by Andrea Elizabeth
Ok, now St. Maximus in Ambiguum 10 is contextualizing his “beyond the senses” Manichean (“a believer in a syncretistic religious dualism originating in Persia in the third century a.d. and teaching the release of the spirit from matter through asceticism”) sounding stuff. Btw, a little earlier he stressed the “by grace” part of deification.
Thus the great Moses broke apart the deception of sensible things, or, to speak more precisely, he stripped away their surface – just like the sea – with a blow of omnipotent reason (symbolized perhaps by the rod), and provided the people, who were hastening toward the divine promises, with a firm and unshakeable ground beneath their feet, by which I mean the foundation of nature that is concealed below the level of superficial sensation. This foundation is visible to and may be clearly defined by right reason, and Moses showed them that it is accessible and easily crossed by a life adorned with virtues, for such a life has nothing to fear from the onrush of the seething waters that formerly concealed the foundation, and which now have been divided. And there is nothing to fear because, according to the anagogical meaning of Scripture, the division of the waters of the intelligible sea excesses the continuous distance of the vices in opposition to the virtues – either by the ebb of deficiency or the flow of excess – a distance which reason is naturally able to establish and control, promptly laying hold of them and in no way permitting them to converge in those who are hastening to God with headlong speed.