Sorry about the delayed reply! Though Anthony has already answered your question, just thought I would let you know that if you are ever planning to go to Russia and would like to visit Sergiev Posad there are regular pilgrimmages to the monastery there organised by different Orthodox organisations, such as "Radonezh"
There are also pilgrimmages organised to Russia by Russian Orthodox people in America (I think!). I know some Australians went on pilgrimmages organised from the U.S. And often these trips will include Sergiev Posad.
Hope that helps a bit!
Thank you dear Vera! Of course it does help! A lot!
Thank you to all who wrote with other book suggestions! I am very happy to hear that many have read what I have also! It makes the bond of Orthodoxy feel so alive, when I see other brothers and sisters reading the same books. I never knew who was the cause for my wish-list spiritual books to be sold out!
When I see a sold out in the future, for a planned-to-read-book, I know that you all are the responsible ones.
But thankfully there are libraries also.
Also, I agree with Matthew that the Life of Saint Anthony
is all a Christian needs to read and follow. I was a teen when I first read that the Saint after hearing the Gospel immediately distributed his property to the poor and went to the desert. I stopped and asked myself: "What am I doing still here?!!! This is what I should also do, follow Saint Anthony's example!" Alas, I can never reach that purity of the soul and degree of repentance and bravery! So I keep reading... Saint Anthony is the closest to the Throne of God, an angel said to someone. So, yes Matthew you are right, that is the Saint we need to read about and emulate always.
I finished the book about Hermitess Photini some days ago. I stand by my first impressions that the book is a treasure and I highly recommend it. I learned so much from it! In addition to the spiritually didactic value, the book fills one's soul with gratitude for God's gifts to us and His love and mercy and gratefulness for His creation.
Also the Hermitess, who stresses very much the importance of manual labor, was a very resourceful person and while giving a detailed description and explanation of her survival in the wilderness she concretizes the daily routine and life of those saintly people who were like her. It is very pleasing and stimulating spiritually because one can easily imagine and visualize what those wonderful human beings do during their days besides praying, worshiping and glorifying God and making the world still revolve through their prayers.
At the moment I am reading... nothing.
Well, if it counts, I am reading 'Monachos' -
30,000 messages! More than one large book. Thank you and congratulations to the mastermind and all those who contribute!
But really at the moment I am not reading a spiritual book. Although that can change during the next seconds.
However I would like to thank you all because you gave me inspiration and ideas, so I am considering the book "We shall see Him as He Is" recommended by Sandra, and "Living without hypocrisy" recommended by many here. Also there have been some weeks that I feel inclined to reread an awsome book which is recomended by Maria: "Blessed Sufferer: The Life and Mystical Revelations of a Russian Eldress: SCHEMANUN MACARIA" by Gennady Durasov.
Yes Maria, in addition to all the wonderful books you and others have recommended, this is an amazing story of endurance and humility. I should probably start with this for now.
Thank you to all and please continue to share information and recommend spiritual gems!