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Encyclopedia > John Cassian
Saint John Cassian
Born Circa 370[1]
Died 435, Marseille
Venerated in Eastern Orthodox Church, Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Catholic Churches
Canonized pre-congregation
Major shrine Monastery of St. Victor, Marseilles
Feast February 29th (July 23rd in Marseille)
Saints Portal

Saint John Cassian (ca. 370435) (Latin: Jo(h)annes Eremita Cassianus, Joannus Cassianus, or Joannes Massiliensis) or John Cassian the Roman, is a Christian theologian celebrated in both the Western and Eastern Churches for his mystical writings. He is known both as one of the "Scythian monks" and as one of the "Desert Fathers." Image File history File links Emblem-important. ... Image File history File links Question_book-3. ... Events Basil of Caesarea becomes bishop of Caesarea. ... Events August 3 - Nestorius is exiled by Imperial edict to a monastery in a Sahara oasis. ... City flag Coat of arms Motto: By her great deeds, the city of Massilia shines The Old Port of Marseille Location Time Zone CET (GMT +1) Coordinates Administration Country Region Provence-Alpes-Côte dAzur Department Bouches-du-Rhône (13) Subdivisions 16 arrondissements (in 8 secteurs) Intercommunality Urban... Orthodox icon of Pentecost. ... Catholic Church redirects here. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Relation to other religions Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Athanasius · Augustine · Constantine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas Calvin · Luther · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      The... This article is about the process of declaring saints. ... Shrine is also used as a conventional translation of the Japanese Jinja. ... The calendar of saints is a traditional Christian method of organising a liturgical year on the level of days by associating each day with one or more saints, and referring to the day as that saints day. ... Image File history File links Gloriole. ... Events Basil of Caesarea becomes bishop of Caesarea. ... Events August 3 - Nestorius is exiled by Imperial edict to a monastery in a Sahara oasis. ... For other uses, see Latins and Latin (disambiguation). ... Theology finds its scholars pursuing the understanding of and providing reasoned discourse of religion, spirituality and God or the gods. ... The Scythian Monks is the name given to a community of monks from the region around the mouth of the Danube, who between the fourth and the sixth century played an influential role in the Christian life of the time, and by their works they had shaped the modern Christian... The Desert Fathers were Christian Hermits who lived in the Sahara desert of Egypt, beginning in about the third century. ...

He was born around 370 probably in the Dobroudja region of Scythia, although some scholars assume a Gallic origin[2] As a young adult, he and an older friend, Germanus, traveled to Palestine, where they entered a hermitage near Bethlehem. After remaining in that community for about three years,[3] they journeyed to Egypt, which was rent by Christian struggles, and visited a number of monastic foundations. Approximately fifteen years later, in c.399, Cassian and Germanus fled the Anthropomorphic controversy provoked by Theophilus, archbishop of Alexandria, with about 300 other Origenist monks. Cassian and Germanus went to Constantinople, where they appealed to John Chrysostom, the Patriarch of Constantinople, for protection. Cassian was ordained to Chrysostom's diaconate and participated in his struggles with the Imperial family. When Chrysostom was exiled from Constantinople in 404, Latin-speaking Cassian was sent to Rome to plead his cause before Pope Innocent I. Events Basil of Caesarea becomes bishop of Caesarea. ... A 2003 satellite image of the region. ... Hermitage Our Lady the Garden Enclosed in Warfhuizen, the Netherlands. ... Arabic بيت لحم Name Meaning House of Lambs Government City (from 1995) Also Spelled Beit Lahm (officially) Bayt Lahm (unofficially) Governorate Bethlehem Population 29,930 (2006) Jurisdiction 29,799 dunams (29. ... The conquests of Alexander the Great brought Egypt within the orbit of the Greek world for the next 900 years. ... For other uses, see Monk (disambiguation). ... This article is about the city before the Fall of Constantinople (1453). ... John Chrysostom (349– ca. ... The Patriarch of Constantinople is the Ecumenical Patriarch, ranking as the first among equals in the Eastern Orthodox communion. ... Exile (band) may refer to: Exile - The American country music band Exile - The Japanese pop music band Category: ... For other uses, see 404 (disambiguation), for the error see HTTP 404. ... Saint Innocent I, pope (402 - 417), was, according to his biographer in the Liber Pontificalis, the son of a man called Innocent of Albano; but according to his contemporary Jerome, his father was Pope Anastasius I, whom he was called by the unanimous voice of the clergy and laity to...

