St. Anselm of Canterbury

 Anselm of Canterbury

St. Anselm: Proslogium; Monologium: An Appendix In Behalf Of The Fool By Gaunilo; And Cur Deus Homo, Translated From The Latin By Sidney Norton Deane, B. A. With An Introduction, Bibliography, And Reprints Of The Opinions Of Leading Philosophers And Writers On The Ontological Argument, (Chicago, The Open Court Publishing Company,, 1903, reprinted 1926)Anselm (1033-1109):






Anselmus Cantuariensis PROSLOGION

















AFTER I had published, at the solicitous entreaties of certain brethren, a brief work (the Monologium) as an example of meditation on the grounds of faith, in the person of one who investigates, in a course of silent reasoning with himself, matters of which he is ignorant; considering that this book was knit together by the linking of many arguments, I began to ask myself whether there might be found a single argument which would require no other for its proof than itself alone; and alone would suffice to demonstrate that God truly exists, and that there is a supreme good requiring nothing else, which all other things require for their existence and well-being; and whatever we believe regarding the divine Being.

Postquam opusculum quoddam velut exemplum meditandi de ratione fidei cogentibus me precibus quorundam fratrum, in persona alicuius tacite secum ratiocinando quae nesciat investigantis edidi: considerans illud esse multorum concatenatione contextum argumentorum, coepi mecum quaerere, si forte posset inveniri unum argumentum, quod nullo alio ad se probandum quam se solo indigeret, et solum ad astruendum quia Deus vere est, et quia est summum bonum nullo alio indigens, et quo omnia indigent ut sint et ut bene sint, et quaecumque de divina credimus substantia, sufficeret.

Although I often and earnestly directed my thought to this end, and at some times that which I sought seemed to be just within my reach, while again it wholly evaded my mental vision, at last in despair I was about to cease, as if from the search for a thing which could not be found. But when I wished to exclude this thought altogether, lest, by busying my mind to no purpose, it should keep me from other thoughts, in which I might be successful; then more and more, though I was unwilling and shunned it, it began to force itself upon me, with a kind of importunity. So, one day, when I was exceedingly wearied with resisting its importunity, in the very conflict of my thoughts, the proof of which I had despaired offered itself, so that I eagerly embraced the thoughts which I was strenuously repelling.

Ad quod cum saepe studioseque cogitationem converterem, atque aliquando mihi videretur iam posse capi quod quaerebam, aliquando mentis aciem omnino fugeret: tandem desperans volui cessare velut ab inquisitione rei, quam inveniri esset impossibile. Sed cum illam cogitationem, ne mentem meam frustra occupando ab aliis, in quibus proficere possem, impediret, penitus a me vellem excludere: tunc magis ac magis nolenti et defendenti se coepit cum importunitate quadem ingerere. Cum igitur quadam die vehementer eius importunitati resistendo fatigarer, in ipso cogitationum conflictu sic se obtulit quod desperaveram, ut studiose cogitationem amplecterer, quam sollicitus repellebam.

Thinking, therefore, that what I rejoiced to have found, would, if put in writing, be welcome to some readers, of this very matter, and of some others, I have written the following treatise, in the person of one who strives to lift his mind to the contemplation of God, and seeks to understand what he believes. In my judgment, neither this work nor the other, which I mentioned above, deserved to be called a book, or to bear the name of an author; and yet I thought they ought not to be sent forth without some title by which they might, in some sort, invite one into whose hands they fell to their perusal. I accordingly gave each a title, that the first might be known as, An Example of Meditation on the Grounds of Faith, and its sequel as, Faith Seeking Understanding. But, after, both had been copied by many under these titles, many urged me, and especially Hugo, the reverend Archbishop of Lyons, who discharges the apostolic office in Gaul, who instructed me to this effect on his apostolic authority --to prefix my name to these writings. And that this might be done more fitly, I named the first, Monologium, that is, A Soliloquy; but the second, Proslogium, that is, A Discourse.

Aestimans igitur quod me gaudebam invenisse, si scriptum esset, alicui legenti placiturum, de hoc ipso et de quibusdam aliis sub persona conantis erigere mentem suam ad contemplandum Deum et quaerentis intelligere quod credit, subditum scripsi opusculum. Et quoniam nec istud nec illud, cuius supra memini, dignum libri nomine aut cui auctoris praeponeretur nomen iudicabam, nec tamen eadem sine aliquo titulo, quo aliquem, in cuius manus veniret, quodam modo ad se legendum invitarent, dimittenda putabam: unicuique suum dedi titulum, ut prius Exemplum meditandi de ratione fidei, et sequens Fides quaerens intellectum diceretur. Sed cum iam a pluribus cum his titulis utrumque transcriptum esset, coegerunt me plures, et maxime reverendus archiepiscopus Lugdunensis, Hugo nomine, fungens in Gallia legatione Apostolica qui mihi hoc ex Apostolica praecepit auctoritate, ut nomen meum illis praescriberem. Quod ut aptius fieret, illud quidem Monologion, id est soliloquium, istud vero Proslogion, id est alloquium, nominavi.





CHAPTER 1. Exhortation of the mind to the contemplation of God.

1 Excitatio mentis ad contemplandum Deum





The Office of Readings, Wednesday,

Advent Week 1

UP now, insignificant man! flee for a little while your occupations; hide yourself, for a time, from the tumult of your thoughts. Cast aside, now, your burdensome cares, and put away your toilsome business. Yield room for some little time to God; and rest for a little time in him. Enter the inner chamber of your mind (cf. Mt 6:6); shut out all thoughts save that of God, and such as can aid you in seeking him; close your door and seek him. Speak now, my whole heart! speak now to God, saying, I seek your face; your face, Lord, do I desire (Ps.26.8).

Eia, nunc homuncio, fuge paululum occupationes tuas, absconde te modicum a tumultuosis cogitationibus tuis Abice nunc onerosas curas, et postpone laboriosas distentiones tuas. Vaca aliquantulum Deo, et requiesce aliquantulum in eo. "Intra in cubiculum" [Mt 6,6] mentis tuae, exclude omnia praeter Deum et quae te iuvent ad quaerendum eum, et "clauso ostio" [Mt 6,6] quaere eum. Dic nunc, totum "cor meum", dic nunc Deo: "Quaero vultum tuum, vultum tuum, Domine, requiro" [Ps 26,8].

And now, O Lord my God, teach my heart where and how it may seek you, where and how it may find you. Lord, if you are not here, where shall I seek you, being absent? But if you are everywhere, why do I not see you present? Truly you dwell in unapproachable light (1Tm 6:16). But where is unapproachable light, or how shall I come to it? Or who shall lead me to that light and into it, that I may see you in it? Again, by what marks, under what form, shall I seek you? I have never seen you, O Lord, my God; I do not know your face.

Eia nunc ergo tu, Domine Deus meus, doce cor meum ubi et quomodo quaerat ubi et quomodo te inveniat. Domine, si hoc non es, ubi te quaeram absentem? Si autem ubique es, Cur non video praesentem? Sed certe habitas "lucem inaccessibilem" [1 Tim 6,16]. Et ubi est lux inaccessibilis? Aut quomodo accedam ad lucem inaccessibilem? Aut quis ducet et inducet in illam, ut videam te in illa? Deinde quibus signis, qua facie te quaeram? Numquam te vidi, Domine Deus meus, non novi faciem tuam.

What, O most high Lord, shall this man do, an exile far from you? What shall your servant do, anxious in his love of you, and cast out afar from your face? He pants to see you, and your face is too far from him. He longs to come to you, and your dwelling-place is inaccessible. He yearns to find you, and does not know your place. He desires to seek you, and does not know your countenance. Quid faciet, altissime Domine, quid faciet iste tuus longinquus exsul? Quid faciet servus tuus, anxius amore tui et longe "proiectus a facie tua" [Ps 50,13]? Anhelat videre te et nimis abest illi facies tua. Accedere ad te desiderat et inaccessibilis est habitatio tua. Invenire te cupit et nescit locum tuum. Quaerere te affectat et ignorat vultum tuum.
Lord, you are my God, and you are my Lord, and never have I seen you. It is you that hast made me, and has made me anew, and has bestowed upon me all the blessing I enjoy; and not yet do I know you. Finally, I was created to see you, and not yet have I done that for which I was made. Domine, Deus meus es et Dominus meus es et numquam te vidi. Tu me fecisti et refecisti et omnia bona tu mihi contulisti et nondum novi te. Denique ad te videndum factus sum et nondum feci, propter quod factus sum.

O wretched lot of man, when he has lost that for which he was made! O hard and terrible fate! Alas, what has he lost, and what has he found? What has departed, and what remains? He has lost the blessedness for which he was made, and has found the misery for which he was not made. That has departed without which nothing is happy, and that remains which, in itself, is only miserable. Man once did eat the bread of angels, for which he hungers now; he eateth now the bread of sorrows, of which he knew not then. Alas! for the mourning of all mankind, for the universal lamentation of the sons of Hades! He choked with satiety, we sigh with hunger. He abounded, we beg. He possessed in happiness, and miserably forsook his possession; we suffer want in unhappiness, and feel a miserable longing, and alas! we remain empty.

O misera sors hominis, cum hoc perdidit, ad quod factus est! O durus et dirus casus ille! Heu, quid perdidit et quid invenit, quid abscessit et quid remansit! Perdidit beatitudinem, ad quam factus est, et invenit miseriam, propter quod factus non est. Abscessit, sine quo nihil felix est, et remansit, quod per se non nisi miserum est. "Manducabat tunc homo panem angelorum"[Ps 77,25], quem nunc esurit manducat nunc "panem dolorum" [Ps 126,2], quem tunc nesciebat. Heu publicus luctus hominum, universalis planctus filiorum Adae! Ille ructabat saturitate nos suspiramus esurie. Ille abundabat nos mendicamus. Ille feliciter tenebat et misere deseruit nos infeliciter egemus et miserabiliter desideramus. et heu, vacui remanemus!

Why did he not keep for us, when he could so easily, that whose lack we should feel so heavily? Why did he shut us away from the light, and cover us over with darkness? With what purpose did he rob us of life, and inflict death upon us? Wretches that we are, whence have we been driven out; whither are we driven on? Whence hurled? Whither consigned to ruin? From a native country into exile, from the vision of God into our present blindness, from the joy of immortality into the bitterness and horror of death. Miserable exchange of how great a good, for how great an evil! Heavy loss, heavy grief heavy all our fate!

