Interior or inner peace is sometimes associated with last stages of Christian maturity and may be a precursor of Union with God. Some Roman Catholics associate it with Abandonment to Divine Providence. Attainment of inner peace may be a slow and painful spiritual journey. It has been noted, as well, that is a gift of God. However, the acquisition and condition of inner peace is best described by those who have actually attained it. St. Seraphim of Sarov, speaking of Holy Spirit, alludes to inner peace only obliqueIy. Some western writers hypothecize the necessary antecedents to this peace without necessarily having attaining it. Yet, I suspect that the actualization and character of inner peace may be described in the writings of some of the saints. But, which saint and in what writings? Can anyone help me out?
Posted 31 May 2017 - 01:22 PM
Posted 31 May 2017 - 02:35 PM
It is not an area our fathers like to speak of as it goes far beyond what words can describe let alone explain. The life of Silouan the Athonite and the Writings of Elder Saphroney can help, but in the end it is an experience which cannot be put into words.
Most of the older fathers speak of it as something which happens as a result of our developing relationship with God and as a personal experience we can only be guided to by one who has experienced it, although it is a long journey we may not even finish in this life as relationship with Christ.
As a process it starts with our baptism and Crismation into the Church and is nourished by the Eucharist, we approach God in the services of the Church and by grace develop the ability to retain grace. I am trying to express something I have only read about and had fleeting experiences off, in the end it is something we can not understand until we experience it ourselves.
Posted 13 June 2017 - 09:50 AM
Saint Isaac the Syrian's writings would be of help...
Anyway, the Orthodox teaching in this regard maybe summarized in few words: if your conscience is not troubled you may acquire interior peace at ease; the way to get a peaceful conscience is repentance.
Posted 17 July 2017 - 10:58 AM
If you seek out the wisdom of the Holy Fathers on singleness of heart (or singleness/wholeness in general), and also the sacrament of the present moment - Metropolitan Kallistos has much to say on this - then you will be squarely on the path of accumulated wisdom relating to interior peace.
God be with you.
Posted 18 July 2017 - 01:32 AM
I suspect that like other virtues the experience and character of this changes as one grows. None of the virtues are entirely lacking in us, but it is taught that they are mixed with alien energies and also unstable and inconsistent in their appearance. The mature appearance is stable and pure. The fullness of peace would be, like the other virtues, found in the context of love completely free of self-love, pride, etc. To see what this peace looks like in action as part of the full complement of virtues one of the books I think of is "Fr Arseny, Priest, Prisoner, Spiritual Father" .
There are warnings about seeking a false peace that is really motivated by self-love - what we end up seeking is not the peace from above, but simply a self-referential state of not wanting to be disturbed. True peace comes with growing humility, selflessness and love. Probably the most common "per-requisite" for peace is to get rid of pride. When I first saw your post it reminded me of an interview I read some time ago and the description it had of our Orthodox elders.
WIE: In the Orthodox tradition there has been a longstanding lineage of illumined spiritual fathers, great individuals who have demonstrated with their own lives the possibility of destroying the ego and discovering a new life in God. What are the marks of one who has won the spiritual battle? How does the expression of the personality change in one who has truly gone beyond the ego?
AD: He's ready for everything always. He never is or says or feels that he's tired. He has joy. He's always ready to give. He exists only for others. He's ready to serve everybody. He does not judge anybody, including the deepest sinner. He's there as a child, but as a child of a king. Who can touch the son of a king? Who can touch a newborn lion knowing that the mother lion is nearby?
Being this way, you're like a small lamb among the wolves, but you're not afraid. You're there offering, receiving everybody, loving, serving, praying for everybody and being ready to die in each moment, and in that, you're totally and completely free. All these are fruits of love
Edited by Anna Stickles, 18 July 2017 - 01:40 AM.
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