Be Holy, for I am Holy

“If but ten among us lead a Holy life, we shall kindle a fire which shall light up the entire city.”

Saint John Chrysostom

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“We are not Sanctified by the place in which we live, but by the way we live. We may be on the Holy Mountain but, in our thoughts, be in the world. Or we may be here [in the world] in body, but noetically on the Holy Mountain.”

Saint Iakovos Tsalikis of Evia

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“Every Christian should find for himself the imperative and incentive to become Holy. If you live without struggle and without hope of becoming Holy, then you are Christians only in name and not in essence.”

Saint Philaret of Moscow

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“Let us also show forth behaviour constant with our beliefs.”

Saint John Chrysostom

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“Orthodox asceticism is not just for the Monasteries, but also for the world.”

Saint Porphyrios of Kavsokalyvia

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“Silence is the cross on which we must crucify our ego.”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“When Christ comes within us, then we live only the good; we live love for the entire world. Evil, sin, and hatred disappear on their own; they can’t remain, there is no place for them.”

Saint Porphyrios of Kavsokalyvia

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“We may study as much as we will but we shall still not come to know the Lord unless we live according to His Commandments, for the Lord is not made known through learning but by the Holy Spirit.”

Saint Silouan the Athonite

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“The goal is to rise Spiritually, not simply to avoid sin.”

Saint Paisios the Athonite

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“When he was asked one day, in what does a perishing sinner differ from a righteous man who is saving his Soul, a saint, Saint Seraphim answered: ‘Only in his resolve… Our Salvation is in our will, in our firmness, in the steadfastness of our resolve to be Godly to the end. The Lord does not give His Spirit by measure, nor does He give His Grace by measure; He gives everything, and He gives Himself. But we receive Grace and make use of God’s gifts to the measure of our readiness to receive what He gives – and that means what He gives, and not what we want – and bring forth the fruit that He expects from us.'”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“A Christian is an imitator of Christ in thought, word and deed, as far as this is humanly possible, and he believes rightly and blamelessly in the Holy Trinity.”

Saint John Climacus

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“Just as a person does not notice how he grows from an infant into an adult, so also the Spiritual growth of a person occurs completely unnoticed by him.”

Saint Barsanuphius of Optina

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“Desire and effort must come from you. God will provide the power and the results.”

Saint Paisios the Athonite

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Of all good things the most important for me is that God’s Name should be Glorified through my life.”

Saint Gregory of Nyssa

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“Throw out of your head the idea that you can, through a comfortable life, become what you must be in Christ.”

Saint Theophan the Recluse

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“A certain brother, seeing his Ascetic life, asked him for his own edification: “Why don’t we , Father, lead a strict life as the ancient Ascetics did?” “Because,” replied the Saint “we have no determination to do so. If we had the determination, we should live as those Fathers did who, in olden times, shone with labours and piety; because God gives His Grace and help to the faithful and to those who seek the Lord with all their heart now just as He did before. For according to the Word of God, Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today, and for ever (Heb. 13:8).”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“If you change from inhumanity to almsgiving, you have stretched forth the hand that was withered. If you withdraw from theatres and go to Church, you have cured the lame foot. If you draw back your eyes from a harlot… you have opened them when they were blind… These are the greatest miracles.”

Saint John Chrysostom

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“Once someone receives God’s Grace the war, the battle, begins. He receives great Grace and his body must also be transformed. The carnal mentality draws the Soul downwards, but at the same time God’s Grace draws it upwards. This is a difficult moment. Someone can be led astray from the right or from the left. The psychological pain is great, and it can strike him at the weakest point of his body, his heart or his brain. Then obedience to a discerning Elder is necessary. Our own will must disappear from within us.”

Saint Sophrony of Essex

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“There would be no need for sermons if our lives were shining. There would be no need for words, if we bore witness within our deeds. There would be no pagans, if we were true Christians.”

