Icons of different faiths are almost impossible to confuse. The manner of writing, artistic techniques, used symbols and allegories - all this allows you to immediately recognize the faces of the Savior, the Virgin, martyrs and ascetics, performed by masters of a particular faith. Our article will tell you why such differences appeared icons and what they are based on. The veneration of relics by believers. Catholicism, as a Western European branch of Christianity, has always been characterized by greater freedom in using aesthetic means. And one of them is temple art - painting, sculpture and even architecture. The services, which are surrounded by such a rich entourage, look magnificent and solemn, turning into peculiar mysteries. At the same time, theology (the doctrine of faith) still dominates the rite. But the Orthodox (Orthodox, or Eastern European) Church relies primarily on the ritual. Religion should be perceived not so much by the mind as by feelings, moods, emotions and feelings. Such canons developed under the influence of the Byzantine culture, which, in turn, took a lot from Ancient Greece, Persia, Egypt.
The same factors determined the difference between Catholic and Orthodox icons
The latter are full of heavenly light, joy, exaltation, serve as spiritual help for prayer, awakening awe and awe of the Lord. The shrines of Eastern Christians are utterly impersonal and unemotional, they cut off all sensuality and subjectivity, preventing wicked fantasies and hallucinations. However, believers do not worship the images themselves, but the divine power, wisdom and mercy revealed through them - this must be remembered so as not to fall into the temptation of idol worship. However, Christians may appeal to relics of any faith. Thus, Rev. Seraphim of Sarov (one of the most famous monks in the history of the Orthodox Church) prayed before the image of the Heavenly Queen “Tenderness”, performed in the Western tradition. All believers honor the icons of the Kazan, Korsun, Ostrobramskoy and Czestochowan Virgin Mary, the face of Madonna Loreto (“Adding the mind”), the shrine of Jesus Christ “Gethsemane prayer”.
Catholic icons are signs of relics
The conditions in which the western branch of Christianity was formed led to the fact that the icon began to be interpreted not as a sacred object, but as an illustration of the Bible. Scenes from the Old or New Testaments, pious traditions and the lives of saints served as tools for teaching and edification - depicting them, artists warned people against mistakes, showing them an example of virtuous, righteous behavior, resistance to temptations, salvation from sins. You can find these and other icons on this site www.holyart.com.
The difference between the Orthodox icon and the Catholic is clearly visible in the style of work. In particular, Western relics are very realistic - they comply with the laws of perspective, composition and construction of figures. To get a reliable image, artists use the services of sitters - sometimes they even copy the faces of saints from their friends and patrons! In addition, such paintings always have a clear plot - they are dedicated to a particular event or holiday, or they praise a certain hypostasis of God.
Orthodox Icons - Establishments and Traditions Religious painting of Eastern Europe - a synthesis of monumental Byzantine art and local features. Strict canons came from Constantinople, polished by centuries of practice, and the masters of Kievan Rus, Bulgaria, Georgia, and Armenia preserved and deepened their meaning. Therefore, such shrines have several levels, and their true meaning is revealed in prayer contemplation. One can understand the Orthodox image only by renouncing everyday problems and completely plunging into a conversation with the Creator.