Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Angels

"What makes woman lovely? Virtue, Faith, and gentleness in suffering, an endurance through scorn or trial; then has it the stamp celestial, and is admitted to sisterhood with angels." -

"The angels may have wider spheres of action, may have nobler forms of duty; but right with them and with us is one and the same thing." - Edwin Hubbell Chapin

"The reason angels can fly is that they take themselves so lightly." - G. K. Chesterton, fully Gilbert Keith Chesterton

"As to modesty and decency, if we are simians we have done well, considering: but if we are something else - fallen angels - we have indeed fallen far." - Clarence Shepard Day, Jr.

"The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us, and we see nothing but sand; the angels come to visit us, and we only know them when they are gone." - George Eliot, pen name of Mary Ann or Marian Evans

"How mysterious in this human life, with all its diversities of contrast and compensation; this web of checkered destinies,; this sphere of manifold allotment, where man lives in his greatness and grossness, a little lower than the angels, a little higher than the brutes." - Henry Giles

"Be charitable in your thoughts, in your speech and in your actions. Be charitable in your judgments, in your attitudes and in your prayers. Think charitably of your friends, your neighbors, your relatives and even your enemies. And if there be those whom you can help in a material way, do so in a quiet, friendly, neighborly way, as if it were the most command and everyday experience for you. Tongues of men and angels, gifts of prophecy and all mysteries and all knowledge are as nothing without charity." - Patrick Joseph Hayes

"As you look at your youngsters, be sure that your standards of promptness, of attention, of quiet, of courtesy, are realistically geared to children, not idealistically geared to angels." - James L. Hymes, Jr.

"Don’t be too hasty... to trust or to admire the teachers of morality: they discourse like angels, but they live like men." -

"Every good act is charity. Your smiling in your brother's face, is charity; an exhortation of your fellow-man to virtuous deeds, is equal to alms-giving; your putting a wanderer in the right road, is charity; your removing stones, and thorns, and other obstructions from the road, is charity; your giving water to the thirsty, is charity. A man's true wealth hereafter, is the good he does in this world to his fellow-man. When he dies, people will say, "What property has he left behind him?" but the angels will ask, "What good deeds has he sent before him."" -

"Reputation is what men and women think of us. Character is what God and angels know of us." - Thomas Paine

"It was pride that changed angels into devils; it is humility that makes men as angels." - Saint Augustine, aka Augustine of Hippo, St. Austin, Bishop of Hippo NULL

"It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles. Then the victory is yours. It cannot be taken from you, not by angels or by demons, heaven or hell." -

"Women are only told that they resemble angels when they are young and beautiful; consequently, it is their persons, not their virtues, that procure them homage." - Phoebe Cary

"The man who can really, in living union of the mind and heart, converse with God through nature, finds in the material forms around him, a source of power and happiness inexhaustible, and like the life of angels. The highest life and glory of man is to be alive unto God; and when this grandeur of sensibility to him, and this power of communion with him is carried, as the habit of the soul, into the forms of nature, then the walls of our world are as the gates of heaven." - George Barrell Cheever

"Angels fly because they take themselves lightly." - G. K. Chesterton, fully Gilbert Keith Chesterton

"Peace is the first thing the angels sang. Peace is the mark of the sons of God. Peace is the nurse of love. Peace is the mother of unity. Peace is the rest of blessed souls. Peace is the dwelling place of eternity." - Pope Leo I, aka Pope Leo The Great, Pope Saint Leo I NULL

"Of law there can be no less acknowledged than that her seat is thy bosom of God, her voice the harmony of the world; all things do her homage, the very least as feeling her care; and the greatest as not exempted from her power; both angels and men, and creatures of what condition soever, though each in different sort and manner, yet all with uniform consent admiring her as the mother of their peace and joy." - Richard Hooker

"Worship is the earthly act by which we most distinctly recognize our personal immortality; men who think that they will be extinct a few years hence do not pray. In worship we spread out our insignificant life, which yet is the work of the Creator’s hands... before the Eternal and All-Merciful, that we may learn the manners of a higher sphere, and fit ourselves for companionship with saints and angels, and for the everlasting sight of the face of God." - Henry Parry Liddon

