New Years and thoughts on time
From T.S. Eliot:
Time present, and time past are both perhaps present in time future And time future is contained in time past….
For The New Year: Henry David Thoreau
On Life’s Purpose
I wish to begin this [year] well; to do something in it that is worthy of it and me; to transcend my daily routine; to have my immortality now; in the quality of my daily life. May I dare as I have never done. May I attain to a youth never attained. I am eager to report the glory of the universe; may I be worthy of it, for it is [only] reasonable that we should be more worthy [of life] at the end of each year, than at its beginning.
from Dr. Viktor Frankl
In the concentration camp, we needed to stop asking about the meaning of life, and instead think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life itself, daily-hourly. Our answer must consist, not in talk and meditation, but in right action and in right conduct. Life ultimately means taking responsibility to find the right answers to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual.
Much has been said about the concept that we are “wounded healers.” That we learn from our own pain how best to address the pain we see in others. My spinal pain has taught me something about the reintegration of the heart, which is reflected in the body… A softening around pain, an investigation of my incessant resistance to accept, and the despair that is manifest in my desire to escape. At first, all I ever sought to learn from my pain is how to negate or relieve it. Then after learning that there was no easy relief, I asked one of my teachers how best to let go or accept this pain I have to contend with daily. His answer was one that propelled me further into my spiritual path than any other piece of advice I have received. It is a starling wisdom that I will never forget. He said, ” Don’t try for relief, look instead for the truth!
We are all wounded healers on the way to completion, entering our wholeness just beneath the surface of our superficial attachments and holdings. … As we live our lives in the lab, life itself becomes an experiment in the truth of our being.]
from Harry Emerson Fosdick
[Nobody ever finds a life worth living. One has to make it worth living. All the people to whom life has been abundantly worth living have made it so by [making] an interior, creative, and spiritual contribution of their own back to life and to others.
Is life worth living? Most people seem to think that is a question about the Cosmos, or about God. No, my friends, that is a question about the inside attitude of you and me.]
Our Deepest Fear Marianne Williamson quoted by Nelson Mandela
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous…
Actually, who are you not to be??
You are a child of God. You’re playing small doesn’t serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
And it is not just in some of us, it’s in everyone.
As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fears, our presence automatically liberates others.
It’s time that we understand our role as stewards of this planet,
That we respect and honor the delicate balance of our world
It’s time that we realize, “We are all one people”,
That separateness is an illusion and that, in truth, we are all connected.
It’s time that we see past the veil of illusion called separateness,
and understand just how connected we really are,
That we are all made from the same substance of the universe,
and by harming another, we are only harming ourselves.
It’s time that we see past the color of one’s skin or the name of one’s God,
That we realize we are merely traveling parallel paths leading up the same mountain.
It’s time that we stop searching for happiness outside ourselves,
That we turn our attention inward and tune into the calm peace of our soul.
It’s time that we take responsibility for making the world a better place,
That we strengthen the foundation of our communities by being of good character.
It’s time that we ask, “how can I make a difference?”,
That we leave this world in a little better shape than when we arrived
It’s time that we listen to each other with empathy and compassion,
That we overcome the fear in our mind so that we can experience the love in our heart.
It’s time that we get past our ego and discover our innate spiritual essence,
That we realize our selfish desires and serve humankind unconditionally, with love.
It’s time that we “Love all, serve all”, That we be at peace.
The Contented Fisherman
One day, a rich industrialist drove up to the edge of the ocean to admire the view… there, under a shady tree, with his fishing pole in his hand, he saw a young fisherman lying lazily beside his boat…
He got out of his limousine, and walked over to the young fisherman and questioned him… in a direct tone of voice, he asked ” Why aren’t you out fishing today???
It is still early, and you should be still hard at work…!
” The fisherman said, ” I have already caught enough fish for the day”
The rich man pushed further” Why aren’t you eager to stay out and catch more?? The fisherman replied, ” What would I do with anymore?”
You could sell it and earn money, was the industrialist’s reply. Then, you could buy a motor, fix up your boat or buy a bigger one, and then be able to go out long distances, into deeper water, and catch even more fish! Then you would make enough money to buy nylon nets, so you can catch more fish, and make more money. Then you could hire workers and buy another boat… maybe a whole fleet of fishing boats! Then you would become a rich man like me.”
What would I do then? asked the fisherman.
Then you could relax and really enjoy life said the rich man.
What do you think I am doing right now??
Question: Which would you rather have: a fortune in your future or the capacity to enjoy life in the here and now?
A Parable on Modern Life
The animals all met in an assembly and began to complain that humans were always taking things from them….
“They take my milk,” said the cow. “They take my eggs”, said the chicken. “They take my flesh for bacon”, said the pig. “They hunt me for oil”, said the whale…
Finally, the snail spoke up… “I have something that they certainly would take away from me if they could. It is something that would make them very rich and it is something that they want more than anything in their lives…” The other animals then looked at the snail, and the snail said,
” I have time” The morale of the story: You can have all the time you need in the world, IF you are willing to give it to yourself. Ask yourself: What stops you? What thoughts and feelings rob you of your peace and your time? How does the use of time in our world influence your sense of freedom and true wealth?