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Princeton University Press

The Pillar and Ground of the Truth: An Essay in Orthodox Theodicy in Twelve Letters

The Pillar and Ground of the Truth: An Essay in Orthodox Theodicy in Twelve Letters

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Pavel Florensky--certainly the greatest Russian theologian of the last century--is now recognized as one of Russia's greatest polymaths. Known as the Russian Leonardo da Vinci, he became a Russian Orthodox priest in 1911, while remaining deeply involved with the cultural, artistic, and scientific developments of his time. Arrested briefly by the Soviets in 1928, he returned to his scholarly activities until 1933, when he was sentenced to ten years of corrective labor in Siberia. There he continued his scientific work and ministered to his fellow prisoners until his death four years later. This volume is the first English translation of his rich and fascinating defense of Russian Orthodox theology.

Originally published in 1914, the book is a series of twelve letters to a brother or friend, who may be understood symbolically as Christ. Central to Florensky's work is an exploration of the various meanings of Christian love, which is viewed as a combination of philia (friendship) and agape (universal love). Florensky is perhaps the first modern writer to explore the so-called same-sex unions, which, for him, are not sexual in nature. He describes the ancient Christian rites of the adelphopoiesis (brother-making), joining male friends in chaste bonds of love. In addition, Florensky is one of the first thinkers in the twentieth century to develop the idea of the Divine Sophia, who has become one of the central concerns of feminist theologians.

Author: Pavel Florensky
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Published: 03/21/2004
Pages: 624
Binding Type: Paperback
Weight: 1.88lbs
Size: 9.10h x 6.10w x 1.33d
ISBN: 9780691117676

About the Author
Boris Jakim is an experienced translator of Russian religious thought. In addition to Florensky's work, he has translated the works of S. L. Frank, Vladimir Solovyov, and Sergius Bulgakov. He is also cotranslator of Ivan Goncharov's novel The Precipice.

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