Cur non nobis custodivit, cum facile posset, quo tam graviter careremus? Quare sic nobis obseravit lucem et obduxit nos tenebris? Ut quid nobis abstulit vitam et inflixit mortem? Aerumnosi, unde sumus expulsi, quo sumus impulsi! Unde praecipitati, quo obruti! A patria in exsilium, a visione Dei in caecitatem nostram. A iucunditate immortalitatis in amaritudinem et horrorem mortis. Misera mutatio! De quanto bono in quantum malum! Grave damnum, gravis dolor, grave totum!

But alas! wretched that I am, one of the sons of Eve, far removed from God! What have I undertaken? What have I accomplished? Whither was I striving? How far have I come? To what did I aspire? Amid what thoughts am I sighing? I sought blessings, and lo! confusion [Ps 121,9; Jer 14,19]. I strove toward God, and I stumbled on myself. I sought calm in privacy, and I found tribulation and grief [Ps 114,3] , in my inmost thoughts. I wished to smile in the joy of my mind, and I am compelled to frown by the sorrow of my heart [Ps 37,9]. Gladness was hoped for, and lo! a source of frequent sighs!

Sed heu me miserum, unum de aliis miseris filiis Evae elongatis a Deo! quid incepi, quid effeci? Quo tendebam, quo deveni? Ad quid aspirabam, in quibus suspiro? "Quaesivi bona et ecce turbatio" [Ps 121,9; Jer 14,19]! Tendebam in Deum et offendi in me ipsum. Requiem quaerebam in secreto meo et "tribulationem et dolorem inveni" [Ps 114,3] in intimis meis. Volebam ridere a gaudio mentis meae et cogor "rugire a gemitu cordis mei" [Ps 37,9]. Sperabatur laetitia et ecce, unde densentur suspiria!

   And you O Lord, how long? How long, O Lord, do you forget us; how long do you turn your face from us? When will you look upon us, and hear us? When will you enlighten our eyes, and show us (Ps 6,4; Ps 12,1-4) your face? (Ps 79,4.8) When will you restore yourself to us? Et o "tu, Domine, usquequo? Usquequo, Domine, oblivisceris nos, usquequo avertis faciem tuam a nobis"? Quando "respicies et exaudies" nos? Quando "illuminabis oculos" nostros et "ostendes" [Ps 6,4; Ps 12,1-4] nobis "faciem tuam" [Ps 79,4.8]? Quando restitues te nobis?
   Look upon us, Lord; hear us, enlighten us, reveal yourself to us. Restore yourself to us, that it may be well with us, --yourself, without whom it is so ill with us. Pity our toilings and strivings toward you since we can do nothing strong without you. (cf. Jn 15:5)  Respice, Domine, exaudi, illumina nos, ostende nobis teipsum. Restitue te nobis, ut bene sit nobis, sine quo tam male est nobis. Miserare labores et conatus nostros ad te, qui nihil valemus sine te.

You do invite us; do you help us. I beseech you, O Lord, that I may not lose hope in sighs, but may breathe anew in hope. Lord, my heart is made bitter by its desolation; sweeten you it, I beseech you, with your consolation. Lord, in hunger I began to seek you; I beseech you that I may not cease to hunger for you. In hunger I have come to you; let me not go unfed. I have come in poverty to the Rich, in misery to the Compassionate; let me not return empty and despised. And if, before I eat, I sigh, grant, even after sighs, that which I may eat. Lord, I am bowed down and can only look downward; raise me up that I may look upward. My iniquities have gone over my head; they overwhelm me; and, like a heavy load, they weigh me down. Free me from them; unburden me, that the pit of iniquities may not close over me.Be it mine to look up to your light, even from afar, even from the depths.

Invita nos, "adiuva" nos [Ps 78,9]. Obsecro, Domine, ne desperem suspirando, sed respirem sperando. Obsecro, Domine, amaricatum est cor meum sua desolatione, indulca illud tua consolatione. Obsecro, Domine, esuriens incepi quaerere te, ne desinam ieiunus de te. Famelicus accessi, ne recedam impastus. Pauper veni ad divitem, miser ad misericordem, ne redeam vacuus et contemptus. Et si "antequam comedam, suspiro" [Iob 3,24], da vel post suspiria quod comedam. Domine, incurvatus non possum nisi deorsum aspicere; erige me, ut possim sursum intendere. "Iniquitates meae supergressae caput meum" obvolvunt me, "et sicut onus grave" [Ps 37,5] gravant me. Evolve me, exonera me, ne "urgeat puteus" earum "os suum super me" [Ps 68,16]. Liceat mihi suspicere lucem tuam, vel de longe, vel de profundo.

TEACH me to seek you,
and reveal yourself to the seeker,

for I cannot seek you, unless you teach me,
nor find you, unless you reveal yourself.

LET me seek you in longing,
let me long
[for you] in seeking;

let me find [you] in loving,
and love in finding.

Doce me quaerere te
et ostende te quaerenti;

quia nec quaerere te possum,
nisi tu doceas,
  nec invenire,
   nisi te ostendas.

 Quaeram te desiderando,
desiderem quaerendo.

Inveniam amando,
amem inveniendo.

Lord, I acknowledge and I thank you that you have created me in this your image, in order that I may be mindful of you, may conceive of you, and love you; but that image has been so consumed and wasted away by vices, and obscured by the smoke of wrong-doing, that it cannot achieve that for which it was made, except you renew it, and create it anew. I do not endeavor, O Lord, to penetrate your sublimity, for in no wise do I compare my understanding with that; but I long to understand in some degree your truth, which my heart believes and loves. For I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe in order to understand. For this also I believe, --that unless I believed, I should not understand.

 Fateor, Domine, et gratias ago, quia creasti in me hanc "imaginem tuam" [Gen 1,27], ut tui memor te cogitem, te amem. Sed sic est abolita attritione vitiorum, sic offuscata fumo peccatorum, ut non possit facere, ad quod facta est, nisi tu renoves et reformes eam. Non tento, Domine, penetrare altitudinem tuam, quia nullatenus comparo illi intellectum meum; sed desidero aliquatenus intelligere veritatem tuam, quam credit et amat cor meum. Neque enim quaero intelligere ut credam, sed credo ut intelligam. Nam et hoc credo: quia "nisi credidero, non intelligam" [Is 7,9].





CHAPTER 2. That God truly is

2 Quod vere sit Deus





AND so, Lord, do you, who do give understanding to faith, give me, so far as you knowest it to be profitable, to understand that you are as we believe; and that you are that which we believe. And indeed, we believe that you are a being than which nothing greater can be conceived. Or is there no such nature, since the fool has said in his heart, there is no God? (Ps 13.1, 52.1). But, at any rate, this very fool, when he hears of this being of which I speak --a being than which nothing greater can be conceived --understands what be hears, and what he understands is in his understanding; although he does not understand it to exist.

Ergo Domine, qui das fidei intellectum, da mihi, ut, quantum scis expedire, intelligam, quia es sicut credimus, et hoc es quod credimus. Et quidem credimus te esse aliquid quo nihil maius cogitari possit. An ergo non est aliqua talis natura, quia "dixit insipiens in corde suo: non est Deus" [Ps 13,1; 52,1]? Sed certe ipse idem insipiens, cum audit hoc ipsum quod dico: 'aliquid quo maius nihil cogitari potest', intelligit quod audit; et quod intelligit, in intellectu eius est, etiam si non intelligat illud esse.

For, it is one thing for an object to be in the understanding, and another to understand that the object exists. When a painter first conceives of what he will afterwards perform, he has it in his understanding, but be does not yet understand it to be, because he has not yet performed it. But after he has made the painting, be both has it in his understanding, and he understands that it exists, because he has made it.

Aliud enim est rem esse in intellectu, alium intelligere rem esse. Nam cum pictor praecogitat quae facturus est, habet quidem in intellectu, sed nondum intelligit esse quod nondum fecit. Cum vero iam pinxit, et habet in intellectu et intelligit esse quod iam fecit.

Hence, even the fool is convinced that something exists in the understanding, at least, than which nothing greater can be conceived. For, when he hears of this, he understands it. And whatever is understood, exists in the understanding. And assuredly that, than which nothing greater can be conceived, cannot exist in the understanding alone. For, suppose it exists in the understanding alone: then it can be conceived to exist in reality; which is greater.

Convincitur ergo etiam insipiens esse vel in intellectu aliquid quo nihil maius cogitari potest, quia hoc, cum audit, intelligit, et quidquid intelligitur, in intellectu est.Et certe id quo maius cogitari nequit, non potest esse in solo intellectu. Si enim vel in solo intellectu est, potest cogitari esse et in re; quod maius est.

Therefore, if that, than which nothing greater can be conceived, exists in the understanding alone, the very being, than which nothing greater can be conceived, is one, than which a greater can be conceived. But obviously this is impossible. Hence, there is doubt that there exists a being, than which nothing greater can be conceived, and it exists both in the understanding and in reality.

 Si ergo id quo maius cogitari non potest, est in solo intellectu: id ipsum quo maius cogitari non potest, est quo maius cogitari potest. Sed certe hoc esse non potest. Existit ergo procul dubio aliquid quo maius cogitari non valet, et in intellectu et in re.





CHAPTER 3. God cannot be conceived not to exist.

3 Quod non possit cogitari non esse





AND it assuredly exists so truly, that it cannot be conceived not to exist. For, it is possible to conceive of a being which cannot be conceived not to exist; and this is greater than one which can be conceived not to exist. Hence, if that, than which nothing greater can be conceived, can be conceived not to exist, it is not that, than which nothing greater can be conceived. But this is an irreconcilable contradiction.

Quod utique sic vere est, ut nec cogitari possit non esse. Nam potest cogitari esse aliquid, quod non possit cogitari non esse; quod maius est quam quod non esse cogitari potest. Quare si id quo maius nequit cogitari, potest cogitari non esse: id ipsum quo maius cogitari nequit, non est id quo maius cogitari nequit; quod convenire non potest.

