Julian’s Comments (2)
Of the properties of the Trinite; and how mannys soule, a creature, hath the same properties, doyng that that it was made for: seyng, beholdyng, and mervelyng his God, so, by that, it semyth as nowte to the selfe.
In these revelations God often showed
how His will and His worship continue,
working unstintingly in mankind,
as in His first example where He showed
Our Lady, in whose soul I saw the work
of Truth and wisdom.
By Holy Spirit’s grace I hope to tell
how this was done in what I saw.
Truth sees God; Wisdom holds Him fast.
From these two comes a third,
a holy, marvellous delight in God,
which is love,
sovereign Wisdom, sovereign Love;
all without end, without beginning.
Where truth and wisdom is,
truly, love is there,
coming, truly, from them both,
and all of God’s making.
For He is endless sovereign truth,
endless sovereign wisdom,
endless sovereign love,
Man’s soul, a creation of God,
made in His image,
fulfills its creation in this:
It forever sees God,
it holds to God,
it loves God.
God delights in His creation,
His creation delights in Him.
In this marvelling he sees his God,
his Lord, his Maker, so high, so great, and so good
that the creature, to itself,
seems nothing in comparison.
But truth and wisdom’s clarity and cleanness
make him see and acknowledge he is made for love,
in which God endlessly keeps him.
Of the ferme and depe jugement of God and the variant jugement of man.
God does not see us as we see ourselves.
He sees our true nature as He made us:
kept whole and safe through all time,
through His goodness.
We judge ourselves on our changeable sensuality,
which seems now one thing, now another,
This wisdom is muddled,
sometimes good and easy, sometimes hard and grievous.
Where it is good and easy it longs for goodness;
where it is hard and grievous
our good Lord Jesus reforms it by mercy and grace,
through the virtue of His blessed passion,
bringing it to good.
Though these two are in accord and unified,
both shall be known in Heaven without end.
The first judgement, from God’s goodness,
His high endless life,
is in that fair sweet judgement shown
in all these fair revelations,
in which I saw Him assign to us
no manner of blame.
And though this was sweet and delectable
yet I could not be fully eased
in holding to this alone
because of Holy Church’s judgement,
as I previously understood,
staying continually in my sight.
Because by this judgment, I thought
I must know myself a sinner,
and by that judgment I understood
that sinners are worthy of blame and wrath,
yet I could not see these two in God.
My desire at that time was more
than I can or may tell.
God Himself showed the higher judgment
and I was bound to accept it,
and Holy Church had taught me the lower judgment,
which I could in no way abandon.
This then was my desire –
that I might see in God
how this judgment Holy Church teaches
is true in His sight,
and how I should understand,
how they may both be saved –
both faithful to God’s meaning,
and both right for me.
And to all this I had no other answer
than a marvellous example of a lord and a servant,
as I should see later, powerfully shown.
And yet I stand desiring,
and will until my end,
that I might know by grace,
how these judgments apply to me.
All things of heaven and earth
are known in these decrees.
The more we understand them
the more we understand our failing ways
by Holy Spirit’s grace;
The more we see them,
the more we long for our true nature’s bliss,
from our beginning, now and ever,
We cannot knowen ourself in this life but be feith and grace, but we must know ourself synners; and how God is never wreth, being most nere the soule, it kepyng. Forty-sixth chapter.
Our passing life in our sense-soul
is blind to our true self.
Yet when we truly see our Lord,
knowing Him in fullest joy,
the nearer we come, the more we shall desire,
because of our true nature,
and by grace.
We may know our true self now in part,
by the help of our true nature.
We may increase and grow in this
by the help and spur of mercy
and of grace, but never fully,
until leaving pain and trials behind,
we pass on.
Yet we must press on,
seeking with all our might
to know our true selves fully,
in endless joy.
In all this time I saw two ways.
