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When one keeps silent, he is given time and freedom for prayer and gathering; when, however, he passes his hours heedlessly, he does not have time for prayer, and from his heedless speech he also derives different sins. For this reason, the Holy Fathers placed the virtue of silence at the head of the virtues, for without this no virtue is able to stand in the soul of man. Therefore silence, prayer, obedience; when you practice these virtues with the help of God, then you will know the light of Christ is within your soul.
~ Elder Ephraim of Philotheou