6 Pearls of Wisdom from Legendary Russian Ascetics, The Optina Elders

Their daily prayer may be the most practical and powerful prayer of all time


Optina Monastery is one of the most legendary of all Russian monasteries. 

It’s beautiful and ancient, but what it's particularly renowned for is its long succession of amazing saints, which has drawn pilgrims to the monastery for centuries. 

Yesterday, the Russian Church celebrated the Optina Elders. Their teachings are uncommonly simple and joyful. Here are some of them:

The "Daily Prayer" -

Possibly the most powerful prayer of all time. It's a condensed version of the Optina Monastery philosophy of life: 

Grant unto me, O Lord, that with peace of mind I may face all that this new day is to bring. 

Grant that I may surrender myself completely to Thy Holy Will.

For every hour of this day, instruct and support me in all things.

Whatsoever news I may receive today, do Thou teach me to accept tranquilly, in the firm conviction that all things fulfill Thy Holy Will.

Govern Thou my thoughts and feelings in all I do and say.

When things unforeseen occur, let me not forget that all things cometh down from Thee.

Teach me to behave sincerely and rationally toward all that I may bring confusion and sorrow to none.

Bestow upon me, my Lord, strength to endure the fatigue of the day, and to bear my part in all its passing events.

Guide Thou my will and teach me to pray, to believe, to hope, to suffer, to forgive, and to love. Amen

More from the Elders:

St. Ambrose of Optina

“We must begin with thanksgiving for everything. The beginning of joy is to be content with your situation.”

St. Anatoly of Optina

“Fear neither sorrows, nor illness,  nor suffering, nor any other trial -- these are all God's visitations, sent for your benefit."

St. Anatoly of Optina

“Live simply, according to your conscience, remember always, that God sees, and-everythign else- don't pay attention to it!"

St. Macarius of Optina

The soul is greater than the body: the body becomes sick, and with that it is finished. But a spiritual sickness extends into eternity. Deliver us, O Lord, from such illness, and grant us healing.


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