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A pessimist is optimistic that he would encounter the failures and an optimist is optimistic that he would encounter the successes but, eventually both are going to get disappointed because the optimistic would encounter unseen failures and pessimistic would get unexpected victories.
Dr Hitesh C Sheth
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...We may encounter many defeats, but we must not be defeated. That sounds goody two-shoes, I know, but I believe that a diamond is the result of extreme pressure and time. Less time is crystal. Less than that is coal. Less than that is fossilized leaves. Less than that it's just plain dirt. In all my work, in the movies I write, the lyrics the poetry, the prose, the essays, I am saying that we may encounter many defeats - maybe it's imperative that we encounter the defeats - but we are much stronger than we appear to be and maybe much better than we allow ourselves to be.
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Christianity is not a new philosophy or new morality. We are Christians only if we encounter Christ... Only in this personal relationship with Christ, only in this encounter with the Risen One do we really become Christians... Therefore, let us pray to the Lord to enlighten us, so that, in our world, he will grant us the encounter with his presence, and thus give us a lively faith, an open heart, and great charity for all, capable of renewing the world.
Pope Benedict XVI
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No scientist knows the world merely by holding it at arm's length: if we ever managed to build the objectivist wall between the knower and the known, we could know nothing except the wall itself. Science requires an engagement with the world, a live encounter between the knower and the known. That encounter has moments of distance, but it would not be an encounter without moments of intimacy as well. Knowing of any sort is relational, animated by a desire to come into deeper community with what we know.
Parker J. Palmer
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There is a group of people who know very well where the weapons of automatic influence lie and employ them regularly and expertly to get what they want. They go from social encounter to social encounter requesting others to comply with their wishes; their frequency of success is dazzling.
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The essence of this practice is that when we encounter pain in our life we breathe into our heart with the recognition that others also feel this. It's a way of acknowledging when we are closing down and of training to open up. When we encounter any pleasure or tenderness in our life, we cherish that and rejoice.
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We rejoice in the joys of our friends as much as we do our own, and we are equally grieved at their sorrows. Wherefore the wise people will feel toward their friends as they do toward themselves, and whatever labor they would encounter with a view to their own pleasure, they will encounter also for the sake of their friends.
Marcus Tullius Cicero
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Every human encounter is the external embodiment of an attraction between two magnetic fields. The encounter comes suddenly, unexpectedly. It is a moment of truth. It is a moment of revelation, as when the right ray of sun penetrates through the right window pane, and falls with the right slant on one picture in the museum.
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When, in adoration, we look at the consecrated Host, the sign of creation speaks to us. And so, we encounter the greatness of his gift; but we also encounter the Passion, the Cross of Jesus and his Resurrection. Through this gaze of adoration, he draws us toward himself, within his mystery, through which he wants to transform us as he transformed the Host.
Pope Benedict XVI
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Only in the context of the great encounter with Jesus can a real authentic struggle take place. The encounter with Christ does not take place before, after, or beyond the struggle with our false self and its demons. No, it is precisely in the midst of this struggle that our Lord comes to us and says, as he said to the old man in the story: 'As soon as you turned to me again, you see I was beside you.'
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We may encounter many defeats, but we must not be defeated. It may even be necessary to encounter the defeat so that we can know who we are. So that we can see, "Oh, that happened, and I rose. I did get knocked down flat in front of the whole world, and I rose. I didn't run away; I rose right where I'd been knocked down." That's how you get to know yourself.
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After my engagement with Muslim friends, I pray more than I used to pray. My prayer life has been enriched by my encounter with some Muslims, encouraged by their devotion and also enriched by the ways in which they pray. Have I compromised in this way at all? No, to the contrary, I've gone deeper in my faith and I think my love for God has been deepened and made more intelligent in a sense, more rich by that very encounter.
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When you go apartment-hunting in the South, you encounter little old ladies who ask you if you use strong drink. In New York you encounter paranoids who wonder if you will commit suicide--not that they care; what they worry about is blood on their fresh paint, a dubious smell in the hallway, or a hole in the awning as you pass through on your way to the sidewalk. The Southerner who moves to any part of the country has problems, but the culture shock that attacks the Southerner who moves North is almost indescribable.
