Russian strannik (wanderer) by Miasoedov

I’ve named my blog after the Russian Orthodox spiritual classic, The Way of a Pilgrim, the simple yet compelling and inspiring account of a spiritual seeker that wandered throughout Russia in the 19thcentury. In chapter 2 of the book the Pilgrim explains:

“…I wandered about for a long time…having for my fellow-traveler the Prayer of Jesus, which heartened and consoled me in allmy journeys, in all my meetings with other people and in all the happenings oftravel…My idea was that I should travel in greater silence and therefore in away that was better for prayer and reading. And this journey I undertook, all the while saying my…Prayer without stopping…”

He learned from the most different sorts of people: monastics and laymen, clergy and ordinarypeasants, men women and children, and from all the circumstances that the Lord chose to send his way, drawing lessons from the seemingly most insignificant things. I find that such attentiveness to the people and places that Divine Providence sets forth for us is more important than ever in spiritual life, and especially in monastic life. All too often we search far and wide for wise elders and teachers, or struggle through obtuse texts of the most  obscure theologians and completely ignore what is right before our eyes. Hopefully writing some of it down will help me pay better attention.

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