"Humankind, full of all creative possibilities, is God’s work. Humankind alone is called to assist God. Humankind is called to co-create. With nature’s help, humankind can set into creation all that is necessary and life-sustaining." ~Hildegard of Bingen
Disibodenberg exists today in ruins, but at the time of the story it literally and figuratively lay at a crossroads. The novel introduces readers to a young Hildegard of Bingen, who later in life became a remarkable author, visionary, healer, scholar, advisor, and musician. A simple Google search on her will yield over 905,000 relevant hits! There's a growing resurgence in the literature about her life and music, but to date, the vast majority of it has been written for an academic audience. This novelization of Hildegard's younger life is meant to remedy this, drawing attentions to the fact that women were capable of great things in a time when their lives and accomplishments were overshadowed by the darkest times of feudal authority and patriarchial dominance in the church.
"Saint Hildegard of Bingen, an important female figure of the twelfth century, offered her precious contribution to the growth of the Church of her time, employing the gifts received from God and showing herself to be a woman of brilliant intelligence, deep sensitivity and recognized spiritual authority. The Lord granted her a prophetic spirit and fervent capacity to discern the signs of the times. Hildegard nurtured an evident love of creation, and was learned in medicine, poetry and music. Above all, she maintained a great and faithful love for Christ and the Church." ~Pope Benedict, 7 October 2012
In Hildegard's own words, she describes and illustrates some of her visions...
St. Hildegard also had her own secret language! How cool is that!
It even had its own special alphabet!
The grammar of her lingua ignota (Latin, "unknown language") appears to be like Latin's, but the vocabulary is different. Here are some sample terms, along with her Latin gloss (explanation of its meaning) and its meaning in English:
Aigonz: deus (God)
Aieganz: angelus (angel)
Zuuenz: sanctus (saint)
Liuionz salvator (saviour)
Diueliz: diabolus (devil)
Inimois: homo (human being)
Jur: vir (man)
Vanix: femina (woman)
You can read more about her secret language on Wikipedia.
Biography of Hildegard of Bingen
[b. 1098 and d. 17 September 1179]
"Underneath all the texts, all the sacred psalms and canticles, these watery varieties of sounds and silences, terrifying, mysterious, whirling and sometimes gestating and gentle must somehow be felt in the pulse, ebb, and flow of the music that sings in me. My new song must float like a feather on the breath of God." ~Hildegard of Bingen
"A human being is a vessel that God has built for himself and filled with his inspiration." ~Hildegard of Bingen, c. 1152
Learn more about Hildegard's musical style...
After 900 years, on the 7th of October 2012, Hildegard is appointed as "Doctor of the Church"...
The Seer and The Scribe series has historical accuracy and underlying messages that speak to our own tumultuous time.