Opportunity Knocks | The World is Your Oyster

February 22, 2018
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Listen to episode 242 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Opportunity Knocks | The World is Your Oyster. Adapted from Stepping-Stones to Success by Horace D. Hitchcock.

Podcast Excerpt: THE world today is full of opportunities. In business, in art, in literature, in every field of endeavor, the call of opportunity is greater than ever before. To the ambitious, the world presents a rich hunting ground, a wide expanse for fruitful endeavor. But to those who lack knowledge and courage, it seems as a great city, walled in by those more fortunate who have gained entrance to its rewards, through fame, fortune, or influence.

The old adage that opportunity knocks once on every person’s door, is, perhaps, so old that it is now out of date. The saying was undoubtedly intended to exemplify the fact that opportunity actually comes to one less often than it is sought. The fields of endeavor are full of opportunities today, but they are ever playing "hide- and-seek" with the ambitious.

The first step toward any success is the grasping of an opportunity. In speaking of opportunity William Gladstone said: "In some sense, and in some effectual degree, there is in every person the material for good work in the world." In every one of us, there is the God-given germ which may be termed our "capacity for usefulness." In every one of us, this quality is capable of being developed, through proper exercise and nourishment.

Today's podcast was sponsored by Audible.com. To get your free 30 day trial, which includes one free audiobook, go to Audible.com/inspirational. Or text the word inspirational to 500-500.

The Happy Life of the Mind | Thinking Out Loud

February 20, 2018
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Listen to episode 241 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Happy Life of the Mind. Edited and adapted from Working With God by Gardner Hunting.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: It is frequently said by people, who profess to have studied the subject, that thinking is a difficult and unattractive job. We accuse average folks of dodging the task of thinking whenever they can. This charge is not true.

If you and I do not choose to think about one subject, it is because we prefer to think about another. But think we do — and get out of it not merely most of our fun, but all the fun we have to experience. Indeed thinking is not only all the fun there is in life; it is all we live for — all of us!

Few things are more pitiable than the person who tries to get perpetual and satisfying joy out of past performances, and past triumphs. People do not begin to live on memories because they are growing old; they grow old because they begin to live on memories. Give a person a topic about which to think, and they will not grow "prematurely old."

Anticipation is nine tenths of the joy of life, because anticipation is constructive thought. One who does not anticipate, never enjoys anything. The applause of the crowd may please us, but only because it stirs us on to further achievement. And the one who learns that all joy lies in achieving through thinking becomes indifferent to applause — and also to censure.

Vedic Wisdom & The Success Path of Giving More

February 15, 2018
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Listen to episode 240 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Vedic Wisdom & The Path of Giving. Edited and adapted from a lecture by Swami Vivekananda.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: The perfect individual can put their whole soul upon one point of love, yet remain unattached. How to accomplish this? Well, first of all, we must recognize that we are all beggars. Whatever we do, we want a return.

We are all traders: we are traders in life; we are traders in virtue; we are traders in religion. Alas! we are also traders in love. If you come to trade, if it is a question of give-and-take, if it is a question of buy-and-sell, you abide by the laws of buying and selling. There is a bad time and there is a good time; there is a rise, and a fall in prices — always you expect the blow to come.

It is like looking at the mirror. Your face is reflected: you make a grimace and there is one in the mirror; if you laugh, the mirror laughs. This is buying and selling, giving and taking. We get caught. How? Not by what we give, but by what we expect. We get misery in return for our love. Not from the fact that we love, but from the fact that we want love in return.

The great secret of true success, of true happiness, is this: the person who asks for no return, the perfectly unselfish person, is the most successful. Ask for nothing; want nothing in return. Give what you have to give; it will come back to you but do not think of that now. It will come back multiplied a thousandfold, but the attention must not be on that.

Cultivate the power to give — give, and there it ends. Learn that the whole of life is giving, that nature will force you to give. So, give willingly.

The Confident Man & Woman | A Victorious Attitude

February 13, 2018
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Listen to episode 239 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Confident Man & Woman | A Victorious Attitude. Edited and adapted from “You Can. But Will You?” by Orison Swett Marden.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. If you are looking for that perfect nightstand book to usher you into a relaxed and inspired sleep, purchase our book Evergreen: 50 Inspirational Life Lessons. Learn more at our website: InspirationalLifeLessons.com.

