Acquiring the Spirit of God is the true aim of our Christian life, while prayer, fasting, almsgiving and other good works done for Christ’s sake are merely means for acquiring the Spirit of God.

(Saint) Seraphim of Sarov, On the Acquisition of the Holy Spirit

There, in one sentence, is perhaps the explanation of the purpose of this entire enterprise[1]. Now, of course, everyone wants details, so I try to give them as best I can.

The Spirit of God (a.k.a. the Holy Spirit) is the mystical communion with God which is available to everyone who looks for it. This union with God is also called Christ, which Jesus embodied. It’s clear from the Gospels that Jesus never meant to imply that only he could have this union with God – it is available to everyone who requests it.

When the Spirit of God inhabits your soul, you experience Christ-ness, which is the union of yourself with God, the divine foundation of the universe. This is the true imitation of Christ, which has been the subject of Christian spirituality for two thousand years.

But sometimes people don’t know how to take yes for an answer. Seraphim explains:

I will explain this point to your Godliness through an example. Imagine that you have invited me to pay you a visit, and at your invitation I come to have a talk with you. But you continue to invite me, saying “Come in, please. Do come in!” Then I should be obliged to think: “What is the matter with him? Is he out of his mind?”

(Saint) Seraphim of Sarov (ibid)

Once we have grasped this communication with God, we need to shut up and listen:

At the descent of the Holy Spirit we must remain in complete silence, in order to hear clearly and intelligibly all the words of eternal life which he will then deign to communicate.

(Saint) Seraphim of Sarov (ibid)

Ridding yourself of constant head chatter is essential for acquiring and maintaining the Spirit of God.

[1] As mentioned in the introduction! I promised you details.

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