THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE LISTS
as of 4/21/16
NOTE: In most cases you will find these lists included in this document but some lists are simply too long and will require using the internet. Links are provided except if this is a print version. If that’s the case, you will have to use a search engine to get to the list the next time you are on the internet or ask me for this document as an email attachment. I will be glad to do that. My email is email@example.com.
We start with the longest list and end with the shortest lists. You can start at the end if you want to. Or anywhere else for that matter!
By the way, you don’t have to agree with everything here. I DON’T. But the wisdom is profound and can lead to enlightenment and great compassion.
ONE HUNDRED TWELVE
+ 30 Small Habits Leading to a More Peaceful Life by Charlene Decesare
+ 25 Reasons Why Twitter is Spiritual by Frederic Brussat
Do not be idolatrous about or bound to any doctrine, theory, or ideology, even Buddhist ones. All systems of thought are guiding means; they are not absolute truth.
Do not think that the knowledge you presently possess is changeless, absolute truth. Avoid being narrow-minded and bound to present views. Learn and practice non-attachment from views in order to be open to receive others' viewpoints. Truth is found in life and not merely in conceptual knowledge. Be ready to learn throughout our entire life and to observe reality in yourself and in the world at all times.
Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education. However, through compassionate dialogue, help others renounce fanaticism and narrowness.
Do not avoid contact with suffering or close your eyes before suffering. Do not lose awareness of the existence of suffering in the life of the world. find ways to be with those who are suffering by all means, including personal contact and visits, images, sound. By such means, awaken yourself and others to the reality of suffering in the world.
Do not accumulate wealth while millions are hungry. Do not take as the aim of you life fame, profit, wealth, or sensual pleasure. Live simply and share time, energy, and material resources with those who are in need.
Do not maintain anger or hatred. As soon as anger and hatred arise, practice the meditation on compassion in order to deeply understand the persons who have caused anger and hatred. Learn to look at other beings with the eyes of compassion.
Do not lose yourself in dispersion and in your surroundings. Learn to practice breathing in order to regain composure of body and mind, to practice mindfulness, and to develop concentration and understanding.
Do not utter words that can create discord and cause the community to break. Make every effort to reconcile and resolve all conflicts, however small.
Do not say untruthful things for the sake of personal interest of to impress people. Do not utter words that cause diversion and hatred. Do not spread news that you do not know to be certain. Do not criticize or condemn things you are not sure of. Always speak truthfully and constructively. Have the courage to speak out about situations of injustice, even when doing so may threaten your own safety.
Do not use the Buddhist community for personal gain or profit, or transform your community into a political party. A religious community should, however, take a clear stand against oppression and injustice, and should strive to change the situation without engaging in partisan conflicts.
Do not live with a vocation that is harmful to humans and nature. Do not invest in companies that deprive others of their chance to life. Select a vocation which helps realize your ideal compassion.
Do not kill. Do not let others kill. Find whatever means possible to protect life and to prevent war.
Possess nothing that should belong to others. Respect the property of others but prevent others from enriching themselves from human suffering or the suffering of other beings.
Do not mistreat your body. Learn to handle it with respect. Do not look on your body as only and instrument. Preserve vital energies (sexual, breath, spirit) for the realization of the Way. Sexual expression should not happen without love and commitment. In sexual relationships be aware of future suffering that may be caused. To preserve the happiness of others, respect the rights and commitments of others. Be fully aware of the responsibility of bringing new lives into the world. Meditate on the world into which you are bringing new beings.
Do not believe that I feel that I follow each and every of these precepts perfectly. I know I fail in many ways. None of us can fully fulfill any of these. However, I must work toward a goal. These are my goal. No words can replace practice, only practice can make the words.
The finger pointing at the moon is not the moon.
+ Twelve Practices leading to our Realization that We are a Heavenly Being by John A Wilde
+ The Twelve Pathways to Higher Consciousness by Kenneth Keyes
1. I am freeing myself from security, sensation and power addictions that make me try to forcefully control situations in my life and thus destroy my serenity and keep me from loving myself and others.
