October 25    

Today's quotation:

Contentment comes as the infallible result of great acceptances, great humilities-- of not trying to make ourselves this or that, but of surrendering ourselves to the fullness of life-- of letting life flow through us.

David Grayson

Today's Meditation:

It's a fascinating concept, that of letting life flow through us rather than trying to control how life turns out; of accepting things as they are rather than trying to make them what we want them to be or think they should be.  It's a difficult concept for many of us, too-- we've learned over and over again that we're supposed to make life what we want it to be rather than enjoying it as it is, not realizing that all our attempts at control end up being somewhat ineffective at best.

I want to let life flow through me because I know enough to know that I don't know enough to try to make life what I think it should be.  I've learned in my time on this planet that there's much more to life than what I think there is, because from my limited perspective I simply can't see the world as it truly is-- I see only the small picture, the limited view.  And because of that fact, when I try to control things there's a very good chance that I'm working against my own best interests, and those of others.  It's like trying to call plays for a football team while seeing only three or four of the players throughout the whole game-- it just doesn't work.

And David is talking about being content-- about allowing ourselves to be satisfied with the way that life is and not trying to turn life into something we think it should be.  I honestly would prefer to live my life as a content person and not have to exert my own will on life.  If I'm content, my life is simpler, and I won't tend to focus on those things that I think I'm missing-- rather, I'll be focused on those things that I have, and how grateful I am for them.

We can be content with the little things, as Edgar says below.  We don't have to have the best of the best, the most expensive of the most expensive.  We simply have to accept what we have as what life has given us for now, and enjoy it as much as we can, and appreciate it for what it is.  The art of contentment originates in our hearts and spirits, and if we let those two parts of ourselves grow in strength, we're bound to lead happy and fulfilling lives.

Questions to consider:

What are some things that keep you from being content?

How might the plain and ordinary things in life give you contentment?

Why are so many people simply discontent?

For further thought:

The art of contentment is the recognition that the most satisfying and the most dependably refreshing experiences of life lie not in great things but in little.  The rarity of happiness among those who achieved much is evidence that achievement is not in itself the assurance of a happy life.  The great, like the humble, may have to find their satisfaction in the same plain things.

Edgar A. Collard

more thoughts and ideas on contentment



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