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The Law of Prosperity

The Law of Prosperity

 

“Yea, the Almighty shall be thy defense and thou shalt have plenty of silver.”

One of the greatest messages given to the race through the scriptures is that God is

man’s supply and that man can release, through his spoken word, all that belongs to him

by divine right. He must, however, have perfect faith in his spoken word.

Isaiah said, “My word shall not return unto me void, but shall accomplish that where unto

it is sent.” We know now, that words and thoughts are a tremendous vibratory force, ever

molding man’s body and affairs.

A woman came to me in great distress and said she was to be sued on the fifteenth of the

month for three thousand dollars. She knew no way of getting the money and was in de-

spair.

I told her God was her supply, and that there is a supply for every demand.

So I spoke the word! I gave thanks that the woman would receive three thousand dollars

at the right time in the right way. I told her she must have perfect faith, and act her perfect

faith. The fifteenth came but no money had materialized.

She called me on the ‘phone and asked what she was to do. I replied, “It is Saturday, so

they won’t sue you today. Your part is to act rich, thereby showing perfect faith that you

will receive it by Monday.” She asked me to lunch with her to keep up her courage. When I

joined her at a restaurant, I said, “This is no time to economize. Order an expensive lunch-

eon, act as if you had already received the three thousand dollars.”

“All things whatsoever ye ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.” “You must act as if

you had already received.” The next morning she called me on the ‘phone and asked me

to stay with her during the day, I said “No, you are divinely protected and God is never too

late.”

In the evening she ‘phoned again, greatly excited and said, “My dear, a miracle has hap-

pened! I was sitting in my room this morning, when the doorbell rang. I said to the maid:

‘Don’t let anyone in.’ The maid however, looked out the window and said, ‘It’s your cousin

with the long white beard.’

So I said, ‘Call him back. I would like to see him.’ He was just turning the corner, when he

heard the maid’s voice, and he came back.

He talked for about an hour, and just as he was leaving he said, ‘Oh, by the way, how are

finances?’ I told him I needed the money, and he said, ‘Why, my dear, I will give you three

thousand dollars the first of the month.’

I didn’t like to tell him I was going to be sued. What shall I do? I won’t receive it till the first

of the month, and I must have it tomorrow.” I said, “I’ll keep on ‘treating.'”

 

I said, “Spirit is never too late. I give thanks she has received the money on the invisible

plane and that it manifests on time.” The next morning her cousin called her up and said,

“Come to my office this morning and I will give you the money.” That afternoon, she had

three thousand dollars to her credit in the bank, and wrote checks as rapidly as her excite-

ment would permit.

If one asks for success and prepares for failure, he will get the situation he has prepared

for. For example: A man came to me asking me to speak the word that a certain debt

would be wiped out.

I found he spent his time planning what he would say to the man when he did not pay his

bill, thereby neutralizing my words. He should have seen himself paying the debt.

We have a wonderful illustration of this in the bible, relating to the three kings who were in

the desert, without water for their men and horses. They consulted the prophet Elisha,

who gave them this astonishing message:

“Thus saith the Lord — Ye shall not see wind, neither shall ye see rain, yet make this valley

full of ditches.”

Man must prepare for the thing he has asked for, when there isn’t the slightest sign of it in

sight.

For example: A woman found it necessary to look for an apartment during the year when

there was a great shortage of apartments in New York. It was considered almost an impos-

sibility, and her friends were sorry for her and said, “Isn’t it too bad, you’ll have to store

your furniture and live in a hotel.” She replied, “You needn’t feel sorry for me, I’m a super-

man, and I’ll get an apartment.”

She spoke the words: “Infinite Spirit, open the way for the right apartment.” She knew

there was a supply for every demand, and that she was “unconditioned,” working on the

spiritual plane, and that “one with God is a majority.”

She had contemplated buying new blankets, when “the tempter,” the adverse thought or

reasoning mind, suggested, “Don’t buy the blankets, perhaps, after all, you won’t get an

apartment and you will have no use for them.” She promptly replied (to herself): “I’ll dig

my ditches by buying the blankets!” So she prepared for the apartment — acted as though

she already had it.

She found one in a miraculous way, and it was given to her although there were over two

hundred other applicants.

The blankets showed active faith.

It is needless to say that the ditches dug by the three kings in the desert were filled to

overflowing. (Read, II Kings)

Getting into the spiritual swing of things is no easy matter for the average person. The ad-

verse thoughts of doubt and fear surge from the subconscious. They are the “army of the

aliens” which must be put to flight. This explains why it is so often, “darkest before the

dawn.”

