Sunday, July 29, 2007

There is a special peace and sense of blessing on Sunday morning, though all mornings are equally quiet here at the hermitage and the same birds always sing. I realize more than ever that here, in solitude, for me, is confrontation with the Word, and with God, and with the only possibilities that are fully real, or with those that are most real.
Journal of Thomas Merton, July 19, 1965
When appearances and names are abandoned, when discrimination ceases, and when we recognize all things as figments of the mind, then we can encounter ultimate reality. Reality has no image; it only has essence. Those who encounter ultimate reality have attained perfect wisdom.
Lankavatara Sutra 4
It is through God that you can be guided towards him. And to obtain this guidance you may seek his permission to find him. When he grants this permission, you recognize his unity. Recognizing his unity is the essence of faith in God. Faith in God leads to knowledge of God. Knowledge of God implies obedience in his commands. Obedience to God's commands is the means whereby you ascend towards him. And by ascending towards God you will eventually reach him.
Junayd: Tawhid 1
Wen said, 'Look around you. The world is full of plants and trees, animals and birds. Each living being has been shaped by yin and yang; and when yin and yang depart froma living being, that being dies. None of us can understand this continuous process of creaton and destruction; we simply observe it and wonder.
Lieh Tzu, The Book of Lieh Tzu: 3
To attain perfect knowledge you must become indifferent to time; you should discern eternity in every moment; and you should discern every moment in eternity. And you must become indifferent to space; you should discern infinity in every point, and you should discern every point in infinity. At the moment when you transcend time, you enter eternity. And at the place where you transcend space, you enter infinity. When you enter eternity and infinity, you are completely isolated, and utterly at one.
Patanjali, Yoga Sutra 3
A certain heathen asked Rabbi Joshua ben Karhah: "Why did the Holy One, the blessed One, speak to Moses out of a thorn bush?" He said to him: "Had it been out of a carob, or out of a sycamore, you would ask the same question. But I cannot send you away empty-handed. Why then out of a thorn bush? To teach you that there is no space free of the divine presence, not even a thorn bush."
Exodus Rabbah 2:9
Let it be my lot to see your light - even if I see it from a distance, and from far below. Teach me the way to you; and, when I have followed that way, welcome me into your presence. I can never find you, unless you guide me; I can never see you, unless you reveal yourself to me. I seek you Lord, because I yearn for you; and I yearn for you, because my nature is to seek you.
St. Anselm of Canterbury: Prologion 1
Thus said the Lord:
Observe what is right and do what is just;
For soon My salvation shall come,
And my deliverance be revealed.
Happy is the man who does this,
The man who holds fast to it:
Who keeps the sabbath and does not profane it,
And stays his hand from doing any evil.
Isaiah 56:1-2