To fear the Lord is the beginning of wisdom: and it was created with the faithful in the womb.
All Commentaries on Wisdom of Sirach 1:14 Go To Wisdom of Sirach 1
Gregory the Theologian
Since grace has been given to us to flee from superstitious error and to be joined to the truth and to serve the living and true God and to rise above creation"passing by all that is subject to time and motion"let us look at and reason on God and divine things in a way that corresponds to this grace given us. But let us begin our discussion of them from the most fitting point. And the most fitting is what Solomon laid down for us: The beginning of wisdom, he says, is to get wisdom. And what this is he tells us: The beginning of wisdom is fear. For we must not begin with contemplation and leave off with fear"for an unbridled contemplation would perhaps push us over a precipice. Rather, we must be grounded and purified and so to say made light by fear, and thus we may be raised to the height. For where fear is there is keeping of commandments, and where there is keeping of commandments there is purifying of the flesh, that cloud that covers the soul and does not allow it to see the divine Ray. And where there is purifying there is illumination, and illumination is the satisfying of desire to those who long for the greatest things, or the greatest Thing or that which surpasses all greatness.