Theophan Dort

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I set up my first personal web site sometime back in the '90s, when I was writing my own HTML in Notepad, and CSS hadn't been invented yet. I had fun putting up photos of my grandchildren, and trying to make it look like an old-fashioned album, with glued corners holding the snapshots on the page. Somehow, these days I take fewer photos, and enjoy sharing video with people, usually by sending them a disc, and this site has languished.

For now, I mostly use this site for temporary projects, testing designs I'm creating for other sites, experimenting with blog software that, again, I'm using for other sites, and putting up occasional family photos or videos. Some day I might do more, but for now, this is mostly a place-holder. My apologies if somehow you've surfed here.

But it occurred to me several years ago that because I set up a domain name with my Orthodox name, "Theophan," some people might surf here looking not for me, but for my namesake, St. Theophan the Recluse. So I thought I'd offer a little bit of information about him.

My Encounter with St. Theophan the Recluse

St. Theophan the RecluseMany years ago, while exploring meditation and contemplative prayer, I encountered some writings of a 19th Century Russian saint named Theophan the Recluse. He wrote with quiet authority, not merely repeating something he had read, or spinning clever speculations, but writing simply from direct experience. He had been where I wanted to go. He had been there. He knew.

As I read on, I felt as if he knew me, knew exactly what I had been searching for and needed to learn, and had written personally to me. He also made clear that he was not just writing about a "meditation technique" that I could tear out of context, but about an indivisible, comprehensive life-changing path toward peace that passes all understanding.

Many years have passed, now, since I embarked upon that path, and I was baptized with his name. St. Theophan and his many writings remain a daily presence in my life.

If you're interested in learning a little more, I have put some information about St. Theophan on this site, as you'll see in the menu at the left. I may work on expanding that in the future.