Dwelling of the Light
Praying with Icons of Christ
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Rowan Williams applies his knowledge and imagination in reflecting on four classic Eastern Orthodox icons of Christ: the Transfiguration, the Resurrection, the Hospitality of Abraham (an icon which depicts the Trinity) and the Pantocrator, or Christ in glory. Icons have been called "theology in line and colour" and in these images we find eternal truths and life-changing challenges. Icons have become increasingly popular as aids to devotion, but with an expert guide such as Rowan Williams, their many layers of meaning emerge more clearly.
"The language of this short book is simple but packed with possibilities. It is devotional theology at its best and cannot be too highly recommended." Paul Bregazzi, THE READER.
"A beautifully presented, slim, hardback volume illustrated with the full icon at the beginning of each section (...) I found this little book quite delightful and learnt quite a lot. (...)A lovely book for anyone wanting to explore icons,it would also make a most acceptable gift." THE LANCE, October 2004.
"This beautifully produced and illustrated little hardback is a sequel of "Ponder These Things", the volume Archbishop Rowan wrote on praying with icons of the Virgins. (...)There is an increasing number of us in the western Church who love and use, and, maybe, paint icons, but who do not hold to the full Orthodox understanding of them (...).But many of the books and articles I have read on praying with or meditating on icons seem to wander off into even more obscure realms of unconnected thoughts and tenuous links with the subject icon, so they become unhelpful or even distracting. Not so with Archbishop Rowan's book which is like a deep clear spring of mountain water. It is full of profound insights and always relevant (but by no means obvious) ideas to inform and deepen prayer before icons of Our Lord. And as the Archbishop writes in his introduction "We don't depict just a slice of history when we depict Jesus; we show a life radiating the light and force of God". John Hughes
"Archbishop Williams has brought out a companion to his fine book of meditations on icons of the Theotokos. (...) After treating in a fairly basic way the history of the style in question (or, in Rublev's case, the icon itself), Williams goes on to focus especially on how the icons invite us to consider some aspect of Christ's transforming work for us. (...) in contrast with the earlier companion to this book, Williams rather restricts himself to making some extremely fundamental comments. Indeed, now that both are available, this reviewer would recommend that anyone interested in having them both might do well to begin with the book on icons of Christ and them take up the book on icons of the Blessed Virgin." Augustine Casiday, SOBORNOST.
"This is another beautiful little book following the Archbishop's Ponder These Things: Praying with icons of the Virgin, this time looking at four icons of Christ from the Eastern Orthodox Church. (...) William's depth and clarity is well-matched by the luminous depths of these icons, and he leads us into new insights into the meaning of Christ that will deeply enrich the Church." THE SIGN, September 2004.
"This is a beautifully written book (...) and Dr. Williams gives us many memorable phrases as well as many thoughtful and challenging insights. (...) It is also beautifully illustrated, with full page coloured depictions of each icon, and details throughout each chapter. We are indebted to the Canterbury Press for giving us these encouraging and enlarging books, which are really better termed works of art; and as always to Rowan Williams, for taking divine and holy things and, in his unique way, enabling us to embed them into our ordinary human lives." John Harvey, CORACLE, August 2004.