Saint Augustine | Confessions | on Love

"O Lord, do I love Thee? Thou didst strike on my heart with Thy word and I loved Thee .... But what do I love when I love Thee?

Not the beauty of bodies nor the loveliness of seasons, nor the radiance of the light around us - so gladsome to our eyes, nor the sweet melodies of songs of every kind, nor the fragrance of flowers and ointments and spices, nor manna and honey, nor limbs delectable for fleshly embraces. I do not love these things when I love my God.

And yet I love a light and a voice and a fragrance and a food and an embrace when I love my God, who is a light, a voice, a fragrance, a food, and an embrace to my inner man ... This it is that I love when I love my God ...

That same voice speaks indeed to all men, but only they understand it who join that voice, heard from outside, to the truth that is within them. And the truth says to me: "Neither heaven nor earth nor any body is thy God." Their own nature says the same.

They see that the substance of a part is less than that of the whole. And now I speak to thee, my soul. Thou art my greater part, since thou quickenest the substance of my body by giving to it life, which no body can give to a body. And thy God is the life of thy life to thee ...

Late have I loved Thee, O Beauty so ancient and so new! Too late have I loved Thee. And lo, Thou wert inside me and I outside, and I sought for Thee there, and in all my unsightliness I flung myself on those beautiful things which Thou hast made.

Thou wert with me and I was not with Thee.

Those beauties kept me away from Thee, though if they had not been in Thee, they would not have been at all. Thou didst call and cry to me and break down my deafness. Thou didst flash and shine on me and put my blindness to flight. Thou didst blow fragrance upon me and I drew breath, and now I pant after Thee. I tasted of Thee and now I hunger and thirst for Thee. Thou didst touch me and I am aflame for Thy peace. "

- from "Confessions" (397-398 A.D.) | Saint Augustine, may God be please with him.

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Technology of the Heart: Saint Augustine | Confessions | on Love
Saint Augustine | Confessions | on Love
Technology of the Heart
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