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Words of Wisdom

God’s Power Is with Us, We Have Peace with God: Excerpts from the Writings by Hryhorii Skovoroda (vegetarian), Part 2 of 2



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“If you build a house, build it for both parts of your being–body and soul. If you deck and adorn the body, do not forget the heart. There are two kinds of bread, houses, garments– two kinds of everything. All things come in twos so that there are two men in each man, two fathers– the heavenly and the earthly, two worlds–the original and the temporal, and two natures– the divine and the bodily– in all things. If one mixes them together and acknowledges only the visible nature, one falls into home-grown idolatry. This is precisely what the Holy Bible prevents by acting as an arch that transcends all perishability and as a gate that leads our hearts to the faith of the true conception of God, to the hope of divine Nature, and the kingdom of peace and love, the original world. And this is enduring peace; to believe in and recognize the ruling nature and to depend on it as on an invincible city and to think ‘my God, the Lord, lives.’ Then you will say, ‘And my soul lives.’ Without this, how can you depend on perishable nature?”

“Such people should not await peace but should listen to Isaiah: ‘They are troubled and cannot rest. There is no rejoicing for the wicked, says the Lord God.’ Look and see who ascends the mountain of peace: ‘The Lord is my strength and He will make my feet for perfection, and lead me to high places, which will give me victory in His song.’ He acknowledges the Lord and sings before those who do not see Him, and God leads him to the mountain of peace. To deny the Lord is the most tormenting distress and the heart’s death.”

“The kingdom of blessed Nature, although it is hidden, is not undetectable behind the external signs. It stamps its footprints on empty matter like the truest image in the oils of a painting. All matter is but painted mud, muddied paint, and picturesque powder. But blessed Nature is the beginning or principle itself, that is, a beginningless invention or contrivance and the wisest delineation that supports all the visible colors. These fit their imperishable strength and essence as clothes fit the body. David himself calls the appearance of things a garment: ‘All of them shall wax old like a garment....’”

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