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A human encounter with holiness is devastating. It refuses to allow us to be impressed with the things of the world we've been chasing. It refuses to allow us to remain comfortable in our sin. It refuses to allow us to remain on the throne of our lives. And it leads us to a relationship with the only One who can perfectly love us, who can forgive all our sins, and who can make us into His likeness. Our encounter with His holiness is our devastation. And our devastation is our salvation.
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Self-knowledge is not the knowledge of a dead self, self-knowledge is the knowledge of the process of the self. It is an alive phenomenon. The self is not a thing, it is an event, it is a process. Never think in terms of things, the self is not there inside you just like a thing waiting in your room. The self is a process: changing, moving, arriving at new altitudes, moving into new planes, going deeper into new depths. Each moment much work is going on and the only way to encounter this self is to encounter it in relationship.
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Every scientist, through personal study and research, completes himself and his own humanity. ... Scientific research constitutes for you, as it does for many, the way for the personal encounter with truth, and perhaps the privileged place for the encounter itself with God, the Creator of heaven and earth. Science shines forth in all its value as a good capable of motivating our existence, as a great experience of freedom for truth, as a fundamental work of service. Through research each scientist grows as a human being and helps others to do likewise.
Pope John Paul II
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Many things happen in life. There are joyous days and times of suffering. Sometimes unpleasant things occur. But that's what makes life so interesting. The dramas we encounter are part and parcel of being human. If we experienced no change or drama in our lives, if nothing unexpected ever happened, we would merely be like automatons, our lives unbearably monotonous and dull. Therefore, please develop a strong self so that you can enact the drama of your life with confidence and poise in the face of whatever vicissitudes you may encounter.
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Over the years I've found it much more helpful to follow the advice of Sister Liebert and seek to treat each young person as a teacher from God, someone God has placed in my life in order to help me grow in faith. When I encounter a young person, I find it much more helpful to think that she (or he) may be the only Jesus I'll ever know. Perhaps by seeking to encounter the presence of Christ in young people, we'll find ourselves better able to see them, hear them, feel compassion for them, and respond in kindness.
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The entity God created to traffic His transcendence has fallen far from its mission when it chooses instead to traffic what can be found on any street corner or at the local mall. You may ask, "But how has the church done that?" By offering secularists what they find mildly interesting and calling it church. By submitting to self-help sermons where encounter with God is not even on the agenda. By letting the horizontal excellence of the show stand in for Vertical impact. By substituting the surprise or shock of superficial entertainment for the supernatural. Church was designed to deliver what we were created to long for. Church must again be about a Vertical encounter that interrupts and alters everything.
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What you encounter, recognize or discover depends to a large degree on the quality of your approach. Many of the ancient cultures practiced careful rituals of approach. An encounter of depth and spirit was preceded by careful preparation. When we approach with reverence, great things decide to approach us. Our real life comes to the surface and its light awakens the concealed beauty in things. When we walk on the earth with reverence, beauty will decide to trust us. The rushed heart and arrogant mind lack the gentleness and patience to enter that embrace.
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It was said by Epicurus, and he was probably right, that all philosophy takes its origin from philosophical wonder. The man who has never at any time felt consciously struck by the extreme strangeness and oddity of the situation in which we are involved, we know not how, is a man with no affinity for philosophy - and has, by the way, little cause to worry. The unphilosophical and philosophical attitudes can be very sharply distinguished (with scarcely any intermediate forms) by the fact that the first accepts everything that happens as regards its general form, and finds occasion for surprise only in that special content by which something that happens here today differs from what happened there yesterday; whereas for the second, it is precisely the common features of all experience, such as characterise everything we encounter, which are the primary and most profound occasion for astonishment; indeed, one might almost say that it is the fact that anything is experienced and encounter at all.
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Solitude is the furnace of transformation. Without solitude we remain victims of our society and continue to be entangled in the illusions of the false self. Jesus himself entered into this furnace. There he was tempted with the three compulsions of the world: to be relevant ('turn stones into loaves'), to be spectacular ('throw yourself down'), and to be powerful ('I will give you all these kingdoms'). There he affirmed God as the only source of his identity ('You must worship the Lord your God and serve him alone'). Solitude is the place of the great struggle and the great encounter - the struggle against the compulsions of the false self, and the encounter with the loving God who offers himself as the substance of the new self.
Henri J.M. Nouwen
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