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Understanding St Basil of Caesarea’s Reference to Secret and Unwritten Apostolic Tradition in On the Holy Spirit

Understanding St Basil of Caesarea’s Reference to Secret and Unwritten Apostolic Tradition in On the Holy Spirit

John Jebaseelan

Abstract: This paper deals with the reference of St Basil of Caesarea to the apostolic tradition which was passed on “secretly” in his work On the Holy Spirit. It goes on to analyse the interpretations given by Lewis Ayres, De Mendieta, R. P. C. Hanson, G. L. Prestige and Georges Florovsky and concludes that when we translate the word “έν μυστηρίῳ,” following the advice of Florovsky and Prestige, as “by the way of mysteries” and not as “secret” and then understand the concept of “tradition” as dynamic and alive in the church, we can have a fuller understanding of what Basil is trying to convey.