Born in San Diego California in 1934 with the name Eugene Dennis Rose, this hieromonk or priest monk became known as Seraphim Rose, or Father Seraphim Rose. The faith that he officially represented was that of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, which in this case was located within the continental United States. Seraphim Rose is famous around the world and particularly in Russia for spreading Orthodox Christianity through much of the Western United States. His writings are still heavily circulated within the US and Russia today, and also in many places where the Russian Orthodox Church has some followers. Although not currently an official certified Saint, Seraphim Rose is called a Saint of iconography, liturgy, and prayer by many within the church. Many people of faith also consider Seraphim Rose to be one of the great Western based mystics, as some of his profound writings and teachings touched upon ground breaking ideas.
Along Seraphim Rose's path towards orthodoxy, he began studying at the American Academy of Asian Studies under professor Alan Watts. During this period Rose became fascinated by the work of the author René Guénon. It was through these writings that Seraphim Rose became inspired to become actively engaged in the pursuit of a solid and meaningful faith based transcendence. One summer in 1955, Rose was introduced to a Finnish American named Jon Gregerson. Jon at the time was a devout and practicing Russian Orthodox Christian, and thus he began to slowly acquaint Rose with the faith. After several years of study and participation within the faith, Rose eventually decided to officially enter the church in 1962. A year later, with the encouragement of Archbishop Saint John Maximovitch, Rose and a Russian Orthodox seminarian by the name of Gleb Podmoshensky, would go on to form a publishing group.
With regard to Seraphim Rose's works and legacy, it's safe to say that he made an enormous contribution to the Russian Orthodox faith, and not just within the United States itself, but worldwide. One of the foremost contributions that he made, was starting what is called the Saint Herman of Alaska Brotherhood, which served as an American publishing house for Russian Orthodox materials. Using a printing press that was available within the monastery, he started a magazine with a bimonthly distribution called The Orthodox Word, which is still published even now. Rose was also known for publishing dozens of ground breaking articles, including Orthodoxy and the Religion of the Future, God's Revelation to the Human Heart, and the controversial The Soul After Death. In addition to writing his own pieces in English, he also contributed immensely by translating his works into Russian, so that they could be circulated back in the Soviet Union.
During his time, Seraphim Rose did stir up some controversy, with various figures within the Russian Orthodox Church calling some of his work heretical, especially the article The Soul After Death. Archbishop Lazar Puhalo who lead the charge against Rose, claims that many of the fathers within the church who originally were thought to support Rose's ideas, were actually misquoted, and that they did not indeed agree with some of his published ideas. The primary idea that lead to accusations against Rose, was the aerial toll house notion, which is a concept that states that souls upon death, pass through various toll houses upon judgement. While there are many within the church that do not agree with Rose's ideas, there are many more that state his ideas are within the realm of acceptable teachings, and thus they are not heretical. That concludes this very brief article on Seraphim Rose, we hope that you learned something new.