So, you, brother, who desire to reach this perfection, since it is necessary to fight yourself incessantly in order to bravely win and neutralize all your wills, big and small ones, you have to be prepared for this war with a motivated soul (for the wreath is given to no other but the brave warrior).
In this war, as it is more difficult than any other war (for fighting against ourselves, ourselves fight us back), our victory will be the most glorious one and the most welcome by God.
For if you decide to kill your mischievous passions, your desires and your wills, instead of beating yourself up about it, until you bleed, and if you fast more than the old hermits and if you bring back to Good thousands souls, while you are still possessed by passions, God will like you more and you will serve Him better.
Saint Nicodemus of Mount Athos
(The invisible war)