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CHAPTER XII: How and in what things a Contemplative Man should be busied

BUT thou shalt ever seek with great diligence in prayer that thou mayest come to a spiritual feeling or sight of God. And that is, that thou mayest know the wisdom of God, the endless might of Him, His great goodness in Himself and in His creatures; for this is Contemplation, and that other mentioned is none, thus saith St Paul: Being rooted and grounded in charity, we may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth. 5656    Ephes. 3:18. That ye may know, he saith not, by sound of the ear nor sweet savour in the mouth, nor by any such bodily thing, but that ye may know and feel with all saints what is the length of the endless being of God, the breadth of the wonderful charity and the goodness of God, the height of His almighty Majesty and the bottomless depths of His wisdom. In knowing and spiritual feeling of these should be the exercise of a Contemplative man. For in these may be understood the full knowing of all ghostly things. This exercise is that one thing which St Paul coveted after, saying thus: This one thing I covet, which is that, forgetting those that are behind, and reaching forth to those things that are before, I press to the mark of the supernal vocation.5757    Phil. 3:13. Which is as much as if he had said, One thing is best for me to covet, and that is, that I might forget all things that be behind or backward, and I shall stretch out my heart ever forward for to feel and to grip the sovereign reward of endless bliss. Behind are all bodily things, forward or before are all spiritual things. And so St Paul would forget all bodily things, and even his own body also, that so he might see spiritual things.

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