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Stanzas concerning an ecstasy experienced in high contemplation.
I entered into unknowing, and there I remained unknowing transcending all knowledge.
1. I entered into unknowing, yet when I saw myself there, without knowing where I was, I understood great things; I will not say what I felt for I remained in unknowing transcending all knowledge.
2. That perfect knowledge was of peace and holiness held at no remove in profound solitude; it was something so secret that I was left stammering, transcending all knowledge.
3. I was so 'whelmed, so absorbed and withdrawn, that my senses were left deprived of all their sensing, and my spirit was given an understanding while not understanding, transcending all knowledge.
4. He who truly arrives there cuts free from himself; all that he knew before now seems worthless, and his knowledge so soars that he is left in unknowing transcending all knowledge.
5. The higher he ascends the less he understands, because the cloud is dark which lit up the night; whoever knows this remains always in unknowing transcending all knowledge.
6. This knowledge in unknowing is so overwhelming that wise men disputing can never overthrow it, for their knowledge does not reach to the understanding of not understanding, transcending all knowledge.
7. And this supreme knowledge is so exalted that no power of man or learning can grasp it; he who masters himself will, with knowledge in unknowing, always be transcending.
8. And if you should want to hear: this highest knowledge lies in the loftiest sense of the essence of God; this is a work of his mercy, to leave one without understanding, transcending all knowledge. (St John of the Cross, The Living Flame of Love, Fourth Stanza)