GABRIEL BUNGE, ANTHONY P. GYTHIEL
Title: Dragon's Wine and Angel's Bread: The Teachings of Evagrius Ponticus on Anger and Meekness
Binding: Paper Back
Book Condition: New
Publisher: St Vladimirs Seminary Pr October 2009
0881413372 / 9780881413373
Seller ID: 126689
In contrast to psychology, which justifies anger and aggressiveness as 'natural' human tendencies, Evagrius Ponticus castigates their 'unnatural' outcome: 'No other evil makes man in particular as much like a demon as anger.' Where spiritual life elevates our nature to the angelic plane, anger drives us downward toward the 'bestial' state. Drawing on his knowledge of Evagrius's fourth-century writings, Bunge renders this great 'desert philosopher's' teachings on anger both accessible and applicable to modern readers. When Evagrius describes troubled dreams, obsessive thoughts, and other consequences of anger, his paramount concern lies with their impact on prayer: 'The man who stores up injuries and resentments and yet fancies he prays might as well draw water from a well and put it in a cask that is full of holes.' Evagrius demonstrates how an angry person's prayer leads to idolatry (we turn from God to contemplate the face of the one who has offended us), even heresy. To heal this illness of the soul, vice must be replaced with its opposite virtue - love, in the form of humility and meekness. With a keen grasp of scriptural allegory, Bunge unpacks Evagrius's Old Testament models of 'warlike' meekness, especially David and Moses. Here is 'neither a weak yielding, nor.the reckless playing out of one's superiority and strength, but rather.submission of one's self, so that the other might have life.' 148 pp.