Tag Archives: sorrow

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Khalil Gibran

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked. And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears. And how else can it be? The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain. Is not the cup that hold your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven? And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives? When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy. When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.Some of you say, “Joy is greater than sorrow,” and others say, “Nay, sorrow is the greater.” But I say unto you, they are inseparable. Together they come, and when one sits alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed. Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy. Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.

— Khalil Gibran – Joy and Sorrow (excerpt) – The Prophet

(image source: wikipedia)

Joy and Sorrow are inseparable

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The whole of the Orient is mesmerized by the word meditation, and in the Occident, the word prayer is of tremendous importance. It is essential to find out whether the mind – which is so very complex, and then caught in a system of what is called meditation, or in a repetition of words, however ancient, however meaningful as prayer – whether the mind can actually know what meditation is, or what lies beyond the word prayer, and discover an actual state that is really silent. It is only when the mind is silent that we can understand anything. If I want to understand somebody, my mind must be quiet, not chattering, not prejudiced, not having innumerable opinions and experiences, for they prevent the observation and the understanding. One can see directly that it is only when the mind is very quiet that there is a possibility of clarity; and the whole purpose of meditation in the East is to bring about such a state of mind. That purpose is the controlling of thought – which is the same purpose in constantly repeating a prayer – so that in that quiet state one may hope to understand one’s problems. One has to understand these problems, one has to be free of the anxieties and fears which they entail, otherwise one cannot really be a human being, one is a tortured entity, and the tortured entity obviously cannot see anything serious very clearly. Unless one lays the foundation – which is to be free from fear, free from sorrow, anxiety, and all the traps that consciously or unconsciously one lays for oneself – I do not see how it is possible for a mind to be actually quiet. This is one of the most difficult things to communicate, or even to talk about.

— Jiddu Krishnamurti – Collected Works Volume 4

(see also “Silence”)

It is only when the mind is silent that we can understand anything

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Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is bliss, taste it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it.

— Mother Theresa

Life is…

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Because in me you all exist, for me there is no separation:
but because you do not possess me,
for you there is separation and sorrow.

— Jiddu Krishnamurti – By What Authority!

There is nothing in the world that you cannot know,
when you know yourself.
Thinking yourself to be the body,
you know the world as a collection of material things.
When you know yourself as a centre of consciousness,
the world appears as the ocean of mind.
When you know yourself as you are in reality,
you know the world as yourself.

— Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj: I Am That

I am That

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He who rules men lives in confusion;
He who is ruled by men lives in sorrow.
Yao therefore desired
Neither to influence others
Nor to be influenced by them.
The way to get clear of confusion
And free of sorrow
Is to live with Tao
In the land of the great Void.

If a man is crossing a river
And an empty boat collides with his own skiff,
Even though he be a bad-tempered man
He will not become very angry.
But if he sees a man in the boat,
He will shout at him to steer clear.
If the shout is not heard, he will shout again,
And yet again, and begin cursing.
And all because there is somebody in the boat.
Yet if the boat were empty.
He would not be shouting, and not angry.

If you can empty your own boat
Crossing the river of the world,
No one will oppose you,
No one will seek to harm you.

The straight tree is the first to be cut down,
The spring of clear water is the first to be drained dry.
If you wish to improve your wisdom
And shame the ignorant,
To cultivate your character
And outshine others;
A light will shine around you
As if you had swallowed the sun and the moon:
You will not avoid calamity.

A wise man has said:
“He who is content with himself
Has done a worthless work.
Achievement is the beginning of failure.
Fame is beginning of disgrace.”

Who can free himself from achievement
And from fame, descend and be lost
Amid the masses of men?
He will flow like Tao, unseen,
He will go about like Life itself
With no name and no home.
Simple is he, without distinction.
To all appearances he is a fool.
His steps leave no trace. He has no power.
He achieves nothing, has no reputation.
Since he judges no one
No one judges him.
Such is the perfect man:
His boat is empty.

— Chuang Tzu

The Empty Boat

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Let us live in joy, not hating those who hate us.
Among those who hate us, we live free of hate.
Let us live in joy,
free from disease among those who are diseased.
Among those who are diseased, let us live free of disease.
Let us live in joy, free from greed among the greedy.
Among those who are greedy, we live free of greed.
Let us live in joy, though we possess nothing.
Let us live feeding on joy, like the bright gods.

Victory breeds hate, for the conquered is unhappy.
Whoever has given up victory and defeat
is content and lives joyfully.

There is no fire like lust, no misfortune like hate;
there is no pain like this body;
there is no joy higher than peace.

Craving is the worst disease;
disharmony is the greatest sorrow.
The one who knows this truly
knows that nirvana is the highest bliss.

Health is the greatest gift;
contentment is the greatest wealth;
trusting is the best relationship;
nirvana is the highest joy.

Whoever has tasted the sweetness
of solitude and tranquillity
becomes free from fear and sin
while drinking the sweetness of the truth.
The sight of the noble is good;
to live with them is always joyful.

Whoever does not see fools will always be happy.
Whoever associates with fools suffers a long time.
Being with fools, as with an enemy, is always painful.

Being with the wise, like meeting with family, is joyful.
Therefore, one should follow the wise, the intelligent,
the learned, the patient, the dutiful, the noble;
one should follow the good and wise,
as the moon follows the path of the stars.

— Siddharta Gautama (The Buddha) – The Dhammapada

Let us live in joy