Category Archives: St. Mark the Ascetic (St. Mark the Monk)

St. Mark the Ascetic: The devil makes small sins seem smaller . . .

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“The devil makes small sins seem smaller in our eyes, for otherwise he can’t lead us to greater evil.”

+ St. Mark the Ascetic, “On the Spiritual Law: Two Hundred Texts” No. 94, The Philokalia: The Complete Text (Vol. 1)

St. Mark the Ascetic: You should continually an unceasingly call to mind all the blessings which God . . .

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“You should continually and unceasingly call to mind all the blessings which God in His love has bestowed on you in the past, and still bestows for the salvation of your soul. You must not let forgetfulness of evil or laziness make you grow unmindful of these many and great blessings, and so pass the rest of your life uselessly and ungratefully.

For this kind of continual recollection, pricking the heart like a spur, moves it constantly to confession and humility, to thanksgiving with a contrite soul, and to all forms of sincere effort, repaying God through its virtue and holiness. In this way the heart meditates constantly and conscientiously on the words from the Psalms: ‘What shall I give to the Lord in return for all His benefits towards me?’ (Psalm 116:12).”

— St. Mark the Ascetic, Letter to Nicolas the Solitary, The Philokalia Vol. 1

St. Mark the Ascetic: When you are wronged and your heart and feelings are hardened . . .

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“When you are wronged and your heart and feelings are hardened, do not be distressed, for this has happened providentially; but be glad and reject the thoughts that arise within you, knowing that if they are destroyed at the stage when they are only provocations, their evil consequences will be cut off, whereas if the thoughts persist the evil may be expected to develop.”

— St. Mark the Ascetic

St. Mark the Ascetic: If one becomes angry with one’s neighbor . . .

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“If one becomes angry with one’s neighbor on account of riches, fame or pleasure, one does not yet realize that God orders all things with justice.”

— St. Mark the Ascetic

St. Mark the Ascetic: Each time someone accepts humiliation . . .

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“Each time someone accepts humiliation for the sake of Christ’s truth he will be glorified a hundredfold by other men. But it is better always to do good for the sake of blessings in the life to come.”

— St. Mark the Ascetic

St. Mark the Ascetic: Think nothing and do nothing without . . .

Journey Theodor_Kittelsen,_Soria_Moria“Think nothing and do nothing without a purpose directed to God. For to journey without direction is wasted effort.”

+ St. Mark the Ascetic, “On the Spiritual Law: Two Hundred Texts” No. 54, The Philokalia: The Complete Text (Vol. 1)

St. Mark the Ascetic: Wickedness is an intricate net. . . .

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“Wickedness is an intricate net; and if someone is careless when partially entangled, he gets completely enmeshed.”

— St. Mark the Ascetic

St. Mark the Ascetic: . . . Both are mistaken.

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“Some without fulfilling the commandments think that they possess true faith. Others fulfill the commandments and then expect the kingdom as a reward due to them. Both are mistaken.”

— St. Mark the Ascetic, On Those who Think that They are Made Righteous by Works, 18

St. Mark the Ascetic: Every vice leads in the end . . .

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“Every vice leads in the end to forbidden pleasure; and every virtue to spiritual blessing. Each arouses what is akin to it.”

— St. Mark the Ascetic

St. Mark the Ascetic: Prayer comprises the complete fullfillment . . .

Icon of St. Mark the Ascetic“Prayer comprises the complete fulfillment of the commandments; for there is nothing higher than love for God.”

— St. Mark the Ascetic