THE CONFESSIONS OF SAINT AUGUSTINE Translated by Edward Bouverie Pusey

BOOK I Great art Thou, O Lord, and greatly to be praised; great is Thy power, and Thy wisdom infinite. And Thee would man praise; man, but a particle of Thy creation; man, that bears about him his mortality, the witness of his sin, the witness that Thou resistest the proud: yet would man praise Thee; he, but a particle of Thy creation. Thou awakest us to delight in Thy praise; for Thou madest us for Thyself, and our heart is restless, until it repose in Thee. Grant me, Lord, to know and understand which is first, to call on Thee or to praise Thee? and, again, to know Thee or to call on Thee? for who can call on Thee, not knowing Thee? for he that knoweth Thee not, may call on Thee as other than Thou art. Or, is it rather, that we call on Thee that we may know Thee? but how shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? or how shall they believe without a preacher? and they that seek the Lord shall praise Him: for they that seek shall find Him, and they that find shall praise Him. I will seek Thee, Lord, by calling on Thee; and will call on Thee, believing in Thee; for to us hast Thou been preached. My faith, Lord, shall call on Thee, which Thou hast given me, wherewith Thou hast inspired me, through the Incarnation of Thy Son, through the ministry of the Preacher. And how shall I call upon my God, my God and Lord, since, when I call for Him, I shall be calling Him to myself? and what room is there within me, whither my God can come into me? whither can God come into me, God who made heaven and earth? is there, indeed, O Lord my God, aught in me that can contain Thee? do then heaven and earth, which Thou hast made, and wherein Thou hast made me, contain Thee? or, because nothing which exists could exist without Thee, doth therefore whatever exists contain Thee? Since, then, I too exist, why do I seek that Thou shouldest enter into me, who were not, wert Thou not in me? Why? because I am not gone down in hell, and yet Thou art there also. For if I go down into hell, Thou art there. I could not be then, O my God, could not be at all, wert Thou not in me; or, rather, unless I were in Thee, of whom are all things, by whom are all things, in whom are all things? Even so, Lord, even so. Whither do I call Thee, since I am in Thee? or whence canst Thou enter into me? for whither can I go beyond heaven and earth, that thence my God should come into me, who hath said, I fill the heaven and the earth. Do the heaven and earth then contain Thee, since Thou fillest them? or dost Thou fill them and yet overflow, since they do not contain Thee? And whither, when the heaven and the earth are filled, pourest Thou forth the remainder of Thyself? or hast Thou no need that aught contain Thee, who containest all things, since what Thou fillest Thou fillest by containing it? for the vessels which Thou fillest uphold Thee not, since, though they were broken, Thou wert not poured out. And when Thou art poured out on us, Thou art not cast down, but Thou upliftest us; Thou art not dissipated, but Thou

gatherest us. But Thou who fillest all things, fillest Thou them with Thy whole self? or, since all things cannot contain Thee wholly, do they contain part of Thee? and all at once the same part? or each its own part, the greater more, the smaller less? And is, then one part of Thee greater, another less? or, art Thou wholly every where, while nothing contains Thee wholly? What art Thou then, my God? what, but the Lord God? For who is Lord but the Lord? or who is God save our God? Most highest, most good, most potent, most omnipotent; most merciful, yet most just; most hidden, yet most present; most beautiful, yet most strong, stable, yet incomprehensible; unchangeable, yet all-changing; never new, never old; all-renewing, and bringing age upon the proud, and they know it not; ever working, ever at rest; still gathering, yet nothing lacking; supporting, filling, and overspreading; creating, nourishing, and maturing; seeking, yet having all things. Thou lovest, without passion; art jealous, without anxiety; repentest, yet grievest not; art angry, yet serene; changest Thy works, Thy purpose unchanged; receivest again what Thou findest, yet didst never lose; never in need, yet rejoicing in gains; never covetous, yet exacting usury. Thou receivest over and above, that Thou mayest owe; and who hath aught that is not Thine? Thou payest debts, owing nothing; remittest debts, losing nothing. And what had I now said, my God, my life, my holy joy? or what saith any man when he speaks of Thee? Yet woe to him that speaketh not, since mute are even the most eloquent. Oh! that I might repose on Thee! Oh! that Thou wouldest enter into my heart, and inebriate it, that I may forget my ills, and embrace Thee, my sole good! What art Thou to me? In Thy pity, teach me to utter it. Or what am I to Thee that Thou demandest my love, and, if I give it not, art wroth with me, and threatenest me with grievous woes? Is it then a slight woe to love Thee not? Oh! for Thy mercies' sake, tell me, O Lord my God, what Thou art unto me. Say unto my soul, I am thy salvation. So speak, that I may hear. Behold, Lord, my heart is before Thee; open Thou the ears thereof, and say unto my soul, I am thy salvation. After this voice let me haste, and take hold on Thee. Hide not Thy face from me. Let me die- lest I die- only let me see Thy face. Narrow is the mansion of my soul; enlarge Thou it, that Thou mayest enter in. It is ruinous; repair Thou it. It has that within which must offend Thine eyes; I confess and know it. But who shall cleanse it? or to whom should I cry, save Thee? Lord, cleanse me from my secret faults, and spare Thy servant from the power of the enemy. I believe, and therefore do I speak. Lord, Thou knowest. Have I not confessed against myself my transgressions unto Thee, and Thou, my God, hast forgiven the iniquity of my heart? I contend not in judgment with Thee, who art the truth; I fear to deceive myself; lest mine iniquity lie unto itself. Therefore I contend not in judgment with Thee; for if Thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall abide it? Yet suffer me to speak unto Thy mercy, me, dust and ashes. Yet suffer me to speak, since I speak to Thy mercy, and not to scornful man. Thou too, perhaps, despisest me, yet wilt Thou return and have compassion upon me. For what would I say, O Lord my God, but that I

know not whence I came into this dying life (shall I call it?) or living death. Then immediately did the comforts of Thy compassion take me up, as I heard (for I remember it not) from the parents of my flesh, out of whose substance Thou didst sometime fashion me. Thus there received me the comforts of woman's milk. For neither my mother nor my nurses stored their own breasts for me; but Thou didst bestow the food of my infancy through them, according to Thine ordinance, whereby Thou distributest Thy riches through the hidden springs of all things. Thou also gavest me to desire no more than Thou gavest; and to my nurses willingly to give me what Thou gavest them. For they, with a heaven-taught affection, willingly gave me what they abounded with from Thee. For this my good from them, was good for them. Nor, indeed, from them was it, but through them; for from Thee, O God, are all good things, and from my God is all my health. This I since learned, Thou, through these Thy gifts, within me and without, proclaiming Thyself unto me. For then I knew but to suck; to repose in what pleased, and cry at what offended my flesh; nothing more. Afterwards I began to smile; first in sleep, then waking: for so it was told me of myself, and I believed it; for we see the like in other infants, though of myself I remember it not. Thus, little by little, I became conscious where I was; and to have a wish to express my wishes to those who could content them, and I could not; for the wishes were within me, and they without; nor could they by any sense of theirs enter within my spirit. So I flung about at random limbs and voice, making the few signs I could, and such as I could, like, though in truth very little like, what I wished. And when I was not presently obeyed (my wishes being hurtful or unintelligible), then I was indignant with my elders for not submitting to me, with those owing me no service, for not serving me; and avenged myself on them by tears. Such have I learnt infants to be from observing them; and that I was myself such, they, all unconscious, have shown me better than my nurses who knew it. And, lo! my infancy died long since, and I live. But Thou, Lord, who for ever livest, and in whom nothing dies: for before the foundation of the worlds, and before all that can be called "before," Thou art, and art God and Lord of all which Thou hast created: in Thee abide, fixed for ever, the first causes of all things unabiding; and of all things changeable, the springs abide in Thee unchangeable: and in Thee live the eternal reasons of all things unreasoning and temporal. Say, Lord, to me, Thy suppliant; say, all-pitying, to me, Thy pitiable one; say, did my infancy succeed another age of mine that died before it? was it that which I spent within my mother's womb? for of that I have heard somewhat, and have myself seen women with child? and what before that life again, O God my joy, was I any where or any body? For this have I none to tell me, neither father nor mother, nor experience of others, nor mine own memory. Dost Thou mock me for asking this, and bid me praise Thee and acknowledge Thee, for that I do know? I acknowledge Thee, Lord of heaven and earth, and praise Thee for my first rudiments of being, and my infancy, whereof I remember nothing; for Thou hast appointed that man should from others guess much as to himself; and believe much on the strength of weak

Who remindeth me of the sins of my infancy? for in Thy sight none is pure from sin. Is that too innocence. but because they will disappear as years increase. in whom I see what of myself I remember not? What then was my sin? was it that I hung upon the breast and cried? for should I now so do for food suitable to my age. Thou commandest me to praise Thee in these things. Hear. yet in Thee doth it come to a close. Thou most Highest. in whom essence and life are one? for Thou Thyself art supremely Essence and Life. not its will. save from Thee. because all such things also are in Thee. when the fountain of milk is flowing in rich abundance. not to endure one to share it. save from thee. For they had no way to pass away. For those habits. when grown. than by discovering not to discover Thee. But Thou art still the same. compacting its limbs. though any comprehend not this? Let him also rejoice and say. . yet it turned pale and looked bitterly on its foster-brother. that persons free. which may stream essence and life into us. yea. wittingly casts away what is good. How many of ours and our fathers' years have flowed away through Thy "to-day. Myself have seen and known even a baby envious. Lord? Shall any be his own artificer? or can there elsewhere be derived any vein. What I then did was worthy reproof. wiser than it. unless Thou upheldest them. then. and (at my infancy's close) I could seek for signs whereby to make known to others my sensations. Who remindeth me? doth not each little infant. if given. and still others shall flow away. What is it to me. Thy years are one to-day. neither in Thee doth to-day come to a close. For Thou art most high. not as being no or slight evils. Even then I had being and life. O Lord. though he prunes. we root out and cast away. but since I could not understand reproof. Whence could such a being be. and art not changed. Now no man. and so receive the mould of their degree of being. the very authors of its birth. and all behind it. and. O Lord my God. For Thou art God. Who knows not this? Mothers and nurses tell you that they allay these things by I know not what remedies. for its general good and safety. Or was it then good. What thing is this? Let him rejoice even thus! and be content rather by not discovering to discover Thee. and whose very life as yet depends thereon? We bear gently with all this. because commands were not obeyed. justly should I be laughed at and reproved. though tolerated now. And since Thy years fail not. served it not? that many besides. though in extremest need.females. obeyed not the nod of its good pleasure? to do its best to strike and hurt. and its own elders. and all of yesterday. would hurt? bitterly to resent. but sin in him Thou madest not. and sing unto Thy name." and from it received the measure and the mould of such being as they had. custom and reason forbade me to be reproved. to cry for what. for Thou madest him. Thou hast done to-day. and all things of tomorrow. Alas. not even the infant whose life is but a day upon the earth. which had been obeyed to its hurt? The weakness then of infant limbs. and all beyond. the very same tempers are utterly intolerable when found in riper years. implanting in it all vital functions. O God. for man's sin! So saith man. ornamenting its proportions. and Thou pitiest him. furnishing thus with senses (as we see) the frame Thou gavest. it could not speak. is its innocence. for. even for a while. who gavest life to this my infancy. Thou. to confess unto Thee.

Lord. When they named any thing. I collected gradually for what they stood. I am yet loth to count in this life of mine which I live in this world.. though small. rejects. yet depending on parental authority and the beck of elders. as it pursues. and we learnt from them to think of Thee (according to our powers) as of some great One. and broke the fetters of my tongue to call on Thee. framed for us weary paths. and yet unable to express all I willed. where. and orderest all things by Thy law. . though hidden from our senses. by the understanding which Thou. even hadst Thou done nought but only this. true though the guess be. but a speaking boy. indicating the affections of the mind. practise the sounds in my memory. or shuns. longing by cries and broken accents and various motions of my limbs to express my thoughts. as proper in a boy. and have since observed how I learned to speak. glances of the eye. to pray to Thee.Almighty and Good. was I Thy servant guiltless? But. which none could do but Thou: whose Unity is the mould of all things. lo! that period I pass by. my elders. did myself. and having broken in my mouth to these signs. the natural language. is it hid from me in the shadows of forgetfulness. and tones of the voice. expressed by the countenance. For so I began. O God my God.and yet it was no more. we found that men called upon Thee. gavest me. I saw and remembered that they called what they would point out by the name they uttered. as it were. I thereby gave utterance to my will. gestures of the limbs. Next I was put to school to get learning. yet with no small earnestness. multiplying toil and grief upon the sons of Adam. and as they spoke turned towards it. yea my very parents. who yet wished me no ill. passing the same course before us. my God. but I. of all nations. that so I might have my will. and guess from other infants that I have passed. that I might not be beaten at school. and many. in which I (poor wretch) knew not what use there was. couldest hear and help us. Lord. possesses. of which I can recall no vestige? Passing hence from infancy. which should serve to the "praise of men. I came to boyhood. or when. For no less than that which I spent in my mother's womb. Lord. praying Thee. And when Thou heardest me not (not thereby giving me over to folly). This age then. But. whereof I have no remembrance. if idle in learning. and what have I now to do with that. I beseech Thee. mocked my stripes. what miseries and mockeries did I now experience. For this was judged right by our forefathers. through which we were fain to pass. who out of Thy own fairness makest all things fair. in order that in this world I might prosper. O my God. or rather it came to me. as they occurred in various sentences. or to whom I willed. I was beaten. as a boy. And that they meant this thing and no other was plain from the motion of their body. where.(for whither went it?). But if I was shapen in iniquity. It was not that my elders taught me words (as. and yet. This I remember. and excel in tongue-science. displacing infancy. Nor did that depart. For I was no longer a speechless infant. which I take on others' word. and so launched deeper into the stormy intercourse of human life. soon after. And thus by constantly hearing words. who. my aid and refuge. other learning) in any set method. when obedience to my teachers was proposed to me. my then great and grievous ill. Thus I exchanged with those about me these current signs of our wills." and to deceitful riches. and in sin did my mother conceive me.

and like near to death. As a boy. that he can think as lightly of the racks and hooks and other torments (against which. Lord. and none commiserates either boys or men. I had already heard of an eternal life. being seized on a time with sudden oppression of the stomach. from the pious care of my mother and Thy Church. how while yet a boy. after that washing. that they may call on Thee.Is there. for the remission of sins. who greatly hoped in Thee. I made less progress in studies which I was to learn. throughout all lands. and for this we were punished by those who yet themselves were doing the like. But elder folks' idleness is called "business". she even more lovingly travailed in birth of my salvation). O Lord my God. Thou sawest. confessing Thee. I might play more unbeseemingly? and what else did he who beat me? who. Yet those who give these shows are in such esteem. And so. with a heart pure in Thy faith. I sinned in transgressing the commands of my parents and those of my masters. as our parents mocked the torments which we suffered in boyhood from our masters? For we feared not our torments less. would have me learn. For I disobeyed. deliver those too who call not on Thee yet. nor prayed we less to Thee to escape them. as if I must needs be again polluted should I live. mocking at those by whom they are feared most bitterly. For what they. loving the pride of victory in my contests. is endued with so great a spirit. for the shows and games of my elders. Lord. and even from the womb of my mother. the Creator and Disposer of all things in nature. but is there any one who. Look with pity. if those very games detain them from the studies. and Thou mayest deliver them. if worsted in some trifling discussion with his fellow-tutor. that of boys. Lord. but from love of play. then. For we wanted not. promised us through the humility of the Lord our God stooping to our pride. because. I sinned herein. and deliver us who call upon Thee now. And yet we sinned. whereof Thy will gave enough for our age. being much troubled (since. my God (for Thou wert my keeper). bring greater and more perilous guilt. that they might itch the more. the baptism of Thy Christ. not from a better choice. only that. by playing a ball. but our sole delight was play. would in eager haste have provided for my consecration and cleansing by the health-giving sacraments. Whereupon the mother my flesh. men call on Thee with extreme dread). of sin the Disposer only. unless I had suddenly recovered. was more embittered and jealous than I when beaten at ball by a play-fellow? And yet. For will any of sound discretion approve of my being beaten as a boy. I might afterwards have put to good use. because the defilements of sin would. the mother of us all. memory or capacity. and cleaving to Thee with so intense affection (for a sort of stupidity will in a way do it). with what eagerness and what faith I sought. is punished by those elders. any of soul so great. and to have my ears tickled with lying fables. on these things. being really the same. Lord Jesus. and yet are very willing that they should be beaten. I then already believed: and my . O Lord God. that almost all wish the same for their children. as a man. whereby they would have them attain to be the givers of them. I was sealed with the mark of His cross and salted with His salt. with whatever motive. the same curiosity flashing from my eyes more and more. from cleaving devoutly to Thee. my cleansing was deferred. O Lord.Thou sawest. in writing or reading or studying less than was exacted of us. my God and Lord.

obeyed. for me to sin? or was it not laid loose? If not. for he is not yet healed. and hated to be forced to it. the while. Thou didst use for my punishment. upon me. because she killed herself for love. Thou didst well for me.a fit penalty for one. why does it still echo in our ears on all sides. by them I obtained. and by my own sin Thou didst justly punish me. let him do as he will. and a shameful glory. not what my first masters. that every inordinate affection should be its own punishment. For those first lessons. the better. by my friends' and my own. O God my life. my God. and the whole household. for what purpose my baptism was then deferred? was it for my good that the rein was laid loose. but I did not well. shouldest be my father. had I been at once healed. didst use for my good the error of all who urged me to learn. But Thou. and to weep for dead Dido. but what was well came to me from Thee. weeping the death of Dido for love to Aeneas. "Let him alone. therein also obeying Thee. if so Thou willest. no one says. But no one doth well against his will. and a breath that passeth away and cometh not again? For those first lessons were better certainly. and then. even though what he doth. And yet whence was this too. "Let him be worse wounded. and preferred to expose to them the clay whence I might afterwards be moulded. Thou bread of my inmost soul. and in this Thou didst aid her to prevail over her husband. but from the sin and vanity of this life." How much better then. forgetful of my own. far from Thee. For the Latin I loved. that as he did not yet believe. For they were regardless how I should employ what they forced me to learn. but weeping not his own death for want of love to Thee. whom she. when made. But why did I so much hate the Greek. Yet neither did they well who forced me. rather than he. unless forced. my soul's recovered health had been kept safe in Thy keeping who gavest it. and my own. Yet I was forced. who would not learn. Better truly. For what more miserable than a miserable being who commiserates not himself. my God.mother. except my father: yet did not he prevail over the power of my mother's piety in me. I was forced to learn the wanderings of one Aeneas. who hast so commanded. and so it is. however (so much less dreaded for me than youth). but what the so-called grammarians taught me. I loved not study. writing and arithmetic. Thou Power who givest vigour to . as it were. So by those who did not well. than the very cast. O God. and this was well done towards me. the power of reading what I find written. so neither should I. by whom the very hairs of our head are numbered. I thought as great a burden and penalty as any Greek. be well. reading. I had not learnt. But how many and great waves of temptation seemed to hang over me after my boyhood! These my mother foresaw. whereas in the others. In boyhood itself. because I was flesh. I beseech Thee. For Thou hast commanded. for he is not yet baptised?" but as to bodily health. which I studied as a boy? I do not yet fully know. with dry eyes. for. I endured my miserable self dying among these things. because more certain. For it was her earnest care that Thou my God. and still retain. and myself writing what I will. I would fain know. so small a boy and so great a sinner. Thou light of my heart. except to satiate the insatiate desires of a wealthy beggary.

smiling and sportively encouraging me. And if forbid to read all this. or rather loved the one and hated the other. If. and is most sweetlyvain. For if I question them whether it be true that Aeneas came on a time to Carthage. by mere observation. that I may love Thy good ways. yet is this not so much an emblem of aught recondite. which have the like tales? For Homer also curiously wove the like fictions. I who wept for Dido slain. I would readily forget the wanderings of Aeneas and all the rest. lo. through Thy laws. two". as to the signs which men have conventionally mind. O . who quickenest my thoughts. my God. again. and to make me understand I was urged vehemently with cruel threats and punishments. cry Thou aloud in my soul. Let not those. And so I suppose would Virgil be to Grecian children. and acquiesce in the condemnation of my evil ways. the more learned that he never did. I should ask which might be forgotten with least detriment to the concerns of life." and "Creusa's shade and sad similitude. whom I no longer fear. No doubt. and "Well done! well done!" echoes on till one is ashamed not to he thus a man. yet was he bitter to my boyish taste. that a free curiosity has more force in our learning these things. and all around me thus fornicating there echoed "Well done! well done!" for the friendship of this world is fornication against Thee. cry out against me. Madness like this is thought a higher and a richer learning. not so. than a frightful enforcement. as it were. Only this enforcement restrains the rovings of that freedom." myself seeking the while a worse extreme. "Not so. in truth. Difficulty. the extremest and lowest of Thy creatures." and "the burning of Troy. then. but of those who talked with me. But now. Let not either buyers or sellers of grammar-learning cry out against me. I loved Thee not. And for all this I wept not. dashed. when as a boy I preferred those empty to those more profitable studies. with gall all the sweetness of Grecian fable. Why then did I hate the Greek classics. But should I ask with what letters the name "Aeneas" is written. whatever my soul will. For not one word of it did I understand. when forced to learn him as I was Homer. than that by which I learned to read and write. then. which I could only do by learning words not of those who taught. the less learned will reply that they know not. as the poet tells. in whose ears also I gave birth to the thoughts. this was to me a hateful singsong: "the wooden horse lined with armed men. "One and one. Far better was that first study. but this I learned without fear or suffering. for my heart urged me to give birth to its conceptions. I committed fornication against Thee. whatever I conceived. four". I was grieved that I might not read what grieved me." were the choice spectacle of my vanity. while I confess to Thee." For. my God. as a cloak of error. amid the caresses of my nursery and jests of friends. "two and two. rather than how to read and write. This I learned without any pressure of punishment to urge me on. and "seeking by the sword a stroke and wound extreme. Time was also (as an infant) I knew no Latin. every one who has learnt this will answer me aright. earth passing into the earth. and let Thy truth tell me. reading and writing or these poetic fictions? who does not foresee what all must answer who have not wholly forgotten themselves? I sinned. the difficulty of a foreign tongue. having forsaken Thee. But over the entrance of the Grammar School is a vail drawn! true.

and Thou mayest yet rescue me from every temptation. For Thou didst grant me Thy discipline. setting up Jupiter as his example of seduction. read. and with all my heart I did it. that I may most entirely love Thee. write. unless Terence had brought a lewd youth upon the stage. "These were Homer's fictions. For God. "Viewing a picture. indeed. recalling us to Thyself from that deadly pleasure which lures us from Thee. my prayer." "beguile. But woe is thee. not do the same! I did it. from the master's cane to the martyr's trials. Thy laws. while I was learning vanities. but these may as well be learned in things not vain." "lap. And I. which even they scarcely overpass who climb the cross? Did not I read in thee of Jove the thunderer and the adulterer? both. Lord. but attributing a divine nature to wicked men. he could not be. and thou lashest thy rocks and roarest." As if we should have never known such words as "golden shower." or others in that passage. where the tale was drawn. thou torrent of human custom! Who shall stand against thee? how long shalt thou not be dried up? how long roll the sons of Eve into that huge and hideous ocean. within sight of laws appointing a salary beside the scholar's payments. Of Jove's descending in a golden shower To Danae's lap a woman to beguile. for compassing such learning. but the celestial gods. most necessary to gain your ends. hence eloquence. nor let me faint in confessing unto Thee all Thy mercies." And yet. O Lord. into thee are cast the sons of men with rich rewards. thou hellish torrent. "These are indeed his fictions. that crimes might be no longer crimes. that I speak. or maintain opinions. when this is going on in the forum. and whoso commits them might seem to imitate not abandoned men. that Thou mightest become a delight to me above all the allurements which I once pursued. being able to temper for us a wholesome bitter. and my sin of delighting in those vanities Thou hast forgiven. transferring things human to the gods. And now which of our gowned masters lends a sober ear to one who from their own school cries out. and a great solemnity is made of it. "Hence words are learnt. let not my soul faint under Thy discipline. whereby Thou hast drawn me out of all my most evil ways." And then mark how he excites himself to lust as by celestial authority: "And what God? Great Jove. Hear. even unto the end. In them." . but so the feigned thunder might countenance and pander to real adultery. for Thy service be whatever useful thing my childhood learned. and that is the safe path for the steps of youth. would he had brought down things divine to us!" Yet more truly had he said. reckon. Who shakes heaven's highest temples with his thunder. for Thy service. my King and my God." "temples of the heavens. poor mortal man. I learnt many a useful word. and clasp Thy hand with all my affections. doubtless.

O Lord God. or ships. troublesome enough to my soul. But what marvel that I was thus carried away to vanities. in darkened affections. For in more ways than one do men sacrifice to the rebellious angels. in whom the passions of rage and grief were most preeminent. For darkened affections is removal from Thee. but by their means the vileness is committed with less shame. and if we. that thirsteth for Thy pleasures. being. Thy praises might have stayed the yet tender shoot of my heart by the prop of Thy Scriptures. Thy gift. Not that I blame the words. a defiled prey for the fowls of the air. will I seek. or change of place. my God. we are beaten. were abashed. O my God (in whose presence I now without hurt may remember this). upon terms of praise or shame. and holdest Thy peace. in itself not ill. choice and precious vessels. For a task was set me. is the true distance from Thy face. and have no sober judge to whom we may appeal.Not one whit more easily are the words learnt for all this vileness. who. they gloried? These things Thou seest. and for this was pronounced a hopeful boy. and to say in prose much what he expressed in verse. behold patiently as Thou art wont how carefully the sons of men observe the covenanted rules of letters and syllables received from those who spake before them. being bepraised. if in relating some action of theirs. but that wine of error which is drunk to us in them by intoxicated teachers. and plenteous in mercy and truth. yea. but we were forced to go astray in the footsteps of these poetic fictions. or journey by the motion of his limbs. Lord. so had it not trailed away amid these empty trifles. that he might in a far country waste in riotous living all Thou gavest at his departure? a loving Father. Behold. O my true life. my God. to speak the words of Juno. or return unto Thee. when men were set before me as models. and went out from Thy presence. So then in lustful. and fear of stripes. as she raged and mourned that she could not "This Trojan prince from Latinum turn. long-suffering. What is it to me. drink not. but when in rich and adomed and well-ordered discourse they related their own disordered life. being censured. whose heart saith unto Thee. . For it is not by our feet. Lord." Which words I had heard that Juno never uttered. too. and more loving unto him. Wilt Thou hold Thy peace for ever? and even now Thou drawest out of this horrible gulf the soul that seeketh Thee. Yet. I have sought Thy face. Lord. when Thou gavest. as it were. maintaining the dignity of the character. they committed some barbarism or solecism. and clothed in the most fitting language. all this unhappily I learnt willingly with great delight. Bear with me. Thy face. while I say somewhat of my wit. fly with visible wings. that is. that my declamation was applauded above so many of my own age and class? is not all this smoke and wind? and was there nothing else whereon to exercise my wit and tongue? Thy praises. and on what dotages I wasted it. Or did that Thy younger son look out for horses or chariots. that men leave Thee. when he returned empty. O my God. And his speaking was most applauded. neglecting the eternal covenant of everlasting salvation received from Thee.

In so small a creature. declaiming against his enemy with fiercest hatred. And is this the innocence of boyhood? Not so. that a teacher or learner of the hereditary laws of pronunciation will more offend men by speaking without the aspirate. Of such is the kingdom of heaven. I learnt to delight in truth. and before Him will I exult for every good which of a . is He that made me. detected. For even then I was. These things I speak and confess to Thee. Lord. I was upbraided. upbraided I so fiercely. For these very sins. I guarded by the inward sense the entireness of my senses. to gold and manors and slaves. This was the world at whose gate unhappy I lay in my boyhood. ignorance. he murder the word "human being". my masters. surrounded by a human throng. from love of play. baseness. of a "uman being. than if he. the Creator and Governor of the universe. not admirable? But all are gifts of my God: it was not I who gave them me. my God. as that I was doing to others? and for which if. was soothed by friendship. and good these are. than having committed one. Thou only great. I hated to be deceived. when I detected it. a man standing before a human judge. As if any enemy could be more hurtful than the hatred with which he is incensed against him. and He is my good. avoided pain. Lord. not so. through the fury of his spirit.a trace of that mysterious Unity whence I was derived. conquered myself meanwhile by vain desire of preeminence. eagerness to see vain shows and restlessness to imitate them! Thefts also I committed. my God. by an error of the tongue. just as severer punishments displace the cane. was gifted with speech. when Thou saidst. And what could I so ill endure. than he wounds his own soul by his enmity. wherein I was cast away from Thine eyes. and these together are myself. my parents. or. I cry Thy mercy. who sold me their play. he murder the real human being. most excellent and most good. It was the low stature then of childhood which Thou our King didst commend as an emblem of lowliness. Before them what more foul than I was already. and in these minute pursuits. a "human being. even hadst Thou destined for me boyhood only. too. from my parents' cellar and table. to Thee. this the stage where I had feared more to commit a barbarism. and felt. to envy those who had not." How deep are Thy ways. thanks were due to Thee our God. which all the while they liked no less than I. that sittest silent on high and by an unwearied law dispensing penal blindness to lawless desires. for which I had praise from them. but takes no heed. Yet. whom I then thought it all virtue to please.Insomuch. will take heed most watchfully. enslaved by greediness. In this play. what was not wonderful. I often sought unfair conquests. I lived. to magistrates and kings. I chose rather to quarrel than to yield. from nuts and balls and sparrows. or that I might have to give to boys. Assuredly no science of letters can be so innate as the record of conscience. lest." hate a "human being" in despite of Thine. then. and had an implanted providence over my well-being. displeasing even such as myself? with innumerable lies deceiving my tutor. these very sins are transferred from tutors and masters. O God. had a vigorous memory. In quest of the fame of eloquence. For I saw not the abyss of vileness. and in my thoughts on things minute. as riper years succeed. "that he is doing to another what from another he would be loth to suffer. Good. or could wound more deeply him whom he persecutes. lest." in despite of the laws of grammar.

even when we be far from Thee. Thou blissful and assured sweetness). O Thou my tardy joy! Thou then heldest Thy peace. but that I may love Thee. the extreme points of Thy creation! had put a bound to their pleasureableness. thanks be to Thee for Thy gifts. that I could not discern the clear brightness of love from the fog of lustfulness. my joy and my glory and my confidence. pleasing myself. and be loved? but I kept not the measure of love. and the bubblings of youth. mists fumed up which beclouded and overcast my heart. For I even burnt in my youth heretofore. as Thy law prescribes. For so wilt Thou preserve me. O Lord: who this way formest the offspring of this our death. and Thou lettest me alone. and desirous to please in the eyes of men. and I myself shall be with Thee. Both did confusedly boil in me. to be satiated in things below. and I stank in Thine eyes. that so the tides of my youth might have cast themselves upon the marriage shore. reviewing my most wicked ways in the very bitterness of my remembrance. that not in Him. not because I love them. friendship's bright boundary: but out of the muddy concupiscence of the flesh. Else ought I more watchfully to have heeded the voice from the clouds: Nevertheless such shall have . For it was my sin. into more and more fruitless seed-plots of sorrows. the One Good. that Thou mayest grow sweet unto me (Thou sweetness never failing. and I boiled over in my fornications. and turned to account the fleeting beauties of these. and I wandered further and further from Thee. confusions. For love of Thy love I do it. Thanks be to Thee. sublimities. but in His creaturesmyself and others. being able with a gentle hand to blunt the thorns which were excluded from Thy paradise? For Thy omnipotency is not far from us. and so fell headlong into sorrows. Oh! that some one had then attempered my disorder. with these various and shadowy loves: my beauty consumed away. and hurried my unstayed youth over the precipice of unholy desires. while turned from Thee. but to love. my God. Thy wrath had gathered over me. and dissipated. and I knew it not. wherein I was torn piecemeal. and a restless weariness. and kept within the object of a family. O my God. I lost myself among a multiplicity of things.boy I had. BOOK II I will now call to mind my past foulness. but do Thou preserve them to me. and those things shall be enlarged and perfected which Thou hast given me. I was grown deaf by the clanking of the chain of my mortality. and wasted. and I strayed further from Thee. errors. of mind to mind. since even to be Thou hast given me. and the carnal corruptions of my soul. the punishment of the pride of my soul. and Thou heldest Thy peace.I sought for pleasures. and I was tossed about. and gathering me again out of that my dissipation. And what was it that I delighted in. with a proud dejectedness. and sunk me in a gulf of flagitiousnesses. and I dared to grow wild again. truths. if they could not be calmed.

but before Thee to mine own kind. and becometh enamoured of Thy creature. who was but a poor freeman of Thagaste. and exceeded all Thy limits. and though I was not as yet baptised. may think out of what depths we are to cry unto Thee. gladly told it to my mother. Where was I. how he may please the Lord. and be a persuasive orator. and that rather by the resolution than the means of my father. or how chaste I were. and woundest us. the expenses for a further journey to Carthage were being provided for me. my heart. he that is unmarried thinketh of the things of the Lord. But yet this same father had no concern how I grew towards Thee. and there was no hand to root them out. who art the only true and good Lord of Thy field. For what is nearer to Thine ears than a confessing heart. through the fumes of that invisible wine of its self-will. and a life of faith? Who did not extol my father. and killest us. for that beyond the ability of his means. and the foundation of Thy holy habitation. and besprinkling with most bitter alloy all my unlawful pleasures: that I might seek pleasures without alloy. in that sixteenth year of the age of my flesh. so that I were but copious in speech. O Lord. as already hence anticipating his descendants. foamed like a troubled sea. how he may please his wife. and endued with a restless youthfulness. She then was startled with a holy fear and trembling. he. poor wretch. But while in that my sixteenth year I lived with my parents. For what mortal can? For Thou wert ever with me mercifully rigorous. rejoicing in that tumult of the senses wherein the world forgetteth Thee its Creator. For that year were my studies intermitted: whilst after my return from Madaura (a neighbour city. however barren I were to Thy culture. even to that small portion of mankind as may light upon these writings of mine. And it is good for a man not to touch a woman. leaving all school for a while (a season of idleness being interposed through the narrowness of my parents' fortunes). but I. But in my mother's breast Thou hadst already begun Thy temple. he would furnish his son with all necessaries for a far journey for his studies' sake? For many far abler citizens did no such thing for their children. To whom tell I this? not to Thee. following the rushing of my own tide. And to what purpose? that whosoever reads this. To these words I should have listened more attentively.trouble in the flesh. but I spare you. feared for me those . but he that is married careth for the things of this world. O God. the briers of unclean desires grew rank over my head. to heal. instead of Thyself. whereas my father was as yet but a Catechumen. lest we die from Thee. whither I had journeyed to learn grammar and rhetoric). their only care was that I should learn to speak excellently. But where to find such. I could not discover. had more happily awaited Thy embraces. And. and being severed for the kingdom of heaven's sake. and I resigned myself wholly to it? My friends meanwhile took no care by marriage to save my fall. turning aside and bowing down to the very basest things. and that but recently. my God. and how far was I exiled from the delights of Thy house. yet I escaped not Thy scourges. though unlicensed by Thy laws) took the rule over me. now growing towards manhood. When that my father saw me at the baths. forsaking Thee. who teachest by sorrow. save in Thee. when the madness of lust (to which human shamelessness giveth free licence.

the invisible enemy trod me down. Yet I lusted to thieve. and a pamperedness of iniquity. Neither did the mother of my flesh (who had now fled out of the centre of Babylon. yea. not only in the pleasure of the deed. nor poverty. Theft is punished by Thy law. O my God. and in her wast despised by me. recalling. "not to commit fornication. and I remember in private with great anxiety warned me. as if in a bed of spices and precious ointments. because he had next to no thought of Thee. Nor cared I to enjoy what I stole. For I stole that. and ran headlong with such blindness. while I wandered further from Thee? Didst Thou then indeed hold Thy peace to me? And whose but Thine were these words which by my mother. when I heard them boast of their flagitiousness. so heed what she had heard of me from her husband. her son. and wallowed in the mire thereof. the son of Thy handmaid. my father. or of less account. O my God. by whom Thou wert not silent unto me. but the hope of learning. of which I had enough. but especially never to defile another man's wife. the brightness of Thy truth. and not their face. which iniquity itself effaces not. which both my parents were too desirous I should attain. the more chaste. For she wished. Woe is me! and dare I say that Thou heldest Thy peace. but in the praise. and much better. Not those hopes of the world to come. and when in any thing I had not sinned as the abandoned ones. the disposition of my parents." These seemed to me womanish advices. which my mother reposed in Thee. but even some furtherance towards attaining Thee. and did it. For thus I conjecture. my mother. and the law written in the hearts of men. But I knew it not. What is worthy of dispraise but vice? But I made myself worse than I was. for that I was easy to be seduced. but through a cloyedness of well-doing. that I might not seem contemptible in proportion as I was innocent. She heeded not this. and seduced me.crooked ways in which they walk who turn their back to Thee. were slackened to me. even unto dissoluteness in whatsoever I affected. Thy faithful one. The reins. intercepting from me. but joyed in the theft . that amongst my equals I was ashamed of a less shamelessness. as to restrain within the bounds of conjugal affection (if it could not be pared away to the quick) what she felt to be pestilent at present and for the future dangerous. Thy servant. and mine iniquity burst out as from very fatness. for she feared lest a wife should prove a clog and hindrance to my hopes. yet went more slowly in the skirts thereof as she advised me to chastity. I would say that I had done what I had not done. yea. because she accounted that those usual courses of learning would not only be no hindrance. And that I might cleave the faster to its very centre. compelled by no hunger. as well as I may. beyond all temper of due severity. Thou sangest in my ears? Nothing whereof sunk into my heart. And in all was a mist. But they were Thine. and of me but vain conceits. to spend my time in sport. one stealing through want. the more they were degraded: and I took pleasure. O Lord. Behold with what companions I walked the streets of Babylon. and the more boasting. so as to do it. meantime. For what thief will abide a thief? not even a rich thief. and I knew it not: and I thought Thou wert silent and that it was she who spake. that I might not be dispraised. which I should blush to obey.

Behold my heart. not even Catiline himself loved his own villainies. of whom it is said that he was gratuitously evil and cruel. or a fear of losing them. and the like. wronged. why? he loved his wife or his estate. And this. and Thy law. late one night (having according to our pestilent custom prolonged our sports in the streets till then). A man hath murdered another. attain to honours. the . and his embarrassments from domestic needs. and each other sense hath his proper object answerably tempered. by reason of the unity formed of many souls. Thou good God.. thou deed of darkness. he might. Thy truth. Creator of all. So then. then. I loved to perish. some lewd young fellows of us went. we ask why a crime was done. not seeking aught through the shame.Thou. Foul soul. Thou fairest of all. and be freed from fear of the laws. although compared with those higher and beatific goods. not that for which I was faulty. But yet. O God. is sin committed. delighted simply in murdering? who would believe it? for as for that furious and savage man. behold. God. yet is the cause assigned. or would rob for his own livelihood. But art thou any thing. in that sixteenth year of my age? Lovely thou wert not. What then did wretched I so love in thee. sympathy hath much influence. but to fling to the very hogs. Wordly honour hath also its grace. empire. but something else. Human friendship also is endeared with a sweet tie. For they are beautiful and comely. our Lord God. and the power of overcoming. but the ill itself. nor decline from Thy law." And to what end? that. for whose sake he did them. laden with fruit. because they were Thy creation. they be abject and low. was on fire to be revenged. which Thou hadst pity upon in the bottom of the bottomless pit. having taken the city. and in bodily touch. and consciousness of villainies. but the shame itself! For there is an attractiveness in beautiful bodies. tempting neither for colour nor taste. I loved mine own fault. but to do what we liked only. while through an immoderate inclination towards these goods of the lowest order. who made all things. that thus I speak to thee? Fair were the pears we stole. When. and all things. to obtain all these. A pear tree there was near our vineyard. having only tasted them. because thou wert theft. in gold and silver. Now. because it was misliked. and He is the joy of the upright in heart. "lest" (saith he) "through idleness hand or heart should grow inactive. for in Him doth the righteous delight. and a correspondence with all things beautiful here below. through a certain proportion of its own. or feared to lose some such things by him. or. and I loved it. having no temptation to ill. the better and higher are forsaken. but not like my God. The life also which here we live hath its own enchantment. To shake and rob this. but my fault itself. that I should be gratuitously evil. behold my heart. and of mastery. we believe it not. not for our eating. unless it appear that there might have been some desire of obtaining some of those which we called lower goods. For these lower things have their delights. Upon occasion of all these. through that practice of guilt. let my heart tell Thee what it sought there. O Lord. falling from Thy firmament to utter destruction. It was foul. Would any commit murder upon no cause. we may not depart from Thee. riches. whence springs also the thirst of revenge.and sin itself. thou theft of mine. and took huge loads.

only that I might steal. For so doth pride imitate exaltedness.sovereign good and my true good. ignorance and foolishness itself is cloaked under the name of simplicity and uninjuriousness. my only feast therein being my own sin. The cruelty of the great would fain be feared. or by whom? The tendernesses of the wanton would fain be counted love: yet is nothing more tender than Thy charity. I mean not such loveliness as in justice and wisdom. because nothing is found more single than Thee: and what less injurious. bright and beautiful above all. Thus doth the soul commit fornication. or who separateth from Thee what Thou lovest? Or where but with Thee is unshaken safety? Grief pines away for things lost. and those I gathered. Thy servant. full of embryo-life. whereas Thou supremely knowest all. Prodigality presents a shadow of liberality: but Thou art the most overflowing Giver of all good. I flung them away. whereas Thou alone art God exalted over all. and lift themselves up against Thee. but Thou art the fulness and never-failing plenteousness of incorruptible pleasures. Thus all pervertedly imitate Thee. because it would have nothing taken from it. And now. but what stable rest besides the Lord? Luxury affects to be called plenty and abundance. Ambition. till she returns to Thee. nor is aught loved more healthfully than that Thy truth. or the earth. For if aught of those pears came within my mouth. which I was pleased to enjoy. sloth would fain be at rest. But even by thus imitating Thee. as nothing can from Thee. and depth of death! could I like what I might not. the delight of its desires. and obtaining a shadow. and senses. What then did I love in that theft? and wherein did I even corruptly and pervertedly imitate my Lord? Did I wish even by stealth to do contrary to Thy law. but who is to be feared but God alone. but honours and glory? whereas Thou alone art to be honoured above all. I might mimic a maimed liberty by doing with impunity things unpermitted me. O monstrousness of life. they imply Thee to be the Creator of all nature. nor such as is in the mind and memory. and behold it hath no loveliness. or sea. nay. replacing by its birth that which decayeth. and Thou possessest all things. fleeing from his Lord. nor yet as the stars are glorious and beautiful in their orbs. and animal life of man. but not them did my wretched soul desire. which endangers things beloved. Yea. or whither. because by power I could not. nor even that false and shadowy beauty which belongeth to deceiving vices. seeking without Thee. For. O Lord my God. and takes forethought for their safety. Fair were those pears. I enquire what in that theft delighted me. or where. Curiosity makes semblance of a desire of knowledge. since they are his own works which injure the sinner? Yea. whence there is no place whither altogether to retire from Thee. out of whose power what can be wrested or withdrawn? when. when she turns from Thee. when gathered. what she findeth not pure and untainted. only because I might not? . Envy disputes for excellency: what more excellent than Thou? Anger seeks revenge: who revenges more justly than Thou? Fear startles at things unwonted and sudden. O rottenness. for I had store of better. who remove far from Thee. and glorious for evermore. a darkened likeness of Thy Omnipotency? Behold. but to Thee what unwonted or sudden. what sweetened it was the sin. Covetousness would possess many things. what seeks it. so that being a prisoner.

for what might I not have done. by Him he sees himself to have been from the like consumption of sin preserved. thou greediness to do mischief out of mirth and wantonness. which the company of fellow-sinners occasioned. called by Thee. O friendship too unfriendly! thou incomprehensible inveigler of the soul. weighing his own infirmity. whereby Thou remittest sins to those that turn to Thee? For whosoever. yea and more. I remember. who loved it. of the remembrance whereof I am now ashamed? Especially. or rather was less. alone I had never done it. and thank Thee. since by whom he sees me to have been recovered from such deep consumption of sin. for that circumstance of the company was also nothing. and to Thy mercy. followed Thy voice. O Lord. I had never committed that theft wherein what I stole pleased me not. that so he should love Thee the less. which as it were tickled our hearts. What fruit had I then (wretched man!) in those things. and wished to enjoy them. nor had I done it. had the bare commission of the theft sufficed to attain my pleasure. it was in the offence itself. yea rather I did love nothing else. and discovereth its dark corners? What is it which hath come into my mind to enquire. But since my pleasure was not in those pears. who had it. and what by Thy guidance I committed not.What shall I render unto the Lord. all I confess to have been forgiven me. What is. I loved then in it also the company of the accomplices. let's do it. my soul is not affrighted at them? I will love Thee. and discuss. and much disliked it. To Thy grace I ascribe it. with whom I did it? I did not then love nothing else but the theft. nor needed I have inflamed the itching of my desires by the excitement of accomplices. Yet alone I had not done it: such was I then. Why then was my delight of such sort that I did it not alone? Because none doth ordinarily laugh alone? ordinarily no one. and consider? For had I then loved the pears I stole. in that theft which I loved for the theft's sake." we are . the vivid remembrance of my soul. alone. yet laughter sometimes masters men alone and singly when on one whatever is with them. as if he had less needed Thy mercy. who even loved a sin for its own sake? Yea. let him not scorn me. because Thou hast forgiven me these so great and heinous deeds of mine. But yet what was it? Who can understand his errors? It was the sport. and confess unto Thy name. and therefore the more miserable I. if anything very ludicrous presents itself to their senses or mind. and avoided those things which he reads me recalling and confessing of myself. that. thou thirst of others' loss. "Let's go. and it too was nothing. Yet I had not done this alone. through whose aid it was that he was not. Behold my God. save He that enlighteneth my heart. whilst my memory recalls these things. was cured by that Physician. alone I had never done it. dares to ascribe his purity and innocency to his own strength. I might have done it alone. before Thee. nor had it alone liked me to do it. To Thy grace I ascribe also whatsoever I have not done of evil. What then was this feeling? For of a truth it was too foul: and woe was me. both what evils I committed by my own wilfulness. that we beguiled those who little thought what we were doing. that Thou hast melted away my sins as it were ice. who. but that I stole. without lust of my own gain or revenge: but when it is said. who being sick. sick: and for this let him love Thee as much. What man is he. in truth? who can teach me.

it uses to be styled misery: when he compassionates others. full of images of my miseries. With Thee is rest entire. that the spectator is not moved to tears. O my God. my Mercy. this very sorrow is his pleasure. not because filled therewith. Stage-plays also carried me away. yet. be fine and courtly. too much astray from Thee my stay. and shall do excellently in the All-Excellent. I sought what I might love. Whoso enters into Thee. he goes away disgusted and . and angers. I hated myself for wanting not. And if the calamities of those persons (whether of old times. and I became to myself a barren land. I would fain. and fears. For this cause my soul was sickly and full of sores. therefore. but more. when he suffers in his own person. and to be beloved. Howsoever. and suspicions. through exceeding vanity. that I might be scourged with the iron burning rods of jealousy.ashamed not to be shameless. For within me was a famine of that inward food. but the more empty. enters into the joy of his Lord: and shall not fear. Thyself. beholding doleful and tragical things. BOOK III To Carthage I came. But Thee I long for. or mere fiction) be so acted. and of fuel to my fire. where there sang all around me in my ears a cauldron of unholy loves. But what sort of compassion is this for feigned and scenical passions? for the auditor is not called on to relieve. it miserably cast itself forth. Why is it. and safety I hated. that man desires to be made sad. I loved not yet. in these days of my youth. the more I loathed it. I fell headlong then into the love wherein I longed to be ensnared. and I beclouded its brightness with the hell of lustfulness. and was with joy fettered with sorrow-bringing bonds. through that famine I was not hungered. My God. desiring to be scraped by the touch of objects of sense. Who can disentangle that twisted and intricate knottiness? Foul is it: I hate to think on it. with how much gall didst Thou out of Thy great goodness besprinkle for me that sweetness? For I was both beloved. and secretly arrived at the bond of enjoying. and quarrels. and out of a deep-seated want. and I wandered. and thus foul and unseemly. but was without all longing for incorruptible sustenance. To love then. the spring of friendship with the filth of concupiscence. but only to grieve: and he applauds the actor of these fictions the more. I sank away from Thee. Yet if these had not a soul. I defiled. the more he grieves. yet I loved to love. What is this but a miserable madness? for a man is the more affected with these actions. and of a satisfaction unsating. they would not be objects of love. then it is mercy. and life imperturbable. when I obtained to enjoy the person I loved. to look on it. the less free he is from such affections. which yet himself would no means suffer? yet he desires as a spectator to feel sorrow at them. was sweet to me. and a way without snares. my God. O Righteousness and Innocency. beautiful and comely to all pure eyes. in love with loving.

upon which. miserable. is he yet pleased to be merciful? which because it cannot be without passion. than him who is thought to suffer hardship. but in it grief delights not. what I loved to look on. he stays intent. wish there might be some miserable. it might bring me to the treacherous abyss. while Thy solemnities were celebrated within the walls of Thy Church. who lovest souls far more purely than we. But whither goes that vein? whither flows it? wherefore runs it into that torrent of pitch bubbling forth those monstrous tides of foul lustfulness. to desire. . O my soul. Upon how grievous iniquities consumed I myself. Be griefs then sometimes loved. But now I much more pity him that rejoiceth in his wickedness. yet are wounded with no sorrowfulness. But beware of uncleanness. the God of our fathers. What marvel that an unhappy sheep. yet had my delight in both. O Thou my exceeding mercy. that acting best pleased me. for this reason alone are passions loved? This also springs from that vein of friendship. as on envenomed nails. who truly and sincerely commiserates. for which Thou scourgedst me with grievous punishments. by missing some pernicious pleasure. and sought out what to grieve at. yet had he. Are griefs then too loved? Verily all desire joy. then may he. This certainly is the truer mercy. and weeps for joy. Or whereas no man likes to be miserable. and a putrefied sore. not such as should sink deep into me. being of its own will precipitated and corrupted from its heavenly clearness? Shall compassion then be put away? by no means. loving mine own ways. For though he that grieves for the miserable. I sorrowed with them. but if he be moved to passion. beware of uncleanness. and the beguiling service of devils. For thus dost Thou. and impatient of Thy keeping. and not Thine. and the loss of some miserable felicity. and to compass a business deserving death for its fruits. and attracted me the most vehemently. among whom I wandered with a stiff neck. pursuing a sacrilegious curiosity.criticising. was it life. who is genuinely compassionate. be commended for his office of charity. that having forsaken Thee. For I have not now ceased to pity. my refuge from those terrible destroyers. though nothing to my fault. but such as upon hearing their fictions should lightly scratch the surface. followed inflamed swelling. as if very compassionate. O my God? And Thy faithful mercy hovered over me afar. impostumes. and in all these things Thou didst scourge me! I dared even. withdrawing further from Thee. who is to be praised and exalted above all for ever. for I loved not to suffer. my God. when in another's and that feigned and personated misery. O Lord God. My life being such. but then in the theatres I rejoiced with lovers when they wickedly enjoyed one another. I became infected with a foul disease? And hence the love of griefs. then loved to grieve. And when they lost one another. And who is sufficient for these things? But I. straying from Thy flock. For if good will be ill willed (which can never be). which drew tears from me. although this was imaginary only in the play. rather there were nothing for him to grieve for. and hast more incorruptibly pity on them. Some sorrow may then be allowed. that he might commiserate. under the guardianship of my God. to whom I sacrificed my evil actions. into which it is wilfully changed and transformed. none loved.

nor knew I what Thou wouldest do with me? For with Thee is wisdom. the more bepraised. With them I lived. which were accounted commendable. even with my mother's milk. not to sharpen my tongue did I employ that book. and hold. though never . I fell upon a certain book of Cicero. Thou knowest) far quieter and altogether removed from the subvertings of those "Subverters" (for this ill-omened and devilish name was the very badge of gallantry) among whom I lived. I was delighted with that exhortation. had my tender heart.loving a vagrant liberty. by Thy good and devout servant: Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit. and kindled. the craftier. whereat I joyed proudly. in that unsettled age of mine. glorying even in their blindness." with which that book inflamed me." But this book altered my affections. and honourable name colouring and disguising their own errors: and almost all who in that and former ages were such. For this name. In the ordinary course of study. and obtain. that I was thereby strongly roused. learned I books of eloquence. that the name of Christ was not in it. this name of my Saviour Thy Son. This book of his contains an exhortation to philosophy. are in that book censured and set forth: there also is made plain that wholesome advice of Thy Spirit. nor did it infuse into me its style. What then could they be more truly called than "Subverters"? themselves subverted and altogether perverted first.e. according to Thy mercy. had a view to excelling in the courts of litigation. how did I burn to re-mount from earthly things to Thee. the deceiving spirits secretly deriding and seducing them. Such is men's blindness. a joy in human vanity. my father being dead two years before). that I might return to Thee. How did I burn then. Some there be that seduce through philosophy. and smooth. and inflamed to love." wherewith they wantonly persecuted the modesty of strangers. feeding thereon their malicious birth. whose doings I ever did abhor -i. and embrace not this or that sect. which they disturbed by a gratuitous jeering. whose speech almost all admire. knowest) Apostolic Scripture was not known to me. under a great. Among such as these. and turned my prayers to Thyself O Lord. For not to sharpen my tongue (which thing I seemed to be purchasing with my mother's allowances. my God. wherein themselves delight to jeer at and deceive others. wherein I desired to be eminent. out of a damnable and vainglorious end. and is called "Hortensius. devoutly drunk in and deeply treasured. and this alone checked me thus unkindled. after the tradition of men. and not after Christ. Every vain hope at once became worthless to me. and seek. and made me have other purposes and desires. not so his heart. Those studies also. Nothing can be liker the very actions of devils than these. and I swelled with arrogancy. so far only. and was sometimes delighted with their friendship. For in Him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. and began now to arise. but wisdom itself whatever it were. O Lord. after the rudiments of the world. And since at that time (Thou. in that my nineteenth year. though (Lord.. O light of my heart. And now I was chief in the rhetoric school. and I longed with an incredibly burning desire for an immortality of wisdom. with a shameless shame that I was not even as they. but its matter. But the love of wisdom is in Greek called "philosophy. and whatsoever was without that name. their "subvertings.

and veiled with mysteries. nor laid open to children. How far then art Thou from those fantasies of mine. not of Thee only (who truly art Truth)." and spake much thereof to me. how inwardly did even then the marrow of my soul pant after Thee. Truth. they. but they seemed to me unworthy to he compared to the stateliness of Tully: for my swelling pride shrunk from their lowliness. in whom is no variableness. the Truth. or true. I fed thereon. For Thy spiritual works are before these corporeal works. and I was not such as could enter into it. than which these true bodies. and of the Holy Ghost. when they often and diversely. But I hungered and thirsted not even after those first works of Thine. learned. yet are not those asleep nourished by it. nor could my sharp wit pierce the interior thereof. I see a thing not understood by the proud. Food in sleep shows very like our food awake. supremely good. But behold. no nor Thy first works. exceeding carnal and prating. celestial or terrestrial. but yet Thy works. neither shadow of turning: yet they still set before me in those dishes. in looking for whom I fail. Thy creatures. but so far forth as the sound only and the noise of the tongue. But I disdained to be a little one. my soul's Love. which with our fleshly sight we behold. for love of Thee. served up the Sun and Moon. swollen with pride. the Paraclete. Such empty husks was I then fed on. art neither those bodies which we see. than those fantasies which by our eyes deceive our mind. though in heaven. not Thyself. took myself to be a great one. that I might see what they were. for the heart was void of truth. celestial though they be. lowly in access. yet it was not in them: but they spake falsehood. for they are asleep. our Comforter. than which better were it to love this very sun (which is real to our sight at least). as Thou hast now spoken to me. beautiful works of Thine. nor was I nourished by them. but exhausted rather. in its recesses lofty. but after Thee Thyself. though it was but an echo? And these were the dishes wherein to me. and was not fed. I resolved then to bend my mind to the holy Scriptures. But Thou. Yet they cried out "Truth. glittering fantasies. fantasies of bodies which altogether are not. echoed of Thee to me. Yet were they such as would grow up in a little one. than by them conjecture other vaster and infinite bodies which have no being. Yet because I thought them to be Thee. O Truth. my Father. . for Thou hast created them. for Thou didst not in them taste to me as Thou art. are far more certain: these things the beasts and birds discern as well as we. Beauty of all things beautiful. for those were corporeal fantasies. not eagerly. or stoop my neck to follow its steps. false bodies. nor those which we see not there. we do with more certainty fancy them. that I may become strong. and of our Lord Jesus Christ. instead of Thee. And again. in whose mouths were the snares of the Devil. But those were not even any way like to Thee. And I indeed ought to have passed by even philosophers who spake truth concerning them. and shining. hungering after Thee. took not entire hold of me. These names departed not out of their mouth. for Thou wast not these emptinesses. Therefore I fell among men proudly doting. For not as I now speak. Truth. and in many and huge books. polished. did I feel when I turned to those Scriptures. nor dost Thou account them among the chiefest of Thy works. and they are more certain than when we fancy them. but even of those elements of this world. limed with the mixture of the syllables of Thy name.

sitting at the door. though I heard it sung. For how much better are the fables of poets and grammarians than these snares? For verses." are more profitable truly than these men's five elements. shadowed out in Solomon. and "Medea flying. Eat ye bread of secrecies willingly. the sight of whose eyes reached only to bodies.than which the images of those bodies. But Thou wert more inward to me than my most inward part. and higher than my highest. and sacrifice living creatures?" At which I. life of my soul. and all those commended by the mouth of God. than in its infinitude. So then. "whence is evil?" "is God bounded by a bodily shape. seemed to myself to be making towards it. Woe. no. and Isaac. as God. and might be rightly said to be after the image of God. according to which Abraham. not one thing in one place. nor yet the soul. which are. by what steps was I brought down to the depths of hell! toiling and turmoiling through want of Truth. answering to five dens of darkness. my God (to Thee I confess it. and another in another. For other than this. Nor knew I that true inward righteousness which judgeth not according to custom. and drink ye stolen waters which are sweet: she seduced me." though I did sing. whom with husks I fed. and poems. And what that should be in us. I maintained not. woe. and so is not wholly every where. wherein Thou willedst that I should excel the beasts. not according to the understanding of the mind. and Jacob. was much troubled. as Spirit. not one who hath parts extended in length and breadth. variously disguised. barred from the very husks of the swine. that which really is I knew not. But Thou art the life of souls. and did kill men. as it were through sharpness of wit. persuaded to assent to foolish deceivers. judging out of man's . the life of lives. until at last a thing ceases altogether to be. are far more certain. which have no being. whereby the ways of places and times were disposed according to those times and places. and saying. I lighted upon that bold woman. it must be less in such part as is defined by a certain space. and was. and more certain still the bodies themselves. and David. and ruminating on such food as through it I had devoured. for every bulk is less in a part than in the whole: and if it be infinite. not as yet confessing). which is the life of the bodies. were righteous. For verses and poems I can turn to true food. since I sought after Thee. because she found my soul dwelling abroad in the eye of my flesh. and Moses. but were judged unrighteous by silly men. and "Medea flying. and changest not. and how far from me? Far verily was I straying from Thee. yet slay the believer. I believed not: but those things I did believe. which how should I see. Where then wert Thou then to me. in my ignorance. and of my mind to a phantasm? And I knew not God to be a Spirit. but out of the most rightful law of God Almighty. or whose being was bulk. itself meantime being the same always and every where. which yet Thou art not. who hadst mercy on me. when they asked me. better and more certain is the life of the bodies than the bodies. I was altogether ignorant. but according to the sense of the flesh. and departing from the truth. by which we were like to God. having life in Thyself. and has hairs and nails?" "are they to be esteemed righteous who had many wives at once. because as yet I knew not that evil was nothing but a privation of good. simple and knoweth nothing.

