Strength and Hope

Edification, consolation, aids to Theosis. There are enough Orthodox blogs out there willing to point out in greatest detail what is wrong with this world. Holy Orthodoxy isn't about lamenting over what is wrong so much as rejoicing that what is wrong with this world can be made right, can be deified.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

From St. John of Kronstadt on Fasting

From "The Spiritual Counsels:"

By feeding largely, one becomes a carnal man, a man of soulless flesh and no spirit; while by fasting one attracts the Holy Ghost and becomes spiritual. When cotton is not soaked with water it is light, and a small quantity of it flies up in the air; but if it is soaked, it beomes heavy and at once falls to the ground. It is the same with the soul. How important it is to preserve it by means of fasting!

And:

It is remarkable that, however much we trouble about our health, however much care we take of ourselves, whatever wholesome and pleasant food and drink we take, however much we walk in the fresh air, still, notwithstanding all this, in the end we sicken and corrupt; whilst the saints, who despise the flesh, and mortify it by continual abstinence and fasting, by lying on the bare earth, by watchfulness, labors, unceasing prayer, make both their souls and bodies immortal. Our well fed bodies decay and after death emit an offensive odor, whilst theirs remain fragrant and flourishing both in life and after death. It is a remarkable thing: we, by building up our body, destroy it, whist they, by destroying theirs, build it up--by caring only for the fragrance of their souls before God, they obtain fragrance of the body also.

St. John of Kronstadt, pray to God for us!

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