THE VISION OF MARY: A HOMILY BY JOHN THE SON OF ZEBEDEE
[Brit. Mus. MS. Orient. No. 605, Fol. 94a]
[Fol. 94a] IN THENAME OF THE FATHER AND OF THE SON AND OF THE HOLY GHOST, ONE GOD. Christ, my God, help me! And, O our Lady the Virgin MARY, do thou entreat Him to help me in His mercy.
A HOMILY WHICH THE HOLY AND BLESSED JOHN THE SON OF ZEBEDEE COMPOSED ON THE MAJESTY AND GLORY OF THE HOLY VIRGIN. MAY HER PRAYER AND BLESSING BE WITH HER SERVANT.
SAITH John the son of Zebedee whom our Lord loved greatly for his purity, and our LadyMARY loved him exceedingly even as He loved her Son :-
She answered and said unto John, I Hearken and I will tell thee an astounding and hidden mystery, which can-not be known by the heart (or mind) and cannot be comprehended by the understanding, which my Lord and my Son, Jesus Christ my beloved one and my Re-deemer, revealed unto me at Golgotha, at the time of the sixth hour, which is noon, on the day of the Eve of the Sabbath (i.e. Saturday). A shining cloud came and bore me along and took me up into the third heaven, and it set me down at the boundary of the earth, and my Son appeared unto me. And He said unto me, " Peace be unto thee, O MARY,My mother, thou dwell-ing-place of God. Peace be unto thee, O virgin, who gavest birth to Me. From thy womb hath gone forth the river of peace. I will reveal unto thee an astounding wonder."
And I made answer to Him and said unto Hirn,"My Lord and my God ! O my Son and my King, let it be asThou wishest." And He answered and said unto me, " Look down on the earth below." And I looked and saw, and the whole world was like a thing of nothing, and the children of men were as naught, even as David the Prophet sad, " Alan is a thing of naught, his days are like unto the shadow that passeth away " (Psalin cxliv, 4), and again he saith, " The days of man are like unto grass. He flourisheth like a flower of the field. A breath goeth forth from him, and he existeth no longer, and his place can no more be known " (Psalm ciii, I5, I6). And I asked my beloved Son and said unto Him, " Doth not man boast himself in vain, seeing that he perisheth in this fashion ? " And He answered and said unto me, " Hast thou not heard what David the Pro-phet saith, ' Why doth the mighty man boast himself in his iniquity, and work iniquity all the day long ? ' (Psalms xxxviii, I2 ; xciv, 4). And again he saith, 'They perish and are scattered like the smoke' (Psalm xxxvii, 20). Even so is the life of the children of men " [Fol. 94b]. And I answered and said unto Him, " I desire to see what happeneth to the souls of the righteous when they depart from their bodies"; and He said unto me," Be patient for a space and I will show thee."
And then I saw fourteen shining angels with the wood of the Cross in their hands, and on their breasts was the sign of the Cross of the Son of God, and in their hands were golden censers. And they came down to meet the soul of a righteous man, and angels of light came and angels of darkness ; when they did not find that which was their portion they left that soul. And they went out and surrounded it, and the angels crowned it with light, and they shook that soul thrice that they might carry it away from its body. And they said unto it, " Come, come forth, thou soul, in peace. Rejoice thou, O pure and bright soul, and be glad." And they made it to rejoice with fans (?), and they admonished that soul and said unto it, " Rejoice thou, O pure and bright soul, and be glad, for behold, we all rejoice in thee, and thy Creator rejoiceth in thee. Get thee on, let us go into our city. Hast thou not heard what David saith, ' I rejoiced, for they said unto me, Let us go into the House of God ? Our feet stand in thy courts, Jerusa-lem. Jerusalem is built like a city ' (Psalm cxxii, I-3). And again he saith,'One day in thy courts,O Jerusalem, is better than a thousand [elsewhere] ' (Psalm 1xxxiv, 2), O pure, bright soul, for thou hast conquered this fleeting world, and hast reduced to shame the Devil and all his evil hosts. And the angel also rejoiceth with it because thereof, saying, ' On the First Day thou hast given me rest.' Remember what David the Prophet saith, 'Tell me how few shall be my days. Drive me not away in the half of my year[s].
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Thy years are from generation to generation' (Psalms xxxix, 4; Cii, 24). And remember thou what Paul saith, ' The dwelling in this world. is a fleeting thing. And those who eat shall be like those who eat not, and those who drink like those who drink not, and those who rejoice like those who re-joice not, and those who marry like those who marry not, and those who are worthy like those who are un-worthy, for fleeting is the dwelling in this fleeting world' (compare 1 Corinthians vii, 29, 31). And all this do thou remember. Thou hast rejected and thou [Fol. 95a] hast hated this world, which groweth old and de-cayeth. And thou hast treated it like an old rag, and like dung, and like an enemyof thine, and thou hast loved Him Whose joy abideth for ever and ever. Come, let us go to thy Creator, and let thy soul rejoice within thee."
And the angel' came forthwith to that soul, and they examined it, and they found not their portion therein ' and they left it and departed. And the angels came down with shining crowns, and they were carrying neck-laces of gold, and fillets (?) of silver and jacinth, and,shining ornaments, and the light thereof was seven times brighter than that of the sun. And Christ and the Paraclete Holy Ghost descended to the fifth heaven, and I went to salute that soul, and the angels of light uttered cries of joy, and I uttered cries of joy with them. I likened the matter to what David the Prophet saith, " Clap your hands, all ye peoples, and sing unto God with a voice of gladness " (Psalm x1vii, i). And again he saith, " Precious before God is the death of the righteous man" (Psalm cxvi, I5). And they brought that soul before God, and He said unto it, " Rejoice and be glad, O soul, for behold, this is God thy Creator; worship thou and adore." And that soul bowed down before God its Creator. And that angel who had pro-tected it continually said unto God its Creator,"I have aforetime told Thee concerning the deeds of that soul ; reward it according to Thy righteousness." And the righteous judge answered and said unto that soul, " Peace be unto thee, O soul, pure, and bright, and happy as when I created thee aforetime. Now thou comest to Me like the flower of the rose, and thou per-fumest Me with the incense of the Garden (i.e. Para-dise).
As thou hast not provoked Me to wrath, I will not anger thee; as thou hast not put Me to shame, I will not shame thee; as thou hast not lied unto Me, I will not lie unto thee. Be not sad. As for thy body I will raise it up in the last days, and thou shalt return to it and be as thou wast, and thou shalt rejoice and shalt have pleasure with it in the country of joy." And the Father gave that soul a white garment, the white-ness whereof was whiter than milk, and it was neither netted nor woven. And He gave it three shining crowns which were seventy-eight times brighter than the sun and moon, and God called Michael the [Fol. 95b] Arch-angel and said unto him, " Take this soul and bring it into the Garden of Delight in the bosom of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and in the bosom of all the holy Fathers, and let it abide there and make itself happy until I come to judge all the world ; and in the last days it shall return to the body which it had formerly, and it shall receive its wages with the saints."And when the thousands and the tens of thousands of angels heard [this], they said unto Him," Verily Thou hast judged [rightly] and righteous are all Thy judgements." And all the hosts of heaven rejoiced, and I rejoiced with them, even as the Prophet saith, " The judgement of God is right, and maketh the heart to rejoice " (Psalm xix, 8, 9). And again he saith, " He who hath toiled in the world shall live for ever, for he shall not see corrup-tion'' (compare Psalm xlix, 8, 9).