For even that intercourse which should be between God and us is violated. Is justice therefore various or mutable? No. I indited verses. are to be avoided according to the customs severally prevailing. did far more excellently and sublimely contain in one all those things which God commanded. the moral habits of the whole human race. which they had not experience of. and his neighbour as himself? Therefore are those foul offences which be against nature. These things I then knew not. but apportioned and enjoined what was fit for each. and season. after a certain time not so. although in varying times it prescribed not every thing at once. but the times. for that by their senses they cannot harmonise the causes of things in former ages and other nations. by which I indited. to the one they take exceptions. by the law of God. they easily see what is fitting for each member. over which it presides. nor even in any one metre the self-same foot in all places. or seek to be shod with a helmet. such as were those of the men of Sodom: which should all nations commit. when that same nature. one were angered at not being allowed to keep open shop. they should all stand guilty of the same crime. day. As if in an armory. but also wherein they were foretelling things to come. or family. and person.judgment. Even such are they who are fretted to hear something to have been lawful for righteous men formerly. as God was revealing in them. But those actions which are offences against the customs of men. commanded them one thing. censured the holy Fathers. Can it at any time or place be unjust to love God with all his heart. different things to be fit for different members. But men whose days are few upon the earth. is polluted by perversity of lust. in one corner permitted or commanded. because they are times. in one man. had not different principles for these different cases. so that a thing agreed upon. which the butler is not suffered to meddle with. Still I saw not how that righteousness. or something permitted out of doors. Yet the art itself. in which I might not place every foot every where. may not be violated at the lawless pleasure . or when in one house he observeth some servant take a thing in his hand. of which He is Author. which hath not so made men that they should so abuse one another. flow not evenly. and confirmed. part. And I in my blindness. one ignorant of what were adapted to each part should cover his head with greaves. not only wherein they made use of things present as God commanded and inspired them. but comprised all in one. and measuring by their own petty habits. which is forbidden in the dining-room. but in another rightly forbidden and punished. which good and holy men obeyed. and I saw them not. with these which they have experience of. whereas in one and the same body. to be every where and at all times detested and punished. which now is not. but differently in different metres. because he had been in the forenoon. and a thing formerly lawful. obeying both the same righteousness: whereas they see. and one house. nor observed. and one family. and should be angry. and one day. they struck my sight on all sides. the same thing is not allotted every where. and with all his mind. to the other they submit. that in one house. or that God. and complain that they fitted not: or as if on a day when business is publicly stopped in the afternoon. and these another. and in no part varied. and to all. with all his soul. for certain temporal respects. by custom or law of any city or nation.

and so do men live ill against the three. yet the persons commended. or grieves at. or for some profit belonging to another. through covetousness of more. or when. and iniquity gives itself the lie. for to obey princes is a general compact of human society). or of rule. and most sweet. where there is a wish to hurt. to that use which is against nature. which Thou hast created and ordained. nor he himself heretofore. it is to be done. in the state which he reigns over. as one less fortunate to one more so. the Ruler of all His creatures! For as among the powers in man's society. as in the green blade of growing corn. and if intermitted. and by a self-willed pride. Thy Ten Commandments. as one enemy against another. to command that which no one before him. whether by reproach or injury. any one false thing is selected therefrom and loved. and Thou cleansest us from our evil habits. And these things are done when Thou art forsaken. if we lift not up against Thee the horns of an unreal liberty. in all which He commands. For any part which harmoniseth not with its whole. as the robber to the traveller. resembling offences of foulness or violence. against the customs or compact of any people. So then by a humble devoutness we return to Thee. who art the only and true Creator and Governor of the Universe. raging with heart and tongue against Thee. who canst not be defiled? or what acts of violence against Thee. discommended. the Good of all. and these either for revenge. that psaltery of often strings. who are on the whole making proficiency. or for the mere pleasure at another's pain. And there are some. But what foul offences can there be against Thee. or to avoid some evil. the greater authority is obeyed in preference to the lesser. For lawful if it he for a king. after the rule of perfection. they boldly joy in self-willed combinations or divisions. either singly. and to obey him cannot be against the common weal of the state (nay. they do wickedly against their own souls. O God. or through envy. upon hope of future fruit. as towards one who is feared. by loving more our own private good than Thee. which by those that judge rightly. it were against it if he were not obeyed. are sins of men. or are found guilty. though it were never by them done heretofore. and art merciful to their sins who confess. and loosest us from the chains which we made for ourselves. so must God above all. These be the heads of iniquity which spring from the lust of the flesh. But when God commands a thing to be done. or all together. Amidst these offences of foulness and violence. how much more unhesitatingly ought we to obey God. to him whose being on a par with himself he fears. O Fountain of Life. is now to be ordained. or in burning in things unallowed. by corrupting and perverting their nature. kicking against the pricks. it is to be restored. of the eye. or two combined. So in acts of violence. who canst not be harmed? But Thou avengest what men commit against themselves. are. and so many iniquities. which yet are no . bursting the pale of human society. according as they have any object to gain or subject of offence. had commanded. is offensive. whether native or foreigner. or deriders and mockers of others. or by an immoderate use of things allowed. as spectators of gladiators. and hearest the groaning of the prisoner. most high. and seven. or one well thriven in any thing.of any. and if never ordained. seeing also when they sin against Thee. suffering the loss of all.

seeing that society of men is just which serves Thee? But blessed are they who know Thy commands! For all things were done by Thy servants. Whence was this. And Thou sentest Thine hand from above. and a shining youth coming towards her. and the tree. and it be against the ordinance of some society of men. O Lord. But when Thou on a sudden commandest an unwonted and unthought of thing. not his own. by constituted authority punished. they watered the ground under her eyes in every place where she prayed. and Thou heardest her. Thou heardest her. but that Thine ears were towards her heart? O Thou Good omnipotent. discerned the death wherein I lay. and mingled with his bowels. at every moan or groan in his prayer. "That where she was. for whom they were created. Thy faithful one. unless they had been set at liberty by the teeth or belly of some "Elect" saint! And I. as to believe that a fig-tree wept when it was plucked. so that she allowed me to live with her. believed that more mercy was to be shown to the fruits of the earth than men. cheerful and smiling upon her. things fitting for a given period are obtained for the service of life.sins. as if they were but one! . she saw me standing by her in the same rule. and the mind of the doer." And when she looked. when streaming down. and the unknown exigency of the period. But he having (in order to instruct. because they offend neither Thee. being insensibly and step by step drawn on to those follies. are (Thou being witness) condemned: because the show of the action. and she answering that she was bewailing my perdition. nor human society. For she. and many. namely. and we know not whether out of a lust of hurting. These things I being ignorant of. and still for the time hidest the reason of Thy command. as if Thou caredst for him only. weeping to Thee for me. there was I also. more than mothers weep the bodily deaths of their children. herself grieving. For if any one an hungered. And what gained I by scoffing at them. there shall burst forth particles of divinity. and to eat at the same table in the house. either to show forth something needful for the present. our Lord God. which should be given him. For whence was that dream whereby Thou comfortedst her. abhorring and detesting the blasphemies of my error? For she saw herself standing on a certain wooden rule. by that faith and spirit which she had from Thee. for the sake of correction. and drewest my soul out of that profound darkness. and despisedst not her tears. yea. who doubts but it is to be done. my mother. yea. its mother. severally vary. by men praised. is by Thy testimony approved. that morsel would seem as it were condemned to capital punishment. which she had begun to shrink from. or to foreshow things to come. shed milky tears? Which fig notwithstanding (plucked by some other's. as is their wont not to be instructed) enquired of her the causes of her grief and daily tears. he should breathe out of it angels. yea Thou heardest her. and told her to look and observe. and we know not whether out of a lust of having. and so for all. miserable. when. but to be scoffed at by Thee. which particles of the most high and true God had remained bound in that fig. and overwhelmed with grief. although Thou hast sometime forbidden it. scoffed at those Thy holy servants and prophets. he bade her rest contented. Many an action then which in men's sight is disapproved. should ask for any. not a Manichaean. guilt) had some Manichaean saint eaten. who so carest for every one of us. or when things are.

when a little one. replies: "No. that Thy answer. and yet Thou sufferedst me to be yet involved and reinvolved in that darkness. yet no whit relaxing in her weeping and mourning. deceived and . and had (without any argument or proof from any one) seen how much that sect was to be avoided. and how great its impiety. when he found persons fitted to receive it). how himself. O Lord. now more cheered with hope. by which a joy to the holy woman. a certain Bishop brought up in Thy Church. their books. there he also'?" I confess to Thee. she presently. for much I pass by. "That she rather should not despair of being one day what I was". so long before foresignified. For he answered. that when she had told me this vision. and had avoided it. godly. a little displeased at her importunity. to be fulfilled so long after. And her prayers entered into Thy presence." At the same time he told her. and had already perplexed divers unskilful persons with captious questions. and had not only read. without any hesitation. that he would see me and discourse with me. -even then moved me more than the dream itself. and teach me good things (for this he was wont to do. for it is not possible that the son of these tears should perish. and so quickly saw what was to be seen. "Go thy ways and God bless thee. which I call to mind. for the consolation of her present anguish. hasting to those things which more press me to confess unto Thee. Thou gavest her then another answer. by a Priest of Thine. saith. "only pray God for him. For almost nine years passed. Which when he had said. with entreaties and many tears. refute my errors. unteach me ill things. -that she was not perplexed by the plausibility of my false interpretation. but urged him more. being puffed up with the novelty of that heresy. and which I certainly had not perceived before she spake. All which time that chaste. there thou also'. 'where he. but 'where thou. BOOK IV For this space of nine years (from my nineteenth year to my eight-and-twentieth) we lived seduced and seducing. and the darkness of falsehood. and I would fain bend it to mean. but frequently copied out almost all. as I afterwards perceived. in which I wallowed in the mire of that deep pit. for it was not told me that. he will of himself by reading find what that error is. and sober widow (such as Thou lovest). that to the best of my remembrance (and I have oft spoken of this). was. but dashed down the more grievously. and she would not be satisfied." Which answer she took (as she often mentioned in her conversations with me) as if it had sounded from heaven. and much I do not remember. often assaying to rise. Thou gavest her meantime another answer. and well studied in Thy books. wisely. he. Whom when this woman had entreated to vouchsafe to converse with me. he refused.Whence was this also. that I was yet unteachable. through my waking mother. ceased not at all hours of her devotions to bewail my case unto Thee. as she had told him: "but let him alone a while" (saith he). had by his seduced mother been consigned over to the Manichees.

And Thou. answered. not out of a pure love for Thee. and feed the wind? Still I would not forsooth have sacrifices offered to devils for me. with a false-named religion. by sciences which they call liberal. that when I had settled to enter the lists for a theatrical prize. taught artifices. And doth not a soul. made sale of a loquacity to overcome by. I consulted . for the sake of issue. detesting and abhorring such foul mysteries. the food that perisheth not? But what sort of man is any man. "Though the garland were of imperishable gold. in whom I in my own case experienced what difference there is betwixt the self-restraint of the marriage-covenant." out of which. and practise with my friends. here proud. in the workhouse of their stomachs. but to feed them. hunting after the emptiness of popular praise. and these I. and such as have not been. and poetic prizes. For what else is it to feed the wind. desiring to be cleansed from these defilements. Thou knowest) honest scholars (as they are accounted). O my God. but I. every where vain. Here. but let us poor and needy confess unto Thee. that is by going astray to become their pleasure and derision? Those impostors then. These things did I follow. and give me grace to go over in my present remembrance the wanderings of my forepassed time. who knew not how to conceive aught beyond a material brightness. seeing he is but a man? Let now the strong and the mighty laugh at us. by carrying food to those who were called "elect" and "holy. by whom we might be cleansed. void of understanding. I beseech Thee. there superstitious. and feeding upon Thee. secretly. but I would still confess to Thee mine own shame in Thy praise. I would not suffer a fly to be killed to gain me it. remaining faithful even to her. without artifice. In those years I taught rhetoric. but whom I had found out in a wayward passion. they should forge for us Angels and Gods. sighing after such fictions. openly. and the follies of shows. In those years I had one. O God. and strifes for grassy garlands. and the bargain of a lustful love. to their soul's health. -not in that which is called lawful marriage. and by those honours to invite the devils to favour me. Suffer me. and the intemperance of desires. not to be practised against the life of the guiltless. Yet I preferred (Lord. and. Let the arrogant mock me. which I showed in that my guidance of such as loved vanity. in divers lusts. " For he was to kill some living creatures in his sacrifices. but a guide to mine own downfall? or what am I even at the best. some wizard asked me what I would give him to win. though sometimes for the life of the guilty. they constrain love.deceiving. and with me. I remember also. deceived by me. O God of my heart. although. to whom I was sacrificing myself by that superstition. There. stricken and cast down by Thee. For what am I to myself without Thee. once born. but an infant sucking the milk Thou givest. from afar perceivedst me stumbling in that slippery course. and to offer unto Thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving. for I knew not how to love Thee. where children are born against their parents' will. and amid much smoke sending out some sparks of faithfulness. yet but one. overcome by cupidity. commit fornication against Thee. But this ill also I rejected. down even to theatrical applauses. myself their companion. trust in things unreal. and sought after leasing. whom they style Mathematicians.

or Saturn. "The cause of thy sin is inevitably determined in heaven". or forbear to heal my soul? For having become more acquainted with him. and as yet I had found no certain proof (such as I sought) whereby it might without all doubt appear. and earnest). and givest grace to the humble. and not fruitlessly bestow a care and diligence. Christian and true piety consistently rejects and condemns. lest a worse thing come unto thee. "But thou. and proud corruption. sin no more. For if when a man by haphazard opens the pages of some poet. thou art made whole. by some higher instinct an answer should be given. saying. and renowned therein. would not get his living by deluding people. could persuade me to cast it aside. either from or through him. for no other reason but that he found it utterly false. a grave man. but not as a physician: for this disease Thou only curest. who laboured to acquire it so perfectly as to get my living by it alone. There was in those days a wise man. and he. understanding Hippocrates. while the Creator and Ordainer of heaven and the stars is to bear the blame. so as to make it the profession whereby he should live.without scruple. nor to pray to any spirit for their divinations: which art. forsooth. And who is He but our God? the very sweetness and well-spring of righteousness. and tracedst in my memory. not by art. so that thou followest this of free choice. a verse oftentimes fell out. Have mercy upon me. wondrously agreeable to the present business: it were not to be wondered at. Thou conveyedst to me. But didst Thou fail me even by that old man. it was vivid. who resistest the proud. But at that time neither he. or Mars": that man. but to remember the Lord's words. Behold. who derided the whole body of divination. if out of the soul of man. heal my soul. and taken to physic. that he had in his earliest years studied that art. and hanging assiduously and fixedly on his speech (for though in simple terms. when he had gathered by my discourse that I was given to the books of nativity-casters. necessary for useful things. All which wholesome advice they labour to destroy. "hast rhetoric to maintain thyself by. lively. upon these vanities. very skilful in physic. and that. he answered me (as he could) "that the force of chance. who renderest to every man according to his works: and a broken and contrite heart wilt Thou not despise. what I might hereafter examine for myself. For. for I have sinned against Thee." saith he. saying. corresponding to the business and actions of the demander. he could soon have understood such a study as this. because they seemed to use no sacrifice. he kindly and fatherly advised me to cast them away. that what had been truly foretold by those consulted was the result of . by hap. diffused throughout the whole order of things. not of necessity: the more then oughtest thou to give me credit herein. however. unconscious what takes place in it. it is a good thing to confess unto Thee. who had with his own proconsular hand put the Agonistic garland upon my distempered head. how then could many true things be foretold by it. who sang and thought of something wholly different. and yet he had given it over." And thus much. and "This did Venus. and to say. and not to abuse Thy mercy for a licence to sin. flesh and blood." Of whom when I had demanded. nor my dearest Nebridius. brought this about. a youth singularly good and of a holy fear. the authority of the authors swaying me yet more. might be blameless.

as soon as I could speak with him (and I could. "he is coming. as true friendship is. both truer and better than that phantasm she was bid to trust in. nor even then. in the first opening flower of youth. and Fountain of mercies. when utterly absent in mind and feeling. unless in such as Thou cementest together. why she was so sad. not of the art of the star-gazers. I. as I would continue his friend. But he was taken away from my frenzy. by that love which is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost. from the true faith (which he as a youth had not soundly and thoroughly imbibed). sore sick of a fever. whom she had lost. and I asked my soul. and why she disquieted me sorely: but she knew not what to answer me. But he was not yet my friend as afterwards. and whatever I beheld was death." as when he was alive and absent. turning us to Thyself by wonderful means. but he was not granted them. that with Thee he might be preserved for my comfort. became a distracting torture. and I hated all places. and we hung but too much upon each other). unknowing. for they succeeded my friend. cleaving unto Thee. Forthwith. he lay senseless in a death-sweat. and my father's house a strange unhappiness. suppressed all my emotions till he should grow well. being man. ripened by the warmth of kindred studies: for. and with a wonderful and sudden freedom bade me. but too dear to me. for I never left him.haphazard. But behold Thou wert close on the steps of Thy fugitives. Thou tookest that man out of this life. sweet to me above all sweetness of that my life. But he so shrunk from me. forbear such language to him. With me he now erred in mind. and how unsearchable is the abyss of Thy judgments? For long. she very rightly obeyed me not. My native country was a torment to me. I had warped him also to those superstitious and pernicious fables. for true it cannot be. was. He had grown up of a child with me. . At this grief my heart was utterly darkened. and we had been both school-fellows and play-fellows. so soon as he was able. as though he would jest with me at that baptism which he had received. he was attacked again by the fever. nor could my soul be without him. of mine own age. Mine eyes sought him every where. at once God of vengeance. myself meanwhile little regarding. I had made one my friend. and presuming that his soul would retain rather what it had received of me. my God. I became a great riddle to myself. nor could they now tell me. as from an enemy. as myself. Only tears were sweet to me. and whatever I had shared with him. for that they had not him. and his recovery being despaired of. a few days after in my absence. Yet was it but too sweet. when he had scarce filled up one whole year of my friendship. But it proved far otherwise: for he was refreshed. in the dearest of my affections. and. all astonished and amazed. and his health were strong enough for me to deal with him as I would. not what was wrought on his unconscious body. and restored. Who can recount all Thy praises. because that most dear friend. which is given unto us. And if I said. Trust in God. which he hath felt in his one self? What diddest Thou then. from a community of pursuits. for which my mother bewailed me. but had now understood that he had received. he was baptised. and so departed. I essayed to jest with him. In those years when I first began to teach rhetoric in my native town. wanting him.

impatient of being borne by me. sighs. but to confess unto Thee. But is it also in grief for a thing lost. since he whom I loved. For I was miserable. yea. because I would not live halved. But in me there had arisen some unexplained feeling. had neither rest nor counsel. who art Truth. yet was I more unwilling to part with it than with him. For I wondered that others. but I wept only and grieved. Well said one of his friend. he being dead. and I wondered yet more that myself. I wept most bitterly. that Thou mayest tell me why weeping is sweet to the miserable? Hast Thou. Not in calm groves. for well I remember it. that they would gladly have died for each other or together. these things are passed by. and then he feels the wretchedness which he had ere yet he lost them. for at once I loathed exceedingly to live and feared to die. and plucking my feet out of the snare. enduring impatiently the lot of man! I fretted then. nor in the pleasures of the bed and the couch. not to live together being to them worse than death. could live. who was to him a second self. like men! O foolish man that I then was. I found not. wept. and that wretched life I held dearer than my friend. too contrary to this. did live. Lord. I remember. "Thou half of my soul". sighed. was revolting and hateful. For though I would willingly have changed it. behold and see into me. except groaning and tears. although present every where. O my God. but we are tossed about in divers trials. Or is weeping indeed a bitter thing. please us? But what speak I of these things? for now is no time to question. which had bereaved me of him: and I imagined it would speedily make an end of all men. when we shrink from them. for therein is a longing to approach unto Thee. since it had power over him. yea. subject to death. the more I loved him. we should have no hope left. who cleansest me from the impurity of such affections. the very light. does it then. For I bore about a shattered and bleeding soul. lest he whom I had much loved should die wholly. nor in fragrant spots. I suppose. whatsoever was not what he was. he is torn asunder when he loses them. So was it then with me. for I felt that my soul and his soul were "one soul in two bodies": and therefore was my life a horror to me. and complaints? Doth this sweeten it. All things looked ghastly. O my Hope. not in games and music. and wretched is every soul bound by the friendship of perishable things. tears.And now. For in those alone . yet where to repose it. and fear (as a most cruel enemy) death. Wretched I was. And yet unless we mourned in Thine ears. O madness. cast away our misery far from Thee? And Thou abidest in Thyself. directing mine eyes towards Thee. And therefore perchance I feared to die. nor (finally) in books or poesy. May I learn from Thee. I know not whether I would have parted with it even for him. and approach the ear of my heart unto Thy mouth. was dead. and time hath assuaged my wound. as if he should never die. the more did I hate. nor in curious banquetings. that we hope Thou hearest? This is true of prayer. and had lost my joy. Thus was it with me. was distracted. from groaning. which knowest not how to love men. Whence then is sweet fruit gathered from the bitterness of life. and the sorrow wherewith I was then overwhelmed? For I neither hoped he should return to life nor did I desire this with my tears. and found my repose in bitterness. as is related (if not feigned) of Pylades and Orestes. Thus was I wretched. Behold my heart. found it repose. and for very loathing of the things which we before enjoyed.

. that a man's conscience condemns itself. if one die. but neither could nor would. but a mere phantom. which lay itching in our ears. by the countenance. And yet there succeeded. for so should mine eyes less look for him. what instead of Thee I loved. and welcome the coming with joy. not indeed other griefs. it glided through the void. For whence had that former grief so easily reached my very inmost soul. nor do they roll idly by. and his friend in Thee. that it might rest. when I thought of Thee. For whither should my heart flee from my heart? Whither should I flee from myself? Whither not follow myself? And yet I fled out of my country. and darkenings of sorrows. our soul. Hence that mourning. where they were not wont to see him. to whom all are dear in Him who cannot be lost. I knew it. in loving one that must die. To Thee. they went and came day by day. and his enemy for Thee. all sweetness turned to bitterness. and my error was my God. the eyes. with whom I did love. Times lose no time. Blessed whoso loveth Thee. it ought to have been raised. and even with the seldomness of these dissentings. to season our more frequent consentings. by whose adulterous stimulus. If I offered to discharge my load thereon. introduced into my mind other imaginations and other remembrances. and came rushing down again on me. This is it that is loved in friends. that steeping of the heart in tears. or love not again him that loves him. since. and upon the loss of life of the dying. was being defiled. and filleth them. There were other things which in them did more take my mind. And who is this but our God. nor be from thence. the tongue. long for the absent with impatience. and this was a great fable. For Thou wert not Thyself. I came to Carthage. Behold. as a man might with his own self. But that fable would not die to me. to do kind offices by turns. to play the fool or be earnest together. the more. and I had remained to myself a hapless spot. so oft as any of my friends died. proceeding out of the hearts of those that loved and were loved again.found I a little refreshment. and a thousand pleasing gestures. and out of many make but one. for Thee to lighten. but that I had poured out my soul upon the dust. and little by little patched me up again with my old kind of delights. And thus from Thagaste. and sometimes learn. the God that made heaven and earth. but who leaveth. And who leaveth Thee. For he alone loses none dear to him. looking for nothing from his person but indications of his love. to read together honied books. but from Thee well-pleased. were so much fuel to melt our souls together. But when my soul was withdrawn from them a huge load of misery weighed me down. O Lord. to talk and jest together. sometimes to teach. through our senses they work strange operations on the mind. whither goeth or whither teeth he. and protracted lie. and truth Thou. because by filling them He created them? Thee none loseth. Thou wert not to me any solid or substantial thing. These and the like expressions. yet the causes of other griefs. to dissent at times without discontent. the death of the living. if he love not him that loves him again. unto which that my sorrow gave way. as if he would never die? For what restored and refreshed me chiefly was the solaces of other friends. where I could neither be. and by coming and going. and so loved. to Thee displeased? For where doth he not find Thy law in his own punishment? And Thy law is truth.

and the whole. at least now thou art tired out with vanities. but it sufficeth not to stay things running their course from their appointed starting-place to the end appointed. when they are hard by? For the sense of the flesh is slow. if itself forsaketh not.Turn us. unless they were from Thee." Be not foolish. that others may come. and we shall be whole. they wax old and wither. they together complete that universe. O God of Hosts. but all wither. by which they are created. Creator of all. But in these things is no place of repose. by the same sense of the flesh thou hearest. O my soul. But do I depart any whither? saith the Word of God. because she longs to be. For what we speak also. through the senses of the body. and by rising. that they might not be. and set. and not itself also. Out of all these things let my soul praise Thee. This is the law of them. they abide not. show us Thy countenance. for thy punishment. and they rend her with pestilent longings. thou knowest not. and all grow not old. and perfected. For in Thy Word. whereof these are parts. they flee. and thy decay shall bloom again. is in part. nor become deaf in the ear of thine heart with the tumult of thy folly. they hear their decree. Who abideth and standeth fast for ever. and thy mortal parts be reformed and renewed. unless toward Thee. and yet they delight thee. For whithersoever the soul of man turns itself. where love is not forsaken. that they may be perfected. it is riveted upon sorrows. but fly away. and so this lower universe be completed by all his parts. and abide for ever before God. that others may replace them. The Word itself calleth thee to return: and there is the place of rest imperturbable. They rise. For they go whither they were to go. Behold. been justly restricted to a part of the whole. that so the whole might better please thee. and out of the soul. O God. Hearken thou too. Why then be perverted and follow thy flesh? Be it converted and follow thee. But had the sense of thy flesh a capacity for comprehending the whole. should pass away. There fix thy dwelling. Thus much has Thou allotted them. they grow. so much the more they haste not to be. trust there whatsoever thou hast thence. were not. thou wouldest. these things pass away. because they are portions of things. and thereby is it bounded. Entrust Truth. that another may succeed. yet let not my soul be riveted unto these things with the glue of love. which exist not all at once. and all thy diseases be healed. And even thus is our speech completed by signs giving forth a sound: but this again is not perfected unless one word pass away when it hath sounded its part. So then when they rise and tend to be. that whatsoever existeth at this present. who can grasp them. but they shall stand fast with thee. "hence and hitherto. because it is the sense of the flesh. and bound around thee: nor shall they lay thee whither themselves descend. and thou shalt lose nothing. out of Thee. they begin as it were to be. O my soul. yea though it is riveted on things beautiful. Whatever by her thou hast sense of. yet wouldest not thou have the syllables stay. and thou hear the whole. the more quickly they grow that they may be. whereof they are portions. yet loves to repose in what she loves. and who can follow them with the senses of the flesh? yea. It sufficeth for that it was made for. whatsoever thou hast from the Truth. but by passing away and succeeding. And so . And yet they.

that ye may ascend. In Him then be they beloved. But far better than these is He who made all. and cleave fast to Him that made you. but ran. For He lingered not. lest in these things which please thee. by ascending against Him. yet left us not. whence He never parted. "Him let us love. and to. crying aloud to us to return unto Him. And in this world He was. but it is good and pleasant through reference to Him. and I was sinking to the very depths. and bore our death. and He is our God. If souls please thee. all of which do not exist together. but it is not there where ye seek. See there He is. because out of His spirit thou speakest thus unto them. And He departed from our eyes. For He departed. for it hath sinned against Him. rejoicing as a giant to run his course. He is within the very heart. they could by no . ye transgressors. To what end then would ye still and still walk these difficult and toilsome ways? There is no rest. ascension. These things I then knew not. life. for neither doth aught succeed Him. "Do we love any thing but the beautiful? What then is the beautiful? and what is beauty? What is it that attracts and wins us to the things we love? for unless there were in them a grace and beauty. and slew him. where truth is loved. calling aloud to us to return hence to Him into that secret place. and there find Him. when any one thing is made up of many. death. our mortal flesh. that we might return into our heart. for He departed thither. and so carry them up with thee unto God. that it might not be for ever mortal. be they loved in God: for they too are mutable. and ascend to God. because unjustly is any thing loved which is from Him. For He did not make them. but in Him are they firmly stablished. burning with the fire of charity. because the world was made by Him. Whither go ye in rough ways? Whither go ye? The good that you love is from Him. For how should there be a blessed life where life itself is not? "But our true Life came down hither. when ye are on high. will ye not ascend and live? But whither ascend ye. Ye seek a blessed life in the land of death. Go back into your heart. else would they pass. and justly shall it be embittered. unto whom my soul confesseth. and turn back thy love upon their Maker. how long so slow of heart? Even now. and carry unto Him along with thee what souls thou canst. Stand with Him. praise God on occasion of them. wherein He espoused the human creation. and into this world He came to save sinners. could all be perceived collectively. and thence like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber. and pass away. If bodies please thee. whence He came forth to us. where ye seek it. all collectively would please more than they do severally. and in Him. it is not there. He would not be long with us. and say to them. and He healeth it. and set your mouth against the heavens? Descend. nor is He far off. and so depart. calling aloud by words. Rest in Him. Him let us love: He made these. that they may weep in the valley of tears. deeds. yet hath the heart strayed from Him. nor doth He pass away." Tell them this. Seek what ye seek. thou displease. For ye have fallen. but they are of Him. and ye shall stand fast. if He be forsaken for it. if thou speakest. descent. first into the Virgin's womb. out of the abundance of His own life: and He thundered. O ye sons of men. and ye shall be at rest. after the descent of Life to you. and to my friends I said. and I loved these lower beauties.ever. He is here.

and again. and even hated. For so did I then love men. I know not how. I had never been so kindled and excited to love him. But by one who loveth is another kindled. be that horse. and some words of his I had heard. so is it carried this way and that. which pleased me? But more did he please me. than so known. whose very hairs Thou numberest. but only the feelings of the relators. See where the impotent soul lies along. Thou knowest." I think. had he been unpraised. and whence do I confidently confess unto Thee. And this consideration sprang up in my mind. nor he himself other. and so as I would be myself commended? For I would not be commended or loved. who highly extolled him. amazed that out of a Syrian. And yet the things had not been other. driven forward and backward. and the like. as of a part of the body with its whole. there was a beauty. for it is gone from me. though very secretly. therefore the same may be said of an actor. but yet was steered by Thee. not Thine. for that he pleased others. should afterwards be formed a wonderful Latin orator. and was tossed about with every wind." And I marked and perceived that in bodies themselves. to dedicate these books unto Hierius. another from apt and mutual correspondence. and I erred through a swelling pride. One is commended. from their forming a sort of whole. who am a man? Man himself is a great deep. but far otherwise. and with dispraise and contempt told the very same things of him. and I wrote "on the fair and fit. that as a good horse is loved by him. he is loved: doth this love enter the heart of the hearer from the mouth of the commender? Not so. but had rather be unknown. first instructed in Greek eloquence. that is not yet stayed up by the solidity of truth! Just as the gales of tongues blow from the breast of the opinionative. But that orator was of that sort whom I loved. that I had loved him more for the love of his commenders. and they fall not to the ground without Thee. as actors are (though I myself did commend and love them). and one most learned in things pertaining unto philosophy. when one that loves him. than so loved. or a shoe with a foot. but loved for the fame of his learning which was eminent in him. For hence he is loved who is commended. in Whom no man is deceived. what I hate to be. Where now are the impulses to such various and divers kinds of loves laid up in one soul? Why. who would not. or fighter with beasts in the theatre. who shares our nature. though he might. And yet are the hairs of his head easier to be numbered than his feelings. And whence do I know. But what moved me. but they are strayed from me. known far and wide by a vulgar popularity. like those of a famous charioteer. upon the judgment of men. Do I then love in a man. O Lord. if I did not hate. that is. O my God. But yet why not for qualities. whom I knew not by face. I should not spurn and cast from myself? For it holds not. than for the very things for which he was commended? Because. unseen. since we are equally men. two or three books. and the beatings of his heart. and earnestly. and these self-same men had dispraised him. an orator of Rome. as wishing to be myself such.means draw us unto them. for I have them not. do I love in another what. praises him. out of my inmost heart. when the commender is believed to extol him with an unfeigned heart. O Lord my God. O Lord. and. and the light is overclouded to .

And to. Thou shalt enlighten my darkness: and of Thy fulness have we all received. and bulky magnitudes. O Thou Omnipotent. for in Thee there is no variableness. who only doest wonders. whereby carnal pleasures are drunk in. as it was then in me. and lusts. being the wish. my empty heart. O Lord my God. but the latter a Duad. and. neither shadow of change. I were the more kindled. And whereas in virtue I loved peace. For I had not known or learned that neither was evil a substance. But I pressed towards Thee. And yet that first I called a Monad. and was thrust from Thee. O my God. and I imagined corporeal forms. And it was to me a great matter. and Thou resistedst my vain stiffneckedness. For Thou shalt light my candle. and surveyed it. and my mind ranged through corporeal forms. nor in me. and. stirring itself insolently and unrulily. if that emotion of the soul be corrupted. and admired it. lust. that my discourse and labours should be known to that man: which should he approve. but if he disapproved. seeing itself is not that nature of truth. had been wounded. and in flagitiousness. a sort of division. But I saw not yet. and the nature of the chief evil. And I turned to the nature of the mind. nor our soul that chief and unchangeable good. For as deeds of violence arise. for Thou art the true light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world. and myself not to be that which Thou art. let me not see the truth. of worse to become better). and colours." whereon I wrote to him. and in viciousness I abhorred discord. I returned not to Thee. as it had been a soul without sex. But what prouder. and I turned away my panting soul from incorporeal substance to lineaments. And not being able to see these in the mind. nor in . Therefore I was repelled by Thee. void of Thy solidity. if the reasonable soul itself be corrupted. whence vehement action than for me with a strange madness to maintain myself to be that by nature which Thou art? For whereas I was subject to change (so much being manifest to me. though none joined therein. in the first I observed a unity. who knew not that it must be enlightened by another light." whose beauty is in correspondence to some other thing: and this I supported by corporeal examples. I dwelt on with pleasure. -anger. but I passed on and on to things which have no being. I accused flesh. myself flesh. but the false notion which I had of spiritual things. which should not only be a substance. not knowing whereof I spake. that it may be partaker of truth. and the truth unseen. and the nature of truth and of the chief good to consist. so do errors and false opinions defile the conversation. but in the other. when that affection of the soul is ungoverned. but in this division I miserably imagined there to be some unknown substance of irrational life. and "fair. but real life also. whereon this weighty matter turned in Thy wisdom. neither in Thee. And yet the "fair and fit. of whom are all things. it is before us. and "fit. and yet not derived from Thee. a wind that passeth away. my very desire to become wise." I defined and distinguished what is so in itself. that I might taste of death: for thou resistest the proud. I thought I could not see my mind. in deeds of violence. yet chose I rather to imagine Thee subject to change. And in that unity I conceived the rational soul. Yet the force of truth did of itself flash into mine eyes.

and to rejoice greatly at the Bridegroom's voice. For Thou didst not make me to hear joy and gladness. which I turned. seeing that. my fellow-citizens (from whom." and longing to stand and hearken to Thee. in punishment. as if Thou also hadst been subjected to Thine own greatness or beauty. buzzing in the ears of my heart. or whether he stands or sits. For Thou hadst commanded. to ask them. I. I read and understood it unaided? And on my conferring with others. and his relationship. and understood? And I delighted in them. that the earth should bring forth briars and thorns to me. and now. "Why then doth God err?" And I maintained that Thy unchangeable substance did err upon constraint. the vile slave of vile affections. I stood exiled). but by my vanity devised out of things corporeal. I was wont. so often as my rhetoric master of Carthage. or suffers anything. how many feet high. And I was wont to ask Thy faithful little ones. for by the voices of mine own errors. And the book appeared to me to speak very clearly of substances. as on something great and divine. and stature. not truth. which they call the often Predicaments. as the figure of a man. reading it by myself. who said that they scarcely understood it with very able tutors. so that (as in bodies) they should exist in Thee. to thy inward melody. But it was falsehood which of Thee I conceived. mouthed it with cheeks bursting with pride). O my God. prating and foolishly. but a body is not great or fair in that it is a body. was comprehended under those often Predicaments. For I had my back . Neither were they created for me by Thy truth. of what sort it is. they could tell me no more of it than I had learned. And what did it profit me. though it were less great or fair. What did all this further me. I essayed in such wise to understand. O sweet truth. "Why then doth the soul err which God created?" But I would not be asked. or under that chief Predicament of Substance. whose brother he is. Thy wonderful and unchangeable Unity also. nor did the bones exult which were not yet humbled. seeing it even hindered me? when. imagining whatever was. And what did it profit me. but knew not whence came all. that therein was true or certain. or does. accounted learned. but drawing many things in sand. I was sinking into the lowest pit.the body. a book of Aristotle. fictions of my misery. that all the books I could procure of the so-called liberal arts. I was then some six or seven and twenty years old when I wrote those volumes. rather than confess that my changeable substance had gone astray voluntarily. of which I have given some specimens. that scarce twenty years old. revolving within me corporeal fictions. and it was done in me. and all the innumerable things which might be ranged under these nine Predicaments. read by myself. or when born." and of their qualities. not the realities of Thy blessedness. and that in the sweat of my brows I should eat my bread. but could not. falling into my hands (on whose very name I hung. I was hurried abroad. and through the weight of my own pride. unknown to myself. or where placed. or be shod or armed. lay in error. meditating on the "fair and fit. such as "man. not only orally explaining it. as their subject: whereas Thou Thyself art Thy greatness and beauty. and others. it should notwithstanding be a body.

protect us. or logic. O Lord God. for our firmness. But what did this further me. and carry us. and I kept not my strength for Thee. nor can man's hard-heartedness thrust back Thy hand: for Thou dissolvest it at Thy will in pity or in vengeance. our mansion fell not. but wandered from Thee into a far country. and arithmetic. Heal Thou all my bones.Thy eternity. who blushed not then to profess to men my blasphemies. seeing I erred so foully. nor is silent in Thy praises. For what profited me good abilities. that it may praise Thee. by the voice of those who meditate thereon: that . What profited me then my nimble wit in those sciences and all those most knotty volumes. and with such sacrilegious shamefulness. neither the spirit of man with voice directed unto Thee. to confess to Thee Thy mercies towards me. that in the nest of Thy Church they might securely be fledged. But let my soul praise Thee. lest there be no place whither to return. because we fell from it: for through our absence. by the food of a sound faith. O my God. not employed to good uses? For I felt not that those arts were attained with great difficulty. and nothing can hide itself from Thy heat. and nourish the wings of charity. without aid from human instruction. since I went about to get so good a portion of my substance into my own keeping. that it may love Thee. return. unravelied by me. seeing a closed heart closes not out Thy eye. who is like unto Thee? For he who confesses to Thee doth not teach Thee what takes place within him. in the doctrine of piety? Or what hindrance was a far slower wit to Thy little ones. and my face to the things enlightened. and to call upon Thee. Our good ever lives with Thee. because both quickness of understanding. when he most excelled in them who followed me not altogether slowly. geometry. nor creation animate or inanimate. and acuteness in discerning. itself was not enlightened. since they departed not far from Thee. BOOK V Accept the sacrifice of my confessions from the ministry of my tongue. nor need we fear. either on rhetoric. Nor do I blush. which good art Thou. by myself without much difficulty or any instructor. Thou wilt carry us both when little. the the light. when it is Thou. O Lord our God. music. is Thy gift: yet did I not thence sacrifice to Thee. Thy whole creation ceaseth not. wert a vast and bright body. which Thou hast formed and stirred up to confess unto Thy name. that we may not be overturned. and let it confess Thy own mercies to Thee. under the shadow of Thy wings let us hope. because with Thee our good lives without any decay. Thou knowest. O Lord. Let us now. Whatever was written. until I attempted to explain them to such. then is it firmness. and even to hoar hairs wilt Thou carry us. O Lord. imagining that Thou. So then it served not to my use. with which I discerned the things enlightened. whence my face. but rather to my perdition. to spend it upon harlotries. but when our own. we are turned aside. O Lord my God. from which when we turn away. even by the studious and talented. and to bark against Thee. and I a fragment of that body? Perverseness too great! But such was I. I understood. and let them say. it is infirmity.

and track the courses of the planets. -what day and hour. re-makest and comfortest them. when I was seeking Thee? And Thou wert before me. that they might not see Thee seeing our souls may from their weariness arise towards Thee. and hast respect unto the humble. And how have they injured Thee? or how have they disgraced Thy government. because not as they have forsaken their Creator. Lord. even for that Thou. -nor did their calculation fail. which Thou bestowedst on them. There had then come to Carthage a certain Bishop of the Manichees. and passing on to Thyself. Let the restless. eclipses of those luminaries. a great snare of the Devil. withdrawing themselves from thy gentleness. from the heaven to this lowest earth. and what hour of the day. that Thou art every where. and cast themselves upon Thee. many years before. depart and flee from Thee. Thou art there in their heart. And since I had read and well remembered much of the philosophers. and out of them do others foretell in what year and month of the year. how much less Thee! I would lay open before my God that nine-and-twentieth year of mine age. And behold. the sun and moon. which. is just and perfect? For whither fled they. the godless. but I had gone away from Thee. and foretold. and what day of the month. yet could I separate from the truth of the things which I was earnest to learn: nor did I so much regard the service of oratory as the science which this Faustus. when they fled from Thy presence? or where dost not Thou find them? But they fled. and weep in Thy bosom. blinded. and falling upon their own ruggedness. and measure the starry heavens. and exquisitely skilled in the liberal sciences. and there is refreshment and true strength. so praised among them. Let them then be turned. and found the former the more probable. but -Thou. who madest them. Lord. who madest them wonderfully. might stumble against Thee (because Thou forsakest nothing Thou hast made). Ignorant. and behold. and many were entangled by him through that lure of his smooth language: which though I did commend. I say. but to the contrite in heart. and justly be hurt. Let them be turned and seek Thee. and what part of . that the unjust. I compared some things of theirs with those long fables of the Manichees. and how many digits. and. in the heart of those that confess to Thee. the Lord of it they could by no means find out. yet Thou seest them. though they are foul. but the proud Thou beholdest afar off. and dividest the darkness. hast Thou forsaken Thy creation. and they weep the more. after all their rugged ways. and it came to pass as they foretold. and stumbling at Thy uprightness. O Lord. For with their understanding and wit. Whom no place encompasseth! and Thou alone art near. For Thou art great. not though by curious skill they could number the stars and the sand. in truth. and joy in weeping. nor did I find myself. and they wrote down the rules they had found out. -not man of flesh and blood. Fame had before bespoken him most knowing in all valuable learning. and seek Thee. Then dost Thou gently wipe away their tears. But where was I. nor art found by the proud. Nor dost Thou draw near. no. might stumble upon Thee. set before me to feed upon. even to those that remove far from Thee. the universe with them is fair. and these are read at this day. leaning on those things which Thou hast created. even although they could only prevail so far as to make judgment of this lower world. Faustus by name. they search out these things. and much have they found out.

and to birds. and their foolish heart was darkened. and they that know it. nor their own diving curiosities (wherewith. or that of Thy wisdom there is no number. and by an ungodly pride departing from Thee. and re-create themselves immortally. and worshipping and serving the creature more than the Creator. as fowls of the air. and the visible testimonies of the stars. but Truth. and profess themselves to be wise. or equinoxes. but was quite contrary. he glorifies Thee as God. attributing to themselves what is Thine. and thereby with most perverse blindness. marvel and are astonished. and four-footed beasts. and behold. knowing Thee. but for Thee only. study to impute to Thee what is their own. they glorify Him not as God. and knoweth not Thee: but happy whoso knoweth Thee. For they search not religiously whence they have the wit. as it is foreshowed. or the eclipses of the greater lights. Thy Word. nor their own luxuriousness. and righteousness. They discourse many things truly concerning the creature. and the sense whereby they perceive what they number. a consuming fire. and the understanding. And whoso knoweth both Thee and them is not the happier for them. and deemed themselves exalted amongst the stars and shining. Yet many truths concerning the creature retained I from these men. and failing of Thy light. therefore please Thee? Surely unhappy is he who knoweth all these. they give not themselves up to Thee. and becomes not vain in his imaginations. and was numbered among us. forging lies of Thee who art the Truth. and creeping things. to preserve what Thou madest. But the Only Begotten is Himself made unto us wisdom. And finding that Thou madest them. and by Him ascend unto Him. and yet it corresponded not with what had been established by calculations and my own sight. and compared them with the saying of Manichaeus. out of which they number. neither are thankful. they fell upon the earth. like the fishes of the seal they wander over the unknown paths of the abyss). or if they find Him. changing Thy truth into a lie. though he know not these. exult. and paid tribute unto Caesar. and saw the reason thereof from calculations.its light. if. At these things men. and return thanks to . nor slay their own soaring imaginations. Lord. so long before. Artificer of the creature. nor sacrifice to Thee what they have made themselves. that know not this art. as beasts of the field. they foresee a failure of the sun's light. and so it shall be. and are puffed up. that Thou. But I was commanded to believe. knowing Him to be God. They knew not this way whereby to descend to Him from themselves. the succession of times. mayest burn up those dead cares of theirs. but discovered not any account of the solstices. and sanctification. and changing the glory of uncorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man. moon or sun is to be eclipsed. They knew not this way. which is. But they knew not the way. and themselves who number. but see not their own. by Whom Thou madest these things which they number. but become vain in their imaginations. wherewith they search out this. which shall be. O Lord God of truth. and is thankful. Doth then. they seek not piously. For as he is better off who knows how to possess a tree. which in his frenzy he had written most largely on these subjects. nor whatever of this sort I had learned in the books of secular philosophy. and therefore find Him not. whoso knoweth these things.

guide. since. For it is vanity to make profession of these worldly things even when known. till the new-born may grow up unto a perfect man. and who having nothing. if they by any means might. Behold piety and wisdom. and number the stars. so long as he doth not believe any thing unworthy of Thee. it should still remain a question to me whether it were so or no. of which he might be ignorant. whom all things serve. or how wide it spreads. that convicted by those who had truly learned them. and poise the elements. and of day and night itself. but confession to Thee is piety." When then he was found out to have taught falsely of the heaven and stars. it might be manifest what understanding he had in the other abstruser things. the Comforter and Enricher of Thy faithful ones. so as not to be carried about with every wind of doctrine. so that. that he sought to ascribe them to himself. by cleaving unto Thee. knowing not. yet possesseth all things. that whoso followed him thought that he followed. the Creator of all.Thee for the use thereof. though he know not even the circles of the Great Bear. not a mere man. than he that can measure it. wherein with unsettled mind I . rest my credence upon his authority. who would not judge that so great madness. and mistaken on them. as to a divine person. And yet is even such an infirmity. and of the motions of the sun and moon (although these things pertain not to the doctrine of religion). on account of his reputed sanctity. and neither owns it. nor do I see that any ignorance as to the position or character of the corporeal creation can injure him. and measure. was with plenary authority personally within him. he most impudently dared to teach. he plainly could have no knowledge of piety. And for almost all those nine years. weight. with so mad a vanity of pride. whose all this world of wealth is. but these things. chief of all whom he could so persuade. though he had perfect knowledge of these things. might be explained consistently with his sayings. I can patiently behold such a man holding his opinion. "That the Holy Ghost. For he would not have himself meanly thought of. with the eclipses of the greater lights. but Thy Holy Spirit. seeing he delivered things which not only he knew not. were to be detested and utterly rejected? But I had not as yet clearly ascertained whether the vicissitudes of longer and shorter days and nights. and will yet affirm that too stiffly whereof he is ignorant. and count all its boughs. although he know not how many cubits high it is. But in him who in such wise presumed to be the teacher. if he imagine it to pertain to the form of the doctrine of piety. but which were falsified. yet his sacrilegious presumption would become evident enough. skill in which was no element of piety? For Thou hast said to man. O Lord. yet neglecteth Thee who hast made all things in number. borne by our mother Charity. but I might. nor knows or loves its Creator: so a believer. For when I hear any Christian brother ignorant of these things. and whatever else of the kind I had read of in other books. but went about to persuade men. But it doth injure him. yet is it folly to doubt but he is in a better state than one who can measure the heavens. source. when once convicted of having taught any thing false. in the infancy of faith. But yet who bade that Manichaeus write on these things also. Wherefore this wanderer to this end spake much of these things.

were to be most readily and abundantly cleared. yet still but the self-same things which they were wont to say. But because he had read some of Tully's Orations. when unable to solve my objections about these things. and with a kind of natural gracefulness. in familiar converse with him. that in the assembly of his auditors. had he not been a Manichee). if delivered in a smooth and copious discourse. It troubled me. nor the soul therefore wise. and that but in an ordinary way. I felt however that another sort of people were suspicious even of truth. . nor therefore falsely. as I recall it. For after it was clear that he was ignorant of those arts in which I thought he excelled. because better said. still held out to me the coming of this Faustus. Of Thyself therefore had I now learned. with many others and more than they. But what availed the utmost neatness of the cup-bearer to my thirst for a more precious draught? Mine ears were already cloyed with the like. nor is there besides Thee any teacher of truth. and therefore I believe that Thou taughtest me. because rudely delivered. because the face was comely. that I might see and hate them. where or whencesoever it may shine upon us. and my remembrance. that neither ought any thing to seem to be spoken truly. however. but that wisdom and folly are as wholesome and unwholesome food. a very few books of Seneca. nor therefore true. Which when I might. some things of the poets. But they who held him out to me were no good judges of things. I began to despair of his opening and solving the difficulties which perplexed me (of which indeed however ignorant. and didst set those shameful errors of mine before my face. did I praise and extol him. and.had been their disciple. whom by chance I had lighted upon. nor therefore false. and adorned or unadorned phrases as courtly or country vessels. he acquired a certain eloquence. O Lord my God. and refused to assent to it. and who could speak fluently and in better terms. Who didst at that time direct me by the hidden mystery of Thy providence. and with my friends began to engage his ears at such times as it was not unbecoming for him to discuss with me. and had brought forward such things as moved me. and his choice and readiness of words to clothe his ideas. I had longed but too intensely for the coming of this Faustus. Thou judge of my conscience? before Thee is my heart. by conference with whom these and greater difficulties. hadst already taught me by wonderful and secret ways. if I had them. because in words pleasing. I was then delighted. again. and therefore to them he appeared understanding and wise. because the language is rich. I found him first utterly ignorant of liberal sciences. he might have held the truths of piety. and such few volumes of his own sect as were written in Latin and neatly. That greediness then. which proved the more pleasing and seductive because under the guidance of a good wit. nor did they seem to me therefore better. therefore true. When then he came. But Thou. and the language graceful. was delighted verily with his action and feeling when disputing. either kind of meats may be served up in either kind of dishes. save grammar. and was daily practised in speaking. because eloquent. because it is truth. because eloquently. O my God. I was not allowed to put in and communicate those questions that troubled me. Is it not thus. For the rest of the sect. wherewith I had of so long time expected that man. I found him a man of pleasing discourse. because the utterance of the lips is inharmonious. nor.

I will not neglect to confess to Thee. but as one finding nothing better. and He shall dispose his way. he. but from Thy hand. O my God: for the steps of a man are ordered by the Lord. For Thy hands. My zeal for the writings of Manichaeus being thus blunted. who undertook to teach me these things. unless by chance something more eligible should dawn upon me. and I now no longer thought him able satisfactorily to decide what I much desired. upon knowledge of that man. the account given in the books of Manichaeus were preferable. must be considered and confessed. that I should be persuaded to go to Rome. O my God. I did not wish therefore to go to Rome. shrunk from the burthen. and Thou didst deal with me by wondrous ways. and stars. that Faustus. Whereas at Carthage there reigns among the scholars a most disgraceful and unruly licence. either what himself desired to hear. of the heaven. that I heard that young men studied there more peacefully. though not right towards Thee. or such as I judged fit for his genius. and out of my mother's heart's blood. and was not ashamed to confess it. had so turned out. petulantly rush into the school of one whose pupils they were not. And how I was persuaded to this. or at least as good. For he was not one of those talking persons. Thou didst it. many of whom I had endured. through her tears night and day poured out. and such I found him. I had settled to be content meanwhile with what I had in whatever way fallen upon. not that I detached myself from them altogether. They burst in audaciously. what I was teaching at Carthage. because herein also the deepest recesses of Thy wisdom. and despairing yet more of their other teachers. to so many a snare of death. came utterly to an end. so far modestly. re-making what it made? Thou didst deal with me. and with gestures almost frantic. seeing that in divers things which perplexed me. did not forsake my soul. had now neither willing nor witting it.For their books are fraught with prolix fables. For he was not altogether ignorant of his own ignorance. was a sacrifice offered for me unto Thee. I began to engage with him in the study of that literature. nor would he rashly be entangled in a dispute. on which he also was much set (and which as rhetoric-reader I was at that time teaching young students at Carthage). he. on comparison of these things with the calculations I had elsewhere read. and moon. yet neither altogether treacherous to himself. For fairer is the modesty of a candid mind. Thus. at their pleasures. whence he could neither retreat nor extricate himself fairly. Which when I proposed to he considered and discussed. in the secret purpose of Thy providence. and to read with him. nor were even admitted without his permission. so renowned among them. and Thy most present mercy to us. but my chief and almost only reason was. Even for this I liked him the better. because higher gains and higher dignities were warranted me by my friends who persuaded me to this (though even these things had at that time an influence over my mind). whether. For he knew that he knew not these things. and were kept quiet under a restraint of more regular discipline. sun. than the knowledge of those things which I desired. in all the more difficult and subtile questions. so that they did not. and said nothing. begun to loosen that wherein I was taken. But all my efforts whereby I had purposed to advance in that sect. Or how shall we obtain salvation. and to teach there rather. But this man had a heart. disturb all order which any one hath established for the good .

