Tag Archives: contentment

Each moment an occasion

My dog lives freely each moment an occasion to cherish and leave — Drew Denton Years ago I found this haiku, along with several others, among some handwritten drafts and school papers saved from Drew’s 10th grade year. He was probably around 15 years old when he wrote this, and I doubt he even knows I …

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Souls yearn

“When the fever-stricken patient is undermined with heat and craving with thirst, he dreams in his dozing of a fresh brook where he might bathe or a clear spring where he might drink in long drafts.  In the same way, in the complex agitation of modern existence, our wearied souls yearn for simplicity.”  — Charles …

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Aware of the treasure

“Normal day, let me be aware of the treasure you are. Let me learn from you, love you, bless you before you depart. Let me not pass you by in quest of some rare and perfect tomorrow. Let me hold you while I may, for it may not always be so. One day I shall …

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The thief of joy

“Comparison is the thief of joy.” – Teddy Roosevelt Which bridge do you like best?  Perhaps you favor the sleek, clean lines of the new bridge, and find the older one unattractive.  Or maybe you like the ornate and romantic construction of the older bridge, alongside which the new one looks bare and cold.  Regardless …

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The quiet voice

“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day, saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow.’”  — Mary Ann Radmacher Enthusiasm and motivation are wonderful, but can backfire on us if we rush in with good intentions and expect too much of ourselves when tackling a new project or difficult resolution.  …

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Happily ever after

“It is only possible to live happily ever after on a day-to-day basis.” — Margaret Bonanno Did you ever wonder why the fairy tales end when the happiness starts?  When the character slays the dragon or the enemy, saving the loved one or rescuing the world at large, the story usually ends (or at least …

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The fullness of peace

“Not for me is the love that knows no restraint…Send me the love that is cool and pure like Your rain, which blesses the thirsty earth and fills the homely earthen jars. Send me the love that would soak down into the center of being, and from there would spread like the unseen sap through …

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The moment’s impermanence

“What solidity of sentiment it takes not to let an awareness of the moment’s impermanence dilute its richness, its sweetness, but purify it and saturate it with the utmost ‘fullness of being’.”― Maria Popova There’s a brief interval each year when many of the flowers, though fading, are still in bloom, and the weather is …

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Our due as humans

“Whereas 19th-century Americans perceived limits on how many people they could know, how much they should self-promote, how much excitement they should expect, 21st-century Americans are coming to expect that endless affirmation, unfettered anger, infinite cognitive power, unending entertainment, and constant companionship are our due as humans.”— Susan J. Matt This is one of those …

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Inverse correlation

“There are things money can’t buy. I don’t think standard of living equates with cost of living beyond a certain point. Good housing, good health, good food, good transport. There’s a point you start getting inverse correlation between wealth and quality of life… I have everything I need to have, and I don’t need any …

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A clover, any time

The pedigree of honey Does not concern the bee; A clover, any time, to him Is aristocracy.       — Emily Dickinson I am a person of simple tastes. During our lean years, I supposed this was because we couldn’t afford grand things. But the passing decades have taught me that it’s a deep-down unchanging part of …

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Great acceptances

“Contentment, and indeed usefulness, comes as the infallible result of great acceptances, great humilities—of not trying to make ourselves this or that, but of surrendering ourselves to the fullness of life—of letting life flow through us.” — David Grayson I couldn’t help but find some comic relief in what I learned when I looked up the …

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Bloom indoors

“I bloom indoors in winter like a forced forsythia; I come in to come out. At night I read and write, and things I have never understood become clear; I reap the harvest of the rest of the year’s planting.” – Annie Dillard One of the best things about being an adult at Christmas is …

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Natural relief

“…if [cats] are content, their contentment is absolute; and our jaded and wearied spirits find a natural relief in the sight…” — Agnes Repplier What animal comes to mind when you hear these words: relaxed, languid, graceful, calm, serene?  For me, it’s always a cat. I’m a dog person through and through. I identify with …

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The transporting wonder

“Those of us who know the transporting wonder of a reading life know that…when we read, we are always inside, sheltered in that interior room, that clean, well-lighted, timeless place that is the written word.” – Alice McDermott All of my life, reading has been a shelter for me, and never more so than in …

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Contentment and aspiration

“We are not to make the ideas of contentment and aspiration quarrel, for God made them fast friends. A man may aspire, and yet be quite content until it is time to raise; and both flying and resting are but parts of one contentment.” — Henry Ward Beecher I think I understand what Beecher was …

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All about us

“It seems to me that people are forever traveling great distances, and journeying to strange countries, to see things that, if they only knew it, exist beside their own doorstep…Whether one goes to nature for truth, or for beauty, for knowledge or for relaxation, these things can be found in a yard in the city …

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There is nothing lacking

“Be content with what you have, rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” — Lao-tzu It’s a curious paradox that some of the people who have the most possessions never seem to have enough, and some with the least are the most content.  …

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Press forward

“The ground of liberty is to be gained by inches. We must be contented to secure what we can get from time to time and eternally press forward for what is yet to get. It takes time to persuade men to do even what is for their own good.” ― Thomas Jefferson A quote attributed …

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Tranquility within

“When we are unable to find tranquility within ourselves, it is useless to seek it elsewhere.”― François La Rochefoucauld We’ve all known people who are restless and never satisfied.  Often these types are blessed with better-than-average advantages in life, but they seem to end up agitated and critical no matter how many times they change …

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Mere living

“How good is man’s life, the mere living!” — Robert Browning Can we really comprehend the meaning of the phrase “mere living?” If so, probably never as clearly as when we come face to face with the reality of our life’s inevitable end, whether soon or years from now.  I wish for you today a …

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Utterly unforeseen

“…since life has an agonizing tendency to offer us the best and the worst at the same time, to give us what we ask for in an utterly unforeseen form, even fairly predictable outcomes prove unrecognizable upon arrival.” – Robert Leleux Even on vacation — or maybe I should say “especially on vacation” — things …

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Rejoice in the way things are

“Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.” ― Laozi It sounds good, but it’s sometimes almost impossible to do. Life can be so difficult, and contentment so elusive even in relatively good times. We seem wired to …

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The world’s largest collection

“I have the world’s largest collection of seashells.  I keep it on all the beaches of the world…perhaps you’ve seen it.” — Steven Wright I think one of the best traits we can develop is the capacity to thoroughly enjoy something without having to own it.  If you can master this skill, you can have …

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You will flow

“As your faith is strengthened you will find that there is no longer the need to have a sense of control, that things will flow as they will, and that you will flow with them, to your great delight and benefit.” — author unknown; attributed to Emmanuel Tanay Among the most ultimately comforting but persistently difficult teachings …

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