Faith (...) makes us to believe the truths which God Himself has revealed - truths surpassing the light of reason, and beyond reach of all human understanding. St. John of the Cross, The Ascent of Mount Carmel, P.67
When one's intelligence, mind, faith and refuge are all fixed in the Supreme, then one becomes fully cleansed of misgivings through complete knowledge and thus proceeds straight on the path of liberation. Gita 5:17
Anyone who knows Me as the Supreme Personality of Godhead, without doubting, is to be understood as the knower of everything, and therefore engages himself in full devotional service, O son of Bharata. Gita 15:19
... faith is the sole proximate and proportionate means of the soul's union with God (...). ...God is either seen or believed in. (...) ... the greater the faith of the soul the more is that soul united to God. St. John of the Cross, The Ascent of Mount Carmel, P.99
Your success is directly proportional to the faith you have in the Lord. Shanti Vachan Bhandar, 1088.
So if anyone declares himself for me in the presence of men, I will declare myself for him in the presence of my Father in heaven. Matthew 10:32
Never feel disheartened and sad in life. Go ahead on the path of spirituality with unflagging zeal and hope. Shanti Vachan Bhandar, 1233.
That is why I am telling you not to worry about your life and what you are to eat, nor about your body and how you are to clothe it. Surely life means more than food, and the body more than clothing! Look at the birds in the sky. They do not sow or reap or gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they are? (...) Set your hearts on his kingdom first, and on his righteousness, and all these other things will be given you as well. So do not worry about tomorrow: tomorrow will take care of itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:25-34
When you lose your heart, when you lose courage - this is death. Don't lose courage.(...) Yoga is to be courageous. To be dejected or to lose courage is not yoga. Teachings of Babaji, P.3.
Where is your faith? Stand firm and hold your ground. Be a man of courage, and wait in patience; my comfort will come to you in its own good time. Thomas A Kempis, Imitation of Christ, III.30.2
One stumbles and falls repeatedly on the spiritual path, but again and again he gets up and moves forward. Do not be dismayed during trials. If you remain firm in faith during trials, you shall definitely achieve success. Shanti Vachan Bhandar, 1888.
Whenever you lose all hopes and faith in your own strength and seek the protection of the Lord, a hidden power will come to your aid because He is the strength of the weak. Shanti Vachan Bhandar, 1966.
Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God still, and trust in me. There are many rooms in my Father's house; (...) John 14:1-2
I have told you all this so that your faith may not be shaken. They will expel you (...) and indeed the hour is coming when anyone who kills you will think he is doing a holy duty for God. They will do these things because they have never known either the Father or myself. John 16:1-3
I tell you solemnly, if your faith were the size of a mustard seed you could say to this mountain, "move from here to there", and it would move; nothing would be impossible for you. Matthew 17:20
If you have faith, everything you ask for in prayer you will receive. Matthew 21:22
(...) the essential usefulness of faith consists in the fact that, through faith, man achieves the good of his rational nature. John Paul II, Crossing the Threshold of Hope, P.192.
Christ certainly desires faith. He desires it of man and he desires it for man. To people seeking miracles from Him He would respond: "Your faith has saved you." (cf. Mk 10:52). John Paul II, Crossing the Threshold of Hope, P.193.
Those who believe and work righteousness, their Lord guides them, as a reward for their faith. Rivers will flow beneath them in the gardens of bliss. Quran 10:9
I fervently beg the Lord to strengthen my faith, so that in my drab, everyday life I will not be guided by human dispositions, but by those of the spirit. Oh, how everything drags man toward the earth! But lively faith maintains the soul in the higher regions and assigns self-love its proper place; that is to say, the lowest one. Faustina Kowalska, The Diary, 210.
"We must never forget that Christianity is much more than the intellectual acceptance of a religious message by a blind and submissive faith which never understands what the message means except in terms of authoritative interpretations handed down externally by experts in the name of the Church. On the contrary, faith is the door to the full inner life of the Church, a life which includes not only access to an authoritative teaching but above all to a deep personal experience which is at once unique and yet shared by the whole Body of Christ, in the Spirit of Christ. St. Paul compares this knowledge of God, in the Spirit, to the subjective knowledge that a man has of himself. Just as no one can know my inner self except my own "spirit," so no one can know God except God's Spirit; yet this Holy Spirit is given to us, in such a way that God knows Himself in us, and this experience is utterly real, though it cannot be communicated in terms understandable to those who do not share it. (See 1 Cor. 2:7-15.) Consequently, St. Paul concludes, "we have the mind of Christ." (1 Cor. 2:16). Thomas Merton, Zen and the Birds of Appetite. New Directions, New York. 1968. Pg. 56, 57. Submitted to L-Center Discussion Group by Gary Horn.
