Don’t be afraid to ignore yourself

Feel free to ignore yourself

Ambro, FreeDigitalPhotos

According to the Life of the Elder Moses of Optina, a troubled monk visited the elder, seeking his counsel.

“Batiushka,” he said, “there is a thought that is bothering me a lot.”

“And what does your thought say to you, brother?” asked the elder.

“Well, Batiushka, my thought says to me that you’re not doing this right, and you’re not doing that right. . . .”

The elder sat quietly and listened while the monk went on at some length about the remembrance of his failures and the taunting and accusing thoughts that weighed down his heart. Having heard the sad testimony, the elder finally spoke.

“My brother,” he said, “tell your thought that this is none of its business.”

Simple. Serenity suddenly settled over the monk, and he left the elder relieved.

I don’t know if you can use that, but it amused me.

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About Joel J. Miller

I'm the author of Lifted by Angels, a look at angels through the eyes of the early church. Click here for more about me or subscribe to my RSS here.

  • http://veryconvenienttruth.blogspot.com Drew Snider

    A very timely bit of insight, there, in my own life right now. I just spent much of the night trying to tell my thoughts to shut the heck up so I can sleep. Directing the thoughts towards God and His magnificent mercy helped, too. Thanks for that!

    • Joel J. Miller

      Awesome. Glad to hear that.


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