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Fulfillment

“Some men fear the feeling of fear and therefore don’t even approach their edge.  They choose a job they know they can do well and easily, and don’t even approach the fullest giving of their gift.  Their lives are relatively secure and comfortable, but dead.  They lack the aliveness, the depth, and the inspirational energy that is the sign of a man living at his edge.  If you are this kind of man who is hanging back, working hard perhaps, but not at your real edge, other men will not be able to trust that you can and will help them live at their edge and give their fullest gift.” ~ David Deida, The Way of the Superior Man

“Most men make the error of thinking that one day it will be done.  They think, ‘If I can work enough, then one day I could rest.’ Or, ‘One day my woman will understand something and then she will stop complaining.’ Or, ‘I’m only doing this now so that one day I can do what I really want with my life.’  The masculine error is to think that eventually things will be different in some fundamental way.  They won’t.  It never ends.  As long as life continues, the creative challenge is to tussle, play, and make love with the present moment while giving your unique gift.” ~ David Deida, The Way of the Superior Man

“Like accolades ought to be, the fulfilled life is a consequence, a gratifying byproduct. It’s what happens when you’re thinking about more important things. Climb the mountain not to plant your flag, but to embrace the challenge, enjoy the air and behold the view. Climb it so you can see the world, not so the world can see you. Go to Paris to be in Paris, not to cross it off your list and congratulate yourself for being worldly. Exercise free will and creative, independent thought not for the satisfactions they will bring you, but for the good they will do others, the rest of the 6.8 billion–and those who will follow them. And then you too will discover the great and curious truth of the human experience is that selflessness is the best thing you can do for yourself. The sweetest joys of life, then, come only with the recognition that you’re not special. Because everyone is.” ~ David McCullough

“So long as I can laugh never will I be poor.  This, then, is one of nature’s greatest gifts, and I will waste it no more.  Only with laughter and happiness can I truly become a success.  Only with laughter and happiness can I enjoy the fruits of my labor.  Were it not so, far better would it be to fail, for happiness is the wine that sharpens the taste of the meal.  To enjoy success I must have happiness, and laughter will be the maiden who serves me.” ~ Og Mandino, The Greatest Salesman in the World

“Long life is indeed a blessing, but maybe we overdo our concern for the length of our lives and give insufficient attention to the passion we bring to whatever time we have.  The meaning and purpose of life are great mysteries, and in that light a very brief life, of only minutes, can be full and rounded.  The soul has appeared in the flesh; then it returns to its home of origin.” ~ Thomas Moore, Original Self

“Almost every day we are asked to extend the range of our acquaintance with life.  It is one of several ways to live intensely, and it is also a way to prepare for death.  For death is the ultimate stranger.  This is not necessarily a morbid thought, because only by allowing death to play a role in daily life do we really live.  Opening to another society or another individual – they are two levels of culture – we die a little death in relation to what has become familiar.  But those little deaths create openings to new life.” ~ Thomas Moore, Original Self

“When we are living only a portion of what a human being is capable of, our lives are incomplete.  I don’t mean that we each have to do everything possible in life, but that the more possibilities we can imagine, the richer our lives will be.  Defending ourselves against the stranger is a way of keeping out our own potentiality.  The diminishment of our acquaintances is a diminishment of ourselves.  The most challenging stranger is life itself, or the soul, the face and source of vitality.  Life is always presenting new possibilities ,and we may fear that bountifulness.  It may seem safer to be content with what we have and what we are, and so we cling to the status quo.  But in these matters there is no convenient plateau.  When we refuse a new offering of life, we develop emotional calluses.  The habit of acting from fear sets in quickly and becomes steadily more rigid.  Refusing life, we become attendants of death.” ~ Thomas Moore, Original Self

“Living closer to nature helps simplify because nature itself, though complex, keeps us in tune with basic rhythms and pleasures that never change and that provide grounding.  When our family moved next to a farm, we found simplicity in the food we ate and in new sources for our entertainment and pleasure.  Learning how to ride a horse is a complicated process, but riding is a simple pleasure that offers lasting satisfaction.” ~ Thomas Moore, Original Self