Thou wert hurrying me to end all desire. but that Thou wouldest not suffer me to sail? But Thou. the other promising vain. whereby when I was cleansed. The wind blew and swelled our sails. whereby I might be drawn thither. But Thou. all that knew it. and they who invited me elsewhere savoured of earth. things. and others. by men in love with a dying life. For both they who disturbed my quiet were blinded with a disgraceful frenzy. many and grievous. And what. But why I went hence. went to her wonted place. and I to Rome. and the earthly part of her affection to me was chastened by the allotted scourge of sorrows. thus full of execrable defilements. holding me by force. to correct my steps. and I was going down to hell. that I might thereby be torn from it. my refuge and my portion in the land of the living. where was an Oratory in memory of the blessed Cyprian. and myself. till he had a fair wind to sail. assured me that the like was not done. Thou knewest. O God. Who didst then disregard them. For she loved my being with her. The manners then which. but she was not behind in weeping and prayer. And I lied to my mother. didst secretly use their and my own perverseness. in the depth of Thy counsels and hearing the main point of her desire. who here detested real misery. and I feigned that I had a friend whom I could not leave. she betook herself again to intercede to Thee for me. there was I received by the scourge of bodily sickness. And lo. as mothers do. with a wonderful stolidity.of his scholars. and suffer incomparably worse than what they do. did not custom uphold them. and she on the morrow was there. and withdrew the shore from our sight. carrying all the sins which I had committed. that either she might keep me back or go with me. But I deceived her. was she with so many tears asking of Thee. frantic with sorrow. Divers outrages they commit. I was fain as a teacher to endure in others: and so I was well pleased to go where. whereas they are punished with the very blindness whereby they do it. and went thither. and. over and above that bond of original sin. regardest not what she then asked. and they think they do it unpunished. therefore did she weep and wail. And yet. She knew not. and such a mother. that I might change my earthly dwelling for the salvation of my soul. the streams of my mother's eyes should be dried. from the waters of the sea. and she knew not how great joy Thou wert about to work for her out of my absence. but much more than many. I would not make my own. And I. after accusing my treachery and hardheartedness. O Lord. at Carthage didst goad me. was there seeking unreal happiness. the one doing frantic. when a student. and with complaints and groans filled Thine ears. that Thou mightest make me what she ever asked. That night I privily departed. whilst through my desires. who grievously bewailed my journey. with which for me she daily watered the ground under her face. in that they now do as lawful what by Thy eternal law shall never be lawful. I scarcely persuaded her to stay that night in a place hard by our ship. and at Rome didst proffer me allurements. yet showedst it neither to me. nor to my mother. punishable by law. and followed me as far as the sea. And yet refusing to return without me. with sorrow seeking what in sorrow she had brought forth. that custom evincing them to be the more miserable. whereby we all die . and by this agony there appeared in her the inheritance of Eve. preserving me. and escaped: for this also hast Thou mercifully forgiven me. both against Thee. for the water of Thy Grace.

as I have before recited and confessed. For I cannot express the affection she bore to me. everywhere present. wherewith she begged of Thee not gold or silver. morning and evening. and healedst the son of Thy handmaid. I joined myself to those deceiving and deceived "holy ones". For Thou. vouchsafest to those to whom Thou forgivest all of their debts. it could never be healed. and. though frenzied as yet in my sacrilegious heart. who wouldest not suffer me. God of mercies. had such a death of mine stricken through the bowels of her love. and how true the death of His body. some I have not mentioned. for Thee to bestow upon him a better and more abiding health. by the crucifixion of a phantasm. For I did not in all that danger desire Thy baptism. Far be it that Thou shouldest deceive her in Thy visions and answers. nor had He abolished by His Cross the enmity which by my sins I had incurred with Thee. but that she might hear Thee in Thy discourses. as that of His flesh seemed to me false. Lord. for the time in body. whither had I departed. to be free from blame. despise the contrite and humbled heart of that chaste and sober widow. without any intermission. as Thine own handwriting. no day intermitting the oblation at Thine altar. when I begged it of my mother's piety. And now the fever heightening. and Thou her in her prayers. not with their disciples only (of which number was he. twice a day. And where would have been those her so strong and unceasing Adam. Thou wert at hand. was the death of my soul. yet in absence prayed for me. hadst compassion upon me. which she laid up in her faithful heart. nor any mutable or passing good. not for idle tattlings and old wives' fables. but the salvation of her son's soul? Thou. But Thou. that I should recover the health of my body. and to accuse I know . and I was better as a boy. For Thou hadst not forgiven me any of these things in Christ. but that I know not what other nature sinned in us". then. at Rome. and when I had done any evil. unintermitting to Thee alone? But wouldest Thou. And even then. being such. With which wound had my mother's heart been pierced. that he might live. by whose gift she was such? Never. I was parting and departing for ever. but also with those whom they call "The Elect. But I had grown up to my own shame. in that order wherein Thou hadst determined before that it should be done. which I believed Him to be? So true. so false was the life of my soul." For I still thought "that it was not we that sin. which did not believe it. and ever praying. because Thy mercy endureth for ever. For had I then parted hence. some whereof I have. in whose house I had fallen sick and recovered). Thou recoveredst me then of that sickness. not to confess I had done any. and I madly scoffed at the prescripts of Thy medicine. to die a double death. than at her childbearing in the flesh. and it delighted my pride. to become also a debtor by Thy promises. Yea. that Thou mightest heal my soul because it had sinned against Thee: but I loved to excuse it. For how should He. and wert hearing and doing. such as my misdeeds deserved in the truth of Thy appointment? And this she knew not. Couldest Thou despise and reject from Thy aid the tears of such an one. coming to Thy church. urged upon Thee. and with how much more vehement anguish she was now in labour of me in the spirit. where I was. I see not then how she should have been healed. so frequent in almsdeeds. so full of duty and service to Thy saints. but into fire and torments. heardest her where she was.

because I could not conceive of mind unless as a subtile body. the other sacrilegious conceits followed on me. that I had rather have Thee. Not as yet then hadst Thou set a watch before my mouth. whether gross. even those things (with which if I should find no better. whom they call Academics. and. Creator of all things visible and invisible: and it seemed to me very unseemly to believe Thee to have the shape of human flesh. Nor did I maintain it with my ancient eagerness. but a mass of bodies (for what was not such did not seem to me to be anything). than myself of Thee to salvation.not what other thing. I also was clearly convinced that they thought. with men that work iniquity. For there half arose a thought in me that those philosophers. this was the greatest. but the evil narrower. Yea. whereby I did not judge myself a sinner. although on that one where the mass of evil was opposed to Thee. I knew not what to think of. and our Saviour . than to believe the nature of evil. both unbounded. such as I conceived it. constrained me to believe that the good God never created any evil nature. in Thy Church. as they are commonly reported. and laid down that no truth can be comprehended by man: for so. And it seemed to me better to believe Thee to have created no evil (which to me ignorant seemed not some only. But now despairing to make proficiency in that false doctrine. therefore. were wiser than the rest. for that they held men ought to doubt everything. to be overcome in me to my destruction. I conceived two masses. at least on other sides. but a bodily substance. Yet I lived in more familiar friendship with them. as unbounded. O Lord of heaven and earth. and to have its own foul and hideous bulk. which was with me. and that diffused in definite spaces). I had resolved to rest contented) I now held more laxly and carelessly. than if on all sides I should imagine Thee to be bounded by the form of a human body. and mine impiety had divided me against myself: and that sin was the more incurable. And from this pestilent beginning. contrary to one another. from which they had turned me aside. and execrable iniquity it was. my God (to whom Thy mercies confess out of my mouth). but which I was not. which the books of Manichaeus are full of. For hence I believed Evil also to be some such kind of substance. or thin and subtile (like the body of the air). since that was not the Catholic faith which I thought to be so. Thee. And because. than with others who were not of this heresy. could come from Thee. and a door of safe keeping around my lips. O God Almighty. Yet did I freely and openly discourage that host of mine from that over-confidence which I perceived him to have in those fables. creeping through that earth. the good more expansive. still my intimacy with that sect (Rome secretly harbouring many of them) made me slower to seek any other way: especially since I despaired of finding the truth. to make excuses of sins. was I still united with their Elect. and to be bounded by the bodily lineaments of our members. For when my mind endeavoured to recur to the Catholic faith. which they imagine to be some malignant mind. And I seemed to myself more reverential. which they called earth. such as it was. I was driven back. when I wished to think on my God. if I believed of Thee. But in truth it was wholly I. I was constrained to confess Thee bounded. And because a piety. and almost only cause of my inevitable error. that my heart might not turn aside to wicked speeches. not then understanding even their meaning.

hugging the fleeting world. Now will Thy spiritual ones mildly and lovingly smile upon me. so as to prefer to money the learning which they acquire. which fouls the hand that grasps it. the Manichees' answer whereto seemed to me weak. than because they did things utterly unlawful.Himself. Furthermore. to gather some to my house. and most pure peace. not easily withstood. but what I could imagine in my vanity. without being mingled with the flesh: and how that which I had so figured to myself could be mingled. had begun to stir me even at Carthage: in that he had produced things out of the Scriptures. to furnish them with a rhetoric reader for their city. and to make trial what he thought thereon. to whom. intoxicated with Manichaean vanities. and through whom. and to learning. than liked and wished them good for Thine. a number of youths plot together. vehemently oppressed and in a manner suffocated by those "masses". But then I rather for my own sake misliked them evil. though not with a perfect hatred: for perchance I hated them more because I was to suffer by them. and first. True. those "subvertings" by profligate young men were not here practised. but only to us in private. to which I was not exposed in Africa. that the Scriptures of the New Testament had been corrupted by I know not whom. as was told me: but on a sudden. as he spoke and disputed face to face against the said Manichees. was mainly held down. who wished to engraff the law of the Jews upon the Christian faith: yet themselves produced not any uncorrupted copies. then prefect of the city. When therefore they of Milan had sent to Rome to the prefect of the city. neither of us however knowing it) that Symmachus. the truth and fulness of assured good. And now I hate such depraved and crooked persons. I could not breathe it pure and untainted. would try me by setting me some subject. Thee. and not defiled. I saw not. O God. and so . said they. I had begun to be known. so as to believe nothing of Him. But I. though I love them if corrigible. -breakers of faith. These also my heart hated. Thy Only Begotten. I feared therefore to believe Him born in the flesh. lest I should be forced to believe Him defiled by the flesh. and sent him at the public expense. and despising Thee. Who abidest. I found other offences committed in Rome. conceiving of things corporeal only. to avoid paying their master's stipend. and remove to another. who for love of money hold justice cheap. I thought could not be defended. His Nature then. being such. what the Manichees had criticised in Thy Scriptures. and they go a whoring from Thee. when to. and forgivest the adulteress soul of man. and filthy lucre. I thought could not be born of the Virgin Mary. yet at times verily I had a wish to confer upon these several points with some one very well skilled in those books. panting under which after the breath of Thy truth. for the words of one Helpidius. when she returns to Thee. Of a truth such are base persons. loving these fleeting mockeries of things temporal. I made application (through those very persons. if they shall read these my confessions. Yet such was I. I believed to have been reached forth (as it were) for our salvation. I began then diligently to practise that for which I came to Rome. to teach rhetoric. and recallest. to be freed wherefrom I was to go. out of the mass of Thy most lucid substance. And this answer they liked not to give publicly. It was.

and the sober inebriation of Thy wine. I was slain spiritually. but this by degrees. For the Catholic cause seemed to me in such sort not vanquished. Notwithstanding. I might not continue in that sect. at first indeed not as a teacher of the truth (which I utterly despaired of in Thy Church). because both sides could be maintained. there was no comparison. for the one was wandering amid Manichaean delusions. and ofttimes "in a figure. as still not as yet to be victorious. Could I once have conceived a spiritual substance. as I more and more considered and compared things. Thenceforth I began to love him. or flowed fuller or lower than was reported. and wavering between all. For though I took no pains to learn what he spake. judging that. and I hung on his words attentively. but only to hear how he spake (for that empty care alone was left me. to see if in any way I could by any certain proof convict the Manichees of falsehood. But salvation is far from sinners. however. whose eloquent discourse did then plentifully dispense unto Thy people the flour of Thy wheat. whether it answered the fame thereof. and the whole of nature. Very many places then of those books having been explained. came also into my mind the things which I would refuse. yet in manner less winning and harmonious. I now thought might be maintained without shamelessness. So then after the manner of the Academics (as they are supposed) doubting of every thing. these things also had now begun to appear to me capable of defence. but as a person kind towards myself. Hereupon I earnestly bent my mind. and I was delighted with the sweetness of his discourse." there also entered "how truly he spake". even while doubting. Of the matter. as it were. not with that intent I ought. but of the matter I was as a careless and scornful looker-on. And while I opened my heart to admit "how eloquently he spake. but. I settled so far. Thy devout servant. than that of Faustus. in believing that no answer could be given to such as hated and scoffed at the Law and the Prophets. and yet was I drawing nearer by little and little. that the Manichees were to be abandoned. despairing of a way. to Ambrose the Bishop. To him was I unknowing led by Thee. the gladness of Thy oil. trying his eloquence. but I could not. To Milan I came. concerning the frame of this world. For first. And I listened diligently to him preaching to the people. to Thee). and showed me an Episcopal kindness on my coming. known to the whole world as among the best of men. and cast utterly out of my mind. That man of God received me as a father. nor that what I held was therefore to be condemned. that by him I might knowingly be led to Thee. the other teaching salvation most soundly. Yet did I not therefore then see that the Catholic way was to be held. yet together with the words which I would choose. for I could not separate them. because it also could find learned maintainers." which when I understood literally. especially after I had heard one or two places of the Old Testament resolved. all their strongholds had been beaten down. open for man. and unconsciously. and the Catholic faith. such as I then stood before him. for which I had thought nothing could be said against the Manichees' objections. I now blamed my despair. to which I already preferred some .send me. more recondite. I judged the tenets of most of the philosophers to have been much more probable. who could at large and with some show of reason answer objections. which the senses of the flesh can reach to.

she should see me a Catholic believer. and found not the God of my heart. For in perils of the sea. carrying me forth upon the bier of her thoughts. assuring them of a safe arrival. and sought Thee abroad out of myself. My mother had now come to me. I was rescued from falsehood. and hung upon the lips of Ambrose. when she heard that what she daily with tears desired of Thee was already in so great part realised. so soon as she knew that the Bishop had forbidden this.of the philosophers. and she hastened the more eagerly to the Church. use rather to be comforted when troubled). to which I had been commended by my parents. Arise. Who hadst promised the whole. and fowls of the air? Thou hadst made me wiser. through despair of ever finding truth. and in slippery places. and had come into the depths of the sea. certain cakes. which springeth up unto life everlasting. that Thou wouldest hasten Thy help. she was not overjoyed. I determined therefore so long to be a Catechumen in the Catholic Church. as it were. and he should revive. she comforted the very mariners (by whom passengers unacquainted with the deep. till something certain should dawn upon me." When then my mother had once. that Thou mightest say to the son of the widow." Thus much to me. after the access. Fountain of mercies. and distrusted and despaired of ever finding truth. my hope from my youth. and separated me from the beasts of the field. as being assured. as at something unexpected. though not yet a Catholic Christian. though I had not yet attained the truth. where wert Thou to me. and bread and wine. she replied to me. Young man. praying for the fountain of that water. and with a heart full of confidence. most calmly. through which she anticipated most confidently that I should pass from sickness unto health. for that they were without the saving Name of Christ. BOOK VI O Thou. and Thou shouldest deliver him to his mother. brought to the Churches built in memory of the Saints. that before she departed this life. But that man she loved as an angel of God. in that. Her heart then was shaken with no tumultuous exultation. that Thou. and begin to speak. because Thou hadst by a vision assured her thereof. She found me in grievous peril. and enlighten my darkness. but. whither I might steer my course. I say unto thee. But when I had discovered to her that I was now no longer a Manichee. following me over sea and land. which physicians call "the crisis. But to Thee. I utterly refused to commit the cure of my sick soul. yet did I walk in darkness. of a sharper fit. though to be reawakened by Thee. in all perils confiding in Thee. and whither wert Thou gone? Hadst not Thou created me. resolute through piety. because she knew that by him I had been brought for the present to that doubtful state of faith I now was in. "She believed in Christ. as she was wont in Afric. poured she forth more copious prayers and tears. she so piously and obediently . wouldest one day give the rest. to which philosophers notwithstanding. and was forbidden by the door-keeper. although she was now assured concerning that part of my misery. for which she bewailed me as one dead.

embraced his wishes, that I myself wondered how readily she censured her own practice, rather than discuss his prohibition. For wine-bibbing did not lay siege to her spirit, nor did love of wine provoke her to hatred of the truth, as it doth too many (both men and women), who revolt at a lesson of sobriety, as men well-drunk at a draught mingled with water. But she, when she had brought her basket with the accustomed festival-food, to be but tasted by herself, and then given away, never joined therewith more than one small cup of wine, diluted according to her own abstemious habits, which for courtesy she would taste. And if there were many churches of the departed saints that were to be honoured in that manner, she still carried round that same one cup, to be used every where; and this, though not only made very watery, but unpleasantly heated with carrying about, she would distribute to those about her by small sips; for she sought there devotion, not pleasure. So soon, then, as she found this custom to be forbidden by that famous preacher and most pious prelate, even to those that would use it soberly, lest so an occasion of excess might be given to the drunken; and for these, as it were, anniversary funeral solemnities did much resemble the superstition of the Gentiles, she most willingly forbare it: and for a basket filled with fruits of the earth, she had learned to bring to the Churches of the martyrs a breast filled with more purified petitions, and to give what she could to the poor; that so the communication of the Lord's Body might be there rightly celebrated, where, after the example of His Passion, the martyrs had been sacrificed and crowned. But yet it seems to me, O Lord my God, and thus thinks my heart of it in Thy sight, that perhaps she would not so readily have yielded to the cutting off of this custom, had it been forbidden by another, whom she loved not as Ambrose, whom, for my salvation, she loved most entirely; and he her again, for her most religious conversation, whereby in good works, so fervent in spirit, she was constant at church; so that, when he saw me, he often burst forth into her praises; congratulating me that I had such a mother; not knowing what a son she had in me, who doubted of all these things, and imagined the way to life could not be found out. Nor did I yet groan in my prayers, that Thou wouldest help me; but my spirit was wholly intent on learning, and restless to dispute. And Ambrose himself, as the world counts happy, I esteemed a happy man, whom personages so great held in such honour; only his celibacy seemed to me a painful course. But what hope he bore within him, what struggles he had against the temptations which beset his very excellencies, or what comfort in adversities, and what sweet joys Thy Bread had for the hidden mouth of his spirit, when chewing the cud thereof, I neither could conjecture, nor had experienced. Nor did he know the tides of my feelings, or the abyss of my danger. For I could not ask of him, what I would as I would, being shut out both from his ear and speech by multitudes of busy people, whose weaknesses he served. With whom when he was not taken up (which was but a little time), he was either refreshing his body with the sustenance absolutely necessary, or his mind with reading. But when he was reading, his eye glided over the pages, and his heart searched out the sense, but his voice and tongue were at rest. Ofttimes when we had come (for no man was forbidden to enter, nor was it his wont that any who came should be announced to him), we saw him thus reading to himself, and never otherwise; and having long sat silent (for who

durst intrude on one so intent?) we were fain to depart, conjecturing that in the small interval which he obtained, free from the din of others' business, for the recruiting of his mind, he was loth to be taken off; and perchance he dreaded lest if the author he read should deliver any thing obscurely, some attentive or perplexed hearer should desire him to expound it, or to discuss some of the harder questions; so that his time being thus spent, he could not turn over so many volumes as he desired; although the preserving of his voice (which a very little speaking would weaken) might be the truer reason for his reading to himself. But with what intent soever he did it, certainly in such a man it was good. I however certainly had no opportunity of enquiring what I wished of that so holy oracle of Thine, his breast, unless the thing might be answered briefly. But those tides in me, to be poured out to him, required his full leisure, and never found it. I heard him indeed every Lord's day, rightly expounding the Word of truth among the people; and I was more and more convinced that all the knots of those crafty calumnies, which those our deceivers had knit against the Divine Books, could be unravelled. But when I understood withal, that "man created by Thee, after Thine own image," was not so understood by Thy spiritual sons, whom of the Catholic Mother Thou hast born again through grace, as though they believed and conceived of Thee as bounded by human shape (although what a spiritual substance should be I had not even a faint or shadowy notion); yet, with joy I blushed at having so many years barked not against the Catholic faith, but against the fictions of carnal imaginations. For so rash and impious had I been, that what I ought by enquiring to have learned, I had pronounced on, condemning. For Thou, Most High, and most near; most secret, and most present; Who hast not limbs some larger, some smaller, but art wholly every where, and no where in space, art not of such corporeal shape, yet hast Thou made man after Thine own image; and behold, from head to foot is he contained in space. Ignorant then how this Thy image should subsist, I should have knocked and proposed the doubt, how it was to be believed, not insultingly opposed it, as if believed. Doubt, then, what to hold for certain, the more sharply gnawed my heart, the more ashamed I was, that so long deluded and deceived by the promise of certainties, I had with childish error and vehemence, prated of so many uncertainties. For that they were falsehoods became clear to me later. However I was certain that they were uncertain, and that I had formerly accounted them certain, when with a blind contentiousness, I accused Thy Catholic Church, whom I now discovered, not indeed as yet to teach truly, but at least not to teach that for which I had grievously censured her. So I was confounded, and converted: and I joyed, O my God, that the One Only Church, the body of Thine Only Son (wherein the name of Christ had been put upon me as an infant), had no taste for infantine conceits; nor in her sound doctrine maintained any tenet which should confine Thee, the Creator of all, in space, however great and large, yet bounded every where by the limits of a human form. I joyed also that the old Scriptures of the law and the Prophets were laid before me, not now to be perused with that eye to which before they seemed absurd, when I reviled Thy holy ones for so thinking, whereas indeed they thought not so: and with joy I heard

Ambrose in his sermons to the people, oftentimes most diligently recommend this text for a rule, The letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life; whilst he drew aside the mystic veil, laying open spiritually what, according to the letter, seemed to teach something unsound; teaching herein nothing that offended me, though he taught what I knew not as yet, whether it were true. For I kept my heart from assenting to any thing, fearing to fall headlong; but by hanging in suspense I was the worse killed. For I wished to be as assured of the things I saw not, as I was that seven and three are ten. For I was not so mad as to think that even this could not be comprehended; but I desired to have other things as clear as this, whether things corporeal, which were not present to my senses, or spiritual, whereof I knew not how to conceive, except corporeally. And by believing might I have been cured, that so the eyesight of my soul being cleared, might in some way be directed to Thy truth, which abideth always, and in no part faileth. But as it happens that one who has tried a bad physician, fears to trust himself with a good one, so was it with the health of my soul, which could not be healed but by believing, and lest it should believe falsehoods, refused to be cured; resisting Thy hands, Who hast prepared the medicines of faith, and hast applied them to the diseases of the whole world, and given unto them so great authority. Being led, however, from this to prefer the Catholic doctrine, I felt that her proceeding was more unassuming and honest, in that she required to be believed things not demonstrated (whether it was that they could in themselves be demonstrated but not to certain persons, or could not at all be), whereas among the Manichees our credulity was mocked by a promise of certain knowledge, and then so many most fabulous and absurd things were imposed to be believed, because they could not be demonstrated. Then Thou, O Lord, little by little with most tender and most merciful hand, touching and composing my heart, didst persuade me- considering what innumerable things I believed, which I saw not, nor was present while they were done, as so many things in secular history, so many reports of places and of cities, which I had not seen; so many of friends, so many of physicians, so many continually of other men, which unless we should believe, we should do nothing at all in this life; lastly, with how unshaken an assurance I believed of what parents I was born, which I could not know, had I not believed upon hearsay -considering all this, Thou didst persuade me, that not they who believed Thy Books (which Thou hast established in so great authority among almost all nations), but they who believed them not, were to be blamed; and that they were not to be heard, who should say to me, "How knowest thou those Scriptures to have been imparted unto mankind by the Spirit of the one true and most true God?" For this very thing was of all most to be believed, since no contentiousness of blasphemous questionings, of all that multitude which I had read in the self-contradicting philosophers, could wring this belief from me, "That Thou art" whatsoever Thou wert (what I knew not), and "That the government of human things belongs to Thee." This I believed, sometimes more strongly, more weakly otherwhiles; yet I ever believed both that Thou wert, and hadst a care of us; though I was ignorant, both what was to be thought of Thy substance, and what way led or led back to Thee. Since then we were too weak by

though worn with cares and fears. that forsaking all else. but sought to please men by it. passing through one of the streets of Milan. How wretched was it! and Thou didst irritate the feeling of its wound. I suppose. it might be converted unto Thee. gains. I wandered through the broad way of the world. and thou deridedst me. yet many more than if it stood not aloft on such a height of authority. but yet I with those my ambitious designs was seeking one much less true. I full of fears. if he asked had I rather be such as he was. who art above all. and be healed. and Thou heardest me. and my heart was panting with these anxieties. nor drew multitudes within its bosom by its holy lowliness. had I rather be merry or fearful? I would answer merry. the same was I plotting for by many a toilsome turning and winding. by dragging. I wavered. he void of care. Thou being the more gracious. for that by all such efforts of ours. and Thou wert with me. O Lord. who wouldest I should remember all this. joking and joyous: and I sighed. sounding strangely in the Scripture. and. For now what things. Let my soul cleave unto Thee. yet calling forth the intensest application of such as are not light of heart. to make me feel my misery on that day. the burthen of my own wretchedness. These things I thought on. now that Thou hast freed it from that fast-holding birdlime of death. was it the truth? For I ought not to prefer myself to him. was to be applauded by those who knew I lied. I panted after honours. the less Thou sufferedst aught to grow sweet to me. then. Behold my heart. I anxious. I sighed. when I was preparing to recite a panegyric of the Emperor. I referred to the depth of the mysteries.abstract reasonings to find out truth: and for this very cause needed the authority of Holy Writ. were wont to offend me. wherein I was to utter many a lie. and spoke to the friends around me. Again. and Thou didst not forsake me. while it lay open to all to read. augmenting it. thereby sought. for. be converted. but simply to please. having heard divers of them expounded satisfactorily. with a full belly. marriage. and more worthy of religious credence. For he verily had not the true joy. Wherefore also Thou didst break my bones with the staff of Thy correction. because more learned than he. and how didst Thou deal with me. I observed a poor beggar. the joy of a temporary felicity. of the many sorrows of our frenzies. But should any ask me. but out of wrong judgment. How miserable was I then. we yet looked to arrive only at that very joyousness whither that beggar-man had arrived before us. and boiling with the feverishness of consuming thoughts. For. as those wherein I then toiled dragging along. In these desires I underwent most bitter crosses. hadst Thou not willed thereby to be believed in. and lying. I had now begun to believe that Thou wouldest never have given such excellency of authority to that Writ in all lands. and its authority appeared to me the more venerable. seeing I had no joy therein. under the goading of desire. and Thou didst guide me. And certainly he was joyous. and that not to instruct. that so it might receive all in its open bosom. and confess to Thee. and through narrow passages waft over towards Thee some few. stooping to all in the great plainness of its words and lowliness of its style. and without whom all things would be nothing. . or what I then was? I should choose to be myself. it reserved the majesty of its mysteries within its profounder meaning. who should never perchance attain it. For what he had obtained by means of a few begged pence. which was not Thou. in that.

undo so good a wit. because I seemed to him kind. as likely to make what I would convey pleasanter and plainer. . Yet the whirlpool of Carthaginian habits (amongst whom those idle spectacles are hotly followed) had drawn him into the madness of the Circus. and was deeply grieved that he seemed likely. both when I first lectured in our town. of whom Alypius was born in the same town with me." I know it. "It makes a difference whence a man's joy is. which was eminent enough in one of no greater years." What glory. and learned. Thou desiredst to joy in glory. for his great towardliness to virtue. and so was he then beyond me: for he verily was the happier. and that his amendment might plainly be attributed to Thyself. But Thou. and grieved. for almost before I could grasp it. or the authority of a master.Away with those then from my soul who say to her. knowest. but I had slept and risen again with mine. I. by reason of some unkindness risen betwixt his father and me. I had by chance a passage in hand. sat down. but chiefly and most familiarly did I speak thereof with Alypius and Nebridius. O Lord. Priest and Dispenser of Thy Sacrament. it flew away. swelling praise. which while I was explaining. Lord? That which is not in Thee. I disembowelled with cares: but he. and he loved me much. Much to this purpose said I then to my friends: and I often marked in them how it fared with me. and afterwards at Carthage. and I. and I found it went ill with me. seasoned with biting mockery of those whom that madness had enthralled. come sometimes into my lecture room. but he was not such. I had found then how deadly he doted upon the Circus. Thou knowest that I then thought not of curing Alypius of that infection. by fair wishes. had a public school. and doubled that very ill. hadst not forgotten him. he began to greet me. hear a little. laying aside then his father's mind in that matter. so was that no true glory: and it overthrew my soul more. and was to sleep again. of persons of chief rank there. who were living as friends together. God. with my scholars before me. by lying. For as one day I sat in my accustomed place. and be gone. unknowingly. For he had studied under me. but younger than I. greeted me. professing rhetoric there. and if any prosperity smiled on me. For even as his was no true joy. as yet he used not my teaching. he entered. God. who was one day to be among Thy children. and the joy of a faithful hope lieth incomparably beyond such vanity. bemoaned together. That beggar-man joyed in drunkenness. But he took it wholly to himself. through a blind and headlong desire of vain pastimes. But while he was miserably tossed therein. that he should not. had gotten wine. either by the kindness of a friend. Thou. not only for that he was thoroughly drenched in mirth. For I supposed that he thought of me as did his father. and I him. and applied his mind to what I then handled. and again to rise with it. or had thrown away so great promise: yet had I no means of advising or with a sort of constraint reclaiming him. Yea. But "it doth make a difference whence a man's joy is. I was loth to catch at it. He that very night should digest his drunkenness. These things we. who guidest the course of all Thou hast created. Thou effectedst it through me. I however had forgotten to deal with him. nay. a likeness from the Circensian races occurred to me. how many days. was seeking for empty.

For he upon that speech burst out of that pit so deep. For so soon as he saw that blood. Why say more? He beheld. which confess unto Thee out of my inmost soul. unawares. closing the passage of his eyes. and there set me. wherein he was wilfully plunged. And Alypius beginning to be my hearer again. not forsaking that secular course which his parents had charmed him to pursue. and he fell more miserably than he upon whose fall that mighty noise was raised. and so shall overcome both you and them. to study law. overcome by curiosity. in that it had presumed on itself. didst of my heart and tongue make burning coals. can you force me also to turn my mind or my eyes to those shows? I shall then be absent while present. but Thou. Let him be silent in Thy praises. and put it into Thy book. and there he was carried away incredibly with an incredible eagerness after the shows of gladiators. For being utterly averse to and detesting spectacles. and they with a familiar violence haled him. whether he could do as he said. whereupon all the filths of the Circensian pastimes flew off from him. was in his body. which entered through his ears. Nor was he now the man he came. carried thence with him the madness which should goad him to return . But I had not rebuked him. he therewith drunk down savageness. to make way for the striking and beating down of a soul. Rebuke a wise man and he will love Thee." They. and as if prepared to despise and be superior to it whatsoever it were. knowing or not knowing. and gave in. who employest all. Upon this. had gone before me to Rome. shouted. a mighty cry of the whole people striking him strongly. whom he desired to behold. bold rather than resolute. who considers not Thy mercies. but one of the throng he came unto. he thus protesting: "Though you hale my body to that place. the whole place kindled with that savage pastime. by which to set on fire the hopeful mind. unable as yet to reach the depth of virtue. led him on nevertheless. and had taken their places as they could. hearing this. loving in the Manichees that show of continency which he supposed true and unfeigned. and would he had stopped his ears also! For in the fight. And whence another would have taken occasion of offence with me. drinking in frenzy. yet readily beguiled with the surface of what was but a shadowy and counterfeit virtue. ensnaring precious souls. that right-minded youth took as a ground of being offended at himself. he was one day by chance met by divers of his acquaintance and fellow-students coming from dinner. a true associate of theirs that brought him thither. and unlocked his eyes. but fixed his eye. and was delighted with that guilty fight. vehemently refusing and resisting. into the Amphitheatre. yea. and the weaker. was involved in the same superstition with me. nor turned away. and was blinded with its wretched pastimes. which ought to have relied on Thee. kindled.and thought that I said it simply for his sake. He gave way. nor came he again thither. he prevailed with his unwilling father that he might be my scholar. He. and so cure it. he opened his eyes. Whereas it was a senseless and seducing continency. in that order which Thyself knowest (and that order is just). and intoxicated with the bloody pastime. forbade his mind to range abroad after such evil. and loving me more fervently. even when seen. during these cruel and deadly shows. when one fell. When they were come thither. But he. and he shook his mind with a strong self-command. and was stricken with a deeper wound in his soul than the other. thus languishing. desirous perchance to try that very thing. For Thou hadst said it long ago.

So was that also. asked him "Whose that was?" "Ours. entered the place. Whom so soon as Alypius remembered. a young man. For forthwith. those that had been sent. privily bringing a hatchet. and an examiner of many causes in Thy Church. find him alone with the hatchet in his hand.not only with them who first drew him thither. Him then I had found at Rome. the silversmiths beneath began to make a stir. should already begin to learn that in judging of causes. the noise whereof had startled and brought them thither. who had not seen him enter. he told the architect: and he showing the hatchet to the boy. Glad they were to meet him especially. and gathering the dwellers in the market-place together. and so he was being led away to be taken before the judge. but in Thee. hale him away. and recognising him immediately. not apprehending any harm to his master. amid much uproar and threats. by whom they were wont to be suspected of stealing the goods lost out of the marketplace. Thou sufferedst him to be apprehended by the officers of the market-place for a thief. yea and to draw in others. ran away. went away better experienced and instructed. but also before them. boast of having taken a notorious thief. took him aside by the hand. was a boy so young as to be likely. But thus far was Alypius to be instructed. But he. But this was after. unperceived by Alypius. our God. For he had attended his master to the market-place. he who was to be a dispenser of Thy Word. and was thinking over at mid-day in the market-place what he was to say by heart (as scholars use to practise). But the noise of the hatchet being heard. and bade all present. to go with him. leaving his hatchet. and taughtest him to have confidence not in himself. whereof Thou alone wert witness. that when he was yet studying under me at Carthage. however. and began to cut away the lead. the real thief. got in. They seize him. a lawyer. Alypius now. where finding the hatchet. There. For as he was walking up and down by himself before the judgment-seat. O Lord. to disclose the whole. with his note-book and pen. which had begun to insult over Alypius. who had the chief charge of the public buildings. Yet thence didst Thou with a most strong and most merciful hand pluck him. and the multitude ashamed. man was not readily to be condemned by man out of a rash credulity. he discovered every thing. heard the whole matter. I deem. he was standing. Thus the crime being transferred to that house. He. But this was already being laid up in his memory to be a medicine hereafter. And being desirous to know the matter. had divers times seen Alypius at a certain senator's house. lo. Thou succouredst his innocency. and he clave to me by a most strong . For as he was being led either to prison or to punishment. as though to show him at last by whom these thefts were committed. suffer it. wondering and considering it. to whom he often went to pay his respects. was aware of his going. a certain architect met them. when behold. and saw with what speed he made away. but that he who was hereafter to prove so great a man. For no other cause. as far as the leaden gratings which fence in the silversmiths' shops. fearing to be taken with it. So they came to the house of the young man who had done the deed." quoth he presently: and being further questioned. and sent to apprehend whomever they should find. and enquiring the occasion of so great a calamity. before the door. hearing their voices. didst Thou.

where he had much lived. sighing out their wants one to another. And lo. which these forsaken. why we should suffer all this. but consulting justice. had come to Milan. There was at that time a very powerful senator. Alypius would have decided otherwise. and a mother behind. which neither desired the friendship. And in all the bitterness which by Thy mercy followed our worldly affairs. esteeming equity whereby he was hindered more gainful than the power whereby he were allowed. sticking in the same mire. viewing and reviewing things. not only with the bait of covetousness. wherein I had begun to kindle with the desire of wisdom. "Tomorrow I shall find it. did at that time cleave to me. darkness met us. At Rome he was Assessor to the count of the Italian Treasury. settling when I had found her. which passed away and wasted my soul. nor feared the enmity of one so great and so mightily renowned for innumerable means of doing good or evil. And I. and clear . yet did not openly refuse. alleging that he would not allow him to do it: for in truth had the judge done it. is faithful also in much. he wondering at others rather who could prefer gold to honesty. more to please his parents than himself. but with the goad of fear. How long shall these things be? This too we often said. with all his heart he scorned it: threats were held out. And the very judge. although also unwilling it should be. These are slight things. and we turned away groaning. Nebridius also. and a most acute examiner of the most difficult questions. and might practise something of the law he had studied. which proceeded out of the mouth of Thy Truth: If ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous Mammon. but he that is faithful in little. His character was tried besides. who will commit to your trust true riches? And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man's. I was now in my thirtieth year. and went with me to Milan. Faustus the Manichee will come. many much feared. Alypius resisted it: a bribe was promised. we might embrace. to abandon all the empty hopes and lying frenzies of vain desires. who was not to follow him. an ardent searcher after true life. with an uncorruptness much wondered at by others. leaving his excellent family-estate and house. greedy of enjoying things present. With this one thing in the way of learning was he well-nigh seduced. whose councillor Alypius was. He would needs. who having left his native country near Carthage. and with me wavered in purpose. like me he wavered. and so saying forsook them not. to. he trampled upon them: all wondering at so unwonted a spirit. he altered his deliberation for the better. both that he might not leave me. by his usual power. it will appear manifestly and I shall grasp it. but put the matter off upon Alypius. yea and Carthage itself. while I said to myself.tie. that he might have books copied for him at Praetorian prices. for as yet there dawned nothing certain. Nor can that any how be void. for no other reason but that with me he might live in a most ardent search after truth and wisdom. as we looked towards the end. Thus were there the mouths of three indigent persons. Like me he sighed. who shall give you that which is your own? He being such. There he had thrice sat as Assessor. to whose favours many stood indebted. and saying. most wondered at the length of time from that my nineteenth year. have a thing allowed him which by the laws was unallowed. and waiting upon Thee that Thou mightest give them their meat in due season. what course of life was to be taken.

if nothing else offer. whose favour we need? When compose what we may sell to scholars? When refresh ourselves. ye Academicians. and sought it. and certain hours be ordered for the health of our soul. have given themselves to the study of wisdom in the state of marriage. and no small sweetness. Alypius indeed kept me from marrying. and these winds shifted and drove my heart this way and that. But God forbid this! It is no vain and empty thing. and despair not. We must not lightly abandon them. not having tried it. if with the death of the body the life of the soul came to an end. unbending our minds from this intenseness of care? "Perish every thing. and vainly accused it of. as a child. While I went over these things. I thought I should be too miserable. and may be otherwise taken. death uncertain. and then what should we more wish for? We have store of powerful friends. if it steals upon us on a sudden. that no certainty can be attained for the ordering of life! Nay. it is no great matter now to obtain some station. where. Never would such and so great things be by God wrought for us. Lo. being so foolish as not to know what is written. Loving a happy life. that the excellent dignity of the authority of the Christian Faith hath overspread the whole world. I feared it in its own abode. things in the ecclesiastical books are not absurd to us now. it is true then. I supposed it to be in our own power (though in myself I did not find that power). and we be in much haste. Wherefore delay then to abandon worldly hopes. in what state shall we depart hence? and where shall we learn what here we have neglected? and shall we not rather suffer the punishment of this negligence? What. or when procure them? from whom borrow them? Let set times be appointed. and most worthy of imitation. and with a settled faith did cast my care on Thee. and of the medicine of Thy mercy to cure that infirmity I thought not. her instructed members hold it profane to believe God to be bounded by the figure of a human body: and do we doubt to 'knock.' that the rest 'may be opened'? The forenoons our scholars take up. what do we during the rest? Why not this? But when then pay we court to our great friends. But where shall it be sought or when? Ambrose has no leisure. let us search the more diligently. if death itself cut off and end all care and feeling? Then must this be ascertained. if with inward groanings I did knock at Thine ears. we have no leisure to read.every thing! O you great men. the Catholic Faith teaches not what we thought. time passed on. and that Thou wouldest give it. where shall we find even the books? Whence. unless folded in female arms. by fleeing from it. my parents placed me. I will take my stand. and deferred not daily to die in myself. but I delayed to turn to the Lord. Many great men. they have some. None can be continent unless Thou give it. for it were a shame to return again to them. alleging that so could we by . As for continency. at least a presidentship may be given us: and a wife with some money. and give ourselves wholly to seek after God and the blessed life? But wait! Even those things are pleasant. and betake ourselves to the one search for truth! Life is vain. and in a good sense. dismiss we these empty vanities. Great hope has dawned. and from day to day deferred to live in Thee. until the clear truth be found out. which sometimes seemed absurd. that she increase not our charges: and this shall be the bound of desire. See.

wherein his virtuous and free feet might be entangled. But me for the most part the habit of satisfying an insatiable appetite tormented. and bound with the disease of the flesh. dreading to be loosed. with strong cries of heart she daily begged of Thee. such as the energy of the human spirit. drew along my chain. that there was great difference between his momentary and scarce-remembered knowledge of that life. but had not stuck fast therein. as it were the hand of one that would unchain me. he ought not to wonder why I could not contemn that course. him. At which time verily. thence to the trial itself. seeing he was willing to make a covenant with death. and that the more. were being fulfilled in my faith. For he would fain know. since in the outset of his youth he had entered into that course. and my continued acquaintance whereto if the honourable name of marriage were added. and a maiden asked in marriage. and a family. For when he wondered that I. not with that confidence she was wont. shall fall into it. busied thereon. both at my request and her own longing. by me did the serpent speak unto Alypius himself. and served God acceptably. and these she told me of. and urged in my defence when I saw him wonder. and observed that her prayers. an admiring wonder was leading captive. and the dreams of her own soul. and thence perhaps to sink into that bondage whereat he wondered. and Thy promises. I was promised. and loved them faithfully. by wondrous and secret ways. when Thou showedst her any thing. Continual effort was made to have me married. For his mind. O Most High. what that should be. but out of curiosity. but slighting them. put back his good persuasions. should stick so fast in the birdlime of that pleasure. So were we. and through that amazement was going on to a desire of trying it. didst come to our help. I wooed. without which my life. as to protest (so oft as we discussed it) that I could never lead a single life. not as overcome with desire of such pleasure. the health-giving baptism might cleanse means with undistracted leisure live together in the love of wisdom. For she could. Of whose greatness of spirit I was far short. he began also to desire to be married. that so once married. living thenceforth until now most continently. not forsaking our dust. Thou never wouldest. which in words she could not express. and its deadly sweetness. rather had he felt remorse and revolting at it. moved us but slightly. and retained their friends. through a certain feeling. commiserating us miserable. discern betwixt Thy revelations. For whatever honour there be in the office of well-ordering a married life. . he said. while it held me captive. and as if my wound had been fretted. until Thou. she said. Moreover. and he that loves danger. brought together. whom he esteemed not slightly. towards which she rejoiced that I was being daily fitted. as we had long desired. free from that chain. so that it was wonderful. which so he might easily despise. was amazed at my thraldom. chiefly through my mother's pains. She saw indeed certain vain and fantastic things. For himself was even then most pure in this point. that Thou wouldest by a vision discover unto her something concerning my future marriage. Yet the matter was pressed on. by my tongue weaving and laying in his path pleasurable snares. to him so pleasing. would to me seem not life but a punishment. But I opposed him with the examples of those who as married men had cherished wisdom.

and Thou nearer. and of Thy judgment to come. as it were. all that plan. Nor was that my wound cured. and preparedst Thine own. We had settled also that two annual officers. and this was to be thus obtained. and our steps to follow the broad and beaten ways of the world. being thus sunk and blinded. Meanwhile my sins were being multiplied. glory to Thee. and therein was his voice of great weight. which had been made by the cutting away of the former. would allow this. that so by the servitude of an enduring custom. who could not imitate a very woman. so that through the truth of our friendship nothing should belong especially to any. had I not believed that after death there remained a life for the soul. the disease of my soul might be kept up and carried on in its vigour. I could not discern that light of excellence and . or what else should we seek?" not knowing that great misery was involved in this very thing. and make one household of all. without fear of losing it. which was being so well moulded. Thence we betook us to sighs. especially Romanianus our townsman. and my pains became less acute. whom the grievous perplexities of his affairs had brought up to court. We thought there might be some often persons in this society. others hoped to have. Fountain of mercies. vowing unto Thee never to know any other man. into the dominion of marriage. it mortified. and all to all. and my concubine being torn from my side as a hindrance to my marriage. my heart which clave unto her was torn and wounded and bleeding. should as a whole belong to each. and places of requital according to men's deserts. but the whole thus derived from all. some of whom were very rich. never departed from my breast.two years under the fit age. inasmuch as not till after two years was I to obtain her I sought not being so much a lover of marriage as a slave to lust. and to fill our souls with blessing. and I knew it not. And she returned to Afric. impatient of delay. purposing to give us meat in due season. But unhappy I. And I asked. and to wash me thoroughly. But when we began to consider whether the wives. was waited for. as pleasing. and to live in perpetual bodily pleasure. was utterly dashed and cast aside. And in my disputes with my friends Alypius and Nebridius of the nature of good and evil. why should we not be happy. had debated and now almost resolved on living apart from business and the bustle of men. should provide all things necessary. Out of which counsel Thou didst deride ours. Thy right hand was continually ready to pluck me out of the mire. the rest being undisturbed. which some of us already had. or even augmented. but Thy counsel standeth for ever. but the fear of death. I held that Epicurus had in my mind won the palm. that. from childhood a very familiar friend of mine. leaving with me my son by her. fell to pieces in our hands. but more desperate. but after inflammation and most acute pain. I was becoming more miserable. procured another. though no wife. which Epicurus would not believe. who was the most earnest for this project. which amid all my changes. nor did anything call me back from a yet deeper gulf of carnal pleasures. And many of us friends conferring about. To Thee be praise. "were we immortal. and groans. we were to bring whatever we might severally procure. for many thoughts were in our heart. because his ample estate far exceeded any of the rest. and. and detesting the turbulent turmoils of human life.

yet all was painful. deprived of this space. and injurable. which I preferred before the corruptible. I always avoided this. I with pleasure discoursed with my friends. And to. yea altogether nothing. and unchangeable. yet would it remain a void place. the unchangeable to things subject to change. nor condensed. but such as is wont to be seen with these eyes. be happy without friends. My heart passionately cried out against all my phantoms. nor swelled out. upon back. yet was I constrained to conceive of Thee (that what could not be injured I preferred unhesitatingly to what could receive injury. as it were a spacious nothing. and unchangeable. even according to the notions I then had of happiness. or diffused infinitely without it. and I felt that I was beloved of them again for myself only. and deliverest us from our wretched wanderings. so that though not under the form of the human body. which the eye of flesh cannot see. and belly. under the figure of a human body. nor diffused. by forsaking Thee. and I was passing into early manhood. of earth and water. and rejoiced to have found the same in the faith of our spiritual mother. true God. yea I will bring you through. that that which may be corrupted must be inferior to that which cannot. "Run. O God. and the place should remain empty of any body at all. flew against my face. And yet these friends I loved for themselves only. a man. as if a body were taken out of its place. which hoped." BOOK VII Deceased was now that my evil and abominable youth. only. And I. since I began to hear aught of wisdom. I will carry you. I thought not of Thee. that even on these things. O crooked paths! Woe to the audacious soul. and turned again. Thy Catholic Church. being scarce put off. and beclouded it. and dost comfort us. and Thou alone rest. seemed to me nothing. foul as they were. there also will I carry you. and with this one blow I sought to beat away from the eye of my mind all that unclean troop which buzzed around it. Thou art at hand. yet I saw plainly. nor could I. who could not imagine any substance. and placest us in Thy way. and say. amid what abundance soever of carnal pleasures. and uninjurable. whatsoever was not extended over certain spaces. uninjurable. and I did in my inmost soul believe that Thou wert incorruptible. Because whatsoever I conceived. not even a void. or did not or could not receive some of . air and heaven. because though not knowing whence or how. whether infused into the world. nor clear even to myself. and was sure. Nor did I. sides. and changeable) as being in space. to be embraced for its own sake. and such a man. unhappy. the more defiled by vain things as I grew in years. consider from what source it sprung. and is seen by the inner man. I then being thus gross-hearted. And behold. to gain some better thing! Turned it hath. in the twinkling of an eye they gathered again thick about me. sought to conceive of Thee the sovereign. But what else to conceive of Thee I knew not.

whatsoever Thou art. which the Manichees are wont to set as an opposing mass over against Thee. whereby it might be extricated and purified. that is. defiled. Lord. every way. It was enough for me. air. But not as yet hadst Thou enlightened my darkness. directing all things which Thou hast created. penetrating it. and they be bounded in Thee. that Word itself being still corruptible because it was of one and the same Substance. Thy Substance whereby Thou art. did my heart then range: nor yet did I see that this same notion of the mind. I thought to be altogether nothing. had not itself been some great thing. For over such forms as my eyes are wont to range. -that was enough which long ago. or offspring of Thy very Substance. for they had no escape. that the body of an elephant should contain more of Thee. to be incorruptible. the greatest as the smallest. For that as the body of this air which is above the earth. and be by them so far corrupted and changed to the worse." This argument then of Nebridius sufficed against those who deserved wholly to be vomited out of the overcharged stomach. in fragments. and dumb praters. then were all these sayings false and execrable. and that this offspring of Thy Substance was the soul. but if corruptible. and yet it could not have formed them. should they affirm Thee. to oppose to those deceived deceivers. So I guessed. by how much larger it is. a lesser: and all things should in such sort be full of Thee. Thy Word. hindereth not the light of the sun from passing through it. Nebridius used to propound. through unmeasurable boundless spaces. but our . for it was false.' then was no reason brought for Thy fighting with it. But I also as yet. although I held and was firmly persuaded that Thou our Lord the true God.these dimensions. if they answered. should he mingled with opposed powers. might relieve. since Thy word sounded not out of them. petty to the petty. large to the large. and whole. by a secret inspiration. as to be turned from happiness into misery. than that of a sparrow. not by bursting or by cutting. pure. so that in all its parts. was not of this sort. and sea only. so that the earth should have Thee. who madest not only our souls. the heaven have Thee. all things have Thee. as vast. and need assistance. free. and Thou bounded nowhere. at which all we that heard it were staggered: "That said nation of darkness. only as unable to conceive aught else. and beyond it. through infinite spaces on every side penetrating the whole mass of the universe. 'it would have done Thee some hurt. within and without. the very statement showed it to be false and revolting. but of the earth too. and a less. but by filling it wholly: so I thought the body not of heaven. what could it have done unto Thee. hadst Thou refused to fight with it? For.' then shouldest Thou be subject to injury and corruption: but if could do Thee no hurt. which being enthralled. while we were yet at Carthage. without horrible blasphemy of heart and tongue. it should admit Thy presence. But such art not Thou. So also did I endeavour to conceive of Thee. Life of my life. So then. whereby I formed those very images. and thus shouldest Thou make the several portions of Thyself present unto the several portions of the world. For thus should a greater part of the earth contain a greater portion of Thee. thus thinking and speaking of Thee. and takes up more room. as that a certain portion or member of Thee. and natures not created by Thee. corrupted. pervious to Thee. and fighting in such wise.

holding Thee to be just. And what can be unlooked-for by Thee. Who knowest all things? . and in no degree mutable. I was most sure that no other than myself did will and nill: and I all but saw that there was the cause of my sin. by no necessity. the incorruptible is preferable to the corruptible (as I did now prefer it). So then endeavouring to draw my soul's vision out of that deep pit. as that I lived: when then I did will or nill any thing. whence is that same devil? And if he also by his own perverse will. wert Thou not incorruptible. But what I did against my will. and Thy just judgment of our suffering ill. lest I should become that evil I was seeking out. to think rather that Thou dost suffer ill. then. and Himself is that good. but to be corrupted is not good. I saw that I suffered rather than did. For corruption does no ways impair our God. yet not brought down to that hell of error (where no man confesseth unto Thee). whence. and what He wills is good. as should not constrain me to believe the immutable God to be mutable. I was again plunged therein. yet understood I not. than that man doth it. I perceived it was in such wise to be sought out. But since most truly and certainly. but goodness itself? Whence then came I to will evil and nill good. were Thyself greater than Thyself. But I was not able clearly to discern it. clearly and without difficulty. But again I said. And yet whatever it were. wert undefilable and unalterable. who art the sovereign and the best good. and ingrated into me this plant of bitterness. nor shall be. that I knew as well that I had a will. that through enquiring the origin of evil. whereby. Where then I saw the incorruptible to be preferable to the corruptible. I was plunged back as often.bodies. but my punishment. Nor art Thou against Thy will constrained to any thing. however. Who is not only good. seeing I was wholly formed by my most sweet God? If the devil were the author. whence corruption comes. thus far free from anxiety. I confessed to be incorruptible. there ought I to seek for Thee. and I judged not to be my fault. and there observe "wherein evil itself was". For I was in such wise striving to find out the rest. they were filled with evil. certain of the untruth of what these held. For the will and power of God is God Himself. as one who had already found that the incorruptible must needs be better than the corruptible: and Thee therefore. by no will. I sought it out then. again. came in him that evil will whereby he became a devil. seeing the whole nature of angels was made by that most good Creator? By these thoughts I was again sunk down and choked. that free-will was the cause of our doing ill. whatsoever Thou wert. of a good angel became a devil. I speedily confessed myself to be not unjustly punished. by no unlooked-for chance: because He is God. by which Thy substance can by no means be impaired. and not only our souls and bodies. And I strained to perceive what I now heard. I could in thought have arrived at something better than my God. But greater should it be. the cause of evil. but all beings. that is. But this raised me a little into Thy light. able to conceive any thing which may be better than Thou. so that I am thus justly punished? who set this in me. from whom I shrunk with my whole heart: for I saw. in that they preferred to think that Thy substance did suffer ill than their own did commit it. and endeavouring often. Who made me? Did not my God. For never soul was. and all things. since Thy will is not greater than Thy power.

I set now before the sight of my spirit the whole creation. as yet unformed. though every way infinite: as if there were a sea. in all its parts. "why that substance which God is should not be corruptible. all angels moreover. and all the spiritual inhabitants thereof. be filled from that unmeasurable sea: so conceived I Thy creation. earth. our Lord and Saviour. it should not be God? And I sought "whence is evil. all are good. in many points. whereof to create all things. professed in the Church Catholic. most mightily and incomparably better than all these: but yet He. yet every way finite. But Thee. trees. He indeed. and He alone be. air. some. overcharged with most gnawing cares. full of Thee. but rather daily . and I made one great mass of Thy creation. could it then be against His will? Or if it were from eternity. every where. He might form good matter. and formed. distinguished as to the kinds of bodies. why suffered He it so to be for infinite spaces of times past. and not rather by the same All-mightiness cause it not to be at all? Or. yea. These thoughts I revolved in my miserable heart. huge. But these very beings." and sought in an evil way." seeing if it were so. the Good. did my fancy dispose in place. that sponge must needs. and how crept it in hither? What is its root. true. some. why would He make any thing at all of it. Therefore either is that evil which we fear. not as it was (which I could not know). the Infinite. yet left something in it which He did not convert into good? Why so then? Had He no might to turn and change the whole. if He might not create something good without the aid of that matter which Himself had not created. hath created these lesser goods. whereby the soul is thus idly goaded and racked. yet did not my mind utterly leave it. but Thou knowest it. but as I thought convenient. Where is evil then. that evil matter being taken away and brought to nothing. For He should not be All-mighty. and ordered it. the greater and chiefest Good. then. one only boundless sea. and infinite Good. as the firmament of heaven.Nor is there any nature in things. and saw not the evil in my very search. Whence is evil? Or. through unmeasured space. still both Creator and created. and so much a greater evil. real bodies. yea. and fluctuating from the rule of doctrine. itself finite. the Good. stars. And this mass I made huge. firmly fixed in my heart. hath created all these things good. the whole. yet was the faith of Thy Christ. and on every side. but bounded. Behold God. Whence is it then? seeing God. indeed. this rather should the All-mighty have effected. and I said. and whence. created them good. and whatever in it we do not see. lest I should die ere I had found the truth. what myself had feigned for spirits. sovereign. Yea. as we have nothing to fear. that we fear. as though they were bodies. and it contained within it some sponge. and what its seed? Or hath it no being? Why then fear we and avoid what is not? Or if we fear it idly. whatsoever we can see therein (as sea. so that no evil should remain in it. And what should we more say. and yet do fear. seeing He is All-mighty? Lastly. and God is good. then is that very fear evil. O Lord. I imagined on every part environing and penetrating it. and was pleased so long after to make something out of it? Or if He were suddenly pleased now to effect somewhat. and see how He environeth and fulfils them. that this evil matter should not be. and behold what God hath created. was there some evil matter of which He made. mortal creatures). or else evil is. Or if it was not good that He who was good should not also frame and create something that were good.