A big demonstration is usually preceded by tormenting thoughts.

Having made a statement of high spiritual truth one challenges the old beliefs in the sub-

conscious, and “error is exposed” to be put out.

This is the time when one must make his affirmations of truth repeatedly, and rejoice and

give thanks that he has already received. “Before ye call I shall answer.” This means that

“every good and perfect gift” is already man’s awaiting his recognition.

Man can only receive what he sees himself receiving.

The children of Israel were told that they could have all the land they could see. This is

true of every man. He has only the land within his own mental vision. Every great work,

every big accomplishment, has been brought into manifestation through holding to the

vision, and often just before the big achievement, comes apparent failure and discourage-

ment.

The children of Israel when they reached the “Promised Land,” were afraid to go in, for

they said it was filled with giants who made them feel like grasshoppers. “And there we

saw the giants and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers.” This is almost every

man’s experience.

However, the one who knows spiritual law, is undisturbed by appearance, and rejoices

while he is “yet in captivity.” That is, he holds to his vision and gives thanks that the end

is accomplished, he has received.

Jesus Christ gave a wonderful example of this. He said to his disciples: “Say not ye, there

are yet four months and then cometh the harvest? Behold, I say unto you, lift up your eyes

and look on the fields; for they are ripe already to harvest.” His clear vision pierced the

“world of matter” and he saw clearly the fourth dimensional world, things as they really

are, perfect and complete in Divine Mind. So man must ever hold the vision of his jour-

ney’s end and demand the manifestation of that which he has already received. It may be

his perfect health, love, supply, self-expression, home or friends.

They are all finished and perfect ideas registered in Divine Mind (man’s own supercon-

scious mind) and must come through him, not to him. For example: A man came to me

asking for treatments for success. It was imperative that he raise, within a certain time,

fifty-thousand dollars for his business. The time limit was almost up, when he came to me

in despair. No one wanted to invest in his enterprise, and the bank had flatly refused a

loan. I replied: “I suppose you lost your temper while at the bank, therefore your power.

You can control any situation if you first control yourself.”

“Go back to the bank,” I added, “and I will treat.” My treatment was: “You are identified in

love with the spirit of everyone connected with the bank. Let the divine idea come out of

this situation.” He replied, “Woman, you are talking about an impossibility. Tomorrow is

Saturday; the bank closes at twelve, and my train won’t get me there until ten, and the time

limit is up tomorrow, and anyway they won’t do it. It’s too late.”

I replied, “God doesn’t need any time and is never too late. With Him all things are possi-

ble.” I added, “I don’t know anything about business, but I know all about God.”

9

He replied: “It all sounds fine when I sit here listening to you, but when I go out it’s terri-

ble.” He lived in a distant city, and I did not hear from him for a week, then came a letter. It

read: “You were right. I raised the money, and will never again doubt the truth of all that

you told me.”

I saw him a few weeks later, and I said, “What happened? You evidently had plenty of

time, after all.” He replied, “My train was late, and I got there just fifteen minutes to twelve.

I walked into the bank quietly and said, ‘I have come for the loan,’ and they gave it to me

without a question.”

It was the last fifteen minutes of the time allotted to him, and Infinite Spirit was not too

late. In this instance the man could never have demonstrated alone. He needed someone

to help him hold to the vision. This is what one man can do for another.

Jesus Christ knew the truth of this when he said: “If two of you shall agree on earth as

touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in

heaven.” One gets too close to his own affairs and becomes doubtful and fearful.

The friend or “healer” sees clearly the success, health, or prosperity, and never wavers,

because he is not close to the situation.

It is much easier to “demonstrate” for someone else than for one’s self, so a person

should not hesitate to ask for help, if he feels himself wavering.

A keen observer of life once said, “no man can fail, if some one person sees him success-

ful.” Such is the power of the vision, and many a great man has owed his success to a

wife, or sister, or a friend who “believed in him” and held without wavering to the perfect

pattern

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The Law of Nonresistance

The Law of Nonresistance

“Resist not evil. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.”

Nothing on earth can resist an absolutely nonresistant person.

The Chinese say that water is the most powerful element, because it is perfectly nonresis-

tant. It can wear away a rock, and sweep all before it.

Jesus Christ said: “Resist not evil,” for He knew in reality, there is no evil, therefore noth-

ing to resist. Evil has come of man’s “vain imagination,” or a belief in two powers, good

and evil.

There is an old legend, that Adam and Eve ate of “Maya the Tree of Illusion,” and saw two

powers instead of one power, God.

Therefore, evil is a false law man has made for himself, through psychoma or soul sleep.

