The Way of A Pilgrim

When I prayed with my heart, everything around me seemed delightful and marvelous. The trees, the grass, the birds, the earth, the air, the light seemed to be telling me that they existed for man’s sake, that they witnessed to the love of God for man, that everything proved the love of God for man, that all things prayed to God and sang his praise.
Sometimes my understanding, which had been so stupid before, was given so much light that I could easily grasp and dwell upon matters of which up to now I had not been able even to think at all. Sometimes that sense of a warm gladness in my heart spread throughout my whole being and I was deeply moved as the fact of the presence of God everywhere was brought home to me. Sometimes by calling upon the name of Jesus I was overwhelmed with bliss, and now I knew the meaning of the words “The kingdom of God is within you.”
The Prayer of my heart gave me such consolation that I felt there was no happier person on earth than I, and I doubted if there could be greater and fuller happiness in the kingdom of Heaven. Not only did I feel this in my own soul, but the whole outside world also seemed to me full of charm and delight. Everything drew me to love and thank God: people, trees, plants, animals. I saw them all as my kinsfolk, I found in all of them the magic of the Name of Jesus.

The Way of a Pilgrim, translated by R. M. French (New York: Seabury Press, 1965)

The Sublime Life of Monasticism

The Sublime Life of Monasticism

The Lord commands us; “Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” (Matthew 5:48) and monasticism helps a person to achieve the summit of Biblical perfection.

Becoming Fire: Through the Year with the Desert Fathers and Mothers pg 322

The Holy Workshop of Virtue

The Holy Workshop of Virtue

Know this, that among all the duties of perfection none are higher and loftier than humility and obedience to God and to the holy fathers. This is what makes the soul shine with the Lord’s light.

Abba John the Little (The Holy Workshop of Virtue: The Life of John the Little by Zacharias of Sakha, pg. 219)

John Cassian Conferences

John Cassian Conferences

…to veer for even a moment from beholding Christ is to be guilty of impurity. When our gaze has wandered even a little from Christ let us immediately turn the eyes of our heart back to Him and let our vision be directed to Him as though along the straightest line.

Abba Moses of Scetes (John Cassian Conferences, Pg. 46)

The Ascetic Lives of Mothers

The Ascetic Lives of Mothers

Chastity is a weapon against lust; it isn’t only for virgins. Chastity is purity of heart, mind, and body. This means being mindful of what we watch, read, listen to, and say. We don’t want to hide our heads in the sand or make some alternate reality for our children, but we do want them to understand the world around them in a loving and godly context. How can we expect our children to control their passions if we aren’t guarding our own eyes, mouths, and ears?

PRAYERS OF BLESSING & THANKSGIVING: ‘CHASTITY’ (p.107)
The Ascetic Lives of Mothers by Annalisa Boyd

Way of the Ascetics

Way of the Ascetics

It follows from this that prayer is your first and incomparably most important means of fighting. Learn to pray, and you vanquish all the evil powers that could imaginably assail you. Prayer is one wing, faith the other, that lifts us heavenward. With only one wing no one can fly: prayer without faith is as meaningless as faith without prayer. But if your faith is very weak, you can profitably cry: Lord, give me faith! Such a prayer seldom goes unheard. The grain of mustard seed, says the Lord, grows into a great tree. The person who wants sunshine and air opens the window. It would be folly to sit behind drawn curtains and say: There is no light; there isn’t a breath of air! Let this picture show you clearly how prayer works. God’s power, or grace, is always and everywhere accessibly to all, but one cannot get one’s share of it without wanting it and acting accordingly.

Chapter 15, ON PRAYER, Tito Colliander

On Repentance and Almsgiving

For this reason while you approach, do not think that you partake of the Divine Body from a man; rather, believe that you partake of the Divine Body from the very Seraphim with the fiery spoon that Isaiah saw; and when we partake of the Saving Blood, let us believe that our lips touch the very Divine and Immaculate Dise. Therefore, for this reason my brethren, let us not be absent from the churches, and inisde them let us no longer occupy our time in conversations. Let us stand with fear and trembling, with our eyes lowered and the soul elevated, with silent sighs and loud shouts of the heart.

Homily 9: On Repentance and About those who have Forsaken the Assemblies, and About the Sacred Table and Judgement (Pg. 128)

On Repentance and Defeating Despair

On repentance and defeating despair

For if beauty, when it occurs in the body, so fascinates and excites the minds of most men, when the soul is shining brightly with it, what can match beauty and grace of this kind? For the groundwork of this corporeal beauty is nothing else but phlegm, and blood, and humor, and bile, and the fluid of masticated food… But your beauty was not of this kind, but excelled it as heaven is superior to earth; or rather, it was much better and more brilliant than this, for no one has anywhere seen a soul by itself, stripped of the body; but yet even so I will endeavor to present to you the beauty of this soul from another source… “For they shall be,” we read, “equal to the angels.” (Luke 20:36)

Pg. 80-81

On Repentance and Defeating Despair

On repentance and defeating despair

For if beauty, when it occurs in the body, so fascinates and excites the minds of most men, when the soul is shining brightly with it, what can match beauty and grace of this kind? For the groundwork of this corporeal beauty is nothing else but phlegm, and blood, and humor, and bile, and the fluid of masticated food… But your beauty was not of this kind, but excelled it as heaven is superior to earth; or rather, it was much better and more brilliant than this, for no one has anywhere seen a soul by itself, stripped of the body; but yet even so I will endeavor to present to you the beauty of this soul from another source… “For they shall be,” we read, “equal to the angels.” (Luke 20:36)

Pg. 80-81