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Published 7-21-10

Thomas Merton, Book of 1 Corinthians, White Eagle, Henry David Thoreau


Dear Readers,

I smile when I hear humanists or atheists accusing religious people of being
Failing to live up to one's spiritual goals isn't being hypocritical,
it's aspiring to something genuine and vital and falling short; the only way
to avoid being that kind of so-called hypocrite is never to reach for God.

Having said that, it's critically important for the spiritual aspirant to look
honestly at himself. It's easy to fall prey to human frailties. We need to
drink from God's well of Love. The reflection we see in that Holy water
water is a picture of our true identity. Any other "identity" is false.

- Lisa

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tulips in a vase in a home
Photo by Stephen Bowman          All rights reserved

The seeds that are planted in my liberty at every moment,
by God's will, are the seeds of my own identity, my own
reality, my own happiness, my own sanctity...

Every one of us is shadowed by an illusory person: a false self.

... My false and private self is the one who wants to exist outside
the reach of God's will and God's love -- outside of reality and
outside of life. And such a self cannot help but be an illusion...

All sin starts from the assumption that my false self, the self
that exists only in my own egocentric desires, is the fundamental
reality of life to which everything else in the universe is ordered.
Thus I use up my life in the desire for pleasures and the thirst
for experiences, for power, honor, knowledge and love, to
clothe this false self and construct its nothingness into
something objectively real ...

Thomas Merton
From "New Seeds of Contemplation"
Orbis Books, 2005


For now we see in a mirror, dimly,
but then face to face. Now I know in part,
but then I shall know just as I also am known.

1 Corinthians 13:12
The Holy Bible
New King James Version

Arno river, Florence, Italy
Photo by Stephen Bowman             All rights reserved

The first and greatest claim upon you is the claim of God,
or of your spirit; or, in other words, your highest self. Your
true self is a shining spirit. You must be true to that shining
spirit above all things. Let nothing draw you aside from your
soul's pursuit of truth and light and eternal love.

Excerpted from "The Quiet Mind: Sayings of White Eagle,"
The White Eagle Publishing Trust, 1972


The secret of my identity is hidden in the love and mercy
of God...
If I find Him I will find myself and if I find my true self
I will find Him...
The only One Who can teach me to find God is God,
Himself, Alone.

Excerpted from "Thomas Merton: Essential Writings "
Orbis Books, 2005

The Last Word:

What lies behind us
and what lies ahead of us
are tiny matters compared to
what lives within us.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)
American writer, abolitionist, naturalist, transcendentalist






























































Utterly Random Bonus Quote:

Who, being loved, is poor?

Oscar Wilde (1854-1900)
English author, playwright, poet


Welcome to
The Religion Network!

I'm Lisa Bowman, editor
of The Religion Network,
a multi-faith Web site.
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