Soul sleep means, that man’s soul has been hypnotized by the race belief (of sin, sickness

and death, etc.) which is carnal or mortal thought, and his affairs have out-pictured his il-

lusions.

We have read in a preceding chapter, that man’s soul is his subconscious mind, and what-

ever he feels deeply, good or bad, is out-pictured by that faithful servant. His body and

affairs show forth what he has been picturing. The sick man has pictured sickness, the

poor man, poverty, the rich man, wealth.

People often say, “why does a little child attract illness, when it is too young even to know

what it means?”

I answer that children are sensitive and receptive to the thoughts of others about them,

and often out-picture the fears of their parents.

I heard a metaphysician once say, “If you do not run your subconscious mind yourself,

someone else will run it for you.”

Mothers often, unconsciously, attract illness and disaster to their children, by continually

holding them in thoughts of fear, and watching for symptoms.

For example: A friend asked a woman if her little girl had had the measles. She replied

promptly, “not yet!” This implied that she was expecting the illness, and, therefore, pre-

paring the way for what she did not want for herself and child.

However, the man who is centered and established in right thinking, the man who sends

out only goodwill to his fellow man, and who is without fear, cannot be touched or influ-

enced by the negative thoughts of others. In fact, he could then receive only good

thoughts, as he himself, sends forth only thoughts.

Resistance is Hell, for it places man in a “state of torment.”

A metaphysician once gave me a wonderful recipe for taking every trick in the game of

life, it is the acme of non resistance. He gave it in this way; “At one time in my life, I bap-

tized children, and of course, they had many names. Now I no longer baptize children, but

I baptize events, but I give every event the same name. If I have a failure I baptize it suc-

cess, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost!”

In this, we see the great law of transmutation, founded on nonresistance. Through his

spoken word, every failure was transmuted into success.

For example: A woman who required money, and who knew the spiritual law of opulence,

was thrown in a business-way continually, with a man who made her feel very poor. He

talked lack and limitation and she commenced to catch his poverty thoughts, so she dis-

liked him, and blamed him for her failure. She knew in order to demonstrate her supply,

she must first feel that she had received — a feeling of opulence must precede its manifes-

tation.

It dawned on her, one day, that she was resisting the situation, and seeing two powers in-

stead of one. So she blessed the man and baptized the situation “Success”! She affirmed,

“As there is only one power, God, this man is here for my good and my prosperity” (just

what he did not seem to be there for).

Soon after that she met, through this man, a woman who gave her for a service rendered,

several thousand dollars, and the man moved to a distant city, and faded harmoniously

from her life. Make the statement, “Every man is a golden link in the chain of my good,” for

all men are God in manifestation, awaiting the opportunity given by man, himself, to serve

the divine plan of his life.

“Bless your enemy, and you rob him of his ammunition.” His arrows will be transmuted

into blessings.

This law is true of nations as well as individuals. Bless a nation, send love and goodwill to

every inhabitant, and it is robbed of its power to harm.

Man can only get the right idea of nonresistance, through spiritual understanding. My stu-

dents have often said: “I don’t want to be a doormat.” I reply “when you use nonresistance

with wisdom, no one will ever be able to walk over you.”

Another example: One day I was impatiently awaiting an important telephone call. I re-

sisted every call that came in and made no outgoing calls myself, reasoning that it might

interfere with the one I was awaiting.

Instead of saying, “Divine ideas never conflict, the call will come at the right time,” leaving

it to Infinite Intelligence to arrange, I commenced to manage things myself — I made the

battle mine, not God’s and remained tense and anxious. The bell did not ring for about an

hour, and I glanced at the ‘phone and found the receiver had been off that length of time,

and the ‘phone was disconnected. My anxiety, fear and belief in interference, had brought

on a total eclipse of the telephone. Realizing what I had done, I commenced blessing the

situation at once; I baptized it “success,” and affirmed, “I cannot lose any call that be-

longs to me by divine right; I am under grace, and not under law.”

A friend rushed out to the nearest telephone, to notify the Company to reconnect.

She entered a crowded grocery, but the proprietor left his customers and attended to the

call himself. My ‘phone was connected at once, and two minutes later, I received a very

important call, and about an hour afterwards, the one I had been awaiting.

One’s ships come in over a calm sea.

So long as man resists a situation, he will have it with him. If he runs away from it, it will

run after him.

For example: I repeated this to a woman one day, and she replied, “How true that is! I was

unhappy at home, I disliked my mother, who was critical and domineering; so I ran away

and was married — but I married my mother, for my husband was exactly like my mother,

and I had the same situation to face again.” “Agree with thine adversary quickly.”