Thereupon he told me that his father had been very curious in such books. but that men's conjectures were a sort of lottery. who took care with most exact diligence to know the births of his very puppies. to give instant intelligence. did not altogether refuse to conjecture. he averred. and the Wisdom which needing no light enlightens the minds that need it. This man then. which could not escape her master. which how far it went to overthrow the estimation of that art. and Nebridius. without . some actually did. and yet Firminus. wherein his worldly hopes had risen. thereby to make fresh experiments in this so-called art. Let Thine own mercies. out of my very inmost soul. that I was now almost persuaded that these were but empty and ridiculous follies. But this time also had I rejected the lying divinations and impious dotages of the astrologers. Firminus by name. and yet knowing something. and tell him what came into my unresolved mind. no negligent consulter of the astrologers. who had herein now begun to incline towards Nebridius' opinion. ran his course through the gilded paths of life. hours. gave birth. who stumbled upon it. that what time his mother was about to give birth to him. consulted me. the first vehemently affirming. For so soon as the women began to be in labour. and I. according to his socalled constellations. even to the minutest points. and had messengers ready to send to one another so soon as they had notice of the actual birth. and well taught in Rhetoric. they each gave notice to the other what was fallen out in their houses. of which they had easily provided. O my God. Thou altogether (for who else calls us back from the death of all errors. confess unto Thee for this also. whereas that slave continued to serve his masters. the one for his son. who with joint study and conference fanned the flame of their affections to these toys. For Thou. I thought on certain affairs of his. and the other for his servant. the other for his new-born slave. nor yet well skilled in those arts. And so it was that (the one for his wife. was increased in riches. an acute old man. and had a friend as earnest in them as himself. which bred about their houses. as one very dear to him. at such an equal distance from either house that neither of them could make out any difference in the position of the stars. down to the whirling leaves of trees?) -Thou madest provision for my obstinacy wherewith I struggled against Vindicianus. through their oft speaking. but (as I said) a curious consulter with them." Thou providedst then a friend for me. and that out of many things which they said should come to pass. the lesser divisions of the hours) both were delivered at the same instant. each in his own province. save the Life which cannot die. and the latter often (though with some doubtfulness) saying. having had a liberal education. whereby the universe is directed. and then observed the relative position of the heavens. or any other minutest points. so that both were constrained to allow the same constellations. He said then that he had heard of his father. born in a high estate in his parents' house. reckoning days. "That there was no such art whereby to foresee things to come. with the most careful observation. so that they would observe the moments whereat the very dumb animals. which he said he had heard of his father.took in more and more of it. unawares to them who spake it. a woman-servant of that friend of his father's was also with child. nay. but added. Firminus. Thus then the messengers of the respective parties met. a young man of admirable talents. he knew not. what. raised to honours.

while consulters and consulted know it not. who knew him. speak diversely. most righteous Ruler of the Universe. Upon hearing and believing these things. what was that which was thence through my tongue distilled into the ears of my most familiar friends? Did the whole tumult of my soul. who for the most part come out of the womb so near one to other. O my God! yet even there were Thine ears open. that the small interval (how much force soever in the nature of things folk may pretend it to have) cannot be noted by human observation. which the authority of Thy Catholic Church pressed upon me. Not by art. he ought to hear. according to the hidden deservings of souls. for which . I ought if I were to predict truly. Our Lord. high birth. O Lord. or if I spake the same. told me. but chance. I should. from the same constellations. But if that servant had consulted me upon the same constellations. looking into the same figures. to have seen in them parents eminent among their neighbours. good education. Now then. but by chance. then. that he may pronounce truly. and Thy substance to be unchangeable. ruminating with myself on the like things. Yet they cannot be true: for looking into the same figures. to that life which is to be after this death. What is this? Why that? Let him not so say. out of the unsearchable depth of Thy just judgment. speak falsely: thence it followed most certainly that whatever. a slavish condition. Whence then. or be at all expressed in those figures which the astrologer is to inspect. For. or his father him. and every thing else utterly at variance with the former. to Whom let no man say. but the failure of the chance. he must not give the same answer. I sought anxiously "whence was evil?" What were the pangs of my teeming heart. and when in silence I vehemently sought. Thou knewest what I suffered. and I knew it not. that no one of those dotards (who lived by such a trade. Thou hadst set the way of man's salvation. told by one of such credibility. upon consideration of the constellations. whereas the same happened not to them. those silent contritions of my soul were strong cries unto Thy mercy. dost by Thy hidden inspiration effect that the consulter should hear what. But Thou sufferedst me not by any fluctuations of thought to be carried away from the Faith whereby I believed Thee both to be. and whatever spoken falsely. or if truly. was spoken truly. since they were his also. a noble family in its own city. and wouldest judge men. Thy Son. he must have predicted the same of Esau and Jacob. These things being safe and immovably settled in my mind. Therefore he must speak falsely. and that Thou hast a care of. if I spake the truth. would he speak truly.any relaxation of his yoke. An opening thus made. O my Helper. For Thou. and no man. for he is man. I bent my thoughts on those that are born twins. and whom I longed to attack. was not out of ignorance in the art." and found no way. what groans. and that in Christ. liberal learning. all that my resistance gave way. was spoken not out of art. and first I endeavoured to reclaim Firminus himself from that curiosity. as Firminus. and with derision to confute) might urge against me that Firminus had informed me falsely. I ought again (to tell him too truly) to see in them a lineage the most abject. by telling him that upon inspecting his constellations. then. and the holy Scriptures. hadst Thou loosed me from those fetters: and I sought "whence is evil.

and middle region of my safety. that I could say. by means of one puffed up with most unnatural pride. and my desire was before Thee. to remain in Thy Image. and dwelt among men:." "it is well": nor did they yet suffer me to turn back. "Whither goest thou. enforced by many and divers reasons. nor of the will of man. I without: nor was that confined to place. and by serving Thee. that He came unto His own. even these inferior things were set above me. "It is enough. willing first to show me how Thou resistest the proud. but as many as received Him. They met my sight on all sides by heaps and troops. and the light of mine eyes was not with me: for that was within. and the darkness comprehended it not. abidest for ever. certain books of the Platonists. I read . by the secret hand of Thy medicining was my swelling abated.neither time nor utterance sufficed. this I read not there. nor did they so receive me. all which I roared out from the groanings of my heart. by the smarting anointings of healthful sorrows. nor of the will of the flesh. and the life was the light of men. and ran against the Lord with my neck. unworthy and defiled?" And these things had grown out of my wound. and it was pleasing in Thy sight to reform my deformities. translated from Greek into Latin. is that true light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world. but the Word of God. and the troubled and bedimmed eyesight of my mind. Thus. But when I rose proudly against Thee. for Thou "humbledst the proud like one that is wounded.Thou procuredst for me. and pressed me down. And therein I read. as many as believed in His name. and in thought the images thereof presented themselves unsought. and the world was made by Him. until Thou wert manifested to my inward sight." and through my own swelling was I separated from Thee. and Thou art my true joy when subjected to Thee. reach them? Yet went up the whole to Thy hearing. and the Word was God: the Same was in the beginning with God: all things were made by Him. that I should be ill at ease. And that He was in the world. but of God. and the world knew Him not. and His own received Him not. And that the soul of man. and by how great an act of Thy mercy Thou hadst traced out to men the way of humility. yea. But that the Word was made flesh. and by inward goads didst Thou rouse me. yet itself is not that light. my pride-swollen face closed up mine eyes. because Thou pitiest our dust and ashes. Again I read there. and dwelt among us. but there found I no resting-place. and without Him was nothing made: that which was made by Him is life. though it bears witness to the light. but to the very same purpose. as I would return to Thee. with the thick bosses of my buckler. and no where was there respite or space of breathing. but I was intent on things contained in place. that In the beginning was the Word. as if they would say unto me. But. was from day to day healed. And Thou. rule the body. But Thou. to them gave He power to become the sons of God. and the light shineth in the darkness. but inferior to Thee. and Thou hadst subjected to me what Thou createdst below me. not indeed in the very words. in that Thy Word was made flesh. being God. For to these things was I superior. that God the Word was born not of flesh nor of blood. where it might be well enough with me. yet not for ever art Thou angry with us. but givest grace unto the humble. Lord. And this was the true temperament. and the Word was with God.

hear not Him. move. professing that they were wise. and thought it not robbery to be equal with God. For that before all times and above all times Thy Only-Begotten Son remaineth unchangeable. and their foolish heart is darkened. into that Egyptian food for which Esau lost his birthright. and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator. and have our being. But that in due time He died for the ungodly. And I had come to Thee from among the Gentiles. I entered even into my inward self. that at the name of Jesus every knee should how. the Light Unchangeable. and that by participation of wisdom abiding in them. who changed the truth of God into a lie.not there. their own soul. to take away the reproach of diminution from Jacob. so as to be wise. seeing Thine it was. that the elder should serve the younger: and Thou calledst the Gentiles into Thine inheritance. and that every tongue should confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is in the glory of God the Father. and things in earth. of things in heaven. And to the Athenians Thou saidst by Thy Apostle. and creeping things. as though the brightness of this should be manifold brighter. But I set not my mind on the idols of Egypt. nor are thankful. nor as it were a greater of the same kind. And I entered and beheld with the eye of my soul (such as it was). above my mind. that the Son was in the form of the Father. and found in fashion as a man. But that He emptied Himself. for that naturally He was the Same Substance. turning in heart back towards Egypt. and the meek He directeth in judgment. as one of their own poets had said. that they that labour and are heavy laden might come unto Him. namely. into the likeness of the image of corruptible man. Learn of Me. and beasts. taking the form of a servant. For Thou hiddest these things from the wise. and that of His fulness souls receive. that they may be blessed. Thou being my Guide: and able I was. beholding our lowliness and trouble. and bowing Thy image. above the same eye of my soul. they became fools. yet they glorify Him not as God. and forgiving all our sins. co-eternal with Thee. and He refresh them. because He is meek and lowly in heart. and I set my mind upon the gold which Thou willedst Thy people to take from Egypt. and revealedst them to babes. O Lord. that they had changed the glory of Thy incorruptible nature into idols and divers shapes. And being thence admonished to return to myself. For it pleased Thee. and the gentle He teacheth His ways. But such as are lifted up in the lofty walk of some would-be sublimer learning. being made in the likeness of men. but wax vain in their thoughts. and that Thou sparedst not Thine Only Son. that in Thee we live. whom they served with Thy gold. before the image of a calf that eateth hay. For I traced in those books that it was many and divers ways said. but I fed not on them. is there. and became obedient unto death. for that Thy first-born people worshipped the head of a four-footed beast instead of Thee. Although they knew God. and gave Him a name above every name. humbled Himself. wheresoever it were. And verily these books came from thence. Not this ordinary light. for Thou wert become my Helper. and ye shall find rest to your souls. for I am meek and lowly in heart. but deliveredst Him for us all. and birds. those books have not. they are renewed. saying. And therefore did I read there also. and with its greatness . which all flesh may look upon. is not there. and that the death of the cross: wherefore God exalted Him from the dead. These things found I here. and things under the earth.

For corruption injures. therefore are all things. because It made me. nor yet as heaven above earth: but above to my soul. Thou liftedst me up. And it was manifested unto me. And what more monstrous than to affirm things to become better by losing all their good? Therefore. but thou shalt be converted into Me. For if they shall be. and Thou madest my soul to consume away like a spider. nor shalt thou convert Me. yea. because they are not what Thou art. streaming forth Thy beams of light upon me most strongly. that those things be good which yet are corrupted. That evil then which I sought. because I was made by It. could not be corrupted. but are not. they shall be better than before. for if I remain not in Him. because they shall abide incorruptibly. He that knows the Truth. and for that Thou madest not all things equal. which neither were they sovereignly good. if not good at all. knows eternity. And Thou art the Lord my God. nor unless they were good could he corrupted: for if sovereignly good. since they are from Thee. because our God made all things very good. as the heart heareth. it could not injure." And I learned. being understood by those things which are made.take up all space. and it was manifested to me that Thou madest all things good. Not such was this light. which is clearly seen. Either then corruption injures not. I perceived therefore. for they are. But if they he deprived of all good. that I might see there was what I might see. And I beheld the other things below Thee. and I perceived that they neither altogether are. in the region of unlikeness. For that truly is which remains unchangeably. nor is there any substance at all. O Truth Who art Eternity! and Love Who art Truth! and Eternity Who art Love! Thou art my God. grow. not only to Thee. whence it is. and I trembled with love and awe: and I perceived myself to be far off from Thee. which unless it were good. and that I was not yet such as to see. And Thou didst beat back the weakness of my sight. I AM that I AM. all which is corrupted is deprived of good. they shall cease to be. Thee when I first knew. Nor was it above my soul. and can now no longer he corrupted. I cannot in myself. because each is good. but unless it diminished goodness. reneweth all things. and I below It. if they shall be deprived of all good. as oil is above water. knows what that Light is. And I said. and thou shalt feed upon Me. they shall no longer be." And I heard. and he that knows It. to Thee do I sigh night and day. but . and I should sooner doubt that I live than that Truth is not. it should be good. nor altogether are not. that Thou for iniquity chastenest man. and altogether very good. and so a chief good: or a corruptible substance. which Thou madest not. far other from these. "Is Truth therefore nothing because it is not diffused through space finite or infinite?" And Thou criedst to me from afar: "Yet verily. or which is most certain. Love knoweth it. they are good: therefore whatsoever is. since Thou standest not in need of my goodness. For either it should be an incorruptible substance. they were incorruptible. nor had I room to doubt. And to Thee is nothing whatsoever evil: yea. but other. So long therefore as they are. but He remaining in Himself. like the food of thy flesh into thee. as if I heard this Thy voice from on high: "I am the food of grown men. is good. is not any substance: for were it a substance. It is good then for me to hold fast unto God. there were nothing in them to be corrupted. which cannot be.

But after Thou hadst soothed my head. praise Thee. And all these things which harmonise not together. hail. And returning thence. who only art Eternal. for that all spaces of times. and all cedars. and which shall pass. working and abiding. And Thy righteousness displeaseth the wicked. and placed it in its heart. both which have passed. I did not now long for things better. that bread which is pleasant to a healthy palate is loathsome to one distempered: and to sore eyes light is offensive. for that Thou art to be praised. I should indeed long for the better. and were all bounded in Thee: but in a different way. and thought it to be Thee. And because my soul durst not be displeased at my God. Far be it then that I should say. through infinite measures of all space. and had no rest. Hence it had gone into the opinion of two substances. praise Thy Name. and corrupt that order which Thou hast appointed it. and all deeps. do yet with the inferior part. snow. it had made to itself a God. but with the . which is not. which we call Earth. having its own cloudy and windy sky harmonising with it. displeased me. and stormy wind. which Thou hast created good. when much which Thou hast made. because unharmonising with other some. much more the viper and reptiles. But when. But in the parts thereof some things. and flying fowls. and this sight was not derived from the flesh. and all things are true so far as they nor is there any falsehood. which displeased it. all the stars and light. but still must even for these alone praise Thee. are accounted evil: whereas those very things harmonise with others. and that the more. not as being in space. creeping things. which to the sound is delightful. the Heaven of heavens. sun and moon. do show from the earth. And I saw that all things did harmonise. I ceased somewhat of my former self. but talked idly. whom aught of Thy creation displeaseth: as neither in me. because there is nothing without. these praise Thee. fitting in with the inferior portions of Thy Creation. neither go nor come. fruitful trees. all Thy hosts. mountains. but altogether better than those above by themselves. And I looked back on other things. to Thee abominable. but through Thee. it would fain not account that Thine. fire. because I conceived of all: and with a sounder judgment I apprehended that the things above were better than these below. and all hills. And I perceived and found it nothing strange. by how much they be unlike Thee. our God. unknown to me. beasts. but because Thou containest all things in Thine hand in Thy Truth. And that Thou.also to Thy creation as a whole. in the heights all Thy angels. old men and young. dragons. and all people. from heaven. but with their seasons. with which the very wicked also fit in. unless when that is thought to be. and saw Thee infinite. and in themselves are good. not with their places only. kings of the earth. ice. young men and maidens. princes. but in another way. and all cattle. which fulfil Thy word. "These things should not be": for should I see nought but these. and I saw that they owed their being to Thee. and the waters that be above the heavens. didst not begin to work after innumerable spaces of times spent. and closed mine eyes that they should not behold vanity. There is no soundness in them. praise Thy Name. and had again become the temple of its own idol. and I awoke in Thee. which may break in. and all judges of the earth. and my frenzy was lulled to sleep. and are good.

For I did not hold to my Lord Jesus Christ. the Supreme. I was thrown again on my wonted habits. nor did I any way doubt that there was One to whom I might cleave.superior creatures. And I enquired what iniquity was. the Eternal Truth. unless it had in some way known. might provide milk for our infant state. and the life. whence also it knew That Unchangeable. the truth. raised itself up to its own understanding. whereby Thou createdst all things. without all doubting. and puffed up outwardly. by how much they become more like to Thee. that so it might find what that light was whereby it was bedewed. but was not yet able to feed on. I. and thence to its inward faculty. whereby to abase from themselves such as . whitherto reach the faculties of beasts. I had found the unchangeable and true Eternity of Truth above my changeable mind. and mingling that food which I was unable to receive. I am the way. and the earthly tabernacle weigheth down the mind that museth upon many things. For. and pronouncing. which. that Thy invisible works from the creation of the world are clearly seen. and soon borne down from Thee by mine own weight. it had had no sure ground to prefer it to the changeable. perceived the odour of. and casting out its bowels. the Word was made flesh. far above the higher parts of Thy Creation. And most certain I was. with our flesh. And thus with the flash of one trembling glance it arrived at THAT WHICH IS. when. raises up the subdued unto Itself: but in this lower world built for Itself a lowly habitation of our clay. which through the bodily senses perceives. withdrawing itself from those troops of contradictory phantasms. until I embraced that Mediator betwixt God and men. the Man Christ Jesus. even Thy eternal power and Godhead. But I could not fix my gaze thereon. humbled. and thence again to the reasoning faculty. whence it was that I so judged. and saying. it cried out. this not". and my infirmity being struck back. Then I sought a way of obtaining strength sufficient to enjoy Thee. "This ought to be thus. God blessed for evermore. but the perversion of the will. And then I saw Thy invisible things understood by the things which are made. "That the unchangeable was to be preferred to the changeable". For examining whence it was that I admired the beauty of bodies celestial or terrestrial. I say. being understood by the things that are made. and a longing for what I had. For Thy Word. but was borne up to Thee by Thy beauty. to which the bodily senses represent things external. and found it to be substance. turned aside from Thee. Which finding itself also to be in me a thing variable. and what aided me in judging soundly on things mutable. nor knew I yet whereto His infirmity would guide us. and found it not. who is over all. as it were. carrying along with me only a loving memory thereof. towards these lower things. and no phantasm for Thee. but that I was not yet such as to cleave to Thee: for that the body which is corrupted presseth down the soul. examining. And I wondered that I now loved Thee. seeing I did so judge. Yet dwelt there with me a remembrance of Thee. And thus by degrees I passed from bodies to the soul. And yet did I not press on to enjoy my God. sinking with sorrow into these inferior things. that Thy wisdom. and drew away my thoughts from the power of habit. calling unto me. O God. to the Humble. to which what is received from the senses of the body is referred to be judged. This weight was carnal custom.

not . might cast themselves down upon It. through the Divine care for us. especially. now to be moved by some affection. being assured "That Thou wert. Only I had learnt out of what is delivered to us in writing of Him that He did eat. all the rest also would risk the charge. that flesh did not cleave by itself unto Thy Word. but very man. He seemed. and thence been taught to search for incorporeal truth. but rather consent to become weak. But having then read those books of the Platonists. not the body of a man only. rejoiced in spirit. but for a certain great excellence of human nature and a more perfect participation of wisdom. But I thought otherwise. walk. with the body. the Catholic truth is distinguished from the falsehood of Photinus. that besides God and flesh. conceiving only of my Lord Christ as of a man of excellent wisdom. in conformity therewith. to the end they might go on no further in self-confidence. seeing before their feet the Divinity weak by taking our coats of skin. But somewhat later. I acknowledged a perfect man to be in Christ. I judged to be preferred before others. All know this who know the unchangeableness of Thy Word. But understanding afterwards that this was the error of the Apollinarian heretics. And because he was well persuaded that the actions recorded of Him could only be performed by a vital and a rational creature. but with the human soul and mind. And should these things be falsely written of Him. now to keep silence. finite or infinite. to have attained that great eminence of authority. and wearied. yet too unsure to enjoy Thee. and drink. on this most sure ground alone. The Word was made flesh. now to move the limbs of the body by will. whom no one could be equalled unto. and It rising. I perceived what that was which through the darkness of my mind I was hindered from contemplating. discoursed. that they are. not only as being a form of Truth.would be subdued. but had I not sought Thy way in Christ our Saviour. whom. there was no soul at all in Christ. I saw Thy invisible things. for an ensample of despising things temporal for the obtaining of immortality. sleep. now to deliver wise sayings through human signs. was sorrowful. and that Thou truly art Who art the same ever. and that all other things are from Thee. For there must also be heresies. But Alypius imagined the Catholics to believe God to be so clothed with flesh. I confess. and tomenting their love. For the rejection of heretics makes the tenets of Thy Church and sound doctrine to stand out more clearly. nor. I prated as one well skilled. a sensitive soul without a rational. But what mystery there lay in "The Word was made flesh. that the approved may be made manifest among the weak. and yet not diffused in space. now not. nor did I at all doubt thereof. for that being wonderfully born of a Virgin. nor would there remain in those books any saving faith for mankind. and wert infinite. now not. might lift them up. and though cast back. he moved the more slowly towards the Christian Faith. I had proved to be. understood by those things which are made. For. allaying their swelling. did I learn how in that saying. belong to soul and mind subject to variation. which I now knew. Since then they were written truly." Of these things I was assured." I could not even imagine. he joyed in and was conformed to the Catholic Faith. and did not think that a human mind was ascribed to Him. and bring them over to Himself. in no part nor motion varying. as far as I could.

skilled, but killed. For now I had begun to wish to seem wise, being filled with mine own punishment, yet I did not mourn, but rather scorn, puffed up with knowledge. For where was that charity building upon the foundation of humility, which is Christ Jesus? or when should these books teach me it? Upon these, I believe, Thou therefore willedst that I should fall, before I studied Thy Scriptures, that it might be imprinted on my memory how I was affected by them; and that afterwards when my spirits were tamed through Thy books, and my wounds touched by Thy healing fingers, I might discern and distinguish between presumption and confession; between those who saw whither they were to go, yet saw not the way, and the way that leadeth not to behold only but to dwell in the beatific country. For had I first been formed in Thy Holy Scriptures, and hadst Thou in the familiar use of them grown sweet unto me, and had I then fallen upon those other volumes, they might perhaps have withdrawn me from the solid ground of piety, or, had I continued in that healthful frame which I had thence imbibed, I might have thought that it might have been obtained by the study of those books alone. Most eagerly then did I seize that venerable writing of Thy Spirit; and chiefly the Apostle Paul. Whereupon those difficulties vanished away, wherein he once seemed to me to contradict himself, and the text of his discourse not to agree with the testimonies of the Law and the Prophets. And the face of that pure word appeared to me one and the same; and I learned to rejoice with trembling. So I began; and whatsoever truth I had read in those other books, I found here amid the praise of Thy Grace; that whoso sees, may not so glory as if he had not received, not only what he sees, but also that he sees (for what hath he, which he hath not received?), and that he may be not only admonished to behold Thee, who art ever the same, but also healed, to hold Thee; and that he who cannot see afar off, may yet walk on the way, whereby he may arrive, and behold, and hold Thee. For, though a man be delighted with the law of God after the inner man, what shall he do with that other law in his members which warreth against the law of his mind, and bringeth him into captivity to the law of sin which is in his members? For, Thou art righteous, O Lord, but we have sinned and committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and Thy hand is grown heavy upon us, and we are justly delivered over unto that ancient sinner, the king of death; because he persuaded our will to be like his will whereby he abode not in Thy truth. What shall wretched man do? who shall deliver him from the body of his death, but only Thy Grace, through Jesus Christ our Lord, whom Thou hast begotten co-eternal, and formedst in the beginning of Thy ways, in whom the prince of this world found nothing worthy of death, yet killed he Him; and the handwriting, which was contrary to us, was blotted out? This those writings contain not. Those pages present not the image of this piety, the tears of confession, Thy sacrifice, a troubled spirit, a broken and a contrite heart, the salvation of the people, the Bridal City, the earnest of the Holy Ghost, the Cup of our Redemption. No man sings there, Shall not my soul be submitted unto God? for of Him cometh my salvation. For He is my God and my salvation, my guardian, I shall no more be moved. No one there hears Him call, Come unto Me, all ye that labour. They scorn to learn of Him, because He is meek and lowly in heart; for these things hast Thou hid from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. For it is one thing, from the mountain's shaggy top to see the land of peace, and to find

no way thither; and in vain to essay through ways unpassable, opposed and beset by fugitives and deserters, under their captain the lion and the dragon: and another to keep on the way that leads thither, guarded by the host of the heavenly General; where they spoil not who have deserted the heavenly army; for they avoid it, as very torment. These things did wonderfully sink into my bowels, when I read that least of Thy Apostles, and had meditated upon Thy works, and trembled exceedingly.

BOOK VIII O my God, let me, with thanksgiving, remember, and confess unto Thee Thy mercies on me. Let my bones be bedewed with Thy love, and let them say unto Thee, Who is like unto Thee, O Lord? Thou hast broken my bonds in sunder, I will offer unto Thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving. And how Thou hast broken them, I will declare; and all who worship Thee, when they hear this, shall say, "Blessed be the Lord, in heaven and in earth, great and wonderful is his name. " Thy words had stuck fast in my heart, and I was hedged round about on all sides by Thee. Of Thy eternal life I was now certain, though I saw it in a figure and as through a glass. Yet I had ceased to doubt that there was an incorruptible substance, whence was all other substance; nor did I now desire to be more certain of Thee, but more steadfast in Thee. But for my temporal life, all was wavering, and my heart had to be purged from the old leaven. The Way, the Saviour Himself, well pleased me, but as yet I shrunk from going through its straitness. And Thou didst put into my mind, and it seemed good in my eyes, to go to Simplicianus, who seemed to me a good servant of Thine; and Thy grace shone in him. I had heard also that from his very youth he had lived most devoted unto Thee. Now he was grown into years; and by reason of so great age spent in such zealous following of Thy ways, he seemed to me likely to have learned much experience; and so he had. Out of which store I wished that he would tell me (setting before him my anxieties) which were the fittest way for one in my case to walk in Thy paths. For, I saw the church full; and one went this way, and another that way. But I was displeased that I led a secular life; yea now that my desires no longer inflamed me, as of old, with hopes of honour and profit, a very grievous burden it was to undergo so heavy a bondage. For, in comparison of Thy sweetness, and the beauty of Thy house which I loved, those things delighted me no longer. But still I was enthralled with the love of woman; nor did the Apostle forbid me to marry, although he advised me to something better, chiefly wishing that all men were as himself was. But I being weak, chose the more indulgent place; and because of this alone, was tossed up and down in all beside, faint and wasted with withering cares, because in other matters I was constrained against my will to conform myself to a married life, to which I was given up and enthralled. I had heard from the mouth of the Truth, that there were some eunuchs which had made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake: but, saith He, let him who can receive it, receive it. Surely vain are all men

who are ignorant of God, and could not out of the good things which are seen, find out Him who is good. But I was no longer in that vanity; I had surmounted it; and by the common witness of all Thy creatures had found Thee our Creator, and Thy Word, God with Thee, and together with Thee one God, by whom Thou createdst all things. There is yet another kind of ungodly, who knowing God, glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful. Into this also had I fallen, but Thy right hand upheld me, and took me thence, and Thou placedst me where I might recover. For Thou hast said unto man, Behold, the fear of the Lord is wisdom, and, Desire not to seem wise; because they who affirmed themselves to be wise, became fools. But I had now found the goodly pearl, which, selling all that I had, I ought to have bought, and I hesitated. To Simplicianus then I went, the father of Ambrose (a Bishop now) in receiving Thy grace, and whom Ambrose truly loved as a father. To him I related the mazes of my wanderings. But when I mentioned that I had read certain books of the Platonists, which Victorinus, sometime Rhetoric Professor of Rome (who had died a Christian, as I had heard), had translated into Latin, he testified his joy that I had not fallen upon the writings of other philosophers, full of fallacies and deceits, after the rudiments of this world, whereas the Platonists many ways led to the belief in God and His Word. Then to exhort me to the humility of Christ, hidden from the wise, and revealed to little ones, he spoke of Victorinus himself, whom while at Rome he had most intimately known: and of him he related what I will not conceal. For it contains great praise of Thy grace, to be confessed unto Thee, how that aged man, most learned and skilled in the liberal sciences, and who had read, and weighed so many works of the philosophers; the instructor of so many noble Senators, who also, as a monument of his excellent discharge of his office, had (which men of this world esteem a high honour) both deserved and obtained a statue in the Roman Forum; he, to that age a worshipper of idols, and a partaker of the sacrilegious rites, to which almost all the nobility of Rome were given up, and had inspired the people with the love of Anubis, barking Deity, and all The monster Gods of every kind, who fought 'Gainst Neptune, Venus, and Minerva: whom Rome once conquered, now adored, all which the aged Victorinus had with thundering eloquence so many years defended; -he now blushed not to be the child of Thy Christ, and the new-born babe of Thy fountain; submitting his neck to the yoke of humility, and subduing his forehead to the reproach of the Cross. O Lord, Lord, Which hast bowed the heavens and come down, touched the mountains and they did smoke, by what means didst Thou convey Thyself into that breast? He used to read (as Simplicianus said) the holy Scripture, most studiously sought and searched into all the Christian writings, and said to Simplicianus (not openly, but privately and as a friend), "Understand that I am already a Christian." Whereto he answered, "I will not believe it, nor will I rank you among Christians, unless I see you in the Church of Christ." The other, in banter, replied, "Do walls then make Christians?" And this he often said, that he was already a

who. and were wroth. whose pride he had imitated and their rites adopted. he went up to make his profession. and Simplicianus as often made the same answer. and the groat is restored to Thy treasury. and is found. proud daemon-worshippers. He pronounced the true faith with an excellent boldness. should he now be afraid to confess Him before men. the Church rejoicing. holy through holy charity. I wish to be made a Christian. he said. For Thou rejoicest in us. not containing himself for joy. all. For he feared to offend his friends. yea by their love and joy they drew him thither. when delivering his own words. the neighbours rejoicing with the woman who found it. the presbyters. But the Lord God was the hope of Thy servant. or the danger had been less? For so Thou also. And having been admitted to the first Sacrament and become a Catechumen. when pronouncing Thy word. And who there knew him not? and there ran a low murmur through all the mouths of the rejoicing multitude. "Go we to the Church. But after that by reading and earnest thought he had gathered firmness. and feared to be denied by Christ before the holy angels. and yet that he had publicly professed: how much less then ought he." But he. and the joy of the solemn service of Thy house forceth to tears. to dread Thy meek flock. such were the hands wherewith they drew him. went with him. and suddenly and unexpectedly said to Simplicianus (as himself told me). as they knew him. and freed from greater peril. dost more rejoice over one penitent than over ninety-nine just persons that need no repentance. who are about to approach to Thy grace. had been lost. and melted away. and he regarded not vanities and lying madness. than if there had always been hope of him. offered Victorinus (as was done to such as seemed likely through bashfulness to be alarmed) to make his profession more privately: but he chose rather to profess his salvation in the presence of the holy multitude. And with much joyfulness do we hear. so often as we hear with what joy the sheep which had strayed is brought back upon the shepherd's shoulder. and appeared to himself guilty of a heavy offence. "For it was not salvation that he taught in rhetoric. from the height of whose Babylonian dignity. then. and liveth again. in a set form of words committed to memory). whispered his name one to another with the voice of congratulation. To conclude. and not being ashamed of the sacrilegious rites of those proud daemons. he became bold-faced against vanity. that he should more rejoice at the salvation of a soul despaired of. as from cedars of Libanus. which the Lord had not yet broken down. that he might be regenerated by baptism.Christian. not long after he further gave in his name. for all things which . For Thou art ever the same. when the hour was come for making profession of his faith (which at Rome they. they gnashed with their teeth. Good God! what takes place in man. that they saw him. when in Thy house it is read of Thy younger son. from an elevated place. he supposed the weight of enmity would fall upon him. that he was dead. in being ashamed of the Sacraments of the humility of Thy Word. Victorinus! Victorinus! Sudden was the burst of rapture. suddenly were they hushed that they might hear him. had not feared a mad multitude!" When. deliver. and in Thy holy angels. The proud saw. Rome wondering. and shame-faced towards the truth. and all wished to draw him into their very heart. in the sight of all the faithful. and the conceit of the "walls" was by the other as often renewed. merciful Father.

and do. from the first motion to the last. and against our wills. joy less for them. and recall us. Thou settest each in its place. grow sweet unto us. stir us up. when it is more delighted at finding or recovering the things it loves. kindle and draw us. not those only which fall upon us unlooked for. sky and sea are calmed. the very pleasures of human life men acquire by difficulties. all wax pale at approaching death. What then takes place in the soul. from the beginning of the world to the end of ages. and all things are full of witnesses. this. though as yet he walks not with his former strength. O Lord my God. that this portion of things thus ebbs and flows alternately displeased and reconciled? Is this their allotted measure? Is this all Thou hast assigned to them. and how deep in the deepest! and Thou never departest. than if it had ever had them? yea. yet had he not conquered unless he had fought. even they that know them. Again. eat certain salt meats. return to Thee. and other things witness hereunto. Eating and drinking have no pleasure. in him who was dead. receiving that Light. and pleasure-seeking trouble. A friend is sick. because they rejoice not in them alone. he sighed not after. let us now love. For far be it. What means this. crying out. as was not. lest as a husband he should hold cheap whom. as betrothed. but even by self-chosen. and the base things of this world. and lead the way with many to follow. This law holds in foul and accursed joy. Yea. as having been exceeding afraid. because those known to many. each also has more exuberant joy for that they are kindled and inflamed one by the other. had been lost and was found. which they who receive. and we scarcely return to Thee. Up. "So is it. inflame. every thing good after its kind? Woe is me! how high art Thou in the highest. For when many joy together. and the things despised . And therefore do they also who preceded them much rejoice in them. this in the very purest perfection of friendship. out of a deeper hell of blindness than Victorinus. It is also ordered that the affianced bride should not at once be given. this in permitted and lawful joy. which the drink allaying. let us run. The storm tosses the sailors. He is restored. all who long for his recovery are sick in mind with him. Men. and they are exceeding joyed. or the noble before the ignoble. given to drink. and lived again. whereas from the highest heavens to the lowest earth. to procure a troublesome heat. and the more peril there was in the battle. yet there is such joy. Every where the greater joy is ushered in by the greater pain. receive power from Thee to become Thy sons? But if they be less known to the nations. and realisest each in their season. and are enlightened. and his pulse threatens danger. unless there precede the pinching of hunger and thirst. seeing rather Thou hast chosen the weak things of the world to confound the strong. Lord. from the angel to the worm. Thou for ever knowest in the same way. whereas Thou art everlastingly joy to Thyself. and some things around Thee evermore rejoice in Thee? What means this. Do not many.abide not the same nor for ever. that in Thy tabernacle the persons of the rich should be accepted before the poor. causes pleasure. threatens shipwreck. influence the more towards salvation." The conquering commander triumpheth. so much the more joy is there in the triumph. approach. when before he walked sound and strong.

And yet it was through me that custom had obtained this power of warring against me. and feared as much to be freed of all incumbrances. strengthened by age. unto every good work. one carnal. joined together (whence I called it a chain) a hard bondage held me enthralled. became necessity. he also for his former name Saul. and became a provincial of the great King. was a lust made. For of a forward will. And who has any right to speak against it. yet more myself. through their nobility. And yet even that least of Thy apostles. I understood. which the devil had held as an impregnable possession. By how much the more welcome then the heart of Victorinus was esteemed. and custom not resisted. how the flesh lusteth against the spirit and the spirit against the flesh. so much the more abundantly ought Thy sons to rejoice. for now it too was. as it were. was pleased to be called Paul. and a lust served. he seemed to me not more resolute than blessed. freely to serve Thee. whither I willed not. Simplicianus. for for this very end had he related it. Thus with the baggage of this present world was I held down pleasantly. how in the days of the Emperor Julian a law was made. and by their discord. and by them. by my own experience. the only assured pleasantness. undid my soul. bound as I was. related to me this of Victorinus. Myself verily either way. But when that man of Thine. than acted willingly. My will the enemy held. whereby Christians were forbidden to teach the liberal sciences or oratory. for that our King hath bound the strong man. of whom he hath more hold. I was on fire to imitate him. for that the truth was not altogether ascertained to me. But when he had subjoined also. one new. and to wish to enjoy Thee. in testimony of so great a victory. the other spiritual. But the proud he hath more hold of. and become serviceable for the Lord.hast Thou chosen. with which mighty and keen weapon he had slain many. it was now for the more part not myself. what I had read. by whose tongue Thou soundedst forth these words. and the other old. was not yet able to overcome my former wilfulness. as we should fear to be encumbered with it. his pride conquered. as in sleep: and the thoughts wherein I meditated on Thee were like the efforts of such as would awake. but by my own iron will. obeying this law. the tongue of Victorinus. in that which I approved in myself. by which Thou makest eloquent the tongues of the dumb. that Thou mightest bring to nought things that are. struggle within me. when through his warfare. because in much I rather endured against my will. became custom. But that new will which had begun to be in me. chose rather to give over the wordy school than Thy Word. if just punishment follow the sinner? Nor had I now any longer my former plea. by whom he hath hold of more. and bound me. Which thing I was sighing for. For in this last. of more through their authority. By which links. For the enemy is more overcome in one. and thence had made a chain for me. and those things which are not. who . and how he. than in that which in myself I disapproved. refused to fight under Thy banner. and they saw his vessels taken from him and cleansed. not with another's irons. But I still under service to the earth. Thus. Paulus the Proconsul. O God. was made to pass under the easy yoke of Thy Christ. Thus did my two wills. that I therefore as yet hesitated to be above the world and serve Thee. because I had come willingly. in having thus found opportunity to wait on Thee only. and made meet for Thy honour.

even after it is time to rise. before us. yet. are again drenched therein. but we sat down to converse. in consideration of our friendship. and a very intimate friend of us all. Who then should deliver me thus wretched from the body of this death. as many hours as might be. but though the former course satisfied me and gained the mastery. such faithful aid as he greatly needed. so was I assured that much better were it for me to give myself up to Thy charity. there came to see me and Alypius. the latter pleased me and held me mastered. anon. had nothing at all to answer. and looking at me. Nebridius being absent (I recollect not why). our countryman so far as being an African. And when Thou didst on all sides show me that what Thou saidst was true. wherewith I was bound most straitly to carnal concupiscence. and slight our request. when another law in my members rebelled against the law of my mind. What he would with us. for that it willingly fell into it. but Thy grace only. but only those dull and drowsy words. and by the right of friendship challenged from our company. with pleasure yields to it." But "presently. and out of the drudgery of worldly things. took. avoiding the distraction of mind thence ensuing. one Pontitianus. defers to shake off sleep. he would not be wanting to a good office. he expressed his joy and wonder that he had on a sudden found this . But he acted herein very discreetly. and in all men's sober judgment waking is better. I was doing my wonted business. as I sold the skill of speaking. O Lord. yet a man for the most part. shunning to become known to personages great according to this world. whereby the mind is drawn and holden. he observed a book. and awaiting to whom to sell his counsel. but as a most kind and gentle friend. feeling a heavy lethargy in all his limbs. a citizen and a grammarian of Milan. to seek. and confess unto Thy name. to. presently. and desiring to have it free and at leisure. Upon a day then. Nebridius then was not drawn to this by any desire of advantage (for he might have made much more of his learning had he so willed)." had no present. For the law of sin is the violence of custom. "Anon. my helper and my redeemer. and led me captive under the law of sin which was in my members. and contrary to his expectation. and daily sighing unto Thee." "presently. now after the third sitting released from his law business. in high office in the Emperor's court. convicted by the truth. I will now declare. and arise from the dead. for he thought it some of those books which I was wearing myself in teaching. even against its will. but deservedly. opened it. found it the Apostle Paul. or read." "leave me but a little. Amid increasing anxiety. through Jesus Christ our Lord? And how Thou didst deliver me out of the bonds of desire. who urgently desired. and my "little while" went on for a long while. And as no one would sleep for ever. I attended Thy Church. thou that sleepest. Nor had I any thing to answer Thee calling to me. in vain I delighted in Thy law according to the inner man. Nebridius had now. consented to teach under Verecundus. I know not. and though half displeased. Alypius was with me. I. and it happened that upon a table for some game. if indeed teaching can impart it. and Christ shall give thee light. whenever free from the business under the burden of which I groaned.yet overcome with a heavy drowsiness. Whereat smiling. than to give myself over to mine own cupidity. or hear something concerning wisdom. Awake.

and am resolved to serve God. Thence his discourse turned to the flocks in the monasteries. in times so recent. filled with a holy love. and this. oppose not. went out to walk in gardens near the city walls. and their holy ways. in their wanderings. saying. and now being Thine." The other answered. I become now at once. inhabited by certain of Thy servants. and giving over his secular service to serve Thee. and this only before my eyes. Which when he discovered. what would we attain by all these labours of ours? what aim we at? what serve we for? Can our hopes in court rise higher than to be the Emperor's favourites? and in this. and kindle at it. in frequent and continued prayers. one went apart with him. For he was a Christian. and his mind was stripped of the world. We all wondered. if they would not join. I begin upon. he and three others. informing and wondering at our ignorance of one so eminent. and finding them. "Now have I broken loose from those our hopes. a conversation arose (suggested by his account) on Antony the Egyptian monk: whose name was in high reputation among Thy servants. and often bowed himself before Thee our God in the Church. Thus both being now Thine. But they relating their resolution and purpose. and following Thee. to meditate on taking up such a life." So spake he. to partake so glorious a reward. said to his friend. And there was a monastery at Milan. But the others. the forsaking all that they had. And these two were of those whom they style agents for the public affairs. for the day was now far spent. though nothing altered from their former selves. full of good brethren. and almost in our own. and read on. did yet bewail themselves (as he . This one of them began to read. of whom is the kingdom of heaven. where Thou sawest. and these. that they had not reached us. what is there not brittle. "Tell me. and we knew it not. And in pain with the travail of a new life. in this place. from this hour. he dwelt the more upon that subject. and baptised. without the city walls. as soon appeared. whereof we knew nothing. and was changed inwardly. not to molest them. For as he read. that they were so great. If thou likest not to imitate me. and determined on a better course. But we stood amazed. When then I had told him that I bestowed very great pains upon those Scriptures. wrought in the true Faith and Church Catholic. came in search of them to the same place. under the fostering care of Ambrose. and rolled up and down the waves of his heart. and the fruitful deserts of the wilderness. if I wish it. and as he read. admire. he stormed at himself a while. in anger with himself cast his eyes upon his friend. and we listened in intent silence. and how that will was begun and settled in then discerned. lighted upon a certain cottage. when the Emperor was taken up with the Circensian games. He went on with his discourse. he would cleave to him. his companions. a sweet-smelling savour unto Thee. were building the tower at the necessary cost. reminded them to return. and full of perils? and by how many perils arrive we at a greater peril? and when arrive we thither? But a friend of God. and he. and the other two wandered by themselves. and there they found a little book containing the life of Antony. I pray thee. and a sober shame. though to that hour unknown to us. Then suddenly. poor in spirit. begged them. He told us then how one afternoon at Triers. and there as they happened to walk in pairs. Then Pontitianus and the other with him. so glorious a service. hearing Thy wonderful works most fully attested. we. he turned his eyes again upon the book. that had walked in other parts of the garden.

but made as though I saw it not. And he having brought to a close his tale and the business he came for. taking me from behind my back where I had placed me. whereby she was wasting to . in the very commencement of my early youth. But the other two. And I had thought that I therefore deferred from day to day to reject the hopes of this world. the more did I abhor myself. though spread around me at my will. whither to direct my course. when compared with them. there remained a mute shrinking. And if I sought to turn mine eye from off myself. nor for often years and more have been thinking thereon. as she would death. while they who neither have so worn themselves out with seeking it. had begged chastity of Thee. while he was speaking. But now. I was stirred to an earnest love of wisdom. have had their shoulders lightened. winked at it. and so. and exceedingly confounded with a horrible shame. that I might see how foul I was. and give myself to search out that. But I wretched. when. bespotted and ulcerous. Such was the story of Pontitianus. but Thou. and setting me before my face. and hate it. and whither to flee from myself I found not. What said I not against myself? with what scourges of condemnation lashed I not my soul. and forgot it. And both had affianced brides. and my conscience was to upbraid me. went his way. to be restrained from the flux of that custom. whereof not the finding only. "Where art thou now. remained in the cottage. And now was the day come wherein I was to be laid bare to myself. how crooked and defiled. that I might find out mine iniquity. fixing their heart on heaven. and soon cure me of the disease of concupiscence. For many of my years (some twelve) had now run out with me since my nineteenth. because there did not appear aught certain. And I beheld and stood aghast. and to the pleasures of the body. most wretched. my tongue? Thou saidst that for an uncertain truth thou likedst not to cast off the baggage of vanity. striving to go after Thee! Yet it drew back. upon the reading of Cicero's Hortensius. and follow Thee only. and I into myself. though already found." Thus was I gnawed within. who when they heard hereof. but the very search. and said. it is certain. I had known it. "Give me chastity and continency. didst turn me round towards myself. but excused not itself.affirmed). that it might follow me. while Pontitianus was so speaking. was to be preferred to the treasures and kingdoms of the world. with hearts lingering on the earth. also dedicated their virginity unto God. and thrustedst me before my eyes. went away to the palace. which I wished to have satisfied. recommending themselves to their prayers. All arguments were spent and confuted. refused. not indeed assured thereof. and received wings to fly away. and she feared. and still I was deferring to reject mere earthly felicity. and piously congratulated them. and Thou again didst set me over against myself. rather than extinguished. but as preferring it to the others which I did not seek religiously. now. unwilling to observe myself. and yet that burden still oppresseth thee. the more ardently I loved those whose healthful affections I heard of. And I had wandered through crooked ways in a sacrilegious superstition. he went on with his relation." For I feared lest Thou shouldest hear me soon. O Lord. only not yet. that they had resigned themselves wholly to Thee to be cured. but opposed maliciously.

to live. Then in this great contention of my inward dwelling. So many things then I did. a maimed and half-divided will. than the soul obeyed itself to accomplish in the will alone this its momentous will. knowing what evil thing I was. may perhaps answer me. and without heart. move not so far as I had come from the house to that place where we were sitting. Thither had the tumult of my breast hurried me. struggling. But I might have willed. when I should will. O my God. And therein we enter not by ships. most vehemently indignant that I entered not into Thy will and covenant. colour. our host. not to turn and toss. this way and that. until it should end as Thou knewest. the mind commands itself. eyes. Thus. and yet was it not done: and more easily did my body obey the weakest willing of my soul. because others are gone before. if I tore my hair. or feet. kept silence. For his presence did not lessen my privacy. troubled in mind and countenance. Lastly. tone of voice. which all my bones cried out unto me to enter. not to go only. in the chamber of my heart. or these be bound with bands. gazing on me in astonishment. which we had the use of. and Alypius. and is resisted. and those darkest pangs of the sons of Adam. where no man might hinder the hot contention wherein I had engaged with myself. I turned upon Alypius. and my forehead. but to will resolutely and thoroughly. and we with our learning. if either they have not the limbs. was not living there. weakened with infirmity. I did it. if the power of motion in my limbs had not obeyed. Whence is this monstrousness? and to what end? The mind commands the body. Only I was healthfully distracted and dying.death. and I did not what both I longed incomparably more to do. in moving its limbs at its nod. and not knowing what good thing I was shortly to become. or how could he forsake me so disturbed? We sate down as far removed as might be from the house. or chariots. cheeks. if so be the secret penalties of men. but cannot. spake my mind more than the words I uttered. The mind commands the hand to be moved. with one part sinking as another rose. in the very fever of my irresoluteness. I retired then into the garden. as of the whole house. if locking my fingers I clasped my knee. I was troubled in spirit. I should be able to do. or any other way hindered. but to go in thither was nothing else but to will to go. and not done it. and such readiness is there. no. and my fever of mind tore me away from him. I made with my body many such motions as men sometimes would. that command is scarce distinct from obedience. I willed. and to will was to do. and it obeys instantly. when "to will" was not in itself "to be able". on my steps. "What ails us?" I exclaim: "what is it? what heardest thou? The unlearned start up and take heaven by force. because soon after. Yet the mind is . to. and praised it to the skies. For it was not my wonted tone. and not ashamed not even to follow?" Some such words I uttered. which I had strongly raised against my soul. while he. beat my forehead. and which soon after. I should will thoroughly. Whence is this monstrousness? and to what end? Let Thy mercy gleam that I may ask. when I should will. For. where we wallow in flesh and blood! Are we ashamed to follow. For in these things the ability was one with the will. I knew not. for the master of the house. A little garden there was to our lodging.

but now light in the Lord. are made more gross darkness through a dreadful arrogancy. Let them perish from Thy presence. Myself when I was deliberating upon serving the Lord my God now. partly to nill. but itself. But it willeth not entirely: therefore doth it not command entirely. and would not command. when they hold these evil things. . borne down by custom. but sin that dwelt in me. which they say. I myself. Themselves are truly evil. If a man deliberate whether he should go to their conventicle or to the theatre. It is therefore no monstrousness partly to will. its own self. For were the will entire. and it will not be true. for that one of them is not entire: and what the one lacketh. which draws to them. so far forth is the thing commanded. But they believe not that will to be other than good. as it willeth not.mind. For if there he so many contrary natures as there be conflicting wills. there shall now be not two only. but in themselves. Therefore it was no more I that wrought it. the true Light that enlightened every man that cometh into the world. What then if one of us should deliberate. For the will commandeth that there be a will. and yet it doth not. I neither willed entirely. and amid the strife of his two wills be in a strait. Whence this monstrousness? and to what end? It commands itself. O God. because it would already be. in that I was a son of Adam. For so far forth it commandeth. not in the Lord. not another. but the punishment of my own. and blush for shame: draw near unto Him and be enlightened. not the presence of another mind. for that they went back farther from Thee. and two evil souls conflicting in one man. and yet indicated. wishing to be light. the other evil. For whence else is this hesitation between conflicting wills? But I say that both be bad: that which draws to them. who have received and are held by the mysteries of theirs: or they must suppose two evil natures. is not. as I had long purposed. one good. the punishment of a sin more freely committed. the other hath. it was I who willed. But they. and themselves shall become good when they hold the truth and assent unto the truth. and rent asunder by myself. nor nilled entirely. these Manichees cry out. therefore what it commandeth. by truth upborne. and no more deny that where one deliberates. another bad. but many. and what it commands is not done. And this rent befell me against my will. Ye were sometimes darkness. The mind commands the mind. whether he should go to the theatre or to our church? would not these Manichees also be in a strait what to answer? For either they must confess (which they fain would not) that the will which leads to our church is good. as well as theirs. I. I say. affirm that there are two minds in us of two kinds. that there is one good and another bad. draws this way. not done. one soul fluctuates between contrary wills. but a disease of the mind. as it willeth: and. But it doth not command entirely. that Thy Apostle may say to them. and your faces shall not be ashamed. that it doth not wholly rise. I who nilled. Take heed what you say. as that which draws back to the theatre. Behold. Therefore was I at strife with myself. or they must be converted to the truth. to will. to will. draws back that way. unless it willed. imagining the nature of the soul to be that which God is. it would not even command it to be. here are two natures: one good. the hand is body. as perish vain talkers and seducers of the soul: who observing that in deliberating there were two wills. And therefore are there two wills.

For I said with myself. So also in wills which are good. prevailed more with me than the better whereto I was unused: and the very moment wherein I was to become other than I was.Let them no more say then." And as I spake. it should recover strength. still held me. conflicting wills. but kept my stand hard by. Thus soul-sick was I. redoubling the lashes of fear and shame. and all but touched. and convict them. all these meeting together in the same juncture of time. which cannot at one time be acted: for they rend the mind amid four. O my God? Let Thy mercy turn it away from the soul of Thy . which before was divided into many. accusing myself much more severely than my wont. O true God. dost disprove. hesitating to die to death and to live to life: and the worse whereto I was inured. and yet came not at it. and not bursting that same slight remaining tie. and did it not: yet sunk not back to my former state. to commit adultery. when they perceive two conflicting wills in one man." What then if all give equal pleasure. but still was. they plucked my fleshy garment. whether he should purchase pleasure by luxury. rolling and turning me in my chain. check. O Lord. and wanted somewhat less of it. and the pleasure of temporal good holds us down below. pressedst upon me in my inward parts by a severe mercy. nor do they yet allege that there are so many divers substances. and tormented. fourthly. The very toys of toys. yet did it not strike me back. from two contrary principles. whether he go to the circus or the theatre. lest I should again give way. till that were wholly broken. it is the same soul which willeth not this or that with an entire will. held. whither the one entire will may be borne. and vanities of vanities. and all at once? Do not divers wills distract the mind. both wills being bad. one deliberates whether he should kill a man by poison or by the sword. nor turned me away. "Be it done now. And I essayed again. above. of two contrary substances. while out of truth it sets this first. "this or that. and therefore is rent asunder with grievous perplexities. but held me in suspense. to rob another's house. For Thou. the greater horror did it strike into me. eternity delights us. and whispered softly. and took breath. And Thou. and laid hold of it. nor touched nor laid hold of it. Thus also. "it is good. if he have the opportunity. the nearer it approached me. when. and somewhat less. when he cannot both. my ancient mistresses. whether he should seize this or that estate of another's. one good. while he deliberates which he should rather choose? yet are they all good. but out of habit sets not that aside. and all being equally desired. "Dost thou cast us off? and from that moment shall we no more be with thee for ever? and from that moment shall not this or that be lawful for thee for ever?" And what was it which they suggested in that I said. if both be open on one day. as when. I all but enacted it: I all but did it. and bind me the faster. be it done now. or even (amid the vast variety of things desired) more. if at the same time he have the means thereof also." what did they suggest. whereby I now was but just. and are at variance till one be chosen. or thirdly. or. For I ask them. and the other bad. or keep his money by covetousness. that the conflict is between two contrary souls. is it good to take pleasure in reading the Apostle? or good to take pleasure in a sober Psalm? or good to discourse on the Gospel? They will answer to each.

and Continence herself in all. honestly alluring me to come and doubt not. But when a deep consideration had from the secret bottom of my soul drawn together and heaped up all my misery in the sight of my heart. a violent habit saying to me. They tell thee of delights. lo! I heard from a neighbouring house a voice. Which that I might pour forth wholly. there appeared unto me the chaste dignity of Continency. but to look back on them. wilt Thou be angry for ever? Remember not our former iniquities. grave widows and aged virgins. yet to this purpose. What defilements did they suggest! what shame! And now I much less than half heard them. And she again seemed to say. yet not relaxedly. so I retired so far that even his presence could not be a burden to me. fear not He will not withdraw Himself that thou shouldest fall. and so standest not? cast thyself upon Him. but a fruitful mother of children of joys. but muttering as it were behind my back. and hung in suspense.servant. most extremely astonished. and the floods of mine eyes gushed out an acceptable sacrifice to Thee. "Canst not thou what these youths. for I felt that I was held by them. " Instantly. and privily plucking me. her holy hands full of multitudes of good examples: there were so many young men and maidens here. I sent up these sorrowful words: How long. And she smiled on me with a persuasive mockery. Take up and read. chanting. and oft repeating. how long. that they may be mortified. Thus was it then with me. so that I hesitated to burst and shake myself free from them. O Lord. thou canst live without them?" But now it spake very faintly. but not as doth the law of the Lord thy God. For on that side whither I had set my face. what these maidens can? or can they either in themselves. my countenance altered. "Take up and read. "to-morrow. for that I yet heard the muttering of those toys. I rose from Alypius: solitude was suggested to me as fitter for the business of weeping. "Thinkest thou. not indeed in these words. Lord. there arose a mighty storm. Why standest thou in thyself. in silence waited the issue of my unwonted emotion. and not openly showing themselves and contradicting me. a multitude of youth and every age. and he perceived something of it. and whither I trembled to go. And. "Stop thine ears against those thy unclean members on the earth. I know not. when. and stretching forth to receive and embrace me. I cast myself down I know not how. not barren. by Thee her Husband. as of boy or girl. for something I suppose I had spoken." And I blushed exceedingly. in its natural expressions. serene. and not rather in the Lord their God? The Lord their God gave me unto them. cast thyself fearlessly upon Him. He will receive. gay. I began to think most intently whether children were wont in any kind of . O Lord. He then remained where we were sitting. giving full vent to my tears. Yet they did retard me. as would she say." This controversy in my heart was self against self only. and so had risen up. and to spring over whither I was called. wherein the tones of my voice appeared choked with weeping. spake I much unto Thee: and Thou. and tomorrow?" Why not now? why not is there this hour an end to my uncleanness? So was I speaking and weeping in the most bitter contrition of my heart. and will heal thee. under a certain fig-tree. how long? how long. But Alypius sitting close by my side. bringing a mighty shower of tears. as I was departing.

so many years before. I am Thy servant. and in silence read that section on which my eyes first fell: Not in rioting and drunkenness. and most corresponding to his character. my words. Who are able to do above that which we ask or think. but put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ. I will offer to Thee the sacrifice of Let my heart and my tongue praise Thee. which I knew not. in concupiscence. and what am I? What evil have not been either my deeds. Then putting my finger between. by a light as it were of serenity infused into my heart. standing in that rule of faith. nor any hope of this world. No further would I read. For thou convertedst me unto Thyself. He asked to see what I had read: I showed him. and the son of Thy handmaid: Thou hast broken my bonds in sunder. and make not provision for the flesh. Eagerly then I returned to the place where Alypius was sitting. and thou shalt have treasure in heaven. so that I sought neither wife. and come and follow me: and by such oracle he was forthwith converted unto Thee. sell all that thou hast. Thence we go in to my mother. nor needed I: for instantly at the end of this sentence. and by a good resolution and purpose. that coming in during the reading of the Gospel. to nill what I willed. interpreting it to be no other than a command from God to open the book. BOOK IX O Lord. by having grandchildren of my body. or if not my to sing such words: nor could I remember ever to have heard the like. she leaps for joy. I arose. all the darkness of doubt vanished away. him that is weak in the faith. I am thy salvation. yea. are good and merciful. And this Thy whole gift was. not in chambering and wantonness. And what was wrought in him. and disclosed to me. we tell her. Who am I. opened. without any turbulent delay he joined me. And Thou didst convert her mourning into joy. So checking the torrent of my tears. and Thy right hand had respect unto the depth of my death. than she was wont to beg by her pitiful and most sorrowful groanings. I seized. for there had I laid the volume of the Apostle when I arose thence. and blesseth Thee. for she perceived that Thou hadst given her more for me. and read the first chapter I should find. for the better. he thus showed me. or if not my words. For I had heard of Antony. who is like unto Thee? Let them say. my will? But Thou. receive. and in a much more precious and purer way than she erst required. and from the bottom of my heart emptied that abyss of corruption. and with a calmed countenance made it known to Alypius. and give to the poor. and to . This followed. I shut the volume. or some other mark. and answer Thou me. not in strife and envying. let all my bones say. where Thou hadst showed me unto her in a vision. O Lord. and say unto my soul. And by this admonition was he strengthened. and I knew not what followed. which he applied to himself. he received the admonition. and he looked even further than I had read. as if what was being read was spoken to him: Go. O Lord. I am Thy servant. and triumpheth. much more plentiful than she had desired. wherein he did always very far differ from me. she rejoiceth: we relate in order how it took place.

to want the sweetnesses of those toys! and what I feared to be parted from. as it doth its meat. it had at first troubled me that in this very summer my lungs began to give way. at least to intermit it. alive. the Lord my God.will what Thou willedst. which was before the eyes of all. and singing that song of degrees. and for dead. and for them enteredst in Thyself. And my infant tongue spake freely to Thee. O Christ Jesus. no students in Thy law. being piled together in the receptacle of our thoughts. if I could be cured and recover. Moreover. for it almost constrained me of necessity to lay down that burden of teaching. was it not known. that I . but not to the high in their own conceits. no more to return for sale. Thou castest them forth. that all the blasts of subtle tongues from gainsayers might only inflame us the more fiercely. higher than all honour. whereby to submit my neck to Thy easy yoke. which as though advising for us. or. would talk much of me. But when the full wish for leisure. And I resolved in Thy sight. and having been purchased by Thee. and out of what low and deep recess was my free-will called forth in a moment. this our vow and purpose might also find some to commend it. was now a joy to part with. brighter than all light. Now was my soul free from the biting cares of canvassing and getting. whom for black Thou hadst made bright. amid too great literary labour. now ascending from the valley of tears. so that all looking on this act of mine. and weltering in filth. and that our good should be evil spoken of. and by the pain in my chest to show that they were injured. but to quit beforehand a public profession. and destroying coals against the subtle tongue. but to men. Nevertheless. and would out of love devour us. and they fired us so vehemently. it now wanted but very few days unto the Vacation of the Vintage. Thou hadst given sharp arrows. that people should repute and dispute upon my purpose. Thou true and highest sweetness. and my shoulders unto Thy light burden. And what end had it served me. this had troubled me. my Helper and my Redeemer? How sweet did it at once become to me. should no longer buy at my mouth arms for their madness. then in a regular way to take my leave. And very seasonably. that we should not sink down to the abyss. and my health. though not to flesh and blood. but gently to withdraw. Our purpose then was known to Thee. it seemed like ostentation not to wait for the vacation now so near. my brightness. and we carried Thy words as it were fixed in our entrails: and the examples of Thy servants. and to breathe deeply with difficulty. would thwart. because for Thy Name's sake which Thou hast hallowed throughout the earth. not tumultuously to tear. the service of my tongue from the marts of lip-labour: that the young. but in lying dotages and law-skirmishes. and scratching off the itch of lust. nor in Thy peace. other than our own friends. But where through all those years. but more hidden than all depths. and I resolved to endure them. and to refuse any full or lengthened speaking. and my riches. sweeter than all pleasure. Thou hadst pierced our hearts with Thy charity. not extinguish us. as if I had desired to appear some great one. For we had agreed among ourselves not to let it out abroad to any: although to us. and observing how near was the time of vintage which I wished to anticipate. kindled and burned up that our heavy torpor. For Thou didst cast them forth from me.

yet they were endured manfully. and yet hereby. whereby he was most straitly bound. had not patience taken its place. I suffered myself to sit even one hour in the chair of lies. pardoned and remitted this sin also. For what other place is there for such a soul? There he liveth. being also a faithful member of the Church Catholic. whereof he asked much of me. not as yet endued with any Sacraments of Thy Church. yet hadst Thou mercy not on him only. Thanks unto Thee. endlessly happy. his wife one of the faithful. more rigidly than by any other chain. in our absence. didst Thou release from the flesh. some of Thy servants. my brethren. but his spiritual mouth unto Thy fountain. O Lord. shalt reward him in the resurrection of the just. my sweet friend. in that rich mountain.might see how that Thou art the Lord. we are Thine: Thy suggestions and consolations tell us. seeing Thou hast already given him the lot of the righteous. be a Christian on any other terms than on those he could not. Perchance. but Nebridius joy. but a most ardent searcher out of truth. Full then of such joy. Now lays he not his ear to my mouth. For he would not. Nor would I be contentious. But hast not Thou. wished me never to have the freedom of Thy sons. excuse. but on us also: lest remembering the exceeding kindness of our friend towards us. Whatever that be. and one of the faithful. and was fixed. for their sons' sake. had left me. adopted of a freed man: there he liveth. he was seized with bodily sickness. and that no feigned. However. it may have been some twenty days. which is signified by that bosom. Nor do I . my God. had fallen into the pit of that most pernicious error. which might something moderate the offence taken by those who. and Thy child. for the covetousness which aforetime bore a part of this heavy business. he believed as we did. there lives my Nebridius. I endured till that interval of time were run. yet unable to number him among Thy flock. with the eternal freshness of Thy Paradise: for that Thou hast forgiven him his sins upon earth. and serving Thee in perfect chastity and continence amongst his people in Africa. his whole house having through him first been made Christian. was he let and hindered from the journey which we had now essayed. and drinketh as much as he can receive. arose. I began even to rejoice that I had this secondary. Thou. with my other most horrible and deadly sins. O most merciful Lord. He then had at that time sorrow. and I remained alone. in me. that mountain which yieldeth milk. he offered us courteously to remain at his country-house so long as we should stay there. he saw that he should be severed from us. O Lord. may say that I sinned in this. for that being held back by bonds. For although he also. Thou now requitest Verecundus for his country-house of Cassiacum. not long after our conversion and regeneration by Thy Baptism. For although. being now at Rome. and therein being made a Christian. Thou knowest. our God. that with a heart fully set on Thy service. Thine own mountain. not being yet a Christian. Whom. a poor inexperienced man. wisdom in proportion to his thirst. he said. and had been overwhelmed. we should be agonised with intolerable sorrow. where from the fever of the world we reposed in Thee. in the holy water? Verecundus was worn down with care about this our blessedness. and now he lives in Abraham's bosom. Faithful in promises. he departed this life. For himself was not yet a Christian. believing the flesh of Thy Son to be a phantom: yet emerging thence. endured.

