Disappointments that aren’t a result of our own foolishness are a testing of our faith or a correction from heaven, and it is our own fault if these disappointments don’t work for our own good.
We are inclined to call things by wrong names. We call prosperity ‘happiness’, and adversity ‘misery’ eventhough adversity is the school of wisdom and often the way to eternal happiness.
The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.
Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.
Life is greater than all art. I would go even further and declare that the man whose life comes nearest to perfection is the greatest artist. For what is art without the sure foundation and framework of a noble life?
Were it not for the presence of the unwashed and the half-educated, the formless, queer and incomplete, the unreasonable and absurd, the infinite shapes of the delightful human tadpole, the horizon would not wear so wide a grin.
We are told truly that meekness and modesty are the rich and charming garments of the soul. The less showy our outward attire is, the more distinctly and brilliantly does the beauty of these inner garments shine.
To be a Christian is to be subversive, or at least that is how he will be viewed by society. Since his loyalty is to one who is beyond history, he cannot give his ultimate allegiance to any government, business, class, or any other institution. His views cannot be expected to coincide with the majority view around him. He can be expected to be in continual conflict with the structures of society, for to be at peace with God means to be in conflict with the world.
Be patterns, be examples in all countries, places, islands, nations wherever you come; that your carriage and life may preach among all sorts of people, and to them; then you will come to walk cheerfully over the world, answering that of God in everyone; whereby in them you may be a blessing, and make the witness of God in them to bless you.
This is the duty of our generation as we enter the twenty-first century — solidarity with the weak, the persecuted, the lonely, the sick, and those in despair. It is expressed by the desire to give a noble and humanizing meaning to a community in which all members will define themselves not by their own identity but by that of others.
A human being is a part of a whole called by us the ’Universe’, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.
Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocrities. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence.
Strange is our situation here upon earth. Each of us comes for a short visit, not knowing why, yet sometimes seeming to divine a purpose. From the standpoint of daily life, however, there is one thing we do know: that man is here for the sake of other men.
In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.
Whoever is spared personal pain must feel himself called to help in diminishing the pain of others. We must all carry our share of the misery which lies upon the world.
Revolution is an attempt to close the gap between the ideal and the real. It is a struggle to move from the ‘is’ to the ‘ought’. It is motivated by both a revulsion at the injustice of the present and a feeling of loyalty to something higher. Thus it is an attempt to move beyond the present to a future that seems within reach.
We need to incorporate within our own lives the revolution we seek. We need not only a theory of a liberated society, but the practice of it. We need the experience of living a new reality. Instead of talking about abstract ideals, we need to live a new life. The time has come for a change and it must begin with me.
The radical will not work through the power structure in order to take it over. Neither will he wait until the establishment is ready to accept his ideas, for he may very well spend his whole life waiting as so many have done. He begins to act now on the vision. He is building a new society which will replace the old.
Being different sexes makes no difference because there is no sex in the inner person where the substance of friendship lies.
There is a bomb ticking away under the whole world. We accidentally built it ourselves, out of too many people and too much consumption and too much pressure on the environment.
Legitimately cool people instinctively understand that the psychology of subservience – getting corporately seduced – is a chicken ass way to live. Today such people are an endangered species.
True Godliness does not turn men out of the world, but enables them to live better in it, and excites their endeavours to mend it.
If you would attain to what you are not yet, you must always be displeased by what you are. For where you are pleased with yourself there you have remained. Keep adding, keep walking, keep advancing.
The prophet does not turn inwards to find peace and calm there, for the prophet knows that peace without justice is a cover-up. Rather, the prophet turns outward to find God and the God who is found is a verb and not a noun.
The search for consciousness begins with an effort to shake off the false consciousness imposed by society… One devise is particularly important; an individual cannot hope to achieve an independent consciousness unless he cultivates, by whatever means are available including clothes, speech, mannerisms, illegal activities and so forth, the feeling of being an outsider. Only the person who feels himself to be an outsider is genuinely free of the lures and temptations of the Corporate State.
All possessions are by nature unrighteous; when one possesses them for personal advantage and does not bring them into the common stock for those in need.