Courage is defined as "bravery; intrepidity; that quality of mind which enables men to encounter danger and difficulties with firmness, or without fear or depression of spirits; valor; boldness; resolution. Courage is a constituent part of fortitude; but fortitude implies patience to bear continued suffering." To discourage is defined as "to deprive of confidence, hope, or spirit."

Courage is a virtue, and a soul faculty of the Mystic Degree, which rules the heart center. The Latin root of courage, cor, means "heart." When you say, "He has heart," you are saying he is courageous.

Edna Lister on Courage

It takes courage and self-control to accept and wait for the time when you can take hold and do the great things as you see them and feel it in your heart. – Edna Lister, October 10, 1925.

If you become discouraged and give up, voice the wail of the quitter, the fainthearted, you will never succeed. You must accept and conquer sometime, so you might as well do it now. God puts you where you are so you may learn to conquer, to express this inner ability which you have not yet expressed. – Edna Lister, Mind, Tuning In and Broadcasting, January 26, 1933.

Wisdom and strength belong to the brave heart. – Edna Lister, The Lord's Prayer, September 26, 1934.

If not showing you high courage, anything making it too easy is not taking you home, but the long way around. – Edna Lister, The High Call, January 2, 1935.

No one is brave or courageous on an empty stomach. – Edna Lister, True Courage, January 16, 1935.

Avoid those associates who discourage you with pessimism. – Edna Lister, How to Improve in Every Way, January 4, 1936.

"Benaiah, the son of a valiant man, slew a lion in a pit on a snowy day." – 1 Chronicles 11:22. Courage is bravery. You can be brave, yet have a torturing fear. – Edna Lister, Daring to Do, February 7, 1937.

You move on the power of encouraging words, such as, "I have faith in you." – Edna Lister, Zeal, a Defense, January 23, 1938.

A courageous and valiant few manage to conquer time and space. – Edna Lister, August 22, 1938.

Let no clouds of darkness or doubt steal your high courage. – Edna Lister, September 29, 1938.

The conquering soul stands strong to endure and in bravery to carry his own burden to the altar in sacrifice. – Edna Lister, February 3, 1939.

Let the courage of the Christ, the first Begotten Son, be your courage. – Edna Lister, April 29, 1941.

When it is necessary to do a thing, take courage and do it. – Edna Lister, November 27, 1941.

You can't buy courage in the dime store, or for millions. No invisible mantle will supply it; you have it or you don't. The courage to stand your ground comes from an inner conviction that what you are doing is right, and bravery is its inevitable outer expression. No following false gods of materialism or loudly voiced opinions can manufacture courage, for such substitutes fail when called upon under fire.

A right goal, with the inner courage that never gives way or backs down, showing a brave front to all enemies, does not come from choosing between two evils. It comes from choosing the one right, and this is always the way of sacrifice, for an individual or a nation. Your choice runs straight down the middle of the right road, from evil and darkness into the Light. Winning comes only from using sacrifice and success as synonymous terms, backed by deathless courage. – Edna Lister, Life in a Nutshell, "Courage in Action," 1942.

Keep your courage high by living in the high center of being, Oversoul. – Edna Lister, January 15, 1942.

Stumbling stones are tests to climb over. Do not grow weary or discouraged; the next time you will be stronger and it will be easier. – Edna Lister, February 26, 1942.

Never stop knocking on heaven's door, or allow discouragement to hold you down. – Edna Lister, February 26, 1942.

Egotism becomes discouraged. – Edna Lister, April 7, 1948.

All initiations by fire require immense courage, faith and love to overcome fear. – Edna Lister, December 5, 1950.

Discouragement is lack of standing in the full unconquerable faith of God. – Edna Lister, April 7, 1952.

Courage is nearly synonymous with faith, and they are unconquerable when exercised together. – Edna Lister, February 13, 1953.

Your surrender of self creates your conquering courage. – Edna Lister, June 3, 1953.

The power of an unconquerable faith takes the next step courageously in conquering faith. – Edna Lister, December 13, 1954.

Prayer keeps you constantly assured of strength and courage to meet each day's task and to hold all gains. – Edna Lister, Black Pearls, 1954.

Courage, confidence in your ability to conquer, and a growing faith, is life's reward for each step you take, for each obstacle you overcome along the way of destiny. You develop the courage, faith and the wisdom needed to conquer the world with each new gain in conquering the "little me" of self. – Edna Lister, Time, the Adjuster of Life, 1954.

