Gospel of Glory

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The Gospel of the glory of grace turns the light of awareness round to unite the mind and the heart in the uncreated light of glory.  This utterly simple mystery transcends all that thought can grasp, yet Hesychast elders think this through to the end, which is the end of confusion and the beginning of indivisible communion.  Ineffability is not nihilism, nor is simplicity the extinction of difference in the mystery of inseparable union.  Wisdom fellowship gathers awakened hearts to renew their trust in the practice of turning, to restore their hope in the practice of seeing, which is wisdom’s vision of God, granting insight into a gospel of glory through the regeneration of love’s glory in a communion of saints.  Gathering is the function of LOGOS, of Christ in the Spirit, which is the quintessential meaning of the Church, upstream from all the institutional regulations that determine canon law.  Wisdom fellowship is ineffable but real, transcending definition, but nonetheless definitive.  We gather in order to restore our trust in the gospel of grace and to partake of wisdom’s awareness of the glory of grace, which imbibes purification and illumination with self-emptying glorification.  Wisdom fellowship retreats are not indirect reflection upon the mysteries of grace but direct immersion in the living flame of the Name.  The function of prophecy is to open the heart to this directness, whilst the function of prayer of the Spirit in the heart is to live this directness in all its mystical wisdom and glory.

The flame of the Name is the living heart of wisdom fellowship, which plunges the heart into the midst of a Burning Bush, which contracts distraction and expands distillation into a resurrected body of light and glory.  The flame of the Name opens the Holy of Holies into mysteries of a long forgotten Bridal Chamber, which frightens sensible piety and unnerves cautious rationality.  Sensible believers flee this flame as if it were a demonic temptation, whilst bewildered saints trust the flame because it is the flame of God’s own saving Name.  Wisdom gathers elders and saints by undoing elders and shattering saints, leaving humble friendship in the Spirit and gentle tenderness of heart.  Clouds of unknowing dissolve into clouds of glory, which they actually always were.  A still small voice rings loud and clear when wisdom is welcomed home from exile.  A mountain cave opens its ancient mysteries when hearts are gathered by wisdom into a hidden glory that pride cannot penetrate, because true glory always refuses to take God’s Name in vain.  Of course, vainglory tries to sneak its way in, but meets glory not vanity, glory that empties vainglory of empty vanity.  Wisdom is baffling in its capacity to turn everything round into a wondrous miracle of uncreated, creative light, baffling in its capacity to illumine the heart with uncreated glory.  So when wisdom gathering happens, ineffable communion gently surrounds and in-breathes, transfiguring disagreement into highly differentiated agreement.

The flame of the Name may seem demanding to a hesitant heart but is actually a gentle easing into the easiness of child-like trust.  Grace really is grace and not reward for anxious effort, not a well-earned payment for positive strain and the negative stress of ascetical renunciation.  Wisdom’s gentle easing is glory’s first gift, turning glorification into a mystery of release rather than a burden of impossible demands.  Wisdom gathers a fellowship of trust that lets grace be grace, welcoming the glory of a gospel of grace, rather than straining and stressing over falls from grace which define sinners definitively as sinners, never as saints in the Spirit’s making.  Wisdom’s loving embrace of fear heals fear of fear by showing love to be the radiant glory of uncreated self-emptying.  No-one can explain it, but miracles happen without presumption and glory shines without consuming what is illumined.  The Burning Bush really is where wisdom fellowship abides, although nobody has any idea how it happens.  THAT this is actually happening is an unbroken wonder, inspiring awe and stillness.  THAT grace really is sheer gospel is glory’s unhesitant assurance.  Wisdom gathers broken hearts into a communion of saints that renews trust in the Name by unveiling the glory of the Name to wisdom.  Beside this, stillness sings or is silent, replete with the completeness of a Gospel of glory, uncertain whether what is arising is prophecy or prayer.