Hesychasm was of great importance in Bulgarian cultural life during the Middle Ages. It is enough to say that thanks to mainly Bulgarian Hesychasts, it becomes possible to establish the so-called. Second Golden Age of Bulgarian Literature.


The golden age of the First Bulgarian Kingdom is associated with the work of the students of the holy brothers Cyril and Methodius. With the establishment of the Ohrid and Preslav literary schools. Along the Golden Age from the time of Knyaz Boris (852 - 889) and King Simeon (893 - 927) the names of St. Kliment Ohridski, St. Naum Ohridski, John the Exarch, Chernorizets Hrabar, Konstantin Preslavski became known. These writers contribute to the maximum extent to the creation of the Bulgarian nation. After the Preslav Church Council (893) the Bulgarian Church was considered independent of the Byzantine Church, and the Old Bulgarian language became official in the church service. This makes possible the emergence of the Bulgarian people, which is created around its independent church, where worship is conducted in the vernacular. In this sense, the works of the mentioned Bulgarian scribes are of special importance for the national awareness and for the introduction of the Bulgarian people into Christianity.


Conditionally accepted as the Second Golden Age of Bulgarian Literature and Culture (XIV c.) Is chronologically related to the time of the Second Kingdom. Then the political conditions are much worse than those of Simeon the Great. The shadow of death is already looming over Bulgaria. Only a few decades have separated her from submission to the power of the infidels and the loss of independent statehood for centuries.


In these tumultuous moments, as though historical logic, Bulgarian literature and culture were reaching new heights. This is possible with the deeds of the Hesychasts Theodosius Turnovski, Patriarch Evtimii Turnovski, Metropolitan Cyprian of Kiev, Romil Vidinsky. It is known that Patriarch Evtimii and Theodosii Turnovski were responsible for the emergence of the Turnovo Literary School. From the point of view of Bulgarian history and Bulgarian literature, a very substantiated explanation of the phenomenon of Hesychasm is given. It is interesting to say more about his mystical and theological character. Because the affairs of the clergy in question are directly related to their worldview. And the worldview of a hesychast, in turn, insists on perfection and cultivation in every respect and in every area.


What would a perfect book look like if this aspiration were followed?

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The goblins in the Bulgarian folk beliefs

The goblins in the Bulgarian folk beliefs

In the ideas of the Bulgarians of the XNUMXth century, a goblin is "an evil spirit that appears as a shadow at night on large buildings." The goblins walk until the roosters sing. In the ideas of the Bulgarians of the XNUMXth century, a goblin is an "evil spirit that appears as a shadow at night on large buildings" ....

Of course, it should first and foremost be completely grammatically correct. Since most of the books in Old Bulgarian are Greek translated literature, Hesychastians insist on a more accurate translation and deal with the poorly translated ones. In addition, many books have been copied by simpler monks (devoid of the pursuit of perfection or even more ignorant). It is then normal for books to be replete with errors, inaccuracies, and incompleteness, which (if we are to use a modern term) is criticized by meticulous hashtags. The other isychastic requirement concerns the grammatical transparency and purity of the Old Bulgarian language. Much is being done in this direction - it has undergone a "neglected" old Bulgarian grammar over the centuries.


In institutional terms, what expression does Hesychism find? We must say that he is a doctrine perfectly embedded in the dogmas of Orthodoxy. That is why the Hesychasts themselves, being all God's servants, became involved in the fight against heresy - at that time Barlaamite and worship. This is the second expression of Hesychasm after the pursuit of absolute grammatical pedantry - perfection in Christianity, in spiritual life.

One can also point out a third that is related to the hard work of the writer. The work is not only related to the "correction" of books, but also to the creation of such books: new and better-written lives, translated literature, laudatory words, and more.


Now the self-importance of Hesychasm should be highlighted. What, as mentioned, is often left aside. There is a lot of talk about what isichism is, but not what it really is. It can be argued, though with reservations, that Hesichism expresses the spiritual quest for Orthodoxy at all. Which, contrary to, say, Catholicism and Protestantism, are striving for a change for the better. In Orthodoxy, no one should consider himself good enough, so everyone should always strive for benevolence and more virtue. While in Catholicism and Protestantism, some people are initially regarded as more virtuous and worthier than others, ie. they are established and called to be elites, and therefore to rule over the elite (ordinary, "mortal" people). So, there is no need to focus on the unworthiness of the person, because there is elitism (innate dignity, over humanity) - in the case of protest, it is typical that everyone is worthy to rule over things (worthy to acquire still and more, and in the name of this - worthy of conquering and colonizing even new continents). It is noteworthy that this constant insistence on the unworthiness of each individual is sometimes received with ridicule by the opponents of Orthodoxy (Hesychism). D. Petkanova writes: “The main pursuit of the Hesychasts is the mastery of virtue. The highest virtues are obedience, humility, asceticism, self-humiliation, combating the passions and vices incited by demons. "


It is difficult for the mind of the contemporary to gaze openly into this so-called. "Self-humiliation" (confused with sheepishness). And how else? As Nicholas Gomez-Davila notes: "According to modern dogma, austerity, humility, and modesty are forms of ideological slavery." Who is strict in his attitude, places himself in limitation, displays humility and modesty, means "something is wrong" and is a slave to ideological delusion. It is suspicious and unreliable for the taste of the modern consumer. To humiliate yourself in submission to abstract virtues instead of rebelling for more benefits is very strange indeed. But fact. Such is the requirement of the followers of isichism.