Lord. motherly love. which allow of no swelling spirit. through the whole world. in what accents spake I unto Thee. and without my knowing that they were there. from my inmost marrow. my mother cleaving to us. Whom he drinketh. and pleasant is it to me. What I there did in writing. lowering the mountains and hills of my high imaginations. for long and many they seemed. as far as friendship permitted. and were mad against the antidote which might have recovered them of their madness. And when shall I have time to rehearse all Thy great benefits towards us at that time. and hear my prayer. and exhorting him to become faithful. and smoothing my rough ways. my God. and heard my words. Now was the day come wherein I was in deed to be freed of my Rhetoric Professorship. And I blessed Thee. lest they should think I spake it for their sakes! Because in truth neither should I speak the same things. and how Thou hast evened me. Lord. when I read the Psalms of David. straightening my crookedness. and awaiting Nebridius to follow us. Have mercy upon me. for the love I bare to the easeful liberty. panting from the school of pride. by what inward goads Thou tamedst me. And it was done. O Lord. which he would not at first vouchsafe to have inserted in our writings. if I perceived that they heard . Thou didst rescue my tongue. nor can any hide himself from Thy heat. than of the wholesome herbs of the Church. against the pride of mankind! And yet they are sung through the whole world. Christian piety! Oh. nor in the same way. as what with myself alone. that our conversion was of such sort. whence Thou hadst before rescued my heart. Oh. and a novice in Thy real love. resting in that villa. rejoicing. before Thee: what with Nebridius. to confess to Thee. I have sought Thy face: Thy face. which was now enlisted in Thy service. what accents did I utter unto Thee in those Psalms. My heart hath said unto Thee. without my knowing whether they heard. which the Lord hath now broken down. my Epistles bear witness. in tribulation Thou enlargedst me. if possible. the God of my righteousness heard me. For rather would he have them savour of the lofty cedars of the Schools. whereof in thought I was already freed. in this breathing-time as it were. could have beheld my countenance. the antidote against serpents. my books may witness. being so near. art mindful of us. Would that what I uttered on these words. those faithful songs. and how Thou also subduedst the brother of my heart. they could hear. for they knew not those Sacraments. How I would they had then been somewhere near me. though still. he was all but doing: and so. and on fire to rehearse them. in female garb with masculine faith. that I might sing to Thee. with Alypius a Catechumen. as well what I debated with others. and how that Psalm wrought upon me: When I called. those medicines. who was absent. namely.think that he is so inebriated therewith. With what vehement and bitter sorrow was I angered at the Manichees! and again I pitied them. O Lord. will I seek. of a married estate. which. as to forget me. our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. with the tranquillity of age. and sounds of devotion. retiring with all mine to the villa. unto the name of Thy Only Begotten. So were we then. comforting Verecundus. when I read the fourth Psalm in that time of my rest. who sorrowed. and how was I by them kindled towards Thee. as yet a Catechumen. according to his measure. lo! those days rolled by at length. especially when hasting on to yet greater mercies? For my remembrance recalls me. seeing Thou. Alypius.

O Lord. And how was I moved. wasting away time. we may be light in Thee. and of the revelation of Thy just judgment. and wine. that the Lord hath magnified His Holy One. and seek after leasing? Know this. but we are enlightened by Thee. . where I had sacrificed. was there vanity and leasing. and again kindled with hope. for by a true death in the flesh did He die for us. not knowing. and sought after leasing. And He had already sent Him. I trembled for fear. slow of heart? why do ye love vanity. that I might not sin in time to come! Yea. but I knew it not. Nor would I be multiplied with worldly goods. how long slow of heart? why do ye love vanity. because He was now magnified. in the bitterness of my remembrance. I was grieved that I could not show It them. Know this: and I so long. as when I spake by and for myself before Thee. How long. to be justly angry. the Spirit of truth. who now intercedeth unto Thee for us. where I was inwardly pricked. Who will show us good things? And we would say. For in those phantoms which I had held for truths. O Father. the Spirit was not yet given. and hadst put gladness in my heart. finding it inwardly. whence from on high He should send His promise. so long as they brought me their heart in their eyes roving abroad from Thee. and said. nor if I spake them would they so receive them. Oh that they were wearied out with their famine. and they hear. Be angry. for that it was not another nature of a people of darkness which sinned for me. For we are not that light which enlighteneth every man. and Thou wouldest hear them when they cried unto Thee. loved vanity. which having tasted. because it was spoken unto such as I remembered myself to have been. Which would they had heard.there hadst Thou begun to grow sweet unto me. out of the natural feelings of my soul. while they said. And Thou. who yet love vanity and seek after leasing! They would perchance have been troubled. and ascending into heaven. and sin not. when Thy good Spirit turning unto us. as I read this outwardly. For till then.. And I cried out. Nor were my good things now without. the Comforter. as they say who are not angry at themselves. where I was angry within myself in my chamber. nor sought with the eyes of flesh in that earthly sun. said. and oil. and waste themselves on the things seen and temporal. He cries out. rising again from the dead. and I spake aloud many things earnestly and forcibly. putting my trust in Thee. I further read. whereas I had in Thy eternal Simple Essence other corn. How long? He cries out. hadst already magnified Thy Holy One. Who will show us good things? For there. for they that would have joy from without soon become vain. that having been sometimes darkness. who had now learned to be angry at myself for things past. The light of Thy countenance is sealed upon us. and treasure up wrath against the day of wrath. and have vomited it up. and setting Him at Thy right hand. slaying my old man and commencing the purpose of a new life. And the prophet cries out. and sought after leasing: and therefore I heard and trembled. and with rejoicing in Thy mercy. and in their famished thoughts do lick their very shadows. and seek after leasing? For I had loved vanity. O ye sons of men. O my God.and saw me. raising Him from the dead. and wasted by time. He had sent Him. because Jesus was not yet glorified. and all issued forth both by mine eyes and voice. Oh that they could see the eternal Internal.

And with a loud cry of my heart I cried out in the next verse, O in peace, O for The Self-same! O what said he, I will lay me down and sleep, for who shall hinder us, when cometh to pass that saying which is written, Death is swallowed up in victory? And Thou surpassingly art the Self-same, Who art not changed; and in Thee is rest which forgetteth all toil, for there is none other with Thee, nor are we to seek those many other things, which are not what Thou art: but Thou, Lord, alone hast made me dwell in hope. I read, and kindled; nor found I what to do to those deaf and dead, of whom myself had been, a pestilent person, a bitter and a blind bawler against those writings, which are honied with the honey of heaven, and lightsome with Thine own light: and I was consumed with zeal at the enemies of this Scripture. When shall I recall all which passed in those holy-days? Yet neither have I forgotten, nor will I pass over the severity of Thy scourge, and the wonderful swiftness of Thy mercy. Thou didst then torment me with pain in my teeth; which when it had come to such height that I could not speak, it came into my heart to desire all my friends present to pray for me to Thee, the God of all manner of health. And this I wrote on wax, and gave it them to read. Presently so soon as with humble devotion we had bowed our knees, that pain went away. But what pain? or how went it away? I was affrighted, O my Lord, my God; for from infancy I had never experienced the like. And the power of Thy Nod was deeply conveyed to me, and rejoicing in faith, I praised Thy Name. And that faith suffered me not to be at ease about my past sins, which were not yet forgiven me by Thy baptism. The vintage-vacation ended, I gave notice to the Milanese to provide their scholars with another master to sell words to them; for that I had both made choice to serve Thee, and through my difficulty of breathing and pain in my chest was not equal to the Professorship. And by letters I signified to Thy Prelate, the holy man Ambrose, my former errors and present desires, begging his advice what of Thy Scriptures I had best read, to become readier and fitter for receiving so great grace. He recommended Isaiah the Prophet: I believe, because he above the rest is a more clear foreshower of the Gospel and of the calling of the Gentiles. But I, not understanding the first lesson in him, and imagining the whole to be like it, laid it by, to be resumed when better practised in our Lord's own words. Thence, when the time was come wherein I was to give in my name, we left the country and returned to Milan. It pleased Alypius also to be with me born again in Thee, being already clothed with the humility befitting Thy Sacraments; and a most valiant tamer of the body, so as, with unwonted venture, to wear the frozen ground of Italy with his bare feet. We joined with us the boy Adeodatus, born after the flesh, of my sin. Excellently hadst Thou made him. He was not quite fifteen, and in wit surpassed many grave and learned men. I confess unto Thee Thy gifts, O Lord my God, Creator of all, and abundantly able to reform our deformities: for I had no part in that boy, but the sin. For that we brought him up in Thy discipline, it was Thou, none else, had inspired us with it. I confess unto Thee Thy gifts. There is a book of ours entitled The Master; it is a dialogue between him and me. Thou knowest that all there ascribed to the person

conversing with me were his ideas, in his sixteenth year. Much besides, and yet more admirable, I found in him. That talent struck awe into me. And who but Thou could be the workmaster of such wonders? Soon didst Thou take his life from the earth: and I now remember him without anxiety, fearing nothing for his childhood or youth, or his whole self. Him we joined with us, our contemporary in grace, to he brought up in Thy discipline: and we were baptised, and anxiety for our past life vanished from us. Nor was I sated in those days with the wondrous sweetness of considering the depth of Thy counsels concerning the salvation of mankind. How did I weep, in Thy Hymns and Canticles, touched to the quick by the voices of Thy sweet-attuned Church! The voices flowed into mine ears, and the Truth distilled into my heart, whence the affections of my devotion overflowed, and tears ran down, and happy was I therein. Not long had the Church of Milan begun to use this kind of consolation and exhortation, the brethren zealously joining with harmony of voice and hearts. For it was a year, or not much more, that Justina, mother to the Emperor Valentinian, a child, persecuted Thy servant Ambrose, in favour of her heresy, to which she was seduced by the Arians. The devout people kept watch in the Church, ready to die with their Bishop Thy servant. There my mother Thy handmaid, bearing a chief part of those anxieties and watchings, lived for prayer. We, yet unwarmed by the heat of Thy Spirit, still were stirred up by the sight of the amazed and disquieted city. Then it was first instituted that after the manner of the Eastern Churches, Hymns and Psalms should be sung, lest the people should wax faint through the tediousness of sorrow: and from that day to this the custom is retained, divers (yea, almost all) Thy congregations, throughout other parts of the world following herein. Then didst Thou by a vision discover to Thy forenamed Bishop where the bodies of Gervasius and Protasius the martyrs lay hid (whom Thou hadst in Thy secret treasury stored uncorrupted so many years), whence Thou mightest seasonably produce them to repress the fury of a woman, but an Empress. For when they were discovered and dug up, and with due honour translated to the Ambrosian Basilica, not only they who were vexed with unclean spirits (the devils confessing themselves) were cured, but a certain man who had for many years been blind, a citizen, and well known to the city, asking and hearing the reason of the people's confused joy, sprang forth desiring his guide to lead him thither. Led thither, he begged to be allowed to touch with his handkerchief the bier of Thy saints, whose death is precious in Thy sight. Which when he had done, and put to his eyes, they were forthwith opened. Thence did the fame spread, thence Thy praises glowed, shone; thence the mind of that enemy, though not turned to the soundness of believing, was yet turned back from her fury of persecuting. Thanks to Thee, O my God. Whence and whither hast Thou thus led my remembrance, that I should confess these things also unto Thee? which great though they be, I had passed by in forgetfulness. And yet then, when the odour of Thy ointments was so fragrant, did we not run after Thee. Therefore did I more weep among the singing of Thy Hymns, formerly sighing after Thee, and at length breathing in Thee, as far as the breath may enter into this our house of grass.

Thou that makest men to dwell of one mind in one house, didst join with us Euodius also, a young man of our own city. Who being an officer of Court, was before us converted to Thee and baptised: and quitting his secular warfare, girded himself to Thine. We were together, about to dwell together in our devout purpose. We sought where we might serve Thee most usefully, and were together returning to Africa: whitherward being as far as Ostia, my mother departed this life. Much I omit, as hastening much. Receive my confessions and thanksgivings, O my God, for innumerable things whereof I am silent. But I will not omit whatsoever my soul would bring forth concerning that Thy handmaid, who brought me forth, both in the flesh, that I might be born to this temporal light, and in heart, that I might be born to Light eternal. Not her gifts, but Thine in her, would I speak of; for neither did she make nor educate herself. Thou createdst her; nor did her father and mother know what a one should come from them. And the sceptre of Thy Christ, the discipline of Thine only Son, in a Christian house, a good member of Thy Church, educated her in Thy fear. Yet for her good discipline was she wont to commend not so much her mother's diligence, as that of a certain decrepit maid-servant, who had carried her father when a child, as little ones used to be carried at the backs of elder girls. For which reason, and for her great age, and excellent conversation, was she, in that Christian family, well respected by its heads. Whence also the charge of her master's daughters was entrusted to her, to which she gave diligent heed, restraining them earnestly, when necessary, with a holy severity, and teaching them with a grave discretion. For, except at those hours wherein they were most temporately fed at their parents' table, she would not suffer them, though parched with thirst, to drink even water; preventing an evil custom, and adding this wholesome advice: "Ye drink water now, because you have not wine in your power; but when you come to be married, and be made mistresses of cellars and cupboards, you will scorn water, but the custom of drinking will abide." By this method of instruction, and the authority she had, she refrained the greediness of childhood, and moulded their very thirst to such an excellent moderation that what they should not, that they would not. And yet (as Thy handmaid told me her son) there had crept upon her a love of wine. For when (as the manner was) she, as though a sober maiden, was bidden by her parents to draw wine out of the hogshed, holding the vessel under the opening, before she poured the wine into the flagon, she sipped a little with the tip of her lips; for more her instinctive feelings refused. For this she did, not out of any desire of drink, but out of the exuberance of youth, whereby it boils over in mirthful freaks, which in youthful spirits are wont to be kept under by the gravity of their elders. And thus by adding to that little, daily littles (for whoso despiseth little things shall fall by little and little), she had fallen into such a habit as greedily to drink off her little cup brim-full almost of wine. Where was then that discreet old woman, and that her earnest countermanding? Would aught avail against a secret disease, if Thy healing hand, O Lord, watched not over us? Father, mother, and governors absent, Thou present, who createdst, who callest, who also by those set over us, workest something towards the salvation of our souls, what didst Thou then, O my God? how didst Thou cure her? how heal her? didst Thou not out of another soul bring forth a hard and a sharp taunt, like a

" And when they. didst by the very unhealthiness of one soul heal another. than by her parents to Thee. as in his affections. stung to the quick. knowing what a choleric husband she endured. earnest advice: "That from the time they heard the marriage writings read to them. she promised the like reward to any who. marvelled that it had never been heard. to please her. yet bore even in their faces marks of shame. and in a temper to receive it. who had milder husbands. Her mother-in-law also. when alone with her. those who observed it not. she served him as her lord. with most bitter insult. he might be made chaste. she so overcame by observance and persevering endurance and meekness. dost Thou repay them. that Patricius had beaten his wife. she taught them her practice above mentioned. so soon as she was of marriageable age. saw the foulness of her fault. should speak ill of her daughter-in-law to her: and . as in jest. or that there had been any domestic difference between them. Then. In a word. As flattering friends pervert. even when another. But Thou. Yet not what by them Thou doest. so reproachful enemies mostly correct. For she looked for Thy mercy upon him. or lest herself also should have anger. whereby they were made servants. not in deed only. Only when he was smoothed and tranquil. Those wives who observed it found the good. and so. and confidentially asking the reason. and the ruled turbulence of the tide of times. asking him to correct them. Lord. at her will who had discovered them. falling to words (as it happens) with her little mistress. he was fervid. is reformed through words of his. But besides this. but not even in word. calling her wine-bibber. for discovering it thus late. while many matrons. remembering their condition. and instantly condemned and forsook it. and for the well-ordering of the family. Brought up thus modestly and soberly. they should account them as indentures. ought not to set themselves up against their lords. With which taunt she. and suffered.lancet out of Thy secret store. giving them. and did it in private. when he observes this. nor by any token perceived. preaching Thee unto him by her conversation. lest any. who turnest to Thy purposes the deepest currents. when in compliance with his mother. even for one day. at first by whisperings of evil servants incensed against her. so in anger: but she had learnt not to resist an angry husband. if haply he had overhastily taken offence. either for that the time and place of the quarrel so found them. For she in her anger sought to vex her young mistress. taunted her with this fault. he had with stripes corrected those discovered. she would blame their tongues. and with one touch remove all that foul stuff? For a maid-servant with whom she used to go to the cellar. making her reverently amiable. would in familiar talk blame their husbands' lives. not to amend her. and admirable unto her husband. by which Thou ornamentedst her. found no relief. And she so endured the wronging of her bed as never to have any quarrel with her husband thereon. and returned thanks. and did her diligence to win him unto Thee. whom he wished to be reformed. being bestowed upon a husband. that she of her own accord discovered to her son the meddling tongues whereby the domestic peace betwixt her and her daughter-in-law had been disturbed. and made subject rather by Thee to her parents. Governor of all in heaven and earth. that believing in Thee. should ascribe it to his own power. but what themselves purposed. she would give an account of her actions.

us. O Lord (whom on occasion of Thy own gift Thou sufferest to speak). A small good this might appear to me. we knew not). such as swelling and indigested choler uses to break out into. it ought to seem a light thing not to toment or increase ill will by ill words. as I believe. in whose womb Thou createdst me. the fountain of life. We were discoursing then together. for that through the witness of the fruits of a holy conversation they perceived Thy presence in her heart. Lastly. of what sort the eternal life of the saints was to be. teaching her in the school of the heart. which is with Thee. but what might tend to their reconcilement. that hearing on both sides most bitter things. But yet we gasped with the mouth of our heart. Thyself. who before her sleeping in Thee lived united together. towards the very end of his earthly life. The day now approaching whereon she was to depart this life (which day Thou well knewest. we might in some sort meditate upon so high a mystery. did I not to my grief know numberless persons. was. as she saw them swerving from Thee. she showed herself such a peacemaker. where removed from the din of men. Such was she. Finally. she never would disclose aught of the one unto the other. at Ostia. and reaching forth unto those things which are before. unless one study withal by good words to quench it. This great gift also thou bestowedst. and forgetting those things which are behind. that being bedewed thence according to our capacity. upon that good handmaid of Thine. which Thou art. For she had been the wife of one man. not only not . that the very highest delight of the earthly senses. in the very purest material light. by Thy secret ways so ordering it. so often travailing in birth of them. who through some horrible and wide-spreading contagion of sin. And when our discourse was brought to that point. her most inward Instructor. did in her much praise and honour and love Thee. which before he was a believer she had borne from him. my mercy. did she gain unto Thee. her own husband. after those heavenly streams of Thy fountain. so served us. whereas to humane humanity. that she and I stood alone. O my God. nor had she to complain of that in him as a believer. of all of us Thy servants. as though she had been child to us all. whosoever of them knew her. was well reported of for good works. they lived together with a remarkable sweetness of mutual kindness. Thyself. nor ear heard. it came to pass. not only disclose to persons mutually angered things said in anger. we were recruiting from the fatigues of a long journey. did she so take care of. that between any disagreeing and discordant parties where she was able. for the voyage. leaning in a certain window. when the crudities of enmities are breathed out in sour discourses to a present friend against an absent enemy. having received the grace of Thy baptism. as though she had been mother of us all. in respect of the sweetness of that life. we were enquiring between ourselves in the presence of the Truth. She was also the servant of Thy servants. very sweetly. but add withal things never spoken. alone. had requited her parents. had brought up children. nor hath it entered into the heart of man. had govemed her house piously. which looked into the garden of the house where we now lay.none now venturing. which eye hath not seen.

she fell sick of a fever. that I might see thee a Catholic Christian before I died. nor in the dark riddle of a similitude. though we shall not all be changed? Such things was I speaking. For scarce five days after. And while we were discoursing and panting after her. and in swift thought touched on that Eternal Wisdom which abideth over all)." are not in her." did by degrees pass through all things bodily. We made not ourselves. yea the very soul be hushed to herself. hushed all dreams and imaginary revelations. and other visions of kind far unlike be withdrawn. now that my hopes in this world are accomplished. Thou knowest that in that day when we were speaking of these things. and we sighed. and discourse. and returned to vocal expressions of our mouth. and this one ravish. to "have been. and what shall be." and "hereafter to be. our Lord. contemptible to us. and wrap up its beholder amid these inward joys. And what is like unto Thy Word. and was for a while . so that life might be for ever like that one moment of understanding which now we sighed after.If then having uttered this. and whatsoever exists only in transition. nor Angel's voice. For to "have been. they too should be hushed. and she is not made. and admiring of Thy works. yea rather. as she hath been. having roused only our ears to Him who made them. nor sound of thunder.worthy of comparison. by inward musing. might hear His Very Self without these (as we two now strained ourselves. who endureth in Himself without becoming old. and even if not in this very manner. not by them but by Himself. but not even of mention. and by not thinking on self surmount self. Lord. I remember not. we slightly touched on her with the whole effort of our heart. "Son." and to "be hereafter. and so shall she be ever. even the very heaven whence sun and moon and stars shine upon the earth. and this world with all its delights became. not through any tongue of flesh. but might hear Whom in these things we love. My God hath done this for me more abundantly. my mother said. but only "to be. that we may hear His Word. and waters. we were soaring higher yet. every tongue and every sign. and maketh all things new? We were saying then: If to any the tumult of the flesh were hushed. and where life is the Wisdom by whom all these things are made. for mine own part I have no further delight in any thing in this life. hushed also the pole of heaven. and air. and we came to our own minds. that we might arrive at that region of never-failing plenty. and went beyond them. all these say. where Thou feedest Israel for ever with the food of truth. since if any could hear. -could this be continued on. and to what I am here. and these same words. that I should now see thee withal. as we spake. were not this. What I do here any longer. despising earthly happiness. become His servant: what do I here?" What answer I made her unto these things. Enter into thy Master's joy? And when shall that be? When we shall all rise again. One thing there was for which I desired to linger for a while in this life. but is. and absorb. and He alone speak." are not eternal. or not much more. where the word spoken has beginning and end. and in that sickness one day she fell into a swoon. hushed the images of earth." seeing she is eternal. and there we leave bound the first fruits of the Spirit. but He made us that abideth for ever. yea. we raising up ourselves with a more glowing affection towards the "Self-same. I know not. yet. and what have been.

which she had provided and prepared for herself by the body of her husband. did rejoice and give thanks to Thee. "shall you bury your mother. "What do I here any longer?" there appeared no desire of dying in her own country. as though unhappy. and there flowed withal a mighty sorrow into my heart. He should not recognise whence He were to raise me up. one day discoursed with certain of my friends about the contempt of this life. she with anxious look." On the ninth day then of her sickness. being exercised by her growing sickness. but my brother spake something. wherever you be. and looking on me and my brother standing by her. For because they had lived in great harmony together. Thou unseen God. "Lay. For we thought it not fitting to solemnise that funeral with tearful lament. but in her own land. "Where was I?" And then looking fixedly on us. that after her pilgrimage beyond the seas. was that religious and holy soul freed from the body. I knew not. when she said." saith she. "what he saith": and soon after to us both. Of this we were assured on good grounds. that you would remember me at the Lord's altar. In like manner also a childish feeling in me. which was.withdrawn from these visible things. but she was soon brought back to her senses. considering Thy gifts." saith she. wishing for her. and the blessing of death: and when they were amazed at such courage which Thou hadst given to a woman. which Thou instillest into the hearts of Thy faithful ones. checked by us all." I held my peace and refrained weeping. or altogether dead. she also wished (so little can the human mind embrace things divine) to have this addition to that happiness. when I was absent. how careful and anxious she had ever been as to her place of burial. "this body any where. the boy Adeodatus burst out into a loud lament. checking him with her eyes. was checked and silenced. Whereat. that she might die. that when we were now at Ostia. I heard afterwards also. recalling what I before knew. and woe was me in such a strife! But when she breathed her last. and the three-and-thirtieth of mine. I closed her eyes. finding its vent in weeping. she held her peace. she with a mother's confidence. . mine eyes at the same time. But I. whereas she was neither unhappy in her death. and to have it remembered among men. nor was it to be feared lest at the end of the world. We hastened round her. let not the care for that any way disquiet you: this only I request. though indeed in that our discourse also in the window. for that he still savoured such things. as the happier lot. with grief amazed: "Here. and asked. by the violent command of my mind. held his peace. not in a strange place." And having delivered this sentiment in what words she could. "Nothing is far to God. the testimony of her good conversation and her faith unfeigned. and rejoiced admiring what she had so disclosed to me. then. whence wondrous fruits do spring. and then looking upon me: "Behold. nor altogether dead. through my heart's youthful voice." she saith. and the fifty-sixth year of her age. said to us enquiringly. "Whether she were not afraid to leave her body so far from her own city?" she replied. for thereby do they for the most part express grief for the departed. But when this emptiness had through the fulness of Thy goodness begun to cease in her heart. what was earthly of this united pair had been permitted to be united beneath the same earth. which was overflowing into tears. drank up their fountain wholly dry. and groanings.

I blamed the weakness of my feelings. hast poured Soft slumbers o'er the night. upon my memory by this one instance. Who. as I could. many brethren and religious women came together. And being very much displeased that these human things had such power over me. to heal my sorrow. That to our limbs the power Of toil may be renew'd. which gave way a little unto me. and was the same as before I bathed. and woke up again. which in the due order and appointment of our natural condition must needs come to pass. I believe. but again came. our whole house answering him. discoursed upon something fitting the time. yet not so as to burst out into tears.What then was it which did grievously pain me within. For Thou art the "Maker of all. when the Sacrifice of our ransom was offered for her. And behold. Then I slept. Who madest us. that she never had heard any harsh or reproachful sound uttered by my mouth against her. as the manner there is. and by this balm of truth assuaged that torment. O Lord. which. together with those who thought not fit to leave me. they unknowing and listening intently. which now feeds upon no deceiving Word. and conceiving me to be without all sense of sorrow. It seemed also good to me to go and bathe. robing day in light. my soul was wounded. yet was I the whole day in secret heavily sad. But in Thy ears. And this also I confess unto Thy mercy. what comparison is there betwixt that honour that I paid to her. known to Thee. the corpse was carried to the burial." and mentioned. and was thus worn by a double sorrow. with great affection of love. of hers and mine together. the Lord. still I knew what I was keeping down in my heart. how strong is the bond of all habit. Euodius took up the Psalter. where none of them heard. and refrained my flood of grief. and as I was alone in my bed. I (in a part of the house. yet Thou didst not. but a fresh wound wrought through the sudden wrench of that most sweet and dear custom of living together? I joyed indeed in her testimony. that I bathed. . impressing. as with a tide. and her slavery for me? Being then forsaken of so great comfort in her. For the bitterness of sorrow could not exude out of my heart. we went and returned without tears. and with troubled mind prayed Thee. For neither in those prayers which we poured forth unto Thee. when now the corpse was by the grave's side. when. did I weep even during those prayers. The boy then being stilled from weeping. previous to its being laid therein. And Ruler of the height. in that her last sickness. where I might properly). she called me "dutiful. had been made but one. having heard that the bath had its name (balneum) from the Greek Balaneion for that it drives sadness from the mind. mingling her endearments with my acts of duty. But yet. as the manner is. nor to change of countenance. I remembered those true verses of Thy Ambrose. Father of the fatherless. and began to sing. I will sing of mercy and judgments to Thee. But hearing what we were doing. and found my grief not a little softened. even upon a soul. with a new grief I grieved for my grief. and whilst they (whose office it was) made ready for the burial. O my God. and that life rent asunder as it were. the Psalm.

the day of her dissolution now at hand. but accept. Let Thy mercy be exalted above Thy justice. let him weep himself for my sins unto Thee. even before her release from the flesh. I believe. laying aside mercy. Whosoever shall say unto his brother. Forgive her. God of my heart. yet dare I not say that from what time Thou regeneratedst her by baptism. by the Medicine of our wounds. and from her heart forgave her debtors their debts. took no thought to have her body sumptuously wound up. for which I give thanks to Thee with joy. O Lord. the Truth. And sorrows be subdu'd. and interpret it. since Thy words are true. and wilt have compassion on whom Thou hast had compassion. These things she . reposing my heart upon them. and Thou hast promised mercy unto the merciful. the Father of all the brethren of Thy Christ.And hearts be rais'd that sink and cower. we confidently hope to find some place with Thee. and now sitting at Thy right hand maketh intercession to Thee for us. laying aside for a while her good deeds. I therefore. who had for many years wept for me that I might live in Thine eyes). her holy tenderness and observance towards us. Thy Son. But whosoever reckons up his real merits to Thee. I know that she dealt mercifully. or embalmed with spices. enter not into judgment with her. shall be in danger of hell fire. no word issued from her mouth against Thy Commandment. forgive. who would have scornfully interpreted my weeping. whereof I was suddenly deprived: and I was minded to weep in Thy sight. with a heart cured of that wound. I pour out unto Thee. And woe be even unto the commendable life of men. Thou fool. let him not deride me. flowing from a spirit shaken by the thoughts of the dangers of every soul that dieth in Adam. our God. Read it. which Thou gavest them to be. I beseech Thee. had lived to the praise of Thy name for her faith and conversation. I entreat Thee. do now beseech Thee for the sins of my mother. Thou shouldest examine it. And now. For she. and it found rest in them. who will. Thou hast already done what I ask. how he will: and if he finds sin therein. for it was in Thy ears. not in those of man. for her and for myself. but rather. Lord." And then by little and little I recovered my former thoughts of Thy handmaid. O my Praise and my Life. nor desired she a choice monument. since the water of salvation. or to be buried in her own land. But now. And although she having been quickened in Christ. what reckons he up to Thee but Thine own gifts? O that men would know themselves to be men. a far different kind of tears. Hearken unto me. her holy conversation towards Thee. if he be one of large charity. And. who wilt have mercy on whom Thou wilt have mercy. But because Thou art not extreme in enquiring after sins. if. whatever she may have contracted in so many years. hath said. and that he that glorieth would glory in the Lord. wherein it might seem blameworthy for an earthly feeling. to overflow as much as they desired. that I wept my mother for a small portion of an hour (the mother who for the time was dead to mine eyes. the free-will offerings of my mouth. in her behalf and in my own. Who hung upon the tree. And I gave way to the tears which I before restrained. in behalf of that Thy handmaid. do Thou also forgive her debts. Lord. in writing I confess it unto Thee.

Thy handmaid bound her soul by the bond of faith. But now. O Lord. that I may be ashamed of myself. and so take us from Him? Unto the Sacrament of which our ransom. and beloved. Who shall restore to Him the innocent blood? Who repay Him the price wherewith He bought us. that she might win him also unto Thee. may through my confessions. am I . what could be hidden in me though I would not confess it? For I should hide Thee from me. how I know not. through which the enemy was triumphed over. by whose bodies Thou broughtest me into this life. and fit it for Thee. cometh to the light. may at Thy Altar remember Monnica Thy handmaid. lest she be convicted and seized by the crafty accuser: but she will answer that her sins are forgiven her by Him. Other things of this life are the less to be sorrowed for. by which the hand-writing that was against us is blotted out. the more they are sorrowed for. For she will not answer that she owes nothing. BOOK X Let me know Thee. that Thou mayest have and hold it without spot or wrinkle. more abundantly fulfilled to her. who knowest me: let me know Thee. with patience bringing forth fruit unto Thee. and longed for. enter into it. Thou shinest out. through the prayers of many. found nothing in Him. and art pleasing. and the more to be sorrowed for. Who owed nothing. that I am displeased with myself. And from Thee. May they with devout affection remember my parents in this transitory light. and choose Thee. This would I do in my heart before Thee in confession: and in my writing. O Lord. Thou lovest the truth. be. Power of my soul. not me from Thee. O Lord. that so many as shall read these Confessions. more than through my prayers. This is my hope. her sometimes husband. whom she obeyed. therefore do I speak. Let none sever her from Thy protection: let neither the lion nor the dragon interpose himself by force or fraud. who summing up our offences. the less men sorrow for them. May she rest then in peace with the husband before and after whom she had never any.enjoined us not. O Lord my God. And inspire. and renounce myself. To Thee therefore. and seeking what to lay to our charge. with Patricius. and my fellow-citizens in that eternal Jerusalem which Thy pilgrim people sigheth after from their Exodus. but in Thee. and pen I serve. but desired only to have her name commemorated at Thy Altar. when I rejoice healthfully. before many witnesses. and heart. in Whom we conquer. Thy sons my masters. and neither please Thee nor myself. whom with voice. for that my groaning is witness. my brethren under Thee our Father in our Catholic Mother. inspire Thy servants my brethren. as I am known. and in this hope do I rejoice. That so my mother's last request of me. which she had served without intermission of one day: whence she knew the holy Sacrifice to be dispensed. to Whom none can repay that price which He. paid for us. and he that doth it. even unto their return thither. unto whose eyes the abyss of man's conscience is naked. For behold.

and she in them. make plain unto me what fruit I may reap by doing it." unless himself lieth? But because charity believeth all things (that is. telleth them that in my confessions I lie not. whether I say true.but will they know? For charity. that it sleep not in despair and say "I cannot. then to confess to Thee is nothing else than to be displeased with myself. My confession then. it cries aloud. and not silently. that Thou mightest bless me in Thee. not what I have been? For that other fruit I have seen and spoken if they could heal all my infirmities. O my God. and the cry of the thought which Thy ear knoweth. but with the words of my soul. when read and heard. is strong. when from myself they hear of myself. blessest the godly. . For the confessions of my past sins. which Thou hast forgiven and covered. For in sound. And the good delight to hear of the past evils of such as are now freed from them. they wish it. but when holy. when by it he became conscious of his own weakness. whose ears charity openeth unto me. nor understanding can reach. For when I am evil. among those whom knitting unto itself it maketh one). changing my soul by Faith and Thy Sacrament. it is silent. yet they believe me." but awake in the love of Thy mercy and the sweetness of Thy grace. O Lord. "It is false. with what fruit. to Whom my conscience daily confesseth. whither neither their eye. But what I now am. do I by this book confess to men also in Thy presence what I now am. But for what fruit would they hear this? Do they desire to joy with me. whereby whoso is weak. O Lord my God. I approach unto Thee? and to pray for me. that they should hear my confessions. as ready to believe. I have said. stir up the heart. in affection. when they shall hear how much I am held back by my own weight? To such will I discover myself For it is no mean fruit. believeth me. but first Thou justifieth him when ungodly. I also. trusting more in the hope of Thy mercy than in her own innocency. whatever I am. who have heard from me or of me. to whom I cannot demonstrate whether I confess truly. when they hear how near. but the spirit of man which is in him? But if they hear from Thee of themselves. who have or have not known me. my inmost Physician. not because they are evils. curious to know the lives of others. Nor do I it with words and sounds of the flesh. "The Lord lieth. will in such wise confess unto Thee." For what is it to hear from Thee of themselves. which Thou hast not first said unto me. but because they have been and are not. seeing no man knows what is in man. at the very time of making these confessions. by Thy gift. For neither do I utter any thing right unto men. nor who will not hear from Thee what themselves are? And how know they. which Thou hast not before heard from me. whereby they are good. I pray. But do Thou. and with what fruit I confess unto Thee. nor dost Thou hear any such thing from me. is made silently.a race. that men may hear. They wish then to hear me confess what I am within. whatever I am. they cannot say. nothing else than not to ascribe it to myself: because Thou. slothful to amend their own? Why seek they to hear from me what I am. but their ear is not at my heart where I am. divers desire to know. but to know themselves? and who knoweth and saith. What then have I to do with men. in Thy sight. With what fruit then. O Lord.

Who are with me. because whether it approveth or disapproveth. if I would live with Thee. but that brotherly mind which when it approveth. And that because what I do know of myself. and account myself dust and ashes. And truly. and when it disapproveth me. Almighty. until my darkness be made as the noon-day in Thy countenance. Who wilt not suffer us to be tempted above that we are able. dost judge me: because. I know not. Thou. it loveth me. and yet know I Thee that Thou art in no ways passible. my fellow-citizens. not a stranger. and let hymns and weeping go up into Thy sight. and fellow-pilgrims.O Lord my God. These are Thy servants. itself knoweth. and Thy judgments. but wilt with the temptation also make a way to escape. yea. I am a little one. I will confess also what I know not of myself. yet know I something of Thee. And do Thou. because Thou art faithful. and no ways forsaking what Thou hast begun. so long know I not it. and a secret sorrow with hope. This then I do in deed and word. I know by Thy shining upon me. Lord. But Thou. This is the fruit of my confessions of what I am. and what I know not of myself. before I am with Thee. sharers of my joy. not before Thee only. who are gone before. not that of the strange children. that we may be able to bear it. to confess this. and partners in my mortality. companions of my way. For Thou. but the spirit of a man which is in him. Let the brotherly mind love in me what Thou teachest is to be loved. sigh for my ill. but in the ears also of the believing sons of men. I am more present with myself than with Thee. Lord. mind. Thus therefore I would be heard. I will confess then what I know of myself. but I. but what I now am and what I yet am. and lament in me what Thou teachest is to be lamented. and Thou be by many entreated for us. of Thee. or are to follow on. But neither do I judge myself. my brethren. but my Father ever liveth. My good deeds are Thine appointments. Let a brotherly. not of what I have been. And there is hope. out of the hearts of my brethren. knowest all of him. Thy censers. not what I have been. Let them breathe freely at the one. and not go before in performing. Who hast made him. which neither the spirit of man that is in him. which I know not of myself. So long therefore as I be absent from Thee. sigh at the other. he pleased with the incense of Thy holy temple. To such then whom Thou commandest me to serve will I discover. what temptations I can resist. and defends me: and Thou Thyself art all my good. not face to face as yet. and my Guardian is sufficient for me. is sorry for me. although no man knoweth the things of a man. were not my soul subdued unto Thee under Thy wings. now we see through a glass darkly. in over great peril. that by many thanks should be given to Thee on our behalf. have mercy upon me according to Thy great mercy for Thine own name's sake. yet is there something of man. perfect my imperfections. my masters. and their right hand is a right hand of iniquity. But this Thy Word were little did it only command by speaking. in a secret exultation with trembling. rejoiceth for me. . For He is the same who begat me. Yet I. my evil ones are my offences. whom Thou willest to be Thy sons. O Lord. this I do under Thy wings. To such will I discover myself: they will breathe freely at my good deeds. whose mouth talketh of vanity. what I cannot. though in Thy sight I despise myself. whom Thou commandest me to serve. and my infirmity known unto Thee. and Thy gifts.

and ointments. not manna and honey.e. and it answered me. do I love Thee. behold. they are made subject unto them: and subjects cannot judge. But more deeply wilt Thou have mercy on whom Thou wilt have mercy. that they may be without excuse. on every side they bid me love Thee. and body. the beams of mine eyes. "Anaximenes was deceived. and wilt have compassion on whom Thou hast had compassion: else in deaf ears do the heaven and the earth speak Thy praises. I. all the bodily messengers reported the answers of heaven and earth. and yet I love a kind of light. "I am not He. and whatsoever are in it confessed the same. and the whole air with his inhabitants answered.Not with doubting.. so gladsome to our eyes. and meat. if one man only sees. not limbs acceptable to embracements of flesh. By which of these ought I to seek my God? I had sought Him in the body from earth to heaven. and they answered. who said. and fragrance. being understood by the things that are made. tell me something of Him. when I love Thee? not beauty of bodies. seek above us. "I am not He". " My questioning them. and there smelleth what breathing disperseth not. their appearance). But the better is the inner. Thou hast stricken my heart with Thy word. nor yet do they change their voice (i. for to it as presiding and judging. "A man. "We are not thy God. This is it which I love when I love my God. when I love my God. one without. None of these I love. another way to that. and spices. melody. so far as I could send messengers. and it answered me. nor the fair harmony of time. moon. and embracement when I love my God. and there tasteth what eating diminisheth not. Is not this corporeal figure apparent to all whose senses are perfect? why then speaks it not the same to all? Animals small and great see it." These things did my inner man know by the ministry of the outer: I the inner knew them. and there clingeth what satiety divorceth not. and said to myself. I am not God. meat. sun. And what is this? I asked the earth. Lord. but by love of them. "Who art thou?" And I answered." I asked the moving air. fragrance." And they cried out with a loud voice. Nor yet do the creatures answer such as ask. and the living creeping things. embracement of my inner man: where there shineth unto my soul what space cannot contain. nor sweet melodies of varied songs. the light. Yea also heaven. "Nor (say they) are we the God whom thou seekest. I asked the whole frame of the world about my God. But men can ask. unless they can judge. and there soundeth what time beareth not away. and all that therein is. stars. the mind. "He made us. nor the fragrant smell of flowers. that ye are not He. but they cannot ask it: because no reason is set over their senses to judge on what they report. another seeing asks. so that the invisible things of God are clearly seen. "We are not God. in me there present themselves to me soul. But what do I love." And behold. through the senses of my body. was my thoughts on them: and their form of beauty gave the answer." And I replied unto all the things which encompass the door of my flesh: "Ye have told me of my God. and melody. and all things therein. and I loved Thee. nor the brightness of the light. and earth. . " I asked the heavens. but He made us. the other within. And I turned myself unto myself. so as to appear one way to this man. nor cease to say so unto all. I asked the sea and the deeps. but He made me. but with assured consciousness.

rising by degrees unto Him Who made me. each entering in by his own gate. I will pass beyond that power whereby I am united to my body. all tastes by the mouth. not that only whereby I animate. out of some inner receptacle. and to the other senses severally. where are the treasures of innumerable images. and as they make way. they are hidden from sight. each having entered by its own avenue: as light. which are fetched. as it were. and all colours and forms of bodies by the eyes. There are all things preserved distinctly and under general heads. to be forthcoming." Now to thee I speak. thou art my better part: for thou quickenest the mass of my body. Nor yet do the things themselves enter in. but they only understand. until what I wish for be unveiled. and the ear. nor any other body is thy God. There is stored up. and brought out at need. all smells by the avenue of the nostrils. what is to each their own peculiar seats and offices. and whatever else hath been committed and laid up. as they are called for. "Is it perchance I?" These I drive away with the hand of my heart. For truth saith unto me. do through them enact. only the images of the things perceived are there in readiness. by the ears all sorts of sounds. brought into it from things of all sorts perceived by the senses. seeing it is the same power. and there laid up. that through it I should see. hot or cold. I require what I will to be brought forth. And I come to the fields and spacious palaces of my memory. but the eye. Nor can I by that power find my God. What then do I love. which forgetfulness hath not yet swallowed up and buried. but that too whereby I imbue with sense my flesh. those in front making way for the following. out of its secret place. they start forth. and appear in sight. a mass is less in a part thereof than in the whole. either by enlarging or diminishing. I will pass beyond this power of mine also. Other things come up readily. as who should say. . I the one mind. giving it life. All these doth that great harbour of the memory receive in her numberless secret and inexpressible windings. when I love my God? who is He above the head of my soul? By my very soul will I ascend to Him. O my soul. others must be longer sought after. nor earth. yea rather it speaks to all. and something instantly comes. that through it I should hear. for thought to recall. for they also perceive through the body. for this also have the horse.but appearing the same way to both. and the ear not to see. which the Lord hath framed for me: commanding the eye not to hear. When I enter there. and fill its whole frame with life. from the face of my remembrance. I will pass then beyond this power of my nature also. who compare its voice received from without. with the truth within. their very nature saith to him that seeth them: "They are a mass. heavy or light. and while one thing is desired and required. or rugged. which no body can give to a body: but thy God is even unto thee the Life of thy life. for so horse and mule that have no understanding might find Him. whatsoever besides we think. others rush out in troops. All which takes place when I repeat a thing by heart. whereby even their bodies live. ready to come when I will. But another power there is. or any other way varying those things which the sense hath come to. speaks to that. either outwardly or inwardly to the body. "Neither heaven. and by the sensation of the whole body. in unbroken order. what is hard or soft. it is dumb to this. which. being divers." This. and mule.

who can tell. at the time neither tasting nor handling. though smelling nothing. and forthwith they appear. and when. and under what feelings. but their images only. and my throat mute. nor wonder that when I spake of all these things. though they also are there. and discern betwixt black and white. I did not see them with mine eyes. nor do I myself comprehend all that I am. as present. sea. as if I saw them abroad. when another store is called for. Out of the same store do I myself with the past continually combine fresh and fresh likenesses of things which I have experienced. from what I have experienced. out of the same treasury of memory. and what I have done. Yea. yet could not have spoken of them. Here also is all. I recall at my pleasure. intrude themselves and interrupt. and that. lying dormant. These things do I within. And where should that be. There also meet I with myself. and the circuits of the stars. "and this or that will follow. earth. nor would I speak of any thereof. how they are formed. where. but remembering only. a large and boundless chamber! who ever sounded the bottom thereof? yet is this a power of mine. were the images wanting. unless I then actually saw the mountains. And though my tongue be still. if I will. stored with the images of things so many and so great. the mighty billows of the sea." say I to myself. or. smooth before rugged. the compass of the ocean. in that vast court of my memory. And I know by what sense of the body each was impressed upon me. which it containeth not of itself? Is it without it. and not within? how then doth it not comprehend itself? A wonderful admiration surprises me. the images of all I speak of are present. Therefore is the mind too strait to contain itself. apart. "I will do this or that. events and hopes. as it were. when with mine eyes I beheld them. and that ocean which I believe to be. nor are they themselves with me. and I prefer honey to sweet wine. And men go abroad to admire the heights of mountains. and laid up. heaven. which flowed in by the ears. So the other things. the broad tides of rivers. Yet did not I by seeing draw them into myself. learnt of the liberal sciences and as yet . billows. besides what I have forgotten. stars which I had seen. O my God. or other's credit. which I am reviewing. excessive great. amazement seizes me upon this. There be all which I remember. For there are present with me. which notwithstanding be there." "O that this or that might be!" "God avert this or that!" So speak I to myself: and when I speak. rivers. inwardly in my memory. and belongs unto my nature. with the same vast spaces between. nor do those images of colours. have believed: and thence again infer future actions. either on my own experience. in my memory I can produce colours. and what others I will: nor yet do sounds break in and disturb the image drawn in by my eyes. For these too I call for. and pass themselves by. Great is this force of memory. piled in and up by the other senses. and whatever I could think on therein. I discern the breath of lilies from violets. and recall myself. in that great receptacle of my mind. though it doth plainly appear by which sense each hath been brought in and stored up? For even while I dwell in darkness and silence. and all these again I reflect on. so can I sing as much as I will.Which images. Yet not these alone does the unmeasurable capacity of my memory retain.

and by marking to take heed that those things which the memory did before contain at random and unarranged. whereby it might be recalled. we gave knowledge of them. ask me not. be laid up at hand as it were in that same memory where before they lay unknown. or that it should have sounded and passed away like a voice fixed on the ear by that impress. for I have gone over all the avenues of my flesh. as if it sounded. and left out the thing. but recognised them in mine. let them say if they can. if I handled it not. the memory still conceives. but cannot find by which they entered. what the art of disputing. which verily in the belly hath now no taste. For the eyes say. and as I said. For those things are not transmitted into the memory. For when I learned them. we renew. they passed by us. but the things themselves. and yet in the memory still in a manner tasteth. "If it have not size. "Whether the thing be? what it is? of what kind it is? I do indeed hold the images of the sounds of which those words be composed. with a noise passed through the air." unless that they were already in the memory. which remembering." The touch says. what is literature. Which how they entered into me. and approving them for true. and thence wonderfully by the act of remembering. Where then? or wherefore. and now are not. but in my memory they were not. that had not the suggestion of another drawn them forth I had perchance been unable to conceive of them? Wherefore we find. how many kinds of questions there be. "If they sound. we reported of them. or as meat. removed as it were to some inner place. which is yet no place: nor are they the images thereof. it is true. whence it conveys into the memory an image of itself. when it no longer sounded. and stored as it were in wondrous cabinets." The nostrils say. is nothing else. which we are said to have learned and come to know which were I for some short space of time to cease to call to mind. I gave no notice of it." The ears say. but perceive within by themselves. in such manner exists in my memory. placed as it were at hand. But the things themselves which are signified by those sounds. "So is it. and which when removed from us. and said. without images. but so thrown back and buried as it were in deeper recesses. did I acknowledge them. I gave not credit to another man's mind. laying them up as it were. "Unless they have a savour. scattered and neglected. but their images only are with an admirable swiftness caught up. or as any thing which the body by touch perceiveth. brought forth. I handled it not. as they are. "If those images were coloured. when they were spoken. whatsoever of these I know. I commended them to it. "If they smell. In my heart then they were." Whence and how entered these things into my memory? I know not how." The taste says. that to learn these things whereof we imbibe nor the images by our senses. even before I learned them. as that I have not taken in the image. yet in my memory have I laid up not their images. For. and so readily occur to the mind familiarised to them. and that those sounds. but by conception. nor ever discerned them otherwise than in my mind. to receive. But now when I hear that there be three kinds of questions.unforgotten. they are again so . whence I might bring them forth when I willed. I never reached with any sense of my body. but themselves. And how many things of this kind does my memory bear which have been already found out. or as a smell while it passes and evaporates into air affects the sense of smell.

I have perceived also the numbers of the things with which we number all the senses of my body. but the things are neither Greek. facio and factito. the very finest. not in the same manner that my mind itself contains them. But the mind hath appropriated to itself this word (cogitation). And that I once feared. The memory containeth also reasons and laws innumerable of numbers and dimensions. or thought upon. I both remember then to have often understood these things. and with sorrow. recognises them within himself.. with joy do I remember my fore-past sorrow. The same memory contains also the affections of my mind. and what I now discern and understand. I have heard the sound of the words whereby when discussed they are denoted: but the sounds are other than the things. brought together. while he derides me. yet is it not false that I remember them. I lay up in my memory.buried. "See that you keep it in mind". For the sounds are other in Greek than in Latin. for mind is one thing. on the contrary. when it feels them.e. I have seen the lines of architects. that they must again." calling the . Many things also most falsely objected against them have I heard. For cogo (collect) and cogito (re-collect) have the same relation to each other as ago and agito. but far otherwise. "It slipped out of my mind. and I remember also that I have discerned betwixt those truths and these falsehoods objected to them. that hereafter I may remember that I understand it now. but those are still different. nor touch. But now seeing this very memory itself is mind (for when we give a thing in charge. as to the body." and. so that. but what is "recollected. nor smell. for other abode they have none: but they must be drawn together again. nor taste. Let him who seeth them not. but those numbers wherewith we number are different. into the deeper recesses. which though they be false. by the force of memory shall I call it to remembrance. we say. it is not so wonderful. and I will pity him. as if new. and without desire call to mind a past desire. nor sound. seeing they have neither colour. not what is "collected" any how. body another. and when we forget. nor Latin. that they may be known. joy. to be kept in memory. none of which hath any bodily sense impressed. Which is not wonderful. I review without fear. nor any other language. is properly said to be cogitated. according to a power of its own. and glide back. and how I learnt them I remember. Sometimes. And I perceive that the present discerning of these things is different from remembering that I oftentimes discerned them. If I therefore with joy remember some past pain of body. in the mind. and remember. they must as it were be collected together from their dispersion: whence the word "cogitation" is derived." i. like a spider's thread. when I often thought upon them. we say. All these things I remember. that I have now been able to remember these things. For without rejoicing I remember myself to have joyed. they are not the images of those lines which the eye of flesh showed me: he knoweth them. and without sorrow do I recollect my past sorrow. So then I remember also to have remembered. whosoever without any conception whatsoever of a body. as it were. he thought out thence. nor are they the images of these. and therefore they indeed are. as if hereafter I shall call to remembrance. that is to say. deride me for saying these things. "It did not come to my mind.