There is, then, so truly a being than which nothing greater can be conceived to exist, that it cannot even be conceived not to exist;. and this being you are, O Lord, our God. So truly, therefore, do you exist, O Lord, my God, that you can not be conceived not to exist; and rightly. For, if a mind could conceive of a being better than you, the creature would rise above the Creator; and this is most absurd. And, indeed, whatever else there is, except you alone, can be conceived not to exist. To you alone, therefore, it belongs to exist more truly than all other beings, and hence in a higher degree than all others. For, whatever else exists does not exist so truly, and hence in a less degree it belongs to it to exist. Why, then, has the fool said in his heart, there is no God (Psalms xiv. 1), since it is so evident, to a rational mind, that you do exist in the highest degree of all? Why, except that he is dull and a fool?

Sic ergo vere est aliquid quo maius cogitari non potest, ut nec cogitari possit non esse. Et hoc es tu, Domine Deus noster. Sic ergo vere es, Domine, Deus meus, ut nec cogitari possis non esse. Et merito. Si enim aliqua mens posset cogitare aliquid melius te, ascenderet creatura super creatorem et iudicaret de creatore; quod valde est absurdum. Et quidem quidquid est aliud praeter te solum, potest cogitari non esse. Solus igitur verissime omnium et ideo maxime omnium habes esse, quia quidquid aliud est, non sic vere, et idcirco minus habet esse. Cur itaque "dixit insipiens in corde suo: non est Deus" [Ps 13,1; 52,1], cum tam in promptu sit rationali menti te maxime omnium esse? Cur, nisi quia stultus et insipiens?





CHAPTER 4. How the fool has said in his heart what cannot be conceived

4 Quomodo insipiens dixit in corde, quod cogitari non potest





BUT how has the fool said in his heart what he could not conceive; or how is it that he could not conceive what he said in his heart? since it is the same to say in the heart, and to conceive.

Verum quomodo dixit in corde quod cogitare non potuit; aut quomodo cogitare non potuit quod dixit in corde, cum idem sit dicere in corde et cogitare?

But, if really, nay, since really, he both conceived, because he said in his heart; and did not say in his heart, because he could not conceive; there is more than one way in which a thing is said in the heart or conceived. For, in one sense, an object is conceived, when the word signifying it is conceived; and in another, when the very entity, which the object is, is understood.

Quod si vere, immo quia vere et cogitavit, quia dixit in corde, et non dixit in corde, quia cogitare non potuit: non uno tantum modo dicitur aliquid in corde et cogitatur. Aliter enim cogitatur re, cum vox eam significans cogitatur, aliter cum id ipsum quod res est intelligitur.

In the former sense, then, God can be conceived not to exist; but in the latter, not at all. For no one who understands what fire and water are can conceive fire to be water, in accordance with the nature of the facts themselves, although this is possible according to the words. So, then, no one who understands what God is can conceive that God does not exist; although he says these words in his heart, either without any or with some foreign, signification. For, God is that than which a greater cannot be conceived. And he who thoroughly understands this, assuredly understands that this being so truly exists, that not even in concept can it be non-existent. Therefore, he who understands that God so exists, cannot conceive that he does not exist.

Illo itaque modo potest cogitari Deus non esse, isto vero minime. Nullus quippe intelligens id quod Deus est, potest cogitare quia Deus non est, licet haec verba dicat in corde, aut sine ulla aut cum aliqua extranea significatione. Deus enim est id quo maius cogitari non potest. Quod qui bene intelligit, utique intelligit id ipsum sic esse, ut nec cogitatione queat non esse. Qui ergo intelligit sic esse Deum, nequit eum non esse cogitare.

I thank you, gracious Lord, I thank you; because what I formerly believed by your bounty, I now so understand by your illumination, that if I were unwilling to believe that you do exist, I should not be able not to understand this to be true.

Gratias tibi, bone Domine, gratias tibi, quia quod prius credidi te donante, iam sic intelligo te illuminante, ut, si te esse nolim credere, non possim non intelligere.





CHAPTER 5. God is whatever it is better to be than not to be; and he, as the only self-existent being, creates all things from nothing.

5 Quod Deus sit quidquid melius est esse quam non esse: et solus existens per se omnia alia faciat de nihilo





WHAT are you, then, Lord God, than whom nothing greater can be conceived? But what are you, except that which, as the highest of all beings, alone exists through itself, and creates all other things from nothing? For, whatever is not this is less than a thing which can be conceived of. But this cannot be conceived of you. What good, therefore, does the supreme Good lack, through which every good is? Therefore, you are just, truthful, blessed, and whatever it is better to be than not to be. For it is better to be just than not just; better to be blessed than not blessed.

Quid igitur es. Domine Deus, quo nil maius valet cogitari? Sed quid es, nisi id quod summum omnium solum existens per seipsum, omnia alia fecit de nihilo? Quidquid enim hoc non est, minus est quam cogitari possit. Sed hoc de te cogitari non potest. Quod ergo bonum deest summo bono, per quod est omne bonum? Tu es itaque iustus, verax, beatus, et quidquid melius est esse quam non esse. Melius namque est esse iustum quam non iustum, beatum quam non











CHAPTER 6. How God can be sensible (sensibilis) yet incorporeal.

6 Quomodo sit sensibilis, cum non sit corpus

BUT, although it is better for you to be sensible, omnipotent, compassionate, passionless, than not to be these things; how are you sensible, if you are not a body; or omnipotent, if you has not all powers; or at once compassionate and passionless? For, if only corporeal things are sensible, since the senses encompass a body and are in a body, how are you sensible, although you are not a body, but a supreme Spirit, who is superior to body? But, if feeling is only cognition, or for the sake of cognition, --for he who feels obtains knowledge in accordance with the proper functions of his senses; as through sight, of colors; through taste, of flavors, --whatever in any way cognises is not inappropriately said, in some sort, to feel.

Verum cum melius sit esse sensibilem, omnipotentem, misericordem, impassibilem quam non esse: quomodo es sensibilis, si non es corpus; aut omnipotens, si omnia non potes; aut misericors simul et impassibilis? Nam si sola corporea sunt sensibilia, quoniam sensus circa corpus et in corpore sunt: quomodo es sensibilis, cum non sis corpus, sed summus spiritus, qui corpore melior est? Sed si sentire non nisi cognoscere aut non nisi ad cognoscendum est qui enim sentit cognoscit secundum sensuum proprietatem, ut per visum colores, per gustum sapores : non inconvenienter dicitur aliquo modo, sentire quidquid aliquo modo cognoscit.

Therefore, O Lord, although you are not a body yet you are truly sensible in the highest degree in respect of this, that you do cognise all things in the highest degree; and not as an animal cognises, through a corporeal sense.

Ergo, Domine, quamvis non sis corpus, vere tamen eo modo summe sensibilis es, quo summe omnia cognoscis, non quo animal corporeo sensu cognoscit.











CHAPTER 7. How he can be omnipotent, if there are many things of which he is incapable

7 Quomodo sit omnipotens, cum multa non possit

BUT how are you omnipotent, if you are not capable of all things?  Or, if you can not be corrupted, and can not lie, nor make what is true, false --as, for example, if you should make what has been done not to have been done, and the like. --how are you capable of all things? Or else to be capable of these things is not power, but impotence. For, he who is capable of these things is capable of what is not for his good, and of what he ought not to do; and the more capable of them he is, the more power have adversity and perversity against him; and the less has he himself against these.

Sed et omnipotens quomodo es, si omnia non potes? Aut si non potes corrumpi nec mentiri nec facere verum esse falsum, ut quod factum est non esse factum, et plura similiter: quomodo potes omnia? An haec posse non est potentia, sed impotentia? Nam qui haec potest quod sibi non expedit et quod non debet potest. Quae quanto magis potest, tanto magis adversitas et perversitas possunt in illum et ipse minus contra illas.

He, then, who is thus capable is so not by power, but by impotence. For, he is not said to be able because he is able of himself, but because his impotence gives something else power over him. Or, by a figure of speech, just as many words are improperly applied, as when we use "to be" for "not to be," and "to do" for what is really not to do, "or to do nothing." For, often we say to a man who denies the existence of something: "It is as you say it to be," though it might seem more proper to say, "It is not, as you say it is not." In the same way, we say, "This man sits just as that man does," or, "This man rests just as that man does"; although to sit is not to do anything, and to rest is to do nothing.

Qui ergo sic potest, non potentia potest, sed impotentia. Non enim ideo dicitur posse, quia ipse possit, sed quia sua impotentia facit aliud in se posse; sive aliquo alio genere loquendi, sicut multa improprie dicuntur. Ut cum ponimus 'esse' pro 'non esse', et 'facere' pro eo quod est 'non facere', aut pro 'nihil facere'. Nam saepe dicimus ei, qui rem aliquam esse negat: sic est, quemadmodum dicis esse; cum magis proprie videatur dici: sic non est quemadmodum dicis non esse. Item dicimus: iste sedet, sicut ille facit, aut: iste quiescit, sicut ille facit; cum 'sedere' sit quiddam non facere et 'quiescere' sit nihil facere.

So, then, when one is said to have the power of doing or experiencing what is not for his good, or what he ought not to do, impotence is understood in the word power. For, the more he possesses this power, the more powerful are adversity and perversity against him, and the more powerless is he against them.

Sic itaque, cum dicitur habere potentiam faciendi aut patiendi quod sibi non expedit aut quod non debet, impotentia intelligitur per potentiam; quia quo plus habet hanc potentiam, eo adversitas et perversitas in illum sunt potentiores, et ille contra eas impotentior.

Therefore, O Lord, our God, the more truly are you omnipotent, since you are capable of nothing through impotence, and nothing has power against you.

Ergo, Domine Deus, inde verius et omnipotens, quia nihil potes per impotentiam, et nihil potest contra te.

CHAPTER 8. How he is compassionate and passionless.

8 Quomodo sit misericors et impassibilis











BUT how are you compassionate, and, at the same time, passionless? For, if you are passionless, you do not feel sympathy; and if you do not feel sympathy, your heart is not wretched from sympathy for the wretched ; but this it is to be compassionate. But if you are not compassionate, whence comes so great consolation to the wretched? How, then, are you compassionate and not compassionate, O Lord, unless because you are compassionate in terms of our experience, and not compassionate in terms of your being.

