Anthony de Mello (1931 – 1987) was an Indian Jesuit priest and psychotherapist. A spiritual teacher, writer, and public speaker, de Mello wrote several books on spirituality and hosted numerous spiritual retreats and conferences. He continues to be known for his storytelling which drew from the various mystical traditions of both East and West, and for his introducing many people in the West to the concept of “awareness” and “the present moment.”
Quotes by Anthony de Mello…
You are so proud of your intelligence… You are like a condemned man proud of the vastness of his prison cell.
A person can be said to have grown up on the day he does not need to be lied to about anything.
Happiness is not something you acquire. Love is not something you produce. Love is not something that you have. Love is something that has you.
Most people, even though they don’t know it, are asleep. They’re born asleep, they live asleep, they marry in their sleep, they breed children in their sleep, they die in their sleep without ever waking up. They never understand the loveliness and the beauty of this thing that we call human existence. You know, all mystics — Catholic, Christian, non-Christian, no matter what their theology, no matter what their religion — are unanimous on one thing: that all is well, all is well. Though everything is a mess, all is well. Strange paradox, to be sure. But, tragically, most people never get to see that all is well because they are asleep. They are having a nightmare.
Silence is not the absence of sound, but the absence of self.
But to come to the land of love, you must pass through the pains of death, for to love persons means to die to the need for persons, and to be utterly alone.
We don’t have to quarrel about a word because “God” is only a word, a concept. One never quarrels about reality. We only quarrel about opinions, about concepts, about judgments. Drop your concepts, drop your opinions, drop your prejudices, drop your judgments, and you will see that.
“Don’t look for God,” the Master said. “Just look, and all will be revealed.”
“But how is one to look?”
“Each time you look at anything, see only what is there and nothing else.”
The disciples were bewildered, so the Master made it simpler: “For instance: when you look at the moon, see the moon and nothing else.”
“What else could one see except the moon when one looks at the moon?”
“A hungry person could see a ball of cheese. A lover, the face of his beloved.”
“Is there anything that I can do to make myself enlightened?”
“As little as you can do to make the sun rise in the morning.”
“Then of what use are the spiritual exercises you prescribe?”
“To make sure you are not asleep when the sun begins to rise.”