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I have examined your edits to the Philokalia article and it is clear that you have ruined it. It is is quite disgraceful. You have totally ruined the integrity of this article that was composed with painstaking care over a long time. You have removed all the best work that gave the clearest explanations. Why? What reason could you possibly have for doing such a thing except your own vain egoism? People like you give this wonderful encyclopedia a bad name because you ruin work that has been conducted with great care over a long time because you simply must have your two pennies worth. 220.127.116.11 (talk) 04:55, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
Please discuss on the talk page of the article, and bring up specific issues there. Everything that was added to the article was done so using extremely reliable sources, particularly the Palmer, Smith, Ware book. Your edit removed a significant amount of sourced information, though some of your copyediting is worth considering. Perhaps if you explained yourself at the article's talk page, we could have a discussion about the problems you see. First Light (talk) 05:03, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
Your edits from the seventh of September 2010 to the present day have ruined an article that was perfectly excellent and also used the most reliable sources. Why don't you answer the question as to why you have ruined this excellent article? You removed perfectly excellent explanatory material that used the best sources. I am a published editor in the sphere of religious studies and my work is highly regarded. You have never published, authored or edited a book in your life and I know by examining your work. And yet you have the audacity to ruin excellent work by people who have genuine expertise (I know because I collaborated with them on this and other articles). What is your reason? You have destroyed an excellent article. It is rather incumbent upon you to explain to me why you have done this. I don't need to explain anything on the talk page because it is you who started to destroy this article on the seventh of September last Autumn. You must explain why you have made your changes. Because there is no valid reason as to why you have removed 100% sourced matter by 100% experts who judiciously chose extracts that explained perfectly clearly the nature, scope and intention of the Philokalia. What possible reason could you have for doing this? Tell me 18.104.22.168 (talk) 05:32, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
If you were a man you would respond to my assertions. What do you mean that you have moved the discussion to Talk:Philokalia? There is nothing new on that page. Or perhaps you mean that you have decided what we shall do. This is the same arrogant attitude you have taken with the article. You hide behind a mask of expertise but you know precious little about the Philokalia. You hide behind the learned rhetoric of the 'senior wikipedian' but perhaps you are just a bully. How can you call the Greek Fathers 'mostly monastic writers'? Can you not see how idiotic and crass such an assertion is? Why did you remove the definition, "Philokalia is defined as the "love of the beautiful, the exalted, the excellent, understood as the transcendent source of life and the revelation of Truth." with the appropriate reference from the Philokalia itself? Why did you remove that? Then you assert, "The two monks put together the Philokalia to counteract what they saw as a decline in the true spiritual character of Mt. Athos, which was becoming secularized by the seventeenth century." You have provided no source for this assertion, which I can assure you is incorrect because the beginnings of Enlightenment secularisation was only felt at the very end of the seventeenth century. You then persisted in removing further explanatory material. Included in the original article was the following: "The writings of The Philokalia have been chosen above others because they "...show the way to awaken and develop attention and consciousness, to attain that state of watchfulness which is the hallmark of sanctity. They describe the conditions most effective for learning what their authors call the art of arts and the science of sciences, a learning which is not a matter of information or agility of mind but of a radical change of will and heart leading man towards the highest possibilities open to him, shaping and nourishing the unseen part of his being, and helping him to spiritual fulfilment and union with God." Why remove such an excellent definition by Bishop Kallistos? What possible reason could you have for removing that? And I'm sorry but it is not just a question of of popping these back into the text. The whole article has been ruined. It was originally an elegant, succint piece of work. Why did you remove the extremely valuable piece of information that "Some works in the Philokalia are also found in the Patrologia Graecae (PG) and Patrologia Latina (PL) of J. P. Migne; in some cases, volumes and columns of the PG or PL are shown below [incomplete]. PG and PL versions may differ somewhat from the Philokalia versions." That is an essential, very valuable piece of scholarly addenda by someone who is an expert. Yet you remove it. Why? It is gratuitous arrogance on your part. Do you not see how clumsy and stupid you have been? Now, if I decide to edit this article in an attempt to restore it to a semblance of something that is scholarly and well-written what I need to know is are you going to simply revert my work as you saw fit to do earlier. Do you have some sort of axe to grind? Because if you do then I shan't bother because I have encountered bullies before on this public project and I have seen the most excellent work destroyed by people who have issues around power and 'winning' the war regardless of whether it results in greatly inferior articles. 22.214.171.124 (talk) 07:02, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
Goodness gracious, please be civil and assume good faith. Somehow my move/response was not saved properly here earlier. My response, which was lost, was to ask why you removed the following very well-referenced additions which I had made. This is why I reverted your edit. I would be happy to discuss adding back what you are talking about, but that will have to wait until tomorrow, as it's late here. So, why did you remove the following, all referenced to Palmer:
The book is a principal spiritual text for all the Eastern Orthodox Churches—in the last century its popularity has spread to include Western Christians, due to the growing interest in contemplative prayer.
The full name of the text is The Philokalia of the Neptic Saints gathered from our Holy Theophoric Father, through which, by means of the philosophy of ascetic practice and contemplation, the intellect is purified, illumined, and made perfect. That title distinguishes it from many other books of monastic spirituality that are also titled Philokalia (or Philocalia), and also gives emphasis to the Greek nepsis, or "watchfulness".
Also note that some of what I removed, apparently added by you at some time, had absolutely no references, and so there was no way to ascertain that it was at all reliable—The Migne information for instance.
You've called me "arrogant", "bully", "gratuitous arrogance", "clumsy and stupid", etc. Now, who is the bully here? If this discussion wasn't already so surreal, I would think the answer is obvious. I sincerely would like to see the article improved, and just as sincerely believe that my additions improved the article. I'll answer your more specific questions on the morrow, but in the mean time, please read WP:VERIFY, WP:CIVIL, WP:AGF. They might help you understand how Wikipedia works, with the latter two perhaps helping you to become as decent a person as you are (apparently) an expert.
And yes, I believe you are right on some of the issues you raise, but you really should add references, so the next innocent editor to remove unreferenced material won't be on the receiving end of such venomous bile. So why not make those changes, without gutting the (very) reliably sourced additions that I made? First Light (talk) 07:37, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
On second thought, I've reverted my own revert, and have decided to stay away from the article. The sad irony is not lost on me — that an article on such a holy book, filled with the deepest teachings on love, calmness, compassion, and an interior life — are the cause of such a hate-filled diatribe by a supposed expert on that very book! I don't need to be on the receiving end of such 'expertise', and quite happily withdraw. If I didn't have the Philokalia in hand, and thus know better, I might doubt that it had any value at all. I mention this mostly for the sake of those who might develop their own doubts about the book after seeing how an expert was touched by it. Best wishes, First Light (talk) 08:05, 29 January 2011 (UTC)
I've had time to cool down from your personal attacks, and also have seen on other talk pages that you can hold civil discussions, so let us discuss changes here. I'll begin- I've begun adding back some of the reliably sourced text which you removed, without removing your own, even leaving your "publisher's blurb", which is not a reliable source but more of an advertisement. I've added the nearly identical statement into the lede (which you had removed) because it is made by the authors themselves in their introduction. I think that version suffices, though if you think both should be there, that would be ok. I will also add back the full title of the original book, as stated by reliable sources, which you had removed. There are a few other changes, hopefully not controversial, which I will describe clearly in edit summaries. First Light (talk) 18:10, 27 February 2011 (UTC)