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Trinity, the definition of concepts —
as presented for non-Christians

Daniel Alievsky, a jew; in cooperation with Andrew Ivanchenko, an Orthodox
Translated by Michael Iazovsky

In the debate and discussion of the Trinity of God between Jew and Orthodox usually lies an abyss of incomprehension. How is it possible to explain a Jew that Christians do not believe in three, but in One God? I witnessed one such debate on one well known Christian forum. The result of this conversation was the attempt to understand the doctrine of the Trinity of God in quite short but laconic article written by Daniel Alievsky and Andrew Ivanchenko. In this article, they quite correctly and accurately, in accessible for non-Christian form of language presented the doctrine of the Orthodox Church about God, the Creator, Who by His Word and Spirit created all visible and invisible world. As it is written by the prophet: By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth (Ps. 33:6). His Word can not be finite and limited — the Word of God is without beginning, and It is God Himself. The Spirit, who comes into the world and gives life to all, can not be finite and created, but His spirit — it is the God Himself. I hope this article by Daniel and Andrew will shed some light and give a proper understanding of the Christian faith, understanding of the fact that Christians believe that God is One.
Victor Pasechniuk, an Orthodox priest

You shall not bear false witness against thy neighbor.

Exodus 20:16


Statement of the problem

Today's de facto situation is that none of the world religions is the only one on the planet. Even Christians, the largest religious denomination (if you add together all the Christian denominations) covers only 20-30% of humanity. And I think that today the time is ripe for different faiths to understand each other.

I'm not talking now about some large-scale problems or about deep understanding, cooperation, mutual learning, and such things. I'm talking about the minimum task: at least to have a rough idea, what exactly others believe in. The purpose is to have at least a minimal, but more or less an adequate idea about it. Not to agree or disagree, not to believe in the same thing and maybe not to believe at all — because first of all we're talking about adult men who have suffered their beliefs through their own experience, we are talking about world views that maintain credibility for their faithful for many centuries. All I mean is just to make an attempt to understand.

In this article it is impossible to go into a detailed review of the situation, so in this case please take a word: virtually there is no any understanding between Jews and Christians today, despite the fact that from a “naive” standpoint that these are “two very close to each other denominations” (approximately 80% of the Holy Scripture of Christians is both the Holy Scripture of Jews). In fact, things that can be heard from Jewish believers about Christian faith in the Hypostases and the Trinity are very far away from Christianity and more reminiscent of some kind of variations on the theme of Greek mythology. Conversely, some things that Christians say about the Jewish faith are usually very far from Judaism and often resembles rather a kind of shamanism.

However — and this is very good and very important thing — those Christians who are really interested in Jewish faith and regard it positively, yet often have a fairly adequate idea of ​it's fundamentals.

Unfortunately the same can not be said about Jews when they speak about Christian faith — (including even great thinkers such as Maimonides, or modern Jewish scholars actively working with the Christian world, such as Dr. Pinchas Polonsky) — more than often the result is something fundamentally different from Christianity and radically contradicts it. Also the same things take place among the members of the other faiths and philosophies, different from Christianity, including atheists. In fact, instead of a real understanding of Christians and their faith, there are various rumors and even practically myths that often can be heard in non-Christian environment. Here are the most common ones:

Some of these myths, for example, myth of tritheism, and the deification of man, in fact, put on Christians “stigma” of polytheists and even idolaters. From the viewpoint of the believers of other monotheistic religions (Jews and Muslims) it makes things extremely difficult not only for understanding, but even for communication with Christians at all, for idolatry is sharply condemned by God. And even when Christians claim that in fact they are also prohibited from the idolatry, it simply often does not help the situation — because they (Jews and Muslims) just don't believe them. For the “secular” people, including staunch atheists, these myths, as minimum, create a completely false impression of Christianity as about kind of polytheism, that is also unlikely to be called the normal situation.

