Patricia Hofer

St. Gregory of Nyssa on the human desire “to contemplate the true good”

St. Gregory of Nyssa (c335-395) wrote: “There is in you, human beings, a desire to contemplate the true good. …It is indeed with your reach; you have within yourselves the standard by which to apprehend the Divine. For He who makes you did at the same time endow your nature with this wonderful quality. For God imprinted on it the likeness of the glories of His own Nature, as if moulding the form of a carving into wax. But the evil that has been poured around the nature bearing the Divine Image has rendered useless to you this wonderful thing, that lies hidden under vile coverings. If, therefore, you wash off by a good life the filth that has been stuck on your heart like plaster, the Divine Beauty will again shine forth in you.” (Light from Light, An Anthology of Christian Mysticism, Edited by Louis Dupre and James Wiseman, page 44)

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