Motivational Quotes

“There is one aspect to our experience of suffering that is of vital importance.  When you are aware of your pain and suffering, it helps you to develop your capacity for empathy, the capacity that allows you to relate to other people’s feelings and suffering.  This enhances your capacity for compassion towards others.  So as an aid in helping us connect with others, it can be seen as having value.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“Our ultimate aim in seeking more wealth is a sense of satisfaction, of happiness.  But the very basis of seeking more is a feeling of not having enough, a feeling of discontentment.  That feeling of discontentment, of wanting more and more and more, doesn’t arise from the inherent desirability of the objects we are seeking but rather from our own mental state.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“The enemy is the necessary condition for practicing patience.  Without an enemy’s action, there is no possibility for patience or tolerance to arise.  Our friends do not ordinarily test us and provide the opportunity to cultivate patience, only our enemies do this.  So, from this standpoint we can consider our enemy as a great teacher, and revere them for giving us this precious opportunity to practice patience.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“It seems that often when problems arise, our outlook becomes narrow.  All of our attention may be focused on worrying about the problem, and we may have a sense that we’re the only one that is going through such difficulties.  This can lead to a kind of self-absorption that can make the problem seem very intense.  When this happens, I think that seeing things from a wider perspective can definitely help – realizing, for instance, that there are many other people who have gone through similar experiences, and even worse experiences.  If you focus too closely, too intensely, on a problem when it occurs, it appears uncontrollable.  But if you compare that event with some other greater event, look at the same problem from a distance, then it appears smaller and less overwhleming.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“As products of an imperfect world, all of us are imperfect.  Every one of us has done some wrong.  There are things we regret – things we have done or things we should have done.  Acknowledging our wrongdoings with a genuine sense of remorse can serve to keep us on the right track in life and encourage us to rectify our mistakes when possible and take action to correct things in the future.  But if we allow our regret to degenerate into excessive guilt, holding on to the memory of our past transgressions with continued self-blame and self-hatred, this serves no purpose other than to be a relentless source of self-punishment and self-induced suffering.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“In our daily life, problems invariably arise.  But problems themselves do not automatically cause suffering.  If we can directly address our problem and focus our energies on finding a solution, for instance, the problem can be transformed into a challenge.  If we throw into the mix, however, a feeling that our problem is ‘unfair,’ we add an additional ingredient that can become a powerful fuel in creating mental unrest and emotional suffering.  And now we not only have two problems instead of one, but that feeling of ‘unfairness’ distracts us, consumes us, and robs us of the energy needed to solve the original problem.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“There is no guarantee that tomorrow at this time we will be here.  But still we are working for that purely on the basis of hope.  So, we need to make the best use of our time.  I believe that the proper utilization of time is this: if you can, serve other people, other sentient beings.  If not, at least refrain from harming them.  I think that is the whole basis of my philosophy.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“Once [our] basic needs are met (food, clothing, shelter, etc), the message is clear: we don’t need more money, we don’t need greater success or fame, we don’t need the perfect body or even the perfect mate – right now, at this very moment, we have a mind, which is all the basic equipment we need to achieve complete happiness.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“Today there are societies that are very developed materially, yet among them there are many people who are not very happy.  Just underneath the beautiful surface of affluence there is a kind of mental unrest, leading to frustration, unnecessary quarrels, reliance on drugs or alcohol, and in the worst case, suicide.  So there is no guarantee that wealth alone can give you the joy or fulfillment that you are seeking.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“Wherever I meet people, I always have the feeling that I am encountering another human being, just like myself.  I find it is much easier to communicate with others on that level.  If we emphasize specific characteristics, like I am Tibetan or I am Buddhist, then there are differences.  But those things are secondary.  If we can leave the differences aside, I think we can easily communicate, exchange ideas, and share experiences.” ~ Dalai Lama, The Art of Happiness

“There is an inextricable link between one’s personal happiness and kindness, compassion, and caring for others.  And this is a two-way-street: increased happiness leads to greater compassion, and increased compassion leads to greater happiness.  In other words, studies have found not only that happier people tend to be more caring and more willing to reach out and help others, but that by deliberately cultivating greater kindness and compassion, a person will experience increased happiness.” ~ Howard Cutler, The Art of Happiness