Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Most Un-Quaker-ly Person~Wee Dragon

"I am probably the most un-Quaker-ly person you will ever meet.  I am loud, you know when I am in a room, and I am at many times filled with fight and avarice.  I am always thinking, always planning, rarely stopping either my body or my brain.  I am always hatching a new plan.  Quiet and silence is a struggle for me.  As I plow through my life like a bull in china shop, I throw things at problems like flaming arrows, often making them into catastrophes.  Then, I run bloody murder from the destruction. It is exactly because of this that I know that I am called to the Society of Friends.  This girl needs silent worship, a simplified life, a view that G-d is in all….a path and a way that opens to the Divine instead of calling it down with demands and force.  Most of all, I need a testimony of Peace."

~Wee Dragon



More at (scroll back to the early posts and read forward to get the full flavour of this wonderful blog)
https://weedragon.wordpress.com/

Artwork from Chris Dunn http://chrisdunnillustration.blogspot.co.uk/





Monday, September 28, 2015

See Each Thing ~ Kallistos Ware

“In our spiritual vision we are not only to see each thing in sharp relief, standing out in all the brilliance of its specific being, but we are also to see each thing as transparent: in and through each created thing we are to discern the Creator.”

~ Kallistos Ware


More at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kallistos_Ware

Artwork is a German woodcut about which I can find no additional information. 

Friday, September 25, 2015

Tasks of the Present~ Elise Boulding

"For most of us, the great enemy of the Kingdom is Today. The trap of dailiness catches us, and makes cowards of us all. For the train leaves for the office in five minutes; if the beds aren't made and the dishes washed now the house will be a mess all day. The baby is crying for his bottle, nobody can find any clean underwear this morning, and the editor of the Meeting's Monthly Bulletin must have information about all the committee meetings to take place next month within an hour. It is not only that these things can't wait today, it is that the same things recur with the same immediate urgency day after day after day. It is not as if we could work up an extra burst of speed, finish our tasks for once and all, and then be free to do "God's work." The more we long to be doing other work, the more overwhelming the tasks of the present seem, until they sap our courage and our strength. Or we may respond to the pressure by a complete about-face, and come to feel that these tasks are after all the only ones that matter. Then we are in danger of finding all our security in our daily routine, and will fear anything that might change it.
Should we leave our daily tasks then? Should we leave the plow standing in the middle of the furrow to follow Him? There are some people whose special gifts require them to do just this, and no man should hinder them. But God does not call most of us away from the plow; he would rather have us shift bosses, since it is after all His acre, and start plowing the field for Him. ..... For those of us who know that it is right for us to stay where we are is it possible to avoid the trap of dailiness? Can we transform our homes and offices into advance outposts of the Kingdom?......I am too tired to be patient, too tired to pray, too tired to make our home "a place of friendliness, refreshment and peace, where God becomes more real to all who dwell there and to those who visit it." And all the time that I have been telling myself this, I have been turning my back on the one Source of refreshment that I needed! If we keep our backs turned to God, His Kingdom gets to seem more and more unreal and impossible, and we come to expect less and less of ourselves in the way of service."

~ Elise Boulding



Much more worth reading at http://www.quaker.org/pamphlets/wpl1956a.html

Artwork from Victoria Stanway http://www.victoriastanwayart.com/index.htm

Thursday, September 24, 2015

The Job you Really Want ~ Monica

"I often think of being a parent as getting this job you really want. You've watched others do the job, you know what you would do, or what you would do differently. You aren't sure what your strengths would be on the job, or what will be your weaknesses. You only know that you've seen some people who are great at it, some who are not, and you can do better than the worst and aspire to be the best.
When you are hired, everyone asks how you like your new job. You answer, "I love it!" because you do, and you've only been there a week. A couple years go by, things start getting intense. You have a bad week, and no one asks how you like your new job anymore. They just tell you how lucky you are to have it. Little by little you figure out your strengths, and the things you just never seem to get right. Yet, you can't delegate your weaknesses, and you can never resign. There is no Human Resources office. Trust me, I would have called for back up by now."

