FOR ALL AGES

100 Best John O’Donohue Quotes From The Irish Poet, Priest, And Philosopher

John O’Donohue quotes are educational.

John O’Donohue was an Irish poet, author, priest, and Hegelian philosopher.

John was awarded his Ph.D. in Philosophical Theology at the end of his doctoral studies at the University of Tubingen, Germany in 1990. After retiring from priestly ministry in the year 2000, he devoted himself full-time to writing.

John began writing in poetic form during his formative college years after experiencing mind awakening and loneliness. Most of O'Donohue's writings are reflections of his deep and critical thinking of his understanding of the innate human hunger and its needs to belong in the physical and mental landscapes of the human psyche. ‘Anam Cara’, which will always be remembered as his best work, became an international bestseller on its release in 1997 and brought massive fame to John. You could also check out John O'Donohoe quotes birthday quote and celtic quotations.

For more related content take a look at Trust God and God Is Good.

John O’Donohue Quotes On Life

Some of the best quotes by John O’Donohue about a lifetime of struggles and sufferings.

1. “The soul redeems and transfigures everything because the soul is the divine space.”

— John O’Donohue.

2. “If our style of looking become beautiful, then beauty will become visible and shine forth for us.”

— John O’Donohue.

3. “Though suffering and chaos befall us, they can never quench that inner light of providence.”

— John O’Donohue.

4. “No one else can see the world the way you see it. No one else can feel your life the way you feel it.”

— John O’Donohue.

5. “May you experience each day as a sacred gift woven around the heart of wonder.”

— John O’Donohue.

6. “We do not need to grieve for the dead. Why should we grieve for them? They are now in a place where there is no more shadow, darkness, loneliness, isolation, or pain. They are home.”

— John O’Donohue.

7. “The infinite is a light sleeper. The moment the self awakens, the force of the infinite begins to stir.”

— John O’Donohue.

8. “The joyful heart sees and reads the world with a sense of freedom and graciousness.”

— John O’Donohue.

9. “Often regret is very false and displaced, and imagines the past to be totally other than it was.”

— John O’Donohue.

10. “To the judgmental eye, everything is closed in definitive frames. When the judgmental eye looks out, it sees things in terms of lines and squares.”

— John O’Donohue.

11. “An interesting question to ask yourself at night is, What did I really see this day?”

— John O’Donohue.

12. “There is great beauty in the notion of desire. Each of us is a child of the desire of our parents for each other.”

— John O’Donohue.

13. “You should never belong fully to something that is outside yourself. It is very important to find a balance in your belonging.”

— John O’Donohue.

14. “To be spontaneous is to escape the cage of the ego by trusting that which is beyond the self.”

— John O’Donohue.

15. “In our mediocrity and distraction, we forget that we are privileged to live in a wondrous universe.”

— John O’Donohue.

Inspirational John O’Donohue Quotes

Inspire yourself with these great inspirational and motivational quotes.

16. “There can be no growth if we do not remain open and vulnerable to what is new and different. I have never seen anyone take a risk for growth that was not rewarded a thousand times over.”

— John O’Donohue.

17. “It is impossible to ever compare two people because each stands on such different ground.”

— John O’Donohue.

18. “The best decision I ever made was to become a priest and I think the second-best was to resign.”

— John O’Donohue.

19. “To look at something that can gaze back at you, or that has a reserve and depth, can heal your eyes and deepen your sense of vision.”

— John O’Donohue.

20. “All through your life your soul takes care of you...your soul is alive and awakened, gathering, sheltering and guiding your ways and days in the world. In effect, your soul is your secret shelter.”

— John O’Donohue.

21. “You should belong first in your own interiority.”

— John O’Donohue.

22. “We can often forage for years in the empty fields of self-analysis and self-improvement and sacrifice much of our real substance for specks of cold, lonesome factual truth.”

— John O’Donohue.

23. “If you have a trust in and an expectation of your own solitude, everything that you need to know will be revealed to you.”

— John O’Donohue.

24. “If you allow yourself to be the person you are then everything will come into rhythm.”

— John O’Donohue.

25. “Nobody else has access to the world you carry within yourself; you are its custodian and entrance.”

— John O’Donohue.

26. “Negativity is an addiction to the bleak shadow that lingers around every human form ... you can transfigure negativity by turning it toward the light of your soul.”

— John O’Donohue.

27. “Behind your image, below your words, above your thoughts, the silence of another world waits.”

— John O’Donohue.

