Saturday, September 10, 2005


An old Chinese farmer was walking along the road with a stick across his shoulder. Hanging from the stick was a pot filled with soybean soup. He stumbled and the jar fell off and broke into pieces. The old farmer kept going, unperturbed. A man rushed up and said excited, "Don't you know that your jar broke?" "Yes," the old farmer answered, "I know. I heard it fall." "Why didn't you turn around and do something about it?" "It's broken; the soup is gone -- what can I do about it?" he asked.

Friday, September 09, 2005


A critic is an asset, though perhaps an unpleasant one. Consider criticism objectively and ask whether it is justified. If it is, then try to profit by it, even when it is unfriendly. If it isn't valid, then forget it. Don't criticize in return, just keep on doing your job to the best of your ability. Sure, it hurts, but we are not intended to go through life without some hurt. We are supposed to make strong people of ourselves.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Empty the Mind

The average man usually empties his pockets onto his dresser or desk before retiring. Personally, I rather enjoy standing over a wastebasket during this process to see how many things I can throw away: notes, memos, scraps of paper, completed self-directions, even knicknacks which I have picked up. With relief, I deposit all items possible in the wastebasket. It is perhaps more important to empty the mind as one empties pockets. During the day we pick up mental odds and ends: a little worry, a little resentment, a few annoyances, some irritations, perhaps even some guilt reactions. Every night, these should be thrown out for, unless eliminated, they accumulate and subtract from the joy of life.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005


On the morning of our thirty-fourth anniversary, Ruth and I went into the church in Syracuse where we were married. How well I remember the day when I first saw her. I was holding a committee meeting following the church service. The door opened and in burst a girl. I had never before seen her but said to myself, That is the girl for me. Of course, I had a little job persuading her, but that was the start of a romance that now covers over fifty years. When she and I went into the church on our anniversary, there was no one there. So I said, "Ruth, please go back and burst through that door again." She did. Believe me, I would do it all over again! And she says she would, too.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Before This Day Is Out

Before this day is out, do something specific and concrete that will demonstrate your determination to change yourself and your life for the better. Pay a debt. Heal a broken relationship. End a quarrel. Offer an apology. Pray for someone. Visit someone who is sick. Restrain yourself from buying something you had planned to buy for yourself and give the money to charity instead. Do whatever you do quietly, without ostentation. And do it, not in hope of reward, but simply because you want to do it, because you prefer to be an inner-directed person.

Monday, September 05, 2005


The process of tranquilizing the mind is important in assuring a condition of body, mind, and spirit that will induce perfect rest. Deliberately conceive of the mind as completely quiet, like the surface of a pond on which there is not even a ripple. Picture the mind as motionless and filled with deep quietness. Think silence until an atmosphere of silence seems to surround you. Suggest tranquil ideas to the mind, remembering that your thoughts respond to suggestion. Slowly, deliberately image peace at the center.

Sunday, September 04, 2005


Stronger than willpower is imagination. The word may be pronouced image-ing. This means the projection of mental images or pictures of a desired outcome. A basic fact of human nature is the tendency to become like that which we habitually imagine (image) ourselves as being. The deeply held mental image tends to realize itself in fact. If you visualize a goal and hold it firmly in consciousness, the mind has a tendency to complete the image.