Interfaith Quotes about Belief, Prayer and Seeking

Interfaith Quotes about Belief, Prayer and Seeking December 23, 2022

Picture: CC0 License

Belief, prayer and exploration are found in all of the world’s great wisdom traditions. Contemplate the following perspectives you look inward during the holiday season.

Good Craftmanship

The Christian shoemaker does his duty not by putting little crosses on the shoes, but by making good shoes, because God is interested in good craftsmanship.

Martin Luther (1483-1546)
German Professor of Theology (Lutheranism)

Befriend Thy Enemy

It is easy enough to be friendly to one’s friends. But to befriend the one who regards himself as your enemy is the quintessence of true religion. The other is mere business.

Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948)
Civil Rights Leader and Nonviolent Visionary

No Compulsion

There is no compulsion in religion

The Qur’an 2:256

Defiance of Despair

A religious man is a person who holds God and man in one thought at one time, at all times, who suffers harm done to others, whose greatest compassion, whose greatest strength is love and defiance of despair.

Abraham Joshua Heschel (1907-1972)
Polish-born American Rabbi

Knowledge of Self

The Sufi recognizes the knowledge of self as the essence of all religions; he traces it in every religion, he sees the same truth in each, and therefore he regards all as one. Hence he can realize the saying of Jesus; ‘I and my Father are one.’ The difference between creature and Creator remains on his lips, not in his soul.

Hazrat Inayat Khan (1882-1927)
Teacher of Universal Sufism

Morning and Evening

Morning and evening I seek You, spreading out my hands, lifting up my face in prayer. I sigh for You with a thirsting heart; I am like the pauper begging at my doorstep. The heights of heaven cannot contain Your presence, yet You have a dwelling in my mind. I try to conceal Your glorious name in my heart, but my desire for You grows till it bursts out of my mouth. Therefore I shall praise the name of the Lord as long as the breath of the living God is in my nostrils.

Solomon ibn Gabriol (1021-1058)
Andalusian Poet and Jewish Philosopher

Not as the Hypocrites

And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward. But thou, when though hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

St. Matthew 6:6
King James Bible

Friendship with God

For prayer is nothing else than being on terms of friendship with God.

Saint Teresa of Avila (1515-1582)
Carmelite Nun and Catholic Saint

Blessings in General

Our prayers should be for blessings in general, for God knows best what is good for us.

Socrates (470-399 BC)
Greek Philosopher

Placed in God’s Hands

I have held many things in my hands, and I have lost them all; but whatever I have placed in God’s hands, that I still possess.

Martin Luther (1483-1546)
German Professor of Theology (Lutheranism)

My Soul Expands

When I admire the wonders of a sunset or the beauty of the moon, my soul expands in the worship of the creator.

Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948)
Civil Rights Leader and Nonviolent Visionary

Alone With You

My God and my Lord: eyes are at rest, the stars are setting, hushed are the movements of birds in their nests, of monsters in the deep. And you are the Just who knows no change, the Equity that does not swerve, the Everlasting that never passes away. The doors of kings are locked and guarded by their henchmen, but your door is open to those who call upon you. My Lord, each lover is now alone with his beloved. And I am alone with you.

Rabia al Basri (713-801)
Female Muslim Saint and Sufi Mystic

Inward Fermentation

I pray on the principle that wine knocks the cork out of a bottle. There is an inward fermentation, and there must be a went.

Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887)
Clergyman and Social Reformer

Pray in Your Heart

Our Lord told us to pray in secret—that means in your heart—and he instructed us to “shut the door.” What is this door he says we must shut, if not the mouth? For we are the temple in which Christ dwells, for as the Apostle said: “You are the temple of the Lord.” And the Lord enters into your inner self into this house, to cleanse it from everything that is unclean, but only while the door—that is, your mouth—is closed shut.

Aphrahat the Persian (270-345)
Syriac-Christian Author

Humility and Confidence

There are two main pitfalls on the road to mastery of the art of prayer. If a person gets what he asks for, his humility is in danger. If he fails to get what he asks for, he is apt to lose confidence. Indeed, no matter whether prayer seems to be succeeding or failing, humility and confidence are two virtues which are absolutely essential.

Anonymous Trappist Monk

Changes Him Who Prays

Prayer does not change God, but it changes him who prays.

Soren Kierkegaard (1813-1855)
Danish Philosopher and Religious Author

Questions Honored

I would like the church to be a place where the questions of people are honored rather than a place where we have all the answers. The church has to get out of propaganda. The future will involve us in more interfaith dialogue. We cannot say we have the only truth.

John Shelby Spong (1931)
American Bishop of the Episcopal Church

Be Lamps Unto Yourselves

Therefore, Ananda, be ye lamps unto yourselves, be ye refuge to yourselves. Betake yourselves to no external refuge. Hold fast to the Truth as a lamp; hold fast to the Truth as a refuge. Look not for a refuge in anyone beside yourselves.

Mahaparinibbana Sutta

Our Own Listening

We cannot live in a world that is interpreted for us by others. An interpreted world is not a hope. Part of the terror is to take back our own listening. To use our own voice. To see our own light.

Hildegard of Bingen (1098-1179)
Benedictine Abbess and Christian Mystic

Few Perfectly Humble

There are few contemplatives, because few souls are perfectly humble.

Thomas a Kempis (1380-1471)
German-Dutch Canon

Seek What They Sought

Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought.

Matsuo Basho (1644-1694)
Japanese Poet

Curated from The Little Book of Oneness and Goodness

Gudjon Bergmann
Author and Mindfulness Teacher
Amazon Author Profile

Recommended books:

Picture: CC0 License

Browse Our Archives