Sunday, January 20, 2013

Sin Originates in the Mind (Part 2)

There is a secret war that takes place in the soul with thoughts from
the evil spirits. The soul is invisible, and thus the sly powers attack it with
an invisible warfare that is akin to the soul's entity. In this confrontation that
takes place between the soul and the enemies, one can observe weapons,
battle formations, cunning strategies, fearsome combat, relentless clashes,
both victories and defeats from both sides.
First we are assaulted by an evil thought. Second a dialogue takes
place. Third there is consent. Fourth we are taken captive. Finally, a
passion develops permanently on account of habit and repetition. This is
what constitutes our downfall in this war.
According to the holy Fathers, an assault is a simple thought or
image of a certain object that arises in the heart and which comes to mind.
Dialogue occurs when someone converses with the thought or image that
appeared. Consent takes place when the soul accepts and indulges in the
sinful thought. The first is not a sin. The second is not always blameless.
The third depends on the spiritual state of the person who is struggling
against sin. Ultimately, the battle will become a cause for either crowns or
Each passion unquestionably requires a corresponding amount of
repentance or it will lead to eternal punishment. Therefore, the person who
resists and confronts the first stage (i.e. the assault), in one fell swoop
severs all the ensuing evils. This is the battle waged by the evil demons
against humans, and this is what our victory or defeat hinges upon. And
crowns will be awarded according to the victories, whereas punishment will
be served to them who sinned and did not repent. Therefore, let us
struggle mentally against the demons, so we do not carry out their evil
suggestions and sin with physical actions.

—by Righteous Philotheos of Mt. Sinai—
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...