Alteration of the orthodox tradition – persecution of its acting body (the monastics)
Back to our story again.
Well, our imaginary researcher has started to realize when this tradition began in time, what its roots are, for how many centuries and where it was applied successfully. In his quest for the truth, he discovers why this tradition no longer exists among the majority of orthodox believers today, and why Orthodoxy went through such an alteration.
It was because Hesychasm and its best legitimate ambassador, the traditional monastics, were both brutally persecuted and expelled from our society!
When someone hears the word Hesychasm, their mind goes automatically to the monks and nuns of Orthodoxy, to the hermits who live in silence and peace. However, it is not only that.
Hesychasm, as we mentioned earlier and, unfortunately, many people have a wrong impression about it, is the healing method of Orthodoxy. We are all supposed to apply Hesychasm. It’s a whole “package”, we could say, of therapeutic actions. In a few words, Hesychasm is a bundle of all the means and methods suggested by our Orthodox Church for the healing of our body and soul: ascetic life (actually orthodox athletics), ceaseless prayer, repentance (Metany), and liturgical life.
Someone could say: What do you imply, Father? Should we all become monks and nuns?
Yes, my brothers and sisters, we should all become monks and nuns, but not necessarily dressed the same way, e.g. wearing black rasso (robe) and being tonsured (κείρομαι).
What I actually mean is that you (I am already) should become monks inside your family, in your own home, in your own city. Because this life, living according to and imitating the monastic life, can lead to a total restoration of our human existence, we can regain our spiritual and physical health.