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The Orthodox World-View - by Blessed Father Seraphim Rose

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  • byakimov@csc.com.au
    The Orthodox World-View by Blessed Father Seraphim Rose     Before beginning my talk, a word or two on why it is important to have an Orthodox world-view,
    Message 1 of 11 , Mar 29, 2004
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      The Orthodox World-View

      by Blessed Father Seraphim Rose





          Before beginning my talk, a word or two on why it is important to have
      an Orthodox world-view, and why it is more difficult to build one today
      than in past centuries.

          In past centuries?for example, in 19th century Russia?the Orthodox
      world-view was an important part of Orthodox life and was supported by the
      life around it. There was no need even to speak of it as a separate
      thing?you lived Orthodoxy in harmony with the Orthodox society around you,
      and you had an Orthodox world-view provided by the Church and society. In
      many countries the government itself confessed Orthodoxy; it was the center
      of public functions and the king or ruler himself was historically the
      first Orthodox layman with a responsibility to give a Christian example to
      all his subjects. Every city had Orthodox churches, and many of them had
      services every day, morning and evening. There were monasterie! s in all
      the great cities, in many cities, outside the cities, and in the
      countryside, in deserts and wildernesses. In Russia there were more than
      1000 officially organized monasteries, in addition to other more unofficial
      groups. Monasticism was an accepted part of life. Most families, in fact,
      had somewhere in them a sister or brother, uncle, grandfather, cousin or
      someone who was a monk or a nun, in addition to all the other examples of
      Orthodox life: people who wandered from monastery to monastery, and
      fools-for-Christ. The whole way of life was permeated with Orthodox kinds
      of people, of which, of course, monasticism is the center. Orthodox customs
      were a part of daily life. Most books that were commonly read were
      Orthodox. Daily life itself was difficult for most people: they had to work
      hard to survive, life expectancy was not great, death was a frequent
      reality?all of which reinforced the Church's teaching on the reality and
      nearness of the other world. Living an Ortho! dox life in such
      circumstances was really the same thing as having and Orthodox world-view,
      and there was little need to talk of such a thing.
          Today, on the other hand, all this has changed. Our Orthodoxy is a
      little island in the midst of a world which operates on totally different
      principles?and every day these principles are changing for the worse,
      making us more and more alienated from it. Many people are tempted to
      divide their lives into two sharply distinct categories: the daily life we
      lead at work, with worldly friends, in our worldly business, and Orthodoxy,
      which we live on Sundays and at other times in the week when we have time
      for it. But the world-view of such a person, if you look at it closely, is
      often a strange combination of Christian values and worldly values, which
      really do not mix. The purpose of this talk is to see how people living
      today can begin to make their world-view more of one piece, to make it a
      whole Orthodox world-view.!

          Orthodoxy is life. If we don't live Orthodoxy, we simply are not
      Orthodox, no matter what formal beliefs we might hold.
          Life in our contemporary world has become very artificial, very
      uncertain, very confusing. Orthodoxy, it is true, has a life of its own,
      but it is also not very far from the life of the world around it, and so
      the life of the Orthodox Christian, even when he is being truly Orthodox,
      cannot help but reflect it in some way. A kind of uncertainty and confusion
      have also entered in Orthodox life in our times. In this talk we will try
      to look at contemporary life, and then at Orthodox life, to see how better
      we might fulfill our Christian obligation to lead other-worldly lives even
      in these quite terrible times, and to have an Orthodox Christian view of
      the whole of life today that will enable us to survive these times with our
      faith intact.


      Life today has become abnormal

          Anyone who looks at our contemporary life from the perspective of the
      normal life lived by people in earlier times?say, Russia, or America, or
      any country of Western Europe in the 19th century?cannot help but be struck
      by the fact of how abnormal life has become today. The whole concept of
      authority and obedience, of decency and politeness, of public and private
      behavior?all have changed drastically, have been turned upside down except
      in a few isolated pockets of people?usually Christians of some kind?who try
      to preserve the so-called "old-fashioned" way of life.
          Our abnormal life today can be characterized as spoiled, pampered. From
      infancy today's child is treated, as a general rule, like a little god or
      goddess in the family: his whims are catered to, his desires fulfilled; he
      is surrounded by toys, amusements, comforts; he is not trained and !
      brought up according to strict principles of Christian behavior, but left
      to develop whichever way his desires incline. It is usually enough for him
      to say, "I want it!" or "I won't do it!" for his obliging parents to bow
      down before him and let him have his way. Perhaps this does not happen all
      the time in every family, but it happens often enough to be the rule of
      contemporary child-rearing, and even the best-intentioned parents do not
      entirely escape its influence. Even if the parents try to raise the child
      strictly, the neighbors are trying to do something else. They have to take
      that into consideration when disciplining the child.
          When such a child becomes an adult, he naturally surrounds himself with
      the same things he was used to in his childhood: comforts, amusements, and
      grown-up toys. Life becomes a constant search for "fun" which, by the way,
      is a word totally unheard of in any other vocabulary; in 19th century
      Russia they wouldn't have underst! ood what this word meant, or any serious
      civilization. Life is a constant search for "fun" which is so empty of any
      serious meaning that a visitor from any 19th-century country, looking at
      our popular television programs, amusement parks, advertisements, movies,
      music?at almost any aspect of our popular culture?would think he had
      stumbled across a land of imbeciles who have lost all contact with normal
      reality. We don't often take that into consideration, because we are living
      in this society and we take it for granted.
          Some recent observers of our contemporary life have called the young
      people of today the "me generation" and our times the "age of narcissism,"
      characterized by a worship of and fascination with oneself that prevents a
      normal human life from developing. Others have spoken of the "plastic"
      universe or fantasy world in which so many people live today, unable to
      face or come to terms with the reality of the world around them or the
      problems w! ithin themselves.
          When the "me generation" turns to religion?which has been happening
      very frequently in the past several decades?it is usually to a "plastic" or
      fantasy form of religion: a religion of "self-development" (where the self
      remains the object of worship), brainwashing and mind-control, of deified
      gurus and swamis, of a pursuit of UFO's and "extra-terrestrial" beings, of
      abnormal spiritual states and feelings. We will not go into all these
      manifestations there, which are probably familiar enough to most of you,
      except to discuss a little later how these touch on the Orthodox Christian
      spiritual life of our days
          It is important for us to realize, as we try ourselves to lead a
      Christian life today, that the world which has been formed by our pampered
      times, makes demands on the soul, whether in religion or in secular life,
      which are what one has to call totalitarian. This is easy enough to see in
      the mindbending cults that ! have received so much publicity in recent
      years, and which demand total allegiance to a self-made "holy man"; but it
      is just as evident in secular life, where one is confronted not just by an
      individual temptation her or there, but by a constant state of temptation
      that attacks one, whether in the background music heard everywhere in
      markets and businesses, in the public signs and billboards of city streets,
      in the rock music which is brought even to forest campgrounds and trails,
      and in the home itself, where television often becomes the secret ruler of
      the household, dictating modern values, opinions, and tastes. If you have
      young children, you know how true this is; when they have seen something on
      television how difficult it is to fight against this new opinion which has
      been given as an authority by the television.
          The message of this universal temptation that attacks men today?quite
      openly in its secular forms, but usually more hidden in its religio! us
      forms?is: Live for the present, enjoy yourself, relax, be comfortable.
      Behind this message is another, more sinister undertone which is openly
      expressed only in the officially atheist countries which are one step ahead
      of the free world in this aspect. In fact, we should realize that what is
      happening in the world today is very similar whether it occurs behind the
      Iron Curtain or in the free world. There are different varieties of it, but
      there is a very similar attack to get our soul. In the communist countries
      which have an official doctrine of atheism, they tell quite openly that you
      are to: Forget about God and any other life but the present; remove from
      your life the fear of God and reverence for holy things; regard those who
      still believe in God in the "old-fashioned' way as enemies who must be
      exterminated. One might take, as a symbol of our carefree, fun-loving,
      self-worshipping times, our American "Disneyland"; if so, we should not
      neglect to see behind it the more! sinister symbol that shows where the "me
      generation" is really heading; the Soviet Gulag, the chain of concentration
      camps that already governs the life of nearly half the world's population.


