The mother of all vices

The mother of all vices is self-love because it leads directly to “self-praise, self-satisfaction, gluttony, unchastity, self-esteem, jealousy . . . [and] pride” (Hesychios the Priest). Furthermore, self-love hides all the other inordinate passions within it (John Climacus) and leads to avarice (Maximus the Confessor). Self-love resembles a veil covering the soul, especially the nous, the heart of the soul, thus preventing “the world’s foundations – the inner senses (logoi) of things” (Ilias the Presbyter) from being revealed. Curing self-love entails doing the opposite of what this mother of all vices, and its derivative passions, spur one to do.

Reference

Met. Hierotheos. (2010). The science of spiritual medicine, pp. 119-122. Greece: Birth of the Theotokos Monastery.

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