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had a “whispering evil-speaking temper. Susurrus once whispered to a particular friend in great secrecy something too bad to be spoken of publicly. He ended with saying, how glad he was that it had not yet taken wind, and that he had some hopes it might not be true, though the suspicions were very strong. His friend made this reply: 'You say, Susurrus, that you are glad it has not yet taken wind, and that you may have some hopes it may not prove true. Go home, therefore, to your closet, and pray to God, for this man, in such a manner and with such earnestness, as you would pray for yourself on like occasion. Beseech God to interpose in his favour, to save him from false accusers. and bring all those to shame, who by uncharitable whispers and secret stories, wound him, like those that stab in the dark. And when you have made this prayer, then you may, if you please, go tell the same secret to some other friend, that you have told to me.' Susurrus was exceedingly affected with this rebuke, and felt the force of it upon his conscience in as lively a manner, as if he had seen the books opened at the Day of Judgment. All other arguments might have been resisted; but it was impossible for Susurrus either to reject or to follow this advice, without being equally self-condemned in the highest degree. From that time to this he has constantly used himself to this method of intercession; and his heart is so entirely changed by it that he can now no more privately whisper anything to the prejudice of another than he can openly pray to God to do people hurt. Whisperings and evil-speakings now hurt his ears like oaths and curses ; and he has appointed one day in the week to be a day of penance as long as he lives, to
humble himself before God, in the sorrowful confession of his former guilt.” (Chap. xxi.)
In Law's writings, and especially in those written after he came under the influence of Jacob Boehme, we find a wonderful catholicity of spirit. He felt himself in union not only with every section of the Christian Church, but with all outside who loved God. Like Tauler and the other fourteenth-century mystics, he insists that the one thing needful is the good will, " the desire of the soul turned to God.” Thus in a classic passage of The Spirit of Prayer, he says:
“There is but one possible way for man to attain this salvation or life of God in the soul. There is not one way for the Jew, another for the Christian, and a third for the Heathen. No; God is one, human nature is one, salvation is one, and the way to it is one ; and that is the desire of the soul turned to God. When this desire is alive, and breaks forth in any creature under heaven, then the lost sheep is found, and the shepherd hath it upon his shoulders. Through this desire the poor prodigal son leaves his husks and swine, and hastes to his father; and it is because of this desire that the father sees the son, while yet afar off, that he runs to meet him, falls on his neck, and kisses him. See here how plainly we are taught that no sooner is this desire arisen and in motion towards God, but the operation of God's Spirit answers to it, cherishes and welcomes its first beginnings, signified by the father's seeing and having compassion on his son, whilst yet afar off-that is, in the first beginnings of his desire. Thus does this desire do all; it brings the soul to God, and God into the soul ; it co-operates with God, and is one life with
God. Suppose this desire not to be alive, not in motion either in a Jew or a Christian, and then all the sacrifices, the services, either of the Law or the Gospel, are but dead works, that bring no life into the soul, nor beget any union between God and it. Suppose this desire to be awakened, and fixed upon God, though in souls that never heard either of the Law or the Gospel, and then the Divine life, or operation of God, enters inte them, and the new birth in Christ is formed in those that never heard of his name. And these are they, 'that shall come from the east and from the west, and sit down with Abraham and Isaac in the kingdom of God.'” (Part i, Chap. ii.) I have spoken of the vital influence which the Serious Call and other early writings of Law exercised on the great religious movement of the eighteenth century. May it not be that the teaching of his later and more mystical works, as illustrated by the passage just quoted from The Spirit of Prayer, foreshadows the kind of religion which men are looking for now-a religion of broad horizons, drawing together in the unity of the spirit, all in every land who love God and mankind ?
Gibb and W. Montgomery.
Transl. by W. Watts. (Loeb Classical Library.)
Montgomery. Life and Letters in the Fourth Century. By T. P. Glover. Hellenism and Christianity. By Edwyn Bevan.
II ST. PATRICK AND ST. COLUMBA Libri Sancti Patricii. Edited by N. J. D. White. St. Patrick : his Writings and Life. By N. J. D. White. The Epistles and Hymn of St. Patrick. Edited by T.
Olden. The Writings of St. Patrick. Edited by C. H. H. Wright. St. Patrick's Confession. Transl. by P. S. Dinneen. The Life of St. Patrick. By J. B. Bury. St. Patrick : his Life and Teaching. By E. J. Newell. The Life of St. Columba by St. Adamnan. Text and
transl. Edited by J. T. Fowler. The Life of St. Columba by St. Adamnan. Transl. by
W. Huyshe. Columba. By Lachlan M. Watt. (Hibbert Journal, January, 1922.)
ST. BERNARD The Life and Works of St. Bernard of Clairvaux. Transl.
by S. J. Eales. Some Letters of St. Bernard. Transl. by S. J. Eales.
Selected by F. A. Gasquet. A Selection from the Writings of St. Bernard. Transl. by
H. Grimley. The Book of St. Bernard on the Love of God. Text, with
Transl. by Edmund G. Gardner. St. Bernard on Loving God. Transl. by W. H. Van Allen. St. Bernard on Consideration. Transl. by George Lewis. The Life and Times of St. Bernard. By J. C. Morrison. St. Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux. By S. J. Eales. Bernard of Clairvaux. By F. C. Storrs. Five Centuries of Religion. By G. G. Coulton.
JOHN TAULER Johann Tauler's Predigten, übertragen von J. Hamberger. The History and Life of the Rev. Doctor John Tauler, with
Twenty-five of his Sermons. Transl. by S. Wink
worth. The Inner Way, being Thirty-six Sermons for Festivals.
by John Tauler. Edited by A. W. Hutton. Light, Life and Love. Selections from the German
Mystics of the Middle Ages. By W. R. Inge.