Świat jako otchłań morska. „Saeculum” w nauczaniu św. Hilarego z Poitiers
The world as an abyss of the sea: saeculum in Hilary of Poitiers’ teaching
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Saeculum in Hilary’s teaching is a term applied to mankind remaining under the influence of sin and evil spirits. Drawing on Sacred Scripture, the Bishop of Poitiers compares earthly reality to a stormy and bottomless sea or to the depths of the sea, and describes the way that saeculum works: the mild and gentle breezes of the sea symbolize the cunning activities of heretics and violent storms and tempests correspond to the attacks of pagans and evil spirits. By portraying the world as a sea abyss, the bishop points out the nature of saeculum, filled with dangers to man’s faith. At the same time, he tries to persuade believers to work on themselves and indicates how to deal with saeculum. In Hilary’s teaching, faith matters the most in contact with earthly reality. The proclamation of Christ, as well as fasting and prayer, are all useful for the believer. Hilary clearly shows that saeculum contributes to the spiritual development of man, even though it carries with it many risks.
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