The Friends of the Transfiguration are an informal gathering of those drawn by the mysteries of desert wisdom at the heart of the Orthodox Hesychast tradition.
It reflects an integral wisdom embrace, transcending but including both Christian and interfaith ecumenism, drawing directly on the mysteries of desert wisdom that inspired St David and St Madoc in St Davids in the sixth century. It is inspired by the transfiguring union of wisdom and glory, which springs from the union of awareness and presence in the Holy Name, union which sustains communion as uncreated co-creativity in mystical theology and sacred art.
Wisdom’s sacred function is to renew tradition in the uncreated light of glory, which is to abide in the hallowing mysteries of transfiguration, illumination and glorification, union with Christ in his death, resurrection, ascension and glorification. Consequently, the Friends of Transfiguration bear witness to the timeless mysteries of wisdom and glory in the heart, abiding in the hallowed Name ‘I AM,’ lived as Way, as Truth and transfiguring Life, unveiling Holy Trinity.
As an expression of ancient Christian desert monasticism, it embraces primordial desert IHIDAYAH, the life of the hermit, upstream from institutional monastic community life, opening to a new unfolding of the eremitical desert tradition. Amongst the friends, It also includes different ways in which wisdom tradition embraces married life, families, life partners, and spiritual friendships.
An initial step was taken in January 2019, when two hermitages were established at 73, Nun St, St Davids, a Wisdom Hermitage and the Starstonewell Hermitage above the ground floor gallery, which houses sacred art and wisdom books. The Gallery offers a space to meet and share with all who are drawn to wisdom work, wisdom creativity and co-creative communion in response to the crises and challenges of our time. It extends the mysteries of transfiguration to a busy high street in the pilgrimage city of St Davids, opening to fresh ways of exploring the Christian tradition as wisdom, beyond the boundaries of pre-modern Christendom, modern Christianity and post-modern Christian spirituality.
Friends of the Transfiguration embrace the wisdom of uncreated light as graceful opening to glory, completeness that includes our incompleteness as transfiguring witness to timeless completeness. Integral wisdom acknowledges the needs of conventional pre-modern religion, modern science, technology, and post-modern spirituality, but is not confined by their exclusions.
Transfiguring wisdom lives from the Great Peace of the hallowed Name, unveiling the kingdom of glory at the heart of ever-present awareness.
Transfiguration is not closed, like a past event, temporally confined, but is always open to wisdom mysteries, which unveil glory, as awareness of presence and presence of awareness, opening from glory to glory.
Transfiguring wisdom makes friends of those whose hearts awaken to these mysteries in every generation.
Translucent wisdom inspires sustaining communion that stands under renewing spiritual fellowship, companionship that upholds the deification of each and all.
Father Silouan. August 21st 2019