“How can the divine Oneness be seen?
In beautiful forms, breathtaking wonders, awe-inspiring miracles?
The Tao is not obliged to present itself in this way.
If you are willing to be lived by it, you will see it
everywhere, even in the most ordinary things.”
–Hua Hu Ching, taken from The Essence of TAO by Pamela Ball
“I create my own reality, today and every day
I define my own success and my own limits
I am thankful for this day and this life.”
–This piece is adapted from The Library Book by Susan Orlean
“If you were to take negative emotions away from people, they would simply collapse and go up in smoke. What would happen to what we call art, theater, drama, to most novels? In the emotional center there is no natural negative part, the greater part of negative emotions are artificial, they are based on instinctive emotions which are transformed by petty imagination and identification (losing self in an object). Positive emotions are emotions which cannot become negative. But all our pleasant emotions such as joy, affection, can, at any moment, turn to boredom, irritation, envy at the slightest provocation, or even without provocation. So we can say that we can have no positive emotions. At the same time we can say that we have no negative emotions without identification and imagination.”
“The feeling of being hurried is not usually the result of living a full life and having no time. It is on the contrary born of a vague fear that we are wasting our life. When we do not do the one thing we ought to do, we have no time for anything else – we are the busiest people in the world.”
“Nostalgia is a process by which dreams become memories without ever coming true.”
“Surely there is grandeur in knowing that in the realm of thought, at least, you are without a chain; that you have the right to explore all heights and all depths; that there are no walls nor fences, nor prohibited places, nor sacred corners in all the vast expanse of thought; that your intellect owes no allegiance to any being, human or divine; that you hold all in fee and upon no condition and by no tenure whatever; that in the world of mind you are relieved from all personal dictation, and from the ignorant tyranny of majorities. Surely it is worth something to feel that there are no priests, no popes, no parties, no governments, no kings, no gods, to whom your intellect can be compelled to pay a reluctant homage. Surely it is a joy to know that all the cruel ingenuity of bigotry can devise no prison, no dungeon, no cell in which for one instant to confine a thought; that ideas cannot be dislocated by racks, nor crushed in iron boots, nor burned with fire. Surely it is sublime to think that the brain is a castle, and that within its curious bastions and winding halls the soul, in spite of all worlds and all beings, is the supreme sovereign of itself.”
–Robert Green Ingersoll
Inspired by this post by Robin. Thank you Robin!
It is the climbing of the mountain that makes the view from the top so breathtaking.”
–Richard C. Miller
“‘ We study madness in order to learn how to resist,’ Professor Wiesel replies. ‘Madness holds the key to protest, to rebellion. Without it, if we are too “sane” by the standards of our surroundings, we can be carried along with the world’s madness.[sic]
‘Listen to a story: One day a just man came to the city of Sodom. He began to preach to its inhabitants, telling them to change their evil ways. He wanted to save them from destruction, a destruction he knew would come as a result of their sins against one another. “Please,” he said, “stop your cruelty, stop your inhumanity! You must be kinder to the stranger, to the children of the stranger!” He went on like that for many days, but no one listened. He did not give up. He continued preaching and protesting for many years. Finaly, a passerby asked him, “Rabbi, really, why do you do that? Don’t you see no one is listening?” He answered, “I know. No one will listen, but I cannot stop. You see, at first I thought I had to preach and protest in order to change them. But now, although I continue to speak, it is not to change the world. It is so that they do not change me.'”
–Ariel Burger, Witness: Lessons from Elie Wiesel’s Classroom p. 119