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On the Spiritual Law
- in Philokalia
- Ignorance makes us reject what is beneficial; and when it becomes brazen it strengthens the hold of evil.
- Concern yourself with your own sins and not with those of your neighbor; then the workplace of your intellect will not be robbed.
- I have seen unlearned men who were truly humble, and they became wiser than the wise.
- Do not say: 'I do not know what is right, therefore I am not to blame when I fail to do it.' For if you did all the good about which you do know, what you should do next would then become clear to you.
- Evils reinforce each other; so do virtues, thus encouraging us to still greater efforts.
- The devil belittles small sins; otherwise he cannot lead us into greater ones.
- Do not listen to talk about other people's sins. For through such listening the form of these sins is imprinted on you.
- When you first become involved in something evil, don't say: 'It will not overpower me.' For to the extent that you are involved you have already been overpowered by it.
- He who does not choose to suffer for the sake of truth will be chastened more painfully by suffering he has not chosen.
- The intellect cannot be still unless the body is still also: and the wall between them cannot be demolished without stillness and prayer.
On Those who Think that They are Made Righteous by Works
- Prayer is called a virtue, but in reality it is the mother of the virtues: for it gives birth to them through union with Christ.
- Love is the last of the virtues to be born in the heart, but it is the first in value.
- However great our virtuous actions of today, they do not requite but condemn our past negligence.
- One man received a thought and accepted it without examination. Another received a thought and tested its truth. Which of them acted with greater reverence?
- Many of us feel remorse for our sins, yet we gladly accept their causes.
- A passion which we allow to grow active within us through our own choice afterwards forces itself upon us against our will.