The beat is calling

Heather Watkins, USA

(Submitted by the author)

As the music played at a recent family event - my grandmother’s memorial dinner - I was doing my usual 'chair dancing', but was urged by one of my aunties to move beyond just sitting, swinging and tapping. Her suggestion included, “Life is short, the beat is calling, and if you want to dance, just get up and do it!”

Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness

Kurt Vonnegut, USA

(Submitted by The Art of Living Team)

Be soft. Do not let the world make you hard.
Do not let pain make you hate.
Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness.
Take pride that even though the rest of the world may disagree,
you still believe it to be a beautiful place.


Nelson Mandela, South Africa

(Submitted by Madeleine Mackenzie, Australia)

There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.

Like a party

Rainer Maria Rilke, Austria

(Submitted by The Art of Living Team)

You must never understand life, and then, it will be like a party.

Where there is a man

Cora Weiss, USA

(Submitted by The Art of Living Team)

Where there’s a man, there should be a woman. Women would not resort to war so easily.

A great adventure

David Loye, USA

(Submitted by the author)

The art of living, I’ve found, involves three things above all:

The first is the capacity to look upon life as a great adventure, in the worst as well as the best of circumstances.

The second is to recognize, and make the most of the fact, that life is a gamble. Sometimes luck is with you, sometimes it isn’t - the main thing is to persist and improve your hand.

The third is, in every way you can, do good in the world. Do it with a smile, a funny story, money, a loving touch, a meaningful compliment, a job, a helping hand - but do it.


Lao Zi, China

(Submitted by The Art of Living Team)

Let your community be small, with only a few people;
Keep tools in abundance, but do not depend upon them;
Appreciate your life and be content with your home;
Sail boats and ride horses, but don't go too far;
Keep weapons and armour, but do not employ them;
Let everyone read and write,
Eat well and make beautiful things.

Live peacefully and delight in your own society;
Dwell within cock-crow of your neighbours,
But maintain your independence from them.

Choosing to live


(Submitted by the author)

I was 9-years-old when I was given the great opportunity to experience death for the first time. Up until that point I'd been quite ambivalent about being in a body. At the age of three, I would spend most of my then wakeful nights praying to God, pleading with Him to take me home. I felt that there was no real point in being in my body. This despair lessened a little as I grew, but the yearning to be somewhere else, where I thought God was, continued to burn within me.


Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, France

(Submitted by Mireille Macé, France)

To live is to be slowly born.

The art of living

Havelock Ellis, England

(Submitted by Wendy Templar, England)

The art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on.

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