I name bodily health. joy. when health were named. the mind upon the joyfulness which is in it. sorrow. we should be compelled to be sad or fearful? And yet could we not speak of them. by recollection. is joyful. but of the thing which it signifies: which if I had forgotten. thence be brought. are as it were passed into the belly. I name memory. nor in discoursing discern pain from pleasure. by dividing each into its subordinate species. committed to the memory. and therefore could they. I should not know what to say thereof. but their images to my memory. but themselves are present in my memory. Ridiculous it is to imagine these to be alike. unless the same image were by the force of memory retained. they were there. yet. when by calling them to mind. when I name forgetfulness. and that image is present in my memory. calling it to mind. but the image itself is present to me. without being committed unto it. yea. and by defining it. For I recall not the image of its image. fear. and yet are they not utterly unlike. and I recognise what I name. or the memory of itself retained. But. but which the mind itself perceiving by the experience of its own passions. Nor would the sick. When . And where do I recognise it. and not by itself? What. I name a stone. or the bitterness of sorrow? Is the comparison unlike in this. where they may be stowed. and whatsoever I can dispute thereon. the mind hath joy. which. but in the memory itself? Is it also present to itself by its image. if so oft as we name grief or fear. when nothing aches: yet unless its image were present to my memory. in my memory find I what to say. I could by no means recall what the sound of this name should signify. and not their images. not only the sounds of the names according to the images impressed by the senses of the body. the things themselves not being present to my senses. I name numbers whereby we number. the memory hath sorrow. and thence do I bring it: yet am I not disturbed by any of these perturbations. as meat is by chewing the cud brought up out of the belly. the thing itself is present with me. although the thing itself were absent from the body. I name a bodily pain. unless its image also were present in my memory. and withal recognise what I name? whence should I recognise it. I remember them. yet the memory upon the sadness which is in it. being sound in body. out of my memory I bring it. Why then does not the disputer. who can readily say? Thus. when committed to the memory. the belly of the mind. as it were. how is it that when with joy I remember my past sorrow. But whether by images or no. so by recollection these out of the memory. then.memory itself the mind). but cannot taste. taste in the mouth of his musing the sweetness of joy. did we not find in our memory. behold. this being so. desire. I name the sun. I could not recognise what that sound signifies. Perchance. did I not remember it? I speak not of the sound of the name. because not in all respects like? For who would willingly speak thereof. yet it is not present with me. thus recollecting. is not sad? Does the memory perchance not belong to the mind? Who will say so? The memory then is. I name the image of the sun. when I say there be four perturbations of the mind. but notions of the very things themselves which we never received by any avenue of the body. and joy and sadness. like sweet and bitter food. recognise what were spoken. and before I recalled and brought them back.

not forgetfulness itself. I might look on and bring back in my mind. a deep and boundless manifoldness. unless we did remember forgetfulness. It is to be understood from this that forgetfulness when we remember it. is not present to the memory by itself but by its image: because if it were present by itself. if what I myself am not. the force of mine own memory is not understood by me. forgetfulness which I remember. For we are not now searching out the regions of heaven. we could never at the hearing of the name recognise the thing thereby signified. in whatever way. seeing that forgetfulness by its presence effaces even what it finds already noted? And yet. the thing itself must needs be first present. be far from me. O my God? What nature am I? A life various and manifold. But what is nearer to me than myself? And to. memory itself is. although that way be past conceiving and explaining. yet. but the privation of memory? How then is it present that I remember it. It is I myself who remember. So . If then this forgetfulness is retained in the memory through its image. But when it was present. whereby what we remember is effaced. either through images. and caverns of my memory. not through itself. or by certain notions or impressions. my memory received from them images. toil therein. It is not so wonderful. and there is no end. as the arts. Present then it is. the memory retaineth. through itself. when it is clear to me that I remember forgetfulness? Shall I say that that is not in my memory. Who now shall search out this? who shall comprehend how it is? Lord. and this am I myself. then forgetfulness is retained by memory. I fly. thus men's faces whom I have seen. truly. then plainly itself was once present.then I remember memory.over all these do I run. But what is forgetfulness. For what shall I say. how did it write its image in the memory. as far as I can. For when these things were present. which I remember? or shall I say that forgetfulness is for this purpose in my memory. while yet whatsoever is in the memory is also in the mind. yea and toil in myself. as the affections of the mind. when I remembered them in their absence. since when present I cannot remember? But if what we remember we hold it in memory. there are present both memory and forgetfulness. which being present with me. that its image might be taken. it would not cause us to remember. What am I then. yet certain am I that I remember forgetfulness itself also. or by actual presence. thus all places where I have been. and caves. I am become a heavy soil requiring over much sweat of the brow. and things reported by the other senses. I the mind. or measuring the distances of the stars. even when the mind doth not feel. Behold in the plains. present with itself: but when I remember forgetfulness. but to forget. though I cannot so much as name myself without it. and exceeding immense. Great is the power of memory. and this thing is the mind. What third way is there? How can I say that the image of forgetfulness is retained by my memory. when I remember it? How could I say this either. we forget. as all bodies. whence that image may be impressed? For thus do I remember Carthage. seeing that when the image of any thing is impressed on the memory. I dive on this side and on that. which. a fearful thing. and being so. I. that I might not forget? Both were most absurd. memory whereby I remember. that we forget not. innumerable and innumerably full of innumerable kinds of things. or enquiring the balancings of the earth. O my God. thus the health or sickness of the body.

because it was not wont to be thought upon together with him. try to recover it. not from the memory (as any visible body). whatever else occurs. upon recollection. connects itself not therewith. "Is this it?" "Is that it?" so long said I "No. O sweet Light. nor many other things they are used unto: nor indeed could they be used to any thing. allow what was named to be right. we reject it. when we seek and find any lost thing. so great the force of life. And how shall I find Thee. nor can we recognise it. and when it doth. demanded the restoration of what it missed? For instance. unless we recognise it. that I may arrive at Him who hath separated me from the four-footed beasts and made me wiser than the fowls of the air. until that present itself. I will pass then beyond memory also. But what when the memory itself loses any thing. else could they not return to their dens and nests. unless she had remembered it. but. And so it ever is. For when it was found. and sought it with a light.great is the force of memory. that I may approach unto Thee. but by the part whereof we had hold. Yea. we say. unless we remember it. it is thence it comes. until what we seek meets us. For we do not believe it as something new. on being reminded by another. and therefore is rejected. but in the memory itself? and there. she had never found it. yet should I not find it. I am mounting up through my mind towards Thee who abidest above me. I will pass beyond memory also. Or. if one thing be perchance offered instead of another. as falls out when we forget and seek that we may recollect? Where in the end do we search. if I remember Thee not? For the woman that had lost her groat. I now will pass beyond this power of mine which is called memory. and maimed. that when I was seeking any of them. and having forgotten his name. Certainly then we had forgotten it. whence Thou mayest be arrived at. and to cleave unto Thee. was the lost part sought for." until that were offered me which I sought. but by memory. And whence does that present itself. which we should not unless we recognised it. and where shall I find Thee. even in the mortal life of man. What sayest Thou to me? See. "This is it". but retained in the memory. desirous to arrive at Thee. For even beasts and birds have memory. yet its image is still retained within. unless she remembered it? I remember to have sought and found many a thing. I will pass beyond it. if we see or think of some one known to us. Notwithstanding. my God? I will pass even beyond this power of mine which is called memory: yea. because I could not recognise it. and it is sought until it be restored to sight. Which had I not remembered (whatever it were) though it were offered me. whereon the knowledge reposes equably as its wonted object. as it were. O Thou my true life. when any thing is by chance lost from the sight. Thou truly good and certain sweetness? And where shall I find Thee? If I find Thee without my memory. by the curtailment of its ancient habit. it is recognised by the image which is within: nor do we say that we have found what was lost. then do I not retain Thee in my memory. whence should she know whether it were the same. and was asked. But were it utterly blotted out of the . in that the memory felt that it did not carry on together all which it was wont. whence one may cleave unto Thee. had not the whole escaped us. What shall I do then. but out of the memory itself? for even when we recognise it. nor recognise it unless we remembered it. and when it is found. and this I thereby know. But this was lost to the eyes.

and there are. whether all severally. in whom also we all died. For when a Greek hears it in Latin. hear. for my joy I remember. What then we have utterly forgotten. until I can say. seeks not further to attain unto. for we are not delighted with the mere sound. taste. for they with one voice be asked. which if it be. and from whom we are all born with misery. as though I had forgotten it. in hope. what. For we have not as yet utterly forgotten that. and desire to be the like (though indeed they would not be delighted but for some inward knowledge thereof. I know not. even when reminded. I will seek Thee. some call to mind the thing. and many who desire to be so. How then do I seek Thee." And this could not be. than they who have it in very deed. or so forgotten it. smell. remembering that I had forgotten it? Or. whether the happy life be in the memory? For neither should we love it. seeing I have it not. unless they were thus delighted). Yea. would not so will to be happy. and my soul by Thee. my God. For my body liveth by my soul. desiring to learn it as a thing unknown. as one remembers Carthage who hath seen it? No. For a happy life is not seen with the eye. or touch my joy. or in that man who first sinned. and the knowledge of . nor wish to be the like. that my soul may live. whence it appears that it is in their knowledge. and am perplexed whether it be in the memory.mind. They have known it then. even when sad. either never having known. we should not remember it. and we all confess that we desire the thing. there is another way. as not even to remember that I had forgotten it? is not a happy life what all will. but only. yet these have by their bodily senses observed others to be eloquent. I know not. when I rejoiced. but we Latins are delighted. As then we remember joy? Perchance. and men of all other tongues. How then do I seek a happy life. "would they be happy?" they would answer without doubt. whereas a happy life. yet are they better off than such as are happy neither in deed nor in hope. But is it so. and so have it by some sort of knowledge. wherein when one hath it. because it is not a body. O Lord? For when I seek Thee. as a happy life. had they it not in some sort. is most certain. "It is enough"? How seek I it? By remembrance. and no one altogether wills it not? where have they known it. I know not how. and been delighted. For although upon hearing this name also. as would he too. For these. As we remember eloquence then? No. and yet still desire to attain it. because the thing itself is neither Greek nor Latin. and therefore love it. he is not delighted. "they would. who still are not yet eloquent. he that hath in his knowledge. that we may be happy. nor did I ever with bodily sense see. how. we cannot even seek after. long for so earnestly. unless the thing itself whereof it is the name were retained in their memory. not knowing what is spoken. I now enquire not. where I ought to say it. which Greeks and Latins. which we remember ourselves to have forgotten. that they so love it? Truly we have it. we do by no bodily sense experience in others. As we remember numbers then? No. These have it in a lower kind. Yet even these. then we have been happy once. I seek a happy life. that they so will it? where seen it. who are blessed. if he heard it in Greek. which that they do will. then is he happy. though lost. but I experienced it in my mind. when unhappy. Known therefore it is to all. did we not know it. but a happy life we have in our knowledge. We hear the name.

of Thee. all have one clave to my memory. both would instantly without any doubting say they would. Who art the Truth. that if two men be asked whether they would go to the wars. another in that. And this is the happy life. O God my light. that he would not. far be it from the heart of Thy servant who here confesseth unto Thee. namely. but we all would fain be happy. Far be it. which now recalling. save where they know the truth also? For they love it also. far be it. Or do all men desire this. and recognised whenever the name of a happy life is mentioned. all desire. we should not with so certain a will desire. Where then and when did I experience my happy life. For they who think there is another. and therefore with sadness I recall former joy. Lord. Where then did they know this happy life. I detest and execrate. Is it perchance that as one looks for his joy in this thing. inasmuch as they who wish not to joy in Thee. at others with longing. but to be happy. so that I can recall it with disgust sometimes. and there is no other. although perchance no longer present. Yet is not their will turned away from some semblance of joy." for a happy life is joy in the truth: for this is a joying in Thee. It is not certain then that all wish to be happy. because. according to the nature of the things. whose joy Thou Thyself art. or some few besides. wherein I remember myself to have joyed. who would be deceived. this life which alone is happy. it is therefore found in the memory. that I should remember. joy. which is the only happy life. unless by some certain knowledge we knew. which. then also do they love the truth. one. health of my countenance. which is no other than joying in the truth. or in falsehood? They will as little hesitate to say "in the truth. to rejoice to Thee. which yet they would not love. and the other not. and long for it? Nor is it I alone. another by another. and the Spirit against the flesh. but to those who love Thee for Thine own sake. this is it. For there is a joy which is not given to the ungodly. for Thee. my God. pursue some other and not the true joy. be the joy what it may. all agree in their desire of being happy. the other. which they strive to attain. but because the flesh lusteth against the Spirit. And when they love a happy life." as to say "that they desire to be happy. I have met with many that would deceive. had he rather joy in truth. they do not will so strongly as would suffice to make them able? For I ask any one. and love. But how is this. This is the happy life which all desire. what they are not able to do. do not truly desire the happy life. and for no other reason would the one go to the wars. and are content therewith. otherwhiles in good and honest things. they fall upon that which they can. to joy in the truth all desire. I should therefore think myself happy. perchance. were there not some notice of it in their memory. as they would (if they were asked) that they wished to have joy. which I recall with longing. that. and this joy they call a happy life? Although then one obtains this joy by one means. would answer that he would. Why then joy they not in it? why are they not happy? because they are more strongly taken up with other things which . but if they were asked whether they would be happy. For even from foul things have I been immersed in a sort of joy. no one. since they would not be deceived. Which being a thing which all must say they have experienced. that they cannot do what they would.

For there is yet a little light in men." and the man of Thine. And why seek I now in what place thereof Thou dwellest. having regard to my poverty. nor the affection of a living being (as when we rejoice. fear. O Lord. But why doth "truth generate hatred. neither wert Thou there: for as Thou art not a corporeal image. yea thus doth the mind of man. For since they would not be deceived. and there I find Thee. Whence she shall so repay them. without it. which since I learnt.have more power to make them miserable. Thus. and I have not found Thee. preaching the truth. that in it Thou dwellest. forget. But the contrary is requited it. but Thou remainest unchangeable over all. and delight in Thee. I passed beyond such parts of it as the beasts also have. See what a space I have gone over in my memory seeking Thee. inasmuch as the mind remembers itself also). and yet hast vouchsafed to dwell in my memory. since I learnt Thee. Thou residest in my memory. she both against their will makes manifest. as if there were places therein? Sure I am. Yet even thus miserable. They love truth when she enlightens. there found I my God. but the Truth is hid from it. condole. O Lord. that am I considering. since I have remembered Thee ever since I learnt Thee. that the darkness overtake them not. because Thou art the Lord God of the mind. thus. when I call Thee to remembrance. they hate her when she reproves. it shall joy in that only Truth. And I entered into the very seat of my mind (which it hath in my memory. These be my holy delights. which is nothing else but joying in the truth. nor found Thee there. that itself should not be hidden from the Truth. or the like). Nor have I found any thing concerning Thee. but in what quarter of it Thou residest. but that aught should be hidden from it. For in thinking on Thee. unless that truth is in that kind loved. let them walk. than that which they so faintly remember to make them happy. and would deceive. they love her when she discovers herself unto them. I have not forgotten Thee. For since I learnt Thee. Happy then will it be. and hate her when she discovers them. ever since I learnt Thee. remember. let them walk. to reside in it. so neither art Thou the mind itself. thus blind and sick. become an enemy to them? whereas a happy life is loved. that they who love anything else would gladly have that which they love to be the truth: and because they would not be deceived. and there do I find Thee. it wills not. which Thou hast given me in Thy mercy. by Whom all things are true. I have not forgotten. wish to be hidden. the Truth itself. when. no distraction interposing. but what I have kept in memory. that they who would not be made manifest by her. desire. and herself becometh not manifest unto them. for I found Thee not there among the images of corporeal things: and I came to those parts to which I committed the affections of my mind. and all these are changed. Since then I learnt Thee. foul and ill-favoured. But where in my memory residest Thou. it had rather joy in truths than in falsehoods. For where I found Truth. . would not be convinced that they are so? Therefore do they hate the truth for that thing's sake which they loved instead of the truth. where residest Thou there? what manner of lodging hast Thou framed for Thee? what manner of sanctuary hast Thou builded for Thee? Thou hast given this honour to my memory.

Thou touchedst me. and my life shall wholly live. that I might learn Thee. which. I the sick. and scatteredst my blindness. and I drew in breath and panted for Thee. plunging amid those fair forms which Thou hadst made. have pity on me. kindle me. and the third time. Is not the life of man upon earth all trial? Who wishes for troubles and difficulties? Thou commandest them to be endured. Things held me far from Thee. yet ever new! too late I loved Thee! And behold. Woe is me! lo! I hide not my wounds. that no man can be continent. Where then did I find Thee. shonest. and shoutedst. from the longing for prosperity. What middle place is there betwixt these two. whence we were dissipated into many. before I learned Thee. O love. my God. saith one. though all do not clearly hear. Thou merciful. I tasted. Thou liftest up. once and again. he had rather there were nothing for him to endure. For though he rejoices that he endures. Thou calledst. Every where. O Thou Beauty of ancient days. not to be loved. For too little doth he love Thee. and there I searched for Thee. which from Thee he heareth. as wholly full of Thee. Thou wert with me. No man loves what he endures. I know not. were not at all. Give what Thou enjoinest. and burstest my deafness. we go backward and forward. and I abroad. though he love to endure. and hunger and thirst. In adversity I long for prosperity. though they hear not always what they will. but in Thee above me? Place there is none. By continency verily are we bound up and brought back into One. who loves any thing with Thee. deformed I. that I might learn Thee? For in my memory Thou wert not. He is Thy best servant who looks not so much to hear that from Thee which himself willeth. O Truth. as rather to will that. and I burned for Thy peace. which he loveth not for Thee. Woe is me! Lord. unless God give it. who ever burnest and never consumest! O charity. I know not. and there is no place. Thou breathedst odours. though on manifold matters they ask Thy counsel. but I was not with Thee. My evil sorrows strive with my good joys. and enjoin what Thou wilt. where the life of man is not all trial? Woe to the prosperities of the world. in prosperity I fear adversity. Where then did I find Thee. through fear of adversity. Is not the life of man upon earth all trial: without any interval? And all my hope is no where but in Thy exceeding great mercy. have pity on me. Lamentable joys strive with joyous sorrows: and on which side is the victory. Clearly dost Thou answer. and when I knew. Thou art the Physician. and at once answerest all. and corruption of joy! Woe to the adversities of the world. But now since whom Thou fillest. I miserable. this also was a part of wisdom to know whose gift she is. unless they were in Thee. Thou wert within. I shall no where have sorrow or labour. and lest it shatter endurance. dost Thou give audience to all who ask counsel of Thee. because I am not full of Thee I am a burden to myself. and on which side is the victory. Too late loved I Thee. Woe is me! Lord. Thou flashedst. once and again. Thou enjoinest continency: give me what . When I shall with my whole self cleave to Thee. All consult Thee on what they will.when I call Thee to remembrance. Thou enjoinest us continency. and because adversity itself is a hard thing.

but even to obtain assent. until Thou destroy both belly and meat. For that nothing of this sort should have. have I confessed unto my good Lord. disentangled from the birdlime of concupiscence. and clothe this incorruptible with an eternal incorruption. For hunger and thirst are in a manner pains. not only during life. but even at my present age. even before I became a dispenser of Thy Sacrament. even to perfect peace. -to work this. But there yet live in my memory (whereof I have much spoken) the images of such things as my ill custom there fixed. Art Thou not mighty. which I would were sufficient for it. the true cannot. which my outward and inward man shall have with Thee. unless the medicine of nourishments come to our aid.Thou enjoinest. and for wedlock itself. over the pure affections even of a sleeper. and the ambition of the world. yield no assent to such enticements? And yet so much difference there is. the lust of the eyes. and what is very like reality. But now the necessity is sweet unto me. that my soul may follow me to Thee. so as to heal all the diseases of my soul. Thou enjoinest continency from concubinage. Who art able to do above all that we ask or think. and by Thy more abundant grace to quench even the impure motions of my sleep! Thou wilt increase. Yea. O Lord my God? And yet there is so much difference betwixt myself and myself. Am I not then myself. awake. For by eating and drinking we repair the daily decays of our body. not even such as a thought would restrain. Verily Thou enjoinest me continency from the lust of the flesh. and bemoaning that wherein I am still imperfect. Thou hast counselled something better than what Thou hast permitted. resisteth such suggestions? And should the things themselves be urged on it. and mindful of our purpose. so far prevails the illusion of the image. that I be not taken captive. and enjoin what Thou wilt. it remaineth unshaken. in my soul and in my flesh. and my pains are removed by pleasure. and carry on a daily war by fastings. within that moment wherein I pass from waking to sleeping. Which since it is . hoping that Thou wilt perfect Thy mercies in me. Lord. in that which Thou hast given me. and even in dreams not only not. and abiding most chastely in it. false visions persuade to that which when waking. that. upon waking we return to peace of conscience: and by this very difference discover that we did not. strengthless when I am awake: but in sleep. is not hard for the Almighty. And since Thou gavest it. There is another evil of the day. even to pollution of the flesh. or return from sleeping to waking! Where is reason then. commit those debasing corruptions. But what I yet am in this kind of my evil. when death shall be swallowed up in victory. Is it clasped up with the eyes? is it lulled asleep with the senses of the body? And whence is it that often even in sleep we resist. that it rebel not against itself. not only so as to give pleasure. often bringing my body into subjection. Thy gifts more and more in me. it was done. when asleep. but not even to consent unto them. the very least influence. through images of sense. against which sweetness I fight. which haunt me. that when it happeneth otherwise. God Almighty. when Thou shalt slay my emptiness with a wonderful fulness. they burn and kill like a fever. rejoicing with trembling. what yet we be sorry that in some way it was done in us. which.

should not ever so be. I can do all things through Christ that strengtheneth me. and air serve our weakness. Drunkard was I never. And oft it is uncertain. But remember. But full feeding sometimes creepeth upon Thy servant. there joineth itself as an attendant a dangerous pleasure. which is to say. Thou wilt have mercy. for what is enough for health. Go not after thy lusts. saying this through the in-breathing of Thy inspiration. for I have learned in whatsoever state I am. and what good soever we have received before we prayed. Let not your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting and drunkenness. Take from me (saith he) the desires of the belly. should not so be. . neither if we eat not. and he was lost and is found. it may disguise the matter of gratification. and how to suffer need. that they who have been. but drunkards have I known made sober by Thee. that Thou givest. Drunkenness is far from me. our calamity is termed gratification. that they who never were such. nor the other miserable. as from Thee it was. Strengthen me. is pleasure. which mostly endeavours to go before it. And health being the cause of eating and drinking. Behold a soldier of the heavenly camp. and enjoin what Thou wilt. and when he glorieth. I heard another voice of Thine. and from Thee it hand through the consolations of Thy gifts. neither if we eat. and that of dust Thou hast made man. Another have I heard begging that he might receive. Yea by Thy favour have I heard that which I have much loved. from Thee we received it. For that passing. that I should set myself to take food as physic. Lord. that I can. so that I may for her sake do what I say I do. Give what Thou enjoinest. neither shall the one make me plenteous. is too little for pleasure. I know how to abound. and from thy pleasure turn away. when that is done which Thou commandest to be done. He confesses to have received. glad that it appeareth not what sufficeth for the moderation of health. because he whom I so loved. whither we needs must pass. yea to the end we might afterwards know this. shall we lack. In this uncertainty the unhappy soul rejoiceth. because I have as yet no settled counsel herein. not the dust which we are. shall we abound. or wish to do. whence it appeareth. or whether a voluptuous deceivableness of greediness is proffering its services. >From Thee then it was. I can do all things (saith he) through Him that strengtheneth me. that under the cloak of health. was of the same dust. that it may be far from me. in the very passage the snare of concupiscence besets me. praying for them. with which land. Nor could he of himself do this. But while I am passing from the discomfort of emptiness to the content of replenishing. For no one can be continent unless Thou give it. that both might know from Whom it was. and I call on Thy right hand. therewith to be content. that we are dust. did we before receive it. O my holy God. and therein prepares an excuse to shield itself. Thou wilt have mercy. for health's sake. I hear the voice of my God commanding. Many things Thou givest us. that it come not near me. in the Lord he glorieth. These temptations I daily endeavour to resist. I heard also another. This hast Thou taught me. Nor have each the same measure. whether it be the necessary care of the body which is yet asking for sustenance. and to Thee do I refer my perplexities. and water. nor is there any other way to pass thither.

but Thou didst loosen and free me. Yet do I too magnify Thy name. and. enlightening my heart. good Father. But with the words which are their life and whereby they find admission into me. ventures not readily to believe herself. praise to Thee. unless experience reveal it. And no one ought to be secure in that life. and He maketh intercession to Thee for my sins who hath overcome the world. themselves seek in my affections a place of some estimation. and that the several . numbering me among the weak members of His body. that he which eateth. all things are pure. For that also is a mournful darkness whereby my abilities within me are hidden from me. that endued with an admirable abstinence.Thou hast taught me. and that our King was tempted. he is a great one. Our only hope. and in Thy book shall all be written. that Elijah was fed with flesh. that he who hath been capable of worse to be made better. let him not despise him that eateth not. for I am a sinful man. judge him that eateth. in those melodies which Thy words breathe soul into. And therefore the people in the wilderness also deserved to be reproved. because even what is in it is mostly hidden. that Noah was permitted to eat all kind of flesh that was good for food. my God. I am not much concerned. I do a little repose. For at one time I seem to myself to give them more honour than is seemly. the whole whereof is called a trial. The delights of the ear had more firmly entangled and subdued me. The bridle of the throat then is to be held attempered between slackness and stiffness. that no man should judge us in meat or drink. knocking at my ears. When absent. only assured promise is Thy mercy. and that David blamed himself for desiring a draught of water. and I can scarcely assign them one suitable. when present. my Master. and that meat commendeth us not to God. O Lord. I fear not uncleanness of meat. deliver me out of all temptation. With the allurements of smells. These things have I learned. For it is not of such nature that I can settle on cutting it off once for all. but because. which is received with thanksgiving. in the desire of food. they murmured against the Lord. yet not so as to be held thereby. that every creature of Thine is good. who is not some whit transported beyond the limits of necessity? whoever he is. as I could of concubinage. I strive daily against concupiscence in eating and drinking. locusts. and. that to the pure. Placed then amid these temptations. I do not refuse them. because Thine eyes have seen that of Him which is imperfect. and nothing to be refused. I know also that Esau was deceived by lusting for lentiles. thanks be to Thee. let him make Thy Name great. I know. was not polluted by feeding on living creatures. by the holy words themselves when thus sung. But I am not such. but bread. So I seem to myself. perchance I am deceived. but the uncleanness of lusting. I do not miss them. not concerning flesh. not for desiring flesh. Now. and. may not likewise of better be made worse. only confidence. And who is he. so that my mind making enquiry into herself of her own powers. but that it is evil unto the man that eateth with offence. when sung with a sweet and attuned voice. but that I can disengage myself when I will. yet ever ready to be without them. than when not. and never touching it afterward. feeling our minds to be more holily and fervently raised unto a flame of devotion. and let not him that eateth not.

and if absent long. and bright and soft colours. who made these things. but by blessing to know them. doth oft beguile me. Yet again. and have mercy and heal me. But this contentment of the flesh. See now my state. the light. Bishop of Alexandria. when he also. banished from my ears. saddeneth the mind. when they are sung with a clear voice and modulation most suitable. which Tobias saw. and so to conclude the temptations of the lust of the flesh. and himself went before with the feet of charity. it was vouchsafed him. O Thou Light. to bless his sons. I acknowledge the great use of this institution. inclined the rather (though not as pronouncing an irrevocable opinion) to approve of the usage of singing in the church. it is with longing sought for. and desiring to be clothed upon with my house from heaven. it strives even to run before her. And so strongly doth it entwine itself. sometimes in silence. these eyes closed. shunning over-anxiously this very deception. and that mode seems to me safer. But Thou. For you who do not act. behold. by a sweet variety. gliding by me in varied forms. I err in too great strictness. who made the reader of the psalm utter it with so slight inflection of voice. in whose presence I have become a problem to myself. and weep for me. and how at this time I am moved. There remains the pleasure of these eyes of my flesh. by some hidden correspondence wherewith they are stirred up. when I remember the tears I shed at the Psalmody of Thy Church. nor is any rest given me from them. weep with me. bathing all which we behold. and see. in the persons of his sons shed light on the different races of . very good indeed. Let not these occupy my soul. when. that it was nearer speaking than singing. waking. and not observing it. the sense not so waiting upon reason as patiently to follow her. let God rather occupy it. blind through great age. Or which Isaac saw. The eyes love fair and varied forms. not knowingly. hearken. and lead her. not with the singing. which I remember to have been often told me of Athanasius. but having been admitted merely for her sake. he taught his son the way of life. groaning earnestly. At other times. to which the soul must not be given over to be enervated. and then had rather not hear music. that so by the delight of the ears the weaker minds may rise to the feeling of devotion. not they. with illumined heart. have their own proper measures in the voice and singing. Thus in these things I unawares sin. whoso regulate your feelings within. the whole day. And these affect me. those brotherly and devout ears. which yet assail me. wherever I am through the day.affections of our spirit. these things touch not you. but afterwards am aware of it. and sometimes to that degree. and the Church's too. and that is my infirmity. as that good action ensues. in the beginning of my recovered faith. Or which Jacob saw. never swerving. when his fleshly eyes being heavy and closed by old age. I confess to have sinned penally. O Lord my God. For this queen of colours. yet is He my good. from all voices. Thou. that if it be suddenly withdrawn. as there is from musical. on which to make my confessions in the hearing of the ears of Thy temple. soothes me when engaged on other things. Thus I fluctuate between peril of pleasure and approved wholesomeness. Yet when it befalls me to be more moved with the voice than the words sung. ye. as to wish the whole melody of sweet music which is used to David's Psalter. but with the things sung.

in pictures also and divers images. and laid his hands. have men added to tempt their own eyes withal. and I lift up mine invisible eyes to Thee. it is one. who go far from Thee. or smell how it glows. and these far exceeding all necessary and moderate use and all pious meaning. but keep their strength for Thee. see how it soundeth. but not of using them. because I had stuck fast in them. with an enticing and dangerous sweetness. and destroying that which themselves have been made! But I. for they are ensnared. "O all-creating Lord. which my soul day and night sigheth after. To this is added another form of temptation more manifoldly dangerous. And I. a certain vain and curious desire. mystically crossed. But they who know how to praise Thee for it. but Thou pluckest me out. but as himself inwardly discerned. For I am taken miserably. And yet we say not only. O Lord. wherein its slaves. The seat whereof being in the appetite of knowledge. in our apparel. But that corporeal light whereof I spake. and do consecrate praise to Him who consecrateth me. not as their father by his outward eye corrected them. when we employ them in seeking knowledge. but also. outwardly following what themselves make. and sight being the sense chiefly used for attaining knowledge. upon his grandchildren by Joseph. it is in Divine language called The lust of the eyes. waste and perish." take it up in Thy hymns. What innumerable toys. though I speak and see this. and all are one. as was said. which the eyes alone can perceive. otherwhiles with pain. which is above our souls. when I had but lightly lighted upon them. belongeth properly to the eyes. sometimes not perceiving it. is . who see and love it. in them foresignified. because Thou that keepest Israel shalt neither slumber nor sleep. see how it smelleth.the future people. And so the general experience of the senses. These seductions of the eyes I resist. For besides that concupiscence of the flesh which consisteth in the delight of all senses and pleasures. Such would I be. veiled under the title of knowledge and learning. because Thy loving-kindness is before my eyes. see how hard it is. yet we use this word of the other senses also. And He is there. For. though they perceive Him not. Thou ceasest not to pluck them out. not of delighting in the flesh. that so they might not wander. while I often entangle myself in the snares on all sides laid. that Thou wouldest pluck my feet out of the snare. see how it shineth. for all these are said to be seen. to see. For we do not say. inwardly forsaking Him by whom themselves were made. shoes. or feel how it gleams. it seasoneth the life of this world for her blind lovers. through the same senses of the body. and Thou pluckest me out mercifully. do hence also sing a hymn to Thee. the soul hath. and are not taken up with it in their sleep. Thou pluckest me out. or taste how it shines. come from that Beauty. my God and my Glory. see how it tasteth. hark how it flashes. made by divers arts and manufactures. because those beautiful patterns which through men's souls are conveyed into their cunning hands. and not scatter it abroad upon pleasurable weariness. utensils and all sorts of works. lest my feet wherewith I walk upon Thy way be ensnared. But the framers and followers of the outward beauties derive thence the rule of judging of them. This is the light. Thou dost ever and anon pluck them out. entangle my steps with these outward beauties. but of making experiments through the flesh.

but out of the lust of making trial and knowing them. fragrant. From Thee. having made me see my infirmity didst speedily admonish me either through the sight itself by some contemplation to rise towards Thee. to whom I owe humble and single-hearted service. full of snares and dangers. oft-times takes my attention? Is the thing different. because the office of seeing. What. doing what Thou wilt. In this so vast wilderness. that coursing peradventure will distract me even from some weighty thought. which to know profits not. And unless Thou. if with that same end of perverted knowledge magical arts be enquired by. Hence also in religion itself. melodious. not desired for any good end. and by our pure and holy country. they flock thither. then by degrees we take interest therein! I go not now to the circus to see a dog coursing a hare. Hence also.called The lust of the eyes. is God tempted. the other senses by way of similitude take to themselves. For what pleasure hath it. Thou givest and wilt give me to follow Thee willingly. soft. and to turn pale. and thrust out of my heart. as Thou hast given me. savoury. but in the field. wherein the eyes hold the prerogative. behold many of them I have cut off. when sitting at home. the theatres do not now carry me away. by what artifices and suggestions doth the enemy deal with me to desire some sign! But I beseech Thee by our King. for pleasure seeketh objects beautiful. the contrary as well. which it were long to go through. O God of my salvation. From this disease of curiosity are all those strange sights exhibited in the theatre. lest we offend the weak. to see in a mangled carcase what will make you shudder? and yet if it be lying near. But by this may more evidently be discerned. but curiosity. Jerusalem. I dully stand fixed therein. since so many things of this kind buzz on all sides about our daily lifewhen dare I say that nothing of this sort engages my attention. or causes in me an idle interest? True. when they make search after any knowledge. any one forced them to see it. so may it ever be further and further. O Lord my God. and how often we give way. or a spider entangling them rushing into her nets. nor care I to know the courses of the stars. my end and intention is far different. that as any consenting thereto is far from me. And yet when dare I say. for trial's sake. if passing. nor did my soul ever consult ghosts departed. or altogether to despise and pass it by. or any report of its beauty drew them thither! Thus also in the other senses. not for the sake of suffering annoyance. Notwithstanding. to be made sad. when signs and wonders are demanded of Him. and wherein men desire nothing but to know. As if when awake. but this does not first draw . but merely to make trial of. because they are but small creatures? I go on from them to praise Thee the wonderful Creator and Orderer of all. a lizard catching flies. in how many most petty and contemptible things is our curiosity daily tempted. who can recount? How often do we begin as if we were tolerating people telling vain stories. wherein pleasure and wherein curiosity is the object of the senses. and draw me after it: not that I turn aside the body of my beast. all sacrilegious mysteries I detest. But when I pray Thee for the salvation of any. Even in sleep they are afraid to see it. Hence men go on to search out the hidden powers of nature (which is besides our end). yet still incline my mind thither.

nor delivered when Thou condemnest. because so hast Thou promised. well-done". better is he who praised than he who is praised. and whilst in Thy presence we direct the voice of our heart to Thine ears. and redeem life from corruption. and he rejoices more at the praise for himself than that he hath the gift for which he is praised. Who would be praised of men when Thou blamest.a man is praised for some gift which Thou hast given him. or shall aught bring us back to hope. than of God. and tame my neck to Thy yoke. But when. this so great concern is broken off by the rushing in of I know not what idle thoughts. Our daily furnace is the tongue of men. O Lord. Thou thunderest down upon the ambitions of the world. not for Thy sake. O Lord. and hast made it. to be feared and loved of men. And now I bear it and it is light unto me. For the one took pleasure in the gift of God in man. And in this way also Thou commandest us continence. that dark and chilled they might serve him. and enjoin what Thou wilt. then are our prayers also thereby often interrupted and distracted. Thou alone Lord without pride. and satisfy my desire with good things: who didst curb my pride with Thy fear. let us be loved for Thee. But. stretch Thy wings over us. and let us fly under them. for no other end. and set it in the deceivingness of men. save Thy complete mercy. Be Thou our glory. pervertedly and crookedly imitating Thee. since Thou hast begun to change us? And Thou knowest how far Thou hast already changed me. because Thou art the only true Lord. he also is praised. that so Thou mightest forgive all the rest of my iniquities. Give what Thou enjoinest. and the foundations of the mountains tremble. and Thy word feared in us. will not be defended of men when Thou judgest. and crown me with mercy and attention. O Lord. But we. the adversary of our true blessedness layeth hard at us. And therefore dost Thou resist the proud. or can it cease through this whole life? To wish. and givest grace to the humble: yea. Shall we then account this also among things of slight concernment. and is overcharged with throngs of this abundant vanity. Because now certain offices of human society make it necessary to be loved and feared of men. namely.not the sinner is praised in the desires of his soul. and verily so it was. and I knew it not. For when our heart becomes the receptacle of such things. when I feared to take it. And of such things is my life full. hath this third kind of temptation also ceased from me. By these temptations we are assailed daily. behold we are Thy little flock. and sever our joy from Thy truth. while Thou dispraisest. not in the bands of charity. who hast no lord. nor he blessed who doth ungodlily. It is one thing to rise quickly. we may be taken unawares. but. that greedily catching at them. who first healedst me of the lust of vindicating myself. Thou knowest on this matter . and be pleased at being loved and feared. but in the bonds of punishment: who purposed to set his throne in the north. and my one hope is Thy wonderful great mercy. without ceasing are we assailed. every where spreading his snares of "well-done. but in Thy stead: and thus having been made like him. and heal all my infirmities. but that we may have a joy therein which is no joy? A miserable life this and a foul boastfulness! Hence especially it comes that men do neither purely love nor fear Thee. possess us as Thine. another not to fall. the other was better pleased with the gift of man. he may have them for his own.

in this. when it hath them. being frenzied in error on all things. in which I mislike myself. it despiseth them. if the soul cannot discern whether. And when I am troubled at this my misery. Yet I own. riches. when I hear him dispraise either what he understands not. For herein I know less of myself than of Thee. Am I then doubtful of myself in this matter? Behold. when I do without them. for it leaves me uncertain. If in my praise I am moved with the good of my neighbour. that is. wherein I find myself maimed. in Thee. Yet fain would I that the approbation of another should not even increase my joy for any good in me. For since Thou hast commanded us not continency alone. And whether it be so with me. I see that I ought not to be moved at my own praises. but that I am delighted with praise. they may be cast aside. but our neighbour also. because I would not have him who praiseth me differ from me about myself. unless it be absent. which displease me. For sometimes I am grieved at my own praise. in refraining my mind from the pleasures of the flesh and idle curiosity. please me more when they please another also? For some how I am not praised when my judgment of myself is not praised. but with truth itself. What then do I confess unto Thee in this kind of temptation. scarce any. or even lesser and slight goods are more esteemed than they ought. or those more. but dispraise doth diminish it. forasmuch as either those things are praised. For. I see which I should choose. yea so abandonedly and atrociously. but righteousness also. I seem to myself to be pleased with the proficiency or towardliness of my neighbour. when pleased with intelligent praise. why am I less moved if another be unjustly dispraised than if it be myself? Why am I more stung by reproach cast upon myself. or not having them. that is. O my God. that they may serve to some one or two or all of the three concupiscences. that so it may prove itself. For I cannot learn how far I am more cleansed from this plague.the groans of my heart. foregoing. which of what value it is. discover to me myself also. from what things to refrain our love. or to be grieved for evil in him. whether I would. or being consistent and most settled in the truth be blamed by all. For in other kinds of temptations I have some sort of means of examining myself. for my own sake. O Lord? What. and therein essay our powers. or is good. must we live ill. often. But to be without praise. that no one should know without detesting us? What greater madness can be said or thought of? But if praise useth and ought to accompany a good life and good works. and the floods of mine eyes. whereon to bestow it. than at that cast upon . we ought as little to forego its company. Yet I know not whether I can well or ill be without anything. it doth increase it. and I much fear my secret sins. that I may confess unto my brethren. I know not. which are desired. O Truth. an excuse occurs to me. not as being influenced by concern for him. more than with praise? For were it proposed to me. I beseech now. Let me examine myself again more diligently. Thou God knowest. and hast willed us to love not Thee only. either when those things be praised in me. and not so only. For then I ask myself how much more or less troublesome it is to me not to have them? Then. be praised by all men. but for the good of my neighbour. But again how know I whether I am therefore thus affected. which Thine eyes know. mine do not. as good life itself. who are to pray for me. which please me less. but because those same good things which please me in myself. I see how much I have attained to.

not only taking pleasure in things not good. and so it is no longer contempt of vain-glory. on to that peace which the eye of the proud knoweth not. Yet the word which cometh out of the mouth. but in Thy good things. Nor in all these which I run over consulting Thee can I find any safe place for my soul. to establish a certain excellency of our own. I surveyed the world. and do not the truth before Thee in my heart and tongue? This madness put far from me. when I referred to Thee what I could discover here below. whereby men become vain.e. Thence entered I the recesses of my memory. before me? Know I not this also? or is it at last that I deceive myself. and seek Thy mercy. storing up others. while in hidden groanings I displease myself. neither was it Thou. arising out of a like temptation. taking some things upon the report of my senses. In all these and the like perils and travails. and observed the life. O Lord. for Thou art the abiding light. Where hast Thou not walked with me. being able to discern nothing of these things without Thee. yet not with brotherly rejoicing. yet best. And sometimes Thou admittest me to an affection. whether they were. and as far as I may be freed from necessary duties. I am poor and needy. those manifold and spacious chambers. Within also. Nor yet was I myself when I did this. until what is lacking in my defective state be renewed and perfected. who found out these things. what they were. but in Thee. drawing out others. and in the large treasure-house of my memory revolving some things. and I heard Thee directing and commanding me. on the very ground that it is reproved. But pleasing themselves. or even if as though from Thy grace. and often glories more vainly of the very contempt of vain-glory. or even if as Thine. Nor was I myself. in my inmost soul. rising to a strange sweetness. lest mine own mouth be to me the sinner's oil to make fat my head. yet as though for their own merits. I know not what in it would not belong to the life to come. solicits and collects men's suffrages. and consulted Thee? With my outward senses. wonderfully furnished with innumerable stores. which I consulted concerning all these. and deeds known to men. or displease or care not to please others. which if it were perfected in me. than not inflicted by me. and nothing of me depart from Thee.another. for it doth not contemn when it glorieth. Thou seest the trembling of my heart. pleasing themselves in themselves. whereof it glories. as if good. and these my senses. unto this pleasure have I recourse. It tempts. but envying that grace to others. questioning about others which I felt to be mingled with myself. But . and I rather feel my wounds to be cured by Thee. who went over them all. that my power whereby I did it. with the same injustice. i. and I considered. and how to be valued. this delights me. within is another evil. very unusual. and what to desire. even when it is reproved by myself in myself. teaching me what to beware. numbering and distinguishing the reporters themselves. though they please not. and laboured to distinguish and to value every thing according to its dignity. O Truth.. and finding none of them to be Thee. and this I often do. as I might. they much displease Thee. bring with them a most dangerous temptation through the love of praise: which. and stood aghast. as though their own. which my body hath from me. whither my scattered members may be gathered.

and am swept back by former custom. he should he far from God: or if in both like God. as I hear. would vaunt himself to be immortal. But the true Mediator. good Father. and have called Thy right hand to my help. and stricken back I said. Whom could I find to reconcile me to Thee? was I to have recourse to Angels? by what prayers? by what sacraments? Many endeavouring to return unto Thee. might be saved. sought Thee by the pride of learning. but cannot. both ways. But a mediator between God and man must have something like to God. art immortal. And it much enticed proud flesh. but would not. the fellow-conspirators of their pride. How hast Thou loved us. by whom they might be purged. and without sin. which He willed to have in common with them. but am greatly held. swelling out rather than smiting upon their breasts. mortal with men. but would with Thee possess a lie. and there was none. not in the middle between God and man. but deliveredst Him up for us ungodly! How hast Thou loved us. and of themselves unable. that he had no body of flesh. that is sin. they were deceived. hath one thing in common with man. seeking a mediator. the Man Christ Jesus. transforming himself into an Angel of light. and together one God. there I would. something like to men. by whom. now made righteous. and am held. drew unto themselves the princes of the air. as no man would in such wise speak falsely. through faith in His Passion to come. but as the Word. who sparedst not Thine only Son. too unlike man: and so not be a mediator. Here I can stay. as we through faith of it passed. tried this. and greatly weep. by whom in Thy secret judgments pride deserved to be deluded. this hath he in common with men. Whom in Thy secret mercy Thou hast showed to the humble. that so they. and been accounted worthy to be deluded. For they were mortal. lest being in both like to man. He was a Mediator. because Thou vouchsafest not to be possessed with a lie. but I through my covetousness would not indeed forego Thee. being high minded. Hence He was showed forth to holy men of old. Thus then have I considered the sicknesses of my sins in that threefold concupiscence. just with God: that because the wages of righteousness is life and peace. but thou. and fallen into the desire of curious visions. for whom He that thought it no robbery to be equal with Thee.through my miserable encumbrances I sink down again into these lower things. was made . So much doth the burden of a bad custom weigh us down. For with a wounded heart have I beheld Thy brightness. That deceitful mediator then. and sinners. appeared betwixt mortal sinners and the immortal just One. that by His example also they might learn that same humility. that Mediator between God and man." Thou art the Truth who presidest over all. miserable. For they. So then I lost Thee. For the devil it was. through magical influences. But since the wages of sin is death. He might by a righteousness conjoined with God make void that death of sinners. that with them he should be condemned to death. another he would seem to have in common with God. and not being clothed with the mortality of flesh. and God with God. have. "Who can attain thither? I am cast away from the sight of Thine eyes. Lord. and sentest. For as Man. and so by the agreement of their heart. as himself to be ignorant of the truth. because equal to God. to whom they proudly sought to be reconciled.

Thou knowest my unskilfulness. art Thou ignorant of what I say to Thee? or dost Thou see in time. free among the dead. confessing our own miseries. He alone. and therefore Priest because the Sacrifice. and strengthenedst me. of servants. that they which live may now no longer live unto themselves. See. and guidances. and despair of ourselves. as I could and as I would. and greatly to be praised. but Thy medicine is mightier. my Lord God. Affrighted with my sins and the burden of my misery. to become poor in spirit. unless He had been made flesh and dwelt among us. since Thou hast begun. and power to take it again: for us to Thee both Victor and Victim. and my infirmities. that we may cease to be wretched in ourselves. I have told Thee many things. Let not the proud speak evil of me. I have said already. and therefore Victor. Your Father knoweth what you have need of. for us to Thee Priest and Sacrifice. and dispense Thy Sacrament to Thy people? And if I suffice to utter them in order. Great is the Lord. We might imagine that Thy Word was far from any union with man. saying. seeing Thou hast called us. and hungering and athirst after righteousness. and merciful. and serving us. sons by being born of Thee. and great. and meek. but unto Him that died for them. Well then is my hope strong in Him. that Thou wilt heal all my infirmities. whereby Thou broughtest me to preach Thy Word. It is then our affections which we lay open unto Thee. and be blessed in Thee. that we may all say. before you ask.subject even to the death of the cross. Therefore Christ died for all. and again will say. Lord. and eat and drink. amongst those that eat and are satisfied. desired to be satisfied from Him. BOOK XI Lord. and Thy mercies upon us. and they shall praise the Lord who seek Him. for love of Thy love do I this. But how shall I suffice with the tongue of my pen to utter all Thy exhortations. that I may live. See. teach me. and all Thy terrors. by Him Who sitteth at Thy right hand and maketh intercession for us. what passeth in time? Why then do I lay in order before Thee so many relations? Not. Thine only Son. and mourners. that Thou mightest learn them through me. I cast my care upon Thee. and yet Truth hath said. and had purposed to flee to the wilderness: but Thou forbadest me. the drops of time are precious with me. because the Victim. and communicate it. of a truth. and consider wondrous things out of Thy law. hath redeemed me with His blood. For we pray also. for Thy mercy endureth for ever. because I meditate on my ransom. that Thou mayest free us wholly. many they are. For many and great are my infirmities. making us to Thee. He. in Whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. and peace-makers. but to stir up mine own and my readers' devotions towards Thee. else should I despair. and comforts. and long have I burned to . having power to lay down His life. and poor. and pure in heart. I had cast in my heart. For Thou art good. because Thou first wouldest that I should confess unto Thee. since eternity is Thine. and heal me.

whither shall we go? whither cry? The day is Thine. lie down. Lord. but not such as Thy law. of the earth. wherein is my desire. Light of the blind. and Strength of the weak. until infirmity be swallowed up by strength. not of gold and silver. Father. O Lord. in Whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. yea also Light of those that see. O Lord my God. and ruminate. Give what I love: for I do love. hearken and pity. whom Thou hast established for Thyself. I would sacrifice to Thee the service of my thought and tongue.. what I may offer Thee. and among them. For it is not. through Whom Thou madest all things. Perfect me. behold.. Behold. unto the everlasting reigning of Thy holy city with Thee. inaccessible to care. the Man of Thy right hand. Who. Of Him did Moses write. Thy voice exceedeth the abundance of pleasures. and close it not against us who knock. nor deceive out of them.meditate in Thy law. but would serve brotherly charity. And I would not have aught besides steal away those hours which I find free from the necessities of refreshing my body and the powers of my mind.Thy Word. but soughtest us. and Strength of the strong. through Whom Thou calledst to adoption the believing people. For not in vain wouldest Thou have the darksome secrets of so many pages written. or necessaries for the body and for this life of our pilgrimage: all which shall be added unto those that seek Thy kingdom and Thy righteousness. and hear my desire. Circumcise from all rashness and all lying both my inward and outward lips: let Thy Scriptures be my pure delights: let me not be deceived in them. the Son of man. not seeking Thee. at Thy beck the moments flee by. this saith the Truth. These do I seek in Thy books. For if Thine ears be not with us in the depths also. O Lord. and see and approve. or the pleasures of the flesh. and hear the voice of praise. Behold. and be it pleasing in the sight of Thy mercy. and intercedeth with Thee for us. Let me confess unto Thee whatsoever I shall find in Thy books. The wicked have told me of delights. give ear unto my prayer. Thou rich to all that call upon Thee. and this hast Thou given: forsake not Thy own gifts. hearken unto my soul. that I may find grace before Thee. and therein me also. Lord. through Whom Thou soughtest us. and reveal them unto me.I beseech Thee by Him. and precious stones. I deem. Grant thereof a space for our meditations in the hidden things of Thy law. we yet pay. have mercy on me. wherein is my desire. do Thou give me. feed. Thy voice is my joy. and the night is Thine. For I am poor and needy.. and let Thy mercy hearken unto my desire: because it is anxious not for myself alone. the daybreak of Thy enlightening. Behold. or which though we owe not. me also. that the inward parts of Thy words be opened to me knocking. who sitteth at Thy right hand. that we might seek Thee. or honours and offices.Thy Only-Begotten. wherein Thou madest the heaven and the earth. Behold. as Thy Mediator and ours. O Lord my god. this saith Himself. and therein to confess to Thee my skill and unskilfulness. that so it is. nor are those forests without their harts which retire therein and range and walk. and the remnants of my darkness. or gorgeous apparel. I beseech by our Lord Jesus Christ Thy Son. and hear it crying out of the depths. and of the service which we owe to men. and meditate on the wonderful things out of Thy law. . nor despise Thy green herb that thirsteth. and drink in Thee. carest for us. and Thou seest my heart. O Lord my God. even from the beginning.

and this it is. nor in the earth. for they change and vary. and would lay the ears of my body to the sounds bursting out of his mouth." and I forthwith should say confidently to that man of Thine." Now the evidence of the thing. For if he were. or gold. For whence shouldest Thou have this. I beseech. convey that which he doth. who art. madest them. forgive my sins. who gavest him Thy servant to speak these things. nor would aught of it touch my mind. in the chamber of my thoughts. didst Thou make heaven and earth? Verily. Thou therefore. nor are they. but if Latin. Nor didst Thou hold any thing in Thy hand. thanks be to Thee. unless Thou hadst made that mind? and he invests with a form what already existeth. Thee. They proclaim also. or waters. he may from mind to matter. give to me also to understand them. compared with Thy knowledge. hadst not Thou appointed them? Thou madest the artificer his body. I should know what he said. And whence should he be able to do this. And our knowledge. or the like. which presideth over itself. whereof to make heaven and earth. who art beautiful. without organs of voice or tongue. wrote and departed. that they made not themselves. should I know it from him? Truly within me. Whereas whatsoever hath not been made. nor good. nor barbarian. whereby. forming one body from another. yet are they not beautiful nor good. before it was made. as it seeth in itself by its inward eye. seeing these also belong to the heaven and the earth. Thee I beseech. All these praise Thee. and Thou. nor in the air. as clay. because we have been made. "therefore we are. neither Hebrew. in vain will it strike on my senses. nor Greek. Thou the apprehension whereby to take in his art. or sound of syllables. nor are. so as to make ourselves." Whereas then I cannot enquire of him. who art good. didst Thou make heaven and earth. as Thou their Creator art. I would hold him and ask him. they proclaim that they were created. according to the discretion of his mind. passed hence from Thee to Thee. we were not therefore. for they are. But how didst Thou make the heaven and the earth? and what the engine of Thy so mighty fabric? For it was not as a human artificer. hath nothing in it. or stone. is the voice of the speakers. full of Whom he spake truth. that it within may consult the truth. "It is truth. This we know. or wood. Truth. for they are beautiful. nor is he now before me. Thee. And should he speak Hebrew." Moses wrote this. whether it be well done or no. and if I knew this also. and yet is. nor Latin. would say. But how dost Thou make them? how. . and beseech him by Thee to open these things unto me. neither in the heaven. Behold. for they are good. how "In the Beginning Thou madest the heaven and earth. "thou sayest truly. that it might be. Thou the mind commanding the limbs. the heavens and the earth are.I would hear and understand. which before it had not. which Thou hadst not made. as by an interpreter. whether he spake truth? Yea. Thou the sense of his body. O God. to change and vary. they are neither beautiful. O Truth. And whence should they be. my God. compared with Whom. within. and report to his mind what is done. Lord. Thou the matter whereof he makes any thing. the Creator of all. and hath a being. But whence should I know. is ignorance. before we were. which can in some way invest with such a form. because there was no place where to make it. and see within what he doth without. nor in the whole world didst Thou make the whole world.

the syllables sounded and passed away. there was a corporeal creature before heaven and earth. the second after the first. by which to say. But how didst Thou speak? In the way that the voice came out of the cloud. I know not. This is my beloved Son? For that voice passed by and passed away. nor are they. and with me there knows and blesses Thee. which Thou makest by saying. the third after the second. but the Word of my Lord abideth above me for ever. or everlasting. There. created for a time. And these Thy words. it could not be at all. nor dost Thou make. until the last after the rest. hear I Thy voice speaking unto me. which was not. and yet are not all things made together. in which Reason nothing beginneth or leaveth off. created that. For whatsoever that were. began and ended. and not a true eternity nor true immortality. O Lord my God? I see it in a way. but how to express it. Else have we time and change.thereof to make any thing? For what is. Whence it is abundantly clear and plain that the motion of a creature expressed it. saying. whoso is not unthankful to assure Truth. O my God. that a body might be made. and leaves off then. And therefore unto the Word coeternal with Thee Thou dost at once and eternally say all that Thou dost say. and give thanks. Lord. But she compared these words sounding in time. by whose motions in time that voice might take his course in time. so far forth it dieth and ariseth. and is. and said "It is different. but because Thou art? Therefore Thou spokest. and so madest heaven and earth. We know. Which is spoken eternally. But there was nought corporeal before heaven and earth. O Lord. which is also "the Beginning. For what was spoken was not spoken successively. and silence after the last. and leaves off to be. begins then. with Thee God. or if there were. that whatsoever begins to be. one thing concluded that the next might be spoken. whose inward ear lay listening to Thy Eternal Word. because It is truly immortal and eternal. unless it be. Let the heaven and the earth be made. Lord. whereby these words again might be made? Thou callest us then to understand the Word. because also It speaketh unto us. without such a passing voice. I confess to Thee. By what Word then didst Thou speak. serving Thy eternal will. with that Thy Eternal Word in silence. These words are far beneath me. the outward ear reported to the intelligent soul. and so forth in order." If then in sounding and passing words Thou saidst that heaven and earth should be made. whereof such a voice were made. and found in the eternal Verity. Why. since inasmuch as anything is not which was. but all things together and eternally. because they flee and pass away. God. Nothing then of Thy Word doth give place or replace. we know. that it might be believed and sought inwardly. and in Thy Word Thou madest them. far different. This I know. that it ought to begin or leave off. and they were made. whereof to make this passing voice." Thus in the Gospel He speaketh through the flesh. This is Thy Word. when in Thy eternal Reason it is known. surely Thou hadst. I know. . and by It are all things spoken eternally. itself temporal. I beseech Thee. otherwise than by saying. and whatever Thou sayest shall be made is made. where the good and only Master teacheth all His disciples. unless by Thee it were made. and this sounded outwardly in the ears of men.

Lo. O Wisdom of God. fainting from it. but He that teacheth us not. where we learn truly. And if aught have arisen in God's Substance. seeing nothing could be created. Let him that is able. It is Wisdom. and speaking unto us. in Thy Son. and fix it. but the whole . while we stand and hear Him. who teacheth us. but that in the Eternal nothing passeth. because unless It abided. it is through knowing. hear Thee inwardly discoursing out of Thy oracle: I will boldly cry out. hast Thou made heaven and earth. shalt heal all my infirmities. wherefore we through patience wait for Thy promises. where there ariseth a will. and that a long time cannot become long. whilst their heart fluttereth between the motions of things past and to come. How wonderful are Thy works. and I shudder and kindle? I shudder. The will of God then belongeth to His very Substance. Lord. And therefore the Beginning. which before was not. and shalt satisfy my desire with good things. but the unchangeable Truth? for even when we are admonished through a changeable creature. which cannot be prolonged altogether. in Thy Power. do not yet understand Thee. why was not the creature also from eternity?" Who speak thus. when we went astray. Who shall comprehend? Who declare it? What is that which gleams through me. For in hope we are saved. we are but led to the unchangeable Truth. who say to us. and in Thee are made: yet they strive to comprehend things eternal. in Thy Word. and this Wisdom is the Beginning. Who hast been gracious to all mine iniquities. how then would that be a true eternity. and rejoice greatly because of the Bridegroom's voice. But if the will of God has been from eternity that the creature should be. from Whom we are. and for ever. because my youth shall be renewed like an eagle's. in Wisdom hast Thou made them all. Light of souls. which was not? For the will of God is not a creature. and that we may know. O God. and wondrously making. and is still unstable. Who shall hold it. restoring us to Him. and see that it cannot be compared. severing my cloudiness which yet again mantles over me. and compare it with the times which are never fixed. Who now teacheth us. understand not yet how the things be made. For Thou shalt also redeem my life from corruption. are they not full of their old leaven. because He is the Beginning. but out of many motions passing by. till Thou. which He had never before made. in Thy Wisdom. wondrously speaking. Wisdom's self which gleameth through me. For my strength is brought down in need. and awhile catch the glory of that everfixed Eternity. But when we return from error. as He did heretofore? For did any new motion arise in God. that Substance cannot be truly called eternal. and in that Beginning didst Thou make heaven and earth. but before the creature. and strikes my heart without hurting it. "What was God doing before He made heaven and earth? For if (say they) He were unemployed and wrought not. there should not. in Thy Truth. and a new will to make a creature. I kindle.because He speaketh us. so that I cannot support my blessings. though He speaketh. be whither to return. which by Thee. He teacheth us. In this Beginning. to us He speaketh not. inasmuch as I am like it. unless the will of the Creator had preceded. O Lord. through the darkness which for my punishment gathers upon me. that it be settled awhile. inasmuch as I unlike it. and crown me with loving kindness and tender mercies. why does He not also henceforth.

or the hand of my mouth by speech bring about a thing so great? See. and Thy years fail not. I answer him that asketh. when they shall no more be. and see how eternity ever still-standing. "He was preparing hell (saith he) for pryers into mysteries. "What did God before He made heaven and earth?" I answer not as one is said to have done merrily (eluding the pressure of the question). our God. But Thou precedest all things past. by the sublimity of an ever-present eternity. therefore didst Thou beget The Coeternal. but To-day. and when they come. but ours shall all be. and surpassest all future because they are future. didst for innumerable ages forbear from so great a work. that it may stand still. is driven on by time to come. is Eternity. why is it demanded." every creature be understood. because they do stand. that no creature was made. because time itself Thou madest. they shall be past. For whence could innumerable ages pass by. than so as to raise a laugh at him who asketh deep things and gain praise for one who answereth false things. and Thy day is not daily. But I say that Thou. Thou the Author and Creator of all ages? or what times should there be. what Thou then didst? For there was no "then. "I know not. Maker of heaven and earth. I boldly say. seeing Thy To-day gives not place unto to-morrow." what I know not. Thy To-day. why say they that Thou didst forego working? For that very time didst Thou make. before Thou wouldest make it. This day have I begotten Thee. for neither doth it replace yesterday. uttereth the times past and to come? Can my hand do this. Thy years stand together. what did He make but a creature? And would I knew whatsoever I desire to know to my profit. neither past nor to come. is created. because Thou . But if any excursive brain rove over the images of forepassed times. Thy years are one day. nor could times pass by. for they pass not away. nor are departing thrust out by coming years. to whom Thou saidst. which were not made by Thee? or how should they pass by. "that before God made heaven and earth. another to make sport of enquirers." It is one thing to answer enquiries." For if He made. and wonder that Thou the God Almighty and All-creating and All-supporting. before there was made any present. if any time was before Thou madest heaven and earth. Thy years neither come nor go. and before all times Thou art: neither in any time was time not. and flows out of that which is ever present? Who shall hold the heart of man. Thou hast made all things. let him awake and consider. Nor dost Thou by time. But if before heaven and earth there was no time. At no time then hadst Thou not made any thing. before Thou madest those times. And no times are coeternal with Thee. that they all may come. He did not make any thing. but Thou art the Same. which Thou madest not. So I answer not. and all past and to come. whereas no time is all at once present: and that all time past. if they never were? Seeing then Thou art the Creator of all times. for rather had I answer." when there was no time. art the Creator of every creature: and if by the name "heaven and earth. whereas ours both come and go. precede time: else shouldest Thou not precede all times. as I know. that he wonders at false conceits. and all to come followeth upon the past.

