The strange thing
You might think that the above title is quite strange for an article… Why was that specific one chosen and not another? Is it to get attention, or are we humans after all not as smart as we think?
One paradox I see happening in the world, especially in Greece where the Orthodox Faith is the main religion, is this: While we would all probably agree that knowledge is power, we apply that in a “discriminatory” manner. What do I mean by that? While we love saying it when we talk about any area of life, we do not apply it to religion. Is that not weird? From the beginning of this article, does it not show you that we humans are probably not that smart after all?
Trust the Saints
Suppose one studies the life of the saints of this century (and thank God there are many in every generation and every country where Orthodoxy exists). One will quickly realize that those people are the most enlightened in the world and the most powerful in terms of their gifts and abilities. It does not require much brain to understand that. Even a young child would realize that something outstanding is happening there. With the gifts given to them by God, those holy figures know things that an ordinary person does not know. They see even the deepest parts of your soul and give you the most effective help in your problems. They see the past and the future, they cure diseases, and so much more.
Science is precious
Therefore, it is bizarre and paradoxical that few only will ask for their opinion in difficult times that a country may be going through. Those few are usually the very faithful. Indeed, knowledge is power; science is also a gift from God. Without science, the world would have been left in cave life. Thanks to its help, the world is evolving and moving forward. Diseases that ailed the world are now curable, and technology in all fields has brought the world and life to a level of which our ancestors would be jealous. But what is missing or dwindling, becoming more and more elusive, is faith. Having reached such impressive levels in technology, humans have begun to believe that they can achieve anything, and they forget where all that progress is coming from. In addition, because money and power are so sweet, we often also see corruption flourishing in every field of science. That, of course, does not diminish the precious contribution of scientific knowledge to humanity. Οn the contrary, it should make us all safeguard it and protect it from all that corruption in the best way.
Follow science wisely
The contribution of the saints in every century is always precious in that protection and safeguarding. They can see things beyond the naked eye with their gifts, something we do not see or perceive. They inform the world, warn and awaken. That is what the modern saints in Greece have also done, giving their beneficial advice on various issues, from the less to the most important.
Over the years, I have seen many issues divide the citizens of a country or the countries themselves. The saints always speak out of love for man, help, protect from traps, and give enlightenment to prevent pitfalls. Do we listen to them? They all love knowledge and science, and there are many times when, while their knowledge was only of elementary school, they advised professors and prominent scientists. They found solutions to problems and guided them to good practices. They warned of dangers, and they often prevented some of their spiritual children from going abroad for experimental therapies because they “saw” that not only would they not be helped, but they would severely harm their health. Not surprisingly, their words always came true. The facts as they unfolded always proved how right they were in their judgment.
There are Saints today
Even if most people do not know where the holy figures are in every century (it is God’s will whether the whole world will know them), people in the Church hierarchy with solid and authentic faith always know where to find them and get their advice. Those holy figures always have more information about what is happening in the world. The strange thing is that few people listen to them, few take their words seriously. So this is the point where we all need to think… Do we believe, and if so, what do we believe? Are not the saints of every age the most worthy successors of Christ’s teachings, the ones who prove that when you believe in the right way, you can do all that Christ did? The saints themselves, of course, stressed that it is vital to follow the official Church. All the saints emphasized that it is the most important thing to do to walk the right path. In the official “ship” of the Church, Christ will always reveal what is right to do. Otherwise, we will have infinite divisions and heresies. If that had not been safeguarded from the first days of Christianity, the Orthodox Faith would not exist at this time. Of course, their point about following the “ship” of the Church did not prevent all those saints from seeing the wrong things in the administration of the Church, of which they always disapproved. They criticized it with love to help the church walk on the right path. They disapproved of specific actions of the Church but did not stay out of it themselves. They tried with their enlightened words to show the right way and not to sow discord. And because, as they said, the years in the future will be difficult, they stressed that we should be careful because even the Church from within will be pretty corrupt. They advised that it is good to compare what the saints of every century say, and where their opinions converge, that is to trust. Let’s not forget that for various reasons, the Church in the past put on the sidelines a remarkable and humble man who was to become one of the greatest and most miracle worker saints in Greece, Saint Nektarios.
The right course of action
In challenging times that we can all go through in life, whether they concern us personally or nationally, etc., let’s remember that the best course of action is to combine the most reliable sources of scientific knowledge, the view of the official Church, and the opinion of modern saints (both those who are alive and those who have passed away). Then, after comparing them and seeing what comes out of that comparison, we should pray for enlightenment and combine that outcome (scientific knowledge, Church’s and the saints’ opinion) with what our instinct tells us. Of course, our instinct never goes wrong. But especially if we are authentic faithful, and truly close to God, it is effortless to hear what that voice inside us is telling us. Then, we do not doubt at all about what is right to do.
So, do you do all of the above in difficult times to make the right decision? Are you as smart as you think?