“I ache for shared silence, not the awkward lulls in conversation where we reach for something- anything- to cover the tension of trying to be with too much of the other and too little of ourselves, but the moments of fullness that let each of us unfold and know who we really are. I long for silences with another where there is nothing to forgive or explain or justify, where we agree to abandon quickly spoken words for a time so we do not abandon ourselves or each other, the silences where no one asks me to choose between belonging to myself and being with the world.” Oriah Mountain Dreamer
“In a healthy response to pain and fear, we establish awareness before it becomes anger. We can train ourselves to notice the gap between the moments of sense experience and the subsequent response. Because of the particle-like nature of consciousness, we can enter the space between instinct and action, between impulse and reaction. To do so we must learn to tolerate our pain and fear. This is not easy. As James Baldwin put it, “Most people discover that when hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with their own pain.” That’s why we start by paying attention to the small things, small pains and disappointments. When I start to get into an argument with my wife, if I pay attention I notice that I usually feel hurt or afraid. If I speak to her angrily, she will become defensive and the argument will grow. But if I’m mindful, I can talk about the hurt or fears instead of being lost in anger and blame. Then my wife becomes interested and concerned. Out of this a different and more honest conversation occurs.” Jack Kornfield
“Honesty is the secret of survival, and it minimizes nearly all the problems of life. The individual who is emotionally and mentally honest has a great deal more chance of being physically healthy. Because the disturbances of the emotions are what cause a great deal of sickness, almost all of the troubles that we have arise from the interference that we create between the levels of our own constitution. The mind betrays the heart, the heart betrays the health, and all these things fall into a common ruin.” Manly P. Hall
“Admit it. You aren’t like them. You’re not even close. You may occasionally dress yourself up as one of them, watch the same mindless television shows as they do, maybe even eat the same fast food sometimes. But it seems that the more you try to fit in, the more you feel like an outsider, watching the “normal people” as they go about their automatic existences. For every time you say club passwords like “Have a nice day” and “Weather’s awful today, eh?”, you yearn inside to say forbidden things like “Tell me something that makes you cry” or “What do you think deja vu is for?”. Face it, you even want to talk to that girl in the elevator. But what if that girl in the elevator (and the balding man who walks past your cubicle at work) are thinking the same thing? Who knows what you might learn from taking a chance on conversation with a stranger? Everyone carries a piece of the puzzle. Nobody comes into your life by mere coincidence. Trust your instincts. Do the unexpected. Find the others…” Timothy Leary
“…feelings like disappointment, embarrassment, irritation, resentment, anger, jealousy, and fear, instead of being bad news, are actually very clear moments that teach us where it is that we’re holding back. They teach us to perk up and lean in when we feel we’d rather collapse and back away. They’re like messengers that show us, with terrifying clarity, exactly where we’re stuck. This very moment is the perfect teacher, and, lucky for us, it’s with us wherever we are.” Pema Chödrön
“I actually attack the concept of happiness. I don’t mind people being happy – but the idea that everything we do is part of the pursuit of happiness seems to me a really dangerous idea and has led to a contemporary disease in Western society, which is fear of sadness. It’s a really odd thing that we’re now seeing people saying ‘write down 3 things that made you happy today before you go to sleep’, and ‘cheer up’ and ‘happiness is our birthright’ and so on. We’re kind of teaching our kids that happiness is the default position – it’s rubbish. Wholeness is what we ought to be striving for and part of that is sadness, disappointment, frustration, failure; all of those things which make us who we are. Happiness and victory and fulfillment are nice little things that also happen to us, but they don’t teach us much. Everyone says we grow through pain and then as soon as they experience pain they say ‘Quick! Move on! Cheer up!’. I’d like just for a year to have a moratorium on the word ‘happiness’ and to replace it with the word ‘wholeness’. Ask yourself ‘is this contributing to my wholeness?’ and if you’re having a bad day, it is.” Hugh Mackay
“Religion for centuries has become associated with a life-negative attitude, and obviously any life negative attitude cannot be creative; it becomes intrinsically impossible for it to be creative. Creativity needs a life-affirmative philosophy, creativity needs a tremendous love for existence, and the so-called religions have been teaching people to renounce life, to escape from life; they have been against life. Because of this, no creative person can be interested in such religions. If he becomes interested he will lose his creativity; if he wants to remain creative he will have to sacrifice his religiousness. Religions have not left any other choice. Because of this, only uncreative people became interested in religion.
