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Inspirational True Story : Do Good and Expect Nothing in Return

Inspirational True Story : Do Good and Expect Nothing in Return

An 18-year-old student was struggling to pay his fees. He was an orphan, and not knowing where to turn for money, he came up with a bright idea. He and a friend decided to host a musical concert on campus to raise money for their education.

They reached out to the great pianist Ignacy J. Paderewski. His manager demanded a guaranteed fee of $2000 for the piano recital. A deal was struck and the boys began to work to make the concert a success.

The big day arrived. But unfortunately, they had not managed to sell enough tickets. The total collection was only $1600. Disappointed, they went to Paderewski and explained their plight. They gave him the entire $1600, plus a cheque for the balance $400. They promised to honour the cheque at the soonest possible.

"No," said Paderewski. "This is not acceptable." He tore up the cheque, returned the $1600 and told the two boys: "Here's the $1600. Please deduct whatever expenses you have incurred. Keep the money you need for your fees. And just give me whatever is left". The boys were surprised, and thanked him profusely.

It was a small act of kindness. But it clearly marked out Paderewski as a great human being.

Why should he help two people he did not even know? We all come across situations like these in our lives. And most of us only think "If I help them, what would happen to me?" The truly great people think, "If I don't help them, what will happen to them?" They don’t do it expecting something in return. They do it because they feel it's the right thing to do.

Paderewski later went on to become the Prime Minister of Poland. He was a great leader, but unfortunately when the World War began, Poland was ravaged. There were more than 1.5 million people starving in his country, and no money to feed them. Paderewski did not know where to turn for help. He reached out to the US Food and Relief Administration for help.

The head there was a man called Herbert Hoover — who later went on to become the US President. Hoover agreed to help and quickly shipped tons of foodgrains to feed the starving Polish people.

A calamity was averted. Paderewski was relieved. He decided to go across to meet Hoover and personally thank him. When Paderewski began to thank Hoover for his noble gesture, Hoover quickly interjected and said, "You shouldn't be thanking me Mr. Prime Minister. You may not remember this, but several years ago, you helped two young students go through college. I was one of them."
Zen Story About Egotism

Zen Story About Egotism

The Prime Minister of the Tang Dynasty was a national hero for his success as both a statesman and military leader. But despite his fame, power, and wealth, he considered himself a humble and devout Buddhist. Often he visited his favorite Zen master to study under him, and they seemed to get along very well. The fact that he was prime minister apparently had no effect on their relationship, which seemed to be simply one of a revered master and respectful student.

One day, during his usual visit, the Prime Minister asked the master, "Your Reverence, what is egotism according to Buddhism?" The master's face turned red, and in a very condescending and insulting tone of voice, he shot back, "What kind of stupid question is that!?"

This unexpected response so shocked the Prime Minister that he became sullen and angry. The Zen master then smiled and said, "THIS, Your Excellency, is egotism."
Ajahn Brahm Inspirational Quotes

Ajahn Brahm Inspirational Quotes

If you want to have a good time, be good.

Real beauty does not lie in perfection, but in embracing and accepting imperfection.

Love is the ability to embrace the imperfections of another, of ourselves, and of life.

Instead of having a fault-finding mind, develop the beautiful attitude of gratitude.

Whatever you value, whatever you think is really important, that is what will develop and grow.

Water the flowers in your garden, don't water the weeds.

What you see in others, that's what they will show you back.

Always put happiness and joy into whatever you are doing.

Merit is not something you store up for a future life, it's what you put into your heart for now.

Real generosity is giving, expecting nothing back in return.

Inspiration is a beautiful source of pure energy that uplifts your heart.

A lot of the time you learn the most from osmosis, by just hanging around good people.

When you cultivate a beautiful mind throughout the day, you will have a beautiful mind in meditation.

Your real home is not the house you live in, but the stillness and peace in your heart.

Forget about the results. Creating the causes; that's your work. The results will come by themselves.

When you face the problem and bring it close to you, you have a chance to understand it. When you run away, your face is turned in the opposite direction.

You don’t need to give things a name...just know them.

Don't bend the truth to fit your beliefs, bend your beliefs to fit the truth.

You can either be caught up in this world and in your desires... or you can be free.

Suffering is asking from the world what it can never give you.

Freedom is realising that you can't control life.

Pleasure is just a pause between two moments of pain.
And pain is just the space between two moments of pleasure.

Whatever disturbance there is, it only lasts for a few moments.
But if you allow it to echo in your mind, it will keep on going for a long time.

