Not for Cowards

When clear matters of the faith are blatantly assaulted, every sober-minded Orthodox Christian is called to stand up and make a courageous answer. There exists a pseudo-humility. This false idea turns humility and meekness into spinelessness and cowardice, in which a person is unable to address anything at all. All such a one can do in such a state is pitifully wheeze, “Who am I to say? I’m just a sinner.”

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Humility does not require we think poorly of ourselves, nor be given over to self-loathing. Just as we must not be over-lauding ourselves, we must not sink to a state of self-loathing, for both states have their basis in the ego. I would be the last person to suggest anyone be trapped in a state of self-hatred, or wallow in the mire of low self-esteem. I am rather concerned for those who are drawn into the sin of pride, which is the result of a false attempt at self-esteem. Feeling good about yourself is not the same as being puffed up with pride.

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The Optina Martyrs

At The Ringing Of The Bells details the lives and faith of three monks (Hieromonk Vasily, Monk Therapont, and Monk Trophim) who were all killed by a Satanist during a Paschal celebration at the Optina Monastery in Russia in 1993. Individual stories of each man are shared through their own personal writings and the testimonies of those who knew them.

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The Ladder Of Divine Ascent

The Ladder Of Divine Ascent by Saint John Climacus is a book intended for monks and the spiritually advanced, yet I read it as a neophyte around the time of my baptism into the Orthodox Church. Much of it just went over my head so I don’t seem to have been damaged through errant interpretations. Below is a selection of my favorite passages.

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The Theology of Humility with Fr. Turbo Qualls

In this stream I am joined by Fr. Turbo Qualls to discuss the unique theology of Jesus Christ’s humility. Orthodox Christianity places a large emphasis on humility as a path to God and in this conversation we unpack what exactly that means. Make sure to check it out and let me know what you think. God bless

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The Demonic Attack On Our Spiritual Progress

There are so many ways in which we can fail to make spiritual progress. Fail to make any kind of progress in our spiritual lives. We can be lazy, we can fail to have attention on the things of our spiritual life. We can become so involved in worldly pursuits and pleasures that we become utterly distracted from the things that are essential. So every one of us is capable of failing to make any kind of spiritual progress drawing closer to God. St. Gregory Palamas says to us that, even when we do make progress over the passions the demons work relentlessly to rob us of every benefit of the victories that we may encounter and experience.

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How do i receive Christ into my heart

How Do I Receive Christ Into My Heart?

Those of us who have not switched to the new calendar, are currently celebrating the Feast of the Nativity. One of the great themes we often hear is that we are to create a Bethlehem in our hearts. Our hearts must be a place where Christ may come and dwell. A place where Christ may be born our hearts. And when we hear those words, of course, it is natural for us to say, “Well, looking at the poverty of my heart, the poverty in terms of what I can offer to God, looking at the true depth of sin and darkness that I recognize within myself, how can I imagine for a moment that Christ would be born in such a dark and sinful place, in me, in my heart?”

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An Orthodox Theory of Knowledge: Apophaticism, Asceticism, and Humility

This presentation discusses an Orthodox theory of knowledge, examining the spiritual use of apophaticism, asceticism, and humility to show that the only valid justification for the possibility of knowledge is for man to presuppose what has been revealed to the Orthodox Christian Church. By practicing what is contained in this divine revelation man can unite himself to Christ and begin to heal the intellect to gain a true foundation for knowledge and obtain genuine understanding…

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