Who is the Inner Person?

In chapter four of the Second Epistle to the Corinthians by Saint Paul, we read very profound and significant words which I would like to explain: “But even if our outer person is wasting away, our inner person is being renewed day by day” (II Cor. 4, 16).

Who is this outer person? That’s the one who’s well-known to people, who consists of flesh and blood, of a nervous system and bones. The person who perceives external, material nature through the five senses of sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch. Its spiritual life is restricted to the perception of material creation through the five senses and the processing of this by the intellect and the heart. Its interest in spiritual matters hardly ever transcends its earthly interests.

But from as early as ancient times, there have always been deep thinkers who have understood that the life of our soul and spirit isn’t determined simply by reactions to the material world. They understood that people have the ability to realize that there is a spiritual world. The Greek philosopher Plotinus compared that double life of the soul and spirit to that of amphibious animals which are able to live on land as well as in water. In the same way, the human soul lives not only with earthly thoughts and the perceptions of the five senses, but also has an incomprehensible, sixth sense, unknown to us, which is the means of receiving the secret admonitions of the Holy Spirit and the awareness of its guardian angel. Through this we can have a profound, living, relationship with God, the Angels, the Mother of God and the Saints, through our prayers….

“Archbishop Luke of Crimea (the Surgeon)”