And we accompanied that soul on its way and we brought it into the Garden (i.e. Paradise), and the righteous and the martyrs received it, Abraliam, Isaac and Jacob, and all the hosts of saints ; Adam and Eve were with them, and David with his harp played music in their midst. And they said unto that soul, " Peace be unto thee, O pure soul ! Come, enter into everlast-ing life, wherein is neither sickness nor suffering, even as the Prophet David saith, ' Return, O my soul, into thy rest, for God hath helped thee ' " (Psalm cxvi, 7). And that soul went with them, and we returned to our rest. And there were some of us who said, " Hallelujah. Hallelujah. Hallelujah. Holy, Holy, Holy God of Hosts. The heavens and the earth are filled full with the holiness of ' Thy praise." And some of us said, " Praise be to the Father. Praise be to the Son. Praise be to the Holy Ghost. Praise be to the Father Who hath given unto this soul the kingdom of the heavens. And worship be to the Son Who hath carried it away from Diabolos. And thanksgiving be to the Holy Spirit Who hath delivered it out of the hand of its enemy and brought it unto the Garden of Delight (In like manner do Thou save Jonathan, Thy servant) for ever and ever.
Amen." [Fol. 96a].
And I answered and said unto my Son, " [Now] show me what happeneth to the soul of the sinner when it leaveth his body." And He said unto ine,"Be patient, and I will show thee." And I looked down under the earth, and I saw angels of light and angels of darkness approach that soul at the same time. And an angel of light examined it, and he lacked his portion in respect of it, and he left that soul and departed. ' And an angel of darkness came and examined that soul ' and lie found his portion in it. And the Paraclete came forth from it. And Temleyakos came into the belly of that soul, and the heavens and the earth compressed it. And there stood tip before its eyes all the sins that it had com-mitted from its infancy to the end of its days ; and the soul was not cut off speedily from its body, but it stayed with it for three or seven (six?) hours . And that wretched soul went about crying out, even as David saith, "The death of the sinner is crooked " (Psalm xxxvii, 38).
And again he saith, " The wicked shall not be removed from the judgement " (compare Psalm i, 5). And that soul went forth from its body, and [the angel] carried it away, beating it with rods [like] lightnings ' and he burned it with a flame of fire, saying," Miserable soul, to whom wilt thou come ? For behold, thou hast forgotten God thy Lord, and thou hast forgotten thy Saviour and hast not remembered Him." And whilst it was saying, " I did not know," he carried it away and goaded on that soul like a fine ox on the day of its slaughter, and made it to run before the king. And that soul said,"I did not know about all that would take place here. Had I but known it I would never have given sleep to mine eyes, and I would never have eaten food or drunk -water until I had obtained a little rest from the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit." And again it said,"For the sake of the name of MARY, the God-bearer, let me rest a little, for my knees are tired through journeying overmuch.
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And they answered and said unto it,"Thou hast wearied thyself by every kind of denial of MARY, the God-bearer; but she loveth not the unclean soul. She is the purest of the pure, and she is greater than heaven and earth." And when that soul had thus spoken I cried out and wept many bitter tears. And I said unto my Son,"have mercy upon me, my Son, for there is no man without sin, and there is no wood which doth not smoke, and there is none pure [Fol. 96b] save Thyself in heaven and in earth." And my Son answered and said unto me, " Weep not, O My mother. Mercy doth not befit him who did not show mercy upon the earth." Now I was unable [to gainsay] this word. And I answered and said unto Him, " Be it according to Thy Will." And then that soul cried out the more, saying, " For the sake of MARY, the Mother of the Light, give me a little rest." And when I heard this word I cried out and wept, and when my Son heard my loud outcry He said, " Let this soul have a little rest for the sake of the name of MARY, My mother."
And then the angel let that soul have rest for a space. And then he took it up and bore it along, and goaded it, and said unto it, " Woe be unto thee, O thou miserable soul. To whom wilt thou go? To whom wilt thou come? By whom wilt thou take thy stand ? With whom wilt thou seek asylum ? And where is the place to which thou canst return ? " And the angel brought the soul to the angel of wickedness. And the spirit of fornication came before it, and the spirit of evil, and the spirit of pride, and the spirit of falsehood also came before that soul, and these spirits examined it and found their por-tions in it.
And they said unto it, " O miserable soul, art thou wise enough to enter into heaven ? " And the angels, and the hosts of angels came and set that soul up in their midst, and they cried out, saying, " Keel) away from us this filthy soul, for if it cometh to us the foulness and the odour thereof will make us sick." And they all cried out with a loud voice, saying, "Woe be unto thee, O wretched soul! Woe be unto thee ! " And the angel took that soul up and said unto it, This is the Lord thy God, Who created thee in His likeness, and fashioned thee with His hands ; bow down and make obeisance [to Him]." And that soul bowed down. And the angel who had protected it continually (i.e. its guardian angel) said unto God the Father, " Lord, take Thou this soul which Thou didst commit to me to keep, and judge it according to the work of its hands."
And God the Father answered and said unto that soul, " O soul, why hast thou treated Me unjustly? Have I separated thee from the righteous ? The moon and the stars of winter and of summer did I not ordain for thee ? Did I not make the rain to descend for thee ? I created for thee food to cat and water to drink ; and I created for thee pleasant breezes and the fruits of the earth. And I have given unto thee days of happiness. Wherefore didst thou forget thy Saviour ? " And that soul said, " I have sinned, Lord. I have sinned. I did not understand that this was to take place, and I knew nothing about the judgement which taketh place here, and as for the Scriptures I knew nothing whatsoever about them." [Fol. 97a].
And He answered and said unto that soul, "At the testimony of three witnesses a matter standeth. And the Scriptures and the priests have talked to thee. Why didst thou not hearken unto them, O soul ? I would have prepared thy provision for thy departure. Thou hast loved darkness rather than light, and hast preferred the ' gods ' to thy Creator. I will not teach him that will not learn, and I will riot show mercy on him that did not show mercy. And now, cast this soul to Satan its father, and give it to Telmeyakos in Jahannam so that he may make it to dwell there. And there let it abide until I come again to judge the living and the dead and all the world. And at the last day it shall return to its body and shall go down into great punish-merit."
