A History of the Athonite Commonwealth: The Spiritual and Cultural Diaspora of Mount Athos

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Cambridge University Press, Jun 7, 2018 - History - 308 pages
This book examines the part played by monks of Mount Athos in the diffusion of Orthodox monasticism throughout Eastern Europe and beyond. It focuses on the lives of outstanding holy men in the history of Orthodoxy who have been drawn to the Mountain, have absorbed the spirit of its wisdom and its prayer, and have returned to the outside world, inspired to spread the results of their labours and learning. In a remarkable demonstration of what may be termed 'soft power' in action, these men have carried the image of Athos to all corners of the Balkan peninsula, to Ukraine, to the very far north of Russia, across Siberia and the Bering Strait into North America, and most recently (when traditional routes were closed to them by the curtain of communism) to the West. Their dynamic witness is the greatest gift of Athos to a world thirsting for spiritual guidance.
 

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Contents

Introduction
5
The Monastic Life
15
Founder
39
The Enlighteners of Georgia
54
Illuminator of Serbia
77
Initiator of
93
Champion of Hesychasm
105
St Theodosius of Trnovo c 13001363 and
124
St Sergius of Radonezh 13141392 and St Nil Sorsky
161
Enlightener of Russia
182
Teacher
199
Reviver of Hesychasm
213
Athos and the West
249
Glossary
275
Index
283
Copyright

Transmitter
145

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About the author (2018)

Graham Speake is founder and Chairman of the Friends of Mount Athos. He is a regular visitor to the Mountain and was received into the Orthodox Church there in 1999. Trained as a classicist, he holds a doctorate in Greek from the University of Oxford and is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries. His first book, Mount Athos: Renewal in Paradise (2nd edition, 2014), was awarded the Criticos Prize.

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