"If we try to contemplate God without having turned the face of our inner self entirely in His direction, we will end up inevitably by contemplating ourselves, and we will perhaps plunge into the abyss of warm darkness which is our own sensible nature. That is not a darkness in which one can safely remain passive. On the other hand, if we depend too much on our imagination and emotions, we will not turn ourselves to God but will plunge into a riot of images and fabricate for ourselves our own home-made religious experience, and this too is perilous. The "turning" of our whole self to God can be achieved only by deep and sincere and simple faith, enlivened by a hope which knows that contact with God is possible, and love which desires above all things to do His will." Merton, Thomas. Thoughts In Solitude. P. 50. Submitted to L-Center Discussion Group by Gary Horn <firstname.lastname@example.org>
"We must never forget that Christianity is much more than the intellectual acceptance of a religious message by a blind and submissive faith which never understands what the message means except in terms of authoritative interpretations handed down externally by experts in the name of the Church. On the contrary, faith is the door to the full inner life of the Church, a life which includes not only access to an authoritative teaching but above all to a deep personal experience which is at once unique and yet shared by the whole Body of Christ, in the Spirit of Christ. St. Paul compares this knowledge of God, in the Spirit, to the subjective knowledge that a man has of himself. Just as no one can know my inner self except my own "spirit," so no one can know God except God's Spirit; yet this Holy Spirit is given to us, in such a way that God knows Himself in us, and this experience is utterly real, though it cannot be communicated in terms understandable to those who do not share it. (See 1 Cor. 2:7-15.) Consequently, St. Paul concludes, "we have the mind of Christ." (1 Cor. 2:16). Thomas Merton, Zen and the Birds of Appetite. P.
So often our faith is leaning on the concept and images of faith. Here (in contemplative prayer) we go beyond them to the Object Himself of faith, leaving all the concepts and images behind. Basil Pennington, Finding Grace at the Centre, P.19.
Let no one hope to find in contemplation an escape from conflict, from anguish or from doubt. On the contrary, the deep, inexpressible certitude of the contemplative experience awakens a tragic anguish and opens many questions in the depths of the heart like wounds that cannot stop bleeding. For every gain in deep certitude there is a corresponding growth of superficial "doubt." This doubt is by no means opposed to genuine faith, but it mercilessly examines and questions the spurious "faith" of everyday life, the human faith which is nothing but the passive acceptance of conventional opinion. This false "faith" which is what we often live by and which we even come to confuse with our "religion" is subjected to inexorable questioning. This torment is a kind of trial by fire in which we are compelled, by the very light of invisible truth which has reached us in the dark ray of contemplation, to examine, to doubt and finally to reject all the prejudices and conventions that we have hitherto accepted as if they were dogmas. Hence it is clear that genuine contemplation is incompatible with complacency and with smug acceptance of prejudiced opinions. It is not mere passive acquiescence in the status quo, as some would like to believe - for this would reduce it to the level of spiritual anesthesia. Contemplation is no pain-killer. What a holocaust takes place in this steady burning to ashes of old worn-out words, clichés, slogans, rationalizations! The worst of it is that even apparently holy conceptions are consumed along with all the rest. It is a terrible breaking and burning of idols, a purification of the sanctuary, so that no graven thing may occupy the place that God has commanded to be left empty: the enter, the existential altar which simply "is." Merton, Thomas. New Seeds of Contemplation. PP. 12-13. Submitted to L-Center Discussion Group by Gary Horn email@example.com
There is only one God, one faith. Let the people believe firmly and do not fear anything. Our Lady of Medjugorie, June 29, 1981. Words from Heaven, P.91.
(…) There are many who do not come to church except through habit. It is necessary to awaken the faith. It is a gift from God. (…) Our Lady of Medjugorie, Spring 1982. Words from Heaven, P.128.
(…) How many people come to church, to the House of God, with respect, a strong faith, and love of God? Very few. (…). Our Lady of Medjugorie, October 25, 1985. Words from Heaven, P.171.
(…) One must be pious and set a good example for others in order to awaken in them the faith. (…) Our Lady of Medjugorie, February 4, 1984. Words from Heaven, P.365.
The great tragedy of our age is the fact, if one may dare to say it,
that there are so many godless Christians - Christians, that is, whose
religion is a matter of pure conformism and expediency. Their "faith"
is little more than a permanent evasion of reality - a compromise with
life. In order to avoid admitting the uncomfortable truth that they
no longer have any real need for God or
any vital faith in Him, they conform to the outward conduct of others like themselves. And these "believers" cling together, offering one another an apparent justification for lives that are essentially the same as the lives of their materialistic neighbours whose horizons are purely those of the world and its transient values. (...) In order to counteract the danger of this spiritual paralysis, the Holy Father urges Christians to renew the fervour of their faith and to cultivate an interior life. In order to do this, we must read, we must pray, we must meditate, we must seek every possible contact with God Who sent His Son into the world to deliver men from the coldness and vanity of purely human religious forms. Merton, Thomas. The Living Bread. P. xxii.
