Title: In the Heart of the Desert: Revised Edition: The Spirituality of the Desert Fathers and Mothers (Treasures of the World's Religions)
Binding: Paper Back
Book Condition: New
Publisher: World Wisdom September 2008
193331656X / 9781933316567
Seller ID: 96747
''Why another book on the spirituality of the desert monastics?'' this reviewer wonders aloud. Maybe because, as the preface states, ''The Desert Fathers possess the imprint of eternity,'' which implies not only longevity but also the comprehension of truth and beauty and goodness. That's why reviewer Belden Lane comments ''The resolute honesty of an Ed Abbey, the prophetic freedom of a Wallace Stegner, the profound love of a Charles de Foucauld - these were the qualities of the Desert Christians who thrived in Egypt and Palestine.'' These desert fathers and mothers continue to birth and nurture spiritual children who need their honesty and compassion, their austerity and their humility. Fr. John Chryssavgis believes ''the hermits who lived in that desert tested and studied what it means to be human - with all the tensions and temptations, all of the struggle beyond survival, all of the contacts with good and the conflicts with evil.'' He's compiled an excellent introduction to their lives and their sayings with commentary that preserves the freshness of their strange but vital way of life. Chryssavgis has also translated the Reflections of Abba Zosimas, for the first time in English, and includes a helpful introduction to the work. To the reader he offers these words: Be neither ''overly impressed nor even greatly distressed...he reader is supposed to catch alight, to catch afire. It is critical to remain open enough to be sufficiently vulnerable to their austere yet suggestive counsel.'''