In my soul, I am still that small child
who did not care about anything else
but the beautiful colors of a rainbow.

Papiha Ghosh


I am often accused of being childish.  I prefer to interpret that as child-like.  I still get wildly enthusiastic about little things.  I tend to exaggerate and fantasize and embellish.  I still listen to instinctual urges.  I play with leaves.  I skip down the street and run against the wind.  I never water my garden without soaking myself.  It has been after such times of joy that I have achieved my greatest creativity and produced my best work.

Leo Buscaglia
Bus 9 to Paradise

Let us liberate ourselves from any form of control.  Let us focus at the inner drum, where the rhythm aligns with that of our heart.  The measure of responsibility, equals to the need for evolution.  Just listen, the inner child, let it whisper in your ear.

Grigoris Deoudis

After a while the middle-aged person who lives in her head begins to talk to her soul, the kid.

Anne Lamott
Joe Jones

The reluctance to put away childish things may be a requirement of genius.

Rebecca Pepper Sinkler

The most sophisticated people I know--inside they are all children.

Jim Henson


Happy are they who still love something they loved in the nursery:
 They have not been broken in two by time; they are not two persons, 
but one, and they have saved not only their souls but their lives.

G.K. Chesterton


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One must ask children and birds how cherries and strawberries taste.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


Grown-ups never understand anything for themselves,
and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever
explaining things to them.

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
The Little Prince


Think what a better world it would be if we all, the whole world,
had cookies and milk about three o'clock every afternoon
and then lay down on our blankets for a nap.

Barbara Jordan

A friend and I were walking recently in the park.  We stopped to sit and chat on a bench overlooking the children's swings and playground equipment.  As we relaxed, enjoying the warm sunlight and the sounds of children's happy laughter, a man in his "latter years" came walking spryly along, swinging an umbrella, wearing a baseball cap and a bright red cardigan over his khaki pants and red and white plaid shirt.  He smiled a greeting at us and proceeded directly to a nearby swing set.  Laying his umbrella on the ground, he settled himself into one of the swings and vigorously, with great joy, exercised his inner and outer child!  His image and actions held me transfixed for a moment.

Shortly, the man stopped swinging, picked up his umbrella, and started up the path toward where my friend and I sat.  As he came abreast of our bench, he paused, smiled, and said that he came to the park every day, swung exactly fifty times in the swing, and continued his walk.  This man glowed with the fullness of life.  His eyes sparkled with the joy of living, and he had no knowledge of the gift he gave to us that day.  His simple, childlike exuberance and enthusiasm for life touched me deeply.  I have thought of him many times since that incident, and his joy touches my soul.  He must be quite a remarkable presence in this world, bringing joy where he goes, and his age is clearly of no concern to him.  He has the joy of spirit!

related by John Marks Templeton


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O men, grown sick with toil and care,
Leave for awhile the crowded mart;
O women, sinking with despair,
Weary of limb and faint of heart,
Forget your years to-day and come
As children back to childhood's house.

Phoebe Cary

Our inner child is still in there somewhere, aching to be let loose from
all the layers we’ve piled on over the years.  Why not break him or her out
for the day or even a moment?  Be playful.  Blow some bubbles.  Skip
around the block.  Feel the freedom.  Take fearlessness out
for a test run.  Let yourself have some fun.

Lynn Hasselberger


Maybe we should develop a Crayola bomb as our next secret weapon. A happiness weapon. A beauty bomb. And every time a crisis developed, we would launch one. It would explode high in the air--explode softly--and send thousands, millions, of little parachutes into the air. Floating down to earth - boxes of Crayolas. And we wouldn't go cheap, either--not little boxes of eight. Boxes of sixty-four, with the sharpener built right in. With silver and gold and copper, magenta and peach and lime, amber and umber and all the rest. And people would smile and get a little funny look on their faces and cover the world with imagination.

Robert Fulghum


To speak truly, few adult persons can see nature.  Most persons
do not see the sun.  At least they have a very superficial seeing.
The sun illuminates only the eye of the adult, but shines into the
eye and heart of the child.  The lover of nature is one whose inward
and outward senses are still truly adjusted to each other; who has
retained the spirit of infancy even into the era of adulthood.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Caring for your inner child has a powerful and surprisingly
quick result:  Do it and the child heals.

Martha Beck


Youth is not a time of life, it is a state of mind.  You are as old
as your doubt, your fear, your despair.  The way to keep young
is to keep your faith young.  Keep your self-confidence young.
Keep your hope young.

Luella F. Phean

Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again.

C.S. Lewis


Everybody's twelve years old in an apple orchard.

