Quotes That I Have Gathered – D

Death

According to Kubler‑Ross, death is the final stage of growth. Her studies on death and dying have confirmed what religion has maintained through the ages: death is a transition to life.

Teilhard de Chardin was not only a man of science; he was a man of deep love and faith. He looked closely into the meaning of death. He commented that “if there were no death, the earth would certainly seem stifling.” For him death is “the only way out to a greater life.” Death does not return us to “the great current of things” but “surrenders us totally to God.”

Teilhard de Chardin’s profound understanding of the reality of eternity and communion in death is reflected in his prayer:

O Energy of my Lord, irresistible and living Force, since of us two, You are infinitely stronger, it is for you to consume me in the union that shall fuse us together. Give me, then something even more precious than the grace which all the faithful beg from you. It is not enough that I die in communion. Teach me communion in dying. Death is not only the final stage of growth, but also the culmination of the processes involved in the integration of the human and the holy. Death comes as a reward only when the individual has loved and appreciated the gift of life and has exerted effort to integrate the human and the holy within himself or herself.

Philomena Agudo, Affirming the Human and the Holy

If we can live with the knowledge that death is our constant companion, traveling on our “left shoulder,” then death can become in the words of Don Juan, our “ally,” still fearsome but continually a source of wise counsel. With death’s counsel, the constant awareness of the limit of our time to live and love, we can always be guided to make the best use of our time and live life to the fullest. But if we are unwilling to fully face the fearsome presence of death on our left shoulder, we deprive ourselves of its counsel and cannot possibly live or love with clarity. When we shy away from death, the ever‑changing nature of things, we inevitably shy away from life.

M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled

An African myth related in NPR “African Rites of Passage” August 4, 1990:

Life and Death were journeying together and stopped at a well to drink. They began to argue over which was the senior and should drink first. Life argued that it was senior: “Before there can be death, there must be life.” Likewise Death argued that it was senior: “Life proceeds from death and returns to death.” A wiseman appeared, and Life and Death submitted the question of their seniority and who should drink first to him. The Wiseman responded: “Without death there can be no life, and without life no death. You are each two faces of the same reality. Drink together.” And they drank together from the same gourd and continued their journey together.

A person on the program NPR “African Rites of Passage” August 4, 1990, noted that in contemporary society death is now treated casually. There is a focus on death because of a gap: “I don’t know where to go from here. . . .” Response: “You have to take the torch and carry on for the next generation.” He also noted: T‑shirt: “Go ahead and shoot me, I’m already dead.” “No matter how full the river, it still wants to grow.”

The art of living is the art of dying.

Charles Davis, Body as Spirit

To face death for what it is as the end of individual existence enables one, . . . to find one’s true identity as one with universal reality. To confront death as the end may also enable us to live without reserve, not just provisionally, in the present.

Charles Davis, Body as Spirit

We are ready for death, we accept death, not when our lives are empty and restless with unsatisfied desires, but when they are rich because we live in an open responsiveness.

Charles Davis, Body as Spirit

Gene Wilder, 16 months after his wife, Gilda Radner, died of cancer, said, “Gilda taught me a lot of things. One of the biggest things she taught me was that death can close you up and shut you off and make you hide ‑ or it can open you up as you’ve never been opened before and make you reach out for life.”

People are no longer moved by fear of death or by the hope of life eternal. All they ask is that death not be mentioned. And thus it seems a conspiracy of silence has descended. We all pretend toward our neighbor that the possibility of his death could never happen.

Albert Schweitzer

When the path of life leads us to some vantage point where the scene around us fades away and we contemplate the distant view right to the end, let us not close our eyes. Let us pause for a moment, look at the distant view, and then carry on.

Albert Schweitzer

Have you ever considered how dreadful it would be if our lives had no appointed end but went on forever? ‑ Albert Schweitzer

See “Life, and death”, “Self‑denial”

Death, denial of

Denial of the “tragic fact that man’s life ends in death” is only self‑deception or a false ideology: such denial is regression. One who denies death does not really accept life.

