Glory to God for All Things

Icons and Words

With this post I want to make a link between my last article, on how we “see” icons, and an earlier article, “Doctrine and Opinion,” in which I quoted the late Fr. Georges Florovsky who said, “Doctrine is a verbal icon of Christ.” I noted then that this presented a very different approach to doctrine and the usual reasoned treatments … Continue reading

Icons – Beauty and the Salvation of the World

“God will save the World Through Beauty.” This saying, often attributed to Fyodor Dostoevsky, never occurs in precisely this form in his novels – though the idea is present in such a strong sense that the phrase is correctly attributed to him. It is a phrase that is easily misunderstood. For Dostoevsky, in good Orthodox fashion, beauty is far more … Continue reading

To See An Icon

My previous post spoke of the world existing “iconically” rather than “literally.” I do not mean that the world cannot be seen in a “literal” fashion – only that the world will not be truly seen if seen only in a literal fashion (there is probably a better word than “literal” to describe this secularized form of experience). The seeing … Continue reading

Is the World Literal or Iconic?

What do you see when you see the world and how do you see it? I have written much about the secular character of our culture and its “literal” view of the world. The world is what you see and nothing more. Significant events take their significance from their own relation to other literal events. Much that passes for Christian … Continue reading

Memory Eternal

A personal note: I received news this evening (September 14) of the falling asleep of my mother, Nancy Freeman, in her home in South Carolina. Her passing was peaceful and marked with words of love. My heart is very full. Earlier today I had given thanks for this 5th anniversary of my parents’ reception into the Orthodox faith. It seems … Continue reading

The Precious and Life-Giving Cross of Christ

The Mystery of our Salvation is contained within the Cross of our God and Savior Jesus Christ. And it is correct to say the “mystery of our salvation,” for what is contained there is more than a cosmic transaction (Christ pays for our sins): it is also the whole of our way of life. It is truly the mystery of … Continue reading

A Mother’s Word

Amma Syncletica said, “If you start a good work, do not let the enemy discourage you. Your endurance will defeat the enemy. When sailors encounter unfavorable winds they do not toss their cargo overboard or abandon ship. They struggle against the storm for a while and then reestablish their course. If you run into a headwind, raise a cross as … Continue reading

The Religion of the Mind and the Religion of the Heart

I write frequently about what I term the Religion of the Heart. Archimandrite Meletios Webber has a short piece on what can be called the Religion of the Mind. The distinction between mind and heart is not a distinction between thought and feeling. Rather it is a distinction between the mind (seat of thoughts and feelings) and the heart (the … Continue reading

Doctrines and Opinion

From the Desert Fathers: Malicious sceptics visited Abba Agathon to see if they could annoy him. They had heard that Agathon possessed great discretion and self-control. They spoke directly to him, “Agathon, we heard that you are an adulterer and full of pride.” He answered, “Yes, that’s true.” “Are you the same Agathom who gossips and slanders?” “I am.” “Are … Continue reading

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Orthodox Christianity, Culture and Religion, Making the Journey of Faith
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