Many / One

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Compiled by JoAnn Kite

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Pseudo-Dionysius, The Complete Works
John Farina, Editor-in-Chief
Complete works of Dionysius the Aeropagite

1 "Each god has his sympathetic representative in the animal, the vegetable, and the mineral world." Proclus (410-485ad), Greek philosopher

2 "To praise this divinely benificent Providence you must turn to all of creation. It is there at the center of everything and everything has it for a destiny. It is there 'before all things and in it all things hold together (Col. 1:17)."

3 “The Transcendent One predefined and brought into being everything that is.”

4 “Let us contemplate the one simple nature of that peaceful unity which joins all things to itself and to each other, preserving them in their distinctiveness and yet linking them together in a universal and unconfused alliance.”

5 "Everything in some way partakes of the providence flowing out of this transcendent Deity which is the originator of all that is. Indeed nothing could exist without some share in the being and source of everything. Even the things which have no life participate in this, for it is the transcendent Deity which is the existence of every being."

6 "He makes our life, disposition, and activity something one and divine….Formed of light, initiates in God's work, we shall be perfected and bring about perfection."

7 "He is the Source and the measure of the ages. He is the reality beneath time and the eternity behind being. He is the time within which things happen. He is being for whatever is. He is coming-to-be amid whatever happens. From Him who Is come eternity, essence and being, come time, genesis, and becoming. He is the being immanent in and underlying the things which are, however they are."

8 “The One may be called the underlying element of all things.”

9 “Providence has neither a beginning nor an end, and is open to all and encompasses all.”

10 "If we are enlightened by the contemplation of and knowledge of the One we are enabled to be unified, to achieve a truly divine oneness and it will never happen that we succumb to that fragmentation…which is the source of hostility between equals."

11 “God penetrates without hindrance through everything.”

12 "The soul has movement – First it moves in a circle, that is, it turns within itself and away from what is outside and there is an inner concentration of its intellectual powers. A sort of fixed revolution causes it to return from the multiplicity of externals, to gather in upon itself and then, in this undispersed condition, to join those who are themselves in a powerful union. From there the revolution brings the soul to the Beautiful and the Good, which is beyond all things, is one and the same, and has neither beginning nor end."

13 "There is a simple self-moving power directing all things to mingle as one; it starts out from the Good, reaches down to the lowliest creation, returns then in due order through all the stages back to the Good, and thus turns from itself and through itself and upon itself and toward itself in an everlasting circle."

14 “As St. Paul said and as true reason has said, the ordered arrangement of the whole visible realm makes known the invisible things of God.”

15 “Nothing possessed of being lies outside the workings of Providence.”

16 “God precontains all opposites in one single, universal cause.”

17 “You will find nothing in the world which is not in the One….Everything owes to the One its individual existence and the process whereby it is perfected and preserved.”

18 “Whatever is, is from the Good, is good and desires the beautiful and the Good.”

19 “Wisdom is the One who renews and makes perfect.”

20 “This transcendently real Godhead is the source of everything. It is the cause which gives being. It is the power holding all things together and the goal embracing all things.”

21 “The supra-divine transcendentally one God dwells indivisibly in every individual.”

22 "This essential Good, by the very fact of its existence, extends goodness into all things. Think of how it is with our sun….by the very fact of its existence it gives light to whatever is able to partake of its light. So it is with the Good. Existing far above the sun, an archetype far superior to its dull image, it sends the rays of its undivided goodness to everything with the capacity to receive it. These rays are responsible for all intelligible and intelligent beings, for every power and every activity….Their longing for the Good makes them what they are and confers on them their well-being. Shaped by what they yearn for, they exemplify goodness and, as the Law of God requires of them, they share with (all) the good gifts which have come their way."

23 "Godhead is granted as a gift to all things. It flows over in shares of goodness to all. And it becomes differentiated in a unified way. It is multiplied and yet remains singular. It is dispensed to all without ceasing to be a unity….God is indivisible multiplicity, the unified overfullness, which produces, perfects, and preserves all unity and all multiplicity….In fact, He is the one God who dwells indivisibly in every individual and who is in Himself undifferentiated unity with no commixture and no multiplication arising out of His presence among the many."

24 "He is all in all, as scripture affirms, and certainly He is to be praised as being for all things the creator and originator, the One who brings them to completion, their preserver, their protector, and their home, the power which returns them to itself, and all this in the one single, irrepressible, and supreme act."

25 "Providence occurs everywhere."

This body of quotes compiled by JoAnn Kite