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26. The Beatitude of God

1. Beatitude, or happiness, or blessedness, is the perfect good of an intellectual nature. It consists in the fact that an intellectual being (that is, being with understanding and free will) knows that it possesses its true good in sufficient measure,and that it is in control of its actions. Now, God is infinitely aware of himself as absolute good, and his perfect will is in absolute control. Hence God is infinitely happy. God is infinite beatitude.

2. In our human way of understanding, we attribute the divine happiness in a special way to the divine intellect. Yet we repeatedly remind ourselves that God's intellect is really God himself, for it is one with the divine essence.

3. Only God is infinitely happy; that is, only God is infinite beatitude. Rational creatures (men and angels) seek God as the object that will fulfill them, and make them perfectly happy: God is their objective happiness. And the possession of God in the beatific vision constitutes their subjective happiness, that is, the happiness which is in them as its possessors or subjects. Inasmuch as all the blessed in heaven have not all the same degree of charity and its resultant measure of the light of glory, there are in heaven different subjective beatitudes.

4. The infinite beatitude of God perfectly embraces all beatitudes.

"Many words do not satisfy the soul; but a good life eases the mind and a clean conscience inspires great trust in God."
Thomas á Kempis

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"The supreme perfection of man in this life is to be so united to God that all his soul with all its faculties and powers are so gathered into the Lord God that he becomes one spirit with him, and remembers nothing except God, is aware of and recognises nothing but God, but with all his desires unified by the joy of love, he rests contentedly in the enjoyment of his Maker alone."
St Albert the Great

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"It is better to be burdened and in company with the strong than to be unburdened and with the weak. When you are burdened you are close to God, your strength, who abides with the afflicted. When you are relieved of the burden you are close to yourself, your own weakness; for virtue and strength of soul grow and are confirmed in the trials of patience."
St John of the Cross, OCD - Doctor of the Church

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