What is the Science of Salvation?

A collection of quotes and sayings about Truth from the great traditions of the world.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Love-filled Heart

The Lord seeks a heart filled to overflowing with love for God and our neighbour; this is the throne on which He loves to sit and on which He appears in the fullness of His heavenly glory.




St. Seraphim of Sarov

"Conversation with N.A. Motovilov"

(A Wonderful Revelation to the World)

Pride

"Just as a deadly plague destroys not just one member of the body, but the whole of it, so pride corrupts the whole soul, not just part of it. Each of the other passions that trouble the soul attacks and tries to overcome the single virtue which is opposed to it, and so it darkens and troubles the soul only partially. But the passion of pride darkens the soul completely and leads to its utter downfall.




St. John Cassian
'On the Eight Vices'
(The Philokalia)"

The Soul

"In true Christians, as in spiritual temples, God, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, abides with love. The Lord says of this, If a man love Me, he will keep My words: and My Father will love him, and We will come unto him, and make Our abode in him (Jn. 14:23). What can be more honorable and noble than that soul in which the Tri-hypostatic God abides with grace and love? It is a glorious thing for people to receive an earthly king into their house; it is incomparably more glorious to receive the Heavenly King into the house of our soul, and to have Him living therein.



St. Tikhon of Zadonsk
'Journey to Heaven'"

Mother of God

"When you look upon the image of the Mother of God, with her Eternal Child, marvel how most truly the Godhead was united with human nature, glorify God's omnipotent goodness, and recognizing your own dignity as man live worthily of your high calling in Christ - the calling of a child of God, an inheritor of eternal bliss.




St. John of Kronstadt
'My Life in Christ'"

Belief in Christ

"Christ is Master by virtue of His own essence and Master by virtue of His incarnate life. For He creates man from nothing, and through His own Blood redeems him when dead in sin; and to those who believe in Him He has given His grace.




St. Mark the Ascetic
'On Those who Think They Are Made Righteous by Works: Two Hundred Twenty Six Texts'"

Repentance

"Repentance is not something of just an hour or a day. It must be an inner preoccupation for us to the end of our lives.




Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic
'The Prologue from Ochrid'"

Body of Christ

"If you are the body of Christ, carry the cross...




St. John Chrysostom"

The Word

"Why is the Son of God also called 'the Word'? Because through Him the Father expresses His will.





St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco
'In the Beginning was the Word'"

Seeking

"...You, my child, are seeking Christ. You are seeking to enter the heavenly city. The elder and the fathers are praying for this, and I, too, the poor one, am praying out here on the crags. So the Lord heard all of us, and in order to crush your proud soul, to humble and defeat your anger, wrath, temper, and ego, He sent you a flea - this small temptation - to keep biting you, so that you learn to bear it. He sent it to bother you, so that you learn to be patient. In this way, your anger, wrath, and agitation are gradually soothed. He sent it so that you learn to choke temptations inside you and not let harsh words come out. and then, once that power of Satan has been stifled inside you repetitively, he goes away and leaves the person meek and calm like a little lamb.




Elder Joseph the Hesychast
'Monastic Wisdom' (Seventh Letter)"

Christians

"Christians are like merchants trading for very great gains. As merchants amass out of the earth earthly gains, so Christians collect together out of all the earth, by means of all virtues and the power of the Spirit, the thoughts of their own heart in this present age. This is the greatest and the true merchandise. For this world is opposed to the world above, and this present age to the eternity above. The Christian therefore, according to Holy Scripture, must deny the world, and be translated and pass in mind out of this present age, in which the mind is placed and exposed to allurements ever since the transgression of Adam, into another age, and in frame of thought must live in the world of the Godhead above, as it is said, But our conversation is in heaven.



St. Macarius the Great
'Spiritual Homilies' (Homily 24)"

Wealth

"Wealth is not a possession, it is not property, it is a loan for use.





St. John Chrysostom"

Demands of Life

"...Certainly it was not something that we strive for! We can sincerely attest one to the other, more than anyone else, that we were well satisfied with a pedestrian philosophy: remaining here below. It may have been better that this did not happen, but I do not know what to say, as long as I am in ignorance of the designs of the Spirit. Since this is the way things happened, we must accept them, it seems to me, especially on account of the time which loosens many heretic tongues against us; so we must not neglect the demands of our own life, or disappoint the hope of those who believe in us.




St. Gregory of Nazianzus
'Letter to Basil, Letter 8' (On the Priesthood)"

Divine Grace

"Divine grace is like bait which enters the soul and without coercion attracts a person toward higher and superior things.




Elder Joseph the Hesychast
'Monastic Wisdom' (Third Letter)"

A Perfect Soul

A soul is perfect whose desiring power is wholly directed towards God.





St. Maximus the Confessor

"Third Century on Love"

(The Philokalia)

Peace

QUESTION: Batiushka, pray for me, that I would be able to bring peace to others. ANSWER: "First be at peace yourself, then you will be able to bring peace to others."





Elder Ambrose of Optina

(From his life.)

Anger

"When one gets angry, he is deprived of God's protection.




Elder Ambrose of Optina"

Vainglory and Pride

"Vainglory and pride are very like each other. But vainglory incites us to show off our piety or intelligence and to put much store in the opinion others hold of us; it makes us love praise and go out of our way to get it, and fills us with false shame; whereas pride is chiefly manifested through anger and embarrassment, through the despising, condemnation, and humiliation of others, and through holding oneself - one's own actions and achievements - in high esteem. Pride has made great men - men spiritually great - fall very low. All human misfortunes and all un-Christian actions spring from pride; all good comes from humility.



