Inter-  Faiths  Dialogue

Classics > Returning to the Source

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S entient beings wish to return to their origin where their nature will be in perfect unity.

quote 4305  |   The Surangama Sutra

M y soul shall declare to Thee that Thou art her Maker,
And shall testify that Thou art her creator, 0 Lord.
At Thy word, "Be, 0 soul," she took on existence,
And from Thy Emptiness Thou didst draw her forth as light from the eye.
It was Thee who didst breathe in her life; I shall proclaim and affirm this with uplifted hands.
And therefore she shall pour out her thanks and give witness that she was bidden to do so by Thee.
While yet in the body, she serves Thee as a handmaid;
And on that day when she returns to the land from whence she came,
In Thee will she dwell, for in Thee is her being.
Whether she sits or rises, Thou art with her the same.
She was Thine before she was born and breathing;
She was nourished by Thee with wisdom and knowledge,
And it is to Thee she looks for her guidance and sustenance,
Grateful to Thee for her water and bread.
She looks only to Thee, and hopes only for Thee.

quote 3774  | 
The Royal Crown; Zangwill, 1923, 1974; pp. 3-5 

T he world, too, is a god, image of a greater God. United to Him and performing the order and will of the Father, it is the totality of life. There is nothing in it, through all the duration of the cyclic return willed by the Father, which is not alive. The Father has willed that the world should be living so long as it keeps its cohesion; hence the world is necessarily God.

quote 3651  | 
Poimander, 1.12, based on translation by Yates, F., 1964, pp. 33-34 

T his ordered universe, which is the same for all, was not created by any one of the gods or by man, but always was, is, and shall be, an ever-living Flame that is first kindled and then quenched in turn. [The universe bursts forth and then is reabsorbed, yet its Source is ever-living, like a Sun that never sets] and who can hide from that which never sets? [That eternal Intelligence in man] is forever beyond change;

quote 3630  | 
Adapted from fragments of Heraclitus found in Freeman, K., 1962; pp. 24-34. Fragment nbr. 30, 16, 34a 

Y ou could not in your travels find the source or destination of the soul, so deeply hidden is the Logos.
[But] I searched for It [and found It] within myself.
That hidden Unity is beyond what is visible.
All men have this capacity of knowing themselves, [for] the soul has the Logos within it, which can be known when the soul is evolved.
What is within us remains the same eternally;
It is the same in life and death, waking and sleeping, youth and old age; for, It has become this world, and the world must return to It.

quote 3627  | 
Adapted from fragments of Heraclitus found in Freeman, K., 1962; pp. 24-34. Fragment nbr. 45, 101, 54, 116, 115,88 

A t the end of the 'night' of time, all things return to My Prakrti; and when the new 'day' of time begins, I bring them again into manifestation.

Thus, through My Prakrti, I bring forth all creation, and all these worlds revolve in the cycle of time. But I am not bound by this vast display of creation; I exist alone, watching the drama of this play. I watch, while Prakrti brings forth all that moves and moves not; thus the worlds go on revolving. But the fools of the world know Me not; ... they know not the supreme Spirit, the infinite God of all.

Still, there are a few great souls who know Me, and who take refuge in Me. They love Me with a single love, knowing that I am the Source of all.

They praise Me with devotion; ... their spirit is one with Me, and they worship Me with their love. They worship Me, and work for Me, surrendering themselves in My vision. They worship Me as the One and the many, knowing that all is contained in Me.

quote 3611  | 
9:7-15; based on Mascaro, Juan, 1962 

B ehold the glory of God in the universe and all that lives and moves on earth. Leaving the transient, find joy in the Eternal.

quote 3602  | 
Isha Upanishad, I.1 

I ndeed, such is the plan of divine love that its purpose is always to draw back to itself that which it loves; it draws everyone out of themselves and out of all created reality, and totally into the uncreated.

