I am a mirror to you who know me.

Amen

I am a door to you who knock on me.

Amen

I am a way to you, the traveler.

Amen

–The Acts of John

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A MAN is raised up from the earth by two wings — simplicity and purity. There must be simplicity in his intention and purity in his desires. Simplicity leads to God, purity embraces and enjoys Him.

If your heart is free from ill-ordered affection, no good deed will be difficult for you. If you aim at and seek after nothing but the pleasure of God and the welfare of your neighbor, you will enjoy freedom within.

If your heart were right, then every created thing would be a mirror of life for you and a book of holy teaching, for there is no creature so small and worthless that it does not show forth the goodness of God. If inwardly you were good and pure, you would see all things clearly and understand them rightly, for a pure heart penetrates to heaven and hell, and as a man is within, so he judges what is without. If there be joy in the world, the pure of heart certainly possess it; and if there be anguish and affliction anywhere, an evil conscience knows it too well.

As iron cast into fire loses its rust and becomes glowing white, so he who turns completely to God is stripped of his sluggishness and changed into a new man. When a man begins to grow lax, he fears a little toil and welcomes external comfort, but when he begins perfectly to conquer himself and to walk bravely in the ways of God, then he thinks those things less difficult which he thought so hard before.

–The imitation of Christ

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My God and My All!

 

—St Francis of Assisi

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“‘ My power, sing praises to the Light and forget not all the powers of the Light which it hath given unto thee.

“‘And the powers which are in thee, sing praises to the name of his holy mystery;

“‘Who forgiveth all thy transgression, who saveth thee from all the afflictions with which the emanations of Self-willed have constrained thee;

“‘Who hath saved thy light from the emanations of Self-willed which belong to destruction; who hath wreathed thee with light in his compassion, until he saved thee;

“‘Who hath filled thee with purified light; and thy beginning will renew itself as an invisible of the Height.’

“With these words Pistis Sophia sang praises, because she was saved and remembered all things which I had done unto her.”

–Pistis Sophia chap. 73

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Truth is within ourselves; it takes no rise

From outward things, what’er you may believe.

There is an inmost center in us all,

Where truth abides in fullness.

 

–Robert Browning

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One of the Sufis says this: “This borrowed life of mine, hand­ed over to me by the Friend, I shall hand back to Him when at last I see His Face.” . . . The fact that we belong to Him .. . that’s the reason we desire Him.

And another saying . . . “Before all men were made, God spoke to them in Adam and He said to them, `Am I not your [Lord],’ and in Adam, they all answered `Yes.’ And therefore in this answer of “Yes” which Adam gave to God’s question “Am I not your [Lord]?” there was a pact made for all creatures, and in Adam, all admitted that they belonged to God.’

The desire of God is tied up in our hearts with this deep sense, the deepest thing in our nature, not that He is a god, not that He is God or the Supreme Being, but that he is Our God, that He is My God. When our Lord says on the cross, “My God why hast thou forsaken me?” It isn’t just God, it is “My God.”

 

–Thomas Merton

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