Religion & Spirituality:Spirituality
The Ladder of Divine Ascent - Chapter XXII: On Vainglory, Part II
With stunning clarity, St. John Climacus begins to show us the subtlety of vainglory; how easily it draws us to focus upon the self in one fashion or another. It suggests thoughts that elevate us in our own eyes and diminishes others in our judgment.
Through vainglory we begin the movement of placing ourselves in the position of God; placing the self at the center of the spiritual life. The battle becomes ever so fierce and dangerous because at this point the focus of the demons’ attention is on our virtues. The demons make them the object of our attention. In doing so they turn us away from God who is the beginning and end of all things.
And with the self firmly planted at the center, we are easily driven to rage and wrath towards anyone who gets in our way. In the end, St John will show us how this gives birth to pride and how it draws us into the very darkness of hell itself.
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It is Free