The Beauty of Life – 10 quotes from Thomas Keating’s book – Open Mind, Open Heart: The Contemplative Dimension of the Gospel

by Mark Votava

51XJ05B0NVL._AC_UL320_SR212,320_1. Let go of spiritual consolations

“The attraction to let go of spiritual consolation in order to let God act with complete freedom is the persistent attraction of the Spirit…”

2. Not take ourselves too seriously

“There is something playful about God… The playfulness of God is a profound part of reality. It warns us to not take ourselves too seriously, to realize that God created us with a certain sense of humor.”

3. The false self is an illusion

“Only God can bring our false self to an end. The false self is an illusion…”

4. The beauty of life

“…we shouldn’t lose the enjoyment of reality as it is, the value of just being and just doing. In the Gospel, Jesus invites us to become like little children, to imitate their innocence, confidence, and direct contact with reality… If our value system doesn’t allow us to enjoy anything without putting a price on it, we miss a great part of the beauty of life…”

5. The value systems by which you have always lived

“When you withdraw from your ordinary flow of superficial thoughts on a regular basis, you get a sharper perspective on your motivation, and you begin to see that the value systems by which you have always lived have their roots in prerational attitudes that have never been honestly and fully confronted…”

6. Reality will tend to become more transparent

“As the unconscious empties out, the fruits of an integrated human nature and the resulting free flow of grace will manifest themselves by a significant change of attitude… Moments of silence will overtake you in the course of daily life. Reality will tend to become more transparent. Its divine Source will shine through it.”

7. An attitude of total commitment

“Solitude is not primarily a place but an attitude of total commitment to God. When one belongs completely to God, the sharing of one’s life and gifts continually increases.”

8. Poverty of spirit

“The Beauty of poverty of spirit springs from the increasing awareness of our true Self. It is a nonpossessive attitude toward everything and a sense of unity with everything at the same time. The interior freedom to have much or to have little, and the simplifying of one’s life-style are signs of the presence of poverty of spirit.”

9. Spiritual disciplines, both East and West

“Spiritual disciplines, both East and West, are based on the hypothesis that there is something that we can do to enter upon the journey to divine union once we have been touched by the realization that such a state exists…”

10. The contemplative dimension of the Gospel

“If there were a widespread renewal of the… practice of the contemplative dimension of the Gospel, the reunion of the Christian churches would become a real possibility, dialogue with the other world religions would have a firm basis in spiritual experience, and the religions of the world would bear a clearer witness to the human values they hold in common.”

Which quote do you like the best?

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