Anthony the Great
- XX -
A brother renounced the world and gave his goods to the poor, but he kept back a little for his personal expenses. He went to see Abba Anthony. When he told him this, the old man said to him, "If you want to be a monk, go into the village, buy some meat, cover your naked body with it and come here like that." The brother did so, and the dogs and birds tore at his flesh. When he came back the old man asked him whether he had followed his advice. He showed him his wounded body, and Abba Anthony said, "Those who renounce the world but want to keep something for themselves are torn in this way by the demons who make war on them."
- From 'The Sayings of the Desert Fathers', Benedicta Ward, SLG (trans). Cistercian Publications, 1984.