Your enjoyment of the world is never right, till every morning you awake in Heaven; see yourself in your Father’s Palace; and look upon the skies, the earth, and the air as Celestial Joys: having such a reverend esteem of all, as if you were among the Angels. The bride of a monarch, in her husband’s chamber, hath no such causes of delight as you. You never enjoy the world aright, till the Sea itself floweth in your veins, till you are clothed with the heavens, and crowned with the stars: and perceive yourself to be the sole heir of the whole world, and more than so, because men are in it who are every one sole heirs as well as you. Till you can sing and rejoice and delight in God, as misers do in gold, and Kings in scepters, you never enjoy the world.
Till your spirit filleth the whole world, and the stars are your jewels; till you are as familiar with the ways of God in all Ages as with your walk and table; till you are intimately acquainted with that shady nothing out of which the world was made; till you love men so as to desire their happiness, with a thirst equal to the zeal of your own; till you delight in God for being good to all: you never enjoy the world. Till you more feel it than your private estate, and are more present in the hemisphere, considering the glories and the beauties there, than in your own house; till you remember how lately you were made, and how wonderful it was when you came into it; and more rejoice in the palace of your glory, than if it had been made but today morning.
Yet further, you never enjoy the world aright, till you so love the beauty of enjoying it, that you are covetous and earnest to persuade others to enjoy it…. The world is a mirror of infinite beauty, yet no man sees it. It is a Temple of Majesty, yet no man regards it. It is a region of Light and Peace, did not men disquiet it. It is the Paradise of God. It is more to man since he is fallen than it was before. It is the place of Angels and the Gate of Heaven. When Jacob waked out of his dream, he said “God is here, and I wist it not. How dreadful is this place! This is none other than the House of God and the Gate of Heaven.
— Thomas Traherne, Centuries of Meditations
17th century Anglican priest. This manuscript was rediscovered in 1997 in the Lambeth Palace Library. [some erroneous info online] Meditations was first published in 1908. There are over 400, hence centuries.
What a radiant post Davidya! I am catching up.
This one and the one from Yogananda are the opening of the Beloved’s Heart Loving All Creation and telling the truth about its Glory.
Thank you for sharing these treasures!
Yes, it’s very beautiful. It’s also worth noting that experiences of the heart are very personal. So we see the widest diversity of description in devotional and celestial verse. But that can deeply stir the memory of that within us, whatever our faith or upbringing.
Pingback: Yoga Limbs « In 2 Deep