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IC_XC

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About IC_XC

  • Rank
    Member
  • Birthday 03/28/1994

Additional Information

  • Biography
    Haven't been on here in years...
    I'm Emily and right now I live in Northern California, but I'm moving back to Missouri soon. I consider myself Orthodox Christian, but I'm struggling to find a good Orthodox church around me. I'm also an aspiring author and I've written three novels so far, all fantasy/adventure books mostly for kids. I'm in college.
  • Location
    The West Coast!
  • Interests
    Writing, reading, playing piano and guitar, vegan food, Thich Nhat Hanh, qi gong, yoga, hiking, visiting caves, the woods, the mountains, the coast, video games, iconography, steampunk, animals, plants...
  • Occupation
    Student
  • Denomination
    Eastern Orthodox Christian
  • Name
    Emily Catherine
  1. IC_XC

    freshmen 15

    I agree! If you're 5'5'' you should try to be gaining a little weight...actually, if you're underweight lots of bad things can happen, like lower lung function and lower immune system function. I'm 5'3'' and 121 pounds, but I have to remind myself that (especially because I have Cystic Fibrosis) I'm at a healthy weight and it'll keep my lungs healthy. But that doesn't mean you have to eat unhealthy food. In fact, since I got really sick with this fatal lung bacteria, I've been figuring out a healthy way to eat without losing tons of weight. I'd say, first and foremost, DRINK ODWALLA DRINKS!! Odwalla is a smoothie/juice company that makes organic, all-natural, no sugar/GMO/preservatives, all-vegan juice drinks that taste really really good! They're 100% juice and come in really awesome flavors like Strawberry C Monster, Mo Beta, Blueberry B, Berries Go Mega, and Mango Tango. They're about 250 calories per bottle, but if you drink 1 a day, you'll get tons of fruit and vitamins PLUS some of your daily calorie intake! (Not all, but some). I drink these things like crazy, and you can find them at pretty much any grocery store. EAT MEAT. In my case, I don't eat much meat at all because it causes inflammation in my lungs. But anyone wanting to get muscle mass and gain a little healthy weight should eat a healthy amount of meat. Too much is bad, but a small bit every now and then is good! Also eat nuts, grains, and soy. They have lots of protein too, not the same kind of protein as meat, but you still need it. Fish is full of Omega-3 fatty acids, which is really good for brain function, heart health, and immune system. Especially eat salmon or tuna. EAT MOSTLY FRUITS AND VEGGIES. You can eat these in lots of tasty ways. I go for Indian food myself, because you can get some awesome lentils and chickpeas in those dishes. I usually make stir fry or chana masala (chickpea curry). Fruits and veggies should be the main part of your diet. But eat lots of them, not just a little. Eat until you're full, and eat regularly. Some good eating tips: Eat sitting up straight and in a comfortable, restful position so that you can digest your food better. Do not drink water (especially cold water) while you're eating, but wait until you're done. Eat slowly, chew your food thoroughly, and don't do anything stressful while you eat. Eat regularly and at set times of the day, and if you're ever hungry, I think you can stand to snack on some fruit/nuts. Here's a good way to think of it: Food is medicine. If you're eating anything fake, processed, full of toxins and preservatives, it's like taking bad medicine. As for exercise, NEVER exercise more than you eat. Your exercise/eating ratio should be equal. Build up muscle by exercising and taking in LOTS of protein, and foods like bananas give you extra energy. Breathe deeply and with your stomach. Don't overwork yourself and only go as far as your body will let you, because otherwise you could hurt yourself. And don't stress about how you look! If you're 5'5'' you should be over 120 to be healthy. Remember that you need fats (good fats), calories, and sugars to survive. Not fake, processed ones, but ones you find in natural foods. And when you put on some weight (healthily, with the right foods and exercise), your complexion starts looking better, your hair looks healthier, and you will feel healthy (trust me), and that's all that matters! If you think you have an eating disorder, I would definitely go to a doctor and ask for help. If not, it's probably good to go see a doctor anyway and discuss your concern about your weight or dieting habits. That was kinda long, sorry about that >_< Hope I helped though! Good luck
  2. I was homeschooled too, so I get this dilemma! XD You know, I got really sick with a lung disease for 3 years and so I had to get really creative with figuring out how to exercise. If you have a Wii, you should SERIOUSLY get Just Dance! I swear that game is a huge workout, and it's like full-body dancing (not like DDR where you just use your feet). Here's another option: There's this website called doyogawithme.com. You can browse the website and watch any yoga video you want for free! And these are like full-length workouts you could buy at a store, all you have to do is pull it up on your computer. And if yoga's not your thing, they've got some other things too. (It probably wouldn't be easy getting a bunch of kids to do yoga though...but we always went to a yoga/art class for kids when we were little, and it seemed okay). If you'd rather go outside, here's what my family did for our PE: We just went to a state park nearby and hiked! If you live someplace where you can find a good hiking spot, that would be awesome. We always hiked for about a mile and then had a picnic or played Frisbee. Plus there's always signing up for dance lessons/martial arts/a sport.
  3. IC_XC

    I wanna die because of daily headaches.

