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Bagley

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About Bagley

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    Seraphim of Leora

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  1. “To imply that the holy words of the Canon as revealed to us by the Ex. Prophets are not present in our houses of worship, witnessed through our liturgical traditions, is a most irreverent and uneducated stance to make. I fear this ‘theologian’ they have dredged up from whatever spiritual gutter they found him in is very much lacking in the wisdoms that would be expected of someone who is learned in the field, and this appears to me to be little more than a personal opinion piece upon what his ideal of the faith is, built upon misconceptions formed of the mind, rather than what is the objective truth and presence of our Holy Church through the shepherding of the Canonist flock across all nations and the evangelization that is carried out by our prelates abroad.” Fr. Seraphim of Leora stated openly amid the streets of Helena as he read over the latest edition of the Herald, expressing his dismay at the contents of the theological perspective found within.
  2. ”You seem to misunderstand the point that I make entirely. For you to say that Intercession is a welcomed thing in our monotheistic faith – Canonism, yet to then contradict yourself in saying that to pray for intercession is heathenry is telling, perhaps, of a lack of education in the faith. You say that we must begin our prayers with O Lord, O God. Yet, in all the years that the faithful have beseeched the intercession of the Saints, they would not open their prayers with O God, for they do not pray to God, but to the Saint or in this context the Aengul. No matter if we pray to our intercessor, we do not worship them, but ask for them to grant us strength and lift us on high in their prayers to the Lord. When a crusader calls upon Saint Lucien to pray for him, and to lend him blessings and strength in the battle to come, he does not need open his prayer with O God. When we pray to Saint Jude for discernment, we say this – Saint Jude, thine own writings reveal thyself to be perfectly content with how thou lived thy life, and I seek that same contentment. Am I to find it by becoming thy son, by virtue of my Brotherhood to monks? I am ready to mortify myself and accept whatever God doth will with a contrite heart, if only thou wilt help me to find out whatsoever he wills. When we pray to Saint Kristoff in our times of struggle and tribulation, we say, Saint Kristoff, the foe presses me from all sides. The occasion of sin gathers round about me, and I am too weak to resist alone. Therefore, pray for me to God, to grant me strength in this difficult time; bid Him dry my tears and renew my Faith. Because we are calling upon the Saints to intercede for us. We see specifically in the dogmatic tenets of the Church, “They are also thought to intercede on man's behalf.” This referring to the Aenguls. And in the Catechism of the Canonist Church which speaks to detail on the nature of intercession and in the clarification that it is not worship but veneration. If you stand against intercession then you make yourself opposed to the intrinsic beliefs of our faith. We venerate, we do not worship. We pray to, yet this prayer is the asking of their aid in making us stronger in the wealth of our love for God; to make known our petitions and to strengthen us and protect us. If you cannot see in these prayers that each and every one calls upon the divine and omnipresent glory of our Lord through his servants, then I fear I can be of no further help, for a man cannot be made to see the truth but only aided in doing so.” He offered a definitive refutation on the man’s continued championing of that point, returning to his work in earnest.
  3. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ GO TO CONFESSION, PRAY, GIVE ALMS Scribed by FR. SERAPHIM OF LEORA TOBIAS’S BOUNTY 1773 An icon in the Akrito-Raev style depicting St. Jude. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ “People complain that we Judites say the same thing, over and over again. ‘Go to Confession, pray, give alms.’ If we say them always, it is only because they are always true!” (Maxims 5:22) ┏━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┓ Section I - Go to Confession Section II - Pray Section III – Give Alms ┗━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┛ ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section I | O Lord, Theós, our God, existing before all ages and remaining unto the ages of ages; whose ineffable mercy hath gifted us salvation in Your Kingdom. We give our thanks unto you for your ineffable and all-glorious mercy. Take our prayers up on high and gift our souls the Grace necessary to act in all the virtues and exalt you for all time. Upon you alone we look, for you alone we have placed our hopes, to you we send glory, now and ever and unto the ages of ages. Amen. “When God is in our heart, we are contented with everything: what has been discomfort to us becomes the greatest comfort, what was bitter to us becomes sweet, poverty becomes wealth, our hunger is satisfied, and our sorrow turns into joy!” (Maxims 4:7) “Go to Confession.” (Maxims 1:11) Let me open with a story of my homeland. Well into the summer months, where the foothills from the Akritan sea gave way to the Magian Highlands and those towering peaks that I call home, there was a village tucked away into the arid mountains. Yet, lying deep in the valleys on the banks of the river known as Vanavros, there was a quiet village - what never stirred for the lives of its people were simple and did not invite chaos. A traveller came from the north, and he was abundant in material wealth. He came with no companions and sought a place to lay his head, and for all his wealth did he have the purpose to reward whomever could give him peace and quiet during his time in this village with his many riches. The first place he came upon was a beautiful place situated on the banks of the river, so he thought to himself it must be a good place to shelter. And so he went and knocked upon the door to receive the graciousness of his benefactors, and when they invited him inside, he reeled away for an ungodly stench permeated the place. These people, despite their otherwise nice home, lived in filth and squalor and so he relieved himself of the place and continued on in pursuit of a more suitable location. And so did he happen upon the second house, and the second was the same in that his hosts were gracious and opened their doors to him. But inside he found disorder, all things were out of placed and covered in dust and cobwebs and all other manner of things. And so did the traveller continue on, but he had become so tired that he determined to stay the night in the next, no matter the state of it. As he went about the town, he wondered to himself how these people who resided in such a beautiful place tucked away into pristine nature could allow themselves such squalor. It was clear it was due to the negligence of their owners, how their internal beauty was diminished so. When he reached the other end of the village, he came by a small shack in which lived a kindly housewife. And he was met with the greatest cordiality and brought into their home. And he immediately noticed that everything was simple, clean and well-ordered. Relief washed over the stranger and he found the peace and quiet he sought, and within did he leave his gifts. “Go to Confession.” (Maxims 2:8) Let us then replace this traveller with the name of the Lord; then we come to see clear what the true meaning of the parable is, God bringing with him the greatest of all gifts, that is His grace with which He raises us up into His kingdom. And if He sought for himself a shelter within our souls, how could He find a place fit for rest? This heavenly guest comes among us and desires entry beneath the roof of our souls, that he might lodge within our hearts. But how can he? Say that a man beckons him in, calls out and bids open the doors to his heart. But the Lord recoils in disgust, for the stench of spiritual decay is such an overpowering thing. Of all the sins and none of the virtues. How can the Lord enter such a place, where the man and his demons exist beneath the same roof in this spiritual pig’s sty? Then say we have a man whose friends and family bid him to fast and to partake in the sacraments. Yet he does not wish to receive this gift, for he has left himself in disorder and allowed his sinful habits to pile up and draw him from a spiritual life. But who can say that his heart; this home, is full and in order through all things that it might entreat the Holiest of Holies to be welcomed there? It is safe to say that we, as men, are all unworthy of God. But He longs to come into us and to raise us up, because we are created for Him and without, we can never know true peace in our souls. And so does He wish to bring His heavenly gift unto all men. How? How can we as men, sick in sin, become worthy of these gifts? It is so simple, and free to all men who simply ask for it! Through Confession; when it is earnest, when it involves the resentment of one’s self and all the sins they have committed and that true desire to cleanse the heart of all this waste, that is how. By Confession can we cleanse ourselves of all these impure thoughts, chaotic feelings and passions, and adorn the soul with the Grace that is God’s gift to mankind. “We know ourselves too well to see virtue in ourselves; God’s grace alone can save us. The fact that God does not just strike us down to Hades for our misdeeds, but instead gives us a chance to repent, makes us living proof of His mercy.” (Maxims 3:6) “Go to Confession.” (Maxims 3:12) We are fashioned for the Lord, and only through the Lord do we find the solution to this constant emptiness, this persistent and ever-present yearning to be filled. All things fall short of Him, and so do all things fail to cure this disease that is within us besides Him. You might gift unto a person each and every desire, but with time, he will become indifferent to it all, and that same emptiness welling in his stomach and in his heart will overcome. This presents itself as an inextinguishable and never ending hunger for the love, peace and truth that we can only find in God. It torments us and never allows us rest, even if we fill ourselves with these passions and frivolous things meant to make us content. It is this wasting disease that is the absence of the Lord’s love and protection, sin, that is the greatest evil that has been presented to mankind. It is folly that many people would try to seek other answers; to say that the source of this emptiness, this great evil, is something besides sin - a Josephite might tell you it is injustice or a lack of freedom, whereas an Everardine might say that it is a lack of faith in the traditions they uphold. And then some might turn to matters of actual importance. They might name this evil as disease, or as poverty or death. Yet none of these things even amount to a fraction of the evil that is sin, and the power it holds over us. How can poverty be in itself this great and destructive evil, when many of our saints, venerable and blessed were rich in the Lord despite impoverishment in this life. Material wealth cannot compare to the eternal bliss that is the heavenly gift of Grace. And disease cannot hold a candle to the Lord when it can be endured through humility and faith; and in turn, bring us closer to Him. And to think death is evil? Death is the gateway to His kingdom, who has prepared in his infinite love a paradise for all who carry in their heart love for Him. Yet sin presents itself as a far more terrible beast than them all, a foul sickness that plagues the soul and deprives us of both the bliss of this life and of the next, separating us forever from the gift of paradise to bury us in darkness and suffering for eternity. It is the damnation of everything that is bright in our souls and teaches us to embrace passions and forgo virtues in favor of debauchery and waste. “Say: ‘O God, my Lord and Master, why have I loved, why in my whole life have I ever desired, anything but Thee? Why have I wandered for all but Thee? O, spirit of God, love of God, mercy of God, reside in me, and have pity on me, the most wretched sinner!’” (Maxims 3:4) “Go to Confession.” (Maxims 3:22) And as much as pestilence of the flesh might be hidden away from the eyes of men, so too can this sickness of the soul. It becomes a comfort to many that they might hide these blemishes and not be known for their lack of virtues, but they cannot hide these things from the Lord, and it is the Lord who shall judge them when they seek entry into His kingdom. God tells us not to sin, he tells us to live according to His virtues and His laws, for sin is an affront to His laws. And the final goal of sin is to separate us from Him and from eternity. Many of us still are blind to this, we think of sin as a fleeting thing that doesn’t matter, and we have no remorse for our wickedness. If we were to weigh all the sins of mankind against all the holiness in Paradise and on earth and the righteousness of all the saints, blessed, venerable and righteous souls, it would not even be able to raise it up by an inch. It is only in the power of the Lord that we can be free of these sins, and only through repentance can they ever be forgiven. But we mustn’t disparage ourselves and dwell in hopelessness that this weighty burden can never be lifted from our shoulders, for God offers us deliverance. We must weep with tears of repentance, for only they and the cleansing waters of Gamesh alone wash away the mud and grime that is the presence of sin upon our souls. For it is the sacrament of baptism that is the evils and the demons that dwelled within us being washed away, but the sins we partake in after our baptism, we must cleanse with our tears. “Go to Confession.” (Maxims 4:6) All of creation is taken in evil, it is sickened in this pervasive pestilence that is sin, yet the one cure for this sickness is provided freely and a miraculous gift it is, to be healed the moment you reach for it - that a leper could swallow an herb and all of his blemishes and wounds and rot would vanish in an instant, that is our miracle. But many people neglect it, they do not even think to accept this cure. And it is because they neglect themselves, physically and spiritually. As there are earthly medicines for earthly diseases, there is the Holiest and Almighty Heavenly Healer and His heavenly medicine for sin. But for this medicine to take hold inside of us, there is one prerequisite, and it is to be true, and to repent without hesitation or misgiving. How unfathomable and great is the Lord’s mercy that he has given the power of forgiving the sins of men to Evaristus and Clement and to all their successors after them, the bishops and the priests of our Holy Church? Why would he do this? To open his hands to mankind and make certain the forgiveness of this sickness in us. But how does this occur? It is simple; through the Sacrament of Penance (Ablution/Confession), which is a pillar of our faith, for it when initial powers from Baptism cannot overcome the passions, comes to set them aside and make room for that grace. The Canonist who is weighed down with this spiritual sickness must attend his priest with true and earnest repentance in his heart and with the sincerity of change, to reveal to his spiritual father full confession of the secrets of his heart and conscience. The cleric, if convinced of sincere repentance of the Canonist may then administer the suitable prayers and the sacrament through ablution. In that instance, whatever is forgiven here in our worldly home too is forgiven in the house of the Lord. It is that easy, that simple, and yet so many people are willing to sit by and ignore this. And if we choose willingly to ignore this mercy that the Lord grants us, the punishments that we deserve are tenfold, because we do not have even the dignity to do this for the salvation of our Souls that is so simple and available to us. What reasonable person would ignore penance after all this? We can only save our souls by two paths; that of not erring in sin whatsoever, or by repenting for them. And since the former is an unattainable perfection, if we are to reconcile with the Lord, we must repent