quote 3447  | 
Complete Works. Mahwah, New Jersey: Paulist Press, 1993, p. 292 

G od has stolen my [illusory] "I" from me and has broght me near to my [real] "I" … The colors have returned ot the pure primoridal white. The voyage has reached its end and everything other than Him has ceased to exist. All attribution, every aspect and all relation being abolished, the original state is re-established.

quote 3268  | 
Kitab al-Mawaqif 7, p. 29,in The Spiritual Writings of 'Abd al-Kader. Albany, N.Y.: State University of New York Press, 1995 

T here are two kinds of death, the death which is inevitable and common to all beings, and the death which is voluntary and particular to certain ones of them only. It is the second death which is prescribed for us in the words of the Messenger of Allah: "Die before you die." The resurrection is accomplished for him who dies this voluntary death. His affairs return to God and they are but one. He has returned to God and he sees Him through Him. As the Prophet said -- on him be Grace and Peace! -- according to a tradtion reported by Tabarani, "You will not see your Lord before being dead" and that is because, in the contemplation of this dead-resurrected one, all creatures are annihilated, and for him only one thing exists, one Reality only. Whatever will be the lot of the believers in their posthumous states is prefigured in one degree or another in this life for the initiates. The "return" of things -- considered in relation to [the diversity of] their forms -- to Allah and the end of their becoming, expresses only a change of cognitive status and not at all a modification of the reality. For him who dies and achieves the resurrection, the multiple is one, by reason of its essential unity; and the One is multiple, by reason of the multiplicity in Him of relations and aspects.

quote 3267  | 
Kitab al-Mawaqif 221, pp. 51-52,in The Spiritual Writings of 'Abd al-Kader. Albany, N.Y.: State University of New York Press, 1995 

G od has given birth to the Son as you, as me, as each one of us. As many beings as many gods in God.
In my soul, God not only gives birth to me as His son, He gives birth to me as Himself, and Himself as me.
My physical father is my father with but a small part of his being, and I live my life separate from him. He may be dead, and I may live. God, however, is my father with His entire being, and I am never separate from Him. I am always His; I am alive only because He is alive.

In this divine birth I find that God and I are the same: I am what I am and what I shall remain, now and forever. I am carried above was the highest angels. I neither increase nor decrease, for in this birth I have become the motionless cause of all that moves. I have won back what has always been mine. Here, in my own soul, the greatest of all miracles has taken place-God has returned to God!

quote 3086  | 
Pfeiffer, Frantz, and Evans, C de B., trans. Meister Eckhart. London: John M. Watkins, 1924, 193 1, Vol. 1: 118, 157, 221-222, 287, 338, 348, 363, 429, and Vol. 2: 41, 114. 

E verything in the world of existence has an end and a goal. The end is maturity, and the goal is freedom. For example, the fruit grows on the tree until it is ripe and then falls. A farmer sows grain in the ground and tends it. It begins to grow, eventually seeds, and again becomes grain. It has returned to its original form. The circle is complete. Completing the circle of existence is freedom.

quote 2873  |   Others Sufis Teaching
Nasafi, Essential Sufism, by James Fadiman & Robert Frager, Harper SanFrancisco, p.53 

G od gives birth to the Son as you, as me, as each one of us. As many beings - as many gods in God. In my soul, God not only gives birth to me as his son, he gives birth to me as himself, and himself as me.
I find in this divine birth that God and I are the same: I am what I was and what I shall always remain, now and forever. I am transported above the highest angels; I neither decrease nor increase, for in this birth I have become the motionless cause of all that moves. I have won back what has always been mine. Here, in my own soul, the greatest of all miracles has taken place - God has returned to God!

quote 2820  | 
Meister Eckhart, THE DIVINE BIRTH 

T he world is a spinning die, and everything turns and changes: man is turned into angel, and angel into man, and the head into the foot, and the foot into the head. Thus all things turn and spin and change, this into that, and that into this, the topmost to the undermost, and the undermost to the topmost. For at the root all is one, and salvation inheres in the change and return of things.