Today’s reading was edited and adapted from the book “You Can, But Will You?” by Orison Swett Marden, published in 1920.

Do you know that you will never accomplish anything great unless you not only hold the conviction that victory is your birthright, but also show evidence of it in your face, in your manner and bearing? No person can expect to be a conqueror while they carry the confession of defeat in their face. You must not only feel like a winner, but you must also appear and act like one. You must show victory in your very expression.

It is not difficult to pick out a successful person among a multitude. If you are a leader, a person who relies upon yourself, every step, every movement, will indicate it. You are covered all over with telltale signs. There is assurance, confidence in your face and bearing. You walk like a master and talk like one. Everyone knows that you believe in yourself and in your mission.

What marks the difference between a winner and a loser? The winner is a person who gets up after they have been knocked down with more determination than before; a person who is stung into greater activity by some serious setback; a person who does not know when they are beaten. A temporary failure does not mean much to such a man or woman; it is only an episode in their life.

Living an Authentic Life | Originality vs. Conformity

February 8, 2018
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Listen to episode 238 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Living an Authentic Life | Originality vs. Conformity. Edited and adapted from Working With God by Gardner Hunting.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. By special request, we’ve just finished producing a new series of autosuggestion meditations to help those who are struggling to break free from cigarettes, alcohol, or heroin. When used in combination with our Majesty program, these meditations are a powerful tool to help create a new life free from addiction.

Learn more by visiting our website at LivingHour.org/breakfree. Now on to today’s reading was edited and adapted from Working With God by Gardner Hunting, published in 1934.

THE poorest reason in the world for doing anything is that somebody else is doing it. Children have a name for the imitators; they call them a "copycat." But isn't it a curious thing that the "copycat" habit is almost universal among human beings? Most of us say the same things about newspapers, relatives, and sunsets that our friends do. We rise, sit, sleep, and eat as others do. And, whether consciously or unconsciously, one of the aims of our lives is not to be weird--that is, unlike others.

Isn't it pitiful, how we so often conform: conform to style, to custom, to mode, to trend. And if we think about it, we come upon a curious anomaly. The world is actually crying out for originality (for something new under the sun) yet it slaps at it instantly when it raises its head.

No person is so unpopular as the one who begins to be unlike the rest. However, no person receives such rewards as the one who persists in it! Strange! All people seem to be in a conspiracy to curb originality, yet we also all laud and reward it — and then when the applause begins, we all begin trying to ape the originator.

Carl Jung on Life, God & Religion | Psychotherapy

February 6, 2018
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Listen to episode 237 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Carl Jung on Life, God & Religion. Edited and adapted from the work of Carl Jung.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. Visit our lifestyle brand BookofZen.com to shop for inspirational fashion and gifts. Proceeds help support the production of our podcast. Today’s reading was edited and adapted from the work of Swiss psychologist Carl Jung.

“The decisive question for humanity is: Are we related to something infinite or not? That is the telling question of our lives. Only if we know that the thing which truly matters is the infinite can we avoid fixing our interests upon futilities and upon all kinds of goals which are not of real importance. The more we lay stress on false possessions, and the less sensitivity we have for what is essential, the less satisfying is our life. We feel limited because we have limited aims, and the result is envy and jealousy. If we understand, and feel, that here in this life we already have a link with the infinite, our desires and attitudes change.”

“An understanding heart is everything in a teacher, and cannot be esteemed highly enough. One looks back with appreciation to the brilliant teachers, but with gratitude to those who touched our human feeling. The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.”

“I am not what happened to me, I am what I choose to become…..You are what you do, not what you say you'll do.”

“There are as many nights as days, and the one is just as long as the other in the year's course. Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word 'happy' would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness…..As far as we can discern, the sole purpose of human existence is to kindle a light of meaning in the darkness of mere being.”

How to Live a Good Life | Lubbock, Seneca, Epictetus

February 1, 2018
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Listen to episode 236 of the Inspirational Living podcast: How to Live a Good Life | Lubbock, Seneca, Epictetus. Edited and adapted from edited and adapted from The Use of Life by Sir John Lubbock.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. To gain access to the full transcripts of our more than 200 podcasts, please become our monthly patron for less than the price of your favorite Latte. Learn more at LivingHour.org/patron. Today’s reading was edited and adapted from The Use of Life by Sir John Lubbock, published in 1894.

