Evagrius helped promote monasticism as “the highest expression of our love and devotion for God.” After the conversion of Constantine, the Christian faith became a recognized religion. Martyrdom ceased to be the highest expression. Monasticism took its place.

Evagrius created a list of eight deadly thoughts (compressed by a later writer into the seven deadly sins) and eight godly virtues.
The eight deadly thoughts are: gluttony, anger, greed or avarice, envy or vainglory, pride, lust or impurity, indifferent or impatient discouragement (sloth), and melancholy or depression.
The eight godly virtues are: temperance, mildness, generosity, happiness, humility, chastity, diligence, and wisdom.
The godly virtues help us to overcome the corresponding deadly thoughts. For example, temperance overcomes gluttony, mildness overcomes anger, generosity overcomes greed, etc.
Beebe and Foster comment, “The emptying of the mind of evil must, of necessity, involve the filling of it with God.” This is what Evagrius recognizes.
Advertisements