I was watching a T.V. program, Call the Midwife, tonight and a quote was used that was attributed to Saint Hildegard of Bingen. “God hugs you. You are encircled by the arms of the mystery of God.”
That quote rattled around in my brain for the rest of the show, so much so that at the end of the program I was compelled to find out more about Sister Hildegard’s life. She was a very interesting person.
In Matthew Fox’s Original Blessing – “Hildegard of Bingen, writes Matthew Fox, was one of the “great creation-centered mystics of the West.” This multitalented and prolific abbess of a Benedictine abbey was an influential preacher, healer, scientist, composer, theologian, artist, and poet. She coined the term viriditas, or greening power, connecting it closely with creativity.”
Saint Hildegard was a 12th-century religious leader of the Benedictine faith known for her visions and diverse forms of writing.
Synopsis of her life:
Saint Hildegard was born in 1098 in West Franconia, Germany, into a wealthy clan. As part of the Benedictine faith, she later established her own convent in Rupertsberg, taking on evangelical work as well. Having renowned visions, she was also a poet, composer and science/history writer. Hildegard, who died in Rupertsberg on September 17, 1179, was officially recognized as a saint by the Pope in 2012. http://www.biography.com/people/saint-hildegard-40403
Some of her quotes:
- “The Word is living, being, spirit, all verdant greening, all creativity. This Word manifests itself in every creature.”
- “Glance at the sun. See the moon and the stars. Gaze at the beauty of earth’s greenings.
Now, think. What delight God gives to humankind with all these things. . . .
All nature is at the disposal of humankind. We are to work with it. For without we cannot survive.”
- “The fire has its flame and praises God. The wind blows the flame and praises God.
In the voice, we hear the word which praises God. And the word, when heard, praises God.
So all of creation is a song of praise to God.”
- “With my mouth,’ God says, ‘I kiss my own chosen creation. I uniquely, lovingly, embrace every image I have made out of the earth’s clay. With a fiery spirit, I transform it into a body to serve all the world. “
- “Divinity is aimed at humanity.”
I find admiration for this woman who lived so long ago and yet seemed to be in better tune with God than I am. Hope you can enjoy her words as well.