Category Archives: Christianism

Quote

A religious belief is not a statement about Reality, but a hint, a clue about something that is a mystery, beyond the grasp of human thought. In short, a religious belief is only a finger pointing to the moon. Some religious people never get beyond the study of the finger. Others are engaged in sucking it. Others yet use the finger to gouge their eyes out. These are the bigots whom religion has made blind. Rare indeed is the religionist who is sufficiently detached from the finger to see what it is indicating — these are those who, having gone beyond belief, are taken for blasphemers.

— Anthony de Mello – One Minute Nonsense – p. 134

When the sage points at the moon, all that the idiot sees is the finger

Quote

I am standing upon the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white
sails to the morning breeze and starts
for the blue ocean.

She is an object of beauty and strength,
and I stand and watch her until at length
she hangs like a speck of white cloud
just where the sea and sky come down
to meet and mingle with each other.

Then some one at my side says,
“There! She’s gone!”

Gone where?
Gone from my sight, that is all.
She is just as large in the mast and hull
and spar as she was when she left my side,
and just as able to bear her load of living freight
to the place of her destination.

Her diminished size is in me, and not in her.

And just at that moment, when some one
at my side says, “There! she’s gone!”
there are other eyes that are watching for her coming
and other voices ready to take up the glad shout,
“There she comes!”

And that is—dying.—

— (attributed to) Henry Van Dyke – A Parable of Immortality

In memory of Anouk Sung Ja Henn † 22/07/2012.

A Parable of Immortality

Quote

We live in a society whose whole policy is to excite every nerve in the human body and keep it at the highest pitch of artificial tension, to strain every human desire to the limit and to create as many new desires and synthetic passions as possible, in order to cater to them with the products of our factories and printing presses and movie studios and all the rest.

 

And yet it is still just as naïve to suppose that members of the same human species, without having changed anything but their minds, should suddenly turn around and produce a perfect society, when they have never been able, in the past, to produce anything but imperfection and, at best, the barest shadow of justice.

 

I had at last become a true child of the modern world, completely tangled up in petty and useless concerns with myself, and almost incapable of even considering or understand anything that was really important to my own true interests.

 

What a strange thing! In filling myself, I had emptied myself. In grasping things, I had lost everything. In devouring pleasures and joys, I had found distress and anguish and fear.

— Thomas Merton – Several Quotes from “The Seven Storey Mountain

Slavery

Describing the Undescribable

Standard

I wish I could give a description of at least the smallest part of what I learned, but, when I try to discover a way of doing so, I find it impossible; for, while the light we see here and that other Light are both light, there is no comparison between the two and the brightness of the sun seems quite dull if compared with the other. In short, however skillful the imagination may be, it will not succeed in picturing or describing what that Light is like.

— Saint Teresa of Avila

Quote

Much madness is divinest sense
To a discerning eye;
Much sense the starkest madness.
’T is the majority
In this, as all, prevails.
Assent, and you are sane;
Demur, — you’re straightway dangerous,
And handled with a chain.

— Emily Dickinson – Complete Poems – Part One – IX

Life

Quote

People are often unreasonable,
illogical and self-centered;
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind,
people may accuse you of selfish ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful,
you will win some false friends and true enemies;
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank,
people may cheat you;
Be honest anyway.

What you spend years building,
someone could destroy overnight;
Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness,
they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today,
people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have,
and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.

You see, in the final analysis,
it is between you and God;
It was never between you and them anyway.

— Mother Teresa – Do It Anyway (adaptation of a text from Kent M. Keith that Mother Theresa put on the wall of her children’s home in Calcutta)

Do it anyway!

Quote

Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is bliss, taste it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.

— Mother Theresa

Life is…