Sed et misericors simul et impassibilis quomodo es? Nam si es impassibilis, non compateris; si non compateris, non est tibi miserum cor ex compassione miseri, quod est esse misericordem. At si non es misericors, unde miseris est tanta consolatio? Quomodo ergo es et non es misericors, Domine, nisi quia es misericors secundum nos, et non es secundum te?

Truly, you are so in terms of our experience, but you are not so in terms of your own. For, when you behold us in our wretchedness, we experience the effect of compassion, but you do not experience the feeling. Therefore, you are both compassionate, because you do save the wretched, and spare those who sin against you; and not compassionate because you are affected by no sympathy for wretchedness.

Es quippe secundum nostrum sensum, et non es secundum tuum. Etenim cum tu respicis nos miseros, nos sentimus misericordis effectum, tu non sentis affectum. Et misericors es igitur, quia misericors salvas et peccatoribus tuis parcis; et misericors non es, quia nulla miseriae compassione afficeris.











CHAPTER 9. How the all-just and supremely just God spares the wicked, and justly pities the wicked.

9 Quomodo totus iustus es et summe iustus parcat malis, et quod iuste misereatur malis

BUT how do you spare the wicked, if you are all just and supremely just? For how, being all just and supremely just, do you anything that is not just? Or, what justice is that to give him who merits eternal death everlasting life? How, then, gracious Lord, good to the righteous and the wicked, can you save the wicked, if this is not just, and you do not anything that is not just?

Verum malis quomodo parcis, si es totus iustus et summe iustus? Quomodo enim totus et summe iustus facit aliquid non iustum? Aut quae iustitia est merenti mortem aeternam dare vitam sempiternam? Unde ergo, bone Deus, bone bonis et malis, unde tibi salvare malos, si hoc non est iustum, et tu facis aliquid non iustum?

Or, since your goodness is incomprehensible, is this hidden in the unapproachable light wherein you dwell? Truly, in the deepest and most secret parts of your goodness is hidden the fountain whence the stream of your compassion flows.

An quia bonitas tua est incomprehensibilis, latet hoc in "luce inaccessibili quam habitas" [1 Tim 6,16]? Vere in altissimo et secretissimo bonitatis tuae latet fons, unde manat fluvius misericordiae tuae.

For you are all just and supremely just, yet you are kind even to the wicked, even because you are all supremely good. For you would be less good if you were not kind to any wicked being. For, he who is good, both to the righteous and the wicked, is better than he who is good to the wicked alone; and he who is good to the wicked, both by punishing and sparing them, is better than he who is good by punishing them alone. Therefore, you are compassionate, because you are all supremely good. And, although it appears why you do reward the good with goods and the evil with evils; yet this, at least, is most wonderful, why you, the all and supremely just, who lacks nothing, bestows goods on the wicked and on those who are guilty toward you.

Nam cum totus et summe iustus sis, tamen idcirco etiam malis benignus es, quia totus summe bonus es. Minus namque bonus esses, si nulli malo esses benignus. Melior est enim qui et bonis et malis bonus est, quam qui bonis tantum est bonus. Et melior est, qui malis et puniendo et parcendo est bonus, quam qui puniendo tantum. Ideo ergo misericors es, quia totus et summe bonus es. Et cum forsitan videatur, cur bonis bona et malis mala retribuas, illud certe penitus est mirandum, cur tu totus iustus et nullo egens malis et reis tuis bona tribuas.

The depth of your goodness, O God! The source of your compassion appears, and yet is not clearly seen! We see whence the river flows, but the spring whence it arises is not seen. For, it is from the abundance of your goodness that you are good to those who sin against you; and in the depth of your goodness is hidden the reason for this kindness.

O altitudo bonitatis tuae, Deus! et videtur, unde sis misericors, et non pervidetur. Cernitur, unde flumen manat, et non perspicitur fons, unde nascatur. Nam et de plenitudine bonitatis est, quia peccatoribus tuis pius es; et in altitudine bonitatis latet, qua ratione hoc es. Etenim licet bonis bona et malis mala ex bonitate retribuas, ratio tamen iustitiae hoc postulare videtur.

For, although you do reward the good with goods and the evil with evils, out of goodness, yet this the concept of justice seems to demand. But, when you do bestow goods on the evil, and it is known that the supremely Good has willed to do this, we wonder why the supremely just has been able to will this.

Cum vero malis bona tribuis: et scitur, quia summe bonus hoc facere voluit, et mirum est, cur summe iustus hoc velle potuit.

O compassion, from what abundant sweetness and what sweet abundance do you well forth to us! O boundless goodness of God how passionately should sinners love you! For you save the just, because justice goes with them; but sinners you do free by the authority of justice. Those by the help of their deserts; these, although their deserts oppose. Those by acknowledging the goods you has granted; these by pardoning the evils you hate. O boundless goodness, which do so exceed all understanding, let that compassion come upon me, which proceeds from your so great abundance! Let it flow upon me, for it wells forth from you. Spare, in mercy; avenge not, in justice.

O misericordia, de quam opulenta dulcedine et dulci opulentia nobis profluis!
O immensitas bonitatis Dei, quo affectu amanda es peccatoribus!
Iustos enim salvas iustitia comitante;
istos vero liberas iustitia damnante.
Illos meritis adiuvantibus
istos meritis repugnantibus.
Illos bona, quae dedisti, cognoscendo,
istos mala, quae odisti, ignoscendo.
O immensa bonitas, quae sic omnem intellectum excedis,
veniat super me misericordia illa, quae de tanta opulentia tui procedit!
Influat in me, quae profluit de te.
Parce per clementiam,
ne ulciscaris per iustitiam.

For, though it is hard to understand how your compassion is not inconsistent with your justice; yet we must believe that it does not oppose justice at all, because it flows from goodness, which is no goodness without justice; nay, that it is in true harmony with justice. For, if you are compassionate only because you are supremely good, and supremely good only because you are supremely just, truly you are compassionate even because you are supremely just.

Nam etsi difficile sit intelligere, quomodo misericordia tua non absit a tua iustitia, necessarium tamen est credere, quia nequamquam adversatur quod exundat ex bonitate, quae nulla est sine iustitia, immo vere concordat iustitiae. Nempe si misericors es, quia es summe bonus, et summe bonus non es, nisi quia es summe iustus: vere idcirco es misericors, quia summe iustus es.

Help me, just and compassionate God, whose light seek; help me to understand what I say.

Adiuva me, iuste et misericors Deus, cuius lucem quaero, adiuva me, ut intelligam quod dico. Vere ergo ideo misericors es, .

Truly, then, you are compassionate even because you are just. Is, then, your compassion born of your justice? And do you spare the wicked, therefore, out of justice? If this is true, my Lord, if this is true, teach me how it is. Is it because it is just, that you should be so good that you can not be conceived better; and that you should work so powerfully that you can not be conceived more powerful? For what can be more just than this? Assuredly it could not be that you should be good only by requiting (retribuendo) and not by sparing, and that you should make good only those who are not good, and not the wicked also. In this way, therefore, it is just that you should spare the wicked, and make good souls of evil.

Ergone misericordia tua nascitur ex iustitia tua? Ergone parcis malis ex iustitia? Si sic est, Domine, si sic est, doce me quomodo est. An quia iustum est te sic esse bonum, ut nequeas intelligi melior, et sic potenter operari, ut non possis cogitari potentius? Quid enim hoc iustius? Hoc utique non fieret, si esses bonus tantum retribuendo et non parcendo, et si faceres de non bonis tantum bonos et non etiam de malis. Hoc itaque modo iustum est ut parcas malis, et ut facias bonos de malis.

Finally, what is not done justly ought not to be done; and what ought not to be done is done unjustly. If, then, you do not justly pity the wicked, you ought not to pity them. And, if you ought not to pity them, you pity them unjustly. And if It is impious to suppose this, it is right to believe that you justly pity the wicked.

Denique quod non iuste fit, non debet fieri; et quod non debet fieri, iniuste fit. Si ergo non iuste malis misereris, non debes misereri; et si non debes misereri, iniuste misereris. Quod si nefas est dicere, fas est credere te iuste misereri malis.











CHAPTER 10. How he justly punishes and justly spares the wicked.

10 Quomodo iuste puniat et iuste parcat malis

BUT it is also just that you should punish the wicked. For what is more just than that the good should receive goods, and the evil, evils? How, then, is it just that you should punish the wicked, and, at the same time, spare the wicked? Or, in one way, do you justly punish, and, in another, justly spare them? For, when you punish the wicked, it is just, because it is consistent with their deserts; and when, on the other hand, you sparest the wicked, it is just, not because it is compatible with their deserts, but because it is compatible with your goodness.

Sed iustum est, ut malos punias. Quid namque iustius, quam ut boni bona et mali mala recipiant? Quomodo ergo et iustum est ut malos punias, et iustum est ut malis parcas? An alio modo iuste punis malos, et alio modo iuste parcis malis? Cum enim punis malos, iustum est, quia illorum meritis convenit; cum vero parcis malis, iustum est, non quia illorum meritis, sed quia bonitati tuae condecens est.

For, in sparing the wicked, you are as just, according to your nature, but not according to ours, as you are compassionate, according to our nature, and not according to yours; seeing that, as in saving us, whom it would be just for you to destroy, you are compassionate, not because you feel an affection (affectum), but because we feel the effect (effectum); so you are just, not because you requite us as we deserve, but because you do that which becomes you as the supremely good Being. In this way, therefore, without contradiction you do justly punish and justly spare.

Nam parcendo malis ita iustus es secundum te et non secundum nos, sicut misericors es secundum nos et non secundum te. Quoniam salvando nos, quos iuste perderes, sicut misericors es, non quia tu sentias affectum, sed quia nos sentimus effectum: ita iustus es, non quia nobis reddas debitum, sed quia facis quod decet te summe bonum. Sic itaque sine repugnantia iuste punis et iuste parcis.











CHAPTER 11. How all the ways of God are compassion and truth; and yet God is just in all his ways.

11 Quomodo universae viae Domini misericordia et veritas, et tamen iustus Dominus in omnibus viis suis

BUT, is there any reason why it is not also just, according to your nature, O Lord, that you should punish the wicked? Surely it is just that you should be so just that you can not be conceived more just; and this you would in no wise be if you did only render goods to the good, and not evils to the evil. For, he who requites both good and evil according to their deserts is more just than he who so requites the good alone. It is, therefore, just, according to your nature, O just and gracious God, both when you do punish and when you sparest.

