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Lectures XV THE VALUE OF SAINTLINESS
  For many of the historic aberrations which have been laid to her charge, religion as such, then, isnot to blame. Yet of the charge that over-zealousness or fanaticism is one of her liabilities wecannot wholly acquit her, so I will next make a remark upon that point. But I will preface it by apreliminary remark which connects itself with much that follows. Our survey of the phenomena ofsaintliness has unquestionably produced in your minds an impression of extravagance. Is itnecessary, some of you have asked, as one example after another came before us, to be quite sofantastically good as that? We who have no vocation for the extremer ranges of sanctity will surelybe let off at the last day if our humility, asceticism, and devoutness prove of a less convulsive sort.

This practically amounts to saying that much that it is legitimate to admire in this field neednevertheless not be imitated, and that religious phenomena, like all other human phenomena, aresubject to the law of the golden mean. Political reformers accomplish their successive tasks in thehistory of nations by being blind for the time to other causes. Great schools of art work out theeffects which it is their mission to reveal, at the cost of a one-sidedness for which other schoolsmust make amends. We accept a John Howard, a Mazzini, a Botticelli, a Michael Angelo, with akind of indulgence. We are glad they existed to show us that way, but we are glad there are also other ways of seeing and taking life. So of many of the saints whom we have looked at. We areproud of a human nature that could be so passionately extreme, but we shrink from advising othersto follow the example. The conduct we blame ourselves for not following lies nearer to the middleline of human effort. It is less dependent on particular beliefs and doctrines. It is such as wearswell in different ages, such as under different skies all judges are able to commend.

The fruits of religion, in other words, are, like all human products, liable to corruption by excess.

Common sense must judge them. It need not blame the votary; but it may be able to praise himonly conditionally, as one who acts faithfully according to his lights. He shows us heroism in oneway, but the unconditionally good way is that for which no indulgence need be asked. We find thaterror by excess is exemplified by every saintly virtue. Excess, in human faculties, means usuallyone-sidedness or want of balance; for it is hard to imagine an essential faculty too strong, if onlyother faculties equally strong be there to cooperate with it in action. Strong affections need a strongwill; strong active powers need a strong intellect; strong intellect needs strong sympathies, to keeplife steady. If the balance exist, no one faculty can possibly be too strong--we only get the strongerall-round character. In the life of saints, technically so called, the spiritual faculties are strong, butwhat gives the impression of extravagance proves usually on examination to be a relativedeficiency of intellect. Spiritual excitement takes pathological forms whenever other interests aretoo few and the intellect too narrow. We find this exemplified by all the saintly attributes in turn-devoutlove of God, purity, charity, asceticism, all may lead astray. I will run over these virtues insuccession.

First of all let us take Devoutness. When unbalanced, one of its vices is called Fanaticism.

Fanaticism (when not a mere expression of ecclesiastical ambition) is only loyalty carried to aconvulsive extreme. When an intensely loyal and narrow mind is once grasped by the feeling that acertain superhuman person is worthy of its exclusive devotion, one of the first things that happensis that it idealizes the devotion itself. To adequately realize the merits of the idol gets to beconsidered the one great merit of the worshiper; and the sacrifices and servilities by which savagetribesmen have from time immemorial exhibited their faithfulness to chieftains are now outbid infavor of the deity. Vocabularies are exhausted and languages altered in the attempt to praise himenough; death is looked on as gain if it attract his grateful notice; and the personal attitude of beinghis devotee becomes what one might almost call a new and exalted kind of professional specialtywithin the tribe.[199] The legends that gather round the lives of holy persons are fruits of thisimpulse to celebrate and glorify. The Buddha[200] and Mohammed[201] and their companionsand many Christian saints are incrusted with a heavy jewelry of anecdotes which are meant to behonorific, but are simply abgeschmackt and silly, and form a touching expression of man'smisguided propensity to praise.