    My younger sister used to get migraines so bad that she had to miss school. It could very well be a migraine if it's happening around the same time every day. But I could be wrong You should definitely go see a neurologist and get a scan of your brain. If nothing is wrong there, and it turns out just to be migraines, I would really suggest acupuncture. That's the only thing that got rid of my sister's migraines. But yeah, I'm no doctor but I know that you first want to make sure that it's nothing serious. If it turns out jut to be a migraine, there's not a lot you can do in the way of medicine, but acupuncture really helps. It could be a side affect of your medication, and actually tons of caffeine is not good for headaches either...except the way it works for my older sister is that, if she doesn't drink enough, she gets a headache. But yeah, go see a doctor if it's getting in the way of your daily routine! That definitely deserves to get looked at.
  4. IC_XC

    Get to know you better

    OOH I've got a good one...I have CF so about 3 years ago, I contracted a fatal lung disease that, for 2 years, came really close to killing me. I was terrified during that entire time because I was switching between good doctors and bad doctors, and I had severe allergic reactions to the only antibiotics that could kill the bacteria. Luckily, within the last year, I found an antibiotic that works and I've been changing my lifestyle/diet. So now I'm doing great, but for a while there I looked like a skeleton O_O It was horrible. Hmm....what's the weirdest dream you've ever had?
  5. So I've got a problem...I have a weird relationship phobia thing Like, if anyone hits on me or even acts SLIGHTLY interested, it just zaps all my energy. I get nervous and even try to avoid that person. I'm 19 and I feel like this isn't normal O_O It's gotten to the point where I almost think I'm asexual (not sexually attracted to anyone). But I don't think that's it...I've had huge crushes before, but all of them never would have worked out. 1: My first big crush was on my old guitar teacher who is 14 years older than me. I knew that would never work. I was like...13 at the time O_O 2: My second big one was on a doctor (or...sorta doctor. He was in medical school, but I saw him along with my doctor). And he was probably way older too, but that's just not even ethical... 3: The third (and worst) one was on a guy named Drew, who acted like he had a huge crush on me, chatted with me every day, flirted with me, and even brought me to prom. As shy as I am, I knew for sure that he liked me and ended up telling him that I liked him. He responded by sending me an email, telling me that he'd rather be friends. I was so hurt and confused, and he's been weird and nasty to me ever since. His mom and brother are nuts. Ever since Drew, I haven't liked anyone. It's gotten way harder for me to, for some reason. I've gone on casual dates with two people (one being my childhood friend, the other some guy from school), but I didn't like either of them. I've never had a boyfriend in my life, and now everyone thinks that there's something wrong with me. I just get scared away by guys who hit on me, and I'd rather have someone I can talk about deep religious stuff with, because that's a big part of my life. So far I haven't met any religious guys. I just don't know what to do!! Part of me wonders if I'm just asking too much. I get along with guys great, and most of my friends are guys. But why am I so weirdly phobic of guys? How can I stop being so shy??
  6. Well, I'm not technically Roman Catholic (I'm Orthodox, which is technically Catholic, but in the East), but I do know some key beliefs the Catholics have. Orthodox beliefs are roughly the same as Roman Catholic ones, with a few differences. One is, of course, the belief that Jesus is God, that he died for our sins, and that he is the bridge that connects all humans to God. Catholics believe that he was, and is, God Himself. Catholics also believe in the Holy Trinity (the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit). They are all God, not separate gods or other forces. The Son proceeds from the Father, and the Holy Spirit proceeds from Him. It's all connected and all one God. Another Catholic belief is the importance of the Virgin Mary (in Eastern Orthodoxy, she is called the Theotokos, or "Mother of God"). Catholics believe that Mary was a very pure, immaculate girl who was chosen to bear Christ. She being the vessel and bearer of God makes her extremely important. In fact, she is believed to be "above the angels", and above even the highest ranks of angels: "More honorable than the cherubim, and beyond compare more glorious than the seraphim." Thus, though she is not worshipped as God is, she is revered and honored more than any saint or angel. Catholics do not pray to her, but ask for her to pray to God for us and help us. Catholics put heavy emphasis on angels. According to them, there are 9 ranks of angels, in this order: Seraphim, Cherubim, Thrones, Dominions, Virtues, Principalities, Powers, Archangels, and Angels. They differ a little in Eastern Orthodoxy, so I'm not sure what the Roman Catholics believe their roles to be. Also, it is the Catholic belief that there is an angel for every planet, star, country, state, town, city, church, house, element, object, river, ocean, person, and