It was possibly when he was in Rome that he accepted the invitation to found an Egyptian style monastery in southern Gaul, near Marseille. He also may have spent time as a priest in Antioch between 404 and 415. Whatever the case, he arrived in Marseille around 415. His foundation, the Abbey of St. Victor, a complex of monasteries for both men and women, was one of the first such institutes in the west, and served as a model for later monastic development. Cassian's abbey and writings influenced St. Benedict, who incorporated many of the same principles into his monastic rule (Regula Benedicti), and recommended to his own monks that they read the works of Cassian. Since Benedict's rule is still used by Benedictine, Cistercian, and Trappist monks, the thought of John Cassian still guides the spiritual lives of thousands of men and women in the Western Church. This article concerns the buildings occupied by monastics. ... Gaul (Latin: ) was the name given, in ancient times, to the region of Western Europe comprising present-day northern Italy, France, Belgium, western Switzerland and the parts of the Netherlands and Germany on the west bank of the Rhine river. ... City flag Coat of arms Motto: By her great deeds, the city of Massilia shines The Old Port of Marseille Location Time Zone CET (GMT +1) Coordinates Administration Country Region Provence-Alpes-Côte dAzur Department Bouches-du-Rhône (13) Subdivisions 16 arrondissements (in 8 secteurs) Intercommunality Urban... Fortified tower of St. ... Bold textTHIS IS THE PAGE THAT A.S. REALLY NEEDS!! THIS IS NOW MARKED!!! ] ps i like A.O. This article is about an abbey as a Christian monastic community. ... Saint Benedict redirects here. ... Monastery of St. ... St Benedict of Nursia The Rule of St Benedict by Benedict of Nursia (fl. ... For the college, see Benedictine College. ... The Order of Cistercians (OCist) (Latin Cistercenses), otherwise Gimey or White Monks (from the colour of the habit, over which is worn a black scapular or apron) are a Catholic order of monks. ... Trappist can refer to: a religious order - see Trappists some of the products, made by the order - see Trappist beer This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... The term Great Schism refers to either of two splits in the history of Christianity: Most commonly, it refers to the great East-West Schism, the event that separated Eastern Orthodoxy and Western Roman Catholicism in the eleventh century (1054). ...

John Cassian died in 435. He is a saint of the Eastern Orthodox Churches. His feast day is traditionally celebrated on February 29th. Because this day occurs only once every four years on leap years, official Church calendars often transfer his feast to a different date (usually the day before). In the Roman Church, his feast is no longer commemorated in the universal calendar, but the Archdiocese of Marseilles and some monastic orders continue to observe his memorial on July 23. Saints redirects here. ... Orthodox icon of Pentecost. ... The calendar of saints is a traditional Christian method of organising a liturgical year on the level of days by associating each day with a saint, and referring to the day as the saints day of that saint. ... For the 1921 film starring Fatty Arbuckle, see Leap Year (film). ... Monasticism (from Greek: monachos—a solitary person) is the religious practice of renouncing all worldly pursuits in order to fully devote ones life to spiritual work. ... The memorial at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Hawaii commemorates American dead from wars in the Pacific. ...

His relics are kept in an underground chapel in the Monastery of St Victor in Marseilles. His head and right hand are in the main church there. For other uses, see Relic (disambiguation). ...



