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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One River, Many Wells: Wisdom Springing from World Faiths
Matthew Fox
In this book I try to go to the core of human religious traditions as we know them to find the spirituality that is there. It is clear that once we return to the depth or core of religion we find much more than dogmas, concepts, institutions, commands. We find a striving for experience of the Divine, however that be spoken of, we find both form and formlessness, male and female, experience and practice. We also find that in their core and depth we do not encounter many different religions so much as one experience that is expressed variously and with great diversity and color flowing in the name of different traditions and cultures.

1 "When we look into our own hearts and begin to discover what is confused and what is brilliant, what is bitter and what is sweet, it isn't just ourselves that we're discovering. We're discovering the universe. When we discover the Buddha that we are, we realize that everything and everyone is Buddha." Pema Chodron

2 "For primal peoples, because the landscape itself is sacred it therefore embodies a divinity that it shares with everything that is part of nature, including human beings, animals, plants, rocks….everything." Jamake Highwater

3 "Beautiful you rise, O eternal living god! You are radiant, lovely, powerful. Your love is great, all-encompassing." Egyptian hymn, ca. 1550 bce

4 "Joy is our true nature and finding the eternal now is doable. It returns us to our origins of joy."

5 "God is breath. All that breathes resides in the Only Being." New Testament, John 4:24, Aramaic translation

6 "There is something in the spirit of man that knows that the dualism, however apparently binding, runs out, exhausts itself, and leaves a core of assurance that the ultimate destiny of man is good." Howard Thurman

7 "Muhammad said: 'All people are equal, as equal as the teeth of a comb.'"

8 "The truth is that interdependence exists at the microcosmic and macrocosmic and psychic levels of existence."

9 "Mechtild of Magdeburg said: 'God is not only fatherly. God is also mother who lifts her loved child from the ground to her knee.'"

10 "God is one, his glory multiplying in many forms." Raimundo Panikkar, 'The Vedic Experience'

11 "Indeed, every creature is a glittering, glistening mirror of divinity."

12 "Ramakrishna teaches about the Divine Mother when he says: 'Whatever we see or think about is the manifestation of the Mother, of the Primordial Energy, the Primal Consciousness.'"

13 "Today we are told that atoms are not impenetrable – they are more like bubbles than like billiard balls and their linking up is what forms molecules, whose linking up forms cells, whose linking up forms organisms, whose linking up forms communities. Behold! Now we have a basis in physics once again to honor community."

14 "My neighbor and I have the same origins; we have the same life-experience and a common destiny; we are the obverse and reverse sides of one entity; we are unchanging equals; we are the faces which see themselves in each other." The Zulu Personal Declaration of 1825

15 "Everything teems with richness, everything aspires to ascend and be purified. Everything sings, celebrates, serves, develops, evolves, uplifts, aspires to be arranged in oneness." The Kabbalah

16 "The Hindu Scriptures say: 'The Self is self-luminous, vibrant energy and vigor, vitality, power, tranquility, wisdom and love. This is who you really are.'"

17 "The Divinity we image is a light-filled, light-making, enlightening, warm, radiant, glorious face."

18 "The African universe is conceived as a unified spiritual totality….all being within it is organically interrelated and interdependent." Dona Richards, African-American philosopher

19 "Divinity is always one."

20 "Isness is God." Meister Eckhart

21 "The Goddess in all her manifestations was a symbol of the unity of all life in Nature." Marija Gimbutas, 'The Language of the Goddess'

22 "From the lowliest insect to the most perfect sage, there breathes the same Universal Spirit, which assumes innumerable forms." B. K. S. Iyengar, 'Light on Yoga'

23 "In the Gospel of John, the Christ says: 'I am the true vine. I am the resurrection. I am the gate. I am the good shepherd. I am the light of the world….I am the bread of life."

24 "Instant by instant the unvierse creates itself as a bonded community. To hear how omnipresent community is in the universe is to encourage our own difficult steps in community-building. The effort at community is an effort to imitate the universe. Therefore, it is a good effort. Therefore, it cannot fail."

25 "There is a fundamental structure of interrelatedness and interdependability inherent in all living things, at microscopic levels of existence and in human society….The origin and goal of community, therefore, is the Mind of God, which is coming to Itself in time." Walter E. Fluker

This body of quotes compiled by JoAnn Kite