All Spiritual Counsels
- YES I DO WANT TO BE SAVED
- WHY SILENCE? WHY THE DESERT?
- WHY SHOULD WE FAST?
- WHY DO MY PRAYERS FOR HELP IN MY DAILY STRUGGLE REMAIN UNANSWERED?
- WHO IS OUR VENERABLE FATHER ARSENIOS OF CAPPADOCIA, THE WONDERWORKER?
- WHICH IS BETTER - THE WAY OF MARY OR THE WAY OF MARTHA?
- USELESS KNOWLEDGE AND IDLE CURIOSITY
- THE WORD OF GOD
- THE VALUE OF MATERIAL THINGS
- THE SECRET TO OBTAINING THE GRACE OF GOD
- THE PRIEST WHO DID NOT WANT TO SERVE THE DIVINE LITURGY
- THE IMPORTANCE OF PLACE IN THE SPIRIUTAL LIFE
- THE GREATEST MISSION OF THE CHURCH IS THE DIVINE LITURGY
- THE EVIL ONE WARS AGAINST SPIRITUAL STRUGGLERS
- THE BROTHER WHO WAS SAVED WITHOUT EFFORT BECAUSE HE DIDN'T JUDGE
- THE BENEFITS OF ALMSGIVING - AN AMAZING MIRACLE
- THE ATHEIST STUDENT WHO VISITED MOUNT ATHOS
- SOMETIMES EVEN THE DEVIL TELLS THE TRUTH
- SLEEPINESS AND PRAYER
- SINS AND PASSIONS
- SIN - DESPAIR - REPENTANCE
- SHOULD I OR SHOULD I NOT REVEAL MY THOUGHTS TO ANOTHER?
- SEEK NOT THE PRAISES OF MEN
- SAYINGS BY ABBA AMMONAS
- PRAYER AND FASTING
- ON JUDGING PRIESTS
- ON JUDGING
- OF WHAT DOES THE SPIRITUAL SEARCH CONSIST?
- MIRACULOUS SIMPLICITY OF AN ATHONITE ELDER
- MALICE - PRAYER AND ASCETICISM
- LIGHT AND DARKNESS IN THE SOUL
- JESUS AS THE NEW ADAM
- IS REPENTANCE AND VIRTUE FOR LAY PEOPLE?
- IS FASTING NECESSARY? ASK THE DEMONS!
- HUMILITY - THE FOUNDATION OF ALL VIRTUES
- FREEDOM THAT ALTERS
- FAITH AND WORKS
- DOES THE DEVIL REALLY EXIST?
- DEALING WITH SPIRITUAL DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY
- COMBATING DESPAIR
- BEFORE THE NEW TESTAMENT WAS THE DIVINE LITURGY
- BE THANKFUL TO GOD FOR EVERYTHING
- BE AT PEACE WITH YOUR OWN SOUL
- AUTHENTIC HUMILITY
- ATTACHMENT TO EARTHLY THINGS MAKE US FOREIGN TO HEAVENLY THINGS
- ADVICE FOR PARENTS FROM AN ELDER
- ABBA SISOES AT THE TOMB OF ALEXANDER THE GREAT
- A PRISONER, A SHIPWRECKED SAILOR AND THE DIVINE LITURGY
- A NEW SAINT DECALRED
LIGHT AND DARKNESS IN THE SOUL
- Categorized in: Spiritual Counsels
Sometimes we are troubled and we are not sure why we feel down. Everything seems to be so heavy on our heart and soul. St Theophan the Recluse offers some of the most practical advice, for monastic and those living in the world, on how to replace depression with brightness, joy and calm.
How many times already have you been made aware of the duty which your conscience dictates to you - the duty to remain with the Lord, not preferring anything else to Him? Perhaps your awareness of this duty no longer ever leaves you. May the actual practise of it likewise prevail constantly within you; for this, after all, is our true aim.
When we are with the Lord, the Lord too is with us, and everything is bright. When the window curtains are drawn apart in a room and the sun shines, the room is full of light. If you draw the curtain over one window it will be darker, and when you draw them all, the room will be in total darkness.
It is the same with the soul. When it is turned towards God with all its powers and feelings, everything is bright, joyful, and calm. But when it turns its attention and feeling to something else, this brightness diminishes. The greater the number of things that occupy the soul, the greater the darkness that invades it; and then complete darkness may result.
It is not so much thoughts that bring darkness, but feelings. While a single instance of being carried away by feelings is less likely to bring darkness than is a continued passionate attachment to some object. The greatest darkness of all comes from external acts of sin.
St Theophan the Recluse (The Art of Prayer p. 261)