Contemplative Quotes
Our awareness of the supportive presence of God is outside of and beyond our power to express in
word or conceive in thought.  This gift of contemplative prayer is not a way of thinking.  It's much more a
way of not thinking.  It's not a way of talking; it finally moves beyond words into silence.  It moves into the
mystery that is too deep for words. -
Everything Belongs p. 149 Richard Rohr
Then it was as if I suddenly saw the secret beauty of their hearts, the depths of their hearts
where neither sin nor desire nor self-knowledge can reach, the core of their reality, the
person that each one is in God's eyes.  If only they could see themselves as they really are.  If
only we could see each other that way all the time, there would be no more war, no more
hatred, no more cruelty, no more greed... I suppose the big problem would be that we would
fall down and worship each other.  -
Thomas Merton
The seventh Fruit of the Spirit is Goodness.  Goodness is the affirmation of creation as good, together
with a sense of oneness with the universe and with everything created.  It is the disposition that perceives
events, even the tragic things of life, as manifestations of  God's love.  It recognizes the beauty of all
creation in spite of the damage that human selfishness has imposed upon it.  As a result, gratitude to
God abounds in  our hearts and a positive attitude characterizes our relationships with others and with
the wear and tear of daily life.   -
Fruits and Gifts of the Spirit p 21, Thomas Keating
...when you love God you enter into the very heart of God.  With this as your source, you then reach  out and
love all that God loves.  When you first begin this loving search (which is, at the same time, a search and a
discovery) you may be puzzled and even wonder if you are really praying.  But leave it up to God.  God calls
you to love and you will soon experience that it is indeed God's grace that calls you.   -
Loving Search for
p 4, William Menninger
What is the Divine Darkness?   Trinity!!  Higher than any being, any divinity, any goodness!  Guide
of Christians in the wisdom of heaven!  Lead us up beyond unknowing and light, up to the farthest,
highest peak of mystic scripture, where the mysteries of God's Word lie simple, absolute and
unchangeable in the brilliant darkness of a hidden silence.  Amid the deepest shadow they pour
overwhelming light on what is most manifest.  Amid the wholly unsensed and unseen they
completely fill our sightless minds with treasures beyond all beauty. -
The Mystical Theology,  
Dionysius the Areopagite
The goal of contemplative life is unitive seeing:  not so much "union with God" understood as
wanting God to the exclusion of all else, but rather, gradually coming to realize that really, there is
nothing that is not (in) God.  God is the dots and the spaces between the dots; nothing can fall out
of God, and all is tenderly and joyously held. -
Centering Prayer and Inner Awakening, p 158
Cynthia Bourgeault
In Centering Prayer … little by little, we enter into prayer without intentionality except to consent
… and consent becomes surrender … and surrender becomes total receptivity
… and, as the process continues, total receptivity becomes effortless, peaceful.
… It is free and has nothing to attain, to get, or desire …
So, no thinking, no reflection, no desire, no words, no thing … just receptivity and consent.

Thomas Keating, ‘Centering Prayer’ segment,
Heartfulness: Transformation in Christ