American Orthodox Catholic Christianity

Faith Of Our Fathers Series

The Holy Fathers on. . . STILLNESS

Be still, and know that I am God. - Psalm 46:10

Ever since the transgression came to pass, the soul cannot know God unless it withdraws itself from men and from every distraction. For then the soul will see the adversary who fights against it. And once it has seen the adversary, and has overcome him every time he engages it in battle, then God dwells in that soul, and all the labor is changed to joy and gladness. But if the soul is overcome, then there come upon it grief, boredom, and many other kinds of heaviness. But let it not take fright; for they will have no strength against it if it walks in quiet.

This is why the holy fathers also withdrew into the desert alone, men such as Elijah the Tishbite and John the Baptist. For do not suppose that because the righteous were in the midst of men it was among men that they had achieved their righteousness. Rather, having first practised much quiet, they then received the power of God dwelling in them...

...Know that it is in quiet that all the saints grew, and for this reason the divine power came to dwell in them, and made known to them heavenly mysteries; thus they drove away all the oldness of this world.

- Abba Ammonas


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