Sed numquid etiam non est iustum secundum te, Domine, ut malos punias? Iustum quippe est te sic esse iustum, ut iustior nequeas cogitari. Quod nequaquam esses, si tantum bonis bona et non malis mala redderes. Iustior enim est qui et bonis et malis, quam qui bonis tantum merita retribuit. Iustum igitur est secundum te, iuste et benigne Deus, et cum punis et cum parcis.

Truly, then, all the paths of the Lord are mercy and truth (Psalms xxv. 10); and yet the Lord is righteous in all his ways (Psalms cxlv. 17). And assuredly without inconsistency: For, it is not just that those whom you do will to punish should be saved, and that those whom you do will to spare should be condemned. For that alone is just which you do will; and that alone unjust which you do not will. So, then, your compassion is born of your justice.

Vere igitur "universae viae Domini misericordia et veritas" et tamen "iustus Dominus in omnibus viis suis" [Ps 22,10; 144,17]. Et utique sine repugnantia; quia quos vis punire, non est iustum salvari, et quibus vis parcere, non est iustum damnari. Nam id solum iustum est quod vis et non iustum quod non vis. Sic ergo nascitur de iustitia tua misericordia tua,

For it is just that you should be so good that you are good in sparing also; and this may be the reason why the supremely Just can will goods for the evil. But if it can be comprehended in any way why you can will to save the wicked, yet by no consideration can we comprehend why, of those who are alike wicked, you save some rather than others, through supreme goodness; and why you do condemn the latter rather than the former, through supreme justice.

quia iustum est te sic esse bonum, ut et parcendo sis bonus. Et hoc est forsitan, cur summe iustus potest velle bona malis. Sed si utcumque capi potest, cur malos potes velle salvare: illud certe nulla ratione comprehendi potest, cur de similibus malis hos magis salves quam illos per summam bonitatem, et illos magis damnes quam istos per summam iustitiam.

So, then, you are truly sensible (sensibilis), omnipotent, compassionate, and passionless, as you are living, wise, good, blessed, eternal: and whatever it is better to be than not to be.

Sic ergo vere es sensibilis, omnipotens, misericors et impassibilis, quemadmodum vivens, sapiens, bonus, beatus, aeternus, et quidem melius esse quam non esse.











CHAPTER 12. God is the very life whereby he lives; and so of other like attributes.

12 Quod Deus sit ipsa vita qua vivit, et sic de similibus

BUT undoubtedly, whatever you are, you are through nothing else than yourself. Therefore, you are the very life whereby you live; and the wisdom wherewith you are wise; and the very goodness whereby you are good to the righteous and the wicked; and so of other like attributes.

Sed certe quidquid es, non per aliud es quam per teipsum. Tu es igitur ipsa vita qua vivis, et sapientia qua sapis, et bonitas ipsa qua bonis et malis bonus es; et ita de similibus.











CHAPTER 13. How he alone is uncircumscribed and eternal, although other spirits are uncircumscribed and eternal.

13 Quomodo solus sit incircumscriptus et aeternus, cum alii spiritus sint incircumscripti et aeterni

BUT everything that is in any way bounded by place or time is less than that which no law of place or time limits. Since, then, nothing is greater than you, no place or time contains you; but you are everywhere and always. And since this can be said of you alone, you alone are uncircumscribed and eternal. How is it, then, that other spirits also are said to be uncircumscribed and eternal?

Sed omne quod clauditur aliquatenus loco et tempore, minus est quam nulla lex loci aut temporis coercet. Quoniam ergo maius te nihil est, nullus locus aut tempus te cohibet, sed ubique et semper es. Quod quia de te solo dici potest, tu solus incircumscriptus es et aeternus. Quomodo igitur dicuntur et alii spiritus incircumscripti et aeterni?

Assuredly you are alone eternal; for you alone among all beings not only do not cease to be but also do not begin to be.

Et quidem solus es aeternus, quia solus omnium, sicut non desinis, sic non incipis esse.

But how are you alone uncircumscribed? Is it that a created spirit, when compared with you is circumscribed, but when compared with matter, uncircumscribed? For altogether circumscribed is that which, when it is wholly in one place, cannot at the same time be in another. And this is seen to be true of corporeal things alone. But uncircumscribed is that which is, as a whole, at the same time everywhere. And this is understood to be true of you alone. But circumscribed, and, at the same time, uncircumscribed is that which, when it is anywhere as a whole, can at the same time be somewhere else as a whole, and yet not everywhere. And this is recognised as true of created spirits. For, if the soul were not as a whole in the separate members of the body, it would not feel as a whole in the separate members. Therefore, you, Lord, are peculiarly uncircumscribed and eternal; and yet other spirits also are uncircumscribed and eternal.

Sed solus quomodo es incircumscriptus? An creatus spiritus ad te collatus est circumscriptus, ad corpus vero incircumscriptus? Nempe omnino circumscriptum est, quod cum alicubi totum est, non potest simul esse alibi; quod de solis corporeis cernitur. Incircumscriptum vero, quod simul est ubique totum; quod de te solo intelligitur. Circumscriptum autem simul et incircumscriptum est, quod, cum alicubi sit totum, potest simul esse totum alibi, non tamen ubique; quod de creatis spiritibus cognoscitur. Si enim non esset anima tota in singulis membris sui corporis, non sentiret tota in singulis. Tu ergo, domine, singulariter es incircumscriptus et aeternus, et tamen et alii spiritus sunt incircumscripti et aeterni.











CHAPTER 14. How and why God is seen and yet not seen by those who seek him.

14 Quomodo et cur videtur et non videtur Deus a quaerentibus eum

HAVE you found what you did seek, my soul? You did seek God. You have found him to be a being which is the highest of all beings, a being than which nothing better can be conceived; that this being is life itself, light, wisdom, goodness, eternal blessedness and blessed eternity; and that it is every where and always.

An invenisti, anima mea, quod quaerebas? Quaerebas Deum et invenisti eum esse quiddam summum omnium, quo nihil melius cogitari potest; et hoc esse ipsam vitam, lucem, sapientiam, bonitatem, aeternam beatitudinem et beatam aeternitatem; et hoc esse ubique et semper.

For, if you have not found your God, how is he this being which you have found, and which you have conceived him to be, with so certain truth and so true certainty? But, if you have found him, why is it that you do not feel you have found him? Why, O Lord, our God, does not my soul feel you, if it has found you? Or, has it not found him whom it found to be light and truth? For how did it understand this, except by seeing light and truth? Or, could it understand anything at all of you, except through your light and your truth?

Nam si non invenisti Deum tuum: quomodo est ille hoc quod invenisti, et quod illum tam certa veritate et vera certitudine intellexisti? Si vero invenisti: quid est, quod non sentis quod invenisti? Cur non te sentit, Domine Deus, anima mea, si invenit te? An non invenit, quem invenit esse lucem et veritatem? Quomodo namque intellexit hoc, nisi videndo lucem et veritatem? Aut potuit omnino aliquid intelligere de te, nisi per "lucem tuam et veritatem tuam" [Ps 42,3]?

Hence, if it has seen light and truth, it has seen you; if it has not seen you, it has not seen light and truth. Or, is what it has seen both light and truth; and still it has not yet seen you, because it has seen you only in part, but has not seen you as you are? Lord my God, my creator and renewer, speak to the desire of my soul, what you are other than it has seen, that it may clearly see what it desires. It strains to see you more; and sees nothing beyond this which it has seen, except darkness. Nay, it does not see darkness, of which-there is none in you; but it sees that it cannot see farther, because of its own darkness.

Si ergo vidit lucem et veritatem, vidit te. Si non vidit te, non vidit lucem nec veritatem. An et veritas et lux est quod vidit, et tamen nondum te vidit, quia vidit te aliquatenus, sed non vidit te "sicuti es" [1 Joh 3,2]? Domine Deus meus, formator et reformator meus, dic desideranti animae meae, quid aliud es, quam quod vidit, ut pure videat quod desiderat. Intendit se ut plus videat, et nihil videt ultra hoc quod vidit, nisi tenebras; immo non videt "tenebras, quae nullae sunt in te" [1 Joh 1,5], sed videt se non plus posse videre propter tenebras suas.

Why is this, Lord, why is this? Is the eye of the soul darkened by its infirmity, or dazzled by your glory? Surely it is both darkened in itself, and dazzled by you. Doubtless it is both obscured by its own insignificance, and overwhelmed by your infinity. Truly, it is both contracted by its own narrowness and overcome by your greatness.

Cur hoc, Domine cur hoc? Tenebratur oculus eius infirmitate sua, aut reverberatur fulgore tuo? Sed certe et tenebratur in se, et reverberatur a te. Utique et obscuratur sua brevitate, et obruitur tua immensitate. Vere et contrahitur angustia sua, et vincitur amplitudine tua.

For how great is that light from which shines every truth that gives light to the rational mind? How great is that truth in which is everything that is true, and outside which is only nothingness and the false? How boundless is the truth which sees at one glance whatsoever has been made, and by whom, and through whom, and how it has been made from nothing? What purity, what certainty, what splendor where it is? Assuredly more than a creature can conceive.

Quanta namque est lux illa, de qua micat omne verum. quod rationali menti lucet! Quam ampla est illa veritas, in qua est omne quod verum est et extra quam non nisi nihil et falsum est! Quam immensa est, quae uno intuitu videt, quaecumque facta sunt, et a quo et per quem et quomodo de nihilo facta sunt! Quid puritatis, quid simplicitatis, quid certitudinis et splendoris ibi est! Certe plus quam a creatura valeat intelligi.











CHAPTER 15. He is greater than can be conceived.

15 Quod maior sit quam cogitari possit

THEREFORE, O Lord, you are not only that than which a greater cannot be conceived, but you are a being greater than can be conceived. For, since it can be conceived that there is such a being, if you are not this very being, a greater than you can be conceived. But this is impossible.

Ergo, Domine, non solum es quo maius cogitari nequit, sed es quiddam maius quam cogitari possit. Quoniam namque valet cogitari esse aliquid huiusmodi: si tu non es hoc ipsum, potest cogitari aliquid maius te; quod fieri nequit.











CHAPTER 16. This is the unapproachable light wherein he dwells.

