Clerical Articles

Words and stories of elder Paisios (VI)

  • March 21, 2017

I told to someone who said that monachism is not a holy mystery and only matrimony is one that monarchism is one of the Holy Mysteries of the Triumphant Church because the monk experiences the angelic life from here.

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Sufferings, pain, shame redeem us from hell. Or as saint Isaac says, they devour hell.

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It is very good for small children to learn Byzantine music because in this way they keep their mind busy and do not think anymore about vain and sinful things. They sanctify themselves and glorify God.

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The devil cannot heal any disease, for instance Parkinson. But he may cure someone who suffered because of a demonic work.

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We should not aim to find pleasure in our prayer, even if it is a spiritual one. Because then it would be as if we loved our father because he gave us toffees and chocolates. Peace is above all these.

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The devil, because he is dark, can understand the dark thoughts he brings in our minds. He cannot understand the bright ones and cannot follow our mind then.

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Many of those who were deluded and the devil made them prophets did not start from repentance and self surveillance, but attempted to fast and keep vigils in order to become holy.

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When someone shares someone else’s pain and tells him something to comfort him it is like a blessing and many times it comes true.

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The people who commit suicide have selfishness. The devil darkens their mind and draws them to despair, making them to commit suicide. But when there is humility even if it becomes reason for a folly, the man doesn’t suicide himself. If someone has a mental disease and commits suicide it is allowed to be buried in the cemetery. He has mitigating circumstances.

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Any bus departs from somewhere and any demonization has a starting point, a cause.

Exorcisms should not be read until is found the cause.

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All those who sanctified themselves had not only holy elders but also holy thoughts.

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The prayer is like the lightning rod which attracts the lightning. This stops the anger of God. The duty of the monk is to pray for himself and for the entire world.

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Humility has that one who no matter what good he would do, he forgets it immediately while the smallest good is done to him he considers as great and feels gratefulness.

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The monk should say his thoughts with humility without giving orders.

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The acquisition of holiness does not depend on the number of years but on our selflessness and struggle made with humility. Selflessness means humility, nobleness, sacrifice.

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The Psalter is a book inspired by God, full of humility. David is like someone who without being an architect accomplished an amazing architectural work.

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There are people who have so noticeably the grace of God that it betrays them. These feel the works of grace, peace, joy and all the rest.

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Fasting and spiritual strive in general should start from the sacrifice the man makes for the love of Christ. The devil is burnt by our love for Christ. With dry ascesis we make no progress.

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When the bodily eyes get closed and the spiritual eyes get open, we’ll see things that will amaze us. In the afterlife we’ll have many surprises.

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There is a time when you have to offer your strive to God. But there also comes a time when you have to understand your spiritual work, meaning what you read, what you do.

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The obedience to an elder is like when you need a plant because you have got a cold. You ask the elder and he indicates you which one to take. And the issue is solved. While when you are alone you try all the plants until you find the right one. And it may happen that until you find it you suffer a greater damage than the benefit brought by that plant.

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Too much work makes the man become wild, makes him become a beast. Work must be decided, must be given by the elder.

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In the years to come many people will become monks because they will get bored of entertainments and they will suffer cause of the emptiness from their soul. They will come to the monastery and they will struggle, they will fast but they won’t find anything because they will lack the necessary conditions. For finding you must fulfill these conditions. The first one is sensitivity. If you don’t have sensitivity, then you will remain at a dry ascesis no matter what you would do.

From the book From the Ascetic and Hesychast Tradition of the Holy Mountain –Evanghelismos Publishing, 2016.