Theoria is wisdom enlightening the mind in the heart, uniting awareness with energy in uncreated light, uniting visible and invisible realms in uncreated glory. To see with the eye of wisdom in the heart is to behold glory in the age to come, centred on the axis of the revelatory Name, pivoting between the uncreated and the created where the invisible becomes visible. The presence of timeless glory is always sudden, a sudden awakening to uncreated light, always present but overlooked when the mind goes out into thoughts and feelings, failing to turn and see. The mind turns round when awareness beholds God at centre where self-centred self-love used to be. The death of self-centred self-obsession is the resurrection of wisdom in glory. Theoria is seeing with the eye of the heart, insight with the eye of uncreated light, awakening to doxological glorification which gives Holy Orthodoxy its name and very reason for being.
There is no living Orthodoxy without theoria, which is why true Orthodoxy is rarer than institutional statistics indicate, but sustains saints and elders nonetheless. Theoria is ‘awakened in-seeing,’ but includes ‘listening-in’ as well as insight, because the ears of the heart are crucial too. Just as theoria sees the invisible, so wisdom’s ineffable hearing listens to the angels who eternally glorify God, unheard by many yet revealing God. When the dull mind races, oblivion causes the heart to sleep, until quite suddenly, wisdom awakens and resounds with ineffable glory. Peace manifests, but is not drowsy, whilst joy rejoices but is not soporific, because true ecstasy is not mindless trance but awakened wisdom. Stillness opens into glorification, giving Hesychast seers capacity to sustain deification without nihilistic annihilation. The cultivation of intentionality, free of abusive force, sustains healthy stillness.
Prayer for the salvation of all keeps stillness from degenerating into oblivion, whilst quiet joy keeps prayer from degenerating into frenzied chatter. Oneness of heart and mind matures into vivid openness, sustaining glorification through illumination. Purification of the heart restores original openness, empowering illumination to regenerate eschatological awareness and glorification to crystallise uncreated light into theophanies of glory. Turning is formless and seeing is imageless, enabling theoria to discern mysteries of glory that cannot be exhaustively explained. Awakening in the Holy Spirit communicates perfect freedom even as dull burdens are being released, unfolding deification as impurities are liberated. When glory is active, grace is receptive; when wisdom is active, glory is receptive. The Song of Songs dances wisdom’s bridal procession from holiness to the Holy of Holies, unveiling theophanies of glory all along the way.