Anselm of Canterbury (1033 – 1109), also known as Anselm of Aosta, was a famous Benedictine monk who served as Archbishop of Canterbury.

He stood out as one of the most brilliant theologians and philosophers of scholasticism.

Famous quotes and phrases from Anselm of Canterbury

In today’s article we will learn more about the ideas and thoughts of this monk through the most famous phrases of Anselm of Canterbury.

  • You may be interested in: “The 74 best phrases of Saint Francis of Assisi”

1. I do not seek to understand in order to believe, but I believe in order to understand. Well, I believe this, because if I did not believe, I would not understand.

The basis of his thinking was based on a belief.

2. In re-examining the work often, I have not been able to find anything I have said in it that does not agree with the writings of the Catholic Fathers and especially with those of the blessed Augustine.

A veneration of his intellectual references within the Church.

3. Even if I didn’t want to believe in you, I can’t help but understand that you exist.

A sentence by Anselm of Canterbury that invites us to reflect.

Come on, little man! Run away for a while from your tasks, hide for a little space from the agitation of your thoughts.

A channel to become yourself again.

5. Come, put aside your pitiful care and put aside your work.

In line with the previous famous quote.

6. For a moment, dedicate your time to God and rest a moment in Him.

Mystical reflection cures all ills, according to St. Anselm of Canterbury.

7. Go into the inner chamber of your mind, close all things except God and all that can help you seek God; and having blocked the door of your chamber, seek Him.

Only when we are alone can we come into contact with God.

8. Speak now, O my heart, O my whole heart, speak now, and say to thy God, My face hath sought thee: I will seek thy face, O Lord.

An ode to the Supreme Being.

9. Teach me to seek and reveal You when I seek You, for I cannot seek You unless You teach me, nor find You unless You reveal Yourself.

Only one is able to find one’s way.

10. Let me seek you in longing, let me long for you in seeking; let me find you in love and love you in finding.

A great poetic phrase from the Archbishop of Canterbury.

11. Lord, I thank you and I thank you because you have created me in this your image, so that I may be aware of you, conceive you and love you.

An explicit thanks to God.

12. But that image has been consumed by the vices, and obscured by the smoke of evil that cannot accomplish that for which it was created, except that You renew it and create it again.

On the necessary atonement every Sunday.

13. I do not strive, Lord, to penetrate Your heights, for I do not in any way compare my understanding with Yours; but I long to understand in some degree Your truth that my heart believes and loves.

An ode to knowledge and to the figure of God.

14. I long, O God, to know You, to love You, that I may rejoice in You.

Another praise for the figure of God Almighty.

15. And if I cannot achieve total joy in this life, at least I can advance from day to day until that joy comes to me completely.

On the final redemption, in a mythical phrase from St. Anselm of Canterbury.

16. Where true heavenly joys are, there should always be the desires of our heart.

Nothing mundane should make us lose our heads.

17. Do, I pray you, Lord, that I may feel with my heart what I touch with my intelligence.

The link between emotions and reason, summarized in this sentence by Anselm de Canterbury.

18. God was conceived as a very pure Virgin… it was appropriate that the virgin should be radiant with such great purity that no greater purity could be conceived.

About the purity of the son of God, Jesus Christ.

19. God often works more for the lives of the illiterate who seek the things that are God’s, than for the ability of scholars who seek the things that are theirs.

God’s goodness, according to Anselm, knows no limits.

20. Take away the grace, and you have nothing to be saved for. Take away free will, and you have nothing to be saved for.

Reflection in a metaphysical tone.

21. For vengeance belongs to no one but to Him who is the Lord of all; for when the powers of the world achieved this end, God Himself made it to design it.

The only owner of the ability to take revenge is God.

22. Therefore, Lord, it is not only you who cannot be thought of as greater, but you are also something greater than can be thought of.

Inconceivably huge.

23. In you I move, and in you I have my being; and I cannot come to you. You are within me and in me, and I do not feel you.

About the omnipresence of the Supreme Being.

24. God is not slow to listen to our prayers because He has no courage to give; but that, by increasing our desires, He can give us more widely.

A beautiful reflection on divine compassion.

25. God is that, the greatest of what cannot be conceived.

Unimaginable and exaggeratedly kind.

26. Let not worldly prosperity divert you, nor let any worldly adversity prevent you from praising it.

A reflection to be applied to our daily life.

27. A single Mass offered by oneself during one’s life can be worth more than a thousand celebrated for the same intention after death.

About his work and the importance of being a perfectionist.

28. And if I cannot do so completely in this life, let me continue until the day I reach that fullness.

After death, it’s supposed to be.

29. Let me receive what you promised through your truth, so that my joy may be full.

A plea to God.

30. O supreme and inaccessible light! O complete and blessed truth, how far thou art from me, who art so near to thee! how far thou art from my vision, though I am so near to thee! Everywhere you are fully present, and I do not see you.

Another phrase in relation to the majesty of God.

31. Idleness is the enemy of the soul.

The more fun, the less purity, according to Anselm de Canterbury.