Other myths, such as the myth of God and His helpers (which is not uncommon today among the Jews), even provide better attitude to Christianity in some ways, though, does not improve the situation in general, because sometimes a good attitude, based on the illusion of understanding, even is more dangerous than the initial rejection.

The reason why the whole situation has become like that is transparent enough: Christianity has never set itself the goal to explain their faith to non-Christians. Of course, priests and pastors have always communicated with non-Christians, but the goal always was quite different — to persuade them to accept the Christian faith, to bring to God and to save their souls. After all, an audience of Christians, as a rule, were pagans, who were true idolaters, and who in the time of Jesus Christ formed the vast majority of humanity. But with the God's help Christianity learned how to cope with that task quite well. And we have to admit that in today's world, largely due to the efforts of Christians, the real paganism with all its primitive idols is almost gone.

However, the essence of the Christian faith, and especially its difference from other religions, in the primary dialogue with the gentiles as a rule was not even discussed. The main purpose was to save the people who dwelled in the darkness of demonic cults and to lead them to the belief in one God. At that time it was simply not up to all these nuances of dogma. Only later, if a person became a Christian, he had a whole life ahead to study theology and reverently try to understand what is the Trinity and the divinity of Jesus. But this was done not by all Christians, but by very few — usually by monks and priests. In such a way, were developed exact and almost mathematically precise philosophical formulas that describe the fundamentals of the faith, formulas which were discussed and properly understood only by those few. On the basis of these formulas were built the Articles of Faith and catechisms of major Christian denominations.

Today, in the era of universal literacy, these formulas are known for non-Christians too. Moreover, the Christians, as a rule, with certain enthusiasm expound basis of their faith to non-Christians, and use the classic formulas for this (though, often distorting the formulas to the best of their own education — because it is actually a real top theology, it's quite easy to go wrong here for common people). But the problem is that non-Christians totally fail to understand the language in which these formulas are usually set out! Besides that they do not have experience of those many years, which is necessary for studying the system of concepts of Christian theology, they even have no desire to delve into it, unless they are not going to convert to Christianity themselves.

The situation is also aggravated because of seeming clarity of Christian texts. For indeed, Christianity is a world religion, and basic Christian doctrines presented in all the languages of the world, so the words of the native language are presented in terms of the potential non-Christian listener or reader. If you try to read, say, the basics of Hinduism but you are not a Hindu, you will certainly face with specific vocabulary — as a rule, non-transferable concepts of Sanskrit language, and here it's better to be cautious in judgments — because it is clear that many things are just incomprehensible. However, in the case of Christianity, there is no such barrier: any words, at first glance, are clear and understandable. Though this “understanding” is usually about the same level as the idea of naive non-mathematician about square root of minus one (√−1) as about the square root of some exotic plant.

As a result, the myths appear, of which we have spoken above. And this results binary situation: the human race is divided into those who have accepted Christianity or going to accept it, and all the others (i.e. 70–80%), who absolutely do not understand Christianity or “understand” it in exactly opposite way.

In this article I want to try to offer at least a preliminary attempt to solve the problem. In particular, I want to raise and consider a possible solution to the following problem: a definition of the concept of the Trinity which is understandable for typical non-Christian (hereinafter Definition).

By definition I mean the text that can be read by anyone who has the standard (for the “civilized” countries) level of education of “secular” school and can draw up, even though not perfect, but more or less adequate understanding of this concept that is free of blunders. It is assumed that this person is far from Christianity and has no idea about its categories, such as God, HYPOSTASIS, nature of God, Spirit, the incarnation, the divine will, etc. In such a way this text can not be based on same or similar concepts or should preface the basic definition of a precise definition of these concepts. By the way, it may very well be that the reader of the text believes in God, but we can't be certain that his concept of “God” is identical to the Christian concept of “God”, because it's probably not the case. Therefore, even this concept can't be used without prior definition.