so on. There are innumerable angels, and they are always around us. We are born with a guardian angel. Also, Catholics believe in demons, and that the demons are fallen angels who followed Lucifer when he fell from Heaven. St. Michael, the Archangel, threw Lucifer out of Heaven along with 1/3 of all the angels of heaven who sided with him, and those angels became demons. Therefore, Catholics believe in demonic possession or oppression (being under the influence of a demon, but not possessed by it). Catholics also have iconography, but not nearly to the extent that Orthodox Christians do. In Roman Catholicism, icons are holy images of saints, Christ, the Virgin Mary, archangels, and other biblical figures. They are mostly just used for decoration, to remind themselves of God. (MOST) Catholics believe in the infallibility of the Pope. The Pope is given the highest position of honor, and is the leader of the Roman Catholics. Many Catholics believe him to be nearly as important as Christ himself. (In Orthodoxy, we don't believe in the infallibility of any human being, even the Pope. Even though he isn't the leader of our church, we still consider him very important, though not infallible.) Catholics also believe in the soul (of course). Unlike Protestants, who believe each soul is unique and created especially for one person, Catholics believe that the soul is inherited from our parents. Our souls are very connected, then, which is why we are all in the same spiritual condition of imperfection. This is also linked to the Catholic belief of "Original Sin", which is the belief that, since Adam and Eve sinned first, it has put a stain on our own souls and makes us born sinful right at the get-go. This is why Baptism is so important, because it washes away our original sin. The Orthodox Christians have a similar belief, I think. Roman Catholics also have saints. In Roman Catholic tradition, a saint is someone who devoted their entire life to God, the church, and other Christians. They were usually nuns or monks, wrote prayers or translated the Bible to other languages, and did charitable things like contribute money to the church or other causes. When the Church split around 1000 years ago (when the Roman Catholics separated from the Eastern Orthodox), suddenly Catholic saints were different from Orthodox ones. Orthodox saints were always people who devoted their entire lives to God, and were so immersed in spiritual life that they were sometimes able to miraculously heal people or perform other miracles. These people could have been nuns or monks, teenage girls, mothers, ex-prostitutes, old men, kings, beggars, or even kids. But the funny thing is, before the Church split, all the saints were the same, so some Orthodox saints are also Catholic saints. Like St. Catherine of Alexandria (my patron saint!) XD All of the above are beliefs held by Roman Catholics and Orthodox alike (with some variations), so below are purely Roman Catholic beliefs. I'll describe them as best as I can (I've been to Catholic schools and had Catholic curriculums, so I think it should work out...) Catholics believe in Purgatory, a "waiting place" that we go to when we die. Because we will only be judged once, when Christ comes again, we cannot be placed definitely in heaven or definitely in hell, because we are not judged yet. Therefore, we are placed in Purgatory, which can either be pleasant or unpleasant depending on whether we've led virtuous lives. We will stay in Purgatory until Christ's second coming, and then we will be judged and placed into either heaven or hell. Orthodox Christians don't believe in Purgatory, but we believe that if, after 40 days of our death, we still have a strong faith in God and resist all traps and temptations, we will remain in a heavenly place that is meant to be like a taste of what heaven will be like one day. So I guess it's similar to Purgatory, but it's complicated and takes forever to explain O_O Again, Catholics believe in the infallibility of the Pope. Catholics believe in a place called "Limbo", where all unbaptized children will end up when they die. Limbo is not heaven or hell, but an in-between place where they can never come out. An older Roman Catholic belief (that may or may not still be around) is that all unbaptized babies will go to hell. This used to be true for children also, until the concept of Limbo came around. Orthodox Christians don't believe in either of these things. There's something about the "Sacred heart of Jesus"...I have no idea what it's about. You should find out O_O Roman Catholics believe that the only way to get to heaven is through Baptism, and that anyone who is unbaptized will automatically go to hell. I'm pretty sure that's it...I think. Like I said, I'm not Roman Catholic so I'm not sure if I covered everything. I'd say, in response to your question, if you believe the basic ideas (the Holy Trinity, the importance of the Virgin Mary, and the concept of angels and souls), you're probably Catholic. I know lots of Catholics who don't believe in Limbo, unbaptized children going to hell, or the infallibility of the Pope. I'd say the Holy Trinity and the Virgin Mary are the biggest ones. But hey, if you ever want to know about Orthodoxy, I'm pretty knowledgeable about that! XD Hope I helped a little!
  7. IC_XC

