If our elder is away but we imagine his face and think that he’s there with us, we’ll avoid any meeting, word, food, sleep, or anything else we think he wouldn’t like, and then we’ll have truly learned obedience. Unruly children are happy at the absence of their teacher, but the obedient ones think it a loss.
Based on St. John of the Ladder
Monks preparing a meal in the refectory at Vatopaidi.
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