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Divine Motherhood. Bulgakov, Sergei Category: Theotokos …between created and uncreated…

Perfect Deification of Mary
According to Fr. Sergei Bulgakov

The Mother of God is the Holy Spirit manifested in a human hypostasis

As the temple that the Holy Spirit came to inhabit at the Annunciation, She [Mother of God] is the Spirit-Bearer, the transparent human image of the revelation of the Holy Spirit, who, according to His hypostatic property, does not became incarnate but makes incarnate and glorifies. Alone of God's creatures found worthy of being inhabited by the Holy Spirit, She is the human hypostatic image of the Holy Spirit. One can say that, in this sense, She is the Holy Spirit not incarnate but manifested in a human hypostasis. There is no, and can be no, greater and fuller manifistation of the Holy Spirit. Thus, after the ascension of Christ and assumption of the Mother of God, there exists in the heavens, with the "Heavenly Man" (1Cor.15:47-49), a human image of the Holy Spirit, not according to incarnation, which cannot be, but according to a perfect spiritual conformity with Him.

The Mother of God' perfect sanctification and deification

The presence of the Mother of God in heaven corresponds to her perfect sanctification and deification, in which She will be followed by humankind in the glorified Church.

Theotokos' maximal deification is accomplished

According to the Church's belief (which admittedly is not supported by scriptural evidence but which is affirmed as certain by liturgical tradition), the Lord Himself came down from heaven at Her Dormition to receive Her holy soul, to resurrect Her holy body, and to raise Her into heaven for life in communion with Him, and, through Him, with entire Holy Trinity (although, of course, not in the interior of the Trinity). It is there, in heaven, that Her maximal deification is accomplished and the supreme goal of creation, its theodicy, is fulfilled.

The Mother of God abides at the boundary of heaven and creation

The appearance of the Mother of God signifies the beginning of the resurection of the dead, because She, who is resurrected Herself, can appear only to resurrected humankind together with the resurrected Lord (who, though He appeared on earth after resurrection and in a glorified body, did not then yet appear in glory). The abiding of the Mother of God in heaven evidently does not signify the same thing as the presence of the Lord at the right hand of the Father. He abides in the heavens as "One of the Holy Trinity" (as a troparion says), as God in the interior of the Trinity. But since She is a creature, the Most Holy Mother of God does not ascend into this heaven of heavens. Christ faces Her in His humanity. As the highest of all the creatures, She abides at the boundary of heaven and creation. She is the peak of the world, which touches heaven. She is sanctified by the entire power of the Divine Sophia, of the revelation of the Holy Trinity. But She Herself remains the creaturely Sophia. This presence of the Mother of God in the heavens can be defined as the creaturely heaven directly illuminated by the divine heaven.

In the parousia, one therefore finds cojoined in Christ and the Mother of God the manifestation of Divinity itself, of the Divine Sophia, in Christ, and Her manifestation in creation. This attests to the accomplished Divine-humanity, the Incarnation of Christ and the deification of creation. The power of deification is further extended to all creation, which is penetrated by the divine light of transfiguration.

The Mother of God is entirely deified person, the peak of all creation

The great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, the tabernacle of God with men, is insistendly and repeatedly also called the "wife" or "bride of the Lamb": "The marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. And he [the angel] saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb" (Rev.19:7-9). And the angel said, "'Come hither, I will show thee the bride, the Lamb's wife.' And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, having the glory of God" (Rev.21:9-11).
This is the most general and complete revelation that we have of the Church as humanity in Divine-humanity. And if this is the case, then is not the Most Pure Mother of God Herself in Her glory this personal head of the Church, the personal humanity of Divine-humanity? Is She not the Heavenly Jerusalem, which returns to earth from its heavenly home in the parousia of the Mother of God, in order to become here the spiritualized tabernacle of God with men? Is She not Sofia herself, creaturely but entirely deified, the peak of all creation, more venerable than the cherubim and incomparably more glorious than the seraphim? Is She not the glory and the joy of the saved peoples at the marriage feast of the Lamb? Is She not that perfect union of the divine and the human in which all creation, both the angelic choir and humankind, rejoices? She, the Spirit-Bearer, is Spirit and Bride, manifesting in Her very being the image of the hypostatic Spirit of God. And about Her is said in the final words of the New Testament:
     "And the Spirit and the Bride say, Come.
     And let him that heareth say, Come!
     Even so, come, Lord Jesus!"

The Mother of God is not being saved but saves

As the Church in its personal realization the Mother of God is above every sin. She is a perfectly divinized and saved creature. The Mother of God is no longer being saved, for her unconditional salvation was accomplished by the visitation of the Holy Spirit. She is not being saved but saves. Here the particular participation of the Holy Spirit in our salvation is revealed and afterwards, that of the Mother of God, not as a saviour, for there is only one Saviour of the whole human race and of her as well, He about whom she speaks as "God and my Saviour", but as an advocate and intercessor for the human race.

The Mother of God is the praying Church itself in a personal incarnation

The Mother of God does not need prayers for herself, for in her divinized state she possesses everything. As the glory of God and the glory of the world, as the love of God for the world and the love of the world for God put on view, she glorifies God with her prayer. Her proper prayer is doxology, i.e., love pre-eternally being realized, flaming and triumphing in perfect joy — the love of God for Himself in His creation. But the Mother of God, as head and representative of the world and the whole creation, also has a non-proper prayer which in virtue of the stated correlation is also her own prayer, is the prayer of every creature. She provides the wings for this prayer by lifting it to the throne of God, she gives power to this prayer, she is the intercessor, the one who raises her hands to God in high-priestly fashion over the world (oranta) and overshadows the world with her omophorion.

The Mother of God is the praying Church itself in a personal incarnation, in this sense she is the universal Mother, patroness and representative.

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