I am not talking about Gautam the Buddha, Lao Tzu, Zarathustra, Jesus, Mohammed, Mahavira, Krishna, Kabir, Nanak; leave aside these few names. They are immensely creative, they are poets of existence. They are far greater poets than your so-called poets—their whole life is poetry. They are great musicians. They may never have played on any musical instrument, but their heart is full of harmony, music, melody. Their very heartbeat is that of rhythm, of music. Their life is a dance, it is a song, it is a celebration. Hence, please leave aside these few people.
But the religions have nothing to do with them. Christianity, Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Mohammedanism, these organized religions have nothing to do with their own founders. If you look deep, if you meditate over the matter, you will be surprised. This is my observation: that the people who call themselves Christians are not at all concerned with Christ and his message; in fact, they are against everything which Christ stood for and sacrificed his life. The people who call themselves Hindus have nothing to do with Krishna; although they worship him, worshipping makes no difference in their lives. They have not learned the art that Krishna represents; in fact, they have interpreted Krishna according to their own ideas. And the same is the case with the Buddhists and the Jainas and other religions. They have all gone against the original founders. They have fallen victims of priests—and priests have nothing to do with religion at all.
Priests and politicians are in a conspiracy to exploit people, and the best way to exploit people is to destroy their intelligence. These religions have enslaved humanity. They have not helped people to be free, to be independent, to have their own selves; on the contrary, they have reduced them to slaves; in the name of religion they have created great prisons. And the strategy is subtle—very subtle, very cunning. The basic strategy is the same one used all over the world by all the religions. The first and the most fundamental principle of that strategy is: destroy people’s love for life, love for joy, love for celebration. Once people’s roots are cut away from existence they start shrinking in themselves, they start losing the sources of nourishment. Their whole being becomes poisoned.
They cannot really escape from life—nobody can really escape from life. Even the people who escape to the mountains have to depend on people who work in the marketplace. Nobody can really escape from life. The people who have gone into the monasteries are dependent on people who live outside; they depend on their support. If all the world, if the whole of humanity renounces life, it will be committing a global suicide. The Buddhist monk has to beg from those who are not yet monks. The Christian monk has to live on the donations of the people who are still in the world. Nobody can really escape from life while he is alive; it is impossible. But your sources can be poisoned.
You cannot escape from life and you cannot live your life totally. You start feeling guilty about being alive: you start feeling as if to be alive is a sin. You start cutting your life as much as you can; you start living at the minimum. That too you accept only as a necessary evil. That’s why laughter has disappeared, wholeness has disappeared. People look sad; their existence has become meaningless. They are uncreative; they are in a kind of limbo, neither here nor there. This is what your religions have done.” Osho
“Creating a life that reflects your values and satisfies your soul is a rare achievement. In a culture that relentlessly promotes avarice and excess as the good life, a person happy doing his own work is usually considered an eccentric, if not a subversive. Ambition is only understood if it’s to rise to the top of some imaginary ladder of success. Someone who takes an undemanding job because it affords him the time to pursue other interests and activities is considered a flake. A person who abandons a career in order to stay home and raise children is considered not to be living up to his potential — as if a job title and salary are the sole measure of human worth. You’ll be told in a hundred ways, some subtle and some not, to keep climbing, and never be satisfied with where you are, who you are, and what you’re doing. There are a million ways to sell yourself out, and I guarantee you’ll hear about them. To invent your own life’s meaning is not easy, but it’s still allowed, and I think you’ll be happier for the trouble.” Bill Watterson
“Growing-up, you’ll be conditioned to think one way or another and be irreverent of your own humanity and that of others for a while; and hopefully sooner rather than later, you’ll unlearn all the bs, and come back full circle to rediscover the deep knowing you were born with. And proceed to live with a strong conviction that ultimately, only love and kindness endures, not illusions built by whatever crap you thought you needed to feel secure. And that you can only take with you the memories that were sustained by these most beautiful and gracious of human qualities. These are the only possessions that will stay faithful to protect you in this lifetime, and beyond.” Unknown
“We all carry wounds in us that we received as children, and taking the path of healing these wounds makes it much easier for us to relate to and understand the children in our life. Whatever we haven’t transformed, we’re likely to pass on to our children and to our students. Our suffering will become their suffering. This is why practicing mindfulness in our daily lives is so important. It is not just to avoid burnout; mindfulness allows us to transform in the depths of our consciousness. If you are not at peace, how can you impart peace to your children and students?” Thich Nhat Hanh