Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Good and evil thoughts, part 1 of a 1,000,000,000 in a series

More about those who harm us from Elder Porphyrios:

We need to be careful not to harbour any resentment against those who harm us, but rather to pray for them with love. Whatever any of our fellow men does, we should never think evil of him. We need always to have thoughts of love and always to think good of others. Look at St. Stephen the first martyr (Acts 7:60). He prayed, Lord, do not hold this sin against them. We need to do the same.

We should never think about someone that God will send him some evil or that God will punish him for his sin. This thought brings about very great evil, without our being aware of it. We often feel indignation and say to someone: 'Have you no fear of God's justice, are you not afraid of God's punishment?' Or else we say. 'God will punish you for what you've done,' or 'O, God, do not bring evil on that person for what he did to me,' or, 'May that person not suffer the same thing.'

In all these cases, we have a deep desire within us for the other person to be punished. Instead of confessing our anger over his error, we present our indignation in a different way, and we allegedly pray to God for him. In reality, however, in this way we are cursing our brother.

And if, instead of praying, we say, 'May God repay you for the evil you have done to me,' then once again we are wishing for God to punish him. Even when we say 'All very well, God is witness,' the disposition of our soul works in a mysterious way and influences the soul of our fellow man so that he suffers evil.

More about this from Elder Porphyrios tomorrow. Good stuff although hard to bear because it exposes false piety. Sigh...

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