[199] Christian saints have had their specialties of devotion, Saint Francis to Christ's wounds;Saint Anthony of Padua to Christ's childhood; Saint Bernard to his humanity; Saint Teresa to SaintJoseph, etc. The Shi-ite Mohammedans venerate Ali, the Prophet's son-in-law, instead of Abubekr,his brother-in-law. Vambery describes a dervish whom he met in Persia, "who had solemnlyvowed, thirty years before, that he would never employ his organs of speech otherwise but inuttering, everlastingly, the name of his favorite, Ali, Ali. He thus wished to signify to the worldthat he was the most devoted partisan of that Ali who had been dead a thousand years. In his own home, speaking with his wife, children, and friends, no other word but 'Ali!' ever passed his lips. Ifhe wanted food or drink or anything else, he expressed his wants still by repeating 'Ali!' Beggingor buying at the bazaar, it was always 'Ali!' Treated ill or generously, he would still harp on hismonotonous 'Ali!' Latterly his zeal assumed such tremendous proportions that, like a madman, hewould race, the whole day, up and down the streets of the town, throwing his stick high up into theair, and shriek our, all the while, at the top of his voice, 'Ali!' This dervish was venerated byeverybody as a saint, and received everywhere with the greatest distinction." Arminius Vambery,his Life and Adventures, written by Himself, London, 1889, p. 69. On the anniversary of the deathof Hussein, Ali's son, the Shi-ite Moslems still make the air resound with cries of his name andAli's.

[200] Compare H. C. Warren: Buddhism in Translation, Cambridge, U.S., 1898, passim.

[201] Compare J. L. Merrick: The Life and Religion of Mohammed, as contained in the Sheeahtraditions of the Hyat-ul-Kuloob, Boston. 1850, passim.

An immediate consequence of this condition of mind is jealousy for the deity's honor. How canthe devotee show his loyalty better than by sensitiveness in this regard? The slightest affront orneglect must be resented, the deity's enemies must be put to shame. In exceedingly narrow mindsand active wills, such a care may become an engrossing preoccupation; and crusades have beenpreached and massacres instigated for no other reason than to remove a fancied slight upon theGod. Theologies representing the gods as mindful of their glory, and churches with imperialisticpolicies, have conspired to fan this temper to a glow, so that intolerance and persecution haveto be vices associated by of inseparably with the saintly mind. They are unque(come) stionablyitsbesettingsins.Thesai(some) ntlytem(us) per is a moral temper, and a moral temper hasoften to be cruel. It is a partisan temper, and that is cruel. Between his own and Jehovah's enemiesa David knows no difference; a Catherine of Siena, panting to stop the warfare among Christianswhich was the scandal of her epoch, can think of no better method of union among them than acrusade to massacre the Turks; Luther finds no word of protest or regret over the atrocious tortureswith which the Anabaptist leaders were put to death; and a Cromwell praises the Lord fordelivering his enemies into his hands for "execution." Politics come in in all such cases; but pietyfinds the partnership not quite unnatural. So, when "freethinkers" tell us that religion andfanaticism are twins, we cannot make an unqualified denial of the charge.

Fanaticism must then be inscribed on the wrong side of religion's account, so long as thereligious person's intellect is on the stage which the despotic kind of God satisfies. But as soon asthe God is represented as less intent on his own honor and glory, it ceases to be a danger.

Fanaticism is found only where the character is masterful and aggressive. In gentle characters,where devoutness is intense and the intellect feeble, we have an imaginative absorption in the loveof God to the exclusion of all practical human interests, which, though innocent enough, is tooone-sided to be admirable. A mind too narrow has room but for one kind of affection. When thelove of God takes possession of such a mind, it expels all human loves and human uses. There isno English name for such a sweet excess of devotion, so I will refer to it as a theopathic condition.

The blessed Margaret Mary Alacoque may serve as an example.

"To be loved here upon the earth," her recent biographer exclaims: "to be loved by a noble,elevated, distinguished being; to be loved with fidelity, with devotion--what enchantment! But tobe loved by God! and loved by him to distraction [aime jusqu'a la folie]!--Margaret melted awaywith love at the thought of such a thing. Like Saint Philip of Neri in former times, or like SaintFrancis Xavier, she said to God: 'Hold back, O my God, these torrents which overwhelm me, orelse enlarge my capacity for their reception."[202]

[202] Bougaud: Hist. de la bienheureuse Marguerite Marie, Paris, 1894, p. 145.

