The Barddas of Iolo Morganwg, Vol. I., ed. by J. Williams Ab Ithel, , at sacred-texts.com
1. The three principal sciences of man: sciences respecting God; to know what he is himself; and to know the tendency of species and nature. From these three all other laudable sciences inevitably spring.
2. The three requirements of God from man: faith, that is, firm belief; religious obedience; and the performance of justice, in thought, word, and deed.
3. Three things God cannot be: unskilful; unjust; and unmerciful.
4. The three principal employments of God: to enlighten the darkness; to invest nonentity with a body; and to animate the dead.
5. The three agents of God in making the worlds: will; wisdom; and love; and from these three comes omnipotence.
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6. Three things beyond all the research of man's sciences: the extreme limits of space; the beginning and end of time; and the works of God.
7. The three requirements of God at the hands of man: to do justice; to impart learning and good sciences to those who are deficient in them; and to urge upon every thing the duty of mercy towards all living beings of every kind and form.
8. Three things, which it is not easy to see clearly in another man, and therefore it is not easy to prejudge them: the tendency of awen; the endeavour of the intellect; and the judgment of conscience; these God alone knows, and to Him belongs the right of judging them.
9. There are three things, of whose length, breadth, and depth, no one knows the thousandth part: the tendency of Awen from God; the capabilities of knowledge; and the properties of truth; and God only knows them.
10. Three things which ought to be considered seriously three times every day: the laws of truth; the laws of love; and the laws of God.
11. Three things which there can be no reason to fear in the world to come on the part of him who gives no reason to fear them in this world: to meet another man before the face of God; the exhibition of works performed in the presence of God; and a call from the great judgment, where God Himself is judge.
12. Three things which can never be: cause of fear in the world to come for one who gives no cause to fear in this world; lack of mercy after this world for one who shows nothing but mercy in this earthly life; and lack of knowledge for him who, to the utmost of what he knew, has exhibited knowledge to every man, fond of knowledge, and to all who required it, or might be seen in want of it. Others say: and lack of sciences, of whatever kind they may be, for him who has exhibited knowledge, as far as he could, to those who were in want of it.
13. The three best of all things that are found in this
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world: bodily health; just and discreet understanding; and purity of conscience.
14. Three things that ought to be considered seriously before we partake of our meals: first, would it be comely and right to present them before God, as if He would partake of them, because of the just way in which they have been obtained; secondly, could His grace be fitly bestowed upon them, according to the desert of those who partake of them; thirdly, are such meet to answer the purposes of God for the benefit of man, that is, to support life and health. Where these particulars do not apply to meals, and what relates to them, it is not right and lawful before God to partake of them.
15. There are three things connected with mercy, that will occur to him who shows it towards every owner of life and soul: he will not fail to have justice in every thing, which he does, whatever it may be; he will not lack the approval of his own conscience; and he will not fail to have the utmost of God's good will and mercy for ever, both in this world, and in the world to come. Because, there is no justice but mercy, and there is no mercy but what does not give pain to either the body or mind of any species or form whatsoever, which may be found to possess life.
16. There are three things in mercy, in virtue of its kind and quality: the first is the utmost of justice, for justice will not fail the act of mercy, nor him who obtains it, whatever species of living beings he may be; the second is co-operation with God, for it was of His infinite mercy that God made all vitalities, and all the orders, 1 and all their animations, of whatever kind or form they actually exist, or may be conceived, since there was no other species which justice could require at His hands; the third is the impossibility, according to justice, of not obtaining all that can be had from God as mercy, by him who performs it, co-equally and commensurately with the performance itself. And thus is it said:--
17. The three principal compounds of justice: utmost
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love and mercy, because there can be no want of love on the part of God, and His works of justice, towards any species or form, which have received their existence from God and His operation only, there not being in them anything that could possibly be displeasing to God, and there is no justice but love towards those who have done no displeasure; the second is, the utmost truth and sincerity of species, form, and condition, because there ought to be but truth, sincerity, and rectitude of condition and skill in what is done by one who can perform the best of all acts, and God can do no less than perform what is best in every species, form, and condition; the third is the utmost beauty or fairness in what is done, because that is not right and becoming which is not the most beautiful act of all the beautiful, and the fairest of the fair, where it is accomplished, and where it is possible; but perfectly possible to God are every excellency, every fulness, every skill, every beauty, every surpassing feat, and every surpassing prudence, and whatever of existences and acts He pleases will be effectuated, because God does what He does for better, and not for worse; hence the proverb, "For better, and not for worse, God does what He does;" also, "For the best, and not for the worst, God does what He does." And these proverbs are true; because it is demonstrated that it is not right to judge, or think, or believe, or suppose, that all the works of God are other than the best.
18. Three things will be obtained from behaving properly, according to courtesy, and leading a holy life: the regard of the world; joy of conscience; and the good will of God.
19. Three things will be obtained from a proper recognition of God, that is, from a discernment of Him by means of a true knowledge of kinds and qualities: every truth of being and existence; every beauty and justice; and every eternal gwynvyd; that is to say, from having the knowledge of God and His goodness, will be obtained the knowledge of every thing possible to man, his understanding and reason,
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and to every awen, affection, beauty, and justice, of which he is capable.
20. Three things in man that will include every other goodness: bravery; peace; and godliness.
21. Three things in man that will exclude every goodness, of whatever kind it may be: cowardice, or timidity; contentiousness; and ungodliness arising from natural mischievousness.