      Two False Approaches to Spiritual Life

          But what, one might ask, does all this have to do with us, who are
      trying to lead, as best we can, a sober Orthodox Christian life? It has a
      lot to do with it. We have to realize that the life around us, abnormal
      though it is, is the place where we begin our own Christian life. Whatever
      we make of our life, whatever truly Christian content we give it, it still
      has something of the stamp of the "me generation" on it, and we have to be
      humble enough to see this. This is where we begin.
          There are two false approaches to the life around us that many often
      make today, thinking that somehow this is what Orthodox Christians should
      be doing. One approach?the most common one?is simply to go along with the
      times: adapt yourself to rock music, modern fashions and tastes, and the
      whole rhythm of our jazzed-up modern life. Often the more old-fashioned
      parents will have little contact with this life and will live their own
      life more o! r less separately, but they will smile to see their children
      follow after its latest craze and think that this is something harmless.
          This path is total disaster for the Christian life; it is the death of
      the soul. Some can still lead an outwardly respectable life without
      struggling against the spirit of the times, but inwardly they are dead or
      dying; and?the saddest thing of all?their children will pay the price in
      various psychic and spiritual disorders and sicknesses which become more
      and more common. One of the leading members of the suicide cult that ended
      so spectacularly in Jonestown four years ago was the young daughter of a
      Greek Orthodox priest; satanic rock groups like Kiss?"Kids in Satan's
      Service"?are made up of ex-Russian Orthodox young people; the largest part
      of the membership of the temple of satan in San Francisco, according to a
      recent sociological survey?is made up of Orthodox boys. These are only a
      few striking cases; most Orthodox yo! ung people don't go so far
      astray?they just blend in with the anti-Christian world around them and
      cease to be examples of any kind of Christianity for those around them.
          This is wrong. The Christian must be different from the world, above
      all from today's weird, abnormal world, and this must be one oft he basic
      things he knows as part of his Christian upbringing. Otherwise there is no
      point in calling ourselves Christian?much less Orthodox Christians.
          The false approach at the opposite extreme is one that one might call
      false spirituality. As translations of Orthodox books on the spiritual life
      become more widely available, an the Orthodox vocabulary of spiritual
      struggle is placed more and more in the air, one finds an increasing number
      of people talking about hesychasm, the Jesus Prayer, the ascetic life,
      exalted states of prayer, and the most exalted Holy Fathers like St. Symeon
      the New Theologian, St. Gregory Palamas, and St. Gr! egory the Sianite. It
      is all very well to be aware of this truly exalted side of Orthodox
      spiritual life and to have reverence for the great saints who have actually
      lived it; but unless we have a very realistic and very humble awareness of
      how far away all of us today are from the life of hesychasm and how little
      prepared we are even to approach it, our interest in it will be only one
      more expression of our self-centered, plastic universe. "The me-generation
      goes hesychast!"?that is what some are trying to do today; but in actuality
      they are only adding a new game called "hesychasm" to the attractions of
      Disneyland.
          There are books on this subject now that are very popular. In fact,
      Roman Catholics are going in very big for this kind of thing under Orthodox
      influence and themselves influencing other Orthodox people. For example,
      there is a Jesuit priest, Fr. George Maloney, who writes all kinds of books
      on this subject and translates St. Macarius the Gre! at and St. Symeon the
      New Theologian and tries to get people in everyday life to be hesychasts.
      They have all kinds of retreats, usually "charismatic"; people are inspired
      by the Holy Spirit, supposedly, and undertake all types of these
      disciplines which we get from the Holy Fathers, and which are far beyond
      the level at which we are today. It is a very unserious thing. There is
      also a lady, Catherine de Hueck Doherty (in fact, she was born in Russia
      and became a Roman Catholic), who writes books about Poustinia, the desert
      life, and Molchanie, the silent life, and all these things which she tries
      to put into life like you would have some fashion for a new candy. This, of
      course, is very unserious and is a very tragic sign of our times. These
      kind of exalted things are being used by people who have no idea of what
      they are about. For some people it is only a habit or a pastime; for others
      who take it seriously, it can be a great tragedy. They think they are
      leading some kind o! f exalted life and really they have not come to terms
      with their own problems inside of them.
          Let me re-emphasize that both of these extremes are to be avoided?both
      worldliness and super-spirituality?but this does not mean that we should
      not have a realistic awareness of the legitimate demands which the world
      makes upon us, or that we should cease respecting and taking sound
      instruction from the great hesychast Fathers and using the Jesus prayer
      ourselves, according to our own circumstances and capacity. It just has to
      be on our level, down to earth. The point is?and it is a point that is
      absolutely necessary for our survival as Orthodox Christians today?we must
      realize our situation as Orthodox Christians today; we must realize deeply
      what times we live in, how little we actually know and feel our Orthodoxy,
      how far we are not just from the saints of ancient times, but even from the
      ordinary Orthodox Christians of a hundred years or even a generation ago! ,
      and how much we must humble ourselves just to survive as Orthodox
      Christians today.

