Tuesday, May 5, 2009

loving God

as expressed by Augustine

"not with doubting,
but with assured consciousness,
do i love thee, Lord.
thou hast stricken my heart with thy word,
and i loved thee.
yea, also heaven, and earth,
and all that therein is,
on every side they bid me love thee;
nor cease to say so unto all
that they may be without excuse.
but more deeply wilt thou have mercy
on whom thou wilt have mercy,
and have compassion
on whom thou hast had compassion:
else in deaf ears
do the heaven and the earth speak thy praises.
but what do i love,
when i love thee?
not beauty of bodies,
nor the fair harmony of time,
nor the brightness of the light, so gladsome to our eyes,
nor sweet melodies of varied songs,
nor the fragrant smell of flowers, and ointments, and spices,
not manna and honey,
not limbs acceptable to embracements of flesh.
none of these i love,
when i love my God;
and yet i love a kind of light,
and melody,
and fragrance,
and meat,
and embracement,
when i love my God,
the light, melody fragrance meat, embracement
of my inner man:
where there shineth unto my soul,
what space cannot contain,
and there soundeth,
what time beareth not away,
and there smelleth,
what breathing disperseth not,
and there tasteth,
what eating diminisheth not,
and the clingeth,
what satiety divorceth not.
this is it which i love,
when i love my God.

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