Take away all the moral beauty and sweetness in the Word and the Bible is left wholly a dead letter, a dry, lifeless, tasteless thing. By this is seen the true foundation of our duty, the worthiness of God to be so esteemed, honoured, loved, submitted to and served, as He requires of us and the amiableness of the duties themselves that are required of us. And by this is seen the true evil of sin; for he who sees the beauty of holiness must necessarily see the hatefulness of sin, its contrary. By this men understand the true glory of heaven, which consists in the beauty and happiness that is in holiness. By this is seen the amiableness and happiness of both saints and angels. He that sees beauty of holiness, or true moral good, sees the greatest and most important thing in the world, which is the fulness of all things, without which all the world is empty, no better than nothing, yea, worse than nothing. Unless this is seen, nothing is seen that is worth the seeing; for there is no other true excellency or beauty. Unless this be understood, nothing is understood that is worthy of the exercise of the noble faculty of understanding. This is the beauty of the Godhead and the divinity of Divinity (if I may so speak), the good of the infinite Fountain of good; without which, God Himself (if that were possible) would be an infinite evil; without which we ourselves had better never have been; and without which there had better have been no being.
Jonathan Edwards
Some quotes from Standing Stark:The mind is the charioteer of experience, while the body is the vehicle that carries out the orders of its driver. The gift we have been given is the one called possibility, whose intent offers to tie all together, creating strands of a whole life rather than a disintegrated one.It is our own microcosmic journey that gives life meaning and weaves us into the macrocosm of existence. Life does begin with each of us. It then expands outward to touch others with how we live.At some time in our lives, we receive a signal to arouse from a deep sleep. If we answer the cue, we set out on a journey toward authenticity that takes us into the unknown. We begin to separate from the selves we thought we were and search for who we are.Set your intent and let it go. Your intent is your beginning. Worrying about the details detracts from the intent. In your strong intent, the attraction will take care of the details.The conscious realization I offer now is that when we learn to trust, we will be led to all we ever need. Our only job is to be awake and follow the lead.We can gauge the measure of truth in our lives by the lightness of our body, emotions and energy. We need only be aware in any given moment of the state of our being and be guided. This is what we are asked to do on the spiritual path. We aren’t headed for a continuing chaotic free fall, but an order of divine nature.After all, if we’re on the spiritual path, we can trust that there is much we don’t know. These mysteries are hidden from us until we are ripe. The paradox is that we frantically attempt to know in order to surrender to the place of not knowing! The other paradox is that there are no mysteries because the cues are surrounding us all the time. We’re just too tied up to recognize them.There comes a time when we are knowingly left with the ramifications of the choices we make. While it would be comforting to think that the progressions we undertake will be painless and smooth, any change involves conflict between what was and what will be. Therein lies the opportunity for learning and alignment to an authentic life.Words are the shell. They feed intellectual knowledge. What lies in the middle of words is the seed that, if presented and embraced in a certain way, will take us to the place we seek.
Carla Woody