Brother Augustine

Enigma

Hummingbird
Orthodox Inquirer
Gold Member
That was an awfully long way of admitting that you don’t have evidence. Nice conflation of “removed by clergy” with “no longer a contributor” though, I’m sure nobody will notice that you switched topics after failing to provide evidence for your initial claim.

If the site is run by clergy and you were removed, that means you were removed by clergy.

If you, or any of the people gossiping about me, had reached out privately and asked me to clarify anything - literally anything about any of these topics - I’d have gladly spoken with you. My life is a pretty open book.

I literally quoted your post and asked you a question, three times, and you refuse to answer it.

Anyways, I apologize to Roosh for contributing to the drama here. Obviously this isn't going to go anywhere.
 

Basilus of Moro

Sparrow
Orthodox
I'm really disheartened to see how the once little Orthosphere has been run into the ground, an unfortunate kind of suicide. I worried when I saw it coming into being that it might go a bad way since it had a macho and physically vain spirit, but this was kept in check for awhile - probably, first, by its small size, then by the insanity of COVID, and the more general newness of everything.

I think it's good you've gotten off of that bandwagon, Michael. There's no end to the divisiveness. Really, there is no charity. I don't judge anyone too harshly in that space, nonetheless, since it is exceedingly difficult to avoid falling into vanity.

The one good thing to come out of this drama is that many, even Jay, are saying they will no longer make explicitly "theological" content. I believe that is for the best.

I've never really put anything out there, besides web designs, in the public Orthodox sphere. I don't envy anyone who has.
 

MichaelWitcoff

Hummingbird
Orthodox
I'm really disheartened to see how the once little Orthosphere has been run into the ground, an unfortunate kind of suicide. I worried when I saw it coming into being that it might go a bad way since it had a macho and physically vain spirit, but this was kept in check for awhile - probably, first, by its small size, then by the insanity of COVID, and the more general newness of everything.

I think it's good you've gotten off of that bandwagon, Michael. There's no end to the divisiveness. Really, there is no charity. I don't judge anyone too harshly in that space, nonetheless, since it is exceedingly difficult to avoid falling into vanity.

The one good thing to come out of this drama is that many, even Jay, are saying they will no longer make explicitly "theological" content. I believe that is for the best.

I've never really put anything out there, besides web designs, in the public Orthodox sphere. I don't envy anyone who has.
I have very mixed feelings about all this but ultimately you’re right. I had a great time and we had a great run for a few years there. I know a lot of people have been helped by it. But at the end of the day, some of the fractures that were always there under the surface were bound to split wider and cause problems eventually.

In either case I think its usefulness has largely run its course and moving forward I’m not going to be making content, or joining platforms, with certain types of people. From here on out it will be either solo or collaborations with people who are at higher levels of dispassion.

As for my part, I was under the impression that I was still friends with the makers of this latest hit piece. I described my interactions with them in Montana, which were entirely positive, around 17:20 of my post-event video. The word you used, disheartening, was exactly how it felt to see last week unfold:
 
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Roosh

Cardinal
Orthodox
I don't know what happened with Michael and Patristic Faith, but my logical brain suggested that it's possible for a contributor to leave a site on his own. I don't understand @Enigma why thinking the only way to not post at a site is to be "removed". Many writers of ROK stopped contributing and only a tiny minority were removed. And whether Michael was removed or not, it's absolutely none of our business. It's gossip, especially since it intends to portray someone in a negative light solely to malign him. I'm Michael's friend and have no desire to ask him such specifics (unless he chooses to bring it up on his own).
 
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Lithuanian Bear

Sparrow
Orthodox Inquirer
it's the fast-pacedness and then also places like Dyercord basically don't have vetting. That's good for the weekly debates Jay does, and he has produced much of value, but the community has definitely suffered ever since it moved beyond the 4000 member mark, and many of the cool people migrated away and (from what I hear, I haven't been there for almost a year) it has gotten a little less well spirited than it used to be. That's just the nature of internet celebrity, you attract weirdos and communities age, die off or migrate away.
The Dyercore Cool cats Were not so Cool as you might have remembered them. Those who were actually decent people are actually still in there. Those who could not Sperg out and be Tards. Left. I was in those servers too. They did the Ouroboros thing and in the end ate themselves apart.
 

get2choppaaa

Hummingbird
Orthodox
I know as a fellow layperson... this whole event it's the sort of reason I specifically chose not to put too much attention to what another layperson says. Lots of people using the internet for self aggrandisement....my priest specifically said when I was a catachumen, "watch out for the Orthobros... Most of them are just recent catachumens or new concerts and think their zeal makes them right" not sure if that applies here.

