The perpetual danger which besets religion is that it may substitute gentility and aestheticism for prophetic insight and power.

Greatness is not in where we stand, but in what direction we are moving. We must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it -- but sail we must and not drift, nor lie at anchor.

Without necessity nothing budges, the human personality least of all. It is tremendously conservative, not to say torpid. Only acute necessity is able to rouse it. The developing personality obeys no caprice, no command, no insight, only brute necessity.

To eliminate the vexation of the mind, it doesn’t help to do something; this only reinforces the mind’s mechanics. Dissolving the mind is instead a matter of not-doing: simply avoid becoming attached to what you see and think. Relinquish the notion that you are separated from the all-knowing mind of the universe. then you can recover the original pure insight and see through all illusions. Knowing nothing, you will be aware of everything. Remember: because clarity and enlightenment are within your own nature, they are regained without moving an inch.

Religion in its true sense emphasizes the insight into our experiences and the consciousness that insists upon learning something from them.

A study of comparative religion gives insight into the values of the various faiths, values which transcend different symbols and creeds and in transcending penetrate to the depths of the spiritual consciousness where the symbols and formulas shrink into insignificance.

True insight is a moment of perceiving a situation before it freezes into similarity with something else.

The existentialist insight, in part, is that meaning is something we give to life. We do not find meaning so much as throw ourselves at it. The Zen insight, in part, is that worrying about meaning may itself make life less meaningful than it might have been. Part of the virtue of the Zen attitude lies in learning to not need to be busy: learning there is joy and meaning and peace in simply being mindful, not needing to change or be changed. Let the moment mean what it will.

If sex and creativity are often seen by dictators as subversive activities, it's because they lead to the knowledge that you own your own body (and with it your own voice), and that's the most revolutionary insight of all.

What we gain without effort does not satisfy like what comes through the sweat of our brow or the work of self-transformation. No berries taste as sweet as those we pick. No insight changes us as deeply as what we discover ourselves. Prayer might help, but walking the endless path of practice is the only way to a deep reward. Sometimes just the path is reward enough.

Throughout history, individuals have solved apparently impossible problems during moments of intense inner clarity. Variously called inspiration, peak performance, creative insight, and higher creativity, such moments produce illuminated understanding, which can then be shaped, revised, and carried forward by skill alone.

We should not expect the natural sciences to give us direct insight into the nature of the spirit.

In the highest love between man and woman, or parent and child, as the person reaches the ultimates of strength, self-esteem, or individuality, so also does he simultaneously merge with the other, lose self-consciousness, and more or less transcend selfishness. The same can happen in the creative moment, in the profound aesthetic experience, in the insight experience…and others which I have generalized as peak experiences.

Humor brings insight and tolerance. Irony brings a deeper and less friendly understanding.

Humor brings insight and tolerance. Irony brings a deeper and less friendly understanding.

Humor brings insight and tolerance. Irony brings a deeper and less friendly understanding.

It is the historical function of civilizations to serve, by their downfalls, as stepping stones to the progressive process of the revelation of always deeper religious insight, and the gift of ever more grace to act on this insight.

Nothing in life is more exciting and rewarding than the sudden flash of insight that leaves you a changed person - not only changed, but for the better.

To the man who studies to gain a thorough insight into science, books and study are merely the steps of the ladder by which he climbs to the summit; as soon as a step has been advanced he leaves it behind. The majority of mankind, however, who study to fill their memory with facts do not use the steps of the ladder to mount upward, but take them off and lay them on their shoulders in order that they may take them along, delighting in the weight of the burden they are carrying. They ever remain below because they carry what should carry them.

Normal experience at the sensory level is that of dualism; but the deeper our insight penetrates the terms, pantheism or monism lose their significance; for Ultimate Reality embraces everything in a nameless undifferentiated continuum.