Christian Themes

(Literary Essentials: Christian Fiction and Nonfiction)

The Mind’s Road to God allegorizes the Christian spiritual path as follows: The six wings of the Seraph correspond to the six stages of illumination by which the soul ascends to God. Six stages of the soul’s powers enable us to ascend by six stages to God: sense, imagination, reason, intellect, intelligence, and conscience. We may ascend to God by reflecting on his traces in the sensible world, by considering our natural powers as reflecting God, and by achieving illumination through Christ as mediator. Each of these three modes of understanding is twofold: We see God through them and in them.

The six stages, then, are these: We understand God through sensible things as bearing the traces of his creative power; we see God in sensible things as essence, potency, and presence; we enter our own minds and see God’s image stamped upon our natural powers; by grace we see the First Principle in ourselves; by reflecting on pure being, we know God as unity; by reflecting on the goodness of pure being, we know God as Trinity.