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Despite the many differences that seem to exist between peoples the world over — regardless of culture, tradition, environment, or heredity — there is but one seeker, one search, and one sacred object of our desire. The celestial source of this sacred being doesn’t just live within us… we are, in fact, one with it.
For whilst in one sense we give up self to live the universal and absolute life of reason, yet that to which we thus surrender ourselves is in reality our truer self. The life of absolute truth or reason is not a life that is foreign to us. In yielding to it we are not submitting to an outward and arbitrary law or to an external authority, but to a law that has become our own law, an authority which has become enthroned in the inmost essence of our being.
Life is so generous a giver. But we, judging its gifts by their covering, cast them away as ugly or heavy or hard. Remove the covering, and you will find beneath it a living splendor, woven of love by wisdom, with power. Welcome it, grasp it, and you touch the angel’s hand that brings it to you. Everything we call a trial, a sorrow or a duty, believe me, that angel’s hand is there. The gift is there and the wonder of an overshadowing presence. Your joys, too, be not content with them as joys. They, too, conceal diviner gifts. Life is so full of meaning and purpose, so full of beauty beneath its covering, that you will find earth but cloaks your heaven. Courage then to claim it; that is all! But courage you have, and the knowledge that we are pilgrims together, winding through unknown country home.
Great minds are like eagles, and build their nests in some lofty solitude.
What is natural is never disgraceful.
The principles of this authentic religion are entirely natural to man, so that the instant they are communicated to him they are received as ideas long familiar and self-evident… These principles are quite simple, understandable, and few in number.
We are surrounded by a rich and fertile mystery. May we not probe it, pry into it, employ ourselves about it, a little?
The mystics of all traditions speak one and the same language: the language of religious experience.
God is intelligence occupied with knowing itself.
Give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way.
Philosophy alone makes the mind invincible and places us out of the reach of fortune, so that all her arrows fall short of us.
God, the divine Principle of man, and man in God’s likeness are inseparable, harmonious, and eternal. God is the parent mind and man is God’s spiritual offspring.
There is a divine sense higher than human sense, that enables those of pure heart to see God.
God will not tell you that you should desire Him above all else, because He wants your love to be freely given, without “prompting.” That is the whole secret in the game of this universe. He who created us yearns for our love. He wants us to give it spontaneously, without His asking. Our love is the one thing God does not possess, unless we choose to bestow it. So, you see, even the Lord has something to attain: our love. And we shall never be happy until we give it.
The Wise One instills the truth in whoever comes to Him yearning for freedom, who follows the true path, calming the tumult of his mind and bringing restfulness.
[This philosophy we speak of is] Cheerful and yet profound, like an October afternoon.
Only the merciful can merit God’s mercy.
Enough to think that truth can be;
Come sit we where the roses glow;
Indeed he knows not how to know
who knows not also how to unknow.
Everyone of us has had experiences which we have not been able to explain: A sudden sense of loneliness, or a feeling of wonder or awe in the face of the universal vastness. Or we have had a fleeting visitation of light like an illumination from some other sun, giving us in a quick flash an assurance that we are from another world, that our origins are divine.
Now there is but one possible way for man to attain this salvation, or life of God in the soul. There is not one for the Jew, another for a Christian, and a third for the heathen. No; God is one, human nature is one, salvation is one, and the way to it is one; and that is, the desire of the soul turned to God. When this desire is alive, and breaks forth in any creature under heaven, then the lost sheep is found, and the shepherd has it upon his shoulders.
He is the free man whom the truth makes free, and all are slaves besides.
Nature is made better by no mean
But nature makes that mean: so, over that art
Which you say adds to nature, is an art
That nature makes.
I have never written the music that was in my heart to write. Perhaps I never shall with this brain and these fingers, but I know that hereafter it will be written. When, instead of these few inlets of the senses through which we now secure impressions from all without, there shall be a flood of impressions from all sides, and instead of these few tones of our little octave there shall be an infinite score of harmonies — for I feel it, I am sure of it. This world of music, whose borders even now I have scarcely entered, is a reality, is immortal.
When you thus cease to be finite, you become one with the Infinite. In the reduction of your soul to its simplest self, its divine essence, you realize this Union, this Identity.
By love, bitter things are made sweet and copper turns to gold. By love, the sediment becomes clear and torment is removed. By love, the dead are made to live. By love, the sovereign is made a slave.
The pure man… has the power of bringing it (higher truth) into a certain state of vibration, which can be conveyed to others, arousing in them a similar vibration. You see that in everyday actions. I am talking to you. What am I trying to do? I am, so to say, bringing my mind to a certain state of vibration, and the more I succeed in bringing it to that state, the more you will be affected by what I say. All of you know that the day I am more enthusiastic the more you enjoy the lecture.