TODAY'S THEME: Confused? Simplicity & Silence

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Welcome To The Religion Network!
I'm Lisa Bowman. The Religion Network is an interfaith web site providing inspiration, quotes and religious resources. This Home Page is changed every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. You are warmly
invited to read every quote posted for each theme, or simply to read those that interest you. They are
offered in the belief that inspiration can be found in all spiritual faiths, and that finding the commonality
in religions is more important than pointing up the differences. Religion is precious gift that blesses the
individual and uplifts the community. However you worship, I hope this site enhances your journey. Let
us meet regularly and build a spiritual network. If you'd like to know my story, click on biography.

In so many ways this island selects for me better than I do myself
at home. When I go back (to the city), will I be submerged again,
not only by centrifugal activities, but by too many centripetal ones?
The multiplicity of of the world will crowd in on me again with its
false sense of values. Values weighed in quantity, not quality, in
speed, not stillness, in noise, not silence; in words, not in thoughts;
in acquisitiveness, not beauty. How shall I resist the onslaught?

...Simplicity of living, as much as possible, to retain a true aware-
ness of life. Balance of physical, intellectual, and spiritual life.
Work without pressure. Space for significance and beauty. Time
for solitude and sharing. Closeness to nature to strengthen
understanding and faith in the intermittency of life: life of the
spirit, creative life, and the life of human relationships.
A few shells.

Excerpted from "Gift From the Sea,"
by Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Pantheon Books, 1975

*Tonglen is a practice of creating space, ventilating the atmosphere
of our lives so that people can breathe freely and relax. Whenever
we encounter suffering in any form, the tonglen instruction is to
breathe it in with the wish that everyone could be free of pain.
Whenever we encounter happiness in any form, the instruction
is to breathe it out, send it out, with the wish that everyone
could feel joy. It's a practice that allows people to feel less
burdened and less cramped, a practice that shows us
how to love without conditions.

*Tonglen - sending and receiving

Excerpted from "When Things Fall Apart,"
by Pema Chodron
Shambala Publications, Inc, 1997


To thine own self be true. A grounding statement for those of us
who get caught up in the storm of needs and feeling of others.

...Sometimes, the demands of other people and our confused
expectations of ourselves - the messages about our responsibilities
toward others - can create a tremendous, complicated mess.

We can even convince ourselves that people-pleasing, going
against our nature and not being honest, is the kind, honest
thing to do!

Not true. Simplify. Back to basics. Let go of the confusion.
By honoring and respecting ourselves, we will be true to
those around us, even if we displease them momentarily.

Excerpted from "The Language of Letting Go,"
by Melody Beattie
Hazeldon, 1990

My life is a listening, His is a speaking. My salvation is to
hear and respond. For this, my life must be silent.
Hence, my silence is my salvation.

Excerpted from "Thoughts in Solitude,"
by Thomas Merton
Farrar - Straus - Giroux, 1958


This is the homeland to which every spiritual pilgrim is
constantly being called, "called home," as St. Augustine
says, "from the noise that is around us to the joys that
are silent. Why do we rush about...looking for God who is
here at home with us, if all we want is to be with him?"

This joy that is silent is already within us. Its discovery is
precious beyond compare. R. S. Thomas expresses it with
deceptive understatement:

But the silence in the mind
is when we live best, within
listening distance of the silence we call God...
It is a presence, then,
whose margins are our margins; that calls us out
over our own fathoms.

Excerpted from "Into the Silent Land,"
by Martin Laird
Oxford University Press, 2006


And now, the Last Word:

A dragonfly just landed

to kiss my page

and stir my soul

into understanding


by Joan Noeldechen




















































Bonus quote:

If one avoids haughtiness to the utmost extent and
is exceedingly humble, he is termed a saint,
and this is the standard of saintliness.

Maimonides, Mishneh Torah


On today's
Home Page:

Anne Morrow
Pema Chodron;
Melody Beattie;
Thomas Merton;
Martin Laird;
Joan Noeldechen