Now

Now.

That’s the key.

Now, now, now.

Mindfulness trains you to be awake and alive,

fully curious, about what?

Well, about now, right?

You sit in meditation

and the out-breath is now

and waking up from your fantasies is now

and even the fantasies are now,

although they seem to take you

into the past and into the future.

The more you can be completely now,

the more you realize

that you’re in the center of the world,

standing in the middle of a sacred circle.

~Pema Chodron

(1936 to pres., Buddhist Teacher)

Compassionate Heart

Cultivating a compassionate heart

can help us avoid burning out,

shutting down, or getting lost

in anxiety and depression.

It can help us stay calm,

caring, and connected

to a wider perspective

so that we may even thrive

in a grim situation.

~Radhule Weininger

(clinical psychologist, founder of Mindful Heart Programs)

Love, Compassion, and Impermanence

Myriads of different thoughts and ideas

run through our minds.

But among all the thoughts

that we might possibly have,

there are two that stand out as truly special.

The first is the thought of impermanence.

Thinking about impermanence

clears the mind of its clutter.

It enables us to think of and perceive the world

in a way that is radically different

and genuinely constructive.

The second is love and compassion.

Love and compassion hold inconceivable power.

Love and compassion never lead us astray.

~Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche

(1951 to pres., Tibetan/ Nepalese Buddhist Teacher,

founder of  the Rangjung Yeshe Institute)

Listen

We are encouraged

to listen to our hearts,

listen to our inner voices,

and listen to our guts,

but rarely are we encouraged

to listen carefully and with intent

to other people.

~Kate Murphy

(Journalist and author)

Stand and Wait

God is all Love,

and we cannot by loud and strong prayers

make Him any wiser.

Perfection cannot be made more perfect

by protestations and prayers.

We must learn to “stand and wait”

as the classic poet Milton puts it,

and His Grace shall of its own

be attracted and flood our very being.

~Sant Kirpal Singh Ji Maharaj

(1894-1974 Mystic Adept, Spiritual Teacher,

Organizer of World Conference on Unity of Man,

President of the World Fellowship of Religions,

and Sant Satguru of Surat Shabd Yoga)

Freedom to Love

Lovingkindness, compassion, joy, and acceptance—

we all hold these qualities of basic goodness within.

It’s our natural state.

We don’t have to find or gain anything.

We simply have to uncover what we already have.

When we’re not clouded by emotions,

not shut down by old habits and fears,

even if for a moment,

we realize what’s best for ourselves.

We go in the direction of healing and openness.

And we discover the freedom to love.

~Pema Chödrön

(1936 to pres., Buddhist Teacher)

Waters of God

We have our own internal spa

fed by the waters of God

that soothe our soul.

When our soul is soothed,

our body and mind

are naturally at rest.

~Sant Rajinder Singh Ji Maharaj

(1946 to pres., Author, Scientist,

Mystic Adept of Light and Sound Current Yoga,

Leader of Science of Spirituality and

International Movements for World Peace)

Seasons

Life meanders

like a path through the woods.

We have seasons when we flourish

and seasons when the leaves fall from us,

revealing our bare bones.

Given time,

they grow again.

~Katherine May

(British writer, philosopher)

Pure Mind

Dismiss all the thoughts

which bother your mind.

Train yourself during many days,

many months, many years,

to retain this pure mind.

One day, when your empty mind

has become crystallized,

suddenly it will be illumined

by its own intrinsic wisdom.

At that instant you will realize

the state of pure awakening.

~Sokei-An Shigetsu Sasaki

(1882-1945, Japanese Rinzai monk

founder the Buddhist Society of America in New York City) 

Stillness

Stillness is vital to the world of the soul.

If as you age you become more still,

you will discover that stillness

can be a great companion.

The fragments of your life will have time to unify,

and the places where your soul-shelter

is wounded or broken

will have time to knit and heal.

You will be able to return to yourself.

In this stillness, you will engage your soul.

Many people miss out on themselves completely

as they journey through life.

They know others, they know places,

they know skills, they know their work,

but tragically, they do not know themselves at all.

Aging can be a lovely time of ripening

when you actually meet yourself,

indeed maybe for the first time.

~John O’Donohue

(1958 to 2008, Irish poet, author, priest, and Hegelian philosopher)