To read Julian’s Revelations in order, which is far better, begin at the Introduction.
The sixteenth Revelation etc. And it is conclusion and confirmation to all fifteen. And of hir frelty and morning in disese and lyte speking after the gret comfort of Jesus, seying she had ravid; which, being hir gret sekeness, I suppose was but venial synne. But yet the Devil after that had gret power to vexin hir ner to deth.
After this the good Lord showed the sixteenth
on the night following, as I shall say later;
concluding and confirming the first fifteen.
But I must first tell you of my feebleness,
my wretchedness, and blindness.
I said at the beginning,
“… all my pain was suddenly taken from me.”
leaving no grief, leaving no unease.
At the end of the fifteen showings
all was closed, and I saw no more.
Soon I felt I should live and languish.
My sickness returned at once,
first in my head with sound and din;
then my body filled again with sickness,
barren, dry, with little sign of comfort.
I moaned and heaved like a wretch,
feeling my bodily pains
my failing spiritual and bodily comfort.
Then a religious person came to me
asking how I fared – I said I had raved,
and he laughed loud and heartily.
And I said,
“The cross that stood before my face,
I though it bled fast.”
At this, the person I spoke to was sad
he marvelled, and at once I was ashamed,
astonished for my recklessness.
I thought, he who saw none of it
takes sadly the least word I say.
when I saw his sadness, his great reverence,
I wept, greatly shamed, wanting absolution.
But at that time I could tell no priest.
I thought, how could a priest believe me?
I do not believe our Lord God.
I did believe truly, as long as I saw Him,
so were my will and thoughts continually,
but like a fool, I let it pass from my mind.
Ah! look at me!
This was a great sin, a great unkindness.
I, for folly in feeling a little bodily pain,
so unwisely lost for a time
all the comfort of our Lord God’s blessed showing.
Here you may see what I am like,
but our courteous Lord would not leave me like this;
I lay still till night, trusting in His mercy,
then fell asleep.
At the beginning of my sleep,
I thought the fiend set himself at my throat
setting his visage close to my face,
like a young man, long, very lean.
I never saw anything like it.
It was red like new-burnt roof tiles,
with black spots like black pustules
fouler than the redness.
His hair was red as rust clipped before,
with side locks hanging on the temples.
He grinned, a wicked semblance of white teeth,
so much I thought it all the more ugly.
His body and hands were unshapely,
but he held me in the throat with his paws
and would have strangled me, but could not.
This ugly showing came in my sleep,
the only one such of all the showings,
but I continually trusted God’s mercy,
and our courteous Lord gave me grace to wake;
by this alone I had my life.
Those with me watched me and wet my temples,
and my heart began to be comforted,
but a pale smoke came in the door
with a great heat and a foul stink.
I said, “Benedicite domine,
it is all on fire here!”
thinking it was a real fire
that should burn us all to death.
I asked if those with me smelt anything.
They said, no, they smelt nothing.
I said, “Blessed be God”; for I knew from that
it was the fiend come to tempt me.
At once I turned to what our Lord had shown me,
that same day, with all the faith of Holy Church
for I saw in them both as one,
and fled there for my comfort.
Instantly, all vanished away
and I was brought great rest and peace,
with no bodily sickness or sense of guilt.
Of the worshipfull syte of the soule which is so nobly create that it myte no better a be made, in which the Trinite joyeth everlastingly; and the soule may have rest in nothing but in God, which sittith therin reuling al things.
Then our Lord opened my spiritual eye
showing me my soul in the midst of my heart,
so large, an endless world, a blissful kingdom;
and by its condition I saw there,
I understood it is a worshipful site.
In the midst of that site our Lord Jesus sits,
God and man, a fair person of great stature,
highest bishop, solemnest king,
most worshipful Lord.
I saw Him clad solemnly;
worshipfully He sits in the soul,
truly in peace and rest.
And the Godhead rules and guides
Heaven, earth, and all that is:
sovereign might, sovereign wisdom,
The place Jesus takes in our soul,
He shall never leave or remove for all time.
In us is His homeliest home,
His endless dwelling,
in this He showed the delight He has
in making man’s soul.
As well as the Father might make a creature,
as well as the Son could inspire a creature,
the Holy Spirit desired man’s soul to be made,
and so it was done;
thus the blessed Trinity eternally treasures
the making of man’s soul;
for He saw from beyond beginning
what would delight Him eternally.
All He has made shows His Lordship,
as I was shown in an example –
a creature shown great nobility:
kingdoms belonging to a Lord,
having seen nobility here below,
it was stirred, marvelling, to search above,
to the high place where the lord dwells,
reasoning that his dwelling
would be in the worthiest place.
So I understood truly,
our soul cannot rest in things beneath itself;
when it rises above all, into itself,
it cannot remain beholding itself;
all its vision is set blissfully in God,
the maker, dwelling therein,
for man’s soul is his true dwelling.
And the highest light,
the brightest shining of that site
is, as I saw, the glorious love of our Lord.
What can we treasure more in God
than what He treasures most in all his works?
I saw that if the blissful Trinity
might have made man’s soul any better,
any fairer, any nobler than it was made,
He should still not have been fully pleased.
He wants our hearts raised and strengthened
above the depth of the earth’s depth,
above all vain sorrows,
delighting in Him.