Yes, please
No, thanks
Theology of History
donate Books CDs HOME updates search contact

The Judgment of Nations - III

Hildegard von Bingen’s
Vision of the Latter Times

Margaret C. Galitzin
After demonstrating that Holy Scriptures warns mankind of a Judgment of Nations, which will be a great chastisement that will fall upon all mankind, to be followed by a period of peace and restoration of the Holy Church (here and here), Fr. Benjamín Martin Sánchez cites the prophecies of various Saints and holy persons whose visions and apparitions confirm these warnings.

St Hildegard von Bingen

St. Hildegard receiving her revelations from Heaven, while Friar Volmar watches

The first that we will look at is St. Hildegard von Bingen, (1098-1179). Fr. Sánchez quotes her describing the Latter Times:

"Then the fear of God has been entirely cast aside, when ferocious and cruel wars happen in an unprecedented manner, when a multitude of people are sacrificed in these wars and many cities are converted into mounds of ruins ... when society has been completely purified by these tribulations ... when they fully return to the practice of justice ... For consolation will follow desolation ... as the new Law succeeded the ancient Law." (1)

That is to say, she sees in the future a great chastisement of peoples, and then, a period of time when mankind will return to the practice of justice, which coincides with our understanding of the Reign of Mary.

In one of her famous works, Scivias (short for Scito vias Domini or "Know the Ways of the Lord"), St. Hildegard gives a more detailed account of this destruction to be followed by consolation. (2)

Abbess Hildegard began to write Scivias in 1142 when, at the age of 42, she was instructed by a Voice from Heaven to record the prophetic visions she had experienced since childhood. Her confessor and spiritual director, the monk Volmar, ordered her to obey the Voice, which he judged came from Heaven. She later received approval from St. Bernard of Clairvaux, as well as the endorsement of Pope Eugenius III at the Synod of Trier (1147-1148).

Scivias by St Hildegard

Scivias by St. Hildegard

In Scivias she purveyed the course of History from the Creation to the Final Judgment, listing a succession of evils that must come to pass before the Judgment. In Vision 11, she speaks of the Latter Days when Christendom falls by means of "five ferocious epochs" after her time, followed by a great victory of the Holy Church led by an "innocent one." Only after this the Antichrist and the End of the World will come. (3)

Describing the vision, she names five beasts that symbolize future epochs of world history each animal suggesting the temperament of the era and its revolted rulers. Here is her description of the vision:

"Then I looked to the North [which symbolizes Evil], and behold! five beasts stood there. One was like a dog, fiery but not burning; another was like a yellow lion; another was like a pale horse; another like a black pig; and the last like a gray wolf. And they were facing the West [symbolizing Heaven]. And in the West, before those beasts, a hill with five peaks appeared; and from the mouth of each beast one rope stretched to one of the peaks of the hill. All the ropes were black except the one that came from the mouth of the wolf, which was partly black and partly white." (4)

The 'five ferocious epochs of temporal rule'

These first of those "five ferocious epochs of temporal rule," as she calls them, is "like a dog, fiery but not burning, for that era will produce people with a biting temperament, who seem fiery in their own estimation but do not burn with the justice of God."

The second epoch is symbolized by the "yellow lion, for this era will endure martial people, who instigate many wars but do think of the righteousness of God in them; for these kingdoms will begin to weaken and tire, as the yellow color shows."

Rupertberg Scivias-Codex

The Rupertberg Scivias-Codex completed in 1175

The third epoch is "the pale horse, for those times will produce people who drown themselves in sin ... and then these kingdoms will lose their ruddy strength and grow pale with the fear of ruin and their hearts will be broken."

The fourth epoch is "like a black pig, for this epoch will have leaders who blacken themselves with misery and wallow in the mud of impurity. They will infringe the divine law by fornication and other evils, and will plot to diverge from the holiness of God's commands."

