Julian’s 15th Shewing.

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In this fifteenth shewing, particularly in chapter 65, the word ‘dread’ occurs several times (i.e. …he shall not dredyn but Him that he lovith.). Although we use the same word today it carries a different meaning, just as ‘fear’ does. In Julian’s day it carried far more of the sense of ‘respect’ and ‘awe’, as in the presence of holiness. Generally I have translated it using both of those words, but sometimes, according to the context, as either one or the other. On one occasion, where its application is to the soul’s previous mistaken response to dis-ease, I have used the word ‘dread’ itself: (All our dreds He setteth among passions… /…setting all other dreads among passions,)

Sixty-fourth chapter

The fifteenth Revelation is as it shewid etc. The absense of God in this lif is our ful gret peyne, besyde other travel, but we shal sodenly be taken fro all peyne, having Jesus to our Moder; and our patient abyding is gretly plesyng to God. And God wil we take our disese lightly, for love, thinkand us alwey at the poynte to be delivirid.

Until this time I had a great longing
and desired God’s gift
to be delivered of this world
and of this life.
For often I saw the woe that is here,
and the health and the bliss that is there.

I thought, if there were no pain in this life
but the absence of our Lord,
that would be more than I might bear,
which made me mourn in fervent longing.

And also my own wretchedness,
my slowness and my weaknesss,
made me not want to live and work
as it befell to me.

And to all this our courteous Lord answered,
in comfort and patience,
saying these words:

Suddenly you shall be taken from all your pain,
from all your sickness,
from all your dis-ease,
from all your woe,
And you shall come up above,
and you shall have me to your reward.
And you shall be filled with love and bliss.
And you shall never have any manner of pain,
no manner of dislike,
no wanting of will,
but joy and bliss without end.
What should it then aggrieve you to suffer a while
since it is my will and my worship?

And in this word,
Suddenly you shall be taken,
I saw that God rewards man with patience
in abiding His will and time,
so man lengthens his patience
through all the time he lives.

For not knowing the time of his passing,
is surely a great profit.
For if a man knew his time,
he would have no patience over that time.
So, as God wills,
while the soul is in the body,
it seems to it to be ever
at the point of being taken.

For all this life and this languor
that we have here is but a point,
and when we are taken
suddenly out of pain into bliss,
then pain shall be nothing.

At this time I saw a body
lying on the earth,
heavy and ugly, without shape or form,
like a quivering bloat of stinking mire.
Suddenly out of this body
sprang a full, fair creature,
a little child, fully shaped and formed,
swift and lively, whiter than a lily,
which swiftly glided to Heaven.

And the bloating of the body
shows the wretchedness of our deadly flesh,
and the littleness of the child
shows cleaness and purity in the soul.

And I thought:
none of this child’s fairness
remains in this body,
none of the body’s foulness
dwells in this child.

It is truly more blissfull,
for man to be taken from pain,
than pain to be taken from man;
for if pain is taken from us
it may come again.

So it is a sovereign comfort,
held blissfully in a loving soul,
for us to be be taken from pain.

For in this I saw a marvelous compassion
that our Lord has for our woe,
and a courteous vow of clean deliverance.
For He wishes us to be supremely comforted,
and He showed this in these words:

And you shall come up above,
and you shall have me as your reward,
and you shall be filled
with joy and bliss.

God wishes us to set our thoughts
in this blissfull understanding
as often and as long as we may,
and keeps us so with His grace.

This is blessed contemplation
for the soul led by God
to fullness in His worship
as long as it lasts.

And when we fall again,
to heaviness and spiritual blindness,
feelings of pain in spirit and body,
by our own frailty,
God’s wishes us to know
He has not forgotten us,
which He says in these words for our comfort:

And you shall have no more pain,
no manner of sickeness,
and nothing to dislike,
no failing of your will,
but joy and bliss without end.
Why then should you grieve to suffer a while,
seeing it is my will and my worship?

God wants us to take His word and comfort
as large and strongly as we may,
and our waiting time and our diseases
as lightly as we may,
and set them at nought.

For the lighter we take them,
and the less price we set on them
for love,
the less pain shall we have in feeling them,
and the more thanks and reward shall we have for them.

Sixty-fifth chapter

He that chesith God for love with reverent mekeness is sekir to be savid, which reverent mekenes seith the Lord mervelous grete and the selfe mervelous litil. And it is God will we drede nothing but Him, for the power of our enemy is taken in our freinds hand. And therfore al that God doith shall be gret likyng to us.

And so I understood:
whatever man or woman wilfully chooses God
in this life, for love,
may be sure that he is loved endlessly,
and this endless love works that grace in him.

For He wishes us to keep this comfort,
so we are secure in hope:
in hope of the bliss of Heaven
while we are here,
and as secure as we shall be
when we are there.

Always, the more we like and joy
in this security
with full reverence and meekness,
the better He likes it.

This reverence that I mean
is holy, courteous respect
in awe of our Lord,
which is allied to meekness.

And that is,
that a creature sees the Lord marvelously greate,
and itself marvelously little.

Those God loved have these virtues endlessly,
seen and felt in our Lord’s gracious presence,
which is highly desired in everything,
for giving marvelous security,
true faith, secure hope, by great charity,
in sweet, delectable respect and awe.

It is God’s will I see myself
greatly bound to Him in love,
as if all that He has done
He has done for me.
Every soul should think thus of his lover.

God’s love makes such unity in us
that, when it is truly seen,
no man sees himself apart from other.
And so our soul is bound
to think that all that God has done
He has done for him;
He shows this to make us love Him,
to have respect and awe for none but Him.

For it is His will that we know
that all the might of our enemy
is taken into our friend’s hand,
and the soul that knows this surely,
shall only be in awe of Him he loves,
setting all other dreads among passions,
bodily sickness, imaginations;
and though we are in so much pain,
so much woe, so much disease,
that we can think of nothing else,
we pass lightly on as soon as we may,
and set it at nought.

And why?
For God wills we know:
if we know Him, and love Him,
in reverent awe of Him,
we shall have peace and great rest,
and it shall be a great liking to us,
all that He does.

And this our Lord showed in these words:
Why should it grieve you to suffer a while,
since it is my will and my worship?

Now have I told you of fifteen Revelations, as God vouchsafe to ministren hem to mynd, renewid by lyghtings and tuchyngs, I hope of the same spirite that shewid hem all. Of which fifteen shewings, the first beganne erly on the morne aboute the howre of fowre, and it lestid, shewing be process ful faire and sekirly ich folowand other, till it was none of the day overpassid.

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