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“Of all the good things in the world, life is dearest to men, and men love life better than truth, although there is no life in truth. The highest good, then, is life, but truth is the foundation of life. He who loves life must also love truth. But what is the way to truth? 'I am the way', says the Lord. 'I am the way', that none should think that there is some other way to the truth besides the Lord Jesus. It was for that He was born as a man: to show men the way. And for this that He was crucified, to make the way plain by His blood.” —St. Nikolai Velimirovich
“If you deny yourself and constantly renounce your own opinions, your own will, your own righteousness-or what amounts to the same thing: the knowledge, understanding, will, and righteousness of fallen nature-in order to plant within you the knowledge of God, the will of God, and the righteousness of God taught us in the holy Gospel by God Himself, then fallen nature will open fire within you and declare a savage war against the Gospel and against God. Fallen spirits will come to the help of fallen nature.
Do not fall into despondency on this account. By your firmness in the struggle, show the tenacity of your purpose and the stability of your free will. When thrown down, get up. When duped and disarmed, rearm yourself afresh. When defeated, again rush to the fight. It is extremely good for you to see within yourself both your own fall and the fall of the whole of mankind. It is essential for you to recognize and study this fall in your own experience, in your heart and mind. It is essential for you to see the infirmity of your knowledge and intellect, and the weakness of your will.” —St. Ignatius Brianchaninov (Bryanchaninov) of Caucasus, The Arena, chapter 8
“The natural passions become good in those who struggle when, wisely unfastening them from the things of the flesh, use them to gain heavenly things. For example they can change appetite into the movement of a spiritual longing for divine things; pleasure into pure joy for the cooperation of the mind with divine gifts; fear into care to evade future misfortune due to sin and sadness into corrective repentance for present evil.” —St. Maximus the Confessor

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