2. I am discovering how my consciousness dominating addictions create my illusory version of the changing world of people and situations around me..
3. I welcome the opportunity, even if painful, that my minute to minute experience offers me to become aware of the addictions I must reprogram to be liberated from my robotlike emotional patterns.
4. I always remember I have everything I need to enjoy my here and now unless I am letting my consciousness be dominated by demands and expectations based on the dead past or imagined future.
5. I take full responsibility here and now for everything I experience for it is my own programming that creates my actions and also influences the reactions of those around me.
6. I accept myself completely here and now and consciously experience everthing I feel, think, say and do (including my emotion-backed addictions) as a necessary part of my growth into higher consciousness.
7. I open myself genuinely to all people by being willing to communicate my deepest feelings, since hiding in any degree keeps me stuck in my illusion of separateness from others.
8. I feel with loving compassion the problems of others without getting caught up emotionally in their predicaments that are offering them messages they need for their growth.
9. I act freely when I am tuned in, centered and loving and if possible I avoid acting when I am emotionally upset and depriving myself of the wisdom that flows from love and expanded consciousness.
10. I am continually calming the restless scanning of my rational mind in order to perceive the finer energies that enable me to unitively merge with everything around me.
11. I am constantly aware of which of the seven centers of consciousness I am using and I feel my energy, perceptiveness, love and inner peace growing as I open all of the centers of consciousness.
12. I am perceiving everyone, including myself, as an awakening being who is here to claim his or her birthright to the higher consciousness planes of unconditional love and oneness.
+ The Ten Commandments (Go to Exodus 20:1-17)
There are ten principal Sufi thoughts which comprise all the important subjects with which the inner life of man is concerned:
1) There is one God, the
Eternal, the Only Being; none else exists save God.
2) There is one Master, the Guiding Spirit of all souls, who constantly leads all followers towards the light.
3) There is one Holy Book, the sacred manuscript of nature, which truly enlightens all readers.
4) There is one Religion, the unswerving progress in the right direction towards the ideal, which fulfils the life's purpose of every soul.
5) There is one Law, the law of Reciprocity, which can be observed by a selfless conscience together with a sense of awakened justice.
6) There is one human Brotherhood, the Brotherhood and Sisterhood which unites the children of earth indiscriminately in the Fatherhood of God.
7) There is one Moral Principle, the love which springs forth from self-denial, and blooms in deeds of beneficence.
8) There is one Object of Praise, the beauty which uplifts the heart of its worshipper through all aspects from the seen to the unseen.
9) There is one Truth, the true knowledge of our being within and without which is the essence of all wisdom.
10) There is one Path, the annihilation of the false ego in the real, which raises the mortal to immortality and in which resides all perfection.
+ “Ten Reasons Gandhi is my Hero” by Frederic Brussat
1. He was aflame with love. "Gandhi was a pioneer in these new realms of consciousness. Everything he did was an experiment in expanding the human being's capacity to love, and as his capacity grew, the demands on his love grew more and more severe, as if to test what limits a human being can bear. But Gandhi had learned to find a fierce joy in these storms and trials. . . . By the end of his life he was aflame with love." — Eknath Easwaran in Gandhi the Man
2. He expended all his energy in service of others. "Late in Gandhi's life a Western journalist asked, 'Mr. Gandhi, you've been working fifteen hours a day for fifty years. Don't you ever feel like taking a few weeks off and going for a vacation?' Gandhi laughed and said, 'Why? I am always on vacation.' Because he had no personal irons in the fire, no selfish concerns involved in his work, there was no conflict in his mind to drain his energy." — Eknath Easwaran in The Compassionate Universe
3. He gave his mission his best shot. " 'Full effort is full victory,' said Gandhi. You need not be troubled if you have made mistakes, or if your ideal has slipped away. Just continue to give your best. If you fall, pick yourself up and march on. If you cannot run, walk. If you cannot walk, crawl. Nothing in life is more joyful or more thrilling. The effort alone brings a continuing wave of joy in which every personal problem, every suffering and humiliation, is forgotten." — Eknath Easwaran in The Compassionate Universe
