M. V. Lodyzhenskii (1852 - 1917) was a Russian with an avid interest in theology, theosophy, and the relationship between esoteric philosophy and Christianity. He discussed some of these matters with Leo Tolstoy.
Light Invisible was published in 1912 and commended by the Moscow Theological Academy for its treatment of "the apologetic significance of mystical phenomena from an Orthodox perspective." This edition of the book has been translated by Mother Magdalena of Novo Divievo Monastery in Spring Valley, New York.
According to Lodyzhenskii, there were in Russia at the beginning of the twentieth century many who were either unfamiliar with Christian mystics or unable to deal with the language of feelings and emotions. They put their faith in reason and the intellect.
Lodyzhenskii presents an in-depth profile of the life and work of the great Russian ascetic Seraphim of Sarov (1750 - 1833). This sage was a believer in the need for solitude to study the Word of God and to receive the gift of understanding. He was blessed with clairvoyance, "that special aptitude of man's higher reason to super-consciousness."
In a fascinating chapter, the author compares the mysticism of Seraphim of Sarov with that of Francis of Assisi who was held in awe not only for his humility and spiritual perception of the natural world, but also for his stigmatization. Lodyzhenskii also analyzes the differences between the mysticism of Eastern and Western churches.
The final chapters deal with other saints of the Eastern church and the impact of a life of contemplation and spiritual striving on asceticsThroughout the book, the reader will find ample reflection and commentary on the power of the Light "that illumined the souls of righteous people, kindled their hearts with flaming love, inciting them to heroic deeds that were humanly impossible."