    Stuck in a terrible situation

    Hey! I completely know what you're going through, and I can tell you pretty confidently that you're not screwed. I feel the exact same way towards those sorts of Christians, and it discourages me constantly. I have a ton of reasons for thinking why they are the way they are, but I'm Orthodox so we're typically very Eastern-minded. I think that there are too many churches that have become "Westernized". I don't mean that in an offensive way, and I've been to plenty of non-denominational churches, cowboy churches, and Protestant churches that have been really good. But I agree when you say that too many Christians act "fake" or off in some way. You don't really find that depth or connection in many "Westernized" churches, and typically you lose the whole spiritual aspect of the religion in favor of simple sermons and rock bands and such. Again, I'm not saying that's necessarily bad. For some people, those things are good for them. But people like you who don't like the whole "Jesus is mah buddy" thing, I can understand where you're coming from. It just seems like there's something missing. I think the term "religious" has become really screwed up too. Nowadays, "religious" means strict, stuck-up, somber, girls in prairie dresses taking care of their men, and bible-thumping, hateful, intolerant people who say you'll go to hell unless you're Christian (or worse, if they're not a part of their denomination). But what does religious really mean when it's applied to Christianity? Let's look at what "Christian" means: It means a "follower of Christ." That means that not only do we believe that Jesus was God and that he died for our sins, bridging the gap between humanity and God, but we also FOLLOW what he told us. And what was the most important thing he said for us to do? To love God with all our hearts and minds, and to love our neighbor with all our hearts and minds. To treat everyone equally and with love, to never be disrespectful or "fake", and to treat everything as sacred. That doesn't mean having a fake, smiling-all-the-time, forming cliques in church attitude where everything is sugar-coated and "life will be easy and I'll get whatever I want now because I have Jesus." Sadly, that happens, but it's not the religion that does it. Human beings are human beings, and whenever you have a big group of them, things can go either way. Many people confuse human beings with the religion, and so they say "Christians are so hateful," or, "Christians are so close-minded." But those are the people, not the religion. The most important thing to do is to separate the people's attitudes, faults, and opinions from the true, real teachings of Christ. And Christ taught deep love for everyone, mindfulness in the present moment (think like the Buddhists view "mindfulness", it's the same concept. Christ told us to only be concerned with today and what's happening right now, and to "let tomorrow take care of itself."), peace, and deep spiritual connection through prayer and meditation on His teachings. As long as you treat everyone with love, respect, and peace, and as long as you love God and believe in Christ, technically you ARE a religious Christian. BUT, having said that, all Christians go through ups and downs in their faith. That's because we have free will: it's ultimately our choice whether we accept God or not, and even after we've become Christian, we can still go back and forth between believing and sort of believing. That happens to every Christian who ever lived, and it's okay, it's not bad. There's a prayer in Orthodoxy that includes the words "help my unbelief": it's a known fact that human beings are not perfect, and that we will never be perfect until we die, and even then we'll never be as perfect as God. The important thing is that, when you catch yourself feeling "blah" about your faith, you just pray and ask for help. I agree, I can't stand that whole fake happy attitude either. I think it's because every one of us goes through our own personal spiritual journey, and we all have different experiences and God reaches us in different ways. There is no cookie-cutter "religious experience", and packing hundreds of people into a mega church will not be spiritually fulfilling. Yes, church is important, and Communion is especially important, but you have to always come back to yourself and meditate on your own spiritual condition. But there ARE people and churches that aren't "fake" or "wishy-washy", so I promise it's not the religion itself. You just need to find the right people to talk to you about it. Also, even if you can't separate from the people who might be holding you back, you should always surround yourself with people who can talk to you and help you out in spiritual stuff. You can always message me anytime, I'd be happy to talk Dang, that was a long rant...O_O Sorry if that was like a novel-sized explanation there...but yeah, I just think you need some better resources and more people to talk to about this kind of thing. Just message me whenever and if you ever need to talk to someone, I'm always available! PLEASE NO ONE GET OFFENDED...I have strong opinions O_O I've got a mom who's Roman Catholic, a sister who's non-denominational, and three other siblings who are I don't know what. No one in my entire family is Orthodox except me and my dad. I think that whatever denomination or church you go to, it should be one that makes you feel comfortable and closest to God. In my experience, I've chosen the Orthodox church. For someone else, it might be the cowboy church. I don't know. As long as people remember to love each other, that's all that matters.
  8. hmmm...well, I say the best way is to pray for your friends a whole ton. Prayer is powerful like that. But I know that I, personally, am very open about my religion. Since I'm Orthodox, a lot of people don't know what that is, so I find myself explaining things like Pascha (Easter) to my Muslim friends, agnostic friends, Hindu friends, and Buddhist friends. The best thing you can do besides praying is just being very open about your religion, just not being ashamed or shy about it. Having said that, human beings don't respond well to being force-fed someone else's religious beliefs. I think that as long as you act Christian (loving, compassionate, peaceful, and humble), pray for your friends, and do everything you can to be a good friend, they should see that Christ is in you. And if it ever gets to a time when your friends wonder about God, and think deeply about existence and such (believe me, everyone goes through that at some point), I'd suggest to them a copy of C.S. Lewis' "Mere Christianity." That book made ME believe in God more, and I've been Christian all my life. I think the bottom line is, pray for them constantly, behave like a Christian should around them, don't be ashamed to voice your opinions about Christianity, and help them out if they ever have questions. They'll definitely notice. But whether they choose to accept God into their hearts is up to God: all you can do are the things I've said. But their souls are ultimately in God's hands, and He will reveal Himself to them eventually. Do all you can, pray for them always, and God will do the rest, believe me
  9. I'm very sorry for your losses...don't give up!! I understand about having to put up with people like your psychology teacher, my English teacher last semester kept going on about how Creationism is "spiritual nonsense" and all that...but yeah, the best thing for you to do is to pray, and it's a good idea to join a Christian youth group type place where you can be surrounded by other Christians. Believe me, that alone is really uplifting! I'll pray for you too.
  10. IC_XC

