Welcome to my Daily Inspiration - Daily Quote. See today's daily inspirational quotes below.
May the world be kind to you, and may your own thoughts be gentle upon yourself. - Jonathan Lockwood Huie

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Saturday, January 31, 2009

How To Be Happy In Life - The 9 Paths To Happiness

How To Be Happy In Life - The 9 Paths To Happiness
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Sometimes it appears that life throws more obstacles in our path than we can handle. However, even in the face of the most challenging circumstances, you can make the choice to be happy by following these 9 paths to happiness.

1. Honor Yourself: Remember what the flight attendant says, "Put your own oxygen mask on first." You are of no use to anyone else if you have not taken care of your own needs first - this includes your own emotional, as well as physical, well-being.

2. Forgive Everyone For Everything: Forgiveness is a gift to yourself. YOU created the stress in your life by getting angry, and YOU can instantly remove that stress by granting forgiveness. Expressing your forgiveness to the other is optional - internalizing that forgiveness is required in order to live a joyful life. Don't forget to also forgive yourself for everything you regret ever having done or not done.

3. Have Gratitude For All Of Life: As with forgiveness, gratitude is a gift to yourself. Saying "thank you" is a powerful way to create great relationships, but the real power of gratitude is internalizing an immense thankfulness for your very existence - everything that has ever occurred or failed to occur in your life.

4. Respect Your Mind: Faith is powerful, but it is no substitute for observing, paying attention, weighing alternatives, and choosing with intention. Without conscious choice, there is no freedom or happiness.

5. Design Your Future: Don't be a passive tumbleweed blown by the winds of life. Envision the future you want, and then take action to create that future. Often, you will fail. Plan again and take action again.

6. Begin Today, and Never Give Up: There is no better time to begin than today - each and every "today." When obstacles stop you, think of new ways to reach your goals. In the words of the Oriental proverb, "Fall seven times, stand up eight."

7. Be Of Service To Others By Radiating Happiness: Being of service is one of the greatest paths to happiness, but remember that your greatest service to others is the person that you are, rather than the tasks you accomplish. Your greatest gift to others is to give them happiness, and by far the most powerful way to do that is to be an example of happiness and to radiate that happiness to others.

8. Dance Lightly With Life: Life does not have to be a serious undertaking. You will make mistakes, you will feel regrets, and eventually, you will die - so what? Happiness comes from dancing lightly with life - playing hopscotch on the river of life - leaping gracefully from joy to joy while laughing at the threats of calamity - even laughing hysterically at our human frailness when we do fall into the muddy torrent.

9. Know Unity With Spirit: There are as many ways to connect with Spirit as there are people - each of us has our own way to receive strength and serenity from the Infinite. Your life will be happier if you acknowledge that you are not alone, become open to that presence, and create ritual to celebrate your connection. You may feel your bond with Spirit at the Lord's Supper, in Songs of Praise, in Calls to Prayer, in Meditation, while doing Yoga or Qigong, or while walking in the woods. However you connect with Spirit, do it today.

Coping With Loss, Grief, and the Fear Of Your Own Mortality

Coping With Loss, Grief, and the Fear Of Your Own Mortality
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

I first became aware that death - for anyone - is never far away when a sixth grade playground chum committed suicide. I had been aware that old people died - but "old" had seemed very remote to my twelve year old self. Instantly death became very real - something that could, and did, happen to anyone.

Having reached my sixties, death is becoming a more and more familiar companion - it is no longer something that happens to grandparents or parents - it is now something that often happens to peers. A surprising number of my friends have also lost children to various calamities.

How to cope with loss and grief... How to cope with the fear of our own mortality...

Here are the pillars that support me as I confront the specter of death. For me, these affirmations proclaim the joy and purpose of life. May they also serve you well.

1. Life is what I make of it. Whether I have hours or decades remaining, I can choose to focus on living a happy and compassionate life - unencumbered by fears of future dangers, including death.

2. Once someone has "passed on," they are no longer suffering. Whether or not I believe that they are now "in a better place," I can be sure that they are no longer suffering. While, I certainly feel compassion for the grief and loss of the departed one's family and friends, my sympathy is for the living, not the dead.

3. Whenever I die, my life will be complete and a finished work. If I believe that the purpose of my life is preordained by a higher power, it is logical to believe that my life is also preordained to fulfill that purpose - however much time I am on this earth. However, if I believe that I have free-will, the only demand upon my earthly time is that I do my best - whatever the result.

