Trouble

There is this difference between depression and sorrow - sorrowful, you are in great trouble because something matters so much; depressed you are miserable because nothing really matters.

Dissent is the native activity of the scientist, and it has got him into a good deal of trouble in the last years. But if that is cut off, what is left will not be a scientist. And I doubt whether it will be a man.

Most of us, swimming against tides of trouble the world knows nothing about, need only a bit of praise or encouragement and we'll make the goal. Say "Thank you!" whenever you think of it. Say "Nice job!" to that workman who put extra effort into his task. Say "Atta boy!" to the fellow who is struggling through in the face of odds. You'll get a whale of a lot of joy out of life that way. And people will love you.

The path of least resistance and least trouble is a mental rut already made. It requires troublesome work to undertake the alternation of old beliefs.

We who believe that children want to learn about the world, are good at it, and can be trusted to do it with very little adult coercion or interference, are probably no more than one percent of the population, if that. And we are not likely to become the majority in my lifetime. This doesn't trouble me much anymore, as long as this minority keeps on growing. My work is to help it grow.

Through danger safety comes - through trouble rest.

Life is not a straight line leading from one blessing to the next and then finally to heaven. Life is a winding and troubled road. Switchback after switchback. And the point of biblical stories like Joseph and Job and Esther and Ruth is to help us feel in our bones (not just know in our heads) that God is for us in all these strange turns. God is not just showing up after the trouble and cleaning it up. He is plotting the course and managing the troubles with far-reaching purposes for our good...

If there were nothing else to trouble us, the fate of the flowers would make us sad.

Every writer I know has trouble writing.

It is one of God's blessings that we cannot foreknow the hour of our death; for a time fixed, even beyond the possibility of living, would trouble us more than doth this uncertainty.

Many students come to see me from all over the place. Many of them are not free from their entanglement with objective things. I treat them right on the spot. If their trouble is due to grasping hands, I strike there. If their trouble is a loose mouth, I strike them there. If their trouble is hidden behind their eyes, it is there I strike. So far I have not found anyone who can set himself free. This is because they have all been caught up in the useless ways of the old masters. As for me, I do not have one only method which I give to everyone, but I relieve whatever the trouble is and set men free.

Friends, I tell you this: there is no Buddha, no spiritual path to follow, no training and no realization. What are you so feverishly running after? Putting a head on top of your own head, you blind idiots? Your head is right where it should be. The trouble lies in your not believing in yourselves enough. Because you don't believe in yourselves you are knocked here and there by all the conditions in which you find yourselves. Being enslaved and turned around by objective situations, you have no freedom whatever, you are not masters of yourselves. Stop turning to the outside and don't be attached to my words either. Just cease clinging to the past and hankering after the future. This will be better than ten years' pilgrimage.

The trouble with us in America isn't that the poetry of life has turned to prose, but that it has turned to advertising copy.

Pleasant it is, when over a great sea the winds trouble the waters, to gaze from shore upon another's great tribulation; not because any man's troubles are a delectable joy, but because to perceive you are free of them yourself is pleasant.

The pleasures of the world are deceitful; they promise more than they give. They trouble us in seeking them, they do not satisfy us when possessing them and they make us despair in losing them.

Men seek retreats for themselves, houses in the country, sea-shores, and mountains; and thou too art wont to desire such things very much. But this is altogether a mark of the most common sort of men, for it is in thy power whenever thou shalt choose to retire into thyself. For nowhere either with more quiet or more freedom from trouble does a man retire than into his own soul, particularly when he has within him such thoughts that by looking into them he is immediately in perfect tranquility; and I affirm that tranquility is nothing else than the good ordering of the mind. Constantly then give to thyself this retreat, and renew thyself; and let thy principles be brief and fundamental, which, as soon as thou shalt recur to them, will be sufficient to cleanse the soul completely, and to send thee back free from all discontent with the things to which thou returnest.

All around us lies what we neither understand nor use. Our capacities, our instincts for this our present sphere are but half developed. Let us confine ourselves to that till the lesson be learned; let us be completely natural; before we trouble ourselves with the supernatural. I never see any of these things but I long to get away and lie under a green tree and let the wind blow on me. There is marvel and charm enough in that for me.

One of the basic causes for all the trouble in the world today is that people talk too much and think too little. They act too impulsively without thinking. I am not advocating in the slightest that we become mutes with our voices stilled because of fear of criticism of what we might say. That is moral cowardice. And moral cowardice that keeps us from speaking our minds is as dangerous to this country as irresponsible talk. The right way is not always the popular and easy way. Standing for right when it is unpopular is a true test of moral character. The importance of individual thinking to the preservation of our democracy and our freedom cannot be overemphasized. The broader sense of the concept of your role in the defense of democracy is that of the citizen doing his most for the preservation of democracy and peace by independent thinking, making that thinking articulate by translating it into action at the ballot boxes, in the forums, and in everyday life, and being constructive and positive in that thinking and articulation. The most precious thing that democracy gives to us is freedom. You and I cannot escape the fact that the ultimate responsibility for freedom is personal. Our freedoms today are not so much in danger because people are consciously trying to take them away from us as they are in danger because we forget to use them. Freedom unexercised may be freedom forfeited. The preservation of freedom is in the hands of the people themselves — not of the government.

The ego must be able to listen attentively and to give itself, without any further design or purpose, to that inner urge toward growth. ... People living in cultures more securely rooted than our own have less trouble in understanding that it is necessary to give up the utilitarian attitude of conscious planning in order to make way for the inner growth of the personality.

The trouble with most of us is that we know too much that ain't so.