It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing. It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dreams, for the adventure of being alive. It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life’s betrayals, or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain. I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide or fade it or fix it. I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own; if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of you fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, be realistic, or to remember the limitations of being a human. It doesn’t interest me if the story you’re telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself; if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. I want to know if you can be faithful and therefore be trustworthy. I want to know if you can see the beauty even when it is not pretty everyday, and if you can source your life from its presence. I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge of a lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes!” It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done for the children. It doesn’t interest me who you are, or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back. It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away. I want to know if you can be alone with yourself, and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.
let it go –
the smashed word broken,
open vow, or the oath cracked lengthwise –
let it go
it was sworn to go
let them go –
the truthful liars and the false fair friends
and the boths and neithers –
you must let them go
they were born to go
let all go –
the big, small, middling,
tall, bigger, really the biggest
and all things –
let all go dear
so comes love
~ e.e. cummings
Remember that whenever you look without and react unfavorably to what you see, you have judged yourself unworthy and have condemned yourself to death. The death penalty is the ego’s ultimate goal, for it fully believes you are a criminal, as deserving of death as God knows you are deserving of life. The death penalty never leaves the ego’s mind, for that is what it always reserves for you in the end. Wanting to kill you as it’s final expression of feeling for you, it lets you live but to await death. It will torment you while you live but it’s hatred is not satisfied until you die. For your destruction is the one end toward which it works, and the only end with which it will be satisfied.
~A Course in Miracles
Just as kusha grass wrapped around rotting fish will soon begin to smell the same,
A person who associates with bad friends, in time, will certainly come to resemble them.
Shun unvirtuous friends who have bad characters, cynical outlooks, and prejudice,
Believe their own view to be the best, are boastful, and disparage others.
~The Treasury of Knowledge, Buddhist Ethics
“The hour is striking so close above me,
so clear and sharp,
that all my senses ring with it.
I feel it now: there’s a power in me
to grasp and give shape to my world.
I know that nothing has ever been real
without my beholding it.
All my becoming has needed me.
My looking ripens things
and they come toward me, to meet and be met.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke
Yoga gives firmness of body, clarity of intelligence, cleanness of heart. That is peace, and by looking at that peace, others will learn. Cultivate that supreme strength of peace, joy and delight. Then others, seeing the joy in you, will say, ‘I want to enjoy too.’ You are a true helper of society when the pupil comes to you, instead of you going to him. Then it is a pure teaching and a pure message.
~B.K.S. Iyengar from The Tree of Yoga