John Cassian wrote two major spiritual works, the Institutes and the Conferences. In these, he codified and transmitted the wisdom of the Desert Fathers of Egypt. These books were written at the request of Castor, Bishop of Apt, of the subsequent Pope Leo I, and of several Gallic bishops and monks. The Institutes (Latin: De institutis coenobiorum) deal with the external organization of monastic communities, while the Conferences (Latin: Collationes) deal with "the training of the inner man and the perfection of the heart." The Desert Fathers were Christian Hermits who lived in the Sahara desert of Egypt, beginning in about the third century. ... For other uses, see Latins and Latin (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Latins and Latin (disambiguation). ...

His third book, On the Incarnation of the Lord, was a defense of orthodox doctrine against the views of Nestorius, and was written at the request of the Archdeacon of Rome, later Pope Leo I. Nestorius - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... Pope Leo I or Leo the Great, was pope of Rome from September 29, 440 to November 10, 461) He was a Roman aristocrat and the first Pope to whom the title the Great. ...

His books were written in Latin, in a simple, direct style. They were swiftly translated into Greek, for the use of Eastern monks, an unusual honor. For other uses, see Latins and Latin (disambiguation). ...

Spirituality of John Cassian

The Desert Monks of Egypt followed a three-step path to mysticism. The first level was called the Purgatio during which the young monk struggled through prayer and ascetic practices to gain control of "the flesh" - specifically gluttony, lust, and the desire for possessions. During this period, the young monk was to learn that any strength he had to resist these desires came directly from the Holy Spirit. At the end of the Purgatio, a period that often took many years, the monk had learned to trust peacefully in the Lord for all his needs. As the monk underwent this period of purging, he identified with Christ's temptation in the desert (Matthew 4:1–11, Mark 1:12-13, Luke 4:1-13). This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      In mainstream... The temptation of Christ in Christianity, refers to the temptation of Jesus by the devil as detailed in each of the Synoptic Gospels, at Matthew 4:1-11, Mark 1:12-13, and Luke 4:1-13. ... The Gospel of Mark, anonymous[1] but traditionally ascribed to Mark the Evangelist, is a synoptic gospel of the New Testament. ... The Gospel of Luke (literally, according to Luke; Greek, Κατά Λουκαν, Kata Loukan) is a synoptic Gospel, and the third and longest of the four canonical Gospels of the New Testament. ...

At this point the Illuminatio commenced. During this period the monk learned the paths to holiness revealed in the Gospel. During the Illuminatio many monks took in visitors and students, and tended the poor as much as their meager resources allowed. They identified strongly with Christ when he taught the Sermon on the Mount, recounted in Matthew chapters 5, 6, and 7. The monk continued his life of humility in the Spirit of God; his stoic acceptance of suffering often made him the only man capable of taking on heroic or difficult responsibilities for the local Christian community. Many monks died never having moved past this period. The Sermon on the Mount by Carl Heinrich Bloch. ... Heroic virtue is a phrase coined by Augustine of Hippo to describe the virtue of early Christian martyrs. ...

The final stage was the Unitio, a period when the soul of the monk and the Spirit of God bonded together in a union often described as the marriage of the Song of Solomon (also called the Song of Songs, or the Canticle of Canticles). Elderly monks often fled into the deep desert or into remote forests to find the solitude and peace that this level of mystical awareness demanded. In this, the monk identified with the transfigured Christ, who after his resurrection was often hidden from his disciples. For other uses, see Song of Solomon (disambiguation). ... The word Transfiguration means a changing of appearance or form. ...

