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26.2.22

Skovoroda

The Ukrainian philosopher and spiritual writer, Hryhorij (Gregory) Skovoroda (1722-1794) wrote of divine Wisdom and of the Holy Spirit within: 

When a man reflects upon himself, responds to the Holy Spirit that lives and calls within him, 
and follows its secret nod instead of his own whims or the advice of others, 
by applying himself and adhering to the station for which he was born into the world
and to which he was assigned by the Highest Being Himself – this is to undertake happily one’s calling with God. 

Whilst he was critical of the veneration of icons, Skovoroda defended iconographic portrayals of divine Wisdom as a woman, emphasising that ‘basic theological concepts are framed in metaphors for a complex and imperceptible reality which cannot be conveyed through literal means.’ Skovoroda was familiar with both the German Pietists and with Boehme’s own works as he is known to have authored several manuscript translations from Boehme, later discovered among Ukrainian peasants.

from John Noyce, The Wisdom Tradition (2006)

Bibliography 
Richard H.Marshall, jr, and Thomas E.Bird, Hryhorij Skovoroda: an anthology of critical articles (Edmonton: Canadian Institute of Ukranian Studies, 1994) 
T.Zakydalsky, ‘Skovoroda, Hryhorii’, Encyclopedia of Ukraine (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1993), v5:734-735 
‘Special issue on Hryhorii Skovoroda’, Journal of Ukranian Studies 22(1-2), 1997