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CHAP. XIII.

 

In which is shewed what infused and passive Contemplation, is, and its wonderful Effects.

 

128. You must know, that when once the Soul is habituated to internal Recollection, and acquired Contemplation, that we have spoken of; when once ‘tis mortified, and desires wholly to be denied its Appetites; when once it efficaciously embraces internal and external Mortification, and is willing to dye heartily to its passions and its own ways, then God uses to take it alone by it self, and raise it more then it knows, to a compleat repose, where he sweetly and inwardly infuses in it his Light, his Love and his Strength, inkindling and inflaming it with a true disposition to all manner of Vertue.

129. There the Divine Spouse, suspending its Powers, puts it to sleep in a most sweet and pleasant rest: There it sleeps, and quietly receives and enjoys (without knowing it ) what it enjoys, with a most lovely and charming Calm: There the Soul raised and lifted up to this passive State, becomes united to its greatest Good, without costing it any trouble or pains for this Union: There in that supream Region, and sacred Temple of the Soul, that greatest Good takes its Complacency, manifests it self, and creates a relish from the Creature, in a way above Sense and all humane understanding: There also only the pure Spirit, who is God, (the purity of the Soul being uncapable of sensible things) rules it, and gets the mastership of it, communicating to it its illustrations, and those Sentiments which are necessary for the most pure and perfect Union.

130. The Soul coming to it self again from these sweet and divine Embracings, becomes rich in light and love, and a mighty esteem of the divine Greatness, and the knowledge of its own Misery, finding it self all changed divinely, and disposed to embrace, to suffer, and to practice perfect Vertue.

131. A simple, pure, infused, and perfect Contemplation, therefore is a known and inward manifestation which God gives of himself, of his goodness, of his Peace, of his sweetness, whose object is God, pure, unspeakable, abstracted from all particular thoughts, within an inward silence: but it is God delights us, God that draws us, God that sweetly raises us in a spiritual and pure manner, an admirable gift, which the divine Majesty bestows to whom he will, as he will, and when he will, and for what time he will, though the state of this Life be rather a state of the cross of Patience, of humility, and of suffering, than of enjoying.

132. Never wilt thou enjoy this divine Nectar, till thou art advanced in Vertue and inward Mortification; till thou doest heartily endeavour to fix in thy Soul a great Peace, silence, forgetfulness and internal solitude: How is it possible to hear the sweet, inward and powerful Voice of God in the midst of the noise and tumults of the Creatures? And how can the pure spirit be heard in the midst of Considerations and discourses of Artifice? If the Soul will not continually dye in it self, denying it self to all these Materiallities and satisfactions, the Contemplation can be no more but a meer vanity, a vain complacency and Presumption.

 

 

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