As a rule, we must not be the slaves of passion; rather, we must be the possessors of great passions. Through passion commences power, but passions should not direct our paths; rather, passions should be our bridled horses, with us commanding whence and to they be directed. Our passions must not take their own courses; but they must be directed by us into which course they ought to take. Modern day people blindly follow the notion that to be slaves to their passions is to be free! But for one to be the Master of one's passions is to be not only free- but powerful.
C. JoyBell C.
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The sword wears out its sheath, as it is sometimes said. That is my story. My passions have made me live, and my passions have killed me. What passions, it may be asked. Trifles, the most childish things in the world. Yet they affected me as much as if the possessions of Helen, or the throne of the Universe, had been at stake.
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Men are admitted into heaven not because they have curbed and governed their passions or have no passions, but because they have cultivated their understandings. The treasures of heaven are not negations of passion, but realities of intellect, from which all the passions emanate uncurbed in their eternal glory.
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It is difficult to say which is the greatest evil--to have too violent passions, or to be wholly devoid of them. Controlled with firmness, guided by discretion, and hallowed by the imagination, the passions are the vivifiers and quickeners of our being. Without passion there can be no energy of character. Indeed, the passions are like fire, useful in a thousand ways, and dangerous only in one--through their excess.
Christian Nestell Bovee
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Why should we desire the destruction of human passions? Take passions from human beings and what is left? The great object should be not to destroy passions, but to make them obedient to the intellect. To indulge passion to the utmost is one form of intemperance - to destroy passion is another. The reasonable gratification of passion under the domination of the intellect is true wisdom and perfect virtue.
Robert Green Ingersoll
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Thus, experience has ever shown, that education, as well as religion, aristocracy, as well as democracy and monarchy, are, singly, totally inadequate to the business of restraining the passions of men, of preserving a steady government, and protecting the lives, liberties, and properties of the people . . . . Religion, superstition, oaths, education, laws, all give way before passions, interest, and power, which can be resisted only by passions, interest, and power.
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It is one thing to be delivered from bad thoughts, and another to be freed from the passions. Often people are delivered from thoughts, when they do not have before their eyes those things which produce passion. But the passions for them remain hidden in the soul, and when the things appear again the passions are revealed. Therefore it is necessary to guard the mind when these things appear, and to know toward which things you have a passion.
Maximus the Confessor
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It is a mistake to imagine, that the violent passions only, such as ambition and love, can triumph over the rest. Idleness, languid as it is, often masters them all; she influences all our designs and actions, and insensibly consumes and destroys both passions and virtues.
Francois de La Rochefoucauld
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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions. These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.
John B. S. Haldane
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Whoever wishes to make progress in perfection should use particular diligence in not allowing himself to be led away by his passions, which destroy with one hand the spiritual edifice which is rising by the labors of the other. But to succeed well in this, resistance should be begun while the passions are yet weak; for after they are thoroughly rooted and grown up, there is scarcely any remedy.
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Only when we rid ourselves of passions and lust and put the desires of flesh under the control of Spi rit, only then we accept the cross and follow Christ. And "withdrawal from the world" is nothing but the destruction of passions and manifestation of the innermost life in Christ.
Vladimir Aleksandrovich Antonov
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The one who wants to love God has to take care about the purity of the soul, first of all. This purity is attained through conquering the passions. (The one who has not conquered the passions cannot enter) the chaste and pure region of the heart. Do not hate a sinner, for we all are to be res pon sible.
Vladimir Aleksandrovich Antonov
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I have often felt as though I had inherited all the defiance and all the passions with which our ancestors defended their Temple and could gladly sacrifice my life for one great moment in history. And at the same time I always felt so helpless and incapable of expressing these ardent passions even by a word or a poem.
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It is a mighty error to suppose that none but violent and strong passions, such as love and ambition, are able to vanquish the rest. Even idleness, as feeble and languishing as it is, sometimes reigns over them; it usurps the throne and sits paramount over all the designs and actions of our lives, and imperceptibly wastes and destroys all our passions and all our virtues.
