Quotes

This page contains some of my favorite quotes from various sources. I love re-reading these from time to time as they serve as good reminders of the enormous amount I have learnt from others. These are some of the thoughts and feelings I’d like to keep in my life going forward.

Roughly in alphabetical order

James Aspey

We all say we love animals and we all are against animal cruelty, but we pay people to mutilate torture and slaughter animals. And it’s not for any necessity, it’s not because we need to for our health, it’s just because we like the way they taste.

Marcus Aurelius

He who lives in harmony with himself lives in harmony with the universe.

Richard Branson

Business as usual is wrecking our planet. Resources are being used up. Air, sea, and land are heavily polluted. The poor are getting poorer. The short-term focus on profit has driven most businesses to forget about their important long-term role in taking care of people and the planet. All over the world people are demanding that business as usual changes. One of the great benefits of information technology is that people are now directly connected to those suffering as a result of economic unfairness and are no longer prepared to accept it.

Belief in yourself & your ideas can make all the difference between success & failure

Find people who look for the best in others, praise rather than criticise, and love what they do.

You will live a much better life if you just do it and pursue your passions. Those people who spend their time working on things they love are usually the ones enjoying life the most. They are also the ones who dared to take a risk and chase their dreams.

If you aren’t making a positive difference to other people’s lives, then you shouldn’t be in business. Companies have a responsibility to make a difference in the world, for their staff, their customers – everyone.

Belief in yourself and belief in your business ideas can make all the difference between success and failure. If you aren’t proud of your idea and believe in your plans, why should anybody else?

Fun is one of the most important – and underrated – ingredients in any successful venture. If you’re not having fun, then it’s probably time to call it quits and try something else.

By simply not giving up, brushing yourself down and trying again, you’ll be amazed what you can achieve.

There’s so many fascinating people to meet, exciting adventures to embark upon and rewarding challenges to take on that there’s no time to lose.

As long as you are surrounded by the people you love, doing what you love, it really doesn’t matter where you are.

Buddha

Without doing any harmful act,
Abundantly perform beneficial acts,
Completely tame your mind,
That is my teaching.

Three things cannot be long hidden: the Sun, the moon and the truth.

You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection

If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.

The mind that perceives the limitation is the limitation.

Awake. Be the witness of your thoughts. You are what observes, not what you observe.

We are the same as plants, as trees, as other people, as the rain that falls. We consist of that which is around us, we are the same as everything. If we destroy something around us, we destroy ourselves. If we cheat another, we cheat ourselves.

Be where you are; otherwise you will miss your life.

Change is never painful, only the resistance to change is painful.

Just as a picture is drawn by an artist, surroundings are created by the activities of the mind.

We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.

What we are today comes from our thoughts of yesterday, and our present thoughts build our life of tomorrow: our life is the creation of our mind.
–  From the Dhammapada

Joseph Campbell

The privilege of a lifetime is being yourself.

The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.

Deepak Chopra

Facts don’t change minds as often as they confirm what the mind insists on believing.
— in the foreword to the book by Dean Radin, Supernormal, 2013.

Where do space and time exist?

When you perceive yourself as spirit, you will not simply feel love – you will be love.

The reason for such strong common agreement is this: suffering, ignorance, and self-destructive behavior are the product of the conditioned mind. It’s not the brain that forces us to feel pain and sorrow, to act out of anger, to possess low self-esteem. It’s how the brain got trained. Who did this bad training? The mind. Therefore, the mind must find a way out. Only through self-awareness can old conditioning be confronted. The job isn’t done overnight, yet thousands of years of spiritual experience attest to the possibility of waking up. (quoted here)

His Holiness, The 14th Dalai Lama

What we call “mind” is a very curious phenomenon. Sometimes it is rigid and resistant to any change. It can also be very flexible as long as we make constant efforts to transform it and convince ourselves, through reflection, that this change is not only possible but essential. To do so, wishes or prayers are not enough. We need to use reason based on experience. One should not expect this transformation to happen overnight, as our old habits will resist any rapid solution.

Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.

You must not hate those who do wrong or harmful things; but with compassion, you must do what you can to stop them — for they are harming themselves, as well as those who suffer from their actions.

I don’t know whether the universe, with its countless galaxies, stars and planets, has a deeper meaning or not, but at the very least, it is clear that we humans who live on this earth face the task of making a happy life for ourselves. Therefore, it is important to discover what will bring about the greatest degree of happiness.