And as to additional conditions of the problem: definitions should not exceed a few pages of the book of usual format. (If the explanation of some of the concept is much too long, in 99% of cases, this suggests a very low way of explanation, that is the failure of the attempt itself.) However, easing of some requirements is allowed in some ways. That is, the text definitely has the right to refer to the other classical texts available in the free disposal. For example, if it is necessary, it may be required to carefully read the Gospel before you start to read the Definition. But here it is necessary to put the restriction: for period to get acquainted with such an “additional literature” should be enough, say, a month. I mean that of course we can not require the reader to enter the Faculty of Philosophy and study there for 4 years, and to learn how to operate the necessary philosophical categories. And finally, one more indulgence: we can recommend the reader to get acquainted with a specific language (Hebrew, Greek, Latin, etc.). Of course, not at the level of fluency, but at least to have the opportunity to arm themselves with textbooks, dictionaries, online translators, interlinear, linguists commentaries, and then letter by letter, word by word to study the text of a relatively small, say, about a couple of pages A4. For today's average educated person, in my experience, quite a few months of hard work usually are quite enough to reach that level. But, of course, it's better do without it, at least for the initial understanding of the Definition it should not be absolutely necessary.

Though I must say that the problem is not simple. Moreover, in well-known Christian literature (the text of the New Testament, “An Exact Exposition of the Orthodox Faith” of Damascene, “Summa Theologiæ” of Thomas Aquinas, contemporary Christian books and articles), this problem has not been solved, and the evidence is mentioned above: the complete lack of understanding among the Jews — including those who are very respectful of Christianity and have one or even two degrees of higher education, who also have read Christian literature, and really tried to comprehend the Christian faith.

However, although it is a difficult task I'm sure that it can be solved. And as a first attempt, I want to offer one way of solution to this problem — the result of our collaboration with the Orthodox Christian Andrey Ivanchenko who agreed to cooperate in the development of appropriate language, which is comprehensible for non-Christians as well. Of course, this is the first attempt, and I hope that the other Jews and Christians will agree to continue this work getting in the end a set of popular literature (instead of those myths about Christianity, which are popular in today's world), which allows any non-Christian for the foreseeable future to familiarize oneself in general terms with the true essence of the Christian doctrine.

The Definition of the Trinity

So, here is a version of the definition of the Trinity. The terms which are introduced in the course of definition are marked with CAPITAL letters, and all other words are have to be understood as the usual concepts of natural language in the conventional sense.

In this text, I deliberately avoid excessively frequent use of some traditional Christian expressions to cause as little as possible of unnecessary associations with those possible misperceptions that the readers may have already adhere to. For the same reason, for God I will use the word HASHEM. This is the “blueprint” with the term Hebrew השם, literally meaning "the Name" and used to refer to God in the Hebrew language instead of the usual Holy Name Tetragrammaton.

The beginning of the Definition

Christians believe in HASHEM, the Creator of the Universe. He made the whole material universe, known to us, as well as all the things in the world that we still don't know. Simply, He created everything. He is absolute, there is no one prior to Him and who is more simple or more fundamental than Him. HASHEM is absolutely simple, structureless and One in every sense.

