Share in the accounts and discoveries of the many individuals who, just like you, set out to find new, true answers that could stand up to the test of passing time with its ever-changing conditions. Welcome these inward and uplifting thoughts as if they were your own, for in one sense… they are.
Wrong action in the past is corrected perfectly by right action in the present.
To meditate is to transcend time. Time is the distance that thought travels in its achievements. The traveling is always along the old path covered over with a new coating, new sights, but always the same road, leading nowhere — except to pain and sorrow. It is only when the mind transcends time that truth ceases to be an abstraction.
There is a moment of difficulty and danger at which flattery and falsehood can no longer deceive, and simplicity itself can no longer be misled.
The union of the soul with soul and spirit with spirit in accordance with the sowing of the word brings growth to the seed sown and produces life. Everyone who is educated in obedience to his educator becomes a son.
A man should never be ashamed to own he has been in the wrong, which is but saying, in other words, that he is wiser today than he was yesterday.
They said to him, “Tell us who you are so that we may believe in you.” He said to them, “You examine the face of heaven and earth, but you have not come to know the one who is in your presence, and you do not know how to examine this moment.”
During the gap — infinitesimal though it be — between two thoughts, the ego vanishes. Hence it may truly be said that with each thought it reincarnates anew. There is no real need to wait for the series of long-lived births to be passed through before liberation can be achieved. The series of momentary births also offers this opportunity, provided a man knows how to use it.
If I have ever made any valuable discoveries, it has been owing more to patient attention, than to any other talent.
Shrinking away from death is something unhealthy and abnormal which robs the second half of life of its purpose.
Condition, circumstance, is not the thing; bliss is the same in subject or in king.
There is an old simile in India that if you place a cup of milk before a Raja Hamsa (swan) with plenty of water in it, he will take all the milk and leave the water. In that way we should take what is of value in knowledge, and leave the dross.
The great thing in this world is not so much where we stand as in what direction we are moving.
A Psalm of Life
Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.
Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
Dust thou art, to dust returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.
Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Find us farther than to-day.
Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.
In the world’s broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!
Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act — act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o’erhead!
Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;
Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.
Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.
For most people, even for educated and thinking people, the chief obstacle in the way of acquiring self-consciousness consists in the fact that they think they possess it, that is that they already possess self-consciousness and everything connected with it; individuality in the sense of a permanent and unchangeable ‘I,’ will, ability to do, and so on. It is evident that a man will not be interested if you tell him that he can acquire by long and difficult work something which, in his opinion, he already has. On the contrary he will think either that you are mad or that you want to deceive him with a view to personal gain.
The force of necessity is irresistible.
There is no death… Only a change of worlds.
It is not necessary to go off on a tour of great cathedrals in order to find the Deity. Look within. You have to sit still to do it.
The search is what anyone would undertake if he were not sunk in the everydayness of his own life. To become aware of the possibility of the search is to be onto something. Not to be onto something is to be in despair.
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.
Study to be quiet.
A sublime soul can rise to all kinds of greatness, but by his own effort; it can tear itself loose from all bondage, to all that limits and restrains it, but only by the strength of determination.
Let your understanding be your action.
In yourself lies the sweetness of your charm, from you does it blossom, in you it sojourns, within you it rests, in your own self you must search for the jubilant quality of your conscience. For that reason Solomon says, “Drink water out of your own cistern and the streams out of your own well.”
Only let your present and past distress make you feel and acknowledge this twofold great truth: first, that in and of yourself, you are nothing but darkness, vanity, and misery; secondly, that of yourself, you can no more help yourself to light and comfort, than you can create an angel. People at all times can seem to assent to these two truths, but then it is an assent which has no depth or reality, and so is of little or no use, but your condition has opened your heart for a deep and full conviction of these truths. Now give way, I beseech you, to this conviction, and hold these two truths, in the same degree of certainty as you know two and two to be four, and then you are with the prodigal come to yourself, and above half your work is done.
If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.