We are on the road, the traffic doesn’t seem to flow as smoothly or quickly as we want, then someone cuts in front of you. Can we take a moment to check-in – the body sensations, the frown on our forehead, the sensations in the chest area. This might give us an opportunity to see things for what they are: everyone on the road is trying to get somewhere just like us, the person who cut in front of us, might have had his turn signal for a mile and finally had an opportunity to get in.
The Art of Living – Epictetus on virtue, happiness and effectiveness, translated by Sharon Lebell
“Circumstances don’t rise to meet our expectations. Events happen as they do. People behave as they are. Embrace what you get. Open your eyes: See things for what they really are, ridding yourself of the pain of false attachments and avoidable devastation…. As an exercise, consider the smallest things you cherish. For example, if you have a favorite cup. It is, just a cup. So if it should break, you could cope. Next, come things and people whom you love. When things happen, your only power is your attitude toward it. You can accept it or resent it. Things and people are not what we wish them to be, nor what they seem to be. They are what they are.”
Margery Williams: The Velveteen Rabbit
“Real isn’t how you are made,’ said the Skin Horse. ‘It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.’
‘Does it hurt?’ asked the Rabbit.
‘Sometimes,’ said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. ‘When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.’
‘Does it happen all at once, like being wound-up,’ he asked, ‘or bit by bit?’
‘It doesn’t happen all at once,’ said the Skin Horse. ‘You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in the joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”
“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”
― Lao Tzu