Answers of the Great Masters of the Spiritual Life to the
Questions of Their Disciples.
Disciple: How would you know that a person is
Master: He does not fear death.
Disciple: How else does he show this since
seldom is one faced with death?
Master: He welcomes sufferings. Those things
which are harmful for the body and which are reluctantly sustained
by nature and consequently cause pain are considered as nothing when
compared with what is awaited in heaven.
Disciple: Does this mean that to discover truth
you must suffer?
Master: When one discovers truth he also gains
the experience of suffering. One cannot exist without the other.
Disciple: Would you say, therefore, that every
suffering man's experience is planned by God?
Master: God, very carefully, provides for man; he is not
abandoned to chance. This is particularly true for those who seek
Him and they see it clearly that suffering is part of His plan.
That needs great faith! What of those without faith?
Those without faith experience sufferings as misfortunes. These
cause them to distrust God and think that God does not govern the
Isaac of Nineveh, 660 A.D.