April 2, 1947
In regard to the phrase “the soul, which is a particle of God” (May 9, 1945), which Father Migliorini would like to correct to “which is almost a particle…,” Jesus says:
“Genesis states: ‘…And He blew into his nostrils the breath of life. God-Life blew his breath into man. He thus gave him a particle of his Infinite, of his Love-in short, of Himself.
“With his creative will God gives you the soul, the eternally vital part which is in you and which constitutes man’s spiritual likeness and image in relation to God, his Father and Creator. The Creator, because He created you. The Father, because, as an earthly father communicates to his children a physical and psychological likeness to himself, together with the blood of his own stock, so the Eternal Father spiritually communicates to you his image and likeness, together with Life, which radiates from Him and which, by his desire, ought to enjoy Him eternally in the Heavens after the earthly trial. As a true Father, the Father gives you Life, for whoever gives life is a father. As an Eternal Father, for He who gives you life is eternal.
“Some confuse being created by God with being God and say that all that is is God and that man thus has the same nature and essence as God and that even the other creations of God which we see are God. There can be no greater error of pride.
“Man does not have the same nature and essence as God, and much less do other created realities. God is the Creator; man, the one who was created by God. If man were God, he would not need to be created, for God is the Uncreated One. If man were part of a totality with God, earth would already be Heaven, for men, the part, would already possess enjoyment of the All. That enjoyment which is man’s ultimate end and at which he arrives after the heroic struggle and perseverance maintained and practiced during the day of earthly exile. How would man be in exile on the earth if that is were God? Man would then be in God already-that is, no longer in exile. How would he sin if he were God? How could he be born with original sin if he were God? How could he have a beginning by conception if he were God, who has always existed and was created by no one and nothing?
“As you see, soul of mine, the heretical doctrine asserting that everything is God destroys numerous truths of God’s history and man’s. It destroys the relations between kingly, divine fatherhood and filial subjection. It destroys the reverential fear of God. It puffs man up with obscene pride because it makes him raise up his arrogant brow, shouting the same cry as Satan: ‘I am You!’ Who is like God? Michael’s angelic cry is the opposite of the Satanic cry: ‘Who is like God?’ And the children of God respond, ‘No one is like God. You alone are Holy! You alone are the Lord! You alone are Most High!’
“That is the hymn of those in whom the ‘part, or spirit of God,’ as described by the greatest theologians, is really alive because it is living in Love, grafter into Jesus Christ. It is the hymn of those able to make the first creation of the soul-the blowing of God’s breath into dust which becomes flesh and will go back to being dust and then be reconstructed as flesh in the final resurrection and last judgment-be followed by recreation with the ‘life’ restored by Baptism and maintained by the Sacraments and the other paternal, divine gifts, ‘life’-that is, Grace-and supercreation with a heroic will which supercreates them as truly resembling God, eternal mirrors reflecting Eternal Perfection and with their splendors setting aflame the blazing Heavens, throne of the Immense, Powerful, Holy, Single, Triune God.
“The statement is correct: ‘You are gods and children of the Most High.’ But you are children because of the ‘particle’ which God has breathed into you, and you must become gods through the constant effort of a whole earthly lifetime. If you were already gods, you would not have to strive to become such. Love calls you to divinize yourselves through love, but you are not born gods and are not gods because One Along is God. The ‘part’, the spiritual sou, infused into you by God, is what gives you aspirations and the way to become the kings in God’s Kingdom and eternal children of the Most High-your reward, wealth, and eternal, immeasurable joy.
“Moreover, let those who seek to disturb because ‘the soul is a particle of God’ has been written also consider that this has been stated by the Holy Fathers and by select minds in every period of Catholicism and that to deny knowing certain matters to disturb a soul is to commit a twofold sin.
“In addition, let them consider the people I was speaking to Gentiles, for whom it was necessary to use a teaching method which would attract their imagination and their desire to ascend to the Olympian heights, where so many famous personalities in their time had been placed, transformed into deities by the people’s idolatry of creatures who, for one reason or another, were out of the ordinary, and this was to attract them, by way of human aspirations, towards the pathways where God is already shining as a distant sun bidding to be reached, given his gentle, majestic, divine splendor. Pagan creatures unaware of the existence of the soul who would understand its importance and dignity and the duty to protect its ‘life; only by having them clearly grasp that it has a sublime value because its origin is in God, who creates it.
“It was not easy to attract minds covered by the resistant scales of pagan conceptions towards Goodness! The apostolate was difficult then! I-and those who were the first to evangelize-had to open minds-as a thin, resistant ploughshare opens clods of earth-hardened by centuries of error, entangled with very stubborn roots, consolidated in their religious though by a love for their country, which they regarded as in danger if their altars were cleared of idols and Christian truths took the place of pagan ceremonies and beliefs. More refined minds than those of the black people in Africa or the savages in Patagonia and Polynesia, the Greeks, Romans, Gauls, Iberians and Cymbrians-but especially the first two-were hard to conquer for God’s workers. And the histories of the Church document the skill and pain with which the first Christian priests had to adorn themselves to turn the pagan world into the Christian world.
Perfect charity, perfect patience, perfect heroism, every perfect virtue. That is how the pagan world was conquered for God.
“Not it would be necessary to begin again. But if the world is once more a hard clod of soil rendered sterile by error, if it is bound by the roots of evil, and if it is solidified by hatred, there is an excessive lack of gentle, thin, resistant, persevering ploughshare to reopen the soil, free it from unhealthy roots, and sow love therein, at the price of complete sacrifice.
“To want to add an ‘almost’ is really to come closer to the heretical concept that everything is God. For the deity (not divinity in this case, since a god intellectually conceived in that way as made of everything that exists is not God, but a pagan deity) thus seems composed of these particles. No, it is not particles that make up God, but it is God who infuses his spirit-that is, part of Himself-to form man: a creature composed of a spiritual substance and a corporeal one. Let it be left, then, as I dictated. For it is correct. And everyone with an upright religious spirit understands that it is correct.
“And as for you, be at peace. It is I who dictate. And I do not know error because I am luminous Infinite Wisdom.”