Welcome To The Religion Network!
WELCOME! I'm Lisa Bowman. The Religion Network is an interfaith web site providing daily inspiration, quotes and religious resources. Faith and religion are precious gifts that bless.
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.
Whenever I touch a flower I touch the sun
and yet I do not get burned. when I touch
the flower, I touch a cloud without flying
to the sky. When I touch the flower, I touch
my consciousness, and the great planet
Earth at the same time. This is the
Avatamsaka realm. The miracle is
possible because of insight into the
nature of interbeing. If you really
touch one flower deeply, you touch
the whole cosmos. The cosmos is neither
one nor many. When you touch one, you
touch many, you touch one.
Excerpted from "Thich Nhat Hanh: Essential Writings"
Orbis Books, 2004
Sofia von Klingnau was a German nun who lived in the 13th
or 14th centuries. Early in her life as a nun, she apparently
was graced with a great "comfort," a vision of her soul.
She told no one the details of her vision until she was near
death. One of the other nuns, a dear friend, begged Sofia to
tell her what she had seen. After praying to determine if
it was God's will that she share the story, she described
her vision. The following are edited portions of that story.
We begin on the feast of the Holy Nativity. Sofia has stayed
behind after mass and gone behind the altar to pray.
There she recalls her earlier life and realizes how she must
have displeased God. This realization distresses her to the
point to where she can't stand. She begs for mercy on the altar and
struggles back to her room to hide. Feeling horribly ill, she prays:
In manus tuas, Domine, commendo spiritum meum.
Redemisti me Domine, Deus veritatis.
(Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.
You have redeemed me, O Lord, O God of truth.)
source: "Ecstatic Confessions," by Martin Buber
"And when I had said it, I saw that a light, beautiful and blissful
beyond measure, was coming from heaven, and it surrounded
me and shone through me and illuminated me entirely, and my
heart was transformed all of a sudden and filled with an unspeak-
able and strange joy, so that I utterly and completely forgot all the
misery and torment that I had ever known until this time. And in
the light and in the joy, I saw and sensed that my God was taken
up from my heart and out through my mouth and high into the
air, and there it was given to me to see my soul clearly and par-
ticularly with spiritual vision, as I have never seen anything with
physical eyes, and all its form and grace and beauty was shown
to me fully...The soul is so entirely spiritual a thing that one can-
not really compare it to any physical thing...But...I will give you a
parable which may help you understand..." (cont. below)
"It was a round, beautiful, and illuminating
light, like the sun, and was of a gold-colored
red, and this light was so immeasurably beautiful
and blissful that I could not compare it to anything
else...And in this light which was my soul, I saw God
blissfully shining, as a beautiful light shines out of a
beautiful radiant lamp, and I saw that he nestled up to
my soul so lovingly and and so kindly that he was wholly
united with it and it with him. And in this union of love my
soul acquired from God the certainty that all my sins had
been wholly forgiven me...
And this bliss lasted in me for eight days, and when I came
to myself again and became aware that a living spirit was in
me, I stood up and was the most joyful person, so it seemed
to me, on the whole earth...And from the abundance of the
measureless joy my body had grown so light and agile and
so without any infirmity that for those eight days I never felt
whether I had a body...and I had no hunger nor thirst nor
desire to sleep...And when I had passed these eight days
in such bliss, the grace was withdrawn from me, so that
I no longer had the contemplation of my soul and of God
in my soul, and then for the first time I felt I had a body.
From the Toss convent near Winterthur,
Elsbet Stagel's Sister-book.
Excerpted from "Ecstatic Confessions,"
by Martin Buber
Harper and Row, 1985
And now, the Last Word:
O love, O pure deep love, be here, be now
Be all; worlds dissolve into your stainless
Frail living leaves burn with you
brighter than cold stars:
Make me your servant, your breath,
Muslim poet and theologian
Catch the vigorous horse of your mind.