Contemplation

The danger of the cult of technological progress lies in its tendency to restrict and confine mankind within the adoring contemplation of his own creative power.

To glorify God is to be engaged in a concrete spirituality that refuses to draw marked distinctions between sacred and secular, contemplation and deed, theology and ethics.

The tragedy of our time is “the treason of the clerks,” that is, the failure of our best minds to give themselves to contemplation of truth, and their undue preoccupation with immediate problems to the neglect of the deeper problems.

Christian contemplation is not something esoteric and dangerous. It is simply the experience of god that is given to a soul purified by humility and faith.

The contemplation of the pious is the immediate consciousness of the universal existence of all finite things, in and through the Infinite, and of all temporal things in and through the Eternal.

Indeed, the chief natural way whereby we can climb up to the understanding of the Deity is by a contemplation of our own souls.

Having criticized the idea that God gives life meaning by assigning a purpose to us collectively or to each one of us individually, this does not mean that God is irrelevant to the meaning of life. It does not exclude the idea that part of the meaning of life consists in the contemplation or worship of the divine…

Traditionally, the relation between the divine and the human is that the divine confers meaning on our finite and otherwise petty lives. The idea… is that the divine has qualities that are meaningful because of our possible response to them. In other words, rather than starting from the divine and understanding the meaning of our lives in terms of that, we should start from meaningful activities, such as contemplation and worship, that constitute an appropriate response to the divine, and from this, try to make sense of the divine.

Prayer should be understood, not as a mere mechanical recitation of formulas, but as a mystical elevation, an absorption of consciousness in the contemplation of a principle both permeating and transcending our world.

The ultimate value of life depends on awareness and the power of contemplation rather than upon mere survival.

By reading, we enjoy the dead; by conversation, the living; and by contemplation, ourselves. Reading enriches the memory, conversation polishes the wit; and contemplation improves the judgment. Of these, reading is the most important, as it furnishes both the others.

That pleasure which is at once the most pure, the most elevating and the most intense, is derived, I maintain, from the contemplation of the beautiful.

Certainly the contemplation of death, as the wages of sin, and passage to another world, is holy and religious; but he fear of it, as a tribute due unto Nature, is weak.

To feel beauty is a better thing than to understand how we come to feel it. To have imagination and taste, to love the best, to be carried by the contemplation of nature to a vivid faith in the ideal, all this is more, a great deal more, than any science can hope to be.

Philosophy is a steady contemplation of all things in their order and worth.

We must learn to reawaken and keep ourselves awake not by mechanical aids, but by an infinite expectation of the dawn, which does not forsake us in our soundest sleep. I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by a conscious endeavor... To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts. Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour.

Every man is tasked to make his life, even in its details, worthy of the contemplation of his most elevated and critical hour.

Two sentiments alone suffice for man, were he to live the age of the rocks, love, and the contemplation of the Deity.

The world can only be grasped by action, not by contemplation ... The hand is the cutting edge of the mind.

The soul of man (whose life or motion is perpetual contemplation or thought) is the mistress of two potent rivals, the one reason, the other passion, that are in the continual suit.