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Desert Fathers

The Fathers who dwelled in the desert (4th-5th century) are much like the sacred icons of the Orthodox Church. By naturalistic standards, they are distorted, strange, and foreign to us, images at times seemingly appropriate to the fanciful. Nevertheless, just as icons draw us into their spiritual auras and become windows through which we see faint glimpses of the heavenly world, so the Fathers of the desert draw us into the sphere of their spiritual power and force us deep into the recesses of our consciences and allow us to look on the almost lost spiritual powers dwelling unheeded within ourselves. Their asceticism cannot be - perhaps should not be - imitated by many. They are simply a standard to which we should strive, a flame so bright as to kindle within us the spark of spiritual desire. [Edited excerpt from: The Ancient Fathers of the Desert, Hellenic College Press, 1980. p. 12.]

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The Ancient Fathers of the Desert: Translated Narratives from the Evergetinos on Passions and Perfection in Christ

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