Submitted to L-Center Discussion Group by Gary Horn firstname.lastname@example.org
The convictions of those who have experienced God cannot be shaken. Paramahansa Yogananda, Man's Eternal Quest, P.36.
We do not demonstrate our faith when we live in the light, we show our faith when we live in the dark. Robert Benson, Living Prayer. P. 46 Submitted to Merton-L Discussion Group
Too often our notion of faith is falsified by our emphasis on the statements about God which faith believes, and by our forgetfulness of the fact that faith is a communion with God's own light and truth. Actually, the statements, the propositions which faith accepts on the divine authority are simply media through which one passes in order to reach the divine Truth. Faith terminates not in a statement, not in a formula of words, but in God. Thomas Merton, New Seeds of Contemplation.
What our country (India) now wants is muscles of iron and nerves of steel, gigantic will, which nothing can resist, which will accomplish their purpose in any fashion, even it means going down to the bottom of the ocean and meeting death face to face. That is what we want, and that can only be created, established, and strengthened by understanding and realizing the ideal of Advaita, that ideal of oneness of all. Faith, faith, faith in ourselves! (...) Why is it that the three hundred and thirty millions of people have been ruled for the last thousand years by any and every handful of foreigners? Because they had faith in themselves and we had not. (...) Vivekananda, quoted in: Nikhilananda, Vivekananda, A Biography, P.119.
The history of the world is the history of a few men who had faith in themselves. That faith calls out the inner divinity. You can do anything. You fail only when you do not strive sufficiently to manifest infinite power. As soon as a man loses faith in himself, death comes. Believe first in yourself and then in God. (...). Vivekananda, quoted in: Nikhilananda, Vivekananda, A Biography, P.150.
Some people have faith because their ancestors taught them to believe. In one sense this is satisfactory, no philosophical arguments will break their belief; in another sense, it is unsatisfactory, since their belief does not come from personal knowledge. Others come to belief through conviction after research. This is satisfactory in one sense, they know God from inner conviction; in another sense, it is unsatisfactory: if others demonstrate to them the fallacy of their reasoning, they may become unbelievers. The best believers are those whose beliefs are satisfactory in every way; they believe because of tradition and also through their own reasoning. This is what we mean when we say: "Our God and God of our ancestors." God is our master both because we know it and because our ancestors taught us. Baal Shem Tov (1698-1760), quoted in: Michael Shire, The Jewish Prophet, P.81.
I would venture to suggest that the only hope that we may influence others lies in the strength of our personal religion. If that is real and effective, it may here and there, be our lovely priviledge to kindle with the light of our enthusiasm, some other wavering, seeking soul. Lily Montagu (1873-1963, England), sermon delivered at the World Union for Progressive Judaism, Berlin, 1928, quoted in: Michael Shire, The Jewish Prophet, P.101.
Refresh your faith, but not with talking.
You have secretly refreshed your desires.
As long as desires are fresh, faith is not,
for it is these desires that lock that gate.
Rumi, Mathnawi I, 1078-1079, quoted in: Helminski, Kabir (2000). The Rumi Collection. P.18.
(...) I take seriously God Who gives me faith and renews that gift, by His mercy, at every moment, in spite of my unbelief. Thomas Merton, Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander, P.333.
The extent to which Buddhism is, literally, a faith is that it asks believers to trust in the possibility and value of enlightenment, in themselves as capable of experiencing it, and in Shakyamuni's teachings as a means of preparing their minds for it. And this trust needs to be maintained despite all the inevitable doubts, setbacks, and appearances to the contrary. Jack Maguire. (2001). Essential Buddhism. P.77.
The Dalai Lama quotes an ancient Tibetan proverb (...): "Someone whose faith is not grounded in reason is like a stream of water that can be led anywhere." Jack Maguire. (2001). Essential Buddhism. P.118.
Once we have entrusted our hope about something to God, we no longer quarrel with our neighbour over it. St. Mark the Ascetic (4th Century C.E.), quoted in: The Philokalia, Vol. I., P.133.
The first among all evils is ignorance; next comes lack of faith. St. Mark the Ascetic (4th Century C.E.), quoted in: The Philokalia, Vol. I., P.133.
If I could just relax in my Father’s loving hands, do fully what I am doing, and move with what he permits, with full confidence that for those who love God all things work to the good. Pennington, Basil. (1978). O Holy Mountain! Journal of a Retreat on Mount Athos. P.212.
Last modified: 2008/03/25
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