Hell is a place with an open door. You send yourself there because of guilt.
If you know what love and forgiveness are, you can walk out any time you want.

It's amazing how free you can be, if you don’t limit yourself to your past.

The nature of life is that it settles down and finds a balance all by itself.

Where there is a self, there are things belonging to a self.
Where there is no self, there is no sense of ownership.

From "All You Need Is Kindfulness - A Collection of Ajahn Brahm Quotes".
Dhammaloka.org.au
Inspirational Wisdom Story About Buddha

Inspirational Wisdom Story About Buddha

Once, Buddha was walking through a village with his students, where the opponents of Buddhism lived. The people of the village surrounded Buddha and his students and started insulting them. In respond, the students also started rising up and wanted to get back at them, but the presence of Buddha calmed them down. The words of Buddha confused not only the students but also the villagers.

He turned to his students and said, "You disappointed me. These people are doing their thing. They are angry. They think that I am an enemy of their religion and their moral believes. These people are insulting me and it's obvious. But why are you angry ? Why did you let these people manipulate you ? Now you depend from them, therefore you’re not free."

The people from the village were completely at loss and asked,"But we were insulting you, why aren't you mad at us ?"

Buddha smiled, "You are free people, and what you did - is your business. I am also a free person and a master of my own actions, which is why I have my own right not to react to manipulation and be free from anger."
Stress Management : Holding A Glass Of Water

Stress Management : Holding A Glass Of Water

A professor walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As he raised a glass of water, everyone expected they’d be asked the “half empty or half full” question. Instead, with a smile on his face, he inquired : “How heavy is this glass of water?”

Answers called out ranged from 6 ounces and 10 ounces but he shrugged them off.

He replied, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. What really matters is how long I've been holding it. If I hold it for a minute, it’s not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.”

He continued, “The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed – incapable of doing anything. That’s the way it is with our stress. If we carry our burdens alone all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won’t be able to carry on.”

It’s important to remember to let go of your stresses. As early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don’t carry them through the evening and into the night.

So, before you return home tonight, put the burden of work down. Don’t carry it home. You can pick it up tomorrow. Whatever burdens you’re carrying now, let them down for a moment if you can. Remember to put the glass down !
What Is The Best Religion ?

What Is The Best Religion ?

The Dalai Lama, a Nobel Peace Prize Laureate is a great spiritual and Buddhist leader. He is the author of many spiritual books. Dr.Leonardo Boff, a Brazilian theologist, is one of the renovators of the Theology of Freedom. In a round table discussion about religion and freedom in which Dalai Lama and Dr.Leonardo Boff were participating, at recess, Boff maliciously, and also with interest, asked Dalai Lama.

Below is the dialogue between The Dalai Lama dan Brazilian theologist, Dr. Leonardo Boff as written by Dr. Leonardo Boff.

"Your Holiness, what is the best religion ?"
(I thought he would say, "The Tibetan Buddhism" or "The oriental religions, much older than Christianity")

The Dalai Lama paused, smiled and looked me in the eyes...which surprised me because I knew of the malice contained in my question.

He answered, "The best religion is the one that gets you closest to God. It is the one that makes you a better person". To get out of my embarrassment with such a wise answer, I asked, "What is it that makes me better ?"

He responded,
"Whatever makes you more compassionate,
More sensible,
More detached,
More loving,
More humanitarian,
More responsible,
More ethical."
The religion that will do that for you is the best religion"

I was silent for a moment, marveling and even today thinking of his wise and irrefutable response. "I am not interested my friend, about your religion or if you are religious or not. What really is important to me is your behavior in front of your peers, family, work, community, and in front of the world".

"Remember, the universe is the echo of our actions and our thoughts".

"The law of action and reactions is not exclusively for physics. It is also of human relations. If I act with goodness, I will receive goodness. If I act with evil I will get evil."

"What our grandparents told us is pure truth. You will always have what your desire for others. Being happy is not a matter of destiny. It is a matter of options."

Finally he said,
"Take care of your Thoughts because they become Words.
Take care of your Words because they will become Actions.
Take care of your Actions because they will become Habits.
Take care of your Habits because they will form your Character.
Take care of your Character because it will form your Destiny, and your Destiny will be your Life...and...There is no religion higher than the Truth."
The Story Of Two Brothers : The Meaning Of Brotherhood

The Story Of Two Brothers : The Meaning Of Brotherhood

Once there were two brothers who inherited their father's land. The brothers divided the land in half and each one farmed his own section. Over time, the older brother married and had six children, while the younger brother never married.

