What was the reason for man’s fall?

25 September 2019

The fall was the result of the inexperience and carelessness of God-created man. These made him neglect and practically betray his personal union and communion with God the Father, believing that he can prosper by himself.

Therefore, the fall is regarded and is named as the detachment and withdrawal of each and every created being from the first cause of creation, i.e God. The universe, according to divine revelation, is that which has been caused and as such it is not self-existent, but it exists because it participates in the divine energy and providence. Therefore, if that which has been created is cut off from the cohesive force and energy of God, it is spoiled and dies.

The defection of beings from God resulted in two equally powerful disasters. One is the audacity against and the defection from the Creator and governor. The other is the separation from the source of eternal life, God, who is the only cause of existence and cohesion.


The same offense caused disaster in both the human and the angelic nature. The angels, because of their selfish haughtiness, imagined that they could become independent from God. They lost not only their significance, their state and their illumination, but they were also altered from most the beautiful beings into horrific monsters and became the instigators of horror and terror, without any intention of repentance and return.

Even though man, who became a victim of demonic wickedness, has lost his god-like state and has been exiled here, to the valley of tears, he did not lose the advantage of repentance, which may prompt him to return.

Excerpts from the book ″Discourse on Mount Athos by Elder Joseph of Vatopedi.
Translated by Olga Konari Kokkinou from the Greek edition: Γέροντος Ιωσήφ Βατοπαιδινού, Συζητήσεις στον Άθωνα, Ψυχοφελή Βατοπαιδινά 13, Ιερά Μεγίστη Μονή Βατοπαιδίου, Έκδοσις Α΄2003