The world is falling away. The center cannot hold. Everyone can feel it in their bones, even those who are far from God and participate wholeheartedly in the Antichrist system that aims to destroy souls for eternity. Today’s man is faced with innumerable options on how to “enjoy life,” but only one option transcends the material, not to improve this life, but to prepare for the one to come. The best response in these times is to faithmax.

Pickup artist teachings have long since taught the importance of maximizing your look to be attractive to women. There would be no point to learn all the pickup lines, routines, and so on if you look unkempt. Secular women love a modern, refined look, so if you wanted to be with secular women, you had to pay close attention to your appearance as if you were a woman yourself.

Over the course of decades, pickup artistry moved away from social value, status, and the art of charm to “looksmaxing,” which is being an attractive man through bodybuilding, trendy haircuts, and the like. This strategy wasn’t entirely flawed because these lustful men would be interacting with exceedingly shallow and lustful women who sought dopamine from hooking up with “hot” guys. The top 1% of good-looking men on Tinder would get most of the matches, and even if they possessed no charm, could finagle fornication from women who were desperate to be personally validated by a man approved by the world.

Unfortunately for the men who looksmaxed their way onto a woman’s bed, and for the women who slept with men they found attractive, fornication is an immoral act that darkens the soul and separates one from God, so pickup artistry, game, and looksmaxing were dead-ends that offered only temporarily pleasure to the body and—if the fornicator remained unrepentant—condemnation for the soul.

Shortcuts can be handy in times of confusion or rapid change. Looksmaxing, while used as a tool for sin, was useful for the men who desired sin. For Christians who desire salvation, but live in dizzying times where each day offers its own challenges and pitfalls, I believe a sound strategy is to faithmax. This is where we focus exclusively on building our faith, repenting, confessing our sins before God, and living in accordance to His will. Our faith must be prioritized and maximized to what the soul can handle, above all other worldly or secular pursuits that offer no profit to the life we will have after death.

To faithmax is to strive higher for God every day of our lives. A life of faithmaxing will include…

  • Praying at least twice a day
  • Reading at least one chapter of the New Testament daily (or at least the Church’s prescribed Bible readings of the day)
  • Reading at least 10 pages of religious material per day
  • Actively replacing secular content with Christian content
  • Actively struggling against sins
  • Starving the old man while feeding the new man with God’s grace
  • Doing good deeds out of love
  • Weakening our attachment to worldly things
  • Watching what comes out of our mouth (profanity, judgments) and guarding against secular influences
  • Participating in Saturday night All-Night Vigil and Sunday morning Liturgy (within the Orthodox Church)

The “maxing” of faithmaxing implies that you continually grow your faith and do more today than you did before. I used to pray only ten minutes a day, but now it is more. I read more of the Bible each day, read more Orthodox books, and am more watchful about committing sinful behaviors. There must be growth in the spiritual life, because if there is no growth, Satan needs to only give you a slight push so that you start going backwards. You’re either growing in zeal or at risk of falling away.

During times of relative peace, faithmaxing can be your focus, because in times of tribulation where you face homelessness, starvation, violence, illness, or persecution, you may not be able to faithmax—you will only be able to use what you have already built. You’ll be able to withdraw from the faith savings account instead of making deposits. It is simply too hard to strengthen faith practices in the initial acute stages of a new shock, which means that it’s today that you should faithmax, without delay, not tomorrow, because when severe tribulations come, you may not even have access to your prayer books to practice the faith. You may not have access to a Church or to the Eucharist. The foundation must be built now, because from a foundation comes the strength to fight what could be a long war.

For example, if you lose your job suddenly, you may be so anxious and stressed that you’ll forget to pray. There’s no way you will add new daily faith habits to your routine during such a crisis. If you get diagnosed with a terminal disease, you will experience so much emotion that the last thing on your mind is to read the Gospel of Luke. All the practices of faith must be cemented in your heart and soul before the tribulation arrives at your door with the hope that you even use 10% of it to get you through the hard time.

I have known many people who experienced states of limbo due to the fear of losing their jobs because of vaccine mandates and other authoritarian measures, but life remains easy for me. I live comfortably, have enough money to fund my internet platforms and baking hobby, and don’t have any responsibilities that have become too onerous. Materially, life is stable, but I’m vigorously trying to use this time wisely by faithmaxing. I can say that I’m doing much more to worship God than a year ago, because each month I struggle to do a little bit more than the previous month. When tribulations come to me, and they certainly will, I will use the faith I built up to help get me through. I faithmax in times of calm to survive when times are rough, and though times are not entirely “calm” right now, they are calm enough for me, and I pray to God every day that He can allow me to one day sustain the harshest of persecutions, because we don’t know what God will ultimately require of our souls.

