Jun 9, 2010

More Than Food

In the Orthodox Church we have many times of fasting. It is easy to focus only on the removal of certain kinds of food, but the Desert Fathers understood fasting to include all aspects of our lives...
We must not only keep a sharp watch over our diet, but keep away from all other kinds of sin so that as our stomach keeps fast, so also may our tongue as we abstain from calumny, from deceit, from idle talk, from railing and anger and all other vices which arise from the tongue. So also let our eyes keep fast. No looking for trivialities, no letting the eyes wander freely, no impudent lying in wait for people to talk to. The same with the hands and feet, to prevent them from doing anything evil. Fasting in this way, as St. Basil says, is an acceptable fast and, leaving behind all the evil to which our senses are inclined, we may come to the holy day of Resurrection, renewed and clean and worthy to share in the Holy Mysteries.
- St. Dorotheos of Gaza, Discourses and Sayings

No comments: