Just received from Amazon the beautifully produced translation of Julian of Norwich, Showing of Love. The type font, the page layout, the paper quality, and the overall production makes it a treat to read and handle. The translation by Julia Holloway is somewhere between medieval and modern in the range of vocabulary and sentence structure. It reads smoothly, and with a care for the cadences and stylistic oddities of one of the finest writers in early vernacular English. It's a sign of high quality translation when a text you know well, reads with freshness and an absence of deliberate novelty, the translator content to let the voice of the text be heard without literary amplification and sound effects. I've read the Penguin translation by Clifton Wolters, and the Paulist Press one by James Walsh, and they still have their place for Julian enthusiasts - the Walsh one remains the definitive modern version.
But this lovely edition (now in protective plastic cover courtesy of a friendly member of UWS library staff) will accompany me through Lent - because Julian is my chosen read this year. Time to enjoy a classic statement of theology that is both radical and orthodox, that was the fruit of twenty years of contemplative prayer, and that speaks with profound relevance to a world that needs as never before, to hear the love of God redemptively defying all that makes for diminishment, futility and waste:
"And thus our good Lord answered to all the questions and doubts that I might make, saying full comfortably, "I may make all things well, I can make all things well, and I will make all things well, and I shall make all things well, and you shall see your self that all manner of thing shall be well."
Julian, more than any other theologian except Traherne, celebrates the wise, good love of God by seeing beyond the immediate and transient to a time when all of creation will applaud the Creator.
For now, I decided to write a Fibonacci in honour of Julian the theologian of the love of God.
Fibonacci on Julian Of Norwich, Revelations of Divine Love
Divine Love Revealed!
All manner of thing shall be well.
I saw a little thing the size of a hazelnut!
It represents all that is made, and it exists and ever shall, because God loves it!
Would you know your Lord's meaning in this? Know it well, Love was his meaning. Hold yourself therein, and you shall understand and know more of the same.