Saint Basil the Great on Salvation in the Monastic Life

Do not think that all who live in a monastery are saved, the bad as well as the good, for this is not so. Many, indeed, come to the life of virtue, but few bear its yoke. The kingdom of heaven belongs to the violent and “the violent take it by force”— these are the words of the Gospel (vid. Mt. 11:12). By “violence” is meant the affliction of the body which the disciples of Christ voluntarily undergo by denying their own will, refusing respite to the body, and observing the commandments of Christ. If, then, you wish to seize the kingdom of God, become a man of violence; bow your neck to the yoke of Christ’s service. Bind the strap of the yoke tightly about your throat. Let it pinch your neck. Rub it thin by labor in acquiring virtues, in fasting, in vigils, in obedience, in stillness, in psalmody, in prayer, in tears, in manual labor, in bearing all the tribulations which befall you at the hands of men and demons.

“Βασιλείου τοῦ Μεγάλου, Ἀσκητικὰ Αʹ, ΕΠΕ 8, 122–23; see also Wagner, Saint Basil: Ascetical Works, vol. 9, 30.”