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Better one who falls and gets up than one who stands and does not repent. Here we must marvel at how both these persons, who are falling into the same sins every hour, are not the same before God, I think, nor before spiritual men. For one of these is extremely ignorant of his falls and of picking himself back up, even though the passions are at work, as will be explained below. But the other falls and gets up, is conquered and conquers. Another struggles and labors and afterwards is overcome by the pressure of the passions. Another does not want to speak a word in anger, but is caught up by habit. Another struggles not to speak any evil but grieves that he has been insulted, yet he rebukes himself for grieving and repents of this. Another does not grieve that he was insulted but neither does he rejoice. Now all of these are opposing the passions, for by their intention they have stopped the passion, and do not want it to act. So they grieve and struggle. As the fathers say: Everything that the soul does not want is short-lived.

I want to speak about those who are uprooting a passion. There are some who rejoice when they are insulted because they expect a reward. Such persons are uprooting the passion but not intelligently. Another person rejoices when he is insulted and thinks that he should have been insulted, because he gave the occasion for it. Such a person is uprooting the passion intelligently. There is another who not only rejoices when he is insulted and considers himself guilty, but who even grieves for the distress he caused for the person who insulted him. May God bring us to such a state!

– – – Introduction to the Philokalic Writings of the Blessed Hesychios