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On doing the right thing (Quotes to live by)

We are exploring wisdom from Maya Angelou this week.

Today's quote is about doing the right thing.

Just do right. Right may not be expedient, it may not be profitable, but it will satisfy your soul. It brings you the kind of protection that bodyguards can't give you. So try to live your life in a way that you will not regret years of useless virtue and inertia and timidity. Take up the battle. Take it up. It's yours. This is your life. This is your world.
Maya Angelou

She also said:
We have to confront ourselves. Do we like what we see in the mirror? And, according to our light, our understanding, according to our courage, we will have to say yay, or nay – and rise!

Activists such as MLK have said similar words:

There comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but he must take it because conscience tells him it is right.
Martin Luther King Jr., A Testament of Hope: The Essential Writings and Speeches

Doing though difficult, is the...

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Learning from history (Quotes to live by)

Continuing with our series on Quotes to live by, this week lets explore some words of wisdom from Maya Angelou.

Maya Angelou was an American poet, memoirist, and civil rights activist. A prolific writer, she published seven autobiographies, three books of essays, several books of poetry, and was credited with a list of plays, movies, and television shows spanning over 50 years.

Maya lived a rich and varied life. She was also a journalist who worked in Africa, a historian, songwriter, dancer, stage and screen producer, director, performer and singer. And as an activist, she was one of the Civil Rights Movement's most prominent women, who worked with Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X, and devoted her life to being a tireless voice for women and black people — and for an open-hearted vision of humanity where all could find their place.

One of the great spiritual voices of our time, Maya left behind a legacy of simple but powerful practical wisdom to inspire us.

Today's quote...

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The good news and bad news about time (Quotes to live by)

How often do we put off things that are important but not urgent? We seem to be waiting for some undetermined future in which we will have "more time" to do things that matter.

I love this quote from the Buddha on the uncertainty of life and the fragility of time:

The trouble is, you think you have time
The Buddha

And this one about the passage of time:

The bad news is time flies. The good news is you're the pilot.
Michael Althsuler

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The stuff of life (Quotes to live by)

Continuing with our series on Quotes to Live By, let us explore some quotes on the passage of time.

Does't thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of.
Benjamin Franklin

How often do we say that "we don't have time" to do the things that really matter?

Here is a quote to reflect on our excuses:

Don't say you don't have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michaelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.
H. Jackson Brown Junior

Ever wonder about how the busy-ness of daily tasks did not distract them from their life's work?

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Whose business are you in? (Quotes to live by)

Byron Katie, developer of a method of self-inquiry called The Work, teaches that our time can be occupied worrying about one of three businesses: someone else's business, God's business or OUR business.

To minimize suffering and maximize effectiveness, we want to stay out of other people's business and we want to stay out of God's business and focus exclusively on our own business – things that we have control over, that is only our own thoughts and behaviours.

This reminds me of The Serenity Prayer which is today's "quote to live by":

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

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Leave the harbor but adjust your sails (Quotes to live by)

In Daily Wisdom, we talk quite a bit about taking action within the sphere on our circle of control and influence. Here are a couple of favourite quotes on the same subject using images of water and boats.

A ship in harbour Is safe, But that Is not what ships are built for
Attributed to John A. Shedd and also Murray/Grace Hopper

Is your ship safely docked in harbor or is it exploring the seas as it was meant to do?

And here is another quote on taking action within your circle of control:

I can't change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.

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The way of love (Quotes to live by)

And another favourite from Rumi today:

The way of love

The way of love is not
a subtle argument.

The door there
is devastation.

Birds make great sky-circles
of their freedom.
How do they learn it?

They fall, and falling,
they're given wings.

Isn't that beautiful? How do you understand these verses?

Here is one interpretation (there are many more of course – the beauty of Rumi is that he can speak about Divine love and earthly love using the same words)

True love is a demanding thing...and it is an argument...with yourself and your lover...an argument because you are desiring love and afraid of love in the same breath...an argument because you and your lover are different and are trying to become more like one within each other...

"the door there is devastation"...the entry way to love is passed through by holding yourself open to great risk...risk of vulnerability, of rejection, of being hurt, of being out of control, of "falling"...

For Divine love, and for earthly love to...

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Live up to your potential (Quotes to live by)

Today's is about fulfilling your potential

You sit here for days saying, "This is strange business."
You're the strange business.
You have the energy of the sun in you, but you keep knotting it up at the base of your spine. You're some weird kind of gold that wants to stay melted in the furnace, so you won't have to become coins.

Are you ready to get out of the furnace??

Here is a great introduction to Rumi's timeless verses:
The Essential Rumi by Coleman Barks

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Feel your feelings! (Quotes to live by)

Today's is about the value in acknowledging and feeling our emotions – a very modern concept expressed some centuries ago!

The Guest House

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning is a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor...
Welcome and entertain them all.
Treat each guest honorably.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door laughing, and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.

Here is a great introduction to Rumi's timeless verses:
The Essential Rumi by Coleman Barks

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On generosity (Quotes to live by)

Today's is about the potential in generosity and giving without expectation

And still, after all this time, the Sun has never said to the Earth,
'You owe me'.
Look what happens with love like that.
It lights up the sky.

Here is a great introduction to Rumi's timeless verses:
The Essential Rumi by Coleman Barks

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