The Philokalia is a four-volume collection of writings from early Church fathers, ascetics, and theologians. Volume 1 contains the earliest writings of the entire Philokalia corpus, including selections from Isaiah the Solitary (late fourth century), Evagrios Ponticus, St. John Cassian (this selection includes one of the earliest descriptions of the ''Eight Vices,'' which evolved in Western spirituality into the Seven Deadly Sins), St. Mark the Ascetic (a text of special note: ''On Those who Think that They are Made Righteous By Works''), St. Hesychios the Priest, St. Neilos the Ascetic, St. Diadochos of Photiki (St. Nikodemos claimed that his On Spiritual Knowledge and Discrimination reveals ''the deepest secrets of the virtue of prayer'') and St. John of Karpathos. Pick up any volume of the Philokalia and you'll know you're encountering the kind of wisdom that only spirit itself can impart. 378 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.