Thought for the day

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If while engaged in spiritual work you see a light or a fire outside you, or a form supposedly of Christ or of an angel or of someone else, reject it lest you suffer harm. And do not pay court to images, lest you allow them to stamp themselves on your intellect. For all these things that externally and inopportunely assume various guises do so in order to delude your soul.

—Gregory of Sinai

This is one of those which might be easy to dismiss in our era… except it’s still so totally true in its exhortation. We just have different sorts of ‘lights’, ‘fires’, and ‘images’. Visions and voices, even if spiritually understood, are fine tools of delusion.

Which, of course, is why Scripture is called a canon. It grounds us in reality, giving us a way to measure the movement of the Spirit among us. Apart from Scripture, spiritual things set us adrift in a stormy sea, whose sometimes malevolence we can only barely understand. Even if we are confident about manning the sails and tiller, a good wave can knock us off course or even send us to the bottom.

Keep your wits about you.

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