The Living Book

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Peace of mind! That is something essential to any enjoyment of the present moment, and unless its separate moments are enjoyed, there is an end to life’s happiness as a whole. We should always recollect that today comes only once, and never returns. We fancy that it will come again tomorrow, but tomorrow is another day, which, in its turn, comes only once.

Arthur Schopenhauer (1788 – 1860)

A man should orient his will and all his works to God and having only God in view go forward unafraid, not thinking, “Am I right or am I wrong?” One who worked out all the chances before starting his first fight would never fight at all. And if, going to someplace, we must think how to set the front foot down, we shall never get there. It is our duty to do the next thing: go straight on, that is the right way.

Meister Eckhart (circa 1260 – 1328)

If you are content with the old world, try to preserve it; it is sick… But if you can no longer live in the eternal conflict between your convictions and life, thinking one way and acting another, take it upon yourselves to leave the shelter of the pale and ruinous arches.

Alexander Ivanovich Herzen (1812 – 1870)

Many are avidly seeking, but they alone find who remain in silence. Those who delight in a multitude of words, even though they say admirable things, are empty within. If you love truth, be a lover of silence. Silence like the sunlight will illuminate you in God and will deliver you from the phantoms of ignorance. Silence will unite your soul to God.

Isaac of Nineveh (circa 613 – 700)

Oh, thou that pinest in the imprisonment of the Actual, and criest bitterly to the gods for a kingdom wherein to rule and create, know this of a truth: the thing thou seekest is already within thee, here and now, couldest thou only see!

James Allen (1864 – 1912)

You grieve for those for whom you should not grieve. The wise grieve neither for the living nor the dead. Never at any time was I not, nor thou, nor these princes of man, nor shall we ever cease to be. The unreal has no being, the real never ceases to be.

Bhaghavad-Gita (500 B.C.E.)

Shade said to Shadow, “A little while ago, you were moving, and now you are standing still. A little while ago, you were sitting down, and now you are getting up. Why all this indecision?”

Shadow replied, “Don’t I have to depend on others to be what I am? Don’t others also have to depend on something else to be what they are? My dependence is like that of the snake on his skin, or of the cicada on his wing. How can I tell why I do this, or why I do that?”

Zhuang Zhou (369 – 286, B.C.E.)

Only the illimitable permanent is here. A peace stupendous, featureless, still replaces all, what once was I, in it a silent unnamed emptiness content either to fade in the unknowable or thrill with the luminous seas of the Infinite.

Sri Aurobindo (1872 – 1950)

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