Those readers who trust modern scientific knowledge have right to consider the known physical universe created by HASHEM as the emergence of the “cosmic egg”, the explosion of which (starting around the middle of XX century) is traditionally called the “Big Bang”. In any case, everything that happens in the universe happens by the will of HASHEM, under control of HASHEM and according to the general plan of HASHEM and the laws of nature, laid by HASHEM — thus HASHEM continues to create the universe. In particular, according to the will of HASHEM, galaxies, stars and planets, including the Solar System were created of matter. HASHEM created life and our human soul, which according to Christian faith is immortal and what in addition to our mortal human body is called “Self”. In this case, the souls of people are created in the likeness of HASHEM Himself, and this likeness lies in a kind of intellect: we just like HASHEM Himself are also reasonable beings. (The word “people” here means, at least, all representatives of modern mankind, in respect of prehistoric apes or possible inhabitants of other star systems, though, of course we can't have exact information about it.) During historical times HASHEM revealed Himself to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and later to Moshe (Moses) and gave the Torah to the Jewish people at the Mount Sinai — in the way as it is described in the first two books of the Bible — Genesis and Exodus. Further books of the Bible truthfully describe the acts of HASHEM and His dialogue with people. Tanakh, or Old Testament of the Bible (in the original language, that is, in Hebrew) uses a number of other names to refer to HASHEM — Tetragrammaton “Yud-Hey-Vav-Hey” (in English language traditionally translated as “Lord”), “Elohim”, “The God of Hosts” (in English translations are usually “[Lord of] hosts”), “El”, “El Elyon,” “El Shaddai”. Although all of these names have different styling (indicating different attributes of HASHEM), they are exact synonymous, in the sense that they represent (call) only HASHEM but not anyone else.

Reference to the literature is advisory only. If the reader wants to understand the concepts of HASHEM and His acts in better way, it is useful to read the first five books of the Bible (the Pentateuch). In this case, the most accurate representation the reader will get when using one of the modern translations, made by Jewish translators, which is nearly verbatim (though, of course, it is better to read it directly in the original language, i.e. Hebrew).

HASHEM is the only One. There are not any others like Him. He, of course, is endlessly different from us, far more unlike than those of His creations such as black holes, or quasars. But in the following fundamental aspects we are confident enough to describe Him in rather more usual conceptions as follows:

From all that has been said above it follows that Christian faith quite accurately coincides with the Jewish faith. And now here we have the following feature of the Christian faith, that differentiates the Christians from the other denominations.

Christians believe that HASHEM exists as three HYPOSTASIS OF GOD — A, B, C (see below for an explanation of the phrase “exists as three”). The expression “HYPOSTASIS OF GOD” is a special term for these three A, B, C; for brevity will be used one word “HYPOSTASIS”. According to Christian tradition, A is named “THE FATHER” or “GOD THE FATHER”; B is named “THE SON”, “GOD THE SON” or “GOD THE LOGOS” (“GOD THE WORD”); C is named “THE HOLY SPIRIT” or “GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT”; HYPOSTASES are also called “PERSONALITIES” or “PERSONALITIES OF THE TRINITY”. In view of the above, Christians also use for the names of HASHEM such names as “THE ONE GOD” or “THE TRIUNE GOD”, thus emphasizing that this is not about the individual HYPOSTASES. These two names in Christianity are exact synonyms of the term “HASHEM” in the sense that they represent (call) only Him. If members of other monotheistic religions believe in one Creator HASHEM, then from a Christian point of view, they are referring to the TRIUNE GOD, even if they have no idea of the trinity of GOD. This set of HYPOSTASES in Christianity is traditionally called the “TRINITY”.

Here are an important note: It should be kept in mind that GOD THE FATHER, GOD THE SON, THE HOLY SPIRIT, HYPOSTASIS and PERSONALITIES are special terms which are irrelevant to everyday concepts, that are familiar to us: such as “children”, “parents”, “spirit” or “human personsality”. Moreover, when the Tanakh (Old Testament) uses the word “Father” in relation to God, as in the Psalms of David, or when modern Jews are turning in prayer to God “our Father”, this word always means HASHEM, not a specific HYPOSTASIS A — despite on the semantic similarity of the words of the Hebrew word “Av” (אב, “ather”) and the Christian term “GOD THE FATHER”. Indeed, HASHEM calls us His children, and therefore He may well be metaphorically called “father”, though it is not the term “GOD THE FATHER”, but simply a metaphor for people who love Him.

The words “exists as three A, B, C” have the following meaning.

