Monasticism, the All-embracing Gift of the Holy Spirit

An Approach to the Monastic Legacy of Saint Sophrony

 

The truly charismatic monk flees any honour as fire, knowing that it will extinguish the flame of love for God burning in his heart and stop the current of the divine will from flowing through him and guiding him. He would rather do everything to remain hidden from the eyes of this world so as not to be seen by men, but to be under the gaze of God’s eyes alone, ‘who seeth in secret and rewardeth openly.’ Neither does he seek consolation or support from this world but puts his only hope in the Lord, ‘which hope he has as an anchor of his soul’, leading him into that which is ‘within the veil.’

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When uncompromised, the life of the monk under obedience is full of prophetic aspects, divine truth and incorruptible consolation. His total crucifixion attracts the eyes of the Lord towards him day and night, as He recognises in His servant a spirit akin to His. Although he has made himself as a ‘beast beside its master’, yet he discovers that God’s presence is always with him. Through the continuous surrendering of his will to his Elder, the monk perpetually dwells in the current of the will of God, whereby he accommodates within himself the gift of Pentecost, the gift of the Holy Spirit. The monk who cultivates a contrite spirit and suffers the changes of the consolation of grace is a supra-cosmic image of the mystery of Pentecost.
These consolations of the Holy Spirit enlighten the mind and strengthen the heart to run the way of Christ’s commandments. Those who adhere to this way of life and have gone through the annihilation of the old man brought about by God’s judgments are able to cry out boldly to the God of their Fathers with the great words of the Psalm: ‘My soul cleaveth unto the dust, quicken Thou me according to Thy word.’


CONTENTS

FOREWORD
INTRODUCTION

I. THE TRUE DIMENSIONS OF THE GOSPEL IN MONASTICISM
The Inverted Perspective of Monastic Life
Charismatic Theocracy
II. CHARISMATIC ASPECTS OF MONASTIC LIFE
Thirst for God
The Name of the Lord Jesus – the Breath of the Monk
Inconsolable Repentance
Fattening the Soul of the Monk through the Bread of Tears
New Beginnings, New Mercies, New Songs of Gratitude and Love
Prophetic Life in Monasticism
The Word Born in the Heart of the Man Who repents
Thanksgiving and Spiritual Sonship
Constantly ‘Rubbing’ against God’s Energy
Christ-like Vulnerability
Spiritual Tension in Times of Affliction
III. COMMENTS ON PHILOKALIC TEXTS ABOUT VIGILANCE
The Thought of Hell in Saint Isaiah the Anchorite
Stillness in Saint Hesychios
Positive Asceticism
Vigilance – the Science of Sciences and Art of Arts
EPILOGUE – AS ALIVE FROM THE DEAD
Biblical Index

 


Weight 0.880 kg
Dimensions 21 × 15 × 3.5 cm
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