Francois de La Rochefoucauld
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The mind of a man that loves God does not fight against things or thoughts about them, but against the passions that are connected with these thoughts. That is, he does not struggle against a woman, or against one who has insulted him, and not against the images of them, but against the passions that are aroused by these images.
Maximus the Confessor
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Behold, O Lord, that I am indignant with myself, for my senseless, profitless, hurtful, perilous passions; that I loathe myself, for these inordinate, unseemly, deformed, false, shameful, disgraceful passions; that my confusion is daily before me, and the shame of my face hath covered me. Alas! woe, woe! O me, how long?
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Nature in causing reason and the passions to be born at one and the same time apparently wished by the latter gift to distract man from the evil she had done him by the former, and by only permitting him to live for a few years after the loss of his passions seems to show her pity by early deliverance from a life that reduces him to reason as his sole resource.
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We must not only put bodily passions to death but also destroy the soul's impassioned thoughts. Hence the Psalmist says, 'Early in the morning I destroyed all the wicked of the earth, that I might cut off all evil-doers from the city of the Lord' (Ps. 101:8) - that is, the passions of the body and the soul's godless thoughts.
Maximus the Confessor
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An immoderate fondness for dress, for pleasure, and for sway, are the passions of savages; the passions that occupy those uncivilized beings who have not yet extended the dominion of the mind, or even learned to think with the energy necessary to concatenate that abstract train of thought which produces principles.... that women from their education and the present state of civilized life, are in the same condition, cannotbe controverted.
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By directing our sentiments, passions, and reason toward the common human plight, imagination grants us the advantages of a moralexistence. What we surrender of innocent love of self is exchanged for the safeties and pleasures of belonging to a larger whole. We are born dependent, but only imagination can bind our passions to other human beings.
Louise J. Kaplan
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By means of poetry all this suffering and effort could be transformed into dream; no matter how much of the ephemeral existed, poetry could immortalize it by turning it into song. Only two or three primitive passions had governed me until this time: fear, the struggle to conquer fear, and the yearning for freedom. But now two new passions were kindled inside me: beauty and the thirst for learning.
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The purpose of adolescence is to revise the past, not to obliterate it. . . . Adolescence entails the deployment of family passions to the passions and ideals that bind individuals to new family units, to their communities, to the species, to nature, to the cosmos. Therefore, given half a chance, the revolution at issue in adolescence becomes a revolution of transformation, not of annihilation.
Louise J. Kaplan
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... those who sit in the darkness of passions and whose minds are blinded by ignorance, or, rather, those who have not acquired the 'mind of Christ' (I Cor. 2:16), think that he who has the mind of Christ is foolish, and that he who has it not is sensible. Of these the prophet David rightly states, 'The ignorant and foolish perish together' (Ps. 49:11). Therefore such men twist the whole of Scripture according to their own desires (cf. II Pet. 3:3, 16) and corrupt themselves in their own passions. But it is not divine Scripture that suffers from this, but those who disfigure it!
Symeon the New Theologian
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As you have been on the road, what have you been hearing from readers about A RELIABLE WIFE? RG: The most interesting question came from a young man in his 30s who asked me to discuss the relationship between love and aging. We think when we're young that, as we get older, our passions and enthusiasms will fade, will lose their hold on us, and we will enter into some more gentle phase. I don't find it to be true. Our passions, in fact, intensify, like a sauce that has been reduced to its essence by long slow simmering over a low flame.
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Even though flowers fall, don't regret it. Even though weeds grow, don't hate them. Don't arouse the passions of attraction and repulsion, hating and loving. If only we don't arouse the passions, the falling of flowers and the growing of weeds as they are is manifest absolute reality.
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To enter heaven is to become more human than you ever succeeded in being on earth; to enter hell is to be banished from humanity. What is cast (or casts itself) into hell is not a man: it is 'remains.' To be a complete man means to have the passions obedient to the will and the will offered to God: to have been a man - to be an ex-man or 'damned ghost' - would presumably mean to consist of a will utterly centered in its self and passions utterly uncontrolled by the will.
