Monday, January 30, 2006

a sublime being

not delighted when praised
not perturbed when belittled
this is the mark of a sublime being

Friday, January 27, 2006

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Infinite Depth

The truly sacred attitude toward life... does not recoil from our own inner
emptiness, but rather penetrates into it with awe and reverence, and with
the awareness of mystery.
This is a most important discovery in the interior life. For the external
self fears and recoils from what is beyond it, and above it. It dreads the
emptiness and darkness of the interior self... The whole tragedy of
'diversion' is precisely that it is a flight from all that is most real and
immediate and genuine in ourselves. It is a flight from life and from
experience -- an attempt to put a veil of objects between the mind and its
experience of itself. It is therefore a matter of great courage and
spiritual energy to turn away from diversion and prepare to meet face to
face, that immediate experience of life which is intolerable to the
exterior man. This is only possible when we are able to see our inner
selves not as a vacuum but as an infinite depth, not as emptiness but
fullness. This change of perspective is impossible as long as we are afraid
of our own nothingness, as long as we are afraid of fear, afraid of
poverty, afraid of boredom -- as long as we run away from ourselves.

Thomas Merton

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Depression - Friend or Foe

"We are all the artists of our own lives. We shape them, as best as we can, using our experience and intuition as guides. But we're also natural liars and we get things wrong. It's so easy for the internal commentary that forms how we live to become a forgery. Approached in a certain way, depression is a lie detector of last resort. By knocking you out for a while, it allows you to ditch out-of-date ideas by which you've been living and to grasp a more accurate description of the terrain.

If you can cope with the internal nuclear winter of depression and come through it without committing suicide, then, in my experience, depression can be a great friend. It says the way you've been living is unbearable, it's not for you. And it teaches you slowly how to live in a way that suits you infinitely better. If you don't listen, of course, it comes back and knocks you out even harder the next time, until you get the point."

Geyneth Lewis
Sunbathing in the Rain