The most signal proofs of God's love which Margaret Mary received were her hallucinations ofsight, touch, and hearing, and the most signal in turn of these were the revelations of Christ'ssacred heart, "surrounded with rays more brilliant than the Sun, and transparent like a crystal. Thewound which he received on the cross visibly appeared upon it. There was a crown of thorns roundabout this divine Heart, and a cross above it." At the same time Christ's voice told her that, unablelonger to contain the flames of his love for mankind, he had chosen her by a miracle to spread theknowledge of them. He thereupon took out her mortal heart, placed it inside of his own andinflamed it, and then replaced it in her breast, adding: "Hitherto thou hast taken the name of myslave, hereafter thou shalt be called the well-beloved disciple of my Sacred Heart."In a later vision the Saviour revealed to her in detail the "great design" which he wished toestablish through her instrumentality. "I ask of thee to bring it about that every first Friday after theweek of holy Sacrament shall be made into a special holy day for honoring my Heart by a generalcommunion and by services intended to make honorable amends for the indignities which it hasreceived. And I promise thee that my Heart will dilate to shed with abundance the influences of itslove upon all those who pay to it these honors, or who bring it about that others do the same.""This revelation," says Mgr. Bougaud, "is unquestionably the most important of all therevelations which have illumined the Church since that of the Incarnation and of the Lord's Supper.

. . . After the Eucharist, the supreme effort of the Sacred Heart."[203] Well, what were its goodfruits for Margaret Mary's life? Apparently little else but sufferings and prayers and absences ofmind and swoons and ecstasies. She became increasingly useless about the convent, her absorptionin Christ's love-"which grew upon her daily, rendering her more and more incapable of attending to externalduties. They tried her in the infirmary, but without much success, although her kindness, zeal, anddevotion were without bounds, and her charity rose to acts of such a heroism that our readerswould not bear the recital of them. They tried her in the kitchen, but were forced to give it up ashopeless--everything dropped out of her hands. The admirable humility with which she madeamends for her clumsiness could not prevent this from being prejudicial to the order and regularitywhich must always reign in a community. They put her in the school, where the little girlscherished her, and cut pieces out of her clothes [for relics] as if she were already a saint, but whereshe was too absorbed inwardly to pay the necessary attention. Poor dear sister, even less after hervisions than before them was she a denizen of earth, and they had to leave her in her heaven."[204]

[203] Bougaud: Hist. de la bienheureuse Marguerite Marie, Paris, 1894, pp. 365, 241.

[204] Bougaud: Op. cit., p. 267.

Poor dear sister, indeed! Amiable and good, but so feeble of intellectual outlook that it would betoo much to ask of us, with our Protestant and modern education, to feel anything but indulgentpity for the kind of saintship which she embodies. A lower example still of theopathic saintliness isthat of Saint Gertrude, a Benedictine nun of the thirteenth century, whose "Revelations," a well-known mystical authority, consist mainly of proofs of Christ's partiality for her undeservingperson. Assurances of his love, intimacies and caresses and compliments of the most absurd andpuerile sort, addressed by Christ to Gertrude as an individual, form the tissue of this paltry-mindedrecital.[205] In reading such a narrative, we realize the gap between the thirteenth and thetwentieth century, and we feel that saintliness of character may yield almost absolutely worthlessfruits if it be associated with such inferior intellectual sympathies. What with science, idealism,and democracy, our own imagination has grown to need a God of an entirely differenttemperament from that Being interested exclusively in dealing out personal favors, with whom ourancestors were so contented. Smitten as we are with the vision of social righteousness, a Godindifferent to everything but adulation, and full of partiality for his individual favorites, lacks anessential element of largeness; and even the best professional sainthood of former centuries, pentin as it is to such a conception, seems to us curiously shallow and unedifying.

[205] Examples: "Suffering from a headache, she sought, for the glory of God, to relieve herselfby holding certain odoriferous substances in her mouth, when the Lord appeared to her to lean overtowards her lovingly, and to find comfort Himself in these odors. After having gently breathedthem in, He arose, and said with a gratified air to the Saints, as if contented with what He haddone: 'see the new present which my betrothed has given Me!'

"One day, at chapel, she heard supernaturally sung the words 'Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus.' Theson of God leaning towards her like a sweet lover, and giving to her soul the softest kiss, said toher at the second Sanctus: 'In this Sanctus addressed to my person, receive with this kiss all thesanctity of my divinity and of my humanity, and let it be to thee a sufficient preparation forapproaching the communion table.' And the next following Sunday, while she was thanking Godfor this favor, behold the Son of God, more beauteous than thousands of angels, takes her in Hisarms as if He were proud of her and presents her to God the Father, in that perfection of sanctitywith which He had dowered her. And the Father took such delight in this soul thus presented byHis only son, that, as if unable longer to restrain Himself, He gave her, and the Holy Ghost gaveher also, the sanctity attributed to each by His own Sanctus--and thus she remained endowed withthe plenary fullness of the blessing of Sanctity, bestowed on her by Omnipotence, by Wisdom, andby Love." Revelations de Sainte Gertrude, Paris, 1898, i. 44, 186.

