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The Aim of Christian Life

We have published an illustrated english translation of the 1914 edition of the conversation between St Seraphim and Nicholas Motovilov.

A little over a year before his death in 1833, Fr Seraphim met in the forest with one of his spiritual children, Nicholas Motovilov. All his life this young man had wished to know the aim of the Christian life, but no-one had been able to satisfy him with their answers. In this conversation, Fr. Seraphim tells him, 'The true aim of our Christian life is the acquisition of the Holy Spirit.'

Dissatisfied with words alone, the young man presses Fr Seraphim, wanting to understand more. During the events that follow, the saint encourages him to articulate in words his experience at every stage, until Fr Seraphim can say to Motovilov, "You yourself are shining just as I am,you too are now in the fullness of the Spirit of God. The Lord is with us."

Nicholas Motovilov feels infinite joy and warmth in his heart. Through his own experience he now knows the answer to his question. In this remarkable exchange, St Seraphim tells his young friend, 'this teaching is for the whole world.'

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Cambridge CB3 9DU, UK

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