Every year Father Cornillo opened the vestry of his little country church and received visits from the young people of neighbouring villages.
They came from far to receive advice and to learn about what to meditate on.
One day, a young girl from a good family knelt at the feet of the priest. “Father,” she said, “I want to become a saint. What should I do?”
“Follow your heart, and never deviate from what it tells you,” Father Cornillo replied.
The girl was pleased with the advice. ‘How easy it is to become a saint,’ she thought. ‘All I have to do is listen to what my heart says.’
But before she could get up and leave the church, the priest added, “To follow you heart you will have to be very strong, and your life will be full of sacrifice.”
Father Cornillo was perfectly right: listening to your heart requires tremendous willpower.
It is not a question of living according to what you feel like doing day by day. On the contrary, you have to seek out the wisdom of your heart, and never give up. You cannot be satisfied with little victories, and you must not fall prey to self satisfaction.
Listening to your heart means being hard on yourself, and never trying to circumvent its moral requirements.
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“The intelligent man who is proud of his own intelligence is like a condemned man who is proud of his large prison cell.” ~ Simone Weil