Take Saint Teresa, for example, one of the ablest women, in many respects, of whose life wehave the record. She had a powerful intellect of the practical order. She wrote admirabledescriptive psychology, possessed a will equal to any emergency, great talent for politics andbusiness, a buoyant disposition, and a first-rate literary style. She was tenaciously aspiring, and puther whole life at the service of her religious ideals. Yet so paltry were these, according to ourpresent way of thinking, that (although I know that others have been moved differently) I confess that my only feeling in reading her has been pity that so much vitality of soul should have foundsuch poor employment.

In spite of the sufferings which she endured, there is a curious flavor of superficiality about hergenius. A Birmingham anthropologist, Dr. Jordan, has divided the human race into two types,whom he calls "shrews" and "nonshrews" respectively.[206] The shrew-type is defined aspossessing an "active unimpassioned temperament." In other words, shrews are the "motors,"rather than the "sensories,"[207] and their expressions are as a rule more energetic than the feelingswhich appear to prompt them. Saint Teresa, paradoxical as such a judgment may sound, was atypical shrew, in this sense of the term. The bustle of her style, as well as of her life, proves it. Notonly must she receive unheard-of personal favors and spiritual graces from her Saviour, but shemust immediately write about them and exploiter them professionally, and use her expertness togive instruction to those less privileged. Her voluble egotism; her sense, not of radical bad being,as the really contrite have it, but of her "faults" and "imperfections" in the plural; her stereotypedhumility and return upon herself, as covered with "confusion" at each new manifestation of God'ssingular partiality for a person so unworthy, are typical of shrewdom: a paramountly feeling naturewould be objectively lost in gratitude, and silent. She had some public instincts, it is true; she hatedthe Lutherans, and longed for the church's triumph over them; but in the main her idea of religionseems to have been that of an endless amatory flirtation--if one may say so without irreverence-betweenthe devotee and the deity; and apart from helping younger nuns to go in this direction bythe inspiration of her example and instruction, there is absolutely no human use in her, or sign ofany general human interest. Yet the spirit of her age, far from rebuking her, exalted her assuperhuman.

[206] Furneaux Jordan: Character in Birth and Parentage, first edition. Later editions change thenomenclature.

[207] As to this distinction, see the admirably practical account in J. M. Baldwin's little book,The Story of the Mind, 1898.

We have to pass a similar judgment on the whole notion of saintship based on merits. Any Godwho, on the one hand, can care to keep a pedantically minute account of individual shortcomings,and on the other can feel such partialities, and load particular creatures with such insipid marks offavor, is too small-minded a God for our credence. When Luther, in his immense manly way,swept off by a stroke of his hand the very notion of a debit and credit account kept with individualsby the Almighty, he stretched the soul's imagination and saved theology from puerility. So muchfor mere devotion, divorced from the intellectual conceptions which might guide it towardsbearing useful human fruit.

The next saintly virtue in which we find excess is Purity. In theopathic characters, like thosewhom we have just considered, the love of God must not be mixed with any other love. Father andmother, sisters, brothers, and friends are felt as interfering distractions; for sensitiveness andnarrowness, when they occur together, as they often do, require above all things a simplified worldto dwell in. Variety and confusion are too much for their powers of comfortable adaptation. Butwhereas your aggressive pietist reaches his unity objectively, by forcibly stamping disorder anddivergence out, your retiring pietist reaches his subjectively, leaving disorder in the world at large, but making a smaller world in which he dwells himself and from which he eliminates it altogether.

Thus, alongside of the church militant with its prisons, dragonnades, and inquisition methods, wehave the church fugient, as one might call it, with its hermitages, monasteries, and sectarianorganizations, both churches pursuing the same object--to unify the life,[208] and simplify thespectacle presented to the soul. A mind extremely sensitive to inner discords will drop one externalrelation after another, as interfering with the absorption of consciousness in spiritual things.

Amusements must go first, then conventional "society," then business, then family duties, until atlast seclusion, with a subdivision of the day into hours for stated religious acts, is the only thingthat can be borne. The lives of saints are a history of successive renunciations of complication, oneform of contact with the outer life being dropped after another, to save the purity of inner tone.

