Skip to content
December 18, 2016 / compassioninpolitics

Abraham Joshua Heschel: His Best Quotes on God,Wisdom, and Religion

“People of our time are losing the power of celebration. Instead of celebrating we seek to be amused or entertained. Celebration is an active state, an act of expressing reverence or appreciation. To be entertained is a passive state–it is to receive pleasure afforded by an amusing act or a spectacle…. Celebration is a confrontation, giving attention to the transcendent meaning of one’s actions.

Abraham Joshua Heschel, The Wisdom of Heschel

“The prophets never taught that God and history are one, or that whatever happens below reflects the will of God above. Their vision is of man defying God, and God seeking man to reconcile with Him.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“The surest way to suppress our ability to understand the meaning of God and the importance of worship is to take things for granted…Indifference to the sublime wonder of living is the root of sin.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“To gain control of the world of space is certainly one of our tasks. The danger begins when in gaining power in the realm of space we forfeit all aspirations in the realm of time. There is a realm of time where the goal is not to have but to be, not to own but to give, not to control but to share, not to subdue but to be in accord. Life goes wrong when the control of space, the acquisition of things of space, becomes our sole concern.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“When I was young, I used to admire intelligent people; as I grow older, I admire kind people.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“The worship of reason is arrogance and betrays a lack of intelligence. The rejection of reason is cowardice and betrays a lack of faith.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

 “Just to be is a blessing. Just to live is holy.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“Never once in my life did I ask God for success or wisdom or power or fame. I asked for wonder, and he gave it to me.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“Wonder rather than doubt is the root of all knowledge.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“To pray is to dream in league with God, to envision His holy visions.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“Only those will apprehend religion who can probe its depth, who can combine intuition and love with the rigor of method”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“In our own lives the voice of God speaks slowly, a syllable at a time. Reaching the peak of years, dispelling some of our intimate illusions and learning how to spell the meaning of life-experiences backwards, some of us discover how the scattered syllables form a single phrase.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“It is customary to blame secular science and anti-religious philosophy for the eclipse of religion in modern society. It would be more honest to blame religion for its own defeats. Religion declined not because it was refuted, but because it became irrelevant, dull, oppressive, insipid. When faith is completely replaced by creed, worship by discipline, love by habit; when the crisis of today is ignored because of the splendor of the past; when faith becomes an heirloom rather than a living fountain; when religion speaks only in the name of authority rather than with the voice of compassion–its message becomes meaningless.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

“A prophet’s true greatness is his ability to hold God and man in a single thought.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: