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Origen of Alexandria, c. 185-254 A.D.
Considered the first Christian Mystic
Every soul comes into this world strengthened by the victories or weakened by the defeats of its previous life. Its place in this world as a vessel appointed to honor or dishonor is determined by its previous merits or demerits. Its work in this world determines its place in the world which is to follow this.
Origen, The Principles
The Reverend Flower A. Newhouse has said we should think with gratitude regarding some of the most prominent early Christian mystics who have blessed our earth and written widely and lived highly, such as Justin Martyr, Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian and the leader, Origen of Alexandria. She believed Origen was likely the highest initiate of these, and she loved to read his writings which she found so rich, so symbolical. She spoke of the mysticism of his writings, as being as a living stream with words of truth. Origen believed in and taught reincarnation, for which he was excommunicated from the Catholic Church.
Now our whole activity and our whole life is devoted to God, since we are bent on progress in divine things.
Origen is considered one of the first and most influential of the early Christian theologians. The quantity of his writings was unmatched and his interpretation of Christian theology remain among the most critically important contributions to the history of the religion.
Origen of Alexandria practiced severe austerity. He slept on the floor, ate no meat, drank no wine, fasted twice a week, owned no shoes, and reportedly castrated himself for the faith. He was also the most prolific scholar of his age (with hundreds of works to his credit), a renowned Christian philosopher, and a profound student of the Bible.