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Past Thoughts of the Day from Interlude: An Internet Retreat

6/1/16 to the present

If you want joy, give joy to others; if you want love, learn to give love; if you want attention and appreciation, learn to give attention and appreciation; if you want material affluence, help others to become materially afluent. In fact, the easiest way to get what you want is to help others get what they want.

Deepak Chopra in The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success

Old minds are like old horses; you must exercise them if you wish to keep them in working order.

John Adams

I believe that any man who takes the liberty of another into his keeping is bound to become a tyrant, and that any man who yields up his liberty, in however slight the measure, is bound to become a slave.

H. L. Mencken

Nonviolence is the answer to the crucial political and moral questions of our time; the need for mankind to overcome oppression and violence without resorting to oppression and violence. Mankind must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.

Martin Luther King Jr.

Whatever is begun in anger ends in shame.

Benjamin Franklin

Honesty results from a pure heart and pure thought. It is also related to the desireless state because in that state, there is no need to distort the truth in order to achieve or obtain anything.

Sathya Sai Baba

You don't get to choose how you're going to die, or when. You can decide how you're going to live now.

Joan Baez

If you understand, things are just as they are.
If you do not understand, things are just as they are.

Zen Proverb

To the dull mind nature is leaden. To the illumined mind the whole world burns and sparkles with light.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Do not think that you will necessarily be aware of your own enlightenment.

Zen Saying

Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.


It's a funny thing about life; if you refuse to accept anything but the best, you very often get it.

W. Somerset Maugham

Learn the truth, live in truth, open the heart and let your life be filled with love, then you will experience absolute joy, peace and the unity of all mankind.

Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba

Hatred ever kills, love never dies; such is the vast difference between the two. What is obtained by love is retained for all time. What is obtained by hatred proves a burden in reality for it increases hatred.

Mohandas K. Gandhi

Do not hold the delusion that your advancement is accomplished by crushing others.

Marcus Tullius Cicero

I have learned from experience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends on our dispositions and not on our circumstances.

Martha Washington

Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood.

Helen Keller

Anything you strive to hold captive will hold you captive and if you desire freedom you must give freedom.

Peace Pilgrim

Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.


I have learned not to worry about love;
But to honor its coming with all my heart.

Alice Walker

The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.

Dorothy Parker

Labor to keep alive in your breast that little spark of celestial fire, called conscience.

George Washington

Doing work which has to be done over and over again helps us recognize the natural cycles of growth and decay, of birth and death, and thus become aware of the dynamic order of the universe. "Ordinary" work, as the root meaning of the term indicates, is work that is in harmony with the order we perceive in the natural environment.

Fritjof Capra

If you have much, give of your wealth; if you have little, give of your heart.

Arabian Proverb

Sin is not hurtful because it is forbidden, but it is forbidden because it is hurtful.

Benjamin Franklin

The less effort, the faster and more powerful you will be.

Bruce Lee

Thoughts are but dreams till their effects be tried.


What you see in yourself is what you see in the world.

Afghan proverb

If you only do what you can do, you'll never be better than what you are.

Shifu, Kung Fu Panda 3

If there was already a path it would have to be someone else's; the whole point is to find your own way.

Joseph Campbell

New knowledge is the most valuable commodity on earth. The more truth we have to work with, the richer we become.

Kurt Vonnegut, Breakfast of Champions

A great marriage is not when the 'perfect couple' comes together. It is when an imperfect couple learns to enjoy their differences.

Dave Meurer

A true friend laughs at your stories even when they're not so good, and sympathizes with your troubles even when they're not so bad.

Irish Proverb

Bless a thing and it will bless you. Curse it and it will curse you...If you bless a situation, it has no power to hurt you, and even if it is troublesome for a time, it will gradually fade out, if you sincerely bless it.

Emmet Fox

It is better to suffer wrong than to do it, and happier to be sometimes cheated than not to trust.