John O’Donohue ‘Anam Cara’ Quotes

Some of the best excerpts from his famed book, 'Anam Cara'.

28. “When you send that love out from the bountifulness of your own love, it reaches other people. This love is the deepest power of prayer.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

29. “...the only difference between a young person at the height of their exuberance and a very old person who is frail and physically wasted is time.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

30. “The ego is the false self-born out of fear and defensiveness.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

31. “Your soul knows the geography of your destiny.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

32. “Your soul is the priestess of memory, selecting, sifting, and ultimately gathering your vanishing days toward presence.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

33. “When time is reduced to linear progress, it is emptied of presence.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

34. “Keep something beautiful in your soul to survive difficult times and enjoy good times.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

35. “A friend is a loved one who awakens your life in order to free the wild possibilities within you.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

36. “The way you look at things is the most powerful force in shaping your life.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

37. “Nature is the direct expression of the divine imagination.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

38. “In a certain sense, to gaze into the face of another is to gaze into the depth and entirety of his life.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

39. “It is lovely to meet an old person whose face is deeply lined, a face that has been deeply inhabited, to look in the eyes and find light there.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

40. “We do not need to operate according to the idea of a predetermined program for our lives.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

41. “In love, you grow and come home to yourself. When you learn to love and let yourself be loved, you come home to the hearth of your own spirit. You are warm and sheltered.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

42. “We do not need to go out and find love; rather, we need to be still and let love discover us.”

— John O’Donohue, 'Anam Cara'.

John O’Donohue Quotes On Love

Love quotes are heartwarming.

Quotes on love and inner beauty by John O’Donohue.

43. “May all that is unlived in you blossom into a future graced with love.”

— John O’Donohue.

44. “When you send that love out from the bountifulness of your own love, it reaches other people. This love is the deepest power of prayer.”

— John O’Donohue.

45.  “In the kingdom of love there is no competition; there is no possessiveness or control. The more love you give away, the more love you will have.”

— John O’Donohue.

46. “The one you love, your anam cara, your soul friend, is the truest mirror to reflect your soul.”

— John O’Donohue.

47. “You can never love another person unless you are equally involved in the beautiful but difficult spiritual work of learning to love yourself.”

— John O’Donohue.

48. “Love is absolutely vital for a human life. For love alone can awaken what is divine within you. In love, you grow and come home to yourself.”

— John O’Donohue.

49. “The life and passion of a person leave an imprint on the ether of a place. Love does not remain within the heart, it flows out to build secret tabernacles in a landscape.”

— John O’Donohue.

50. “When love awakens in your life, it is like a rebirth, a new beginning.”

— John O’Donohue.

51. “As a river flows in ideal sequence May your love discover time is presence.”

— John O’Donohue.

52. “Love opens the door of ancient recognition. You enter. You come home to each other at last. As Euripides said, ‘Two friends, one soul’.”

— John O’Donohue.

53. “When love comes into your life, unrecognized dimensions of your destiny awaken and blossom and grow.”

— John O’Donohue.

John O’Donohue Quotes On Blessings

Great quotations on blessings and the impact of religion on oneself.

54. “I think the divine is like a huge smile that breaks somewhere in the sea within you, and gradually comes up again.”

— John O’Donohue.

55. “When our eyes are graced with wonder, the world reveals its wonders to us. There are people who see only dullness in the world and that is because their eyes have already been dulled.”

— John O’Donohue.

56. “Blessed be the mind that dreamed the day the blueprint of your life would begin to glow on earth, illuminating all the faces and voices that would arrive to invite your soul to growth.”

— John O’Donohue.

57. “Prayer is the art of presence. Where there is no wonder there is little depth of presence.”

— John O’Donohue.

58. “A blessing is a circle of light drawn around a person to protect, heal and strengthen.”

— John O’Donohue.

59. “I pray that you will have the blessing of being consoled and sure about your own death.”

— John O’Donohue.

60. “Our passion for life is quietly sustained from somewhere in us that is wedded to the energy and excitement of life.”

— John O’Donohue.

61. “The word blessing evokes a sense of warmth and protection; it suggests that no life is alone or unreachable. Each life is clothed in raiment of spirit that secretly links it to everything else.”

— John O’Donohue.

62. “So at the end of this day, we give thanks For being betrothed to the unknown.”

— John O’Donohue.

John O’Donohue Quotes On Friendship

Quotes about keeping good company are inspiring.

Quotes about life and the importance of making good friends along the way.

63. “If we choose to journey on the path of truth, it then becomes a sacred duty to walk hand in hand with beauty.”

