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henrikhankhagnell
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« on: March 09, 2011, 04:20:29 PM »

I've just started to read the way of a pilgrim and have some questions:
1. is this the spiritulity that all russian monks practise? or are there other spiritual practices?
2. why is saying the prayer so important that his spiritual father never talk with him about the divine office. i mean, in the benedictine spirituality the say the full divine office. does russian monks say the divine office or do they give so much importants to the jesus prayer that they have no time or will to say the divine office.
3. why did this man so often pray in solitude. i mean, jesus spent a lot of time with sinners. so why does the pilgrim live in solitude?
4. is it true that too many people in the church just talk about prayer instead of learning people how to pray?
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« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2011, 07:23:42 PM »

I've just started to read the way of a pilgrim and have some questions:
1. is this the spiritulity that all russian monks practise? or are there other spiritual practices?
2. why is saying the prayer so important that his spiritual father never talk with him about the divine office. i mean, in the benedictine spirituality the say the full divine office. does russian monks say the divine office or do they give so much importants to the jesus prayer that they have no time or will to say the divine office.
3. why did this man so often pray in solitude. i mean, jesus spent a lot of time with sinners. so why does the pilgrim live in solitude?
4. is it true that too many people in the church just talk about prayer instead of learning people how to pray?

1. What do you mean? The Prayer of Jesus in particular or solitude or hesychasm? The Prayer of Jesus was very popular among the Sinai ascetics but was somewhat of a lost art until Russian monks started to bring it back into use. I believe the monks of Holy Athos use it also.
2. The Prayer of Jesus sums up the whole of the Gospel into one phrase. When you don't have books and the internet you need something simple to give to people. You can be unlearned and come to salvation with it's use; it is a prayer for all people. But it also has all the depth of the Gospel so those who seek a more intimate experience can after much practice and guidance. It's power comes from the name of Jesus used at the beginning. Paul's charge to pray unceasingly (1 Thess 5:17) can also be attained through use of the prayer. I wouldn't make a blanket statement about Russian monks' use of the Divine Office, but the Fathers teach us that the whole of the Gospel in contained in the Prayer of Jesus so the DO may not be necessary.
3. Solitude allows us to concentrate the mind and free it of thought so that one can take the mind and descend into the heart where real prayer takes place. Jesus says to go into your closet to pray and solitude reflects that charge. (Mat 6:6) With all the distractions of the world and regular life, it is very very heard to achieve this living a regular life. Yes Jesus did but first He went into the desert for 40 days to fight Satan and free himself. Not everyone is called to seclusion, yet not everyone is called to evangelism.
4. The answer to that is subjective. The only teacher of true prayer is Christ. We can take advice from holy people but at the end of the day we must find quiet and seek God and His knowledge through prayer.
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« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2011, 10:40:57 PM »

I've just started to read the way of a pilgrim and have some questions:
1. is this the spiritulity that all russian monks practise? or are there other spiritual practices?
2. why is saying the prayer so important that his spiritual father never talk with him about the divine office. i mean, in the benedictine spirituality the say the full divine office. does russian monks say the divine office or do they give so much importants to the jesus prayer that they have no time or will to say the divine office.
3. why did this man so often pray in solitude. i mean, jesus spent a lot of time with sinners. so why does the pilgrim live in solitude?
4. is it true that too many people in the church just talk about prayer instead of learning people how to pray?

The Jesus Prayer is not the same as a daily prayer rule.  Is that what you mean by Divine Office?  The book doesn't mention the pilgrim's daily prayer rule, it is about "praying without ceasing" and the prayer of the heart. 

The book was written in the mid 1800's.  Perhaps at that time there was an issue with too much scholasticism inside the church (talking about prayer rather than doing it).  I'm sure things like that ebb and flow in the 2000 yr life of the Orthodox church. 
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« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2011, 10:45:13 PM »

The book is not meant to be an all-encompassing guide to Orthodox prayer life, but a guide to the Jesus Prayer and "prayer of the heart." It is assumed that the narrator is also maintaining a set of formal prayers, which are briefly mentioned here and there. Of course, there are some of the opinion that the Jesus Prayer can satisfactorily replace formal prayer, or psalmody, but this doesn't seem to be a universal belief.
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« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2011, 10:31:11 AM »

I think this book is best taken as an overall inspirational work & until one does speak to a priest etc. its intricasies should be considered pending at least. Nonetheless, it is an enjoyable (& important) read, a seminarian gave me this book when I was chrismated & I never have adapted the particular techniques of the pilgrim & yet the Jesus Prayer is the spine of my very prayer life (such as it may be).
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« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2011, 04:58:15 AM »

Simply Orthodox - 10
October 19, 2007 Length: 13:05
Dr. Nassif discusses three important lessons we learn from the the Russian novel "The Way of a Pilgrim." In addition to the prayer from that novel, known as the Jesus Prayer, he talks about other types of short prayers and their value to us as a means to our spiritual growth.

http://ancientfaith.com/podcasts/nassif/simply_orthodox_10



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« Last Edit: March 12, 2011, 03:28:39 PM by PeterTheAleut » Logged

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henrikhankhagnell
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« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2011, 06:43:07 AM »

The Way of a Pilgrim: a Russian Orthodox Hermit's Path

Readers of The Way of a Pilgrim quickly discover two levels of narration in this simple and unassuming nineteenth-century religious classic. The first level presents a heartfelt apologia for silent prayer in the Orthodox Christian tradition, namely, the "ceaseless" prayer or the so-called Jesus prayer. Cited as the authority for the Jesus prayer is the Philokalia, a literary collection of writings of the Greek-speaking Church Fathers supporting the tradition of hesychasm. Yet The Way of a Pilgrim does not pursue theological argument. It is imminently practical in its advice to simply start praying.

http://www.hermitary.com/articles/pilgrim.html



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« Last Edit: March 12, 2011, 03:28:11 PM by PeterTheAleut » Logged

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