Archive for Angelus Silesius

Some via negativa poetry

I haven’t posted in a couple days, I have a number of irons in the fire and been doing a lot of art which I will share soon. But I’m thinking of you and thought you might enjoy these via negativa poems:

God is pure no-thing,
concealed in now and here:
The less you reach for him,
the more he will appear
-Angelus Silesius

If in your heart you make
a manger for his birth,
then God will once again
become a child on earth.
-Angelus Silesius

Beloved, show me the way out of this prison.
Make me needless of both worlds.
Pray erase from this mind all
that is not you.
-Abu Saeed Abil Kheir

Thank the flame for its light,
but do not forget the lampholder
standing in the shade with constancy of patience.
-Tagore (Little Birds 64)

Where is the fountain
that throws up these flowers
in a ceaseless outbreak of ecstasy?
-Tagore (Little Birds 70)

Via Negativa in Poetry

Here are some poems I love on the via negativa, finding God in absence. For more posts on this look here:


I have lived on the lip
Of insanity, wanting to know reasons,
Knocking on a door. It opens,
I’ve been knocking from the inside!
Rumi (trans. Coleman Barks & John Moyne)


God, whose love and joy
Are present everywhere,
Can’t come to visit you
Unless you aren’t there.
-Angelus Silesius (trans. Stephan Mitchell)

Lao Tzu:

The Tao that can be told
is not the eternal Tao.
The name that can be named
is not the eternal name.

The unnamable is the eternal real.
Naming is the origin
Of all particular things.

Free from desire, you realize the mystery.
Caught in desire, you see only the manifestations.

Yet mystery and manifestations
Arise from the same source.
This source is called darkness.

Darkness within darkness.
The gateway to all understanding.
-Lao-Tzu (trans. Stephan Mitchell)

A couple quotes from The Unveiling of Love by Sufi Sheikh Muzaffer Ozak Al-Jerrahi:

(On affection toward God) …it is possible by letting oneself fall like a drop into the ocean.

As for those who are annihilated in God, it is absolute certainty that they will exist forever.

The last quotes are borderline negative/affirmative way, but they are so beautiful…