Fill your bowl to the brim
and it will spill
Keep sharpening your knife
and it will blunt
Chase after money and security
and your heart will never unclench
Care about people's approval
and you will be their prisoner
Do your work, then step back-
the only path to serenity.
(The Tao Te Ching : The book of the way : Tr. Stephen Mitchell)
I believe that the man who observes self-control in thought, word and deed, right in the midst of the world, is verily the true ascetic. If things do not bind us and if we are not attached to things even when they are easily available to us that according to me is the greatest test of our detachment than merely withdrawing to a lonely forest.
What I mean by living to one's-self is living in the world as in it, not of it. It is as if no one knew there was such a person and you wished no one to know it. It is to be a silent spectator of the mighty scene of things, not an object of attention or curiosity in it. To take a thoughtful, anxious interest in what is passing in the world, but not to feel the slightest inclination to make or meddle with it.
(Hazlitt : Table Talk)
The pathway to peace lay in becoming a spectator of life, men, events, of even one's own career. The positive aspect of one's life mainly consists in doing one's duties, following one's lights and leaving at that. The results are inconsequential.
(R. K. - Rasipuram Krishnaswami – Narayan : Journal during War Time Crisis)
…I do not marvel
When I see good and evil:
I just walk over them
As over the iridescence of
Horsepiss after rain ....
I've learned to watch lovers
without envy or memory
As I would watch under a lens
Houseflies rub hands or kiss,
I look at wounds calmly.
(A. K. Ramanujan : The Hindoo: He reads his Gita)
"Congratulate me. I am proud to announce I have just become a grandfather. My grandson has Down's Syndrome*."
(Reuven Feuerstein : addressing his students of Bar Illan University)
* : Down's Syndrome : The irony is that Dr. Feuerstein has treated thousands of children having Down's Syndrome in which a person is born with a wide, flat face, sloping eyes and below average mental ability.