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CHAPTER XXXV

OF THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST, OR, THE FOUNTAIN WITH THREE RILLS

Now we will speak further of the second manner of the coming of Christ, in those inward exercises by which a man is adorned, enlightened, and enriched in the three highest powers of the soul. This coming we will liken to a living fountain with three rills.4949    Probably Ruysbroeck had here in mind such a “fountain” or lavabo as was to be seen in almost any fourteenth century cloister: a cistern or basin fed by a duct of running water, and pouring itself out in several streams into the lower basin or trough which provided washing-places for the brethren.

The fountain-head, from which the rills flow forth, is the fulness of Divine grace within the unity of our spirit. There grace dwells essentially; abiding as a brimming fountain, and actively flowing forth in rills into all the powers of the soul, each according to its need. These rills are special inflowings or workings of God in the higher powers, wherein God works by means of grace in many diverse ways.


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