The Unfolding of the Mystery of life is as the opening of a Passion Flower to the genial warmth of the summer sun; its disclosure of inner beauty and fragrance. Beneath the influence of Nature, by the invigorating and ever-changing sea with its unceasing music, in the dim and mystic shadows of the darkening forest, the soul seems to expand, until Infinity becomes its only possible sphere of life. One is for the time being in true relationship with the Creator; in possession of the mystery that has gathered about sin, suffering, and temptation; seeing no longer through a glass darkly, but face to face with Truth as revealed in Nature. The grand free immensity of land, sea, and sky—the perfection in detail, the conscious thrill of life that pulses through all things, the realization of the Divine Presence in the World, is to the tempted, oft-defeated soul, as the home-going after a long and bitter banishment. When Nature breathes comprehensively of God, the west wind interlacing the shining leaves of the tree tops, while the yearning sigh steals through the woods as of a soul seeking (through its very agonies and struggles) life and breath and all things.
One awakens to the true significance of life, its search for God in everything that is apparently outside Him; to the good that is at the heart of things that seem evil, the dawn of light in and through the terrible Gethsemane of temptation and despair. Materialism drops away from the soul as a garment outgrown; the senses become spiritualized, desires purified, and the inward eye beholds the Vision Beautiful, arising stately and strong out of the dead ashes of past blunderings and folly; a spiritual Building "not made with hands, eternal in the Heavens."
For the moment one becomes a poet, writing out in flaming characters the great drama of cities and vast territories, filling the Universe with music, and touching into instant melody the breaking of moonlit waves upon the sands; painting from east to west with an impassioned beauty the wide spaces of the skies; all this and more becomes the soul freed from itself and in harmony with Truth made visible because of beauty, when duty dissolves into love, sorrow into a Garden where the Man of Sorrows was acquainted with grief; and found joy; turmoil and discord into the echo of that far-off Voice of Peace, wrung from the Heart of the Cross, whose undying Shadow lightens all the shadows of the world, and where all that is of the earth earthy is known to be but the test, whereby the soul grows pure and true and self-forgetting, and finally more than conqueror through the Love that once was given to death for the life of the whole world. Thus by the silent eloquence of Nature, under the starlit skies, by the wide seas, in the whispering woods, in the pleading voice of a little child, is the secret revealed as is the wonder of a waking day, and the secret is TRUTH.