      What we can do

          More specifically, what can we do to gain this awareness, this
      realization, and how can we make it fruitful in our lives? I will try to
      answer this question in two parts: first, concerning our awareness of the
      world around us, which as never before in the history of Christianity has
      become our conscious enemy; and second, concerning our awareness of
      Orthodoxy, which, I am afraid, most of us known much lass than we should,
      much less than we have to know if we wish to keep it.
      First, since whether we wish it or not we are in the world (and its effects
      are felt strongly even in a remote place like our monastery here), we must
      face it and its temptations squarely and realistically, but without giving
      in to it; in particular, we must prepare our young people for the
      temptations facing them, and is it were inoculate them against these
      temptations. We must be aware that the world around us seldom helps and
      almost always hinders the upb! ringing of the child in the true Orthodox
      spirit. We must be ready every day to answer the influence of the world by
      the principles of a sound Christian upbringing.
          This means that what a child learns at school must constantly be
      checked and corrected at home. We cannot assume that something he is going
      to learn at school is simply something that is profitable or secular and
      has nothing to do with his Orthodox upbringing. He may be taught useful
      skills and facts (although many schools in America today are failing
      miserably even at this; many school teachers tell us that all they can do
      is keep the children in god order in class without even teaching them
      anything), but even if he gets this much, he is also taught many wrong
      attitudes and philosophies. A child's basic attitude towards and
      appreciation of literature, music, history, art, philosophy, even science,
      and of course life and religion?must come first of al not from school, for
      the school will give! you all this mixed up with modern philosophy; it must
      come first from the home and Church, or else he is bound to be miseducated
      in today's world, where public education is at best agnostic, and at worst,
      openly atheistic or anti-religious. Of course, in the Soviet Union all this
      is forced upon the child, with no religion whatsoever and an active program
      of making the child an atheist.
          Parents must now exactly what is being taught their children in
      education courses, which are almost universal today in American schools,
      and correct it at home, not only by a frank attitude to this subject
      (especially between fathers and sons?a very rare thing in American
      society), but also by a clear setting forth of the moral aspect of it which
      is totally absent in public education.
          Parents must know just what kind of music their children are listening
      to, what is in the movies they see (listening and seeing together with them
      when necessary), what ! kind of language they are exposed to and what kind
      of language they use, and give the Christian attitude to all this.
          Television?in households where there is not enough courage to throw it
      out the window?must be strictly controlled and supervised to avoid the
      poisonous effects of this machine which has become the leading educator of
      anti-Christian attitudes and ideas in the home itself, especially to the
      young.
          I speak about the raising of children because this is where the world
      first strikes its blows at Orthodox Christians and forms them in its image;
      once wrong attitudes have been formed in a child, the task of giving him a
      Christian education becomes doubly difficult.
          But it is not only children, it is all of us, who are facing the world
      which is trying to form us in anti-Christianity, by means of schools,
      television, movies, popular music, and all the other influences that pound
      in upon us, most of all in ! the big cities. We have to be aware that what
      is being pounded in upon us is all of one piece; it has a certain rhythm, a
      certain message to give us, this message of self-worship, of relaxing, of
      letting go, of enjoying yourself, of giving up any thought of the other
      world, in various forms, whether in music, or in movies, television, or
      what is being taught in schools, the way subjects are emphasized, the way
      the background is given, and everything else; there is one particular thing
      which is being given to us. It is actually an education in atheism. We have
      to fight back by knowing just what the world is trying to do to us, and by
      formulating and communicating our Orthodox Christian response to it.
          Frankly, from observing the way Orthodox families in today's world live
      and pass on their Orthodoxy, it would seem that this battle is more often
      lost than won. The percentage of Orthodox Christians who retain their
      Orthodox identity intact and are not change! d into the image of today's
      world, is small indeed.
          Still, it is not necessary to view the world around us as all bad. In
      fact, for our survival as Orthodox Christians we have to be smart enough to
      use whatever is positive in the world for our own benefit. Here I will go
      into a few points where we can use something in the world which seems to
      have nothing to do directly with Orthodoxy in order to formulate our
      Orthodox world-view.
          The child who has been exposed from his earliest years to good
      classical music, and has seen his soul being developed by it, will not be
      nearly as tempted by the crude rhythm and message of rock and other
      contemporary forms of pseudo-music as someone who has grown up without a
      musical education. Such a musical education, as several of the Optina
      elders have said, refines the soul and prepares it for the reception of
      spiritual impressions.
          The child who has been educated in good literat! ure, drama, and poetry
      and has felt their effect in his own soul?that is, has really enjoyed
      them?will not easily become an addict of the contemporary movies and
      television programs and cheap novels that devastate the soul and take it
      away from the Christian path.
          The child who has learned to see beauty in classical painting and
      sculpture will not easily be drawn into the perversity of contemporary art
      or be attracted by the garish products of modern advertising and
      pornography.
          The child who knows something of the history of the world, especially
      in Christian times, and how other people have lived and thought, what
      mistakes and pitfalls people have fallen into by departing from God and His
      commandments, and what glorious and influential lives they have lived when
      they were faithful to Him?will be discerning about the life and philosophy
      of our own times and will not be inclined to follow the first new
      philosophy or way of life he en! counters. One of the basic problems facing
      the education of children today is that in the schools they are no longer
      given a sense of history. It is a dangerous and fatal thing to deprive a
      child of a sense of history. It means that he has no ability to take
      examples from the people who lived in the past. And actually, history
      constantly repeats itself. Once you see that, it becomes interesting how
      people have answered problems, how there have been people who have gone
      against God and what results came from that, and how people changed their
      lives and became exceptions and gave an example which is lived down to our
      own times. This sense of history is a very important thing which should be
      communicated to children.
          In general, the person who is well acquainted with the best products of
      secular culture?which in the West almost always has definite religious and
      Christian overtones?has a much better chance of leading a normal, fruitful
      Orthodox life than some! one who knows only the popular culture of today.
      One who is converted to Orthodoxy straight from "rock" culture, and in
      general anyone who thinks he can combine Orthodoxy with that kind of
      culture?has much suffering to go through and a difficult road in life
      before he can become a truly serious Orthodox Christian who is capable of
      handing on his faith to others. Without this suffering, without this
      awareness, Orthodox parents will raise their children to be devoured by the
      contemporary world. The world's best culture, properly received, refines
      and develops the soul; today's popular culture cripples and deforms the
      soul and hinders it from having a full and normal response to the message
      of Orthodoxy.
          Therefore, in our battle against the spirit of this world, we can use
      the best things the world has to offer in order to go beyond them;
      everything good in the world, if we are only wise enough to see it, points
      to God, and to Orthodoxy, and we have to make ! use of it.