4. I choose to overcome my instinctive fear of the unknown. All humans naturally fear the unknown. I will fight that fear every day - and I will win. In winning my battle with fear, I win my freedom and my happiness.

5. I am one with Spirit - Spirit is my strength. Whatever the details of my beliefs, and however I choose to commune with my Higher Power, it is my rock and my Pillar of Life.

Buddha: What we think, we become. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.


What we think, we become. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.
- the Buddha
INTENT - the Buddha is describing what we call Intent or Intention. We hold the power to make things happen through our intent - to the extent that we use our intention with compassion and without ego.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Choose Your Habits, Choose Your Life - 5 Secrets For Breaking Your Bad Habits

Choose Your Habits, Choose Your Life - 5 Secrets For Breaking Your Bad Habits
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

By nature, we are all creatures of habit. We instinctively adopt familiar routines for most activities. We eat about the same number of meals each day - at more or less the same times. We have a regular pattern of sleeping - unless it is perturbed by illness or shift work. Most everything we do is habitual.

You probably eat three meals each day, but why? Why not two or five? There is nothing particularly "natural" about our pattern of eating three meals each day - it is just a habit that we share with most of those around us. Actually, a number of studies indicate that eating five smaller meals is more satisfying and healthier than eating three large ones.

You will always have habits - things you do regularly and without conscious thought - but you do have the ability to CHOOSE your habits. Here's how...

1. Begin to pay attention to WHAT you do, WHEN you do it, and WHY you do it. One of the bad habits I fell into was eating a large dish of ice cream in the late evening. Obviously, "ice cream" was the "what," but the "when" was more than just "in the evening." "When" was times I felt stressed, hadn't had a satisfying dinner, or was bored. "Why" was mouth sensation, having something to do with my hands, and sometimes hunger.

2. Keep a journal of the "what", "when," and "why." Make an entry whenever you find yourself doing something that isn't really your choice. You will find that you gain better insight into the "when's" and "why's" as you get more entries in your journal. Soon a pattern will emerge that can enable you to find healthy habits to replace the harmful ones.

3. Look for other activities that would satisfy the "when" and "why." A hot bath for stress, hard candy for mouth sensation, a good book for activity, a warm bowl of soup for real hunger.

4. Make the undesirable activity difficult. Don't keep the cigarettes or ice cream in the house. When ice cream was in my own freezer, it was hard to resist, but when eating a dish of super chocolate chunk required a trip to the convenience store, it was much easier to turn my attention to other activities and a low calorie snack - if any snack at all.

5. Begin new habits not only because you need them to replace unhealthy ones, but also because they are the things you always wanted to do, but couldn't find the time or money. That book club or yoga class makes a great substitute for the eating or smoking, and you can more than pay for your health club membership with what you save on cigarettes.

Dalai Lama: The purpose of our lives is to be happy

The purpose of our lives is to be happy.
- Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama
Choosing to live a happy life is not only our greatest gift to ourselves, it is also the greatest gift we can give to those around us. When we are happy, we radiate happiness, and that is infectious. Consider giving the gift of happiness to yourself as being your gift to all humanity.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Osho: The moment you start seeing life as non-serious, a playfulness, all the burden on your heart disappears


The moment you start seeing life as non-serious, a playfulness, all the burden on your heart disappears. All the fear of death, of life, of love - everything disappears.
- Osho
Corporate financiers die just as dead as bag ladies, and sometimes they have twice the worries and half the fun. Life is a game - a game you can never win. You already know the final score: Life 1, You 0. When the game ends, you will be dead.

The great news is that the game can be wonderful fun while it lasts as long as you remember that it is a game and keep it light and playful. Tease life, taunt life, never attack life head-on.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Joseph Campbell: The world is perfect. It's a mess. It has always been a mess. We are not going to change it.


The world is perfect. It's a mess. It has always been a mess. We are not going to change it. Our job is to straighten out our own lives.
– Joseph Campbell
Minding other people's business doesn't create happiness for them or for me. In the words of the old saying, "Live and let live." Between living my own life and my commitment to sow a few seeds of joy in the world, my life is quite full, thank you.

Read my Monastery Housekeeping story about minding other people's business.