This means, agree that the adverse situation is good, be undisturbed by it, and it falls

away of its own weight. “None of these things move me,” is a wonderful affirmation.

The inharmonious situation comes from some inharmony within man himself.

When there is, in him, no emotional response to an inharmonious situation, it fades away

forever, from his pathway.

So we see man’s work is ever with himself.

People have said to me, “Give treatments to change my husband, or my brother.” I reply,

“No, I will give treatments to change you; when you change, your husband and your

brother will change.”

One of my students was in the habit of lying. I told her it was a failure method and if she

lied, she would be lied to. She replied, “I don’t care, I can’t possibly get along without ly-

ing.”

One day she was speaking on the ‘phone to a man with whom she was very much in love.

She turned to me and said, “I don’t trust him, I know he’s lying to me.” I replied, “Well, you

lie yourself, so someone has to lie to you, and you may be sure it will be just the person

you want the truth from.” Some time after that, I saw her, and she said, “I’m cured of ly-

ing.”

I questioned: “What cured you?”

She replied: “I have been living with a woman who lied worse than I did!”

One is often cured of his faults by seeing them in others.

Life is a mirror, and we find only ourselves reflected in our associates.

Living in the past is a failure method and a violation of spiritual law.

Jesus Christ said, “Behold, now is the accepted time.” “Now is the day of Salvation.”

Lot’s wife looked back and was turned into a pillar of salt.

The robbers of time are the past and the future. Man should bless the past, and forget it, if

it keeps him in bondage, and bless the future, knowing it has in store for him endless joys,

but live fully in the now.

For example: A woman came to me, complaining that she had no money with which to buy

Christmas gifts. She said, “Last year was so different; I had plenty of money and gave

lovely presents, and this year I have scarcely a cent.”

I replied, “You will never demonstrate money while you are pathetic and live in the past.

Live fully in the now, and get ready to give Christmas presents. Dig your ditches, and the

money will come.”

She exclaimed, “I know what to do! I will buy some tinsel twine, Christmas seals and wrap-

ping paper.” I replied, “Do that, and the presents will come and stick themselves to the

Christmas seals.”

This too, was showing financial fearlessness and faith in God, as the reasoning mind said,

“Keep every cent you have, as you are not sure you will get any more.”

She bought the seals, paper and twine, and a few days before Christmas, received a gift of

several hundred dollars. Buying the seals and twine had impressed the subconscious with

expectancy, and opened the way for the manifestation of the money. She purchased all

the presents in plenty of time.

Man must live suspended in the moment.

“Look well, therefore, to this Day! Such is the salutation of the Dawn.”

He must be spiritually alert, ever awaiting his leads, taking advantage of every opportu-

nity.

One day, I said continually (silently), “Infinite Spirit, don’t let me miss a trick,” and some-

thing very important was told to me that evening. It is most necessary to begin the day

with right words.

Make an affirmation immediately upon waking.

For example:

“Thy will be done this day! Today is a day of completion; I give thanks for this perfect day,

miracle shall follow miracle and wonders shall never cease.”

Make this a habit, and one will see wonders and miracles come into his life.

One morning I picked up a book and read, “Look with wonder at that which is before you!”

It seemed to be my message for the day, so I repeated again and again, “Look with wonder

at that which is before you.”

At about noon, a large sum of money was given me, which I had been desiring for a cer-

tain purpose.

In a following chapter, I will give affirmations that I have found most effective. However,

one should never use an affirmation unless it is absolutely satisfying and convincing to

his own consciousness, and often an affirmative is changed to suit different people.

For example: The following has brought success to many:

“I have a wonderful work, in a wonderful way, I give wonderful service, for wonderful pay!”

I gave the first two lines to one of my students, and she added the last two.

It made a most powerful statement, as there should always be perfect payment for perfect

service, and a rhyme sinks easily into the subconscious. She went about singing it aloud

and soon did receive wonderful work in a wonderful way, and gave wonderful service for

wonderful pay.

Another student, a business man, took it, and changed the word work to business.

He repeated, “I have a wonderful business, in a wonderful way, and I give wonderful serv-

ice for wonderful pay.” That afternoon he made a forty-one thousand dollar deal, though

there had been no activity in his affairs for months.

Every affirmation must be carefully worded and completely “cover the ground.”

For example: I knew a woman, who was in great need, and made a demand for work. She

received a great deal of work, but was never paid anything. She now knows to add, “won-

derful service for wonderful pay.”

It is man’s divine right to have plenty! More than enough!

