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The Orthodox Way

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  2,249 ratings  ·  114 reviews
This book is a general account of the doctrine, worship and life of Orthodox Christians by the author of the now classic THE ORTHODOX CHURCH. It raises the basic issues of theology: God as hidden yet revealed; the problem of evil; the nature of salvation; the meaning of faith; prayer; death and what lies beyond. In so doing, it helps to fill the need for a modern Orthodox ...more
Paperback, Revised Edition, 164 pages
Published September 1st 1995 by St. Vladimir's Seminary Press (first published 1979)
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Aug 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I've now read Ware's The Orthodox Way three times over the last decade or so. (Something going on there?) Anyway, this time around a few things jumped out at me, or at least struck me as fresh and new with this reading. First, the title, which is sneaky smart. In the early days of the Church, Christianity was called "The Way." (I actually think there's an older Bible from the Jesus Freak days of the late 60s and 70s called the The Way.) That title itself harkens to John 14:6 ("I am the Way, the ...more
Kevin Greenlee
Sep 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theology
I've always been an ecumenist. I believe in one holy, catholic and apostolic church, and believe that every creed professing person is a member of Christ's Church. A few years back, however, I had a few realizations that changed the form of my ecumenism.

The first was the realization that sola scriptura, when seen in the ahistorical way many modern Evangelicals view it, is an untenable position.

Second, I realized that the sort of ecumenism I had developed bordered dangerously on consumerism.
Donovan Richards
Mar 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Burn the Heretics

Whenever my grandfather discusses Greece, he mentions his singular experience in the Greek Isles. Visiting an Orthodox Church with my grandmother, an Orthodox priest graciously administered a tour of the premises. The dialogue advanced swimmingly between the parties until the priest asked if my grandparents were Orthodox. When my grandfather admitted his Protestant roots, the priest kindly-yet-forcefully requested that my grandparents leave the church. To this day, my
Michael O'Brien
May 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If it were possible to give this book six stars, I would. It's gotten to me rethink and reexamine a number of things about my Christian journey in this life, and see fundamental truths in Christianity from a different view --- that of the Eastern Church, a branch of Christianity that has existed little changed from its beginnings. Bishop Kallistos goes into the fundamental beliefs of Orthodox Christianity, but, unlike too many Christian theologists and academics, avoids the tendencies either to ...more
Jan 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This was assigned reading for a course I took in my undergrad, and I have read it almost annually since. I have referred back to it regularly for preaching and writing. It has been among the most formative books in terms of spiritual formation. While I am not Eastern Orthodox, reading this book opened my eyes to a freshness of beauty and mystery and wonder so badly needed in Western Protestantism. The presentation of the Orthodox spirituality which embraces mystery, beauty, meditation, and ...more
Jamie Grefe
Aug 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Without being a member, I've been studying Orthodoxy for a few years now, dipping into certain thinkers and texts--The Philokalia, namely or articles by Vincent Rossi or books by Philip Sherrard--and I find this book to be the best introduction to Orthodoxy that I've read. While it is not as linear and systematic as "Orthodox Dogmatic Theology," that is not its aim. Its aim, I feel, is to give the reader a more poetic and lived experience of Orthodoxy while presenting certain overriding Orthodox ...more
Jeff Rickel
Apr 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
An eye opening book that reveals historic Christianity in all its glory, before the Great Schism of 1054. Most in the West have little knowledge of the intricacies of the Faith (here always referred to simply as The Way, as it was called in the New Testament) of the ancient times because we have been so greatly impacted by the Schism. Protestantism is nothing more than a reaction to the claims of unilateral authority given to the Pope, yet this is not how the ancient Church functioned.

