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Three Millennia of Greek Literature



from the Spiritual Homilies 4, 7, 15, 22, Translated by Elpenor 
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When the soul exits one’s body, a great mystery happens there. If a person is responsible for sins, there arrive groups of demons and left-side angels, and powers of darkness receive that soul and take hold of her to their own side. No one should be surprised by these. Because, if that person, while alive and being in the present age, subdued himself, obeyed and became a servant to these powers, how much more should he be possessed and enslaved by them when exiting the world? You should infer that these things are true, by understanding what happens at the godly side, because even now, before death, there are angels residing by the holy servants of God and holy spirits circle and protect them, and when they exit their body, choruses of angels receive their souls to their side, to the clean age, and thus they present these men to the Lord.

Makarios, Spiritual Speeches, 22

Ὅταν ἐξέλθῃ ἐκ τοῦ σώματος ψυχὴ ἀνθρώπου, μυστήριόν τι μέγα ἐκεῖ ἐπιτελεῖται. Ἐὰν γὰρ ᾖ ὑπεύθυνος ἐν ἁμαρτίαις, ἔρχονται χοροὶ δαιμόνων καὶ ἄγγελοι ἀριστεροί, καὶ δυνάμεις σκότους παραλαμβάνουσι τὴν ψυχὴν ἐκείνην καὶ κρατοῦσιν εἰς τὸ ἴδιον μέρος. Καὶ οὐκ ὀφείλει τις ἐπὶ τούτοις ξενίζεσθαι. Εἰ γὰρ ζῶν καὶ ὢν ἐν τῷ αἰῶνι τούτῳ ὑπετάγη καὶ ὑπήκουσε καὶ δοῦλος ἐγένετο αὐτοῖς, πόσῳ μᾶλλον ὅταν ἐξέρχηται ἐκ τοῦ κόσμου, κατέχεται καὶ κρατεῖται ὑπ᾿ αὐτῶν. Ἀπὸ δὲ τοῦ μέρους τοῦ ἀγαθοῦ ὀφείλεις νοῆσαι, ὅτι οὕτως ἔχει τὰ πράγματα· καὶ γὰρ τοῖς ἁγίοις δούλοις τοῦ Θεοῦ ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν εἰσιν ἄγγελοι παραμένοντες καὶ πνεύματα ἅγια κυκλοῦντα αὐτοὺς καὶ φυλάττοντα, καὶ ὅταν ἐξέλθωσιν ἀπὸ τοῦ σώματος, οἱ χοροὶ τῶν ἀγγέλων παραλαμβάνουσιν αὐτῶν τὰς ψυχὰς εἰς τὸ ἴδιον μέρος, εἰς τὸν καθαρὸν αἰῶνα, καὶ οὕτως αὐτοὺς προσάγουσι τῷ Κυρίῳ.

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