The Imitation of Christ, Chapter XVII

Of a religious life

It behoveth thee to learn to mortify thyself in many things, if thou wilt live in amity and concord with other men. It is no small thing to dwell in a religious community or congregation, and to live there without complaint, and therein to remain faithful even unto death. Blessed is he who hath lived a good life in such a body, and brought it to a happy end. If thou wilt stand fast and wilt profit as thou oughtest, hold thyself as an exile and a pilgrim upon the earth. Thou wilt have to be counted as a fool for Christ, if thou wilt lead a religious life.

2. The clothing and outward appearance are of small account; it is change of character and entire mortification of the affections which make a truly religious man. He who seeketh aught save God and the health of his soul, shall find only tribulation and sorrow. Nor can he stand long in peace, who striveth not to be least of all and servant of all.

3. Thou art called to endure and to labour, not to a life of ease and trifling talk. Here therefore are men tried as gold in the furnace. No man can stand, unless with all his heart he will humble himself for God’s sake.

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5 thoughts on “The Imitation of Christ, Chapter XVII”

  1. This comment will not strive to be related to any specific article posted by Mr. Tracy. I’ve been trying to get an idea of how MHB has lost so many thoughtful commenters, comparing the close to zero comments of these current days, to the pre FAU days when it was lively, contentious, and well stocked.

    Of course it’s clear that the treatment received from FAU was cruel and traumatic. One can imagine the pressure to make promises to God in exchange for any relief whatsoever. Now more than ever, we need what Christianity has monopolized out of the grasp of people who may not appreciate having fellowship poisoned by this cruel and traumatizing religion. Eternal damnation is the central operating idea in this religion that must use this evil threat; where fearful to admit outwardly, the result is that people will do anything to escape even a hair’s breadth of uncertainty concerning it. That is a mind-lock that includes committing some of the very sins that are supposed to justify the damnation; although they be hidden under the veil of fervent devotion and obedience.

    This not a tirade against any Christian. It’s against the ultimate bane of civilization; Christianity. I don’t doubt that Christians are persecuted and that all monotheistic religions are vying for the same occupancy of the Planet Master Throne. In other words, the world kingship is the World Cup for the winner of this brutal competition. So persecution is no affirmation of being right. It only means that the other competitors had a better grip on their money giving flock, or are simply more ruthless.

    1. “[T]he ultimate bane of civilization, Christianity” and its one true, apostolic church, is largely responsible for the development of Western civilization over the past two millennia. This includes, speaking of higher ed, establishment of the first universities.

      As C.S. Lewis observes, Jesus was either a liar, a lunatic, or Lord. Those who claim the former have busied themselves convincing their own captive, “money giving flock” that Christianity is, as the comment suggests, a colossal fraud based on an event that never occurred.

      1. Lewis observed wrong, for he left out the fourth possibility, that Jesus never existed.

        What did you do with all those remarkable skills that were used to pick apart the Sandy Hook operation? Why are there so many that can see through the psychological operations like Boston Marathon, but are completely blind to the biggest example of fraud, force, and forgery, ever.

        It’s only a theory of mine that traumatic mind control somehow manages to compartmentalize the trauma that is used to induce the desired set of beliefs and proclivities, which in turn become part of the compartment. Christianity is exactly a high example of traumatic mind control that depends on it’s central feature of the idea of eternal damnation. As I said before, people in the grips of the possibility of burning alive for all eternity, are likely to do anything to avoid it, including apology and defense for all of Christianity’s permissions of tyranny.

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