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Chapter 82

The Son speaks: ”Like a bride, you should have a lovely mouth, clean ears, modest eyes, and a steadfast heart. A soul, too, should have the same qualities. Her mouth is her clean mind where nothing but what pleases me may enter. May her mouth, that is, her mind be lovely with the odor of good thoughts from the attentive recollection of my passion. May her mind also be like a mouth that is red with the fervor of divine charity so as to put what it understands into effect. As sure as no one longs to kiss a colorless mouth, neither does a soul please me at all unless she performs good deeds of her own good will alone. Like a mouth, her mind should have two lips, that is, these two affections: a longing for heavenly things, and scorn for all earthly things. Her lower palate should be the fear of death that separates the soul from the body and fear of the state in which she will then find herself. Her upper palate should be a fear of the terrible judgment.

The soul's tongue should keep itself between these two palates. What is the soul's tongue if not the frequent consideration of my mercy? Therefore, when you meditate on my mercy and how I created and redeemed you, how patient I am with you, consider also what a strict judge I am and how I do not leave anything unpunished, and consider, too, how uncertain the hour of death is. The soul's eyes should be as innocent as those of a dove that sees a hawk close by the waters. In other words, may your thoughts be ever on my love and my sufferings, and on the deeds and words of my chosen ones. With their help you will understand how the devil is capable of deceiving you, and so you never can be sure of yourself. Your ears should be clean so that you do not wish to hear vulgar and ludicrous things. Your heart should be steadfast so that you do not fear death by keeping the faith nor blush at the world's reproaches nor worry about the loss of your body for the sake of me, your God.”

Christ speaks to the bride and tells her that she should love him as a good servant loves his master, as a good son loves his father, and as a faithful wife loves her husband from whom she ought never to be separated. He gives a spiritual and profitable explanation of all this.

      1. Chapter 83

The Son speaks: ”I love you as a good master loves his servant, as a father his son, as a husband his wife. The master says to his servant: 'I shall give you clothing, proper food, and a moderate amount of work. The father says to his son: 'All I have is yours. The husband says to his wife: 'Your rest is my rest, your comfort is my comfort.'

How will these three respond to so much love? The servant, if he is good, will certainly say to his master: 'My condition is that of a servant, so I would rather serve you than anyone else.' The son will say to his father: 'I get every good thing from you, so I do not want to be separated from you.' The wife will say to her husband: 'I am supported by your work; I have the warmth of your breast and the sweetness of your words, so I would rather die than be separated from you.'

I, God, am the husband. The soul is indeed my bride, and she should be comforted in my rest and refreshed with the food of my divinity. For her part, she ought to bear every torment rather than be separated from me, for she can receive neither comfort nor honor apart from me. Two things pertain to matrimony: first, the means a married couple needs for their support; second, a son to receive their inheritance - they may also have a servant to attend to them - for it is written that Abraham was troubled about not having a son.
The soul has her means of support when she is full of virtue. She also has a son when she possesses wise discretion in order to be able to discern between virtues and vices, and when her discernment is according to God. She also has a servant, that is, her physical emotions. This servant does not live according to the concupiscence of the flesh but for the benefit of the body and the perfection of the soul.
I love you, thus, as a husband loves his wife, for your rest is my rest. It belongs to you, therefore, to bear freely any hardship rather than provoke me to anger. I love you, too, as a father loves his son, for I have given you discretion and free will. I love you, moreover, as a master loves his servant, and I have commanded you to maintain a moderate amount of necessary goods and a reasonable workload. But that servant, the body, is so foolish that he would rather serve the devil than me, and the devil never gives him rest from the cares of the world.”

Christ speaks to the bride and describes three men who fell because of women. The first is compared to a crowned donkey. The second had the heart of a hare, and the third is compared to a basilisk. Woman must therefore always be subject to man.

      1. Chapter 84

The Son speaks: ”Three men are said to have fallen because of women. The first was a king whose lover struck him on the face when he did not smile at her. This is because he was a fool and could not restrain her nor cared about his own honor. He was like a donkey wearing a crown - a donkey because of his foolishness, a crown because of his rank. The second was Samson who, though the strongest of men, was beaten by a woman. He had the heart of a hare, since he was unable to master a single woman. The third was Solomon who was like a basilisk that kills by a glance but is killed by a mirror. Thus, the wisdom of Solomon exceeded all the rest, yet a woman's looks slew him. Woman must therefore be subject to man.”



Christ speaks to the bride and tells her that two pages of a book are opened before him. Mercy is written three times on one page, justice on the other. He warns her to be converted to mercy while she still has time so that she will not afterward be punished by justice.




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