Orthodox Byzantine Chants
Holy Mount Athos
`Father, the secular people say they feel an emptiness in their soul, even if they have all the goodies in the world.`
`The true, pure joy can be found only near Christ`. `If you unite yourself with Him through prayer, you will see your soul is rewarded`. The secular people seek joy in entertainments`. `The spiritual people seek it in theological discussions, in preaches, etc`. `But when all these are over they find themselves in an emptiness and wonder what they will do further on.`
`If their activities are sinful or neutral, it’s just the same`. `Why don’t they better go to sleep, so that they would be more prepared for the work of the next day?`
`What you gain by fulfilling the worldly desires of the heart is only stress, not spiritual joy`. `The worldly joy brings stress even to the spiritual people`.`The worldly joy is not permanent, it’s not a real joy, it’s a temporary one, of that moment.`
`And this is a material joy, not a spiritual one.` `And the worldly joys don’t fill the human soul, they rather fill it with ballast.” “When we experience spiritual joy we don’t want any material joy anymore.` `I will be satiated when Your glory is manifested.` `The worldly joy doesn’t bring any peace to the spiritual man, but weariness`. `Let a spiritual man stay in a worldly house and you will see that he doesn’t rest.` `Even if the worldly man thinks that he rests, it’s not like this at all, he only suffers.` ` He seems to be glad, but inside himself he is not content, but tormented.`
`Father with this worldly order you asphyxiate yourself.`
`Although people asphyxiate themselves with it, they want it as it is with the frog that’s running in the mouth of the snake.` `This one stay near the water and watches the frog. If the frog makes the mistake to look at the snake, it gets electrified, dizzy and runs into the mouth of the snake.` `Then the snake bite it to make it still. Then the frog will cry out but even if you save it will die because it is poisoned.
`Father, why the people enjoy the worldly things?`
`The contemporary men don’t think of eternity. Their self-love makes them forget that they will lose everything. They didn’t understand the deepest meaning of life. They didn’t feel heavenly joys and that’s why their heart doesn’t leap up for something higher. For instance you give a pumpkin to someone and that one tells you: `What a nice pumpkin!` If you give him pineapple he will tell you: `The pineapple has scales.` And throws it because he had never eaten that. Or tell to a mole `how nice is the sun!` and the mole will go back underground. Those who find rest in the material world are like the foolish chicks that don’t make any noise in their shell to make it break and get out of it and enjoy the sun – the flight in the sky towards the heavenly life – but stay still and thus they die in the eggshell.
The pious Paisios of the Holy Mountain