On the one hand, whenever HASHEM does something or somehow manifests Himself, in particular, when we see His actions (though also even when we can't see them — because not all of His actions can be observed even in principle), the reality is that this action produces HYPOSTASES A, B and C. Moreover, the HYPOSTASES are not only a manifestation of HASHEM, but they, in some sense, completely cover the existence of HASHEM — that is, one can't say that HASHEM exists outside of HYPOSTASES and that they are only His attributes, or agents, or “masks”, or functions, or manifestations, or ways of proceeding. In other words, in the fullest sense HASHEM is His HYPOSTASIS A, B, and C. All six of the following statements: “HASHEM is A”, “HASHEM is B”, “HASHEM is C”, “A is HASHEM”, “B is HASHEM” , “C is HASHEM” — should be considered as an acceptable approximation to the truth, if just remember that in this case the concept of “is” is not identical to the simple mathematical identity “=”, in particular, is not transitive: it is impossible to say that A is B (i.e. neither of the HYPOSTASES can be replaced by the other HYPOSTASIS).

On the other hand, HASHEM is a reality, He is alive and real, the God who loves us, the Creator of the universe and the living author of the Torah. HASHEM is not a set of three or “a collective” {A, B, C} and not a complex entity consisting of three parts. (As stated in the first paragraph, He is simple, indivisible and structureless.)

In other words, behind these three HYPOSTASIS there is a kind of ultimate reality, and this reality is the only HASHEM — the King and the Originator of everything. But at the next level of reality the same HASHEM appears as the three HYPOSTASES, and as a matter of fact, we can deal with HASHEM only at this level. However it is very important to understand that, according the Christian faith, HASHEM is not a set of HYPOSTASES — after all an assemblage of objects is related to the same level of reality as those very objects. No, HASHEM is the One, who dwells at a higher level of reality. HASHEM is each one of His HYPOSTASES but not a set of them. So, now it can be seen that Christians believe in only one God (HASHEM).

HYPOSTASES, being the only form of existence of HASHEM, with equal reason as HASHEM himself may be called (in a figurative sense) “personalities”. Their names correspond to the question “who is”, not “what is”. In Christianity use of the word “personality” for the HYPOSTASES is more accepted than the usage of this word in relation to HASHEM, and this is one of the differences from the two other Abrahamic religions — Judaism and Islam (where believers often use word “personality” for designation God-HASHEM only) . Thus, even in accordance with one tradition of the usage of this word it is referred to three Personalities, and in accordance with the other — to one Personality, and in both cases it is a figurative sense, since God can't be described in terms of the human concept of “personality”.

Of course, in the ordinary world it is difficult to imagine a situation when there is a Someone (conditionally called “N”), who is the only One, holistic and non-structured, but at the same time this N represents three others — A, B, C, and each of the A, B and C is also Someone: A is a Someone, B is a Someone and C is а Someone. Nevertheless according to the Christian faith, it is so, and this is a common occurence when you try to understand the incomprehensible God. After all, as an example in the material world, a photon in the same manner can be called a wave as well as a particle for a good reason, and there was a time when it seemed inexplicably and impossible, but today it is taught in schools.

The number of HYPOSTASES is always three, no more and no less. They exist forever, just as HASHEM, who they actually are. And they never turn into each other — so, A is always A, B is always B, C is always C. Whenever the Bible describes the act of HASHEM by expressions “spoke” or “said,” particularly when HASHEM created the world in the first chapter (“And God said...”), and when HASHEM speaks to people, we are talking about the action of HYPOSTASIS B — “speaks” means always B. Those cases that are in everyday language are called “divine inspiration”, are usually the result of action that implemented in humans by HYPOSTASIS C. Actions, performed directly by HYPOSTASIS A, are absolutely transcendent for us; when the actions of HYPOSTASIS A appear on the level of perception that is accessible to humans, it happens through HYPOSTASIS B with the help of HYPOSTASIS C.