4. He reframed greed. "There is a story told about Mahatma Gandhi. On his train trips he used to get off at every stop and collect money for the poor. A friend said of him, 'If you want to see somebody consumed by greed, look no further.' Of course, instead of being greedy for himself, he was greedy for the poor." — Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat in Spiritual Rx
5. He practiced compassion in creative ways. "One day Gandhi stepped aboard a train as it started to move, and one of his shoes slipped off and dropped on the tracks. Unable to retrieve it, he calmly took off his other shoe and threw it back along the track to land close to the first. When an amazed passenger asked why he had done that, Gandhi smiled and said, 'The poor man who finds the shoe lying on the track will now have a pair he can use.' With the eyes of his imagination, Gandhi saw a man with bare feet, saw him coming across a lone shoe and desperately searching for the other, and saw the disappointment on his face when he didn't find it; seeing these things, Gandhi did what he could to help." — Donald McCullough in Say Please, Say Thank You
6. He redefined success. "Without realizing it, Gandhi had found the secret of success. He began to look on every difficulty as an opportunity for service, a challenge which could draw out of him greater resources of intelligence and imagination." — Eknath Easwaran in Gandhi the Man
7. He emphasized the privilege of giving. "Gandhi reminded us that it was everyone's privilege to give. We should thank the poor for giving us the opportunity to undo some of our karma." — Ekanath Easwaran in The Bhagavad Gita for Daily Living, Volume 3
8. He showed us how a mantra could be one's staff of life. "Rama, Gandhi's mantram, is a formula for abiding joy. Gandhi used to walk for miles every day repeating it to himself until the rhythm of the mantram and his footsteps began to stabilize the rhythm of his breathing, which is closely connected with the rhythm of the mind. When fear or anger threatened him, clinging to Rama used the power of these emotions to drive this formula for joy deep into Gandhi's mind. "Gandhi said: 'The mantram becomes one's staff of life and carries one through every ordeal.' " — Eknath Easwaran in Gandhi the Man
9. He was the essential pioneer of nonviolence. "In its positive form, nonviolence means the largest love, the greatest charity. If I am a follower of nonviolence, I must love my enemy. I must apply the same rules to the wrong-doer who is my enemy or a stranger to me, as I would to my wrong-doing father or son. This active nonviolence necessarily includes truth and fearlessness. The practice of nonviolence calls forth the greatest courage." — Mohandas Gandhi in Mohandas Gandhi: Essential Writings edited by John Dear
10. He passed on his spiritual legacy to all of us. " 'I have not the shadow of a doubt that any man or woman can achieve what I have, if he or she would make the same effort, and cultivate the same hope and faith.' Gandhi, who always claimed he had no more than ordinary capacities, is proof that these spiritual laws do work, and that by obeying them we can transform our character and consciousness. Gandhi belongs to our own century and faced many of the problems we ourselves are facing today, and even though physically dead, he still continues to give new direction to our civilization." — Eknath Easwaran in The Bhagavad Gita for Daily Living, Volume 1: The End of Sorrow
+ Ten Simple Rules for Daily Living: The daily decalogue of Pope John XXIII
I will not be afraid to enjoy what is beautiful and to believe in goodness.
1) Only for today, I will seek to live the livelong day positively without wishing to solve the problems of my life all at once.
2) Only for today, I will take the greatest care of my appearance: I will dress modestly; I will not raise my voice; I will be courteous in my behaviour; I will not criticize anyone; I will not claim to improve or to discipline anyone except myself.
3) Only for today, I will be happy in the certainty that I was created to be happy, not only in the other world but also in this one.
4) Only for today, I will adapt to circumstances, without requiring all circumstances to be adapted to my own wishes.
5) Only for today, I will devote 10 minutes of my time to some good reading, remembering that just as food is necessary to the life of the body, so good reading is necessary to the life of the soul.
6) Only for today, I will do one good deed and not tell anyone about it.
7) Only for today, I will do at least one thing I do not like doing; and if my feelings are hurt, I will make sure that no one notices.