I have a hard time thinking Michael is grifting in any way, I've had positive interactions with him on here privately and through his work and thought his interview with Fr Turbo was excellent... Even made himself aware to work on his passions, something I too struggle with.

So again... Why assume there's fruit to this tree of discord when the person involved has demonstrated themselves to be forthright and honest in spite of failures of ego (we are all human aren't we?)?

I don't much care for Dyer... I could take him or leave him...don't think he's a bad guy, just don't get a lot out of him now... Though i did enjoy his stuff about 5 years ago before he had a cult following (which he does as far as I can tell) . It's my understanding he's got a whole bunch of people who are big into his support who come off a bit more pugnacious than one would expect...but how many people are using that platform to foment themselves into an echo chamber of enemies with in their group (of Orthodox) to purge?

At the end of the day...we need to remember, gossip about our fellow Christians is wrong. Gossip period is wrong. Attacking someone for browny points is wrong. God doesn't care about internet wins.

This whole ordeal seems very convoluted from a casual observers point of view, and something that does not paint our faith in a good light.

Not pointing fingers at anyone just saying... Most of the things people say on the internet WOULD NEVER be said to a person's face. If Michael said these people didn't confront him personally when given the chance very recently.... Then why assume he is lying? Is not their character just as much on trial as his according to the labels being thrown around?
 

Enigma

Hummingbird
Orthodox Inquirer
Gold Member
I don't know what happened with Michael and Patristic Faith, but my logical brain suggested that it's possible for a contributor to leave a site on his own. I don't understand @Enigma why thinking the only way to not post at a site is to be "removed". Many writers of ROK stopped contributing and only a tiny minority were removed. And whether Michael was removed or not, it's absolutely none of our business. It's gossip, especially since it intends to portray someone in a negative light solely to malign him. I'm Michael's friend and have no desire to ask him such specifics (unless he chooses to bring it up on his own).

The falling out came from Michael's bad theology takes, not Bitcoin. When many people, including Fr. Dcn. Ananias, tried correcting him, he lashed out and burnt a bunch of bridges.

It was then that he left/was removed from Patristic Faith and all his articles were deleted. People at Patristic Faith (not just Jay) say he was removed.

However, I still tried to get Michael's side of the story, but he won't confirm nor deny. Though if he did leave over being corrected, it's not all that much better.

It's not gossip for clergy -- or even knowledgeable laymen -- to correct people, especially if it's done in a respectful way. The gossip and the drama is on top, but Michael has contributed to that himself, including in this thread. He just called me a "toll house demon" and I've never spoken to the guy in my life.
 

get2choppaaa

Hummingbird
Orthodox
The falling out came from Michael's bad theology takes, not Bitcoin. When many people, including Fr. Dcn. Ananias, tried correcting him, he lashed out and burnt a bunch of bridges.

It was then that he left/was removed from Patristic Faith and all his articles were deleted. People at Patristic Faith (not just Jay) say he was removed.

However, I still tried to get Michael's side of the story, but he won't confirm nor deny. Though if he did leave over being corrected, it's not all that much better.

It's not gossip for clergy -- or even knowledgeable laymen -- to correct people, especially if it's done in a respectful way. The gossip and the drama is on top, but Michael has contributed to that himself, including in this thread. He just called me a "toll house demon" and I've never spoken to the guy in my life.
Are you Orthodox? or just an inquirer?
 

Lithuanian Bear

Sparrow
Orthodox Inquirer
The falling out came from Michael's bad theology takes, not Bitcoin. When many people, including Fr. Dcn. Ananias, tried correcting him, he lashed out and burnt a bunch of bridges.

It was then that he left/was removed from Patristic Faith and all his articles were deleted. People at Patristic Faith (not just Jay) say he was removed.

However, I still tried to get Michael's side of the story, but he won't confirm nor deny. Though if he did leave over being corrected, it's not all that much better.

It's not gossip for clergy -- or even knowledgeable laymen -- to correct people, especially if it's done in a respectful way. The gossip and the drama is on top, but Michael has contributed to that himself, including in this thread. He just called me a "toll house demon" and I've never spoken to the guy in my life.
Like Hieromonk Felipe Balingit says: We expect perfection from others without expecting perfection from ourselves. We should be intolerant to our own sins and tolerant to other peoples sins. Praying for them so they would find their way to the right path instead of judging incessantly. St.Nektarios when told he is being slandered by his superior said: "May God bless them".