      The Orthodox World-view

          With such an attitude?a view of both the good things and the bad things
      in the world?it is possible for us to have and to live an Orthodox
      world-view, that is, an Orthodox view on the whole of life, not just on
      narrow church subjects. There exists a false opinion, which unfortunately
      is all to widespread today, that it is enough to have an Orthodoxy that is
      limited to the church building and formal "Orthodox" activities, such as
      praying at certain times or making the sign of the Cross; in everything
      else, so this opinion goes, one can be like anyone else, participating in
      the life and culture of our times without any problem, as long as we don't
      commit sin.
          Anyone who has come to realize how deep Orthodoxy is, and how full is
      the commitment which is required of the serious Orthodox Christian, and
      likewise what totalitarian demands the contemporary world makes on us, will
      easily see how wrong this opinion is. O! ne is Orthodox all the time every
      day, in every situation of life, or one is not really Orthodox at all. Our
      Orthodoxy is revealed not just in our strictly religious views, but in
      everything we do and say. Most of us are very unaware of the Christian,
      religious responsibility we have for the seemingly secular part of our
      lives. The person with a truly Orthodox world-view lives every part of his
      life as Orthodox.
          Let us, therefore, ask here: How can we nourish and support this
      Orthodox world-view in our daily life?
          The first and most obvious way is to be in constant contact with the
      sources of Christian nourishment, with everything that the Church gives us
      for our enlightenment and salvation: the Church services and Holy
      Mysteries, Holy Scripture, the Lives of Saints, the writings of the Holy
      Fathers. One must, of course, read books that are on one's own level of
      understanding, and apply the Church's teaching to one's own circumstance! s
      in life; then they can be fruitful in guiding us and changing us in a
      Christian way.
          But often these basic Christian sources do not have their full effect
      on us, or don't really affect us at all, because we don't have the right
      Christian attitude towards them and towards the Christian life they are
      supposed to inspire. Let me now say a word here about what our attitude
      should be if we are to obtain real benefit from them and if they are going
      to be for us the beginning of a truly Orthodox world-view.
          First of all, Christian spiritual food, by its very nature, is
      something living and nourishing; if our attitude towards it is merely
      academic and bookish, we will fail to get the benefit it is meant to give.
      Therefore, if we read Orthodox books or are interesting in Orthodoxy only
      to gain information?or show off our knowledge to others, we are missing the
      point; if we learn of the commandments of God and the law of His Church
      merely to! be "correct" and to judge the "incorrectness" of others, we are
      missing the point. These things must not merely affect our ideas, but must
      directly touch our lives and change them. In any time of great crisis in
      human affairs?such as the critical times right in front of us in the free
      world?those who place their trust in outward knowledge, in laws and canons
      and correctness, will be unable to stand. The strong ones then will be
      those whose Orthodox education has given them a feel for what is truly
      Christian, those whose Orthodoxy is in the heart and is capable of touching
      other hearts.
          Nothing is more tragic than to see someone who is raised in Orthodoxy,
      has a certain idea of the catechism, has read some Lives of Saints, has a
      general idea of what Orthodoxy stands for, understands some of the
      services, and then is unaware of what is going on around him. And he gives
      his children this life in two categories: one is the way most people live
      and the other ! way is how Orthodox live on Sundays and when they are
      reading some Orthodox text. When a child is raised like that he is most
      likely not going to take the Orthodox one; it is going to be a very small
      part of his life, because the contemporary life is too attractive, too many
      people are going for it, it is too much a part of reality today, unless he
      has been really taught how to approach it, how to guard himself against the
      bad effects of it and how to take advantage of the good things which are in
      the world.
          Therefore, our attitude, beginning right now, must be down-to-earth and
      normal. That is, it must be applied to the real circumstances of our life,
      not a product of fantasy and escapism and refusal to face the often
      unpleasant facts of the world around us. An Orthodoxy that is too exalted
      and too much in the clouds belongs in a hothouse and is incapable of
      helping us in our daily life, let along saying anything for the salvation
      of those around us. Our! world is quite cruel and wounds souls with its
      harshness; we need to respond first of all with down-to-earth Christian
      love and understanding, leaving accounts of hesychasm and advanced forms of
      prayer to those capable of receiving them.
          So also, our attitude must not be self-centered but reaching out to
      those who are seeking for God and for a godly life. Nowadays, wherever
      there is a good-sized Orthodox community, the temptation is to make it into
      a society for self-congratulation and for taking delight in our Orthodox
      virtues and achievements: the beauty of our church buildings and
      furnishings, the splendor of our services, even the purity of our doctrine.
      But the true Christian life, even since the time of the Apostles, has
      always been inseparable from communicating it to others. An Orthodoxy that
      is alive by this very fact shines forth to others?and there is no need to
      pen a "department of missions" to do this; the fire of true Christianity
      communica! tes itself without this. If our Orthodoxy is only something we
      keep for ourselves, and boast about it, then we are the dead burying the
      dead?which is precisely the state of many of our Orthodox parishes today,
      even those that have a large number of young people, if they are not going
      deeply into their Faith. It is not enough to say that the young people are
      going to church. We need to ask what they are getting in church, what they
      are taking away from church, and, if they are not making Orthodoxy a part
      of their whole life, then it really is not sufficient to say that they are
      going to church.
          Likewise, our attitude must be loving and forgiving. There is a kind of
      hardness that has crept into Orthodox life today: "That man is a heretic;
      don't go near him;" "that one is Orthodox, supposedly, but you can't really
      be sure;" "that one there is obviously a spy." No one will deny that the
      Church is surrounded by enemies today, or that there are some who stoop t!
      o taking advantage of our trust and confidence. But this is the way it has
      been since the time of the Apostles, and the Christian life has always been
      something of a risk in this practical way. But even if we are sometimes
      taken advantage of and do have to show some caution in this regard, still
      we cannot give up our basic attitude of love and trust without which we
      lose one of the very foundations of our Christian life. The world, which
      has no Christ, has to be mistrustful and cold, but Christians, on the
      contrary, have to be loving and open, or else we will lose the salt of
      Christ within us and become just like the world, good for nothing but to be
      cast out and trodden underfoot.
          A little humility in looking at ourselves would help us to be more
      generous and forgiving of the faults of others. We love to judge others for
      the strangeness of their behavior; we call them "cuckoos" or "crazy
      converts." It is true that we should beware of really unbalanced pe! ople
      who can do us great harm in the Church. But what serious Orthodox Christian
      today is not a little "crazy?" We don't fit in with the ways of this world;
      if we do, in today's world, we aren't serious Christians. The true
      Christian today cannot be at home in the world; he cannot help but feel
      himself and be regarded by others as a little "crazy." Just to keep alive
      the ideal of other-worldly Christianity today, or to get baptized as an
      adult, or to pray seriously, is enough to put you into a crazy house in the
      Soviet Union and in many other countries, and these countries are leading
      the way for the rest of the world to follow.
          Therefore, let us not be afraid of being considered a little "crazy" by
      the world, and let us continue to practice the Christian love and
      forgiveness which the world can never understand, but which in its heart it
      needs and even craves.
          Finally, our Christian attitude must be what, for want of a better
      word, ! I would call innocent. Today the world places a high value on
      sophistication, on being worldly-wise, on being a "professional." Orthodoxy
      places no value on these qualities; they kill the Christian soul. And yet
      these qualities constantly creep into the Church and into our lives. How
      often one hears enthusiastic converts especially, express their desire of
      going to the great Orthodox centers, the cathedrals and monasteries where
      sometimes thousands of the faithful come together and everywhere the talk
      is of church matters, and one can feel how important Orthodox is, after
      all. That Orthodoxy is a small drop in the bucket when you look at the
      whole society, but in the great cathedrals and monasteries there are so
      many people that it seems as though it is really an important thing. And
      how often one sees these same people in a pitiful state after they have
      indulged their desire, returning from the "great Orthodox centers" sour and
      dissatisfied, filled with worldly church gossip ! and criticism, anxious
      above all to be "correct" and "proper" and worldly-wise about church
      politics. In a word, they have lost their innocence, their unworldliness,
      being led astray by their fascination with the worldly side of the Church's
      life.
          In various forms, this is a temptation to us all, and we must fight it
      by not allowing ourselves to overvalue the externals of the Church, but
      always returning to the "one thing needful": Christ and the salvation of
      our souls from this wicked generation. We needn't be ignorant of what goes
      on in the world and in the Church?in fact, for our own selves we have to
      know?but our knowledge must be practical and simple and single-minded, not
      sophisticated and worldly.