    EVERYONE. Read this article!

    LOVE this!! Ack, I always have this problem...>_< most of my friends are guys, and I tend to get along with guys better for some reason, and I'm completely platonic, non-flirtatious (I don't think I know how O_O), totally average and just plain polite. But somehow a lot of guys take that to mean that I want to date them. NO...I'M JUST YOUR BUDDY, MAN. I almost never get crushes on people as it is. Honestly, I've only gone on a couple casual dates, but never actually had a boyfriend...this article is awesome.
  11. IC_XC

    Ask A Girl.

    Hey, so I saw that someone had made an "ask a guy" thread, so I thought, why not? Anything you want to know about girls, I (and whatever girl wants to answer) will answer to the best of my ability
  12. LOL I was homeschooled too, but I never had that problem...I DID go to a homeschool group though, and one day I heard one of the kids say "What's a Twinkie?" I felt like a piece of me died...O_O lol but oh well...
  13. IC_XC

    I'm SUCH a fair-weather Christian!

    Hey! Oh yeah, totally. I think lots of people do. You've got the attention of the Orthodox woman, so here we go...LOL. Anyway, yeah, I think that everyone goes through exactly that. No one stays perfectly Christian forever, and I believe it's because human beings have free will. We can choose to accept God or not, or else we would be Christian forever or atheist forever, and that would be that. But we know that's not how life works. No one is destined to be, say, agnostic for the rest of their lives because it's God's will. No, God wants us all to be close to him, but WE have to make that choice. And because we have free will, our faith goes through this roller coaster of ups and downs. Sometimes we feel so emotionally moved by God and we're very spiritual, and then other times we just feel "bleh". God isn't going to judge you for having these "bleh" times. The important thing is just to keep coming back to God, even when you don't feel like it. THAT's what really matters Plus, if you're concerned about your lifestyle or "ways", I would suggest meditation as one thing you could do. A lot of people think meditation involves emptying your mind, but that's not true. Even the Orthodox church uses meditation. All you have to do is sit in a comfortable position, sit up straight, and close your eyes. Take slow, deep breaths, and first what you do is count your breathing. But remember to focus hard on it, and don't let your mind wander or get emptied. Once you've gotten into a good meditative state, you can start praying. In the Orthodox church, we pray the Jesus Prayer during meditation. "O Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner." (Or the shortened version: "O Jesus, have mercy on me.") When you get to "O Lord Jesus Christ", take a long deep breath in. When you get to "have mercy on me, a sinner," you breathe out. You can focus on anything, but we always focus on our hearts. That's it! That meditation can be done any time of day, anywhere, and soon you can catch yourself at a free moment saying the prayer. I know it's not for everyone, but if you ever want to do a "Christian meditation exercise", this is it. I do it all the time, and it's really calming and brings my focus back to God. I'll pray for you too!
  14. IC_XC

