all, we cannot afford not to live in the
present. They are blessed over all mortals who
lose no moment of the passing life in remembering the
hurry through the so-called boring things in order to attend
to that which we deem more important, interesting.
Perhaps the final
freedom will be a recognition that every thing in every moment
is 'essential' and that nothing at all is 'important.'
If you have made
mistakes, even serious ones,
there is always another chance for you. You may have
a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing
we call failure is not the falling down, but the staying down.
Life (an excerpt)
Rachel Naomi Remen
years I have seen the power of taking an unconditional
relationship to life. I am surprised to have found a sort
of willingness to show up for whatever life may offer and meet
with it rather than wishing to edit and change the
inevitable. Many of my patients also seem to have found
their way to this viewpoint on life.
people begin to take such an attitude they seem to become
intensely alive, intensely present. Their losses and
suffering have not caused them to reject life, have not cast
them into a place of resentment, victimization, or
bitterness. As a friend with HIV/AIDS puts it, "I
have let go of my preferences and am living with an intense
awareness of the miracle of the moment." Or in the
words of another patient, "When you are walking on thin
ice, you might as well dance."
people I have learned a new definition of the word
"joy." I had thought joy to be rather synonymous
with happiness, but it seems now to be far less vulnerable than
happiness. Joy seems to be a part of an unconditional wish
to live, not holding back because life may not meet our
preferences and expectations. Joy seems to be a function
of the willingness to accept the whole, and to show up to meet
with whatever is there. It has a kind of invincibility
that attachment to any particular outcome would deny us.
Rather than the warrior who fights towards a specific outcome
and therefore is haunted by the specter of failure and
disappointment, it is the lover drunk with the opportunity to
love despite the possibility of loss, the player for whom
playing has become more important than winning or losing.
willingness to win or lose moves us out of an adversarial
relationship to life and into a powerful kind of openness.
From such a position, we can make a greater commitment to
life. Not only pleasant life, or comfortable life, or our
idea of life, but all life. Joy seems more closely related
to aliveness than to happiness.
strength that I notice developing in many of my patients and in
myself after all these years could almost be called a form of
curiosity. What one of my colleagues calls
fearlessness. At one level, of course, I fear outcome as
much as anyone. But more and more I am able to move in and
out of that and to experience a place beyond preference for
outcome, a life beyond life and death. It is a place of
freedom, even anticipation. Decisions made from this
perspective are life-affirming and not fear-driven. It is
degree that we can relinquish personal preference, we free
ourselves from win/lose thinking and the fear that feeds on
it. It is that freedom which helps a team to go to the
Super Bowl. An adversarial position may not be the
strongest position in life. Freedom may be a stronger
position than control. It is certainly a stronger and far
wiser position than fear.
a fundamental paradox here. The less we are attached to
life, the more alive we can become. The less we have
preferences about life, the more deeply we can experience and
participate in life. This is not to say that I don't
prefer raisin toast to blueberry muffins. It is to say
that I don't prefer raisin toast so much that I am unwilling to
get out of bed unless I can have raisin toast, or that the
absence of raisin toast ruins the whole day. Embracing
life may be more about tasting than it is about either raisin
toast or blueberry muffins. More about trusting one's
ability to take joy in the newness of the day and what it may
bring. More about adventure than having your own way.
wonderful book of short vignettes by Rachel Naomi Remen, Kitchen
Table Wisdom is an exploration of the meanings of life and
living. Through her experiences as a medical doctor, Remen
has learned much about living and dying, and the meaning of
both. Highly recommended for anyone who wants a dose of
humanity and a positive perspective on life and the people of
this world we live in.
Wallpaper! Just click below on
the size your desktop is formatted to,
right-click on the picture that appears
in the new window, and choose
"Set as background."
x 600 - 1024
gives to every time and season some beauties of its own; and
morning to night, as from the cradle to the grave, is a succession
of changes so gentle and easy we can scarcely mark their progress.
Do You Go For Your Intellectual Feast?
