Steeleye Span, "Gower Wassail".
It's we poor wassail boys, so weary and cold!
Please drop some small silver into our bowl.
And if we survive for another new year
Perhaps we may call and see who does live here.
All the wisdom of the world and all human ability, compared with the infinite wisdom of God, are pure and supreme ignorance, even as Saint Paul writes ad Corinthios, saying: Sapientia hujus mundi stultitia est apud Deum. ‘The wisdom of this world is foolishness with God.’ Wherefore any soul that makes account of all its knowledge and ability in order to come to union with the wisdom of God is supremely ignorant in the eyes of God and will remain far removed from that wisdom; for ignorance knows not what wisdom is, even as Saint Paul says that this wisdom seems foolishness to God; since, in the eyes of God, those who consider themselves to be persons with a certain amount of knowledge are very ignorant, so that the Apostle, writing to the Romans, says of them: Dicentes enim se esse sapientes, stulti facti sunt. That is: Professing themselves to be wise, they became foolish. And those alone acquire wisdom of God who are like ignorant children, and, laying aside their knowledge, walk in His service with love. This manner of wisdom Saint Paul taught likewise ad Corinthios: Si quis videtur inter vos sapiens esse in hoc soeculo, stultus fiat ut sit sapiens. Sapientia enim hujus mundi stultitia est apud Deum. That is: If any man among you seem to be wise, let him become ignorant that he may be wise; for the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. So that, in order to come to union with the wisdom of God, the soul has to proceed rather by unknowing than by knowing; and all the dominion and liberty of the world, compared with the liberty and dominion of the Spirit of God, is the most abject slavery, affliction and captivity.
"Pure love" for our holy Father John of the Cross means loving God for his own sake, with a heart that is free form all attachment to anything created: to itself and to other creatures, but also to all consolations and the like which God can grant the soul, to all particular forms of devotion, etc.; with a heart that wants nothing more than that God's will be done, that allows itself to be led by God without any resistance. What one can do oneself to attain this goal is treated in detail in the Ascent of Mount Carmel. How God purifies the soul, in the Dark Night. The result, in the Living Flame and the Spiritual Canticle. (Basically, the whole way is to be found in each of the volumes, but each time one or the other of the stages is predominant.)
A Nocturnal Upon St. Lucy's Day, Being The Shortest Day
by John Donne
'Tis the year's midnight, and it is the day's,
Lucy's, who scarce seven hours herself unmasks;
The sun is spent, and now his flasks
Send forth light squibs, no constant rays;
The world's whole sap is sunk;
The general balm th' hydroptic earth hath drunk,
Whither, as to the bed's feet, life is shrunk,
Dead and interr'd; yet all these seem to laugh,
Compar'd with me, who am their epitaph.
Study me then, you who shall lovers be
At the next world, that is, at the next spring;
For I am every dead thing,
In whom Love wrought new alchemy.
For his art did express
A quintessence even from nothingness,
From dull privations, and lean emptiness;
He ruin'd me, and I am re-begot
Of absence, darkness, death: things which are not.
All others, from all things, draw all that's good,
Life, soul, form, spirit, whence they being have;
I, by Love's limbec, am the grave
Of all that's nothing. Oft a flood
Have we two wept, and so
Drown'd the whole world, us two; oft did we grow
To be two chaoses, when we did show
Care to aught else; and often absences
Withdrew our souls, and made us carcasses.
But I am by her death (which word wrongs her)
Of the first nothing the elixir grown;
Were I a man, that I were one
I needs must know; I should prefer,
If I were any beast,
Some ends, some means; yea plants, yea stones detest,
And love; all, all some properties invest;
If I an ordinary nothing were,
As shadow, a light and body must be here.
But I am none; nor will my sun renew.
You lovers, for whose sake the lesser sun
At this time to the Goat is run
To fetch new lust, and give it you,
Enjoy your summer all;
Since she enjoys her long night's festival,
Let me prepare towards her, and let me call
This hour her vigil, and her eve, since this
Both the year's, and the day's deep midnight is.
What is the exact linguistic opposite of the word "violence" if not "respect"? And everybody knows what a large role "respect" plays in the two most important works of moral philosophy of the modern age, Kant's Critique of Practical Reason and Rosmini's Principles of Ethics. Do we need to recall that according to Kant respect is a very special sentiment, because on the one hand it is awareness of our subordination to the absolute authority of the law, and on the other it is awareness of our participation in the absolute value of the law, and therefore it is what makes us recognize our own dignity? Thus, we can say that respect for the law prevents my will from becoming an absolute, and respect for the other person prevents my action from becoming violent. Likewise, do we need to recall the first principle of Rosmini's ethics, which is respect for the order of being?
On August 13, 1960, a portion of the Parisian populace headed for the many Métro stations from which various local trains would take them to what had once been the Champ-de-Mars. It was Prize Day at the Academic Credit Union, the vast institution of public education, and over this solemn ceremony His Excellency the Minister of Improvements of the City of Paris was to preside.
The Academic Credit Union and the age's industrial aims were in perfect harmony: what the previous century called Progress had undergone enormous developments. Monopoly, that ne plus ultra of perfection, held the entire country in its talons; unions were founded, organized, the unexpected results of their proliferation would certainly have amazed our fathers. (p. 3)
The sun was setting behind the hills which bounded the view to the west. The weather was fine. On the other side, over the sea, which to the north-east and east was indistinguishable from the sky, a few tiny clouds reflected the sun's last rays, soon to be extinguished in the shades of the twilight, which lasts for a considerable time in this high latitude of the fifty-fifth degree of the southern hemisphere. (p. 1)
"If I were absolutely free, Uncle," the young man replied, "I'd like to put into practice that definition of happiness I once read somewhere, and which involves four conditions."
"And what, without being too inquisitive, might they be?" asked Quinsonnas.
"Life in the open air," answered Michel, "the love of a woman, detachment from all ambition, and the creation of a new form of beauty."
"Well then!" exclaimed the pianist with a laugh, Michel's already achieved half his program."
"How's that?" asked Uncle Huguenin.
""Life in the open air--he's already been thrown onto the street!" (pp. 162-163)
Without a moment's hesitation Vasquez left the watch room and hurried down the staircase into the quarters of the ground floor.
There was not a second to lose. Already the sound of the boat sheering off from the schooner to bring some of the crew ashore could be heard.
Vasquez seized a couple of revolvers, which he slipped into his belt, crammed a few provisions into a bag, which he threw over his shoulder. He then came out of the quarters and ran rapidly down the slope of the enclosure, to disappear into the darkness undetected. (p. 95)