“His barns should be full, and his cup should flow over!” This is God’s idea for man, and

when man breaks down the barriers of lack in his own consciousness, the Golden Age will

be his, and every righteous desire of his heart fulfilled!

 

 

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The Cover up

The Cover up

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

(1 John 1:9)

Something was wrong at school. Very wrong. It was only the bravery of Andrew that

finally brought resolution. Of course, he was that same person who actually caused the situation

in the first place. Nevertheless, he snapped into action, mustered up no small amount

of courage and, yes, he CLEANED OUT HIS LOCKER!

People teared up as they walked by. It wasn’t emotion over his bravery. It was some

sort of gray fog that was looming over the locker. The stench was causing the paint to

peel.

The cleaning process was an adventure- maybe it was more of an excavation. No,

excavation isn’t a strong enough word either. It was more like a hostile confrontation. He

might have been better prepared for the battle if it were a military school locker. Still, I

think we’d all be pretty amazed, if not thoroughly grossed out, at the spoils of war a 9th

grader can acquire when he resolves to clean his locker. “So there’s that Government report.”

“Hey, I remember when these shoes fit!”

Andrew continued the onslaught on his locker until he finally sniffed out the enemy.

He found it sandwiched between a couple of stiff, brown socks. (Hey, wait a minute! I only

buy him white socks). It was one of those frozen pocket sandwiches. Needless to say, it was

no longer frozen. It’s safe to say that it was no longer a sandwich either. It was green and

purple and slimy- the part that was still there, that is. Half of it was gone-even though he

hadn’t ever eaten any of it.

Once he peeled away the socks, the stench moved the battle into more of a chemical

warfare mode. Even after Andrew hauled off the slime pocket, the stench didn’t seem to

understand that its instigator was gone. The gray fog still loomed. So Andrew fought the

chemical battle the way most 9th grade guys fight the battle- something like Mold-zilla

meets High Karate Kid.

Isn’t that how we treat sin sometimes? We ignore it until it just won’t be ignored

anymore. And then we try to cover it over by “over-cologning” it. We excuse it as a little

boo-boo, an error in judgment, or “just part of my personality.” What we really need to do

is recognize that stench for what it is: sin. Then we need to hose out the locker of our lives

and start fresh.

Jesus is the only one who can clean up the stench. “If we confess our sins, he is

faithful to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9) Yes, HE

can purify even the stuff we’ve left growing all semester.

Covering over our sin gets us nowhere. Proverbs 28:13 says, “He who conceals his sins

does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” He finds mercy.

In some analogies, he may even find a science project.

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Mrs. Thompson

Mrs. Thompson

 

Jean Thompson stood in front of her fifth-grade class on

the very first day of school in the fall and told the children

a lie. Like most teachers. She looked at her pupils and said

that she loved them all the same, that she would treat

them all alike. That was impossible because there in front

of her, slumped in his seat on the third row, was a little boy named Teddy Stoddard. Mrs.

Thompson had watched Teddy the year before and noticed he didn’t play well with the

other children, that his clothes were unkept and that he constantly needed a bath. Teddy

was unpleasant. It got to the point during the first few months that she would actually take

delight in marking his papers with a broad red pen, making bold X’s and then marking the F

at the top of the paper biggest of all.

 

Because Teddy was a sullen little boy, no one else seemed to enjoy him, either. At

the school where Mrs. Thompson taught, she was required to review each child’s records

and put Teddy’s off until last. When she opened his file, she was in for a surprise. His

first-grade teacher wrote. “Teddy is bright, inquisitive child with a ready laugh.” “He does

his work neatly and has good manners… he is a joy to be around.” His second grade teacher

wrote, “Teddy is an excellent student well liked by his classmates, but he is troubled because

his mother has a terminal illness and life at home must be a struggle.” His third grade

teacher wrote, “Teddy continues to work hard, but his mother’s death has been hard on

him. He tries to do his best but his father doesn’t show much interest and his home life will

soon affect him if some steps aren’t taken.” Teddy’s fourth-grade teacher wrote. “Teddy

is withdrawn and doesn’t show much interest in school. He doesn’t have many friends and

sometimes sleeps in class. He is tardy and could become a problem.”