I believe all suffering is caused by ignorance. People inflict pain on others in the selfish pursuit of their happiness or satisfaction. Yet true happiness comes from a sense of inner peace and contentment, which in turn must be achieved through the cultivation of altruism, of love and compassion and elimination of ignorance, selfishness and greed.

We are but visitors on this planet. We are here for ninty or one hundred years at the very most. During that period, we must try to do something good, something useful with our lives. If you contibute to other people’s happiness, you will find the true goal, the true meaning of life.

The very purpose of our life is to seek happiness.

With realization of one’s own potential and self-confidence in one’s ability, one can build a better world.

Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.

When asked what surprised him most about humanity;
Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money in order to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.

For many people, the only tangible value is money. And of course money has its place, but the value of cultivating a compassionate attitude is much more effective. When we only pay attention to material values, there’s little room for concern for others, or for mutual regard.

With the realisation of one’s own potential and self-confidence in one’s ability, one can build a better world. According to my own experience, self-confidence is very important. That sort of confidence is not a blind one; it is an awareness of one’s own potential. On that basis, human beings can transform themselves by increasing their good qualities and reducing their negative qualities.

The more you are motivated by love, the more fearless and free your action will be.

Nowadays we are so interdependent that the destruction of our neighbours means our own destruction, too. This is why we have to think of building a more compassionate society, and we need to do it less on the basis of faith than on reasoning.

A loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for you life.

The way to change others’ minds is with affection and not anger.

Ignorance is the fundamental cause of the painful round and round of cyclic existence.

If through practice of insight you develop a sense of ease, then time has no relevance. If you’re miserable, time does matter. It’s so unbearable; so enormous; you want to get out of it as soon as possible.

We have, in my view, created a society in which people find it harder and harder to show one another basic affection. In place of the sense of community and belonging, which we find such a reassuring feature of less wealthy (and generally rural) societies, we find a high degree of loneliness and alienation.

Albert Einstein

It would be possible to describe everything scientifically, but it would make no sense; it would be without meaning, as if you described a Beethoven symphony as a variation of wave pressure.

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage — to move in the opposite direction.

Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.

The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.

The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.

My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind.

The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.

The further the spiritual evolution of mankind advances, the more certain it seems to me that the path to genuine religiosity does not lie through the fear of life, and the fear of death, and blind faith, but through striving after rational knowledge.

Now he has departed from this strange world a little ahead of me. That means nothing. People like us, who believe in physics, know that the distinction between past, present, and future is only a stubbornly persistent illusion.

A human being is a part of a whole, called by us _universe_, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest… a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.

Viktor Frankl

Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it.

Gandhi

I want to change their minds. Not kill them for weaknesses we all possess.

My life is my message.

Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need but not every man’s greed.

Any number of experiments is too small and no sacrifice is too great for attaining this symphony with nature. But unfortunately the current is nowadays flowing strongly in the opposite direction. We are not ashamed to sacrifice a multitude of other lives in decorating the perishable body and trying to prolong its existence for a few fleeting moments, with the result that we kill ourselves, both body and soul. In trying to cure one old disease, the pleasures of sense, we lose in the end even our capacity for enjoyment. All this is passing before our very eyes, but there are none so blind as those who will not see. (from “An Autobiography” by Gandhi – 1927)

The future depends on what you do today.

Kahlil Gibran

Several quotes from “The Prophet”, 1926.

Work is love made visible.

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.

The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.

The breath of life is in the sunlight and the hand of life is in the wind.

And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair.

For self is a sea boundless and measureless.

Say not, ‘I have found the path of the soul.’ Say rather, ‘I have met the soul walking upon my path.’ For the soul walks upon all paths.

No man can reveal to you aught but that which already lies half asleep in the dawning of your knowledge.

For the wisdom of one man lends not its wings to another man.

Your friend is your needs answered.

Bhagavad Gita

Unnatural work produces too much stress.

Thich Nhat Hanh

It is possible that the next Buddha will not take the form of an individual. The next Buddha may take the form of a community—a community practicing understanding and loving kindness, a community practicing mindful living. This may be the most important thing we can do for the survival of the Earth.

Each one of us has to ask ourselves, What do I really want? Do I really want to be Number One? Or do I want to be happy? If you want success, you may sacrifice your happiness for it. You can become a victim of success, but you can never become a victim of happiness.

Each one of us has to be our true self: fresh, solid, at ease, loving and compassionate. When we are our true selves, not only you but everyone around you will profit from your presence. Just like a beautiful tree: if the tree is anything but a tree we will all be in trouble.

Louise Hay

The thoughts we choose to think are the tools we use to paint the canvas of our lives.

