In this rounded and authoritative survey of Eastern Orthodox Christian spirituality, George A. Maloney presents an overview of patristic teachings from the first eight centuries. The author, founder of Contemplative Ministries and publisher of Inscape, is convinced that the writings and teachings of the early Eastern churches speak to the contemporary interest in spirituality. The following subjects are covered: the richness of the Godhead in the trinity, the image of God, the apophatic way, logos mysticism, the gift of tears, the ascetic life, icons, and the Holy Spirit.

Maloney does a good job exploring the process of divinization whereby the Holy Spirit works within to sanctify us. "The process of moving from image to likeness," he notes, "is the end of every human being in God's eternal plan." The author singles out the emphasis in Eastern Christian spirituality upon inner self-discipline and purity of heart. Maloney also explains the importance of icons where art and theology combine to accentuate the transfiguration of matter.