Spiritual Liberation

Anthony de Mello quotes on enlightenment

"How shall I get liberation?"
"Find out who has bound you," said the Master.
The disciple returned after a week and said, "No one has bound me."
"Then why ask to be liberated?"

That was a moment of Enlightenment for the disciple, who suddenly became free.

Isn't there such a thing as social liberation?"
"Of course there is," said the Master.
"How would you describe it?"
"Liberation from the need to belong to the herd." (One Minute Nonsense (1992), p.172)

"Calamities can bring growth and Enlightenment," said the Master.

And he explained it thus:

"Each day a bird would shelter in the withered branches of a tree that stood in the middle of a vast deserted plain. One day a whirlwind uprooted the tree, forcing the poor bird to fly a hundred miles in search of shelter -- till it finally came to a forest of fruit-laden trees."
And he concluded: "If the withered tree had survived, nothing would have induced the bird to give up its security and fly."
A religious belief… is not a statement about Reality, but a hint, a clue about something that is a mystery, beyond the grasp of human thought. In short, a religious belief is only a finger pointing to the moon. Some religious people never get beyond the study of the finger. Others are engaged in sucking it. Others yet use the finger to gouge their eyes out. These are the bigots whom religion has made blind. Rare indeed is the religionist who is sufficiently detached from the finger to see what it is indicating— these are those who, having gone beyond belief, are taken for blasphemers. (One Minute Nonsense (1992), p.134)