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and the care of the body, and it is arguable that the general lines of the fourth-century paradigms did not disappear. At the same time, preachers and teachers tended to see the spiritual life primarily as participation in the liturgy and the hearing of scripture; and they were often content with a more modest understanding of the moral demands upon Christians. The monasteries became more important as centres of pastoral care than they had been at the end of the fourth century. Attending to the sick and the poor fell more and more to the lot of the monasteries, which provided sanctuary both literally and figuratively to people caught up in the chaos of war and of social and economic disruption.

For much of the period there are few sources; consequently, we may restrict discussion to a few of them. It may seem odd to speak first of the pseudo-Dionysian writings, but they supply what can be understood as a liturgical understanding of the Christian life and may well have been designed to implement the cure of souls. No one knows who Dionysius really was, and the first mention of the corpus is found in the writings of Severus, the Miaphysite patriarch of Antioch, early in the sixth century. By the middle of the century John Philoponus promoted Dionysius in miaphysite Alexandria, while John of Scythopolis, a Chalcedonian, edited and commented on the corpus. We can be sure that Dionysius had an impact on understandings of the spiritual life in Constantinople. Another example of liturgical change in the capital city is the work of Romanus the Singer, who in the sixth century wrote and introduced numerous kontakia for the Constantinopolitan liturgy. Somewhat earlier Diadochus of Photice wrote his Centuries on Christianperfection.Wehave some evidence, then, for liturgical and spiritual developments in Byzantium. And it is reasonable to say that these developments demand consideration in speaking of the cure of souls.

After 451, Syria presents us with a more complicated picture. Syriac-speaking Christians appear to have ignored the boundaries between the Roman and the Persian empires, and we are obliged to speak of the church in Persia. The West Syrians tended to be Miaphysites, as was Philoxenus, who was bishop of Mabbug from 485 till 519, when he was driven out by the Chalcedonians only to die a few years later. We possess thirteen of his homilies, which though addressed primarily to monks envisage a wider audience. They reflect earlier conventions regarding the spiritual life and do make mention of pure prayer and the contemplation of God. But Philoxenus' emphasis is upon the moral life - renunciation of the world and the ascetic struggle against fornication and gluttony. John of Ephesus, who died a Miaphysite martyr in 586, wrote fifty-eight Lives of the Eastern saints, making it clear that holy men and women

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