And when that soul heard this word it wept, saying, " Woe is me I Woe is me, the wretched one. Better for me would it have been had I never been born. Cursed be the day wherein I was born." And when it spake thus we all wept and cried out, and the angels of heaven put aside their crowns. Even as David the Prophet saith, " Hast Thou created the children of men for naught ? " (Psalm lxxxix, 47). And also Mark the evangelist saith, " What will it profit a man if lie gain the whole world and lose his own soul ? And what if a man liath not given a ransom for his soul (Mark viii, 36, 37).
And my Son answered and said unto me, " Come, let us walk about in the Garden (i.e. Paradise), and I will show thee the souls of the just and righteous where they live." And He lifted me up and brought me to a great abyss, the depth whereof is unknown, and I saw there shining houses, the splendour whereof was seven (or, six) and fifty times brighter than the light of the sun and moon. And there came to me an aged man, and he em-braced (or, saluted) me, saying, " Blessed [art thou], MARY, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, and blessed are the eyes that see thee." And I asked Him (i.e. her Son) and said unto Him, " What is the name of him who hath saluted me ? " And He said, " His name is Enoch." And then there came another man from that house and said unto me, " Blessed art thou, MARY and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, and blessed ' 'are the eyes that see thee." And I asked my Son, saying, "What is his name? " And He said unto me, " His name is Elias."
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And then I saw also in that IFol. 97b] great abyss a lofty pillar of gold covered all over with in- scriptions, and on it were written the names of the righteous. And the height of that pillar was equal to twelve cubits. And when I saw this I asked my Son, saying, " What is this that I see written upon this pillar, and what are the letters of the writing thereon And He said unto me, " The names of the righteous and the martyrs are written upon this pillar." And I asked Him, saying, "Are there any effigies of them on it ? " And He said unto me, " There are no effigies of them, but [the names] of all of them are written down." And I asked Him, saying, " Were they written upon this pillar before they were born ? "
And He said unto me, " Be-fore their father and mother, Adam and Eve, were created they were written down." And I also saw a column of fire, and there was writing upon it, and it was larger than the pillar of gold. And I answered and said unto my Son, " Were the names upon this pillar written before or after [their owners] were born ? " And He answered and said unto me, " Hast thou not heard what the Book saith-these who are enrolled be-fore this judgement were enrolled before they were born."
And then He carried me onward to that city. And I looked and saw a city which was shining seventeen (or, sixteen) times more brightly than the sun and moon. And I saw there a vine set in the ground and the fruit thereof was abundant, and the clusters of grapes on it were very many, and there were three upon every branch. And I also saw a fig tree, and a nut tree, and almond trees of three kinds, and five hundred thousand and sixty-seven plants. And the perfume and the taste of the fruits carried away captive the heart. And I an-swered and said unto my Son, " Unto whom doth this palace belong ? " And He answered and said unto me, " To the man who hath lived with his wife, and the wife who hath lived with her husband, both dwelling together in purity, the man knowing no other woman, and the woman knowing no other man, but both dwell-ing in their purity. And when they (i.e. the angels) bring them here they give them their reward. Thus Matthew the Evangelist saith, ' Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God ' " (Matt. v, 8).
And then I saw behind that city a river of wine. And our father Adam was there, and Abel, and Seth, and Mahalaleel, and Cainan, and Jared, and [Fol. 98a] Arphaxad, and all the holy Fathers. And there were there Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and Terah and Reu, and when they saw me they bowed down and saluted me. And Adam came and said unto me, " Hail to thee, MARY ! They have renewed the Lamb (?). Blessed are the eyes that see thee." And Abel, the first fruits of the dead, came to me, and bowed down to me and saluted me, and said, " Hail, MARY ! thou pure offering. [Blessed are the eyes] that see thee." And all the hosts of the saints came in their companies according to their majesty, and they saluted me and bowed down to me, saying, " Mar-vellous is thy coming hither ! All hail ! MARY, thou beautiful dove. Blessed are the eyes that see thee."
And then He lifted me onwards to the river, and brought me unto the river of honey. And there were there Moses, and Aaron, and Amos, and Isaiah, and Nahum, and Jeremiah, and Zephaniah, and Haggai, and Zechariah, the son of Barachiah, and Gideon, and Samson, and John the Baptist, and Yosa' (Joshua ?), and Joel, and Midad, and Eldad, and Melchaiah, and all the prophets and the sons of the prophets, and Jonah, and Ezra. And Hanna the prophetess and Elisabeth were with them. And there were other women in their places with their mother Sara, and Rebekah, and Rachel, and all the women were in one place by them-selves.
And Moses the Prophet came unto me, and he bowed down before me, saying, " Greeting unto thee, MARY, thou white dove. Blessed are the eyes that see thee." And all the prophets came to me according to their rank and habitation, and they bowed down before me and saluted me, and said unto me, " Blessed art thou, MARY, O pure palace I Blessed are the eyes that see thee." And Eve came to me, and she bowed down before me and saluted me, and said unto me, " Blessed art thou, MARY, pure and shining woman I Blessed are the eyes that see thee." And then all the [other] holy women came unto me, and bowed down before me and saluted me, and said, " Blessed art thou, MARY, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And blessed are the eyes that see thee."
And then [my] Son took me on to the river of milk, to the place where were one hundred and forty-four times ten thousand babes [Fol. 98b] of Bethlehem whom Herod slew, who had not polluted their bodies and their garments with the pollution of this world. And when they saw me they came from the uttermost parts of the place, and bowed down before me and saluted me, saying, " Blessed art thou, MARY, thou object of the boast of virgins ! Blessed are the eyes that see thee."
And I answered and said unto my Son, " Who are these who dwell by the river of wine ? " And He said unto me, " These who dwell by the river of wine are they who have shown love to pilgrims during their lives, and have loved them as they loved their own souls. And they fed the hungry with their bread, and they gave the thirsty water to drink from their cups, and have given their own apparel to the naked for clothing. These are they whom, when they went forth from the world, the angels carried into the presence of God that they might bow before Him and salute Him. And when they had done this and finished their adoration, He had them brought to the river of wine, and He made them to dwell here and gave them their reward (or, wages).
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And He welcomed them whilst yet afar off, and embraced them, and kissed their mouths as if He had been acquainted with them from of old, and He showed them love, and set them down here according to their tribes and brethren. And He said unto them, ' Verily ye have overcome the fleeting world, and ye have van-quished the Devil, and have put him to shame, together with his evil hosts. Ye have grown up in the work of goodness and righteousness, go ye forth into the city and be joyful with us."' And again I answered and said unto Him, "And who are these who dwell by the river of honey? " And He answered and said unto me, " These are they who have stretched out their hands to the poor, and their hands to the needy, even as David,
the blessed man, saith, ' Blessed is the man who succoureth the poor and needy, God shall deliver him in the day of trouble, and shall protect him, and give him life, and do good to him upon the earth ' (Psalm xli, I,2). And Matthew the Evangelist also saith, [Fol. 99a] ' Blessed are the merciful, for unto them shall men show mercy ' (Matt. V, 7).
