What does total abstinence mean?

What does total abstinence mean?

drink even water

Question: What does total abstinence mean? Is it when you are not allowed to drink even water, or is it something deeper than that?

Answer: I believe it is deeper than that. First of all, abstinence means vigilance of one’s mind and heart, and then, of course, abstinence from certain kinds of food. For instance, total abstinence is recommended during the First Week of the Lent, when an individual is strongly advised not to eat anything till Wednesday or Friday. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it. (Matthew 19: 12).  Anyway, abstinence consists not only of food. It entails control over our thoughts, eyes, ears, and tongues.

Archpriest Andrey Lemeshonok

June 22, 2022
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