“What happens within a person at that moment when, suddenly torn out of an ordinary life, he is thrust under the jurisdiction of merciless and powerful forces which appear to have only one wish — his destruction? Is any kind of defense or resistance possible? Everything a person had lived by, everything he possessed, i.e., free will, people who were close to him, work which he enjoyed, private property, his physical being, his life — none of these is he able to defend, and all is in the hands of the forces of evil. . . .
Thus finding himself on the edge of an abyss, a person, before complete destruction, begins to understand that nevertheless something exists which is not within the realm of the external, invincible forces. And even though all the rest can no longer be saved, resistance, fight and victory are possible in one way: in the preservation of the soul — or to put it another way, which is, however, exactly the same thing — in safeguarding one’s spiritual freedom and in resistance to evil and force. However, in order for this fight to be successful or even possible, one must renounce, beforehand, everything that the physical forces can take away. . . .
Only through this complete renunciation does a person become free — only then, when he no longer has anything to lose.”
Mihajlo Mihajlov, Underground Notes (London, 1977), pages 178-179. Italics original.
“. . . having nothing, yet possessing everything.” 2 Corinthians 6:10
This post was originally published on The Gospel Coalition