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- noun Plural form of
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I confess I know not that my heart and soul abhors any eruption of the diabolical pride of man like that whereby they reproach and scoff at the deepest humiliations and self-abasements which poor sinners can attain unto in their prayers, confessions, and supplications.
Yet in truth, during the years that followed, whenever he was not under the influence of recurrent attacks of melancholia, Isaac did again derive much comfort from the aspirations and self-abasements of religion.
Such self-abasements have been known ever since the reign of Nero, began to become more common under Domitian and have ceased to be regarded as anything unusual; in fact, so many men of good birth or even of high birth have become gladiators or charioteers, so many of these have acquired popularity, so many, even if actually few, have won wealth and fame, that professional charioteering or swordsmanship has almost ceased to be regarded as a degradation.
It is a condescension for that infinitely glorious being, who dwells in Himself, and is abundantly satisfied in the beholding of His own incomprehensible excellencies, to vouchsafe to look out of Himself, and behold the things that are in heaven; the best of those glorious inhabitants that stand round about His throne; who therefore, conscious of that infinite distance wherein they stand, make their addresses with the greatest self-abasements, "covering their faces, and casting themselves down" upon those heavenly pavements.