Julian of Norwich quotes

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Julian of Norwich

Birthdate: 8. November 1342
Date of death: 1416

Julian of Norwich was an English anchoress and an important Christian mystic and theologian. Her Revelations of Divine Love, written around 1395, is the first book in the English language known to have been written by a woman. Julian was also known as a spiritual authority within her community, where she also served as a counsellor and advisor. She is venerated in the Anglican and Lutheran churches. The Roman Catholic Church has not declared her to be a saint or given her the title Blessed. Accordingly, she does not appear in the Roman Martyrology, nor is she included in the calendar of the Catholic Church in England and Wales.

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Quotes Julian of Norwich

„If any such lover be in earth which is continually kept from falling, I know it not: for it was not shewed me. But this was shewed: that in falling and in rising we are ever preciously kept in one Love.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Sixteenth Revelation, Chapter 82
Context: If any such lover be in earth which is continually kept from falling, I know it not: for it was not shewed me. But this was shewed: that in falling and in rising we are ever preciously kept in one Love. For in the Beholding of God we fall not, and in the beholding of self we stand not; and both these be sooth as to my sight. But the Beholding of our Lord God is the highest soothness. Then are we greatly bound to God that He willeth in this living to shew us this high soothness. And I understood that while we be in this life it is full speedful to us that we see both these at once. For the higher Beholding keepeth us in spiritual solace and true enjoying in God; that other that is the lower Beholding keepeth us in dread and maketh us ashamed of ourself. But our good Lord willeth ever that we hold us much more in the Beholding of the higher, and leave not the knowing of the lower, unto the time that we be brought up above, where we shall have our Lord Jesus unto our meed and be fulfilled of joy and bliss without end.

„It behoved that there should be sin; but all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Thirteenth Revelation, Chapter 27
Context: In my folly, afore this time often I wondered why by the great foreseeing wisdom of God the beginning of sin was not letted: for then, methought, all should have been well. This stirring was much to be forsaken, but nevertheless mourning and sorrow I made therefor, without reason and discretion.
But Jesus, who in this Vision informed me of all that is needful to me, answered by this word and said: It behoved that there should be sin; but all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.

„The light is Charity, and the measuring of this light is done to us profitably by the wisdom of God.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Sixteenth Revelation, Chapter 84
Context: The light is Charity, and the measuring of this light is done to us profitably by the wisdom of God. For neither is the light so large that we may see our blissful Day, nor is it shut from us; but it is such a light in which we may live meedfully, with travail deserving the endless worship of God.

„Thus is that Blissful Sight end of all manner of pain to the loving soul, and the fulfilling of all manner of joy and bliss.“

—  Julian of Norwich

Variant translation to modern English: I am that which is highest, I am that which is lowest, I am that which is ALL.
The Sixteenth Revelation, Chapter 72
Context: Thus is that Blissful Sight end of all manner of pain to the loving soul, and the fulfilling of all manner of joy and bliss. And that shewed He in the high, marvellous words where He said: I IT AM that is highest; I IT AM that is lowest; I IT AM that is ALL.

„Ever the more clearly that the soul seeth this Blissful Cheer by grace of loving, the more it longeth to see it in fulness.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Sixteenth Revelation, Chapter 72
Context: Ever the more clearly that the soul seeth this Blissful Cheer by grace of loving, the more it longeth to see it in fulness. For notwithstanding that our Lord God dwelleth in us and is here with us, and albeit He claspeth us and encloseth us for tender love that He may never leave us, and is more near to us than tongue can tell or heart can think, yet may we never stint of moaning nor of weeping nor of longing till when we see Him clearly in His Blissful Countenance. For in that precious blissful sight there may no woe abide, nor any weal fail.

„God deemeth us upon our Nature-Substance, which is ever kept one in Him, whole and safe without end: and this doom is of His rightfulness. And man judgeth upon our changeable Sense-soul, which seemeth now one, now other, — according as it taketh of the parts, — and showeth outward. And this wisdom is mingled.“

—  Julian of Norwich

For sometimes it is good and easy, and sometimes it is hard and grievous. And in as much as it is good and easy it belongeth to the rightfulness; and in as much as it is hard and grievous our good Lord Jesus reformeth it by mercy and grace through the virtue of His blessed Passion, and so bringeth it to the rightfulness.
And though these two be thus accorded and oned, yet both shall be known in Heaven without end. The first doom, which is of God’s rightfulness, is of His high endless life; and this is that fair sweet doom that was shewed in all the fair Revelation, in which I saw Him assign to us no manner of blame. But though this was sweet and delectable, yet in the beholding only of this, I could not be fully eased: and that was because of the doom of Holy Church, which I had afore understood and which was continually in my sight. And therefore by this doom methought I understood that sinners are worthy sometime of blame and wrath; but these two could I not see in God; and therefore my desire was more than I can or may tell. For the higher doom was shewed by God Himself in that same time, and therefore me behoved needs to take it; and the lower doom was learned me afore in Holy Church, and therefore I might in no way leave the lower doom. Then was this my desire: that I might see in God in what manner that which the doom of Holy Church teacheth is true in His sight, and how it belongeth to me verily to know it; whereby the two dooms might both be saved, so as it were worshipful to God and right way to me.
And to all this I had none other answer but a marvellous example of a lord and of a servant, as I shall tell after: — and that full mistily shewed. And yet I stand desiring, and will unto my end, that I might by grace know these two dooms as it belongeth to me. For all heavenly, and all earthly things that belong to Heaven, are comprehended in these two dooms. And the more understanding, by the gracious leading of the Holy Ghost, that we have of these two dooms, the more we shall see and know our failings. And ever the more that we see them, the more, of nature, by grace, we shall long to be fulfilled of endless joy and bliss. For we are made thereto, and our Nature-Substance is now blissful in God, and hath been since it was made, and shall be without end.
Summations, Chapter 45