One: endless continuing love,
secure keeping and blissful salvation,
shown in all the visions;
the other: Holy Church’s teaching
in which I was grounded, grown and held strongly,
in use and understanding.
This was not taken from me,
nor was I led from it in any way,
but was taught to love and understand it,
so I might, by our Lord’s help and grace,
learn a more heavenly understanding
and a higher love .
In all, I understood we were sinners,
with much evil done, much good undone,
deserving pain and wrath.
Yet in all this I saw, strongly, truly,
there was no wrath in God nor ever shall be
for He is God: goodness, life, truth, love, peace.
In His love and unity He cannot be be wrathful.
I saw truly it is against might’s property to be wroth,
against the property of His wisdom,
against the property of His goodness.
God is goodness that may not be wroth,
for He is nothing but goodness.
Between our soul and His Goodness
there is neither wrath nor forgiveness.
Our soul is one with Him in his goodness.
Nothing separates God and our soul.
My soul was led to this understanding by love,
drawn by might in every showing.
Our good Lord showed that this is so,
and how it is truly of His great goodness.
He wants us to desire this knowledge
but there is more God has not revealed;
things He will keep privately, mightily,
and wisely Himself which He hides for love.
to be kept until He in His goodness
makes us worthy to see it.
I am content to abide His time in this
and yield myself to my Mother, Holy Church,
as her obedient child.
For some reason I cannot understand, Biblical phrases such as ‘God’s anger’ are translated as ‘God’s wrath’, even though the words have different origins.
In the original Greek the word for ‘Anger’, is orge, pronounced ‘orgay’, a sorrowing word, sharing roots with anguish and grief: the grieving anger of a sorrowing parent with a wayward child.
The germanic word ‘wrath’ (wrað) shares it roots with wreak and wreck, with wreath and writhe; a twisted, turning away,
like a stern loveless teacher.
‘the wrath of God’ is a mistranslation for ‘the anger of God’,
which might be even better understood as ‘the grief of God’.
Many dictionaries do not distinguish this, giving them as synonyms, which they are not.
Our soul has two duties:
to reverently marvel, and to be meek and patient,
ever enjoying God,
for He would have us understand
that soon we shall clearly see in Him
all that we desire.
Notwithstanding all this,
I saw and greatly wondered:
what is the mercy and forgiveness of God?
For by the teaching I had before,
I understood God’s mercy
should be in the forgiveness of His wrath
after we have sinned.
For I thought:
to a soul whose meaning and desire is love,
God’s wrath was harder than all other pain,
so the forgiveness of His wrath
should be the main point in His mercy.
But however I might seek and desire it,
I could not see it in all the Shewing.
How I understood and saw the workings of mercy,
I shall say as much as God will give me grace.
I understood this:
Man is changeable in this life;
by frailty and overcoming he falls into sin.
Weak and unwise of himself, his will is defeated.
Then he is in tempest, sorrow and woe;
caused by blindness for he does not see God.
If he saw God continually
he could have no mischievous sense,
nor motion nor yearning that leads to sin.
Then I saw and felt this sight and feeling
was high and fully gracious
more than our feeling in this life;
yet I thought it small and lower
than that the soul’s desire to see God.
For I felt in me five forms of working:
Enjoying, mourning, desire, dread, and sure hope.
Enjoying: for God gave me understanding and knowing
– it was Himself I saw;
mourning: for failing;
desire: that I might see Him ever more and more,
understanding, knowing, we shall not fully rest
till we see Him truly, clearly in heaven;
dread: for it seemed through all the shewings
my sight of Him might fail and I be left alone;
sure hope: in the endless love –
His mercy in which I should be held
and brought to His bliss, joying in His sight.
This sure hope of His merciful keeping
gave me feeling and comfort
so mourning and dread were not greatly painful.
Yet in God’s Shewing I saw ,
this vision may not continue in this life,
for the increase of His worship and our future joy.
