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Catholic Dictionary




The quality of being immeasurable, either because the nature of something is spiritual, such as that of angels or the human soul; or because someone is sublime and by his essence is beyond all spatial dimensions. The term was consecrated by the Fourth Lateran Council in answer to the Albigenses, who restored the Manichaean notion of deities who occupied (and were circumscribed by) the earthly and stellar regions. In the first article of a first-century creed we read: "For the first thing, believe that there is only one God . . . who encompasses everything, while He alone cannot be encompassed" (Pastor Hermae, I, 1). (Etym. Latin immensus, immeasurable, boundless.)