« Prev CHAPTER XLVI Next »


“It is needful to see and to know that we are sinners: wherefore we deserve pain and wrath.” “He is God: Good, Life, Truth, Love, Peace: His Clarity and His Unity suffereth Him not to be wroth”

BUT our passing life that we have here in our sense-soul knoweth not what our Self is.147147"like it." And when we verily and clearly see and know what our Self is] then shall we verily and clearly see and know our Lord God in fulness of joy. And therefore it behoveth needs to be that the nearer we be to our bliss, the more we shall long [after it]: and that both by nature and by grace. We may have knowing of our Self in this life by continuant help and virtue of our high Nature. In which knowing we may exercise and grow, by forwarding and speeding of mercy and grace; but we may never fully know our Self until the last point: in which point this passing life and manner of pain and woe shall have an end. And therefore it belongeth properly to us, both by nature and by grace, to long and desire with all our mights to know our Self in fulness of endless joy.


And yet in all this time, from the beginning to the end, I had two manner of beholdings. The one was endless continuant love, with secureness of keeping, and blissful salvation,—for of this was all the Shewing. The other was of the common teaching of Holy Church, in which I was afore informed and grounded—and with all my will having in use and understanding. And the beholding of this went not from me: for by the Shewing I was not stirred nor led therefrom in no manner of point, but I had therein teaching to love it and find it good148148"like it." : whereby I might, by the help of our Lord and His grace, increase and rise to more heavenly knowing and higher loving.

And thus in all the Beholding methought it was needful to see and to know that we are sinners, and do many evils that we ought to leave, and leave many good deeds undone that we ought to do: wherefore we deserve pain and wrath. And notwithstanding all this, I saw soothfastly that our Lord was never wroth, nor ever shall be. For He is God: Good, Life, Truth, Love, Peace; His Clarity149149So S. de Cressy has it. There is evidently an omission in the MS. of part of this sentence. See lvi., lxxii. The dim sight of God comes before the dim sight of the Self, but the clear sight of God comes after the clear sight of the Self. and His Unity suffereth Him not to be wroth. For I saw truly that it is against the property of His Might to be wroth, and against the property of His Wisdom, and against the property of His Goodness. God is the Goodness that may not be wroth, for He is not [other] but Goodness: our soul is oned to Him, unchangeable Goodness, and between God and our soul is neither wrath nor forgiveness in His sight. For our soul is so fully oned to God of His own Goodness that between God and our soul may be right nought.


And to this understanding was the soul led by love and drawn by might in every Shewing: that it is thus our good Lord shewed, and how it is thus in the truth of His great Goodness. And He willeth that we desire to learn it—that is to say, as far as it belongeth to His creature to learn it. For all things that the simple soul understood, God willeth that they be shewed and [made] known. For the things that He will have privy, mightily and wisely Himself He hideth them, for love. For I saw in the same Shewing that much privity is hid, which may never be known until the time that God of His goodness hath made us worthy to see it; and therewith I am well-content, abiding our Lord’s will in this high marvel. And now I yield me to my Mother, Holy Church, as a simple child oweth.

« Prev CHAPTER XLVI Next »
VIEWNAME is workSection