Desert elders abide in the Holy Name of God, ‘I AM,’ a union of deifying awareness and uncreated presence which reveals the enlightened state of hallowed glorification as wisdom’s living stream to the saints. ‘I AM’ is ever-present as timeless awareness, but without recognition, there is no remembrance of God, only the endless confusion of conditioning thoughts grasping at conditioned phenomena, or what the desert calls the passions. Desert wisdom dwells at centre in the ineffable union of awareness and presence in God the Holy Trinity, whose oneness is a union without confusion or division. Christ’s revelation of God’s Name, restoring glory to the Father, can be described as ‘I AM’ coming face to face with ‘I AM,’ God in us face to face with God with us, Holy Trinity unveiling ‘I AM’ through ‘I AM,’ in ‘I AM.’ Elders impart wisdom’s living stream of Holy Trinity as light of glory healing and hallowing the saints, turning hardened hearts into gardens of paradise, illumined hearts suffused with light and glory.
The Lord’s Prayer hallows God’s Name and the Kingdom comes in glory. The Prayer of the Name of Jesus restores glory to God, (the name Jesus means ‘I AM’ saves), releasing awareness into presence. Working together, both invocations of the Name open desert seers to the very heart of enlightened glorification. In Christ, our original nature partakes in the uncreated light of glory, but when luciferan falls separate us from glory, we become confused, mistaking the created for the uncreated. Desert wisdom turns and sees, then trains in the turning and practices the seeing, which it calls spiritual asceticism. Such training is crucial for the desert because it assimilates what the Name transmits, a mystery which the desert calls graced synergy, co-operation with the uncreated glory of grace. The Name communicates Great Peace when it opens the eye of the heart to Christ in our midst. Passions fall away when they come face to face with God, finding nothing to get hold of at centre. The energy caught up in passions is originally wholesome and wants to be released back into the hallowing flow of the uncreated energy of glory. The unveiled face of glory frees created energies to turn back into God’s uncreated energies as God-centred glorification of God, letting Holy Trinity be what Holy Trinity always was, is and shall forever be.
Desert wisdom never strays from the mysteries of glory which elders call glorification. Abiding at centre where wisdom’s uncreated awareness conjoins with glory’s uncreated presence, desert elders remind the saints to remember God in whose presence passions transform, fixations release and addictions liberate. Christ is in our midst but we fail to recognise him. The Spirit is perfect freedom but we do not realise it. Uncreated grace saves and heals but we remain blind and deaf to its call. The Name undoes confusion and cures division but hard hearts refuse to turn and see. Awareness releases into enlightened presence but we prefer the compulsive dualisms of fear and control. But ‘I AM’ is ‘I AM,’ God revealing God, so turning can always turn and seeing once turned can always see. Elders remind us to recognise God by turning and to remember God by seeing, bearing witness to Christ and his saving Name even in the face of centuries of stubborn resistance and continuing persistent confusion. Orthodox tradition has often been renewed from within by the Spirit of Truth transfiguring desert saints, despite centuries of resistance and confusion. The inexhaustible legacy of desert elders flows beneath external ecclesiastical structures like wisdom’s living stream of unveiled glory. Elders nourish saints with wisdom, sustaining hearts with glory. It is wisdom’s living stream that awakens hearts to uncreated light and illumines saints in uncreated glory, restoring hope by cutting through all confusion and leaping over every obstructive division. Saints bear witness to wisdom’s living stream of unveiled glory, ensuring sound coherence in lesser mysteries and deifying co-inherence in greater mysteries at the heart of God’s own God-centred glorification of God in Holy Trinity.