Some hew their path as they go, conquering all manners of obstacles that life seems to glory in placing before the advance of civilization. Inspired leaders develop the courage to conquer each succeeding obstacle by conquering the one standing in the middle of their path now. They forget how hard the path will be ahead, while they use all their strength to mount the barriers as they come. Courage, confidence in your ability to conquer, and a growing faith, is life's reward for each step you take, for each obstacle you overcome along the way of destiny. – Edna Lister, Time, the Adjuster of Life, 1954.

To choose a "right" way in life, you must have an inner conviction to stand, and the courage to stick to it. – Edna Lister, Your Life's Plan, May 16, 1954.

People are discouraged because they do not want to appear awkward before the world. To dare to be wrong takes great courage, but not as much as to dare to be happy. "I'm so discouraged" means that you lack courage. You are a coward! – Edna Lister, Manna From Heaven, August 21, 1955.

"I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed." – Revelation 3:18. White raiment is your sheath of protecting Light, the price for which is steadfastness in courage. Courage is the Wisdom of God upheld by the Love of God. – Edna Lister, The Open Door, November 20, 1955.

The Path of Destiny tests the soul for courage and endurance. It is very narrow and offers no place to turn around and go back. – Edna Lister, Eternal Youth, 1956, 1976.

Only the Love of God gives you the courage to choose the right way, instead of wandering in darkness, wasting time, paying debts. You cannot jump straight to the goal, but take step by courageous step. Today's sacrifice forms your next step toward the goal.

St. Paul said, "I die daily." – 1 Corinthians 15:31. You must have an inner conviction of right and be willing to stand for it. You must know what goal you want to reach before you can succeed; what you want, you desire to do, then you must want it enough to "die daily" for it. So, you must be willing to suffer, to sacrifice, to face death of the little self every hour. – Edna Lister, The Three Loves, April 15, 1956.

"Benaiah, the son of a valiant man … slew a lion in a pit on a snowy day." – 1 Chronicles 11:22. A pit, what a terrifying place and position! Benaiah was the "son of a valiant man," but it doesn't say that he started as valiant. He became courageous by daring to do the impossible. You build character on strength that dares to exceed itself each time life calls upon it to do something unusual. A lion is a formidable beast. "A lion in a pit on a snowy day" — the pit is the subconscious, and a snowy day describes the least favorable circumstances. Benaiah couldn't afford fear.

From the courage to act, which is daring, your fearlessness grows. Courageous souls desire to conquer all lukewarmness and indifference. Those who are afraid of losing their place do nothing, so they lose it by default as the vibration slows to nothing at all. You climb as high as your active daring and doing vibration takes you. – Edna Lister, Daring to Do, April 22, 1956.

Courage and valiance are born of the quiet irresistible power of the faith of God. – Edna Lister, Daring to Do, April 22, 1956.

The principle of faith is that steadfastness of courage that is honor. – Edna Lister, June 25, 1956.

Courage requires a balance of Wisdom and Love, with no emotion or sentiment, but with a heart that is strong. Courage bestows the ability to smile in the face of adversity, obstacles or trouble. The formula for courage is that quality of mind which meets danger with firmness, calmness, boldness and gallantry. "Faith is the substance of things hoped for" to Paul. Yet to us, "Faith is the absolute possession of all things hoped for," since Jesus said, "Believe that you have it and you shall." First you must accept this, and second, you may never let it go. These are choices. You must know the truth; God cannot change the law. Then you must have the courage to dare and to do. – Edna Lister, Courage Through Faith, August 12, 1956.

You build your courage with love. – Edna Lister, November 1, 1956.

Your job is not to set a goal of competition for another to reach, for this only encourages him to outer enslavement to keep up. – Edna Lister, November 21, 1957.

Make the problems you face a source of new strength, unfailing courage and unconquerable faith. Sacrifice your sentimental attitudes and approaches to life to increase your courage. – Edna Lister, February 23, 1959.

The real gifts you can give God in service are courage, standing in steadfastness, continuity in expression and persistence in conquering self. – Edna Lister, September 27, 1959.

Bravery is courage and daring. When you act in spite of fear, bravery is a splendor. Light emanates from your heart and you are able to act in the face of harm or evil. Bravery is to stand, to dare, and to do. – Edna Lister, The 33 Degrees of Soul Conquering, October 27, 1959.

The mental faculties include logic, reason and will, discrimination, discretion and discernment and courage, strength and endurance in learning obedience. – Edna Lister, Is it Right to Ask for Myself? June 14, 1960.

