Stephen Cope

The Great Work of Your Life [Book]

Book Overview:  If you’re feeling lost in your own life’s journey, The Great Work of Your Life may provide you with answers to the questions you most urgently need addressed—and may help you to find and to embrace your true calling.

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Post(s) Inspired by this Book:

  1. The Power of Mantra – As Described by Mohandas Gandhi’s Family Servant.

 

The Power of Mantra – As Described by Mohandas Gandhi’s Family Servant.

The Power of Mantra - As Described by Mohandas Gandhi's Family Servant.

Rambha (family servant) had given [Mohandas K.] Gandhi an enchanting image to describe the power of mantra.  She compared the practice of mantra to the training of an elephant.  “As the elephant walks through the market,” taught Rambha, “he swings his trunk from side to side and creates havoc with it wherever he goes – knocking over fruit stands and scattering vendors, snatching bananas and coconuts wherever possible.  His trunk is naturally restless, hungry, scattered, undisciplined.  This is just like the mind – constantly causing trouble.”

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“The whole world is inside each person, each being, each object.  To know any part of the world deeply, intimately, is to know the whole world.  Each of us, then, must find our own particular domain – that little corner of the world in which we can drill for gold.  For the acupuncturist it is knowing the body through the language of Chinese medicine.  For the painter, it is knowing the world through through paint and the canvas.  For the writer, it is knowing the world through words.” ~ Stephen Cope, The Great Work of Your Life

“It is well known that expert meditators develop the capacity to see life in slow motion, observing objects (including their own thoughts) in minute detail, as if seeing every individual frame of a movie.  It turns out that masters in every field develop the same capacity.  Master baseball players, for example, when at bat, see the ball coming at them as if in slow motion – even though the ball is actually traveling 90 miles an hour.  Not only can the master batter see the ball in ‘individual frame’ detail, but he can at the same time see the meaning of those details.  How low is the ball to the ground?  Over what quadrant of the plate will it pass?  Is it spinning?  In what direction?  How will all of this detail influence my decision about how and where I want to hit the ball?  This is mastery.” ~ Stephen Cope, The Great Work of Your Life

“When we reach sixty-two, we are likely to interpret feelings of exhaustion and boredom as the signal to retire.  But couldn’t they just as easily be the call to reinvent ourselves?  As we age it seems harder and harder to let our authentic dharma reinvent us.  We imagine somehow that the risks are greater.  We tend to think that leaping off cliffs is for the young.  But no.  Actually – when better to leap off cliffs?” ~ Stephen Cope, The Great Work of Your Life

“You cannot be anyone you want to be.  Your one and only shot at a fulfilled life is being yourself – whoever that is.  Furthermore, at a certain age it finally dawns on us that, shockingly, no one really cares what we’re doing with our life.  This is a most unsettling discovery to those of us who have lived someone else’s dream and eschewed our own: No one really cares except us.  When you scratch the surface, you finally discover that it doesn’t really matter a whit who else you disappoint if you’re disappointing yourself.  The only question that makes sense to ask is: Is your life working for you?” ~ Stephen Cope, The Great Work of Your Life

“I know people who have been stuck in doubt their entire lifetime.  Each of these unfortunate individuals – some of them my very own friends and family – came at some point to a crossroads.  They came to this crossroads and found themselves rooted there, with one foot firmly planted on each side of the intersection.  Alas, they never moved off the dime.  They procrastinated.  Dithered.  Finally, they put a folding chair smack in the center of that crossroads and lived there for the rest of their lives.  After a while, they forgot entirely that there even was a crossroads – forgot that there was a choice.” ~ Stephen Cope, The Great Work of Your Life

 

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