"Orthodox spiritual practice has found its complete expression in ishism (the city of 'Hesychia' - peace, silence, self-absorption) - a teaching about the way of man to mystical union with God through the specific methods of self-focus and purification of the mind from 'thoughts.' The words "silence" and "light" are the basic symbolic concepts of Hesychism - "silence" (Hesychia) refers to spiritual practice, ie. to the actions taken by man at his will, his free choice, and the "light" to the "grace" ("Harris"), descending from God in the process of deeper immersion in silence.


The main method of Hesychasm is the repeated repetition of the "Jesus Prayer" ("Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on my sinner", ie "grant me your mercy", "grant me grace"). Standing in a sitting posture and resting his chin on his chest, the supplicant "directs the mind to the heart," slows his breathing to quench the flow of thought, and begins to "create prayer", associating the rhythm with his breathing as prayer becomes " self-moving, ”and no longer does the person pray, taking specific actions to do so, and the prayer seems to flow through it without requiring any effort. In doing so, the supplicant consistently rejects "thoughts" (i.e. thoughts), thus purifying his mind and likening it to an "empty mirror" in which the graceful touch of "unreal light" can be reflected.










monastery in the village of Dolen

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In isichasm there is an inherent duality, a contradictory nature (dialectic). He first appeared in the monastic circles, among the abandoned earthly honors. In addition, his constant demand is for humility, a kind of "extinction of desire" in man. In this connection D. Petkanova states:
"After the dominant current, Hesychism acquires new features. It goes beyond the narrow confines of monastic circles and becomes socially engaged. It can no longer be said that his most important feature is the escape from life. The Hesychasts become leaders of the church, active public figures - both in the field of church life and in the field of literary activity. In Bulgaria, the ideas of Hesychasm for perfection are manifested in the fight against heresies for the unity of the church, in the fight against moral corruption, in establishing strict moral standards. In literature, Hesychism shapes the pursuit of accurate and artistic translations, contributes to the emergence of a new ornate hagiographic style, and his ideas are felt in the struggle for the establishment of universal spelling rules and a single literary language. Ultimately, Hesichism leads to the formation of higher criteria based on higher artistic requirements. "

For a kind of "coming out of tradition in the world", ie. the emergence of hashism behind the monastery and its entry into the world is a testimony to the so-called. "Seniority." A recent depiction of Ishikhism in our world has been left by Fyodor Dostoevsky through the image of the old man Zosima in the novel "The Karamazov Brothers."


"For the world is saying, 'You have needs, and therefore you satisfy them, because you have the same rights as the noblest and richest people have. Don't be afraid to saturate them, but even multiply them. "- Here is the current teaching of the world. They see freedom in this. And what comes out of this right to multiply needs? In the rich, privacy and spiritual suicide, and in the poor, envy and murder, because rights have been given and means have not yet been given to satisfy the need. (…)
I ask you: is such a person free? I knew a "fighter for the idea" who told me that when he was imprisoned in tobacco, he was so tormented by that deprivation that he almost went and gave up his "idea" just to give him tobacco. And he says, "I am going to fight for humanity." But where will he go and what is he capable of? (…)


The monastic path is another. Obedience, fasting and prayer are even ridiculed, and in fact only in them is the path to true, already true freedom: I cut off my excess and unnecessary needs, my proud and proud will to humble myself, and scourge it with obedience and achieve it, with the help of God, the freedom of the spirit, and with it spiritual joy! Which of them is better able to take up a great thought and go to serve it - whether you are a lonely rich man, or one who is freed from the tyranny of things and habits? The chorus is a monk for his seclusion: "You have united to be saved behind the walls of the monastery, but you have forgotten the brotherly service of humanity." But will we see who is more angry about brotherhood? Because seclusion is not with us, but with them, but they do not see it. And since ancient times people's figures have descended from us, why not now? The same humble and meek posters and silent men will rise up and go about great works. (…)


Brethren, fear not the sin of men, love man also in his sin, for this likeness of divine love is the apex of love on earth. Love every creature of God - the whole and every sand. Love every petal, every ray of God. Love animals, love plants, love every thing. If you love every thing, you will achieve the mystery of God in things. If you reach her once, you will constantly begin to know her more and more, day after day. And you will finally love the whole world with all, universal love. Love animals: God Himself has given rise to thought and joy that is serene. Do not rebel, do not torment them, do not deprive them of joy, do not resist the thought of God. (…) Especially love children, because they are also sinless as angels and live for our mercy, for the purification of our hearts, and as a sign for us. Woe to him who grieves a baby! And Father Anfim taught me to love children: he, the kind and the silent one in our wanderings, with the gifts of money he sometimes bought them cookies and candy, and gave them to them: he could not pass by a child without a mental shock: such a man.


At any thought, you become perplexed, especially seeing the sin of men, and ask yourself: "With power to prevail, or with humble love?" Always decide: "I will prevail with humble love." When you decide once and for all, you will be able to to conquer the whole world. Humility is a frightening love, the most powerful of all and not like her. "           

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