16 Quod haec sit lux inaccessibilis, quam inhabitat

TRULY, O Lord, this is the unapproachable light in which you dwell; for truly there is nothing else which can penetrate this light, that it may see you there. Truly, I see it not, because it is too bright for me. And yet, whatsoever I see, I see through it, as the weak eye sees what it sees through the light of the sun, which in the sun itself it cannot look upon. My understanding cannot reach that light, for it shines too bright. It does not comprehend it, nor does the eye of my soul endure to gaze upon it long. It is dazzled by the brightness, it is overcome by the greatness, it is overwhelmed by the infinity, it is dazed by the largeness, of the light.

Vere, Domine, haec est "lux inaccessibilis, in qua habitas" [1 Tim 6,16]. Vere enim non est aliud quod hanc penetret, ut ibi te pervideat. Vere ideo hanc non video, quia nimia mihi est; et tamen quidquid video, per illam video, sicut infirmus oculus quod videt, per lucem solis videt, quam in ipso sole nequit aspicere. Non potest intellectus meus ad illam. Nimis fulget, non capit illam, nec suffert oculus animae meae diu intendere in illam. Reverberatur fulgore, vincitur amplitudine, obruitur immensitate, confunditur capacitate.

0 supreme and unapproachable light! O whole and blessed truth, how far are you from me, who am so near to you! How far removed are you from my vision, though I am so near to yours! Everywhere you are wholly present, and I see you not. In you I move, and in you I have my being; and I cannot come to you. You are within me, and about me, and I feel you not.

O summa et inaccessibilis lux, o tota et beata veritas, quam longe es a me, qui tam prope tibi sum! Quam remota es a conspectu meo, qui sic praesens sum conspectui tuo! Ubique es tota praesens et non te video. "In te moveor et in te sum" [Apg 17,28] et ad te non possum accedere. Intra me et circa me es et non te sentio.











CHAPTER 17. In God is harmony, fragrance, sweetness, pleasantness to the touch, beauty, after his ineffable manner.

17 Quod in Deo sit harmonia, odor, sapor, lenitas, pulchritudo suo ineffabili modo

STILL you are hidden, O Lord, from my soul in your light and your blessedness; and therefore my soul still walks in its darkness and wretchedness. For it looks, and does not see your beauty. It hearkens, and does not hear your harmony. It smells, and does not perceive your fragrance. It tastes, and does not recognize your sweetness. It touches, and does not feel your pleasantness. For you have these attributes in yourself, Lord God, after your ineffable manner, who hast given them to objects created by you, after their sensible manner; but the sinful senses of my soul have grown rigid and dull, and have been obstructed by their long listlessness.

Adhuc lates, Domine, animam meam in luce et beatitudine tua, et idcirco versatur illa adhuc in tenebris et miseria sua. Circumspicit enim et non videt pulchritudinem tuam. Auscultat et non audit harmoniam tuam. Olfacit et non percipit odorem tuum. Gustat et non cognoscit saporem tuum. Palpat et non sentit lenitatem tuam. Habes enim haec, Domine Deus, in te tuo ineffabili modo, qui ea dedisti rebus a te creatis suo sensibili modo; sed obriguerunt, sed obstupuerunt, sed obstructi sunt sensus animae meae vetusto languore peccati











CHAPTER 18. God is life, wisdom, eternity, and every true good.

18 Quod in Deo nec in aeternitate eius, quae ipse est, nullae sint partes

AND lo, again confusion; lo, again grief and mourning meet him who seeks for joy and gladness. My soul now hoped for satisfaction; and lo, again it is overwhelmed with need. I desired now to feast, and lo, I hunger more. I tried to rise to the light of God, and I have fallen back into my darkness. Nay, not only have I fallen into it, but I feel that I am enveloped in it. I fell before my mother conceived me. Truly, in darkness I was conceived, and in the cover of darkness I was born. Truly, in him we all fell, in whom we all sinned. In him we all lost, who kept easily, and wickedly lost to himself and to us that which when we wish to seek it, we do not know; when we seek it, we do not find; when we find, it is not that which we seek.

Et iterum "ecce turbatio" [Jer 14,19] ecce iterum obviat maeror et luctus quaerenti "gaudium et laetitiam" [Ps 50,10]! Sperabat iam anima mea satietatem et ecce iterum obruitur egestate! Affectebam iam comedere et ecce magis esurire! Conabar assurgere ad lucem Dei et recidi in tenebras meas. Immo non modo cecidi in eas, sed sentio me involutum in eis. Ante cecidi, quam "conciperet me mater mea". Certe in illis "conceptus sum" [Ps 50,7], et cum earum obvolutione natus sum. Olim certe in illo omnes cecidimus, "in quo omnes peccavimus" [Röm 5,12]. In illo omnes perdidimus, qui facile tenebat et male sibi et nobis perdidit, quod cum volumus, quaerere nescimus; cum quaerimus, non invenimus; cum invenimus, non est quod quaerimus.

Do you help me for your goodness' sake! Lord, I sought your face; your face, Lord, will I seek; hide not your face far from me (Psalms xxvii. 8). Free me from myself toward you. Cleanse, heal, sharpen, enlighten the eye of my mind, that it may behold you. Let my soul recover its strength, and with all its understanding let it strive toward you, O Lord. What are you, Lord, what are you? What shall my heart conceive you to be?

Adiuva me tu "propter bonitatem tuam, Domine" [Ps 24,7]. "Quaesivi vultum tuum, vultum tuum, Domine, requiram; ne avertas faciem tuam a me" [Ps 26,8f]. Releva me de me ad te. Munda, sana, acue, "illumina"[Ps 12,4] oculum mentis meae, "ut intueatur te" [Hld 6,12]. Recolligat vires suas anima mea, et toto intellectu iterum intendat in te, Domine.

Assuredly you are life, you are wisdom, you are truth, you are goodness, you are blessedness, you are eternity, and you are every true good. Many are these attributes: my straitened understanding cannot see so many at one view, that it may be gladdened by all at once. How, then, O Lord, are you all these things? Are they parts of you, or is each one of these rather the whole, which you are? For, whatever is composed of parts is not altogether one, but is: in some sort plural, and diverse from itself; and either in fact or in concept is capable of dissolution. But these things are alien to you, than whom nothing better can be conceived of. Hence, there are no parts in you, Lord, nor are you more than one. But you are so truly a unitary being, and so identical with yourself, that in no respect are you unlike yourself; rather you are unity itself, indivisible by any conception. Therefore, life and wisdom and the rest are not parts of you, but all are one; and each of these is the whole, which you are, and which all the rest are.

Quid es, Domine, quid es, quid te intelliget cor meum? Certe vita es, sapientia es, veritas es, bonitas es, beatitudo es, aeternitas es, et omne verum bonum es. Multa sunt haec, non potest angustus intellectus meus tot uno simul intuitu videre, ut omnibus simul delectetur. Quomodo ergo, Domine, es omnia haec? An sunt partes tui, aut potius unumquodque horum est totum quod es? Nam quidquid partibus est iunctum, non est omnino unum, sed quodam modo plura et diversum a seipso, et vel actu vel intellectu dissolvi potest; quae aliena sunt a te, quo nihil melius cogitari potest. Nullae igitur partes sunt in te, Domine, nec es plura, sed sic es unum quiddam et idem tibi ipsi, ut in nullo tibi ipsi sis dissimilis; immo tu es ipsa unitas, nullo intellectu divisibilis. Ergo vita et sapientia et reliqua non sunt partes tui, sed omnia sunt unum, et unumquodque horum est totum quod es, et quod sunt reliqua omnia.

In this way, then, it appears that you have no parts, and that your eternity, which you are, is nowhere and never a part of you or of your eternity. But everywhere you are as a whole, and your eternity exists as a whole forever.

Quoniam ergo nec tu habes partes nec tua aeternitas, quae tu es: nusquam et numquam est pars tua aut aeternitatis tuae, sed ubique totus es, et aeternitas tua tota est semper.











CHAPTER 19.He does not exist in place or time, but all things exist in him.

19 Quod non sit in loco aut in tempore, sed omnia sint in illo

BUT if through your eternity you have been, and are, and will be; and to have been is not to be destined to be; and to be is not to have been, or to be destined to be; how does your eternity exist as a whole forever? Or is it true that nothing of your eternity passes away, so that it is not now; and that nothing of it is destined to be, as if it were not yet?

Sed si per aeternitatem tuam fuisti et es et eris, et fuisse non es futurum esse et esse non est fuisse vel futurum esse: quomodo aeternitas tua tota est semper? An de aeternitate tua nihil praeterit, ut iam non sit, nec aliquid futurum est, quasi nondum sit?

You was not, then, yesterday, nor will you be to-morrow; but yesterday and to-day and to-morrow you are; or, rather, neither yesterday nor to-day nor to-morrow you are; but simply, you are, outside all time. For yesterday and to-day and to-morrow have no existence, except in time; but you, although nothing exists without you, nevertheless do not exist in space or time, but all things exist in you. For nothing contains you, but you contain all.

Non ergo fuisti heri aut eris cras, sed heri et hodie et cras es. Immo nec heri nec hodie nec cras es, sed simpliciter es extra omne tempus. Nam nihil aliud est heri et hodie et cras quam in tempore; tu autem, licet nihil sit sine te, non es tamen in loco aut tempore, sed omnia sunt in te. Nihil enim te continet, sed tu contines omnia.





CHAPTER 20. He exists before all things and transcends all things, even the eternal things.

20 Quod sit ante et ultra omnia etiam aeterna







HENCE, you do permeate and embrace all things. You are before all, and do transcend all. And, of a surety, you are before all; for before they were made, you are. But how do you transcend all? In what way do you transcend those beings which will have no end?

Tu ergo imples et complecteris omnia; tu es ante et ultra omnia. Et quidem ante omnia es, quia "antequam fierent, tu es" [Ps 89,2] Ultra omnia vero quomodo es? Qualiter enim es ultra ea quae finem non habebunt?

Is it because they cannot exist at all without you; while you are in no wise less, if they should return to nothingness? For so, in a certain sense, you do transcend them. Or, is it also because they can be conceived to have an end; but you by no means? For so they actually have an end, in a certain sense; but you, in no sense. And certainly, what in no sense has an end transcends what is ended in any sense. Or, in this way also do you transcend all things, even the eternal, because your eternity and theirs is present as a whole with you; while they have not yet that part of their eternity which is to come, just as they no longer have that part which is past? For so you do ever transcend them, since you are ever present with yourself, and since that to which they have not yet come is ever present with you.