"Every good act is charity. Your smiling in your brother's face, is charity; an exhortation of your fellow-man to virtuous deeds, is equal to alms-giving; your putting a wanderer in the right road, is charity; your removing stones, and thorns, and other obstructions from the road, is charity; your giving water to the thirsty, is charity. A man's true wealth hereafter, is the good he does in this world to his fellow-man. When he dies, people will say, "What property has he left behind him?" but the angels will ask, "What good deeds has he sent before him."" -

"To those who are His all things are not only easy to be borne, but even to be gladly chosen. Their will is united to that which moves heaven and earth, which gives laws to angels, and rule the courses of the world." - Henry Edward Manning

"The guardian angels of life sometimes fly so high as to be beyond our sight, but they are always looking down upon us." -

"Men prefer to believe that they are degenerated angels, rather than elevated apes." -

"A heart renewed - a loving heart - a penitent and humble heart - a heart broken and contrite, purified by love - that and only that is the rest of men. Spotlessness may do for angels, repentance unto life is the highest that belongs to man." -

"Faith is a certain image of eternity. All things are present to it - things past, and things to come; it converses with angels, and antedates the hymns of glory. Every man that hath this grace is as certain there are glories for him, if he perseveres in duty, as if he had heard and sung thanksgiving song for the blessed sentence of doomsday." - Jeremy Taylor

"You tell us that baptism is absolutely necessary to go to heaven. If there were a man so good that he had never offended God, and if he died without baptism, would he go to hell, never having given any offense to God? If he goes to hell, then God must not love all good people, since He throws one into the fire. You teach us that God existed before the creation of heaven and earth. If He did, where did He live, since there was neither heaven nor earth? You say that the angels were created n the beginning of the world, and that those who disobeyed were cast into hell. How can that be so, since you say the angels sinned before earth’s creation, and hell is in the depths of the earth? You declare that those who go to hell do not come out of it, and yet you relate stories of the damned who have appeared in the world - how is that to be understood. Ah, how I would like to kill devils, since they do so much harm! But if they are made like men and some are even among men, do they still feel the fire of hell? Why is it that they do not repent for having offended God? If they did repent, would not God be merciful to them? If Our Lord has suffered for all sinners, why do not they receive pardon from him? You say that the virgin, mother of Jesus Christ, is not God, and that she has never offended God. You also say that her Son has redeemed all men, and atoned for all; but if she has done nothing wrong, her son could not redeem her nor atone for her." - Young “Savage” Seminarians NULL

"I died as a mineral and became a plant, I died as a plant and rose to animal, I died as an animal and I was man. Why should I fear? When was I less by dying? Yet once more I shall die as a man, to soar with angels blest; but even from angelhood I must pass on: all except God perish. When I have sacrificed my angel soul, I shall become what no mind e’er conceived. Oh, let me not exist! For Non-existence proclaims in organ tones, “To Him we shall return.”" - Rumi, fully Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Rumi NULL

"What is government itself but the greatest of all reflections on human nature? If men were angels, no government would be necessary." - Alexander Hamilton

"Good-humor, gay spirits, are the liberators the sure cure for spleen and melancholy. deeper than tears, these irradiate the tophets with their glad heavens. Go laugh, vent the pits, transmuting imps into angels by the alchemy of smiles. The satans flee at the sight of these redeemers." - Amos Bronson Alcott

"Religion is suited to all kinds of minds. Some pay attention only to its establishment, and this religion is such that its very establishment suffices to prove its truth. Others trace it even to the apostles. The more learned go back to the beginning of the world. The angels see it better still, and from a more distant time." - Blaise Pascal

"It is an exquisite and beautiful thing in our nature, that, when the heart is touched and softened by some tranquil happiness or affectionate feeling, the memory of the dead comes over it most powerfully and irresistibly. It would seem almost as though our better thoughts and sympathies were charms, in virtue of which the soul is enabled to hold some vague and mysterious intercourse with the spirits of those whom we loved in life. Alas! how often and how long may these patient angels hover around us, watching for the spell which is so soon forgotten!" - Charles Dickens, fully Charles John Huffam Dickens

