We find rest in those we love, and we provide a resting place in ourselves for those who love us.

— Bernard of Clairvaux

The most vibrant Bernard of Clairvaux quotes that are little-known but priceless

Love seeks no cause beyond itself and no fruit;

it is its own fruit, its own enjoyment. I love because I love; I love in order that I may love.


If then you are wise, you will show yourself rather as a reservoir than as a canal. For a canal spreads abroad water as it receives it, but a reservoir waits until it is filled before overflowing, and thus communicates, without loss to itself, its superabundant water. In the Church at the present day, we have many canals, few reservoirs.


With her for guide, you shall never go astray;

while invoking her, you shall never lose heart; so long as she is in your mind, you are safe from deception; while she holds your hand, you cannot fall; under her protection you have nothing to fear; if she walks before you, you shall not grow weary; if she shows you favor, you shall reach the goal.


The true measure of loving God is to love him without measure.


The rivers of Grace cannot flow uphill, up the steep cliff of the proud man's heart.


Theirs is an endless road, a hopeless maze, who seek for goods before they seek for God.


We are to love God for Himself, because of a twofold reason;

nothing is more reasonable, nothing more profitable.


Spiritual life is like living water that springs up from the very depths of our own spiritual experience. In spiritual life everyone has to drink from his or her own well.


Ingratitude is the soul's enemy... Ingratitude is a burning wind that dries up the source of love, the dew of mercy, the streams of grace.


Learn the lesson that, if you are to do the work of a prophet, what you need is not a sceptre but a hoe.


Let us not imagine that we obscure the glory of the Son by the great praise we lavish on the Mother; for the more she is honored, the greater is the glory of her Son. There can be no doubt that whatever we say in praise of the Mother gives equal praise to the Son.


Many of those who are humiliated are not humble.

Some react to humiliation with anger, others with patience, and others with freedom. The first are culpable, the next harmless, the last just.


About Bernard of Clairvaux

Quotes 106 sayings
Birthday 1090

It is no great thing to be humble when you are brought low;

but to be humble when you are praised is a great and rare attainment.


What I know of the divine sciences and Holy Scriptures, I learned in woods and fields. I have no other masters than the beeches and the oaks.


Let no one believe that he has received the divine kiss, if he knows the truth without loving it or loves it without understanding it. But blessed is that kiss whereby not only is God recognized but also the Father is loved; for there is never full knowledge without perfect love.


Pride only, the chief of all iniquities, can make us treat gifts as if they were rightful attributes of our nature, and, while receiving benefits, rob our Benefactor of His due glory.


Who loves me will love my dog also.


True penance consists in regretting without ceasing the faults of the past, and in firmly resolving to never again commit that which is so deplorable.


Do what Jesus says... what he commands through his ministers who are in the Church [see 1 Cor 6:4]. Be subject to his vicars, your leaders, not only those who are gentle and kind, but even those who are overbearing [see 1 Pt 2:18].


The Eucharist is that love which surpasses all loves in Heaven and on earth


When God forgives a sinner who humbly confesses his sin, the devil loses his dominion over the heart he had taken.


Slander is a poison which kills charity, both in the slanderer and the one who listens.


Wherever...thou shalt be, pray secretly within thyself. If thou shalt be far from a house of prayer, give not thyself trouble to seek for one, for thou thyself art a sanctuary designed for prayer. If thou shalt be in bed, or in any other place, pray there; thy temple is there.


Vines and trees will teach you that which you will never learn from masters.


The spiteful tongue strikes a deadly blow at charity in all who hear him speak and, so far as it can, destroys root and branch, not only in the immediate hearers but also in all others to whom the slander, flying from lip to lip, is afterwards repeated.


If anyone makes himself his own master in the spiritual life, he makes himself scholar to a fool.


Love me, love my dog.


Therefore gird yourselves manfully and take up joyful arms for the name of God.


Jesus to me is honey in the mouth, music in the ear, a song in the heart.


How beautiful then is modesty and what a gem among virtues it is.


The heart of Christ can be seen through the openings of his wounds.

For what can prove to me so clearly as your wounds that you, O Lord Jesus, are sweet & mild & plenteous in mercy.


Your actions in passing, pass not away, for every good work is a grain of seed for eternal life.


Hell is full of good wishes or desires.


There are some who wish to learn for no other reason than that they may be looked upon as learned, which is ridiculous vanity ... Others desire to learn that they may morally instruct others, that is love. And, lastly, there are some who wish to learn that they may be themselves edified; and that is prudence.


The piercing nail has become a key to unlock the door, that I may see the good will of the Lord. And what can I see as I look through the hole? Both the nail and the wound cry out that God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself... Through these sacred wounds we can see the secret of his heart, the great mystery of love.


The reason for our loving God is God.


Let us affectionately love His angels as counselors and defenders appointed by the Father and placed over us. They are faithful; they are prudent; they are powerful; Let us only follow them, let us remain close to them, and in the protection of the God of heaven let us abide.


Thus understanding and love, that is, the knowledge of and delight in the truth, are, as it were, the two arms of the soul, with which it embraces and comprehends with all the saints the length and breath, the height and depth, that is the eternity, the love, the goodness, and the wisdom of God.


O Blessed Mary, whoever loves you honors God;

whoever serves you pleases God; whoever invokes your holy name with a pure heart will infallibly receive the object of his petition.


Learn first to love yourself, and then you can love me.


The more I contemplate God, the more God looks on me.

The more I pray to him, the more he thinks of me too.


Death is the gate of life. Ingratitude is the soul's enemy... Ingratitude is a burning wind that dries up the source of love, the dew of mercy, the streams of grace. You will find something far greater in the woods than you will find in books. Stones and trees will teach you that which you will never learn from masters.


Our King [Jesus] is accused of treachery;

it is said of him [by the Muslims] that he is not God, but that he falsely pretended to be something he was not.


It's not as if grace did one half of the work and free choice the other;

each does the whole work, in its own peculiar contribution. Grace does the whole work, and so does free choice - with this one qualification: That whereas the whole is done in free choice, so is the whole done of grace.


I do a great wrong in His sight, when I beseech Him that He will hear my prayer, which as I give utterance to it, I do not hear myself. I entreat Him that He will think of me; but I regard neither myself nor Him. Nay, what is worse, turning over corrupt and evil thoughts in mine heart, I thrust a dreadful offensiveness into His presence.


Nothing can work me damage except myself.

The harm that I sustain I carry about with me, and never am a real sufferer but by my own fault.


God will become visible as God's image is reborn in you.


What I know of the divine science and holy scripture, I learnt in the woods and fields.


God has aroused the spirit of kings and princes to root up from the earth the enemies of the Christian name. Therefore gird yourselves manfully and take up joyful arms for the name of Christ.