The Wayside Pulpit

The Wayside Pulpit provides messages of inspiration for those who pass by our door. These quotations are chosen biweekly from the collected wisdom of the ages to reflect the diverse and life-affirming beliefs of our congregation.


We are one with the rest of nature, fitting neither above nor below, but within.
—NEIL DeGRASSE TYSON

We are here to awaken from our illusion of separateness.
—THICH NHAT HANH

Love’s pronoun is plural. We are in this together; we will not be left alone.
—ELEA KEMLER

The world is too dangerous for anything but truth and too small for anything but love.
—WILLIAM SLOAN COFFIN, JR.

You must not, ever, give anyone else the responsibility for your life.
—MARY OLIVER

Transcend appearances. Listen, learn, relate.
—ANDREA GALLAGHER

And love says, “I will, I will take care of you,” to everything that is near.
—HAFIZ

Learn the word for thank you in three languages.
—JUDYTH HILL

Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice.
—MARTIN LUTHER KING, Jr.

There are so many borders that divide people, but for every border there is also a bridge.
—GiNA VALDÉS

Worship is the mystery within us reaching out to the mystery beyond.
—JACOB TRAPP

There are two great days in our lives—the day we are born and the day we discover why.
—WILLIAM BARCLAY

Always live within the question.
—NEALE DONALD WALSCH

The meaning of life is whatever you ascribe it to be.
—JOSEPH CAMPBELL

Watch, now, how I start the day in happiness, in kindness.
—MARY OLIVER

Peace be unto you.

It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.
—AUDRE LORDE

How would I live if I were exactly what’s needed to heal the world?
—RACHEL NAOMI REMEN

Do no harm.
—HIPPOCRATES

We either live with intention or exist by default.
—KRISTIN ARMSTRONG

There is a sacred place in each of us where the entire universe resides.
—JAMES D. HOUSTON

May your work and your heart’s joy ever be as one.
—NAN MERRILL

Music puts me in touch with something beyond intellect, something otherwordly, something sacred.
—STING

I trust a whisper infinitely more than I trust a shout.
—HANNIBAL LOKUMBE

Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.
—PEMA CHÖDRÖN

What will you do with your gifts? Choose to bless the world.
—REBECCA ANN PARKER

Gratitude is the memory of the heart.
—JEAN BAPTISTE MASSIEU

Light a candle. Take a breath. Name the pain and sorrow. Walk towards peace.
—ERIC CHERRY

It is never too early or too late to care for the well-being of the soul.
—EPICURUS

There are times, at least for now, when we must be content to love the questions themselves.
—NEIL DeGRASSE TYSON

Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.
—JALĀL AD-DĪN RUMI

One thing musicians can teach politicians is that not everyone has to sing the melody.
—PETE SEEGER

I believe in singing together…to stop being me for a little while and to become us.
—BRIAN ENO

Hearts rebuilt from hope resurrect dreams killed by hate.
—ABERJHANI

Use your freedom to serve one another in love.
—GALATIANS 5:13

Music is indeed the mediator between the spiritual and sensual life.
—LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN

We are all born for love. It is the principle of existence, and its only end.
—BENJAMIN DISRAELI

Have a mind that is open to everything and attached to nothing.
—TILOPA

Gratitude is my compass, my heartbeat, my way of life.
—CHERYL RUSSELL

As the ancient myth makers knew, we are children equally of the earth and the sky.
—CARL SAGAN

All that is eternal in me welcomes the wonder of this day.
—JOHN O’DONOHUE

Music reproduces for us the intimate essence, the tempo and energy, of our spiritual being.
—ROGER SESSIONS

The most basic and powerful way to connect to another person is to listen.
—RACHEL NAOMI REMEN

There is a crack in everything—that’s how the light gets in.
—LEONARD COHEN

It all comes to this: the simplest way to be happy is to do good.
—HELEN KELLER

Nothing is more powerful than an individual acting out of conscience.
—NORMAN COUSINS

Hatred never ceases by hatred, but by love alone is healed.
—BUDDHIST TEXT

Two things fill the mind with awe: the starry heavens above me and the moral law within me.
—IMMANUEL KANT

The highest form of wisdom is kindness.
—THE TALMUD

The difference between misery and happiness depends on what we do with our attention.
—SHARON SALZBERG

The world is but a canvas to our imagination.
—HENRY DAVID THOREAU

When I see heaven and earth as my own garden, I live that moment outside the universe.
—ZEN POEM

I have been sustained throughout my life by a faith in the power of resilience and hope.
—ELIZABETH EDWARDS

Fear is all about control. Love is all about growth.
—MICHAEL KOVARIK

Walking with you is my prayer.
—REV. BURNS STANFIELD

Gratitude is not only the greatest of the virtues but the parent of all others.
—MARCUS TULLIUS CICERO

Always the beautiful answer who asks a more beautiful question.
—E.E. CUMMINGS

What we sing is who we are.
— JASON SHELTON

Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much.
— HELEN KELLER

We are not isolated beings, but connected in mystery and miracle to the universe and to each other.