and be sincere in our sorrows before Him. Else, we shall never be in His presence, for no impure thing will ever enter into His radiant kingdom. “Confession is a fountain of mercy - an outpouring of love! I beg thee, I entreat thee, and I beseech thee at thy feet to repent now, for God alone knows the hour.” (Maxims 6:22) “Go to Confession.” (Maxims 5:1) ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section II | “So I am the Most High, and in pursuit of My Virtue, I bid my faithful this: You shall not be idle, nor forget your duties in favor of sloth.” (Virtue 4:8) The mind is the faculty of the soul, for when one strives in all things towards salvation, this mind dwells within itself and within the first mind, that is God. However when we choose to open ourselves to the passions of the world, the mind dissipates upon carnal and earthy faculties that bring unto it sensual pleasures and impassioned thoughts. However where diligence expresses itself, which distinguishes good from evil, becomes the wealth of the mind. We must then endeavor to restrain this faculty of the mind and to steer it towards God for the betterment of our soul, which is the conductor of the mind. If we allow it to fall away from God, we open ourselves to self-indulgence, greed and ambition. Consequently does man’s freedom become an internal thing, for while we might outwardly be free in our lives if we do not train our mind and our faith we are on the inside slaves who do not keep God’s will. Yet, as with the gift of penance made available to us by God, there too is a means to take charge of one’s mind and to guide it towards, in all things, God. The answer is prayer. And I do not speak of the sort of prayer that exalts a Canonist to be open and public in his faith, that he prays to be seen and not to be seen by God. I speak of the sort of prayer that beckons one to turn inwards, to look upon himself, upon his imperfections and to channel his words and thoughts towards Grace that he might illuminate himself and establish a sincere connection with his faith and with God. There are multiple ways of doing this, and I would argue, that there is no single correct way. Though before I go on, I open to wisdom accredited to my contemporary and brother in faith, Fr. Griffith of Gwynon who brings with his writings good insight that will help me to elaborate my point further. “Better is one hour prayed fervently, than all seven mouthed idly!” (Maxims 7:6) ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ On the St. Lucien Prayer Authored by Fr. Griffith of Gwynon “For deep is our pain, my beloved, but what phrase may express the sorrow of our souls? What painting reflect the horror we have witnessed and the anguish that lies within us? The Lord knows our hearts better than we know each other’s, so let us pray for the only meaningful thing we may. Let us pray that the Lord have mercy on us and on the child he has taken unto his bosom. Let us pray to the Lord our God.” High Pontiff St. Lucien to his wife, Lady Julianna Ashford, in reference to her mourning of their son, Carden Ashford, who passed away due to complications with leprosy. The madness and distractions of this modern world we find ourselves in leaves many with the belief they are unable to sustain a proper prayer rule. Husbands find themselves struggling with many hours and hope to find only comfort and peace in the after hours from their wives and children. Wives toil and slave to raise their children to be proper and refined for this new age the Empire has been ushered into only to find themselves tasked with the duty to prepare the final meal of the day. Even children cannot find rest with many struggling to find meaning in this world after their parents pass into the next life or burdened with obtaining a new trade never before seen in the family. But this is the gravest belief that has plagued throughout the Empire the last century. Without daily and ever-present prayer, our communication with the Lord is severed. The constant relief and joy prayer brings us, is dropped. In favor of what, beloved? For the excuse that the material world’s duties may bring us true relief where the Lord, the creator of the material world and of us, may not? Some may not wish to phrase it that way, but the truth in this statement is undeniable. When we allow society to dedicate our actions by forcing a constant implication of work onto us and allow this as an excuse to not pray, we are spitting at the notion of prayer entirely. We are allowing the material world to take hold of us spiritually like a daemonic snare of sorts, draining us of our relationship with the Lord. High Pontiff St. Lucien, in his piety, easily saw the inner and outward strife the world brought to bear upon the Canonist cause. He participated in the founding of the Order of the White Rose to crush the pagan threat of this world and bring the light of God upon the world at large. And while he did this, he sought innerly, as he was a devout man of God. How could he bring both the subjugation of the earthly world, the management of his Order, and all while offering the praise the Lord deserved, through prayer, he often wondered. The saint toiled with the task of creating a prayer that would offer the feelings and meaning behind the prayer he so desperately searched for, but the Lord revealed to him that no prayer of that magnitude was necessary. Only that he prayed to the Him unto ages of ages. And so St. Lucien wrote what is known as the ‘Prayer to the Lord my God’, as he is referenced to have said: “O Lord God, maker of all, have mercy on me, a sinner.” I have translated the prayer to Common from Flexio and the local dialect of Kaedreni found in Gwynon (through which I have learned the prayer from) and divided it into four sections as St. Lucien intended. The prayer asks the Lord specifically asks the Lord for mercy and allows itself to be prayed during breathing intervals. For example; “O Lord God”, breathe in. “maker of all”, breathe out. “have mercy on me”, breathe in. “a sinner.”, breathe out. The prayer also has an alternative form that is intended for such cases where the individual is amongst others to pray for them. “O Lord God, maker of all, have mercy on us, sinners.” With the pseudo-rhyme structure of the prayer and it’s shortness allows for a repetition within the breast even our body attunes itself to. And thus is the goal. For you shall pray it over and over, this simple prayer, and with the quantity of the prayer, you shall learn of its quality. For as St. Lucien learned, many words are not necessary for there to be strong meaning behind them. This prayer I give pass from St. Lucien unto you. When you toil, whether from a task given to you by the Lord or the children gifted unto you by the Lord, pray this prayer. You shall see the ease and comfort commune with God offers you. The monastics pray for the world and us, so let us do the same. Pray that the world and us may be given mercy for our sins. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ “There is not a time in which prayer is not useful.” (Maxims 6:9) We see here offered in the wisdoms of High Pontiff St. Lucien brought to our attention by Fr. Griffith, and this speaks to my earlier words, that there is no single proper way of engaging in prayer and devoting one’s own mind to the Lord. Thus, can the ‘Prayer to the Lord my God’, or what we could even dub the St. Lucien Prayer for its origins be said to be a proper means of formulating prayer. For it speaks to quantity of repetitions in its short and simplistic nature, which allows oneself to become ‘lost’ in prayer, so to speak, to drown out your thoughts and drive out all things before the glory of the Lord. This is what we could call a contemplative prayer, which is popular among monastics because alike to their vocation, it too calls for a retreat from the worldly existence to focus oneself not upon the words they speak or even their own thoughts but on their connection to the Lord, which we call mental ascesis. In contemplative prayer, prayer becomes a practice of the mind entreating the heart, where the conscious is no longer burdened by the presence of images nor temptations and engages into a stillness that is punctuated further by the repetition of their prayer. This tradition is invoked also in the Chaplet of the Ten Virtues (or the Little Rosary), though to a lesser extent where prayer is augmented through the use of beads to allow for the individual to focus their mind upon the prayer itself where through their repetitions where the beads help to further this focus and keep a track, so to speak, upon the contemplations without interruption. Yet, for as beneficial as contemplative prayer is to some, to many we find in our devotions something much simpler - the common laymen will often not seek contemplation and the mysteries of faith through the isolation of the self and the mind from the earthly, and does that make their prayers any less effective? Of course not! God hears them all. For prayer encompasses every aspect of a Canonist’s life and the common and pious layman should entrust himself to the Lord in his own way, just as the Monastics do with their asceticism and contemplations. We can see in Ven. Humbert’s Book of Prayers how all encompassing these devotions are, and I say even to those who indulge in the inward drive towards illumination, to not shun them for they are every bit as worthy. Prayer is, as penance, a pillar of our faith and we must all strive to incorporate it into our being, be it through silent pleas, monastic contemplation or virtuous petitions, for as the Maxims say, “If every Canonist family prayed the Rosary every day together, the entire world would be saved.” (Maxims 4:5) “God and His Saints are with you always: you need only invoke His help and their prayers.” (Maxims 5:3) ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section III | “Diligence is a virtue, but without Charity, it is nothing. For I have seen men slave themselves to wealth, to drink and to honour, and so make themselves miserable. Remember, therefore, for what you work! (Pointing to the Skies.)” (Maxims 7:7) We find ourselves touching upon the last of these three pillars. Which is the giving of alms, charity, whatever you might call it. We find the foundation of this paramount duty of the faithful to be clear cut within the Scroll of Virtue. “And so I have placed into your hearts the blessings of abundance: the virtuous wealth of the spirit. And as I have given to you this blessing of My Word, you shall also give unto your fellows. For I have placed into your heart a wealth of virtue, and I have created for you a garden of abundance. And you shall give your fellows the abundance of the spirit, which is My Word. For the abundance of the spirit is never divided, but multiplied. So I am the Most High, and in pursuit of my Virtue, I bid my faithful this: You shall not desire the wealth of this world, nor the wealth of others, but the wealth of the spirit.” (Virtue 2:5-10) I do not think there is much to be said on the topic of almsgiving, which is rather self-explanatory. However, I believe that many people would misconstrue almsgiving in that one can only give alms and act in charity through the relinquishing of material wealth unto those who are in need of it. How then can the monastics, who act in poverty and forsake personal possessions in favor of a life given unto the Lord, act in charity when they have no wealth of their own to give? We find, chiefly, two avenues that we may pursue in this regard. Acts of Mercy, which are the means of Grace by which we endeavor in the good works of the Lord and enact justice that is pleasing to God. These are selfless deeds which are a reflection of piety, faith and everlasting belief in the Lord, and we needn’t an abundance of wealth to strive towards such virtue. These can be divided into two halves, which are the corporal works and the spiritual works. The corporal works tend to the physical needs of those who are in need of succor from others; this is to say, that feeding the hungry, giving shelter to those without, tending to the injured and the sick, remaining at their bedside, and to bury the dead are acts of physical mercy and charity from which we receive no reward beyond the good conscience that is derived from our works. And so too are the spiritual works similar in bearing, for they are aimed to drive away spiritual suffering. This is to instruct those who are ignorant in the ways of the Lord, even if they would reject you. To lend counsel to those who doubt and are without hope. To admonish those who are sick with sin and drive them into the arms of the Lord. To act in patient virtue as is the Lord's command. To show love to all, even one’s foes, as is the Lord’s command. And what I would consider most important of these, to pray for all peoples who are in need of it; living or dead. So, let it be known that those who are themselves in poverty can still treat their fellow man to the abundance of their faith, and it is certainly their duty to endeavor in this, just as it is for the wealthy man to offload his riches unto the pauper. “The intention matters. Do a little kindness for the greater glory of God: offer to the stranger a small smile, pray to bless each man you see; tell those around you how much you love them.” (Maxims 2:11) Light of Lights, Holy of Holies, deliver us not into hands of the Evil One but send for us our Holy Mother to cast him away into the depths where he may forever be cursed. Lord of Lords, King of Kings, offer onto us, your humble servants, an immeasurable amount of mercy according to your grace. For while you God are holiness itself, we are nothing more than useless servants, defiling the vessels of our bodies with perverse and wicked things. For while we are wicked, you love us. Thus we proclaim unto ages of ages to the Lord our God; O Lord God, maker of all, have mercy on us, sinners. Lord have mercy, Lord have mercy, Lord have mercy. Glory to the Lord and may his saints forever be blessed. Through the prayers of our holy Exalted prophets, holy and blessed Mother of Mankind, holy and righteous St. Jude and St. Kristoff, Aeriel the Archaengul, High Pontiff St. Lucien who has blessed us with this eternal prayer, and of all the saints. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
  4. ”I take no offense nor do I hold you at fault for what misconceptions you might have. It is a fair assumption to view this as some polytheistic syncretism that has found its way into our faith, yet it is simply not the case. Intercession has deep roots within the foundations and dogmas of our Holy Church. In that the prerequisites for canonization as a Saint require the intercession of the beatified through miracles. And it is these miracles that are attributed to the Saints which confirm their closeness to God. Thus, do we call out to the Saints and Blessed, or in the case of your asking, to the Aenguls, that they might gift us their protections and in turn offer their prayers for us to the Lord. We do not worship the Saints, nor the Blessed nor the Aenguls – for they are all creations of the Lord and fall short of Him, who is the One God and creator of all things. If we look to the Catechisms of the Canonist Church, it is clear that we do not indulge in polytheism because this is distinct from it; we call upon these figures but we do not believe they have any power outside of the power that God has given them, and we do not submit ourselves to them. As the Catechisms read, the difference between veneration and worship is the difference between honoring one’s elders and obeying one’s father. As with the prayer to the Archaengul Michael, we say, by the power of the Heavenly Cross of the Lord, make them as meek as sheep before me and disperse them like dust before the wind. In saying this do we recognize that the Archaengul’s power is derived from the power of the Lord, and it is only through God’s Grace that he might overcome our enemies, as we overcome our own shortcomings through that very same Grace. Veneration and worship are two very distinct things, and so long as one recognizes in his prayers that the power of the Saint or the Aengul is the power given to them by God and offer our obedience not to them but to He who is above them, we do not err into polytheistic notions as we continue to recognize one God, and He alone.” Seraphim offered his own insights in return to the man, hoping they were sufficient.
