For notwithstanding all my pains, I would not have been stopped for love that I had in him. German Woodblock of Catherine of Siena's dying with her mother and disciples around her. Compare with Breughel's 'Death of the Virgin' above. Dying was a public holy act. But bodily pain is not more than this'. And how all things suffered him good and ill. The firmament, the earth, failed for sorrow in their nature, in the time of Christ's dying. For when he saw wondrous and marvelous sorrows and dreads that befell in that time, he said, 'Either the world is now at an end or else he who is maker of nature suffers'.
God of his goodness who makes the planets and the elements to work in their nature to the blessed man, and the cursed. Adam Easton's Pseudo-Dionysius Manuscript. This I said for I would not. Repenting and willful choice be two contraries, which I felt both at the one and the same time, and they be two parts, one outward, that other inward. Whereof I felt much at this time, and that part was that repented. And this was more secretly felt. And this part is in which mightily, wisely and wilfully I chose Jesus to be my heaven.
For the pains were deeds done in a time by the working of love. But love was without beginning and is and ever shall be without any end. And also the loathing that is in our nature to suffer pain.
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For as much as he was most tender and clean, right so was he most strong and mighty to suffer. And for every one's sin who shall be saved he suffered, and every man's sorrow. For in as much as our Lady sorrowed for his pains, as much he suffered sorrow for her sorrow. And more, in as much as the sweet manhood of him was worthier in nature. For as long as he was mortal he suffered for us, and sorrowed for us. The Twenty-First Chapter. The first is the hard pain that he suffered with contrition and compassion. And that showed our Lord in this time. And gave me might and grace to see it.
And right in the same time that I thought it seemed the life might no longer last and the showing of the end needs must be. The changing of his blissful cheer changed mine. And I was as glad and merry as it was possible to be. Then brought our Lord merrily to my mind, 'Where is now any point of the pain or of your grief?
And then shall all be brought to joy. And so meant he in this Showing. God which we might never have without that. And the harder our pains have been with him in his Cross, the more shall our worship be with him in his kingdom. And thought, 'I see three heavens and all the blessed manhood of Christ, none is more, none is less, none is higher, none is lower, but even like in bliss'. Wherefore we be not only his by his buying, but also by the courteous gift of his Father. We be his bliss, we be his reward, we be his worship, we be his crown. And truly the number passed my understanding and my wits so far, that my reason might not nor could comprehend it.
Then means he thus, ' How should it then be, that I should not for your love do all that I might, which deed grieves me not, since I would for your love die so often, having no reward for my hard pains '. And here I saw for the second beholding in this blessed Passion, the love that made him to suffer passes as far all his pains, as heaven is above earth. And love was without beginning, is and shall be without ending.
The Father is pleased, the Son is worshipped, the holy Ghost delights. These four are aforesaid for the pains of the Passion. And therein he will we be mightily comforted and strengthened, and thus will he merrily with his grace that our soul be occupied. For we are his bliss.
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For in us he joys without end. And so shall we in him with his grace.
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And all that he has done for us and does and ever shall was never cost nor charge to him nor might be, but only that he died in our manhood, beginning at the sweet Incarnation and lasting till the blessed Uprising on Easter Morn. So long lasted the cost and the charge about our redemption in deed, of which deed he joys endlessly as it is before said.
That is to say that the liking of our salvation be like the joy that Christ has of our salvation, as it may be while we are here.
But only the Maiden's Son suffered. And I ask nought else of you for my travail but that I might well pay you'. For he has pleased and solaced him whom he loves. And he shall no more suffer.
And with the sweet beholding he showed his blissful heart even cloven in two. That is to mean the endless love, that was without beginning and is and shall be ever. How I let open my side, and my heart is cloven in two and lets out blood and water, all that is in it, and this delights me and so will it delight you'.
And for my love joy now with me'. And now is all my bitter pain and all my hard travail turned to endless joy and bliss to me. And to you. How should it now be, that you should pray anything of me that delights me, but if I should full gladly grant it to you. For my delight is your holiness and your endless joy and bliss with me.
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And brought to my mind where our Lady stood in the time of his Passion, and said, ' Will you see her? As if he said, 'Will you see how I love her, that you may joy with me in the love that I have in her and she in me? As it were all to one person as if he said, 'Will you see in her how you are loved? For your love I made her so high, so noble and so worthy, and this delights me. And so will I that it does you'. For after himself she is the most blessed sight. But here I am not taught to long to see her bodily presence while I am here.
But the virtues of her blessed soul, her truth, her wisdom, her charity, whereby I may learn to know myself and reverently dread my God. Yea, good Lord, if it be your will'. And I saw that nothing hindered me but sin. For then thought I all should have been well. And overpassing. But I saw not sin. For I believe it has no manner of substance nor any part of being, nor might it be known but by the pain that it causes. And this pain, it is something as to my sight for a time.
The Shewings of Julian of Norwich, Part 1
For it purges and makes us to know ourself and ask mercy. For the Passion of our Lord is comfort to us against all this. And so is his blessed will.