No matter where I have been – in solitude or in human society – light and consolation pour forth into my soul from the Cross of Christ. Sin, which has possession of my entire being, does not cease to say to me, “Come down from the cross.” Alas! I come down from it, thinking to find righteousness outside of the Cross – and I fall into misery of soul: waves of agitation swallow me. Having come down from the cross, I am found to be without Christ.
How can I help my calamitous state? I pray to Christ to raise me up onto the cross again. As I pray, I myself try to be crucified, as one taught by experience – he who is not crucified is not Christ’s. Faith raises me up onto the cross; reason, falsely so called, full of faithlessness, brings me down from it.
St. Ignatius Brianchaninov