The Philokalia is a four-volume collection of writings from early Church fathers, ascetics and theologians. This second volume is dominated by a selection from the writings of St. Maximos the Confessor, whose theological and spiritual depth and precision is increasingly recognized among contemporary theologians, both within and without the Orthodox tradition. Included are his 'Four Hundred Texts on Love,' 'Two Hundred Texts on Theology Written for Thalassios,' and 'On the Lord's Prayer.' The aforementioned Thalassios is represented here by a short work, 'On Love, Self-control, and Life in Accordance with the Intellect.' This volume also contains 'A Discourse on Abba Philimon' (late sixth century), the earliest text to mention the Jesus Prayer in its standard form, ''Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me.'' 414 pp.
An Eighth Day View:
"The Philokalia" is a collection of texts written between the fourth and the fifteenth centuries by spiritual masters of the Orthodox Christian tradition. First published in Greek in 1782, then translated into Slavonic and later into Russian, "The Philokalia" has exercised an influence in the recent history of the Orthodox Church far greater than that of any book apart from the Bible. It is concerned with themes of universal importance: how man may develop his inner powers and awake from illusion; how he may overcome fragmentation and achieve spiritual wholeness; how he may attain the life of contemplative stillness and union with God.
Only a selection of texts from "The Philokalia" has been available hitherto in English. The present rendering, which is a completely new translation, is designed to appear in five volumes. The first of these was published by Faber and Faber in 1979. The second volume consists mainly of writings from the seventh century, in particular by St. Maximus the Confessor, the greater part of which has never before been translated into English. As in the first volume, the editors have provided introductory notes to each of the writers, a glossary of key terms, and a detailed index.