8) Only for today, I will make a plan for myself: I may not follow it to the letter, but I will make it. And I will be on guard against two evils: hastiness and indecision.
9) Only for today, I will firmly believe, despite appearances, that the good Providence of God cares for me as no one else who exists in this world.
10) Only for today, I will have no fears. In particular, I will not be afraid to enjoy what is beautiful and to believe in goodness. Indeed, for 12 hours I can certainly do what might cause me consternation were I to believe I had to do it all my life.
1. One God
“The Lord is our God, The Lord is One” - Shema, Hebrew Prayer
“Allah is One” - Koran, 112:1
“The One is Lord of all the moves” - Rig Veda III.54.8 (Hinduism)
“There is only One God.” -Chief Seattle
2. God is Everywhere
“I fill the Heaven and the Earth.” - the Bible, Jer 23:24
“The whole world is Brahman.” - the Upanishads (Hinduism)
“How majestic is your presence in all the earth!” the Bible, Psalm 8
“We think of Tirawa (God) as in everything” Lenape Indian interview
3. God is Light
“God is Light, and in Him is no darkness at all.” - the Bible 1John 1:5
“All things appear, illumined by Brahman’s Light.” - the Upanishads
“Allah’s light illumines all Heaven and Earth.” - Koran 24:35
4. The Existence of the Soul
“Fear not them which are able to kill the body but not able to kill the soul”
- Bible, Matthew 10:20
“A soul will not die” Koran 3:145
“For the soul there is never birth nor death. It is not slain when the body is slain”
- Bhagavad Gita (Hinduism)
“And it came to pass, as her soul was departing, (for she died)”- Bible, Genesis 35:18
5. God is Inside of Us
“We know that He dwell in us because he has given us of his Spirit.” - Bible 1John 13
“God dwelleth in all hearts” - Bhagavad Gita
“The One God is hidden in all living things” - the Upanishads (Hinduism)
“All animals have power because the Great Spirit dwells in all of them”
- Lame Deer, Sioux Chief
“The Kingdom of God is within you.” - Jesus
“He to whom you pray is nearer than the neck of your camel.” - Mohammed
6. Spiritual Knowledge is Obtainable
“Take heed of the Living One while you are alive, lest you die and seek to see Him, and be unable to do so.” - Jesus, Gospel of Thomas
“All who dwell on earth may find you” - Jewish Prayer Book
“True knowledge can only be attained by a human being.” - Krishna
“Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave” - Mohammed
“The sage who is intent on yoga comes to Brahman without long delay” -Bhagavad-gita
“Search with sincerity and in the end you will find the truth.” Buddha
“If thou seekest hidden treasures, thou shall find the knowledge of God” -Bible, Proverbs
7. God’s Name: “I AM”
Although all religions have different native languages, most contain similar teachings about God’s name. Many of them tell us that God’s name can’t actually be pronounced, or that giving God a name is like putting a limit on something that is limitless. As well, many of the religions have several names for God. One name that the religions share is the phrase “I AM.” This is shown in Exodus 3:14 and John 8:58 of the Bible, and in the Shatapatha Brahmana of the Hindu faith. The sacred word soham for Hindus is translated as “I am that I am,” the exact same phrase as in Exodus 3:14.
8. Compassion and Respect for Everyone
“All beings long for happiness. Therefore extend thy compassion to all. He who wishes his own happiness, let him cultivate goodwill towards all the world” - Buddha
“Love your enemies. Bless them that curse you. For if you love only those that love you, what reward have ye? -Jesus
“Judge everybody favorably” - the Talmud (Jewish sacred book)
9. Morals: Don’t Lie, Steal, Commit Adultery, Covet
The Ten Commandments, the Ten Precepts of the Buddha, and verse 16:1 of the Bhagavad-gita all clearly state these moralistic teachings.