He who hath redeemed the oppressed, who hath been a father and a mother to the orphan, and a prop to the widow, and a helper to the afflicted and distressed, who hath made the miserable man to re-joice, and comforted the sad, and visited the sick, and held converse [Fol. 99a] with the prisoner, whether Jew or Gentile ('Aramawi), for they are all God's creatures, he shall dwell by the river of honey. For the potter with one kind of clay doth not make of one half of it a vessel to honour and another to dishonour. Even as David saith, ' judge the poor and the orphans.. Right the oppressed and the needy, and save the solitary and the miserable, and save them from the hand of sinners (Psalm lxxxii, 3, 4).
And Matthew the Evangelist also saith, ' The oppressed shall be saved for the kingdom of heaven' (Matt. v, 10). And the wise man Solomon saith, 'Those who have mercy on the poor shall God repay' (?) (Proverbs xiv, 2 I). When they go forth from this world they (i.e. the angels) shall take them to God that they may bow before Him, and when they have saluted Him and finished their worship of Him, He will have them brought here to this river of honey. And the Prophets and all the righteous shall come to receive them, and shall say, ' Ye have conquered this fleeting world and overcome the Devil and all his hosts ye into our city and rejoice with us.' "
And I answered and said unto my Son, " Who are these who dwell by the river of milk ? " And he an-swered and said unto me, " Those who have purified themselves from fornication, and have kept themselves from begetting and from the impurity of women, and have never thought of this in their hearts and minds. For the Gospel saith, ' He who hath looked upon a woman and desired her hath already committed forni-cation with her in his heart ' (Matt. v, 28). And when those women who have kept their virginity undefiled go forth from the world, the angels shall take them into the presence of God that they may bow before Him and salute Him. And when they have finished worship-ping, the angels shall bring them hither, and the chil-dren shall go forth and welcome them from afar off, and shall say unto them, ' Verily ye have conquered the fleeting world, and have passed over the waves thereof, and ye are like unto us. Come into our city and rejoice ye with us.' "
And then my Son showed me a white land, which shone seven times more brightly than the sun, and moon, and stars ; and the whole of it was decorated with gold and silver. And I answered and said unto my Son, " Unto whom belongeth this city? " And He said unto me, " To him that hath preserved [Fol. 99b] his tongue from calumny, and to him that is without boast-ing and pride, to him that is not a lover of wine, and is not envious, and is not proud, who doth not provoke his brother to wrath, who is not lascivious, who hath not vilified his neighbour and is not vindictive and mali-cious, in whose heart revenge doth not dwell, to him that is as gentle as a dove. Even as Luke the Evangelist saith : ' I say unto you, Whosoever blasphemeth against the Son of Man shall perish (sic), and he who blasphemeth against the Holy Ghost shall never be for-given, neither in this world nor in that which is to come.' Even so shall it be with these (i.e. the above- mentioned). And again Luke the Evangelist saitlh 'He who magnifieth himself shall be abased, and he who showeth himself humble shall be honoured' (Luke xii, 10; xiv,11; xviii, 14).
And Matthew the Evangelist also saith, ' Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth ' (Matt. v, 5). And he also saith, ' Be ye wise as serpent and meek like doves ' (Matt. x, I6). And David saith, ' He who calumniateth his neighbour in secret him have I chased away. He who is arrogant of eye and greedy of heart shall not hold familiar talk with me ' (Psalm ci, 5). And He also saith in the Gospel, 'Whosoever pro-voketh his brother without cause shall be condemned in the judgement ' (Matt. v, 22). And when the meek go forth from the world, the angels take them into the presence of God that they may bow before Him and salute Him. And when they have finished worshipping, they bring them hither, and make them dwell here, and He giveth unto them their everlasting wages. Even as David the Prophet saith, ' The meek shall inherit the earth and dwell therein for evermore'(Psalm xxxvii, 11.) And lie also saith, ' Keep meekness and thou shalt see righteousness ' (Psalm xxv, 9). And he also saith, 'Be-cause of my meekness Thou wilt accept me, and wilt make me strong before Thee for ever'" (compare Psalm xxii, 26).
And my Son also showed me the fore-part of the place across the river, and I looked and saw [there] amass of people. And there was [at] the gate of the Garden a great tree, and on seeing it a man would imagine that it was full of fruit, whereas in the inner parts thereof there was no fruit whatsoever ; and that tree used to bend down towards those people so that they might think that there was much fruit upon it. When the people were hungry they searched for fruit, but they found none on that tree, and they lacked food to eat. And that tree used to bow its head, and when it did so those people bowed [Fol. 100a] their heads until they reached the ground; and then the tree. would raise itself up until its branches reached to the Garden (i.e. Paradise), and they (i.e. the people) were raised up together with it. And when I saw this I wept bitterly, saying, " My Son, who are these people and what is this tree which seemeth to me to be full of fruit ? "
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And when I looked at those people they were hungry and thirsty, and they wished to cat. And when the fruit of the tree was lacking, they fell down with it on the ground, and when that tree raised itself up they were raised up with it ; and when I saw this I was sorry. And my Son answered and said unto me, " Weep not, My mother. I will tell thee the hidden matter concern-ing those men. In respect of fasting, and prayer, and abstinence they are perfect ; and in keeping their bodies undefiled they are perfect. But they never fed the hungry with their bread, and they never gave drink to the thirsty, and they never clothed the naked, and they never gave the pilgrim lodging in their house. And they were arrogant and boastful." And I answered and said unto my beloved Son, "Shall these words judge them?"
And He answered and said unto me, " There is nothing which can surpass these words, and of all great sin[s] boast-ing and arrogance are the greatest. Through boasting the Devil fell." And I answered and aid unto[Fol. 100b] Him, " Did their arrogance, and boasting, and tying of their hands prevent their coming into the Garden of Delight ? " And He said unto me, " Boasting and arro-gance and the tying of the hand are the root of sin." And He answered and said unto me, " These people shall dwell in this gate until I come a second time, until I come in My glory with all the saints. And when the righteous are journeying along that road and they see .them, they shall make entreaty for them, and I will remember them, and will permit them to come into the kingdom of heaven." And when I heard these words from His glorious mouth I gave thanks unto my Son.
And then He carried me onwards to that river, and He made me cross the river in a ship of gold, and He brought me into a house, which was white and was shining with a light which was seven times brighter than the light of the sun, moon, and stars. And I saw [Fol. 100b] couches of gold spread over with splendid cloths of finely woven work. And I answered and said unto my Son, " For whom is this habitation intended ? " And He said unto me, " For the men who have never known men, and have preserved their virginity unde-filed. As David the Prophet saith, ' Blessed art thou, and well is it with thee. Thy wife is like a pleasing vine on the citadel of thy house' (Psalm cxxviii, 3). And the Evangelist Matthew also saith, ' Blessed are those who are pure in their bodies, for they shall see God ' (Matt. v, 8). And again lie saith, ' Those whom God hath joined together man shall not separate ; they are not two, but one' (Matt. xix, 5, 6).
