2148 Michelson Dr, Irvine, CA 92612

Eye of the Mind

Thurs­day. Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slum­ber to thine eye­lids. Deliv­er thy­self as a roe from the hand of the hunter, and as a bird from the hand of the fowler (Prov. 6:4–5). Every­one who in his heart has set out now, before the face of the Lord, to live accord­ing to His com­mand­ments, should take this rule as his guide. He must not give sleep to his eyes — not these out­er eyes, but the inner eyes of his mind — so that they will gaze into his heart, and faith­ful­ly observe all that occurs there, and thus enable those who are zeal­ous to find the ene­my’s snares and avoid dan­ger from them. The heart now becomes an are­na for strug­gle with the ene­my. There the ene­my unceas­ing­ly sows his own [seed], which is in turn reflect-ed in one’s thoughts. Such thoughts, how­ev­er, are not always outra-geously bad, but are for the most part dis­guised by false kind­ness and cor­rect­ness. The chain of all thoughts is like a net of art­ful de-sign! He who sets out after them heed­less­ly will not escape entangle-ment, and, con­se­quent­ly the dan­ger of a fall. This is why, broth­er, you must keep the eye of your mind sharp-sight­ed by means of strict at-tention toward every­thing that oc-curs in you and around you. Notice what your relent­less “advi­sor” pro-poses to you on the left side, and sift out the rea­son it was pro­posed to you and where it will lead, and you will nev­er fall into his nets. Only, do not for­get that atten­tive­ness alone is not effec­tive — it must be joined with absti­nence, vig­i­lance, and un-ceasing prayer to the Lord. Com­bine all these, and it will be hard to catch you.

Saint Theo­phan the Recluse