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“Before obtaining mourn­ing and tears let no one deceive us with vain words, and let us not deceive ourselves: there is no repentance in us, no true self-­reproach, no fear of God in our hearts. We have not blamed ourselves; our soul has not reached any perception of the future judgment and eternal torments. If we had blamed ourselves, we should have acquired and attained this perception; tears would also at once have procured it. Without them it will never be possible to soften the hardness of our heart, nor will our soul acquire a spirit of humility; we cannot be humble. Without becoming humble, it is impossible to be united with the Holy Spirit; without being united to Him, it is impossible to come to the vision and knowledge of God, and our heart is secretly not fit to learn the virtue of humility.”

—St. Symeon the New Theologian

St. Symeon the New Theologian