HYPOSTASES A, B, C, being a form of existence of HASHEM (Who is absolutely simple and indivisible), in a certain sense are indistinguishable from each other, i.e. there is no difference between them that could be virtually discovered. You can't, for example, refer to A, bypassing B, or ask for something only C, or love B, but not be treated with the same love for C, or believe that A is strict, but B is gracious (and not vice versa) and so on. It is impossible inherently and fundamentally, as in all cases a man has to deal with HASHEM and each of the HYPOSTASIS for 100% is HASHEM. HASHEM is the living God Who loves us and He is the only One. Christians describe this situation by saying that all HYPOSTASES “have one and common divine nature”.

Obviously, this implies that although we can verify the existence of HASHEM (as He reveals Himself to us), but we have no way to detect the presence of the three HYPOSTASES. After all, whenever dealing with one of them, we have to deal with all three. But Christians are aware of the HYPOSTASES from direct revelation — HASHEM told them about it.

Likewise, Christians believe that the man called Jesus, as it described in the Gospels, in fact is HASHEM. This means that HASHEM fully identified Himself with a concrete person, and as a result Jesus is at the same time 100% man and 100% HASHEM. This greatest miracle of HASHEM — His presence in man — Christians call THE INCARNATION OF GOD and believe that this act was committed by HYPOSTASIS B. So in this case, unlike the situation with HASHEM, there is no any “duality” in Jesus — (what is meant here is that the only HYPOSTASIS B, is at the same time HASHEM, and a man in every sense.) Christians describe this situation saying that GOD THE SON (B) since the moment of implementation “has two natures: human nature and divine nature”.

References to the literature: To understand the Christian faith in Jesus it is encouraged to read the four canonical Gospels. It is also recommended to use, or at least to have at hand original texts in Greek, though it is not as important as when reading the Pentateuch, since in Gospels a common interpretation of the things is usually more important than single words.

The end of Definition

Test for theses and antitheses

The next set of theses and antitheses gives to the reader the opportunity to test oneself, if one has understood the concept of the Trinity rightly, just as it is understood by Christians. Here we won't single out the terms in capital letters, and instead of “HASHEM” will use more familiar to readers word “God.”

So, from the point of view of Christian faith:

  1. True: there is one God.
    False: there are three Gods.
  2. True: God is God the Father, God is God the Son, God is the God the Spirit (Holy Spirit).
    False: God is a set or a group, which includes the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
  3. True: God can be allegorically described as “personality” or “someone,” and it can be considered as an explanation of the phrase “A man created after the image and likeness of God.”
    False: God can be allegorically described as “something”, for example, “Universal Regularity”, according to which the world exists.
  4. True: Each Hypostasis can be allegorically described as “personality,” and therefore we can pray to God the Son, and to hear the voice of God the Son.
    False: Each of the Hypostases corresponds to one of the aspects or traits of personality, just like the human personality has an aspect of its mind and an aspect of its love.
  5. True: In the world God always and exclusively manifests Himself through one of its Hypostases — there are no any acts of God, which are not associated with any of the Hypostasis.
    False: Hypostases are only manifestations of God and they do not have any autonomy, or they are only His attributes, or only His functions.
  6. True: God is Triune, i.e.God is three Hypostases.
    False: God consists of three parts-hypostases.
  7. True: God is absolutely simple and structureless.
    False: God has a tripartite structure.
  8. True: God is in no sense no more and no less than every Hypostasis.
    False: The Triune God is something more than an individual Hypostasis.
  9. True: Each Hypostasis is One God.
    False: One God is the result of combining or interaction of three Hypostasis.
  10. True: God exists in three Hypostases.
    False: God is the source of Hypostases and the root cause of the existence of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
  11. True: God is God the Son, and God the Son is God (and the same thing about the other Hypostases).
    False: God = God the Son (it is one and the same).

