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“The fall arises out of man’s free decision to reject personal communion with God and restrict himself to the autonomy and self-sufficiency of his own nature…if the transcendence that previously gave significance to the world is lost, we need a new account of meaning — a new “imaginary” that enables us to imagine a meaningful life within this now self-¬sufficient universe of gas and fire. That “replacement” imaginary is what Taylor calls “exclusive humanism…[we may] on one level, may ascribe to the idea of God, that God exists, even that God is the creator and that God governs the world, yet on another level, share with nonreligious, secular counterparts a complete confidence in the autonomy of human existence and the self-sufficiency of the world.” (Christos Yannaras, Charles Taylor, James K.A. Smith, Vigen Guroian)

“The self-sufficient does not pray, the self-satisfied will not pray, the self-righteous cannot pray. No man is greater than his prayer life….Let me not slip into self-contentment and imagined self-sufficiency, which is the kiss of death to spiritual growth and thirst….The Lord infuses us with His strength when we when we turn to Him. This often happens when we finally wake up from the delusion of self-sufficiency, recognize our true need, and seek Him with a repentant and earnest heart.” (Leonard Ravenhill, Sr. Dr. Vassa Larin, Sacramental Living Ministries)

“The point of all our spiritual disciplines is not to attempt to put God in our debt, to achieve any earthly goal, or to distinguish ourselves from our neighbors in any way. It is, instead, to help us gain the humility to have the faith necessary to entrust our deepest pains and fears to the One Who has conquered even death and Hades. Acquiring that kind of faith is not easy and surely not a matter of simply going through the motions of religious practice. It is, instead, a matter of allowing our illusions of self-sufficiency and self-righteousness to be destroyed as we come to see clearly where we stand before the Lord as those with broken hearts who often totter on the brink of despair. He graciously accepts faith even the size of a mustard seed…” (Fr. Philip LeMasters)

“One repents not because one is virtuous, but because human nature can change, because what is impossible for man is possible for God. The motive for repentance is at all times humility, unself-sufficiency - not a means of justification for oneself, or of realizing some abstract idea of goodness, or of receiving a reward in some future life. Just as the strength of God is revealed in the extreme vulnerability of His Son on the Cross, so also the greatest strength of man is to embrace his weakness: "for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I render glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me" (2 Corinthians 12.9).” (Greek Orthodox Archdiocese)

“Repentance is the conversion of the mind to an abiding change in our human existence itself and in the behavior of human nature towards deification and perfection in God. In repentance, people escape their egocentric individuality and, freed from the inadequacy of unhealthy self-sufficiency, re-align themselves with a personal relationship with God, initially through experiencing participation in the uncreated energies of God through their neighbor- an image of God- and then, in addition, through communion with God. Repentance, then, is a course of treatment, devoid of the pedantic spirit of a view that would dissolve the assembly of brothers and sisters in the same place and undermine the aim of us all being one (John 17:21).” (Vasilios Grillas)

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