The Field

The Field

Cultivating Salvation

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Paperback, 374 pages
Dec 1, 2016
9 in x 6 in
EPUB, 374 pages
Dec 1, 2016
Kindle, 374 pages
Dec 1, 2016

— About the Book —

The spiritual harvest requires a heart that is harrowed by repentance, softened by compunction, and irrigated by tears.  

The field is a place of cultivation and of battle. In this volume the nineteenth century Christian saint and teacher  Ignatius (Brianchaninov) instructs his readers in the cultivation of the field of their hearts, with the aim of producing a harvest of virtues both pleasing to God and of benefit to all humankind. Drawing on his own military background St Ignatius recognizes that this cultivation requires discipline and awareness of the enemies that thwart our efforts to live a holy life. His words combine spiritual wisdom with reflections on nature that hint at the joy awaiting those who embrace the saint’s call.

The Field draws deeply on the teachings of the ascetic fathers of the Church, from the desert dwellers of Scetis in Egypt to St Ignatius’s Russian contemporaries,  the Optina Elders. He demonstrates how their voice is one in guiding us on the Christian path. It will be impossible for either lay people or monastics to read these words without being challenged and inspired to follow Christ more fully in cultivating the Field of their own life. 


— Author Biography —

SAINT IGNATIUS (BRIANCHANINOV) was one of the leading spiritual writers of nineteenth century Russia.  He became a monk in 1831 and the bishop of the Caucasus and the Black Sea in 1857. He devoted much of his life to writing spiritual works, his most famous being known in English translation as the Arena, which has been continuously in print for almost half a century. He reposed in 1867 and was canonized in 1988.  The Field is the inaugural English translation of the first volume of his Collected Works. 

— Contents —


Part I

1.              Emulating Our Lord Jesus Christ

2.              On Reading the Gospels

3.              On Reading the Holy Fathers

4.              On Avoiding Books That Contain False Teaching

5.              On the Commandments of the Gospel

6.              On the Gospel Beatitudes

7.              Truth and Spirit

8.              Faith and Works

9.              A Scattered Life and an Attentive Life

Part II

Reflection: The Sea of Life

10.           On the Snares of the Prince of This World

11.           The Pharisee

12.           A Christian and His Passions

13.           On Habits

14.           Conscience

15.           The Eight Chief Passions with Their Subdivisions and Offshoots

Part III

 Reflection: Thoughts on the Shores of the Sea

16.     On the Virtues That Act Against the Eight Chief Sinful Passions

17.     On Loving One’s Neighbor

18.     On Loving God

19.     On Fasting

20.     On Prayer

21.     On Faith

Part IV

 Reflection: Dew

22.     On Repentance

23.     On Humility: A Conversation Between an Elder and His Disciple

24.     On True and False Humble-Mindedness

25.     On Patience

26.     On Purity

27.     A Short Rule of Vigilance for Those Who Live in the World

Part V

 Reflection: The Tree in Front of My Cell’s Window During Winter

28.       The Cemetery

29.       A Voice from Eternity: Thoughts on the Grave

30.       Thoughts on Death

31.       Proof of the Resurrection of the Body, Taken from the Effect of the Jesus Prayer

Part VI

 Reflection: The Garden During Winter

32.       My Cross and the Cross of Christ

33.       The Cup of Christ

34.       On Monasticism: A Conversation Between Two Orthodox Christians, a Layman, and a Monk

35.       Words of Consolation for Sorrowing Monks

36.       On Tears

37.       Glory to God!

38.       The Praying Mind Seeks Union with the Heart

39.       A Vision of Christ

Appendix 1 - A Short Biography of St Ignatius (Brianchaninov)

Appendix 2 – My Lament


Subject Index

Scripture Index

— More from the Author —
The Threshold
The Refuge
The Arena