There are so many, “to live” – how to determine the degree of fasting

The Church, asking you about the food, not so many asks about that, what drink you food, how about that, for what you use it” thoughts of St. innocent (Veniaminov) as the post says the nun Eugenia (Senchukova).

Photo: Misha Maslennikov / Flickr

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St. Innocent (Veniaminov)

Some say that we cannot partake of the Holy mysteries, because it is not kept post. Of course, our Church commands us to fast and to fast, because the Saviour Himself fasted forty days and forty nights, but what is true fasting? Many people think that fasting is just about not eating meat, and oil, and even fish, but eat everything that is not meat, not oil, and not fish. Of course, so! Former Christians in the post did not consume fast food, but they are the simplest of foods consumed is known to measure and quantity.

Which has a post? In order to facilitate and to humble the body, and restrain the wishes and discourage passion. Here is the goal post! And because the Church, asking you about the food, not so much asking about what kind of food you eat, but about what you use it for you to pacify and relieve your body to curb your wishes and to mortify your passions. So, a post is a feat and an important means in order that the soul might be freer to follow him and later to ascend to Him with the prayer: Brachna we will not put before God, says the Apostle Paul.

So, if you go by the rules of the Church and dismantled when eating meat, when the fish and stuff, but at the same time fast not a soul that is not vozderzhites themselves from sins, do not keep your tongue from evil, all your fasting is in vain. There were examples that even the monks, such as St. John of the ladder, used at all times all foods and even meat. But how much? So much to live, and this did not prevent him to partake of the Holy communion, and finally, not prevented to become Holy.

St. Innocent (Veniaminov),
Metropolitan of Moscow and Kolomna

In the far East of St. innocent love and revere. Not only the Orthodox faith, but literacy, and medicine (the Saint contributed to the vaccination of smallpox). He was a wise man and a competent missionary, and was well aware that it is important for the Christian life and what is secondary.

At least four times a year Orthodox Christians begin a fierce debate about the necessity or futility of the post.

The Nun Eugenia (Senchukova)

Meanwhile, the answer lies on the surface: the post needed to facilitate the body. The relief of the body promotes deeper prayer.

That moderate diet good for spiritual (in the broad sense of the word) of life – a fact quite evident at least from experience. In one form or another such form of asceticism existed in all historical religions and local religious traditions. Probably there are some tangible explanation: perhaps the body spends more energy digesting protein and animal fats, and therefore, the forces at work is less spiritual.

Indeed, one can notice that when the intellectual work is rather a high demand for carbohydrates (“eat something sweet”). On the other hand, all individually: one on the protein-free diet can not only work and pray, but even to communicate with people.

St. innocent worked in harsh conditions. He was familiar with the life of the Northern peoples, who often are nothing but meat wasn’t. His disciple, the priest Demetrius (novel), the future first Bishop of Yakutsk and Vilyui Dionysius, almost lost health by trying to fast in missionary trips to Yakutia. Yes, actually, why do to mitigate the “almost”? He lost his health went from Yakutia after decades of dedicated work of a sick man.

So, bodily deeds are important but individual part of the spiritual life. In General, the Church Charter “fit” the context and Sainted Innokentii concludes that the principle of economy: “the Church, asking you about the food, not so much asking about what kind of food you eat, how much about why you do it.” And, returning to the early teachings of the Saint, worthy to receive the Holy Gifts, and if that rejects, not failing to post, and disregard them, the rejection of austerity in itself, as a fact of spiritual life.

How would say absolutely not pious character of the Soviet satirical literature Bender – don’t make a cult out of food. But on a direct question: “Why do you eat?” – in the period of the post must be an equally direct answer: “To maintain the physical strength of the body.” Or, as it articulates the Sainted innocent, “to live”.

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