Elder Aimilianos on the Jesus Prayer  

Posted by Joe Rawls

Archimandrite Aimilianos (Vafeidis), born 1934, was for many years abbot of the monastery of Simonopetra on Mt Athos.  He is one of the leading spiritual fathers in the Orthodox world.  His insights into the Jesus Prayer, the underpinning of Athonite spirituality, are expressed in the following essay translated by John Sanidopoulos, owner of the excellent Mystagogy blog.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The prayer of Mount Athos, who does not recognize it?  It is comprised of one small phrase, of measured words.

Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me, a sinner.

With the loud cry Lord, we glorify God, His glorious majesty, the King of Israel, the Creator of visible and invisible creation, Whom Seraphim and Cherubim tremble before.

With the sweet invocation and summons Jesus, we witness that Christ is present, our Savior, and we gratefully thank Him, because He has prepared for us life eternal.

With the third word Christ, we theologically confess that Christ is the Son of God and God.  No man saved us, nor angel, but Jesus Christ, the true God.

There follows the intimate petition have mercy, and we venerate and entreat that God would be propitious, fulfilling our salvation's demands, the desires and needs of our hearts.

That on me, what range it has!  It is not only myself, it is everyone admitted to citizenship in the state of Christ, in the holy Church; it is all those who are members of the body of the Bridegroom.

And finally, so that our prayer be full of life, we close with the word a sinner, confessing--since we are all sinners--as all the Saints confess and become through this sound sons of light and of the day.

Through this we understand, that this prayer involves:
Glorification
Thanksgiving
Theology
Supplication
and Confession.

This entry was posted on Friday, November 16, 2012 at Friday, November 16, 2012 . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

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