What is the service of God? In nothing else, as in removing from the mind all that is alien, when we praise God. Let there be no pleasure in us of anything earthly while we are praying to Him! Let there be no malice in us, as we chant Him! Let there be no hatred towards our neighbor at the time when we worship Him! Let there be no evil zeal in us, as we strive our mind towards Him! Let there be no shameful lust in our members at the time when we are engaged in the memory of God. All this the soul is clouded, held captive and, having these passions in itself, can not bring pure service to God. They forbid it in the air, that is, stirring up thoughts and dreams, do not allow it to appear to God and perform a mysterious service to Him, praying to Him from the sweet action of Divine love with the sweetening of the heart, in the holy will of God, and the soul is enlightened by God. Without cutting off these passions by spiritual reason, the mind is constantly in obscurity and can not succeed in God.Reverend Abba Isaiah (82, 225-226).
It is necessary to pray so that the mind is completely collected and tense. Should call on God with a grieving soul and do not say too much words, do not stretch out the prayer, but speak a few simple words, because not from a multitude of words, but from the sobriety of the mind depends on hearing. If you stretch out your speech, you can often be distracted by attention and give the devil the opportunity to fearlessly approach you and seduce, distract your thought from what you are saying ...(43, 965).
When you are awake in prayer, do not think about the fatigue caused by waking, but about the boldness delivered by prayer(36, 758).
Knowing the deceit of the devil, we will try, especially during prayer, to drive him away, as if we saw him present and facing our eyes; we will try to remove from ourselves every thought that embarrasses our soul, to strain all our strengths and create a zealous prayer so that not only the language will say the words, but the soul with the words ascend to God(38, 320).
And if you do not hear your own prayer (by distraction), how do you want God to hear it?(37, 472).
Who is careless and inattentive to what he says in prayer, he calls not to God, but speaks in vain and in vain(39, 494).
We do not know how to benefit from prayer, because we do not listen to it with all zeal and do not exercise it according to the laws of God(39, 13).
During prayer, we can hold attention, if we remember, with whom we talk, if we imagine that we are making a spiritual sacrifice.St. John Chrysostom (44, 519).
Thoroughness in prayer brings many gifts. Only let each one pray with attention and right conscience, not wandering at all in thought at will and without paying a prayer, as though necessary, involuntary duty, but fulfilling the love and desire of the soul ... and the Lord Himself will inspire those who ask, how to pray ... So , who is diligent in prayer, must ask her and know that in such an important matter he must endure a great struggle with much effort and effort, since the spirit of malice attacks them with particular force, trying to overthrow our diligence. Hence the weakening of body and soul, effeminacy, carelessness, negligence and all that destroys the soul, tormented by parts and betrayed to its enemy. So, it is necessary that the mind be governed by the soul as a wise helmsman, pointing the straight path to the mountain pier and betraying the soul intact to God who entrusted it.Saint Gregory of Nyssa (23, 280).
When you stand praying, let your mind listen to the power of words, and think that you are standing before God, torturing hearts and wombs. When you rise from sleep, first of all, glorify God with your mouth, then start the rule easily and quietly, remembering your sinfulness and breathing about it, remembering the eternal torment waiting for you.Avva Siluan (82, 354-355).
Prayer done with negligence and sloth is idle talk.The Monk Anthony the Great (82, 27).
Our fathers drew close attention to prayer in silence, and we care about cooking and needlework.Abba Athanasius (82, 72).
Diligent prayer soon corrects the mind.Sayings of the nameless elders (82, 395).
The purity of the heart is proved by unspoken prayer.Rev. Abba Isaiah (82, 216).
The soul of prayer is attention. As a body without a soul is dead, so prayer without attention is dead(108, 146).
Saying the words of prayer slowly, do not let the mind wander everywhere, but shut it up in the words of prayer(108, 146).
The mind during prayer should be preserved with all due diligence ... images, if allowed by the mind in prayer, become an impenetrable veil, a wall between the mind and God(108, 147).
