The sayings in this book consist of lessons I myself have learned in life, whether by experience or through trial and error; sometimes by deep pain or disappointment; many times through an inner joy almost unbearable. What I’ve presented here is the fruit of many years of thoughtfully directed living.
This book represents a complete revision of a former book of mine, DO It NOW! Today, fourteen years later, I offer this revised version both because of my continued enthusiasm for the book, and out of my continued growth in the insights it expresses.
Feb. 7. Never lend money unless you can feel, in your heart, that you are giving the money away. This practice will spare you much grief. For as Shakespeare said (through Polonius in Hamlet), “Loan oft loseth both itself and friend.” Tell God that you place the money in His hands. He will then see to it that you will not lack. Be sensible in your lending, however. Make sure you are helping someone whose need is real. I’ve often pondered movie actors who carelessly gave away vast sums of the money they were earning, but years later died in penury.
June 10. Honor your commitments, even those you make to yourself. If you’ve told someone, “I’ll go out and buy a newspaper today,” and the news you wanted then reaches you by some other means, go out and buy the paper anyway. Do so purely to maintain your promise—to him, and to yourself. For you should view even casual commitments in the light of promises. To do so will give you such a power of truth that your mere word will have materializing power.
July 5. My bottom line for many years has been, not money or profit, but inner peace. I’ve refused to allow anything to stress me to the point of stealing away that treasure. It is better, I’ve felt—and experience has borne me out—to leave undone even important things, if attention to them might undermine my peace. For without peace, one is all too prone to error. From inner peace, moreover, come enlightened decisions. People’s expectations of me can never equal what is expected of me by God.
July 16. Is there any subject on which you feel sensitive? If so, decide, “I will change myself.” A sore spot on the body tells us something is wrong there. When people “rub you the wrong way,” see what is wrong in you, that you’ve been made to flinch.
July 25. Why is there so much violence in the world? Surely it is that people are disharmonious in themselves. Today’s terrorists imagine they’ll improve the world by making it over in their own image. Were they ever to succeed in destroying everyone who disagreed with them, they’d only turn their energies to butchering one another. Ultimately, the only way for the world to know peace is for people everywhere to seek it within themselves.
July 27. Never resort to self-justification. If people are interested in hearing your explanation, state the facts simply and impersonally, but never descend to the embarrassment of self-defense.
Aug. 23. Live as much as possible at the center between every duality. Everything is dual; that is how the one Spirit manifested its Creation. Every up is balanced by a down; light is always balanced by darkness; pleasure, by pain; emotional love, by hatred. I say “emotional love,” because there is no opposite to divine love. Nor is there a balancing opposite to divine joy. Eternal truths lie at the center between all opposites. Therefore I say, live more at that center: in the heart center, or chakra, of your own spine.
This article first appeared in print in Summer 2009: “Selections from: Do It Well*,” Swami Kriyananda, Clarity Magazine.
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