For twelve months are a year. if the second. all after it. an hundred years hence. often days hence. A long time past (for example) we call an hundred years since. which was not at all. But see at least whether that one which is now current. my Light. when present. "a long time" and "a short time". what could be long. we understand also. and never pass into time past. we call (suppose) often days since. then is not the year present. so as to utter a word about it? But what in discourse do we mention more familiarly and knowingly. "it is long". time present were not. and therefore are not yet. still. it was no longer. What wilt thou answer me? Are an hundred years. we understand. Those two times then. how are they. but after it was past. But in what sense is that long or short. thou soul of man. and if nothing were coming. the rest past. they should not be times. namely. I know not: yet I say boldly that I know. For what is time? Who can readily and briefly explain this? Who can even in thought comprehend it. but eternity. "it hath been long". wherefore neither could that be long. If time present (if it is to be time) only cometh into existence. that ceased also to be long. For if the first of these years be now current. only of time past or to come. but if they abode. but one day only. was it long when it was now past. when there was. one is now past. and that to come is not yet? But the present. it was long. or when it was yet present? For then might it be long. which ceased to be. what hath been long. shall not here also Thy Truth mock at man? For that past time which was long. it is no more. but the other ninety and nine are to come. but when past. for if the current month be its first. and the future. if any of the . and a short time to come. Therefore. the rest to come. another present. the first is already past. whether an hundred years can be present. verily it should not be time. a long time? See first. that if nothing passed away. and therefore there was. is not yet. but because it is tending not to be? And yet we say. Let us not then say. and if nothing were. but let us say. seeing the past now is not. whether present time can be long: for to thee it is given to feel and to measure length of time. how can we say that either this is. and a long time to come. that we cannot truly say that time is. But a short time past. "that present time was long". wherefore an hundred years cannot be present. because it passeth into time past. of which whatever by the current month is present. or to come. it is present. to come. For it had not yet passed away. Let us not then say. and if not present as a whole. are past. but if the second year be current. whose cause of being is. I know: if I wish to explain it to one that asketh. time past were not. Let us see then. that it shall not be. "it will be long. past. neither is the year now current present. past and to come. so as not to be. what could be long. itself is present. than time? And. should it always be present. What then is time? If no one asks me. Although neither is that current month present. and the rest are not yet." O my Lord. if the last. when we speak of it. And so if we assume any middle year of this hundred to be present.abidest. when it was present. seeing that since it was past. is not now. and of the future. which is not? For the past. "time past hath been long": for we shall not find. the rest are to come. so. the rest being to come. all before it. because. but of the past. a time to come were not. if it be the first. when we hear it spoken of by another.

and others longer. the first hath the rest to come. "This is double. are. because neither is one day present as a whole. Wheresoever then is whatsoever is. or only just so much as that. "it will be long. it is divided into past and future. or past. I ask." Permit me. See how the present time. Lord. "it is long". whatsoever remaineth. which alone we found could be called long. so as to be long. And yet. because those two are not? Or are they also. the last hath them past. Thus my childhood. or the future. and so. I would know where they be. we perceive intervals of times. Although when past facts are related. which is not. as yet is not). rule and guide me. they. as not to be lengthened out with the least stay. is past. doth it come out of some secret place. but past. when it is yet to come. and when from future it becometh present. cannot be seen. but present only. those behind it to come. who foretold things to come. Yea. And they who relate things past. present. by perceiving them. but words which. when from future which as yet is not. because it is not. but we say. there are drawn out of the memory. "Who will tell me that there are not three times (as we learned when boys. but when it is past. to seek further. I affirm not: O my God. Lord. they are not yet there. it shall not be long (because what can be long. Father. then amid past and to come. that can be measured. or treble. and compare them. which cannot be divided into the smallest particles of moments. and future. who can measure? unless a man shall presume to say. it is only as present. that one hour passeth away in flying particles. because it is not yet." When therefore will it be? For if even then. how much longer or shorter this time is than that. if as yet they be not? For that which is not. if in mind they did not discern them. it cannot. it may be perceived and measured. We measure also. let not my purpose be confounded. and that. which now are not. and any of the middle hath those before it past. could not relate them. If an instant of time be conceived. which may be called present. have through the senses left as traces in the mind. Whatsoever of it hath flown away. that alone is it. they are not there as future. is abridged to the length scarce of one day.middle. Which yet if I cannot. if there also they be past. it shall begin now to be. is to come. then does time present cry out in the words above. and say. . and if they were not." But we measure times as they are passing. yet I know. they could no way be discerned. For if there also they be future. wherever they be. and so it shall then be long. some are shorter. When then time is passing. but present. Where then is the time. Things then past and to come. that it cannot be long. which we may call long? Is it to come? Of it we do not say. Which yet flies with such speed from future to past. and have become present. The present hath no space. and we answer. and taught boys). when retiring. past. conceived by the images of the things. For if it be. O my hope. For if times past and to come be. but once. that so there should exist what may be long. in passing. For it is made up of four and twenty hours of night and day: of which. which are not yet. from present it becometh past? For where did they. not the things themselves which are past. But let us examine that also. see them. they are no longer there.

most things improperly. I could not foretell it. because it is still in my memory. which already is. Nor is it properly said.which now is not. because then it is no longer future. the images may be perceived before. still the things intended are understood. O sweet light of my hidden eyes. yet foretold they may be from things present. which is not yet. and I confess there are three. a present of things past. Let it be said too. . present of things past. memory. nor that imagination of my mind. expectation. is about to rise. And yet did I not in my mind imagine the sun-rising itself (as now while I speak of it). I behold the day-break. that only can be seen. Ruler of Thy creation. which two are seen now present. and tell of it. that the sun. in the soul. not the sun. "there be three times. But neither is that day-break which I discern in the sky. Therefore they are not future but present to those who now see that. when we have set upon. because it is to come. it is not themselves which as yet are not (that is. which already are. sight. and have begun to do what we were forethinking. is in time past. which we speak properly. I foreshow. "there be three times. from which the future. but present. and those who foretell those things. if what is so said be but understood. that the other which is to be may be foretold. but their causes perchance or signs are seen. nor find fault. do behold the conceptions present before them. by what way dost Thou teach souls things to come? For Thou didst teach Thy Prophets. which now is not: but now when I recall its image. and to come": yet perchance it might be properly said. is foretold. "there be three times. present. but otherwhere do I not see them. past. that of things which as yet are not. What I behold. present of things present. what is not. or rather of the future. What now is clear and plain is. which are to be). Which way soever then this secret fore-perceiving of things to come be. Future things then are not yet: and if they be not yet. Thou then. what I foresignify. and a present of things future. to whom nothing is to come. which is. and that that forethinking is present. dost teach things present? For. Too far is this way of my ken: it is too mighty for me. Which. now is. but present. is not future. nor what is past. when Thou shalt vouchsafe it. then shall that action be. I know not. is present. By what way dost Thou. already existing. neither can it be taught. I object not. I confess. teach things to come. I cannot attain unto it. I behold it in the present. When then things to come are said to be seen. that neither what is to be. present of things future. that we generally think before on our future actions. nor gainsay. being foreconceived in the mind. but from Thee I can. For but few things are there. and to come": in our incorrect way. Let now the numerous variety of things furnish me some example. and are seen. the sun-rising. O my God. but the action whereof we forethink is not yet. Which fore-conceptions again now are. but the sun-rising. they cannot be seen." For these three do exist in some sort. Whether there be a like cause of foretelling things to come also. that neither things to come nor past are. See. a present of things present. they are not: and if they are not. If thus we be permitted to speak. I see three times. This indeed I know. present. past. But what now is. which are already. to come. although it goes before it.

and time. and equal. which be measurable. and double. constituted time. "How knowest thou?" I might answer. that I may contemplate the delights of the Lord. grant to men to see in a small thing notices common to . but let them dawn through Thy enlightening mercy. "how long time since he did this". In what space then do we measure time passing? In the future. Give. because I have taken upon me to know. otherwhiles quicker. or any other like way that we speak of time. single. and "how long time since I saw that". By Christ I beseech Thee. but into the past? From that therefore. Give. which now is not. or if it turned sometimes slower. For why should not the motions of all bodies rather be times? Or. and trouble is before me until Thou openest it. O Lord my God. and things past and to come. as I said. by which it passes? but no space. let no man disturb me. "I know. by what way. so vehemently kindled toward Thy Scriptures. This is my hope." These words we speak.I said then even now. that it be hindered from piercing into them. for I do love. others long. to Whom these my studies. and stars. from my desire. that the motions of the sun. but when it shall have passed. and so of any other parts of time. should we not also be speaking in time? Or. in order to be able to say. and triple. and say. I heard once from a learned man. which is not yet. it is not measured. and I assented not. for this do I live. and are understood. and a potter's wheel run round. and whither passes it while it is a measuring? whence. and how. Shut it not up. And we talk of time. and this hast Thou given me. into that." But time present how do we measure. through that. than to Thee. these in a longer? God. My soul is on fire to know this most intricate enigma. Wherefore. Holy of holies. are not. but because those sounded in a shorter time. are not troublesome? Give what I love. and times. O Lord. good Father. should there be no time by which we might measure those whirlings. other shorter? Or. while we were saying this. should there in our words be some syllables short. we measure times as they pass. except of spaces of times. but through the present? whither. we do not measure: or in the past. Father. if the lights of heaven should cease. and these we hear. Most manifest and ordinary they are. do not shut up these usual. seeing it hath no space? It is measured while passing. moon. and times. for there will be nothing to be measured. we measure not. But whence. Behold. I know not. Yet what do we measure. And if any should ask me. to which it passes? But neither do we measure that. or. Or in the present. "How long time is it since he said this". yet hidden things. this is just so much as that. Who truly knowest to give good gifts unto Thy children. which hath no space. which now is not. For I believed. that some rounds were longer. nor can we measure things that are not. in His Name. and the self-same things again are but too deeply hidden. and therefore do I speak. and they pass away. that either it moved with equal pauses. this time is twice so much as that one. that we do measure. if not time in some space? For we do not say. Whom shall I enquire of concerning these things? and to whom shall I more fruitfully confess my ignorance. whence it passeth through? But what is not yet. Thou hast made my days old. and understand. through Christ I beseech Thee. and "this syllable hath double time to that single short syllable. but from the future? Which way. we measure times as they pass. and the discovery of them were new.

from morning to morning." or "twice so long as that. and it continue to move so that I see not when it ends. that a double time. are also for signs. Seeing "day" denotes not the stay only of the sun upon the earth (according to which day is one thing. Light and Truth. And if I look long. if so be it was finished in so small a space as twelve hours. when at the prayer of one. but in time. because. does the motion alone make the day. as the sun usually makes his whole course in. For when a body is moved. whereby we. according to which we say. if between one sun-rise and another there were but so short a stay. "there passed so many days. was finished. while the sun stood still. "so many days. and say (for example) this motion is twice as long as that. nor that. if. Thou sayest it not. But when we can mark the distances of the places. For I ask. If both. and comparing both times. night another). Dost Thou bid me assent. and for years. even supposing the sun to run his round from east to east. if any define time to be "motion of a body?" Thou dost not bid me. but that the motion of a body is time. but not how long. nor yet he. this Thou sayest. For that no body is moved. or the stay in which that motion is completed. sometimes in that double time. then should not that make a day. wilt show me. as one hour comes to. I hear not. that by which we measure how long it is. or his parts. and for days. I by time measure. the sun had stood still. I perceive time then to be a certain extension. should call this a single time. then should we have a day." we do it by comparison. so much time should overpass. I can only pronounce it to be a long time. But do I perceive it." and the nights not reckoned apart. which of the two is rather to be called time? . then neither could that be called a day. how long it moveth. because when we say "how long. If the second. from this place unto that. but the sun must go four and twenty times about. that the going round of that wooden wheel was a day. The stars and lights of heaven. if the sun should run his whole round in the space of one hour. but time went on. or both? For if the first be the day. sometimes in that single. I will not therefore now ask. another." or the like. Let no man then tell me. and for seasons. that the motions of the heavenly bodies constitute times. by which we measure the motions of bodies. although the sun should finish that course in so small a space of time. I cannot measure. who sees not. as.. till he could achieve his victorious battle. they are. what that is which is called day. yet neither should I say. Seeing therefore the motion of a body is one thing.seeing then a day is completed by the motion of the sun and by his circuit from east to east again. the sun stood still. but. save perchance from the time I began. to complete one day. I desire to know the force and nature of time. whence and whither goeth the body moved. For in its own allotted space of time was that battle waged and ended. I ask. I hear. or seem to perceive it? Thou. from the time it began to move until it left off? And if I did not see whence it began. what time is. as one hour comes to. until I cease to see. but also its whole circuit from east to east again. if it moved as in a lathe.things great and small. "this is as long as that. then can we say precisely. that it was therefore no time." the night being included when we say. measuring the circuit of the sun. should say that it was finished in half the time it was wont. in how much time the motion of that body or his part.

because prolonged by so many syllables. nor past. and that having long spoken of time. pronounced hurriedly. Before it sounded. by the space of short syllables. and sounds on. pronounced more fully. Behold. and we say "it is a long stanza. the space of a rood? for so indeed we seem by the space of a short syllable. by the spaces of the syllables. and the time itself do I not measure? Or could I indeed measure the motion of a body how long it were. that I do measure times? Do I then measure. not his motion only. as by the space of a cubit. for it is not yet. my mind. and now it cannot. or guessed. Thus measure we the spaces of stanzas. because composed of so many verses. and the spaces of the feet. Does not my soul most truly confess unto Thee. that time is nothing else than protraction. and I marvel. it was to come. sometimes stands still. because it is not protracted by any space. but as I speak. But neither do we this way obtain any certain measure of time. and the spaces of long. and in how long space it could come from this place to that. And so for a verse. long verses. Time then is not the motion of a body. when I say. and to say that this is double the other. but of what. because as yet it was not. O Lord. the voice of a body begins to sound. O Lord my God. He made us. How then know I this. and is no more a voice. a syllable. long feet. before Thee I lie not. Whence it seemed to me. and we say. as much as it moved". and does sound. because it may be. Thou. what I know not. because it is no longer. and could not be measured. either indefinitely "this is a longer time than that. seeing I know not what time is? or is it perchance that I know not how to express what I know? Woe is me. but by the pause of time. because it now is not. Suppose. "it stood still. or "it stood still twice or thrice so long as it moved". And I confess to Thee. to measure the space of a long syllable. do I measure. Courage. it ceases. then we measure. now. and yet I measure not time to come. if it be not of the mind itself? For what. without measuring the time in which it is moved? This same time then. more or less. I beseech Thee. that I yet know not what time is. wilt enlighten my darkness. that very "long" is not long. and the spaces of the verses. O my God. may take up more time than a longer. O my God. and again I confess unto Thee. O Lord. by the spaces of the feet. as we use to say. Thou shalt light my candle. by the spaces of the verses. not times). a foot. I know.For and if a body be sometimes moved. because consisting of so many feet. or any other space which our measuring hath either ascertained. Then therefore while it sounded. not measuring by pages (for then we measure spaces. God is our helper. and that voice is past. but his standing still too by time. it might. that I know that I speak this in time. O my God." or definitely "this is double that"? That I measure time. it is silence now. so is my heart. But yet even then it . and not we ourselves. how do I measure? do we by a shorter time measure a longer. because there then was what might be measured. and know not what I measure? I measure the motion of a body in time. I know not. and press on mightily. nor present. that a shorter verse. but when we utter the words and they pass by. What then do I measure? Times passing. and list. that do not even know. a long syllable because double to a short one. not past? for so I said. Press on where truth begins to dawn.

Either then this is time. measuring. are but single. which there remains fixed. and find it so. cannot be measured. nor can it be measured but from the instant it began in. seeing I measure it not till it be ended? Now his ending is his passing away. for that? For while passing. and yet we do measure times. that I measure times. How may it then be measured? And yet we measure times. and say that this silence hath held as long time as did that voice? do we not stretch out our thought to the measure of a voice. We measure neither times to come. unless they were already past and ended. It is not then themselves. interrupt not thyself with the tumults of thy impressions. that so we may be able to report of the intervals of silence in a given space of time? For though both voice and tongue be still. yet in thought we go over poems. a voice that is not yet ended. and report as to the spaces of times. Every one of these to every one of those. If therefore then it might. so that it may be said how long. have flown. to. since the present hath no space. fourth. sixth. nor can it be called equal to another. but yet neither those which are not yet. seeing the long does not begin to sound. The four short then. and nothing left to be measured. so that it might be measured. or short it is. nor present. this it is which still present. And yet I could not do this. nor passing. and I sensibly find it to have twice so much. third. shall I apply it to the long. But it sounds still. fifth. and passing away. passed away. as one's plain sense perceives." this verse of eight syllables alternates between short and long syllables. not the things which pass by to make this impression. nor past. and confidently answer (so far as is presumed on a practised sense) that as to space of time this syllable is but single. the first. namely. as if it sounded. it no longer is. But when ended. and eighth. seeing when it hath left sounding. unless the short leaves sounding? And that very long one do I measure as present. in respect of the four long. or double to a single. and how. nor those which no longer are. For the very space between is the thing we measure. the impression. and verses. how much this is in respect of that.was not at a stay. This I measure. and yet I measure. let us measure it verily. or the like. it was being extended into some space of time. the latter long. which now are not. or I do not measure times. for it was passing on. that I may find this to have twice so much. how shall I detain the short one. or dimensions of motions. if the former be short. but something in my memory. are no more. and any other discourse. and tell how much it is. that I measure. It is in thee. and still soundeth in one continued tenor without any interruption. but when one sounds after the other. then. What then is it I measure? where is the short syllable by which I measure? where the long which I measure? Both have sounded. it will then be past. What when we measure silence. and seventh. suppose another voice hath begun to sound. that is. let us measure it while it sounds. hath a double time: I pronounce them. when I measure times. report on them. Interrupt me not. remains even when they are gone. that double. no otherwise than if vocally we did . my mind. the second. unto the end it left in. which things as they pass by cause in thee. Could it be measured the rather. nor those which are not lengthened out by some pause. In thee I measure times. "Deus Creator omnium. I measure. I measure a long syllable by a short. nor those which have no bounds. By plain sense then. from some beginning unto some end. Wherefore.

whereof all the actions of man are parts. until it be brought unto the end proposed. which is now no longer. and may be re-collected from my old conversation. is "a long expectation of the future. for so much of it as is finished. my . that through it what was future. and us many. where I may hear the voice of Thy praise. there be three things done? For it expects. when that whole action being ended. and committing it to memory. he hath in silence already gone through a space of time. so much the more the expectation being shortened. all is past. which sounds on. in my Lord the Son of man. behold. but to those things which are before. that so that which it expecteth. my life is but a distraction. many also through our manifold distractions amid many things. and each several syllable. and not distended but extended. so as to become past. my expectation is extended over the whole." nor is it time past. and had settled in thought how long it should be. begins to utter that speech. through that which it considereth. how much soever of it I shall separate off into the past. that things to come are not as yet? and yet. whereof this Psalm may be part. art my comfort. not distractedly but intently. and expectation as to what I am about to repeat. I follow on for the prize of my heavenly calling. that is long. the past increasing by the diminution of the future. which now is not. passeth into that which it remembereth. but when I have begun. But because Thy loving-kindness is better than all lives. And who denies past things to be now no longer? and yet is there still in the mind a memory of things past. And thus passeth it on. Who therefore denieth. and contemplate Thy delights.pronounce them. is extended along my memory. neither to come. the same holds through the whole age of the sons of men. is "a long memory of the past. hath sounded already. Which the more it is done again and again. The One. it considers. But now are my years spent in mourning. and the rest will sound. there is in the mind an expectation of things to come. O Lord. But how is that future diminished or consumed. for as yet it is not: but a long future. but a long past. save that in the mind which enacteth this. Yea it hath sounded. which as yet is not? or how that past increased. because it passeth away in a moment? and yet our consideration continueth. And this which takes place in the whole Psalm. may be conveyed over. Before I begin. thus the life of this action of mine is divided between my memory as to what I have repeated. and Thy right hand upheld me. forgetting what is behind. the Mediator betwixt Thee. shall have passed into memory. that by Him I may apprehend in Whom I have been apprehended. it remembers. and will sound. And who denieth the present time hath no space. whereof all the lives of men are parts. the same takes place in each several portion of it. through which that which shall be present proceedeth to become absent. not to things which shall be and shall pass away. until the present intent conveys over the future into the past. It is not then future time. the same holds in that longer action. If a man would utter a lengthened sound." I am about to repeat a Psalm that I know. that is long. is the memory enlarged: till the whole expectation be at length exhausted. to follow The One. And Thou. the same holds in the whole life of man. nor to pass away. but "consideration" is present with me. until by the consumption of the future.

far be it. if there be mind gifted with such vast knowledge and foreknowledge. "How came it into His mind to make any thing. in my mould. are through expectation of the words to come. and become firm in Thee. what a depth is that recess of Thy mysteries. BOOK XII My heart. let him confess unto Thee. when "time" is not. For not. And therefore most times. varied. and whoso understandeth not. what else is it to say. in that nothing past. nor any creature. is the poverty of human understanding copious in words.Father everlasting. that I may share the joy of Thy light. or heareth some well-known song. and yet the humble in heart are Thy dwelling-place. dost Thou know them. O Lord. for Thou raisest up those that are bowed down. even the inmost bowels of my soul. having never before made any thing?" Give them. are rent and mangled with tumultuous varieties. Oh how high art Thou. what. and how much there remained unto the end. Thy truth. and my thoughts. Whoso understandeth. purified and molten by the fire of Thy love. nothing to come in after-ages. and demanding is longer . that time cannot be without created being. O Lord my God. unchangeably eternal. Far. and they fall not. and the remembering of those that are past. Certainly. and far more mysteriously. that Thou shouldest in such wise know all things past and to come. as I know one well-known Psalm. whose elevation Thou art. but I have been severed amid times. and fearfully amazing. And now will I stand. far more wonderfully. who by a penal disease thirst for more than they can contain. touched with the words of Thy Holy Scripture. and that no times be coeternal with Thee. and cease to speak that vanity. until I flow together into Thee. as to know all things past and to come. and to find. that is. Like then as Thou in the Beginning knewest the heaven and the earth. -not so doth any thing happen unto Thee. because enquiring hath more to say than discovering. the Creator of souls and bodies. amid this poverty of my life. "what did God before He made heaven and earth?" Or. even if there be any creature before all times. O Lord. This then that He is said "never to have made". But far be it that Thou the Creator of the Universe. and how much of it had passed away from the beginning. well to bethink themselves what they say. let him confess unto Thee. that "never" cannot be predicated. nor will I endure the questions of men. and understand Thee before all times. the eternal Creator of minds. is any more hidden from him. May they also be extended towards those things which are before. without any variety of Thy knowledge. and say. without any distraction of Thy action. is much busied. than "in 'no have made?" Let them see therefore. and how far from it have the consequences of my transgressions cast me! Heal mine eyes. and his senses divided. truly that mind is passing wonderful. so madest Thou in the Beginning heaven and earth. than when I sung that Psalm. as the feelings of one who singeth what he knoweth. was hidden from me what. the eternal Creator of all times. whose order I know not.

nor object of sense. receiveth. So that when thought seeketh what the sense may conceive under this. Lord. and our hand that knocks. but to have no sound there? Hast not Thou. when the Truth promiseth? The lowliness of my tongue confesseth unto Thy Highness. because it had no shape. who can be against us? Ask. there was nothing. what was the presence of darkness. nor spirit? and yet not altogether nothing. to that unknown heaven. And what is it to have silence there. or justice. The heaven of heavens are the Lord's. for there was a certain formlessness. there was in it no object of sight or sense". where should it have been but by being over all. and saith to itself. findeth. than our hand that receives. seek. O Lord. knock. as where sound is not. nor body.while man's thought thus saith to itself. hath more work to do. that before Thou formedst and diversifiedst this formless matter. and it shall be opened unto you. neither colour. because being invisible. but by some ordinary word? And what. taught his soul. nor figure. they are less beautiful than the other higher parts are. How then should it be called. Therefore didst Thou command it to be written. but the absence of light? Darkness therefore was upon it. . as life. not being wholly every where. whereof to make this beautiful world) to be suitably intimated unto men. shall it be opened. but to that heaven of heavens. and ye shall find.than obtaining. But where is that heaven of heavens. without any beauty.. not the sons' of men. whereof the lowest is this our earth. and he that seeketh. and ye shall have. and this earth that I tread upon. who shall make it null? If God be for us. what else than the absence of light? For had there been light. hath in such wise received its portion of beauty in these lower parts. it may endeavour either to know it. by being ignorant of it. and there was I know not what depth of abyss. which confesseth unto Thee? Hast not Thou taught me. and to him that knocketh. and enlightening? Where then light was not. O Lord. among all parts of the world can be found nearer to an absolute formlessness. but the earth hath He given to the children of men? Where is that heaven which we see not. is but earth: yea both these great bodies. this heaven which I see. For every one that asketh. there is silence. may not absurdly be called earth. We hold the promise. that it might be in some measure conveyed to those of duller mind. that Thou madest heaven and earth. aloft. than earth and deep? For. whence is this earth that I bear about me. by knowing it. Thou madest it. to which all this which we see is earth? For this corporeal whole. Wherefore then may I not conceive the formlessness of matter (which Thou hadst created without beauty. These be Thine own promises: and who need fear to be deceived. and without form. occupying the lowest stage. transparent all and shining. upon which there was no light. even the heaven of our earth. because it is the matter of bodies. that darkness was upon the face of the deep. "It is no intellectual form. or to be ignorant. because light was not upon it. And now this earth was invisible and without form. which is the Lord's. by the name of earth invisible and without form. which we hear of in the words of the Psalm.

I suspected to be through a certain formless state. not to suspect only. as being capable of receiving these visible and compound figures. the other. what is it? Is it soul? Is it body? Is it that which constituteth soul or body? Might one say. Holy. And this changeableness. and true reason did persuade me. my mind tossed up and down foul and horrible "forms" out of all order. for so should they have been equal to Thine Only Begotten Son. in Thy Wisdom. by my tongue and my pen. whereas no way were it right that aught should be equal to Thee. whatsoever knots Thou didst open for me in this question. but because it had such as my mind would. when they who understood it not. Lord God Almighty. so far forth as they are? But so much the further from Thee. And aught else besides Thee was there not. and nothing was there besides. and thereby to Thee also." I would say. this were it: and yet in some way was it even then. from Whom are all things. not out of Thyself. and a song of praise. not through a mere nothing. and human frailness would be troubled at. things of two sorts. create something. neither formed. which was not of Thee. out of which Thou createdst heaven and earth. not as being deprived of all form. if I would conceive matter absolutely without form. to make all things good. and changing and varying them. for those things which it is not able to express. it being filled with the images of formed bodies. a great thing. And still that which I conceived. and otherwise in another. and I could not. as unwonted and jarring. Holy. and the Self-same. Thou wert. what reader would hold out to take in the whole? Nor shall my heart for all this cease to give Thee honour. whatever Thyself hath taught me of that matter. and I bent myself to the bodies themselves. into which these changeable things are changed. and the petty earth. Thou therefore. -the name whereof hearing before. to which nothing should be inferior. a formless almost nothing. and looked more deeply into their changeableness. O God.But I. "a nothing something". for it is not farness of place. Who art not one in one place. which should be deprived of all form. and therefore out of nothing didst Thou create heaven and earth. but yet "forms" and I called it without form not that it wanted all form. and a small thing. Lord. and the Self-same. For Thou createdst heaven and earth. an "is. is not. by which they cease to be what they have been. whereof Thou mightest create them. as the unliker Thee. For the changeableness of changeable things. So my mind gave over to question thereupon with my spirit. and therefore did not conceive it at all. which was born of Thine own Substance. one near Thee. if I would. and begin to be what they were not. one to which Thou alone shouldest be superior. as it willed. is itself capable of all those forms.-If then my voice and pen would confess unto Thee the whole. nor nothing. . but the Self-same. but from Thee. even the great heaven. so I conceived of it as having innumerable forms and diverse. if presented to it. didst in the Beginning. than conceive a thing betwixt form and nothing. but in comparison of more beautiful forms. for sooner could I imagine that not to be at all. One Trinity. the other near to nothing. confess unto Thee the whole. was without form. Lord. and Trine Unity. which is of Thee. Holy. and this same shifting from form to form. But whence had it this degree of being. for Thou art Almighty and Good. yet this I longed to know. that I must utterly uncase it of all remnants of form whatsoever. turn from. and not understanding. and that out of nothing. told me of it.

hath even in his depths. and so live. the second day. that times can be observed and numbered in it. And therefore the Spirit. cleaving close unto Thee. For verily that heaven of heavens which Thou createdst in the Beginning. For Thou. the Light of my heart. upon which there was no light. speak unto me. which we sons of men wonder at. I heard Thy voice behind me. neither is this very formlessness of the earth. thereof to make those great things. nor any vicissitude of spaces of times. by giving a visible figure to the formless matter. which. and darkness was upon the deep. of which almost nothing.But that heaven of heavens was for Thyself. Let me not be mine own life. I fell off into that. and doth through the sweetness of that most happy contemplation of Thyself. invisible. the Trinity. and without form. calling to me to return. For times are made by the alterations of things. yet partaketh of Thy eternity. Which firmament Thou calledst heaven. I return in distress and panting after Thy fountain. without form. Let it be made. But this same earth which Thou madest was formless matter. more than in the deep. O Lord. For it was invisible. speaks nothing of times. whose very changeableness appears therein. even thence I loved Thee. Thou saidst. when It recounts Thee to have In the Beginning created heaven and earth. and where this is not. of which firmament between water and water. of which formlessness. and I revive in Thee. For very wonderful is this corporeal heaven. which out of nothing. behold. Thou mightest make all these things of which this changeable world consists. and without any fall since its first creation. or. madest the world of a matter without form. do Thou discourse unto me. and creeping things in the bottom of it. to this earth and sea. the heaven. but that was the heaven of this heaven. nothing of days. perceivable in whatever degree unto the fishes. strongly restrain its own changeableness. yet there was already that which could be formed. But that whole deep was almost nothing. the matter whereof is the invisible earth aforesaid. and it was made. is placed beyond all the rolling vicissitude of times. of which invisible earth and without form. darkness was above the deep. not mine own darkness. For already hadst Thou made both an heaven. and there was a deep. which Thou madest before all days. and remembered Thee. there plainly are no days. which Thou madest the third day. that is. Let no man forbid me! of this will I drink. to be seen and felt. because it was invisible and without form. while the figures. but even thence. Because this deep of waters. Thou madest next to nothing. For where no figure nor order is. after the creation of light. that is. And now. or go. Yea. Do Thou speak unto me. a light proper for its nature. was not such as we now see and feel. through the tumultuousness of the enemies of peace. numbered among the days. O let the Light. death was I to myself. the Teacher of Thy servant. I have believed Thy Books. because In the beginning Thou hadst made heaven and earth. from myself I lived ill. because hitherto it was altogether without form. is some intellectual creature. and scarcely heard it. visible now. before all days. the Truth. but the earth which Thou gavest to the sons of men. although no ways coeternal unto Thee. are varied and turned. but subsists not. Lord. and their words be most full of . and became darkened. there does nothing come. I went astray.

unto that which in a less degree is. if her tears be now become her bread. if she now thirsts for Thee. Who only hast immortality. nor distracted into any times. than Thine house. above all times. by this then may the soul that is able. and the motion of the will from Thee who art. and let it be more and more cleared unto me. O blessed creature. most harmoniously one. nor is Thy will altered by times: seeing no will which varies is immortal. that if all figure be so wasted and consumed away. its eternal Inhabitant and its Enlightener! Nor do I find by what name I may the rather call the heaven of heavens which is the Lord's. Already Thou hast told me with a strong voice. By this may the soul. drawing its nourishment from Thee. for cleaving unto Thy Blessedness. behold. far above those heavenly places that we see. that there . that Thou hast made all natures and substances. in my inner ear. who but such a one would tell me. by this may she understand. that she may dwell in Thy house all the days of her life (and what is her life. first or last. having neither future to expect. Thou hast told me also with a strong voice. suffers no changeableness of times. one pure mind. understand how far Thou art. doth in no place and at no time put forth its natural mutability. nor conveying into the past what it remembereth. but Thou? and what Thy days. Where is Thy God? if she now seeks of Thee one thing. the citizens of Thy city in heavenly places. I beseech Thee. unto Whom with its whole affection it keeps itself. yet by continually and unfailingly cleaving unto Thee. Thou hast told me also with a strong voice. as Thy years which fail not. O Lord. and desireth it. eternal. and. in my inner ear. while they daily say unto her. let me with sobriety abide under Thy wings. There is. although it be not coeternal with Thee. I beseech Thee: and in the manifestation thereof. This is in Thy sight clear unto me. by that settled estate of peace of holy spirits. let me with sobriety abide under Thy wings. which is not. O Lord. and which with a most persevering purity. and who shall tell me (unless such a one as through the emptiness of his own heart. and yet are. since Thou canst not be changed as to figure or motion. but Thy eternity. whose happiness Thou only art. and let it be more and more cleared to me. This is in Thy sight clear unto me. wonders and tosses himself up and down amid his own fancies?). and let it be more and more cleared to me.mystery. that Thou art eternal. if such there be. and in the manifestation thereof. because Thou art ever the same?). I know not what formlessness in those changes of these last and lowest creatures. in my inner ear. which are not what Thyself is. that neither is that creature coeternal unto Thyself. and that only is not from Thee. let me with sobriety abide under Thy wings. whose pilgrimage is made long and far away. This is in Thy sight clear to me. or disturb the order of Thy government. and in the manifestation thereof. which contemplateth Thy delights without any defection of going forth to another. Thyself being ever present with it. blest in Thee. is neither altered by any change. and that no man's sin doth either hurt Thee. I beseech Thee. seeing Thy house which at no time went into a far country. because such motion is transgression and sin.

without any succession of times. and whatsoever further is in the formation of the world. because where is no form. but (as I said) know all at once. -and because of the earth invisible and without form. not. heaven but the Heaven of heaven. but as a whole. because of these two do I conceive. though changeable. For forthwith it subjoined what earth it spake of. One. and as much as Thou openest to me knocking. that without any ceasing of contemplation. recorded to have been. as being of such nature. These things considered. not within the compass of time. oh that Thou wouldest slay them with Thy two-edged sword. which is so formed. and a trembling of love. O my God. that because of the Heaven of heavens. face to face. that thing anon". which succession presents "this thing now. not darkly. and also. without any succession of times. this is what I conceive. an awfulness of honour. without any interval of change. is the formlessness conveyed unto us (that such capacities may hereby be drawn on by degrees. the two things that I spake of. the one. whose Intelligences know all at once. and that. that it had not that. and called Heaven. which could be changed from one form into another. through which the thing was changed and turned from one figure to another. behold! is before us. But this Thou didst not leave thus formless. a wondrous depth! It is awful to look therein. there is no distinction of things: -it is. O my God. not in part. out of which another Heaven might be created. because. Thou in the Beginning didst create Heaven and Earth. it conveys to us of which Heaven He before spake. whether of motion. did Thy Scripture say without mention of days. In which words. not through a glass. without mention of days. the other earth but the earth invisible and without form. the other which was so formless. -that intellectual Heaven. The enemies thereof I hate vehemently. and not mentioning what day Thou createdst them. because before all days. O my God. But the Earth was invisible and without form. as are not able to conceive an utter privation of all form. inviting to little ones. that they might no longer be enemies unto it: for so do I love to have them slain unto . and a primitive formless. and darkness was upon the deep. and darkness was upon the deep. in that the Firmament is recorded to be created the second day. a primitive formed. In the Beginning God created Heaven and Earth. as being subject to appointed alterations of motions and of forms. when I hear Thy Scripture saying.should only remain that formlessness. yet are they a wondrous depth. it may thoroughly enjoy Thy eternity and unchangeableness. as much as Thou stirrest me up to knock. in manifestation. where there is no figure. and that thing anon. neither of which is coeternal with Thee. as much as Thou givest. or of repose. not without days. this thing now. then. without yet coming to nothing). yet not changed. created. Wondrous depth of Thy words! whose surface. without the variety of motions. on account of these two. together with a visible and well-formed earth: and the waters diversly ordered. In the beginning God made Heaven and Earth: and the Earth was invisible and without form. two things I find that Thou hast made. so as to become subject unto time. there are no times: and no variety. This then is what I conceive. that that could exhibit the vicissitudes of times? For plainly it could not. that the successive changes of times may take place in them.

O ye gainsayers? Are these things false?" "No. nor toward himself." Unto Whom Thyself. what He tells me in my inner ear. and which is enlightened. not of earthly mould. because not without beginning. the intellectual nature. and the righteousness which is made by justification. that is. because without defection for ever. what before He willed. Again. that His substance is no ways changed by time. Thou hast given it a law which it shall not pass. For this. For Thou hast made it fast for ever and ever. hath not upon any new will made any creature. that they may live unto Thee. that although not coeternal with Him. and at once. nor of celestial bulk corporeal but spiritual. and in Whom. when they be past. is light. His Father. O Thou God all. and is free and eternal in the heavens (in what heavens. do I thus answer. or matter capable of form. But behold others not faultfinders. as the Beginning. but reposeth in the most true contemplation of Him only?" Because Thou. the rational and intellectual mind of that chaste city of Thine. concerning the Eternity of the Creator. the expectation of things to come becomes sight. nor His will separate from His substance? Wherefore He willeth not one thing now. and find that my God." These things I infer. and by Whom all things were created. and sufficest him. unto him that loveth Thee so much as Thou commandest. our God. for wisdom was created before all things. He willeth all things that He willeth. another anon. the eternal God. nor now this. and therefore doth he not decline from Thee. which by contemplating the light. not that Wisdom which is altogether equal and coeternal unto Thee. He would not have it understood. because He is supremely?" "Neither do we deny this. "What then? do you deny this. but otherwise. nor doth His knowledge admit of any thing transitory. being judge. for it was made. and is eternal: but our God is eternal. Now all thought which thus varies is mutable. but extollers of the book of Genesis. and put together. but from Him Who is supremely good. "The Spirit of God. which with a strong voice Truth tells me in my inner ear. "Who by His servant Moses wrote these things. "What then? Is it false." say they. is not. that there is a certain sublime creature. and always. nor willeth afterwards. but once. as we say. and this same sight becomes memory. is also called wisdom. yet is it not detached from Him. what before He willed not. because such a will is and no mutable thing is eternal: but our God is eternal. That we might be made the righteousness of God in Him. nor dissolved into the variety and vicissitude of times. Nor yet is it coeternal with Thee. Thou createdst heaven and earth. "Will you affirm that to be false. for so saith a certain servant of Thine." say they. nor willeth not. though created. For although we find no time before it. with so chaste a love cleaving unto the true and truly eternal God. so much is there betwixt the Wisdom that createth. O God. our mother which is above. that every nature already formed. and that created. But what difference there is betwixt the Light which enlighteneth. This is the house of God. if not in those that . as thou sayest. dost show Thyself. and partaker of Thy eternity. "What will ye say then." they say. as betwixt the Righteousness which justifieth. but that wisdom which is created. O God. now that. Therefore since a certain created wisdom was created before all things.themselves. when they are come. For we also are called Thy righteousness. not again and again. would not have those words thus understood.

be not Thou silent to me. there was no order? But where no order was. but of its creation. thy builder and possessor. when inwardly it heard the voice of His praise. there could be no vicissitude of times: and yet this almost nothing.' inasmuch as it was not altogether nothing. yea all at once. O house most lightsome and delightsome! I have loved thy beauty. was from Him certainly. nor even in it (it being meet ever to behold Thy face." say they. and raising it up into their own eyes: and myself will enter my chamber. and remembering Jerusalem. what part thereof do you affirm to be false? Is it that the matter was without form. yet is the Eternity of the Creator Himself before it. wherefore it is not varied by any change). "What say ye to me. which Thy Truth whispers unto my soul." With these I now parley a little in Thy presence. and his books the oracles of the Holy Ghost? Is not this house of God. with heart lifted up towards it. yet after its measure. it shineth and gloweth from Thee. because you will not find them? For that. not indeed of time (for time itself was not yet). our God. nor is ever drawn away from it. because the One Sovereign and true Good. and chill. yet is there in it a liability to change. but that by a strong affection cleaving unto Thee. not coeternal indeed with God. and repel me. whence it would wax dark. and not the Self-same: because though we find time neither before it. let Him take possession of me also in thee. -though we find no time before it (because that which hath been created before all things. Husband. and I say to Him that made thee. O my God. Nor will I be turned away. surpasses all extension. where the first-fruits of my spirit be already (whence I am ascertained of these things). for only Thou so speakest: and I will let them alone blowing upon the dust without. from this dispersed and disordered estate. the pure and strong delight. the Heaven of heavens? Because this is also the Heaven of heavens for the Lord). as to be altogether other than Thou. being created. and to open in them a way for Thy word. and the place of the habitation of the glory of my Lord. and all good things unspeakable. I have gone astray like a lost sheep: yet upon the shoulders of my Shepherd.praise Thee. "What then of all that which my heart loudly uttered unto my God." say they. Father." "It is. I will essay to persuade them to quiet. from Whom. from Whom is whatsoever is. I beseech. the Enlightener. Let my wayfaring sigh after thee. in what degree soever it is. Jerusalem my mother. and Thou conform and confirm it for . and all revolving periods of time. and sing there a song of loves unto Thee. Hence it is so of Thee. to which it is ever good to cleave fast to God. groaning with groanings unutterable. and Thyself that rulest over it. it took the beginning. O ye gainsayers that I was speaking unto. who yet believe Moses to have been the holy servant of God. Speak Thou truly in my heart. who grant all these things to be true. like perpetual noon. For those who deny these things. let them bark and deafen themselves as much as they please. into the peace of that our most dear mother. when you seek for changes of times in vain. in my wayfaring. precedeth also the creature of time). hope I to be brought back to thee. eternal in the heavens. O my God. But if they refuse. Jerusalem my country. until Thou gather all that I am. thy builder. seeing He hath made me likewise. and solid joy. "do we not deny." "This also. in which because there was no form. Guardian.

and so. that by the earth invisible and without form is understood corporeal matter. when. as we. piece by piece. because out of it was this visible world with all those natures which most manifestly appear in it. and do yet contradict me in some thing. or received any light from Wisdom?" It yet remains for a man to say. my Mercy. What now if another should say that "this same formlessness and confusedness of matter. however. and. but with this distinction. O our God. the stuff apt to receive form and making. but that the yet unformed commencement of things. as it were. that under the words earth invisible and without form. spiritual matter. who honour Thy holy Scripture. that he thought them fit to be entrusted with the knowledge of such works of God only as were visible. were made and arranged during those "days") may. By Thyself judge. "Though these things be true. be understood of this formless first matter. which is ofttimes called by the name of heaven and earth. or be changed. this declared he by those words. all this visible world. O my God. are not signified under the name of heaven and earth. which God made in His Wisdom. out of which was to be created both heaven and earth (i. In the beginning God made heaven and earth. yet did not Moses intend those two. to arrange in detail. because therein were confusedly contained. before it underwent any restraint of its unlimited fluidness. when we read. that the universal creation. whether they abide. For such were that rude and carnal people to which he spake. created and perfected?" What again if another say that "invisible and visible nature is not indeed inappropriately called heaven and earth. "universally and compendiously. which it pleased the Holy Ghost thus to enounce. that "the already perfected and formed natures. He did not under the name of heaven. was entitled by the same names given to the earth invisible and without form and the darkness upon the deep. as the soul and body of man are): therefore the common matter of all things visible and invisible (as yet unformed though capable of form). as doth the eternal house of God. But those who do not affirm all these truths to be false. was comprehended under those two words? Notwithstanding." "What?" "By the name of heaven and earth would he first signify. and there is a mutable nature in them all. all those things. not as yet . set forth by holy Moses. was called by these names. in the Beginning. antecedent to its being qualified by any form. "meant as we say. and that darksome deep (out of which it is subsequently shown. In the beginning God created heaven and earth. For they say. that all these visible things which we all know." say they. so as afterwards by the enumeration of the several days. but out of nothing (because they are not the same that God is." "What then?" "That man of God.ever. and by the darkness upon the deep. placing it. not incongruously. since all things be made not of the substance of God. was for this reason first conveyed under the name of heaven and earth. signify that spiritual or intellectual creature which always beholds the face of God. if he will. he said. on the summit of authority to be followed. that formless matter. that is. by revelation of the Spirit. visible and invisible." say they." They agree. between my Confessions and these men's contradictions. nor under the name of earth. I answer thus. the invisible and visible creature when formed).

In the Beginning God made heaven and earth. that the Beginning is Thy Wisdom. that is. the one being the spiritual. the light of all true-speaking minds. zealously confessing these things. did God make the . It is true. the same as the writer understood. never to be changed. that whatsoever is formed out of that which had no form. if a man use it lawfully: for that the end of it is charity. that saith. but the subversion of the hearers. that of things having form. In the Beginning God made heaven and earth. It is true. Thou light of my eyes in secret. or the spiritual and the corporeal creature. creation. I say. who saith. which so cleaveth to the unchangeable Form. -of all these then. understood not this. together with all those apparent and known creatures. that this visible world hath for its greater part the heaven and the earth. all those things which being now digested into order. doth it prejudice me. whence that formlessness. -what. we dare not imagine him to have said any thing. O Lord. that is. and seeing we believe him to speak truly. And what doth it prejudice me. that whatsoever is mutable. Out of these truths. that not only every created and formed thing. of which they doubt not whose inward eye Thou hast enabled to see such things. since divers things may be understood under these words which yet are all true. which briefly comprise all made and created natures. that that formlessness which is almost nothing. whereof heaven and earth were made. what hurt is it. that Thou madest heaven and earth. It is true." He another. and faith unfeigned. although he whom he reads. whereby it receiveth a form. and it is true too. And true too. be called by the name of the thing made of it. and who unshakenly believe Thy servant Moses to have spoken in the Spirit of truth. which it containeth. dost show him to be true. in Which Thou createst all: and true again. "in His Word coeternal with Himself. if a man understand what Thou. that is.distinguished by their qualities and forms. It is true. may by a certain mode of speech. that saith. out of a pure heart and good conscience." He another. "in His Word coeternal with Himself. or is changed. there is not any nearer to having no form. God made the intelligible and the sensible. It is true. It is true. I will not strive about words: for that is profitable to nothing. though not this truth? For true it is. upon which two commandments He hung all the Law and the Prophets. as though subject to change. seeing he also understood a Truth. which ourselves either know or think to be false. cannot be subject to the alteration of times. the other the corporeal. O my God. but whatsoever is capable of being created and formed. that that whereof a thing is made. But the law is good to edify. And well did our Master know. of Whom are all things. was unformed before it was formed. if I think otherwise than another thinketh the writer thought? All we readers verily strive to trace out and to understand his meaning whom we read. that that is subject to no times. Thou madest." All which things being heard and well considered. might be called heaven and earth. In the Beginning God made the heaven and the earth. did God make the universal bulk of this corporeal world. than the earth and the deep. or turned. "in His Word coeternal with Himself. he taketh one. While every man endeavours then to understand in the Holy Scriptures. are called Heaven and Earth. gives us to understand a certain want of form.

that is. unless we understand it to be signified by the name of heaven and earth. that is. that is. The earth was invisible and without form. "the Scripture did not call that formlessness by the name of heaven and earth. The earth was invisible and without form. we are to understand no other matter." He another. without light. divided into two great parts. and darkness was upon the deep. that so in what follows. did God create the formless matter of the creature corporeal. which. and darkness was upon the deep. out of which. or of earth alone. But the earth was invisible. but that which God made." He another. for neither hath Scripture told us. and without form." Another he who says. who saith. with all the common and known creatures in them. The earth was invisible and without form. upper and lower. out of which every visible and invisible creature was to be created. under which name is comprised this corporeal heaven also. out of all those truths. and darkness was upon the deep. the whole corporeal nature. "there already was a certain formless matter. and are apparent." For should any attempt to dispute against these two last opinions. God made heaven and earth. and the earth. "this all. and darkness was upon the deep. which he called the earth invisible without form. saith he. there was something which God had not made. when it is said. that is. was still a formless and darksome matter. which is called heaven and earth. whereof is written above. who saith. without order. namely. otherwhere called the Heaven of heavens. that God made heaven and earth. "that corporeal thing that God made. "in the very beginning of creating and working. do they now stand out." And with regard to the understanding of the words following. Ergo. "If you will not allow." Another he who says. and darkness upon the deep. that this formlessness of matter seems to be called by the name of heaven and earth. "in His Word coeternal with Himself. of which the Scripture said before. that is." Another he who says. In the Beginning God made the heaven and earth. of which he had before said. but that formlessness. in a word. that God of Whom are all things. thus. was still a formless and a darksome matter. out of which was to be made. In the Beginning God made heaven and earth. he chooses one to himself. with all things in them. namely. both that intelligible heaven. which are known to our corporeal senses. wherein heaven and earth lay as yet confused. The earth was invisible and without form. upon hearing this. and darkness was upon the deep. being now distinguished and formed. which is called heaven and earth. confusedly containing in itself both heaven and earth. that God made this matter.formless matter of creatures spiritual and corporeal. with all that is in them. did God make that formless matter. the spiritual and corporeal creature. the whole corporeal bulk of the world. out of which to make heaven and earth. "this all. " Another he who says. of which the corporeal heaven and the corporeal earth were to be made. . that God had made heaven and earth. we at this day see in the bulk of this world. already was. was as yet a formless matter of corporeal things. that is. and the earth was invisible and without form (although it pleased Him so to call the formless matter). being formed. return for answer. "we do not deny this formless matter to be indeed created by God." The maintainers of either of those two latter opinions will. In the Beginning God created heaven and earth. that is. that saith.

in the largeness of charity. For the first sort. and seek in them for Thy meaning. "this Moses thought. another way. and let us approach together unto the words of Thy book. seeing we behold them flowing in so comely a manner. that knowest it). notwithstanding this history hath omitted to show when it was created?" These things then being heard and perceived. and for this other. who have in this book . as also it hath not many others. two sorts of disagreements I see may arise. Dominions. why then is it written. concerning the meaning of the relater. is not written? For the waters remain not formless and invisible. Let the waters under the firmament be gathered together. and therefore not to be coeternal to Him. how then can formless matter be meant in that name of earth. what shall we say of the waters. the firmament was made. nor is it written. nor again will any sober teaching dare to affirm these waters to be coeternal with God. is most apparent. But which of us shall. O my God. which yet that God did make neither sound faith nor well-grounded understanding doubteth. and called heaven. O Lord. when we see the waters so beautiful? Or if it be so taken. away with all those who imagine themselves to know as a truth. all things be comprehended. on the ground that we find them to be mentioned in the hook of Genesis. so discover that one meaning. but when they were created. We say however that Scripture hath not set down. what will be said as to those waters above the firmament? Seeing neither if formless would they have been worthy of so honourable a seat. so we confess that to be a lesser good which is made capable of creation and form. as to affirm. which is created and formed. with the same confidence as he would. through the meaning of Thy servant. what Moses. according to the weakness of my capacity (which I confess unto Thee. I Thy servant. If then Genesis is silent as to God's making of any thing. concerning the truth of the things. what is false. For we enquire one way about the making of the creature. that out of the same formlessness. as they are differently understood. and darksome deep) to have been created of God out of nothing. by whose pen Thou hast dispensed them. Powers. which imagine Moses to have written things that be false. But if they then received that beauty. as the Cherubim." whether Moses thought this or that? For behold. that God made this formlessness. and that the waters were made. "this is true. away with all them too. among those so many truths. which occur to enquirers in those words. O Lord. by what word they were formed." and "this would he have understood in that history". yet still good. Or if in that which is said. Principalities. with them that feed on Thy truth. that excellent minister of Thy Faith. what is true. one. with those and delight myself in Thee. for as we affirm that to be a greater good. we do not find. Thrones. the other. would have his reader and hearer understand by those words.very good. why (seeing truth teaches us) should we not understand that formless matter (which this Scripture calls the earth invisible and without form. when God said. upon which the Spirit of God moved? For if they be comprised in this word earth. All which that God made. and Seraphim. and those which the Apostle distinctly speaks of. But let me be united in Thee. when a thing is in words related by true reporters. He made heaven and earth. that so the gathering together be itself the forming of them.

