(Luke 10, 25-37)
I love my neighbour like I love myself
It is God’s commandment for us to love him with our whole selves. Therefore, I love God if I have within myself a tension, in the good sense, i.e., an alertness at every moment. And nothing, so to speak, can remain outside of this. Everything that we are must be given with love to God. And this love contains it all.
The second commandment is that we love our neighbour “as ourselves”. Therefore, I love my neighbour as though he is myself. We are all quite aware that it is one thing for me to love my neighbour and quite another for me to feel that my neighbour is myself. This reality is due to the fact that before the eyes of God we all exist as one man. The Holy Trinity –the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit– are three persons but one God. Likewise, although humanity consists of many persons, before the eyes of God humanity stands as one person. In this sense, we can understand what is meant by God’s commandment for us to love my neighbour as I love myself.
In the apostolic reading, St. Paul says: “Imitate me,” (1 Corinthians 4.16). It is not simply that I can be called a Christian theoretically. But by applying pressure to oneself to conform to Christ, and by imitating the saints, one begins to see ever more clearly his filth and the sin hiding within.
You have made, o man, a wound in your soul –and this, from your foolishness, and your carelessness. This wound, however, needs curing. It is very significant for us today to each see his sin –in both a general, a specific, and a detailed way– and for each of us to truly repent without difficulty, since then, we will feel the forgiveness of our sins and, in this way, see the face of God.
Holy Hesychasterion “The Nativity of Theotokos” Publications.
Archimandrite Symeon Kragiopoulos