Some Quotes from Quakers:
What is the Quaker faith? It is not a tidy package of words which you can capture at any given time and then repeat weekly at a worship service. It is an experience of discovery which starts the discoverer on a journey which is life-long. The discovery in itself is not uniquely a property of Quakerism. It is as old as Christianity, and considerably older if you share the belief that many have known Christ who have not known His name. What is unique to the Religious Society of Friends is its insistence that the discovery must be made by each man [person] for him [or her]-self.
No one is allowed to get it second-hand by accepting a ready-made creed. Furthermore, the discovery points a path and demands a journey, and gives you the power to make the journey.
— Elise Boulding, 1954 (quoted in Philadelphia Yearly Meeting’s Faith and Practice handbook)
True godliness don’t turn men out of the world, but enables them better to live in it and excites their endeavors to mend it; not hide their candle under a bushel, but set it upon a table in a candlestick.
— William Penn, 1668 (ibid)
If God ever spoke, He is still speaking. If He has ever been in mutual and reciprocal communication with the persons He has made, He is still a communicating God as eager as ever to have listening and receptive souls. If there is something of His image and superscription in our inmost structure and being, we ought to expect a continuous revelation of His will and purpose through the ages…. He is the Great I Am, not a Great He Was.
–Rufus M. Jones, 1948 (ibid)
Live up to the light that thou hast and more will be granted thee.
— Caroline Fox, 1841
The spiritual life has many sources of nourishment, among them the companionship of other seekers, the pleasures of solitude and silence, keeping faith as we wait for leading, experiencing the confirmation of having followed the leadings we have been given, and times of testing. In each of these, when I know I am being nourished and nurtured, I know something of joy. And there are other times I receive joy – as a gift of serenity, balance, deep happiness, and I know this is good for my spirit now and through the rest of my life.
When we share about the spiritual life, let us not be afraid to say what we know. Let us not, above all, be afraid to share the fact of joy, the gifts of joy. Joy is finally the greatest source of nourishment for the spiritual life, because it is God’s greatest gift to us.
— Paul Lacey, 1995