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This above all: to thine own self be true. And it must follow, as night the day. Thou canst not then be false to any man. William Shakespeare (1564)
How can a soul which misunderstands itself have a sure idea of other creatures? Lucius Annaeus Seneca (4 B.C.E.)
Happy is the man that findeth Wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold. She is more precious than rubies; and all things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her. (3:13-15) Proverbs (400)
All truth passes through three stages: First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident. Arthur Schopenhauer (1788)
I salute you. I am your friend, and my love for you goes deep. There is nothing I can give you which you have not. But there is much, very much, that, while I cannot give it, you can take. No heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in it today. Take heaven! No peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this present little instant.
Take peace! The gloom of the world is but a shadow. Behind it, yet within our reach, is joy. There is radiance and glory in darkness, could we but see. And to see, we have only to look. I beseech you to look!
Life is so generous a giver. But we, judging its gifts by their covering, cast them away as ugly or heavy or hard. Remove the covering, and you will find beneath it a living splendor, woven of love by wisdom, with power. Welcome it, grasp it, and you touch the angel's hand that brings it to you.
Everything we call a trial, a sorrow or a duty, believe me, that angel's hand is there. The gift is there and the wonder of an overshadowing presence. Your joys, too, be not content with them as joys. They, too, conceal diviner gifts.
Life is so full of meaning and purpose, so full of beauty beneath its covering, that you will find earth but cloaks your heaven. Courage then to claim it; that is all! But courage you have, and the knowledge that we are pilgrims together, wending through unknown country home.
Fra Giovanni Giocondo (1435)
What is praised is one, so the praise is one too,
many jugs being poured into a huge basin.
All religions, all this singing, one song.
The differences are just illusion and vanity.
Sunlight looks a little different
on this wall than it does on that wall
and a lot different on this other one,
but it is still one light.
We have borrowed these clothes,
these time-and-space personalities,
from a light, and when we praise,
we are pouring them back in.
Jalal Al Din Rumi (1207)
I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. Jesus Christ (4 B.C.E.)
You are banging the walls. What walls? There are no walls. You are fighting the guards. What guards? They don't exist. You are free right now. See this. Vernon Howard (1918)
Enter yourself, let self-honesty turn you in the right direction, after which self-awareness lives your life for you. Wishing for something other than darkness is already a bit of light. Have no fear of exposing the illusion that your present world is a false world, for the end of the old reveals the new. Change starts with even the dim realization of being betrayed by our own faulty thoughts. Self-renewal occurs spontaneously when habitual thoughts are dropped. Few people realize how little truth they can take, but those who do will become new. Vernon Howard (1918)
If we will be quiet and ready enough, we shall find compensation in every disappointment. Henry David Thoreau (1817)
We have it in our power to begin the world over again. Thomas Paine (1737)
The thing about our choices is that after we have made them, they turn around and make us. Anonymous
Go within or go without. Mayan (325)
The musicality of being holds both unending joy and infinite sorrow
It is the delicate touch of longing for the infinite
It is the tears of pain in the eyes of the worshiper
It is the sacrifice, at last rewarded
With a crown of roses, or thorns
It holds the mystery of all beings who strive without knowledge
The infinite cycles of meaningless pain
The cares and woes of a thousand lives
Can one look at them, and listen without pity?
I touch them, I call them unto me
Those of little faith, and of great
Those who cry forever and those that laugh hysterically
The poor, the maimed, the lacking, the unhappy
The many parts each person must play
I call them unto me, and I say:
Take all, take all, take everything and more
Your unhappiness is unbounded, take from me
And be at peace.
They scream, they cry, their tears are unending
The many forms of misery which all beings are heir to
Haunt me in the night.
There are beings of joy, of wonder, of enjoyment
There are sensual heavens, and pleasure-filled paradises
Yet where may those who suffer and grieve go
Those for whom the illusion of separateness
Is the truest reality?
Ropes and coils of evil deceptions
Locks and bars and endless loneliness
Before joy comes sorrow, before knowledge, pain
Before the thrill of enlightenment
Am I, who aid the wounded
I share their grief, I hold them in my arms
I shed my tears, that they may realize they are not alone
In the vast depths of the infinite universe
There is one who cares.
Buddhism (500 B.C.E.)
Once you start to awaken, no one can ever claim you again for the old patterns. Now you realise how precious your time here is. You are no longer willing to squander your essence on undertakings that do not nourish your true self; your patience grows thin with tired talk and dead language. You see through the rosters of expectation which promise you safety and the confirmation of your outer identity. Now you are impatient for growth, willing to put yourself in the way of change. You want your work to become an expression of your gift. You want your relationship to voyage beyond the pallid frontiers to where the danger of transformation dwells. You want your God to be wild and to call you to where your destiny awaits. John O'Donohue (1956)
Learned transcendentalists who know the Absolute Truth call this nondual substance Brahman, Paramatma or Bhagavan. Srila Vyasadeva
Clouds and dust are carried by the air, but less intelligent persons say that the sky is cloudy and the air is dirty. Similarly, they also implant material bodily conceptions on the spirit self. Srila Vyasadeva
What your looking for is what's looking. St. Francis Of Assisi (1181)
Let my soul smile through my heart and my heart smile through my eyes, that I may scatter rich smiles in sad hearts. Paramhansa Yogananda (1893)
Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love. Lao Tse (604 B.C.E.)
Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage. Lao Tse (604 B.C.E.)
Turn back from the outer, set your eyes within. Jalal Al Din Rumi (1207)
You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give. Kahlil Gibran (1883)
If you reveal your secrets to the wind, you should not blame the wind for revealing them to the trees. Kahlil Gibran (1883)
And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair. Kahlil Gibran (1883)
"The path of sorrow, and that path alone, leads to the land where sorrow is unknown; no traveller ever reached that blessed abode who found not thorns and briers in his road."- William Cowper
"The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to such a pass that he cannot distinguish the truth within him. "- Fyodor Dostoyevsky
"It's the great mystery of human life that old grief passes gradually into quiet tender joy. "- Fyodor Dostoyevsky
"The darker the night, the brighter the stars, The deeper the grief, the closer is God. "- Fyodor Dostoyevsky
"Give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way. "- American Indian
""Is there anything that I can do to make myself enlightened?" "As little as you can do to make the sun rise in the morning." "Then of what use are the spiritual exercises you prescribe?" "To make sure you are not asleep when the sun begins to rise." "- Anthony De Mello
"If you persist in trying to attain what is never attained (It is Tao's Gift!), If you persist in making effort to obtain what effort cannot get, If you persist in reasoning about what cannot be understood, You will be destroyed by the very thing you seek. To know when to stop, To know when you can get no further by your own action, This is the right beginning! "- Lao Tse
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