As the Flower to the Root

The hills and valleys of Heaven will be to those you now experience not as a copy is to an original, not as a substitute to the genuine article, but as the flower to the root, or the diamond to the coal.

— C.S. Lewis, Letters to Malcolm

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Symbols

From infinite longings finite deeds rise

As fountains spring toward far-off glowing skies,

But rushing swiftly upward weakly bend

And trembling from their lack of power descend—

So through the falling torrent of our fears

Our joyous force leaps like these dancing tears.

Excerpt From

The Book of Hours

Rainer Maria Rilke

https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/the-book-of-hours/id980491166?mt=11

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A Shining and Affirmative Thing

White is a colour. It is not the absence of colour; it is a shining and affirmative thing, as fierce as red, as definite as black. When, so to speak, your pencil grows red-hot, it draws roses; when it grows white-hot, it draws stars. And one of the two or three defiant verities of the best religious morality, of real Christianity, for example, is exactly this same thing; the chief assertion of religious morality is that white is a colour. Virtue is not the absence of vices or the avoidance of moral dangers; virtue is a vivid and separate thing, like pain or a particular smell. Mercy does not mean not being cruel or sparing people revenge or punishment; it means a plain and positive thing like the sun, which one has either seen or not seen.

GKC – A Piece of Chalk

Faith in love

For Sunday, from an account of George MacDonald preaching, reprinted in ‘Wingfold’ Spring 2017:

“Faith in God, he is careful to explain, is not faith in opinions about God. It is faith in God’s love; while the doing of what we believe to be right is the chief if not the only means of finding out–of attaining to a belief in this love.”

On the Wrong Side of the Door

At present we are on the outside of the world, the wrong side of the door. We discern the freshness and purity of morning, but they do not make us fresh and pure. We cannot mingle with the splendours we see. But all the leaves of the New Testament are rustling with the rumour that it will not always be so. Some day, God willing, we shall get in. When humans souls have become as perfect in voluntary obedience, then they will put on its glory, or rather that greater glory of which Nature is only the first sketch. For you must not think that I am putting forward any heathen fancy of being absorbed into Nature. Nature is mortal; we shall outlive her. When all the suns and nebulae have passed away, each one of you will still be alive. Nature is only the image, the symbol; but it is the symbol Scripture invites me to use. We are summoned to pass in through Nature, beyond her, into that splendour which she fitfully reflects. — C.S. Lewis