quote 2765  | 
Martin Buber’s ten rungs, collected Hassidic saying, p.69 

M AY THE LORD of Love, who projects himself
into this universe Of myriad forms,
From whom all beings come and to whom all
Return, grant us the grace of wisdom.

quote 2642  | 
Shvetashvatara Upanishad, translated by Eknath Easwaran, 1987; Nilgiri Press, Tomales, California 

B y its nature, the Great Ultimate is unmoved. When it is aroused, it becomes spirit. Spirit leads to number. Number leads to form. Form leads to concrete things. Concrete things undergo infinite transformations, but underlying them is spirit to which they must be resolved.

quote 2338  | 
Shao Yung, Supreme Principle Governing the World (Huang-Chi Ching Shu), 7B:23b, in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 29 

A ll things in the world came from being, and the origin of being is Used on non-being. In order to have being in total, it is necessary to return to non-being.

quote 2277  | 
WANG PI, Lao Tzu chu, or Commentary on the Lao Tzu, ch. 40, in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 19. 

T o return is to revert to the original [substance]. The original [substance] is the mind of Heaven and Earth. […] Thus although Heaven and Earth are vast, possesssing the myriad things in abondance, where thunder moves and winds circulate, and while there is an infinite variety of changes and transformations, yet its original [substance] is absolutely quiet and perfect non-being. Therefore only with the cessation of activities within Earth can the mind of Heaven and Earth be revealed. If being were to be the mind [of Heaven and Earth], things of different categories will not be able to exist together.

quote 2272  | 
WANG PI, COMMENTARY ON THE BOOK OF CHANGES, Commentary on hexagram no. 24, fu or to return, in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 19. 

A lways to know the standard is called profound and secret virtue.
Virtue becomes deep and far-reaching
And with it all things return to their original natural state.
Then complete harmony will be reached.

quote 2211  | 
Laozi 65, in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 7. 

H e who knows the male (active force) and keeps to the female (the passive force or receptive element)
Becomes the ravine of the world.
Being the ravine of the world,
He will never depart from eternal virtue,
But returns to the state of infancy.
He who knows the white (glory) and yet keeps to the black (humility),
Becomes the model for the world.
Being the model for the world,
He will never deviate from eternal virtue,
But returns to the state of the Ultimate of Non-being.
He who knows glory but keeps to humility,
Becomes the valley of the world.
Being the valley of the world,
He will be proficient in eternal virtue,
And returns to the state of simplicity (uncarved wood).

quote 2192  | 
Laozi, 28, in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 7. 

T here was something undifferentiated and yet complete,
Which existed before heaven and earth.
Soundless and formless, it depends on nothing and does not change.
It operates everywhere and is free from danger.
It may be considered the mother of the universe.
I do not know its name; I call it Tao.
If forced to give it a name, I shall call it Great.
Now being great means functioning everywhere.
Functioning everywhere means far-reaching.
Being far-reaching means returning to the original point.
Therefore Tao is great.
Heaven is great.
Earth is great.
And the king (1), is also great.
There are four great things in the universe, and the king is
one of them.
Man models himself after Earth.
Earth models itself after Heaven.
Heaven models itself after Tao.
And Tao models itself after Nature.

quote 2190  | 
Laozi 25, in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 7 

The doctrine of returning to the original is prominent in Lao Tzu (see Lao Tzu, chs. 14, 16, 28, 40, 52.) It has contributed in no small degree to the common Chinese cyclical concept, which teaches that both history and reality operate in cycles.

A ttain complete vacuity,
Maintain steadfast quietude.
All things come into being,
And I see thereby their return.
All things flourish,
But each one returns to its root.
This return to its root means tranquillity.
It is called returning to its destiny.
To return to destiny is called the eternal (Tao).
To know the eternal is called enlightenment.
Not to know the eternal is to act blindly to result in disaster.

quote 2181  | 
Laozi 16, in Wing-Tsit Chan, Chinese Philosophy, Chapter 7. 

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