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Love (and Spiritual Blindness)

“Why does a man not see God? Because he has not love. He has not love because he does not love his brother…The heart’s eye must be continually cleansed and strengthened by love, in order to see that changeless being in whose presence the lover may always delight and enjoy it in the company of the angels for all eternity.” (St. Augustine)

“Christ pins the blame for a lack of understanding on hardheartedness. So focused on their own physical needs, the apostles fail to see the heavenly meanings in Christ’s words. Reducing all of Christ’s words to their literal meanings results in their failure to seek the things above. Christ is always trying to get their hearts and minds to think in godly terms rather than merely human ones. To comprehend the Lord Jesus they need to soften their hearts with faith, hope and love in order to see and hear the divine meaning in and behind Christ’s words.” (Fr. Ted Bobosh)

“To love God is something that comes naturally to us, it is something that is part of our deep and inalienable nature. In order for us to realize and experience this love, we need only stop our mind from wandering, let go of our troubled thoughts, and silence our inner noise and turmoil, at which the reality of God will come rushing towards us, a reality that has been rushing toward us from all eternity, though we are too distracted to see it. The more we empty our mind, the more it will be naturally filled with the presence and love of God, who pours Himself out to us to the extent that we open our hearts to Him.” (V. Rev. Maximos Constas)

“Experiencing the love of God enables us to comprehend “the width and length and depth and height” (Eph 3:18) of Christ’s nature and His life among us. These dimensions include the width of God’s love for all men; the length to which the Lord is willing to go for us, even to death on the Cross; the depth of God’s humility in Christ; and the height of His exaltation above “every name that is named” (Eph 1:21).” (Dynamis 10/13/2021)

“Our lives are often filled with tensions and judgments with jealousy and greed – all of which serve to deaden our hearts and make us blind to the true character of the Kingdom in our midst. The Kingdom is reduced to slogan – a cypher for a set of opinions. Patience, inner stillness, love and forgiveness are the disciplines that make it possible for us to perceive the texture of the Kingdom. It allows its depth to be formed in our hearts…Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (Mt 5.8). Purity of heart means to be free of all wicked motivations and sinful intentions, and to have no unworthy interests and self-seeking desires. It means to be totally free from anything which blinds and darkens the mind so that it cannot see things clearly and honestly. It means to be totally liberated from anything which captivates and darkens the soul so that it cannot reflect and shine with the pure light of God.” (Father Stephen Freeman, Fr. Thomas Hopko)


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