Rachael Ray


In every real person a child is hidden that wants to play.

Friedrich Nietzsche

Some things can only be understood when you're in a tree house.
With a pile of warm chocolate chip cookies.  And a book.

Dr. SunWolf

A child who does not play is not a child, but the adult who
does not play has lost forever the child who lived within.

Pablo Neruda

No matter how old you get, if you can keep the desire to
be creative, you're keeping the child inside alive.

John Cassavetes

There is within each of us a child.  A child who, to one degree or another, did not receive the parenting he or she wanted.  There was not enough love or care or support.

We keep looking for someone to be the good parent, someone to count on.  We demand that our own parents change and apologize for their mistakes or inadequacies.  They often become defensive and refuse; they didn't have a "total" parent, either.

There is only one way to get superb parenting of the child who will always be within you.  Only one person truly knows what that child wants.  Only one person will, or can, love and nurture that child to the point of peace and joy.  Only one person can be the good mother, father, brother, sister.  You are your best parent and friend.

Accept, love, and care for the child within you.

Joan Chittister
In some cases, wounded children internalize the seen, sensed, and
verbalized wounds of their parents.  When this happens, children will
use excuses and denial to justify how they were treated.  In the
process of surviving in an environment that is void of trust, children
also learn to deny themselves and their wounds in order to protect
the image and needs of the big people in the environment. It is this
inner child, or inner victim—who has been denied and often forgotten,
the aspect of the self who has endured a thousand hurts—who will
emerge later in the life of the adult.  This inner child, who was buried
alive deep within in order to be protected from further injury, shame,
guilt, or humiliation, is the part of the consciousness that holds
the key to our authentic identity and capacity to trust.

Iyanla Vanzant

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The real you is still a little child who never grew up.  Sometimes that little child
comes out when you are having fun or playing, when you feel happy, when you
are painting, or writing poetry, or playing the piano, or expressing yourself in
some way.  These are the happiest moments of your life--when the real you
comes out, when you don't care about the past and you don't
worry about the future.  You are childlike.

Don Miguel Ruiz
The Four Agreements

We must remain as close to the flowers, the grass, and the butterflies as the
child is who is not yet so much taller than they are.  We adults, on the other
hand, have outgrown them and have to lower ourselves to stoop down to
them.  It seems to me that the grass hates us when we confess our love for it.
Whoever would partake of all good things must understand
how to be small at times.

Friedrich Nietzsche

Inside all of us are three distinct and totally separate ego states that work in concert to make up our unique personality.  We have a parentlike ego, an adult ego, and a childlike ego who act much the same way that parents, adults, and children do in real life.

Your adult ego state is the rational part of yourself.  It gathers data and makes logical decisions devoid of emotion.  It plans your schedule, balances your checkbook, figures out your taxes, and determines when to rotate your tires.

Your parentlike ego tells you to tie your shoes, brush your teeth, eat your vegetables, do your homework, exercise, meet your deadlines, and finish your projects.  It has two sides to it.  The negative side shows up as your inner critic—the part that judges you when you don’t live up to its standards.  The positive side shows up as the nurturing part of yourself that makes sure you’re protected, taken care of, and provided for.  It is also the part that validates, appreciates, and acknowledges you for doing a good job.

Your childlike ego, on the other hand, does what all children do—it whines, begs for attention, craves hugs, and acts out when it doesn’t get its needs met.  As we go through life, it’s almost as if we have a 3-year-old holding on to us who’s constantly asking,  Why are we sitting at this desk?  Why aren’t we having more fun?  Why am I still up at three in the morning?  Why am I reading this boring report? 
As the parent of this “inner child,” one of your most important tasks is to engage it and reward it for behaving while you get your work done.

Jack Canfield
The Success Principle


Found online:

(Found online images come from a variety of unattributed
sources from various social media pages.  They're too nice
not to share!)


Yes, life can be mysterious and confusing--but there's much of life that's actually rather dependable and reliable.  Some principles apply to life in so many different contexts that they can truly be called universal--and learning what they are and how to approach them and use them can teach us some of the most important lessons that we've ever learned.
My doctorate is in Teaching and Learning.  I use it a lot when I teach at school, but I also do my best to apply what I've learned to the life I'm living, and to observe how others live their lives.  What makes them happy or unhappy, stressed or peaceful, selfish or generous, compassionate or arrogant?  In this book, I've done my best to pass on to you what I've learned from people in my life, writers whose works I've read, and stories that I've heard.  Perhaps these principles can be a positive part of your life, too!
Universal Principles of Living Life Fully.  Awareness of these principles can explain a lot and take much of the frustration out of the lives we lead.



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