ohmksea | Hesychasm* constitutes the quintessence of Orthodox tradition, having related itself to everything that the term “Orthodoxy” embodies and expresses. Orthodoxy outside the Hesychastic tradition is unthinkable and nonexistent. Besides, Hesychasm itself is the “philosopher’s stone” by which one can recognize the genuine Christian image. In the Orthodox tradition, the “divine charismas” are acquired through fasting, vigils and prayer. And it should be clarified, that Hesychasm is understood first of all as the course towards theosis and the experience of theosis, and only secondly, as a (theological) recording of this method of experience. In Christianity (the authentic Christian conscience), we know that textual recordings are basically pursuant to practice and that they comprise descriptions of that practice; they do not however comprise a substitute. Saint Gregory Palamas’ “successors” are not located in academic theology; they can only be found in the continuance of his ascetic lifestyle.
«Hesychasm, as an ascetic therapeutic treatment, was at the core of Orthodoxy, even from the time of the Apostles, and it prevailed throughout the entire Roman kingdom, in the East and in the West» (Fr. John Romanides). This was the responsible verification of one of the most reliable researchers of Hesychasm and of Saint Gregory Palamas, i.e., father John Romanides. In the framework of a tradition that was spiritually uplifted by Hesychasm, it is easy to understand and to interpret the national, social and (even) political history of Romanity (Fr. John Romanides). It is precisely within this framework that one can also properly evaluate the contribution of Saint Gregory Palamas. “Being a continuation of the ancient Fathers”, of the united and indivisible patristic tradition, he “expressed –according to the venerable Geron, father Theocletos Dionysiatis- the eternal spirit of the Orthodox Church, by reviving its experiences, its practices, its teachings and its promises.» He contributed decisively in this way, towards the preservation of the Church’s overall identity.