Saint John Chrysostom

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“Without having freed itself from the world, the Soul cannot love God sincerely. For worldly things, in the words of Saint Antioch, are as it were a veil for the Soul.”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“Our actions disclose what goes on within us, just as its fruit makes known a tree otherwise unknown to us.”

Saint Thalassios the Libyan

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“Just as God has given us sight in order that we may recognise visible things – what is white, and what is black, so, too, He has given us intelligence in order that we may discern what benefits the Soul.”

Saint Anthony the Great

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“Dispassion doesn’t mean to no longer feel the passions, but to no longer accept them.”

Saint Isaac the Syrian

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“He who has humbled himself within will not be cheated by his lips; for what is not in the treasury cannot be brought out through this door.”

Saint John Climacus

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“Establish yourself in God and then you will be helpful to others.”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“When we are beset by temptations, that’s when the Grace of God comes. When one undergoes temptation, he recognises his weakness, is humbled and attracts the Grace of God. Don’t let the winds of temptation affect you. They can’t do you any harm.”

Elder Amphilochios Makris

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“Don’t forget these words: God has given you time to build your Eternal Salvation. Do not waste it!”

Saint Sophrony of Essex

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“Evils reinforce each other; so do virtues, thus encouraging us to still greater efforts.”

Saint Mark the Ascetic

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“It is up to us to add labours in order to ‘go from strength to strength’ (Psalm 83:7), and to come ‘to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ’ (Ephesians 4:13), so that the words of the Lord may be fulfilled in us: ‘But they who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall grow wings like eagles; and they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint’ (Isaiah 40:31). Only then will our present joy (which now visits us little and briefly) appear in all its fullness; and no one will take it from us, for we shall be filled to overflowing with inexplicable Heavenly delights.”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“A time will come… when you will be so certain of the Love of God, and so careful not to judge the other person or do anything which may cause him harm, that you no longer have any burden on your conscience. You will then, with joy, receive the Joy of God and pass it on to others.”

Mother Gavrilia

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“Stop defiling your flesh with shameful deeds and polluting your Soul with wicked thoughts; then the Peace of God will descend upon you and bring you love.”

Saint Maximos the Confessor

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“No spiritual exercise can be compared with silence.”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“If thou lovest peace, be peaceful.”

Saint Isaac the Syrian

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“We mustn’t despair when we struggle and continuously see nothing but the slightest progress. We all do nearly nothing, some a little more, some a little less. When Christ sees our little effort He gives us an analogous token and so our nearly nothing becomes valuable and we can see a little progress. For this reason we mustn’t despair, but hope in God.”

Saint Paisios the Athonite

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“In proportion to your humility you are given patience in your woes; and in proportion to your patience the burden of your afflictions is made lighter and you will find consolation; in proportion to your consolation, your love of God increases; and in proportion to your love, your joy in the Holy Spirit is magnified.”

Saint Isaac the Syrian

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“Salvation consists in the restoration of our communion with God.”

Saint Ignatius Brianchaninov

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“If a man Prays, then he receives a sweet savor and Grace from God, and his Angel also Prays nearby. A man Prays, and his Angel pleads: ‘O my God, hear his Prayer; do that which he asks.’ And if our Prayer is also accompanied by tears and repentance then our Angel rejoices, because he has more boldness before God because of such a beautiful Soul, such a beautiful person.”

Elder Ephraim of Arizona

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“The person who has entered onto the path of silence must constantly remember why he has done so. This is so that the heart may not be turned away from its purpose toward something else.”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“Your Lord is Love: love Him and in Him all men, as His children in Christ. Your Lord is a fire: do not let your heart be cold, but burn with faith and love. Your Lord is light: do not walk in darkness of mind, without reasoning or understanding, or without faith. Your Lord is a God of mercy and bountifulness: be also a source of mercy and bountifulness to your neighbours. If you will be such, you will find Salvation yourself with everlasting glory.”

Saint John of Kronstadt

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“The fear of God is when you love Him, when you truly love Him with all your heart and you strive never to offend or sadden Him – not only with your deeds, actions, and words, but also with your thoughts.”