Pity the person who has a favorite restaurant, but not a favorite
author. that person has picked out a favorite place to feed
his or her body, but doesn't have a favorite place to feed his or
Why would this be? Have you heard about the accelerated
learning curve? From birth, up until the time we are about
eighteen, our learning curve is dramatic, and our capacity to
learn during this period is just staggering. We learn a
tremendous amount very fast. We learn language, culture,
history, science, mathematics... everything!
For some people, the accelerated learning process will continue
on. But for most, it levels off when they get their first
job. If there are no more exams to take, if there's no
demand to get out paper and pencil, why read any more books?
Of course, you will learn some things through experience.
Just getting out there - sometimes doing it wrong and sometimes
doing it right - you will learn.
Can you imagine what would happen if you kept up an accelerated
learning curve all the rest of your life? Can you imagine
what you could learn to do, the skills you could develop, the
capacities you could have? Here's what I'm asking you to
do: be that unusual person who keeps up his learning curve
and develops an appetite for always trying to find good ideas.
One way to feed your mind and educate your philosophy is through
the writings of influential people. Maybe you can't meet the
person, but you can read his or her books. Churchill is
gone, but we still have his books. Aristotle is gone, but we
still have his ideas. Search libraries for books and
programs. Search magazines. Search
documentaries. They are full of opportunities for
In addition to reading and listening, you also need a chance to do
some talking and sharing. I have some people in my life who
help me with important life questions, who assist me in refining
my own philosophy, weighing my values and pondering questions
about success and lifestyle.
We all need association with people of substance to provide
influence concerning major issues such as society, money,
enterprise, family, government, love, friendship, culture, taste,
opportunity, and community. Philosophy is mostly influenced
by ideas, ideas are mostly influenced by education, and education
is mostly influenced by the people with whom we associate.
One of the great fortunes of my life was to be around Mr. Shoaff
those five years. During that time he shared with me at
dinner, during airline flights, at business conferences, in
private conversations and in groups. He gave me many ideas
that enabled me to make small daily adjustments in my philosophy
and activities. Those daily changes, some very slight, but
very important, soon added up to weighty sums.
A big part of the lesson was having Mr. Shoaff repeat the ideas
over and over. You just can't hear the fundamentals of life
philosophy too often. They are the greatest form of
nutrition, the building blocks for a well-developed mind.
I'm asking that you feed your mind just as you do your body.
Feed it with good ideas, wherever they can be found. Always
be on the lookout for a good idea - a business idea, a product
idea, a service idea, an idea for personal improvement.
Every new idea will help to refine your philosophy. Your
philosophy will guide your life, and your life will unfold with
distinction and pleasure.
with permission from the Jim Rohn Weekly E-zine. Copyright
Jim Rohn International except where indicated otherwise. All
rights reserved worldwide. jimrohn.com.
note: Another idea that Jim Rohn presents in one of his
programs is the idea of becoming one of the most well read experts
in your field. Think of how much you would learn about your
field if you were to read one book a week on that field
specifically! By the end of one year, you will have read 52
books on your field, and you'll easily be one of the most well
read persons around! Even if you can read only one book
every two weeks, that's 26 books, more than 99% of your
peers. One book every three weeks? That's 17, still a
great number. So what are you waiting for?
A tree has both
straight and crooked branches; the symmetry of the tree,
is perfect. Life is balanced like a tree. When you
consider the struggles,
difficulties, and sorrows as a part of it,
then you see it as beautiful and perfect.
anything that I hope I never lose during the days that I'm on this
planet, it's the sense of wonder that allows me to see life as a
beautiful, amazing process that I'm very fortunate to be able to
witness. The sense of wonder that I've been blessed with
allows me to feel much more of life, and it keeps me looking for
more and more things to wonder at. It keeps things fresh and
new, for there's never any telling what any new moment will
bring. When I take a walk downtown I may be seeing the same
sights, but there's always something amazing to see, even if it's
just the leaves on the trees that continue to produce oxygen all
the time and convert sunlight to energy for the tree to
grow. It may be the way the light hits a certain building,
or the way it reflects off of a window to illuminate something in
a way I've never seen it before.
