The Living Book

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The great challenge is living your wounds through instead of thinking them through. It is better to cry than to worry, better to feel your wounds deeply than to try to understand them, better to let them enter into your silence than to talk about them. The choice you face constantly is whether you are taking your hurts to your head or to your heart.

Henri J. M. Nouwen (1932 – 1996)

Love between human beings springs from a desire to be made free of another world than one’s own. Every true communion of lovers is a mutual discovery and recognition. Every passion is a passion for release, for that loss of one’s self by which alone one gains life.

Gerald Bullett (1893 – 1958)

Energy is spent chiefly on unnecessary and unpleasant emotions, on the expectation of unpleasant things, possible and impossible, on bad moods, on unnecessary haste, nervousness, irritability, imagination, day-dreaming, and so on. Energy is wasted on the wrong work of centers, on unnecessary tension of the muscles out of all proportion to the work produced, on perpetual chatter which absorbs an enormous amount of energy, on the “interest” continually taken in things happening around us or to other people and having in fact no interest whatever, on the constant waste of the force of “attention,” and so on, and so on.

P. D. Ouspensky (1878 – 1947)

The Indian believes profoundly in silence — the sign of a perfect equilibrium. Silence is the absolute poise or balance of body, mind and spirit. The man who preserves his self-hood is ever calm and unshaken by the storms of existence. What are the fruits of silence? They are self control, true courage or endurance, patience, dignity and reverence. Silence is the cornerstone of character.

Ohiyesa (1858 – 1939)

It is only when everything, even love, fails, that, with a flash, man finds out how vain, how dream-like is this world. Then he catches a glimpse… of the beyond. It is only by giving up this world that the other comes; never through holding onto this one.

Vivekananda (1863 – 1902)

So long, therefore, as we are not agitated by passions which are contrary to our nature, so long is the power of the soil by which it seeks to understand things not impeded; and so long, therefore, has it the power of forming clear and distinct ideas.

Baruch Spinoza (1632 – 1677)

At the still point of the turning world, neither flesh nor fleshless;
Neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is,
But neither arrest nor movement. And do not call it fixity,
Where past and future are gathered. Neither movement from nor towards,
Neither ascent nor decline. Except for the point, the still point,
There would be no dance, and there is only the dance.

T. S. Eliot (1888 – 1965)

Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding… She is more precious than rubies, and all things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her.

Old Testament