Guyton B. Hammond on Eric Fromm’s thought, Man in Estrangement

Death, fear of

People resist the door of death. But this body is a vehicle of consciousness, and if you can identify with the consciousness, you can watch this body go like an old car. There goes a fender, there goes the tire, one thing after another ‑ but its predictable. And then, gradually, the whole thing drops off, and consciousness rejoins consciousness. It is no longer of this particular environment.

Joseph Campbell

Devil

The figure of the Devil is, after all, that of the lustful Pan, and his attendant demons are satyrs. Demography is in fact a scarcely concealed pornography. The monstrous Devil is the external caricature, the magnified image of the erotic, animal, self‑seeking, and other features of human life which men constantly refuse to acknowledge and accept.

Charles Davis, Body as Spirit

Satin is thus a symbol of what we disown in ourselves. That explains the fascination of the Evil One. But we must, as Jung urges, “integrate the Evil One.” When human evil is externalized and refused acknowledgement, it becomes monstrous.

Charles Davis, Body as Spirit

Devotions

Fix some part of every dayfor private exercises. You may acquire the taste which you have not; what is tedious at first will afterwards be pleasant. Whether you like it or no, read and pray daily. It is for your life; there is no other way, else you will be a trifler all your days, and a pretty, superficial preacher. Do justice to your ownsoul; give it time and means to grow. Do not starve yourself any longer.

[S]et apart certain hours to think of God and your relation to Him. You must read, pray, distrust your inclinations and habits; remember that you carry the gift of God in an earthen vessel, and above all, let your sould be nourished with the love of God. However youmay have departed from Him, do not fear to return toHimwith a humble and childlike love. Speak toHim in your prayers of all your wretchedness, of all your wants, of all your sufferings; speak even of the disrelish you sometimes feel for His service. You cannot speak too freely nor with toomuch confidence. He loves the simple and the lowly; it is with them that He converses. If you are of this number, open your whole heart and say all to Him. After you have thus spoken to God, be silent and listen to Him.

John Wesley to preacher, John Trembath

See,also Leisure

Discipline

Discipline is the means of human spiritual evolution.

M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled

Love and discipline go hand in hand, so that unloving, uncaring parents are people lacking in discipline. Passive dependent people lack self‑discipline. They are unwilling or unable to delay gratification of their hunger for attention. As a matter of fact, it is no accident that the most common disturbance that passive dependent people manifest beyond their relationships to others is dependency on drugs and alcohol. They are addicted to people, sucking on them and gobbling them up, and when people are not available to be sucked and gobbled, they often turn to the bottle or the needle or the pill as a people‑substitute.

M. Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled

Dogma

What the world needs is not dogma, but an attitude of scientific inquiry, combined with a belief that the torture of millions is not desirable, whether inflicted by Stalin or by a Deity imagined in the likeness of the believer.

Bertrand Russell’s Best, edited by Robert E. Egner

See, also, “Man, Hope for” and “Skepticism”

Duality

We think in opposites because we cannot think otherwise. That’s the nature of our experience of reality. Man‑woman, life‑death, good‑evil, I‑you, this‑that, true‑untrue. But my theology suggests that behind that duality there is a singularity over which this plays like a shadow game.

Joseph Campbell, The Hero’s Adventure

Everything in the field of time is dual: past and future, dead and alive, being and nonbeing. But the ultimate pair of the imagination are male and female, the male being aggressive, and the female being receptive, the male being the warrior, the female the dreamer. We have the realm of love and the realm of war. Freud’s eros and Thanatos. . . When you are a man, you are in the field of time and decisions. Joseph Campbell, The Hero’s Adventure To transcend means to go past duality.

