Martin Israel

Making ourselves fully available

When we have made ourselves fully available to our neighbor and to God, becoming emptied in the process, then at last we begin to live.

~ from HAPPINESS THAT LASTS by Martin Israel
Happiness That Lasts
By Martin Israel

As we grow in the way of prayer

As we grow in the way of prayer, we begin to know that true prayer is an aware openness to the working of Love, that we may play our part in transmitting the divine love to all whom we meet in the daily round. Prayer is universal in scope, for God has no favorites. The way of communicative silence is the most effective way of knowing God and serving our brothers and sisters... I have little doubt that we will appreciate the silence when the body is dead and the soul passes forth into new surroundings for fresh adventures.

~ from DARK VICTORY by Martin Israel

Real knowledge comes from the unitive experience of God

Real knowledge comes from the unitive experience of God; the world's great saints and mystics have been given the key to that knowledge, and it is in turn their burden as well as their privilege to impart it to others. Once we 'set our minds on God's realm and God's justice before everything else, all the rest will come to us as well.' (Matthew 6:33) We begin to grasp the truth, that contemplative prayer -- that deep, inner loving look at God in silence -- is the way of the path, not acquisitive knowledge. And as we proceed, such amazing understanding of the fabric of the universe will be declared to us that we will scarcely be able to contain ourselves for joy that the creation is as it is. Once we are ready, God does not withhold anything from our grasp. And the measure of our readiness to receive real knowledge is our capacity to flow out in love to our neighbor.

~ from THE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE by Martin Israel

Humility is indeed a basic spiritual virtue

Humility is indeed a basic spiritual virtue. It comes to us when we do not know how to proceed, when all previous teachings and certainties have been found to be unavailing. When we are in the suffocation darkness of our own hell, we are suddenly confronted by a light of radiance that illuminates our total situation. We at once accept its glow and loving warmth with relief; but as it leads us on to the fuller light, it makes demands on us. It requires nothing less than a complete change of heart, so that we may take up the darkness of the world around us in the light that had so recently lightened our own darkness ... As our depths are illuminated, so we take our place in the light of God. It is then that we know the meaning of love ... and then, it radiates to the entire cosmos as a beam of the love of God. The light of God in this way releases the love that is native to the soul but usually imprisoned in it ...

~ from THE DARK FACE OF REALITY by Martin Israel

Silence is its own reward

Silence is its own reward: we do not look for any "sign" of God's presence, but as we grow in faith, we become increasingly aware of the wordless dialogue proceeding deep within us. This is the silent conversation with God that warms the heart and mobilizes the powers of the mind and spirit which we are all endowed, but which largely remain in abeyance in everyday life, until we are enabled to strike a deeper note of awareness. In other words, the effect of God's grace shows itself as we give of ourselves by what we are given, but, far from dwelling on it, we stride forward in resolution to give what we have to those around us ... There can be no effective journey on the path to the pearl of great price, until we are so inwardly posed that our attention and resolution remain in control even when the world is collapsing around us. For, real prayer -- the still point of our inner being -- never ceases ...

~ from THE PEARL OF GREAT PRICE by Martin Israel
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