Origen, one of the early church fathers, was a man whose greatest ambition in life was martyrdom. In fact, Origen’s father, Leonides, was killed while in prison. Origen — not quite 17 — made plans to join his father, so they could be tortured side by side. But tradition has it that Origen’s mother hid his clothes to keep him from leaving home.
Never fear. Origen found other means with which to prove his faith. He sold the family library and emasculated himself, dedicating the rest of his life to teaching, philosophy, and comforting those in prison.
Except Origen’s acts weren’t viewed as extreme (unless you count the fact that he was extremely popular with students). So how might today’s extremists appear to future generations? And what might those generations think of those we accept as normal, successful and commendable?
how might today’s extremists appear to future generations?