The most important thing to learn in life, is how to live. There is nothing people are so anxious to keep as life, and nothing they take so little pains to keep well. This is no simple matter. "Life is short. Art is long. Opportunity fleeting. Experiment uncertain, and Judgment difficult,'' says Hippocrates.

Happiness and success in life do not depend on our circumstances, but on ourselves. More people have ruined themselves than have ever been destroyed by others: more houses and cities have perished at the hands of men, than storms or earthquakes have ever destroyed."

There are two sorts of ruin; one is the work of time, the other of humankind. Of all ruins, the ruins of humanity are the saddest, and our worst enemy, as Seneca said, is the one in our breast. Providence does not create evil, but gives liberty, and if we misuse it we are sure to suffer, but have only ourselves to blame."

I am sometimes accused of being optimistic. But I have never ignored or denied the troubles and sorrows of life: I have never said that we all are happy, only that we might be so; and that if we aren’t, the fault is generally our own: that most of us throw away more happiness than we enjoy. And this makes it all the more melancholy. In other words, "For of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these: it might have been."

When Things Go Wrong | The Power of Constructive Thinking

January 30, 2018
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Listen to episode 235 of the Inspirational Living podcast: When Things Go Wrong | The Power of Constructive Thinking. Edited and adapted from Success Through Thought Habit by Benjamin Johnson.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast, creators of The Majesty Program, a life-changing meditation program using our very own autosuggestion sound method technique. Get 30% off the $11.99 purchase price with the coupon code: inspiration. Learn more at: LivingHour.org/majesty.

Today’s podcast has been edited and adapted from “Success Through Thought Habit” by Benjamin Johnson, published in 1908.

IF ever the true merit of constructive thought is placed to a test, it is when things go so wrong that there is apparently no way to turn, and no solution to our difficulty. Try as we may, we can find no reasonable excuse for what’s happening.

Once in a while, we may be placed in the trying position of not being able to blame anyone for our plight, and, as we think things over, we are forced to admit that were circumstances to be again arranged as they had been, we would do the same things all over again.

Then, perhaps, we grow a little sorry for ourselves and we say — beneath our breaths — "What is the use of trying. I was just as good as I could have been for days, weeks, and months, and then this awful thing had to happen for no reason at all." Next, we may get angry, or possibly disgusted, and just in proportion to our own state of mind, does the outlook continue to look worse and worse until soon dull despair settles down in great chunks of gloom.

"What is the remedy?" you ask. There is only one to be used in cases of this description, and that is absolute Faith in the ultimate outcome, no matter how bad everything looks — and the realization that nothing that happens to us at any time is an accident, but is what we need, in order to show what we are made of.

Resistance, resentment, anger, and blame only mean that we shall continue to have more tribulations of a similar nature, until our lessons have been learned, and we find that out of every evil, good will come. In the mental world, as well as the physical, anyone who breaks a law is punished — not always in the way we may recognize, but just so surely the punishment comes....

Self-Improvement Begins Now | Classic Self-Help Books

January 25, 2018
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Listen to episode 234 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Self-Improvement Begins Now | Classic Self-Help Books. Edited and adapted from A Book of Cheerful Counsel by Nixon Waterman.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. I’d like to start today by thanking our new patrons: Michael Jindra, Margo Blake, Gizem Engur, and Elhadj Omar. I truly appreciate your financial gifts that help offset the 70 hours a month I put into producing this free podcast. To become our monthly patron and gain access to our entire transcript archive, please visit LivingHour.org/patron. Thank you.

Today’s reading was edited and adapted from A Book of Cheerful Counsel by Nixon Waterman, published in 1909.

LEARN to do, but without overdoing. Too much striving for success is as bad as too little. Moderation is the silken string running through the pearl chain of all virtues. Do not cram books into your head until you crowd pleasant thinking out of it. A moderately informed person, standing firmly on their two good legs, is superior to the wise professor who is unable to leave their bed.

What have you profited, if you gain the whole world, and lose your own soul? And what does it profit you, if you become a multi-millionaire and lose your health of mind or body? Success that costs more than it is worth is failure.

Make haste slowly. Be ambitious, but not foolish. Learn a few things, and learn them well. The person who grasps much, holds little. We all know that there is a happy medium between too much preciseness and slovenliness; between laziness and an unwarranted degree of mental activity; between ignorance and an intellect ground to an edge too fine to carve its way through a hard world.