Straretz Macarius of Optina
'Russian Letters of Direction'"

God's Word

"What is the aim of the incarnate dispensation of God's Word, preached in all the Holy Scriptures but which we, who read them, do not know? The only aim is that, having entered into what is our own, we should participate in what is His.




St. Simeon the New Theologian
'Practical and Theological Precepts'
(The Philokalia)"

Degrees of Perfection

"According to the condition and stature of each mind, Holy Scripture calls our free wills to various degrees of perfection. For it was not possible that one uniform crown of perfection should be forward for all men alike. Not all have the same virtue, or will, or fervor, and therefore the inspired Word has given us, so to say, divers orders of these very perfections and divers measures with them. That this is so, is evidenced by the different Beatitudes pronounced in the Gospel...




St. John Cassian
'On the Different Kinds of Perfection'
(Selected Writings)"

The Divine Liturgy

"The Divine Liturgy is truly a heavenly service on earth, in which God Himself, in a particular, immediate and most close manner is present and dwells with men, for He Himself is the invisible celebrant of the service, He is both the offerer and the offering. There is on earth nothing higher, greater, more holy, than the Liturgy; nothing more solemn, nothing more life-giving.




St. John of Kronstadt
'My Life in Christ'"

Heavenly Glory

"...The culmination of their earthly life is the beginning of their heavenly glory. Their end is for them a dissolving of earthly ties and an ascent to Christ, Whom they loved, in order to remain eternally with Him (Phil. 1:23). The day of their earthly end is the day of their heavenly birth, and the celebration of it is a solemnity of the coming of the future age for those who have followed Christ in this age.




St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco
'About the Apostles Peter and Paul'"

Intercessions

"Innocent is he whose soul is in its natural purity as it was created, and who makes intercession for all.




St. John Climacus
'The Ladder of Divine Ascent' (Step 24)"

The Cross

"It is not possible to represent and to think of the cross without love. Where the cross is, there is love. In church you see crosses everywhere and on everything, in order that everything should remind you that you are in the temple of the God of love, the temple of love crucified for us.





St. John of Kronstadt
'My Life in Christ'"

Suffering

"You who suffer for the true faith, are suffering for what your spiritual vision sees. You who suffer for the false faith, are suffering for what your physical eyes see. You former suffer for faith in reality and truth; you latter suffer for a dream and a fantasy.
Spiritual vision calls its knowledge by a humble name - - faith. Physical eyes call your faith by a boastful name - - knowledge. Both the one and the other are seeing: the first is seeing of the peaceful and sparkling essence of creation; the second is the seeing of flickers of that essence through the darkness.





Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic
'Prayers by the Lake'"

Confession

"People who have been deceived by heterodoxy and have decided to revert to the unity of Orthodoxy, and those also who for the first time wish to be taught the doctrine of the Word of Truth must be instructed in the confession that has been written by the blessed Fathers who met at Nicaea. The same may prove useful also against people suspected to be opposed to the sound doctrine, and who conceal their corrupt theories under deceptive excuses; for them also, the present confession of faith itself will be sufficient....




St. Basil the Great
'Profession of Faith' (Letter)"

Know Yourself

"Try to know yourself, your own wickedness. Think on the greatness of God and your wretchedness. Meditate on the suffering of Christ, the magnitude of Whose love and suffering surpass our understanding. Ascribe the good that you do to God alone. Do not think about the sin of a brother but about what in him is better than in yourself .... Flee from glory, honors and praise, but if this is impossible, be sorry that such is your lot. Be benevolent to people of low origin. Be freely and willingly obedient not only to those above you but to those below .... The lowlier we are in spirit, the better we know ourselves, and without humility we cannot see God.


St. Tikhon of Zadonsk"

Watch Continually

"Watch yourself continually, that spiritual life and wisdom may not dry up within you. Think oftener upon what you read, or sing, or hear, in church, or sometimes at home. Live as the saints lived, by their prayers, wisdom and virtues; in meekness, humility and gentleness, not sparing yourself, but renouncing yourself, your rest, ease and enjoyment, for the love of God and your neighbor, in patience, courage and struggle - have their faith, hope and love.





St. John of Kronstadt
'My Life in Christ'"

An Accounting

"In your earthly life be ready at any moment to give Him an account.


St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco
(from the sermon 'Watch')"

Communion

To receive communion even daily and partake of the sacred Body and Blood of Christ is good and beneficial, for He said clearly: "He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life" (John 6:54). Who would doubt that partaking regularly of life is anything else but living continually?





St. Basil the Great

"Letter to Kaisaria"

(The Fathers Speak)

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Orthodox Church

"Do not seek grace in any other faith, for truth is only in the Orthodox Church.


St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco
(from a pastoral letter)"

Sin

"Perception is a property of the soul, but sin is the buffeting of perception.



St. John Climacus
'The Ladder of Divine Ascent' (Step 26)"

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Humility

"...How do we come to this saving humility, leaving behind us the deadly swelling of arrogance? By exercising ourselves in it in all things, and by keeping in mind that there is nothing which cannot be a danger to us. For the soul becomes like the things it gives itself to; and takes the character and appearance of what it does.




St. Basil the Great
'On Humility'"

Friday, July 2, 2010

Repentance

"There is no sin that cannot be washed away by repentance.



St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco
from the sermon 'In Memory of the Royal Martyrs'"