18/365 – Respect – Body Truth

Your body is your vehicle for life.
As long as you are here, live in it.
Love, honor, respect and cherish it, treat it well, and it will serve you in kind. 
– Suzy Prudden
Every person’s body has a specific formula that works for it.  It is your responsibility to become acquainted with your body’s individual requirements.  No one diet works for everyone, nor does any one sleep or exercise regimen.
True respect comes from learning what your body needs to run at optimum performance, and then making the commitment to honoring those needs.
[…] How many times do you need to indulge and compromise your body’s truth before you learn to respect its limitations?  Not too many, I hope, for your own sake.  Treat your body with deference and respect, and it will respond accordingly.  Listen to your body and its wisdom; it will tell you what it needs if you ask, listen, and take heed.”  – Cherie Carter-Scott Ph.D. (If Life is a Game, These are the Rules)

17/365 – On Meditation, Wandering Thoughts

“When you follow wandering thoughts,
you are restricting your awareness;
your mind is restricted to that particular thought train.
When you don’t follow your wandering thoughts, your mind is free and open.  Tell your mind it can go anywhere it pleases, but you will not follow it.  At this time your body will be relaxed and your mind will be free because you are not restricting it in any way.  This is the most enjoyable time.  You have nothing to do.  Both mind and body are at ease.
[…] With meditation you can reach a point where there is no fluctuation, no scatteredness, no confusion.  You reach a state of equanimity.  Your mind is peaceful.  There are no waves.  That is being clear.  In that situation, however, there are still thoughts.  But if you maintain that clarity, you won’t think about them.”  – Ch’An Master Sheng-Yen (Zen Wisdom)

16/365 – Inner Voice

“Inner Voice
The Inner Voice speaks not in words but in the wordless language of the heart.  It is like an oracle who only speaks the truth.  If it had a face it would be […] alert, watchful, and able to accept both the dark and the light.
[…] There are times in our lives when too many voices seem to be pulling us this way and that.  Our very confusion in such situation is a reminder to seek silence and centering within.  Only then are we able to hear our truth.
If you have found your truth within yourself there is nothing more in this whole existence to find.  Truth is functioning through you. […] Your whole life becomes a prayer without any words, or better to say a prayerfulness, a grace, a beauty which does not belong to our mundane world, a ray of light coming from beyond into the darkness of our world.”
– Osho (Zen Tarot)

15/365 – Activities infused with reverence

“We see that when the activities of life are infused with reverence,
they come alive with meaning and purpose.
We see that when reverence is lacking from life’s activities, the result is cruelty, violence and loneliness.  The physical arena is a magnificent learning environment.  It is a school within which, through experimentation, we come to understand what causes us to expand and what causes us to contract, what causes us to grow and what causes us to shrivel, what nourishes our souls and what depletes them, what works and what does not.
[…] Our deeper understanding leads us to another kind of power, a power that loves life in every form that it appears, a power that does not judge what it encounters, a power that perceives meaningfulness and purpose in the smallest details upon the Earth.
This is Authentic Power.
When we align our thoughts, emotions, and actions with the highest part of ourselves, we are filled with enthusiasm, purpose, and meaning.  Life is rich and full.  We have no thoughts of bitterness.  We have no memory of fear.  We are joyously and intimately engaged with our world.  This is the experience of authentic power.”  –  Gary Zukav (The Seat of the Soul)

13/365 – Evolution: Survival of the Fittest?

“The evolution that we learned about in school
is the evolution of physical form.
[…] We learned, for example, that the single-celled creatures of the oceans are the predecessors of all more complex forms of life. […] We were taught, in other words, that evolution means the progressive development of organizational complexity.
This definition is an expression of the idea that the organism that is best able to control both its environment and all of the other organisms in its environment is the most evolved.  Survival of the fittest means that the most evolved organism in a given environment is the organism that is at the top of the food chain in that environment.  According to this definition, therefore, the organism that is most able to serve its self-preservation, is the most evolved.
We have long known that this definition of evolution is inadequate, but we have not known why.
When two humans engage one another, they are, in terms of organizational complexity, equally evolved.  If both have the same intelligence, yet one is small-minded, mean and selfish while the other is magnanimous and altruistic, we say that the one who is magnanimous and altruistic is the more evolved.  If one human intentionally sacrifices his or her life to save another, by, for example, using his or her own body to shield another from an unseen bullet or a speeding car, we say that the human who sacrificed his or her life, indeed, was one of the most evolved among us.  We know these things to be true, but they are at variance with our understanding of evolution.
[…] Our deeper understanding tells us that a truly evolved being is one that values others more than it values itself, and that values love more than it values the physical world and what is in it.”  – Gary Zukav (The Seat of the Soul)

