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Compiled by Jim and Sarah Young


*To view a 18 minute video of this Article illustrated with photographs,

click on this YouTube link:


PART ONE - Happiness


“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by the Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

The U.S. Declaration of Independence (Adopted July 4, 1776)


“The pursuit of happiness is a great activity.

One must be open and alive. It is the greatest feat man has to accomplish, And spirits must flow.

It takes wit and interest and energy to be happy.”

Robert Henri


“Joy is the holy fire that keeps our purpose warm and our intelligence aglow.” Helen Keller


“Oh. make us happy and you make us good.”

Robert Browning


“If you feel happy, you are happy — that’s all we mean by the term.”

  Jonathon Freedman


“No one can be poor that has enough,

nor rich that covets more than he has.”



“All you have to do is go to a hospital

and hear all the simple blessings that people never before realized were blessings — being able to urinate, to sleep on your side, to be able to swallow, to scratch an itch... [these things] educate us faster [than anything] about our blessings.”

Abraham Maslow


If we seek greater serenity, we can strive to restrain our unrealistic expectations, to go out of our way to experience reminders of our blessings, to make our goals short-term and sensible, to choose comparisons that will breed gratitude rather than envy.”

David Myers


“There is only one success,

to spend your life in your own way.”

Christopher Morley



“If true freedom were readily available and could be found without great effort, how is it possible that it should be neglected by almost everyone?

But all things difficult are as excellent as they are rare.”



“A man must become interesting to himself and must become actually expressive before he can be happy.”

Rbbert Henri



PART TWO - Personal Freedom


“We have to live, and we have to die;

the rest we make up.”



“Everything costs everything.”

Priscilla Hoback


“Do few things but do them well.”

St. Francis of Assissi


“Adolescents sense a secret, unique greatness in themselves that seeks expression. They gesture toward the heart when trying to express any of this; A significant clue to the whole affair.”

Joseph Chilton Pierce


“If you don’t know where you’re going,

you’ll probably end up someplace else.”

Yogi Berra


“We dull our lives by the way we conceive them.

We have stopped imagining them with any sort of romance, any fictional flair.”

James Hillman


“The choices we make dictate the lives we lead.”

William Shakespeare


“What lies before us and what lies behind us are small matters compared to what lies within us. And when we bring what is within out into the world, miracles happen.”



“It seems essential, in relationships and all tasks,

that we concentrate only on what is most significant and important.”



“The moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too.

All sorts of things occur to help one that never otherwise would have occurred... Whatever you can, do.

Or dream you can, do. Begin it.

Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now.”



“If you have a great ambition, take as big a step as possible in the direction of fulfilling it. The step may only be a tiny one, but trust that it may be the largest one possible for now.”

  Mildred McAfee



PART THREE — Awakening to Personal Power


“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when it came to die, discover that I had not lived.”

Henry David Thoreau


“The words ‘I am’ are potent words. Be careful what you hitch them to.

The thing you’re claiming has a way of reaching back and claiming you.”

 A.L. Kitselman


“Where are you making for?

It takes so many thousand years to wake, but will you wake for pity’s sake.”

Christopher Fry


“The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation. What is called resignation is confirmed desperation... But it is characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things.”



“There are two kinds of people...

One kind you can tell just by looking at them at what point they congealed into their final selves...

The other kind keep moving...

They are fluid. . .moving forward.. .making new trysts with life, and the motion keeps them young.

In my opinion, they are the only people who are alive.”

Gail Godwin (from The Finishing School)


“A calling may be postponed, avoided, intermittently missed. It may possess you completely. Whatever; eventually it will out. It makes its claim.”

James Hillman


“Without vision the people parish.”

Proverbs 29:18


“You are born with a character; it is given;

a gift, as the old stories say, from the guardians upon your birth.”

James Hillman


“Man, know thyself and know the universe.”

Inscription over the doorway to the Oracle at Delphi


“My life is my message.”

Mahatma Gandhi


“As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.”

Philippians 4:10


“So often we run away from the responsibilities dictated (or rather suggested) by nature, by fate, even sometimes by accident, just as Jonah tried in vain to run away from his fate.”

Abraham Maslow


“Man is asked to make of himself what he is supposed to become to fulfill his destiny.”

Paul Tillich



“Everything on earth has a purpose, and every person a mission. This is the Indian theory of existence.”

Christine Quintasket, Salish Indian


“Each of us is meant to have a character all our own,

to be what no other can exactly be, and to do what no other can exactly do.”

 William Ellery Channing


“Every blade of grass has its Angel that bends over it and whispers, ‘Grow, grow.”

 The Talmud


“It doesn’t matter what we do until we accept ourselves.

Once we accept ourselves, it doesn’t matter what we do.”

 Charly Heavenrich


“The real measure of our wealth

is our worth if we lost our money.”



“Every calling is great when greatly pursued.”

Oliver Wendell Holmes


“Nothing can resist a human will that stakes its heart upon a purpose.” Benjamin Disraeli



PART FOUR - Living the Life You Took Birth For


“Everyone has a purpose in life...

a unique gift or special talent to give to others.

And when we blend this unique talent with service to others, We experience the ecstasy and exultation of our own spirit, Which is the ultimate goal of all goals.”

Deepak Chopra


“Awake, awake

the world is young. For all its weary years of thought, the starkest fights must still be fought;

the most surprising songs be sung.”

Elroy Flecker



“And so long as you lack this dying and becoming, you are but a dull guest on darkling earth.”



“What does a man gain by winning the whole world at the cost of his true self?”

 Mark 8:36-37


“If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”



“The reason why we are disenchanted with ourselves is because we entertain in the depths of our psyche; a kind of vision ..of what we could be if we would be what we might be.”

       Pir Vilayat Khan


“We are raised on comparison;

our education is based on it; so is our culture.

So we struggle to be someone other than who we are.”



“I believe that every human being will leave this earth with an unfulfilled longing.

But I believe also that the loyalty to this longing will be the fulfillment of their life.”

  Christine Busta


“When a man tries to realize himself through the gifts with which Nature has endowed him, he does the best and only meaningful thing he can do.”

  Hermann Hesse


“For everything there is a season,

and a time for every purpose under heaven.”

  Ecclesiastes 3:1


“A wind has blown across the world,

It calls the brave and true’

To find a new Jerusalem

And build the world anew.”

F.C. Happold



“Here is a test to find out whether your mission on earth is finished:

If you’re alive, it isn’t.”

Richard Bach


“Consider the lilies how they grow in the fields... they do not work and they do not spend... set your mind on God’s kingdom...

and the rest will come to you.”

Matthew 6:28-26 and 33-34

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