And Mark the Evan-gelist also saith, ' Blessed are those who having wives are as if they had them not' (i Corinthians Vii, 9, 29). And when they go forth from their world, [the angels] take them to God that they may bow down before Him and salute Him. And as soon as they have finished worship-ping they bring them hither, and take them into this habitation, and give them couches of gold spread with splendid cloths."
And then my Son took me beyond those couches, and I saw there a river of oil and unguent, and I saw there also a shining city whereof the brightness was seven times greater than that of the sun. And I also saw there very many crowns, and their number must have been thousands of thousands, and tens of thousands of thou-sands, and the . . . were one thousand and forty and four. And I answered and said unto my Son, " For whom are these crowns and this city ? " And He an-swered and said unto me, "This abode and these crowns are for the martyrs who renounced and hated this fleeting world, who cut themselves off [from it], and gave themselves over to death, being driven from city to city, and suffering hunger and thirst for the sake of righteousness. They fulfilled what is said in the Gos-pel, 'Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for right-eousness' sake, for they shall be satisfied. Blessed are they who are persecuted (or, driven forth) for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven ' (Matt. v, 6, 10). And again he saith, ' Every one shall hate you. And not a single hair of your heads shall be destroyed and in your forbearance ye shall possess your soul (Luke xxi, I7, 19).
And this city is not the reward of the righteous only, but the Apostles [Fol. 101a] shall seek the shadow thereof, and the righteous, and the Pro-phets, together with their disciples-for there shall be the martyrs, and the Apostles, and the seventy-two dis-ciples and their five hundred companions, and the com-pany of the firstborn, their governors and kings, Peter, the Rock of the Faith, and Paul, the Tongue of Un-guent-even as it saith in the Gospel, 'He who teacheth and doeth shall be great in the kingdom of the hea-vens ' " (Matt. v, 19). And whilst I was talking to my Son there came unto me all the saints [in] hosts, and the company of the firstborn, and the Martyrs, and they saluted me and said unto me, " Hail to thee, MARY, thou fortress of the holiness of God. Blessed are the eyes that see thee."
And then my Son carried me on before Him to that river, and I saw there two hundred times ten thousand houses of light, and they were large, each being twelve cubits with the cubit of- the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost. And I answered and said unto my Son, " For whom are this habitation and the houses ? " And He answered and said unto me, " For the Papasat (i.e. heads of the Church), and archbishops, and bishops, and priests, and deacons, and readers and singers of psalms." And I answered and said unto Him, " Will they all come into this abode ? " And He answered and said unto me, " Not all of them shall enter, but a few shall come in. Hast thou not heard what it saith in the Gospel, ' Not every one that saith unto Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but every one that doeth the Will of My Father Who is in heaven ? And in that day many shall say, Lord, in Thy Name we prophesied, and in Thy Name we cast out devils, and in Thy Name we did mighty works. And then will I say unto them, I never knew you. Get ye gone from Me, O workers of iniquity' (Matt. vii, 2I-23). And as for those who are set over the churches, not all of them shall enter into this abode."
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And I asked Him, saying, " Who shall enter into this abode? " [And He said unto me], " I will tell thee. Those who have kept them-selves pure from fornication, and have not pursued another man's wife ; those who have not been avari-cious and envious, those who have not had avarice and malice in their hearts, those who have not been proud, and arrogant, and calumniators, and boasters, and op-pressors [Fol. 101b] ; those who have not worshipped idols ; those who have hated themselves, those who have not worked against their neighbours, those who have not sworn falsely ; those who have not loved dig-nities, and crowns upon earth, and praise before kings, and who did not neglect the church ; and those who made themselves fathers and mothers to the church, and touched My Body in purity and My Blood in purity, and did not defile My mystery and My holy things. These are they who shall enter this Gate. And I will describe to thee those who shall not enter it. Those who pursue the wives'of other men, he who kil-leth himself, he who sweareth falsely, he who setteth avarice in his heart, the arrogant, the boastful, the transgressor of the Law.
The dancer (?), the fornicator, the impure man, he who goeth astray and worshippeth idols, and lie who despiseth the House of God. This is he who shall not enter this house-even as Paul, the Tongue of Unguent, saith, ' No fornicator, or unclean man, or idolater shall inherit the kingdom of God, neither shall he enter the kingdom of heaven ' (1 Corinthians vi, 9, 10). And it also saith in the Gospel, 'Enter in at the strait gate, for difficult and narrow is that which leadeth to life, and few there be that find it. But broad and spacious is that which leadeth to destruction, and many are those who find it and enter in [through] it' (Matt. vii, I3, I4). And again it saith, 'Many are called and few are chosen ' " (Matt. xx, I6).
And when He had said these things He took me and carried me up to the Heavenly Jerusalem. And I saw there a sanctuary of light, and a pavilion of light, and a tent covered over with fire. And I saw there a man, and he shone with a light seven times brighter than that of the sun. And in his hand he held an instrument of music with strings (harp ?) and a lyre, and he stood in the gates of Jerusalem and played his harp, and struck his lyre and made the foundations of the Garden to shake. And when I entered the courtyard of that house he came to me and embraced me and kissed me, saying, " Blessed art thou, MARY, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb. Blessed are the eyes [Fol. 102a] that see thee." And I answered and said unto my Son, " Who is this that saluted me ? " And He answered and said unto me, " The name of the man who embraced thee is David." And I heard him saying, " Hallelujah, Halle-lujah, Hallelujah." And when he spake thus all the saints cried out with the mouth, saying, " David." And I answered and said unto my Son, " Will [this] cease with the voice of David? " And He answered and said unto me, " Without the word of David the praise of heaven and earth would not be complete." And I answered and said unto Him, " What doth it mean ? " And He said unto me, " It meaneth 'song' (?)." And I answered and said unto Him, " If one crieth out Hal-lelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, doth it become all ad-vantage to him ? " And He answered and said unto me, " If lie crieth out with boasting it will be of no benefit to him.
But if he crieth out with purity of intent, with-out any hesitation through inertness, his song shall be with that of the hosts of heaven." And I answered and said unto Him, " Supposing a man be sick or suffering, or sleepy, if lie saith Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, will it be [reckoned] a sin to him ? " And He answered and said unto me, " If he be sick, or suffering, or sleepy, and he say these words it will not be [reckoned] a sin to him, for he doth not do so boastingly." And the inter-pretation of the phrase is Hallelujah to the Father ; Hallelujah to the Son ; Hallelujah to the Holy Ghost. Now the ground-meaning of the phrase is Glory be to the Father ; Glory be to the Son ; Glory be to the Holy Ghost, Who is One in His Being for ever and ever. Amen.
