One River, Many Wells – Chapter 1

More quotes 🙂

Deep Ecumenism and the Universality of Experience

The truly wise person kneels at the feet of all creatures.

Mechtild of Magdeburg

The great religions of the world are not competitive but complementary. One religion is not the enemy of the other, but all religions are faced by common enemies: skepticism, atheism, and perhaps worst of all, severe indifference. Only if the religions of the world stand together will they preserve themselves [and] help to bring about a new manifestation of the world spirit.

Nikhilananda, Hindu scholar

The worship of the different religions,

which are like so many small streams,

move together to meet God, who is like the ocean.


– Rajjab, Hindu mystic

All religions,

all this singing,

is one song.

The differences are just

illusion and vanity.

The sun’s light looks a little different

on this wall than it does on that wall . . .

but it’s still one light.


Rumi, Sufi poet & mystic

Through the practice of deep looking and deep listening, we become free, able to see the beauty and values in our own and others’ tradition. Yet, to get to the point of seeing the beauty and value in others’ traditions, one must look and listen deeply into one’s own. One must practice some path along the journey that leads to depth. One must enter the well of mystical experience.

– Matthew Fox, quoting and expanding on Buddhist practitioner Thich Nhat Hanh

When you touch someone who authentically represents a tradition, you not only touch his or her tradition, you also touch your own.

Thich Nhat Hanh

It is my belief that in the Presence of God there is neither male nor female, white nor black, Gentile nor Jew, Protestant nor Catholic, Hindu, Buddhist, nor Moslem, but a human spirit stripped to the literal substance of itself before God.

Howard Thurman, spiritual mentor to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Every truth without exception – and whoever may utter it – is from the Holy Spirit. The old pagan virtues were from God. Revelation has been made to many pagans.

St. Thomas Aquinas, 13th-century theologian & Doctor of the Church

As a practicing Roman Catholic, I especially like the last quote from Aquinas – it reminds me that even in my own faith tradition there have been those individuals who have so deeply touched the heart of God that they no longer have to fear other religious traditions – they can affirm God’s own Spirit blowing where it will and speaking to all people of authentic good will.

Enjoy – more quotes forthcoming!

Blessings & Peace,

Hugo