Featured Wisdom Quotes

Welcome to our growing collection of Wisdom quotes. You can find more using the Search button below, taking you to our full library of Resources. Meanwhile, here’s a list to get you started.

A Point of Nothingness

At the center of our being is a point of nothingness which is untouched by sin and by illusion, a point of pure truth, a point or spark which belongs entirely to God, which is never at our disposal, from which God disposes of our lives, which is inaccessible to the fantasies of our mind or the brutalities of our own will. This little point of nothingness and of absolute poverty is the pure glory of God in us. It is so to speak His name written in us, as our poverty, as our indigence, as our dependence, as our sonship. It is like a pure diamond, blazing with the invisible light of heaven. It is in everybody, and if we could see it we would see these billion points of light coming together in the face and blaze of a sun that would make all the darkness and cruelty of life vanish completely.

~Thomas Merton, Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander, p. 158

Art thou in the darkness?

Art thou in the darkness? Mind it not, for if thou dost it will feed thee more. But stand still, and act not, and wait in patience till light arises out of darkness and leads thee.

~ James Naylor, Quaker mystic

As your being increases

As your being increases, your receptivity to higher meaning increases; as your being decreases, the old meanings return.

~ Maurice Nicoll, Psychological Commentaries on the Teachings of Ouspensky and Gurdjieff

Authentic Spiritual Experience

He who aspires to authentic spiritual experiences never confounds the intensity of the experience undergone with the truth that is revealed. [He does not regard the force of impact as a criterion of its authenticity and truth.]

~ by Valentin Tomberg in Meditations on the Tarot

Christ will storm the hell in you

Here, now is the right time to wrestle before the divine presence. If you stand firm, if you do not bend, you will see and perceive great wonders. You will discover how Christ will storm the hell in you and will break your beasts.

~ Jacob Boehme, The Way to Christ

Detaching the sense of identity from the descriptions of yourself

The first task, clearly, is to detach the sense of identity from the descriptions of yourself. This does not mean to find another description that would be the correct one. It means to realize there is no description of you.

~ Beatrice Bruteau, Prayer and Identity

Enduring the tedium

You have to endure the tedium until something gradually emerges in it.

~ Br. Raphael Robin

Faith is a continual inner effort

Faith is a continual inner effort, a continual altering of the mind, of the habitual ways of thought, of the habitual ways of taking everything, of habitual reactions.

~ Maurice Nicoll, The New Man

Faith, hope and love

Faith of Consciousness is freedom
Faith of feeling is weakness
Faith of body is stupidity

Love of consciousness evokes the same in response
Love of feeling evokes the opposite
Love of Body depends on type and polarity

Hope of consciousness is strength
Hope of feeling is slavery
Hope of body is disease”

~ G.I. Gurdjieff, Beelzebub’s Tales to His Grandson

Freedom to be

Freedom to be your ego is not freedom.

~ A. H. Almaas

Give over thine own willing

 Give over thine own willing, give over thine own running, give over thine own desiring to know or be anything, and sink down to the seed which God sows in thy heart and let that be in thee and grow in thee and breathe in thee and act in thee, and thou shalt find by sweet experience that the Lord knows that and loves and owns that, and will lead it to the inheritance of life which is God’s portion.

~ Isaac Penington, Quaker mystic

God is the unity

At this point in my thinking, it is not enough for me to proclaim that God is responsible for all this unity. Instead, I want to proclaim that God is the unity—the very intelligence, the very energy, the very intelligence, the very elegance and passion that make it all go.

~ Barbara Brown Taylor, The Luminous Web

God is the web

Where is God in this picture? God is all over the place. God is up there, down here, inside my skin and out. God is the web, the energy, the space, the light—not captured in them, as if any of those concepts were more real than what unites them—but revealed in that singular, vast net of relationships that animates everything that is.

~ Barbara Brown Taylor, The Luminous Web

God wills and works in the resigned will

God wills and works in the resigned will, by which the soul is made holy and comes to rest. When the body breaks up, the soul is pressed through with divine love and is illuminated with God’s light as fire glows through iron by which it loses its darkness.

~ Jacob Boehme, The Way to Christ

Heading Out

Beyond here there’s no map.
How you get there is where 
you’ll arrive: how, dawn by 
dawn, you can see your way
clear: in ponds, sky, just as
woods you walk through give
to fields. And rivers: beyond
all burning, you’ll cross on bridges
you’ve long lugged with you.
Whatever your route, go lightly,
toward light. Once you give away
all save necessity, all’s
mostly well: what you used to
believe you owned is nothing,
nothing beside how you’ve come
to feel. You’ve no need now
to give in or give out: the way 
you’re going your body seems
willing. Slowly as it may
otherwise tell you, whatever
it comes to you’re bound to know.

~Philip Booth, “Heading Out”

How to pray

I pray for you by living the life.

~ Raphael Robin

How wholeness is born

Wholeness is born of the acceptance of the conflict of human and divine in the individual psyche.

~ Helen Luke, Old Age

I am the light shining upon all things

Jesus says: I am the light shining upon all things. I am the sum of everything, for everything has come forth from me, and toward me everything unfolds. Split a piece of wood and there I am; pick up a stone and you will find me there.

~ Gospel of Thomas, Logion 77

If you are searching

If you are searching, you must not stop until you find. When you find, however, you will become troubled. Your confusion will give way to wonder. In wonder you will reign over all things.

~ Gospel of Thomas,  Logion 2

If you give birth to that which is in yourself

If you give birth to that which is in yourself, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not have anything within, what you “do not have will destroy you.”

