Tuesday, November 18, 2014

St. Athanasius on the Psalms

So then, my son, let whoever reads this Book of Psalms take the things in it quite simply as God-inspired; and let each select from it, as from the fruits of a garden, those things of which he sees himself in need. For I think that in the words of this book all human life is covered, with all its states and thoughts, and that nothing further can be found in man. For no matter what you seek, whether it be repentance and confession, or help in trouble and temptation or under persecution, whether you have been set free from plots and snares or, on the contrary, are sad for any reason, or whether, seeing yourself progressing and your enemy cast down, you want to praise and thank and bless the Lord, each of these things the Divine Psalms show you how to do, and in every case the words you want are written down for you, and you can say them as your own.

-from his letter to Marcellinus, On the Interpretation of the Psalms

The rest of which (it's long) you can read here.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Daria - the writings of St Athanasius have always been a favorite of mine.
    I was going through my DO notes, and I came across this one, which, If I may I would like to share with you. It's a reading from the Office Reading Aug 7 by Baldwin of Canterbury, bishop, (19 Nov 1190) which made a strong impression on me, and whose memory we celebrate today.
    "Lord, take away my heart of stone, a heart so bitter and uncircumcised, and give me a new heart, a heart of flesh, a pure heart. You cleanse the heart and love the clean heart. Take possession of my heart and dwell in it, contain it and fill it, you who are higher than the heights of my spirit and closer to me than my innermost self! You are the pattern of all beauty and the seal of all holiness. Set the seal of your likeness upon my heart! In your mercy set your seal upon my heart, God of my heart and the God who is my portion for ever! Amen."

    Keep warm!!!