Canto 1 - The Music of the Spheres


The glory of the One who moves all things
penetrates all the universe, reflecting
in one part more and in another less

Apollo (represented by the musician Hector Berlioz)

Dante invokes Apollo and the Muses to help. He sees Beatrice staring into the sun, symbol of God's Grace that "shines with the greatest beneficence on the soul when it is most fitted to receive it". He imitates her, discovering:-


In that place first created for mankind
much more is granted to the human senses
than ever was allowed them here on earth.

Dante finds he is being "transhumanised," lifted by light. He hears the "Music of the Spheres" and sees "a great expanse of heaven ablaze with the sun's flames". Beatrice explains:-


… "therein God's higher creatures see
the imprint of Eternal Excellence -
that goal for which the system is created,

and in this order all created things,
according to their bent, maintain their place,
disposed in proper distance from their Source…

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