An quia illa sine te nullatenus esse possunt, tu autem nullo modo minus es, etiam si illa redeunt in nihilum? Sic enim quodam modo es ultra illa. An etiam, quia illa cogitari possunt habere finem, tu vero nequaquam? Nam sic illa quidem finem quodam modo, tu vero nullo modo. Et certe quod nullo modo habet finem, ultra est quod aliquo modo finitur. An hoc quoque modo transis omnia etiam aeterna, quia tua et illorum aeternitas tota tibi praesens est, cum illa nondum habeant de sua aeternitate quod venturum est, sicut iam non habent quod praeteritum est? Sic quippe semper es ultra illa, cum semper tibi sis praesens, seu cum illud semper tibi praesens, ad quod illa nondum pervenerunt.





CHAPTER 21. Is this the age of the age, or ages of ages?

21 An hoc sit saeculum saeculi sive saecula saeculorum







IS this, then, the age of the age, or ages of ages? For, as an age of time contains all temporal things, so your eternity contains even the ages of time themselves. And these are indeed an age, because of their indivisible unity; but ages, because of their endless immeasurability. And, although you are so great, O Lord, that all things are full of you, and exist in you; yet you are so without all space, that neither midst, nor half, nor any part, is in you.

An ergo hoc est saeculum saeculi sive saecula saeculorum? Sicut enim saeculum temporum continet omnia temporalia, sic tua aeternitas continet etiam ipsa saecula temporum. Quae saeculum quidem est propter indivisibilem unitatem, saecula vero propter interminabilem immensitatem. Et quamvis ita sis magnus, Domine, ut omnia sint te plena et sint in te: sic tamen es sine omni spatio, ut nec medium nec dimidium nec ulla pars sit in te.





CHAPTER 22.He alone is what he is and who be is.

22 Quod solus sis quod est et qui est







THEREFORE, you alone, O Lord, are what you are; and you are he who you are. For, what is one thing in the whole and another in the parts, and in which there is any mutable element, is not altogether what it is. And what begins from non-existence, and can be conceived not to exist, and unless it subsists through something else, returns to non-existence; and what has a past existence, which is no longer, or a future existence, which is not yet, --this does not properly and absolutely exist.

Tu solus ergo, Domine, es quod es, et tu es qui es. Nam quod aliud est in toto et aliud in partibus, et in quo aliquid est mutabile, non omnino est quod est. Et quod incepit a non esse et potest cogitari non esse et, nisi per aliud subsistat, redit in non esse; et quod habet fuisse quod iam non est, et futurum esse quod nondum est: id non est proprie et absolute. Tu vero es quod es; quia quidquid aliquando aut aliquo modo es, hoc totus et semper es.

But you are what you are, because, whatever you are at any time, or in any way, you are as a whole and forever. And you are he who you are, properly and simply; for you have neither a past existence nor a future, but only a present existence; nor can you be conceived as at any time non-existent. But you are life, and light, and wisdom, and blessedness, and many goods of this nature. And yet you are only one supreme good; you are all-sufficient to yourself, and need none; and you are he whom all things need for their existence and wellbeing.

Et tu es qui proprie et simpliciter es; quia nec habes fuisse aut futurum esse, sed tantum praesens esse, nec potes cogitari aliquando non esse. Et vita es et lux et sapientia et beatitudo et aeternitas et multa huiusmodi bona, et tamen non es nisi unum et summum bonum; tu, tibi omnino sufficiens, nullo indigens, quo omnia indigent ut sint, et ut bene sint.





CHAPTER 23.This good is equally Father, and Son, and Holy Spirit. And this is a single, necessary Being, which is every good, and wholly good, and the only good.

23 Quod hoc bonum sit pariter Pater et Filius et Spiritus Sanctus: et hoc sit unum necessarium, quod est omne et totum et solum bonum







THIS good you are, you, God the Father; this is your Word, that is, your Son. For nothing, other than what you are, or greater or less than you, can be in the Word by which you do express yourself; for the Word is true, as you are truthful. And, hence, it is truth itself, just as you are; no other truth than you; and you are of so simple a nature, that of you nothing can be born other than what you are. This very good is the one love common to you and to your Son, that is, the Holy Spirit proceeding from both. For this love is not unequal to you or to your Son; seeing that you do love yourself and him, and he, you and himself, to the whole extent of your being and his. Nor is there anything else proceeding from you and from him, which is not unequal to you and to him. Nor can anything proceed from the supreme simplicity, other than what this, from which it proceeds, is.

Hoc bonum es tu, Deus Pater; hoc est Verbum tuum, id est Filius tuus. Etenim non potest aliud quam quod es, aut aliquid maius vel minus te esse in Verbo, quo te ipsum dicis; quoniam Verbum tuum sic est verum, quomodo tu verax, et idcirco est ipsa Veritas sicut tu, non alia quam tu; et sic es tu simplex, ut de te non possit nasci aliud quam quod tu es. Hoc ipsum est Amor unus et communis tibi et Filio tuo, id est Sanctus Spiritus ab utroque procedens. Nam idem Amor non est impar tibi aut Filio tuo; quia tantum amas te et illum, et ille te et seipsum, quantus es tu et ille; nec est aliud a te et ab illo, quod dispar non est tibi illi; nec de summa simplicitate potest procedere aliud, quam quod est de quo procedit.

But what each is, separately, this is all the Trinity at once, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; seeing that each separately is none other than the supremely simple unity, and the supremely unitary simplicity which can neither be multiplied nor varied. Moreover, there is a single necessary Being. Now, this is that single, necessary Being, in which is every good; nay, which is every good, and a single entire good, and the only good.

Quod autem est singulus quisque, hoc est tota Trinitas simul, Pater et Filius et Spiritus Sanctus; quoniam singulus quisque non est aliud quam summe simplex unitas et summe una simplicitas, quae nec multiplicari nec aliud et aliud esse potest. "Porro unum est necessarium" [Lc 10,42]. Porro hoc est illud unum necessarium, in quo est omne bonum, immo quod est omne et unum et totum et solum bonum.





CHAPTER 24 Conjecture as to the character and the magnitude of this good.

24 Coniectatio, quale et quantum sit hoc bonum







AND now, my soul, arouse and lift up all your understanding, and conceive, so far as you can, of what character and how great is that good! For, if individual goods are delectable, conceive in earnestness how delectable is that good which contains the pleasantness of all goods; and not such as we have experienced in created objects, but as different as the Creator from the creature. For, if the created life is good, how good is the creative life! If the salvation given is delightful, how delightful is the salvation which has given all salvation! If wisdom in the knowledge of the created world is lovely, how lovely is the wisdom which has created all things from nothing! Finally, if there are many great delights in delectable things, what and how great is the delight in him who has made these delectable things.

Excita nunc, anima mea, et erige totum intellectum tuum, et cogita, quantum potes, quale et quantum sit illud bonum. Si enim singula bona delectabilia sunt, cogita intente quam delectabile sit illud bonum, quod continet iucunditatem omnium bonorum; et non qualem in rebus creatis sumus experti, sed tanto differentem, quanto differt creator a creatura. Si enim bona est vita creata: quam bona est vita creatrix? Sic iucunda est salus facta: quam iucunda est salus, quae facit omnem salutem? Si amabilis est sapientia in cognitione rerum conditarum: quam amabilis est sapientia, quae omnia condidit ex nihilo? Denique si multae et magnae delectatione sunt in rebus delectabilibus: qualis et quanta delectatio est in illo, qui fecit ipsa delectabilia?





CHAPTER 25. What goods and how great, belong to those who enjoy this good.

25 Quae et quanta bona fruentibus eo







WHO shall enjoy this good? And what shall belong to him, and what shall not belong to him? At any rate, whatever he shall wish shall be his, and whatever he shall not wish shall not be his. For, these goods of body and soul will be such as eye has not seen nor ear heard, neither has the heart of man conceived (Isaiah Ixiv. 4; I Corinthians ii. 9).

O, qui hoc bono fruetur: quid illi erit et quid illi non erit! Certe quidquid volet, erit, et quod nolet non erit. Ibi quippe erunt bona corporis et animae, qualia "nec oculus vidit nec auris audivit nec cor hominis" [1 Kor 2,9] cogitavit.

Why, then, do you wander abroad, slight man, in your search for the goods of your soul and your body? Love the one good in which are all goods, and it suffices. Desire the simple good which is every good, and it is enough. For, what do you love, my flesh? What do you desire, my soul? There, there is whatever you love, whatever you desire.

Cur ergo per multa vagaris, homuncio, quaerendo bona animae tuae et corporis tui? Ama unum bonum, in quo sunt omnia bona et sufficit. Desidera simplex bonum, quod est omne bonum et satis est. Quid enim amas, caro mea, quid desideras, anima mea? Ibi est, ibi est quidquid amatis, quidquid desideratis.

If beauty delights you, there shall the righteous shine forth as the sun (Matthew xiii. 43) If swiftness or endurance, or freedom of body, which naught can withstand, delight you, they shall be as angels of God, --because it is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body (I Corinthians xv. 44) --in power certainly, though not in nature. If it is a long and sound life that pleases you, there a healthful eternity is, and an eternal health. For the righteous shall live for ever (Wisdom v. 15), and the salvation of the righteous is of the Lord (Psalms xxxvii. 39) If it is satisfaction of hunger, they shall be satisfied when the glory of the Lord has appeared (Psalms xvii. 15). If it is quenching of thirst, they shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of your house (Psalms xxxvi. 8). If it is melody, there the choirs of angels sing forever, before God. If it is any not impure, but pure, pleasure, you shall make them drink of the river of your pleasures, 0 God (Psalms xxxvi. 8).