„He that is highest and worthiest was most fully made-nought and most utterly despised.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Eighth Revelation, Chapter 20
Context: Thus I saw our Lord Jesus languoring long time. For the oneing with the Godhead gave strength to the manhood for love to suffer more than all men might suffer: I mean not only more pain than all men might suffer, but also that He suffered more pain than all men of salvation that ever were from the first beginning unto the last day might tell or fully think, having regard to the worthiness of the highest worshipful King and the shameful, despised, painful death. For He that is highest and worthiest was most fully made-nought and most utterly despised.

„I am sure that no man asketh mercy and grace with true meaning, but if mercy and grace be first given to him.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Fourteenth Revelation, Chapter 42
Context: This is our Lord’s will, that our prayer and our trust be both alike large. For if we trust not as much as we pray, we do not full worship to our Lord in our prayer, and also we tarry and pain our self. The cause is, as I believe, that we know not truly that our Lord is Ground on whom our prayer springeth; and also that we know not that it is given us by the grace of His love. For if we knew this, it would make us to trust to have, of our Lord’s gift, all that we desire. For I am sure that no man asketh mercy and grace with true meaning, but if mercy and grace be first given to him.

„I am the Ground of thy beseeching.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Sixteenth Revelation, Chapter 86
Context: For Charity pray we all; with God’s working, thanking, trusting, enjoying. For thus will our good Lord be prayed to, as by the understanding that I took of all His own meaning and of the sweet words where He saith full merrily: I am the Ground of thy beseeching. For truly I saw and understood in our Lord’s meaning that He shewed it for that He willeth to have it known more than it is: in which knowing He will give us grace to love Him and cleave to Him. For He beholdeth His heavenly treasure with so great love on earth that He willeth to give us more light and solace in heavenly joy, in drawing to Him of our hearts, for sorrow and darkness which we are in.

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„God is nearer to us than our own Soul: for He is Ground in whom our Soul standeth, and He is Mean that keepeth the Substance and the Sense-nature together so that they shall never dispart.“

—  Julian of Norwich

Summations, Chapter 56
Context: God is nearer to us than our own Soul: for He is Ground in whom our Soul standeth, and He is Mean that keepeth the Substance and the Sense-nature together so that they shall never dispart. For our soul sitteth in God in very rest, and our soul standeth in God in very strength, and our Soul is kindly rooted in God in endless love: and therefore if we will have knowledge of our Soul, and communing and dalliance therewith, it behoveth to seek unto our Lord God in whom it is enclosed.

„He shall appear suddenly and blissfully to all that love Him.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Second Revelation, Chapter 10
Context: It is God’s will that we have three things in our seeking: — The first is that we seek earnestly and diligently, without sloth, and, as it may be through His grace, without unreasonable heaviness and vain sorrow. The second is, that we abide Him steadfastly for His love, without murmuring and striving against Him, to our life’s end: for it shall last but awhile. The third is that we trust in Him mightily of full assured faith. For it is His will that we know that He shall appear suddenly and blissfully to all that love Him.
For His working is privy, and He willeth to be perceived; and His appearing shall be swiftly sudden; and He willeth to be trusted. For He is full gracious and homely: Blessed may He be!

„Love and Dread are brethren, and they are rooted in us by the Goodness of our Maker, and they shall never be taken from us without end. We have of nature to love and we have of grace to love: and we have of nature to dread and we have of grace to dread.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Sixteenth Revelation, Chapter 74
Context: Love and Dread are brethren, and they are rooted in us by the Goodness of our Maker, and they shall never be taken from us without end. We have of nature to love and we have of grace to love: and we have of nature to dread and we have of grace to dread. It belongeth to the Lordship and to the Fatherhood to be dreaded, as it belongeth to the Goodness to be loved: and it belongeth to us that are His servants and His children to dread Him for Lordship and Fatherhood, as it belongeth to us to love Him for Goodness.