Analogies from physics

In the material world there is no exact analogue of mutual relations of HASHEM and the three HYPOSTASES. But, by the grace of God, today, in the XXI century, we know two physical phenomena which can provide a good example and be a partial analogue. We present them — in the hope that it will help the non-Christian to understand the idea of the Trinity.

The analogy of the Trinity and quantum field

The first analogue is the field (e.g. electromagnetic) and its quanta (photons). The field produced by an electric charge, say an electron, in fact is always only one. It is structureless and simple. It is completely real and not just a mathematical abstraction for describing the behavior of the charge. In particular, it will exist for a time, even when the charge itself will disappear (say annihilates). So the light from distant stars, in reality is represented by the waves of the electromagnetic fields created by these stars, and this light will wander in the Universe forever, even when these stars go out. At the same time we know that the field manifests itself only through its quanta (photons in this case). We can't observe the field in other way than by interacting with its quanta, and this is not about limitation of our technology but the law of nature. Thus, the quanta are the only form of real existence of the field, and any other electromagnetic fields except the photons simply do not exist. However, we can't say that the field is the set of photons because the electromagnetic field of the electron objectively exists even when the electron does not interact with anything and does not exchange the photons (which are the only way to electromagnetic interaction), that is, in case when there are no any photons accessible to observation.

Various photons, of course, are often different from each other — energy, coordinates and velocity vectors may often differ from each other. However, since they are bosons, the situation is quite acceptable when two photons are absolutely identical — they can match by coordinates, velocities and all other physical characteristics, including energy and polarization. For those who do not fancy the physics of the microworld fully, the analogy can be simplified by imaging the field as strongly agitated water in the bath, and the quanta as the water waves (photons actually do correspond to the waves of change in the field). However the analogy of the microcosm is much more exact.

In this analogy, the field corresponds to HASHEM, and quanta to HYPOSTASES. Imperfection of this analogy, mainly, is that photons are not everlasting, but on the contrary, are very “ephemeral” — they rush the speed of light until they react with some substance (say, with our eyes), and then disappear. Another imperfection is that quanta basically are not related to each other: one photon emitted by the electromagnetic field of the electron located in the sun, may reach the Earth, but the next one may reach the Moon as well. And one more imperfection — photons may usually vary from each other by various parameters, while Hypostasis are strictly identical (there are no attributes, which would have one of the hypostasis, but would not have the others). However, this imperfection disappears when we are dealing with two or more identical photons — as waves, they can “overlap” with each other, and become the same in all aspects. Even in this case, just as the Hypostasis they continue to remain different photons, not merging into a united body — for example, in certain device you can register interaction with one of N identical photons, and even (if you're lucky) to count their number (N), noting the number of their interactions. The same applies to the Hypostases — though THE FATHER and THE SON present one and the same HASHEM, nevertheless, we can hear the word spoken by THE SON, but the words of THE FATHER we can't hear in principle.

The analogy of the Trinity and the quarks in a hadron

The second analog of the Trinity are hadrons, such as the well known protons and neutrons which are composed of three quarks, as well as two-quark mesons. The unity of the quarks is so great that we can't even observe one separate quark in principle. For example an attempt to “split” a proton into parts (quarks) will lead to the emergence of (the birth of) new hadrons, but the quarks will still be grouped as triplets (baryons) or pairs (mesons). This analogy helps to understand those aspects of the Trinity, which in the previous analogy could not be fully covered because of two lacks: the ephemeral nature and disconnectedness. Under normal circumstances, the proton, in fact is eternal, and always consists of the same three quarks. Moreover, in practice, we always deal with a single proton, because quarks are “acting” jointly. Unfortunately, this analogy too has a fundamental imperfection — a proton is still not simple and not structureless. It really consists of quarks, i.e. simply presents the set or assemblage — though it was extremely difficult to discover this fact. HASHEM is structureless and He is not a ”group” (or a “party”) due to His essence, but not because of our limited capacity in comprehension of the Creator.

March–september 2013

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