Byzantine Mysticism

The key terms around which Byzantine mystical texts revolve are: “knowledge”,“quietude”, “vigilance”, “prayer”, “freedom from passion”, “purification of the nous”, “asceticism”, “practice”, “contemplation”, “ecstasy”, “illumination”, “remembrance of God”, “seeing God”, “divine light”, “intermingling”, “divine eros” and “deification”. The uniqueness of the mystical experience is also expressed by the oxymora which embrace the Christian experience dialectically: “bright darkness”, “joyful mourning”, “sober inebriation” and so on. Although the attention of many scholars is attracted by the uniqueness of some of the above terms of Orthodox mystical theology, it should not be overlooked that the concepts most often repeated in the Orthodox mystics are the terms: “God”, “Jesus”, “Christ”, “Spirit”, “Holy Trinity”, “grace”, “commandments”, “Cross”, “Resurrection” and “love”.

“Archbishop Anastasios of Tirana”