There's much in
life that I wonder at.
I wonder when I
see the eyes of a child--I wonder at the brightness and the
curiosity and the openness to new ideas and experiences.
I wonder when I
see the eyes of an adult--I wonder at the experiences that have
come together to give this person his or her particular view of
the world. So many people have lived through so much, and
it's a wonder that so many people have come so far.
I wonder when I
see the rain fall--what held it up there in the first place if
it's so heavy? It's wonderful that it's going to soak into
the earth and help the plants grow and give us water to drink.
I wonder at the
wind--we can't see it or touch it, but there it is, and this
unseen, untouchable thing can give us a beautiful soft breeze or
be one of the most destructive forces on the planet.
I wonder at the
sunlight, which has traveled millions of miles just to be with
us. The light that warms my skin and nourishes the plants
left the sun eight minutes ago in order to travel the 93 million
miles to get here.
I wonder at the
songs of birds, who share their voices with us all the time,
asking nothing in return. Even without harmony or rhythm,
their songs are beautiful and amazing.
I wonder at the
many wonderful people who spend their lives helping others.
Many risk their lives to provide that help, and what they do is
simply amazing. Doctors, researchers, emergency personnel,
teachers--the list is almost endless.
I wonder when I
look at the things on my desk. The books have been inspired
by some, written by someone else, edited by others, printed by
someone else, distributed by yet others, stocked in the store by
another person, and sold to me by someone else. And so it is
with everything here--their existence can be traced through an
incredible number of people, all of whom have worked to bring it
wonder when I turn on a light. From the vast chain of people
involved in producing the light bulb and getting it to me, to the
chain of people involved in producing the electricity and making
it available to the home in which I live, the fact that I can flip
a little switch and get light is nothing short of a miracle to me.
see, in these days when so many people claim that no more miracles
happen, there are many amazing miracles happening every single
day, in every single moment. We are incredibly blessed with
an amazing world, and our lives will be much richer the more that
we allow ourselves to maintain the sense of wonder that we were
born with--it's that sense of wonder that keeps open the door to
appreciation, and the appreciation that allows us to feel
world is a wonderful place, and it's up to us to see that wonder,
to feel it, and to let it be an important part of who we
are. The wonder is always there--the only question is
whether we notice it and allow ourselves to feel that
wonder. Sometimes it takes practice to get back to a point
at which we can, but it's time and effort well spent.
The mark of your
ignorance is the depth of your belief in injustice and tragedy.
What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the Master calls the
Life Fully, the e-zine
exists to try to provide for visitors of the world wide web a
of growth, peace, inspiration, and encouragement. Our
are presented as thoughts of the authors--by no means do
mean to present them as ways that anyone has to live
from them what you will, and disagree with
whatever you disagree
with--just know that they'll be here for you
I loved the
rain as a child. I loved the sound of it on the leaves of
trees and roofs and window panes and umbrellas and the feel of it
on my face and bare legs. I loved the hiss of rubber tires
on rainy streets and the flip-flop of windshield wipers. I
loved the smell of wet grass and raincoats and the shaggy coats of
dogs. A rainy day was a special day for me in a sense that
no other kind of day was--a day when the ordinariness of things
was suspended with ragged skies drifting to the color of pearl and
dark streets turning to dark rivers of reflected light and even
people transformed somehow as the rain drew them closer by giving
them something to think about together, to take common shelter
from, to complain of and joke about in ways that made them more
like friends than it seemed to me they were on ordinary sunny
days. But more than anything, I think, I loved rain for the
power it had to make indoors seem snugger and safer and a place to
find refuge in from everything outdoors that was un-home,
unsafe. I loved rain for making home seem home more deeply.
that joy is rarer, more difficult, and more beautiful
sadness. Once you make this all-important discovery,
must embrace joy as a moral obligation.