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Why Reading Inspirational Quotes Can Inspire You

Inspirational Quotes to Live By

inspirational quotes

Quote from Ma Jaya

There is nothing like a good inspirational quote to soothe your mind, freshen your soul or enliven your mood. There are a multitude of books that intrigue us with their pithy statements and aphorisms. When all else fails—meaning that when absorption in work, taking a dream vacation, meeting the boyfriend of your dreams or scarfing down a hot fudge sundae doesn’t work to inspire you– pick up one of myriad tiny books of inspirational quotes. You will for sure read something that will alter your thinking in such a way to either lift your spirits or make you contemplative.

Sacred Texts Holding Inspirational Quotes

Notwithstanding the Bible, Koran, Torah, Ramayana, or any of our so-called holy books, where reading scriptures of some sort can relax a troubled soul, there are many men and women of wisdom who have delved into inspiration and are able to share it with others. They are fortunate to have distilled their life experiences into a jewel of inspirational wisdom.

How to be the purveyor of inspirational quotes

Some of us might ask how does one become a purveyor of inspirational quotes that render wisdom. This request usually comes at a time when you no longer look towards that best friend or relative who always seemed to give you the “word.” Suddenly you are not looking for mere consolation; you are looking for that peaceful wisdom that comes from the depth of one’s soul. Mere pithy aphorisms no longer make the grade. You are searching for wisdom, and an inspirational quote that suddenly consoles the troubled or scattered mind.

Noteworthy figures that give us inspirational quotes

We are truly lucky to live in this age where wise prophet like people abound in popular form, to-wit: Eckert Tolle, Oprah Winfrey, Thich Nat Hanh, the Daily Lama, Maya Angelou, Deepak Chopra, and Marianne Williamson, to name a few who have shared their wisdom with us countless times. We certainly do not lack for wisdom. While these noteworthy figures have indeed inspired us, and multitudes are drawn to them, there are so many others through the ages that make us ponder and enrich us.

Choosing Inspirational Quotes for your Perusal

I choose a few of the myriad wisdom statements that have inspired me. You need only look up inspirational quotes on your computer. You will be sure to find quotes that stop the meanderings of your mind and embrace it so that it turns in a different direction.

Inspirational quotes:

Take any one of these inspirational quotes, digest it into your heart and soul and allow it to transform you.

Helen Keller:

The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart

Jackson Brown:

The best preparation for tomorrow is doing your best today.

Joseph Campbell:

We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.

Walt Whitman:

Today I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, and pain. To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it.

Thomas Jefferson:

I don’t consider a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend.

Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati:

When you plant a seed of love, it is you that blossoms.

George Santayana:

We must welcome the future, remembering that soon it will be the past; and we must respect the past, remembering that it was once all that was humanly possible.

Bruce Springsteen:

The past is never the past. It is always present. And you better reckon with it in your life and in your daily experience, or it will get you. It will get you really bad.

Norman Vincent Peale:

Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.

Nelson Mandela:

Education is the most powerful weapon, which you can use to change the world.

P.T. Barnum:

Every man should make his son or daughter learn some useful trade or profession, so that in these days of changing fortunes of being rich today and poor tomorrow they may have something tangible to fall back upon. This provision might save many persons from misery, who by some unexpected turn of fortune have lost all their means.

I choose quotes from from the spectrum of wisdom. Thus you see how much wisdom emanates from a person who not only lives an exemplary life, but also manages to distill the experience into a wisdom jewel.

Posted in Spiritual Quotes | Leave a comment

What is the Dharma?

What is the Dharma Explored

what-is-the-dharmaMost of us seek happiness. As we seek happiness, those of us who are perhaps of a more immature frame of mind might think happiness is to be gained through the fulfillment of one’s desires. In that respect, we seek happiness through worldly pleasures, attainment of worldly success. Perhaps for some unfortunates, happiness is sought in addictive behavior and substances. These addictive behaviors bring of course short-lived “happiness” and requires increasing amounts of the favored substance to bring it about. When everything fails to bring what we feel we desire, those of us fortunate enough might begin to ask what is the dharma.

What is the dharma defined

What is the dharma can best be answered as that path of righteousness and living one’s life according to certain codes of conduct. Thus, these codes might vary according to the religious path one follows. However, Hinduism has long been known as the path that best describes dharma.

What is the dharma?

Hinduism describes dharma as the natural universal laws whose observance enables humans to be contented and happy. It also saves one from suffering. Dharma is the moral law. One combines it with spiritual discipline to guide one’s life. Thus, for Hindus answering the question what is the dharma, they will tell you that it is the very foundation of life. A Sanskrit word, it means “that which holds” the people of the world and all of creation. Dharma is the “law of being” without which things do not exist.

Definition of what is the dharma by Tulsidas

A wise Hindu scholar, Tulsidas, defined the root of dharma as compassion. This principle is observed and promulgated by Lord Buddha in the Dhammapada, an immortal book of great wisdom. In Hindu wisdom, there is dharma and the absence of it is referred to as adharma.

How karma contributes to the question of what is the dharma

Hinduism accepts the concept of reincarnation. What determines the state of an individual in the next incarnation is karma. Karma refers to the actions undertake by the body and the mind. In order to achieve good karma, it is important to live life according to answering the precepts of what is the dharma. This involves doing what is right for the individual, the family, the class or caste and also for the universe itself. Dharma affects the future according to the karma accumulated.

What contributes to answering what is the dharma?