So we often fail to see Him,
we fall into ourself,
finding no right feeling,
only contrariness in our self;
which, with our contrivance,
and with all the sins that follow,
is rooted in our first sin.
In which we are in torment and tempest
with sins and pains, spiritual and bodily,
in the many ways we find in this life.
Off mercy and grace and their propertyes; and how we shall enjoy that ever we suffrid wo patiently. Forty-eighth chapter.
BUT our good Lord the Holy Ghost,
endless life dwelling in our soul,
keeps us fully secure;
working peace therein,
bringing it to ease by grace,
pliant, in harmony with God.
This is the mercy and the way
that our Lord continually leads us
throughout this changeable life.
For I saw no wrath except on our part,
and He forgives that in us.
Wrath is brazen arrogance,
contrary to peace and love;
from failing strength, failing wisdom,
or failing goodness.
Not a failing in God,
but in us.
We continue, in sin and wretchedness,
contrary to peace and love.
He shewed this fully, often,
in His lovely regard to us
in compassion and in pity.
For the ground of mercy is love,
the working of mercy is our keeping in love.
This was shown in such manner
that I could not, as far as I could see,
have understood mercy’s part
in any way but love.
Mercy is sweet, gracious working of love
mingled with plenteous pity.
Mercy works to keep us,
mercy works to turn all things to good for us.
Mercy, by love, allows us a measure of failing,
and as much as we fail, as much we fall;
and in as much as we fall, that much we die:
for we die as much as we fail
of the sight and feeling of God
who is our life.
Our failing is dreadful,
our falling is shameful,
and our dying is sorrowful:
but the sweet eye of pity and love
is never lifted from us,
nor does the work of mercy cease .
For I saw the property of mercy,
I saw the property of grace:
with two manners of working in one love.
Mercy is a pitying property
in the tender love of the Motherhood.
Grace is a worshipful property
of the royal Lordship in that same love.
keeping, suffering, quickening, and healing;
all is tenderness of love.
raising, rewarding, endlessly surpassing that
which our longing and our travail deserve,
shewing high plenteous largess:
God’s royal Lordship in His marvellous courtesy;
the abundance of love.
Grace works our dreadful failing
into plenteous, endless solace;
grace works our shameful falling
into high, worshipful rising;
grace works our sorrowful dying
into holy, blissful life.
For I saw, full and sure,
as our contrariness brings us pain,
shame, and sorrow in earth,
so rightly, contrary-wise,
grace works to us surpassing solace,
worship, and bliss in heaven.
To such extent, that when we come
and receive the sweet reward
which grace hath wrought for us,
then we shall thank and bless our Lord,
endlessly rejoicing that we ever suffered woe.
That shall be a property of blessed love,
that we shall know in God
which we could never have known
without woe going before.
And when I saw all this I had to grant
God’s mercy and forgiveness
in softening and weakening our wrath.
Our lif is growndid in love withoute the which we perish; but yet God is never wroth, but in our wreth and synne He mercifully kepith us, and tretith us to peace, rewarding our tribulations. Forty-ninth chapter
For this was a high marvel to the soul
which was continely shown in all,
and with gret diligens beholden:
that our Lord God Himself cannot forgive,
for He cannot be wroth.
It were impossible.
For this was shown:
our life is grounded and rooted in love;
we cannot not live without it .
So to the soul, who by His special grace
sees far into His high, marvellous goodness,
and sees us endlessly united to Him in love,
it is quite impossible that God could be wroth.
For wrath and friendship are contraries.
For He that wastes and destroys our wrath,
and makes us meek and mild,
must always be one in love,
meek and mild, contrary to wrath.
For I saw fully, certainly,
that where our Lord appears,
peace comes and wrath has no place.
I saw no manner of wrath in God,
not briefly, nor at length.
for I saw, truly, that if God might be wroth,
a mere touch,
we should neither live, nor stand, nor exist.
as we are created in God’s eternal might,
His eternal wisdom and eternal goodness,
so equally we are preserved
in His same eternal might, wisdom and goodness.