  5. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ OF RESPECT AND IMPUDENCE Scribed by FR. SERAPHIM OF LEORA GODFREY’S TRIUMPH 1773 An icon depicting the Ex. Prophet Horen and the righteous Lady St. Julia. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ O Lord, Theós, our God, existing before all ages and remaining unto the ages of ages; whose ineffable mercy hath gifted us salvation in Your Kingdom. Teach us not to err in disrespect, to entreat humility unto ourselves and praise you in all things, through the love you fortify us with and the peace you gift us. Instill in us your fear and your love that your holy name may also be glorified in us. Upon you alone we look, for you alone we have placed our hopes, to you we send glory, now and ever and unto the ages of ages. Amen. “Imagine thyself as the servant to all, and treat each one as if they were God in person.” (Maxims 6:10) To speak candidly does away with reverence and respect. For a man to speak in such a way betrays this feeling of impudence; that drives from us the fear of the Lord, for it in itself is a way of pride. But how are we as simple men to avoid this in our daily lives? It is quite a simple matter, and simplicity asks for a simplistic solution. This solution is humility; to feel that you yourself are below all others, and certainly you are - for is that not the nature of a sinner? And we are all sick with it, there is no doubt about it. Being candid, or perhaps blunt and overloud to be more precise is the enemy of all good Canonists, because it drives piety away from the soul. This manner of speaking and carrying oneself is in a way a means of rebellion, and opens the doors to a callous feeling of indifference towards those around you, and so do we fool ourselves into thinking that this is natural. And many people do not see this, and how could they, when their spiritual ‘spectacles’ are covered in filth; they cannot see that this anxiety within is because they are audacious. To be reserved in one’s words is the greatest simplicity, and simplicity is piety, whereas bluntness is audacity. But it is not enough to be reserved with your tongue; so too should you be reserved with your heart. To have the fear of the Lord, for that fear is what brings gladness to the heart and warms the soul. We should be alike to children in that sense. Think of a young child who, out of respect for his parents, will not so much as look them in the eyes, or when they go to ask for something, a toy or some other foolish thing, they stumble over themselves and grow flustered. This is the respect you wish for in a youth. But then on the other hand you might have one who thinks to themselves, “Oh, they are only my parents,” and then they behave with that same audacity I speak of. And when they, as the other child, wish for something they do not entreat it with courtesy or perhaps even fear and reluctance but with flailing arms and anger screaming and shouting until they get what they want. In the ideal family, what we’ve known throughout the ages yet has become so wilted with these modern ideals of freedom (what invites audacity), a child will respect their parents, and they will act with freedom, yet not to an overabundance of it. They shouldn’t be afraid to speak their minds, to ask of things and so on. “Cultivate in thyself love, wisdom and fear: so that if mean and base men shall cut thee into a thousand pieces, each and every one of them shall love thy butcher.” (Maxims 1:23) There should be a presence of love between parent and child, and love dismisses all fear and shame for it is so full of courage. The child without this love, they will be reserved perhaps, but their hesitation is out of fear. And the other with it, they are truly reserved, for they with this abundance of love are not fearful, yet still they show respect. It is important that we are able to discern the differences between what is good simplicity, which does not involve this audacity, or impudence, and the simplicity where there is no respect. This takes the shape of such audacious and bold behaviors. This boldness then becomes a simplicity of life, yet not a good one. Think that a girl might speak to her father with disrespect, because of boldness and this lack of love. They might then ask themselves, why should I fear my husband, when I needn’t fear my father? They fail to realize that this is a fear born out of respect, what respect comes from love. It is easy to forget that. When I respect something, it is because I have love for it. When I praise and worship God, it is because I love God. And that love is embodied in respect. And so too should a woman have this same sort of love for her husband; a love that is respect and a respect that is fear. And so too should a man love his wife. Without this love, there can be no respect, and what is it without? A gateway to impudence. “If husband and wife do not sacrifice for one another, they will not grow in love. Love thy spouse more than thou lovest thyself.” (Maxims 6:14) Disrespect shows itself outside of these relationships, however; and let us touch upon the greatest example of it - the relationship between the new generation and the old. Let us say that a young man is in the company of his grandparents, or any elder for that matter, we cannot differentiate. They are going on and in their talks something is brought up which the young man disagrees with; say, for example, they disagree with some modern state of affairs or philosophy that has come into fashion today. And this boils the young man’s blood so. They go and pipe up because they are certain that they are in the right, they voice their opinion loudly and tell these elders that they are wrong. Some might even have the audacity to say they are wrong because they have the wisdom of age! This is to be blunt, audacious, impudent and disrespectful all in the same breath. No matter what, respect must be shown to your elders, by the Grace of God. This respect is owed, and it simply isn’t the younger man’s place to so vocally enforce his ideals. That is not to say that a person should abide by untruths simply because they are junior to another, but they should pose their opinions with respect and humility. But if it is a simple matter of conflicting opinions, then, if there is respect in a man’s heart, they should realize it would be impertinent to speak of it, because they do not have the authority. This, in turn, is how we treat God. We look upon the holy scriptures of the Scrolls and we see these are the words of God. Do we then, because we might have some difference of opinion say, “No, this is wrong! My way is the better way!”. No, never! It is blasphemy! And we should have the same opinion when we speak of our elders and their wisdoms; we blaspheme them if we are to go and say that because we are entitled to our opinions they must make them better than theirs. And if we show this courtesy, if we entreat ourselves to humility and respect, then it will become no issue for the elderly man should, if he is righteous, show the same respect to the youth - be it for his own respect, that he is shown it for his age. “Seeing a Novice help an old lady cross the street: Such is the kingdom of God on earth!“ (Maxims 7:23) ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ “Despise not the old; distrust not the young. For God is the author of old and young age alike!” (Maxims 7:14) In this day and age it is a popular belief that respect is old-fashioned, and especially so the elderly. Many believe respect should be earned, that it is not owed, so that you should only respect a man in political office or some other manner of service. But that is simply false. How can you say this, when it is clear, that respect has already been earned by the wisdom of age? Such a wealth of experience that people might so easily disregard. This is simply impudence. And they disillusion themselves in thinking that this manner of thinking makes them strong-willed and independent; that they are free as the so-called Rights of Man proclaimed them to be! We must take care not to embrace such a spirit, for it goes against all that the Lord has commanded. Respect has gone and went out the door, and without that respect, what is to stop someone from passing judgement even upon the Lord himself, for how mighty their opinions are. This ‘Imperial Spirit’, as I have so labeled it in my other writings, becomes so pervasive in spreading this ideal of impudence and the ‘right way’, as they call it, to not only judge the laymen, the politicians, the lords and ladies and all the bureaucrats but to attack the church leaders and even the saints themselves in their ‘opinions’. As with the Josephites seeking to dismantle any presence of what they call ‘the evil and backwards religious establishment that is a mantle to keep them in the dark ages’ - more or less the contents of the writings Arthur Callahan penned to touch upon the ‘poison’ he so believes to be the Church. “God has fashioned us two ears and two eyes, but only one mouth: let us therefore hear twice as much as we shout.” (Maxims 3:11) This is what has become the norm of today. What shall he do next? Call upon God to enforce his sacrosanct rights and refashion the scriptures to suit such a need? Impudence entreats impudence and all it does is become a cycle of disrespect that is never-ending. Evil manifests itself in this ‘Imperial’ Spirit - this newfound ideal of secularism, and it slowly warps into blasphemy. This glorification of rationale and human logic erodes trust in God to a point where, if we allow it to go on, then one day not a single young person will have any trust in Him. This manner of conduct, what places the person before God, impudence before respect, becomes an obstacle in the path to salvation. These secular beliefs of liberty drive away respect and common courtesy. And when they do, the Grace of God becomes more and more distant from us. If a person cannot refrain from speaking with egoism and impudence, so that God’s Grace departs from them, they cast away their protections and their shelter. They invite the Evil One into the house that is the heart and they cast the Lord out. Yet when there is such reverence for Him, the same respect that one shows his elders and all those who hold authority over him by right, that Grace wreathes them in divine light and they are made whole again. Yet when we constantly speak without respect, when we do not give what is owed and demand our opinions to be held higher, they make of themselves a rebel. This is what the Evil One wanted also, to place himself above the throne of God. And if we abandon this respect for impudence, even if it is worldly respect and instead exalt ourselves, how then can we make room for God; how can we respect and love Him when we have none of these things but for ourselves? The answer is simple, you cannot. “Beware of those who use ‘love’ as an excuse to tear down the law of God - as if they, in their pride, had a better idea of Love than our God, who is Charity itself. (Deus Caritas Est.)” (Maxims 7:13) Light of Lights, Holy of Holies, and Blessed God, grant us the gift of discernment that you might free us from our delusions and speak in all things respect, obedience and submission. For we are but Slaves to you and thus do we honor you. Grant us all a long life so we may repent from any wicked actions we have taken or thoughts persisting in our minds. Let us know peace through your holy and life-giving way. Through the intercessions of our holy Exalted prophets, our holy and righteous Mother, Lady St. Julia, Ex. Prophet Horen who humbled himself before the Lord, and all the saints, we pray to you most glorious Master to lead us once again into being your humble servants that we may spend our lives with you unto ages of ages. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
  6. ”A most valid concern to raise. And certainly, one that lies in the issue of translation. In the Akritan dialect which is most common in Rhen, and from which most of the translation is derived, the word árrhen which is simply man. We can infer, via the context of the original texts, that this usage of man applies itself to the four brothers and all their descendants, not simply the descendants of Ex. Horen. Thus, it is safe to presume that all descendants are to inherit this gift – that of a guardian angel, so long as they are baptized in the sacraments of the Lord, and are virtuous and true that they do not scandalize their protector. That is to say that the vast majority of those who are outside of mankind, be it elves, dwarves or orcs, do not receive this guardian of the soul and virtue because they are outside the faith and have not been cleansed in the waters of Gamesh.” Seraphim penned in reply to Pius of Sutica, clarifying upon the wording.
