Monday, 8 March 2010

Love your neighbors! - St. Ignatius Brianchaninov


St. Ignatius Brianchaninov speaks to me.
Direct all your attention to the acquisition of love for your neighbor as the basis of your life and your task. 
Love your neighbor according to the dictates of the commandments of the Gospel, not at all according to the dictates and impulses of your heart. 
The love planted by God in our nature was damaged by the fall and cannot act correctly. 
On no account allow it to act!  Its actions have lost their purity.... 
Love your neighbor in the following way: 
·         Do not get angry with him and do not bear resentment or a grudge against him. 
·         Do not allow yourself to say to your neighbor any reproachful, abusive, sarcastic or caustic words. 
·         Maintain peace with him as far as possible. 
·         Humble yourself in his presence. 
·         Do not try to have your revenge on him either directly or indirectly.  Whenever possible, yield to him. 
·         Get out of the habit of arguing and quarreling, and reject it as a sign of pride and self-love. 
·         Speak well of those who speak evil of you. 
·         Pay good for evil. 
·         Pray for those who cause you various offenses, wrongs, temptations, persecutions. 
·         Whatever you do, on no account condemn anyone; do not even try to judge whether a person is good or bad, but keep your eyes on that one evil person for whom you must give an account before God - yourself.

“Treat your neighbors as you would like them to treat you.  Forgive and pardon men their offenses against you from the depth of your heart, so that your heavenly Father may forgive you your countless offences, your debt of sin."

St. Ignatius Brianchaninov

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