After the original post, I received the following question:
Thank you for the inspiration!
Did the quote by Joseph Campbell mean to say that the world is NOT perfect instead of saying that the world IS perfect? Just checking……
My response to the kind subscriber:

Thank you for your kind words, and thank you for the question. The quote is accurate. I cannot know what was in Joseph Campbell's mind, but my interpretation is that the world is "perfect" because it exists exactly the way it does. If one believes in a benevolent and omnipotent God, the world is perfect because God created it exactly the way He did. If one is a humanist, the world is perfect simply because it is futile to wish for it be different - and such wishing causes suffering.

Here is another quote that says perhaps the same thing in different words:
The world is perfect.
As you question your mind, this becomes more and more obvious.
Mind changes, and as a result, the world changes.
A clear mind heals everything that needs to be healed.
It can never be fooled into believing that there is one speck out of order.
- Byron Katie
Light and Joy...
Jonathan

** Today is your day to dance lightly with life. It really is. **
- jonathan lockwood huie

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Lao Tzu: He who knows others is wise. He who knows himself is enlightened.


He who knows others is wise. He who knows himself is enlightened.
- Lao Tzu
It's a cozy little luncheon with the girls, or a "no holds barred" time with the guys. Everyone tells their story and complains a little. "My marriage is getting worse," "My boss doesn't appreciate me," "I don't know what to do next." Amazingly, everyone at that table knows just how to fix everyone's problems - except their own. Why?

We are so close to our own issues that we see impossibility in each proposed solution. I couldn't just leave my abusive spouse, I need the money and the house, I couldn't survive on my own. Really? We can tell a friend how to leave an unworkable job, marriage, or friendship, and a moment later recoil in horror when a similar suggestion is offered for our dilemma.

Take a deep breath. Step back from the situation to gain a clear perspective. Be courageous and bold. Consider carefully what advice you would give to a good friend who was in the same circumstances that trouble you, and then accept that advice and put it into action - today.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Francesco Garri Garripoli: The Dance of the Cosmos


The Dance of the Cosmos
- Francesco Garri Garripoli

The dance of the cosmos and the world we experience every day are wonderfully intertwined... Most times we are so caught up in our daily lives that we forget about anything but our immediate challenges or joys... nose to the grindstone... With this challenge of not "seeing the forest through the trees" we can so easily get caught up in the small stuff and forget about our true nature as infinite expressions of an infinite universe... Sounds kinda spiritual/new age right? But guess what? This week a group of very respected astrophysicists from respected universities in the U.S. and Germany have moved a step closer to being quite certain that we all live in a universe that is actually a hologram. Ha! People practicing high-level Qigong for millennia have said this... spiritual practitioners have known this intuitively forever... the Master teacher I studied with for years in the 1970's in Hawaii impressed this upon me regularly... A hologram? Does that mean that our world isn't real?

Well, the last I checked, this world is very real... I spent all morning repairing another 50 feet of fence that the wild pigs destroyed last night... so the physical that we experience - our bodies and all the fences we interact with - is quite real to us... what is up for grabs is how we relate to it... Sure, some of this is played out in our attitude and mood; good attitude = nice day, bad mood = lousy experiences... but it goes so much deeper... to the way our subtle energy affects everything we experience on the physical and energetic planes.

This is part of what those astrophysicists are dealing with... for them, they are finding solutions to challenges that have plagued great minds like Einstein. These challenges came from not being able to resolve why physics (the workings of the physical world) didn't behave the same on small scales as it did on large scales... why light was the limit of speed... and what accounted for so much mass in the universe when it couldn't be seen... These might not seem like challenges to you, but for these guys - and the universities that fund them millions of dollars annually - it is a professional lifework to resolve them. I remind you that when Einstein proposed a theory (Relativity) on a piece of paper, it opened the minds of people like Oppenheimer and Fermi so that they could go on to create things that were ABSOLUTELY new and impossible before the change of their belief systems. This of course was atomic power and atomic weapons.

Imagine what will come about when these new theories of the holographic nature of our universe become fully accepted by the intellectual powerbrokers of today? That acceptance shifts the construct system of group-think... and when that happens, watch out... new things will naturally come into existence.

The dance of the cosmos... syncing with Obama as president of the U.S... another expression of major shifting in group-think...

This hologram theory that the astrophysicists are presenting stems from some irregularities observed in a large-scale test done searching for minute gravitational waves. The only good solution to the interference is that, get this, atoms at the edge of our known universe dictate the creation of all the atoms in all the matter we experience, and the ripple of this is disturbance in space/time is what is being seen as the "interference." In other words, everything we experience as solid and observable physical stuff is a projection of those atoms sitting some 7 billion light years away. I'm not making this up! I just want to end this dissertation with the idea that in a hologram, everything reflects everything... this means that space (distance and things) and time (the illusion of passing experience) no longer exist as factual... a shift within an atom at one edge of the universe instantaneously affects everything else, everywhere else...