Joseph Campbell, The Hero’s Adventure

“The cosmic Sense and the Christly Sense definitely coexisted in my heart and irresistibly drew towards each other.” In later life Teilhard wrote, “In fact, and even at the highest point of my spiritual trajectory, I only find myself completely at ease when bathed in an ocean of Matter.”

Teilhard quoted by Nicolas Corte, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin: His Life and Spirit

As Teilhard sees it the universe has, from its beginning “marks of the rupture between matter and spirit; and all unification is the fruit of a struggle against dispersion.

Emily Rideau, The Thought of Teilhard de Chardin

Teilhard’s view of the universe discloses a human reality Rideau describes as follows: “If man is placed in the universe, the universe is placed in man, and the history of the universe is ultimately the history of man. If the world contains and goes beyond man, it is also true to say that man contains and goes beyond the world.” There is absolute rejection of any dualism by Teilhard.

Emily Rideau, The Thought of Teilhard de Chardin

Whenever continuity is possible, the burden of proof rests upon those who assert opposition and dualism. Nature is the mother and the habitat of man, even if sometimes a stepmother and an unfriendly home. This is shown also in civilizations endurance. As the developing growth of an individual from embryo to maturity is the result of interaction of organism with surroundings, so culture is the product not of efforts of men put forth in a void or just upon themselves, but of prolonged and cumulative interaction with environment. Nothing that a man has ever reached by the highest flight of thought or penetrated by any probing insight is inherently such that it may not become the heart and core of sense.

John Dewey, Art as Experience

Bertrand Russell, My Philosophical Development: “I have found . . . that by analyzing physics and perception the problem of the relation of mind and matter can be completely solved. It is true that nobody has accepted what seems to be the solution, but I believe and hope that this is only because my theory has not been understood.”

See also “Matter, and Spirit” “Spirit, and Matter” and “Evolution” and “Philosophy, universal phenomenology”

Theologia Germanica:

Let us remember how it is written and said that the soul of Christ had two eyes, a right and a left eye. In the beginning, when the soul of Christ was created, she fixed her right eye upon eternity and the Godhead, and remained in the full intuition and enjoyment of the Divine Essence and Eternal Perfection; and continued thus unmoved and undisturbed by all the accidents and travail, suffering, torment, and pain that ever befell the outward man. But with the left eye she beheld the creature and perceived all things therein, and took note of the diffeence between the creatures, which were better or worse, nobler or meaner; and thereafter was the outward man of Christ ordered. . . .

Now the created soul of man also has two eyes. The one is the power of seeing into eternity, the other of seeing into time and the creatures, of perceiving how they differ from each other as aforesaid, of giving life and needful things to the body, and ordering and governing it for the best. But these two eyes of the soul of man cannot both perform their work at once; but if the soul sees with the right eye into eternity, then the left eye must close itself and refrain from working and be as though it were dead. . . . Therefore whoever will have the one must let the other go; for “no man can serve two masters.”

[3‑27‑92: Is this duality necessarily exclusive of each other? Whitehead suggests it is not. Is it not really a matter of balance, a dynamic balance? That Germanica Theologia fails to see the dynamic interrelation of these apparently opposite poles is evident in its identification of God with Perfection. It is akin to Greek Idealism: “. . . the Perfect cannot be apprehended, known, or expressed by any creature as creature. Therefore we do not give a name to the Perfect, for it is none of these. The creature as creature cannot know or apprehend it, name or conceive it.” This is in contrast to Eric Fromm’s notion of God as nameless.

Links to my site:

Introduction https://bibleartists.wordpress.com/2013/07/14/introduction/

Graphic Arts https://bibleartists.wordpress.com/2013/07/14/i-graphic-arts/

Architecture https://bibleartists.wordpress.com/2013/07/14/ii-church-architecture-and-its-incorporation-of-art/

Music https://bibleartists.wordpress.com/2013/07/14/iii-music/

Theology https://bibleartists.wordpress.com/2013/07/14/iv-theology/

Home Page https://bibleartists.wordpress.com/

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