10. All of Humanity is United
“God hath made of one blood all nations that dwell upon the face of the Earth” -Bible, Acts 17:16
“All creatures are members of the one family of God” - Mohammed
“Human beings, all, are as head, arms, trunk, and legs unto one another” - The Vedas
“One thing we know. All men are brothers” - Chief Seattle
“All people are your children, whatever their belief, whatever their shade of skin”
- Jewish prayer book
This document is uncopyrighted. All are encouraged to print, copy, and distribute it. It is available online at http://www.theharmonyinstitute.org
For a free hard copy that fits perfectly on to a two-sided piece of paper, send a Self Addressed Stamped Envelope to The Harmony Institute (see address below).
From the book, The Message That Comes From Everywhere: Exploring The Common Core of the World's Religions and Modern Science, by Gary L. Beckwith, ISBN 0970112564.
For more information contact The Harmony Institute:
PO Box 242
Jonesville, VT 05466
phone (802) 434-4939
Book also available on Amazon.com.
+ The 9 Attributes of Heaven by John A. Wilde
+ The Beatitudes (Go to Matthew 5: 1-12)
By calling ourselves progressive, we mean we are Christians who…
1. Believe that following the path and teachings of Jesus can lead to an awareness and experience of the Sacred and the Oneness and Unity of all life;
2. Affirm that the teachings of Jesus provide but one of many ways to experience the Sacredness and Oneness of life, and that we can draw from diverse sources of wisdom in our spiritual journey;
3. Seek community that is inclusive of ALL people, including but not limited to:
•Conventional Christians and questioning skeptics,
•Believers and agnostics,
•Women and men,
•Those of all sexual orientations and gender identities,
•Those of all classes and abilities;
4. Know that the way we behave towards one another is the fullest expression of what we believe;
5. Find grace in the search for understanding and believe there is more value in questioning than in absolutes;
6. Strive for peace and justice among all people;
7. Strive to protect and restore the integrity of our Earth;
8. Commit to a path of life-long learning, compassion, and selfless love.
The Right Understanding is crucial to understanding the Buddhist belief system, particularly the identification, causes, consequences of, and through these eight steps, the elimination of suffering. The Right Understanding also conveys an understanding of the Buddhist philosophy of the non-permanence of the self.
To have the Right Thought, a follower should fully understand his purpose in following the teachings of the Buddha, as well as his outlook on the world and world issues.
The focus of the Right Speech is to avoid harmful language, such as lying or unkind words. It is far better to use gentle, friendly and meaningful words, even when a situation calls for a truth that may be hurtful, despite the follower’s best intentions.
The Right Action forms a list of fundamental ethical behaviors all practicing Buddhists should follow. These are the Five Precepts:
1. To refrain from destroying living beings
2. To refrain from stealing
3. To refrain from sexual misconduct (adultery, rape, etc.)
4. To refrain from false speech (lying)
5. To refrain from intoxicants which lead to heedlessness
Those seeking enlightenment should pick the Right Livelihood to support the other fundamentals of Buddhism. Followers should avoid employment in positions where their actions may cause harm to others, be it directly or indirectly.
Buddhists recognize that human nature limits the mind at times and causes ill thoughts. Unlike Right Thought, the Right Effort focuses on working to remove the bad thoughts and replace them with positive, more pleasant thoughts.
The Right Mindfulness, along with Right Concentration, is the foundation behind Buddhist meditation. Monks, or other followers, should focus their minds on their body, emotions, mental workings, and mental qualities, but not on worldly desire and aversion while meditating.
Coupled with Right Mindfulness, Right Concentration lays the framework for proper meditation. Rather than focusing on the mental aspects, the Right Concentration gives instructions as to how to work through the steps of focus in effective meditation.
+ Seven Centers of Consciousness by Kenneth Keyes
1) THE SECURITY CENTER: This Center makes you preoccupied with food, shelter, or whatever you equate whith your personal security. This programming forces your consciousness to be dominated by your continuous battle to get "enough" from the world in order to feel secure.
2) THE SENSATION CENTER: This Center is concerned with finding happiness in llfe by providing yourself with more and better pleasurable sensations and activities. For many people, sex is the most appealing of all sensations. Other addictive sensations may include the sound of music , the taste of food, etc.
