The ineffable lucidity of wisdom weds the incomprehensible radiance of glory at the heart of the Name ‘I AM.’ Uncreated awareness abides timelessly in uncreated presence, revealing first-personhood to be God’s mystery of mysteries in the light and glory of his revelatory Name. Saint Sophrony the Hesychast bequeathed a restorative legacy of profound Johannine wisdom to Orthodoxy when he pointed out the profound significance of the ‘I AM’ sayings of Jesus in the Gospel of John. His many different writings draw attention to the mystery of first-personhood in the light of Christ’s revelation of ‘I AM,’ God’s Name, throwing renewing light on the Patristic tradition that restores both its wisdom and its glory. The Name unveils the ground of being to be pure awareness, hidden at the heart of unreified first-personhood. Awareness is timeless presence just as presence is timeless awareness here where turning turns and as seeing (theoria) sees. Like crystal, reflecting light as the many colours of a rainbow, awareness embraces presence as rainbow radiance, translucent oneness manifest as many colours, communicating wisdom both manifold yet one. Colours differ but their difference does not obstruct their difference or destroy their oneness as uncreated light radiating uncreated glory, from glory to glory. Awareness is empty for presence just as presence is empty for awareness, a self-emptying KENOSIS which is ineffable lucidity, radiant as wisdom and manifold as glory.
But when awareness contracts into self-centred consciousness, presence constricts into many desirable commodities or undesirable phenomena, splitting wholeness of awareness and oneness of presence into warring competitors, rival factions fighting over dissipated fragments of our fractured world. In God, however, presence remains one but unconfused, just as awareness remains whole yet undivided, because the Name unites healing awareness with wholesome presence. ‘I AM’ always has been whole and will always heal, because God’s Name saves. Awareness hallows presence just as presence deifies awareness, a secret that wisdom never forgets and glory never forsakes. To abide in God through his saving Name is to awaken on the inside of the Spirit’s union with the only-begotten Son, on the inside of the glory which the Father unveils through the Son. To abide in Christ is to awaken on the inside of Holy Trinity, to be by grace who Christ is by nature. The New Testament recognises this, the Patristic Tradition is decisive about this, so Saint Sophrony is not imposing his own opinion when he hallows the Name ‘I AM,’ nor is he introducing some curious novelty. Orthodox glorification is not a slave of opposing extremes when it ascribes glory to God, restoring glory to the Father, through the wisdom of the Son, in the joy of the Spirit. Wisdom knows no bounds to glory when awareness embraces presence in unobstructed union, wisdom embracing glory in the joy of unbroken communion.
Timeless awareness is ever-present, so is uninterrupted as timeless presence, at the heart of the hallowing Name. The Name unveils to saints what elders have always known, union with God in the midst, communion in the Spirit with the Father, deification through the Son in the hallowing Name. The enlightened intent of glorification has always been the ultimate meaning of grace. The kingdom of glory has always been the radiance of uncreated light, so in God awareness has never actually fallen short of presence, even when separation falls from glory and delusion takes hold. Delusion reigns except when in Christ the powers of delusion are overcome. It is not that separation is normal and delusion the exception. When delusion remains determined to save itself from delusion, it suffers from delusion, accuses grace of delusion and inverts the Spirit of Truth. But wisdom is decisive, awareness is presence, here in glorification. Abiding in God, the heart is purified, illumined and glorified. The decisive experience of glorification is the dissolution of confusion and the disintegration of division. In Christ glorified, there is union without confusion and communion without division, which grace transmits to us in God’s deifying Name. Ineffable lucidity does not actually come and go. It abides in God as self-centred perceptions dissolve into pure awareness whilst delusory phenomena resolve back into pure presence. Ineffable lucidity abides in Holy Trinity, resting in Great Peace, an experience of uncreated awareness as pure presence, an awakening to uncreated presence as pure awareness. Elders have always called this glorification, but saints experience it on the way as purification and illumination of the heart. The heart is ineffable lucidity, so the vision of God is its glory and its joy.