I was very glad that you have such a zeal for receiving spiritual benefit. I am eager myself to help any brother who seeks his salvation.
Therefore my beloved brother, open your ears! Man’s purpose in life is to find God. But he won’t find Him if God wouldn’t find him first. We live and move within Him, but our passions closed our spiritual eyes and we do not see. But when our most kind God would turn His eye towards us then we shall awake as if we were sleeping and we shall begin to seek our salvation.
Thus I answer to your first question: now God saw you, enlightened you and guides you. Wherever you woul be, work. Say the Prayer ceaselessly with your tongue and your mind. When the tongue tires, let the mind begin it. And when the mind tires, let the tongue say it. Only don’t stop it. Do many prostrations. Keep vigils as much as you can. And if the flame and love of God would start burning in your heart and you sought peace and could not stay in the world anymore – because within you the Prayer is burning – then write to me and I shall tell you what to do.
And if the grace doesn’t work in this way but you still have the zeal to accomplish the commandments of God then calm down yourself as you are cause you are fine. Don’t seek anything else. You shall find out the difference between thirty, sixty and one hundred when you read the Evergetinos. You will find there written many others of this kind and you shall have a great benefit.
Now I’m answering at the other questions you asked me. The Prayer should be done through the inner word. But because the mind is not used to say it and forgets about it that is why it is said sometimes with the mouth and other times with the mind. Snd this is to be done till the mind get used to it. Thus the Prayer becomes work.
Work is when by saying the Prayer you feel within yourself joy and the desire to say it without cease. Thus when the mind starts saying the Prayer and it becomes the joy I am telling you about, then it shall be said by itself without cease within yourself without any compulsion. This is called felt work, because the grace works without the will of man. He walks, sleeps, wakes and within himself the Prayer calls without cease. And one like this has peace and joy.
Now about the hours of Prayer. Because you live in the world and have so many worries, make your Prayer whenever you have time. But compel yourself constantly and don’t neglect it. In what regards the contemplation you aim to reach, this is hard to achieve because it is required to have complete hesychia.
The spiritual condition has three stages and the grace works within the man in accordance with these.
The first stage is called purifier, when the man cleanses himself. In this stage you are now and the purifying grace is the one that works within yourself. Any aspiration you have for the spiritual things is due to grace. Nothing is your won. It is the grace that works everything mystically. If you compel yourself this grace remains with you for a few years. And if the man makes progress due to the Jesus Prayer said with the mind, he receives another kind of grace, which is quite different.
The first one as I said is called purifier and the man who prays feels a divine motion-work within himself.
The second stage is called enlightening. In this stage the soul receives the light of knowledge and falls into the contemplation of God. No deceitful lights, no delusions, no images, only clarity of mind, purity of thought, depth of understanding. For reaching this stage the man who prays needs to have great peace and a wise enlightened adviser.
The third stage – the shading of grace – is that one when it works the grace which makes you flawless and this is a great gift.
I’m not writing to you about this now because it is not necessary. But if you want to read about it, I wrote from my ignorance in a book in manuscript called `The trumpet moved by the Holy Spirit` when these energies work. Try to find it. Also buy saint Makarios from Shinas Publishing and abba Isaac and you shall benefit from this a great deal. And any query you might have write to me and I shall kindly answer.
Now I am writing all the time to those who ask me questions. This year some people came from Germany only to learn about the Jesus Prayer. Others write to me from America with great love. From Paris there are many who look for me with warmth. And if we have all these at our disposal why should we idle? Is it like digging the land when we utter without cease Christ’s name so that He woul have mercy on us?
There is a false opinion given by the tempter saying that if someone says the Prayer he may be deluded. But in fact this is a delusion.
Who wants it should try it. And when the work of Prayer will be for a long time it would become a heaven within himself. It will free him of his passions, he will become a different man. And if he is in reclusion the benefits given by Prayer are innumerable!