How Should We Pray the Jesus Prayer?|
Mental prayer...is the result of much vocal prayer, and mental prayer leads to the prayer of the heart.
St Ignatius Brianchaninov (d. 1867) quoting Russian hieromonk St. Dorotheus (d. 1865)
When you pray, keep to the rule that it is better to say five words from the depth of your heart than ten thousand words with your tongue only.
St John of Kronstadt (d. 1908) On Prayer
For a whole week I stayed along in my hut and recited the Jesus Prayer six thousand times every day, neither worrying about anything nor paying attention to the distracting thoughts...I became so accustomed to the Prayer that if for a short while I stopped reciting it I felt as if I were missing somethng.
Anonymous author of The Way of a Pilgrim (19th century Russia); chapter 1
It is used by saying, "Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me a sinner, ' and pulling one knot through your fingers. Say it again and move another knot, and so on with each prayer. You may make a prostration, from the waist or to the ground as you desire, at each prayer. Or for small knots, you may do a bow from the waist; large knots, prostrations. The whole rule consists of a fixed number of prayers and prostrations, interspersed with prayers in your own words.
St. Theophan the Recluse (d. 1894) Prayer Rule of Brief Prayers
Let His most sweet name be joined to your breath; and then you will know the profit of silence.*
Gregory the Theologian of Nazianzus (d.391) quoted in Writings from the Philokalia
Take up prayer more readily and continue without interruptions and you will soon achieve your desired goal. Soon a reverent attention to the One God will be established, and with it, inner peace. I say soon, not now, or in a day or two. Months may be required, sometimes, even years. Ask the Lord and He will help.
From the letters of St. Theophan the Recluse (d. 1894)
Methods and Steps in the Jesus Prayer
Prayer Rules using the Jesus Prayer