Gems of Wisdom

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by Skull, Jun 10, 2016.

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    “Nor is a myth simply a work of fancy: true myth is only represented, never created, by a poet. Prometheus and Pandora were not invented by the solitary imagination of Hesiod. Real myths are the product of the moral experience of a people, groping toward divine love and wisdom—implanted in a people’s consciousness, before the dawn of history, by a power and a means we never have been able to describe in terms of mundane knowledge.”

    The Essential Russell Kirk, p. 23
     
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    "They constantly try to escape
    From the darkness outside and within
    By dreaming of systems so perfect that no one will need to be good."


    T.S. Eliot, The Rock (1934)
     
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    12 Wisdom is radiant and unfading,
    and she is easily discerned by those who love her,
    and is found by those who seek her.

    13 She hastens to make herself known to those who desire her.

    14 One who rises early to seek her will have no difficulty,
    for she will be found sitting at the gate.

    15 To fix one's thought on her is perfect understanding,
    and one who is vigilant on her account will soon be free from care,
    16 because she goes about seeking those worthy of her,
    and she graciously appears to them in their paths,
    and meets them in every thought.

    17 The beginning of wisdom is the most sincere desire for instruction,
    and concern for instruction is love of her,
    18 and love of her is the keeping of her laws,
    and giving heed to her laws is assurance of immortality,
    19 and immortality brings one near to God;
    20 so the desire for wisdom leads to a kingdom.

    Wisdom of Solomon, ch. 6
     
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    “Philosophy," says Hierocles, "is the purification and perfection of human life. It is the purification, indeed, from material irrationality, and the mortal body; but the perfection, in consequence of being the resumption of our proper felicity, and a reascent to the divine likeness. To effect these two is the province of Virtue and Truth; the former exterminating the immoderation of the passions; and the latter introducing the divine form to those who are naturally adapted to its reception.”

    Excerpt From: Thomas Taylor, Introduction to the Philosophy and Writings of Plato.

     
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    For a dying person who does not have a specific religion like Buddhism, we can advise them to think, “May everybody be happy, may all living beings please be happy, may every living being please somehow be freed from their misery.” These sorts of ideas, general ideas of wishing well to others, are very helpful.

    Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche
     
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    Things are in the saddle,
    And ride mankind.

    There are two laws discrete
    Not reconciled,
    Law for man, and law for thing;
    The last builds town and fleet,
    But it runs wild,
    And doth the man unking.

    Emerson, "Ode to William H. Channing"
     
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    Man would fain be great and sees that he is little; would fain
    be happy and sees that he is miserable; would fain be perfect
    and sees that he is full of imperfections; would fain be the
    object of the love and esteem of men, and sees that his faults
    merit only their aversion and contempt. The embarrassment
    wherein he finds himself produces in him the most unjust
    and criminal passions imaginable, for he conceives a mortal
    hatred against that truth which blames him and convinces
    him of his faults.


    —Pascal, Pensées
     
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    The idea of the good is the greatest discipline.

    Socrates, The Republic
     
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    For if we are temperate, we shall still continue to be so, though these calamities may befall us, and if we are contemplators of true beings, neither shall we be plundered of this habit; but all these dreadful events taking place, we shall still persevere in celebrating the rulers of all things, and in investigating the causes of effects.

    - Proclus, On Providence, Fate, and that which is in our Power, 22, 20
     
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    If powers fail, there shall be praise for daring; and in great undertaking, to have willed is enough.

    Propertius II, 10, 5-6
     
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