And then He took me up and carried me on to the city, and brought me to the City of God. And He showed me a shilling city which was built ill [the form of] the flower of a rose, whereof the boundary and the end (i.e. extent) and the riches cannot be known. And its splendour was seven times more than that of the heavens. And in it were apparel of gold and silver, and necklaces (or, collars) of gold, and crowns of gold. And [Fol. I02b] I answered and said unto my Son, " For whom is this abode [prepared] ? " And He answered and. said unto me, " For those who have rejected and hated this fleet-ing world, for those of the monks who have forsaken riches and desire. None hath knowledge of this city and habitation, neither the angels nor the archangels. And the priests of heaven shall enter therein and shall . . . the gates thereof.
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And none shall enter therein except Myself, and My Father, and the Paraclete. And do thou enter into it and take shelter therein, and it shall be thy city, and three thousand angels shall minister unto thee." And I answered and said unto Him, " Will all the monks come into this Gate ? " [And He answered and said unto me, " There shall enter] only those who have kept themselves pure from the filth of fornication, and those who have rejected and hated this fleeting world, and those who have not Ioved the riches of honour, and possessions, and ally desirable thing of the world, and self, and pleasure, and the jests of the theatre, and the laughter of fools, and the chatter of idle folk ; and the mail who was not prone to anger, and the man who was not a drunkard, and the man who was not proud or boastful, and the man who did not make accusations and did not stir tip strife, and the man who was not apathetic (or, sluggish), and the man who ceased not praying during the hours of the day and night.
Hast thou never heard that the book saith, ' Nothing harm-eth the monk more than abandoning prayer ' ? And also, ' The monk who hath nothing is better than the monk who is not a giver of alms ? ' And Paul saith also, ' To me the world is dead, and I am dead to it ' (Gala-tians vi, I4). And lie also saith, 'In heaven our city ' (2 Corinthians v, i ; Hebrews xii, 22). Arid [the sum of] all this which I have said unto thee is the monk who is perfect shall come into this Gate." And I answered and said unto my Soil, "And who are they who shall not come into this Gate? " And He answered and said unto me, " I will tell thee.
Those who shall not come into this Gate are the proud, the irascible, the boasters, the men who feigned sickness, men who complained at all times, men who were crazy, vilifiers, evil men, men who cherished hatred, false men, deniers [of Christ], scoffers, men who acted like fools (or, madmen), fornicators, men who were unclean, men who swore falsely, shepherds who hated their flocks because of their fornica-tion ' flocks who hated their shepherds because of their love for women, sorcerers who slew their brethren with the tongue of violence and fraud and were like unto the monks who became idolaters and worshipped false gods, men who rode horses (horse-soldiers ?), men who sought vengeance, men who had abundance and demanded more [Fol. I03a], lovers of riches, lovers of dignities, lovers of self-gratification and pleasure, lovers of the world, those who committed fornication after they had adopted the garb of the monk, those who drowned themselves in wine, those who hated their neighbour, those who slew their neighbour through envy, the eaters of flesh who were without flesh (sic) with-out measure, those who drank blood without stint, those who knew not fasting, lovers of sleep, haters of fasting and prayer, those who made plans to eat and to drink, and those who said, ' a feast to-day.' These are they who shall not enter this Gate."
And He answered and said unto me, " Come, let us go towards the west also, and I will show thee where the souls of the sinners and the men of deceit live." And He took me up and carried me towards the west, and He brought me to the boundaries of earth and of heaven. And I saw a large court of light wherein was no darkness, and it was filled with a river of fire. And I an-swered and said unto Him, " What is the explanation of this river, and who are they who dwell in this river ? " And. He answered and said unto me, " These were not wholly cold (?), and they were riot poor."
And I looked there and I saw many people, men, women, young folks and children. And I looked again, and I saw some men who were immersed [in the fire] up to their breasts, and some were immersed up to their lips, and some tip to their skulls. And when I saw these people I answered and said unto my Son, " Who are these ? And who are these who are immersed up to their knees And He said unto me, " These are they who were sluggish at the time of prayer, and not [only] at midnight. [Hearken to what] I am going to say unto thee. At midnight all creation prayeth to God, and at dawn all creation giveth thanks unto Him because the night hath passed and the day hath come, and in the evening they thank Him also for the third, and sixth, and ninth hours of the day, and [pray for] sleep in the night hours. Because these people were sluggish and neglected prayer this is their doom for ever and ever.
Those who are immersed up to their navels are the men who committed fornication with women in church, and those who are immersed up to their necks are the men who uttered cruel words in church, and those who are immersed tip to their breasts [Fol. I03b] are the men who uttered words (i.e. con-versed with friends) after they had received the Offer-ing, without making them to be refreshed, either with bread or water. And those who are immersed up to their lips are those who vilified their neighbour in church. And those who are immersed up to their skulls are those who winked with their eyes and nodded de-risively in church."
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And then I saw a great yawning abyss, and if a soul fell down to a depth of fifty thousand cubits it did not reach the limit of that abyss. And I asked my Son, say-ing, " For whom is this doom [decreed] ? " And He answered and said unto me, " For those who committed fornication with their father's wives ; and for those who committed fornication with their sisters, or with their daughters, or with their sons' daughters, or with the wives of] their friends, or their daughters ; and for those who lay with men as with women ; and for those who committed fornication with the wives of their sons or with the wives of the sons of their sisters ; and for those who committed fornication with a pregnant woman or with an unclean woman; and for those who committed fornication with a black woman, or with a Muhammadan woman, or with a Jewish woman ; and for those who committed fornication with beasts, or with horses, or with a mule, or an ass, or a camel, or with any animal whatsoever ; and for those who com-mitted fornication within the precincts ; and for the wife of the priest who committed fornication with another man, and the priest who committed fornication with a woman. These are they who shall enter this abyss, and this shall be their punishment for ever."
And then I saw another punishment. I saw an old man, and fourteen cruel angels of darkness were carry-ing him along, and they brought him into the river of fire, and the river of fire engulfed him. And the angels set him upon a throne of fire, and the fire flared about him as far up as his breast, and they hurled red-hot darts into his sides, and they poured fire over him from out of a vessel. And when I saw this I Wept bitterly, and I cried out with many cries, and I said unto my Son, " What is the name of this man ? " And He answered and said unto me, " His name is 'Papas'." And I an-swered and said unto Him, " What hath this priest done that this most awful punishment is decreed for him ? " And He answered and said unto me, " In My Law and Commandment [Fol. I04a] he did not celebrate the Holy Mysteries; he handled [them] riot in purity ; and he did not lift up the Offering in purity. He brought his days to an end in fornication and uncleanness. He did not house the pilgrim, He loved riot the poor and needy, he devoured the first-fruit offerings ; and he neither fed the hungry nor gave drink to the thirsty. This shall be his punishment for ever."