To be alive in this beautiful, self-organizing universe is a wonder beyond words.
—JOANNA MACY

The only measure of your words and deeds will be the love you leave behind when you’re done.
—FRED SMALL

The more I wonder, the more I love.
—ALICE WALKER

I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual.
—HENRY DAVID THOREAU

What is nearest to the heart is often farthest from the word.
—JOHN O’DONOHUE

Eternity… that time when question and answer would become one.
—ELIE WIESEL

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
—ELEANOR ROOSEVELT

The meaning of life is to find your gift; the purpose of life is to give it away.
—DAVID VISCOTT

Want what you have; do what you can; be who you are.
—FORREST CHURCH

Trust your instinct to the end, though you can render no reason.
—RALPH WALDO EMERSON

Stillness. One of the doors into the temple.
—MARY OLIVER

There is an inmost center in us all, where truth abides in fullness.
—ROBERT BROWNING

I like a forest’s way of living with a river.
—DANA ROBINSON

As I step in the direction of generosity, I move from fear to love.
—HENRI NOUWEN

You too can be carved anew by the details of your devotions.
—MARY OLIVER

Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength.
—FRANCIS DE SALES

How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.
—ANNIE DILLARD

If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.
—JACK KORNFIELD

May you experience each day as a sacred gift woven around the heart of wonder.
—JOHN O’DONOHUE

I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion.
—LAOZI

I will sing for what is behind the veil—light, light, and more light.
—MARY OLIVER

Courage is the judgment that something else is more important than one’s fear.
—AMBROSE HOLLINGWORTH REDMOON

Everyone, rich or poor, deserves a shelter for the soul.
—SAMUEL MOCKBEE

In the end is my beginning—the perpetual paradox of becoming.
—MARVIN HILES

The firmer one’s boundaries, the more entrenched are one’s battles.
—KEN WILBER

I have learned that the heart knows a deeper truth than reason can reach.
—MARILYN SEWELL

Break not the circle of enabling love.
—FRED KAAN

The gloom of the world is but a shadow. Behind it, yet within our reach, is joy.
—GIOVANNI GIOCONDO

Those who come nearest to truth come nearest to God.
—WILLIAM GREENLEAF ELIOT

There is a voice in the universe urging us to remember our purpose for being on this earth.
—WAYNE DYER

We are of the spirit, truly of the spirit. Only can the spirit turn the world around.
—HARRY BELAFONTE

Let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
—AMOS 5:24

Please watch out for each other and love and forgive everybody.
—JIM HENSON

We know truth not only by the reason but also by the heart.
—BLAISE PASCAL

No question is more sublime than why there is a Universe.
—DEREK PARFIT

Dream lofty dreams, and as you dream so shall you become.
—JAMES ALLEN

Social justice insists that people are not their circumstances; they are their possibilities.
—DONALD E. ROBINSON

If we are to reach real peace in this world, we shall have to begin with the children.
—MOHANDAS GANDHI

Receive the children in reverence, educate them in love, and send them forth in freedom.
—RUDOLF STEINER

Religion is the straining of the spirit forward to a wisdom beyond wisdom.
—ROBERT FROST

And we are put on earth a little space, that we may learn to bear the beams of love.
—WILLIAM BLAKE

Re-examine all you have been told…dismiss whatever insults your own soul.
—WALT WHITMAN

We dance round in a ring and suppose, but the Secret sits in the middle and knows.
—ROBERT FROST

Forgiveness is not an occasional act; it is a constant attitude.
—MARTIN LUTHER KING, Jr.

Every natural fact is a symbol of some spiritual fact.
—RALPH WALDO EMERSON

Truth stood on one side and ease on the other; it has often been so.
—THEODORE PARKER

This is the way of peace: overcome evil with good, falsehood with truth, and hatred with love.
—MILDRED LISETTE NORMAN, PEACE PILGRIM

I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word in reality.
—MARTIN LUTHER KING, Jr.

No peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this present instant.
—GIOVANNI GIOCONDO

The only gift is a portion of thyself.
—RALPH WALDO EMERSON

Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.
—HAMILTON WRIGHT MABIE

Religion is what a person does with solitude.
—ALFRED NORTH WHITEHEAD

Sometimes the truth depends on a walk around the lake.
—WALLACE STEVENS

The moral fiber of a nation can be judged by its treatment of animals.
—MOHANDAS GANDHI

Your daily life is your temple and your religion.
—KAHLIL GIBRAN

Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.
—ALBERT SCHWEITZER

The ultimate mystery of being is beyond all categories of thought.
—JOSEPH CAMPBELL

I have a terrible need of—shall I say the word—religion. Then I go out and paint the stars.
—VINCENT VAN GOGH

Spring. It is time to attend the soil. We are, after all, animated ground.
—MARVIN HILES

Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours.
—C.S. LEWIS

Some other faculty than the intellect is necessary for the apprehension of reality.
—HENRI BERGSON

We are what we think. With our thoughts we make the world.
—SIDDHARTHA GUATAMA

Keep some room in your heart for the unimaginable.
—MARY OLIVER

Sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment.
—JALAL AD-DIN RUMI

And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.
—JOHN 8:32

To find the truth we need imagination and skepticism both.
—CARL SAGAN

If people looked at the stars each night, I’ll bet they’d live a lot differently.
—BILL WATTERSON

Every answer asks a more beautiful question.
—E.E. CUMMINGS

Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.
—ALBERT EINSTEIN

I would love to live like a river flows, carried by the surprise of its own unfolding.
—JOHN O’DONOHUE

Your innermost sense of self, of who you are, is inseparable from stillness.
—ECKHART TOLLE

A mind stretched to a new idea can never go back to its original dimensions.
—OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES, SR.

Let us forgive each other—only then will we live in peace.
—LEO TOLSTOY

Religion is more about loving dialogue than it is about right ideas.
—SAM KEEN

Forgiveness is choosing to love.
—MOHANDAS GANDHI

The distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.
—ALBERT EINSTEIN

No tree has branches so foolish as to fight amongst themselves.
—OJIBWE

The place to improve the world is first in one’s own heart and head and hands.
—ROBERT M. PIRSIG

“Beauty is truth, truth beauty,”—that is all ye know on earth, and all ye need to know.
—JOHN KEATS

Our own life is the instrument with which we experiment with the truth.
—THICH NHAT HANH

Live, so you do not have to look back and say, “God, how I have wasted my life.”
—ELISABETH KÜBLER-ROSS

The invariable mark of wisdom is to see the miraculous in the common.
—RALPH WALDO EMERSON

Go forth under the open sky and list to nature’s teachings.
—WILLIAM CULLEN BRYANT

Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, but empties today of its strength.
—CORRIE TEN BOOM

Our truest life is when we are in dreams awake.
—HENRY DAVID THOREAU

Spring is a great “Yes” pulsing through all life.
—MARVIN S. HILES

If I could take one word with me into eternity, it would be “give.”
—STEPHEN POST

Every step of the journey is the journey.

Everything in the universe is connected; interdependence rules the cosmic order.
—TAISEN DESHIMARU

To love is to return to a home we never left, to remember who we are.
—SAM KEEN

Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present.
—ALBERT CAMUS

The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.
—MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.
—HENRY STANLEY HASKINS

After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.
—ALDOUS HUXLEY

Wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving.
—KAHLIL GIBRAN

In the attitude of silence the soul finds the path in a clearer light.
—MOHANDAS GANDHI

Religion is about what we love, not about what we think.
—PETER MORALES

Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life.
—RACHEL CARSON

God is a metaphor for that which transcends all levels of intellectual thought.
—JOSEPH CAMPBELL

By ethical conduct toward all creatures, we enter into a spiritual relationship with the universe.
—ALBERT SCHWEITZER

If you do not see God in the next person you meet, you need look no further.
—MOHANDAS GANDHI

Love must be as much a light as a flame.
—HENRY DAVID THOREAU

It is in our lives and not in our words that our religion must be read.
—THOMAS JEFFERSON

Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.
—VICTOR HUGO

We build too many walls and not enough bridges.
—ISAAC NEWTON

We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.
—WINSTON CHURCHILL

We find comfort among those who agree with us, growth among those who don’t.
—FRANK A. CLARK

My country is the world; my religion is to do good.
—THOMAS PAINE

We need not think alike to love alike.
—FRANCIS DAVID

We are best united not by mutual fear but by mutual hope.
—ADLAI E. STEVENSON

All events are blessings given to us to learn from.
—ELISABETH KÜBLER-ROSS

All that fear finally protects us from is the possibility of love.
—FORREST CHURCH

The true mystery of the world is the visible.
—OSCAR WILDE

Life’s most urgent question is: what are you doing for others?
—MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

The holiest of holidays are those kept in silence and apart, the secret anniversaries of the heart.
—HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW

In a dark time, the eye begins to see.
—THEODORE ROETHKE

Anything said about God is true not of God but of our concept of God.
—ANTHONY DE MELLO

There is a calmness to a life lived in gratitude, a quiet joy.
—RALPH H. BLUM

The ideas that have lighted my way have been kindness, beauty, and truth.
—ALBERT EINSTEIN

Music is the way I speak to the silence of the universe.
—MARGA RICHTER

Do not walk through time without leaving worthy evidence of your passage.
—POPE JOHN XXIII