Werner Heisenberg

The atoms or elementary particles themselves are not real; they form a world of potentialities or possibilities rather than one of things or facts.

Napoleon Hill

Several quotes from “Think and Grow Rich”, 1937.

First comes thought; then organization of that thought, into ideas and plans; then transformation of those plans into reality. The beginning, as you will observe, is in your imagination.

Any idea, plan, or purpose may be placed in the mind through repetition of thought.

Desire is the starting point of all achievement, not a hope, not a wish, but a keen pulsating desire which transcends everything.

Indecision crystalizes into doubt, the two blend and become fear!

What a different story men would have to tell if only they would adopt a definite purpose and stand by that purpose until it had time to become an all-consuming obsession.

That is one of the tricks of opportunity. It has a sly habit of slipping in by the back door, and often it comes disguised in the form of misfortune, or temporary defeat. Perhaps this is why so many fail to recognize opportunity.

Failure is a trickster with a keen sense of irony and cunning. It takes great delight in tripping one when success is almost within reach.

Success comes to those who become success conscious. Failure comes to those who indifferently allow themselves to become failure conscious.

It was a keen, pulsating desire, which transcended everything else. It was definite.

Practical dreamers do not quit!

Remember, too, that all who succeed in life get off to a bad start, and pass through many heartbreaking struggles before they “arrive”. The turning point in the lives of those who succeed, usually comes at the moment of some crisis, through which they are introduced to their “other selves”.

Your belief, or faith, is the element which determines the action of your subconscious mind.

Faith is the only known antidote for failure!

Both poverty and riches are the offspring of thought.

Your subconscious mind recognizes and acts upon only thoughts which have been well-mixed with emotion and feeling.

He has discovered that his brain is both a broadcasting, and a receiving station for the vibration of thought, and he is beginning now to learn how to make practical use of this discovery.

Truly, thoughts are things, and their scope of operation is the world itself.

A quitter never wins – and – a winner never quits.

Leadership calls for power, and power calls for cooperation.

Failure cannot cope with persistence.

Genuine wisdom is usually conspicuous through modesty and silence.

Fortunes gravitate to men whose minds have been prepared to “attract” them, just as surely as water gravitates to the ocean.

Without persistence you will be defeated, even before you start. With persistence you will win.

Keep in mind the fact that there are only two known elements in the whole universe, energy and matter.

Nature’s building blocks are available to man, in the energy of thinking.

Poverty needs no plan. It needs no one to aid it, because it is bold and ruthless. Riches are shy and timid. They need to be “attracted”.

Love is, without question, life’s greatest experience.

The subconscious mind acts first on the dominating desires which have been mixed with emotional feeling, such as faith.

The subconscious mind will not remain idle! If you fail to plant desires in your subconscious mind, it will feed upon the thoughts which reach it as the result of your neglect.

Thoughts are truly things, for the reason that every material thing begins in the form of thought-energy.

The word “riches” is here used in its broadest sense, meaning financial, spiritual, mental and material estates.

Powerful and mighty is the human mind! It builds or it destroys.

Dr. Mark Hyman

Good food is good medicine that can prevent, reverse, and even cure disease. Take away the bad food, put in the good food, and magic happens.
— from http://www.examiner.com/article/dr-oz-says-elimination-diet-speeds-weight-loss-zaps-food-allergies

B.K.S. Iyengar

The body is lazy, the mind is vibrant and the soul is luminous.
The Tree of Yoga, 1988 – Chapter 1

The circumstances of life are there for our evolution, not for our destruction.
— The Tree of Yoga, 1988 – Chapter 3

Mind is a product of food, so food will have an effect on the mind.
— The Tree of Yoga, 1988 – Chapter 4

The fundamental disease – that of imagining that you are defective in something – has already set in.
— The Tree of Yoga, 1988 – Chapter 4 

A badly fed body would become a fertile ground for illness and worry and would not be a fit vehicle for spiritual development.
— The Tree of Yoga, 1988 – Chapter 5

Experience is real; words are not real. They are someone else’s words, but it is your own experience. So put everything to the test of experience.
— The Tree of Yoga, 1988 – Chapter 21

I don’t want yesterday’s experience. I want to see what new understanding may come in addition to what I had felt up to now. In this quest, my body is my bow, my intelligence is my arrow, and my target is my self.
— The Tree of Yoga, 1988 – Chapter 21

Pascual Jordan

Observations not only disturb what is to be measured, they produce it.

Jiddu Krisnamurti

It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a profoundly sick society.

