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Daily Archives: January 5th, 2005

Praying With Icons: Holy Fools

(In a slightly different form, this essay was published in Praying With Icons by Jim Forest, published by Orbis Books in 1997, revised 2008; illustrations and endnotes have been removed.) But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to […]

Praying With Icons: St. George the Dragon Slayer

extract from Praying With Icons by Jim Forest, published by Orbis Book, 1997, revised 2008; endnotes have been removed According to legend, a dragon lived in a lake in the region of Cappadocia in Asia Minor. To subdue his rage, the local people sacrificed their children to him. They were chosen by lot. At last […]

Praying With Icons: The Transfiguration Icon

extract from Praying With Icons by Jim Forest, published by Orbis Book, 1997, revised 2008; endnotes have been removed Just as the Lord’s body was glorified when he went up the mountain and was transfigured into the glory of God and into infinite light, so the saints’ bodies also are glorified and shine as lightning. […]

Praying With Icons: Devotion to the Saints

extract from Praying With Icons by Jim Forest, published by Orbis Book, 1997; endnotes and illustrations have been removed To all God’s beloved … called to be saints … — Saint Paul, letter to the Romans There is but one sadness, and that is for us not to be saints. — Leon Bloy, The Femme […]

Praying With Icons: Praying in Body and Soul

extract from Praying With Icons by Jim Forest, published by Orbis Book, 1997, revised 2008; endnotes and illustrations have been removed We bless you now, O my Christ, word of God, light of light without beginning, bestower of the Spirit. We bless you, threefold light of undivided glory. You have vanquished the darkness and brought […]

Praying With Icons: Qualities of the Icon

extract from Praying With Icons by Jim Forest, published by Orbis Book, 1997, revised 2008; endnotes and illustrations have been removed It is the task of the iconographer to open our eyes to the actual presence of the Kingdom in the world, and to remind us that though we see nothing of its splendid liturgy, […]

Praying With Icons: A Short History of Icons

extract from Praying With Icons by Jim Forest, published by Orbis Book, 1997; revised 2008; endnotes and illustrations have been removed: He is the image [Greek: ikon] of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. — Col 1:15 That … which we have heard and seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon […]

Praying With Icons

After eleven printings of its original edition plus numerous translations into other languages, Praying With Icons has now been issued in a revised, all-color edition with fifty more pages and an expanded collection of icons. Extracts from Praying With Icons: A Short History of Icons Qualities of an Icon Praying Body and Soul Devotion to […]

The Ladder of the Beatitudes – Blessed are the poor in spirit

Blessed are they who have nothing to lock up. – Dostoevsky, Crime and Punishment The monks of the Egyptian desert in the fourth century described some who came to visit them as “visitors from Jerusalem,” others as “visitors from Babylon.” It was their way of distinguishing pilgrim from tourist. The tourist is seeking new sights, […]

Ladder of the Beatitudes – Blessed

In English the first verses of the Sermon on the Mount are called “the beatitudes.” The traditional Russian phrase is “the commandments of blessedness.” The first word of each beatitude isn’t an everyday word. We have to ask ourselves before going further what blessed and beatitude mean. Beatitude comes from the Latin word beatus, meaning […]