    Ask an Eastern Christian

    Hey, I'm Eastern Orthodox too!!! Maybe I can answer those questions up there. Technically, Orthodox Christians DO believe in original sin. The reason is because of the condition of our souls: Western Christians tend to believe that their souls are unique and were created just for them, but the Orthodox believe that our souls are passed down to us, so that they're deeply connected to every other soul there is. Like, we inherit our souls, and while they're still technically ours, they're connected to our parents, and theirs are connected to their parents, and so on. Because our first parents were Adam and Eve, our souls are ultimately connected to theirs, too. Thus, we DO believe in original sin, because this is the same concept that the Roman Catholics have. Now about your next question...well, I know a big one is the veneration of icons. An icon, as you probably know, is a holy image of Christ, the Theotokos (Virgin Mary), the saints, or the archangels. They can be painted on a lacquered wooden slate, or sometimes inlaid with gold or silver. Western Christians seem to think that we're worshipping pictures, and even Roman Catholics (while they still have icons) only think of them as pictures, nothing more. But you have to understand that we don't WORSHIP the icons, we venerate them. In church, before we take our seats, we go up and kiss each icon, cross ourselves and bow three times, and then go to our places (usually we have no seats in church). We don't ask the icons for protection, for forgiveness, or for any special help at all. We treat them with great respect, since they're images of holy people or angels. But we never say "Icon of St. Marina, I give myself up to your care...please forgive me and save me, a sinner." Nope. We don't even say "O Icon of Christ, protect me..." because the icon is not Christ, it's just an image of him. We don't pray TO the icon, but rather, we USE to icon to pray. We could kiss an icon of Christ, and then bow our heads and pray to him, then kiss the icon again when we're done. It's more like a way to show our respect, and actually iconography is quite an art. Icons, in the home, are put on the Eastern wall and usually have a candle burning under them, but it's not to worship the images. It's more like saying, "Hey, I know you guys. I respect you guys. I want to be reminded of your presence in my life every day." I've got all my icons in my room where I can see them whenever. It's just like a reminder to pray, and that God is always there
  15. IC_XC

    Why Do Catholics Pray To Mary?

    I'm not Roman Catholic, but I am Eastern Orthodox, and they're very similar. We don't pray to anyone but God (and Christ, because he is God). That has always been the rule right there, never to worship anyone but God. What we're doing when we say our "Hail Marys" (or a Troparion to the Theotokos, as we call it) and other prayers that include her, we aren't worshipping her, but revering her. We count the Theotokos (Mary) as extremely important, above the angels. However, we STILL don't worship her, since she isn't God. But we do ask her to pray to God for us, or ask for her intercession (help) in God's name. Because the Theotokos is the Mother of God, she is counted (in the Catholic and Orthodox churches) as above the angels, above the saints, and above the martyrs, but she is still not equal to God, and so even though she's very important, she is not worshipped. If you listen to the Hail Mary prayer that the Roman Catholics use, "Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art though among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of death. Amen." You see? We ask her to pray for us to God, we tell her that "the Lord is with thee", not "the Lord is thee". Basically this prayer points out that she, being the Mother of God, is extremely blessed and deserves our respect. Now, here's a similar prayer from the Orthodox church: "It is truly right to bless you, O Theotokos, ever blessed, and most pure, and the Mother of our God: more honorable than the cherubim, beyond compare more glorious than the seraphim — without corruption you gave birth to God, the Word. True Theotokos, we magnify you!" Again, we see that we are "blessing" her, as in we're showing her great respect and acknowledging her as the Mother of God. She is "more honorable than he cherubim" and "beyond compare more glorious than the seraphim". Those are the two highest ranks of angels, and so we see that she is more "glorious" than even they are. But again, we only ask for her prayers and revere her. There have been cults or periods of Church history in which the worship of Mary had to be eradicated.
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