The Degrees of the Gift of Understanding
In the first degree of understanding, the soul begins to contemplate hidden things while it is still on earth, “for this gift penetrates all supernatural truths and reveals their secrets under any veil.
Every Christian has this gift, together with the other gifts of the Holy Spirit. They are not extraordinary favors conceded to a few; everyone who is in grace possesses them. And if he always has them, it’s because he needs them at every step….And as it increases, this gift produces things even more wonderful in our soul. It makes us penetrate into the very mysteries of religion; by it, we understand the beautiful harmonies in spiritual things.” ”When it has reached its highest degree, we are led to contemplate magnificent panoramas—those infinite horizons of the supernatural order that reveal, as far as is possible on earth, the perfections of God: His justice, His mercy, His love.”