~ Gospel of Thomas, logion 70

Keep within

Keep within. And when they say, ‘Look here or look there is Christ,’ go not forth. For Christ is within you, and all who try to draw your mind away fron the teaching inside you are opposed to Christ. For the measure’s within, and the light of God is within, and the pearl is within you, though hidden.

~ George Fox, Quaker mystic

Keep your attention within yourself

You should observe three things before all else: freedom from all cares, not only about bad and vain but even about good things…your conscience should be clear so that it denounces you in nothing, and you should have a complete absence of passionate attachment so that your thought inclines to nothing worldly. Keep your attention within yourself—not in your head, but in your heart.

~ Symeon the New Theologian, Three Methods of Attention and Prayer

Lovers lost in each other

Is not the moment when two lovers say they are lost in each other the moment when they come into the most complete possession of themselves?

~ Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, The Human Phenomenon

Mercy and truth are met together

Man in his weakness and shortsightedness believes he must make choices in this life. He trembles at the risk he takes. But no; our choice is of no importance. There comes a time when our eyes are opened and we come to realize that mercy is infinite. We need only to await it with confidence and receive it with gratitude. Mercy imposes no conditions. 

And lo! Everything we have chosen has been granted to us. And everything we have rejected has also been granted. We get back even what we rejected. For mercy and truth are met together. Righteousness and bliss shall kiss one another.

~ Isak Dinesen, Babette’s Feast

No law is needed

Where tact prevails, no law is needed.

~ Jean Gebser, The Ever-Present Origin

Only Being is real

States aren’t real. They come and go. Only Being is real.

~ Sunyata, a.k.a., Alfred Sorensen, Danish mystic

Real feeling

Real feeling becomes possible when you turn toward that which has you in its grip.

~ Jyri Paloheimo

Seeking Wisdom

If you seek Wisdom in the first place, you will find that Wisdom is joyous. If you seek the joy of Wisdom in the first place, you will fall prey to illusions.

~ by Valentin Tomberg in Meditations on the Tarot

Spiritual longing

Neither activities nor possessions will ever be able to satisfy the spiritual longing radiating from our souls.

~ Catherine Whitmire, Practicing Peace

Stand still

Stand still in that which is pure after ye see yourselves, and then mercy comes in. After thou seest thy thoughts and temptations. Do not think, but submit, and then power comes in. Stand still in that which shows and discovers, and there doth strength immediately come. And stand still in the light, and submit to it, and the other will be hushed and gone, and then contentment comes.

~ George Fox, Quaker mystic

Tasting the hidden life

There is a great difference between comprehending the knowledge of things and tasting the hidden life in them.

~ Isaac Penington, Quaker mystic

The Five Obligolnian Strivings

The first striving: to have in one’s ordinary being-existence everything satisfying and really necessary for the planetary body.

The second striving: to have a constant and unflagging instinctive need to perfect oneself in the sense of Being.

The third: the conscious striving to know more and more about the laws of world-creation and world-maintenance.

The fourth: the striving, from the beginning of one’s existence, to pay as quickly as possible for one’s arising and individuality, in order afterward to be free to lighten as much as possible the sorrow of our Common Father.

And the fifth: the striving always to assist the most rapid perfecting of other beings, both those similar to oneself and those of other forms, up to the degree of ‘Marfotai,’ that is, up to the degree of self-individuality.

~ G.I. Gurdjieff, Beelzebub’s Tales to His Grandson

The gospel’s secret power

The gospel’s secret power, often hardly glimpsed by Christianity itself, is the gathering up of all our passion, our entropic centrifugal energy, our very outward thrust and vital compulsivity, secularity, and carnality, into this divine energy that flows ever outward from its hidden source.

~ Bruno Barnhart, Second Simplicity

The knowledge of Jesus Christ

The knowledge of Jesus Christ is a unitive knowledge. It is the luminosity of my own true and eternal being.

~ Bruno Barnhart, Second Simplicity

The present material of my life

For as much as it is the present material of my life, it is a legitimate and effective support for me.

~ Hubert Benoit, Attention and Acceptance

The projection of the deep resources of our own spirit

It’s the projection of the deep resources of our own spirit—and the Holy Spirit— onto other people that seems to be the mistake. The whole thing is in us, but we keep hanging it on somebody or something outside us.

~ Bruno Barnhart

The subjective act of being conscious

You are to coincide with the subjective act of being conscious, not to reflect on the fact of your being or of your being conscious.

~ Beatrice Bruteau, Prayer and Identity

The truth is one

The truth is one and the same always, though ages and generations pass away.

~ Margaret Fell, Quaker mystic

The Water Wheel

Stay together, friends.
Don’t scatter and sleep.

Our friendship is made
of being awake.

The waterwheel accepts water
and turns and gives it away,

That way it stays in the garden,
whereas another roundness
rolls through a dry riverbed looking
for what it thinks it wants.

Stay here, quivering with each moment
like a drop of mercury.

~ by Rumi in The Essential Rumi translated by Coleman Barks

The wellsprings of life

The wellsprings of life are bubbling up anew each moment. So when the angel is troubling the waters, it is no time to stand on the bank and recite past wonders.

~ Thomas Kelly, A Testament of Devotion

There is a secret in the heart of life

There is a secret in the heart of life that that is not only the unmoving white light. It is not only the still point in the turning world, not only the light-filled empty center. It is also the lion of fire, the unceasing explosion of expansive being, of proliferating life, from the center. It is the fontal energy that demands to express itself always and everywhere, through every form. It is not only secret but also manifestation: the secret manifestation, the nameless, ubiquitous power that is expressed in our own restless centrifugal living.

~ Bruno Barnhart, Second Simplicity

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