Tis' the Season for Resolutions

Sunday, January 2, 2011

So 2011 is here and many people are making New Year's resolutions - to stop eating junk food, to exercise more, to quit smoking, etc. For whatever reason I've never really gotten into making resolutions in the New Year. Might be because I was never really successful at it. Is anyone?

Don't get me wrong, I have definitely made resolutions and adhered to them, just never successfully on New Years Eve. I stopped smoking August 8th, 2003, I became Vegan July 9th, 2009 - to name just a couple. When I get in my mind that I am going to do something differently or approach life in a different way - then I do it. But it always ends up being on my own terms, in my own time.

I have to work through it you know? And sometimes there are a lot of false starts along the way. But if I am committed, then I always get around to it. Here is a really cool quote on resolutions I found...

"Making resolutions is a cleansing ritual of self assessment and repentance that demands personal honesty and, ultimately, reinforces humility. Breaking them is part of the cycle." - Eric Zorn

So if I come up short again and again at conquering whatever it is I want to change or maturing into what I'd like to become, that's ok. I just have to pick myself up and try again. It is normal to break resolutions. The important part, I think, is to keep recommitting yourself, striving to be better. And of course, we probably shouldn't wait to re-evaluate ourselves once a year on December 31st either.

Shouldn't we constantly be evolving and maturing - working at becoming better versions of ourselves than the day before?

What say you people out there in cyber space? While you think about it, here are some additional quotes to ponder from some sacred scriptures.

"Arise, O people, and, by the power of God's might, resolve to gain the victory over your own selves, that haply the whole earth may be freed and sanctified from its servitude to the gods of its idle fancies -- gods that have inflicted such loss upon, and are responsible for the misery of, their wretched worshipers. These idols form the obstacle that impedeth man in his efforts to advance in the path of perfection. We cherish the hope that the Hand of Divine power may lend its assistance to mankind, and deliver it from its state of grievous abasement." (Baha'u'llah, Gleanings from the Writings of Baha'u'llah, p. 93)

"Those who meditate with perseverance, constantly working hard at it, are the wise who experience Nirvana, the ultimate
freedom from chains.

When a man is resolute and recollected, pure of deed and persevering, when he is attentive and self-controlled and lives
according to the Teaching, his reputation is bound to grow.

By resolution and attention, by discipline and self-control, a clever man may build himself an island that no flood can
overthrow." (Buddhist, Dhammapada - Sayings of the Buddha 1 (tr. J. Richards))

"Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eyelids.

Deliver thyself as a roe from the hand of the hunter, and as a bird from the hand of the fowler.

Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.

How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? when wilt thou arise out of thy sleep? Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man." (King James Bible, Proverbs 6:4-11)

"He who has committed a sin and has repented, is freed from that sin, but he is purified only by (the resolution of) ceasing (to sin and thinking) 'I will do so no more.'

Having thus considered in his mind what results will arise from his deeds after death, let him always be good in thoughts, speech, and actions." (Hindu, 231-232 Laws of Manu)

"This is a brilliant century. Eyes are now open to the beauty of the oneness of humanity, of love and of brotherhood. The darkness of suppression will disappear and the light of unity will shine. We cannot bring love and unity to pass merely by talking of it. Knowledge is not enough. Wealth, science, education are good, we know: but we must also work and study to bring to maturity the fruit of knowledge.

Knowledge is the first step; resolve, the second step; action, its fulfillment, is the third step." (Abdu'l-Baha, Abdu'l-Baha in London, p. 54)


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