It is not
Feb 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: religion

A pleasant little book which outlines and explores the Orthodox understanding of the nature of the Trinitarian God of Christianity and the implications and outcomes it has on worship. An impressive work in not only its scope relative to its size but also the way it makes concepts and terms which sound unimaginably dry and pedantic (ie the interaction of the ousia of the logos within the hypostatic union) engaging and helps one really understand why these debates were so important in the
No review because I didn't finish it. I probably won't end up reading this for a long time due to the recent comments on gay marriage by the author Met. Kallistos Ware. It wasn't the comments that made me weary of reading this, but stuff I learned by those that were already distrustful of him. Met. Ware apparently makes crypto nestorian remarks in a few of the chapters which as a person still very new into the theology of Orthodoxy I'd rather not read and get influenced into heresy. When I'm ...more
Elliott Pardee
May 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theology, owned
A wonderful book about Orthodox theology, spirituality, and mysticism.
Ryan Moore
Dec 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The Orthodox Way by Bishop Kalistos(Timothy)Ware was recommended to me as a solid introduction to Orthodoxy. I haven't studied Orthodoxy much at all which is not good, considering the fact that I study Russia, where Orthodoxy is central to life. Ware asserts that Christianity is a path along which we journey. I love this idea. He further asserts that we must have companions and signposts(events to look back on) along the way. "Each of us is called to verify for himself what he has been taught ...more
Paul Batz
Dec 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
This is an excellent book from Bishop Kallistos Ware. That being said, if you're considering reading this book, I would first recommend you read his classic book, "The Orthodox Church."

"The Orthodox Way" is a well organized book and the chapter headings certainly help with this. What first caught my attention was the fact that Ware starts his book with a chapter called "God as Mystery." (The latter chapters are similarly titled, such as "God as Trinity" and "God as Man."). Starting with a
Nov 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Kristin by: Robert Stackpole
Shelves: theology, non-fiction
This book is so accessible to people who want to learn more about Orthodoxy but are outside of the Orthodox tradition, like myself (a former evangelical, sometimes liturgical, though rarely church-attending Protestant).
Above all things, the book gave me great hope. Over the past few years, I took a brief foray into the writing of "emergent church" thinkers like Brian McLaren, but always ended with this strange feeling that they were trying to reinvent the wheel. But at the same time, the
Kaycie Simmons
May 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book was a practical breakdown of complicated ideas; certain things were redundant (that might just be my filter), but one things I did really enjoy were the quotes from different people at the end of each chapter.
Mar 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I read this book for the catechumen class at the Orthodox church that I attend. This book talks about the more mystical side of the Christian faith which is found in Orthodox Christianity.
Andrew Temple
Jan 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Excellent articulation of the Orthodox faith and of the meaning of mystery. Very enlightening.
Dec 23, 2009 rated it really liked it
Excellent, pastoral, overview. Steers clear of controversial doctrines and focuses on the spirituality of Orthodoxy.
Alex Stroshine
This is a wonderful and exquisite distillation of basic Eastern Orthodox belief and spirituality (or, I would argue, "orthodox," as there are definite affinities between Orthodoxy and other Christian traditions and theologies such as Arminianism). Kallistos Ware frequently gleans wisdom from past saints such as the Church Fathers and modern theologians. Highly recommended!
Tristan Sherwin
Feb 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
An excellent introduction to the Orthodox faith. I’ll definitely be delving further into the other texts quoted in here.

I should add, I’m not from the Orthodox tradition. However much of it’s theology appeals and resonates deeply with me.

—Tristan Sherwin, author of *Love: Expressed*
Kate Stephens
Sep 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
I’m not Orthodox and don’t foresee myself becoming one in the future, but I really appreciated this book. I thought Kallistos did a beautiful job of explaining about Christ, His glory, and Godhood. There were a few things I thought he explained better than the evangelicals. I have many issues with Orthodoxy in general but can respect those things we have in common.
Mar 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
Thee book for getting to know Eastern Orthodoxy or even just Christianity. A real masterpiece of Spiritual writing and more than a mere introduction. There is so much for any reader to reflect on, it is the sort that I want to hand out copies of to people I know, and because of the beautifully open way it is written most could read it while taking in the key points.
Not many works have that quality but this one is special even for those that do. And there is so much wisdom distilled in this
Apr 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
I found this book to be most enlightening regarding tenets of the Orthodox Church.

In a way I was sad after I read it. I felt the need to search other sources for his views on women in the Orthodox Church because I found few women leaders/theologians/pastors mentioned anywhere in this book. I know that there were women in the early church who were important to Jesus Christ and His followers.