Though we feel in ourselves
wretchedness, arguments and strivings,
God’s mildness wraps us in every way
in His meekness, His goodwill, His tolerance.
For I saw, fully and surely, that our
love for one another,
our standing, our life, our being
is in God.
For that same eternal goodness
that keeps us from perishing when we sin,
continually deals peaceably against our wrath
and our contrarious falling;
it makes us see our need with true dread,
to beseech God mightily for forgiveness
with a gracious desire of our salvation.
For we can only be happily safe
when we are in true peace and love,
for that is our salvation.
Though we, by our wrath and contrary ways
are now in tribulation, disease, and woe,
from our blindnes and frelte,
yet we are secure and safe
by God’s mercy keeping us from perishing.
But we cannot be blissfully safe,
nor in endless joy
’til we are fully in peace and love,
fully pleased with God,
with all His works and judgements,
loving and peaceable with ourself
and our fellow Christians,
and all God loves, in love’s delight.
All this, God’s goodness does in us.
God is our true peace, our secure keeper,
when we are ourselves at one in peace,
He works to bring us to eternal peace,
so when we, by mercy and grace,
are made meek and mild, we are fully safe.
Suddenly the soul is united to God
when it is truly at peace in itself,
for in Him is found no wrath.
I saw, when we are all in peace and love,
we find no conflict, or any way
to stop that love and peace.
Our Lord’s goodness turns any conflict in us,
that causes our tribulations and woe,
fully to our profit.
He takes them, and sends them up to Heaven,
where they are made sweeter,
more delectable than heart may think
or tongue may tell.
When we come there we shall find them
all turned to very fair and endless worship.
Thus God is our steadfast ground,
and shall be our full bliss when we are there,
making us as unchangeable as He is.
How the chosen soule was nevere ded in the syte of God, and of a mervel upon the same; and three things boldid hir to aske of God the understondyng of it. Fiftieth chapter.
Mercy and forgiveness,
our path in this mortal life,
forever leads us to grace;
but the torment and sorrow we fall into
often makes us dead in man’s eyes.
But in God’s sight,
the soul that shall be saved was never dead,
nor ever shall be.
But here I wondered and marvelled
with all the diligence of my soul,
“Good Lord, I see you are all truth,
and know we sin gravely each day,
with great blame,
and I cannot deny this truth,
but I do not see you blame us at all.
How can this be?
For I know by the common teaching of Holy Church,
and by my own feeling,
that our sin’s blame hangs on us always,
from the first man until we come to Heaven.”
This was my marvel, I saw our Lord God
blaming us no more than if we were
as clean and holy as angels in Heaven.
And between these two contraries
my reason was greatly tortured by my blindness
and could have no rest
for fear that His blessed presence
should pass from my sight, leaving me
not knowing how He saw us in our sin.
For I needed God’s help to see
that He has wholly done away with sin,
or else see just how He sees it,
to know truly how I should see sin
and the manner of our blame.
My longing endured, continually beholding Him,
and yet I could have no patience
for great distress and perplexity, thinking,
“If I take it that we are not sinners,
nor blameworthy, it seems I should err
and fail to know the truth of this.
if we are truly guilty sinners,
how can I not see this truth in You,
my God, my maker,
in whom I desire to see all truths?”
For three points give me strength to ask it.
First, it is so low a thing,
for if it were high I should be afraid.
Second is that it is so common,
for if it were a special secret,
I should also be afraid.
The third is that I need to know it,
thinking that if I survive here,
I must understand good and evil
so that by reason and grace
I may tell them more apart,
one from another,
loving goodness and hating evil
as Holy Church teaches.
I cried inwardly with all my might,
seeking in God for help,
“Ah, Lord Jesus, King of bliss, how shall I be eased?
Who shall teach me and tell me what I need to know
if I cannot now see it in You?”