      Conclusion
          It is obvious to any Orthodox Christian who is aware of what is going
      on around him today, that the world is coming to its end. The signs of the
      times are so obvious that one might say that the world is crashing to its
      end.
          What are some of these signs?
          ?The abnormality of the world. Never have such weird and unnatural
      manifestations and behavior been accepted as a matter of course as in our
      days. Just look at the world around you: what is in the newspapers, what
      kind of movies are being shown, what is on television, what it is that
      people think is interesting and amusing, what they laugh at; it is
      absolutely weird. And there are people who deliberately promote this, of
      course, for their own financial benefit, and because that is the fashion,
      because there is a perverse craving for this kind of thing.
          ?The wars and rumors of wars, e! ach more cold and merciless than the
      preceding, and all overshadowed by the threat of the unthinkable universal
      nuclear war, which could be set off by the touch of a button.
          ?The widespread natural disasters: earthquakes, and now volcanoes?the
      newest one forming not far from here near Yosemite Park in central
      California?which are already changing the world's weather patterns.
          ?The increasing centralization of information on and power over the
      individual, represented in particular by the enormous new computer in
      Luxembourg, which has the capacity to keep a file of information on every
      man living; its code number is 666 and it is nicknamed "the beast" by those
      who work on it. To facilitate the working of such computers, the American
      government plans to begin in 1984 the issuance of Social Security checks to
      persons with a number (apparently including the code number 666) stamped on
      their right hand or forehead?precisely the condition w! hich will prevail,
      according to the Apocalypse (ch. 13) during the reign of antichrist. Of
      course, it doesn't mean that the first person to get himself stamped 666 is
      the antichrist, or the servant of antichrist, but once you are used to
      this, who will be able to resist? They will train you first and then they
      will make you bow down to him.
          ?Again, the multiplication of false Christs and false Antichrists. The
      latest candidate just this summer spent probably millions of dollars
      advertising his impending appearance on world television, promising to give
      at that time a "telepathic message" to all the world's inhabitants. Quite
      apart from any occult powers that might be involved in such events, we
      already know well enough the opportunities for presenting subliminal
      messages by radio and especially by television, as well as the fact that
      this can be done by anyone with the technology for breaking into normal
      radio and television signals, no matter how many la! ws there might be
      against it.
          ?The truly weird response to the new movie everyone in America is
      talking about and seeing: "E.T.", which has caused literally millions of
      seemingly normal people to express their affection and love for the hero, a
      "saviour" from outer space who is quite obviously a demon?an obvious
      preparation for the worship of the coming Antichrist. (And incidentally,
      the movie editor of the official Greek Archdiocese newspaper in America, an
      Orthodox priest, has heartily recommended this movie to Orthodox people
      saying that it is a wonderful movie which can teach us about love, and
      everyone should go see it. There is quite a contrast between people who are
      trying to be aware of what is going on, and those who are simply led into
      the mood of the times.)
          I could go on with details like this, but my purpose is not to frighten
      you, but to make you aware of what is happening around us. It is truly
      later than we think; the! Apocalypse is now. And how tragic it is to see
      Christians, and above all Orthodox young people, with this incalculable
      tragedy hanging over their heads, who think they can continue what is
      called a "normal life" in these terrible times, participating fully in the
      whims of this silly, self-worshipping generation, totally unaware that the
      fool's paradise we are living in is about to crash, completely unprepared
      for the desperate times that lie just ahead of us. There is no longer even
      a question of being a "good" or a "poor" Orthodox Christian; the question
      now is: will our Faith survive at all? With many, it will not survive; the
      coming Antichrist will be too attractive, too much in the spirit of the
      worldly things we no crave, for most men even to know that they have lost
      their Christianity by bowing down to him.
          Still the call of Christ comes to us; let us begin to heed it. The
      clearest expression of this call today is coming from the enslaved atheist
      w! orld, where there is real suffering for Christ and a seriousness of life
      which we are rapidly losing or have already lost. One Orthodox priest in
      Romania, Fr. George Calciu, is now near death in a communist prison for
      daring to challenge young seminarians and students to put off their blind
      allegiance to the spirit of the times and come forward to labor for Christ.
      After speaking of the emptiness of atheism, he tells today's young people:
      "I call you to a much higher flight, to total abandonment, to an act of
      courage which defies reason. I call you to God. To the One that transcends
      the world so that you might know an infinite heaven of spiritual joy, the
      heaven which you presently grope for in your personal hell, and which you
      seek even while in a state of non-deliberate revolt? Jesus has always loved
      you, but now you have the choice to respond to His invitation. In
      responding, you are ordained to go and bear fruit that will remain. To be a
      prophet of Christ in the world in w! hich you live. To love your neighbor
      as yourself and to make all men your friend. To proclaim by every action
      this unique and limitless love which has raised man from the level of a
      serf to that of a friend of God. To the prophets of this liberating love
      which delivers you from all constraint, returning to you your integrity as
      you offer yourself to God."
          Fr. George, speaking to young people who had little inspiration to
      serve Christ's Church because they had accepted the worldly opinion (common
      also among us in the free world) that the Church is only a set of buildings
      or a worldly organization, calls them to a deeper awareness of Christ's
      Church and of how our "formal membership" in it is not enough to save us.
          "The Church of Christ is alive and free. In her we move and have our
      being, through Christ Who is her Head. In Him we have full freedom. In the
      Church we learn of truth and the truth will set us free (John 8:32). You
      are in ! Christ's Church whenever you uplift someone bent down in sorrow,
      or when you give alms to the poor, and visit the sick. You are in Christ's
      Church when you are good and patient, when you refuse to get angry at your
      brother, even if he has wounded your feelings. You are in Christ's Church
      when you pray: 'Lord, forgive him.' When you work honestly at your job,
      returning home weary in the evenings but with a smile upon your lips; when
      you repay evil with love?you are in Christ's Church. Do you not see,
      therefore, young friend, how close the Church of Christ is? You are Peter
      and God is building His Church upon you. You are the rock of His Church
      against which nothing can prevail? Let us build churches with our faith,
      churches which no human power can pull down, a church whose foundation is
      Christ? Feel for your brother alongside you. Never ask: 'Who is he?' Rather
      say: 'He is no stranger; he is my brother. He is the Church of Christ just
      as I am."
          With such ! a call in our hearts, let us begin really to belong to the
      Church of Christ, the Orthodox Church. Outward membership is not enough;
      something must move within us that makes us different from the world around
      us, even if that world calls itself "Christian" and even "Orthodox." Let us
      keep and nourish those qualities of the true Orthodox world-view which I
      mentioned earlier: a living, normal attitude, loving and forgiving, not
      self-centered, preserving our innocence and unworldliness even with a full
      and humble awareness of our own sinfulness and the power of the worldly
      temptations around us. If we truly live this Orthodox world-view, our Faith
      will survive the shocks ahead of us and be a source of inspiration and
      salvation for those who will still be seeking Christ even amidst the
      shipwreck of humanity which has already begun today.