~ Monica



More at (you will want more than one visit!) http://www.blueskiesandshooflypies.com/

Artwork from Cathie Bleck http://www.cathiebleck.com/

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Working in the Hiddenness ~ Evelyn Underhill

"The leavening of yeast must have seemed to ancient men a profound mystery, and yet something on which they could always depend. Just so does the supernatural enter our natural life, working in the hiddenness, forcing the new life into every corner and making the dough expand. If the dough were endowed with consciousness, it would not feel very comfortable while the yeast was working. Nor, as a rule, does our human nature feel very comfortable under the transforming action of G_d, steadily turning one kind of love into another kind of love–desire into charity, clutch into generosity, Eros into Agape. Creation is change, and change is often painful and mysterious to us. Spiritual creation means a series of changes, which at last produce a Holiness, G_d’s aim for us."

~ Evelyn Underhill




More at  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evelyn_Underhill

Artwork from John S De Martelly https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_de_Martelly

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Abundant Joy ~ Jana Llewellyn

"It’s great to share your beliefs, practice, and faith with others. But too many Quakers spend a lot of time talking to other Quakers about what it means to be Quaker. (Feel free to read that sentence again.) We can’t continue to worship the institution rather than the Spirit. When a person has a deeply personal relationship to God, and if she has found the Light within her, it spreads. People feel it. She (or he) has the capacity to inspire. I have grown very weary of hearing Quakers talk about the semantics of history and theology, or focusing on the “Quaker view” of the many problems in the world. We should be focusing more on Light instead of dark. Pessimism is easy. It’s harder (but much more rewarding) to spread the light, find the good, listen, create, be in tune with the universe. An intimate relationship with God does not manifest in dourness and solemnity, but in abundant joy."

~ Jana Llewellyn



More at http://firstdaypress.org/gods-weird-people/

Artwork from Bridget Farmer http://www.bridgetfarmerprintmaker.com/p/about-me.html

Monday, September 21, 2015

We are of the Same Stuff ~ Oakleaf Mennonite Farm

"Maybe it is the connection between our bodies and the soil. Scripture tells us that this tie is more than intimate.  We are made from earth, it says.  We are of the same stuff. So when we work in the soil and get it under our nails and all over our clothes, there is good reason that we recognize the link.  It’s not imaginary, it’s really there. When we tend the garden, we are tending to another part of ourselves and when we grow food for the sake of others we are loving them as God loves us – creating for them, providing for them, for our neighbors, our brothers and sisters."

~ Oakleaf Mennonite Farm




More at https://oakleafmennonitefarm.wordpress.com/2014/03/10/something-holy-an-ash-wednesday-reflection/

Artwork from Rob Barnes http://www.robbarnesart.co.uk/

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Glorious Wonders ~ Charles E. Kellogg

"Nature has endowed the earth with glorious wonders and vast resources that man may use for his own ends. Regardless of our tastes or our way of living, there are none that present more variations to tax our imagination than the soil, and certainly none so important to our ancestors, to ourselves, and to our children.” 

~ Charles E.  Kellogg


More at http://blogs.usda.gov/2012/06/20/remembering-dr-charles-e-kellogg-soil-scientist-and-chief-of-usdas-bureau-of-chemistry-and-soils/

Artwork from Tessa Newcomb http://www.acag.co.uk/tessa-newcomb-biography/

Friday, September 11, 2015

Step by Painful Step ~ Faith Baldwin

“I have learned over a period of time to be almost unconsciously grateful--as a child is--for a sunny day, blue water, flowers in a vase, a tree turning red. I have learned to be glad at dawn and when the sky is dark. Only children and a few spiritually evolved people are born to feel gratitude as naturally as they breathe, without even thinking. Most of us come to it step by painful step, to discover that gratitude is a form of acceptance.”

~ Faith Baldwin




More at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faith_Baldwin

Artwork from Mark a Pearce http://www.markapearce.co.uk/#!/home

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Many people ~ Primo Levi

“Many people — many nations — can find themselves holding, more or less wittingly, that ‘every stranger is an enemy’. For the most part this conviction lies deep down like some latent infection; it betrays itself only in random, disconnected acts, and does not lie at the base of a system of reason.”

~  Primo Levi




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