 

By now Mrs. Thompson realized the problem, but Christmas was coming fast. It was

all she could do, with the school play and all, until the day before the holidays began and

she was suddenly forced to focus on Teddy Stoddard. Her children brought her presents,

all in beautiful ribbon and bright paper, except for Teddy’s, which was clumsily wrapped in

the heavy, brown paper of a scissored grocery bag. Mrs. Thompson took pains to open it in

the middle of the presents. Some of the children started to laugh when she found a rhinestone

bracelet with some of the stones missing, and a bottle that was one quarter full of

cologne. She stiffled the children’s laughter, when she exclaimed how pretty the bracelet

was, putting it on, and a dabbing some of the perfume behind the other wrist. Teddy Stoddard

stayed behind just long enough to say, “Mrs.Thompson, today you smelled just like my

mom used to.” After the children left she cried for at least an hour.

 

On that very day, she quit teaching reading, writing, and speaking. Instead, she began

to teach children. Jean Thompson paid particular attention to one they called “Teddy”.

As she worked with him, his mind seemed to come alive. The more she encouraged him, the

faster he responded.

 

On days where there would be an important test, Mrs. Thompson would remember

that cologne. By the end of the year he had become one of the smartest children in the

class and …well, he had also become the “pet” of the teacher who had once vowed to love all

her children the same. A year later she found a note from Teddy, telling her that of all the

teachers he’d had in elementary school, she was his favorite. Six years went by before she

got another note from Teddy. He then wrote that he had finished high school, had stuck

with it, and would graduate with the highest of honors. He assured Mrs. Thompson she was

still his favorite teacher of all time.

 

Four years after that, she got another letter, saying that while things had

been tough at times, he’d stayed in school, had stuck with it, and would graduate from college

with the highest honors. He assured Mrs. Thompson she was still his favorite teacher.

Then four more years passed and yet another letter came. This time he explained that she

was still his favorite teacher, but now his name was a little longer. The letter was signed,

Theodore F. Stoddard, M.D.

 

The story doesn’t end there. You see, there was yet another letter that spring.

Teddy said he’d met this girl and was to be married. He explained that his father had died

a couple of years ago and he was wondering.. well, if Mrs. Thompson might agree to sit in the

pew usually reserved for the mother of the groom. And guess what, she wore that bracelet,

the one with several rhinestones missing and I bet that on that special day, Jean Thompson

smelled just like … well, just like the way Teddy remembered his mother smelling on their

last Christmas together.

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They Were all Winners

 They Were all Winners

 

A few years ago at the Seattle Special Olympics, nine contestants, all

physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the 100-

yard dash. At the sound of the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash,

but with relish to run the race to the finish and win. All, that is except one boy

who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a couple of times and began to cry.

The other eight heard the boy cry. They slowed down and looked back. They

all turned around and went back. Every one of them. One girl with Down’s Syndrome

bent down and kissed him and said, “This will make it better.” All nine

linked arms and walked across the finish line together.

 

Everyone in the stadium stood, and the cheering went on for several

minutes. People who were there are still telling the story. Why? Because deep

down we know this one thing: What matters in this life is more than winning

for ourselves. What truly matters in this life is helping others win, even if it

means slowing down and changing our course.

 

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Being and Breathing

Being and Breathing

 

One warm evening many years ago…

After spending nearly every waking minute with Angel for eight straight days, I knew that I had to tell her just one thing.  So late at night, just before she fell asleep, I whispered it in her ear.  She smiled – the kind of smile that makes me smile back –and she said, “When I’m seventy-five and I think about my life and what it was like to be young, I hope that I can remember this very moment.”

A few seconds later she closed her eyes and fell asleep.  The room was peaceful – almost silent.  All I could hear was the soft purr of her breathing.  I stayed awake thinking about the time we’d spent together and all the choices in our lives that made this moment possible.  And at some point, I realized that it didn’t matter what we’d done or where we’d gone.  Nor did the future hold any significance.

All that mattered was the serenity of the moment.

Just being with her and breathing with her.

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Shark Bait

Shark Bait

 

During a research experiment a marine biologist placed a shark into a large holding tank and then released several small bait fish into the tank.

As you would expect, the shark quickly swam around the tank, attacked and ate the smaller fish.

The marine biologist then inserted a strong piece of clear fiberglass into the tank, creating two separate partitions. She then put the shark on one side of the fiberglass and a new set of bait fish on the other.

Again, the shark quickly attacked.  This time, however, the shark slammed into the fiberglass divider and bounced off.  Undeterred, the shark kept repeating this behavior every few minutes to no avail.  Meanwhile, the bait fish swam around unharmed in the second partition.  Eventually, about an hour into the experiment, the shark gave up.

This experiment was repeated several dozen times over the next few weeks.  Each time, the shark got less aggressive and made fewer attempts to attack the bait fish, until eventually the shark got tired of hitting the fiberglass divider and simply stopped attacking altogether.