  7. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ AENGULICA HIERARCHIA - A COMPENDIUM OF AENGULIC HIERARCHIES Recovered from THE HOLY SAINT MIKHAĒL TOU KÓRDOVA MONASTERY Attributed to EX. PROPHET SIGISMUND Translated by FR. SERAPHIM OF LEORA HOREN’S CALLING 1773 An icon depicting a guardian angel in the old Ruskan style. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ┏━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┓ I - PREFACE - TRANSLATOR’S NOTES II - THE ORDERS III - PRAYERS TO THE ARCHAENGULS IV - ON THE NATURE OF GUARDIAN AENGULS ┗━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┛ ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section I | God is good. These writings are purported to be the work of the most holy and sanctified Prophet, Exalted Sigismund, whose witness of the word of the Lord is said to have been the premise for a vast repertory of wisdoms and insight that were, while not the divinely inspirated word of God as is the case with the prophecies of the Scroll of Auspice, nevertheless a window into godliness and the experiences and wisdom of The Preserver, whose sight reached beyond mortal gleaning and inspired generations of augurs to strive towards the mysteries of faith. The compendium, translated from writings in both the old Lendian script as well as the North Rhenyar Akritian dialects, was discovered during a personal trip on return to my land of birth, in the care of the Schemamonks at the Holy Saint Mikhaēl tou Kórdova Monastery in the city of Leora. So gracious and welcoming were they, that they opened their doors to me and allowed me the vast wealth of knowledge contained within their walls; what was not only the personal (and great) wisdoms of the generations of monks who had inhabited the enclave itself, but many writings of the Saints and many holy men commonly venerated within Rhen. Yet, what stood out to me, and what I have since translated into both the common tongue and the standards of Church Flexio, is the Compendium of the Aengulic Hierarchies ( or simply the Aengulica Hierarchia / Aengelikí Ierarchía). This stood out to me for multiple reasons. Clearly, to even be assumed as the writings of the Exalted Prophet is significant (whether or not there is true credibility), but is with little doubt drawn from heavenly inspirations and can be corroborated through various accounts throughout history, such as the various aengulic messengers of the Lord appearing before the prophets, or even the descent of the Archaengul Michael before the faithful of Luciensport, among whom were Bl. High Pontiff Everard II and Bl. Baldwin de Bar who spoke to the image of God’s servant on high and whose accounts have been preserved even to this day. Thereby we presume these to be apocryphal works that, while are not the inspired word of the Lord, are most valuable in their insights and fall in line with the dogmas of our Church. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section II | THE ORDERS As was with the creation of the Heavens, so too were they adorned with the mantle of hierarchy, and the creations of our Lord God; his most sanctified and faultless servants stood in vigil over his skies, and for each among them was an ordering to who were granted the glories of creation. Accordingly, are the orders of the aenguls separated into seven orders, who in turn represent the skies and the earth, and encompass all the things within to each of whom is afforded the authorities over their domain to act in the judgement of the Lord and as his unerring and forever obedient servants. Chief among them are the Virtues who carry out the command of the Lord and guide the heavenly hosts in their everlasting glorification of God, the Winds, Waters and Fires who represent the primal elements of creation and watch over all the skies beneath the throne of God, and then the Watchers, Attendants and Guardians who minister over the earth and protect mankind so much as they guide them towards virtue and sanctification in the arms of the Lord. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ VIRTUES The Virtues, known also as the Archaenguls of the Lord, are distinct among the orders for their presence among the rest. For to each order is known an archaengul, and therefore six are named and known who carry with them the virtue of the Lord and carry his message unto the nations, carrying with them all the glories of Heaven in supreme and total obedience to the one God. They are named as Tesion, Tetel, Michael, Eshtael, Aeriel and Razael. Each is a prince of the Lord’s kingdom and derives their authority from God in their command over the Aengulic hierarchies. They are distinct in their depictions and in accounts of their descent for having six wings. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ WINDS The Winds are the guardians of the Fifth and Sixth Skies, the divine and sanctified messengers of God’s word delivering glory unto the unworthy. They are the word bearers of the holy gospels who speak with the voice of the Lord and carry his commands from heaven to earth and beyond, and have been responsible not only for visions experienced by prophets and saints alike, but invoke the will of the Lord over the earth through natural disasters (especially those related to storms). They serve in gifting prophecy and strengthening the faith of men, bringing with them the light of knowledge and the mysteries of the gospel to which all creation might bask in the glory of God. They are represented as messengers, and have been known to present themselves in visions as five-winged men adorned in robes of purest wool carrying with them the word. Stylistic (non-standard aengulic) depictions in Canonist iconography typically embody the Winds as is typical of their appearances in patristic writings - five-winged enwreathed in a crown of light (halo). Their prince is the Archaengul Tesion, who is the Lord of the Annunciations and chief messenger of God. He carries in one hand the divine command of the Lord, and in the other an olive branch which signifies the peace which follows the word of God. Noteworthy servants of the Archaengul Tesion and the Order of the Winds are Artifai, Cassion and Gaderiel. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ WATERS The Waters are the guardians of the Third and Fourth Skies, governors of the cosmos, omens and miracles. It is to them that God entrusted the movement of his heavenly bodies, and in doing so do they cast their light over the domains of men, shining down with the supernal wisdom of the Lord ever radiant in the mysteries of God, and invoke the will of the Lord over the earth through natural disasters (especially those related to floods and turbulent seas). They are represented as scholars, and have been known to present themselves as four-winged figures whose bodies are the ever moving tapestries of the heavens shining with the everlasting brilliance of the stars, blinding all in their presence with their mystical and divine brilliance. Stylistic (non-standard aengulic) depictions in Canonist Iconography typically embody the Waters as stars in lieu of attributing humanity to them, though this manifests most commonly in depictions as the sun, or as the sun bearing a man’s face. Their prince is the Archaengul Tetel, who is the Lord of the Stars and God’s chief servant of sanctification. He carries in one hand the sun whose immortal light shines over creation by the glory of God, and in the other the fiery Sword of Truth by which he chases the darkness from the skies. Noteworthy servants of the Archaengul Tetel and the Order of the Waters are Tsafon, Uresion and Jovial. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ FIRES The Fires are the guardians of the First and Second Skies, divine gatekeepers who are entrusted with the guardianship of the entrance into the Lord’s Kingdom. They are the body of the heavenly hosts of the Skies and are the innumerable and undefeated army of God, ministers of flaming glory whose wrath is the wrath of the Lord and whose love is the love of the Lord, and invoke the will of the Lord over the earth through natural disasters (especially those related to fire and the upheaval of the earth). They are represented as soldiers, and have been known to present themselves in visions as winged, immaculate and divinely beautiful men wreathed in celestial fire and fitted with garments of purest light. Stylistic (non-standard aengulic) depictions in Canonist Iconography typically embody the Fires as winged soldiers of the Lord cladden in bedecked in the fineries and armor of the Prophetic Era, wielding swords, spears and fire, typically enwreathed in a crown of light (halo) though occasionally substituted with fire. Their prince is the Archaengul Michael, who is the Lord of Battle and chief commander of the heavenly hosts. He wields in one hand the horn Holy Oliphant to which the armies of the heavens and all men answer to, and in the other the Spear of Courage with which he asserts the dominion of God over all evil and the servants thereof. Noteworthy servants of the Archaengul Michael and the Order of the Fires are Garumdus, Dalariel and Zacheriel. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ WATCHERS The Watchers are the guardians of the worldly domains of the earth, the earthly wardens of the Lord’s creation who stand in vigil over all that lie beneath the Skies. They are the protectors of the world and its inhabitants, interceding on the behalf of God to do battle against evil spirits and drive their contempt from the hearts of men whom they possess power over, and record all the deeds of every man and woman who is born, both good and ill-natured. Watchers are often called upon (often specifically their archaengul) to intercede during exorcisms and in all things related to possession and the overwhelming presence of sin. They are represented as sentries, and have been known to present themselves in visions as winged yet empyreal figures of pure light, uncontained and all encompassing in their glory, embodying in themselves the Holy Light of the one God. Stylistic (non-standard aengulic) depictions in Canonist iconography typically embody Watchers as being surrounded in an aureole and having two faces from which they might witness all things. Their prince is the Archaengul Eshtael, who is the Lord of All Prayer and protector of the sanctity of righteous souls. He carries with him a thurible overflowing with incense warding against all the servants of the deceiver, and in one hand the scales of balance which weigh judgement on those who would defy God. Noteworthy servants of the Archaengul Eshtael and the Order of the Watchers are Castiel, Anahel and Savriel. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ATTENDANTS The Attendants are the guardians of all the nations of the earth, and of the souls of mankind, presiding over the Lord’s creation as, for a lack of better phrasing, celestial pallbearers. They are the guides to the dead of mankind, who descend from the Lord’s kingdom in divine brilliance to usher the souls of the recently deceased on to the Skies. They guard all the kingdoms and nations of men and anoint the worthy towards righteous office, directing the faithful towards power only for spreading God’s glory to all corners of the land. They are represented as healers, and have been known to present themselves in visions as thrice-winged figures ushering with them the benefactions of the Lord through healing and mercy. Stylistic (non-standard aengulic) depictions in Canonist iconography typically embody Attendants as having animalistic features (such as the face of a lion). Their prince is the Archaengul Aeriel, who is the Lord of Intercession and the protector of all those who ascend into the Lord’s kingdom. He carries in one hand a lantern full with the light of the heavens leading all souls into the embrace of God, and in the other a whip by which he rebukes the unworthy. Noteworthy servants of the Archaengul Aeriel and the Order of the Attendants are Varaqiel, Avistus and Oriel. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ GUARDIANS The Guardians are the guardians of all the men of the earth, and of all mankind on the earth and beyond it within the Skies. They are the friends and protectors of each and every man who is born and dies, shielding them from evil and gracing them with good thoughts and virtue in the hopes that they shall strive towards salvation in all things and praise the good word, appointed to them by the grace of the Lord to all believers anointed in the cleansing waters of Gamesh. They proclaim the lesser mysteries of the Lord and teach men to live righteously and for God. They are represented as wardens, and have been known to present themselves in visions as what is generally recognized to be the ‘aengulic standard’ that is applied to all the other orders in many iconographical works, being androgonyously beautiful winged figures clad in flowing robes and wreathed with crowns of light (halo). Their prince is the Archaengul Razael, who is the Lord of Shepherds and protector of the Lord’s chosen. He carries in one hand a shepherd’s crook by which he entreats and guides all those anointed in the faith towards virtue, and in the other a white rose whose petals he scatters over the earth as the Lord’s blessings showering down upon the righteous. There are no noteworthy servants among the Order of the Guardians, as they are innumerable and personal in nature being adjoined to the anointed faithful who serve God’s covenant. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section III | PRAYERS TO THE ORDERS The following are prayers dedicated to the Archaenguls of the Six Orders, who intercede upon our behalf and in the name of the Lord do they grant us their benefactions and lead us towards virtue and glory. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ PRAYER TO THE ARCHAENGUL TESION O Holy Mighty and Glorious Archaengul Tesion, we who are unworthy beseech you by your prayers, do we ask you encompass us within your immaterial glory, and faithfully preserve us who fall down and cry to you: Deliver us from all harm and tribulations and torments, and sing praise of God forever in his heavenly kingdom. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ PRAYER TO THE ARCHAENGUL TETEL O Holy and Sanctified Archaengul Tetel, Sanctifier of All Things, intercede for us that our hearts might burn evermore with the fire of the Lord. Aid us in affirming the grace of our confirmation, that the mysteries of the Lord might bear fruit in our souls. Obtain for us the grace of God that we might take up the Sword of Truth, to dispel all that offends the Will of the Lord. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ PRAYER TO THE ARCHAENGUL MICHAEL O Holy, Sanctified and Great Michael, Archaengul of the Lord, six-winged prince, leader of the heavenly host, Lord of Battle, be my helper and vanquish all my foes by the power of the Heavenly Cross of the Lord, make them as meek as sheep before me and disperse them like dust before the wind. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ PRAYER TO THE ARCHAENGUL ESHTAEL O Pure and Most Gracious Archaengul Eshtael, who lowers himself before the Lord. Lead us in our petitions we make unto the lord, we will it to pray unto the Lord and to worship him earnestly. May our lives be like incense pleasing to Him. That we might live in love and humility unto the ages of ages. Obtain for us these blessings and present them before the Lord Our God, that they might be seen true. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ PRAYER TO THE ARCHAENGUL AERIEL O Merciful and Glorious Archaengul Aeriel, who dispenses the Lord's eternal mercy. Help us to overcome our sinful habits and be truly repentant for them. Bring us all to true faith in the Lord. That we may experience the joy of which his grace brings down upon us, without which never may we know true peace. Thou who dost continue to intercede for us, listen to our prayers so we may give praise for all he has given. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ PRAYER TO THE ARCHAENGUL RAZAEL O Mighty Archaengul Razael, filled with all the splendor of the Skies. We are but His sons placed underneath your protection, at the mercies of this world filled with confusion and demonic influence. We beseech your aid, to allow the joy of God to become our vigor. Grant this, through your intercessions, that we may reach our heavenly home. Protect us from all harm so that we may enjoy peace for all eternity, and the happiness that the Lord has prepared us in Heaven. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ PRAYER TO OUR GUARDIAN AENGULS AND PROTECTORS O Holy Aengul of the Lord, my Protector and Guardian, who watches over me body and soul, I beseech you not to abandon this wretched life, this sinner who lacks control and discipline. Leave not room for the evil to gain hold over me. Strengthen my feeble hand and guide me unto salvation. O Holy Aengul of God, forgive all sorrow that I have brought unto you, protect me during this day and keep me from all temptations, that I may not anger the Lord in my sin. Pray to Him for me that the Lord might strike into me His fear, and make me worthy of His grace. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section IV | The guardianship of aenguls over men is a tradition that reaches back into the canon of our holy gospels. For the Lord bid his servants to go unto his children and bid them to act unto his command. And so too does he send his servants unto all his children, not only the prophets and the saints, but protectors who hide themselves from our mortal gleaning that they might watch over and preserve us for all time. But when does this guardian take hold over us, and instill in us the fear and virtue of God? We can clearly discern this point as the invocation of the Sacrament of Baptism, when the supernal grace of the Lord fills us and we are purified of all our wrongdoings through the anointing waters of Gamesh. Therefore, when we are purified, it is not only in body and in spirit, but it is also in the sanctifying presence of an aengul of the Lord. Who makes his name ours and who becomes part of our journey towards salvation and heavenly inheritance. The Guardian Aengul is a sanctifier, one who stands before the face of God and intercedes on our behalf, who protects us from evil and wards us from the temptations and grasping claws of demonic influences. Who reflects the image of the Lord and instills in us all the good thoughts and virtues that we may be as God intended us to be, his leal and humble servants. They are not simply this unknowable, esoteric force that looks over us from on high, though. They are friends to us, companions for life who keep us and who have the same love for us that we have for the Lord. They adjoin in harmony the grace of God and ensure that we are not only safe of body, but safe and sound of mind and soul. When doubt gnaws at the back of our minds, what overcomes it? Man is weak and feeble, certainly, it is not man who overcomes it alone, for it is the benefaction of our Guardian that shines over in the intercession of the Lord to aid us and to protect us from such things. This unconditional love that our Guardian holds for us does not mean we are free to abuse their protections and live a life of sin. For even when we are cleansed by the waters of sacrament, we are still bound to follow in the virtues of the Lord. An aengul of the Lord might be scandalized in his vigil over a man; if one was to engage in a life of degeneracy, to openly and wantonly partake in premarital relations with women, or worse yet adultery, then his Guardian might depart from him, overwhelmed by the sorrows of his charge falling into a life of sin and defiance in the face of God. Therefore, it is paramount that to ensure a beneficial friendship with the Guardian, one must be diligent in their confessions, repentance and in their prayers to their Guardian or to the Archaenguls who intercede above them. If we fail in this, if we become sick in sin, then we shall not enjoy the protections afforded to us by our Lord, for if we are unworthy of them now, how can we be worthy of them when we partake in a life that would only earn us the disgust of God, the aenguls and all his saints? ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
  8. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ THE CLERICAL QUESTION; OR A THESIS UPON THE EXTREME OF CLERICAL SUBJUGATION BEFORE ELECTED OFFICE Scribed by FR. SERAPHIM OF LEORA GODFREY’S TRIUMPH 1772 An icon depicting the Archaengul Michael (Micahelus) purging the servants of the Evil One during the last battle. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ┏━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┓ Section I - The Extreme of Politics Section II - Balance the Two Extremes Section III – Seeking Office is Seeking Damnation ┗━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┛ ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section I | Blessed is our Lord, always, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen. Glory to You, O Theós Spirit of Truth, present in all places and filling all things; lifegiver and blessed divine maker of all things, take Your abode in us and cleanse us of every stain, and save our souls, O Good one whose law and mandate are the essence of all things. Amen. Let the words I write be without error and let the listener be cleansed of their impure thoughts. As with many of my other theses published in the last years do I ramble on and on about how the world is becoming too secular. And this is not so simple a thing; but many faceted. It is secular in the life of men, who have abandoned virtue for comfort and vanity. It is secular in the politics of our nations, where career statesmen would advocate against faith, against virtue and against God. And so too does this plague of the secular mind; of the so-called Imperial spirit I touched upon in my writings prior, inflict its damages upon the institutions of our faith. Though, this infection, this damage done, is not something easily witnessed or discerned. We believe in the ideal of balancing the extremes. On one hand, you have those who might advocate for the complete and total severance of the Church from secular entities; to not ‘lower’ oneself to the folly of secular politics, that it is better to be detached from the world and to allow it to succumb wholly to the self-destructive nature of man, than to lend its stern and guiding hand in leading kings and emperors towards godliness. And then on the other, you have those who believe it prudent for shepherds of the faithful to adorn themselves in the vanity of secular office. To aspire not in guiding the people into good deeds and faith by the measure of their own piety and wisdom, but to instead build upon their throne of office by facilitating themselves as politicians who might hold in one hand the gospel of the Lord, and in the other, the flier declaring their worthiness to be appointed to term. “Truth is not decided by a majority vote.” (Maxims 2:16) How can it be suitable for a priest, ordained within the sacrament of our holy church, to throw himself before the mercy of the laity. It does not! The priesthood received their garments from Exalted Owyn, by the word of the Lord. Therefore, a holy father of our Church cannot and should not lower himself to be made at the mercy of popular will. It deprecates the station, and makes a mockery of the inestimable grace and burden that the priesthood is adorned with, and not only does it do these things, but it places a vulnerability on the Church in both reputation and spiritual bearing. For before the Lord, his sacraments, the holy word and the flock we shepherd, there is nothing upon this earth worthy of our attention. In looking towards the dogma of our Holy Church, it is written that the ministry shall be subject to the will of no sovereign but the High Pontiff. What then is a priest, who has one foot within the clergy and one foot outside it, in chasing after these modernistic democratic institutions which do not carry with them the same collegian bearing that separate, as an example, the Curia in the election of a Pontiff. To engage in election for secular political office is to offend the dogma of the Church, for then not only do you make yourself a subject of the masses (despite it being clearly inappropriate to answer to any sovereign but the God and his Vicar) but also open yourself to the vanities of secular politics. By engaging in this system, does one engage in what becomes little more than glorified pageantry vying for popularity through concession. There is no possibility of reconciling this as being a valuable quality of a servant of God. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section II | I would clarify in my rantings, as to not sound like Friar Boniface, in the misconception that I hold a complete and utter disdain towards priests acting with political bearing. I do not condemn it, for many of our Saints, Blessed and Venerable souls alike have conducted themselves in such a manner throughout the history of our Church. That is to say, I do not revile politics, as much as I do the extremes. To subject oneself to the judgement of any but the Lord God and his servants upon his earth, this is the path of a priest who entrusts himself to a life of spiritual waste. High Pontiff St. Lucien once said that when the clergy turn into laymen, that the laymen will turn into demons. When the priest becomes a man of the world, who subjects himself to the many vices, and to a path which does not befit the garments he is adorned with, then he becomes the Evil One’s candidate. We must avoid these extremes; extreme solutions never solve a problem. They always impart suffering onto our Church, as much as they do for those who hold the positions, for an extreme stance has a way of nailing people into place. Some people might ask, Father Seraphim, what difference does it make if a priest holds secular office in hand with religious? You cited High Pontiff St. Lucien, and he himself held a Prince-Archbishopric, is that not secular office? There comes a difference between the grant of a fiefdom, and the rise to an elected office. One is gifted by the sceptre. The other bartered for and won with pageantry and common ascent. There is too much importance attached to human glory, rather than the glory that awaits us in paradise, when we shall depart from the glory of men. God does not receive his glory from men, just as men of the cloth do not receive their glory from men. We place ourselves into the hands of the Lord alone. And certainly he who seeks salvation of the soul does not chase after high offices. To seek election is to thrust yourself into that office, and no matter the reasoning, it becomes nothing but a hindrance for you have then made yourself a subject of the office - of the masses, and not their shepherd. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section III | “Do not be afraid to resign all things to God, and all prayers to thy Patron Saint. For to be the abject slave of God, is greater than to be the Chamberlain of the Emperor himself, and we come to Him best through our Saints.” (Maxims 2:10) There are some who, because of their life, should have been filled with happiness and sang glory to the Lord, despite having been delivered from all manners of discomfort by him, seek out responsibility and offices. And when they are not handed these things, they are given to fester in their indignation and anger, it damages the body and soul alike, yet they seek to enter the Skies through human glory rather than through God’s glory. The simple fact that we must accept is that those who chase after human glory will never be glorified by God. A man, and a priest especially, should never go out of his way to be given more responsibility. For to do so is to be burdened with every kind of worry; to chase these things is to admit that you are not content, and for that, that the evil of pride is eating away at your soul. No one should ever pursue an office for the sake of glory, for that reveals the advancement of spiritual waste, treading onward on this path of sickness that takes them further and further away from humility; the path upon which the Holy Fathers of our Church entered Paradise. And again will I say that responsibility can become a great detriment to a spiritual life. Those who wish to endeavor in their spiritual work and the glorification of the Lord should not seek them. Typically, those who do seek out these offices and posts are taken into the sin of egoism. They act for glory and not for the Lord. But those who do not comfort their egos, who allow peace to come to the souls that require help, and to those who might help them, can receive a peace in this life and for the life to come. This is to say, while the extreme of apoliticism proves itself as damaging to the flock at large who are left without that stern hand, the extreme of politicality, office seeking and subjugation to the will of the laity births an irrevocable destruction of the spirit and the virtues, which in turn imparts itself upon the faithful for in the absence of a faithful shepherd to guide them into the love of our Lord, they themselves become nothing but slaves to the passions. Take only the office that the Lord brings upon you, and no more. “There is nothing so repulsive to iblees as humility: there is nothing so pleasing to God as lowliness.” (Maxims 4:15) Most Glorious and Righteous Mother of Peace, Lady St. Julia, let the children of your womb and not out of your womb humble themselves in their path that the Lord has assigned them to walk. Allow the men you have watched since your ascension learn to seek not the riches and glory they may obtain from below but seek the crowns of gold in the heavenly kingdom of our Lord and God. Let them keep to the holy path of the Lord and not stray to seek pleasures of this world in an attempt to satisfy their sinful passions. Please now, intercede on our behalf, for while we below are weak, you above are strong beloved of the Lord. Through the intercessions of our holy Exalted prophets, our holy and righteous Mother, Lady St. Julia, High Pontiff St. Lucien who foresaw the evil taking hold of our world, and all the saints, we pray to you most glorious Master to lead us once again into being your humble servants that we may spend our lives with you unto ages of ages. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
  9. Sat amid the halls of the Elven Pale, the Saneyir of Aldemar had come across a transcript of the tragedy, and not even the splendor of his lord’s domain could stave off the somber mood that had overtaken him. Even in the company of the Warden, he could not help but to reminisce on those bygone days, musing aloud to Keledan. “Oh, what gaity, where to be reminded that a husk of a man once resided, and not this serpentine visage of a thousand faces. That boy who took up sword and lance in the name of the Storm King. In forging for himself a hundred glories and a legacy to outlast them all. Perhaps still his wish was granted, to be immortalized in dramatization and make-believe. Yet, I fear that peace his kindly wife wished upon him, despite all the wrong he dealt her, shall never be received. For so long as a fragment of that shattered ego dwells within us, never shall he leave the Titan’s service. And never shall he have that promised rest.” The faintest semblance of a smile twitched at the corners of the Saneyir’s lips, though he duly discarded the parchment in favor of his wine glass, honoring the Warden with a toast as he stirred himself from nostalgia back into the waking world. @Malaise
  10. Din’laselan grew somber upon hearing rumor of the resurgent Alderfolk, and of the misconstruction of their ancient histories that had been passed down by father to son for generations. So warped was their idea of the truths of the days before their reemergence into the settled world, that they appeared more alike to fairy tales in the eyes of the Ithelanen elder, than actual history with how skewed they had become by the words of those who did not know by heart the old lore. Yet still, he couldn’t help but feel pride welling in his chest that the unblooded scions of his lineage carried on thousand year old traditions, even if they were misguided. Taking up his staff, he departed from urban civilization back into the deep woods, the place of his people’s true belonging, far away from petty squabbles and poisoned earth.