This is pure vitriol in my eyes. If you want drama. You should be watching tv shows instead. People like you would have judged and slandered St. Nektarios and St.Paisios during their life if you were alive at the time for they were slandered heavily.
 

Raskolnikov

Sparrow
Orthodox
The Dyercore Cool cats Were not so Cool as you might have remembered them. Those who were actually decent people are actually still in there. Those who could not Sperg out and be Tards. Left. I was in those servers too. They did the Ouroboros thing and in the end ate themselves apart.
Maybe you know more of the lore than I do, because I was gone for a while. I don't want to name names, but you most likely know the same people that I did. I'm know about my own view, but when I became religious and right wing around '17/'18, many people around me left and/or would claim I was a schizo, so having a couple of smart guys to chat and joke with was really important for me back then. I don't even know if I would blame them for being sperging out sometimes, because Discord sort of gets the sperg out of most people. I still maintain loose contact to some of them. I realize that there was a lot of instability and drama during the covid years, but honestly, many people had difficulty keeping it together during the lockdowns and exclusion period, so I'm reluctant to hold that against anyone. Also, us guys in dissident circles, while being generally smart, are also generally people that are difficult to deal with at times, and that's also something I always try to keep in mind. But you obviously have a point regarding the feedback loops on some of the servers.
What's that about Jay not doing Apologetics anymore? He's still putting out videos, isn't he?

@MichaelWitcoff I think if theres a more nuanced take on everything, you might still want to consider explaining your side of the story here, given that it's halfway public anyway and it could help clearing things up. Kind of sad to hear that the Orthosphere is having problems like that.
 

Lithuanian Bear

Sparrow
Orthodox Inquirer
What's that about Jay not doing Apologetics anymore? He's still putting out videos, isn't he?
Dyer said in his last video that he is done with theology videos because he is has been attacked by schizo people online for years and he is done with that. I myself think that it is more to do with his character and how he deals with situations than about him being attacked.

However I will admit that I have no behind the scenes knowledge of what is happening in his private life.


I like Jay on the whole. As everyone I know in public sphere he has character problems I dislike. However That doesn't mean I am willing to go and make my life's purpose to attack the man and make hour long videos smearing him just because I see fault in him.
A lot of the times he complains that he is being accused of having a cult. Which is understandable considering the zeal with which his fans defend him. In my view instead of feeling the need to defend himself or explaining himself He should show strength and say yes. I am a cult member and lean into it. Because we live in a time where you cannot have any real conversation with the opposition. They have their own agenda that they are pushing and they do not care for the truth. Which is freeing because You know then and there that there is no more need for self explanations to them (That doesn't mean you are free to be ignorant of your own beliefs or be unable to explain them when asked about them/defending them).

Hate Owen benjamin for all his faults (Don't worry I see his pride, his false understanding of theology, Self worship) But at least he understand that there is no debate with those people. So he does his Own thing and he promote great things. It's just that you have to weigh the pros
and cons of following him. For example I dont watch his streams and him talking. However he has great instagram account so I follow that instead.
Long story short. People are children. We are jealous, insecure, greedy, prideful etc. So we like to console ourselves by pointing at other people saying "I know you are but what am I" Instead of just being understand and praying for them.

End of rant that was meaningless and incoherent I guess. hahaha
 

MichaelWitcoff

Hummingbird
Orthodox
@MichaelWitcoff I think if theres a more nuanced take on everything, you might still want to consider explaining your side of the story here, given that it's halfway public anyway and it could help clearing things up. Kind of sad to hear that the Orthosphere is having problems like that.
I spoke with my priest at length about this yesterday, explaining my desire to follow the saintly path of silent endurance while also not wanting people to be scandalized by hearing these things about me without an explanation or response. Without hesitation he encouraged me to not respond, explain, defend myself, etc. He has been through something similar and said that it was the “best time of his life” spiritually.

Thank God for true pastors and shepherds! As a result of his guidance, I am not going to defend myself in any public way from these accusations. People who have reached out privately with questions have gotten those questions answered, but I will not respond to accusations. God is using my accusers to help teach me to love my enemies, and my priest told me to fear praise much more than insults.

Glory to God for all things!
 