      Reprinted from The Orthodox Word
      Vol. 18, No. 4 (105) July-August, 1982
    • michael nikitin
      Why is Fr.Serapfim Rose called blessed, when St.Metr.Philaret, whose relics are found incorrupt by Metr.Laurus, is not? One has to be careful to attribute
      Message 2 of 11 , Mar 30, 2004
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        Why is Fr.Serapfim Rose called blessed, when St.Metr.Philaret,
        whose relics are found incorrupt by Metr.Laurus, is not?

        One has to be careful to attribute blessed to someone who
        on his deathbed damned Fr.Herman, his co-struggler.

        Michael N


        byakimov@... wrote:


        The Orthodox World-View

        by Blessed Father Seraphim Rose




        ---------------------------------
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      • Priest Seraphim Holland
        ... That is not the story I hears. What you and I both have regarding your version and my version is hearsay. I would not place any credence in your version of
        Message 3 of 11 , Mar 30, 2004
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          michael nikitin wrote:
          > One has to be careful to attribute blessed to someone who
          > on his deathbed damned Fr.Herman, his co-struggler.

          That is not the story I hears. What you and I both have regarding your
          version and my version is hearsay. I would not place any credence in your
          version of events without ironclad documentation. I heard he was
          disappointed in Fr Herman and afraid he was going the wrong way.

          --
          Priest Seraphim Holland - seraphim@... PHONE: 972/529-2754
          MOBILE: 214 658-5433 ADDRESS:2102 Summit, McKinney, TX 75071
          Sermons,Articles,Orthodox topics Q&A,Confession,Parish info,links,etc
          http://www.orthodox.net
        • byakimov@csc.com.au
          I have always referred to dear Vladyka Metr. Philaret (since his repose) as blessed in memory. I have the same regard for Father Seraphim Rose (notwithstanding
          Message 4 of 11 , Mar 30, 2004
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            I have always referred to dear Vladyka Metr. Philaret (since his repose) as
            blessed in memory.
            I have the same regard for Father Seraphim Rose (notwithstanding your
            attribution we all make mistakes even the
            righteous can be angry & some times the anger is deservedly so...) but in
            any case the article was already headed
            in this way & I only posted it.




            michael nikitin <nikitinmike@...> on 31/03/2004 06:07:55 AM

            Please respond to orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com

            To: orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com
            cc:
            Subject: Re: [orthodox-synod] The Orthodox World-View - by Blessed
            Father Seraphim Rose


            Why is Fr.Serapfim Rose called blessed, when St.Metr.Philaret,
            whose relics are found incorrupt by Metr.Laurus, is not?

            One has to be careful to attribute blessed to someone who
            on his deathbed damned Fr.Herman, his co-struggler.