C.S. Lewis 

Several quotes from “Mere Christianity”, 1945.

If you are on the wrong road, progress means doing an about-turn and walking back to the right road; and in that case the man who turns back soonest is the most progressive man… And I think if you look at the present state of the world, it is pretty plain that humanity has been making some pretty big mistake. We are on the wrong road. And if that is so, we must go back. Going back is the quickest way on.

And I think if you look at the present state of the world, it is pretty plain that humanity has been making some big mistake. We are on the wrong road. And if that is so, we must go back. Going back is the quickest way on.

My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I got this idea of just and unjust?

Because free will, though it makes evil possible, is also the only thing that makes possible any love or goodness or joy worth having.

And if we cannot picture even the atoms of which our own world is built, of course we are not going to be able to picture this.

People need to be reminded more often than they need to be instructed.

Good people know about both good and evil: bad people do not know about either.

Virtue – even attempted virtue – brings light; indulgence brings fog.

But then, has oneself anything lovable about it? You love it simply because it is yourself. God intends us to love all selves in the same way and for the same reason.

No man knows how bad he is till he has tried very hard to be good.

Boni Lonnsburry

You are a spiritual being having a physical experience. One of the reasons you came here is to learn how to hold onto your happiness no matter what, and to use that very happiness as a resonance to change your world—and eventually, to change the world. That puts it in perspective, doesn’t it? It is the truth. You just need to remember it.

David Lynch

There are so many clues and feelings in the world that it makes a mystery . . . and there are many avenues in life where we’re given little indications that the mystery can one day be solved. We get little proofs — not the big proof — but little proofs that keep us searching.

Nelson Mandela

No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.

It always seems impossible until its done.

Kelly McGonigal

Chasing meaning is better for your health than avoiding discomfort
– from her TED Talk, June 2013

Caroline McHugh

I find the word diet uninviting, given that it’s been so robbed of its original meaning. I prefer to think of everything that passes my lips being a radical act of self compassion and self esteem.  Only that which is worthy of me – beautiful, organic, unrefined – crosses that threshold.
— (Private communication – in response to a question about her diet)

Kim McMillen

Several quotes from “When I Loved Myself Enough”, 1996.

When I loved myself enough… I began to know I was in the right place at the right time… and I could relax.

When I loved myself enough… I felt compelled to slow down – way down… and that has made all the difference.

When I loved myself enough… I came to see that I am not special – but I am unique.

When I loved myself enough… I began to see I didn’t have to chase after life. If I am quiet and hold still, life comes after me.

Native American Proverb (Cree)

Only when the last tree has died
and the last river has been poisoned
and the last fish has been caught
will we realize that we can’t eat money

Max Planck

I regard consciousness as fundamental. I regard matter as derivative from consciousness. We cannot get behind consciousness. Everything that we talk about, everything that we regard as existing, postulates consciousness.

Michael Pollan

Don’t buy any food you’ve ever seen advertised!
– in an interview, March 2009

Kathleen Porter

…it helped me learn how to surrender more than resist, how to relax more than hold tension, and how to tune into the most subtle details of my body’s sensations: how it breathes, how it creates and hold onto tensions, how it lets go, how it feels when it is aligned, how it feels when it is not, and how it interacts with, affects and “is” the mind.
— Extracted from her article “Natural Posture” in Law of Attraction Magazine, Winter 2014 edition. Here she is talking about her experiences with meditation in Burma.

Bob Proctor

Thoughts become things. If you see it in your mind, you will hold it in your hand.

See yourself living in abundance and you will attract it. It always works.

Let’s start with what we can be thankful for and get our mind into that vibration, and then watch the good that starts to come, because one thought leads to another.

Everything you are seeking is seeking you in return. Therefore, everything you want is already yours. It is simply a matter of becoming more aware of what you already possess.

Dean Radin

Much of my exploding interest is motivated by the scientific confirmation that meditation and yoga, along with dietary changes, provides a huge range of improvements in mental and physical health.
Supernormal, 2013

Established benefits of yoga and meditation include improved immune function, lowered blood pressure, treatment and reversal of heart disease, slowed development of prostate cancer, improved focus, memory and concentration, improved quality of life after cancer treatment, positive effects on chronic pain and mood, slower aging, reduced anxiety, reduced infertility, and treatment for otherwise intractable skin diseases.
Supernormal, 2013

To emphasize, this suggests that the observational effect is not limited to working in real time; it also works in what, from a conventional point of view, would appear to be backward in time. Based on the experimental evidence reviewed in earlier chapters, by now you should be used to the idea that the mind has access to information from “outside” the usual boundaries of space and time. This implies that either the mind can reach through space and time, or – and I’m guessing that this is more likely – the mind is not in ordinary space-time in the first place.
— Supernormal, 2013

