Symeon the New Theologian
We are on a small clearing in a pine forest. This is a place of hesychia — a working site of Symeon the New Theologian.
In the past we worked at this place, filled with the Divine Consciousness of Symeon, in the state of deep inner quietness: the state when the ‘I’ is dissolved, when the spiritual heart, filled with love and calm, expands far beyond the limits of the body.
Today He asks as to tell to other people the following:
“All serious spiritual schools contribute to the development of spirituality on our planet.
“But I would like to tell a little about the contribution of Christians-Hesychasts to this treasury of common knowledge.
“The first direction of efforts made by these humble and steadfast seekers was LOVE FOR GOD, which can be developed only in the spiritual heart against the background of inner quietness.
“Without this love one cannot gain true achievements!
“If one’s love for God fades away, then everything that person tries to do in the religious field turns into useless ritualism!
“The second direction researched by Hesychasts was LOWLINESS OF MIND. Hesychasts taught to observe and destroy selfhood in oneself. Gaining this ‘basic skill of spiritual life’ is extremely important! Without it the Lord does not allow approaching Him!
“I believe it is important to tell about it now, because many followers of the contemporary pseudo-spiritual directions tend to elevate their selves, while love for God remains at the background or even becomes forgotten… Yet it is only through love, through development of the spiritual heart and gradual transformation of it into the Heart of Christ that one can traverse the Path shown by Jesus!
“Of course, many true religious schools had teachings about repentance, about gaining inner quietness and cordial love: without them Mergence with God cannot be achieved!
“And these milestones of the spiritual Path established by Christians-Hesychasts continue to serve people of the Earth.
“Hesychasts showed examples of monastic life to the world, that is a life completely dedicated to God.”
* * *
“Once Jesus told a parable about a man whose granaries were full of grain. That man was proud about his earthly wealth! But God ended his life — and he could not use the accumulated wealth…
“So, the most important things in human life are those contributing to the development of the soul! One has to tell about this to people; they need to know what multiplies their spiritual wellness, what is really valuable to God!
“These are growth of love and purity of the soul and also service to God and to people!
“Everyone has to understand it, so that one does not live life on the Earth in vain!”
* * *
“Let Me also tell a few words about illnesses:
“An illness is one of the ways of how God talks to man!
“This talk begins by the initiative of God. Often this happens when man directs all the attention to the material existence and forgets about the life of the soul. In such a case — through an illness — God points out to man the problems and vices of the soul which can be realized and corrected now.
“Let Me repeat again: when one does not want to turn the look of the soul away from transient desires and deeds and direct all the attention and efforts to feeling oneself as a soul before God — then such a one can be taught by God through an illness. In such a case, God allows an illness to come, that illness which is rooted in mistakes and misdeeds of that person and in unbecoming emotional states of the soul.
“And what else can God do if this person has no understanding of the purpose of human life and the necessity of making efforts for realization of this purpose?…
“Being ill and separated from the worldly concerns due to the illness, one receives an opportunity to hear God. One does not necessarily hear God through the words. There is another way of gaining understanding of what God wants from you.
“Of course, in this situation one needs also to heal the body as well — by all available means. Only such an approach helps to restore the health fully: the health of the body and the health of the soul.
“… Unfortunately it often happens that only after seeing the approaching death people start to think about the purpose of their lives on the Earth and about how to realize this purpose. They think about what they would like to accomplish — but have neither strength nor time to do it in the current incarnation…
“Yet even in this sad case, the illness and the coming death can be quite useful for the soul: if one does not fear to draw conclusions, then the soul becomes purified and prepared for the more favorable conditions of the next incarnation. In this situation, one begins together with God to make a plan of the next life in a new body. In this plan one can take into account all the past errors and thus can learn not to make them again in the future.
“So let everyone think: does it make sense to wait for the end of the current life and beginning of the next incarnation if right now I have an opportunity to begin purification and transformation of myself-soul?
“Everything said above is meant for souls who are already capable of thinking and being conscious of themselves.
“The Law of Higher Love and Justice is not always clear to those who are too young now — both by their bodies and by souls.
“But in any case, everything that God gives to you is always good for the soul!”.