3) THE POWER CENTER: When your consciousness is focused on this Center, you are concerned with dominating people and situations and increasing your prestige, wealth, and pride--in addition to thousands of more subtle forms of hierarchy, manipulation, and control.
4) THE LOVE CENTER: In this Center you are going beyond subject-object relationships and are learning to experience the world with increasing understanding, patience and emotional acceptance. You see yourself in everyone- and everyone in yourself. You feel compassion for the suffering of those caught in the dramas of security, sensation and power. You may not like what people say or do- but you no longer throw them out of your heart. You are beginning to love and emotionally accept everyone unconditinally - including yourself.
5) THE CORNUCOPIA CENTER: When your consciousness is illuminated by this Center, you experience the friendliness of the world you are creating. You begin to realize that you 've always lived in a perfect world. To the degree that you still have addictions, the perefction lies in giving you the experience you need to get free of your emotion-backed demands. As you reprogram your addictions, the perfection will be experienced as a continuous enjoyment of the here and now in your life. As you become more loving and accecpting, the world becomes a "horn of plenty" that gives you more than you need to be happy.
6) THE CONSCIOUS-AWARENESS CENTER: It is liberating to have a Center from which your conscious-awareness watches your body and mind perform on the first five centers. This is a meta-center from which you nonjudgementally witness the drama of your body and mind. From
this Center of Centers, you learn to impartially observe your social roles and life games from a place that is free from fear and vulnerability.
7) THE COSMIC CONSCIOUSNESS CENTER: When you live fully in the Sixth Center of Consciousness, you are ready to transcend self-awareness and become pure awareness. At this ultimate level, you are one with everything-you are love, peace, energy, beauty, wisdom, clarity, effectiveness and oneness.
The traditional Hindu system of belief encompasses energy centers known as chakras, which serve to accumulate, assimilate, and transmit psychological, physical, and spiritual energies. When these areas of interconnection between body and spirit are purified or opened up through the process of yoga (sometimes called raja yoga or kundalini yoga), the adept may experience an enormous infusion of energy, and, in some cases, enlightenment. The chakras are often pictured as lotus blossoms or spinning wheels (in Sanskrit, chakra means "wheel"; the English words "cycle" and "cyclone" are derived from the same root), and each chakra corresponds to a location in the physical body. (A similar system, with different terminologies, is employed by some schools of Buddhism and Taoism.)
The chakras are aligned along a central subtle energy channel called the sushumna, which is connected to two crisscrossing channels called the ida and pingala in a pattern that is strikingly similar to the double helix of DNA. Together they carry the life force, or prana, to various places in the body. Neither the chakras nor these channels (or nadis) are visible but work in the sheathes of subtle energy that surround and interpenetrate the body. The ida, or left channel, carries the breath from the left nostril to the base of the spine and is associated with lunar, cooling, feminine energy. The pingala, or right channel, carries the breath from the right nostril to the base and is associated with solar, fiery, masculine energy.
The first, or muladhara, chakra lies at the base of the spine, where the kundalini energy is pictured as a serpent coiled between the anus and the genitals (kundalin is Sanskrit for "she who lies coiled," and kundalini yoga is a process of raising the serpent power). The second, or svadhisthana, chakra corresponds to the genitals; the third (manipura) corresponds to the navel and solar plexus; the fourth (anahata) is located near the heart (although usually placed either in the middle of the chest or closer to the right side); the fifth (vishuddha) corresponds to the throat region; the sixth (ajna) is located slightly behind and above the space between the eyebrows, or cavernous plexus (the so-called "third eye") and corresponds to the pineal gland; and the seventh chakra is located just above the crown of the head, although it corresponds to the pituitary gland. It is called the sahasrara chakra, from the Sanskrit word for "thousand," referring to the "thousand-petaled lotus of enlightenment." In addition, there are six minor chakras which are rarely mentioned.
Western teachers have developed elaborate theories of the chakras and practices for cleansing them to unblock the flow of vital energy within the body, and some teachers, including Caroline Myss, posit an 8th chakra located an arm's length above the head.