...so dream on what it will be like when this becomes the accepted truth for the scientific community... that's how realities change, don't they? Change what you believe and your world changes... The better you learn how to dream and shift your beliefs, the more efficient you will be at shifting your world, at being free... Qigong is a great tool at learning how to work with this... focusing on your health is an easy entry point for wanting to work with Qigong... but it's only the beginning....

Guest author Francesco Garri Garripoli is a respected Qigong instructor, author, wellness advocate, Emmy Award winning television graphics designer and program Producer-Director. Learn about Qigong at www.wujiproductions.com and about Francesco's retreats, workshops, classes and international study trips at www.kahunavalley.org

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Check out Francoise Bonhoure's Benefits to Exercise for Seniors website at www.benefits-to-exercise-for-seniors.com and read her comments below this post.

Where there is no accusation of "fault," there can be no anger - jlh

Where there is no accusation of "fault," there can be no anger.
- jonathan lockwood huie
When I get angry, I am always angry AT someone - perhaps my friend or spouse, perhaps a stranger, perhaps the nameless "they" - "those people at the bank wronged me," perhaps God, or perhaps myself. In any case, when I get angry, I want to find someone to be "responsible" for what happened.

My window breaks. I want to know WHO broke my window. Who threw the rock, or who built the defective window, or who didn't prevent the hurricane or meteorite. America's penchant for filing law suits, along with untold misery, is built upon pandering to our instinct to blame someone whenever life doesn't occur as we prefer.

Life just happens - enjoy it anyway.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

John Lennon: Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans


Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
- John Lennon

Stop wishing and fearing the future long enough to be fully present in TODAY. Some great things are happening today that bear no resemblance to what you planned.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Beware the Rattlesnake of the Mind - jlh

Beware the Rattlesnake of the Mind
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie
Obviously, "Rattlesnake of the Mind" is a metaphor, and it is inspired by the Zen term, "Monkey Mind," which refers to the mind's tendency to invent an unending sequence of creative stories about everything we see and hear.

You are not your mind. You, a Spiritual BEing, are neither your mind nor your body. Mind and body are your tools - to use as you choose. Sometimes your body appears to have a will of its own, as when it twitches or pains. Likewise, your mind often appears to have its own will. That incessant chattering of regret, disappointment, guilt, shame, foreboding, worry, and fear is your Rattlesnake Mind striking off on its own.

Know that your mind can be a vicious rattlesnake, and be cautious. The mind can be tamed, but only with conscious effort and patience.

Mary Anne Radmacher: Persevere in the midst of turmoil

Protect your vision.
Prevail over adversity.
Persevere in the midst of turmoil.
Passionately act upon your convictions.
Purposely walk into the day.
- Mary Anne Radmacher

Friday, January 23, 2009

Joseph Campbell: We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us

We must be willing to get rid of the life we've planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us. The old skin has to be shed before the new one can come.
- Joseph Campbell
Good Endings precede Good Beginnings. If it isn't working, release it. If life isn't following the course you wanted, release your expectations and choose to love the life you have.

Every day is a new beginning - a day for a new plan and new action. If today, in conscious awareness, you choose the same plan as yesterday, you are wise. If you choose a different plan, you are equally wise. Whatever you choose, choose with intention.

Mary Anne Radmacher: Old Beginnings versus NEW beginnings

Old Beginnings versus NEW beginnings….

I was relating the details of a conflict to my coach. In my mind it was fresh to a life long issue. It was new information and I was pleased with my approach. My coach asked, “Why have you done the same thing you have always done in this circumstance?”

I told her I didn’t understand the question. She offered the candid observation, “I know you think you’ve made a new beginning. But really all you’ve done is used different words with the same approach you’ve always used. Really! You need to reach for a NEW beginning … not the same old beginning you’ve always used.”

The irony has remained with me. Hmmmm. A beginning that’s actually OLD. The phrase “new beginnings” at first seems redundant. It’s actually a profound challenge.

Have your new year’s resolutions been a new beginning for you or have they, like my approach to an old conflict, just been different words on the same old beginning? Maybe now’s the time to establish a new pattern of viewing your life fresh for 2009.