One night, the younger brother lay awake. "It's not fair that each of us has half the land to farm," he thought. "My brother has six children to feed and I have none. He should have more grain than I do."

So that night the younger brother went to his silo, gathered a large bundle of wheat, and climbed the hill that separated the two farms and over to his brother's farm. Leaving the wheat in his brother's silo, the younger brother returned home, feeling pleased with himself.

Earlier that very same night, the older brother was also lying awake. "It's not fair that each of us has half the land to farm," he thought. "In my old age my wife and I will have our grown children to take care of us, not to mention grandchildren, while my brother will probably have none. He should at least sell more grain from the fields now so he can provide for himself with dignity in his old age."

So that night, too, he secretly gathered a large bundle of wheat, climbed the hill, left it in his brother's silo, and returned home, feeling pleased with himself.

The next morning, the younger brother was surprised to see the amount of grain in his barn unchanged. "I must not have taken as much wheat as I thought," he said, bemused. "Tonight I'll be sure to take more."

That very same moment, his older brother was also standing in his barn, musing much the same thoughts.

After night fell, each brother gathered a greater amount of wheat from his barn and in the dark, secretly delivered it to his brother's barn. The next morning, the brothers were again puzzled and perplexed. "How can I be mistaken ?" each one scratched his head. "There's the same amount of grain here as there was before I cleared the pile for my brother. This is impossible ! Tonight I'll make no mistake - I'll take the pile down to the very floor. That way I'll be sure the grain gets delivered to my brother."

The third night, more determined than ever, each brother gathered a large pile of wheat from his barn, loaded it onto a cart, and slowly pulled his haul through the fields and up the hill to his brother's barn. At the top of the hill, under the shadow of a moon, each brother noticed a figure in the distance. Who could it be?

When the two brothers recognized the form of the other brother and the load he was pulling behind, they realized what had happened. Without a word, they dropped the ropes to their carts and embraced.
Jing Si Aphorism - Inspirational Wisdom by Dharma Master Cheng Yen

Jing Si Aphorism - Inspirational Wisdom by Dharma Master Cheng Yen

Know your blessings,
cherish them and sow more blessings.

The ocean can be filled,
yet the tiny mouth
of a human being
can never be filled.

The fist step on a path of Buddhism
is to lessen our desires and be satisfied
with what we have.
Then our mind will relax and we will begin
to gain wisdom.

When we treat others
with loving-kindness,
we will not stir up ill feelings,
and we will able to
form good relationships with others.

Bodhisattvas are not
idol made of wood;
real Bodhisattvas are people
who eat, talk, work,
and relieve suffering
in times of need.
An Inspirational Story About Two Frogs

An Inspirational Story About Two Frogs

Once upon a time, there were two frogs live together in a lake. In a summer, the heat of the sun had dried all the water in the lake.

The frog said to his friend, "We can not stay here much longer without water."

"The birds look for the forest to live in, while we frogs look for the water to live in." After walking long enough, they found a well.

"See ! Right in front of us, there is a well !", the frog said happily to his friend.

"Hmmm...", his friend replied.

"Let's jump into the well. This is a nice place to stay and for the food", the frog said to his friend again.

"Yes, yes ! It will be nice if we jump into the well now, but the problem is ... how can we get out again then ?", replied his friend.

We need to consider the consequences of our decisions. Sometimes, an interesting opportunity may be just like the water in the well...it's easy to jump in, but it will be impossible to climb out !
The Inspiration Of The Coffee Bean

The Inspiration Of The Coffee Bean

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling.

It seemed that, as one problem was solved, a new one arose. Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to a boil. In the first, she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans.

She let them sit and boil, without saying a word. In about twenty minutes, she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her daughter, she asked, "Tell me, what do you see ?"

"Carrots, eggs, and coffee," the young woman replied. The mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. She then asked her to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard-boiled egg. Finally, she asked her to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma. The daughter then asked, "What does it mean, mother ?"

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity - boiling water - but each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak.

The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior. But, after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened! The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water.

"Which are you?" the mother asked her daughter. "When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean?"

Think of this : Which am I ? Am I the carrot that seems strong but, with pain and adversity, do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength? Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat ? Did I have a fluid spirit but, after a death, a breakup, or a financial hardship, does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and a hardened heart ? Or am I like the coffee bean ? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavour.

If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you. When the hours are the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate to another level ? How do you handle adversity ? Are you a carrot, an egg, or a coffee bean ?
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