            Michael N


            byakimov@... wrote:


            The Orthodox World-View

            by Blessed Father Seraphim Rose




            ---------------------------------
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            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]




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          • Peter Joshua Hatala
            In the new biography, Father Seraphim Rose: His Life and Works this topic is addressed. From page 1015 of the book: Fr. Seraphim was tied to his bed, with a
            Message 5 of 11 , Mar 30, 2004
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              In the new biography, "Father Seraphim Rose: His Life
              and Works" this topic is addressed. From page 1015 of
              the book:

              "Fr. Seraphim was tied to his bed, with a tube in his
              mouth, tossing and turning in unbearable agony,
              cursing people who were the closest in the world to
              him, saying he hated everyone, and threatening to get
              revenge once he got free. Fr. Herman was shocked to
              hear such words coming out of his co-laboror, but as
              he looked into Fr. Seraphim's eyes he could see that
              they were glazed over, not looking at anything. Fr.
              Seraphim was truly not himself, but was in a state of
              delirium caused by the pain and residual effect of the
              anesthesia. Fr. Herman immediately went to tell the
              doctor that Fr. Seraphim was in great pain, and asked
              that he be given some pain-killers. He also told the
              doctor that Fr. Seraphim was saying shocking things,
              but the doctor told him to pay no attention-- that
              people coming out of anesthesia can act as if out of
              their minds."

              I'd also like to add this selection from the book:

              "On the fortieth day after Fr. Seraphim's repose, a
              day designated as a special time of prayer by the
              Church, pilgrims again arrived at Fr. Seraphim's grave
              to pray for him. Many, however, had begun to do what
              Bishop Nektary had advised Mother Brigid; that is, to
              pray not only for Fr. Seraphim, but also to him, that
              he would continue to guide and pray for them from the
              other world. Bishop Nektary, who came to the monastery
              on the fortieth day together with several clergymen,
              confirmed what was already in people's hearts. After
              serving Divine Liturgy and then a pontifical
              Pannikhida at the grave, the Bishop gave a sermon
              which ended with the phrase: "Fr. Seraphim was a
              righteous man, possibly a saint." Bishop Nektary was
              well qualified to make such a statement, having been
              in close contact with saints both in Russia and the
              free world. The priest who was translating his sermon
              into English, however, hesitated in repeating this
              phrase, particularly the last word. Calculating that
              such a bold affirmation might be risky since other
              Church leaders had not yet expressed their opinion,
              this priest asked Bishop Nektary if he had really
              meant what he said. Hitting the ground with his staff,
              the Bishop repeated, in Russian, "A Saint!"-- and the
              confused priest was obliged to render this word in
              English.
              Having led a procession from the hillock of Fr.
              Serapim's grave, the Bishop was about to enter the
              church, still holding a censer in his hand. Abruptly
              he turned around and, with great feeling, loudly began
              to sing the glorification hymn to monk-saints: "We
              glorify thee, our holy Father Seraphim, and we honor
              thy holy memory: instructor of monastics, and
              converser with angels." The monks, clergy and pilgrims
              joined in the singing, and the sorrow of being
              separated from Fr. Seraphim was again transformed into
              joy."


              Peter Hatala


              --- Priest Seraphim Holland <seraphim@...>
              wrote:
              > michael nikitin wrote:
              > > One has to be careful to attribute blessed to
              > someone who
              > > on his deathbed damned Fr.Herman, his
              > co-struggler.
              >
              > That is not the story I hears. What you and I both
              > have regarding your
              > version and my version is hearsay. I would not place
              > any credence in your
              > version of events without ironclad documentation. I
              > heard he was
              > disappointed in Fr Herman and afraid he was going
              > the wrong way.
              >
              > --
              > Priest Seraphim Holland - seraphim@...
              > PHONE: 972/529-2754
              > MOBILE: 214 658-5433 ADDRESS:2102 Summit, McKinney,
              > TX 75071
              > Sermons,Articles,Orthodox topics
              > Q&A,Confession,Parish info,links,etc
              > http://www.orthodox.net
              >
              >
              >
            • Paul O. BARTLETT
              ... Having known both Fr. Seraphim and Fr. Herman (I lived with them for seven months), I am wondering how this account of Fr. Seraphim damning Fr. Herman
              Message 6 of 11 , Mar 30, 2004
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                On Tue, 30 Mar 2004, Priest Seraphim Holland wrote:

                > michael nikitin wrote:
                > > One has to be careful to attribute blessed to someone who
                > > on his deathbed damned Fr.Herman, his co-struggler.
                >
                > That is not the story I hears. What you and I both have regarding your
                > version and my version is hearsay. I would not place any credence in your
                > version of events without ironclad documentation. I heard he was
                > disappointed in Fr Herman and afraid he was going the wrong way.

                Having known both Fr. Seraphim and Fr. Herman (I lived with them
                for seven months), I am wondering how this account of Fr. Seraphim
                "damning" Fr. Herman got started. Who was witness to it? I heard
                that before the end Fr. Seraphim was on a respirator and therefore
                (so far as I understand) would have been unable to speak.

                --
                Paul Bartlett
                bartlett "at" smart "dot" net
                PGP key info in message headers
              • michael nikitin
                Fr. Seraphim, below is what Fr. Alexey Young writes on the subject of Fr. Seraphim Rose damning Fr. Herman. Michael N http://www.roca.org/oa/126-127/126p.htm
                Message 7 of 11 , Mar 31, 2004
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                  Fr. Seraphim, below is what Fr. Alexey Young writes on the subject
                  of Fr. Seraphim Rose damning Fr. Herman.

                  Michael N


                  http://www.roca.org/oa/126-127/126p.htm

                  "Is it possible that Fr. Seraphim on his deathbed finally did give his
                  blessing to proceed with this plan, as the biography maintains? It is
                  very unlikely-for two reasons: first, shortly after Fr. Seraphim was
                  admitted to the hospital he was put on life-support systems, including a
                  respirator-which meant that he was unable to talk. He was also in and
                  out of consciousness-as all of us who were there can testify. Secondly, and
                  more serious: several months later Fr. Herman himself told me that the very
                  last words spoken to him by Fr. Seraphim were: "I'm finished with you. Damn
                  you!" Fr. Seraphim's uncharacteristically angry words bespeak a mind deeply
                  troubled over Fr. Herman's general behavior and suggest that there was
                  more going on than any of us suspected at the time. Needless to say, none of
                  this is in the biography."


                  Priest Seraphim Holland <seraphim@...> wrote:
                  michael nikitin wrote:
                  > One has to be careful to attribute blessed to someone who
                  > on his deathbed damned Fr.Herman, his co-struggler.

                  That is not the story I hears. What you and I both have regarding your
                  version and my version is hearsay. I would not place any credence in your
                  version of events without ironclad documentation. I heard he was
                  disappointed in Fr Herman and afraid he was going the wrong way.

