Eastern asceticism aims at divesting the mind of all that is relative and transitory, so that man may identify with the impersonal Absolute.
Saint Theophan the Recluse says, that the aim of an Orthodox Christian is “a living unity with God.” This referred to as “theosis.”
This is from the Life of St. Arsenios of Paros (1800-1877), who is commemorated by the Orthodox Church on January 31. A very instructive story.
In accordance with the tradition of our Holy Church, we approach our saints every day, honoring their memories, bearing their names and asking for their intercessions and mediations before the throne of God. They are saved, we are sinners; they are in the Light, we are in darkness. Full of illnesses we ask the saints to heal our bodies, though more rarely to heal our souls. And the saints, compassionate as they are, being imitators of the merciful God, graciously give us what we need, assisting us, strengthening us and healing us. But we especially recommend three medicines.
The birth of Christ restored the equality of the sexes. At the beginning of human history, a woman, Eve, was born, without female intervention, from a man, Adam, so in this rebalancing of history, a man, Christ, was born of a woman, Our Most Holy Lady, this time without male involvement. Christ brings the good tidings of the harmonious relationship between us and God and, by extension, with Himself, other people and nature. Love is restored to its place as the mystical axis of life.
What Elder Porphyrios, a Famous Monk-Priest, Says About How Parents and Teachers Need to Treat the Young
The education, says elder Porphyrios, lasts throughout life (lifelong education) and starts from fetal life, and constantly evolving. The most important educations and upbringing is the one held by the family. According to elder Porphyrios, the family is the first physical means of upbringing and educating people. In the first 5 years of human life the family with all functions – visible and hidden, conscious and unconscious – helps on shaping the personality.