[209] "Is it not better," a young sister asks her Superior, "that I should not speak at all during thehour of recreation, so as not to run the risk, by speaking, of falling into some sin of which I mightnot be conscious?"[210] If the life remains a social one at all, those who take part in it must followone identical rule.

Embosomed in this monotony, the zealot for purity feels clean and free once more. Theminuteness of uniformity maintained in certain sectarian communities, whether monastic or not, issomething almost inconceivable to a man of the world. Costume, phraseology, hours, and habitsare absolutely stereotyped, and there is no doubt that some persons are so made as to find in thisstability an incomparable kind of mental rest.

[208] On this subject I refer to the work of M. Murisier (Les Maladies du sentiment Religieux,Paris, 1901), who makes inner unification the mainspring of the whole religious life. But ALLstrongly ideal interests, religious or irreligious, unify the mind and tend to subordinate everythingto themselves. One would infer from M. Murisier's pages that this formal condition was peculiarlycharacteristic of religion, and that one might in comparison almost neglect material content, instudying the latter. I trust that the present work will convince the reader that religion has plenty ofmaterial content which is characteristic and which is more important by far than any generalpsychological form. In spite of this criticism, I find M. Murisier's book highly instructive.

[209] Example: "At the first beginning of the Servitor's [Suso's] interior life, after he had purifiedhis soul properly by confession, he marked out for himself, in thought, three circles, within whichhe shut himself up, as in a spiritual intrenchment. The first circle was his cell, his chapel, and thechoir. When he was within this circle, he seemed to himself in complete security. The secondcircle was the whole monastery as far as the outer gate. The third and outermost circle was the gateitself, and here it was necessary for him to stand well upon his guard. When he went outside thesecircles, it seemed to him that he was in the plight of some wild animal which is outside its hole,and surrounded by the hunt, and therefore in need of all its cunning and watchfulness." The Life ofthe Blessed Henry Suso, by Himself, translated by Knox, London, 1865, p. 168.

[210] Vie des premieres Religieuses Dominicaines de la Congregation de St. Dominique, aNancy; Nancy, 1896, p. 129.

We have no time to multiply examples, so I will let the case of Saint Louis of Gonzaga serve as atype of excess in purification.

I think you will agree that this youth carried the elimination of the external and discordant to apoint which we cannot unreservedly admire. At the age of ten, his biographer says:-"The inspiration came to him to consecrate to the Mother of God his own virginity--that being toher the most agreeable of possible presents. Without delay, then, and with all the fervor there wasin him, joyous of heart, and burning with love, he made his vow of perpetual chastity. Maryaccepted the offering of his innocent heart, and obtained for him from God, as a recompense, theextraordinary grace of never feeling during his entire life the slightest touch of temptation againstthe virtue of purity. This was an altogether exceptional favor, rarely accorded even to Saintsthemselves, and all the more marvelous in that Louis dwelt always in courts and among greatfolks, where danger and opportunity are so unusually frequent. It is true that Louis from his earliestchildhood had shown a natural repugnance for whatever might be impure or unvirginal, and evenfor relations of any sort whatever between persons of opposite sex. But this made it all the moresurprising that he should, especially since this vow, feel it necessary to have recourse to such anumber of expedients for protecting against even the shadow of danger the virginity which he hadthus consecrated. One might suppose that if any one could have contented himself with theordinary precautions, prescribed for all Christians, it would assuredly have been he. But no! In theuse of preservatives and means of defense, in flight from the most insignificant occasions, fromevery possibility of peril, just as in the mortification of his flesh, he went farther than the majorityof saints. He, who by an extraordinary protection of God's grace was never tempted, measured allhis steps as if he were threatened on every side by particular dangers. Thenceforward he neverraised his eyes, either when walking in the streets, or when in society. Not only did he avoid allbusiness with females even more scrupulously than before, but he renounced all conversation andevery kind of social recreation with them, although his father tried to make him take part; and hecommenced only too early to deliver his innocent body to austerities of every kind."[211]

[211] Meschler's Life of Saint Louis of Gonzaga, French translation by Lebrequier, 1891, p. 40.

At the age of twelve, we read of this young man that "if by chance his mother sent one of hermaids of honor to him with a message, he never allowed her to come in, but listened to her throughthe barely opened door, and dismissed her immediately. He did not like to be alone with his ownmother, whether at table or in conversation; and when the rest of the company withdrew, he soughtalso a pretext for retiring. . . . Several great ladies, relatives of his, he avoided learning to knoweven by sight; and he made a sort of treaty with his father, engaging promptly and readily toaccede to all his wishes, if he might only be excused from all visits to ladies." [212]

[212] Ibid., p. 71.

