chapter  IV
Faith and Philosophy
Pages 4

We are familiar with the Augustinian idea that words are vessels which do not cease to be pure and precious even when they are employed to convey the poisoned wine of error. Could we not turn it the other way round and admire the wine of grace even when it is poured out of imperfect or misshapen vessels, even when the human intellect has been deformed by a faulty philosophy or inaccurate ideas? In reality this is applicable to every man who tries to utter God’s thoughts; we are more conscious of it, however, in the writings of those who have been swept off their feet by some great revelation; of those, above all, who are still groping in a state of transition. Sometimes the novelty of their expressions and the unaccustomed use to which they put the words they employ give a certain youthful directness to their testimony. Sometimes, again, their clumsy attempts serve to throw into greater relief the divine wisdom to which they aspire. But it may also happen sometimes that the opposition of their old ideas and former expressions hinders their ascent and obscures their conclusions, Has this been sufficiently recognized in the case of Simone Weil?