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Saint Augustine -
The River Which Flows Uphill

Behold ye the path of the living Christ,
as a fair stream which flows through the desert
All may dip in their hands and drink,
for its source is never-ending abundance
Those who thirst after righteousness
may lift their staves and follow the river
Which runs through mighty chasms and valleys, and rocky peaks
Unto the top of the world.

The stream sends clear water into the swamps of human habitation
Small rivulets into fetid mountains of humanity
That even to the greatest sinner, the proudest and most lustful,
the sweet water of life is always near.

It rises from the marketplace and brothel
Into the regions of the desert
The sparse bush, and rocky alcoves,
dust storms blowing across the horizon
But the water may be hidden by the desert
And the traveler thirst.

To the traveler I say:
Look beyond the arid wastes, look high into the mountains
For there is a river which flows uphill,
to the heights of the sky
And few there are that are capable of following its powerful course.

The mountains are reaches of sanctity,
the very beginning
Where the true struggles of the self begin
To enter a monastery and change one's habitation and friends is easy
To change one's life and one's soul is difficult.

Follow the course of the living Christ
as he pours upon you the baptismal waters of sanctity
In crashing waterfalls and powerful rapids
In sheets of water raining down from the skies
Walk through the blinding spray and its rainbows
Grasp trees and bushes as you climb, but do not cling to them
For their roots in the earth will emerge and trap you.

Pray to the living God as you strive ever upwards
For the path becomes dark,
and you must be led by the glory of the living lord your God
Or be lost in the night forever.

Pray without ceasing, let your love illumine the skies
That the darkness of man may drop away
And only the light of God show through.

Pray unto the Holy, with all your heart and soul
Pray for the shining light of guidance
That your path may be glorious with love.

Travel far beyond the mountains of the self
Until at last the top is reached, the home of the Spirit
Where all passions of the soul have been left behind.

And atop the serene and peaceful gardens of the Holy
Shines a white bird flying
And beyond him, his smiling and radiant master.

May all be blessed who revere his Name.

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