The First Three Habits surround moving from dependence to independence (i.e., self-mastery):
Habit 1: Be Proactive
Take initiative in life by realizing that your decisions (and how they align with life's principles) are the primary determining factor for effectiveness in your life. Take responsibility for your choices and the consequences that follow.
Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind
Self-discover and clarify your deeply important character values and life goals. Envision the ideal characteristics for each of your various roles and relationships in life. Create a mission statement.
Habit 3: Put First Things First
Prioritize, plan, and execute your week's tasks based on importance rather than urgency. Evaluate whether your efforts exemplify your desired character values, propel you toward goals, and enrich the roles and relationships that were elaborated in Habit 2.
The next three have to do with Interdependence (i.e., working with others):
Habit 4: Think Win-Win
Genuinely strive for mutually beneficial solutions or agreements in your relationships. Value and respect people by understanding a "win" for all is ultimately a better long-term resolution than if only one person in the situation had gotten his way.
Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood
Use empathic listening to be genuinely influenced by a person, which compels them to reciprocate the listening and take an open mind to being influenced by you. This creates an atmosphere of caring, and positive problem solving.
Habit 6: Synergize
Combine the strengths of people through positive teamwork, so as to achieve goals no one person could have done alone.
Change of attitude When one works on attitude, nothing can be a hindrance to one's effectiveness in life.
Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw
Balance and renew your resources, energy, and health to create a sustainable, long-term, effective lifestyle. It primarily emphasizes exercise for physical renewal, prayer (meditation, yoga, etc.) and good reading for mental renewal. It also mentions service to society for spiritual renewal.
(1) Motivation (May I be Healthy and Happy)
(2) Gratitude (May I be Grateful)
(3) Transformation (May I be Transformed in my Highest Ideals)
(4) Intention (May I be Loving and Compassionate)
(5) Mindfulness (May I be Mindful through my Breathing)
(6) Meditation (May I become Wise through my Meditation)
(7) Dedication (May I be in Service to All Beings)
· The Law of Pure Potentiality: Take time to be silent, to just BE. Meditate for 30 minutes twice a day. Silently witness the intelligence within every living thing. Practice non-judgment.
· The Law of Giving: Today, bring whoever you encounter a gift: a compliment or flower. Gratefully receive gifts. Keep wealth circulating by giving and receiving care, affection, appreciation and love.
· The Law of Karma: Every action generates a force of energy that returns to us in like kind. Choosing actions that bring happiness and success to others ensures the flow of happiness and success to you.
· The Law of Least Effort: Accept people, situations, and events as they occur. Take responsibility for your situation and for all events seen as problems. Relinquish the need to defend your point of view.
· The Law of Intention and Desire: Inherent in every intention and desire is the mechanics for its fulfillment. Make a list of desires. Trust that when things don’t seem to go your way, there is a reason.
· The Law of Detachment: Allow yourself and others the freedom to be who they are. Do not force solutions—allow solutions to spontaneously emerge. Uncertainty is essential, and your path to freedom.
· The Law of Dharma: Seek your higher Self. Discover your unique talents. Ask yourself how you are best suited to serve humanity. Using your unique talents and serving others brings unlimited bliss and abundance.
+ 7 Key Concepts of CELEBRATE. CELEBRATE is a philosophy that encourages an abundance way of thinking developed by renowned photographer and motivational speaker Dewitt Jones:
§ Believe it and you will see it
§ Recognize abundance
§ Look for possibilities
§ Harness your energy to fix what is wrong
§ Ride the changes
§ Take yourself to the edge
§ Be the best for the world
+ Seven similar practices to awaken the heart and mind > excerpt from the Spirituality and Practice course on Becoming a Wise Elder led by Angeles Arrien > Roger Walsh found that the world religions share seven similar practices to awaken the heart and mind and increase receptivity to inner guidance and wisdom. In Essential Spirituality, he describes these practices as a universal spiritual map:
1. Transform your motivation: reduce craving and find your soul's desire.
2. Cultivate emotional wisdom: heal your heart and learn to love.
3. Live ethically: feel good by doing good.
4. Concentrate and calm your mind.
5. Awaken your spiritual vision: see clearly and recognize the sacred in all things.
6. Cultivate spiritual intelligence: develop wisdom and understand life.
7. Express spirit in action: embrace generosity and joy of service.
Barrett wrote: "I wish I could claim credit for all of these, but I borrowed from others. I got Help, Thanks, and Wow from Anne Lamott and I got Oops from the blog By Common Consent. The only part that is unique to me (as far as I know) is the Yes part.