"Fools rush in where angels fear to tread." - English Proverbs

"Goodness answers to the theological virtue charity, and admits no excess but error. The desire of power in excess caused the angels to fall; the desire of knowledge in excess caused man to fall. But in charity there is no excess; neither can angel or man come in danger by it." - Francis Bacon

"The desire of power in excess caused angels to fall; the desire of knowledge in excess caused man to fall; but in charity is no excess, neither can man nor angels come into danger by it." - Francis Bacon

"The desire of power in excess caused the angels to fall; the desire of knowledge caused man to fall." - Francis Bacon

"Let no temporal things be the cause of thy peace; for then wilt thou be as worthless and fragile as they. You would have such a peace in common with the brutes; let thine be that of the angels, which proceeds from truth." - Guiges du Chastel NULL

"Men do not attract that which they want, but that which they are... The “divinity that shapes our ends” is in ourselves, it is our very self. Man is manacled only by himself: thought and action are the jailers of Fate - they imprison, being base; they are also the angels of Freedom - they liberate, being noble. Not what a man wishes and prays for does a man get, but what he justly earns." -

"The true measure of spirituality lies not in having visions of angels, but in the ability to make that unpleasant phone call." - Joan Borysenko

"Our object in life should be to accumulate a great number of questions to be asked and resolved in eternity. Now we ask the sage, the genius, the philosopher, the divine, but none can tell; but we will open our queries to other respondents - we will ask angels, redeemed spirits, and God." - John Foster, fully John Watson Foster

"The bigot sees religion, not as a sphere, but a line; and it is the line in which he is moving. He is like as African buffalo - sees right forward, but nothing on the right or the left. He would not perceive a legion of angels or devils at the distance of ten yards, on the one side or the other." - John Foster, fully John Watson Foster

"The laws, the life, and the joy of beauty in the material world of God, are as eternal and sacred parts of His creation as, in the world of spirits, virtue; and in the world of angels, praise." - John Ruskin

"Any flea as it is in God is nobler than the highest of angels in himself." - Meister Eckhart, formally Meister von Hochheim

"We cannot part with our friends. We cannot let our angels go. We do not see that they only go out that archangels may come in. We are idolaters of the old. We do not believe in the richness of the soul, in its proper eternity and omnipresence." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Make friends with the angels, who though invisible are always with you. Often invoke them, constantly praise them, and make good use of their help and assistance in all your temporal and spiritual affairs." - Saint Francis de Sales NULL

"He knoweth nothing as he ought to know, who thinks he knoweth anything without seeing its place and the manner how it relateth to God, angels and men, and to all the creatures of the earth, heaven and hell, time and eternity." - Thomas Traherne

"Your enjoyment of the world is never right, till every morning you awake in Heaven; see yourself in your Father’s Palace; and look upon the skies, the earth, and the air as Celestial Joys; having such a reverend esteem of all, as if you were among the angels." - Thomas Traherne

"Man, proud man, drest in a little brief authority, most ignorant of what he’s most assur’d, his glassy essence, like an angry ape, plays such fantastic tricks before high heave, as make the angels weep." -

"If all things in this universe exist, it is because they participate in the Being of God, if there are some things with life, it is because they are reflections of the life of God; if there are beings endowed with intellect and will — like men and angels — it's because they are a participation of the Sovereign Intellect which is God." - Fulton Sheen, fully Archbishop Fulton John Sheen

"There are angels near you to guide you and protect you, if you would but invoke them. It is not later than we think, it is a bigger world than we think." - Fulton Sheen, fully Archbishop Fulton John Sheen

"Faith from its essential nature implies the fallen state of man, while it recognizes the principles of the covenant of grace. It is itself the condition of that covenant. It is a grace which is alike distinguished from the love of angels and the faith of devils. It is peculiar to the returning sinntr. None but a lost sinner needs it; none but a humbled sinner relishes it." - Gardiner Spring