Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Doulas' Tales of Bessarion

BessarionDoulas, the disciple of Bessarion, said, "I once went into the cell of my abba, and found him standing up, praying, with his hands outstretched to heaven. He stayed like that for fourteen days.

At the end he called me and said, "Come with me."

We went out and went through the desert. I grew thirsty, and said to him, "Abba, I am thirsty." He took off his cloak and went a stone's throw away; he prayed and brought me the cloak full of water.

We went to the city of Lycus, and visited John, and greeted him and prayed. Then they sat down and began to talk about a vision that they had seen. Bessarion said, "The Lord has commanded the destruction of the pagan temples."

So, it was done and they were destroyed.

~~Sometimes called Bessarion the Great or Bessarion the Wonder Worker, Saint Bessarion (circa 4th Century) was an Egyptian who became a monk at Skete under Anthony of Egypt. Bes, as he is also known, was later a disciple of Macarius the Great. Before founding his own monastery, Bessarion wandered among the cells of Skete. He is said to have kept vigil 40 nights in a row and to have slept sitting or standing for 40 years. He is also said to have had a vision of Theophilus of Alexandria destroying the pagan temples and to have changed salt water into fresh without aid of scientific equipment. His disciple, Doulas, whose name means slave, recorded the stories and sayings of Bessarion.

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