  11. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ A THESIS ON JOSEPHITES, OR A RESPONSE TO A JOSEPHITE CRITIQUE OF THE CANONIST ESTABLISHMENT Scribed by FR. SERAPHIM OF LEORA SUN’S SMILE 1771 An icon depicting the Archaengul Michael (Micahelus) as Lord of Battle shields the Faithful in God’s Name ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ┏━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┓ Section I - The Beauty of Creation Section II - Civilization and Modern Opinions Section III - Exalting the Rights of Man over God Section IV - A Josephite’s War against Faith ┗━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┛ ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section I | O Lord, Theós, our God, existing before all ages and remaining unto the ages of ages; whose ineffable mercy hath gifted us salvation in Your Kingdom. Show us how to rise above our enemies, visible and invisible. Place in us power from on high; keep us beneath the protection of thy wings and fortify us with love for one another and grant us unshakable peace. Instill in us your fear and your love that your holy name may also be glorified in us. Upon you alone we look, for you alone we have placed our hopes, to you we send glory, now and ever and unto the ages of ages. Amen. “The earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness thereof.” (Maxims 7.8) Look at what Theós created with His word alone. What harmony, for wherever does one turn shall he see His wisdom and grandeur as it was ordained in the making of all things. Gaze upon the celestial lights, the stars and the heavens above. By His divine hand were they scattered in the sky, and so do they give great comfort to mankind, whereas the lights of man, fire and oil and the spark of our hand are so tiresome. It is with harmony that He has designed all things. The trees of a forest that are planted by the hands of men resemble a regimental formation, whereas the woods of the land untouched by the tampering of us grant comfort to the eye, so peaceful and restful. Even the smallest of Theós’ wild flowers is bountiful with grace. But then look at flowers folded from paper, there is no grace in them! Everything that Theós has greeted is a wonder in and of itself. The human form, as an example, resembles a manufactory. For the Lord has arranged in us all things with great wisdom. Think of the wisdom with which the plants and beasts are made. We should find the Lord in animals, in plants, in all things. How can you sit there and not admire it all? It is His creation. You see the tiniest swallow carried south to winter, and brought home, back to its very nest, without the use of a compass or any tool. And then you have men who rely on all manner of map and sign and tool, and still they find themselves not in the destination they had sought. And it is not as if the birds walk upon the earth and mark their way as they go. There is no path for them to follow, for they fly in the sky above. Everything that our Father has created is so glorious and full of beauty. We men should be jealous; wherever you turn, you encounter His wisdom. Everything that you might see or hear in this world, you should make to aid you in reaching up to the Seven Skies. Let everything transport you on high. This is how a man raises himself from the beasts of the world to our Lord. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section II | “What shall it avail a man, if he gain the world, but lose his immortal soul?” (Maxims 6.1) In this day and age we live in, civilization is good. But in order for it to be beneficial to men, the soul must in turn be civilized. Otherwise we are doomed from the beginning. A wise mendicant told me once, “Evil arises from those who are educated.” Despite the fact that the world has advanced so far in these last few hundred years, that so much tremendous progress has been made both within the sphere of the philosophical and the practical, when we use this new creations and new ideas to try and help people, they end up doing more harm than good, unintentionally. Theós has given unto his creation the freedom to do as they please. And since man often does not listen to the Lord, he ends up ruining not only his life, but that of all those around him. It is through our own sin that our destruction is wrought. What have we achieved as a people in the eighteenth century? We have driven people out of their minds with these supposed ‘forward-thinking’ ideals, and we have brought great destruction upon ourselves. And often is this destruction simply the desolation of the land around us for ‘progress’. In the days of our forefathers men suffered from war, and today? They suffer from civilization. War stirred man to depart his cities and live in the hamlets and villages. And it is now that civilization will drive them from these great metropolises. War brought death, and now civilization brings disease. Men rely too much today on the auspices of science and of ‘progress’. For now is the era of the Josephite. And I do not mean to disparage them, but I speak to the beliefs they hold in their hearts. For these modern notions of civilization as we know it are born from their declarations and their ‘liberties’. But how can we call them liberties, when they have become slaves to the world and to their own egos? To this I say remember the words of Ven. Humbert the Slave of God, “I have heard enough of the so-called rights of man, let us now talk of the rights of God.” ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section III | And you may ask, how do the wisdoms of our Lord’s creation play into the subject we reach now? As I had written before, the trees of a forest that are planted by the hands of men resemble a regimental formation, whereas the woods of the land untouched by the tampering of us grant comfort to the eye, so peaceful and restful. And much in the same way, do these rights of man resemble the forest planted by man’s hand. Man’s creation, imperfect as it is. But you cannot say this to a man with Josephite convictions! You cannot quote to him the teachings of Ven. Humbert, or of the Exalted and the Saints. Because he does not care for the rights of God! He cares for the rights of man, meaning the rights of the self, and it is this self-love that corrupts the relationship between man and Theós. Allow me to quote a publication; A Josephite Critique of the Canonist Establishment - this treatise put together by an Arthur Callahan speaks foul of our Holy Church. And in doing does it speak foul of Theós, for the Church is the making of the Prophets by the Lord’s word and does the Lord sits at its head. The Josephite writes of a spiritual slavery that has befallen man. So allow me to quote my brother Pius of Sutica. “Sin is a black form of slavery. Wrath, lust, inability to forgive, avarice and pride, all of these enslave a man to his passions and render him unable to attain to his true potential, that is, to allow God to fashion him into a man reborn in His grace. Let us therefore translate this rightly, cast off the unholy chains of sin and embrace the merciful yoke of our Creator. This will be the basis for the devotion which I will here unfold, which I consider to be way of quick progress in the spiritual life: indeed, Divine Slavery is the finest means of divine union.” (Thesis on Divine Slavery, Pius of Sutica) Where the Josephite paints devotion to the Lord as foul shackles meant to restrain man and keep him mired in so-called ignorance, we see it as the virtue of our inheritance, for we as men of the cloth devote ourselves to holy and spiritual living. This angers the Josephite, who sees the virtues of the Lord’s words as arbitrary and archaic in hindrance to all the progress and ego they strive towards. For, to the Josephite, man must be in control of his own destiny in order for a culmination of his ‘rights’ to be achieved, to know true liberty as it were. And doing so does he cry all spiritual guidance and bearing upon his life for how can he with a clear conscience indulge within the love of himself and the worship of the idol of ego if he still holds in his heart any love for Theós? The Josephite decries faith as superstition and wishes to make of it a sacrificial lamb upon his altar of ego. And so does the blood of this metaphorical lamb awaken the darkness in the Josephite’s heart, who then eschews his morality in favor of freedom, of liberty. For he has no need of morals but for the morals of his idolatrous spirit of mankind, Joseph and his golden laurels of freedom. The Holy Scrolls become secondary to these three inalienable rights, for who are they to respect the word of He who made all things when they are freed from such shackles by their liberty to pursue any manner of hateful blasphemy or debauchery. They hold themselves upon a pedestal of moral and intellectual virtue of which is born a superiority to the backwards and narrow minded institutions that they call faith. The only concern of theirs is the secular power they command, and for the Josephite to speak out against out Church as he does is to show that they fear it, for the virtue of His flock is the only thing that stands as a bulwark against the senseless trespasses who would otherwise commit against both his fellow man and against our Lord O God. “Even further, the use of Canonism as a state religion has hampered our ability to fully unite humanity in any true form, for bygone are the days where Canonism reigned outright. Countless humans, from north to south, have sought spiritual comfort in diverse religions and codes of conduct, and no longer can we claim that humanity’s religion is truthfully Canonism. In reaching the goal of a humanity united under one nation and one law, we must realize that the unifying ties of Canonism in fact creates needless division, an ethos which has failed its very purpose. Look we must instead to a civic religion, a duty not to any god but to the Crown, with any responsibilities given for the sake of humanity and not injudicious superstitions. Our neighbors and peers of Oren must be joined together in hands of common kinship and nationality, and in achieving this goal, we must do away with that which disregards blood for supercilious faith.” (A Josephite Critique of the Canonist Establishment, Arthur Callahan) ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section IV | It confounds me, the audacity of men in this day and age. They know no humility, for as I have said before and will say again they build for themselves a cult of ego and love of the self. Let us break apart these silly and nonsensical arguments. To presume that Canonism has served to hamper humanity - to claim that humanity’s religion is not, in truth, Canonism, is to blaspheme against the Lord. I cite the Scrolls; “But you remain My prophet. And that My word is kept, you shall anoint servants in your lineage. For you are their lord, and bear the laurel of Horen. So Owyn left the palace of Harren, and he came into the city of Alduun. He found that the lords of mixed blood had fled into the north with the heir of Harren, and took many of their servants with them. Those virtuous freedman that remained were anointed as priests of GOD, and they bore the Virtue and the Spirit. Thus the Word of GOD was kept for a thousand years of His Silence, and man’s purity of faith and blood was so sworn.” (Gospel 4:56-62) “Owyn obeyed the command of GOD and anointed the brothers Evaristus and Clement, who jostled in the same womb, as joint bearers of the laurel of Horen. He entrusted to them the Word of GOD, which were the Virtue and the Spirit, and charged them to instruct their brethren in the path of holiness. At Owyn’s command, the brothers set shepherds over the flock of men, and so created a priesthood for their instruction, in anticipation of the second son of spirit.” (Gospel 5:3-5) “O James, pious son of the Lord, I have seen the glory of God in your heart and His word on your tongue. You will be my high priest, as in the days of Evaristus and Clement. I name you pontifex, for you are a builder of bridges.” (Gospel 6:59-61) To try and rationalize that the Canonist Church does not inherit the Word of God, to keep in earnest the covenant of man with the Lord and shepherd His flock towards faith and virtue is foolish. Our holy texts are clear. He seeks to diminish the stature of the Church by decrying the existence of those who do not exalt in all things the Lord, but even in the day of the Exalted Owyn, have the idolaters invested themselves into sin and hatred of the Lord. I sincerely worry for the salvation of those men who have taken into their hearts the writings of this Josephite, of this ethos of liberty that reviles all things which do not exalt the self. Humanity shall always be united in spirit and the love of Theós, now and ever and unto the ages of ages. To exalt nationality and blood over the holy bonds of the Lord's flock is characterized by a term we have used in Old Rhen, phyletismos, or what we call the barbarity of tribalism. “Remember, therefore, that thy true citizenship is in Heaven: God wants thee, and he wants thee a Saint. Be ever a foreigner to the world, and the closest son of the Skies instead.” (Maxims 2.4) The Josephite wishes for us to uphold our civic duties before our spiritual ones. They wish for us to worship not in the theatre of our Lord, but in the theatre of secularism. They wish for us to worship liberty and not God. The Josephite speaks of the sake of humanity yet forgets what is the true inheritance of mankind, and that is the spiritual kingdom that lies beyond this life and this world. But yea to a blasphemer as he would say we ‘follow a sadistic god, for we are his villainous band of preachers’. How will you explain these words to the Lord when comes the day you are judged? And this is what I must stress to all people reading this, and especially to the Josephites who shall certainly meet my writings with hatred and revulsion for I have made my stance against their sacrosanct rights gifted unto themselves by themselves, in contempt of Theós. I bid all those who do carry in their hearts with sincerity these beliefs espoused by that Josephite in his musings against our Holy Church to repent, to prostrate thyselves before the Lord and allow His mercy to garb you in His love for mankind. For man to love and exalt himself is the gateway to vanity, and certainly does this ethos espoused in the writings and virtue of the Josephite cause become so. Let us recall the teachings of our Lord, and practice humility unto all for all fall short of Him. Exalt Him, not mankind, nor rights that are not the Lord’s Own or else you will certainly find yourself in spiritual waste. Light of Lights, Holy of Holies, and Blessed God, grant us the gift of discernment from unholy and vile beliefs, that we may fully submit to your Holy Mother Church and the Venerable Priesthood you have graced us with. Grant us all a long life so we may repent from any wicked actions we have taken or thoughts persisting in our minds. Let us know peace through your holy and life-giving way. Through the prayers and intercessions of the holy Exalted prophets, righteous and blessed Holy Mother of Peace Saint Julia, Venerable Humbert who has enlightened our darkened minds with his words, and all the saints. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
