Peace of mind does not result from the attempt to control our lives. In fact, it is just the opposite. It comes from the wisdom that is illuminated when we learn how to relax in a way that allows us to ‘be with what is.’ In our practice, we learn how to engage in something when it is appropriate and how to disengage as well. Peace of mind comes from recognizing how one fits into the scheme of things, the degree to which all life is interconnected, and the realization that nobody is ever alone.
David A Cooper, Ecstatic Kabbalah
If you pass through a period of darkness or depression, just ask, ‘Who is aware of the darkness?’ That’s how you pass through the different stages of your inner growth. You just keep letting go, and remain aware that you are still there. When you’ve let go of the dark psyche, and you’ve let go of the light psyche, and you’re no longer clinging to anything, you will reach a point where it will all open up behind you. You are now becoming aware of a universe behind your seat of consciousness. If you’re willing to let go, you’ll fall back and it will open into an ocean of energy. You will become filled with light. You will become filled with a light that has no darkness, with a peace that passeth all understanding
The only choice we have as we mature is how we inhabit our vulnerability, how we become larger and more courageous and more compassionate through our intimacy with disappearance, our choice is to inhabit vulnerability as generous citizens of loss, robustly and fully, or conversely, as misers and complainers, reluctant, and fearful, always at the gates of existence, but never bravely and completely attempting to enter, never wanting to risk ourselves, never walking fully through the door.
Although it seems like a contradiction, saying no is actually an act of compassion for others, because when we do things that aren’t appropriate or we’re just too damn tired to fully participate in, they only get a piece of us — a small, crabby piece, if you are anything like me. And it shows compassion for ourselves, a reminder that we’re just as precious as everyone else and sometimes we need to be nurtured as well.
Geri Larkin, Tap Dancing in Zen
Contentment doesn’t mean we are always happy about life events or deny the reality of pain. We cultivate contentment by cultivating the inner witness who is able to respond to life from a place of calmness, peace, and tranquility. It means we honor that what is given to us in any moment is enough. So it is the ‘still heart’ — the heart of equanimity — that can welcome everything in. Instead of always living with a sense of dissatisfaction about our lives, or anticipation over what comes next, we live in the knowledge that this moment contains everything we need to be at peace, to experience freedom, to develop compassion for ourselves and others.
Christine Valters Paintner, Lectio Divina: The Sacred Art
When you become enlightened it can come about through a very small or ordinary thing. You see, the most difficult thing for someone to accept is the plainness of their life. To discover magnificence in every moment of a simple life is truly life’s greatest reward.
Hua-Ching Ni, Entering the Tao