Raskolnikov

Sparrow
Orthodox
Thank God for true pastors and shepherds! As a result of his guidance, I am not going to defend myself in any public way from these accusations. People who have reached out privately with questions have gotten those questions answered, but I will not respond to accusations. God is using my accusers to help teach me to love my enemies, and my priest told me to fear praise much more than insults.
Ok, fair enough, sounds like reasonable advice. It can be an endless spiral anyway with internet communities. May the Lord guide you through it.
 

MichaelWitcoff

Hummingbird
Orthodox
Michael's bad theology takes
As far as I’m aware, my only two “bad theology takes” since becoming a serious inquirer were things that I later changed my mind about.

The first is that, as an inquirer, I was not yet a Trinitarian and argued about this with people on Facebook. The Wesleyan parish I’d been attending when I discovered Orthodoxy was very light on dogmatics and didn’t really seem to care much about what theology a person believed in, at least in the young adult services I was attending. Obviously, by the time I became an Orthodox catechumen I had accepted the Trinity as correct.

The other is that, post-Baptism, I did not believe in the aerial tollhouses for a while. I rejected the concept based, in retrospect, largely on the way the idea was being poorly presented. I think I was right to reject the caricature of the tollhouses that I was initially told, but a Priestmonk Kosmas video explained the proper understanding of the tollhouses and after that I saw nothing to disagree with.

Beyond those previous mistakes I’m not aware of any beliefs I hold that go against what the Church teaches, and nothing has been brought to my attention by my spiritual father or any priest I’ve spoken with. If I do still have theological errors lurking around in my mind somewhere, you’re welcome to point out what they are so that I may correct the errors and be more fully Orthodox.
 

Tardynox

Sparrow
Orthodox Inquirer
Maybe you know more of the lore than I do, because I was gone for a while. I don't want to name names, but you most likely know the same people that I did. I'm know about my own view, but when I became religious and right wing around '17/'18, many people around me left and/or would claim I was a schizo, so having a couple of smart guys to chat and joke with was really important for me back then. I don't even know if I would blame them for being sperging out sometimes, because Discord sort of gets the sperg out of most people. I still maintain loose contact to some of them. I realize that there was a lot of instability and drama during the covid years, but honestly, many people had difficulty keeping it together during the lockdowns and exclusion period, so I'm reluctant to hold that against anyone. Also, us guys in dissident circles, while being generally smart, are also generally people that are difficult to deal with at times, and that's also something I always try to keep in mind. But you obviously have a point regarding the feedback loops on some of the servers.
What's that about Jay not doing Apologetics anymore? He's still putting out videos, isn't he?

@MichaelWitcoff I think if theres a more nuanced take on everything, you might still want to consider explaining your side of the story here, given that it's halfway public anyway and it could help clearing things up. Kind of sad to hear that the Orthosphere is having problems like that.
No wonder it's called Discord, but a lot of those big platforms are all crap anyways. I do use Discord fairly often but it's mainly just in small communities. I find Discord being somewhat of a headache to use nowadays too because of a lot of fancy bot stuff and all these annoying colours/animated things. Better to just stick to healthy forums like these for any talks.
 

Lithuanian Bear

Sparrow
Orthodox Inquirer
No wonder it's called Discord, but a lot of those big platforms are all crap anyways. I do use Discord fairly often but it's mainly just in small communities. I find Discord being somewhat of a headache to use nowadays too because of a lot of fancy bot stuff and all these annoying colours/animated things. Better to just stick to healthy forums like these for any talks.
You wouldn't think that a platform called discord would bring Discord between people hahahaha How paradoxical !!!!!!!
 

Tardynox

Sparrow
Orthodox Inquirer
You wouldn't think that a platform called discord would bring Discord between people hahahaha How paradoxical !!!!!!!
Wonder about the minds of the people behind the naming choice, as far as I am aware it's mainly just ((())) who lead the company, as well as the fact that it's mainly built on (((venture capital and investments))). But whatever, let's not derail the thread too much.
 

quilter

 
Banned
Orthodox
The other is that, post-Baptism, I did not believe in the aerial tollhouses for a while. I rejected the concept based, in retrospect, largely on the way the idea was being poorly presented. I think I was right to reject the caricature of the tollhouses that I was initially told, but a Priestmonk Kosmas video explained the proper understanding of the tollhouses and after that I saw nothing to disagree with.

For anyone interested and who is perhaps unclear on tollhouses I'd suggest St Theodora's account as a very good starting point. It provides a good structure for confession, and the need to confess.

 
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