22. Three things that will never end: life; intellect; and light; but they will improve and increase for ever and ever.
23. There are three demeanours contrary to God: an oath contrary to truth; a sentiment contrary to natural prudence; and course of life contrary to innate awen. Others say; and concern of life contrary to innate awen.
24. The three fulnesses of God: fulness of life; fulness of knowledge; and fulness of might and power; and from these three fulnesses comes the fulness of every goodness, in every kind, part, form, and comprehension possible to it.
25. There are three things in God of pure necessity: an eye which sees in every place, and at every time; an ear which hears in every place and time; and memory, which preserves every thing, and every event, in deed, word, and thought, in every place and time, in order to exhibit them in the presence of the angels of heaven, and all the saints, before the judgment of the day of doom, that every man may be paid for his deed and conduct, whether that shall be in heaven or in hell.
26. There are three things in man, that are the most odious of all to God: craftiness; avarice; and becoming hardened against praiseworthy' sciences.
27. Three things that God regards as the best in every man: to be liberally conscientious; to demean one's self with a clear regard to truth; and to genialize prsiseworthy sciences.
28. Three things invisible to him who is keenest of eye:
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the path of an arrow through the air; the path of fish in the sea; and the path of wile through the world.
29. Three things divine in a man: an amiable and cheerful countenance; a meek and courteous demeanour; and contentment of mind. Others say: an amiable countenance; gentle demeanour; and contentment with every will of God.
30. Three things devilish in a man: a harsh countenance; a proud spirit; and insatiable covetousness.
31. Three men it is difficult to make godly: the pugnacious; the reveller; and the adulterer.
32. The three superiors of the world and life: a pure conscience; knowledge of the truth; and health of body and mind.
33. Three things which the countenance cannot conceal: pride; anger; and amorousness.
34. Three things easy to be seen in the countenance of those who bear them: sorrow; joy; and peace of mind.
35. The three monstrosities of the world: the joy of fools; the generosity of misers; and the courtesy of ungodly men.
36. The three forerunners of mischief: not to seek the sciences of truth; not to anticipate the usages of courtesy; and not to make an oblation to God.
37. Because of three things no man should 1 become proud: his sciences; his godliness; and the good he does; for he will not know or do, as long as he lives, half of the one or the other of them, though he should do as much as he can.
38. Three things which every man should avoid doing: to cause worldly loss to any man whatsoever; to cause bodily or mental pain to any man, or to any other living or animated thing; and to cause deterioration to any thing whatsoever, whether it be conduct, usage, learning, art, the sciences of wisdom, and morality, or any other thing, of whatsoever kind it may be; because the evil that he does
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will fall upon him either in this world and life, or in that which is to come in the next world.
39. Three men that will be odious to God: he who causes hatred and contentiousness among his neighbours; he who conceals the truth to the injury of another; and he who servilely disputes against justice. Others say; he who does against justice.
40. The three indispensables of goodness: justice; beauty; and truth.
41. The three indispensables of godliness: love truth; and prudence. Others say; consideration.
42. Three things that will augment godliness: sciences; alms; and worship.
43. The three souls of worship: truth; goodness; and beauty.
44. The three mutual charms of worship: prayer; thanksgiving; and praise.
45. The three requirements of God at the hands of man: belief; obedience; and worship.
46. The three reasons for worship: to teach wisdom; to cultivate the energies of the mind; and to gladden hope.
47. Three things which God only can perform: what has never been in existence before; to know all that will happen; and to judge the conscience. Others say Three things which are possible only to God: to perform what did not exist before; to know what will happen; and to judge the conscience.
48. There are three spirits from God, which ought to be in man before he can be happy: reason to understand and to know all rectitude; awen to love and to study all rectitude; and courageous patience to side firmly with all rectitude, and against all wrong, and to suffer, where occasion requires, for what ought to be, of whatever kind it may be.
49. The three losses that will bring gain in the end to man: to lose more than what life needs and requires; to
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lose bodily health on the part of a vain-glorious man; and to lose what one considers as his chief in and over every thing, for it is in this that most of his sinfulness consists.
50. The three different sciences concerning God: to remove far off from all evil; to approach all goodness; and to acquiesce patiently in every thing whatsoever, and in every incident and event of life.
51. The three distinctions of truth: utility in every thing; beauty in every thing; and strength to obviate and to oppose every thing.
52. The three columns of godliness: truth; beauty; and goodness.
53. For three godly reasons ought the Christmas Holidays to be kept: in remembrance of the birth of Jesus Christ as the Saviour of the human world; secondly, in order to give alms to God and the necessitous poor out of all our possessions, for a gift to the poor is a gift to God; thirdly, in godly joyfulness that the grace and blessings of God have been obtained for men. He who does not call Jesus Christ and His Gospel to memory, and gives no alms, and does not enjoy his property in godly and religious gladness, will receive no benefit from keeping it on the Feast of Christmas.
54. Three things which a man ought to avoid, as he would the fall of fire on his heart: pride; cruelty; and covetousness; for where they are, all his doings will degenerate into ungodliness, irreligion, and all mischievousness.
55. Three things familiar to every mischievous person: falsehood; deceit; and depredation.
56. The three familiar things of the ungodly: pride; extortion; and cruelty.
57. The three customs of mischief: treachery; murder; and theft.
58. The three familiarities of happiness: to love peace and tranquillity; to love truth and justice; and to love God and all goodness.
327:1 p. 326 Al. "and the orders."
333:1 p. 332 Al. "a man should not."