And I looked again to that abyss and I saw a man whom the angels of darkness smote until he fell down upon his face ; and the blood was pouring out of his mouth. And the angels cast him into that river [of fire] which rose up round about him to his breasts. And when He said, Have mercy upon me, there is none to have mercy' I answered and said unto my Son, "What is the sin of this man ? And what is his name ? " And He answered and said unto me, " His name is 'Deacon,' and his sin I will declare unto thee. In My Command-ment he hath not walked ; he was not devoted to the Church ; lie did not hold My Blood in purity; and he did not walk purely in the Sanctuary. He did not feed the hungry with his food, lie gave the thirsty no drink from his cup, lie did not clothe the naked with his apparel, and he neither prepared for burial the pilgrims who died [on the road] nor buried them. This [river of fire] shall be his punishment for ever."
And I saw further on in that river a great and ma-jestic man, and the angels of darkness seized him, and cast him into that river of fire which rose to his breast. Arid they were beating him with stones of fire (i.e. red-hot stones), and scourging him with rods of lightning. And when I saw this I cried out and wept bitterly, and I answered and said to my Son, " What is his name And He answered arid said unto me, " 'Archbishop I will tell thee what his sin was. He did not show forth the Faith of the Trinity; and everything I commanded him [to do] He did not ; and he did not administer the Law of the Canon. And this shall be his punishment for ever."
And behind him I saw the river of fire, and I saw a man whom [the angels of darkness] were dragging along with ropes of fire, and they were making the river (or, sea) of fire to flow up about him, and they were buffet-ing him and saying unto him, " Since it fell to thee to break the Bread, why dost thou hunger ? Since it fell to thee to pour out of the Cup, [Fol. I04b] why dost thou thirst now ? And since it fell to thee to slaughter the Lamb, why art thou not filled with the flesh there-of ? " And I answered and said unto Him, What is the name of this man? And what is his sin? And He answered and said unto me, " His name is 'Priest,' and his sin is great ; I will tell thee. Though He was a priest He did not walk in the work of his priesthood. And He did not keep himself pure from fornication, and He brought his days to an end with jesting and idle talk and sluggishness. And this shall be his punishment for ever."
And I also saw another man whom the angels were bringing along, and they were beating his face with rods [made] of lightning, and his face was blackened (or, scorched) by the fire, and they cast him into the river of fire which rose up about him to his breast. And they were cutting out his tongue with a razor of fire, and his nose with a sword of fire; arid when he said " Have mercy upon me," there was none to show mercy to him. And when I saw this I wept bitterly and I cried out with many cries. And I asked my Son, saying, " What is the name of this man ? " And He said unto me, " It is ' Deacon, 'and I will declare his sin unto thee. He did not keep the Law of the Canon which I appointed, and lie would not sing at My Offering, and he dwelt amid tumult and revelry and fornication, and He loved not the church, but was sluggish and arrogant and boastful. And this shall be his punishment for ever."
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And I also saw many men scattered about like ashes in the fire, and they were suspended upon pillars of fire, and I asked my Son, saying, " Who are these men ? " And He said unto me, " These are the men who wor-shipped the gods, the sun, and the moon, and the stars. And this shall be their punishment for ever."
And I saw other men in the river of fire, and worms were gnawing them, and I asked my Son, saying, "Who are these men ? " And He said unto me, " These are they who were sated with food and gold, and who put their confidence in their riches, and who allowed the poor and needy to cry out [in vain]. And as Paul said, 'Those who wish to be rich shall fall into great sin' (1 Timothy vi,9). This shall be their punishment for ever."
And then I looked and I saw [many] virgins who were arrayed in darkness, and they had chains of fire tied about their necks [Fol. 105a] and [the angels of] dark-ness were dragging them into the river of fire. And I asked my Son, saying, " Who are these that are in such great tribulation ? " And He said unto me, " These are they whose fathers could not make them to observe the law of men, and who lost their virginity either in the field or on the way-side. And this shall be their punish-ment for ever."
And then I saw other men hanging upon [pillars of fire], and their hands and necks were bound with chains of fire, and [the angels of darkness] were setting them in a place of darkness where there was weeping and gnashing of teeth. And I asked my Son, saying, " Who are these men ? " And He said unto me, " These are the kings, and governors, and judges of the earth who devoured the possessions of others, and the possessions of the orphans and widows. They magnified themselves of this fleeting world, and gloried in that which could not in any way profit them; even as the Book of the Wise Man saith, 'Wholly vanity is the dwelling in this fleeting world ' (Ecclesi-astes ii, I4). And this shall be the punishment of the rich ones of the earth for ever."
And then I looked again and I saw other people hang-ing upon pillars of fire, and [the angels of darkness] were afflicting them; and panthers of fire were biting through their throats, and lions of fire were crushing their legs. And when I saw this I wept bitterly, and I asked my Son, saying, " Who are these men? " And He an-swered and said unto me, " 'these are the nuns and widows who went outside the Law of the Canon, and destroyed their virginity after they had adopted the holy garb, and falsified that which ought not to be falsi-fied, and rejected that which ought not to be rejected. And when they conceived they killed their babes (i.e. procured abortion), and poured out their blood on the earth, and when they brought forth children they killed them with their own hands. And their fathers gave poison to their mothers. And these babes cry out be-fore the throne to My Father, saying, 'Whether we were to do evil or good they did not let us grow up. One half of us they cast to the dogs, and the other half to the swine.'
And when we heard these words, I and My Father and the Paraclete were angry, and We com-manded TeImeyakos [Fol. 105b] to set them in a beau-tiful habitation. And this shall be the punishment of their fathers and mothers for ever." And I asked my Son, saying, " If they had repented wouldst Thou not have had mercy upon them ? " And He said unto me, " Verily, verily, I say unto thee, if they had repented with a ready heart their sins should have been remitted to them. But inasmuch as they did not repent they must be requited with their punishment.
And as for their shepherds, if they did not rebuke them they shall find with Me blame and punishment, and their punishment shall be like unto that of Eli and Pola. Eli did not admonish his sons, and P6I5 sold his children for a little of the food that passeth quickly away. And moreover they resemble Esau who sold his right as firstborn for a mess of pottage (or, for one meal) and his posterity for an ox (Genesis xxv, 33). And these shepherds have sold [themselves], even as Paul saith, 'They serve their bellies and not Christ ' " (Romans xvi, I3).
And then I saw [men] suspended on pillars of fire, and a flame of fire was driving them hither and thither; and there were in front of their eyes many kinds of fruit and some pure, sweet water. And when they wished to eat some of the fruits and to drink of that water, they could not reach them, and neither fruit nor water en-tered their mouths. And when I saw [this] I was ex-ceedingly sad and sorrowful, and I asked my Son, saying, " Who are these men? " And He said unto me, " These are they who rejected fasting, and they reduced the fasts and made haste to do them away, whether it was the fast of the fourth day, or the' fast of the eve of the Sabbath, or the Great Fast [of Lent]. And this shall be their punishment [for ever]." And He answered and said unto me, " If they had fasted two days they would have obtained remission of their sins.
