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Viriditas: God in the Green of Creation

Born in 1198, Hildegard was the tenth child and so she was "tithed" to the church and raised in a monastery. She was from a little town called Bingen in the Rhineland Valley in Germany.

We remember her today because she died on this day in 1179 at the age of 81.

From childhood, Hildegard experienced vibrant spiritual visions, and when she was 43 a voice told her to record what she saw. This picture is one of her unusual and wondrous illuminations in which she illustrated the feminine imagery for God and God's creative activity.

Despite living in a male dominated world, her confidence in her visions and her illustrations gave her spiritual authority despite being a woman.

Hildegard is best known for her spiritual concept of Viriditas - greenness which is a word meaning vitality, fecundity, lushness, verdure, or growth. For Hildegard, the Divine manifested itself in nature and the greenness of the creation was proof of that Divine presence.

What if we saw the Divine in all that is green around us? Try looking at nature with viriditas in mind.


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