processes.  The Greek language is among the most rich that mankind has ever seen—perhaps a contributing factor as to why God chose to plant His Church in the Hellenized world!

Let’s focus on one word from the Greek lexicon: “Philotimo”

As many words in the Greek language, they may not be adequately translated into the English language, therefore, these words are most adequately translated through description, and even perhaps through story.  The following is an offered description/explanation of the word “Philotimo” by Elder Paisios of the Holy Mountain…

“‘Philotimo,’ according to Elder Paisios, is the reverent distillation of goodness, the love shown by humble people, from which every trace of self has been filtered out.  Their hearts are fll of gratitude towards God and their fellow men, and out of spiritual sensitivity and sense of honor they try to repay the slightest good which others do for them.”

We should all strive to actualize ‘Philotimo’ in our lives—John Lennon wrote the song, ‘Imagine,’ ...imagine if he knew what “philotimo’ was…

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