- Mary Anne Radmacher

Courage Doesn't Always Roar - book - Mary Anne Radmacher

courage doesn't always roar.
sometimes courage is the quiet voice
at the end of the day, saying,
"i will try again tomorrow."
- mary anne radmacher

Read Mary Anne Radmacher's book Courage Doesn't Always Roar.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Is Your Relationship In Danger? Take This 10 Question Quiz To Find Out


Is Your Relationship In Danger? Take This 10 Question Quiz To Find Out
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

You have the occasional argument. Sometimes you feel frustrated, and you have that uneasy sense that everything is not as it should be. Is your relationship in trouble? The answer may not be obvious. Take this quiz to measure the overall state of your relationship and highlight the trouble spots.

1. When you have an argument, is it about a specific issue, or is it about your partner's character? A specific issue would be, "You forgot to take out the garbage last night," while "you never remember anything," is a generalized character assassination.

2. Do you have more conflict or less conflict when the two of you get time alone together? Do a "date night" or a few days away renew your relationship, or create more stress?

3. Is there physical violence in your relationship? Have you come close to physical violence? Are there threats of physical violence?

4. How often does the thought that you would rather be with someone else pass through your mind?

5. Take one minute to write a list of what you like and what you dislike about your partner. How many "likes" and how many "dislikes" are on your list?

6. Do you seriously question your partner's faithfulness?

7. Do you have arguments about sex?

8. In times of emergency or grief - such as when a relative becomes ill or dies, do you and your partner pull together?

9. If you could turn the clock back to the day you first met your partner, would you choose a different direction for your life?

10. If you won the lottery, would you be overjoyed to share the blessing with your partner, or would you wish it were all yours?

Physical violence or threats are the biggest danger signs for your relationship and for your personal safety. If they are present, get professional help TODAY.

The following are all danger signs for your relationship. If several are present, your relationship is in real trouble:

  • character assassination
  • fantasizing often about being with someone else
  • not having ready access to a list of your partner's great qualities
  • doubts of faithfulness
  • serious sexual incompatibility
  • lack of mutual support in times of crisis
  • a feeling of being stuck or obligated by the relationship
Question #2 offers hope that your relationship may be much sounder than it appears. Conflict in your relationship may be primarily a reflection of the stress in your individual lives.

Often, partners redirect frustration and anger about unrelated events toward each other. For example, your boss yelled at you, and you yell at your partner. This unconscious redirection is a behavior that can be overcome through conscious attention, and is not a reflection on the overall quality of your relationship. If you and your partner are loving and supportive toward each other in relatively stress-free situations, you likely have a basis for working through your other issues.

How do you want to be remembered? Live life full out - Begin today - jlh

How do you want to be remembered? Live life full out - Begin today.
- jonathan lockwood huie
What do you want written on your tombstone? Inspired people? Good friend? Loving spouse and parent? Or, worked late at the office? What you do TODAY is what others will remember. Make today count.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Stop Anger Before It Stops You - 7 Secrets - jonathan lockwood huie


Stop Anger Before It Stops You - 7 Secrets
- jonathan lockwood huie

Being angry is as close as a human being can come to experiencing hell on earth.
- jonathan lockwood huie

Anger is something that each one of us has experienced - some of us only occasionally, some almost daily. Can we eliminate all anger? Probably not. We will always have expectations, and those expectations will often be unmet. Disappointment is the principle cause of anger. When we are disappointed, we look for someone to blame. Declaring someone to be at fault is the nature of anger. Anger is always directed at someone - possibly God or the non-specific they, but some animate entity.

You've told yourself a hundred times that you aren't going to get angry - really angry - ever again, but wham, you start to feel that telltale heat, locked shoulders, clenched jaw, shallow breathing. Someone has just done something really awful and you are angry at them. What now?

Here are my 7 Secrets to Stop Anger before It Stops You:

1. Recognize when you are angry: It may not immediately occur to you that you are angry. You know that you have been wronged, and you can see everyone around you take a step back, but especially if you are really angry, it may take a while to gain the clarity to acknowledge your anger. Anger clouds perception and thinking, so make a special effort to spot it early and put it into words, "I am angry."

2. Breathe deeply: Concentrate on taking slow deep breaths. Sometimes this is all it takes to break out of anger and gain clarity on the issue. At other times, breathing deeply is just a beginning, but it paves the way for the rest of the secrets.

