The paradisal tree of life remained in paradise. In its place the tree of the Cross was set up on earth. The goal of both is the same: if a man eats, he will live. Come, cleave to it with your lips and drink life from it. You will cleave to the Cross when, having spurned self-pity, you become zealous for self-crucifixion; and you’ll begin to drink life from it when you enter into the struggle against the passions. Each conquest of the passions will be the same as receiving life-giving sap from the life-giving Cross. Do it more often, and you will the sooner slake your thirst and be filled with life. Wondrous are the properties of self-crucifixion! It seems to take away, but in taking away, it gives; it seems to cut off, but in cutting off, it imparts; it seems to kill, but in killing, it gives life. It is none other than the Cross of Christ, by which death is trampled down and life is given.
– St. Theophan the Recluse