This tranlation is quite literal, very old fashioned, and essential for comparison with the newer Paulist Fathers version by Rorem and Luibheid. In the matter of old school vs. new school I confess to traditionalist leanings. But anyone who wants to know what the author intended needs to come to his or her own conclusions. It is best to learn Greek; second best to have two good translations of opposite tendencies to compare. Parker's (this version) is my favorite, and that of some other seasoned scholars, like Eric Perle.
State of the art in the 1890's is worthy to be compared to the state of the art of a century later. To those who find it difficult, I'd add: Not everyone is supposed to read this book; when I first read it, I was not ready for it. Twenty years later I was. If you care about authentic Christian mysticism, this is the founding classic -- whoever wrote it whenever. If you are not ready, you will be bored, perhaps feel contempt, or get a headache. When you are ready, if you must read it in English, this version and Luibheid's need to be used in tandem. For interpretations, I like Fr. Alexander Golitzin's best, though there are many others.