Daily Reflections

Daily Meditation

People say that what we are all seeking is a meaning for life. I do not think that’s what we’re really seeking. I think that what we’re seeking is an experience of being alive, so that our life experiences on a purely physical plane will have resonances with our innermost being and reality, so that we actually feel the rapture of being alive.

Joseph Campbell

God’s grace is the beginning, middle, and end. When you pray for God’s grace, you are like someone standing neck deep in water, yet praying for water. It is like saying that someone neck deep in water feels thirsty, or that a fish feels thirsty, or that water feels thirsty.

Unknown

Jesus said, “Recognize what is in your sight, and what is hidden will become clear to you.”

The Gospel of Thomas

Moses said, “When I tell the people that the God of their fathers has sent me, they will ask his name. What shall I tell them?” And God said, “I am what I am. Tell them I AM sent you.”

The Bible

Love your enemies, be good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who mistreat you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven.

Jesus of Nazareth

You shall love the Unnamable with all your hears and with all your mind, and with all your strength.

The Bible

The broadest and most prevalent error, requires the most disinterested virtue to sustain it.

Henry David Thoreau, Civil Disobedience

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door shall be open to you.

Jesus of Nazareth

The kingdom of God does not come if you watch for it. Nor will anyone be able to say, “Here it is” or there it is.” For the kingdom of God is within you.

Jesus of Nazareth

Many a man will live and die upon a dogma; no man will be a martyr for a conclusion.

Albert Camus

I would rather sit on a pumpkin and have it all to myself than be crowded on a velvet cushion.

Henry David Thoreau, Walden

Lift up your heart to God with a meek stirring of love… and pierce the cloud of unknowing with darts of pure love.

The Cloud of Unknowing 14th century

Be still and know that I am God

The Bible

Am I coming to grips?
Am I coming apart?
Am I listening to fear,
or to my heart?

Mike Scott

Unless you change your life and become like a child, you cannot enter the kingdom of heaven.

Jesus of Nazareth

Do not pretend to know, what you do not know.

Plato

Beyond a certain point there is no return. This point has to be reached.

Franz Kafka

Humor, the nickname of wisdom

Yves M.-J. Congar, O.P. 1956 On the Feast of Francis of Assisi

We can never finely know. I simply believe that some part of the Self or Soul is not subject to the laws of space or time.

Carl Jung

Don’t judge and you will not be judged; don’t condemn and you will not be condemned; forgive and you will be forgiven.

Jesus of Nazareth

Jesus said, “When you see one who was not born of a woman, bow down and worship him. That one is your Father.”

The Gospel of Thomas

God Loves the World!
God Loves Us!
God Loves You!
I Love You!
God Loves Me!
I Love Me!
Thanks Be To God!
Amen! Amen!

The Shouting Prayer

Don’t be anxious about what you will eat or what you will wear. Isn’t your life more than food and your body more than clothing?

Jesus of Nazareth

When you understand how to love one thing – then you also understand how to best love everything.

Novalis

That is perfect. This is perfect. Perfect comes from perfect. Take perfect from perfect, the remainder is perfect. May peace and peace and peace be everywhere.

The Upanishads

I can well imagine a religion in which there are no doctrines, so that nothing is spoken. Clearly then the essence of religion can have nothing to do with what is sayable.

Ludwig Wittgenstein

Beware lest you lose the substance by grasping at the shadow.

Aesop

God has made everything beautiful in its time, and has put eternity in our hearts.

The Bible

Begin by believing these things, advance and persevere; and though I know thou wilt not arrive, I shall rejoice at thy advance. For he who devoutly follows in pursuit of the Infinite, thou he never comes up with it, will always advance by setting forth. Yet pry not into that secret, and mettle not into the mystery of the birth of the Infinite, nor presume to grasp that which is the summit of understanding, but understand there are things thou canst not grasp.

St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Contra Gentiles, Book I

Jesus said, “Blessed are those who have chosen their solitude, for they will find the kingdom of heaven.”

The Gospel of Thomas

Mind pulls the universe out of a top hat, bows to its own applause, and walks off the stage, grinning.

Hung Po ( ? – 849ce)

Jesus said, “If you bring forth what is inside you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is inside you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.”

The Gospel of Thomas

Studying the sacred tradition should never be confused with practicing the sacred tradition, just as studying aesthetics should never be confused with being an artist.

T. P. Kasulis

Love your neighbor as yourself.

The Bible

Pure logic is the ruin of the spirit.

St. Exupery

Prayer is an act of love; words are not needed. Even if sickness distracts from thoughts, all that is needed is the will to love.

Saint Teresa of Avila

And God looked at everything he had made, and behold, it was very good.

The Bible


Saintly Reflection: Martin of Tours (d. 397)

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Martin of Tours

Allow me, brothers, to look toward heaven rather than at the earth, so that my spirit may set on the right course when the time comes for me to go on my journey to the Lord.

A conscientious objector who wanted to be a monk; a monk who was maneuvered into being a bishop; a bishop who fought paganism as well as pleaded for mercy to heretics—such was Martin of Tours, one of the most popular of saints and one of the first not to be a martyr.

Born of pagan parents in what is now Hungary and raised in Italy, this son of a veteran was forced at the age of 15 to serve in the army. He became a Christian catechumen and was baptized at 18. It was said that he lived more like a monk than a soldier. At 23, he refused a war bonus and told his commander: “I have served you as a soldier; now let me serve Christ. Give the bounty to those who are going to fight. But I am a soldier of Christ and it is not lawful for me to fight.” After great difficulties, he was discharged and went to be a disciple of Hilary of Poitiers (saint day: January 13).

He was ordained an exorcist and worked with great zeal against the Arians. He became a monk, living first at Milan and later on a small island. When Hilary was restored to his see after exile, Martin returned to France and established what may have been the first French monastery near Poitiers. He lived there for 10 years, forming his disciples and preaching throughout the countryside.

The people of Tours demanded that he become their bishop. He was drawn to that city by a ruse—the need of a sick person—and was brought to the church, where he reluctantly allowed himself to be consecrated bishop. Some of the consecrating bishops thought his rumpled appearance and unkempt hair indicated that he was not dignified enough for the office.
Along with St. Ambrose, Martin rejected Bishop Ithacius’s principle of putting heretics to death—as well as the intrusion of the emperor into such matters. He prevailed upon the emperor to spare the life of the heretic Priscillian. For his efforts, Martin was accused of the same heresy, and Priscillian was executed after all. Martin then pleaded for a cessation of the persecution of Priscillian’s followers in Spain. He still felt he could cooperate with Ithacius in other areas, but afterwards his conscience troubled him about this decision.

As death approached, his followers begged him not to leave them. He prayed, “Lord, if your people still need me, I do not refuse the work. Your will be done.”

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