Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Gerald Vann

British Roman Catholic Theologian and Philosopher

"If you learn to see God in all things you will learn to love them according to His will, not your own self-will. If you see things as in eternity you are less a prey to the pain of their passing, and so you can learn the more easily not to clutch at them as they pass."

"How terrible when people are led to believe, or left to believe, that once they are in love they nothing to do but live happily every after, they have nothing further to learn."

"Temperance is not the absence of passion, but is the transfiguring of passion into wholeness. Without it... you will have the senses usurping sovereignty and excluding the spirit; you will have them deciding good and evil and excluding God."

"I lose God, I lose the world, I lose myself, if I want only to clutch at things and use them only for my own pleasure or profit."

"We of the modern West are the only people in the whole history of the world who have refused to find an explanation of the universe in a divine mind and will."

"The greatest and most urgent task of educators today is to instill ineradicably into the young precisely the utility of the useless, the value of the things that produce no cash returns but that make the “soul worth saving.”"

"If we are to be saved from our futility we must recover the faculty of being still: we must make an enclave of silence within our own souls."

"Detachment is not a denial of life but a denial of death; not a disintegration but the condition of wholeness; not a refusal to love but the determination to love truly, deeply, fully."

"Nothing is more depressing and more illogical than aggressive Christianity. "

"To help all created things, that is the measure of all our responsibility; to be helped by all, that is the measure of our hope. "

"Some people think that prayer just means asking for things, and if they fail to receive exactly what they asked for, they think the whole thing is a fraud. "

"If you say that the history of the Church is a long succession of scandals, you are telling the truth, though if that is all you say, you are distorting the truth."