The marine biologist then removed the fiberglass divider, but the shark didn’t attack.  The shark was trained to believe a barrier existed between it and the bait fish, so the bait fish swam wherever they wished, free from harm.

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All the Difference in The World

All the Difference in The World

 

Every Sunday morning I take a light jog around a park near my home.  There’s a lake located in one corner of the park.  Each time I jog by this lake, I see the same elderly woman sitting at the water’s edge with a small metal cage sitting beside her.

This past Sunday my curiosity got the best of me, so I stopped jogging and walked over to her.  As I got closer, I realized that the metal cage was in fact a small trap.  There were three turtles, unharmed, slowly walking around the base of the trap.  She had a fourth turtle in her lap that she was carefully scrubbing with a spongy brush.

“Hello,” I said.  “I see you here every Sunday morning.  If you don’t mind my nosiness, I’d love to know what you’re doing with these turtles.”

She smiled.  “I’m cleaning off their shells,” she replied.  “Anything on a turtle’s shell, like algae or scum, reduces the turtle’s ability to absorb heat and impedes its ability to swim.  It can also corrode and weaken the shell over time.”

“Wow!  That’s really nice of you!” I exclaimed.

She went on: “I spend a couple of hours each Sunday morning, relaxing by this lake and helping these little guys out.  It’s my own strange way of making a difference.”

“But don’t most freshwater turtles live their whole lives with algae and scum hanging from their shells?” I asked.

“Yep, sadly, they do,” she replied.

I scratched my head.  “Well then, don’t you think your time could be better spent?  I mean, I think your efforts are kind and all, but there are fresh water turtles living in lakes all around the world.  And 99% of these turtles don’t have kind people like you to help them clean off their shells.  So, no offense… but how exactly are your localized efforts here truly making a difference?”

The woman giggled aloud.  She then looked down at the turtle in her lap, scrubbed off the last piece of algae from its shell, and said, “Sweetie, if this little guy could talk, he’d tell you I just made all the difference in the world.”

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GET A LIFE

GET A LIFE

GET A LIFE

This is a commencement speech made by Anna Quindlen at Villanova:

It’s a great honor for me to be the third member of my family to receive an honorary doctorate from this great university. It’s an honor to follow my great Uncle Jim, who was a gifted physician, and my Uncle

Jack, who is a remarkable businessman. Both of them could have told you something important about their professions, about medicine or commerce. I have no specialized field of interest or expertise, which puts me at a disadvantage talking to you today. I’m a novelist. My work is human nature. Real life is all I know.

Don’t ever confuse the two, your life and your work. The second is only part of the first. Don’t ever forget what a friend once wrote Senator Paul Tsongas when the senator decided not to run for re-election because he had been diagnosed with cancer: “No man ever said on his deathbed I wish I had spent more time at the office.”   Don’t ever forget the words my father sent me on a postcard last year: “If you win the rat race, you’re still a rat.” Or what John Lennon wrote before he was gunned down in the driveway of the Dakota: “Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.”

You will walk out of here this afternoon with only one thing that no one else has. There will be hundreds of people out there with your same degree; there will be thousands of people doing what you want to do for a living.  But you will be the only person alive who has sole custody of your life. Your particular life. Your entire life. Not just your life at a desk, or your life on a bus, or in a car, or at the computer. Not just the life of your mind, but the life of your heart. Not just your bank account, but your soul.

People don’t talk about the soul very much anymore. It’s so much easier to write a resume than to craft a spirit. But a resume is a cold comfort on a winter night, or when you’re sad, or broke, or lonely, or when you’ve gotten back the test results and they’re not so good.

Here is my resume: I am a good mother to three children. I have tried never to let my profession stand in the way of being a good parent. I no longer consider myself the center of the universe.

I show up. I listen.  I try to laugh. I am a good friend to my husband. I have tried to make marriage vows mean what they say. I am a good friend to my friends, and they to me. Without them, there would be nothing to say to you today, because I would be a cardboard cutout. But I call them on the phone, and I meet them for lunch. I would be rotten, or at best mediocre at my job, if those other things were not true. You cannot be really first rate at your work if your work is all you are. So here’s what I wanted to tell you today:

Get a life.  A real life, not a manic pursuit of the next promotion, the bigger paycheck, the larger house. Do you think you’d care so very much about those things if you blew an aneurysm one afternoon, or found a lump in your breast?

Get a life in which you notice the smell of salt water pushing itself on a breeze over Seaside Heights, a life in which you stop and watch how a red tailed hawk circles over the water or the way a baby scowls with concentration when she tries to pick up a Cheerio with her thumb and first finger. Get a life in which you are not alone.