32. God has promised forgiveness to the one who repents, but He has not promised repentance to the one who sins.

Such is the moral code of the Supreme Being.

33. Deliver me by thy mercy, and punish me not with thy justice.

A plea to God, in reference to his goodness.

34. Disasters teach us humility.

When we lose everything, we have a chance to feel like mere mortals again.

35. It is impossible to save a soul without devotion to Mary and without her protection.

About the virgin.

36. There is no inconsistency in God commanding us not to take upon ourselves that which belongs to him alone.

What is God’s is His and nothing else.

37. For that of which something is made is a cause of that which is made of it; and, necessarily, every cause contributes something to the existence of the effect.

Philosophical phrase.

38. Lust does not desire procreation, but only pleasure.

About the sex act and its ultimate motive.

39. I have written the following little work… in the role of one who strives to elevate his mind to the contemplation of God and one who seeks to understand what he believes.

Another sentence on the virtues of people who believe.

40. Therefore, Lord God, you are more truly omnipotent, for you have no power through powerlessness and nothing can be against you.

A reflection on the omnipotence of the Supreme Being.

41. Therefore, it is not appropriate for God to overlook sin without punishment.

All conduct must have its divine punishment if it is not morally acceptable.

42. Because I don’t seek to understand in order to believe, but I believe in order to understand. Because I believe this: unless I believe, I will not understand.

Faith brings knowledge.

43. This pamphlet wants to expose in usual language what there is about the divine essence and other points related to this meditation.

For reflection.

44. Eminent Nature is the first and only cause. It alone produced everything by itself and from nothing.

The way God speaks: through the natural environment.

45. To know oneself will then be to ascend to the knowledge of the eminent essence.

About self-discovery and the divine.

46. He knows that there is always a similarity and a dissimilarity.

The inconsistencies, in the eyes of God.

47. How does the finite relate to the infinite, the One to the multiple?

A philosophical question on the air, of great interest.

48. It is evident that eminent Nature gives life, gives vigor. It creates and maintains conservation by its presence. This means that she is everywhere: through things and within things.

The vitality of nature is virtually unparalleled.

49. To express God we have to take all possible attributes and the best ones at the best level.

In a superlative degree, always.

50. The artist “says” the things he thinks of himself before he performs them. In the same way God has a way of speaking.

A metaphor for understanding the function of thought.

51. The Word is the image and likeness of the thing in the mind.

Do you know what the difference is between meaning and significance?

52. The eminent Essence is defined because it lives, feels and reasons. Then all nature will come closer to it in that it lives, feels, and reasons because all good is similar to the greater good.

Everything is tailored to the divine essence.

53. God is reality: it is important to understand him even when we know that this science surpasses our intelligence.

A disquisition about what exists.

54. Our language is weak, even inefficient: God is greater than all that can be thought.

Another elucidation of the limitations of human thought.

55. God has created us in his image: let us then seek this image and we will see God.

Only if we find her will we be close to her essence.

56. The more the reasonable spirit tries to know himself with great care, the more effectively will he know the eminent Essence.

In the line of the previous sentence.

57. The most admirable thing you have received is the printed image of the Creator: you can remember, understand and love. Memory is the image of the Father, intelligence is the image of the Son, and love is the image of the Holy Spirit.

One of those deep religious phrases.

58. Tender means believe.

Reflecting on faith.

59. Certainly this is not only God (noetic level), but the one ineffably triune God.

The characteristics of the Christian God, according to Anselm.

60. Faith makes us reach God in his reality, in his real essence: we know that he is the only one who really is. that we cannot understand him, we can only rationally understand that he is incomprehensible; that we tend towards him to reach him and enjoy his presence.

About the importance of having faith.

61. The analogy is important if we do not forget to start from the real thing and not from our language.

A language trap can be to rely too much on metaphors and similes.

62. The human mind must rationally understand what is incomprehensible.

Unimaginable doesn’t mean unknowable.

63. We can understand with the saints what is the width and length, the height and depth, and also know the super-eminent love of the knowledge of Christ so that we may be filled in all the fullness of God.

To reflect on the love of Christ.

64. Creation was nothing and at the same time it was something.

Interesting thought from Anselm of Canterbury.

65. To believe means to be in contact with something or to have experience of something, and this experience is indispensable to know.

Apprehension that results in divine knowledge.

66. This does not lead to the recognition that God is not simple, but composed. He is composed in terms of his attributes, but at the same time he is simple in that each attribute is in the others.

God and his defining characteristics.

67. The other natures are not, they receive the being of God and therefore should glorify Him.

Every natural being emanates from the wisdom of God.

68. Only God is real because he is the only one who is in a simple, perfect, and absolute way; the other natures-human nature also-are not real because they are not in a simple, perfect, and absolute way, they are just that.

About the concept of reality.

69. Man, by accepting that he “can know nothing or almost nothing”, unites the two levels, noetic and ontic, the level of thought and the level of reality.

A metaphysical reflection to be taken into account.

70. God is my defense.

It never fails.