ReBlog: Inner Warfare with the Passions…

A quote from St. Theophan the Recluse as posted on Christ is in our Midst! blog

“Do not try to wrestle with a passion intellectually by thinking up points against it.  You are unlikely to be successful. As an example, an impulse of pride comes to you.  If you begin to bear in mind that pride is antagonistic to God, how can you, dust and ashes, not be ashamed of taking pride in your thoughts?  Some people gather up thoughts against pride, or lust, or envy…  supposing that with them they can drive it out.  But this approach is not reliable.  While they are sorting out the evidence, the accused – passion – is sitting four-square in the dock, and it still has their sympathy as its advocate, because all the while we are exposing a passionate thought to the light, we are holding it in our mind.  All this time it keeps on stirring up our feelings, and awakening our desires.  This continues to defile the soul.  So one is voluntarily maintaining impurity within oneself – which is very dangerous.  It is far better to decide without argument, as soon as you notice any sinful passion in yourself, that this is the enemy, and be angry with it!  Thoughts are easy to hit with anger, desires are more difficult, and passions are most difficult because they themselves are impulses of the heart.”

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