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The Great Anthony of the Desert

Author: Brian Cavanaugh, T.O.R.

Once the great Anthony of the Desert was relaxing with his disciples outside his hut when a hunter came by. The hunter was surprised to see Anthony relaxing, and rebuffed him for taking it easy. It was not his idea of what a holy monk should be doing. Anthony replied, “Bend your bow and shoot an arrow.” And the hunter did so. “Bend it again and shoot another arrow,” said Anthony. The hunter did so, again and again. The hunter finally said, “Abba Anthony, if I keep my bow always stretched, it will break.” So it is with the monk,” replied Anthony. “if we push ourselves beyond measure, we will break. It is right from time to time to relax our efforts.”

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