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Daily Meditations

Saint Basil the Great

December 30th, 2011

The Archbishop of Caesarea, Saint Basil is revered—together with Saints John Chrysostom and Gregory Nazianzos—as one of the “Three Holy Hierarchs” of the Church. Together with that same Nazianzos and Saint Gregory of Nyssa, Saint Basil is revered as one the “Cappadocian Fathers,” whose homiletical and mystical writings helped establish what is now considered the heart of Orthodox theology and spirituality. As Saint Benedict is honored for founding monasticism in the West, Saint Basil is honored for founding monasticism in the East. The Divine Liturgy bearing his name is the central Eucharistic service of the Eastern Church throughout Great Lent, Christmas, Theophany, and on the saint’s feast day, January 1.

~ Illumination

If we are illumined
by His divine agency, and fix
our eyes upon the beauty

of the image making manifest
our invisible God,
and if, by that image,

we are allowed to glimpse
the inexpressible
beauty of its source,

it is because
we have already become
utterly joined to the Spirit.

The Holy One pours out
upon those who love
the vision of the truth

a power that enables
them to see the image—
and this power is Himself.

From Scott Cairns, “Saint Basil the Great,” LOVE’S IMMENSITY: Mystics on the Endless Life