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And then I saw men with their hands cut off, and a flame of fire moving them hither and thither, and I asked my Son, saying, " Who are these men ? " And He said unto me, " These are they who wrote papers (deeds or documents), and who cut off portions of them. This shall be their punishment [for ever]."
And then I saw men whom [the angels of darkness] were smiting with flames of fire, and whom they were bridling with bridles of fire. And I asked my Son, say-ing, " Who are these men? " And He said unto me, These are they who cursed their neighbours and aban-doned their brethren. When the angels cursed Adam they fell down from their exalted place [Fol. 106a]. This shall be their punishment for ever."
And then I saw a pit, the inside of which was full of bitumen and sulphur ; there was no light therein and it was full of darkness, and I saw there many men with their hands and feet cut off. And I asked my Son, say-ing, " Who are these men ? " And He said unto me, " These are Muhammadans, men who do not believe that I was born of thee, and they do not believe in My baptism, or in My Resurrection and Ascension, or in the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost. This shall be their punishment for ever."
And then I saw other men with sulphur and fire issu-ing from their mouths, and there was a scroll of fire hanging from their necks. And I asked my Son, saying, " Who are these men? " And He said unto me, " These are priests, the teachers of the Book of Psalms, who made the song of praise to cease in [their] churches. This shall be their punishment for ever."
And then I saw a man whom four angels were hold-ing suspended with ropes of fire, and his feet were in the air and his head was below, that is to say, lie was hanging head downwards, and they were suspending him on spears of fire which pierced his face. And when the angels loosed the ropes of fire from his feet he fell down into the fire. And I asked my Son, saying, "What is the name of this man, and what is his sin ? " And He said unto me, " ' Priest ' is his name, and his sin I will describe unto thee. He did not bring incense and offer-ing on the day of the Sabbath of the Christians in purity, and he was sluggish and arrogant."
And I an-swered and said unto my Son, "At what time dost Thou wish [men] to bring sacrifice and offering, O my Son? " And He answered and said unto me, " On the day of the [Christian] Sabbath I wish them to bring the Offer-ing at daybreak ; on the Jewish Sabbath at the third hour. Hast thou not heard that He said, ' I did not come to destroy the Law and the Prophets but to fulfil them' ? (Matt. v, I7). Now, I did not destroy (or, abolish) the first Sabbath without [setting] a day [in its place]; and as for the other Sabbaths let them hold them in honour like the First Day of the Week."
And I also saw a man whom the angels of darkness] were bringing low with darts of fire. And I. asked my Son, saying, " What is the name of this man, land what is his sin ? " And He answered and said unto me,] "His name is ' Deacon, and his sin I will describe [Fol. 106b] unto thee. He did not bring in a pure sacrifice quickly on the First Day of the Week. This shall be his punish-ment for ever."
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And again I looked at that river of fire and at the place where a pit of fire had been dug. And I saw there men and women, and they were immersed in it up to their necks, and there were serpents and vipers of fire in every part of their hearts, and four angels of darkness were piercing them with spears of fire. And I wept bitterly and cried out loudly, and I said unto my Son, " Who arc these people ? " And He said unto me, " They are monks and nuns who did not walk in My path, and did not follow in
MY footsteps, but made their days to pass in fornication. This shall be their punishment for ever."
And again I saw Jahannam scaled with seven seals. And my Son cried out, saying, " Open ye the doors of Jahannarn that MARY, My Mother, may see." And when those doors had been thrown open and I had seen [Jahannam] I was afraid and terrified, and I said unto Him, " What is this river ? " And He said unto me, " Its name is Jahannam." And I answered and said unto Him, " Who are they who dwell therein? " He said, " These are they who said that the Son of God was not ; this shall be their punishment for ever." And when all those who were under torture saw me, they cried out, saying, " Blessed art thou, O MARY, and blessed is the Fruit of thy womb. Blessed are the eyes that see thee."
And I answered and said unto my Son, " Have mercy upon them for my sake, O my Son; there is no man without sin." And my Son answered and said unto me, " From the eve of the Sabbath (i.e. Sunday) until the second day of the week dawneth, the sinners [in Jahannam] shall have respite from their torture." And our Lord said unto me, " Be not thou sorrowful, O My Mother ! He who hath celebrated thy com-memoration, or hath called upon thy name, or who Hath built a shrine to thee, or hath written the history of thy words, on him will I show mercy to the twelfth generation for thy sake, O thou who didst give Me birth. This I swear unto thee by My Father, and by His Son, Myself, and by the flow of blood from My side, for the redemption of [the world], and by His Spirit, My Spirit." And when I heard His voice I gave thanks unto Him.
And now, O John, know thou and be certain of the truth of all these things that I have told thee. And thou shalt not lay this book in a place that is defiled. And no woman who is with child, or who is after the manner of women, shall approach the place where it is' and no woman who committeth fornication shall draw nigh unto it. [Fol. I07a] No man of evil disposition shall dwell where it is. What will it profit a woman who fornicateth when she cometh to church ? And what will it profit the fornicator when lie entereth a church?
Hearken, O John. Command the people that they cele-brate my commemoration on the 2I st day of the month of Ter (January I6),' and on the 2Ist day of the month of Sane (June 15), and on the 16th day of the month Nahasse (August 9), 2 and on the I6th day of the month of Yakatit (February 10). If they can, let them cele-brate my commemoration each month, and if they can-not do so, let them celebrate it each year. I will stand by him who shall celebrate my commemoration on the day in the time of his tribulation. And to him that hath had this [book] written, and to him that wrote it I will show myself. And I will write in the Book of Life the names of him that readeth it, and him that trans-lateth it, and him that hath hearkened readily to the words therein, for ever and ever. Amen.
I The day of MARY's death.
2 The day of MARY's Ascension.
HERE ENDETH THE VISION OF MARY
May her prayer and her blessing, and the mercy of her beloved Son be with her servant the sinner ... and with all her slaves and her handmaidens, for ever and ever. Amen. And may Christ write the names of the writer and the man who had this book written upon a pillar of red gold in the kingdom of heaven for ever and ever. Amen. O my Lady who consolest, who art, inas-much as thy word is shown never to be false, the Consoler of the sinner, thy servant Hayla Shelase for ever and ever! Amen.
Feed me, MARY, thy hireling minister, with
The bread of a right understanding and the wine of wisdom
Even as th`ou didst give to the famished dog water to drink.
If my sin increaseth overmuch among the people,
Remember, O my Lady, thine own invincible loving mercy.
Ras Tafari International consultants
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Africa Liberation Day Inquiry