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This Here Flesh: Spirituality, Liberation, and the Stories That Make Us

Cole Arthur Riley

Top 10 Best Quotes

“In lament, our task is never to convince someone of the brokenness of this world; it is to convince them of the world’s worth in the first place. True lament is not born from that trite sentiment that the world is bad but rather from a deep conviction that it is worthy of goodness.”

“To be human in an aching world is to know our dignity and become people who safeguard the dignity of everything around us.”

“The chasm between the spiritual and the physical is no greater than that between a thought and a word. They cannot be disconnected. And it is difficult to tell where one ends and the other begins, perhaps because there is no such place.”

“Seeing a person or piece of creation trampled should always disrupt something in us. It should always do something to the soul. And when you trace that trampling back across generations and systems and powers, a quiet sorrow is born in you.”

“I don't want to make it to the promised land if it means I forget the wilderness.”

“Audre Lorde said, “I cannot hide my anger to spare you guilt, nor hurt feelings…. Guilt is not a response to anger; it is a response to one’s own actions or lack of action. If it leads to change then it can be useful, since it is then no longer guilt but the beginning of knowledge.”

“How boring to spend the whole of my vocational energy trying to figure out if I am choosing the right work. It is of much greater interest to me to talk about how I’m going to do the work with integrity. How am I going to protect dignity as I work? And what truths are calling out to me as I work?”

“And as a Black woman, I am disinterested in any call to spirituality that divorces my mind from my body, voice, or people.”

“It takes time to undo the whiteness of God. When I speak of whiteness, I am referring not to the mere existence of a person in a particular body; I am referring to the historic, systemic, and sociological patterns that have oppressed, killed, abducted, abused, and discredited those who do not exist in a particular body. Whiteness is a force.”

“Those who believe love is a scarcity are less likely to give it away freely.”

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Book Keywords:

love, trauma, spirituality, neglect

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