Si delectat pulchritudo: "fulgebunt iusti sicut sol" [Mt 13,43] Si velocitas aut fortitudo aut libertas corporis, cui nihil obsistere possit: "erunt similes angelis dei" [Mt 22,30]; quia "seminatur corpus animale, et surget corpus spirituale" [1 Kor 15,44], potestate utique, non natura. Si longa et salubris vita: ibi est sana aeternitas et aeterna sanitas; quia "iusti in perpetuum vivent et salus iustorum a Domino" [Ps 36,39] Si satietas: satiabuntur, "cum apparuerit gloria Dei" [Ps 16,15] Si ebrietas: "inebriabuntur ab ubertate domus Dei"] Si melodia: ibi angelorum chori concinunt sine fine Deo. Si quaelibet non immunda, sed munda voluptas: "torrente voluptatis suae potabit eos" [Ps 35,9] Deus.

If it is wisdom that delights you, the very wisdom of God will reveal itself to them. If friendship, they shall love God more than themselves, and one another as themselves. And God shall love them more than they themselves; for they love him, and themselves, and one another, through him, and he, himself and them, through himself. If concord, they shall all have a single will.

Si sapientia: ipsa Dei sapientia ostendet eius seipsam. Si amicitia: diligent Deum plus quam seipsos, et invicem tamquam seipsos, et Deus illos plus quam illi seipsos; quia illi illum et se et incivem per illum, et ille se et illos per seipsum. Si concordia: omnibus illis erit una voluntas, quia nulla illis erit nisi sola Dei voluntas.

If power, they shall have all power to fulfil their will, as God to fulfil his. For, as God will have power to do what he wills, through himself, so they will have power, through him, to do what they will. For, as they will not will anything else than he, he shall will whatever they will; and what he shall will cannot fail to be. If honor and riches, God shall make his good and faithful servants rulers over many things (Luke xii-42); nay, they shall be called sons of God, and gods; and where his Son shall be, there they shall be also, heirs indeed of God, and joint-heirs with Christ (Romans viii. 17).

Si potestas: omnipotentes erunt suae voluntatis, ut Deus suae. Nam sicut poterit Deus quod volet, per seipsum, ita poterunt illi quod volent, per illum; quia sicut illi non aliud volent quam quod ille, ita ille volet quidquid illi volent; et quod ille volet, non poterit non esse. Si honor et divitiae: Deus suos "servos bonos et fideles supra multa constituet" [Mt 25,21.23]; immo "filii Dei" et dii "vocabuntur" [Mt 5,9] et erunt; et ubi erit Filius eius, ibi erunt et illi, "haeredes quidem Dei, cohaeredes autem Christi" [Ps 81,6; Röm 8,17].

If true security delights you, undoubtedly they shall be as sure that those goods, or rather that good, will never and in no wise fail them; as they shall be sure that they will not lose it of their own accord; and that God, who loves them, will not take it away from those who love him against their will; and that nothing more powerful than God will separate him from them against his will and theirs.

Si vera securitas: certe ita certi erunt numquam et nullatenus ista vel potius bonum sibi defuturum, sicut certi erunt se non sua sponte illud amissuros, nec dilectorem Deum illud dilectoribus suis invitis ablaturum, nec aliquid Deo potentius invitos Deum et illos separaturum.

But what, or how great, is the joy, where such and so great is the good! Heart of man, needy heart, heart acquainted with sorrows, nay, overwhelmed with sorrows, how greatly would you rejoice, if you did abound in all these things! Ask your inmost mind whether it could contain its joy over so great a blessedness of its own.

Gaudium vero quale aut quantum est, ubi tale ac tantum bonum est? Cor humanum, cor indigens, cor expertum aerumnas, immo obrutum aerumnis: quantum gauderes, si his omnibus abundares? Interroga intima tua, si capere possint gaudium suum de tanta beatitudine sua.

Yet assuredly, if any other whom you did love altogether as yourself possessed the same blessedness, your joy would be doubled, because you would rejoice not less for him than for yourself. But, if two, or three, or many more, had the same joy, you would rejoice as much for each one as for yourself, if you did love each as yourself. Hence, in that perfect love of innumerable blessed angels and sainted men, where none shall love another less than himself, every one shall rejoice for each of the others as for himself.

Sed certe, si quis alius, quem omnino sicut teipsum diligeres, eandem beatitudinem haberet, duplicaretur gaudium tuum, quia non minus gauderes pro eo quam pro teipso. Si vero duo vel tres vel multo plures idipsum haberent, tantundem pro singulis quantum pro teipso gauderes, si singulos sicut teipsum amares. Ergo in illa perfecta caritate innumerabilium beatorum angelorum et hominum, ubi nullus minus diliget alium quam seipsum, non aliter gaudebit quisque pro singulis aliis quam pro seipso.

If, then, the heart of man will scarce contain his joy over his own so great good, how shall it contain so many and so great joys? And doubtless, seeing that every one loves another so far as he rejoices in the other's good, and as, in that perfect felicity, each one should love God beyond compare, more than himself and all the others with him; so he will rejoice beyond reckoning in the felicity of God, more than in his own and that of all the others with him.

Si ergo cor hominis de tanto suo bono vix capiet gaudium suum: quomodo capax erit tot et tantorum gaudiorum? Et utique, quoniam quantum quidque diligit aliquem, tantum de bono eius gaudet: sicut in illa perfecta felicitate unusquisque plus amabit sine comparatione Deum quam se et omnes alios secum, ita plus gaudebit absque existimatione de felicitate Dei quam de sua et omnium aliorum secum.

But if they shall so love God with all their heart, and all their mind, and all their soul, that still all the heart, and all the mind, and all the soul shall not suffice for the worthiness of this love; doubtless they will so rejoice with all their heart, and all their mind, and all their soul, that all the heart, and all the mind, and all the soul shall not suffice for the fulness of their joy.

Sed si Deum sic diligent "toto corde, tota mente, tota anima" [Mt 22,37], ut tamen totum cor, tota mens, tota anima non sufficiat dignitate dilectionis: profecto sic gaudebunt "toto corde, tota mente, tota anima", ut totum cor, tota mens, tota anima non sufficiat plenitudini gaudii.





CHAPTER 26. Is this joy which the Lord promises made full?

26 An hoc sit gaudium plenum quod promittit Dominus





MY God and my Lord, my hope and the joy of my heart, speak unto my soul and tell me whether this is the joy of which you tell us through your Son: Ask and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full (John xvi. 24). For I have found a joy that is full, and more than full. For when heart, and mind, and soul, and all the man, are full of that joy, joy beyond measure will still remain. Hence, not all of that joy shall enter into those who rejoice; but they who rejoice shall wholly enter into that joy.

Deus meus et Dominus meus, spes mea et gaudium cordis mei, dic animae meae, si hoc est gaudium, de quo nobis dicis per Filium tuum: "Petite et accipietis, ut gaudium vestrum sit plenum" [Joh 16,24] Inveni namque gaudium quoddam plenum, et plus quam plenum. Pleno quippe corde, plena mente, plena anima, pleno toto homine gaudio illo:

Show me, O Lord, show your servant in his heart whether this is the joy into which your servants shall enter, who shall enter into the joy of their Lord. But that joy, surely, with which your chosen ones shall rejoice, eye has not seen nor ear heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man (Isaiah lxiv. 4; i Corinthians ii. 9). Not yet, then, have I told or conceived, O Lord, how greatly those blessed ones of yours shall rejoice. Doubtless they shall rejoice according as they shall love; and they shall love according as they shall know. How far they will know you, Lord, then! and how much they will love you! Truly, eye has not seen, nor ear heard, neither has it entered into the heart of man in this life, how far they shall know you, and how much they shall love you in that life.

adhuc supra modum superit gaudium. Non ergo totum illud gaudium intrabit in gaudentes, sed toti gaudentes intrabunt in gaudium. Dic, Domine, dic servo tuo intus in corde suo, si hoc est gaudium in quod intrabunt servi tui, qui intrabunt "in gaudium Domini sui" [Mt 25,21]. Sed gaudium illud certe, quo gaudebunt electi tui, "nec oculus vidit, nec auris audivit, nec in cor hominis ascendit" [1 Kor 2,9] Nondum ergo dixi et cogitavi, Domine, quantum gaudebunt illi beati tui. Utique tantum gaudebunt, quantum amabunt; tantum amabunt, quantum cognoscent. Quantum te cognoscent, Domine, tunc, et quantum amabunt? Certe "nec oculus vidit, nec auris audivit, nec in cor hominis ascendit" [1 Kor 2,9] in hac vita, quantum te cognoscent et amabunt in illa vita.

I pray, O God, to know you, to love you, that I may rejoice in you. And if I cannot attain to full joy in this life may I at least advance from day to day, until that joy shall come to the full. Let the knowledge of you advance in me here, and there be made full. Let the love of you increase, and there let it be full, that here my joy may be great in hope, and there full in truth. Lord, through your Son you do command, nay, you do counsel us to ask; and you do promise that we shall receive, that our joy may be full. I ask, O Lord, as you do counsel through our wonderful Counsellor. I will receive what you do promise by virtue of your truth, that my joy may be full. Faithful God, I ask. I will receive, that my joy may be full. Meanwhile, let my mind meditate upon it; let my tongue speak of it. Let my heart love it; let my mouth talk of it. Let my soul hunger for it; let my flesh thirst for it; let my whole being desire it, until I enter into your joy, O Lord, who are the Three and the One God, blessed for ever and ever. Amen.

Oro, Deus, cognoscam te, amem te, ut gaudeam de te. Et si non possum in hac vita ad plenum, vel proficiam in dies, usque dum veniat illud ad plenum. Proficiat hic in me notitia tui et ibi fiat plena; crescat amor tuus et ibi sit plenus, ut hic gaudium meum sit in spe magnum, et ibi sit in re plenum. Domine, per Filium tuum iubes, immo consulis petere et promittis accipere, "ut gaudium nostrum plenum sit" [Joh 16,24]. Peto, Domine, quod consulis "per admirabilem consiliarium" [Jes 9,6] nostrum; accipiam, quod promittis per veritatem tuam, "ut gaudium meum plenum sit" [Joh 16,24]. Deus verax, peto accipiam, "ut gaudium meum plenum sit" [Joh 16,24]. Meditetur interim inde mens mea, loquatur inde lingua mea. Amet illud cor meum, sermonicetur os meum. Esuriat illud omnia mea, sitiat caro mea, desideret tota substantia mea, donec "intrem in gaudium Domini mei" [Mt 25,21], qui est trinus et unus Deus "benedictus in saecula. Amen" [Röm 1,25].



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