The mind should be a good, strong, healthy feeder, but not a glutton. When unduly stimulated, it wears out the mechanism of the body, like friction upon a machine not lubricated, and the growing weakness of the physical frame nullifies the power it encloses.

Get the Best of Our Podcast in Inspirational Book Format. Discover Evergreen (50 Inspirational Life Lessons & Everest (50 Motivational Life Lessons) at: InspirationalLifeLessons.com.

The Master Mind | Napoleon Hill’s Keys to Success

January 23, 2018
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Listen to episode 233 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Master Mind | Napoleon Hill’s Keys to Success. Edited and adapted from Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: The Master Mind principle, or rather the economic feature of it, was first called to my attention by Andrew Carnegie. Mr. Carnegie's Master Mind group consisted of a staff of approximately fifty people, with whom he surrounded himself, for the DEFINITE PURPOSE of manufacturing and marketing steel. He attributed his entire fortune to the POWER he accumulated through this "Master Mind."

Analyze the record of any person who has accumulated a great fortune, and many of those who have accumulated modest fortunes, and you will find that they have either consciously, or unconsciously, employed the "Master Mind" principle. Great power can be accumulated through no other principle.

ENERGY is Nature's universal set of building blocks, out of which she constructs every material thing in the universe, including humankind, and every form of animal and vegetable life. Through a process which only Nature completely understands, she translates energy into matter. And Nature's building blocks are available to us in the energy involved in THINKING!

Our brain may be compared to an electric battery. It absorbs energy from the ether, which permeates every atom of matter, and fills the entire universe. It is a well-known fact that a group of electric batteries will provide more energy than a single battery. It is also a well-known fact that an individual battery will provide energy in proportion to the number and capacity of the cells it contains.

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The Joy of Doing | Rebuilding Real Manhood & Womanhood

January 18, 2018
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Listen to episode 232 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Joy of Doing | Rebuilding Real Manhood & Womanhood. Edited and adapted from A Book of Friendly Thoughts by Nixon Waterman.

Motivational Podcast Transcript: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. Coming up this weekend on Our Sunday Talks, we’ll be discussing the problem of life, along with the imaginary conflict that supposedly exists between science and religion. To gain access to our weekly Sunday series, please become our monthly patron today. To learn more, please visit LivingHour.org/Sunday.

Today’s reading was edited and adapted from A Book of Friendly Thoughts by Nixon Waterman, published in 1913.

Half-way, half-hearted doings never amount to much. Battles are not won with flags at half-mast — they are run up to the very tops of their standards and are waved as far toward the heavens as is possible. If we lack enthusiasm, we are almost as certain to fail of achieving an end, as a locomotive engine that lacks steam is of climbing a grade.

A listless, lackadaisical spirit may get on all right, so long as the path of life is all on a level or down grade, but when it comes to hill-climbing and the real experiences of life that serve to develop character, we are likely to give up the contest, and surrender the prize we might win to other and more earnest competitors.

Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something. If you would get the best results, do your work with enthusiasm as well as fidelity. The world makes way only for the determined person who laughs at barriers which limit others — at stumbling-blocks over which others fall.

Everyone knows that the friends whom they love best are the ones who are alive to the world about them and who feel an enthusiasm in the tasks and privileges that confront them. Enthusiasm is the breeze that fills the sails, and sends the ship gliding over the happy waves. It is the joy of doing things, and of seeing that things are well done. It gives to work a thoroughness and a delicious zest and to play a whole-souled, health-giving delight.

Only they who find joy in their work can live the larger and nobler life — for without work, and work done joyously, life must remain dwarfed and undeveloped.

Gain full access to all of our transcripts by becoming our patron for as little as $3 a month. Visit LivingHour.org/patron.

Taking Stock of Ourselves | Vices & Virtues | Freethinkers

January 16, 2018
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Listen to episode 231 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Taking Stock of Ourselves | Vices & Virtues. Edited and adapted from All’s Right with the World by Charles B. Newcomb.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. Support us by visiting our lifestyle brand BookofZen.com to shop for clothing, wall hangings, coffee mugs, and more — all of which feature our own original inspirational quotes within a classic zen enso circle. Thank you. Today’s reading was edited and adapted from All’s Right with the World by Charles B. Newcomb, published in 1897.

