Feast Day: October 12th (March 12th)

The Life of Saint Symeon: And while he was still a layman he obtained his first experience of the Uncreated Light…



Apolytikion: You received Divine enlightenment within your Soul, O Father Symeon. You were shown to the world as a most radiant light, driving away its darkness, and persuading all to seek the Grace of the Spirit which they had lost. Intercede with Him to grant us great mercy.

“Just as the farmer wearies himself by merely plowing, digging and sowing the seed on the ground, but it grows and produces fruit early and late (cf. Jms. 5:7) by God’s gift, so it is in reality, as you will discover, in Spiritual matters. It belongs to us to engage in every activity and with much toil and weariness to sow the seeds of virtue, but by God’s gift and Mercy alone the rain of His loving-kindness and Grace falls and causes the unfruitful soil of our hearts to bear fruit. When the grain of the word falls on our Souls it receives the moisture of God’s goodness; it germinates, grows, and becomes a great tree (cf. Mt. 13:31-32), that is, it attains to mature manhood, to ‘the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ’ (Eph. 4:13).”


“If through fear of God you cut off your own will – inexplicably, for you do not know how this happens – God will give you His Will. You will keep it indelibly in your heart, opening the eyes of your mind so that you recognize it; and you will be given the strength to fulfill it. The Grace of the Holy Spirit operates these things: without it, nothing is accomplished.”

“Whoever strives to mortify his own will should follow the Will of God; and in the place of his own will he should put God’s Will, planting it in himself and grafting it into his heart. Moreover, he should carefully observe whether what he has planted has put down deep roots, whether what he has grafted has healed over so as to make a single tree, and whether it has grown and flowered and borne good, sweet fruit in such a way that he no longer recognizes the Earth into which the seed was sown or the stock onto which the graft was made, so incomprehensible and Miraculous is the Life-bearing tree that has grown up.”


“The words of the Saints are words of God and not of men.”


“Worldly thoughts and material concerns blind the mind, or eye of the Soul, like a cloth that covers the physical eyes: so long as we are not free of them, we cannot see. But once they are removed by mindfulness of death, then we clearly see the True Light, that which illumines everyone who attains the Spiritual world.”

“Implore God with Prayers and tears to send you a guide who is dispassionate and Holy. But you yourself should also study the Divine writings – especially the works of the Fathers that deal with the practice of the virtues – so that you can compare the teachings of your master with them; for thus you will see and observe them as in a mirror. Take to heart and keep in mind those of his teachings that agree with the Divine writings, but separate out and reject those that are false and incongruent. Otherwise you will be led astray. For in these days there are all too many deceivers and false prophets.”

“Before a Monk has entered this court and has revealed what he has in his heart, he may perhaps argue with his Spiritual guide, either out of ignorance or because he thinks he can keep things about himself hidden. But after he has revealed and sincerely confessed his thoughts, he cannot argue with the man who, after God, will be his judge and master until death. For when a Monk has once entered this court and laid bare the secrets of his heart, he will know from the start – if he has any understanding at all – that he deserves a thousand deaths. He will believe that through humility and obedience he can be saved from all punishment and chastisement, if indeed he has truly grasped the nature of this Mystery.”

“The only thing God requires of us is that we do not sin. But this is achieved, not by acting according to the law, but by carefully guarding the Divine Image in us and our supernal dignity. When we thus live in our natural state, wearing the resplendent robe of the Spirit, we dwell in God and God dwells in us. Then we are called gods by adoption and sons of God, sealed by the light of the knowledge of God (cf. Ps. 4:6. LXX).”


“Whoever fears the Lord will not fear the sickly attacks of demons or the threats of evil people. Like a flame or a burning fire, he goes about day and night through dark and hidden places, and instead of fleeing from the demons he makes them flee from him, so as not to be scorched by the flaming rays of Divine fire that pour from him.”

“If you know that all visible things are a shadow and all pass away, are you not ashamed of playing with shadows and hoarding transitory things? Like a child you draw water with a bucket full of holes; do you not realize it and take it into account, my dear friend? As though there were nothing more serious than appearance and illusion, as though reality has been taken from them?”

“Bodily listlessness and torpor, which affect the Soul as a result of our laziness and negligence, not only make us abandon our normal rule of Prayer, but also darkens the mind and fills it with despondency. Then blasphemous and cowardly thoughts arise in the heart. Indeed, the person tempted by the demon of listlessness cannot even enter his usual place of Prayer; he grows sluggish, and absurd thoughts directed against the Creator of all things arise in his mind. Aware of the cause of all this and why it has happened to you, resolutely enter your normal place of Prayer and, falling down before the God of love, ask with a compunctive and aching heart, full of tears, to be freed from the weight of listlessness and from your pernicious thoughts. If you knock hard and insistently, this release will soon be given to you.”

“If you have received the remission of all your sins, either through Confession or through putting on the Holy and Angelic Habit, this will be a great source of love, thanksgiving and humility for you. For not only have you been spared the countless punishments that you deserved, but you have been granted sonship, glory and the Kingdom of Heaven. Bear this in mind and continually meditate on it, taking care never to dishonour Him Who honoured you and has forgiven you ten thousand sins; Glorify and Honour Him in all you do, so that in return He will glorify you even more – you whom He has honoured above all visible Creation and has called His true friend.”

“Every man should examine himself and watch himself with good judgment, lest he rely on hope alone without mourning and humility in God; nor on humility and tears unless followed by hope and Spiritual joy.”

“Lamentation comes upon me; my heart is consumed, and I pine away for your sake, when I remember that we have such a generous Master, so full of loving-kindness to us men that in return for simple faith in Him He grants us such gifts as surpass our understanding, our hearing, our thinking, such as “the heart of man has not conceived” (1 Cor. 2:9). But we are like brute beasts and prefer nothing but the Earth and the things that, through His great Mercy, it produces to satisfy the needs of bodies! These are for our moderate sustenance, so that our Souls may make the journey to the things that are above without hindrance, as they are likewise fed with the rational food of the Spirit according to the extent that they have been cleansed and ascend.”

“You should keep your life free from worldly concerns and possessions. You may recognize that Grace is active within you when you truly feel that you are a greater sinner than all other men. How this happens, not I, but only God can say.”