The astonishing thing about him [man] is his range of vision; his gaze into the infinite distance; his lonely passion for ideas and ideals, far removed from his material surroundings and animal activities, and in no way suggested by them, yet for which, such is his affection, he is willing to endure toils and privations, to sacrifice pleasures, to disdain griefs and frustrations. The inner truth is that every man is himself a creator, by birth and nature, an artist, an architect and fashioner of worlds.
Man's main task in life is to give birth to himself, to become what he potentially is. The most important product of his effort is his own personality.
A good character is, in all cases, the fruit of personal exertion. It is not inherited from parents, it is not created by external advantages, it is no necessary appendage of birth, wealth, talents or station; but it is the result of one’s own endeavors.
This spectacle of old age would be unendurable if we did not know that our psyche reaches into a region held captive neither by change in time nor by limitation of place. In that form of being our birth is a death and our death is a birth. The scales of the whole hang balanced.
Birth is nothing without virtue, and we have no claim to share in the glory of our ancestors unless we strive to resemble them.
It is in life that we have to ‘perfect’ ourselves. If we limit ‘this life’ to one single journey between birth and death there is not enough time. People give up trying, just because of this appearance of things. They do not bend the life round in a circle, but leave the whole matter to the ‘hereafter’. We cannot grasp that beyond the ‘end’ lies the beginning... Beyond our life we meet - our life. We cannot turn in any other direction!
The Universe is governed by divine laws, which, unlike those of man’s making, are immutable, inviolable and an end to themselves, not instruments for the attainment of particular objects. The love of God is man’s only true good. From other passions we can free ourselves, but not from love, because for the weakness of our nature we could not subsist without the enjoyment of something that may strength us by our union with it. Only the knowledge of God will enable us to subdue the hurtful passions, This, as the source of all knowledge, is the most perfect of all; and inasmuch as all knowledge is derived from the knowledge of God, we may know god better than we know ourselves. This knowledge in time leads to the love of God, which is the soul’s union with Him. The union of the soul with God is its second birth, and therein consists man’s immortality and freedom.
Have I met the hour patiently, without fear, at the portal? Now is my name called, of the lip of my love has spoken: Do I mistake you, O divine Signaler? is it after all some other soul that is hailed. My self is my answer: there’s that in my heart responds, meeting the call with equal voice, establishing forever the unspeakable bond! Bond that does not bind - bond that frees - bond that discovers and bestows. Look! I am flushed with inexhaustible possessions! The old measures vanish, I am expanded to infinite sweep... Before birth, seeing birth, after life seeing life!... This minute grown infinite, the far worlds spread before me, the endless drift of soul...
The happiest lot for a an as far as birth is concerned, is that it should be such as to give him but little occasion to think much about it.
There seem to be some persons, the favorites of fortune and darlings of nature, who are born cheerful. “A star danced” at their birth. It is no superficial visibility, but a bountiful and beneficent soul that sparkles in their eyes and smiles on their lips. Their inborn geniality amounts to genius, the rare and difficult genius which creates sweet and wholesome character, and radiates cheer.
It is the responsibility of free men to trust and to celebrate what is constant - birth, struggle, and death are constant - and so is love, though we may not always think so - and to apprehend the nature of change, to be able and willing to change. I speak of change not on the surface but in the depths - change in the sense of renewal. But renewal becomes impossible if one supposes things to be constant that are not - safety, for example, or money or power. One clings then to chimeras, but which one can only be betrayed, and the entire hope - the entire possibility - of freedom disappears.
There are but three events which concern men: birth, life and death. They are unconscious of their birth, they suffer when they die, and they neglect to live.
Ah is the shortest of human cries, Oh the longest. Man is born in an Ah and dies in an Oh, for birth is immediate and death is like an airplane taking off.
If by saying that all men are born free and equal, you mean that they are all equally born; it is true, but true in no other sense; birth, talent, labor, virtue, and providence, are forever making differences.
Some political and social activities of the Catholic Church are detrimental and even dangerous for the community as a whole... [e.g.] the fight against birth control at a time when overpopulation [is] a serious obstacle to peace.
The universal of an atom containing emptiness and existence. This means that the atom has no intrinsic nature, so it is empty; yet its illusory characteristics are evident, so it is existent. Indeed, because illusory form has no essence, it must be no different from emptiness, and real emptiness contains qualities permeating to the surface of existence. Seeing that form is empty produces great wisdom and not dwelling in birth-and-death; seeing that emptiness is form produces great compassion and not dwelling in nirvana. When form and emptiness are nondual, compassion and wisdom are not different; only this is true seeing.
All death in nature is birth, and at the moment of death appears visibly the rising of life. There is no dying principle in nature, for nature throughout is unmixed life, which, concealed behind the old, begins again and develops itself. Death as well as birth is simply in itself, in order to present itself ever more brightly and more like to itself.
What is so wonderful about great literature is that it transforms the man who reads it towards the condition of the man who wrote, and brings to birth in us also the creative impulse.
Man's main task in life is to give birth to himself, to become what he potentially is.
Life and death are but phases of the same thing, the reverse and obverse of the same coin... I want you all to treasure death and suffering more than life and to appreciate their cleansing and purifying character. Death which is an Eternal verity is revolution, as birth and after is slow and steady evolution. Death is as necessary for man's growth as life itself... All fear is a sign of want of faith... Hate the sin and love the sinner.