Saturday, October 20, 2018

An Oldie But Goodie

     Low on funds (and room) for a new book to read, I searched my bookshelves for an old book to re-read.  And, what a nice find!  It's Hot Chocolate for the Mystical Soul: 101 True Stories of Angels, Miracles, and Healings, a collection edited by Arielle Ford.

     The stories are grouped by categories which include "Mystical Places, Magical Moments," "Divine Guidance and Inner Direction," "Romances of the Soul," "Spiritual Healing," "Help from Above," "Vision," and "The Other Side."  The stories run the gamut from very personal visionary experiences to recollections of extraordinary situations that occurred to several people.  It's also very easy to read.

     To be honest, I think I enjoyed the stories that included other people's experiences besides the authors' because some of the personal visionary stuff was a little hard to relate to in some instances.  It's like when someone tells you their dream -- they may have been very moved by it, but you may have a hard time relating because the symbolism is very personal.  Still, if you want to measure your own visionary experiences against some other people's, this may be a good book for you.  All in all, if you have a mystical bent, this is a terrific book to pick up.


Saturday, October 13, 2018

A Thought for Our Times

     This quote is from David Krieger, and is so relevant to our times.
     Peace is active, not passive.  You can't sit back and wait for peace to come to you.  You must work for it.  You must shake off your apathy and demand it.  This is not always easy in a culture of war, such as we have in the U.S., but it is necessary.      
     It is clear that war makes great demands on its participants.  We need to think of peace in the same way.  Peace is not the absence of war or the space between wars; it is a goal to be achieved by actively demanding that the world's governments find nonviolent means of settling disputes.
     Go forth, peace warriors.
   
(image courtesy of pixabay.com)


 

Saturday, October 6, 2018

A Terrific Quote

     Here's a wonderful quote I recently ran across.  How true it is!
The time has come . . . to resist the impulse to control, to command, to force, to oppress, and to begin quite humbly to follow the guidance of the larger community on which all life depends.  Our fulfillment is not in our isolated human grandeur, but in our intimacy with the larger earth community, for this is also the larger dimension of our being.  (Thomas Berry)
(image courtesy of pixabay.com)

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Some Thoughts for Today

     Here are some quotes that might inspire you:

Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth.  (Albert Einstein)
The moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life -- the sick, the needy and the handicapped.  (Hubert H. Humphrey) 
Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity.  (Horace) 

(photo courtesy of pixabay.com)



Saturday, September 22, 2018

An Oldie but Goodie, Part 2

     Last week I was extolling a biography about the 14th century mystic, Catherine of Siena.  Here are some quotes from this powerful woman:
Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.
Nothing great is ever achieved without much enduring. 
Proclaim the truth and do not be silent through fear.
We've had enough exhortations to be silent.  Cry out with a thousand tongues -- I see the world is rotten because of silence.
Speak the truth in a million voices.  It is silence that kills. 
     This mystic, not well educated, hardly able to read or write, thin as a rail, still took the command from her Lord and from her heart to speak to the injustices of her day.  I would encourage all of us to follow her example.  The world needs us to show courage and speak up for justice and equality.  Claim your power.  Speak up!

Saturday, September 15, 2018

An Oldie but Goodie, Reissued

     I recently found on my overflowing bookshelf a marvelous little biography entitled Road to Siena: The Essential Biography of St. Catherine.  I didn't know this until I started out, but it was originally published by Edmund Garrett Gardner in 1907.  Fortunately for modern readers, Jon M. Sweeney came along and edited it, rendering sentences and wording to fit the current age.  It's an easy, informative read.  And if that doesn't convince you, Evelyn Underhill, the great compiler of mystical writings and thought, referred to Gardner's biography of Catherine of Siena as "the best modern biography."  That's high praise.

     What I liked about this book is that it presents both the historical context of her life as well as personal details without intruding by offering unfounded psychological analyses.  I'm sure you've read books where the biographer tries to make a point about someone's psychological makeup that after a while feels tawdry or even gossipy.  You won't find that here.  It's well written, well-paced, and presents a woman in all her complexities in an age very different (and in some ways very much the same) as our own.

     Catherine of Siena knew early on that she was destined to work for her Lord, and she did so to the best of her ability.  She lived during a perilous, rocky time when governments were unstable and religious institutions racked by hypocrisy, scandal, and division.  She spoke her truth to power and worked for peace and stability.   She died at the age of thirty-three, having left behind 380 letters, twenty-six prayers, and her Dialogues, which some have compared to Dante's style.  This mystic deserves your attention.


Saturday, September 8, 2018

Another Thought for Today

A pair of quotes for today:
It is a spiritually impoverished nation that permits infants and children to be the poorest Americans.  (Marian Wright Edelman)
and:
How can we even begin to disarm greed and envy?  Perhaps by being much less greedy and envious ourselves; perhaps by resisting the temptation of letting our luxuries become needs; and perhaps by even scrutinizing our needs to see if they cannot be simplified and reduced.  (E. F. Schumacher)
(image courtesy of pixabay.com)