Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Mysteries of the Jesus Prayer

For those of you who would like a wonderful introduction to the Jesus Prayer, I cannot recommend the movie The Mysteries of the Jesus Prayer highly enough. It is a two hour long show which documents a journey from the monasteries in the deserts of Egypt all the way up to the monasteries of Russia. In each monastery the producers speak to some of the spiritual elders and receive a "word" from them on the prayer of the heart, and the Jesus Prayer in particular. The words of the elders are short, but deep and profound.

There is also an accompanying book. I've yet to read it, but after seeing the movie I've realized that I need to get a copy of the book and work my way through it. If it contains even more words from the elders, it'll be worth its weight in gold.

Speaking of which, there are a couple of other books that would be would be wonderful accompaniments to the movie as well. Kyriacos C. Markides books The Mountain of Silence: A Search for Orthodox Spirituality and Gifts of the Desert: The Forgotten Path of Christian Spirituality are wonderful books which follow the same basic idea as the Mysteries of the Jesus Prayer movie. The author travels to various locations where known spiritual masters are living and seeks "words" or guidance from them. Again these books are worth their weight in gold.

But check out the movie. It, along with a good deal of other information, can be found on the producers' website: http://mysteriesofthejesusprayer.com/wp1/.

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