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18. The Life of God

1. Things have life when they have the perfection of self-movement. In the world around us, this perfection is manifested by plants, animals, and human beings. Other bodily things (called, in general, minerals) have not this perfection. Therefore, not all things are alive; some things have life, some lack it.

2. Life is primarily the substantial principle or source of self-movement. Secondarily, it is the operation of self-movement.

3. Plants have vegetal life with the operations of nutrition, growth and development, and reproduction. Animals have vegetal life and also sentient life with its operations of sensing, appetizing, and local movement. Human beings have vegetal and sentient life and also rational life with its operations of understanding and will. Rational life is far superior to the other forms of life. Yet in earthly man, rational life is bound up with bodiliness. Even in angels it seeks a goal outside itself. Pure and perfect rational life is self-sufficient; its movement is not change; it tends to no goal outside itself; its activity is identified with its essence. Such rational life is all-perfect life, absolute life. It is pure perfection. Now, all pure perfection belongs to God eminently. Therefore, God is life.

4. God is life. God is knowledge. In the divine simplicity, the perfections of life and knowledge are one. Hence all things that are in God's knowledge are in God's life, and therefore we have the saying, "All things are life in God".

"Before a man chooses his confessor, he ought to think well about it, and pray about it also; but when he has once chosen, he ought not to change, except for most urgent reasons, but put the utmost confidence in his director."
St Philip Neri

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"Whoever wants to stand alone without the support of a master and guide will be like the tree that stands alone in a field without a proprietor. No matter how much the tree bears, passers-by will pick the fruit before it ripens. "
St John of the Cross, OCD - Doctor of the Church

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"When the devil has failed in making a man fall, he puts forward all his energies to create distrust between the penitent and the confessor, and so by little and little he gains his end at last."
St Philip Neri

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