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All living creatures are sparks from the radiation of God’s brilliance, and these sparks emerge from God like the rays of the sun. If God did not give off these sparks, how would the divine flame become fully visible?

~ Hildegard of Bingen

Hildegard of Bingen was a Benedictine abbess of a monastery in the 1100’s and one of the most remarkable women of the Middle Ages. She was a mystic, musician, artist, writer, and preacher, and she also advised kings, bishops, and popes. Hildegard is considered a scientist and healer; she promoted natural medicine that integrated physical, psychological, and spiritual healing. She explored the curative power of natural objects, wrote about medicinal uses of plants, animals, and trees, and proposed principals for a balanced diet. {taken from a Monastery of the Holy Spirit placard; image from Wikipedia}