Elder Thaddeus of Vitovnica

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“Every lying thought bears in itself a proof of its falsehood. This proof is its deadly effect upon the heart; ‘for to be carnally minded is death’. Likewise every true thought contains in itself a proof of its truth. This profit is its vivifying effect upon the heart; ‘but to be Spiritually minded is life and peace’, says the Apostle.”

Saint John of Kronstadt

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“An egg, when you dye it, takes on whatever colour they give it on the outside; but on the inside it always remains white.”

Saint Nicholas Planas

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“There is nothing better than peace in Christ, for it brings victory over all the evil spirits on Earth and in the air. When peace dwells in a man’s heart it enables him to contemplate the Grace of the Holy Spirit from within. He who dwells in peace collects Spiritual gifts as it were with a scoop, and he sheds the light of knowledge on others. All our thoughts, all our desires, all our efforts, all our actions should make us say constantly with the Church: ‘O Lord, give us peace!’ When a man lives in peace, God reveals Mysteries to him…”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“You must work Spiritually not only until you see the fruit in your Soul, but also until your very end. For even ripe fruit is often destroyed by hail.”

Saint Isaac the Syrian

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“One must examine oneself while reading the Writings of the Holy Fathers of the Orthodox Church, who help us use the light of the Gospels without error. The more a person delves deeply into himself and comes to know himself, the more he comes to recognise his passions, the different ways they act on him and attack him. Then he comes to know his weaknesses; then he can begin to destroy within himself all sinful qualities grafted into his nature by the fall. Then he can acquire the qualities indicated by the Gospels. And only then will his foundation for the edifice of Prayer be completely firm.”

Saint Ignatius Brianchaninov

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“The things that hinder us from understanding and grasping the meaning of Spiritual teachings are our own indifference and the fact that we cling with all our might to the fleeting concerns of this life.”

Saint Gregory Palamas

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“If a vessel is to be filled, it must first be empty. So cast all evil away from you, that you may be filled to the brim.”

Saint Augustine of Hippo

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“The more you are purified from the passions, the more peace you have, the wiser you are, the more you understand God.”

Elder Ephraim of Arizona

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“You don’t become holy by fighting evil. Let evil be. Look towards Christ and that will save you. What makes a person Saintly is love.”

Saint Porphyrios of Kavsokalyvia

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“Have patience in everything until death.”

Saint Joseph the Hesychast

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“It’s not who we are when we read a Spiritual book that is most important, but who we are when we close it.”

Monk Simeon of Mount Athos

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“Evidently we are not yet perfect, but at least we desire to be so, and this is the beginning of our Salvation. For from this desire we shall come in God’s company both into the combat and through the combat.”

Saint Dorotheos of Gaza

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“Prayer, fasting, vigil and all other Christian practices, however good they may be in themselves, do not constitute the aim of our Christian life, although they serve as the indispensable means of reaching this end. The true aim of our Christian life consists in the acquisition of the Holy Spirit of God. But fasting, Prayer, alms and every good deed done for the sake of Christ is a means to the attainment of the Holy Spirit.”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“In the beginning there is struggle and a lot of work for those who come near to God. But after that there is indescribable joy. It is just like building a fire: at first it is smoky and your eyes water, but later you get the desired result. Thus we ought to light the Divine Fire in ourselves with tears and effort.”

Saint Syncletica of Alexandria

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“When we speak about Asceticism in the Orthodox Church we do not simply mean bodily Ascetic practices, although these too are essential, but the Soul’s resurrection from the passions, love towards God and the quickening of the Soul by the Holy Spirit.”

Saint Sophrony of Essex

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“Whatever you do, do it gently and unhurriedly, because Virtue is not a pear to be eaten in one bite.”

Saint Seraphim of Sarov

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“Do not wish for many things, whether they are within or out of reach. Instead, take care to Sanctify the little you have.”

Mother Gavrilia

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