“He finds it extraordinary that on some mornings, just after he has woken up, as he bends down to tie his shoes, he is flooded with a happiness so intense, a happiness so naturally and harmoniously at one with the world, that he can feel himself alive in the present, a present that surrounds him and permeates him, that breaks through him with the sudden, overwhelming knowledge that he is alive. And the happiness he discovers in himself at that moment is extraordinary.”
“First dentistry was painless.
Then bicycles were chainless,
Carriages were horseless,
And many laws enforceless.
Next cookery was fireless,
Telegraphy was wireless,
Cigars were nicotineless,
And coffee caffeineless.
Soon oranges were seedless,
The putting green was weedless,
The college boy was hatless,
The proper diet fatless.
New motor roads are dustless,
The latest steel is rustless,
Our tennis courts are sodless,
Our new religion–godless.”
“If peace comes from seeing the whole,
then misery stems from a loss of perspective.
We begin so aware and grateful. The sun somehow hangs there in the sky. The little bird sings. The miracle of life just happens. Then we stub our toe, and in that moment of pain, the whole world is reduced to our poor little toe. Now, for a day or two, it is difficult to walk. With every step, we are reminded of our poor little toe.
Our vigilance becomes: Which defines our day—the pinch we feel in walking on a bruised toe, or the miracle still happening?
It is the giving over to smallness that opens us to misery. In truth, we begin taking nothing for granted, grateful that we have enough to eat, that we are well enough to eat. But somehow, through the living of our days, our focus narrows like a camera that shutters down, cropping out the horizon, and one day we’re miffed at a diner because the eggs are runny or the hash isn’t seasoned just the way we like.
When we narrow our focus, the problem seems everything. We forget when we were lonely, dreaming of a partner. We forget first beholding the beauty of another. We forget the comfort of first being seen and held and heard. When our view shuts down, we’re up in the night annoyed by the way our lover pulls the covers or leaves the dishes in the sink without soaking them first.
“Even if it were possible to cast my horoscope in this one life, and to make an accurate prediction about my future, it would not be possible to ‘show’ it to me because as soon as I saw it my future would change by definition. This is why Werner Heisenberg‘s adaptation of the Hays Office—the so-called principle of uncertainty whereby the act of measuring something has the effect of altering the measurement—is of such importance. In my case the difference is often made by publicity. For example, and to boast of one of my few virtues, I used to derive pleasure from giving my time to bright young people who showed promise as writers and who asked for my help. Then some profile of me quoted someone who disclosed that I liked to do this. Then it became something widely said of me, whereupon it became almost impossible for me to go on doing it, because I started to receive far more requests than I could respond to, let alone satisfy. Perception modifies reality: when I abandoned the smoking habit of more than three decades I was given a supposedly helpful pill called Wellbutrin. But as soon as I discovered that this was the brand name for an antidepressant, I tossed the bottle away. There may be successful methods for overcoming the blues but for me they cannot include a capsule that says: ‘Fool yourself into happiness, while pretending not to do so.’ I should actually want my mind to be strong enough to circumvent such a trick.”
? Christopher Hitchens, Hitch-22: A Memoir
“To my mind, ‘magic’ is the hard-to-define quality of the things that stir up mystical feelings like amazement, curiosity, imagination, and above all wonder.
Magic is that which renders something beautiful in a spiritual sense. It is that which makes one feel as if the world is more than it is presently understood to be, and yet at the same time the world is working itself out in a good and beautiful way.
Magic underlies the relationship between us, and the greater immensities of birth and death. Thus the experience of being in the presence of something magical is an empowering, uplifting experience. Magic, understood this way, contributes meaning to life.
? Brendan Myers
“There is a relationship between the eye contacts we make and the perceptions that we create in our heads, a relationship between the sound of another’s voice and the emotions that we feel in our hearts, a relationship between our movements in space all around us and the magnetic pulls we can create between others and ourselves. All of these things (and more) make up the magic of every ordinary day and if we are able to live in this magic, to feel and to dwell in it, we will find ourselves living with magic every day. These are the white spaces in life, the spaces in between the written lines, the cracks in which the sunlight filters into. Some of us swim in the overflowing of the wine glass of life, we stand and blink our eyes in the sunlight reaching unseen places, we know where to find the white spaces, we live in magic.”
? C. JoyBell C.
“I came to set fire to the earth. And I am watchful that the fire grow.
May the fire of love grow in our hearts.
May the fire of transformation glow in our movements.
May the fire of purification burn away our sins.
May the fire of justice guide our steps.
May the fire of wisdom illuminate our paths.
May the fire that spreads over the Earth never be extinguished.”
? Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist
“You’re going to meet many people with domineering personalities: the loud, the obnoxious, those that noisily stake their claims in your territory and everywhere else they set foot on. This is the blueprint of a predator. Predators prey on gentleness, peace, calmness, sweetness and any positivity that they sniff out as weakness. Anything that is happy and at peace they mistake for weakness. It’s not your job to change these people, but it’s your job to show them that your peace and gentleness do not equate to weakness. I have always appeared to be fragile and delicate but the thing is, I am not fragile and I am not delicate. I am very gentle but I can show you that the gentle also possess a poison. I compare myself to silk. People mistake silk to be weak but a silk handkerchief can protect the wearer from a gunshot. There are many people who will want to befriend you if you fit the description of what they think is weak; predators want to have friends that they can dominate over because that makes them feel strong and important. The truth is that predators have no strength and no courage. It is you who are strong, and it is you who has courage. I have lost many a friend over the fact that when they attempt to rip me, they can’t. They accuse me of being deceiving; I am not deceiving, I am just made of silk. It is they who are stupid and wrongly take gentleness and fairness for weakness. There are many more predators in this world, so I want you to be made of silk. You are silk.”
? C. JoyBell C.