Quotes and Quick Inspiration

Volume Three

From Tom Spencer's Soul of the Garden


The world is the wheel of God, turning round
And round with all living creatures upon its rim.
The world is the river of God,
Flowing from him and flowing back to him.


- Shvetashvatara Upanishad, translated by Eknath Easwaran

In eternity there is indeed something true and sublime.
But all these times and places and occasions are now
and here. God himself culminates in the present
moment, and will never be more divine in the
lapse of all the ages.

- Henry David Thoreau, Walden


The creature called man has a strange history. He is not of one piece, nor was he born of a single moment in time. His elementary substance is stardust almost as old as the universe.

Loren Eiseley, The Lost Notebooks


A billion stars go spinning through the night,

blazing high above you head.

But in you is the presence that will be,

when the stars are dead.


- Rainer Maria Rilke


I'm a failed Christian

 I've got my own church

I pray with my soul

to this great universe.

- Nick Lowe



Catch the bird of heaven,

Lock him in a cage of gold;

Look Again Tomorrow,

And he will be gone.


Ah! the bird of heaven!
Follow where the bird has gone;
Ah! the bird of heaven!
Keep on traveling on.


- Sydney Carter


Imperishable is the Lord of Love.
As from a blazing fire thousands of sparks
Leap forth, so millions of beings arise
From the Lord of Love and return to him.

- Mundaka Upanishad

In the depths of winter I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.

 - Albert Camus


Attention is living; inattention is dying.
The attentive never stop; the inattentive are dead already.

- Dhammapada 21, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.


The simple act of stopping and
looking at the beauty around us can be prayer.

-   Patricia R. Barrett, The Sacred Garden



The individual feels the vanity of human desires and aims, and the nobility and marvelous order which are revealed in nature and in the world of thought. He feels the individual destiny as an imprisonment and seeks to experience the totality of existence as a unity full of significance.

- Albert Einstein


Do not follow the ideas of others,
but learn to listen to the voice within yourself.
Your body and mind will become clear
and you will realize the unity of all things.

- Dogen


The Heart has reasons that Reason does not know

- Blaise Pascal

When you come to the end of all the light you know, and it's time to step into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing that one of two things shall happen: Either you will be given something solid to stand on or you will be taught to fly.

-Edward Teller


The purpose of art is not the release of a momentary ejection of adrenaline but rather the gradual, lifelong construction of a state of wonder and serenity.

-Glenn Gould



An artist is not paid for his labor, but for his vision.

- James McNeil Whistler




I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.

-  Frank Lloyd Wright


I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station through
which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in.


-  George Washington Carver





We work with the stuff of the soul
 by means of the things of life.


- Thomas Moore



Birdsong brings relief

to my longing.


I am just as ecstatic as they are,

but with nothing to say!


Please, universal soul, practice

some song, or something, through me!


- Rumi

translated by Coleman Barks




The song of birds, the voices of insects, are all means of conveying truth to the mind; in flowers and grasses we see messages of the Way. The scholar, pure and clear of mind, serene and open of heart, should find in everything what nourishes him.

- Buddhist saying.



A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust.

- Gertrude Jekyll



Though an old man, I am but a young gardener.

- Thomas Jefferson


Still I would not forget that the pale-faced missionary and the hoodooed aborigine are both God's creatures, though small indeed their own conceptions of Infinite Love. A wee child toddling in a wonder world, I prefer to their dogma my excursions into the natural gardens where the voice of the Great Spirit is heard in the twittering of birds, the rippling of mighty waters, and the sweet breathing of flowers. If this is Paganism, then at present, at least, I am a Pagan.

- Zitkala-Sa (Red Bird,) Native American Teacher and Leader



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