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simplicity

Shared Wisdom: Words Both Past & Present

In the last week or so I have been presented with some beautiful words of wisdom that span that sands of time and that I would like to share with you.  The first piece is the oldest of all of them and was written by Lao-tzu 2,500 years ago.  It comes from a translation of part of one of the eighty-one verses that form his book, titled Tao Te Ching. 

“63rd Verse

Practice nonaction.
Work without doing.
Taste the tasteless.
Magnify the small, increase the few.
Reward bitterness with care.
See simplicity in the complicated.
Achieve greatness in little things.”

Sometimes I need to remember that not taking action can be as important as, if not better than, taking action.  Because I tend to be impulsive a lot of the time this is a lesson that I need to practice. 

The opening words in this quotation also reminded me of another great person who lived in great simplicity but had an enormous impact on modern day history.  Here is a memorable one-liner from Ghandi that I found tucked in my purse.

“No matter how insignificant what you do may seem, it is important that you do it.”

Another ancient philosopher, Jalal ad-Din Rumi (1207-1273) wrote some of the most beautiful poetry that I have ever read.  Most of it is quite mystical and, I think, very spiritual. Just a week ago a good friend passed  me this piece of writing by Rumi.

“You were born with wings, why prefer to crawl through life?
Absorbed in this world, you’ve made it your burden.  Rise above this world.  There is another vision.  All your life you’ve paid attention to your experiences, but never to your Self.  Are you searching for your Soul?
Then come out of your prison. Leave the stream and join the river that flows into the Ocean.  Let yourself be silently drawn by the stronger pull of what you really love.  It will not lead you to stray.  Let the beauty you seek be what you do.
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.  Question the scholars and philosophers, but God is beyond their understanding.  Then look in your Heart and it was there where God dwells that you will see; God is nowhere else to be found.
Everything in the Universe is within you.  There is a link between matter and Spirit. And your heart is looking for that path.
Consciousness is clear and pure like water.
And pure water is a perfect mirror for moonlight.”

Coming closer to today, a gentleman was at a meeting that I attended a short while ago.  During a break he handed out small slips of paper to other attendees.  Mine contained the following quotation from Mark Twain.  I have been carrying it in my wallet so that I can take it out and read it frequently.

“Three daily reminders:  Have the courage to say no.  Have the courage to face the truth.  Have the courage to do the right thing because it is right.”

I have to constantly remind myself to practice the first reminder!

The last words of wisdom for today were written by a modern day writer/philosopher, Paul Ferrini.  I came across this quotation recently “by mistake” (in other words, by God-incidence).   There is so much packed into this one sentence that I remain in awe every time I read it.

“The door to the Divine Presence opens when you no longer need to make reality fit your pictures of how it should be, when you can surrender everything you think you know and come to each moment empty of expectations.”

Wow!!  Methinks I shall have to get some of Mr. Ferrini’s books.  He has written over forty of them.  I have never heard of him before but Larry Dossey says of him: “Paul Ferrini is a modern-day Kahlil Gibran – poet, mystic, visionary, teller of truth”.  I am always ready to read new (to me!) authors who may open up new doors, new visions on my spiritual path. 

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