St. Isaac on Humility

southwest-trip-172.jpgHumilty is the raiment of the Godhead. The Word who became human clothed himself in it, and he spoke to us in our body. Everyone who has been clothed with humility has truly been made like unto Him who came down from his own exaltedness and hid the splendor of his majesty and concealed his glory with humility, lest creation be utterly consumed by the contemplation of him….Wherefore every man has put on Christ when he is clothed with the raiment wherein the Creator was seen through the body that he put on. For the likeness in which he was seen by his own creation and in which he kept company with it, he willed to put on in his inner man, and to be seen therein by his fellow-servants.

…I should marvel greatly if there were any truly humble man who would venture to supplicate God when he draws nigh to prayer, or to ask to be accounted worthy of prayer, or to make entreaty for any other thing, or who would know what to pray. For the humble man keeps a reign of silence over all his deliberations, and simply awaits mercy and whatever decree should come forth concerning him from the countenance of God’s worshipful majesty….When he bows his head to the earth, and contemplation within his heart is raised to the sublime gate leading to the Holy of Holies wherein is He whose dwelling place is darkness which dims the eyes of the Seraphim and whose brilliance awes the legions of their choirs and sheds silence upon all their orders….Then he dares only to speak and pray thus, ‘May it be unto me according to thy will, O Lord.’

Taken from The Spiritual World of Isaac the Syrian by Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev

About Fr. Stephen Freeman

Fr. Stephen is a retired Archpriest of the Orthodox Church in America, Pastor Emeritus of St. Anne Orthodox Church in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He is also author of Everywhere Present: Christianity in a One-Storey Universe, and Face to Face: Knowing God Beyond Our Shame, as well as the Glory to God podcast series on Ancient Faith Radio.



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3 responses to “St. Isaac on Humility”

  1. neochalcedonian Avatar

    I dare not say anything more than Amen!

  2. David Bryan Avatar

    That and, “Holy St. Isaac, pray to God for us sinners.”

  3. Alice C. Linsley Avatar

    I’ve been taught a fresh lesson in humility by a 6th grade girl. I published her short story and poem, and a poem in her honor here: http://teachgoodwriting.blogspot.com

    And what does she do? Does she act in a puffed up way at seeing her name? No! Instead she instantly honors Jesus’ greater Name with a acrostic poem.

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