Centuries of Meditations – First Century 31-32


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31

Yet further, you never enjoy the world aright, till you so love the beauty of enjoying it, that you are covetous and earnest to persuade others to enjoy it. And so perfectly hate the abominable corruption of men in despising it, that you had rather suffer the flames of Hell than willingly be guilty of their error. There is so much blindness and ingratitude and damned folly in it. The world is a mirror of infinite beauty, yet no man sees it. It is a Temple of Majesty, yet no man regards it. It is a region of Light and Peace, did not men disquiet it. It is the Paradise of God. It is more to man since he is fallen than it was before. It is the place of Angels and the Gate of Heaven. When Jacob waked out of his dream, he said “God is here, and I wist it not. How dreadful is this place! This is none other than the House of God, and the Gate of Heaven.”

32

Can any ingratitude be more damned than that which is fed by benefits? Or folly greater than that which bereaveth us of infinite treasures? They despise them merely because they have them: And invent ways to make themselves miserable in the presence of riches. They study a thousand newfangled treasures, which God never made: and then grieve and repine that they be not happy. They dote on their own works, and neglect God’s, which are full of majesty, riches, and wisdom. And having fled away from them because they are solid, divine and true, greedily pursuing tinseled vanities, they walk on in darkness, and will not understand. They do the works of darkness, and delight in the riches of the Prince of Darkness, and follow them till they come into Eternal Darkness. According to that of the psalmist All the foundations of the Earth are out of course.


Thomas Traherne (1637 – September 27, 1674) was an English poet, Anglican cleric, theologian, and religious writer. Traherne’s writings frequently explore the glory of creation and what he saw as his intimate relationship with God. His writing conveys an ardent, almost childlike love of God, and is compared to similar themes in the works of later poets William Blake, Walt Whitman, and Gerard Manley Hopkins. His love for the natural world is frequently expressed in his works.

The work for which Traherne is best known today is the Centuries of Meditations, a collection of short paragraphs in which he reflects on Christian life and ministry, philosophy, happiness, desire and childhood. This was first published in 1908 after having been rediscovered in manuscript ten years earlier. Before its rediscovery this manuscript was said to have been lost for almost two hundred years and is now considered a much loved devotional.

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Thomas Traherne, Centuries of Meditations. Public Domain

About Roland Ledoux

Pastor of Oasis Bible Ministry, an outreach ministry of teaching, encouragement and intercessory prayer from the Holy Bible, the written Word of God and author of the ministry website, For The Love of God. He lives in Delta, Colorado with his beautiful wife of 50+ years and a beautiful yellow lab whom they affectionately call Bella.
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