Do You Know God?

“Do you know God? Do you know there is a power greater than ourselves which manifests itself within us as well as everywhere else in the universe? This I call God. Do you know what it is to know God, to have God’s constant guidance, a constant awareness of God’s presence? To know God is to reflect love toward all people and all creations.To know God is to feel peace within—a calmness, a serenity, a unshakeableness which enables you to face any situation. To know God is to be so filled with joy that it bubbles over and goes forth to bless the world.”

From “Peace Pilgrim: Her Life and Work In Her Own Words” page 87

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10 Life Changing Tips Inspired By Rumi

1. Challenge Fear – “Run from what’s comfortable. Forget safety. Live where you fear to live. Destroy your reputation. Be notorious.”

2. Be Bold – “Do not be satisfied with the stories that come before you. Unfold your own myth.”

3. Have Gratitude – “Wear gratitude like a cloak and it will feed every corner of your life.”

4. Take Action – “Why should I stay at the bottom of a well, when a strong rope is in my hand?”

5. Have Faith – “As you start to walk out on the way, the way appears.”

6. Embrace Setbacks – “If you are irritated by every rub, how will you be polished?”

7. Look Inside – “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”

8. Learn From Suffering – “The wound is the place where the Light enters you.”

9. Don’t Be Concerned With What Others Think Of You – “I want to sing like the birds sing, not worrying about who hears or what they think.”

10. Do What You Love – “Let yourself be drawn by the stronger pull of that which you truly love.”

St. Francis

My Design St. Francis

Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen

Unexpected Beauty

A man sat at a metro station in Washington DC and started to play the violin; it was a cold December morning. He played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time, since it was rush hour, it was calculated that a thousand people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.

Three minutes went by and a middle-aged man noticed there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried up to meet his schedule. A minute later, the violinist received his first dollar tip: a woman threw the money in the till and without stopping continued to walk.

A few minutes later, someone leaned against the wall to listen to him, but the man looked at his watch and started to walk again. Clearly he was late for work. The one who paid the most attention was a 3-year-old boy. His mother tugged him along, but the child stopped to look at the violinist. Finally the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. All the parents, without exception, forced them to move on.

In the 45 minutes the musician played, only 6 people stopped and stayed for a while. About 20 gave him money but continued to walk their normal pace. He collected $32. When he finished playing and silence took over, no one noticed it. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the best musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written with a violin worth over 3.5 million dollars. Two days before his playing in the subway, Joshua Bell sold out at a theater in Boston and the seats averaged $100.

This is a real story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and priorities of people. The outlines were: in a commonplace environment at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize the talent in an unexpected context?

One of the possible conclusions from this experience could be: If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world playing the best music ever written, how many other things are we missing?