                  --
                  Priest Seraphim Holland - seraphim@... PHONE: 972/529-2754
                  MOBILE: 214 658-5433 ADDRESS:2102 Summit, McKinney, TX 75071
                  Sermons,Articles,Orthodox topics Q&A,Confession,Parish info,links,etc
                  http://www.orthodox.net




                  ---------------------------------
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                  [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                • Peter Joshua Hatala
                  Yes, Fr. Alexey says this of the old biography. However, he gives his full support to the new.
                  Message 8 of 11 , Mar 31, 2004
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                    Yes, Fr. Alexey says this of the old biography.
                    However, he gives his full support to the new.

                    --- michael nikitin <nikitinmike@...> wrote:
                    > Fr. Seraphim, below is what Fr. Alexey Young writes
                    > on the subject
                    > of Fr. Seraphim Rose damning Fr. Herman.
                    >
                    > Michael N
                    >
                    >
                    > http://www.roca.org/oa/126-127/126p.htm
                    >
                    > "Is it possible that Fr. Seraphim on his deathbed
                    > finally did give his
                    > blessing to proceed with this plan, as the biography
                    > maintains? It is
                    > very unlikely-for two reasons: first, shortly after
                    > Fr. Seraphim was
                    > admitted to the hospital he was put on life-support
                    > systems, including a
                    > respirator-which meant that he was unable to talk.
                    > He was also in and
                    > out of consciousness-as all of us who were there can
                    > testify. Secondly, and
                    > more serious: several months later Fr. Herman
                    > himself told me that the very
                    > last words spoken to him by Fr. Seraphim were: "I'm
                    > finished with you. Damn
                    > you!" Fr. Seraphim's uncharacteristically angry
                    > words bespeak a mind deeply
                    > troubled over Fr. Herman's general behavior and
                    > suggest that there was
                    > more going on than any of us suspected at the time.
                    > Needless to say, none of
                    > this is in the biography."
                    >
                    >
                    > Priest Seraphim Holland <seraphim@...> wrote:
                    > michael nikitin wrote:
                    > > One has to be careful to attribute blessed to
                    > someone who
                    > > on his deathbed damned Fr.Herman, his
                    > co-struggler.
                    >
                    > That is not the story I hears. What you and I both
                    > have regarding your
                    > version and my version is hearsay. I would not place
                    > any credence in your
                    > version of events without ironclad documentation. I
                    > heard he was
                    > disappointed in Fr Herman and afraid he was going
                    > the wrong way.
                    >
                    > --
                    > Priest Seraphim Holland - seraphim@...
                    > PHONE: 972/529-2754
                    > MOBILE: 214 658-5433 ADDRESS:2102 Summit, McKinney,
                    > TX 75071
                    > Sermons,Articles,Orthodox topics
                    > Q&A,Confession,Parish info,links,etc
                    > http://www.orthodox.net
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > ---------------------------------
                    > Do you Yahoo!?
                    > Yahoo! Finance Tax Center - File online. File on
                    > time.
                    >
                    > [Non-text portions of this message have been
                    > removed]
                    >
                    >
                  • michael nikitin
                    If people want to call Fr.Seraphim blessed it is up to them. What I cannot understand is when something is written about St.Metr.Philaret, who s relics
                    Message 9 of 11 , Mar 31, 2004
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                      If people want to call Fr.Seraphim blessed it is up to them.
                      What I cannot understand is when something is written about
                      St.Metr.Philaret, who's relics Metr.Laurus found to be incorrupt,
                      blessed is not attributed to him.

                      I give credit to Fr.Seraphim for his prolific writings, although they may
                      not be of the caliber or in agreement with Metr.Anthony Khrapovitsky
                      amongst others.
                      But I cannot call anyone blessed who at his deathbed damns another.
                      A person who is blessed would not have that in his heart whether he
                      was delirious or on medications.

                      A blessed person would be full of love for Christ and incapable of such
                      sayings.

                      Michael N


                      byakimov@... wrote:
                      I have always referred to dear Vladyka Metr. Philaret (since his repose) as
                      blessed in memory.
                      I have the same regard for Father Seraphim Rose (notwithstanding your
                      attribution we all make mistakes even the
                      righteous can be angry & some times the anger is deservedly so...) but in
                      any case the article was already headed
                      in this way & I only posted it.



                      ---------------------------------
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                      Yahoo! Finance Tax Center - File online. File on time.

                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • Paul O. BARTLETT
                      ... Who wrote this book? (Simple question for information, no sarcasm or criticism implied.) Where is it available? -- Paul Bartlett bartlett at smart
                      Message 10 of 11 , Mar 31, 2004
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                        On Tue, 30 Mar 2004, Peter Joshua Hatala wrote:

                        > In the new biography, "Father Seraphim Rose: His Life
                        > and Works" this topic is addressed. From page 1015 of
                        > the book:

                        Who wrote this book? (Simple question for information,
                        no sarcasm or criticism implied.) Where is it available?
                        --

                        Paul Bartlett
                        bartlett "at" smart "dot" net
                        PGP key info in message headers
                      • Peter Joshua Hatala
                        Paul, It was written by Hieromonk Damascene from Platina. It can be ordered from the monastery here: http://www.stherman.com/catalog/chapter_one/fsr_book.htm
                        Message 11 of 11 , Mar 31, 2004
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                          Paul,

                          It was written by Hieromonk Damascene from Platina. It
                          can be ordered from the monastery here:

                          http://www.stherman.com/catalog/chapter_one/fsr_book.htm

                          Fantastic book...much better than the first bio. The
                          author's note at the back of the book states:

                          "In seeking to be accountable to the Church, we have
                          had this new version reviewed prior to publication by
                          clergymen, monastics, and laypeople from the Russian
                          Orthodox Church Abroad, the Serbian Orthodox Church,
                          the Orthodox Church in America, the Antiochian
                          Archdiocese of North America, the Greek Orthodox
                          Archdiocese of North America, the Bulgarian Orthodox
                          Church, and the Romanian Orthodox Church. "

                          Then a list of names are provided. Seems like quite a
                          different approach this time around!

                          -Peter Hatala


                          --- "Paul O. BARTLETT" <bartlett@...> wrote:
                          > On Tue, 30 Mar 2004, Peter Joshua Hatala wrote:
                          >
                          > > In the new biography, "Father Seraphim Rose: His
                          > Life
                          > > and Works" this topic is addressed. From page 1015
                          > of
                          > > the book:
                          >
                          > Who wrote this book? (Simple question for
                          > information,
                          > no sarcasm or criticism implied.) Where is it
                          > available?
                          > --
                          >
                          > Paul Bartlett
                          > bartlett "at" smart "dot" net
                          > PGP key info in message headers
                          >
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