— John O’Donohue.

64. “There is an instinct that emerges when we get quiet with people. We know who’s close.”

— John O’Donohue.

65. “One of the tasks of true friendship is to listen compassionately and creatively to the hidden silences.”

— John O’Donohue.

66. “Real friendship or love is not manufactured or achieved by an act of will or intention. Friendship is always an act of recognition.”

— John O’Donohue.

67. “One of the tasks of true friendship is to listen compassionately and creatively to the hidden silences.”

— John O’Donohue.

68. “The anam cara was a person to whom you could reveal the hidden intimacies of your life. This friendship was an act of recognition and belonging.”

— John O’Donohue.

69. “One of the great obstacles to modern friendships is the ‘religion of rush.’ People are rushing all the time through time. Friendship takes time.”

— John O’Donohue.

70. “Friendship is a creative and subversive force. It claims that intimacy is the secret law of life and universe.”

— John O’Donohue.

John O’Donohue Poems

Some of the best quotes from his amazing poems.

71. “I would love to live like a river flows,

carried by the surprise of its own unfolding.”

— John O’Donohue.

72. “When the rhythm of the heart becomes hectic,

Time takes on the strain until it breaks.”

— John O’Donohue.

73. “You have traveled too fast over false ground;

Now your soul has come to take you back.”

— John O’Donohue.

74. “I bless the night that nourished my heart

To set the ghosts of longing free.”

— John O’Donohue.

5. “When the canvas frays

in the currach of thought

and a stain of ocean

blackens beneath you,

may there come across the waters

a path of yellow moonlight

to bring you safely home.”

— John O’Donohue.

76. “May the nourishment of the earth be yours,

may the clarity of light be yours,

may the fluency of the ocean be yours,

may the protection of the ancestors be yours.”

— John O’Donohue.

77. “As high over the mountains the eagle spreads its wings,

May your perspective be larger than the view from the foothills.”

— John O’Donohue.

78. “Imitate the habit of twilight,

Taking time to open the well of color

That fostered the brightness of day.”

— John O’Donohue.

79. “You placed smiles like flowers,

On the altar of the heart.

Your mind always sparkled,

With wonder at things.”

— John O’Donohue.

80. “May dawn find you awake and alert,

approaching your new day with dreams,

Possibilities and promises.”

— John O’Donohue.

81. “May you learn to see yourself with the same delight, pride,

and expectation with which God sees you in every moment.”

— John O’Donohue.

82. “Bring warmth again to,

Where the heart has frozen,

In order that beyond the walls,

Of our cherished hurt.”

— John O’Donohue.

83. “May your prayer of listening deepen enough

to hear in the depths the laughter of god.”

— John O’Donohue.

84. “You are able to function well

Until in the middle of work or encounter,

Suddenly with no warning,

You are ambushed by grief.”

— John O’Donohue.

85. “I pray that you will have the blessing of being consoled.

May you know in your soul that there is no need to be afraid.”

— John O’Donohue.

John O’Donohue Quotes Short Quotes

Some of the very best short quotes to learn from.

86. “When you become vulnerable, any ideal or perfect image of yourself falls away.”

— John O’Donohue.

87. “When one flower blooms spring awakens everywhere.”

— John O’Donohue.

88. “One of the most beautiful gifts in the world is the gift of encouragement.”

— John O’Donohue.

89. “The more love you give away, the more love you will have.”

— John O’Donohue.

90. “One of the deepest longings of the human soul is to be seen.”

— John O’Donohue.

91.  “When you steal a people’s language, you leave their soul bewildered.”

— John O’Donohue.

92. “The duty of privileged is absolute integrity.”

— John O’Donohue.

93. “Your sense of inner beauty has to remain a very private thing.”

— John O’Donohue.

94. “To gaze into the face of another is to gaze into the depth and entirety of his life.”

— John O’Donohue.

95. “The world rests in the night.”

— John O’Donohue.

96. “A friend is someone who wishes what is good for the other.”

— John O’Donohue.

97. “Your soul knows the geography of your destiny.”

— John O'Donohue.

98. “The human journey is a continuous act of transfiguration.”

— John O’Donohue.

99. “Often secrets are not revealed in words, they lie concealed in the silence between the words or in the depth of what is unsayable between two people.”

— John O’Donohue.

100. “Inspiration is always a surprising visitor.”

— John O’Donohue.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for John O’donohue quotes then why not take a look at Thank You God quotes, or God's Love quotes

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The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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