„For a man beholdeth some deeds well done and some deeds evil, but our Lord beholdeth them not so: for as all that hath being in nature is of Godly making, so is all that is done, in property of God’s doing.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Third Revelation, Chapter 11
Context: In another time He gave a Shewing for the beholding of sin nakedly, as I shall tell: where He useth working of mercy and grace.
And this vision was shewed, to mine understanding, for that our Lord would have the soul turned truly unto the beholding of Him, and generally of all His works. For they are full good; and all His doings are easy and sweet, and to great ease bringing the soul that is turned from the beholding of the blind Deeming of man unto the fair sweet Deeming of our Lord God. For a man beholdeth some deeds well done and some deeds evil, but our Lord beholdeth them not so: for as all that hath being in nature is of Godly making, so is all that is done, in property of God’s doing.

„And here I understood that that the Lord beholdeth the servant with pity and not with blame.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Sixteenth Revelation, Chapter 82
Context: But here shewed our courteous Lord the moaning and the mourning of the soul, signifying thus: I know well thou wilt live for my love, joyously and gladly suffering all the penance that may come to thee; but in as much as thou livest not without sin thou wouldest suffer, for my love, all the woe, all the tribulation and distress that might come to thee. And it is sooth. But be not greatly aggrieved with sin that falleth to thee against thy will.
And here I understood that that the Lord beholdeth the servant with pity and not with blame. For this passing life asketh not to live all without blame and sin.

„For the fulness of joy is to behold God in all: for by the same blessed Might, Wisdom, and Love, that He made all-thing, to the same end our good Lord leadeth it continually, and thereto Himself shall bring it; and when it is time we shall see it.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Thirteenth Revelation, Chapter 35
Context: When God Almighty had shewed so plenteously and joyfully of His Goodness, I desired to learn assuredly as to a certain creature that I loved, if it should continue in good living, which I hoped by the grace of God was begun. And in this desire for a singular Shewing, it seemed that I hindered myself: for I was not taught in this time. And then was I answered in my reason, as it were by a friendly intervenor : Take it GENERALLY, and behold the graciousness of the Lord God as He sheweth to thee: for it is more worship to God to behold Him in all than in any special thing. And therewith I learned that it is more worship to God to know all-thing in general, than to take pleasure in any special thing. And if I should do wisely according to this teaching, I should not only be glad for nothing in special, but I should not be greatly distressed for no manner of thing : for ALL shall be well. For the fulness of joy is to behold God in all: for by the same blessed Might, Wisdom, and Love, that He made all-thing, to the same end our good Lord leadeth it continually, and thereto Himself shall bring it; and when it is time we shall see it.

„Our Substance is our Father, God Almighty, and our Substance is our Mother, God, All-wisdom; and our Substance is in our Lord the Holy Ghost, God All-goodness.“

—  Julian of Norwich

Summations, Chapter 58
Context: Our Substance is our Father, God Almighty, and our Substance is our Mother, God, All-wisdom; and our Substance is in our Lord the Holy Ghost, God All-goodness. For our Substance is whole in each Person of the Trinity, which is one God. And our Sense-soul is only in the Second Person Christ Jesus; in whom is the Father and the Holy Ghost: and in Him and by Him we are mightily taken out of Hell, and out of the wretchedness in Earth worshipfully brought up into Heaven and blissfully oned to our Substance: increased in riches and in nobleness by all the virtues of Christ, and by the grace and working of the Holy Ghost.

„The properties are these: Life, Love, and Light.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The Sixteenth Revelation, Chapter 83
Context: I had, in part, touching, sight, and feeling in three properties of God, in which the strength and effect of all the Revelation standeth: and they were seen in every Shewing, and most properly in the Twelfth, where it saith oftentimes: The properties are these: Life, Love, and Light. In life is marvellous homeliness, and in love is gentle courtesy, and in light is endless Nature-hood. These properties were in one Goodness: unto which Goodness my Reason would be oned, and cleave to it with all its might.

„It lasteth, and ever shall for that God loveth it. And so All-thing hath the Being by the love of God.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The First Revelation, Chapter 5
Context: He shewed me a little thing, the quantity of an hazel-nut, in the palm of my hand; and it was as round as a ball. I looked thereupon with eye of my understanding, and thought: What may this be? And it was answered generally thus: It is all that is made. I marvelled how it might last, for methought it might suddenly have fallen to naught for little. And I was answered in my understanding: It lasteth, and ever shall for that God loveth it. And so All-thing hath the Being by the love of God.

„Our soul is so specially loved of Him that is highest, that it overpasseth the knowing of all creatures: that is to say, there is no creature that is made that may know how much and how sweetly and how tenderly our Maker loveth us.“

—  Julian of Norwich

The First Revelation, Chapter 6
Context: Our soul is so specially loved of Him that is highest, that it overpasseth the knowing of all creatures: that is to say, there is no creature that is made that may know how much and how sweetly and how tenderly our Maker loveth us. And therefore we may with grace and His help stand in spiritual beholding, with everlasting marvel of this high, overpassing, inestimable Love that Almighty God hath to us of His Goodness. And therefore we may ask of our Lover with reverence all that we will.
For our natural Will is to have God, and the Good Will of God is to have us; and we may never cease from willing nor from longing till we have Him in fullness of joy: and then may we no more desire.

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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