But if they therefore love it. I pray Thee. pour down a softening dew into my heart. and pray. and not insight but vanity was its parent. what I shall say to him. then is it both theirs. and before my brethren. it might have been truly said. and mine. to the end of charity: hearken and behold. to a lie. For I perceive. but what I say. Because I see not in his mind. and have seen in the heart of Thy servant what they speak. Thou best judge. Hearken. I do not so perceive. if it please Thee. "Moses meant not what you say. hearken. when he uttered these words. which this so great man saw in his mind. where. which . lest we he deprived of it. but belonging to us all. "How know you that Moses thought that which you infer out of his words?" I ought to take it in good part. which Thou propoundest to all to enjoy. In the Beginning God made heaven and earth? No. that he thought of this when he wrote these things. that by Thy mercy I may pay my vows unto Thee. may both be true. are Thy judgements terrible. not because they have a divine Spirit. or any sense beside (that I have not here mentioned). yet that their rashness belongs not to knowledge. whom Thou callest publicly to partake of it. but because it is theirs. but both in the unchangeable Truth itself. but as I say: for if he should ask me. not knowing Moses' opinion. and expressed it aptly. For he might have his thoughts upon God's commencement of creating. but what they say. that in Thy incommutable world Thou createdst all things visible and invisible. as I love what they say. or something more at large. when he said In the beginning. Let no man harass me then. hearken to what I shall say to this gainsayer. do we see it? Neither I in thee. And therefore. but to overboldness.vowed a sacrifice of confession unto Thee. love not: for though it were so. this I like not. as being in common to all lovers of truth. For whosoever challenges that as proper to himself. is driven from what is in common to his own. from truth. that whichsoever of the two had been said. can I. Truth Itself. not to account it private to ourselves. but because it is true." yet denieth not that what each of us say. if he were unyielding. O my God. Moses thought not as you say. that I may patiently bear with such as say this to me. seeing Thy truth is neither mine. and would answer perchance as I have above. by saying. O God. and on that very ground not theirs because it is true. with the same confidence wherewith I affirm. But when he saith. Otherwise they would equally love another true opinion. but which of the two he thought of in these words. in this place he might intend no formed and perfected nature whether spiritual or corporeal. O Lord. For he that speaketh a lie. I doubt not but that he saw it truly. nor thou in me. not because it is truth. but loving their own. Although. and both see that to be true that I say. for before Thee do I speak. that Moses meant no other than this. and by heaven and earth. affirm also. but both of them inchoate and as yet formless. nor his. But whereas they contend that Moses did not mean what I say. For this brotherly and peaceful word do I return unto Him: "If we both see that to be true that Thou sayest. whether it were either of these. and would have that his own which belongs to all. that is. because it is true. life of the poor. in Whose bosom is no contradiction. as I do see it in Thy truth to be certain. speaketh it of his own. who employ Thy law lawfully. nor another's. when they say true: not because it is theirs. warning us terribly. when he wrote. but because they be proud.

one. which was to benefit many who were to discourse thereon. is derived from the same fountain. were to surmount all sayings of false and proud teachings. does out of a narrow scantling of language. might reject the sayings. neither should that fail of being discoverable in those same words. which of them Moses principally meant. whose words we go about to expound. have desired such a power of expression and such a style to be given me. whence every man may draw out for himself such truth as he can upon these subjects. as may be extracted out of those words. and been enjoined by Thee to write the book of Genesis. in such abundance of most true meanings. another. by larger circumlocutions of discourse. and hadst Thou set me in that office. might find what true opinion soever they had by thought arrived at. I should have desired verily. O my God. one truth. Let it be made. rashly to affirm. had I then been Moses (for we all come from the same lump. as beyond their capacity. "This I meant". had I been then what he was. why strive we about the thoughts of our neighbour which we cannot so see. men's acquaintance with the . and with pernicious contentions to offend charity itself. if Moses himself had appeared to us and said. For as a fountain within a narrow compass. and forgivest my sins: seeing Thou commandest me to love my neighbour as myself. and with all our mind: and our neighbour as ourself. above that which is written: let us love the Lord our God with all our heart. for whose sake he spake every thing. that by the service of my heart and tongue those books might be dispensed. with all our soul. Thou lifter up of my humility. that came into being. had I been born in the time he was. by some new and sudden resolution." Seeing then we strive not about the very light of the Lord God. neither so should we see it. And yet I. create heaven and earth. as the unchangeable Truth is seen: for that. exterior to itself. And when they hear. as it were at a certain distance. For some. and supplies a tide for more streams over larger spaces. Who hearest my confessions. or hear these words. another. when they read. I would then. and whatever of the like sort. and what is man. unless we believe that Moses meant. I cannot believe that Thou gavest a less gift unto Moses Thy faithful servant. whatsoever in those books he did mean. not passed over in those few words of that Thy servant: and should another man by the light of truth have discovered another. than I would wish or desire Thee to have given me. saving that Thou art mindful of him?). than he hath taught us. they conceive of words begun and ended. than any one of those streams. after a wide interval. how foolish it is. sounding in time. conceive that God like a man or some mass endued with unbounded power. wherein all things were to be contained. and rest of my labour. Let us not then be puffed up for one against another. and passing away. overflow into streams of clearest truth. is more plentiful. which for so long after were to profit all nations. but should believe above our souls. and they who had attained thereto. that neither they who cannot yet understand how God created. imagining otherwise of our fellow servant's mind. which was commanded so to do. we shall make God a liar. which. Behold now. and through the whole world from such an eminence of authority. so the relation of that dispenser of Thine. With a view to which two precepts of charity. after whose departure. two great bodies above and below. did. and it was made. God said.

and pluck them. neither do they understand it in one way. out of which heaven and earth were to be formed. He at first made. Have pity. which should be formed by Thy likeness (recurring to Thy Unity. the other. These things they see. that only. carried on. to be in this place called heaven and earth. Whose will. the visible only. the other formless. because it is the same that Thou art. as in a mother's bosom. not of Thy making. a formless unlikeness. And among them that understand In the Beginning to mean. out of which this sensible corporeal mass was to he made. he will. till it can fly. with the things in them contained. as if it were said. At first He made. In whom. nor by a will. and rejoice. lest they who go by the way trample on the unfledged bird. of the . so far as is given to each thing in his kind). if any despising. which in admirable variety their eye beholdeth around. as too simple. both the invisible and visible." one believes the matter out of which the heaven and earth were to be created. but deep shady fruit-bowers. in the light of Thy truth. in Thine own likeness. and beholdeth therein Wisdom. In the beginning He made. Which words. that it may live.material world would suggest. fly joyously around. another. shall stretch himself beyond the guardian nest. In the Beginning God made heaven and earth. are surpassed by Thy eternal and stable abiding. they see that all times past and to come. another. which is the form of all things. can only truly understand heaven and earth of the matter of heaven and earth. but out of nothing. under the name Earth. a corporeal matter. that is. with a proud weakness. understand the same. while their weakness is by this humble kind of speech. one formed nature. and with cheerful notes seek out. whether they abide around Thee. Thou madest all things. or being in gradation removed in time and place. and darksome earth. "In Thy Wisdom Thou createdst heaven and earth. They again who by the names heaven and earth. in which we behold this lightsome heaven. who believe the creatures already ordered and arranged. not by any change of will. to be there called heaven and earth. unto whom these words are no longer a nest. and might all be made very good. O Lord God. their faith is wholesomely built up. But others. that God made all natures. the Beginning because It also speaketh unto us. and by Beginning understands the commencement of things created. in the little degree they here may. according to their appointed capacity. Another bends his mind on that which is said. Neither do they. being yet little ones and carnal. whereby they hold assured. and yet that there is no creature formed in time. and that a spiritual. alas. and send Thine angel to replace it into the nest. under the name Heaven. than if it were said. that matter out of which both the intelligible and the sensible creature were to be perfected. and that these things were not out of Thyself. see the fruits concealed therein. Another likewise bends his mind on the same words. containing in its vast bosom these visible and ordinary natures. For reading or hearing these words. made or undergo the beautiful variations of the Universe. But he that no otherwise understands In the Beginning He made. understand matter as yet formless. natures already formed and distinguished. fall miserably. but the one. which before was not. another. but the one.

passeth away. for when it is sung. so soon as made. of which I have spoken what . are with extreme difficulty understood. as the fruit before the flower. O Lord. those carnal ones excepted. pure charity. but as though prior in time. whereof a chest or vessel is fashioned. for we do not first in time utter formless sounds without singing. what by choice. because a tune is a formed sound. in time. nor canst thou find ought to recall and by art to compose. seeing itself is rather made. as to be able without great pains to discern. what made He afterwards?" and after the universe. is of so sharpsighted understanding. By this example. By this if man demands of me. because a tune receives not form to become a sound. and a thing not formed. let Truth herself produce concord. "How did God make this first. as the sound before the tune. then formed. And our God have mercy upon us. which is afterwards formed into a chant. but in singing it is not so. For if he would understand thereby the universe. And who. because the forms of things give rise to time. if nothing after?" But when he says. whereof to make a tune. for it is given forth together with the tune. "I know not". as God is before all things. not before. because heaven and earth were made out of it. again. how the sound is therefore before the tune. he will find nothing. an object of sense together with its form. which sound of his is his matter. And this indeed is formed. that we may use the law lawfully. subjected to the soul which singeth. "If God made this first. easily. and yet I know that those senses are true. So then the chant is concentrated in its sound. for there is not first a formless sound. cannot be formed. but that was without form.universal intelligible and corporeal creation. understand how the matter of things was first made. For each sound. and what in original. its sound is heard. and thereby before them. the first and last mentioned. unchangeably making things changeable. and subsequently adapt or fashion them into the form of a chant. whereas that which existeth not. but a sound receives a form to become a tune. not because it maketh it. whereupon must he against his will hear another question. In this diversity of the true opinions. For a rare and too lofty a vision is it. For such materials do by time also precede the forms of the things made of them. and therefore (as I said) the matter of the sound is before the form of the tune. it may be rightly demanded of him. as the flower before the fruit. for a sound is no way the workmaster of the tune. by original. Nor is it first in time. let him that is able. a tune being not only a sound. the two middle. Of these four. nor is it before by interval of time. by choice. what precedes by eternity. that it may be a tune. by time. By eternity. this were not the language of my Confessions. the end of the commandment. whereof somewhat might be created. but is something corporeal. Yet was it not made first in time. But it is first in original. nor first in choice. through any power it hath to make it a tune. if he be but qualified to discern. whereas in value it is last (because things formed are superior to things without form) and is preceded by the Eternity of the Creator: that so there might be out of nothing. should I not confess unto Thee. for a sound is not better than a tune. Thus is the matter before the thing made. And yet nothing can be related of that matter. as already formed. God made matter first formless. but a beautiful sound. there is no absurdity. "which of these was the meaning of Thy servant Moses". as wood or silver. may exist. and called heaven and earth. what by time. to behold Thy Eternity. but now is.

and with few words a copious meaning. where many may occur. delivering high things lowlily. or any other true one which Thou pleasest. if both be true?" And if there be a third. or a fourth. yea if any other seeth any other truth in those words. and good sense that Thou shalt inspire me. could not offend me. if man did see less. and fruitfulness of profit. why may not he be believed to have seen all these. though he through whom they were spoken. rather than set down my own meaning so clearly as to exclude the rest. if we are athirst for it. thought on some one? which if so it be. yet I should say that. do Thou. certain. Behold. that the words of Thy Book affright them not. "Why not rather as both. be so rash. But to us. let that which he thought on be of all the highest. could any thing be concealed from Thy good Spirit (who shall lead me into the land of uprightness). through whom the One God hath tempered the holy Scriptures to the senses of many. I will not therefore. perceived and thought on what truth soever we have been able to find. let us so honour this Thy servant. but as I do. or some other by occasion of those words. yet Thou mayest feed us. which if I should not attain. the fountain of truth. yea and whatsoever we have not been able. He without doubt. how much we have written upon a few words. I confess. but which may be found in them. that so. nor yet are. which not being false. what It willed. have this benefit. that is right and best. might he conveyed in my words. whether Thou discoverest the same to us. this being the law my confession. who art God and not flesh and blood. which revealed also unto him. that whatever truth any could apprehend on those matters. BOOK XIII . "Moses meant as I do". perhaps among many true meanings. "Nay. which among them chiefly excels both for light of truth. O my God. how much I beseech Thee! What strength of ours. and jointly love Thee our God. when by Thy revelation he wrote these things. And all we who. which Thy Truth willed by his words to tell me.seemed necessary. either reveal that same. and not for vanities. and to choose some one true. although many should occur. So when one says. O Lord my God. which Thou Thyself by those words wert about to reveal to readers in times to come. as not to believe. the dispenser of this Scripture. that if I should say that which Thy minister intended. as to that Thy servant. I should prefer so to write. for this should I endeavour." I suppose that I speak more reverently. yea what ages would suffice for all Thy books in this manner? Permit me then in these more briefly to confess unto Thee. yea. Lastly. not error deceive us. that Thou vouchsafedst as much to that great man. who should see therein things true but divers? For I certainly (and fearlessly I speak it from my heart). let us love one another. O Lord. see and express the truth delivered in those words. when he wrote those words. that were I to indite any thing to have supreme authority. he intended that. And even those hopeful little ones who so think. and another. as to believe that. full of Thy Spirit. O Lord.

until in Thy Only One we become Thy righteousness. and still labour amidst the relics of our darkness. as formless. and by Him so enlightened. whom Thou preventedst before I called. unless it had been by the same Word turned to that. out of Thy goodness. O my God. and whereof Thou hast made me. preventing all this which Thou hast made me. For we have been Thy judgments. For of the fulness of Thy goodness. as a land. become light. which are . which Thou madest in the Beginning. and yet behold. unless I cultivated Thee: but serving and worshipping Thee. so likewise to a created spirit to live. not in serving Thee. deserve of Thee? Let those spiritual and corporeal natures which Thou madest in Thy Wisdom. wherewith I fell from Thee. forgetting Thee. and call upon Thee. it lose by turning from Thee. to be even invisible and without form? seeing it were not even this. unless by the same Word they were brought back to Thy Unity. nor am I any such good. as though Thou wouldest tire in working. if lacking my service: nor cultivating Thy service. to depend thereon (even in that their several inchoate and formless state. so as to repay the work of Thy hands wherewith Thou madest me. and forgottest not me. and the corporeal though without form. nor was of Thee (lest so it should be equal to Thee). who as to the soul are a spiritual creature. because before I was. But good it is for it always to hold fast to Thee. Or how could the inchoate spiritual creature deserve of Thee. but that Thou madest it. else should it be wise unchangeably. say wherein they deserved of Thee. since they had not been even this. that I would hear Thee from afar. to be even without form. but from Thee? How did corporeal matter deserve of Thee. and Thou hast prevented all my well deservings. and so to depend upon Thy Word. might yet be since it could be made of Thee. so as not to repay into my hands. even to ebb and flow darksomely like the deep. turned away from Thee our light. superior to the corporeal though formed. Lord. blottedst out all my evil deservings. to which Thou mightest grant to be. indued with form and from Thee the One Sovereign Good were made all very good. and be converted. Who createdst me. though not equally. for Thou. ready to fall away into an immoderate liberty and far-distant unlikeliness unto Thee. For neither hadst Thou need of me. my mercy. is not one with being beautiful. though without form. nor was I any thing. Forsake me not now calling upon Thee. and relapse into life resembling the darksome deep. by Whom it was created. whether spiritual or corporeal. Thou wert.I call upon Thee. lest what light it hath obtained by turning to Thee. from whom it comes. doth Thy creature subsist. I am. that must remain uncultivated. I call Thee into my soul which. which could no ways profit Thee. else could it not be deformed. could not deserve of Thee to be made. that I have a being capable of well-being. and urgedst me with much variety of repeated calls. -the spiritual. yet conformably to that Form which is equal unto Thee? For as in a body. -unlike Thee. How did they deserve of Thee. that calledst after me. better than were it altogether nothing). to be. like the mountains of God. as to be helpful unto Thee. that I might receive a well-being from Thee. For what did heaven and earth. Thou preparest for Thee. is not one with living wisely. were in that life sometimes darkness. and therefore because it was not. that so a good. or lest Thy power might be less. my Lord and God. For we ourselves also. by the longing Thyself inspirest into her.

which Thou Thyself art. and to live more and more by the fountain of life. and beautified. another to live blessedly. that it lived. to be enlightened. although these things had either never been. I do. because Thou alone simply art. why after the mention of heaven. it owes to nothing but Thy grace. That which Thou saidst in the beginning of the creation. and please Thee. And under the name of God. unless it became light. I beseech the great deep. and Son. Let there be light. not as though Thy joy were fulfilled by them? For to Thee being perfect. let it not teach me vanities. in Thy Son. Which is Thy Wisdom. was borne upon that life which Thou hadst created. the Son. which Thou mightest illuminate. I searched further in His holy words. and of the earth invisible and without form. For those. so neither now that it was. which could be enlightened. understand of the spiritual creature: because there was already a sort of life. by Whom it was made. ebbing and flowing in its own darkness: for which it remaineth to be converted unto Him. on whom Thy good Spirit is said to rest. or remained without form. by our mother charity. but out of the fulness of Thy goodness. in Him Who is the Beginning of our wisdom. in reference to the wandering instability of its spiritual deformity. in whom He made these things. born of Thyself. equal unto Thee and coeternal. seeing it liveth also. createdst heaven and earth. from Whom it had its then degree of life. Lo. and that not by existing simply. to which. unto Thee it being not one thing to live. living is not one with happy living. unless it had been converted unto Him. and the heaven of that heaven. so that. I now held the Father. who made these things. Thy . and tell me. and to. and Holy Ghost. had it any. not as wert Thou imperfect. tell me the reason. Father. For neither could its formless estate be pleasing unto Thee. and enlightened. Creator of all creation. because Thou. and of the earth invisible and without form. and darkness upon the deep. being turned by a better change unto That which cannot be changed into worse or better. O Father. restraining them and converting them to form. dispel its darkness. and by their perfecting wert also to be perfected. which was afterwards set between water and water. Thy Spirit moved upon the waters. which thou madest. Behold the Trinity. that is. as I did. is their imperfection displeasing. my God. not out of any want. in itself all-sufficient for itself. as if He rested upon them. seeing Thyself art Thine own Blessedness. What then could he wanting unto Thy good. and in His light to see light. and of the darksome deep. and cleaving to it. which is Thou my God. and hence were they perfected by Thee. my God as the Trinity. and there was light. and by His enlightening became a beauteous life. but by beholding the illuminating light. But what was the cause. which Thou alone art. and under the name of Beginning. But Thy incorruptible and unchangeable will. He causes to rest in Himself. For Thy good Spirit indeed was borne over the waters. and believing. and to be perfected. But as it had no claim on Thee for a life. I beseech Thee. now the Trinity appears unto me in a glass darkly. and lived happily. not unsuitably. Much now have we said of the Heaven of heavens. O true-speaking Light? -unto Thee lift I up my heart. not borne up by them.

and where he bows his knee unto Thee for us. and there had been light. as being "borne above". For Thou. had even the heaven of heavens been in itself a darksome deep. that we may lift our hearts unto Thee. nor could He rightly be said to be borne above. whom it was meet not otherwise to be spoken of than as being borne. who fell away and discovered their own darkness. over which He might be borne. and thereby pointed the abyss in that dark depth.Scripture should then at length mention Thy Spirit? Was it because it was meet that the knowledge of Him should be conveyed. and the holiness of Thine raising us upward by love of unanxious repose. where he thus speaks. But wherefore was it not meet that the knowledge of Him should be conveyed otherwise. First then was that to be spoken of. the uncleanness of our spirit flowing away downwards with the love of cares. and yet what less like? They be affections. they be loves. ere my life may run into Thy embracements. like a body. and how charity raises up again by Thy Spirit which was borne above the waters? to whom shall I speak it? how speak it? For it is not in space that we are merged and emerge. O our God. and all abundance. Angels fell away. was He borne supereminent above the waters. when our soul shall have passed through the waters which yield no support. downwards to the steep abyss. For neither was He borne above the Father. For even in that miserable restlessness of the spirits. over which Thy Spirit may be understood to have been borne. and rested in Thy Spirit. but now it is light in the Lord. unless that were first mentioned. ready for the whole spiritual creation. shalt lighten our darkness: from Thee riseth our garment of light. but if the unchangeable supereminence of Divinity above all things changeable. and then shall our darkness be as the noon day. until it be hidden in the hidden place of Thy Presence. follow with his understanding Thy Apostle. and every obedient intelligence of Thy heavenly City had cleaved to Thee. less than Thee. is emptiness to me. O my God. and this could not be said. and then He. he teacheth and showeth unto us a more excellent way of charity. where Thy Spirit is borne above the waters. Because Thy love is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us: and where concerning spiritual gifts. that woe is me except in Thee: not only without but within myself also. then neither was the Holy Spirit. man's soul fell away. in space. if He were borne over nothing. restore Thyself unto me: behold I love. than as being borne above? Hence let him that is able. Give Thyself unto me. which is not my God. and if it be too little. then were both Father. But was not either the Father. This only I know. how much love there yet lacketh to me. borne above the waters? if this means. Otherwise. and Holy Ghost . and Son. Let there be light. and so not even herself. To whom shall I speak this? how speak of the weight of evil desires. hadst not Thou said from the beginning. and come to that supereminent repose. to which nothing will suffice to yield a happy rest. that we may know the supereminent knowledge of the love of Christ. What can be more. I would love more strongly. or the Son. dost Thou sufficiently reveal how noble Thou madest the reasonable creature. And therefore from the beginning. nor turn away. when bared of the clothing of Thy light. I cannot measure so as to know. Which is borne unchangeably over every thing changeable. nor the Son.

restored to order. in that we were darkness. And. water poured upon oil. Weight makes not downward only. simply and yet manifoldly. and there was light. so soon as it was made. a stone downward. by Thy Gift we are kindled. and Wills unchangeably. how inseparable a life there is. Why then is this said of Thy Spirit only. In Thy good pleasure is our peace. which being itself other than Thou. Now the three I spake of are. namely. Which is borne above every thing changeable. I would that men would consider these three. has known no other condition. and we go. Who is not in place. had it not been enlightened. this is so spoken. Whoso can. or whether all three be in Each. We ascend Thy ways that be in our heart. without peace. and yet a distinction. as if I could enlighten any man that cometh into this world? Which of us comprehendeth the Almighty Trinity? and yet which speaks not of It. there is in God also a Trinity. without any interval. and Know. than that. Whereas in us this took place at different times. with Thy good fire. borne aloft by that calling whereby Thou saidst. To Be. let him look into himself. if indeed it be It? Rare is the soul. and see. But when he discovers and can say any thing of these. we glow inwardly. where they may practise themselves. or whether both ways at once. is my love. Why should he trouble me. and sing a song of degrees. whithersoever I am borne. and Knows unchangeably. but to his own place. let him ask of Thee. of Whom only it is written. no man sees that vision. they seek their own places. let him discern that can. to Know. And they contend and strive. Let there be light. We are inflamed. Love lifts us up thither. My weight. is raised above the water. that so the cause whereby it was made otherwise. which while it speaks of It. and go forwards. and are carried upwards. and there prove and feel how far they be. sinks below the oil. why is it said only of Him? As if He had been in place. by Thy Gift. They are urged by their own weight. and to Know.borne upon the waters. so that the three belong to Each. and one essence. thereby am I borne. Fire tends upward. For I Am. These three be indeed far other than the Trinity: I do but tell. Blessed creature. mind. There hath Thy good pleasure placed us. and are made light: but of that is only said. that He is Thy gift? In Thy Gift we rest. as if it had been unsettled and darksome before. and tell me. Our rest is our place. it was. Surely a man hath it before him. that we may desire nothing else. knows what it speaks of. We will go up to the house of the Lord. we glow inwardly with Thy fire. They are urged by their own weights to seek their own places. The body by its own weight strives towards its own place. and Thy good Spirit lifts up our lowliness from the gates of death. In these three then. that are in themselves. yet. and whether because of these three. and to Will. When out of their order. might appear. Itself a bound unto . and to Will: and I Will to Be. which Is unchangeably. Oil poured below water. they are at rest. they are restless. and Will: I Am Knowing and Willing: and I Know myself to Be. that being turned to the Light unfailing it became light. yea lastly how inseparable a distinction there is. there we enjoy Thee. yea one life. but to abide there for ever. wondrously. let him not therefore think that he has found that which is above these Unchangeable. because we go upwards to the peace of Jerusalem: for gladdened was I in those who said unto me. what it would have been. let him understand this.

lest as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty. O Lord my God. yet still groaning within himself. and O foolish Galatians. not for himself. that the force of His streams might make glad the city of God. doth he call to that other depth. But because Thy Spirit was borne above the waters. Yea and our earth. and Thou saidst. and we were covered with the darkness of ignorance. even he as yet. and Thy judgments were like the great deep unto him. As yet doth deep call unto deep. by the abundant greatness of its Unity. to Him he sighs. in Thy Name do we baptise. any way. Holy. but now light in the Lord. behold. and forgetteth those things which are behind. And. Son. and reacheth forth to those which are before. as the hart after the water-brooks.Itself within Itself. I too say. waiting for the adoption. and those tears be passed away. but in malice. doth not think himself to have apprehended. and Holy Ghost. having now the first-fruits of the Spirit laid up with Him. for Him he is jealous. Where is now Thy God? Behold. but as unto carnal. but now in the voice of Thy water-spouts. because among us also. for Him he is jealous. -who can readily conceive this? who could any ways express it? who would. to wit. Be not conformed to this world. as being a friend of the Bridegroom. whereby It is. O my God. And because our soul was troubled within us. is not hope. for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. a member of the Bride. was invisible and without form. O my faith. over whom being jealous he feareth. namely. but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind. Repent ye. O Lord. yet unbounded. the redemption of his body. And. and set open the flood-gates of His gifts. and that mountain equal unto Thyself. before it received the form of doctrine. that in understanding ye may be perfect. saying. When shall I come? desiring to be clothed upon with his house which is from heaven. be ye children. Father. but hope that is seen. so their minds should be corrupted from the purity that is in our Bridegroom Thy only Son. Holy. the spiritual and carnal people of His Church. whilst they daily say unto me. and Holy Ghost. say to the Lord thy God. who hath bewitched you? But now no longer in his own voice. and is Known unto Itself and sufficeth to itself. Father. from the land of Jordan. because in the voice of Thy water-spouts. we turned unto Thee and there was light. Repent ye. pronounce thereon rashly? Proceed in thy confession. For Thou chastenedst man for iniquity. not in his own voice. but in Thine who sentest Thy Spirit from above. we remembered Thee. Let there be light. and his soul thirsteth after the Living God. where Thou art! in . when we shall see Him as He is. we were sometimes darkness. Him doth this friend of the Bridegroom sigh after. O what a light of beauty will that be. and groaneth being burthened. Son. in His Christ did God make heaven and earth. but little for our sakes: and our darkness displeased us. unchangeably the Self-same. in Thy Name have we been baptised. Holy. which have been my meat day and night. let there be light. I could not speak unto you as unto spiritual. be not children in understanding. for by hope we are saved. As yet doth he that saith. through Him who ascended up on high. and calleth upon this lower deep. Where art Thou? see. But as yet by faith and not by sight. and saith. Thy mercy forsook not our misery.

and the children of the day. Why art thou sad. Let them praise Thy Name. Hope thou in the Lord. Lord. For heaven shall be folded up like a scroll. I believe immortal. underwent mortality. when they by sin became mortal. our God. and now is it stretched over us like a skin. in the morning I shall stand in Thy presence. upon the heavens. which Thou hast spread under them. O Lord. and make my neck pliant to Thy yoke. more eminently extended over all that be under it. For Thy Divine Scripture is of more eminent authority. I know not any other such pure words. I know not. or rather perceives itself still to be a deep. clear from our eyes that cloud. whereof we also were once children. Lord. which by the ministry of mortal men Thou spreadest over us. day. not the children of the night. and why dost thou trouble me? Hope in the Lord. that we have not received of Thee? out of the same lump vessels are made unto honour. and callest the light. Betwixt whom and us. and shall see the health of my countenance. Thy praise out of the mouth of babes and sucklings. when I pour out my soul by myself in the voice of joy and praise. who resisteth Thy reconciliation by defending his own sins. relics whereof we bear about us in our body. And yet again it is sad. For by their very death was that solid firmament of authority. until the day break. my God. In the morning I shall stand in Thy presence. until the wrath of the Lord. until the night. but Thou? And what have we. Whence Thou hast like a skin stretched out the firmament of Thy book. which giveth wisdom unto the little ones: perfect. Thou only dividest. and becomes a deep. Unto it speaks my faith which Thou hast kindled to enlighten my feet in the night. which whilst they lived here. For we know no other books. There is Thy testimony. that we should now be light: whilst we are saved by hope. Let me understand them. was not so eminently extended. which so destroy pride. whereof others also are made unto dishonour. and invite me to serve Thee for nought. Thou. His word is a lanthorn unto thy feet: hope and endure. let . except Thou. hast Thou established them. because He hath in mercy been borne over our inner darksome and floating deep: from Whom we have in this pilgrimage received an earnest. Thou hadst not as yet enlarged in all directions the glory of their deaths. For who discerneth us. that is. and are the children of light. in this uncertainty of human knowledge. in Thy discourses set forth by them. be overpast. and contemplate Thee: I shall for ever confess unto Thee.Thee I breathe a little. dead because of sin. the work of Thy fingers. who am placed under them: because for those placed under them. and separated from earthly corruption. who were sometimes darkness. who provest our hearts. who also shall quicken our mortal bodies. nor of the darkness. O my God. Thou hadst not as yet spread abroad the heaven like a skin. which so destroy the enemy and the defender. by the Spirit that dwelleth in us. Thou knowest. Let us look. how Thou with skins didst clothe men. O my soul. which so persuade me to confess. Or who. which yet sometimes we were. Other waters there be above this firmament. Thy harmonizing words. made for us that firmament of authority over us in Thy Divine Scripture? as it is said. good Father: grant this to me. the mother of the wicked. and the shadows fly away. because it relapseth. And Thou knowest. night. the sound of him that keeps holy-day. and the darkness. since those mortals by whom Thou dispensest it unto us.

Nor is the bitterness of men's wills. Thou waterest by a sweet spring. The preachers of Thy word pass out of this life into another. and art eternally. and settest them their bounds. by the order of Thy dominion over all things. But the souls that thirst after Thee. as Thou art. seeing Thou Thyself art this to them. Let the waters be gathered together into one place. that as the Unchangeable Light knoweth Itself. even unto the end of the world. the supercelestial people. and let the dry land appear. but Thy Word remaineth for ever. For Thy mercy. and Thy hands prepared the dry land. and Knoweth unchangeably. saidst. because Thou hast ordained them above this firmament. Lord. and Thy Knowledge Is. Thine angels. which now appeareth unto us under the dark image of the clouds. Therefore is my soul like a land where no water is. but Thou. that the earth may bring forth her fruit. where they might gaze up and learn Thy mercy. though they waver up and down with an innumerable variety of cares. a temporal and earthly felicity. not as it is: because we also. they choose. they read the very unchangeableness of Thy counsel. The clouds pass away. or by reading to know of Thy Word. like as in Thy light we shall see light. so should it be known by the thing enlightened.them praise Thee. Because the scroll shall be rolled together: and the grass over which it was spread. and by loving. because as it cannot of itself enlighten itself. and Willeth unchangeably. and Thou hast made it. and through the glass of the heavens. O Lord. though the well-beloved of Thy Son. they love. loving our neighbour in the relief . and Thy Will Is. He looketh through the lattice of our flesh. so can it not of itself satisfy itself. so commanding. yet it hath not yet appeared what we shall be. for by choosing. For they always behold Thy face. announcing in time Thee Who madest times. and Thy truth reacheth unto the clouds. and He spake us tenderly. But when He shall appear. Yet heaven and earth also shall pass away. but Thy Scripture is spread abroad over the people. and Thou. For so is the fountain of life with Thee. called sea. and changeable. Who art unchangeably. and kindled us. Thou only knowest. and that never passes away which they read. what willeth Thy eternal will. And Thy Essence Knoweth. nor their scroll folded up. is in the heavens. but the heaven abideth. how far they may be allowed to pass. Lord God. Nor seemeth it right in Thine eyes. for we shall see Him as He is. then shall we be like Him. which Thou hast firmly settled over the infirmity of the lower people. and Willeth unchangeably. and there read without any syllables in time. they read. which thirsteth after Thee? For the sea also is Thine. will our sight be. Lord. Who gathered the embittered together into one society? For they have all one end. and willest unchangeably. and that appear before Thee (being by other bounds divided from the society of the sea). Who. for attaining whereof they do all things. They are ever reading. As He is. but the gathering together of the waters. that their waves may break one against another: and thus makest Thou it a sea. who have no need to gaze up at this firmament. for Thou restrainest the wicked desires of men's souls. and knowest unchangeably. shall with the goodliness of it pass away. For altogether. Their book is never closed. our soul may bud forth works of mercy according to their kind. and we ran after His odours. but Thy words shall not pass away.

cleaving to the firmament of Thy Scripture. to another discerning of spirits. but Thy spiritual children also set and ranked in the same firmament (now that Thy grace is laid open throughout the world). and. For all these worketh the one and self-same spirit. to another the gift with the light of perspicuous truth. as in herb yielding seed. dividest between the light and the darkness. For there Thou instructest us. and those other notices of gifts. when from feeling of our infirmity. and the day is at hand: and that Thou wilt crown Thy year with blessing. from the hand of the powerful. well-doing in rescuing him that suffers wrong. And all these as it were stars. are only for the rule of the night. as betwixt the day and the night. arriving at the delightfulness of contemplation. and in Thy years which fail not. helping them. like the tree yielding fruit: that is. even he. and let there be lights in the firmament. as Thou givest cheerfulness and ability. not only in things easy. and giving him the shelter of protection. to profit withal. who speaketh wisdom among . so that now not Thou only in the secret of Thy judgment. whose harvest shall be in the end. which gladdens the forementioned day. obtaining the Word of Life above. To another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit. as before the firmament was made. as that Thy most prudent servant could not speak unto as unto spiritual. by the mighty strength of just judgment. and despise not those of our own flesh. as it were for the rule of the day. or things of sense. sending the labourers of Thy goodness into Thy harvest. which are varied in their seasons as it were the moon. wherein are contained all Sacraments. Let us clothe the naked. to another the gift of healing. as we would be helped. so. For they are necessary to such. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom. to divide between the things intellectual. I beseech Thee. but also in the protection of our assistance. to another divers kinds of tongues. or between souls. But the word of knowledge. So. given either to things intellectual. to another the working of miracles. sending also into another field. Let us break our bread to the hungry. For Thou by an eternal counsel dost in their proper seasons bestow heavenly blessings upon the earth. in sowing whereof. and righteousness look down from heaven. dividing to every man his own as He will. let there spring up.of his bodily necessities. as Thou doest. inasmuch as they come short of that brightness of wisdom. and be for signs of times. that old things are passed away. and divide betwixt the day and the night. may give light upon the earth. Thus grantest Thou the prayers of him that asketh. and ourselves. and things of sense. if we were in like need. as it were the lesser light: to another faith. as it were the lesser light: to another faith. see it is good: and let our temporary light break forth. let truth spring out of the earth. as it were stars. which are reckoned up in order. and bring the houseless poor to our house. but Thou art the same. all things are become new. from this lower fruitfulness of action. appear like lights in the world. having seed in itself according to its likeness. others have laboured. to another prophecy. with our best strength. behold. and blessest the years of the just. Which fruits having sprung out of the earth. and that our salvation is nearer than when we believed: and that the night is far spent. Lord. we compassionate so as to relieve the needy. Thou preparest a garner for our passing years. and causing stars to appear manifestly. but as unto carnal.

For behold God saying. for ye are the light of the world. though not as the angels. Whence then so many thorns. that the earth may bring forth the green herb for meat. in an admirable contemplation. and they may shine upon the earth. yet doth not the night obscure them. . what he should do to attain eternal life. show unto night. there came suddenly a sound from heaven. Learn to do good. and from before mine eyes. seeing they give it light in its degree. go after Him. but be content with the light of the moon and the stars. saith the Lord. lightened by the sun. let Him tell him. ye beauteous fires. which will not be. The moon and stars shine for the night. ye holy fires. But that barren earth was grieved. as it were a babe in Christ and fed on milk. But the natural man. and hath exalted you. having the word of life. and night. Thy firmament. our All-wise God. but He is good because He is God).those that are perfect. that the dry land may appear. wash you. and the tree bearing fruit. All these (saith he) have I kept. nor are ye put under a bushel. in Thy Book. associated with them. that the heavens may declare His glory. dividing between the light of the perfect. and to the night. and bring forth the honouring of father and mother. not steal. That rich man asked of the good Master. among whom He speaketh wisdom. you weak things of the world. and confound the mighty. not commit adultery. that we may discern all things. For ye. that there may be lights in the firmament of the heaven. as thou hast heard of the good Master. not bear false witness. until he be strengthened for solid meat and his eye be enabled to behold the Sun. plead for the widow. and in years. and in days. and the love of our neighbour. speech of wisdom. unless there thy treasure be. the word of knowledge. and be filled with fruit. Run ye to and fro every where. be clean. who have forsaken all. though not despised. that ye may follow the Lord. Run ye to and fro. Shine over the earth. put away evil from your souls. is exalted. But first. shining with the moon. and shine ye in the firmament. let us reason together. But you. let him not dwell in a night forsaken of all light. root up the spreading thickets of covetousness. by giving to the poor. and be known unto all nations. as it were. So dost Thou speak to us. if he would enter into life. and let the day. that thou also mayest know it. and come. go after Him. as it had been the rushing of a mighty wind. ye beautiful feet. and thou shalt have treasure in heaven. Who knoweth what to distribute to the day. that the dry land may appear. And there were made lights in the firmament of heaven. and there appeared cloven tongues like as of fire. unless thy heart be there: nor will that either be. and the darkness of the little ones. and let the waters bring forth the moving creature that hath life. judge the fatherless. He whom you cleave unto. and it sat upon each of them. if the earth be fruitful? Go. utter unto day. not kill. Let the good Master tell him (whom he thought no more than man. and for thee there may be lights in the firmament of heaven. though as yet in signs and in times. he must keep the commandments: let him put away from him the bitterness of malice and wickedness. sell that thou hast. Let the sea also conceive and bring forth your works. chosen generation. and follow the Lord if thou wilt be perfect. and the thorns choked the word. Let there be lights in the firmament of heaven.

in Thy Word. For such those moving and flying creatures now seem to me to mean. Now are all things fair that Thou hast made. may. the human race so profoundly curious. not the moving creature that hath life. because the waters themselves cast them forth. For Thy Sacraments. are made the mouth of God. it looked forwards to perfection. because Thou. by the motions of the body. but in Thy Gospel. many great wonders were wrought. and expressed. brings forth. multipliedst them by blessing. but the living soul. should not further profit. (for no other entrance is there into the kingdom of heaven. mysterious doings and sayings. And hereby. and their words to the end of the world. but the earth separated from the bitterness of the waters. and restlessly tumbling up and down. For there is no speech nor language. as the heathen have. and the material works in the wavy sea. whithersoever they went. where their voice is not heard: seeing their sound is gone through all the earth. not the living creature which the earth brings forth. why they were sent forth in Thy Word. These Sacraments have the waters brought forth. and as itself had. in Thy Baptism. and tongues are for a sign. or do I mingle and confound. yet even of them. but to them that believe not.separating the precious from the vile. and one thing growing out of another. that unless it sees signs and wonders. for it is not such. but in Thy word. since Thou hast appointed that this should be the entrance:) nor does it seek after wonderfulness of miracles to work belief. by the ministry of Thy holy ones. The necessities of the people estranged from the eternity of Thy truth. to hallow the Gentiles in Thy Name. Thyself art unutterably fairer. and the fowls that fly above the earth. but the moving creature having life. as it were great whales: and the voices of Thy messengers flying above the earth. be many ways set out. unless their soul had a spiritual life. have brought them forth. that so one thing in the understanding of our mind. as their authority under which they were to fly. now that the faithful earth is separated from the waters that were bitter with infidelity. and unless after the word of admission. when it was covered with the waters. have moved amid the waves of temptations of the world. not to them that believe. And amid these things. the diseased bitterness whereof was the cause. that being set over them. not the deepness of the sea. O God. the material operations are many and divers. without any increase by generation. the brackishness of the sea had never flowed out of him. in the open firmament of Thy Book. For now hath it no more need of baptism. it will not believe. from whom had not Adam fallen. and tempestuously swelling. by whom He saith. Speak I untruly. they are multiplied by Thy blessing. and not distinguish between the lucid knowledge of these things in the firmament of heaven. after a corporeal and sensible manner. O God. who hast refreshed the fastidiousness of mortal senses. Let the waters bring forth. as it were lights of wisdom and knowledge. Neither then does that earth which Thou hast founded upon . that madest all. Lord. and then had there been no need of Thy dispensers to work in many waters. that is. but behold. whereby people being initiated and consecrated by corporeal Sacraments. and under the firmament of heaven? For of those things whereof the knowledge is substantial and defined.

that is to say. in death-bringing pleasures. For of the first preachings of the Evangelists. for Thou.the waters. the mother of admiration. out of a reverence towards those secret signs. Be not conformed unto this world. have any lack. For therefore was He taken out of the deep. for I also am as you are. shall they over-abound. the serpents. wherein ignorance. so shalt thou be beloved by all men). Now then let Thy ministers work upon the earth. when it is said unto us. in meekness of action (for Thou hast commanded. and your soul shall live. the haughtiness of pride. that so their soul may live unto Thee. For this is after his kind. man's infidelity was the cause. But. and the poison of curiosity. the cattle broken to the yoke. that the earth may bring forth the living soul. Seek the Lord. is the fountain of life eternal. is yet multiplied upon the earth. yet it is Thou that workest in them that they may work out a living soul in it. Lord. and the fowl. although it feeds upon that fish which was taken out of the deep. so as not to hear only. though bred in the sea. Send Thou Thy word into it by Thy messengers: for we speak of their working. but to do also. and stirring them up to imitation. because it dies by forsaking the fountain of life. if they eat not. by following the followers of Thy Christ. and good .let Thy ministers work now as on the dry land. which at Thy word the waters brought forth. Thus in this living soul shall there be good beasts. by Thy Evangelists. upon that table which Thou hast prepared in the presence of them that believe. need that flying kind. But the living soul takes his beginning from the earth: for it profits only those already among the Faithful. For thus do men hear. harmless. yet are the faithful also exhorted and blessed by them manifoldly. Contain yourselves from it: the soul lives by avoiding what it dies by affecting. and the fowls that fly under the firmament of heaven. by living before them. For such is the entrance unto the Faith for the sons of Adam forgetful of Thee. the sluggish voluptuousness of luxury. But Thy word. which was dead while it lived in pleasures. and the false name of knowledge: that so the wild beasts may be tamed. Go on with thy business in meekness. separated from the whirlpools of the great deep: and let them be a pattern unto the Faithful. For these be the motions of our mind under an allegory. and good cattle. that so the earth may in the fountain of life bring forth a living soul. while they hide themselves from Thy face. Lord. and is conformed unto it. O God. because the earth is the cause that they work this in the soul. which neither if they eat. art the life-giving delight of the pure heart. of whom the earth hath no need. that is. and become a darksome deep. and Sacraments. might be intent upon them. as the sea was the cause that they wrought upon the moving creatures that have life. from day to day. -not as upon the waters of infidelity. for the soul dies not so as to lose all motion. that He might feed the dry land. a soul made continent in Thy Word. Be ye (saith he) as I am. nor. the delight of lust. Be not conformed to the world. are the motions of a dead soul. Contain yourselves from the ungoverned wildness of pride. The earth brings it forth. because a man is wont to imitate his friend. and passeth not away: wherefore this departure of the soul is restrained by Thy word. by preaching and speaking by miracles. and mystic words. and so is taken up by this transitory world. to contain themselves from the love of this world.

And God made man: and to that said in the plural. Wherefore to that said in the plural. when our affections have been restrained from the love of the world. do judge spiritually. not now after your kind. and hold for certain. which Thou presently subjoinedst. our Creator. is made good in us. but. nor may they judge of Thy Book itself. For behold. not those only who are spiritually set over. and Thy word which Thou spokest by Thy apostle. our God. whereby he perceiveth the things of the Spirit of God. this answers to his having dominion over the fish of the sea. so as to follow after his kind. being understood by the things that are made. for we submit our understanding unto it." but Let us make man. After the image of God. Be not conformed to this world: there follows that also. after our image and likeness.serpents. Thus is man renewed in the knowledge of God. or such as obey). that we might prove what Thy will is. he judgeth all things (all things which are to be judged). In Thy Church therefore. saying. as though following your neighbour who went before you. and over all the earth. After our likeness. For this he doth by the understanding of his mind. according to the sex of body. according to Thy grace which Thou hast bestowed upon it (for we are Thy workmanship created unto good works). not of that spiritual knowledge which shines in the firmament (for they ought not to judge as to so supreme authority). but by Thy direction proveth what is that good. is yet subjoined in the singular. and cherish as a nurse. O our God. For these creatures are obedient unto reason. that he might not for ever have them babes. whereas otherwise. to discern the Trinity of the Unity. and perfect will of Thine: yea. -Spiritual persons (whether such as are set over. and beholding and understanding Thy truth. Thou teachest him. and begun to be a living soul. Let us make man. but wise to take heed. where. and over all cattle and wild beasts. there is neither male nor female. that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. as may suffice that eternity be clearly seen. O Lord. they live. man being placed in honour. to do hurt. through good living. and over the fowls of the air. and is compared unto the brute beasts. "Let man be made. not dangerous. even though something there shineth not clearly. yet himself is judged of no man. For to this purpose said that dispenser of Thine (who begat children by the Gospel). and are good. and the Unity of the Trinity. whom he must be fain to feed with milk. For man being renewed in his mind. nor as living after the example of some better man (for Thou saidst not. because neither Jew nor Grecian. and only making so much search into this temporal nature. be ye transformed (saith he) by the renewing of your mind. that even what . But be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind. Let us make man after our own image and similitude). by which we died through evil-living. that acceptable. after the image of Him that created him: and being made spiritual. Wherefore Thou sayest not." but. -for in this way didst Thou make man male and female. "Let man be made after his kind. but they also who spiritually are subject to those that are set over them. when being restrained from deadly prevailing upon us. is subjoined in the singular. "according to his kind". needs not man as his director. Nor saidst Thou. neither bond nor free. But that he judgeth all things. and is become like unto them. had no understanding. now made capable. in Thy grace spiritual. and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

as it were the earth bringing forth fruit. discoursing disputing. whether in the celebration of those Sacraments by which such are initiated. by interpreting. For He judgeth and approveth what He findeth right. to judge them that are without. subject to the authority of Thy Book. nor the lights. although flying fowls be multiplied upon the earth. that they may increase and multiply. is yet rightly and truly spoken. -such signs. though now spiritual and renewed in the knowledge of God after His image that created him. their closed to our sight. But what is this. which cannot see thoughts. though spiritual. and the fowls of the air. nor the stars. as are bred of their own kind. which are perceived by the senses of the body. nor the earth. I might say. the devout earth feedeth upon: or in the expressions and signs of words. So that there is need to speak aloud into the ears. and plants. as proceed out of the mouth. For so man. nor over the day and the night. flying as it were under the firmament. who are known unto Thine eyes. had I found it given to the fruit-trees. Neither doth he judge of that distinction of spiritual and carnal men. received not dominion over the lights of heaven. so that. and over all the earth. and that the fowls should be multiplied upon the earth. in chastity. in holy meditations. nor the sea? I might say that Thou. whom Thou hast made after Thine own image. O our God. who created created us after Thine Image. and of those things. or praying unto Thee. and replenish the waters of the sea. and have not as yet discovered themselves unto us by works. which Thou calledst day. The spiritual man judgeth also by allowing of what is right. as Thy mercy searches out in many waters: or in that. knowing not which of them shall hereafter come into the sweetness of Thy grace. in the works and lives of the faithful. I might say likewise. and hast divided and called them in secret. The vocal pronouncing of all which words. in fasting. that they should increase and multiply. nor over the gathering together of the waters. and replenish the earth. which Thou calledst before the foundation of the heaven. and He disalloweth what He findeth amiss. dost Thou not thereby give us a hint to understand something? why didst Thou not as well bless the light. wherein he hath also power of correction. and which continue in the perpetual bitterness of ungodliness? Man therefore. which. yet they derive their beginning from the waters. judge the unquiet people of this world. not a judge. consecrating. which is the sea. and over all creeping things which creep upon the earth. and of the living soul. Nor doth he. and disallowing what he finds amiss. O God. and what kind of mystery? Behold. and the blindness of the flesh. Amen. expounding. or ever the firmament was made. But now neither unto . hadst Thou not in like manner blessed the fishes and the whales. in which that Fish is set forth. nor over that hidden heaven itself. that it had been Thy good pleasure to bestow this blessing peculiarly upon man. nor the firmament of heaven. taken out of the deep. and over all cattle. is occasioned by the deep of this world. dost even now know them. for what hath he to do. that this blessing pertained properly unto such creatures. Upon all these is he now said to judge. O Lord. Lord. and sound forth. ought to be a doer of the law. so that the people may answer. but He received dominion over the fishes of the sea. that by their fruits we might know them: but Thou. living by the taming of the affections. and beasts of the earth. Thou blessest mankind.

and to righteous and unrighteous. as in the firmament which is settled betwixt the waters and the waters. as in the dry land. In the Beginning God created heaven and earth. For in this blessing. as in the lights of heaven. do by generation increase and continue their kind. which doth not. what this lesson suggests to me. If therefore we conceive of the natures of the things themselves. In all these instances we meet with multitudes. the single love of God and our neighbour. it is corporeally expressed. then do we find "multitude" to belong to creatures spiritual as well as corporeal. Thus do the offspring of the waters increase and multiply. what Scripture delivers. behold. surely. notwithstanding all these as well as the fishes. and to the society of people yet in the bitterness of infidelity. whosoever readest this. is it not understood manifoldly. Increase and multiply. . to have said to these kinds. For I know a thing to be manifoldly signified by corporeal expressions. on account of the fruitfulness of reason. as in the sea. By signs corporeally pronounced we understand the generations of the waters. And if I understand not what Thou meanest by that phrase. Increase and multiply. agree unto all things. but properly. human generations. make better use of it. that is. and to affections formed unto temperance. as in heaven and earth. O Truth my Light? "that it was idly said. I conceive Thee to have granted us a power and a faculty. that Thou spokest not so in vain. Lord. Behold. and in each several language. But let my confession also be pleasing in Thine eyes. both to express several ways what we understand but one. as in the living soul. by things mentally conceived. nor serpents is it said. that come of seed. and in trees bearing fruit. Observe again. and without meaning?" Not so. those of more understanding than myself. superfluously ascribe this benediction to the offspring of aquatic animals and man only). and the voice pronounces one only way. wherein I confess unto Thee. and innumerable languages. not allegorically. nor do I see what should hinder me from thus understanding the figurative sayings of Thy Bible. and to understand several ways. that I believe. we find not. nor the trees. which is understood one way by the mind. and to the zeal of holy souls. hast given to each man to understand. For it is true. abundance. in how innumerable modes of speaking.the herbs. O Lord. and to holy authors who have been the ministers of the Law unto us. far he it from a minister of Thy word to say so. fowls. And for this end do we believe Thee. and to spiritual gifts set forth for edification. my God. except in signs corporeally expressed. then does the phrase increase and multiply. but what shall in such wise increase and multiply that one thing may be expressed many ways. nor will I suppress. and in things mentally conceived. nor the beasts. But if we treat of the words as figuratively spoken (which I rather suppose to be the purpose of the Scripture. but by various kinds of true senses? Thus do man's offspring increase and multiply. What then shall I say. by what manifold sacraments. necessarily occasioned by the depth of the flesh. and that understood many ways in the mind. which is signified one way by corporeal expression. as in the herbs bearing seed. and increase. or men. and one expression understood many ways. as in light and darkness. not through any deceit of error. O Father of piety. according as Thou. and to works of mercy belonging to this present life. let my betters.

what we read to be obscurely delivered but in one. Thus are the waters of the sea replenished, which are not moved but by several significations: thus with human increase is the earth also replenished, whose dryness appeareth in its longing, and reason ruleth over it. I would also say, O Lord my God, what the following Scripture minds me of; yea, I will say, and not fear. For I will say the truth, Thyself inspiring me with what Thou willedst me to deliver out of those words. But by no other inspiration than Thine, do I believe myself to speak truth, seeing Thou art the Truth, and every man a liar. He therefore that speaketh a lie, speaketh of his own; that therefore I may speak truth, I will speak of Thine. Behold, Thou hast given unto us for food every herb bearing seed which is upon all the earth; and every tree, in which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed. And not to us alone, but also to all the fowls of the air, and to the beasts of the earth, and to all creeping things; but unto the fishes and to the great whales, hast Thou not given them. Now we said that by these fruits of the earth were signified, and figured in an allegory, the works of mercy which are provided for the necessities of this life out of the fruitful earth. Such an earth was the devout Onesiphorus, unto whose house Thou gavest mercy, because he often refreshed Thy Paul, and was not ashamed of his chain. Thus did also the brethren, and such fruit did they bear, who out of Macedonia supplied what was lacking to him. But how grieved he for some trees, which did not afford him the fruit due unto him, where he saith, At my first answer no man stood by me, but all men forsook me. I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge. For these fruits are due to such as minister the spiritual doctrine unto us out of their understanding of the divine mysteries; and they are due to them, as men; yea and due to them also, as the living soul, which giveth itself as an example, in all continency; and due unto them also, as flying creatures, for their blessings which are multiplied upon the earth, because their sound went out into all lands. But they are fed by these fruits, that are delighted with them; nor are they delighted with them, whose God is their belly. For neither in them that yield them, are the things yielded the fruit, but with what mind they yield them. He therefore that served God, and not his own belly, I plainly see why he rejoiced; I see it, and I rejoice with him. For he had received from the Philippians, what they had sent by Epaphroditus unto him: and yet I perceive why he rejoiced. For whereat he rejoiced upon that he fed; for, speaking in truth, I rejoiced (saith he) greatly in the Lord, that now at the last your care of me hath flourished again, wherein ye were also careful, but it had become wearisome unto you. These Philippians then had now dried up, with a long weariness, and withered as it were as to bearing this fruit of a good work; and he rejoiceth for them, that they flourished again, not for himself, that they supplied his wants. Therefore subjoins he, not that I speak in respect of want, for I have learned in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound; every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full, and to be hungry; both to abound, and to suffer need. I can do all things through Him which strengtheneth me.

Whereat then rejoicest thou, O great Paul? whereat rejoicest thou? whereon feedest thou, O man, renewed in the knowledge of God, after the image of Him that created thee, thou living soul, of so much continency, thou tongue like flying fowls, speaking mysteries? (for to such creatures, is this food due;) what is it that feeds thee? joy. Hear we what follows: notwithstanding, ye have well done, that ye did communicate with my affliction. Hereat he rejoiceth, hereon feedeth; because they had well done, not because his strait was eased, who saith unto Thee, Thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress; for that he knew to abound, and to suffer want, in Thee Who strengthenest him. For ye Philippians also know (saith he), that in the beginning of the Gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no Church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye only. For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my necessity. Unto these good works, he now rejoiceth that they are returned; and is gladdened that they flourished again, as when a fruitful field resumes its green. Was it for his own necessities, because he said, Ye sent unto my necessity? Rejoiceth he for that? Verily not for that. But how know we this? Because himself says immediately, not because I desire a gift, but I desire fruit. I have learned of Thee, my God, to distinguish betwixt a gift, and fruit. A gift, is the thing itself which he gives, that imparts these necessaries unto us; as money, meat, drink, clothing, shelter, help: but the fruit, is the good and right will of the giver. For the Good Master said not only, He that receiveth a prophet, but added, in the name of a prophet: nor did He only say, He that receiveth a righteous man, but added, in the name of a righteous man. So verily shall the one receive the reward of a prophet, the other, the reward of a righteous man: nor saith He only, He that shall give to drink a cup of cold water to one of my little ones; but added, in the name of a disciple: and so concludeth, Verily I say unto you, he shall not lose his reward. The gift is, to receive a prophet, to receive a righteous man, to give a cup of cold water to a disciple: but the fruit, to do this in the name of a prophet, in the name of a righteous man, in the name of a disciple. With fruit was Elijah fed by the widow that knew she fed a man of God, and therefore fed him: but by the raven was he fed with a gift. Nor was the inner man of Elijah so fed, but the outer only; which might also for want of that food have perished. I will then speak what is true in Thy sight, O Lord, that when carnal men and infidels (for the gaining and initiating whom, the initiatory Sacraments and the mighty workings of miracles are necessary, which we suppose to be signified by the name of fishes and whales) undertake the bodily refreshment, or otherwise succour Thy servant with something useful for this present life; whereas they be ignorant, why this is to be done, and to what end; neither do they feed these, nor are these fed by them; because neither do the one do it out of an holy and right intent; nor do the other rejoice at their gifts, whose fruit they as yet behold not. For upon that is the mind fed, of which it is glad. And therefore do not the fishes and whales feed upon such meats, as the earth brings not forth until after it was separated and divided from the bitterness of the waves of the sea.

And Thou, O God, sawest every thing that Thou hadst made, and, behold, it was very good. Yea we also see the same, and behold, all things are very good. Of the several kinds of Thy works, when Thou hadst said "let them be," and they were, Thou sawest each that it was good. Seven times have I counted it to be written, that Thou sawest that that which Thou madest was good: and this is the eighth, that Thou sawest every thing that Thou hadst made, and, behold, it was not only good, but also very good, as being now altogether. For severally, they were only good; but altogether, both good, and very good. All beautiful bodies express the same; by reason that a body consisting of members all beautiful, is far more beautiful than the same members by themselves are, by whose well-ordered blending the whole is perfected; notwithstanding that the members severally be also beautiful. And I looked narrowly to find, whether seven, or eight times Thou sawest that Thy works were good, when they pleased Thee; but in Thy seeing I found no times, whereby I might understand that Thou sawest so often, what Thou madest. And I said, "Lord, is not this Thy Scripture true, since Thou art true, and being Truth, hast set it forth? why then dost Thou say unto me, 'that in Thy seeing there be no times'; whereas this Thy Scripture tells me, that what Thou madest each day, Thou sawest that it was good: and when I counted them, I found how often." Unto this Thou answerest me, for Thou art my God, and with a strong voice tellest Thy servant in his inner ear, breaking through my deafness and crying, "O man, that which My Scripture saith, I say: and yet doth that speak in time; but time has no relation to My Word; because My Word exists in equal eternity with Myself. So the things which ye see through My Spirit, I see; like as what ye speak by My Spirit, I speak. And so when ye see those things in time, I see them not in time; as when ye speak in time, I speak them not in time." And I heard, O Lord my God, and drank up a drop of sweetness out of Thy truth, and understood, that certain men there be who mislike Thy works; and say, that many of them Thou madest, compelled by necessity; such as the fabric of the heavens, and harmony of the stars; and that Thou madest them not of what was Thine, but that they were otherwhere and from other sources created, for Thee to bring together and compact and combine, when out of Thy conquered enemies Thou raisedst up the walls of the universe; that they, bound down by the structure, might not again be able to rebel against Thee. For other things, they say Thou neither madest them, nor even compactedst them, such as all flesh and all very minute creatures, and whatsoever hath its root in the earth; but that a mind at enmity with Thee, and another nature not created by Thee, and contrary unto Thee, did, in these lower stages of the world, beget and frame these things. Frenzied are they who say thus, because they see not Thy works by Thy Spirit, nor recognise Thee in them. But they who by Thy Spirit see these things, Thou seest in them. Therefore when they see that these things are good, Thou seest that they are good; and whatsoever things for Thy sake please, Thou pleasest in them, and what through Thy Spirit please us, they please Thee in us. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of a man, which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no

'It is not ye that know. Now we (saith he) have received.' And no less then is it rightly said to those that see through the Spirit of God. We behold the heaven and earth. Because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost. yea and the matter of herbs and trees. These things we behold. a man should see that it is good (as Thy creatures be pleasing unto many. and divided from the darkness. Which is given unto us: by Whom we see that whatsoever in any degree is. and the dry land both void. or the spiritual and corporeal creature. it is not ye that speak: so is it rightly said to them that know through the Spirit of God. but the Spirit of God: how then do we also know. set over all irrational creatures. when they prefer to enjoy them. it is not they. Thanks to Thee. who in the mind of her reasonable understanding should have a parity of nature. the sun to suffice for the day. should be in like manner subject to the sex of her husband. 'It is not ye that see'. who Himself Is not in degree. and man. And I am admonished. but the Spirit of God. "because the things which we know by His Spirit. what things are given us of God?" Answer is made me. created after Thy image and likeness. doth consist. but what He Is. We behold the face of the earth decked out with earthly creatures. as the forenamed do. the moon and the stars to cheer the night. so. which bears up the flights of birds. whom yet Thou pleasest not in them. namely. Is. whether the corporeal part. . or (since this also is called heaven) this space of air through which wander the fowls of heaven. is good. and another. times should be marked and signified. beasts. but in the sex of her body. betwixt those waters which are in vapours borne above them. that when a man sees a thing that it is good. but God that sees that it is good. We behold on all sides a moist element. God should in him see that it is good. replenished with fishes. because the grossness of the air. so whatsoever through the Spirit of God they see to be good. that He should be loved in that which He made. and in the adorning of these parts. that it might obey. and birds. made a woman. because they be good. thickeneth itself by the exhalation of the waters. but the Spirit of God. Who cannot be loved. as the appetite of doing is fain to conceive the skill of right-doing from the reason of the mind. For from Him it is. not the spirit of this world. another made subject. O Lord. another. even through that Thy very image and likeness (that is the power of reason and understanding). between the spiritual upper waters and the inferior corporeal waters. We behold the lights shining from above. but the Spirit which is of God. even these no one knoweth. corporeally also. but by the Holy Ghost which He hath given. And as in his soul there is one power which has dominion by directing. to Thee). and formed so as to be visible and harmonized. superior and inferior. or rather the universal creation. that that which is good. "Truly the things of God knoweth no one. and those heavier waters which flow along the earth. that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. and in clear nights distill down in dew. we see light made." It is one thing then for a man to think that to be ill which is good. We see the firmament of heaven. and they are severally good. so was there for the man. and that by all these. We behold a face of waters gathered together in the fields of the sea. whereof the universal pile of the For as it is rightly said unto those that were to speak by the Spirit of God. and altogether very good. whether that primary body of the world.

for they were made of nothing. the mind subjected to Thee alone and needing to imitate no human authority.) the peace of rest. Next didst Thou form the living soul of the faithful. and together very good. hast Thou renewed after Thy image and likeness. And after this didst Thou kindle certain lights in the firmament. in Thy predestination before all times. and let us love Thee. but of matter concreated (that is. part secretly. not of any matter not Thine. but the form of the world out of the matter without form: yet both together. to help us in due season. and didst subject its rational actions to the excellency of the understanding. and forms of words according to the firmament of Thy Book. without morning and evening. and those under. and to all Offices of Thy Ministry. which hath no evening. by Thee. who were to he docile unto Thee. at the same time created by Thee). and visible miracles. and dividest them from the wicked. having the word of life. having finished their courses. as the woman to the man. without any interval of delay. They have then their succession of morning and evening. didst Thou out of corporeal matter produce the Sacraments. to obtain heavenly. or that was before. which from time have beginning and ending. and Thy good Spirit was borne over us. even distributing to the poor their earthly riches. For seeing the matter of heaven and earth is one thing. who were to be subject to them: and Thou gatheredst together the society of unbelievers into one conspiracy. form and privation. And we have seen. give peace unto us: (for Thou hast given us all things. For all this most goodly array of things very good. and the form another. and Thou madest the firmament of authority of Thy Book between those placed above. good things. for in them there was morning and evening. that for their temporal uses. because Thou seest them in us. O Lord God. the peace of the Sabbath. and we had sunk into the dark deep. All these we see. We have also examined what Thou willedst to be shadowed forth. both heaven and earth. rising and setting. for our sins hung over us. in Thy Word. and they are very good. that the zeal of the faithful might appear.Let Thy works praise Thee. be given by the same faithful. not of Thee. that we may love Thee. to the end Thou mightest reveal hidden things. or the relation of things in such an order. and they might bring forth works of mercy. Who hast given unto us Thy Spirit. the Head and the body of the Church. so that the form should follow the matter. growth and decay. Thou willedst. Thou without any interval of time didst give form. by which we might see them. by which the faithful should be blessed and multiplied. whether by the creation. that things singly are good. in Thy Only-Begotten. and Thou didst justify the ungodly. because to its state without form. is to pass away. after that again. part apparently. But when Thou begannest to execute in time the things predestinated. and rectify our disorders. Thou madest the matter of merely nothing. for the initiation of the unbelieving Gentiles. . Thy Holy ones. necessary for the perfecting of the faithful in this life. and shining with an eminent authority set on high through spiritual gifts. that Thy works may praise Thee. and in them love Thee. fruitful to themselves in time to come. through affections well ordered by the vigour of continency: and after that.

because Thou hast sanctified it to an everlasting continuance. the One. ever workest. And we see without. an Angel? or what Angel. so shall it be found. but not eternal. so shall it be opened. For then shalt Thou rest in us.But the seventh day hath no evening. knocked for at Thee. yet to be made. yea the times themselves. But Thou. And what man can teach man to understand this? or what Angel. Nor dost Thou see in time. and within. the Good God. We therefore see these things which Thou madest. because Thou seest them. that we also after our works (therefore very good. so shall it be received. resting the seventh day. and the rest which results from time. that they are good. but in the former time we were moved to do evil. And we were at a later time moved to do well. didst never cease doing good. when made. as these are Thy works through us. shall rest in Thee also in the Sabbath of eternal life. GRATIAS TIBI DOMINE End ofThe Project Gutenberg Etext the The Confessions of Saint Augustine . that that which Thou didst after Thy works which were very good. and art ever at rest. being the Good which needeth no good. a man? Let it be asked of Thee. art ever at rest. because Thy rest is Thou Thyself. nor restest in a time. of Thy gift. and so shall that be Thy rest through us. sought in Thee. where Thou sawest them. although Thou madest them in unbroken rest. And we also have some good works. forsaking Thee. because they are: but they are. after our hearts had conceived of Thy Spirit. that may the voice of Thy Book announce beforehand unto us. as now Thou workest in us. but Thou. nor hath it setting. but Thou sawest them there. because Thou hast given them us). Lord. and yet Thou makest things seen in time. nor art moved in time. Amen. that they are. after them we trust to rest in Thy great hallowing. But Thou. so.

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