Unparalleled, accessible to man, is given by God in due time to such a devotee of prayer who by perseverance and zeal in the feat will prove the sincerity of his desire to gain prayer(108, 262).
Passions - these moral ailments of man - are the main cause of entertainment in prayer(108, 262).
Attentive prayer requires self-denial, and self-sacrifice resolves rare(108, 243).
Attentive prayer, alien to absentmindedness and dreaminess, is a vision of the invisible God, attracting to Him the vision of the mind and the desire of the heart(109, 166).
From activities of their own will and on their minds will immediately appear guardianship of oneself, various considerations will appear to the mind ... they will destroy attentive prayer(108, 279).
It is inherent in prayer to discover in the fallen nature the innermost signs of its fall and impressions produced by arbitrary sins(108, 290).
Absentiousness conceals prayer. Praying with distraction, he feels in himself an unconscious emptiness and dryness. Constantly praying with absent-mindedness is deprived of all the fruits of the spiritual, usually born from attentive prayer(109, 164-165).
Close the doors of your cell from people coming for empty talk, to kidnap your prayers; shut the doors of the mind from extraneous thoughts ... shut the doors of the heart from the sensations of sinful ones and pray(109, 171).
It is necessary during prayer to conclude the mind in the words of prayer, rejecting indiscriminately every thought - and obviously sinful and righteous in appearance(112, 356).
The dignity of prayer consists solely in quality, not in quantity. Then the quantity is admirable when it leads to quality ... The quality of true prayer is that the mind is in attention during prayer, and the heart sympathizes with the mind(109, 163).
It must be remembered that the essence of the prayerful deed is not in the number of prayers read, but in reading that was read with attention, with the sympathy of the heart(112, 105).
The mind, in the words of prayer, draws the heart into sympathy for itself(109, 163).
We will learn to pray first with a careful oral and vowel prayer, then it is convenient to learn how to pray and with one mind in the silence of the inner cage(109, 183).
Do you want to succeed in clever and heartfelt prayer? Learn to listen orally and vowel: attentive oral prayer by itself turns into an intelligent and heartfelt(109, 185).
Put in the basis of the prayer of the deed, the main and most significant between the monastic exploits ... an attentive vowel prayer, for which the merciful Lord bestows in time a constant, patient, humble ascetic prayer, intelligent, cordial,(109, 188).
Attentive prayer serves as a sign that the heart has broken the threads of attachments and is therefore free to go to God, clings to Him, is assimilated to Him(111, 257).
The state of deep constant attention in prayer comes from the touch of Divine grace to our spirit. The gift of the blessed attention to the worshiper is the original spiritual gift of God(111, 339).
Prayerful prayer is ordinarily preceded by special sorrows and spiritual upheavals that reduce our spirit to the depths of the consciousness of poverty and insignificance(109, 284).
Prayer requires inseparable co-presence and the promotion of attention. At attention, prayer is the inalienable property of the worshiper, in the absence of attention, it is alien to the worshiper(112, 98).
The attention that fully complies with the prayer of entertainment or from extraneous thoughts and dreams is a gift of God's grace.Bishop Ignatius (Bryanchaninov) (112, 98).
A certain disciple told about his father. Once we made a rule; I read the psalms and missed one word without noticing it. When we had finished our service, the old man said to me: "I, in performing the service, imagine that the fire is burning before me, and my mind can not evade to the right or to the left. Where was your mind when you read the psalms and missed the word? Do not you know that by praying, you stand before God and speak to God? "(82, 436).
They told of John: when he returned from the harvest, he went first to the elders for prayer and edification; then he practiced psalmody; after this, he was already turning to prayer. Such gradualness in his studies he considered necessary to bring the mind to the state in which he was before he left the cell.Father (82, 288).
One demon in the desert, when he prayed diligently, the demons appeared and for two weeks they played him like a ball, threw him up and picked him up on the matting. However, they could not distract his mind from fiery prayer.Reverend Neil of Sinai (47, 194).