  12. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ACOLYTE’S THESIS The Spirit of Today Scribed by ACOLYTE SERAPHIM OF LEORA GODFREY’S TRIUMPH 1771 An icon depicting St. Daniel of Al’Khazar ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ┏━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┓ Section I - Vanity is the Gateway Section II - Beauty of the Soul Conquers Worldly Things Section III – The Secular Spirit Gnaws at Us ┗━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┛ ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section I | Glory to you O Lord, Holy Immortal, for Thine is the Kingdom and the Power and the Glory, now and forever and to the ages of ages. Amen. Save, O Theós, Your people and bless Your inheritance, grant victory to the faithful over the enemy and by Your Cross protect Your empire. Cause our faithful emperors to be glad in Your power, granting to them victories against their adversaries. And for an ally, Theós, may they have You, peace as their armor, the trophy invincible. Both now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen. The Evil One is the ruler of the world of this age; not because he has mastery or power over the world. How can he? Creation is born of the essence of our Lord. But he has power over falsehoods and vanity. And they have become so common in the modern state of things. All those who are dominated by such frivolous things are dominated by the Evil One. “So I am the Most High, and in pursuit of My Virtue, I bid my faithful this: You shall not judge your own virtue, be it great or small, for all fall short of Me.” (Virtue 7:8) When a heart is taken into vanity, it will wither and bear the fruit of a muddled mind. And in such a state can one truly be called a human being, when they are missing the spiritual element that is our Lord’s gift to mankind? I call them what they are; monsters and husks, devoid of life or love. The greatest evil in this world, the greatest threat to our souls, is not the Evil One, but the secular spirit. For it tastes so sweet when it takes them into its clutches, but when all is said and done, you are left bitter until the end of days. In this century, this modern age, there is too much of a focus on the ‘world’, so to speak, an abundance of this secular spirit which is bound to lead to our destruction. People have taken into their hearts the world, and ousted Theós. And so we must ask, why is it so difficult to realise the threat the secular spirit places upon our souls? Why are we so easily delivered into its temptations when we know clearly the danger it poses? And I say unto you, the reason for this is that the secular spirit does not flood the senses and overcome the heart, no. It is a gradual infiltration of the faculties of the mind and soul. It deceives us into concessions until finally it takes hold of us and has us walking the steps of evil. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section II | If a soul, or even the nous, is moved by physical beauty alone, it reveals to us that it is only stirred by the vanity of this world. It is attracted to the creation and not to the Creator, to clay and not to Theós. There is no distinction if it is pure and without imperfect qualities to it, for when the soul is drawn towards worldly perfection, which though not inherently born of sin, is still vain, it brings with it this feeling of joy that is born, again, of this worldly disposition. A joy that with it does not bring the grace of the Lord and no exaltation of him or of the spirit. If mankind, and especially those who take upon the tonsure and live in monastic appreciation of our Lord’s creation, could see with their own eyes the ugliness of their spirit upon which the burden of sin weighs, they would not pursue vain beauty for repairing the condition of the soul is greater the aspiration. When we do not see the spiritual waste that is within us, we focus on trying to erase the smallest of blemishes on the outside. But it is of paramount importance that we turn to the inner beauty, and not the outer. The beauty of the soul conquers all vain beauties, for the soul of man is so full of grace and love for our Lord. It is paramount that we as men resist the soul-destroying desires of carnality. That we do not allow them to take hold of us, in our minds and in our hearts, if we are to offer ourselves, and our soul and everything that we have to Theós. And if we do not do this, then we shall know unfulfillment in this life, and unto the next for it will not be salvation that awaits when one rejects the Lord for the earth and its pleasures. That is not to say that the world is evil, or that the material should be eschewed as the many philosophies of the other races speak. “This is a sin of remarkable folly, for there is no holiness in creation but with the Lord, and no profanity but for what is without Him. All things are the Lord’s creation, and what is profane cannot be holy.” (Spirit 4:8-9) The world is of the Lord’s creation, and it is holy. But it is only holy when one sees it for what it is, being of the word and essence and creation of Theós. Thus must we not reject the world or all the things within it, but strive to make of the world what Theós intended for it and not give ourselves into excess or depravity. As I had mentioned in my previous thesis, the passions are not inherently sinful, for the passions are of natural making. It is only when sin muddies the basin, so to speak, that the passions become unnatural and a gateway to evil. When desire presents itself within our hearts, it is not evil. It is not sin. But when such things seek to chip away at the heart, then they weaken the love we have for our Lord. Any such thing, however good it may seem to us, must not compare to the desire for Theós. For when I give my heart to Theós, will He not give to me His entire Self in return? In surrendering ourselves to him do we gain all the desires of our contentment and in paradise do we ascend to bask in his divine presence. Thus must we not allow the worldly possessions to take hold of us and steal from us our hearts. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section III | This brings me back to the idea of the secular spirit. I believe of two ideas; that of the Orenian spirit, and that of the Canonist spirit. Which is to say that, one who sees the earth through Orenian eyes, with Orenian logic, does so without faith. And when one has caught the Canonist spirit and abandoned the Orenian, I mean that he was left behind these modern notions of logic, rationality and instead focuses himself on simplicity in life, and piety in all things for that is the Canonist spirit within which Theós rests. For it is sacred simplicity that brings comfort to the soul and to the mind, and if we do not renounce the secular spirit and take on the simple as one dons his clothes, we will never experience kinship with Theós and the Saints. There are times where even those who confess the spiritual life will live in a fake, secular and superficial bearing, or to be more exact, in the manner of the Darfeyists that sought power for the sake of it alone. They concerned themselves not with how they would enter into Paradise, or how they would make a good impression with the Lord, but instead, about making a good impression in this life. They robbed themselves of spiritual joys to engage in the secular spirit, to remain as earthly people striving towards spiritual life but in a secular manner. Inside, they were empty, for Theós is not present within their hearts. It is unfortunate that the secular spirit has had such a great impact on spiritual men, for if they act or even think in that way, what is to happen to those who live secular lives? The men and women of today do not realize that worldly success is spiritual failure. Now, I do not say that a man is at fault for having a wealth of things, or for striving in his duties that are of a bearing to this secular earth. Theós has envisioned a path for all men, and certainly shall Emperors, Kings and Lords have their place in His Kingdom. It is not the ownership nor the wealth that is foul in and of itself. It is only when they take hold of man’s heart and dictate his thoughts and actions that this desire, this excess of the world, becomes problematic to the spiritual health. Thus do I beseech them towards three things; charity, humility and nobility. These three pillars are what steels the regnant, landholder and all those who hold in abundance the gifts of the earth against the temptations of the Evil One, and against embracing the secular spirit and with it spiritual drought. Therefore must we not allow this Orenian spirit, this spirit of modern secularism to come into our lives. We must never reach this point, and certainly it is a difficult undertaking, for it requires vigilance and discipline. It is a disease, and the most important thing we can do is to not yield to this worldly spirit. To resist is a way of bearing witness, in the vein of holy martyrdom. That we must not be led astray by this sweeping current. All of us wish to avoid this great pestilence, and we must avoid it no matter where we are. For if we wish to grow in our spiritual life, we must become strangers to worldly ideals of progress, and this is how we tend our spiritual health and be raised up in angelic joy. Blessed be the one who hears of their wickedness and repents from it, for their reward shall be far greater in the heavens above than that of any man gain from the land below. May we receive the gift of spiritual discernment to realign our poisoned secular minds to that of a true Canonist’s. Through the prayers and intercessions of the holy Exalted prophets, Our Most Holy and Righteous Mother of Peace Saint Julia, Righteous King St. Daniel whom this thesis is dedicated to, and all the saints. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
  13. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ACOLYTE’S THESIS Temptation of the Sinful Heart Scribed by ACOLYTE SERAPHIM OF LEORA OWYN’S LIGHT 1771 An icon depicting St. Theodosius of Istiam rejecting the temptations of the Evil One’s servants ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ┏━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┓ Section I - The Spiritual Decline Section II - The Only Power is the Power we give him Section III – Virtue is the End of Temptation Section IV – Evil is Nothing in the Face of God and His Love for Man ┗━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┛ ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section I | Blessed is our Lord, always, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen. Glory to You, O Theós Spirit of Truth, present in all places and filling all things; lifegiver and blessed divine maker of all things, take Your abode in us and cleanse us of every stain, and save our souls, O Good one whose law and mandate are the essence of all things. Amen. We live in a time of great spiritual decline. Where secularism overcomes the divine principles of faith as ordained by the word of our Lord God O Theós. And with spiritual decline and the gradual rise of vainglory and disrespect sewn within the passions of men, does the soul itself weaken to become a gateway to the presence of demonic influence within the world. The Evil One’s corruption manifests itself only because man has given it the right to do so, to allow his servants to walk the earth unhindered. Demons can only harm us if we allow them to, if we give them the keys to our soul and thus power over us. Thus, those who do not partake in the mysteries of our Canonist faith give these demons the power to tempt them, and to make them vulnerable to the passions and damnation. And beyond the passions of the body are the passions of the noetic being; rationalism, stubbornness, willfulness, disobedience and impudence. These are all qualities of The Evil One, an infection of the spirit, of uncleanliness which dwells in the soul through the presence of mortal sins. They have become a dwelling place for these demons, who intercede upon the behalf of their master to corrupt man and cloak him in ungodliness that he might never ascend into the presence of our Lord. On the other hand, a soul that is infected with this disease. With the passions and the sins stoked by them, but not mortally so, is only under the influence of this malignant presence, but not owned by it. In this day and age we see an unfortunate trend, people who do not have any wish nor desire to walk the path of virtue, to restrain their passions and their self-will or even listen to the advice of the fathers or of the divine teachings bequeathed unto us by the Holy Scrolls. People are unable to take command of themselves, to stave off the passions and starve them of their gluttonous appetites because The Evil One has taken charge of them. The Evil One, God forbid, does not dwell within the hallowed spirit, but he still dictates their lives from the outside. