In his introduction to his Interpretation of the Hexaemeron, St. Neophytos the Recluse (+ 1215) explains the following reason as to why he undertook this work:
It seems good to tell as to what caused me to reach the decision to write this book. When I was enlightened by some divine sunrise from above and I turned far away from the vanities of life, and my feet were led along the straight path and way of peace, so as to follow the monastic life, I secretly left my parents and my seven siblings, both male and female, and I arrived at a certain holy monastery. There it happened that I heard the prophetic words which say: "In the beginning God created heaven and earth," and all the words which follow these. And as I listened I was amazed because I had never heard these words before, for I was illiterate and did not even know the alphabet, being a child of eighteen years of age.