I read this morning that Simone Weil, French philosopher and mystic (1909-1943), battled the pain from frequent migraine headaches by reciting over and over again the poem "Love" by George Herbert (1593–1632).
LOVE bade me welcome; yet my soul drew back,
Guilty of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning
If I lack'd anything.
'A guest,' I answer'd, 'worthy to be here:'
Love said, 'You shall be he.'
'I, the unkind, ungrateful? Ah, my dear,
I cannot look on Thee.'
Love took my hand and smiling did reply,
'Who made the eyes but I?'
'Truth, Lord; but I have marr'd them: let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.'
'And know you not,' says Love, 'Who bore the blame?'
'My dear, then I will serve.'
'You must sit down,' says Love, 'and taste my meat.'
So I did sit and eat.
The book in which I read this (Remarkable Women, Remarkable Wisdom: A Daybook of Reflections by Mary Frances Gangloff) said that in the recitation "she experienced the mystical presence of Christ's love in her affliction."