BY THOMAS A KEMPIS
Nihil Obstat and Imprimatur, 1941
CHAPTER 24: OF AVOIDING CURIOUS INQUIRY RESPECTING THE LIFE OF OTHERS
SON, be not curious, and give not way to useless cares.
What is this or that to thee? Follow thou Me.
For what is it to thee whether that man be such or such, or whether this man do or speak this or that?
Thou dost not need to answer for others, but thou shalt for thyself give an account; why, therefore, dost thou meddle with them?
Behold, I know all men, and see all things that are done under the sun; and I know how it is with everyone-----what he thinks, what he would have, and at what his intention aims.
To Me, therefore, are all things to be committed; but do thou keep thyself in good peace; and let the unquiet be as unquiet as he will.
Whatsoever he shall do or say, will come upon himself, because he cannot deceive Me.
Be not solicitous for the shadow of a great name, nor for acquaintance with many, nor for the particular love of individuals.
For these things generate distractions and great darkness in the heart.
I would gladly speak My word to thee, and reveal My secrets, if thou wouldst diligently observe My coming, and open to Me the door of thy heart.
Be circumspect, and watch in prayers, and humble thyself in all things.
IN order to enjoy true peace we must, in the first place, avoid all curiosity as to what regards our neighbor; secondly, we must receive with patience all the afflictions which arise either from the justice of God, or the injustice of man; thirdly, we must suffer and accustom ourselves to the privation of all joy and consolation; sacrifice to God all the pleasures of our mind, heart, and senses; and thank Him for not permitting us to find any real satisfaction but in Him.
I ACKNOWLEDGE, O God, that my only desire and the only curiosity of my mind, is to know whether I am at present in the state of grace, and whether I shall so continue until death; whether Thou hast pardoned me my sins, and whether Thou wilt grant me that greatest of all Thy mercies, final perseverance. But I will resign this desire to Thee, I will sacrifice this security, and will hope from Thy pure bounty this greatest of all graces. Amen.