Power, Love and Life’s Journey

There are always two worlds. The world as it operates is largely about power; the world as it should be, or “the Reign of God,” is always about love. Conversion is almost entirely about moving from one world to the next, and yet having to live in both worlds at the same time. As you allow yourself to loosen your grip on the ego or bad forms of power, you will gradually see the inadequacy

Father Maximos on Temperance and Self-Control

Fr. Maximos was fond of referring to a story of John Chrysostom, fourth-century patriarch of Constantinople who later was canonized as a major saint of the Church, both of the East and of the West. He was persecuted by the wife of the then emperor for being critical of her abuse of power and exploitation of the poor and weak. When John was warned by friends to stop his sermons against her on the ground


Theognostos (fourteenth century?) is known to us only as the author of the work included in the Philokalia. “When you fall from a higher state, do not become panic-stricken, but through remorse, grief, rigorous self-reproach, and, above all, through copious tears shed in a contrite spirit, correct yourself and return quickly to your former condition. Rising up again after your fall, you will enter the joyous valley of salvation, taking care so far as possible


ST. ISAIAH THE SOLITARY I, ON GUARDING THE INTELLECT, SEC. 22 Here Isaiah the Solitary expresses the same confidence that Paul speaks of in Romans 8:38-39, that “nothing can separate us from the love of God.” All that is required is for the sinner to repent and return to God.      “Be attentive to yourself, so that nothing destructive can separate you from the love of God. Guard your heart, and do not grow listless

Members of One Another (Part IX): Weep with Me, Forest and Desert (I)

Sin and salvation, however, are not merely human in scope, but they also involve the entire created order. When Adam fell, the whole creation fell with him; and by the same token our human salvation will inaugurate the salvation of the total cosmos. As Fr Sophrony puts it, ‘Every saint is a phenomenon of cosmic character’. We are not saved from but with the world. This cosmic understanding of sin and salvation has a firm

The Feast Day of the Holy Apostle Bartholomew. Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew: On the Origin of Evil.

We need a theology that will answer the atheist position about evil, about the process imputed to God since Jean Paul Richter, Nietzsche, and Dostoevsky (think, for example, of the arguments presented by Ivan in The Brothers Karamazov). We must abolish once and for all that image of a “diabolical God” who, from all eternity, controls everything and thus appears as the only source of evil. Our God is the Theos pathon, the crucified God

Holy Wednesday

In the Gospel and hymns of the Church for Holy Wednesday, we hear about the sinful woman who broke an alabaster box of costly ointment, wept at Jesus’ feet, and dried them with her hair. She broke the box – i.e. saved nothing for herself – and poured it out as her offering. It cost 300 denarii, which was 300 days’ wages! This latter fact enrages the disciple who sits in a place of honor

Holy Tuesday – Hymn of St. Kassiane

At Bridegroom Orthros on Great and Holy Tuesday the Church sings the following hymn by St. Kassiane: O Lord, the woman who had fallen into many sins, perceiving Thy divinity, fulfilled the part of a myrrh-bearer; and with lamentations she brought sweet-smelling oil of myrrh to Thee before Thy burial. ‘Woe is me,’ she said, ‘for night surrounds me, dark and moonless, and stings my lustful passion with the love of sin. Accept the fountain