Theologica Germanica

Chapter 24

How that four Things are needful before a Man can receive divine Truth and be possessed with the Spirit of God.

Moreover there are yet other ways to the lovely life of Christ, besides those we have spoken of: to wit, that God and man should be wholly united, so that it can be said of a truth, that God and man are one. This cometh to Pass on this wise. Where the Truth always reigneth, so that true perfect God and true perfect man are at one, and man so giveth place to God, that God Himself is there and yet the man too, and this same unity worketh continually, and doeth and leaveth undone without any I, and Me, and Mine, and the like; behold, there is Christ, and nowhere else. Now, seeing that here there is true perfect manhood, so there is a perfect perceiving and feeling of pleasure and pain, liking and disliking, sweetness and bitterness, joy and sorrow, and all that can be perceived and felt within and without. And seeing that God is here made man, He is also able to perceive and feel love and hatred, evil and good and the like. As a man who is not God, feeleth and taketh note of all that giveth him pleasure and pain, and it pierceth him to the heart, especially what offendeth him; so is it also when God and man are one, and yet God is the man; there everything is perceived and felt that is contrary to God and man. And since there man becometh nought, and God alone is everything, so is it with that which is contrary to man, and a sorrow to him. And this must hold true of God so long as a bodily and substantial life endureth.

Furthermore, mark ye, that the one Being in whom God and man are united, standeth free of himself and of all things, and whatever is in him is there for God’s sake and not for man’s, or the creature’s. For it is the property of God to be without this and that, and without Self and Me, and without equal or fellow; but it is the nature and property of the creature to seek itself and its own things, and this and that, here and there; and in all that it doeth and leaveth undone its desire is to its own advantage and profit. Now where a creature or a man forsaketh and cometh out of himself and his own things, there God entereth in with His own, that is, with Himself.

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