You don’t have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.
—C.S. LEWIS

If peace is the question, yes is the answer.
—MINDY AUDLIN

The sun and its light, the ocean and the wave, the singer and his song: Not one. Not two.
—ANTHONY DE MELLO

Life is what we make it. Always has been, always will be.
—GRANDMA MOSES

I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination.
—ALBERT EINSTEIN

Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood.
—MARIE CURIE

Peace is not unity in similarity but unity in diversity.
—MIKHAIL GORBACHEV

We do not attract that which we want, but that which we are.
—JAMES ALLEN

We are a way for the Cosmos to know itself.
—CARL SAGAN

If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to us as it is, infinite.
—WILLIAM BLAKE

Words help us to understand; experience allows us to know.
—NEALE DONALD WALSCH

Mitakuye Oyasin: We are all related.
—LAKOTA

Wonder rather than doubt is the root of all knowledge.
—ABRAHAM JOSHUA HESCHEL

Our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.
—THE DALAI LAMA

Judgment is the mind’s primary tool of separation.
—DIANE BURKE

Let us not look back in anger or forward in fear, but around in awareness.
—JAMES THURBER

If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.
—THE DALAI LAMA

As is the human mind, so is the cosmic mind. As is the atom, so is the universe.
—THE UPANISHADS

At the center of non-violence stands the principle of love.
—MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.
—JOHANN WOLFGANG VON GOETHE

Let nothing come between you and the light.
—HENRY DAVID THOREAU

Thanks are the highest form of thought, and gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.
—G.K. CHESTERTON

Constantly regard the universe as one living being, having one substance, one soul.
—MARCUS AURELIUS

Every problem has in it the seeds of its own solution.
—NORMAN VINCENT PEALE

Embrace your suffering, and let it reveal to you the way to peace.
—THICH NHAT HANH

If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.
—MAYA ANGELOU

We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.
—ANAÏS NIN

Justice is love operating at a distance.
—JOSEPH SITTLER

Give what you have. To someone, it may be better than you dare to think.
—HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW

Forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world.
—MARIANNE WILLIAMSON

What is essential is invisible to the eye.
—ANTOINE DE SAINT EXUPÉRY

We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.
—ALBERT EINSTEIN

What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.
—RALPH WALDO EMERSON

If the only prayer you ever say in your whole life is “thank you,” that would suffice.
—MEISTER ECKHART

The passion for truth is silenced by answers which have the weight of undisputed authority.
—PAUL TILLICH

I seem to be a verb, an evolutionary process—an integral function of the universe.
—R. BUCKMINSTER FULLER

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.
—ANNE FRANK

Never does nature say one thing and wisdom another.
—JUVENAL

Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have.
—ECKHART TOLLE

Before me peaceful
Behind me peaceful
Under me peaceful
Over me peaceful
All around me peaceful.
—NAVAJO

In the midst of winter, I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.
—ALBERT CAMUS

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious.
—ALBERT EINSTEIN

Out beyond the ideas of wrong-doing and right-doing, there is a field. I will meet you there.
—MEVLANA JELALLUDIN RUMI

We must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation.
—MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.

This time, like all times, is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it.
—RALPH WALDO EMERSON

I imagine that yes is the only living thing.
—E. E. CUMMINGS

Each night a child is born is a holy night.
—SOPHIA LYON FAHS

A spiritual person tries less to be godly than to be deeply human.
—WILLIAM SLOANE COFFIN, JR.

Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind.
—RALPH WALDO EMERSON

Silence is sometimes the best answer.
—THE DALAI LAMA

Be the change you wish to see in the world.
—MOHANDAS GANDHI

Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.
—MEVLANA JELALLUDIN RUMI

Work is love made visible.
—KAHLIL GIBRAN

To know you have enough is to be rich.
—THE TAO TE CHING

Are we not formed, as notes of music are, for one another, though dissimilar?
—PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY

Come out of the circle of time and into the circle of love.
—MEVLANA JELALLUDIN RUMI

We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
—PIERRE TEILHARD DE CHARDIN

Only that day dawns to which we are awake.
—HENRY DAVID THOREAU

Gardening is active participation in the deepest mysteries of the universe.
—THOMAS BERRY

What is the value of political freedom but as a means to moral freedom?
—HENRY DAVID THOREAU

The universe will reward you for taking risks on its behalf.
—SHAKTI GAWAIN

What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
—MARY OLIVER

Live out of your imagination, not your history.
—STEPHEN R. COVEY

There is no house like the house of belonging.
—DAVID WHYTE

Dare to live the life you have dreamed for yourself.
—RALPH WALDO EMERSON

Though I am different from you, we were born involved in one another.
—T’AO CHIEN

Who will speak for Planet Earth?
—CARL SAGAN