The Search for the ‘Place of the Heart’: The Heart-Spirit

So there has grown within the rich Christian tradition the idea of integrated knowledge, which assumes the necessity of reason, but in conjunction with the other faculties and senses, such as willpower, love, and the awareness of beauty. Integrated knowledge is knowledge in faith; it combines human nature in a personal movement of encounter and communion. By this communion the fullness of the godhead is communicated to human nature, reaching the very ground of the


I CAME TO CAST FIRE UPON THE EARTH; AND WOULD THAT IT WERE ALREADY KINDLED! —LUKE 12:49 If you want to know what it means to be happy, look at a flower, a bird, a child; they are perfect images of the kingdom. For they live from moment to moment in the eternal now with no past and no future. So they are spared the guilt and the anxiety that so torment human beings and

The Search for the ‘Place of the Heart’: The Temple of the Body

We are both person and nature, and the nature itself is also dual, being a synthesis of visible and invisible, each pervading and containing the other. Through the body, we participate in the material and living world; by means of the body, personal existence belongs to the material universe and particularizes it. Cosmic energy is constantly passing through the body, renewing it materially, with the result that the whole of humanity actually possesses a single

Father Maximos on Logismoi and the Jesus Prayer

Fr. Maximos paused, waiting for another question. “I am puzzled by what the Fathers of the Ecclesia say about the Jesus Prayer,” Teresa commented. “They claim that when we pray, the mind, or nous, must be on the heart. I don’t understand what that means.” “I appreciate your puzzlement,” Fr. Maximos replied. “This is what the tradition of the Ecclesia teaches as noetic prayer or prayer of the heart. When the Fathers say that the

Self-Knowledge and the Inner Journey

Our operative God image is often a subtle combination of our mom and our dad and/or any other significant authority figures. Once we begin an inner life of prayer and in-depth study of sacred texts, we slowly begin to grow, and from then on it only gets better. Grace does its work and creates a unique “work of art” (Ephesians 2:10). Most early “God talk”—without self-knowledge and inner journey—is largely a sincere pretense, even to

Members of one another (Part VI)

In the monk’s relationship with the world, St Silouan distinguishes a double movement. First, through prayer the monk withdraws into himself, shutting out the world, gradually liberating himself from visual imagery and discursive thinking, and so entering into the image-free stillness of the heart. But then, within the depths of his own heart, he rediscovers his solidarity with all humankind and with the whole creation. So the monk’s flight from the world turns out to