Friday, July 24, 2009

Looking for the Shortest Way to God?

The Work of God is simple: it is prayer––children talking to their Father, without and subtleties.
Saint Theophan the Recluse

There are two ways to prepare ourselves to be in communion with God. One is through ascetic struggles and the other is the contemplative way, turing the mind to God--Saint Gregory of Sinai says, "God is gained either by activity and work, or by the art of invoking the Name of Jesus." He tells us that the first way is longer and the second is quicker and more effective...

It follows from this that we should from the very first give full instructions on the practice of the Jesus Prayer to everyone who repents or begins to seek the Lord ...because it is in this way that one can most quickly become steadfast and spiritually aware, and achieve inner peace....

The practice of the prayer is called an "art", and it is very simple...

There are deviations from the right way of praying; therefore we must learn it from someone who knows all about it. Mistakes occur chiefly from the attention being in the head and not in the heart.
He who keeps his attention in the heart is safe.
Safer still is he who at all times clings to God in contrition, and prays to be delivered from illusion.
Saint Theophan the Recluse, Art of Prayer, p 95-97

No comments:

Post a Comment