By: Linnaea Radley and Kyle Carroll
Class: Lv. 6 Catechism
Issue: Set to Appear in the December 2020 Edition
These are synopses of chapters from The Ladder of Divine Ascent.
Joy-making sorrow is a sorrow that results in joy. A beautiful metaphor is a mother giving birth. She endures heavy pain, sorrow, because she knows that it will result in her child. She does not think about or know how long she will have to wait, she just does. Righteous mourning is humble with no thought for oneself. The mother is thinking of her child, not herself. The coming of her child brings her joy. Prideful mourning is like drinking water which looks clean, but it contains poisonous bacteria. Pure tears, like naturally occurring pure water, are not easily sourced. If found, inviting people to see would churn up the mud. These holy tears are rebukes and sorrows induced from one’s imperfections that end up in the happiness of being wholly cleansed.
Steps 8 & 9
An angry person is someone who is not willing to forgive others. Angry people keep a list of sins others may have done against them in their hearts, and this bitterness and wrath burns away all the spiritual progress they have made. We must be careful, because the demon of anger sometimes leaves us, and when we see that it is gone, we stop protecting ourselves against it. It then returns and we become incurably sick. Some may think that they have achieved freedom from anger, when in reality they are hiding it inside of them. When they can no longer contain it, it all bursts out at once. This fiery outburst of rage often causes much more spiritual damage than a constant, but small flame. At the beginning of our journey, we are bitter when someone sins against us. In the middle, we accept it without pain. Perfection is to love our enemies and to accept insults as praise.