Category Archives: Liberating Release

Wisdom of Stillness

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Hesychast wisdom does not set one thing against another as heresies do, opposing each other with one-sided opinions, spawning confusion and division.  The desert does not set up a dualism between gnosis and ignorance, sowing sectarian Gnosticism.  Elders do not drive a dualistic division between prayer of the heart and liturgical prayer, spawning Messalianism.  Nor do saints impose a divisive separation between prophecy… Read more »

Heart of Awareness

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Wisdom turns and sees love embrace forgiveness and simplicity embrace stillness at the heart of awareness, welcoming the blessing of presence with the joy of generous awareness.  Blessed is the ineffable joy of boundless awareness uniting with the inexplicable glory of liberating presence.  Wisdom is one in her encircling stillness and free in her ineffable completeness, awareness of presence embracing presence of awareness in the… Read more »

Praxis of Theoria

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The practice of spiritual vision, which Orthodox Hesychast Tradition calls the ‘praxis of theoria,’ is the methodical activity that turns and sees what the Name reveals, purifying and illumining the awakened heart, opening mysteries of grace to hallowing glorification.  Elders explain this conceptually in order to point the saints beyond conceptuality to direct, non-conceptual awareness.  It is the practice of seeing in the Spirit that keeps… Read more »

Grace and Freedom

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The Kingdom comes when the Name is hallowed, unveiling the freedom of grace.  Grace is complete freedom, releasing the strain and stress of laboured effort, letting go of the struggle to achieve what is always already graciously given.  Faith puts its trust in grace, generating confidence in the unconditionality of God’s blessing rather than in conditioned attempts to earn grace as… Read more »

Expansion and Contraction of Awareness

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The timeless expansion of awareness in illumination arises together with the continuing temporal contraction of awareness in purification because whilst glory breaks in with illumination, temporal awareness reasserts itself, dividing future glory from past glory, reducing timeless presence to a fleeting present.  Purification of the heart is already illumination in action, but temporal fluctuation subjects experience of uncreated light to unevenness, a coming… Read more »

From Grace to Grace

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The desert bears witness that wisdom is the fullness of sheer goodness, completeness poured out from grace to grace.  The wisdom of Jerusalem is the glory of God’s Name whilst the wisdom of Athens is self-examination leading from self-forgetfulness through dialectical questioning to the fullness of self-knowledge.  Culturally speaking, this is an integration of two wisdom traditions, the Abrahamic and the… Read more »

Liberation, Collaboration and Co-inherence

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At this juncture, the ancient tension between past-centred conservatism and future-centred progressivism, together with every received notion of completeness, is devolving into new constellations of liberation, collaboration and co-inherence that transcend all we can grasp or possess.  Today, tensions threaten to divide centre from periphery, north from south, east from west in a proliferation of new ways that press for devolutions… Read more »

Saint Sophrony’s Spiritual Testament

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In his Spiritual Testament, delivered to us in community on the Feast of Saint Antony January 17th 1991, Saint Sophrony the Hesychast shared his vision of monastic life as the unity for which Christ prayed, that we may be one as the Father and the Son are one, that we may be one in the image and likeness of God the… Read more »

Know yourself: Saint Antony on the knowledge of God.

In his Third Letter, Saint Antony tells us, “He who knows himself knows God” (Chitty SLG 1975 pg 11).  He bears witness in the Spirit that all who know themselves know God and glorify God aright, knowing God’s own God-centred knowledge of God which undergirds God’s God-centred glorification of God.  For Antony the Great, desert father of monks and solitaries, it was… Read more »

Regenerating the imagination

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Wisdom in the desert regenerates the imagination, inspiring radical transforming vision, renewing the language and imagery of vision for an age that has lost vision. Desert wisdom retells old myths and stories in new, liberating ways, to awaken hearts in times that have lost faith in wisdom.  Desert prophecy was always radically counter-cultural, inspiring imagery that regenerates degenerated imagination, imagination conditioned… Read more »