Archimandrite Sophrony, an outstanding Christian ascetic, monk, and mystic of the twentieth century, studied at the Orthodox Theological Institute in Paris. He lived as a monk on Mount Athos in the Russian Monastery of St Panteleimon and spent his final years at the Monastery of St. John the Baptist, Essex, United Kingdom.">
Book: His Life is Mine, by Elder Sophrony

Book: His Life is Mine, by Elder Sophrony

Book: His Life is Mine, by Elder Sophrony

Book: His Life is Mine, by Elder Sophrony
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Contemplation, prayer, spirituality--these words have become popular in our day among those despairing at the banality and emptiness of the contemporary scene. But popular as well are a myriad of pseudo-spiritualities, each offering its own shortcut to spiritual satisfaction. His Life is Mine is a refreshing contrast. The book deals with prayers, and especially with the "Jesus Prayer" of Orthodox monasticism. Yet it is not simply a presentation of "techniques." The book is permeated by the awareness that prayer is not just the cultivation of a particular spiritual state, not the investigation of an abstract Idea or dissolution in an anonymous Whole, but an encounter with the personal Being, I AM, demanding in turn our own growth in personhood.

As remarkable as the book is its author, Archimandrite Sophrony. Like a good plot, his life has proceeded from possibility to probability to necessity--from marked success as a painter exhibiting in the great Paris salons after the Russian Revolution via a brief period of study at the Orthodox Theological Institute in Paris to Mount Athos, the Holy Mountain of Eastern monasticism, where he spent twenty-two years, first as a monk in the Russian Monastery of St Panteleimon and for the final seven years as a hermit in the "desert."


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