— About the Book —
Death is perhaps one of the least discussed and frequently concealed realities of life in contemporary Western societies. Nonetheless, it remains the one event we all expect to encounter, even if we perceive it only dimly as something in our distant future.
Archimandrite Panteleimon, was a Russian who came to the United States in 1913 and in 1930 founded the Holy Trinity Monastery in Jordanville, New York. It was to become the spiritual center of the Russian Orthodox Church outside of Russia during the long years of Communist control of his homeland. He compiled this books from a wide variety of Russian and other sources out of the conviction that:
The science of sciences, the education of human beings so that they may become worthy representatives of the human race, cannot be correct and sensible if it is not founded on a broad and true knowledge of man’s spiritual life.
He shows how this true knowledge is founded upon the understanding of the One God as a Trinity of three Persons and that inextricably linked to this is belief is the immortality of the human soul. Thus he concludes that: An expectation of a future life, together with faith in God, forms the foundation of a well ordered life on earth, not to speak of a future life.
He goes on to offer many examples of the awareness of the life beyond death and in so doing offers the clear hope of a growth in life “beyond the grave” of this temporal existence.
This 2nd edition was reedited, re-ordered, newly typeset. It includes subject and scripture indexes, and includes a biography of the author.
— Author Biography —
Archimandrite Panteleimon was the founder and first abbot of Holy Trinity Monastery, in Jordanville New York. Father Panteleimon was born Peter Nizhnik on January 16, 1895 in the village of Rechitsa, Grodno Province, Russia. Immigrating to the United States in 1913, he found work in a factory in Chicago. Spurred by the radical changes that were occurring in his homeland due to the Revolution and Civil War, he entered St. Tikhon’s Monastery in Pennsylvania in 1918. Quickly ordained first a deacon and then a priest, Fr. Panteleimon was in charge of agricultural projects at the monastery. Desiring a life even more removed from the vanity and bustle of the world, he wanted to build his own monastery far away in the woods. Along with a fellow desirer of the quiet monastic life Ivan Kolos, (the future Archimandrite Joseph) Fr. Panteleimon received permission to work in the Sikorsky factory in Connecticut to raise money to buy land for a monastery. Eventually, in 1928 he was able to purchase farmland near Jordanville NY, where he started to slowly build Holy Trinity Monastery. Facing many early challenges, including a fire that burned down the first wooden church that was built, Fr. Panteleimon and his fellow monks nevertheless continued to labor, and eventually were able to build a stone cathedral dedicated to The Holy Trinity, along with a large building to house the monks and printing press. Strengthened with the movement of the St. Job of Pochaev Brotherhood from Slovakia, which drew its roots from the famous Pochaev Lavra, the monastery continued the printing tradition of the Pochaev monastery, and became one of the main sources for Russian language spiritual literature and service books during the Soviet period. Father Panteleimon was a tireless compiler and author of spiritual texts. He fell asleep in the Lord in 1984.