If you’re not faithmaxing then you’re faithminimizing, faithsinking, faithplunging. There is no stillness in this world, you’re either moving forward or you’re moving backwards, and if you don’t perceive forward movement then you must immediately get to work. Visit an Orthodox Church, talk to the priest, and ask his advice on how to build your faith. Start praying. Buy the Orthodox Study Bible. You still have time, but how much time we don’t know. Faithmax today and every day so that when hardship comes, you can raise your hands in the air and say, “Lord, have mercy on me,” and not worry about what comes next.

Read Next: 10 Reasons Why You Should Visit An Orthodox Monastery

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Wonderful read, I love it. I actually just bought that Orthodox Study Bible too. Came in Saturday.

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I think the line “if you’re not faithmaximing then you’re faithminimizing” can be very problematic without spirtual guidance and certainly can lead to pride and despair about one’s own ability. Yes, everyone should try to be as orthodox as much as possible, but what can an individual do? This is discernment, which should come from a holy elder who knows the person and knows what they are capable of. Not everyone starts off with the same fasting rules for example. Is someone who fasts less than, at the guidance of his Father, less than someone who eats nothing? For an article that claims to be against pharisees, it certainly airs toward them. Consider this story from the life of St. Anthony the Great:

“A hunter was roaming the desert when he saw Abba Antony hanging out with some of his disciples.

The hunter was shocked, and a little disappointed. He thought a monastic father would be more disciplined than this. Abba Antony then asked the hunter to put an arrow in his bow and cast it.

Confused, the hunter obliged. Abba asked him to shoot another, and another and another. The hunter then told St. Antony that if he kept this up, the bow would bend and break.
Abba antony then said:

“It is the same with the work of God. If we stretch the brethren beyond measure they will soon break. Sometimes it is necessary to come down to meet their needs.”

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What you beautifully describe as Faithmaxing basically seems to be exactly the same as what I picked up somewhere on the internet: the five ascetic practices according to orthodox saint Nikitas Stethatos: study, prayer, self-control, silence and vigils.

Personally, for some reason I often feel that I can focus the best on studying Christianity while I am procrastinating on some big important secular task. I wonder why that is...

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Mark my words this man will be canonized in the Orthodox Church as Saint Daryush of Washington one day.

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Do you think that if the time of persecution is long enough you will deplete your "faith well" eventually? Or the struggles just will strengthen your resolve to walk with God? I think that hard times are more likely to turn you to the right path and easy times can easily distance you from the faith.

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Mark my words this man will be canonized in the Orthodox Church as Saint Daryush of Washington one day.

Comments like this can be really damaging to someone with faith. I long ago learned to ignore all compliments. It's better not to compliment Christians, lest they develop pride.

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Comments like this can be really damaging to someone with faith. I long ago learned to ignore all compliments. It's better not to compliment Christians, lest they develop pride.

There's got to be a distinction between feeling good because someone complimented you and pride, right?

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Very nice, thank you @Roosh. I like the term "faithmaxing"! :D

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There's got to be a distinction between feeling good because someone complimented you and pride, right?

I don't really believe there is. Any good we are capable of doing is a result of God's grace alone.

The contemporary society has most of us brainwashed that we must feel about ourselves at all times ie. self-love, self-esteem, etc. The deeper I look into myself the more evil I find. I pray that God gives me the grace and humility to root this out and expose it to the light. This is an endless task as we will never be perfect as Jesus is, but must strive to be regardless.

Pride is an exceptionally dangerous sin as Roosh has pointed out.

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There's got to be a distinction between feeling good because someone complimented you and pride, right?

The fathers say we should be dead to praise and insult alike.

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The fathers say we should be dead to praise and insult alike.

When

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There's got to be a distinction between feeling good because someone complimented you and pride, right?

@clzoomer - what is the difference between the feelings of a compliment to you, and your idea of feeling pride?

A compliment is a form of praise or approval from an individual - his or her's admiration with something you did.
Pride (in the form of a compliment) is the self feeling of another individual's admiration. His or her's words satisfy you - placing this individual in high regard.

