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“See how many and great the evils it has brought on us – this self-justification, this holding fast to our own will, this obstinacy in being our own guide. All this was the product of that hateful arrogance towards God. Whereas the products of humility are self-accusation, distrust in our own sentiments, hatred of our own will. By these one is made worthy of being redeemed, of having his human nature restored to its proper state, through the cleansing operation of Christ's holy precepts. Without humility it is impossible to obey the Commandments or at any time to go towards anything good. As Abba Mark says: without a contrite heart it is impossible to be free from wickedness or to acquire virtue.” —St. Dorotheos of Gaza, Discourses and Sayings
“Begin gradually, do not trust yourself. Do not depend on your own understanding, reject your will, and the Lord will give you true understanding.” —St. Macarius of Optina, Living Without Hypocrisy
“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.

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