To walk the Via Christa, you must bear trials and temptations, which means being steadfast and having the fortitude and courage to stand and hold. – Edna Lister, How Do I Wait Upon the Lord? June 28, 1960.

A lukewarm approach to faith and lack of love in the world encourages evil to exist. – Edna Lister, November 1, 1961.

When you succumb to appearances, you become afraid and let the deadly sins of discouragement and disappointment take over. Then you must build again from the bottom until you learn to be steadfast and hold, to let nothing deter or weaken you. – Edna Lister, March 27, 1962.

You may whine, or decide to carry your cross bravely. You will fall under its weight until you learn to assume the burden of new initiations bravely, while adjusting to life. – Edna Lister, Fourteen Stations of the Cross, April 24, 1962.

Courage is yours when you conquer fear. – Edna Lister, Love, Your Radar, November 17, 1963.

When the joy of God possesses you, its lifting quality draws all things into its radiance. It can transmute depression and discouragement into itself, for its whole reason for being is to absorb darkness into Light. – Edna Lister, Five Keys of the Kingdom, 1964.

God has always sent forth His Power to encourage people to ascend, but emotion or intellect too often takes charge. – Edna Lister, The Word, Your Magic Wand, April 12, 1964.

When your praise weakens or fades through neglect, allowing love to cool and faith to falter, you do not grow in greater strength and courage with comprehension of God's bountiful laws unfolding for you. – Edna Lister, June 22, 1964.

The Path of Destiny tests the soul for courage and endurance. It is very narrow and offers no place to turn around and go back. Once you step onto your Path of Destiny, you sign a contract with the Source of Power, and something beyond explanation takes place. No matter what misunderstandings you encounter, no matter how much it hurts, a deathless desire takes over and you cannot quit. "To do and to endure" becomes the motto you follow. – Edna Lister, Eternal Youth, 1965.

It takes dauntless courage to discard the old ways of thinking. – Edna Lister, Eternal Youth, 1965.

Your faith, courage and perseverance in action and expression come under your relationship to God. These three qualities are the stuff of which conquerors are made, the qualities of the restless soul, surging, demanding changes in life, in body, in business, in comprehension. – Edna Lister, Comprehension and Recompense, November 7, 1965.

The three primary ornaments of wisdom are love, truth and courage. – Edna Lister, Stonehenge and Glastonbury, November 9, 1965.

To have a new idea for a goal is the first challenge. The second challenge is facing the adverse criticism, then speculation that reaches to the horizon to support the original idea. If the challenge causes discouragement and weakness, it is well to have it happen at once. – Edna Lister, December 10, 1965.

Your courage, conviction and burning desire must grow up to match the size of your vision. – Edna Lister, Your Eternal Destiny, October 3, 1966.

Seeing the challenges you face, know that they result from what you have done, and thank God for the faith, vision and courage to know and to face them. – Edna Lister, March 13, 1968.

Courage is the ability to dare to make a stand and do something, whether the world approves or not. – Edna Lister, God Neither Slumbers Nor Sleeps, December 14, 1969.

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Treatments for Courage

To convince the subconscious that there is nothing to fear, repeat, "God is all courage and strength." Fear pays no dividends. – Edna Lister, The Light: Your Expression, November 4, 1956.

To encourage the one who is just coming up in consciousness, say, "This is going to turn out well." – Edna Lister, July 26, 1961.

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Old Testament on Courage

Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. – Deuteronomy 31:6

Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord. – Psalm 27:14.

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Edna Miriam Lister
1884 – 1971
The original Christian Pioneering Mystic,
Platonist philosopher, American Idealist, Founder, Society of the Universal Living Christ, minister, teacher, author, wife, and mother.

Edna Lister

Etymology of courage: Vulgar Latin coraticum, from Latin cor, heart.

Courage is a soul faculty.

Courage is a virtue.


A man may have the courage of a lion in attack and self-defence (such courage being a human virtue), but he will not thereby be rendered supremely happy; but he whose courage is of that divine kind which enables him to transcend both attack and defence, and to remain mild, serene, and lovable under attack, such a man will thereby be rendered supremely happy. – James Allen, From Passion to Peace

We must build dikes of courage to hold back the flood of fear. – Martin Luther King, Jr., Antidotes for Fear


The Compact Edition of The Oxford English Dictionary: 2 volumes. E.S.C. Weiner, editor. Oxford University Press, 1971.

The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV).

Webster, Noah. "Bravery, "Webster's American Dictionary of the English Language. Two volumes. New York: S. Converse, 1828. This work is in the public domain.

Related Topics

See Bravery

See Mystic