Pride is the deadliest of sins because it can be used by individuals to manipulate. I dislike to use this as an example, but if a pretty girl makes you feel good by complimenting you would you still have the same feelings if you found out she was a harlot?

The opposite of pride (vice) is to be humble (virtue).
The Bible provides God's Word about being given grace to the humble: once in the Old Testament (Proverbs) and twice in the New Testament (James, Peter).

Here is a short article from Orthodox Church in American. Would be interested in hearing your thoughts:

In the Orthodox tradition, humility has often been called the “mother of all virtues,” and pride has been named “the cause of all sin.” The wise and honest person is the one who is humble. [quote link from OCA]

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Mark my words this man will be canonized in the Orthodox Church as Saint Daryush of Washington one day.

As Roosh says, be careful throwing around praise like that. You're just saying that because Roosh was already a fairly prominent public figure and the proprietor of this forum. There are other posters on here who deserve more praise as a Christian than Roosh himself, but you're not praising them because their names didn't already have neon signs from a pre-conversion time pointing to them.

Not saying that Roosh isn't doing good work, but there's definitely a halo effect around the Roosh name. So be careful about saying things like that.

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There's got to be a distinction between feeling good because someone complimented you and pride, right?

Thomas Merton said, “perfect humility implies perfect confidence in the power of God.”

I think the distinction between feeling good because someone complimented you and pride can perhaps be seen when taking the idea expressed by Merton and viewing it from the perspective of Paul’s words in 1 Cor 4:7, “Who confers distinction upon you? What do you possess that you have not received? But if you have received it, why are you boasting as if you did not receive it?”

In other words, if someone were to pay me a compliment, if my identity is firmly rooted in God, then I can take that compliment and see it as a compliment paid to my Creator, who graced me with whatever trait it was that was complimented. It’s not I, but He, who deserves the credit for all good things. I can feel good about God’s creative goodness.

I think CS Lewis explained this idea better than probably anyone in The Screwtape Letters (the “Enemy” being God in this story): “The Enemy wants to bring the man to a state of mind in which he could design the best cathedral in the world, and know it to be the best, and rejoice in the fact, without being any more (or less) or otherwise glad at having done it than he would be if it had been done by another. The Enemy wants him, in the end, to be so free from any bias in his own favour that he can rejoice in his own talents as frankly and gratefully as in his neighbour’s talents—or in a sunrise, an elephant, or a waterfall. He wants each man, in the long run, to be able to recognise all creatures (even himself) as glorious and excellent things. He wants to kill their animal self-love as soon as possible; but it is His long-term policy, I fear, to restore to them a new kind of self-love—a charity and gratitude for all selves, including their own; when they have really learned to love their neighbours as themselves, they will be allowed to love themselves as their neighbours.”

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The comment wasn't really intended as a compliment, more as a future possible prognosis. Only God knows for sure who will become a Saint. I don't think the comment detracts from all the other Christians who may or may not have displayed more heroic virtue than Roosh. If it instills negative pride (vainglory; arrogance; superbia) there's a difference between healthy and unhealthy pride. A compliment, if it contains a factual estimation of skill or virtue, should not necessitate unhealthy pride. But in any case it's IS a compliment towards God as all grace comes from Him alone.

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There's got to be a distinction between feeling good because someone complimented you and pride, right?

God soften a heart tonight, and allowed further reflection for a different response.

Here is another way to look at “paying compliments to another individual,” in a manner that is praising God’s work through His children. And connecting God’s children through the act of “sharing the faith with one another.” Sharing similar experiences with living in this world, but overcoming tribulations through faith in Jesus Christ. Our Lord.

Tonight at Vespers, there was an older lady who knew, through our same employer, the Christian lady responsible for bringing Christ back into [my] life. She often used her spiritual gifts of evangelism during work hours in our office. I praised the Christian lady and shared we still kept in contact from time to time. The older lady asked to give encouragement (endurance); and to share a praise to her: professionalism in a difficult working environment. A working environment (and a world) not kind to Christianity.

Glory to God for His spiritual gifts given to His children.

Romans 1: 11-12
"I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong— that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith."

Commentary for Orthodox Bible:
This epistle contains the core of apostolic doctrine essential for the foundation of a local community. The Church reads Romans following Pentecost, the season in which we celebrate the spread of the gospel from Jerusalem to the ends of the world.

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