Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Spiritual Life Is Something That Someone Else Gives To Us


By Archimandrite Aimilianos of Simonopetra

A basic condition for the spiritual life is that we should understand that, on our own, we can do absolutely nothing. No matter how hard we try, the spiritual life is something that someone else gives to us.

And the “someone else” is the Spirit of God, the Comforter, the “treasury of good things and the giver of life”, the treasury from which all the riches of spirituality come forth, the source from which the spiritual life emerges and overflows.

Of course, sometimes we get confused, and think that to be spiritual means to be a “good person”: not to steal, not to kill, not to go to bad places or with bad friends, to go to Church on Sunday, to read spiritual books, and so on. But no, this is not the spiritual life.

A spiritual person, a true Christian, is someone whose entire life is sworn to God.

Initially by means of his baptism, and later, in his heart, such a person swears an oath to God, to live for God, and to remain with God forever.

A spiritual person is an athlete who has burst into life, who stands out from the crowds of human beings, and runs with all the speed of his soul to heaven.

A spiritual person is one who with shining eyes and chest thrust forward, has set his course and races to heaven. He is not a “good man”.

A spiritual person knows that, in order to succeed, he needs strong wings: the wings of the Holy Spirit.

A spiritual person must therefore do everything possible to attract, to win over, the Spirit of God, because only the Holy Spirit, God himself, has the gifts of the spiritual life. According to St Gregory of Nyssa, the “distribution of the royal gifts” of the Holy Spirit takes place in the Church through the Sacraments.

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