The Confessions And Letters Of St by St. Augustine
Chapter XXII.--He Prays God that He Would Explain This Most Entangled Enigma.
28. My soul yearns to know this most entangled enigma. Forbear to shut up, O Lord my God, good Father, -- through Christ I beseech Thee, -- forbear to shut up these things, both usual and hidden, from my desire, that it may be hindered from penetrating them; but let them dawn through Thy enlightening mercy, O Lord. Of whom shall I inquire concerning these things? And to whom shall I with more advantage confess my ignorance than to Thee, to whom these my studies, so vehemently kindled towards Thy Scriptures, are not troublesome? Give that which I love; for I do love, and this hast Thou given me. Give, Father, who truly knowest to give good gifts unto Thy children. Give, since I have undertaken to know, and trouble is before me until Thou dost open it. Through Christ, I beseech Thee, in His name, Holy of Holies, let no man interrupt me. For I believed, and therefore do I speak. This is my hope; for this do I live, that I may contemplate the delights of the Lord. Behold, Thou hast made my days old, and they pass away, and in what manner I know not. And we speak as to time and time, times and times, -- |How long is the time since he said this?| |How long the time since he did this?| and, |How long the time since I saw that?| and, |This syllable hath double the time of that single short syllable.| These words we speak, and these we hear; and we are understood, and we understand. They are most manifest and most usual, and the same things again lie hid too deeply, and the discovery of them is new.