Srinivas Rao

Nothing matters. That’s the key to unlocking the handcuffs that keep us imprisoned in worry, self-doubt, fear and disbelief
The Art of Being Unmistakable

But, I’ve realized that loss creates an opening in our lives. We can fill that space with fear, panic and anxiety. Or we can let it be open for creating something new, something that didn’t exist before. It can lead to something far better. To experience something new, we have to let go of what’s old. We have to remain calm in the face of setbacks.
The Art of Being Unmistakable

Kamal Ravikant

The truth is to love yourself with the same intensity you would use to pull yourself up if you were hanging off a cliff with your fingers.
Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It

Imagine that. Imagine the feeling of catching yourself loving yourself without trying. It’s like catching a sunset out of the corner of your eye. It will stop you.
– Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It

So I ask myself this question, “If I loved myself, truly and deeply, what would I do?”. I love this question. There is no threat, no right or wrong answer, only an invitation to my truth in this present moment.
– Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It

Often the price for not being present is pain.
– Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It

That is the beauty of learning, and then sharing. You grow. You share the lessons and help others grow. Here’s the magic – they, in turn, make you grow. It’s a natural cycle.
– Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It

Albert Schweitzer, M.D.

It’s supposed to be a professional secret, but I’ll tell you anyway. We doctors do nothing. We only help and encourage the doctor within.

Bernie Siegel, M.D.

Within each of us is a spark. Call it a divine spark if you will, but it is there and can light the way to health. There are no incurable diseases, only incurable people.

Simran Singh

Let yourself rest from the speed of life. As you move to a slower pace, breathing in what is around you, your eyes shall open to things you have not let yourself see.
Conversations with the Universe: How the World Speaks to Us

You teach what you need to learn. Everything you say to others is what you are really saying to yourself.
– Conversations with the Universe: How the World Speaks to Us

David Suzuki

There are some things in the world we can’t change – gravity, entropy, the speed of light, and our biological nature that requires clean air, clean water, clean soil,  clean energy and biodiversity for our health and well being. Protecting the biosphere should be our highest priority or else we sicken and die. Other things like capitalism, free enterprise, the economy, currency, the market, are not forces of nature, we invented them. They are not immutable and we can change them. It makes no sense to elevate economics about the biosphere.

Socrates

There is no illness of the body apart from the mind.

Ralph Waldo Trine

Never affirm or repeat about your health what you do not wish to be true.

Eckhart Tolle

We depend on nature not only for our physical survival. We also need nature to show us the way home, the way out of the prison of our minds. We got lost in doing, thinking, remembering, anticipating – lost in a maze of complexity and a world of problems. We have forgotten what rocks, plants and animals still know. We have forgotten how to be – to be still, to be ourselves, to be where life is: here and now.

Death is not the opposite of life. Death is the opposite of birth.

No relationship can thrive without the sense of spaciousness that comes with stillness. Meditate or spend silent time in nature together. When going for a walk or sitting in the car or at home, become comfortable with being in stillness together. Stillness cannot and need not be created. Just be receptive to the stillnessthat is already there, but is usually obscured by mental noise.

When you recognize that there is a voice in your head that pretends to be you and never stops speaking, you are awakening out of your unconscious identification with the stream of thinking. When you notice that voice, you realize that who you are is not the voice – the thinker – but the one who is aware of it.

You cannot find yourself in the past or future. The only place where you can find yourself is in the Now.

Lao Tzu

If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.

If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are liven in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.

Iyanla Vanzant

A belief is a thought – fueled by a feeling – that you think over and over again until it becomes habitual

Peter Whiting

Some of the things I’ve come up with and would like to remember.

What are you enjoying in this moment?

The only place you can find inspiration is in the present moment.

In business, there’s no winning or losing, there’s just serving. Are you providing a service?

Marianne Williamson

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our Light, not our Darkness, that most frightens us.

Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we learned here.

The practice of forgiveness is our most important contribution to the healing of the world.

Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.

We are not held back by the love we didn’t receive in the past, but by the love we’re not extending in the present.

In every community, there is work to be done. In every nation, there are wounds to heal. In every heart, there is the power to do it.

Oprah Winfrey

It’s very true that the way you think creates reality for yourself.
– From this interview.

Unknown Source

It helps to think of silence as the connective tissue for all life. By listening to silence, we can be nourished by everything that is larger than us.