Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Illumined Heart: Capture the Vibrant Faith of the Ancient Christians Paperback – June 1, 2007
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
In my puzzlement I wondered, how could I--someone who had read a fair amount of Church history and Christian classics--be in such foreign territory? Was this yet another way of viewing the Christian faith (like the many theological streams I'd encountered in Protestant writings)? Or were these writings espousing not merely different, but erroneous, views of Christianity? Or was there something missing (or even erroneous) in my Western view of the faith that needed clarification?
Many of the growing number Eastern Christian books available to Western readers (some of which I have recommended elsewhere here at Amazon), might cause the reader the same kind of puzzlement mentioned above.
Along comes this wonderfully simple gem, "The Illumined Heart," by renowned author and commentator Frederica Mathewes-Green, who gently invites the reader to explore "the ancient Christian path of transformation" in an unthreatening manner. Here Frederica introduces us to a fictitious "Christian of another era, perhaps from the fifth or sixth century, living in the Middle East," called Anna.
By introducing us to Anna, and her family, we catch a glimpse of how Christians of another time and place lived out their faith on a daily basis. While I was a bit leery of how this fictional approach would work, I felt that this woman and her family accurately resembled the historical non-fiction accounts I've read of this era.Read more ›
So be prepared to be confronted with the greatest challenge of the Christian life: to be transformed into the image of Christ. But the greatest challenge is also the greatest joy!
Buy this book, read it, and pass it on. You won't be sorry.
I did not expect it to become a book I'd have to slam down every other sentence for the richness of what I read. This is one of those books. Once again, I'm rearranging my "Top Ten Most Influential" book list. I heard this woman, who should be feted and bedecked with Mallowcups, speak at a conference; I remember thinking she was a soft-spoken woman I would not want to meet in an alley for the tough truth she owned. This book confirms that thought.
This book took me back to some hallowed basics of Christianity. It took me back to a simplicity I have long looked for without knowing. Here's a few things it did: 1. It reminded me that my other enemy is the devil (the first being myself.) That's not popular, Frederica, to own the devil as an enemy. Mallowcups for speaking truth. 2. It reminded me of fasting. Thanks a WHOLE LOT for that one--even my hair shrieks at the thought of missing a meal. But the truth of fasting, the realization that it is a sacrament and that I've been missing out, is louder than the shrieking. 3. It reminded me that I am a sinner. The tacit understanding is that we are NOT sinners. We are saved by grace, skip the sinner part. We think the grace part erases the sinner part. Owning the sinner part again is...huge. And, last, #4: The Jesus Prayer.
The idea of chanting a prayer over and over is anathema to many believers. It's too fearfully close to vain repetition. But there is something about "Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me, a sinner." It's aligning. Frederica says, "Do not be deceived into thinking that the words have magic of their own...that is the kind of thing Jesus meant by "vain repetition."...you do it in vain if you don't mean it."
So for those four things, plus the reprint of the prayer of Nikolai Velimirovic (where did you dig that up? another thing that had me slamming the book down...)...Mallowcups, Frederica.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a great book - if you are curious about Orthodox Christianity you should read this.Published 8 months ago by Elizabeth A. Whisler
This is another excellent book by Frederica Mathewes-Green. Having come from a Protestant background, I find the mystical approach to the practice of Christianity refreshing. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Patrick Vosse
Excellent introduction to the differences between Orthodox and Western spirituality.Published 9 months ago by Nicole
Started reading this book and I am enjoying it greatly. So much wisdom . . .Published 17 months ago by Kimberly
Book that I received was heavily underlined and highlighted and appeared to be "well-loved" by a previous reader. Read morePublished 24 months ago by Al-Radaniya
This small volume contains amazing amounts of profoundly useful guidance in a very short book. Absolutely no wasted space can be found here - engaging and poignant throughout -... Read morePublished on September 7, 2013 by J. Franklin Ballard
Although I have read multiple books and essays by Frederica Mathewes-Green, THE ILLUMINED HEART is my absolute favorite. Read morePublished on August 9, 2013 by Beth L.