3. Focus your anger: Get clear what you are angry about and who you are angry at. Talk to yourself, "I am angry at Joe because he ..." Don't let your anger expand onto innocent bystanders, especially those trying to help calm you down. Don't refocus your anger onto everything that Joe has ever done or failed to do.

4. Remember that you are in charge: Anger is an expression of frustration and helplessness. Remember that you always have options - you can design your own life. No one can steal your happiness - unless you let them.

5. Look for the silver lining: There is a silver lining to every disappointment. Your boss fired you and you are furious. Probably it was a blessing. Now you have the opportunity to get a better job that you really enjoy.

6. Consider forgiveness: Angry and happy don't mix. Flush out the angry, and the happy has a place to put down roots. Forgive everyone for everything in order to give anger and resentment a chance to fade. Forgive and you can become happy. Forgiving is not a gift to someone else - Forgiving is our gift to ourselves - a great gift - the gift of happiness.

7. Accept that Life is NOT "Supposed to be Fair": Know that there is no single way that life is "supposed" to be. Demanding that life meet our expectations is a sure fire recipe for a miserable existence. Life is a game with no rules. Life just happens to us regardless of our best intentions. To choose happiness, be open to receiving whatever life throws at you - with Gratitude. Have NO Expectations of life.

You do not need anyone's permission to be your true self - jlh

You do not need anyone's permission to be your true self.
- jonathan lockwood huie
NO ONE has been granted the authority to tell me how my life should be lived. I answer only to myself and to Spirit - whatever that means to me.

Please accept this photo as representing all self-proclaimed authorities. It is not my intention to single out any particular religion, gender or race.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Where There is Love, Nothing is Missing - a Parable - jonathan lockwood huie

The businessman looked around the vacation villa in Puerto Vallarta.  Plain, but clean and well furnished.  A good place to grab a few days away from his failing business and troubled marriage.  He had brought a large supply of sleeping pills and had requested several bottles of Tequila to be brought to his room.  Perhaps he could at least drown a few of his worries.
     He watched as the housekeeper stocked the villa's kitchen - frozen dinners, some dry cereal, and thankfully, four large bottles of liquor - they had paid careful attention to his unusual requests.  The frozen dinners would be easy - he could focus on his lonely drinking, and lose himself.
     Jim noticed the housekeeper's slow movements, the stoop in her shoulders, the stubby yellowed teeth.  It was somehow comforting to see that other people could be even worse off than he was.  Even with his company troubles and impending divorce, Jim was sure he could always find the money to keep his teeth whitened and in good repair - even find the money for the hair transplant he had promised himself.  He shivered a little, just thinking about those teeth.
     The woman shuffled over to him.  "Senor, you not look happy.  TV dinner not good.  I am Maria, I cook.  I bring you real food."
     "OK, OK."  Jim didn't want to talk with anyone, and certainly not with this woman.  Besides, a taco might be better than microwave food - if it showed up on his table.


The bustling in the kitchen brought Jim out of the depths of his hangover.  It hadn't been a really big night - less than a whole bottle of booze, and none of the sleeping pills - he might want to take those all at once.  Still, he felt really lousy, and resented the intrusion.  The bedside clock showed 12:30 as Maria opened the curtains and sunlight poured in.
     The enticing smells of spicy meat and corn filled the villa.  Maria stood over him, offering a plate of tamales.  "Senor, eat.  You feel better."
     Jim reached for one, took a hesitant bite, and relaxed a little.  Before he knew it, the heaping plate was almost empty.
     Maria moved the nearly empty plate to the kitchen counter.  "You were hungry.  Get a nice hot bath.  I come back," and she moved toward the door.
     "How much do I owe you," Jim called out, remembering her apparent poverty.
     "Nothing.  My gift.  You were hungry," and she was gone.


The next afternoon, Chiles Rellenos appeared.  Jim had drunk less the second night, and was even more appreciative of the good food.  Again, Maria would not accept payment.  "I have money.  You must need money, please take it," Jim almost pleaded.
     Maria replied, "I am rich.  Please come to my home tonight.  I will show you.  I come back at seven."


