John O'Donohue

It is not a luxury to have such friends

It is such a privilege to have people who continue each day to bless us with their love and prayer. These inner friends of the heart confer on us inestimable gifts. In these times of greed and externality, there is such unusual beauty in having friends who practice profound faithfulness to us, praying for us each day without our ever knowing or remembering it. There are often lonesome frontiers we could never endure or cross without the inner sheltering of these friends. It is hard to live a true life that endeavors to be faithful to its own calling and not become haunted by the ghosts of negativity, therefore, it is not a luxury to have such friends; it is necessary.

~ from TO BLESS THE SPACE BETWEEN US by John O'Donohue

The journey of each life

At its heart, the journey of each life is a pilgrimage through unforeseen sacred places that enlarge and enrich the soul.

~ John O'Donohue

Within us and around us there is an invisible world

Within us and around us there is an invisible world; this is where each of us comes from... When you cross over from the invisible into this physical world, you bring with you a sense of belonging to the invisible that you can never lose or finally cancel... When you enter the world, you come to live on the threshold between the visible and the invisible... Because the invisible cannot be seen or glimpsed with the human eye, it belongs largely to the unknown. Still there are occasional moments when the invisible seems to become faintly perceptible... Now you belong fully neither to the visible nor to the invisible. This is precisely what kindles and rekindles all your longing and your hunger to belong. You are both artist and pilgrim of the threshold.

~ from ETERNAL ECHOES by John O'Donohue

Draw alongside the silence of stone

You have traveled too fast over false ground;
Now your soul has come to take you back.
Take refuge in your senses, open up
To all the small miracles you rushed through.
Become inclined to watch the way of rain
When it falls slow and free.
Imitate the habit of twilight,
Taking time to open the well of color
That fostered the brightness of day.
Draw alongside the silence of stone
Until its calmness can claim you.

~ from TO BLESS THE SPACE BETWEEN US by John O'Donohue

Prayer is the art of presence

Prayer is the art of presence. Where there is no wonder there is little depth of presence.

~ from ETERNAL ECHOES by John O'Donohue

Let us begin to learn how to bless one another

The word blessing evokes a sense of warmth and protection; it suggests that no life is alone or unreachable. Each life is clothed in raiment of spirit that secretly links it to everything else. Though suffering and chaos befall us, they can never quench that inner light of providence. . . . A blessing is not a sentiment or a question; it is a gracious invocation where the human heart pleads with the divine heart. . . . When a blessing is invoked, it changes the atmosphere. Some of the plenitude flows into our hearts from the invisible neighborhood of loving kindness. In the light and reverence of blessing, a person or situation becomes illuminated in a completely new way. In a dead wall a new window opens, in dense darkness a path starts to glimmer, and into a broken heart healing falls like morning dew. It is ironic that so often we continue to live like paupers though our inheritance of spirit is so vast.

~ from TO BLESS THE SPACE BETWEEEN US by John O'Donohue

The gift of the world is our first blessing

There is a quiet light that shines in every heart. . . . It is what illuminates our minds to see beauty, our desire to seek possibility, and our hearts to love life. Without this subtle quickening our days would be empty and wearisome, and no horizon would ever awaken our longing. Our passion for life is quietly sustained from somewhere in us that is wedded to the energy and excitement of life. This shy inner light is what enables us to recognize and receive our very presence here as blessing. We enter the world as strangers who all at once become heirs to a harvest of memory, spirit, and dream that has long preceded us and will now enfold, nourish, and sustain us. The gift of the world is our first blessing.

~ from TO BLESS THE SPACE BETWEEEN US by John O'Donohue

Silence is one of the major thresholds in the world

Silence is one of the major thresholds in the world. . . . Meister Eckhart said that there is nothing in the world that resembles God so much as silence. Silence is a great friend of the soul; it unveils the riches of solitude. It is very difficult to reach that quality of inner silence. You must make a space for it so that it may begin to work for you. In a certain sense, you do not need the whole armory and vocabulary of therapies, psychologies, or spiritual programs. If you have a trust in and an expectation of your own solitude, everything that you need to know will be revealed to you. These are some wonderful lines from the French poet Rene Char: "Intensity is silent, its image is not. I love everything that dazzles me and then accentuates the darkness within me." Here is an image of silence as the force that discloses hidden depth. Silence is the sister of the divine.

~ from ANAM CARA by John O'Donohue

Time is presence

As a river flows in ideal sequence May your love discover time is presence.
~ John O'Donohue

Springtime in your soul

Spring is a youthful season coming forth in a rush of life and promise, hope and possibility. At the heart of spring, there is a great inner longing when desire and memory stir toward each other. Consequently, springtime in your soul is a wonderful time to undertake some new adventures, some new project, or to make some important changes in your life; there the rhythm, the energy, and the hidden light of your own clay work with you. You are in the flow of your own growth and potential.

~ from ANAM CARA by John O'Donohue
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