> Fellow Greeks,
> A week ago a question was raised about the meaning
> of EPIQUMIA. I found an interesting passage in Col. 3:5
> containing this word:
> NEKRWSATE OUN TA MELH TA EPI THS GHS
> PORNEIAN AKAQARSIAN PAQOS EPIQUMIAN
> KAKHN KAI THN PLEONEXIAN......
> (NIV) Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your
> earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil
> desires and greed......
> Now looking at the NIV's translation and the Greek
> there are two different words for lust and evil desires:
> PAQOS and EPITHUMIA KAKHN respectively.
> Which shows quite clearly that there is nothing
> inherently sexual in the meaning of EPITHUMIA.
> Lust is expressed by a different word.
> On another point,
> A friend (History Professor) recently told me about
> how he remembered reading something in Greek
> Philosophy regarding how the ancient Greeks
> viewed homosexuality. Basically the Greeks saw that
> the only way to have true spiritual love was through
> the melding of mind and spirit between two people.
> Since they thought that women didn't have a mind,
> the only way to achieve this kind of love was to meld
> with another male. Apparently the ancient Greeks
> were also quite favourable toward pedofilia.
> I find this quite shocking. My friend couldn't remember
> where he read this so does anyone out there know
> where I could find such references (assuming my friend
> recalled this correctly).
> ZAE hEMERA EX hEMERAS KAI PLOUTE
You'll find these sentiments expressed (though the idea about women not
having minds seems to be an implicit assumption) in Plato's
Symposium. And I think I'm right in saying that this is also the
tenor of the Phaedrus - though it's been a long while since I read the work.
In any case it certainly gives credence to the idea that Paul was ahead
of his time: since women are to him full moral agents (why else does
he address, let alone counsel them, as he does, to choose to subordinate
themselves to their husbands?).