Armodoxy for Today: Fires and Peace
The journey to and through Armodoxy is paradoxical, it is rather simple to understand but difficult to implement, above all, it requires an open mind. Stories, clichés, phrases, and general conversations are filled with idioms that are seldom questioned or explored. Instead, we repeat them as part of an unbridled conversation. An open mind is necessary to dispel some of our skewed understandings of life, how we live and how we interact with the Divine. For instance, when we say, “They spilled the beans” we mean they gave away a secret and not that they were clumsy with pinto or fava varieties of beans. The expression, “Under the weather” has nothing to do with rain, sleet, or snow, rather it is a way of saying a person is feeling ill. There are thousands of these expressions that have made their way into daily conversations.
Some of these expressions have been repeated so often that they obstruct our reasoning capabilities so much so that we think of them as truths or axioms. For instance, the expression, “You fight fire with fire,” means to fight against an opponent by using the same methods or weapons that the opponent uses. However, if we think about it for a moment, we quickly understand that fighting fire with fire only makes the fire bigger! And so, if we use the same tactic an opponent uses on us, the “bigger fire” is the necessary kindling for war.
Armodoxy comes from Armenia, a land and people that have fought fire with water. Many times, the water supply hasn’t been adequate, but still, we understand the best way to fight fire is not with more fire, but with water. This model, for a land and people that have been attacked and killed by barbarians. They have witnessed the rape and pillage of their country and people, and yet, they have survived and dare to talk about peace… lasting peace.
When looking at the conditions of our world today, I realize that I have no other alternative but to talk about Armodoxy as a necessary way of life, especially today.
Jesus says,” You have heard that it was said, “An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.” But I say to you, do not resist an evildoer. But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also; and if anyone wants to sue you and take your coat, give your cloak as well; and if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile.” (Matthew 5:38f)
This is a much tougher solution than fighting fire with fire, but as the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “If we do an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, we will be a blind and toothless nation.”
The world is playing with fire and we’re only fanning and fueling the fire at an unprecedented rate. Armodoxy demands that we have an openness of mind, and a sense of reason to see the ends apart from the means. To understand that that the end is, and must be, peace.
Let us receive the blessing from our Lord Jesus Christ, by praying His words,
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the [a]earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. (Matthew 5:3-9)
Cover Photo: Gregory Beylerian, 2023