“All happiness or unhappiness solely depends upon the quality of the object to which we are attached by love.” ~ Spinoza
Hmm, I would think that the ‘quality of the object’ is purely determined by the quality of my love. If the love which guides my attraction is actually just ego preference the ‘quality of any object’ will never satisfy. If, however, that Love comes from the essence of my being any object is of infinite quality. “How holy is the smallest grain of sand, when it is recognized as being part of the completed picture of God's Son!" (ACIM)
“Creativity requires the courage to let go of certainties.” ~ Erich Fromm
Every time I am willing to let go of ‘present’ judgments and “see things differently” is a creative act--having the courage to experience life anew, without the constrictions and formalities of past associations.
“There can be no hope without fear, and no fear without hope.” ~ Baruch Spinoza
Hope, a universally treasured feeling, has to my mind an element of victim. “I hope things will work out ….” A statement implying a sense of powerlessness and of being at the whim of circumstances. Naturally the feeling of ‘hope’ would be accompanied by ‘fear’ as I have absolutely no way of ensuring that ‘things will work out’. Now when I develop ‘Trust’, a sense of Knowing that all is at all times FOR me, then ‘hope’ becomes meaningless as does ‘fear’. I wonder what Spinoza would say to this. Anyone channeling Spinoza these days? Let me know?
“I would warn you that I do not attribute to nature either beauty or deformity, order or confusion. Only in relation to our imagination can things be called beautiful or ugly, well-ordered or confused.” ~ Baruch Spinoza
Nature is neither beautiful nor not beautiful. Spinoza addresses the freedom in recognizing absolute neutrality in all things. In that absolute neutrality lies absolute Peace.
“When your fear touches someone’s pain, it becomes pity, when your love touches someone’s pain, it becomes compassion.” ~ Stephen Levine
Very interesting perspective. If I take pity on someone, I am actually not focussing my attention on them but myself--ie. “I’m glad that’s not me”. No attempt at connection is made. But what happens when I am willing to be with another person and bear witness to their struggle, while also recognizing the person beyond the pain?
“The attempt to develop a sense of humor and to see things in a humorous light is some kind of a trick learned while mastering the art of living.” ~ Viktor Frankl
It is actually natural to develop a sense of humor about virtually any situation once I recognize (Know again, literally) that everything is always for me, is always a gift. Now, having a sense of humor does not mean that I laugh at every situation but it does mean that I look for the light no matter what is being offered.
“Love goes very far beyond the physical person of the beloved. It finds its deepest meaning in his spiritual being, his inner self. Whether or not he is actually present, whether or not he is still alive at all, ceases somehow to be of importance.” ~ Viktor Frankl
Namaste. “Love finds its deepest meaning in his spiritual being.” Now, watch how the ego rushes in and urges me to take this purely spiritual experience and tries to convince me that this experience can, no must, become physical, must find a physical expression. Love and sex are not mutually exclusive, nor are Love and working in the garden, nor are Love and doing the dishes mutually exclusive. Everything I do with the body is either and extension of Love or a cry for Love.
“And out of that hopeless attempt has come nearly all that we call human history—money, poverty, ambition, war, prostitution, classes, empires, slavery—the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.” C.S.Lewis
To put it another way: it is the relentless looking outside my ‘Self’ for peace and joy. Why is that habit so tenacious? Could it be that I am pathetically addicted to the feelings associated with the belief that I have done something so terrible, that ‘Self’ or ‘God’ has long ago abandoned me for unspeakable deeds of which I am not even aware? Enough already. So I took a bite of that apple. Get over it. My innocence is unchangeable. It is time to stop feeding my addiction to guilt feelings.
“For the only therapy is life. The patient must learn to live, to live with his split, his conflict, his ambivalence, which no therapy can take away, for if it could, it would take with it the actual spring of life.” ~ Otto Rank
I would rephrase this to say “Therapy is a means of embracing life--triggers and all”. One very common trapping surrounding inner-work is placing the goal as the abolition of judgments and upsets. The notion is akin to planting a flag on a mountain and telling it not to move. What therapy does provide is a strong foundation to support me during times of ‘conflict’, and an adventurous attitude that adapts and adopts resistance as a means of flight.
Diederik Wolsak is program director at Choose Again