The author, Bishop Kallistos Ware believes that "Christianity is a liturgical religion--worship comes
Jan 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book. I have been interested in the teachings of the Orthodox church for some time. This is an introductory book, the author has written a much more extensive one elsewhere.

I found this quite interesting though. He quotes many Orthodox writers, but also non-Orthodox writers. He intentionally doesn't take the time to argue with non-Orthodox Christians, but instead he presents what the Orthodox church teaches and believes. I found that I agreed with nearly all of it (only a
♥ Ibrahim ♥
Aug 22, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: spirituality
....The way of fastidiousness!
That's the first thing that comes to my mind when I hear the word "orthodox", anything orthodox, I think of "fastidious", which runs against everything "grace" is about and being "gracious". The Orthodox Way is the only way, my way or the high way! No way Jose! And I am the poet and I didn't know it! Kallistos Ware makes me queasy, with a capital "Q" as he sounds pompous in every way and I love for all theology to meet me at my own level, speak to my heart like a
Nov 14, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: religion
This book literally changed my life in that it matured my views and belief in G-d. I was raised in a Pentecostal family, and by the age of 13 felt nothing but utter contempt for the Christian church. Nearly ten years later, I was having a rather constructive conversation with a train-hopping Christian, and he handed me this book and said simply, "I don't care if you give this book back to me, but you have to read it from cover to cover. It'll bring a new meaning to everything in life." I must ...more
Apr 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Great intro to an ancient and venerable tradition within Christianity. The west in general could learn something from Orthodox thought. Some of the differences may seem slight at first, but lead to a wholly different approach to theology. Students of Taoism may notice some parallels at the mystical level, especially in areas like the apophatic approach or hesychastic meditation.

"You are a world within a world: look within yourself, and see there the whole of creation." St Nilus of Ancyra
Tom Schmdit
Jun 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This along with "Orthodox Church" were my introduction to Orthodoxy.
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A Most Spiritual Companion

Metropolitan Kallistos (Timothy) Ware is a renowned British academic and Eastern Orthodox theologian. His famous book The Orthodox Church has piqued the interest of thousands in the ancient institution. The present work is intended as a companion volume and fills in the spiritual and practical gaps of the first, which was largely focused on Church history and structure. Like many readers, I made the unfortunate mistake of skipping The Orthodox Church the first time
Jan 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I got this book primarily to learn, and I did learn quite a bit, but this book definitely made me think in a way that is not typical for an introduction. The author patiently explains the Eastern Christian tradition, going into the basics and using simple language. However, it is clear that he expects his readers to be quite familiar with the broader Western tradition, if not Western Christian tradition specifically. In more than one place, his entire point hinges on using the same Latin root ...more
Dec 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I really liked this one, it had a way of stating theological concepts of orthodoxy in a clear and concise way (often better than other books) that made reading go smoothly. Of course, it was a great help to be able to text questions to my priest along the way as well. I think this book is a good entry into dogma and theology of orthodoxy that is neither intimidating nor too long. Perfect combination for catechism, at least in my experience thus far.

It was kind of neat to see Ware cite CS Lewis
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His Excellency, the Most Reverend Metropolitan Kallistos (Ware) of Diokleia (b. 1934, also known by his lay name, Timothy Ware) is a titular metropolitan of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Great Britain. From 1966-2001, he was Spalding Lecturer of Eastern Orthodox Studies at Oxford University, and has authored numerous books and articles pertaining to the Orthodox Christian faith.
“In the Christian context, we do not mean by a "mystery" merely that which is baffling and mysterious, an enigma or insoluble problem. A mystery is, on the contrary, something that is revealed for our understanding, but which we never understand exhaustively because it leads into the depth or the darkness of God. The eyes are closed—but they are also opened.” 26 likes
“If I do not feel a sense of joy in God's creation, if I forget to offer the world back to God with thankfulness, I have advanced very little upon the Way. I have not yet learnt to be truly human. For it is only through thanksgiving that I can become myself.” 24 likes
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