Finally, the last epoch "is like the gray wolf. For those times will have people who plunder each other, robbing the powerful and the fortunate. And in these conflicts they will show themselves to be neither black nor white, but gray in their cunning. And they will divide and conquer the rulers of those realms. And then the time will come when many will be ensnared, and error of errors will rise from Hell to Heaven. And then the children of light will be pressed in the winepress of martyrdom, and they will not deny the Son of God but reject the son of perdition who tries to do his will with the Devil's arts." (5)

The five peaks & five ropes

The prophecy becomes more interesting. From the mouth of each of the first four beasts a black rope stretches to one of the mountain peak, which symbolizes the power of carnal desire. But from the mouth of the wolf, representing the last era, the rope is black and white. For in that time there will be many who are very evil, but also from that direction will come those "who are white with justice."

Five beasts represent five epochs

Five beasts representing five epochs

And those latter will "resist the son of perdition by ardent wonders," especially the "righteous doer of justice." St. Hildegard foresees an "innocent one" who "will be aroused like a burning coal against one who deceives in works." That prophetic leader will be "raised up in the sight of God as a bright spark and a clear light and a flaming torch. And so, bearing in himself the strongest and purest works, he puts them on like a strong breastplate and a sharp sword, and drives away vice and wins virtue." (6)

After this epoch that will end with the victory of the just led by innocent one, then will come a new period, when "the Church will shine in her justice until the time of Antichrist."

A counter-revolutionary context

For those who follow the History along the Revolution & Counter-Revolution lines set out by Prof. Plinio Correa de Oliveira, the prophecies of St. Hildegard point to a victory over the Revolution led by a man with a prophetic mission. After the counter-revolutionary victory will commence a new period when the Church will be restored again to her former brilliance, the Reign of Mary foretold at Fatima and Quito.

It seems to me that the five beasts signaling epochs of History could represent the Four Revolutions that reach their peak in the fifth, the epoch of the Wolf. Could not the fiery dog that produces "people with a biting temperament who are fiery in their own eyes but do not burn with the justice of God" represent the Protestant Revolution of the 16th century. Certainly its wicked heresiarchs burned with self- righteousness but lacked justice before the eyes of God.

Shrine with the relics of St. Hildegard

Shrine with the relics of St. Hildegard, Eibingen, Germany

The second epoch symbolized by the yellow lion is a time of war and revolutions that begin the waning of the kingdoms. This could signify the French Revolution that aimed to destroy monarchies and institute equality in government.

The third epoch of the pale horse, a time that "will produce people who drown themselves in sin" bring to mind the fourth horseman of the Apocalypse identified as Death riding a pale horse, followed by Hell (Rev 6:8). This could well be interpreted to represent the Third Revolution, Communism, which made nations "lose their strength and grow pale with the fear of ruin."

The black pig of the fourth epoch well describes Tribalism in the woods and in the cities. The Hippy Revolution of the 1960s was an important landmark of it. The hippy leaders "wallowed in the mud of impurity, infringing the divine law by fornication and other evils, plotting to diverge from the holiness of God's commands."

Finally, we reach the epoch of the grey wolf, where the cunning lies of the Fifth Revolution or the Occult leading to Satanism are deceiving so many people. But in this time, a force of good will rise up led by a "innocent one," a leader with a prophetic mission who will vanquish the evil in wondrous ways.

This, then, will be the beginning of the victory of Our Lady, when "the Church will shine in her justice until the time of Antichrist."

Thus we find that St. Hildegard's prophecies, which confirm Scriptures, also predict a Latter Times, after which the Church and society will shine brilliantly before the End of the World.

To be continued
  1. Benjamín Martin Sánchez, The Last Times: Public and Private Prophecies, TOP, 1st ed., Imprimatur: Bishop Eduardus Zamorensis, 1968, p. 14., p. 58. Unfortunately Fr. Sanchez does not provide a source for his quote. However, this prophecy is fully substantiated by the words written about the Latter Times in Hildegard von Bingen's famed work Scivias.
  2. Hildegard of Bingen, Scivias, trans. by Mother Columba Hart and Jane Bishop, NY: Paulist Press, 1990.
  3. Ibid., The Last Days and the Fall of the Antichrist, pp. 493-494.
  4. Ibid./li>
  5. Ibid., pp. 494-495
  6. Ibid, pp. 495-496

Posted June 19, 2020