Many / One

A database of 11,000+ illuminated guiding quotations in 40 categories from 600+ inspired books by our most brilliant and influential authors.
Compiled by JoAnn Kite

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Mysticism
Evelyn Underhill
This is a classic work in the field of spiritual consciousness studies. Underhill writes of the awakening, purification and training of the self in its ascent of the path which leads to the blessedness of the Unitive life.

1 "The 'sense of God' is not a metaphor. Innumerable declarations prove it to be a consciousness as sharp as that which other men have of colour, heat, or light."

2 "The quest of the Absolute is no long journey, but a realization of something which is implicit in the self and in the universe."

3 "The beauty, the majesty, the divinity of the living World of Becoming holds in its meshes every living thing."

4 "'That Which Is', says St. Augustine; 'The One', 'The Supplier of true Life', says Plotinus; 'the energitic Word', says St. Bernard; 'Eternal Light', says Dante; 'the Abyss', says Ruysbroeck; 'Pure Love', says St. Catherine of Genoa – poor symbols of Perfection at the best. But, through and by these oblique utterances, they give us the assurance that the Object of their discovery is one with the object of our quest."

5 "The simple vision of pure love, which is marvellously penetrating, does not stop at the outer husk of creation: it penetrates to the divinity which is hidden within." Malaval, 'De l'Oraison Ordinaire'

6 "This meaning, this secret plan of Creation, flames out, had we eyes to see, from every department of existence."

7 "Divine Love, immanent in the soul, spurs on that soul to union with the transcendent and Absolute Light – at once the source, the goal, the life of created things."

8 "This universe is free, self-creative. The divine action floods it: no part is more removed from the Godhead than any other part."

9 "Under the spur of love life draws near to Life."

10 "Symbols form the rallying-points about which are gathered a whole group of ideas and intuitions. Their presence – sometimes the sudden thought of them – will be enough, in psychological language, to provoke a discharge of energy along some particular path: that is to say, to stir to life all those ideas and intuitions which belong to the self's consciousness of the Absolute, to concentrate vitality on them, and introduce the self into that world of perception of which they are, as it were, the material keys."

11 "All…are called to their origin." Rulman Merswin

12 "There is – must be – contact in an intelligible where between every individual self and the Supreme Self, the Ultimate."

13 "I but open my eyes, - and perfection, no more and no less, in the kind I imagined full-fronts me, and God is seen God in the star, in the stone, in the flesh, in the soul and the clod." Robert Browning, 'Saul'

14 "Natural magnetism…will draw the pilgrim irresistibly along the road from the Many to the One."

15 "The Power of God exceeds and fills all." St. Angela of Foligno

16 "This One is…not merely the Reality of all that is, but also a living and personal Object of Love."

17 "Do but fix your eyes joyously upon yourself, and watch how God plays the game of love within your loving soul." Suso, 'Leban', cap. vi

18 "I have ascended higher than myself, and lo! I have found the Word above me still. My curiosity has led me to descend below myself also, and yet I have found Him still at a lower depth. If I have looked without myself, I have found that He is beyond that which is outside of me; and if within, He was at an inner depth still. And thus have I learned the truth of the words I have read, 'In Him we live and move and have our being.'" St. Bernard of Clairvaux, 'Cantica Canticorum, Sermon lxxiv

19 "Hints of a marvellous truth, a unity whose note is ineffable peace, shine in created things."

20 "The object of the mystic's contemplation is always some aspect of the Infinite Life: of God, the one Reality."

21 "Every visible and invisible creature is a theophany or appearance of God." Erigena

22 "The soul of the individual subject is the microcosm of the soul of the world."

23 "The spirit of God breathes us out from Himself that we may love."

24 "The manifestation of the Eternal Light is renewed without interruption in the hiddenness of the spirit."

25 "This gift of 'sonship', this power of free cooperation in the world process, is man's greatest honour."

This body of quotes compiled by JoAnn Kite