St seraphim praying on a rock

St seraphim praying on a rock


This is the “summer feast” for St Seraphim of Sarov. Here are some of his sayings.

Acquire the spirit of peace and a thousand souls around you will be saved.

“…the Lord has frequently demonstrated before many witnesses how the grace of the Holy Spirit acts on people whom He has sanctified and illumined by His great inspirations. Remember Moses after his talk with God on Mount Sinai. He so shone with an extraordinary light that people were unable to look at him. He was even forced to wear a veil when he appeared in public. Remember the Transfiguration of the Lord on Mount Tabor. A great light encircled Him, ‘and His raiment became shining, exceedingly white like snow’ (Mk.. 9:3), and His disciples fell on their faces from fear. But when Moses and Elias appeared to Him in that light, a cloud overshadowed them in order to hide the radiance of the light of the divine grace which blinded the eyes of the disciples. Thus the grace of the All-Holy Spirit of God appears in an ineffable light to all to whom God reveals its action.” St. Seraphim of Sarov, Little Russian Philokalia V, St. Herman of Alaska Brotherhoodpg 98

Let us go forward with the heart completely attentive and the soul fully conscious. For if attentiveness and prayer are daily joined together, they become like Elias’ fire-bearing chariot, raising us to heaven. What do I mean? A spiritual heaven, with sun, moon and stars, is formed in the blessed heart of one who has reach a state of watchfulness, or who strives to attain it.

Thus should we weep for the forgiveness of our sins. The words of the bearer of the purple should convince us of this: ‘Going they went and wept, casting their seed; but coming they shall come with joyfulness, carrying their sheaves (Ps. 125:6);’ as well as the words of St. Isaac the Syrian: ‘Moisten your cheeks with the tears of your eyes, that the Holy Spirit may abide in you, and cleanse the filth of your malice. Move your lord with your tears, that He may help you’ (homily 68).
One should always endure any trial for the sake of God with gratitude. Our life is a single minute in comparison with eternity; and therefore, according to the Apostle, `the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be comparted with the glory which shall be revealed in us’ (Rom. 8:18). Spiritual Instruction of St. Seraphim of Sarov

From solitude and silence are born tender contrition, and meekness; the activity of this latter in the human heart may be compared to that quiet water of Siloe, which flows without noise or sound, as the Prophet Isaiah speaks of it: ‘the waters of Siloe that go softly’ (Is. 8:6). St. Seraphim of Sarov, Little Russian Philokalia, Vol. 1

Sin, to one who loves God, is nothing other than an arrow from the enemy in battle. The true Christian is a warrior fighting his way through the regiments of the unseen enemy to his heavenly homeland. According to the word of the Apostle, our homeland is in heaven; and about the warrior he says: ‘our warfare is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers.’ St. Seraphim of Sarov, Letters, Little Russian Philokalia, V.3

One must condescend to the soul in its infirmities and imperfections, and bear its defects as we bear those of others; one must not, however, become lazy, but should spur oneself to do better. Perhaps one has eaten too much, or done something similar to this which is natural to human weakness – do not be disturbed at this, and do not add injury to injury; but bestir yourself to correction and at the same time strive to preserve peace of soul, according to the word of the Apostle: ‘Blessed is he that condemneth not himself in that thing which he alloweth’ (Rom. 14:22). St. Seraphim of Sarov, Little Russian Philokalia, Vol. 1

The body is a slave, the soul a sovereign, and therefore it is due to Divine mercy when the body is worn out by illness: for thereby the passions are weakened, and a man comes to himself; indeed, bodily illness itself is sometimes caused by the passions. St. Seraphim of Sarov, Spiritual Instructions

He who would be saved should ever have his heart disposed to repentance and broken, according to the Psalmist: “Sacrifice to God is a broken spirit: a broken and humbled heart God will not despise” (Ps. 50:17). St Seraphim of Sarov – Spiritual Instructions

One should nourish the soul with the word of God: for the word of God, as St. Gregory the Theologian says, is angelic bread, by which are nourished souls who hunger for God. Most of all, one should occupy oneself with reading the New Testament and the Psalter, which one should do standing up. From this there occurs an enlightenment in the mind, which is in the mind, which is changed by a Divine change. St Seraphim of Sarov – Spiritual Instructions

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