There is no such thing as privacy between a deity and his worshipper. There are no secrets, no glossed-over failures. Only promises kept and abandoned, sins committed and imagined, and raw emotion. How many of us are ready to have our lives judged? What would happen if we were found wanting?
What if a man save my life with a draught that was prepared to poison me? The providence of the issue does not at all discharge the obliquity of the intent. And the same reason holds good even in religion itself. It is not the incense, or the offering that is acceptable to God, but the purity and devotion of the worshipper.
Seneca the Younger
A life-worshipper's philosophy is comprehensive. He is at one moment a positivist and at another a mystic: now haunted by the thought of death and now a Dionysian child of nature; now a pessimist and now, with a change of lover or liver or even the weather, an exuberant believer that God's in his heaven and all's right with the world.
He'll be delivered from madness. What then? He'll feel himself acceptable! What then? Do you think feelings like his can be simply re-attached, like plasters? Stuck on to other objects we select? Look at him! ... My desire might be to make this boy an ardent husband - a caring citizen - a worshipper of abstract and unifying God. My achievement, however, is more likely to make a ghost!
I think war is just part of human nature. And I'm fascinated by human nature "" especially the dark side. I always have been. It doesn't make me a Devil worshipper, no more than being interested in Hitler makes me a Nazi. I mean, if I'm a Nazi, how come I married a woman who's half Jewish?
A worshipper perceives that he is near to God because he is awake all night worshipping God. But after worship, your prayers are for health, long life, wealth, and for the damsels and slaves of the Paradise. Ponder! Did you ever pray to God, 'O' God, I desire from Thee nothing but Thee'?
Riaz Ahmed Gohar Shahi
But without going to such extremes prudence may easily involve the loss of some of the best things in life. The worshipper of Dionysus reacts against prudence. In intoxication, physical or spiritual, he recovers an intensity of feeling which prudence had destroyed; he finds the world full of delight and beauty, and his imagination is suddenly liberated from the prison of every-day preoccupations.
You'll call me a damned Jew, a Christ murderer, a secret worshipper of pigs and a kidnapper of christian children.' This was all said cheerfully. 'How absurd! Who would want to kidnap children, Christian or otherwise? Vile things. The only mercy of children is that they grow up, as my son has but then, tragically, they beget more children. We do not learn life's lessons.
He is likely to remain the one historian of the Sierra; he imported into his view the imagination of the poet and the reverence of the worshipper.... William Kent, during Muir's life, paid him a rare tribute in giving to the nation a park of redwoods with the understanding that it should be named Muir Woods. But the nation owes him more. His work was not sectional but for the whole people, for he was the real father of the forest reservations of America.
Robert Underwood Johnson
...but when The Spirit speaks,""or beauty from the sky Descends into my being,""when I hear The storm-hymns of the mighty ocean roll, Or thunder sound,""the champion of the storm!"" Then I feel envy for immortal words, The rush of living thought; oh! then I long To dash my feelings into deathless verse, That may administer to unborn time, And tell some lofty soul how I have lived A worshipper of Nature and of Thee!
The 'I' casts off the illusion of the 'I' and yet remains 'I'. Such is the paradox of Self-realization. The Realized do not see any paradox in it. Consider the case of the worshipper. He approaches God and prays to be absorbed in Him. He then surrenders himself in faith and by concentration. And what remains afterwards? In the place of the original 'I', self-surrender leaves a residuum of God in which the 'I' is lost. That is the highest form of devotion or surrender and the peak of detachment.
But, in conformity to His wisdom it was right that afterwards the Prophet should be sent back from the vision of pure Unity and that he should return . . . toward the separative vision. For, He created man and jinn only that they should worship Him and know Him - and, if they remained at the degree of pure Unity, there would be none to worship Him. In this separative vision, the Worshipped and the worshipper, the Lord and the servant, the Creator and the creature are again perceived.
Abdelkader El Djezairi
The honor that we pay to the Son of God, as well as that which we render to God the Father, consists of an upright course of life. This is plainly taught us by the passage, "You that boast of the Law, through breaking the Law dishonor God."...For if he who transgresses the law dishonors God by his transgression,...it is evident that he who keeps the law honors God. So the worshipper of God is he whose life is regulated by the principles and teachings of the Divine Word
[Robert's eulogy at his brother, Ebon C. Ingersoll's grave. Even the great orator Robert Ingersoll was choked up with tears at the memory of his beloved brother] The record of a generous life runs like a vine around the memory of our dead, and every sweet, unselfish act is now a perfumed flower. Dear Friends: I am going to do that which the dead oft promised he would do for me. The loved and loving brother, husband, father, friend, died where manhood's morning almost touches noon, and while the shadows still were falling toward the west. He had not passed on life's highway the stone that marks the highest point; but, being weary for a moment, he lay down by the wayside, and, using his burden for a pillow, fell into that dreamless sleep that kisses down his eyelids still. While yet in love with life and raptured with the world, he passed to silence and pathetic dust. Yet, after all, it may be best, just in the happiest, sunniest hour of all the voyage, while eager winds are kissing every sail, to dash against the unseen rock, and in an instant hear the billows roar above a sunken ship. For whether in mid sea or 'mong the breakers of the farther shore, a wreck at last must mark the end of each and all. And every life, no matter if its every hour is rich with love and every moment jeweled with a joy, will, at its close, become a tragedy as sad and deep and dark as can be woven of the warp and woof of mystery and death. This brave and tender man in every storm of life was oak and rock; but in the sunshine he was vine and flower. He was the friend of all heroic souls. He climbed the heights, and left all superstitions far below, while on his forehead fell the golden dawning, of the grander day. He loved the beautiful, and was with color, form, and music touched to tears. He sided with the weak, the poor, and wronged, and lovingly gave alms. With loyal heart and with the purest hands he faithfully discharged all public trusts. He was a worshipper of liberty, a friend of the oppressed. A thousand times I have heard him quote these words: 'For Justice all place a temple, and all season, summer!' He believed that happiness was the only good, reason the only torch, justice the only worship, humanity the only religion, and love the only priest. He added to the sum of human joy; and were every one to whom he did some loving service to bring a blossom to his grave, he would sleep to-night beneath a wilderness of flowers. Life is a narrow vale between the cold and barren peaks of two eternities. We strive in vain to look beyond the heights. We cry aloud, and the only answer is the echo of our wailing cry. From the voiceless lips of the unreplying dead there comes no word; but in the night of death hope sees a star and listening love can hear the rustle of a wing. He who sleeps here, when dying, mistaking the approach of death for the return of health, whispered with his latest breath, 'I am better now.' Let us believe, in spite of doubts and dogmas, of fears and tears, that these dear words are true of all the countless dead. And now, to you, who have been chosen, from among the many men he loved, to do the last sad office for the dead, we give his sacred dust. Speech cannot contain our love. There was, there is, no gentler, stronger, manlier man.
Robert G. Ingersoll