Samuel Johnson

The truth that many people never understand, until it is too late, is that the more you try to avoid suffering the more you suffer because smaller and more insignificant things begin to torture you in proportion to your fear of being hurt.

Thomas Merton

Life's unfairness is not irrevocable; we can help balance the scales for others, if not always for ourselves.

Hubert Humphrey

Enlightenment is the natural condition of life after you strip the unnatural heavy and dark conditions away.

Ron Smothermon

The soul is not really united unless all the bodily energies, all the limbs of the body are united.

Martin Buber

Live so that when your children think of fairness and integrity, they think of you.

H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

If you come up in this world, be sure not to go down in the next.

Irish Proverb

Taking the first footstep with a good thought, the second with a good word, and the third with a good deed, I entered paradise.


No matter how big a nation is, it is no stronger that its weakest people, and as long as you keep a person down, some part of you has to be down there to hold him down, so it means you cannot soar as you might otherwise.

Marian Anderson

If you see good in people, you radiate a harmonious loving energy which uplifts those who are around you. If you can maintain this habit, this energy will turn into a steady flow of love.

Annamalai Swami

Poverty is the parent of revolution and crime.


Be not afraid of life. Believe that life is worth living and your belief will help create the fact.

William James

What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world remains and is immortal.

Albert Pine

Since the house is on fire, let us warm ourselves.

Siccome la casa brucia, riscaldiamoci.

Italian proverb

Without an understanding of myth or religion, without an understanding of the relationship between destruction and creation, death and rebirth, the individual suffers the mysteries of life as meaningless mayhem alone.

Marion Woodman

If we are facing in the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking.

Ancient Buddhist Saying

I have become my own version of an optimist. If I can't make it through one door, I'll go through another door - or I'll make a door. Something terrific will come no matter how dark the present.

Rabindranath Tagore

I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend.

Thomas Jefferson

Many persons have the wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.

Helen Keller

If you resist reading what you disagree with, how will you ever acquire deeper insights into what you believe? The things most worth reading are precisely those that challenge our convictions.


The most effective kind of education is that a child should play amongst lovely things.


Service is the rent that you pay for room on this earth.

Shirley Chisholm

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.' You must do the thing you think you cannot do.

Eleanor Roosevelt

There are risks and costs to action. But they are far less than the long range risks of comfortable inaction.

John F. Kennedy

If civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the science of human relationships - the ability of all peoples, of all kinds, to live together, in the same world at peace.

Franklin D. Roosevelt

For me, I am driven by two main philosophies: know more today about the world than I knew yesterday and lessen the suffering of others. You'd be surprised how far that gets you.

Neil deGrasse Tyson

Difficulties strengthen the mind, as labor does the body.


If only we'd stop trying to be happy we'd have a pretty good time.

Edith Wharton

The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.

Dorothy Parker

Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.

Theodore Roosevelt

Little progress can be made by merely attempting to repress what is evil. Our great hope lies in developing what is good.

Calvin Coolidge

The supreme quality for leadership is unquestionably integrity. Without it, no real success is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a football field, in an army, or in an office.

Dwight D. Eisenhower

Doing work which has to be done over and over again helps us recognize the natural cycles of growth and decay, of birth and death, and thus become aware of the dynamic order of the universe. "Ordinary" work, as the root meaning of the term indicates, is work that is in harmony with the order we perceive in the natural environment.

Fritjof Capra

What you see in yourself is what you see in the world.

Afghan proverb

Boundary lines, of any type, are never found in the real world itself, but only in the imagination of the mapmakers.

Ken Wilber

It's fearful to know we're connected to everything in the universe, because we're responsible.

Glenda Taylor

It is in justice that the ordering of society is centered.


Pain is a part of the life-stream and not a stranger that invades it. Our continued evolvement overcomes pain and uses it for processing life's unfolding material.

Nina Kfir

Learn to watch your drama unfold while at the same time knowing you are more than your drama.

Ram Dass

Non-violence is the greatest force at the disposal of mankind. It is mightier than the mightiest weapon of destruction devised by the ingenuity of man.

