‘God, you know my folly,’ and ‘Your eyes see all my guilt.’ Lord my God, you know, and you have made me know, and your eyes have seen and you have not hidden it from my eyes. For I know, in the light of your revelation, how much I lack in perfection and knowledge, and this I reckon no little wisdom here on earth, I think this no little step on the way to perfection, to know how far I am removed from wisdom and far removed from the paths of the perfect I am walking. So then, if I am ignorant of anything, provided only that I know I am ignorant, then as the Wise Man says, ‘my ignorance will remain with me,’ and my weakness will be a great help and support to me, again provided that I keep it before my eyes. This twofold knowledge of my wretchedness shines like light in darkness, making me gleam with brightness in your presence, Lord my God, and preparing me, I hope, to gaze upon your countenance. Certainly, the surest preparation for knowing you is to have known myself fully.
John of Ford, On the Song of Songs, VII, Sermon 108, verse 5 (CF 47, page :96)