Doctrinal controversy

Cassian is considered to be the originator of the view that later became known as Semipelagianism. This emphasized the role of free will in that the first steps of salvation is in the power of the individual, without the need for divine grace. He was attempting to describe a "middle way" between Pelagianism, which taught that the will alone was sufficient to live a sinless life, and the view of Augustine of Hippo, that emphasizes original sin and the absolute need for grace. Cassian took no part in the controversy that arose shortly before his death; his first opponent, Prosper of Aquitaine, held him in high esteem as a man of virtue and did not name him as the source of the conflict. Semipelagianism was condemned by the local Council of Orange in 529. Semi-Pelagianism is a softer form of Pelagianism, which taught that humanity has the capacity to seek God in and of itself apart from any movement of God’s Word or the Holy Spirit. ... Free-Will is a Japanese independent record label founded in 1986. ... For other uses, see Salvation (disambiguation). ... In Christianity, divine grace refers to the sovereign favour of God for humankind — especially in regard to salvation — irrespective of actions (deeds), earned worth, or proven goodness. ... Pelagianism is the belief that original sin did not taint human nature (which, being created from God, was divine), and that mortal will is still capable of choosing good or evil without Divine aid. ... Augustinus redirects here. ... Original Sin redirects here. ... Saint Prosper of Aquitaine (c. ... For other uses, see number 529. ...

The views expressed by Cassian to which critics have pointed as examples of his alleged semi-Pelagianism are found in his Conferences, in book 3, the Conference of Abbot Paphnutius; book 5, the Conference of Abbot Serapion; and most especially in book 13, the Third Conference of Abbot Chaeremon.

Effects on later thought

The spiritual traditions of John Cassian had an immeasurable effect on Western Europe. Many different western spiritualities, from that of St. Benedict to that of St. Ignatius of Loyola, owe their basic ideas to John Cassian. In particular, the Institutes had a direct influence on organization of monasteries described in the Rule of St. Benedict; Benedict also recommended that ordered selections of the Conferences be read to monks under his Rule. Moreover, the monastic institutions Cassian inspired kept learning and culture alive during the Early Middle Ages, and were often the only institutions that cared for the sick and poor. His works are excerpted in the Philokalia (Greek for "Love of the Beautiful"), the Eastern Orthodox compendium on mystical Christian prayer. Saint Benedict redirects here. ... Saint Ignatius of Loyola, also known as Ignacio (Íñigo) López de Loyola (December 24, 1491 – July 31, 1556), was the principal founder and first Superior General of the Society of Jesus, a religious order of the Catholic Church professing direct service to the Pope in terms of mission. ... St Benedict of Nursia The Rule of St Benedict by Benedict of Nursia (fl. ... Justinians wife Theodora and her retinue, in a 6th century mosaic from the Basilica of San Vitale in Ravenna. ... The Philokalia (Gk. ... Orthodox icon of Pentecost. ...

Even modern thinkers are beholden to John Cassian's thinking, although perhaps in ways the saint would not have expected. Michel Foucault was fascinated by the rigorous way Cassian defined and struggled against the "flesh". Perhaps because of investigations like these, Cassian's thought and writings are enjoying a recent popularity even in non-religious circles. Michel Foucault (pronounced ) (October 15, 1926 – June 25, 1984) was a French philosopher, historian and sociologist. ...


  1. ^ Lake, Stephen. “Knowledge of the Writings of John Cassian in Early Anglo-Saxon England.”

    Anglo-Saxon England 32 (2003): 27–41.

  2. ^ Lake, p. 27; C. Stewart, Cassian the Monk (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998).
  3. ^ Lake, p. 27.

Further reading

  • Stewart, Columba. Cassian the Monk New York: Oxford University Press, 1998.

External links

Look up icon in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ...

  Results from FactBites:
CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: John Cassian (1364 words)
It was probably in Rome that Cassian was elevated to the priesthood, for it is certain that on his arrival in the Eternal City he was still a deacon.
The teaching of Cassian on this point was a reaction against what he regarded as the exaggerations of St. Augustine in his treatise "De correptione et gratia" as to the irresistible power of grace and predestination.
Cassian saw in the doctrine of St. Augustine an element of fatalism, and while endeavouring to find a via media between the opinions of the great bishop of Hippo and Pelagius, he put forth views which were only less erroneous than those of the heresiarch himself.
Cassian - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (257 words)
Cassian, or Saint Cassian of Imola was a Christian saint of the 4th century.
This saint is different from St. John Cassian, the Abbot of St. Victor Abbey in Marseille, who died in 433.
Cassian is the patron saint of Mexico City, and of parish clerks.
  More results at FactBites »



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