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section II | If men would only go to a spiritual father that they might make clean their sins, the demonic influence over them would abate and they would have their eyes opened to the truth of our Lord. Repentance and confession deprive The Evil One and his servants of their rights over mankind. The Evil One does not hold power over those who have faith, who attend liturgy, repent their sins and remain in communion with our Holy Church. Like a toothless dog, he holds no sway over the virtuous and pious Canonists. Yet he has immense sway over those who do not have such faith and diligence in their life, it grants him rights and authority that he might take these people into his claws and tear them to pieces. The demons that lurk in the shadows of our sin only have as much power over us as we grant them. The only way to relinquish a person of the influence of these demons is to find the root of the sickness; one might treat the symptoms but if they cannot provide a cure then it is simply folly. No matter how intensely others might pray for them, the demons will not let go. They are helpless, for The Evil One has a crippling effect. Our Spiritual Fathers may commit them to unending exorcisms but it will only make it worse for the man possessed, for their demons will only torment them more severely. For The Evil One to depart must the sinner repent and revoke from the demon the rights he has granted him. Otherwise, there is no end to the suffering. The Evil One does not approach a pure creature of god. It is clear to us that if we stray from the commandments of Theós, from his holy teachings, our passions will rise up in fury and strike at us. What our Lord desires of us is to take these passions and throw them in the face of evil, of the demons and their master; that is to say that you must turn your rage, your stubborn nature, and so on against him. To sell off your passions and use this spiritual wealth you have acquired to procure stones to pelt him with and keep him from creeping close enough to deal harm to your mind and spirit. What business do the demons have in the heart of the pure, one not mired with filth and the mud of the passions? If, then that we realize our heart - our house has become rundown and in a state of disrepair and the enemy has taken up residence within, we must tear it down without hesitation in order to evict The Evil One. Hesitation is the tool of the enemy, for the longer sin reigns over man, the more rights does The Evil One acquire over him. When a man repents and delivers himself into the Lord’s hands, he will grant him with strength and majesty and the enlightenment of the ages. But it is here where the struggle truly begins, for the enemy will fight him with such rage and ferocity unbridled that only the patience and unerring perseverance of man might overcome. There is no other way to uproot the passions, to discard pride and vanity and intemperance. This is how man comes to realize that there is nothing he is able to do on his lonesome, and thus in humility does he prostrate himself before the Lord and begs his mercy. And then is virtue born. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section III | Make no mistake, all men have inherited passions, but these are passions of a natural bearing. These can be twisted, and made unnatural. Thus must we struggle with our spiritual body. “And as I have created for you the struggles of the world, so too do I create the struggles of the spirit. And as I have created the struggles of the world and the spirit, so too do I bring their remedies.” (Virtue 5:5-6) The struggles of the spirit are the passions, and from them our battle with the demons sent to draw us into sin. We must have spiritual bravery enough to scorn him and never to open with him a dialogue from which he can whisper his poisons into our mind and seed our thoughts with unvirtuous notions. To sever our ties to him and to his servants we must put an end to all temptation, and the best thing we can do in that endeavor is to ignore him. Have ill deeds befallen us, or have we been treated with contempt? I ask you to see to yourself first and foremost, that the fault may rest upon your shoulders. If not then we shall have our rewards from our Lord. Dispel the thoughts from your mind any further, for to continue on is to entreat the demons that gnaw at the soul. Sometimes, I have this thought that in this day and age we live in, the Evil One grows in power. Certainly is he full of malice and hatred, but he holds no true power, for it is our Lord that is All-Powerful and it is through his love that we endure. The Evil One tries to appear as a being of strength and purpose, but he succeeds in no capacity. He is powerless, many of his schemes and plots to turn the faithful against Theós. It is Theós who is All-Powerful. This deceiver is decaying and rotten, a husk of a beast whose weapons do not stand to the faithful. Do you not wear a cross? Only when we abandon our spiritual armor does the enemy overpower us. A Spiritual Father of our Canonist Church needs only show a small cross to a man who has taken to bed foul powers and makes himself black magician and sorcerer, and the demon that he was invoked in his heart and mind will balk and cower. This is because the Evil One and his servants are ignorant. And in this ignorance can we make the observation that he and his can never know the human heart, for only Theós has knowledge of his creation and only he may reveal what is in our hearts. What contrast is it that they only know what evil and mischief they plant within our hearts, our good thoughts are indecipherable to them. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section IV | Why does Theós allow the Evil One to spin his web of lies and draw the faithful into sin? It is simple, clear as day, and it falls back onto the struggles that we inherit in our march towards virtue. To pick out his children from among the pack; those who are earnest and true in their faith. Theós tells him and his servants, do that you will, because no matter what evil is wrought he is defeated in the end crushed by the unerring majesty of our Lord. Theós created the angels, but many fell for they had taken into their hearts the pursuit of glory in all things and did not entreat their maker with humility. And thus was fashioned man who replaced this fallen order, for he was the Lord’s perfect creation. And so taken was the Evil One by jealousy; his demons cry out, we have made one mistake and they make mistakes without end and yet you forgive them. And the difference therein lies that humankind repents for their misdeeds, whereas those who were once among the noetic spirit of our Lord have never once show remorse for their rebellion against Theós. And this exemplifies the importance of humility as a weapon against him. It has great power, for it destroys the Evil One as it is the bane of him who cannot lower himself from his pride. Where there is humility, there is no room for him and where there is no room for him there is no room for temptation. No matter what we do, we need humility, love and nobility. It is such a simple affair to acquire these three virtues, but we make it so over-complicated. Whenever the chance arises we must do what is difficult for the Evil One and what is easy for mankind. The path to salvation must begin through love and humility and then go on to the rest. We must pray that we might always give joy to Theós and distress to the Evil One. O’ Holy One, giver of life and renewer of our soul. Grant us many years that we may repent from our wicked ways; ways consumed by our lust for our passions caused by carelessness, indifference, or demonic influence. Renew our hearts and minds from this wicked path of passions to your holy path of righteousness. Through the prayers and intercessions of the holy Exalted prophets, the Mother of Mankind Saint Julia, Saint Humbert of Bar to whom this thesis is dedicated to, and all the saints. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
  14. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ACOLYTE’S THESIS The Lukewarm Man Scribed by ACOLYTE SERAPHIM OF LEORA HOREN’S CALLING 1771 An icon depicting the prophet, Exalted Sigismund, after receiving the Scroll of Auspice. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ ┏━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┓ Section I - Knowledge and Ignorance Section II - The Sin of Today Section III - Comfort and the Struggle towards Grace ┗━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━┛ ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section I | Glory to you, our Lord Theós. Let the words I speak be true and just, Theós. Let them be remembered in the hearts and minds of all who read this if they are so, and let them be forgotten if they are not so. There is nothing in this world to be held in greater esteem than knowledge. Knowledge is the illumination of the Lord within all things, and most importantly, within the souls of men. The opposite, as it were, is ignorance. And if knowledge is the light of creation, then ignorance is darkness, thus sin. Ignorance, darkness or sin, this foul triune, is proper to the irrational spirit and to the man who does not know in his heart the commands of our Lord. And in turn is knowledge proper to those who are rational, bearing the faculties of understanding. Yet knowledge does not by default entail understanding, for when I write of knowledge I write of true knowledge. False knowledge in so far as it is a knowledge of that which is not, is ignorance and not knowledge. Falsehood is nothing but that which is not. Yet how does one discern falsehood from the truth? It is simple, and all we need do is look towards our sacred scriptures. That we might approach the teacher in whom there is borne no falsehood and who is the truth, our Lord Theós who by the grace of his divine essence, all-powerful and ever eternal unto the ages of ages, gifted to us the labours of our virtue. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section II | So let us hear the voice of Him who is the wisdom and the power of all things and then let us learn the true knowledge of all things that are. Approaching with all the attention and sincerity of our soul undefiled by the passions, for even the sharpest eye cannot gain a clear view of the truth that lies before him if the light that is within us becomes darkness, and that darkness itself is stoked by the malignance of sin festering within the heart. And it is this darkness I speak of which has manifested itself upon the peoples of the earth. That has made itself at home in the houses of men and taken them to bed in matrimony of the senses and the soul. If men did not have the so-called ‘nobility’ of sin, then they would have never reached this barbarous state of moral degradation we witness today - that people are destroyed, physically and psychologically. Yet it transcends beyond the material and noetic spirit of man to become a sickness upon the spirit. Men have become as the beasts of the earth, they feel the comfort of sin and do not have the heart to leave it. It has become fashion to them; I weep, to look upon us that we are a Canonist nation, and yet we are in such a pitiable state. When a person today sees a man who walks the other path, the one of truth and knowledge, who strays from sin and purges the passions of the spirit, they think him to be old-fashioned and backwards. To them, to not sin is a crime, an insult, while sin to them is progress.This is the worst thing of all, for if those who lived in darkness would cast aside their pride to at least acknowledge their condition, this illness of the soul, Theós would have mercy on them. They would rather justify what is unjustifiable, to glorify sin; the greatest blasphemy that man might commit in defiance of our Lord. To consider sin as progress and forward-thinking, and morality as backward ignorance. And it is for this reason that those who struggle in the purging of their passions to maintain in life purity and piety will be greatly rewarded. As it is written in the Scroll of Virtue. “I am the Lord God without peer, and My Word is the holy word, and My path is the virtuous path, and all the blessings of the Virtue shall fall before the righteous who tread it.” (Virtue 1:9) “And as I have created for you the struggles of the world, so too do I create the struggles of the spirit. And as I have created the struggles of the world and the spirit, so too do I bring their remedies. For I have given you the pains of the world, and I have given you their cure. And you shall know the trials of this theater of virtue, and know that they shall strengthen you.” (Virtue 5:5-8) ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━ | Section III | In the old days. In the days when faith came before convenience, perverts and drunkards were shamed to appear in the public. The wife who had strayed only just would have not dared to come out from her home. And this was good; for it served as restraint. Yet in this day, if someone lives in accordance with the virtues of our Lord, they are made fun of. But in the days of old, when lay people sinned, when sickness came upon their souls, they felt in their hearts the burden of their illness, bowed their heads and would not come upon those who lived spiritual lives. Instead they admired the devout for their piety and closeness to our Lord. The greatest travesty is that today, people do not feel guilt in their hearts, nor respect for others. And if a man does not live in accordance to the standards of this new world, he is ridiculed for conviction. As I mentioned before, it is born of convenience. Men look for comfort in all things but they will never be comforted; the passions cannot be justified for they cast a veil over the soul and blind him to the knowledge and teachings of our Lord. We taste in our mouths bitter poison when we live apart from the Lord. And when a sinful man embraces Theós anew, he is alike to a prince who is fed with divine bliss, with heavenly sweetness and all the exultations of Paradise. Even though he lives upon this earth, in himself does he sense a small part of the joys of the life that awaits us in the hereafter. So overwhelmed is his soul that he cannot do any work, that divine warmth makes his knees buckle as if they were candlesticks and his heart leaps and wishes to fly out because this world and all things material appear worthless in comparison to the divine. And this is why men must strive to drive the darkness from their hearts. To purge the passions and open their eyes to the wisdom and knowledge that our Lord grants freely. For a person who has distanced himself from the Lord, who embraces sin and the luxuries and conveniences of this world receives in him demonic influence, whereas a person who is close to God, who embraces him, receives his grace and the promise of paradise in the hereafter. And that is the highest calling to which all men must answer. May the Lord Theós offer us mercy unto the ages of ages for our countless sins against Him and may He offer us a long life so we may repent from such sins. Through the prayers and intercessions of the holy Exalted prophets, the Exalted Sigismund whom this thesis is dedicated to, the Holy Mother of Mankind and of Peace Saint Julia, and all the saints. Amen. ━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━━
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