GOD SPEAKS IN A LOW VOICE – Иверский Орский женский монастырь



Holy Father Seraphim of Sarov used to say: “when I spoke for myself, there were mistakes; when I spoke on behalf of the Holy Spirit, there were no mistakes”. We often hear and repeat this phrase, but hardly often everyone perceives the depth of it.  What did Father Seraphim mean? We do not understand due to our inexperience. What does “for myself” and “on behalf of the Holy Spirit” mean? Our head is constantly bustling with thoughts and ideas while Our Lord speaks gently, delicately, but very definitely. But being always busy with ourselves we do not hear what God says. Nevertheless, it’s very important to learn it, as the most essential in our life is what God says, but not what we would figure out ourselves with our fallen mind. 

In fact, our mind is gravely damaged. We are always inspired to do good, but inspiration is not enough, we need to realize what to do and how it has to be done, we need to have a sense of purpose. But our head is a mess. How is that, speak on behalf of the Holy Spirit, and how not to speak and stop dwelling in your own thoughts and ideas? You need to slow down your thoughts that keep pouring like a flow, spinning and making noise, and let yourself hear what God says. In order to hear God, before we put our thoughts on pause, we need to fall silent. 

We jolly fine understand the visible part of the act of faith; we realize that in order to take control of our flesh we need to fast, so that our body was satisfied with less food and not to become immodest from excessive amount of food. Practically the same goes for our mind. Our mind needs to fast. For the body it is food restriction, for the mind – restriction of thoughts.  But not all of you will understand what I mean. How is that, to restrict our thoughts? It’s very good to practice Jesus prayer. This prayer is short and always the same. It doesn’t give space to thoughts as owing to its shortness it keeps moving and moving. Any complicated, long praying such as reading of the Psalter or canons is surely necessary, but it distracts our mind with its width… 

The wider is the thought, the more our mind gets disturbed, the farther it goes. And the shorter is the thought, the more we restrict our mind. And so, Jesus prayer is very short, it is unchanging and doesn’t make our thoughts broaden: Jesus, Jesus Jesus, Jesus, Jesus… That was the way Holy Father Seraphim lived, that was the way all venerable people lived. Not only their flesh, but also their mind fasted. They gave very scarce food to their mind, and it did not get immodest. Their mind was not cultivated, but was set at rest, it rested upon this one short thought “Jesus, Jesus…” At that point they started to hear God – what He says, speaking gently, humbly, quietly, inconspicuously. Why don’t we hear God all the time? It is because we think loudly while God speaks in a low voice. That is why we can’t possibly hear Him. Many people even come to say there is no God, He doesn’t address us in any way. But venerable people restricted their mind and started to hear the word of God. It was very definite and exact. At that point, when they heard Our Heavenly Father, they understood what He wanted from them and how it had to be done. And they got good results.

Glory to Our God, always, now, and ever, and unto ages of ages.