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Lack of interest in mission is not fundamentally caused by an absence of compassion or commitment, nor by lack of information or exhortation. And lack of interest in mission is not remedied by more shocking statistics, more gruesome stories or more emotionally manipulative commands to obedience. It is best remedied by intensifying peoples' passion for Christ, so that the passions of his heart become the passions that propel our hearts.
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Whatever a man loves he inevitably clings to, and in order not to lose it he rejects everything that keeps him from it. So he who loves God cultivates pure prayer, driving out every passion that keeps him from it. He who drives out self-love, the mother of the passions, will with God's help easily rid himself of the rest, such as anger, irritation, rancor and so on. But he who is dominated by self-love is overpowered by the other passions, even against his will. Self-love is the passion of attachment to the body.
Maximus the Confessor
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It's hard to trust your child to find his or her own path, especially when we're told everyday by professionals that children must fit into rigid boxes. We all want to give our kids the best opportunities we can, which is why it feels like such a disservice if we don't push them in the "right" direction. Celebrating you children's passions rather than redirecting them, especially when those passions don't line up neatly with a checklist for future success, can feel like jumping off a cliff. It certainly did for me. But that leap of faith is necessary if your kids are going to fly.
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Music directly imitates the passions or states of the soul...when one listens to music that imitates a certain passion, he becomes imbued withthe same passion; and if over a long time he habitually listens to music that rouses ignoble passions, his whole character will be shaped to an ignoble form.
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What is a Poet? He is a man speaking to men: a man, it is true, endued with more lively sensibility, more enthusiasm and tenderness, who has a greater knowledge of human nature, and a more comprehensive soul, than are supposed to be common among mankind; a man pleased with his own passions and volitions, and who rejoices more than other men in the spirit of life that is in him; delighting to contemplate similar volitions and passions as manifested in the goings-on of the universe, and habitually impelled to create them where he does not find them.
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If you see the fury and hear the howling of the tempest, or read of shipwrecks, think of the storm of human passions causing daily groans and disturbance in the hearts of men, wrecking the spiritual ship of the soul or the ship of human society; and pray fervently to the Lord that He may subdue the tempest of sins, as He once subdued the tempest at sea by His word, and that He may root our passions from our hearts, and re-establish in them unceasing tranquility.
John of Kronstadt
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Shall I not render a service to men in speaking to them only of morality? This morality is so pure, so holy, so universal, so clear, so ancient, that it seems to come from God himself, like the light which we regard as the first of his works. Has he not given men self-love to secure their preservation; benevolence, beneficence, and virtue to control their self-love; the natural need to form a society; pleasure to enjoy, pain to warn us to enjoy in moderation, passions to spur us to great deeds, and wisdom to curb our passions?Â
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Our passions are the chief means of self-preservation; to try to destroy them is therefore as absurd as it is useless; this would be to overcome nature, to reshape God's handiwork. If God bade man annihilate the passions he has given him, God would bid him be and not be; He would contradict himself. He has never given such a foolish commandment, there is nothing like it written on the heart of man, and what God will have a man do, He does not leave to the words of another man. He speaks Himself; His words are written in the secret heart.
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Man is an animal, formidable both from his passions and his reason; his passions often urging him to great evils, and his reason furnishing means to achieve them. To train this animal, and make him amenable to order; to inure him to a sense of justice and virtue; to withhold him from ill courses by fear, and encourage him in his duty by hopes; in short, to fashion and model him for society, hath been the aim of civil and religious institutions; and, in all times, the endeavor of good and wise men. The aptest method for attaining this end hath been always judged a proper education.
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The history of ancient Greece showed that, in a democracy, emotion dominates reason to a greater extent than in any other political system, thus giving freer rein to the passions which sweep a state into war and prevent it getting out-at any point short of the exhaustion and destruction of one or other of the opposing sides. Democracy is a system which puts a brake on preparation for war, aggressive or defensive, but it is not one that conduces to the limitation of warfare or the prospects of a good peace. No political system more easily becomes out of control when passions are aroused. These defects have been multiplied in modern democracies, since their great extension of size and their vast electorate produce a much larger volume of emotional pressure.
B.H. Liddell Hart
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