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Author Topic: Evagrius of Pontus: Talking Back  (Read 2096 times)

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« on: March 04, 2013, 11:32:17 PM »

It was suggested to me to share my thoughts on Spiritual Warfare and the potential usefulness of this book, entitled, Evagrius of Pontus: Talking Back, A Monastic handbook for Combating Demons.

Here is a link for the book at Amazon:  

Here is the original thread of the discussion of Spiritual Warfare:,2553.msg40133.html#msg40133

So, Evagrius of Pontus is one of the Desert Fathers and, as I understand and continue to learn, lived a monastic life; a life of interior life of prayer and discipline.  He lived from 344-399 AD. 

It is through Evagrius' struggles (experiences) to live a monastic life that he documented his struggles and battles with vices/demons/sin/addictions/etc and at some point began to share it with other monks.

So, this is a book to guide others in a practical way to combat the seven deadly sins, or vices, or whatever you want to call those things that keep one away from following Jesus.

As I mentioned in my other post, is that I believe in the Armor of God, and that the Word is the sword that we use in Spiritual Battle.  We have an obligation to learn the Word of God to be properly equipped.  This ‘handbook’ helps one to be better prepared.  It is said however in the introduction that the book may have been used by “advanced monks” or other spiritual directors, but nevertheless is available to anyone. 

And like with most things useful, they can be used improperly, so for me that means, I need to prepare my own inner life of prayer and discipline to ensure I’ve taken the plank out of my eye before I try to take the splinter from another’s eye or try to leave gifts on the alter before I forgive others (and forgive myself.) I, as well as in the book, on page 23, should work quickly to remove evil from myself.  (Which I practice via use of the 12 step program, in particular step 10, which tells me to continue to take personal inventory, and when wrong, promptly admit it.)

So, being relatively prepared, I can trust God and use the sword properly.  I can use the words found in this handbook to better combat my attackers.

I won’t, nor should anyone else, tell you that you’ll be fine with this book.  God made us to be not perfect and wants us to come to Him.  What I mean here is that, we won’t 100% of the time be successful.  We have to battle every day, or at the very least, be ready at any time.

Our losses are still our victories, because (hopefully) we go to God each time (losses and victories) in prayer for continued guidance and help.

So when we are aware of our feelings, and can put a name to it, we can use this book as one tool (weapon), flip to the appropriate section of the book, and read scripture to cast out the demon, then we can have a clearer mind to properly conduct ourselves as God desires for us.

My experience with this includes not trying to practice 'getting better' on my own, i get help from others that have been through it as well. (again, a 12 step program suggestion) The book is just one tool to have scripture available to properly conduct spiritual warfare as i understand it.
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