At exactly 7 PM, there was a knock on the door.  Jim followed Maria into the warm twilight.  They walked silently through the tourist area, then turned sharply down an alley.  They emerged into a neighborhood of partially finished stucco dwellings.  Iron reinforcing rods spiked the tops of the unfinished verticals.  Plastic sheeting substituted for glass in the unfinished windows.  Maria led Jim to one of the unfinished stairways and began to climb.
     Opening a door on the fourth floor, Maria smiled at Jim and beckoned him to enter.  The walls and floor were bare except for small rugs and weavings that combined bright reds, oranges, and yellows.  A small sofa and a few chairs lined the walls, one of which honored an oversized Madonna-with-child picture featuring a dark-skinned Mary.  The small room was dominated by a long plank table covered with food and surrounded by a dozen happy-looking eaters of all shapes and ages - newborns to nineties.  The delicious smells welcomed Jim.
     Near tears, Jim turned to Maria to thank her, but words didn't form.
     Leading Jim to the table, Maria introduced him to her family, saying, "I am rich.  I have my family.  Where there is love, nothing is missing.  My family is now your family."

Lao Tzu: Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished

Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.
- Lao Tzu
Hurrying - urgency - robs life of its quality. Patience is more than a virtue, patience is a joyful way of living. Don't accomplish less, but focus on the most important things, and proceed at a natural comfortable pace. The soft water of the river cuts through the hardest rock - in its own time.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Chief Seattle: All things share the same breath - the beast, the tree, the man... the air shares its spirit with all the life it supports

All things share the same breath - the beast, the tree, the man... the air shares its spirit with all the life it supports.
- Chief Seattle
UNITY - we are all one - the web of life.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Bertha Calloway: We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails


We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails.
- Bertha Calloway
(Founder of the Great Plains Black Museum)

Bono Quotes - the Wisdom of Bono

Bono (Paul David Hewson): (1960-):

Distance does not decide who is your brother and who is not.

We thought that we had the answers, it was the questions we had wrong.

Religion often gets in the way of God.

Objectivity is the cure for depression.

Inspire people to do things for themselves. Inspire people to think for themselves.

To carry each other is not a burden at all but a kind of privilege.

I come from Ireland and I've seen the damage of religious warfare. I am a believer. I don't wear the badge on the outside but it is on the inside.

I am still amazed at how big, how enormous a love and mystery God is -- and how small are the minds that attempt to corral this life force into rules and taboos, cults and sects.

There are righteous people working in a whole rainbow of belief systems--from Hasidic Jews to right-wing Bible Belters to charismatic Catholics.

I'm actually starting to like more and more people who have convictions that are unpopular.

God's Spirit moves through us and the world at a pace that can never be constricted by any one religious paradigm. I love that.

Forrest Gump Movie Quotes - Forrest Gump Quotes

Quotes from the movie Forrest Gump:

Mama always said life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get.

My Mama always said you've got to put the past behind you before you can move on.

It happens - Sometimes.

I just wanted to tell you I love you.

If you're sick, I'll take care of you.

Momma always said dyin' was a part of life. I sure wish it wasn't.

Stupid is as stupid does.

Karate Kid Movie Quotes - Miyagi Quotes

First, wash all car. Then wax. Wax on...
Wax on, right hand. Wax off, left hand. Wax on, wax off. Breathe in through nose, out the mouth. Wax on, wax off. Don't forget to breathe, very important.
- Miyagi: character in the movie Karate Kid

Problem: attitude.
- Miyagi: character in the movie Karate Kid

Walk on road, hmmm? Walk left side, safe. Walk right side, safe. Walk middle, sooner or later get squish just like grape. Here, karate, same thing. Either you karate do "yes" or karate do "no." You karate do "guess so," squish just like grape. Understand?
- Miyagi: character in the movie Karate Kid

Better learn balance. Balance is key. Balance good, karate good. Everything good. Balance bad, better pack up, go home. Understand?
- Miyagi: character in the movie Karate Kid

Okay, here's your first lesson: how to take a FALL!
- the movie Karate Kid

For man with no forgiveness in heart, life worse punishment than death.
- Miyagi: character in the movie Karate Kid 2

Never trust spiritual leader who doesn't dance.
- Miyagi: character in movie The Next Karate Kid

Fighting not good. But if must fight... win.
- Miyagi: character in movie The Next Karate Kid

Star Trek Quotes - Wisdom from the Movies and Television

Star Trek Quotes:

Humans do have an amazing capacity for believing what they choose, and excluding that which is painful.
Spock

In critical moments men sometimes see exactly what they wish to see.
Spock

Change is the essential process of all existence.
Spock

Life is best when I wish neither to hurry the future nor to slow it - jlh


Life is best when I wish neither to hurry the future nor to slow it.
- jlh
TODAY - today is what life is all about. When I desire for the future to arrive quickly, I become unable to savor today. I can't live in tomorrow, and when I focus all my energies on the future, I shortchange today. Likewise, fearing the future emasculates today, leaving it dry and lifeless.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Amelia Earhart: Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn't be done


Never interrupt someone doing what you said couldn't be done.
- Amelia Earhart
OK, so the wording is a little sarcastic, but the idea is important. If you believe that something is impossible, you have just made that task impossible for you to accomplish, but you are likely to watch in amazement as others make it happen. Very few challenges can resist insight and perseverance for long.