When he was seventeen years old Louis joined the Jesuit order,[213] against his father'spassionate entreaties, for he was heir of a princely house; and when a year later the father died, hetook the loss as a "particular attention" to himself on God's part, and wrote letters of stilted goodadvice, as from a spiritual superior, to his grieving mother. He soon became so good a monk that ifany one asked him the number of his brothers and sisters, he had to reflect and count them overbefore replying. A Father asked him one day if he were never troubled by the thought of hisfamily, to which, "I never think of them except when praying for them," was his only answer.

Never was he seen to hold in his hand a flower or anything perfumed, that he might take pleasurein it. On the contrary, in the hospital, he used to seek for whatever was most disgusting, andeagerly snatch the bandages of ulcers, etc., from the hands of his companions. He avoided worldlytalk, and immediately tried to turn every conversation on to pious subjects, or else he remainedsilent. He systematically refused to notice his surroundings. Being ordered one day to bring a bookfrom the rector's seat in the refectory, he had to ask where the rector sat, for in the three months hehad eaten bread there, so carefully did he guard his eyes that he had not noticed the place. One day,during recess, having looked by chance on one of his companions, he reproached himself as for agrave sin against modesty. He cultivated silence, as preserving from sins of the tongue; and hisgreatest penance was the limit which his superiors set to his bodily penances. He sought after falseaccusations and unjust reprimands as opportunities of humility; and such was his obedience that,when a room-mate, having no more paper, asked him for a sheet, he did not feel free to give it tohim without first obtaining the permission of the superior, who, as such, stood in the place of God,and transmitted his orders.

[213] In his boyish note-book he praises the monastic life for its freedom from sin, and for theimperishable treasures, which it enables us to store up, "of merit in God's eyes which makes ofHim our debtor for all Eternity." Loc. cit., p. 62.

I can find no other sorts of fruit than these of Louis's saintship. He died in 1591, in his twenty-ninth year, and is known in the Church as the patron of all young people. On his festival, the altarin the chapel devoted to him in a certain church in Rome "is embosomed in flowers, arranged withexquisite taste; and a pile of letters may be seen at its foot, written to the Saint by young men andwomen, and directed to 'Paradiso.' They are supposed to be burnt unread except by San Luigi, whomust find singular petitions in these pretty little missives, tied up now with a green ribbon,expressive of hope, now with a red one, emblematic of love," etc.[214]

[214] Mademoiselle Mori, a novel quoted in Hare's Walks in Rome, 1900, i. 55.

I cannot resist the temptation to quote from Starbuck's book, p. 388, another case of purificationby elimination. It runs as follows:-"The signs of abnormality which sanctified persons show are of frequent occurrence. They getout of tune with other people; often they will have nothing to do with churches, which they regardas worldly; they become hypercritical towards others; they grow careless of their social, political,and financial obligations. As an instance of this type may be mentioned a woman of sixty-eight ofwhom the writer made a special study. She had been a member of one of the most active andprogressive churches in a busy part of a large city. Her pastor described her as having reached thecensorious stage. She had grown more and more out of sympathy with the church; her connectionwith it finally consisted simply in attendance at prayer-meeting, at which her only message wasthat of reproof and condemnation of the others for living on a low plane. At last she withdrew fromfellowship with any church. The writer found her living alone in a little room on the top story of acheap boarding-house quite out of touch with all human relations, but apparently happy in theenjoyment of her spiritual blessings. Her time occupied in writing booklets on sanctification--pageafter(own) pageofdreamyrhapsody.Shepro(was) ved to be one of a small group of persons who claim that entire salvation  involves three steps instead of two; not only must there beconversion and sanctification, but a third, which they call 'crucifixion' or 'perfect redemption,' andwhich seems to bear the same relation to sanctification that this bears to conversion. She relatedhow the Spirit had said to her, 'Stop going to church. Stop going to holiness meetings. Go to yourown room and I will teach you.' She professes to care nothing for colleges, or preachers, orchurches, but only cares to listen to what God says to her. Her description of her experienceseemed entirely consistent; she is happy and contented, and her life is entirely satisfactory toherself. While listening to her own story, one was tempted to forget that it was from the life of aperson who could not live by it in conjunction with her fellows."Our final judgment of the worth of such a life as this will depend l............
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