The Love of God and Neighbour

“Suppose there be a circle… imagine that this circle is the world: the centre of the circle, God, and the radii the different paths or ways of life of men. When the saints, desiring to approach God, walk towards the centre of the circle, insofar as they penetrate to the interior, they draw near to one another at the same time as they do to God. The more they draw near to others, the more they draw near to God. And you understand that the same works in reverse when one turns away from God to withdraw to the exterior: it is clear that the more we distance ourselves from others, the more we distance ourselves from God as well. Such is the nature of love. Insofar as we are on the outside and do not love God, to the same extent are we distant with regard to our neighbour. But if we love God, inasmuch as we approach God through love for Him, to the same extent we are united to love for our neighbour; and inasmuch as we are united to our neighbour, we are united to God.” St. Dorotheus, Instructions VI, 78 (which can be purchased here Discourses and Sayings of Abba Dorotheus

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