Four Hundred Texts on Love (Third Century) 39

78.  It is one thing to be delivered from sinful thoughts and another to be free from passions. Frequently a man is delivered from such thoughts when the things which rouse his passions are not present. But the passions lie hidden in the soul and are brought to light when the things themselves are present. Hence one must watch over the intellect in the presence of things and must discern for which of them it manifests a passion.

And this is an important point. Passions require a trigger. If we simply remove the trigger, we are not free of the passion. The former is important, of course, but only the first step in our healing. Moreover, like the Pharisee thanking God that he is not like other men, including the wicked publican, we are often proud of our ability to resist things with which we have never been truly tempted. We need to understand that we share in the weakness of humanity and that only through the strength of Christ can we be truly healed.

This entry was posted in St. Maximos the Confessor and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Share your thoughts!

%d bloggers like this: