My beloved spiritual children in Christ Our Only True God and Our Only True Savior,
CHRIST IS IN OUR MIDST! HE WAS, IS, AND EVER SHALL BE. Ο ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ ΕΝ ΤΩ ΜΕΣΩ ΗΜΩΝ! ΚΑΙ ΗΝ ΚΑΙ ΕΣΤΙ ΚΑΙ ΕΣΤΑΙ.
THE EIGHT DEADLY SINS AND THEIR SUBDIVISIONS
By Saint Ignaty Bryanchaninov (+ 1867), from the online catalogue of the "Transfiguration of Our Lord" Russian Orthodox Church, Baltimore, MD - USA.
Overeating, drunkenness, nor keeping the fasts, eating in secret, over-indulgence, extreme love of one's body and bodily comforts, which leads to egoism and indifference to God, the Church and virtue.
Sexual desires in the heart and soul. The entertainment of impure thoughts (logismoi), delight in them, acceptance of them. Sexual fantasies and enthrallment. Inappropriate physical contact. Foul language and the reading of sexually inflaming literature. Sins of natural sex (fornication and adultery) and unnatural (sodomy and bestiality).
Love of money and material possessions. The desire to enrich oneself and thoughts of how to achieve it. Greed and cupidity. Lack of faith in God's Providence. Addition to and unhealthy love for earthly possessions, which keep the soul in bondage. Love of gifts. Misappropriation. Usury. Hard-heartedness towards the needy. Theft. Piracy.
Hot temper, angry and revengeful thoughts, irritability, seething of the heart and mind with rage; quarreling, indecent shouting, use of obscenities and cruel words, beating, pushing, murder. Malice, hate, enmity, revenge, slander, the passing of judgment on others, giving offense to others.
Chagrin, despondency, loss of faith in God, doubt of God, ungratefulness towards God for everything that happens in one's life, faint-heartedness, impatience, taking offense, grumbling, renunciation of one's cross, the attempt to give it up.
Indolence towards all good deeds, especially prayer. Abandonment of church and home prayers. Abandonment of constant prayer and spiritual reading. Indifference to and hastiness in praying. Negligence, Impiety, Slothfulness. Excessive abandonment to sleep and other bodily comforts. Idle talk. Improper jokes. Sacrilege. Abandonment of spiritual labors. Forgetfulness of one's sins. Forgetfulness of Christ's Commandments. Carelessness. Loss of the fear of God.
Vainglory. Bragging. Desire and seeking after earthly and vain honors. Love of beautiful clothing and things. Excessive attention to the attractiveness of one's body. Shame in confessing one's sins. Deceitfulness. Self-justification. Contradiction. Hypocrisy. Lying. Flattery. Sycophancy (Slander). Envy. Humiliation of others. Moral relativism. Shamelessness. Demonic lifestyle.
Contempt for others. Self-preferment. Defiance. Clouding of the mind and heart. Exclusive reliance on earthly things. Disbelief. False intellect. Disobedience of the Law of God and the Church. Imposing of one's own will. Reading heretical, profane and vain books. Revolt against authority. Mockery. Abandonment of humility and silence. Loss of simplicity. Loss of love for God and one's neighbors. Death of the soul.
Such are the sins which constitute the great curse - the mortality of Adam, which sprang from his fall. The Prophet Isaiah (Old Testament) speaks of this great curse, saying: "From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in him; but wounds, and bruises, and putrefying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment" (Isaiah 1:6). According to the Holy Fathers of the Church, this means that the curse - sin - is not local, i.e., striking only one bodily member, but affects the entire being: envelops the body, envelops the soul, takes possession of all the faculties of a person. God called this great curse - death, when He forbade Adam and Eve to taste of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, saying: "For in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die" (Genesis 2:17). Immediately upon eating the forbidden fruit the forefathers experienced eternal death; they felt an earthly sensation in their eyes; they saw that they were naked. The knowledge of the nakedness of their bodies reflected the nakedness of their souls, which has lost the beauty of chastity granted them by the Holy Spirit Himself. In their eyes there was the feeling of shame, which comprised all their new sinful feelings: pride, uncleanliness, sorrow, despondency, despair. Death becomes the great curse; irremediable is the mortality which came with the loss of the Divine image! The Apostle Paul calls this great curse the law of sin, the body of death (Romans 7:23-24), because the mortified mind and heart have turned completely towards the earth, slavishly serve the lowly desires become flesh, have become dark and heavy, have themselves become flesh. This flesh is no longer able to communicate with God (Genesis 6:3). This flesh is unable to inherit eternal, heavenly bliss (1 Corinthians 6:50). The great curse has spread upon all mankind, has become the ill-legacy of each and every person.
Looking upon this Great Curse of mine, I am filled with bitter sorrow! I ponder what to do. Shall I follow the example of ancient Adam, who, upon seeing his nakedness, hastens to hide himself from God? Shall I attempt to justify myself, as he did, throwing the blame upon sin? It is futile to hide from the All-seeing One! It is futile to justify oneself before the One Who always wins in judgment (Psalm 30:7)! Instead of fig leaves let me dress myself in tears of repentance; instead of justification let me bring to Him my sincere penitence. But, dressed in penitence and tears, can I present myself before my God?
O, sinful descendant of Adam, take heart! A Great Light has shone forth in your prison: God has descended into the land of your exile, in order to bring you up into the heavenly homeland which you had lost. You wished to have knowledge of good and evil. He allows you to retain this knowledge. You wished to become like God, and because of this your soul has become like the demons and your body like the animals; but God, joining you to Him, makes you godlike through grace. He forgives your sins. And that is not all! He extracts the root of evil from your soul, the very pestilence of sin, and grants you an anodyne (pain and distress "reliever") against sin for the entire course of your earthly life, no matter how many times you sin through your frailty. This anodyne is the confession of sins. Do you wish to attain freedom from your enslavement to sin? Immerse yourself in humility! Overcome the shame of vanity, extract your sins, engage in battle with your sins by means of sincere confession. This anodyne must precede all others; without it the anodynes of prayer, tears, fasting and all other means will be insufficient, unsatisfactory, unstable. Go, proud one, to your Spiritual Father. Only sincere and frequent confession can free us of sinful habits, make our repentance fruitful, our correction lasting and sincere. (Source: Orthodox Heritage)
"Glory Be To GOD For All Things!"--Saint John Chrysostom
With sincere agape in His Holy Diakonia (Ministry),
The sinner and unworthy servant of God