Orthodox Byzantine Chants
Holy Mount Athos
Many times we mix up our sentimental mood with the spiritual one. That’s why many people say at the confession that `now I am all right` or `now I am very bad condition.` While speaking about their sentimental mood, they mean the spiritual one and this is wrong.
Someone might be very well spiritually, while sentimentally he might be not. What I mean is that our sentimental mood is not the same as our spiritual condition and we have to distinguish them in our mind.
When I have a bad sentimental mood – I found out that an acquaintance of mine is sick – this doesn’t mean that I am in a bad spiritual condition. And the reverse. If I have no problem and I am all the time in a good mood, this doesn’t mean that I make any spiritual progress.
Of course when the man finds and knows Christ he has joy inside but this doesn’t mean that he won’t get upset because of a certain thing in his daily life. The feelings show our human nature, but they shouldn’t suffocate our spiritual endeavours to find Christ everywhere and forever.
Even the saints had their sentimental ups and downs, but this doesn’t mean that once they found Christ and another time they didn’t. The saints are not robots without feelings. The virtue of being passionless mentioned by the holy fathers is not a mood without any feelings, a sort of callousness, but a passionless mood, a mood without passions.
Saint apostle Paul urges the men to rejoice. Only this joy shouldn’t be a mere sentimental outburst, but a deep existential mood, springing from experiencing God’s love.
Personally, I’m afraid for those Christians who always have a false smile on their faces, because they feel guilt in expressing their feelings – for instance cause they are not in the right mood – coming to be stifled by them instead of stifling them and these become some giants inside them and they get some odd moods of autarchy, hangup, syndrome of guilt and psychic disorders.
The man of God is not that way all of a sudden.
The man of God even if he is not well, he is well in the end, because he has God in his life, although he has problems and he is not always in a good mood.
The aim is not to be all the time apparently in a good mood and glad, the aim is to have Christ in the center of our life, even when we are not well from the sentimental point of view.
We shouldn’t feel guilt for the fact that one day we are not in the right mood, cause this is human, is not a sin.
Archimandrite Pavel Papadopoulos