What is the meaning of life? The meaning may not be expressed in words. It transcends the mind and the intellect. The meaning is to be experienced, realized... It is open to everyone who would live according to certain disciplines... The discipline of duty. Life is a field of duty, not a dance of desires... The discipline of service... We are here to help others... The opposite of love is not hate but apathy... The discipline of silence... The meaning of life is to love God and to give the service of love to the suffering children of God. And to the birds and animals who are God’s children as well.
The same suffering is much harder to bear for a high motive than for a base one. The people who stood motionless, from one to eight in the morning, for the sake of having an egg, would have found it very difficult to do in order to save a human life.
How many years of fatigue and punishment it takes to learn the simple truth that work, that disagreeable thing, is the only way of not suffering in life, or at all events, of suffering less.
We are to live with life and die with death, not separated from them. The problem of suffering is insoluble, because we think of ourselves as apart from pain and death, in opposition to them. We can be free from change only by changing with it.
Keep the middle path of strength and virtue, lest you be overwhelmed by misfortune or corrupted by pleasant fortune. All that falls short or goes too far ahead, has contempt for happiness, and gains not the reward for labor done. It rests in your own hands what shall be the nature of the fortune which you choose to form for yourself. For all fortune which seems difficult, either exercises virtue, or corrects or punishes vice.
When God will educate a man, He compels him to learn bitter lessons. He sends him to school to the Necessities rather than to the Graces, that by knowing all suffering he may know also the eternal consolations.