The Barddas of Iolo Morganwg, Vol. I., ed. by J. Williams Ab Ithel, , at sacred-texts.com
Disciple and his Teacher.
Disciple. Tell me, my kind and discreet Master, whence originated the world, and all visible, all audible, all sensible,
p. 250 p. 251
and all intelligible things, and whence did they come, and were made?
Teacher. God the Father made them by pronouncing His Name, and manifesting existence. In the same instant, co-simultaneously, lo! the world, and all that appertains to it, sprang together into being, and together celebrated their existence with a very loud and melodious shout of joy; even as we see them to be now, and as they shall exist whilst God the Father lives, Who is not subject to dissolution and death.
D. Of "what, in respect of materials, were formed living and dead beings, which are cognizable to the human sight, hearing, feeling, understanding, perception, and the creation of the imagination?
T. They were made of the manred, 1 that is, of the elements in the extremities of their particles and smallest atoms, every particle being alive, because God was in every particle, 2 a complete Unity, so as not to be exceeded, even in all the multiform space of Ceugant, or the infinite expanse. God was in each of the particles of the manred, and in the same manner in them collectively in their conjoined aggregation; 3 wherefore, the voice of God is the voice of every particle of the manred, as far as their numbers or qualities may be counted or comprehended, and the voice of every particle is the voice of God--God being in the particle as its life, and every particle or atom being in God and His life. On account of this view of the subject, God is figuratively represented as being born of the manred, without beginning, without end.
D. Was existence good or bad before God pronounced His Name?
p. 252 p. 253
T. All things were thoroughly good, without beginning, without end, as they are now, and ever shall be; though in Abred neither the mode, nor the thing that exists, is seen, except from learning by means of demonstrative hearing and seeing, or by means of reason making it comprehensible, namely, God and His peace in every thing, and nothing existing without God and His peace. Therefore, there was good in every thing,--a blissful world, and a blissful deliverance from every evil, as an unconquerable predominance. And where God exists in every atom of manred, evil is impossible; because there neither is, nor can be room for it, since God and all goodness fill the infinitude, which is without beginning and without end, in respect of place and duration of time. Therefore, evil or its like cannot exist, nor the least approximation to it.
D. What judgment is formed concerning the act of God in giving existence to the world, that is, heaven and earth, and all that are in and from them?
T. God, with a view to every goodness of which He is capable, branched Himself out of His majesty, incomprehensible to man further it was so. And from this there was an increase of all finite goodness, and all goodness cannot be had, without finite goodness in infinite space.
D. Who was the first man?
T. Menyw the Aged, son of the Three Shouts, who was so called because God gave and placed the word in his mouth, namely, the vocalization of the three letters, which make the unutterable Name of God, that is, by means of the good sense of the Name and Word. And, co-instantaneously with the pronunciation of God's Name, Menyw saw three rays of light, and inscribed on them figure and form, and it was from those forms and their different collocations that Menyw made ten letters, and it was from them, variously placed, that he invested the Cymraeg with figure and form, and it is from understanding the combination of the ten letters that one is able to read.
D. My beloved Teacher, show me the power and mysteries
p. 254 p. 255
of the three primitive letters, and the forms of the ten letters, which Menyw made from the varied combination of the three.
T. This is not allowed and permitted to me, for the ten letters are a secret, being one of the three pillars of the mystery of the Bards of the Isle of Britain. And before the disciple is brought under the obligation and power of a vow, the mystery may not be revealed to him. And even then it can only be displayed to the eye, without utterance, without voice. It can only take place, when the disciple shall have gone through all the cycle and course of his pupillage. Nevertheless, the sixteen letters are formed very differently, and I am at liberty to show and declare their names and their powers, before the cycle of the vow of pupillage shall have been traversed; and thus are the sixteen symbols, and the way in which they are enforced by usage.
251:1 p. 250 "Manred " is compounded of mân, small, fine, and rhêd, a course.
251:2 Ti ymhob pwnk.--Thou art in every point.
Gruff. Gryg i Dduw, (1330-1370.)
251:3 "Cymminedd cyfungwlm;" light is thrown here upon the expression "manred gymmined," with which Meugant commences the several stanzas of his "Marwnad Cynddylan," (Ap. Myv. Arch. v. i. p. 159.) It is but a phrase borrowed from the Druidic Creed, and employed by the Bard for some fanciful reason or other, but without any immediate reference to the strain or drift of the p. 251 song. Dr. Pughe knew nothing of the Bardic import of the word "manred," which he renders, "of small step or pace," and "manred gymmined," "short-paced traveller." So necessary, for the proper understanding of the works of the Bards, is a knowledge of Bardism!