Seventyumi said: Some people say that in the human soul is an evil not found in animals and wild beasts, but this does not mean that people are worse than beasts. Rather, this evil character and darkness of soul in the human being hides a secret essential element. The more precious and noble that element is, the greater the veil to hide it, and such veils cannot be removed without great effort. These struggles are of various kinds. The greatest is to spend time with friends who have turned their faces to God and turned their backs on this world. There is no more difficult combat than this, for the very sight of them dissolves our ego and worldly desires. That is why they say that if a snake has seen no human for forty years it becomes a dragon, since it has seen no one who could stop the growth of its own evil nature. Wherever men or women put a big lock, that is a sign of something precious and valuable. Just like the snake that guards a treasure, do not regard a persons ugliness, but look instead at the preciousness of their treasure.
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