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From the publisher
"Select Meditations" is among the earliest works of the poet and mystic Thomas Traherne (1637-74). Written shortly after the Restoration of Charles II in 1660, the manuscript was not discovered until 1964 and first published by Carcanet in 1997. Traherne, a young clergyman in a country parish at the time, explores his relationship with God and his vocation to 'teach Immortal Souls the way to Heaven'. It is a spiritual journey that involves examination of his doubts and failings (he confesses to 'too much proneness to Speak'), of the political issues that shaped his times, and of the realities of ministering to his congregation. Above all, though, Traherne's meditations celebrate the beauty of the world and the human community transfigured by the love of God, in terms that speak across time. 'Remember', he writes, 'that the world is the beginning of Gifts.' Julia J. Smith's landmark edition, preserving the original spelling, provides a detailed introduction and notes on the text.