God can’t live without me – an instant at the most:
If I went out of being, He’d give up the ghost.
~ Angelus Silesius, Cherubinischer Wandersmann I.8
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It’s a shocking aphorism, isn’t it? The sort of thing that would merit the charge of blasphemy, in certain contexts.
And yet it’s true. We know that it’s true, because we just finished celebrating the incarnation of Christ, and we’re about to start into the temptations of Christ and His crucifixion. What those events teach us is that human beings are, for mysterious reasons known only in eternity, beyond value and beyond price in the eyes of God.
No one is more adept at exploring the paradoxes in the love of God than Angelus Silesius. He takes it to both extremes–he writes aphorisms on the nothingness of men in themselves, and aphorisms like the one above, where the well-being of an individual soul is so crucial to God that He would no more suffer its annihilation than suffer His own annihilation.
I’ll be posting a few more of Angelus Silesius’s aphorisms in this vein throughout the following weeks. Look for paradoxes. But also look for truth. The love of God for the world is, after all, a mysterium mysteriorum.