12/365 – Seeking Happiness

“[…] Isn’t a life based on seeking personal happiness by nature
self-centered, even self-indulgent?
Not necessarily.
In fact, survey after survey has shown that it is unhappy people who tend to be most self-focused and are often socially withdrawn, brooding, and even antagonistic.
Happy people, in contrast, are generally found to be more sociable, flexible, and creative and are able to tolerate life’s daily frustrations more easily than unhappy people.  And, most important, they are found to be more loving and forgiving than unhappy people.
[…]  We begin, then, with the basic premise that the purpose of life is to seek happiness.  It is a vision of happiness as a real objective, one that we can take positive steps toward achieving.  And as we begin to identify the factors that lead to a happier life, we will learn how the search for happiness offers benefits not only for the individual but for the individual’s family and for society at large as well.”  –  Howard C. Cutler, M.D. (The Art of Happiness)

11/365 – Discovering the pathway to the source of self-esteem

“Self-esteem is feeling worthy and able to meet life’s challenges.
It is as essential as the air we breathe, and just as intangible.
It comes from the depths of our core, yet it is reflected in every single outward action we take, grand or small.  It is the essence from which we measure our worth and the most important building block in the foundation or our psyches.
If self-esteem is a lesson that you need to learn, you will be tested over and over until you feel confident about who you are and understand and believe in your intrinsic value.
[…] The process of building self-esteem is threefold:
  1. The first step is to identify what stands in your way.  By acknowledging the limiting belief that you have about yourself, you can then move to the
  2. second step: to search your soul for a deeper core connection with who you really are.
  3. The third step is to take action, whether that means valuing yourself just as you are or making positive change.
[…]  Remind yourself that self-esteem is ephemeral.  You will have it, lose it, cultivate it, nurture it, and be forced to rebuild it over and over again.  It is not something to be achieved and preserved, but rather a lifelong process to be explored and cultivated.
Where do your feelings of worthiness stem from?
Search to discover the pathway to that source, for you will need to revisit that source again and again through out your lifetime.  When you can easily find your way to the core of your essential value, then you know you have learned this lesson.”  – Cherie Carter-Scott Ph.D. (If Life is a Game, These are the Rules)

10/365 – Karma; Healing of the Soul

“Every action, thought, and feeling is motivated by an intention,
and that intention is a cause that exists as one with an effect.
If we participate in the cause, it is not possible for us not to participate in the effect.
In this most profound way, we are held responsible for our every action, thought and feeling, which is to say, for our every intention.  We, ourselves, shall partake of the fruit of our every intention.  It is, therefore, wise for us to become aware of the many intentions that inform our experience, to sort out which intentions produce which effects, and to choose our intentions according to the effects that we desire to produce.
[…]  Since we cannot know what is being healed through each interaction – what karmic debts are coming to conclusion – we cannot judge what we see.
[…]  Of one thing we can be certain: a person that is engaging in violence is hurting deeply, because a healthy and balanced Soul is incapable of harming another.”  – Gary Zukav (The Seat of the Soul)

9/365 – We never know

“Our days are numbered.
At this very moment, many thousands are born into the world, some destined to live only a few days or weeks, and then tragically succumb to illness or other misfortune.
Others are destined to push through to the century mark, perhaps even a bit beyond, and savor every taste life has to offer: triumph, despair, joy, hatred, and love.
We never know.
But whether we live a day or a century, a central question always remains: What is the pupose of our life?  What makes our life meaningful?”  – Howard C. Cutler, M.D.  (The Art of Happiness)