“When you put so much of yourself and your time into something, it’s hard to separate it from who you are.” ~ Julia Rothman, Brain Pickings
The Book of Understanding was the first book I read by Osho. I was sitting on an airplane several thousand feet above ground with no internet connection when I first opened the cover. It was unusual for me because I don’t normally read in any kind of moving environment (I get pretty intense motion sickness) and because I normally take notes online as I read.
Feeling peculiarly drawn to this book (and despite being in a moving aircraft), I figured I would use my phone’s notepad app to take notes and would start the book anyway. It worked out great. That is, until I got to page 2.
“Each of us feels some aspect of the world’s suffering acutely. And we must pay attention. We must act. This little corner of the world is ours to transform. This little corner of the world is ours to save.” ~ Stephen Cope, The Great Work of Your Life
“When we’re always thinking about me, myself and I, we become quickly dissatisfied. Maybe it’s too much time spent with unproductive thoughts or a lack of connectedness, but this self-absorption can quickly bring us down. The surest way to stop thinking about yourself is to start thinking about someone else. When you do something for someone else—out of love, compassion or connectedness—not obligation, you might find you’ve forgotten your troubles, and life actually feels fuller, more meaningful.” ~ Meghan Camp, Tiny Buddha
“Man creates what he is, man creates himself. The meaning has to be created. You have to sing your meaning, you have to dance your meaning, you have to paint your meaning, you have to live it. Through living, it will arise; through dancing, it will start penetrating your being. Through singing, it will come to you. It is not like a rock just lying there to be found, it has to bloom in your being.” ~ Osho, The Book of Understanding
“People wonder why there seems to be no meaning in life. Meaning does not exist a priori. There is no meaning existing in life; one has to create it. Only if you create it will you discover it. It has to be invented first. It is not lying there like a rock, it has to be created like a song. It is not a thing, it is significance that you bring through your consciousness.” ~ Osho, The Book of Understanding
“When a poet writes a poem, meaning arises – because the poet is not alone; he has created something. When a dancer dances, meaning arises. When a mother gives birth to a child, meaning arises. Left alone, cut off from everything else, isolated like an island, you are meaningless. Joined together you are meaningful. The bigger the whole, the bigger is the meaning.” ~ Osho, The Book of Understanding
“A true religion will have the humbleness to admit that only a few things are known, much more is unknown, and something will always remain unknowable. That ‘something’ is the target of the whole spiritual search. You cannot make it an object of knowledge, but you can experience it, you can drink of it, you can have the taste of it – it is existential.” ~ Osho, The Book of Understanding
“The really poor are those that think that money are the meaning of life. When we lack love in our life, money becomes a substitute.” ~ Swami Dhyan Giten
“Man’s chief purpose… is the creation and preservation of values, that is what gives meaning to our civilization, and the participation in this is what gives significance, ultimately, to the individual human life… The individual contribution, the work of any single generation, is infinitesimal; the power and glory belong to human society at large, and are the long result of selection, conservation, sacrifice, creation, and renewal — the outcome of endless brave efforts to conserve values and ideas, and to hand them on to posterity, along with physical life itself. Each person is a temporary focus of forces, vitalities, and values that carry back into an immemorial past and that reach forward into an unthinkable future.” ~ Lewis Mumford, Faith for Living
“Perhaps the secret of living well is not in having all the answers but in pursuing unanswerable questions in good company.” ~ Rachel Naomi Remen
“Every piece of the universe, even the tiniest little snow crystal, matters somehow. I have a place in the pattern, and so do you.” ~ T.A. Barron