Anything that helps human beings to reach god and fulfill their spiritual path is dharma. Anything that hinders human beings from reaching god is adharma. According to the wise book, the Bhagavat Purana, righteous living or life on a dharmic path has four aspects:

  1. Austerity
  2. Purity
  3. Compassion and
  4. Truthfulness.

Adharmic life has three vices: pride; contact and intoxication. Moreover, the essence of dharma lies in possessing a certain ability, power and spiritual strength. The strength of being dharmic lies in a unique combination of spiritual brilliance and physical prowess.

Rules involved in answering what is the dharma

According to the ancient sage Manu, there are ten essential rules for the observance of dharma:

  1. Patience
  2. Forgiveness
  3. Piety or self control
  4. Honesty
  5. Sanctity
  6. Control of senses
  7. Reason
  8. Knowledge or learning
  9. Truthfulness and 10. Absence of anger

I know that many people reading these rules of dharma find themselves with a feeling of overwhelm at the many conditions of living in the dharma. However, the purpose of dharma is not only to attain a union of the soul with the supreme reality. It also points to a code of conduct that one intends to secure both worldly joys and happiness.

Thus,unlike many Christian religions, leading a dharmic life is not only so that you may enjoy your afterlife. It is also to bring joy and contentment to this life. The practice of dharma gives an experience of peace, joy, strength and tranquility within one’s life in the present.

Posted in Spiritual Practices and Traditions | Leave a comment

What is a True Friend?

Exploring the qualities of a true friend

What is a true friend?

true-friendI met a woman the other night who said to me, “I have many acquaintances, but have only one true friend.” I must say she spoke regretfully of the fact that she only shared one good friend. I thought of how lucky she was to have even one friend when some people long for a true friend. We are indeed fortunate if we can consider someone to be a true friend.

What a true friend provides

Finding a true friend is like selecting that person in your family who really accepts who you are in your totality. Many times our families have a very encapsulated and constricted views of who we are based on their own unfulfilled wishes or projections. Many psychiatrists or psychologists will tell you of the countless people who visit them because their families have considered them unacceptable in some way. These families unfortunately have projected their disappointment on their children in such a manner that the children can feel unworthy and unloved for the rest of their lives. It is truly tragic that no matter how much we have persevered, our families continue to see us in a very small way, unaware of the person we strive to become or perhaps have already become.

Personal experience with a true friend

This is one of the reasons it is so valuable to meet someone who sees us through eyes of not only acceptance, but also admiration. I personally have been fortunate to have a true friend who has not been unaware of my flaws, but still continues to see me in the best way possible. In my darkest moments and times of self-criticism, she has been quick to point out to me the qualities she herself has admired and appreciated in me. I am truly graceful for her acceptance and love. It’s as if she holds a snapshot or picture of me that never changes no matter what negative presentations I might present in the moment. She remembers my good qualities and always reminds me of them.

A true friend provides self esteem

Another friend held my hand, literally and figuratively, during a time when a boss was persecuting me. Fearful of losing my job, this person sought to reassure me of my worthiness and self esteem. Even though I eventually lost my position, I am truly grateful of the support I had at that time. A true friend can boost your self-esteem. Even better is when you can return that same feeling of esteem to your friend.

Here are some other qualities of a true friend:

  1. A true friend can also tell you of some blind spots you perhaps are not aware of.
    They do so in a very impartial and kind way. Their criticism is not meant to diminish you, but to assist you in some fashion. They are anxious that you succeed in life. We all have real flaws, but in many cases, they are not fatal even though we may refer to them as that. Gentle honesty is what sets their critiques of us apart from real criticism.
  1. They are present.
    What this means is a true friend gives you real attention when you speak. They are honestly interested in your thoughts and feelings. They are not always looking at their cell phone when you are speaking or giving excuses as to why they can’t speak with you in the moment. Nor are they more interested in telling you about their lives than yours. Mostly, it is a two way street. You are honestly interested in their lives also. This back and forth discussion of both your lives during a meal or over the phone is appreciated and loved.
  1. They support you through adversity.
    This is when you know you have a true friend. There is a willingness to even do your laundry or make chicken soup for you if you are ill. Their own feelings for the moment are submerged so that you can express whatever you are feeling during an emergency. They are as close to a real family member as you can get.
  1. A true friend is there for many stressful moments.
    How wonderful it is to be able to speak with someone when you are facing a stressful situation. Finding someone who gives you good and valuable advice is a great gift. Not everybody has the wisdom to give you advice that relieves your stress. If you find someone who has wisdom, clarity and compassion, you are truly lucky. Just talking to them or spending a bit of time with them can help beat stress.
  2. A true friend is truly happy when we accomplish something wonderful.
    It is great when you have someone who enjoys your accomplishments as well as your moments of despair. This is someone who is ready to applaud your finest moments also and not be jealous or envious of them. They not only support you, but also are genuinely happy if some good luck has come your way.
  3. They are truly proud of you.
    A true friend is happy to tell their other friends that you are their best friend and why. They even give significant examples of why they consider you their best friend. It is wonderful to know that there is someone who considers you that close and who trusts you enough to give you that moniker.
  4. They stick with you even though you may disagree with them. Sometimes hurt feelings emerge through interactions. They will eventually want to know why you are feeling in a certain way and feel free to tell you how they feel also. They are willing to look at their own failings and admit to them. You feel free to likewise return that gift.  It is a true gift to be honest with each other through adversity. In fact, the interest to maintain your friendship is such they are willing to admit to their own flaws. In fact, they might even be willing to change some aspect of it. The true friendship however is when both parties can accept the compromise each is willing to make to maintain the friendship.

Finally, a true friend will always evoke the best in us. In order for a friendship to continue, we must bring our very best to it to help it to grow and be sustainable. A true friend will always attempt to maintain the friendship even through difficult times. It is a sign of respect and honor when a friend is willing to sacrifice even their own ego to maintain a friendship with you.

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