Find people you love, and who love you. And remember that love is not leisure, it is work. Pick up the phone. Send an e-mail. Write a letter.

Get a life in which you are generous.  And realize that life is the best thing ever, and that you have no business taking it for granted. Care so deeply about its goodness that you want to spread it around. Take money you would have spent on beers and give it to charity. Work in a soup kitchen. Be a big brother or sister. All of you want to do well. But if you do not do good too, then doing well will never be enough.

It is so easy to waste our lives, our days, our hours, our minutes. It is so easy to take for granted the color of our kids’ eyes, the way the melody in a symphony rises and falls and disappears and rises again. It is so easy to exist instead of to live.

I learned to live many years ago. Something really, really bad happened to me, something that changed my life in ways that, if I had my druthers, it would never have been changed at all. And what I learned from it is what, today, seems to be the hardest lesson of all.

I learned to love the journey, not the destination. I learned that it is not a dress rehearsal, and that today is the only guarantee you get. I learned to look at all the good in the world and try to give some of it back because I believed in it, completely and utterly. And I tried to do that, in part, by telling others what I had learned. By telling them this: Consider the lilies of the field. Look at the fuzz on a baby’s ear. Read in the backyard with the sun on your face. Learn to be happy . And think of life as a terminal illness, because if you do, you will live it with joy and passion as it ought to be lived.

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HOW TO WALK ON THE PATH OF LIFE

HOW TO WALK ON THE PATH OF LIFE

HOW TO WALK ON THE PATH OF LIFE

When I was very young, not long after I came to Parmarth Niketan, a very old, revered saint came to Rishikesh to give his divine satsang at Parmarth Niketan.

However, rather than staying in the comforts of the ashram, he used to stay in a small hut on the banks of Ganga a little bit away from the center of the ashrams.

I was given the special seva of going to pick him up each morning and bring him to the ashram. As we walked through the busy marketplace, I would try to push everyone and everything out of his way so that this revered saint could walk comfortably and unimpeded to the ashram. I asked everyone along the way, Side please. Please give us the way to walk. I would gently push all of the wandering cows out of his path. I moved standing bicycles and fruit carts out of the way so he could pass.

Finally as we reached the gate of the ashram I was feeling very glad that I had been able to bring him so safely and smoothly to the ashram, and that I had been able to clear such a nice path for him to walk.

This saint, however, looked at me lovingly and said, Beta, kis kis ko hatate rahoge? Aur kab tak hatate rahoge?  My child, how many people and cows can you push out of the  way? For how long can you move other people and things out of your path? That is not the way. Apna rasta banate jao. Apna rasta banake nikalte jao. Do not try to move others; rather find your way between the others and around them. Make your own path, but do not worry about moving others. Find your own way in the midst of the chaos.

In our lives we frequently get frustrated and broken by feeling that others are blocking our way and thwarting our path.  We blame their presence and their actions for our own failure. We explain to ourselves that we would have been able to succeed if only they had let us, if only they had moved out of the way for us. We try to push people and obstacles aside to clear a way for ourselves in life.

However, obstacles never stop coming. People who are jealous never stop trying to block our path. For how long can we try to move them aside? How many obstacles, how many enemies can we try to push away? The answer is to simply find our own way, around them, between them. If they are blocking the path on the right, we walk on the left. If they are blocking the path on the left, we walk on the right.

We must be more concerned about finding our own way rather than focusing on moving all of those whom we think are blocking our path. For those who are pure in mind, thought and deed, there will always be a path in which to walk. The path may be narrow at times and it may seem that obstacles and enemies line both sides. But we must humbly and sincerely make our own way on the path of life. We must just keep walking the path of our dharma, the path of righteousness, the path of honesty, purity and piety without worrying about those who try to block our way.

So much of our precious time, energy and focus are wasted in the futile task of trying to remove obstacles and other people from our path. It is not necessary. Find your own path around the obstacles. Find your own path around the enemies. Do not try to push them aside or push them down or fight them for the right of way. Rather, carefully examine the situation and see where the path is clear. Then, choose that path and continue on your way.

The more attention we give to those who are trying to sabotage us and trying to thwart our progress, the less time and energy we have to walk to right path. In that way, then, the enemies win, for they have stolen our peace of mind, our tranquility, our joy and also our time. Instead of trying to fight them out of the way, we must remain humble, pure and single-minded on the goal. If we can see our destination clearly then we will always be able to find a path in which to walk.

So, keep the destination firm in your mind. Stay focused on the goal and nikalte chale, nikalte chale jao [move around the obstacles and continue on the path.].