To live means to suffer, because the human nature is not perfect and neither is the world we live in. During our lifetime, we inevitably have to endure physical suffering such as pain, sickness, injury, tiredness, old age, and eventually death; and we have to endure psychological suffering like sadness, fear, frustration, disappointment, and depression. Although there are different degrees of suffering and there are also positive experiences in life that we perceive as the opposite of suffering, such as ease, comfort and happiness, life in its totality is imperfect and incomplete, because our world is subject to impermanence. This means we are never able to keep permanently what we strive for, and just as happy moments pass by, we ourselves and our loved ones will pass away one day, too.
2. The origin of suffering is attachment.
The origin of suffering is attachment to transient things and the ignorance thereof. Transient things do not only include the physical objects that surround us, but also ideas, and -in a greater sense- all objects of our perception. Ignorance is the lack of understanding of how our mind is attached to impermanent things. The reasons for suffering are desire, passion, ardour, pursuit of wealth and prestige, striving for fame and popularity, or in short: craving and clinging. Because the objects of our attachment are transient, their loss is inevitable, thus suffering will necessarily follow. Objects of attachment also include the idea of a "self" which is a delusion, because there is no abiding self. What we call "self" is just an imagined entity, and we are merely a part of the ceaseless becoming of the universe.
3. The cessation of suffering is attainable.
The cessation of suffering can be attained through nirodha. Nirodha means the unmaking of sensual craving and conceptual attachment. The third noble truth expresses the idea that suffering can be ended by attaining dispassion. Nirodha extinguishes all forms of clinging and attachment. This means that suffering can be overcome through human activity, simply by removing the cause of suffering. Attaining and perfecting dispassion is a process of many levels that ultimately results in the state of Nirvana. Nirvana means freedom from all worries, troubles, complexes, fabrications and ideas. Nirvana is not comprehensible for those who have not attained it.
4. The path to the cessation of suffering.
There is a path to the end of suffering - a gradual path of self-improvement, which is described more detailed in the Eightfold Path. It is the middle way between the two extremes of excessive self-indulgence (hedonism) and excessive self-mortification (asceticism); and it leads to the end of the cycle of rebirth. The latter quality discerns it from other paths which are merely "wandering on the wheel of becoming", because these do not have a final object. The path to the end of suffering can extend over many lifetimes, throughout which every individual rebirth is subject to karmic conditioning. Craving, ignorance, delusions, and its effects will disappear gradually, as progress is made on the path.
+ The Trinity or the Triune God: Father, Son, Holy Spirit
1) To realize and spread the knowledge of unity, the religion of love and wisdom, so that the bias of faiths and beliefs may of itself fall away, the human heart may overflow with love, and all hatred caused by distinctions and differences may be rooted out.
2) To discover the light and power latent in man, the secret of all religion, the power of mysticism, and the essence of philosophy, without interfering with customs or belief.
3) To help to bring the world's two opposite poles, East and West, closer together by the interchange of thought and ideals, that the Universal Brotherhood may form of itself, and man may see with man beyond the narrow national and racial boundaries.
+ What Ray heard The Voice say in Field of Dreams:
· If you build it, he will come.
· Ease his pain.
· Go the distance.
+ Two Natures of Christ: Divine & Human
+ The Great Commandment (Matthew 22:37-40 and Luke 10:27)
· Love God with all your heart, mind, strength and soul.
· Love your neighbor as you love yourself
+ The Great Polarity of Taoism: Yin and Yang
+ One God
+ One Universe
+ One Earth
+ One Sun
+ One Common Humanity
+ One Golden Rule: Treat others the way you want to be treated.