Mahatma Gandhi

...violence never brings permanent peace. It solves no social problem: it merely creates new and more complicated ones. Violence is impractical because it is a descending spiral ending in destruction for all. It is immoral because it seeks to humiliate the opponent rather than win his understanding: it seeks to annihilate rather than convert. Violence is immoral because it thrives on hatred rather than love. It destroys community and makes brotherhood impossible. It leaves society in monologue rather than dialogue. Violence ends up defeating itself. It creates bitterness in the survivors and brutality in the destroyers.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

We are here to add what we can to, not what we can get from, life.

Sir William Osler

A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams.

John Barrymore

Man is never alone. Acknowledged or unacknowledged, that which dreams through him is always there to support him from within.

Laurence van der Post

Teach us love, compassion, and honor that we may heal the earth and heal each other.

Prayer, Ojibwa Tribe

Thought held in mind reproduces after its kind, just like a seed in the ground that's nourished reproduces after its kind. In this moment, you are free to plant again.

Mary Manin Morrissey

The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honours the servant and has forgotten the gift.

Albert Einstein

The contemplation of truth and beauty is the proper object for which we were created, which calls forth the most intense desires of the soul, and of which it never tires.

William Hazlitt

All speech, action, and behavior are fluctuations of consciousness. All life emerges from, and is sustained in, consciousness. The whole universe is the expression of consciousness. The reality of the universe is one unbounded ocean of consciousness in motion.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi

It is impossible for the human mind to remain completely without thought for long times. On the other hand, too many small, unimportant thoughts can fill the mind to the extent that no meaningful thought takes place.

Tomio Hirai in Zen Meditation Therapy

Man's mind once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimension.

Oliver Wendell Holmes

Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person.

Mother Teresa

Service is the rent we pay for being. It is the very purpose of life and not something you do in your spare time.

Marian Wright Edelman

Happy were men if they but understood
There is no safety but in doing good.

John Fountain

Deeds of violence in our society are performed largely by those trying to establish their self-esteem, to defend their self-image, and to demonstrate that they, too, are significant.

Rollo May

During my eighty-seven years I have witnessed a whole succession of technological revolutions. But none of them has done away with the need for character in the individual or the ability to think.

Bernard M. Baruch

Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm.

Winston Churchill

I don't care how poor a man is; if he has family, he's rich.

M*A*S*H, Colonel Potter

The best way to pay for a lovely moment is to enjoy it.

Richard Bach

No amount of money, no matter how much it is, will ever compensate you sufficiently for remaining in a job that is drudgery and robs you of your spirit, or one that prevents you from fulfilling a dream.

John Kehoe

Kindness is the golden chain by which society is bound together.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

For peace of mind, we need to resign as general manager of the universe.

Larry Eisenberg

Violence is the last resort of the incompetent.

Lorne Bozinoff

Compassion is the chief law of human existence.

Fyodor Dostoyevsky

All I can do is engage with complete sincerity. Then whatever happens, there is no regret.

The Dalai Lama

Concern should drive us into action and not into depression.

Karen Horney

Dig within. Within is the wellspring of Good; and it is always ready to bubble up, if you just dig.

Marcus Aurelius

As perfume to the flower, so is kindness to speech.

Katherine Francke

It's not enough to have good thoughts for the world. You must get out there! It is also really important that each person realize their own worth. If you don't think you're good enough, how can you turn around and help save the world?

Ted Danson

Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; Who looks inside, awakens.

Carl Jung

Take the attitude of a student, never be too big to ask questions, never know too much to learn something new.

Og Mandino

Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God's kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.

Mother Teresa

The spiritual aspirant must swim upstream, against the current of habit, familiarity and ease.

Eknath Easwaran

A kind heart is a fountain of gladness, making everything in its vicinity freshen into smiles.

Washington Irving

I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.

William Penn

People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

Bonnie Jean Wasmund


©2016 Tom Barrett