Alfred Lord Tennyson, (UK), was Poet Laureate of Great Britain and Ireland during much of the Victorian era and continues to be a very popular British poet. His works on Camelot, King Arthur, and the Knights of the round-table drove the idea of chivalry, courage, and honor into a virtual British national identity. In “Ulysses” he urges his readers to persevere through hard times, never giving up. This resolve echoed into the twentieth century with Winston Churchill’s famous “Never give up” determination during World War II.
"This is one of my meanings," he said, "of
Ring in the Christ that is to be:
when Christianity without bigotry will triumph, when the controversies of creeds shall have vanished, and Shall bear false witness, each of each, no more,
But find their limits by that larger light,
And overstep them, moving easily
Thro’ after-ages in the Love of Truth,
The truth of Love”
Baron Hallam Tennyson Tennyson, (1898), Alfred Lord Tennyson: A Memoir by His Son: Volume 1. New York: The Macmillan Co. p. 326
He wrote: “A kind of waking trance I have frequently had, quite up from boyhood, when I have been all alone. This has generally come upon me thro’ repeating my own name two or three times to myself silently, till all at once, as it were out of the intensity of the consciousness of individuality, the individuality itself seemed to dissolve and fade away into boundless being, and this not a confused state, but the clearest of the clearest, the surest of the surest, the weirdest of the weirdest, utterly beyond words, where death was an almost laughable impossibility, the loss of personality (if so it were) seeming no extinction but the only true life.” “This might,” he said, “be the state which St. Paul describes, ‘Whether in the body I cannot tell, or whether out of the body I cannot tell.’” He continued: “I am ashamed of my feeble description, Have I not said the state is utterly beyond words? But in a moment, when I come back to my normal state of ‘sanity,’ I am ready to fight for my life, and hold that it will last for eons of eons.”
Ibid., p. 320
About prayer he said “The reason why men find it hard to regard prayer in the same light in which it was formerly regarded is, that we seem to know more of the unchangeableness of Law, but I believe that God reveals Himself in each individual soul. Prayer is, to take a mundane simile, like opening a sluice between the great ocean and our little channels when the great sea gathers itself together and flows in at full tide.” “Prayer on our part is the highest aspiration of the soul.”
Baron Hallam Tennyson Tennyson, (1898), Alfred Lord Tennyson: A Memoir by His Son: Volume 1.
Ibid., p. 324
Speak to Him thou for He hears, and Spirit with Spirit can meet—Closer is He than breathing, and nearer than hands and feet.
ibid., p. 325