Winston Churchill quote: You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.

You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.
- Winston Churchill

Thomas Jefferson: Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations; entangling alliances with none.

Peace, commerce and honest friendship with all nations; entangling alliances with none.
- Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson: I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend.

I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend.
- Thomas Jefferson

Ralph Waldo Emerson: People only see what they are prepared to see


People only see what they are prepared to see.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson: Nothing can bring you peace but yourself

Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson: A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds


A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson: Earth laughs in flowers

Earth laughs in flowers.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ralph Waldo Emerson: Every wall is a door


Every wall is a door.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Jimmy Carter: We will not learn how to live together in peace by killing each other's children.

We will not learn how to live together in peace by killing each other's children.
- Jimmy Carter

Nelson Mandela: If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.

If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.
- Nelson Mandela

Mother Teresa: If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.

If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.
- Mother Teresa

Whatever you do, do with kindness. Whatever you say, say with kindness. Wherever you go, radiate kindness. - jonathan lockwood huie

Whatever you do, do with kindness.
Whatever you say, say with kindness.
Wherever you go, radiate kindness.
- jonathan lockwood huie

Love Without Limits - jlh

Thich Nhat Hanh : Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.

Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.
- Thich Nhat Hanh

Henry David Thoreau: Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.

Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them.
- Henry David Thoreau

Mahatma Gandhi: Nobody can hurt me without my permission

Nobody can hurt me without my permission.
- Mahatma Gandhi

Maya Angelou:I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
- Maya Angelou
Your love is more powerful than your words or your actions.

Martin Luther King, Jr. - Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal.

Peace is not merely a distant goal that we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
Peaceful actions, speech, and intent by individuals lead to Peace for all. Peace can never be achieved through violence, threat, or hate.

Martin Luther King, Jr. - Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase.


Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.
Begin today. Act on your vision. Do your best. If you take action, you may succeed or you may fail, but if you do nothing, the only possible outcome is failure.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

"Hurry up" ranks right up there with "you need to" as a destroyer of our humanity - jlh

"Hurry up" ranks right up there with "you need to" as a destroyer of our humanity.
- jonathan lockwood huie
Why hurry? Why the urgency? What is the worst that could happen if you didn't meet someone's deadline? Is a deadline worth your health and happiness? Consider a gentler, quieter, slower life. Pause to smell the roses, to breathe, to take quiet moments for yourself.

Mark Twain: It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.

It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so.
- Mark Twain (attributed)
If you know it "for sure," it probably isn't truth to everyone else. We are most sure about those things to which we have given the least thought. If you KNOW that something is true without having ever questioned it, take the opportunity to consider the opinions of others with an open mind.

Leonardo da Vinci: Where there is shouting, there is no true knowledge

Where there is shouting, there is no true knowledge.
- Leonardo da Vinci
Thoughtful people seldom share exactly the same opinion - the same point-of-view. The wise ones understand that they know nothing - for virtually none of our experience is truly factual - and they graciously honor all other opinions.

Arguing is merely defending one's opinion by labeling it, "Fact" or "The Truth."

Leo Tolstoy: If you want to be happy, be

If you want to be happy, be.
- Leo Tolstoy
Happiness is a choice - independent of circumstances.

John F. Kennedy: Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth

Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth.
- John F. Kennedy
Be yourself. There is nothing more for you to do than to be the best YOU that you can - no imitation, no pretense, no guilt, no shame.

George Washington: It is far better to be alone, than to be in bad company

It is far better to be alone, than to be in bad company.
- George Washington
Of course you can and should keep your composure and happiness regardless of circumstances - regardless of your friends, family and co-workers - regardless of gossip, sarcasm, and negativity. Nonetheless, life is much easier and more pleasant when you spend as much time as possible in the company of enthusiastic positive people - not necessarily those who agree with you, but those who respect your right to your point of view.

George Bernard Shaw: We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing

We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.
- George Bernard Shaw
Life is to be taken lightly - by those who wish to be happy and by those who wish to age gracefully. - jlh

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