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Real Life Minute

Real Life Minute
How Did You Pay for That?

Episode date: February 15, 2011
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There is a long-standing practice in many cultures for people to try to justify or cleanse themselves through making big donations or building public institutions. It can be surprising to learn how many monuments, buildings and the like were paid for by men who lived truly evil lives.

St. Kosmas Aitolos tells us that such generosity will do little for evil persons:

Those of you who earn your bread by means of your toil and sweat should rejoice, because that bread is blessed; and if you give a little of it as alms it is reckoned as much. But those who live by means of injustice and grasping should mourn, for what you…

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Real Life Minute

Real Life Minute
What Should You Do When You Sin?

Episode date: February 16, 2011
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What should you do when you sin? What impact should it have on you? Lorenzo Scupoli answers:

If you happen to be wounded by succumbing to some sin through weakness, or through the faulty nature of your character…do not lose heart and fall into senseless turmoil. Above all do not dwell on yourself, do not say: ‘How could I be such as to allow and suffer it?’ This is a cry of proud self-opinion. Humble yourself and, raising your eyes to the Lord, say and feel: ‘What else could be expected of me, O Lord, weak and faulty as I am.’ Thereupon give thanks to Him that the thing has gone no further, saying:…

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Real Life Minute

Real Life Minute
What Should You Do When You Overcome Sin?

Episode date: February 17, 2011
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In the last episode we heard how we should respond when we sin. But what about the opposite? How should we respond when we avoid or overcome a sin?

Abbot Nikon answers:

Remember that by your own power you will gain nothing. Always call upon the Lord Jesus Christ for help in all situations. Then, your praiseworthy attitude will be aided by God’s might, which curtails all sin—all wiles of the demons. If you overcome some sinful influence, do not credit yourself but the Lord; and thank Him for helping you conquer the sin. If you credit yourself, you will again fall into the same sins.


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Real Life Minute

Real Life Minute
True Intelligence

Episode date: February 27, 2011
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You may have noticed that some people over-emphasize intellect and knowledge, while other people seem to be proud of their lack of intellect and knowledge. St. Antony the Great shows us the shallowness of this debate by focusing on true intelligence:

People are generally called intelligent through a wrong use of this word. The intelligent are not those who have studied…but those whose soul is intelligent, who can judge what is good and what evil; they avoid what is evil and harms the soul and intelligently care for and practice what is good and profits the soul, greatly thanking God. It is these alone who should properly…

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Real Life Minute

Real Life Minute
What Do You Intend to Do?

Episode date: February 28, 2011
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Orthodox Christianity strongly emphasizes how we live and what we do, but even more important is the reason for which we do these things.

St. Kosmas Aitolos says two things that really focus on our intentions. First he says, “If we want to do something but cannot, then before God, who knows our hearts, it is as if we have done it. This is true whether the intended action is good or bad.”

Second, “When we fulfill the commandments in our outward actions, we receive from the Lord what is appropriate; but any real benefit we gain depends on our inward intention.”

Doing good is good, but we need to do it for the right…

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