IT is a custom of retailers to have an annual "taking account of stock." At such times, they examine carefully the goods on hand, clear the shelves of unsaleable articles, mark down those that have become shopworn or out of season, and put new values on all for which there is unusual demand.

Just so in the thought life of a community, we find that periodically there is by general consent a taking account of stock. Old standards and ideas are removed from the shelves and carefully examined in the light of new discoveries — their character and usefulness are challenged, and their condition tested. If they have become unserviceable for any reason, and higher thought has led to higher standards, the old theories and views of life and conduct are soon laid aside. Their defects have become apparent, and better things are in demand.

At the same time, some ancient truth or teacher that has been long labeled passé and put upon a shelf comes suddenly into notice. New meaning and unsuspected value are found in the proscribed philosophy. It throws a fresh light upon all the ethical problems of the day, and is slowly becoming popular once again.

In this moral stock-taking, we are often surprised to find the necessity of a new classification of what we have called "virtues" and "vices." In the light of higher principles and larger knowledge, we find we must change the tags that have been carelessly put on. Some virtues do not hold their color in the sunshine of the new century. Some vices prove to be not so harmful after all.

Gain full access to all of our transcripts by becoming our patron for as little as $3 a month. Visit LivingHour.org/patron.

A Merry Heart | The Poetry of Happy Living | Inspiration

January 11, 2018
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Listen to episode 230 of the Inspirational Living podcast: A Merry Heart | The Poetry of Happy Living. Edited and adapted from A Book of Friendly Thoughts by Nixon Waterman.

Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. If you enjoy our podcast, please spread the word by telling a friend or sharing your favorite episode on Facebook. We also would love it if you could leave us a review at the iTunes store, Google Play, or Stitcher.com. I always appreciate hearing back from you, and knowing this podcast has had a positive impact on your life. Thank you.

Today’s reading was edited and adapted from A Book of Friendly Thoughts by Nixon Waterman, published in 1913.

WHO among us can presume to estimate the value of a joyful heart? What a perpetual blessing it is to its possessor and to all who must come into close relationship with the owner of it! There is nothing more pleasantly "catching" than happiness. The happy person serves to make all who are about them the more happy.

What the bright, inspiring sunshine adds to the beauty of the fields, a happy disposition adds to the charm of all the incidents and experiences of one's daily life. Do not you, who listens to me now, love to associate with a friend possessing a cheerful disposition? And do you not intuitively refrain from meeting with the unfortunate one whose looks and words are heavy with complaining or whose eyes fail to see the beauty of the world lying all about?

If we are given to wise thinking, we must reach the conclusion that as we regard these attributes in others, so others must regard them in us. Nothing is more eloquent than a joyful face. It is the open sesame to all our hearts. A sunshiny face melts away all opposition and finds the word "Welcome" written over the doorways where the face that wears a hard, unfriendly look sees only the warning, "No Admittance."

Am I a Genius? | How the Successful Succeed | Motivation

January 9, 2018
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Listen to episode 229 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Am I a Genius? | How the Successful Succeed. Edited and adapted from A Book of Cheerful Counsel by Nixon Waterman, published in 1909.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. I’d like to start today by thanking some of our new patrons, including Margo Blake, Anna Rido Suico, Otis Irvine, and Philip Dvil. When you become a patron of our podcast, you receive exclusive access to all of the transcripts in our podcast archive, as well as access to the patron series Our Sunday Talks — and it costs as little as 3$ month. Learn more at LivingHour.org/patron.

Now, on to today’s reading, which was edited and adapted from A Book of Cheerful Counsel by Nixon Waterman, published in 1909.

"AM I A GENIUS?" "You hope, and perchance believe, no doubt, that when you have a full opportunity to show the world what sort of timber you are made of that people will look upon you as being a (quote) "genius." Almost every person cherishes some such aspiration. And why not? Such a trend of thought is to be encouraged. It is proper and commendable. We would all be geniuses if we could. The world admires a genius. If you are the genuine article, it seeks your autograph, prints your picture in books and magazines, and when you pass away it is likely to build a monument over your remains.

Can we all be geniuses? Some say we can and some say we cannot. Some say geniuses are born and some say they are self-made. When Thomas Edison, the famous inventor, was asked for his definition of genius he answered: "Two per cent is genius and ninety-eight per cent is hard work.”

This definition of genius quite agrees with that given by the American statesman, Alexander Hamilton, who said: "All the genius I have lies in just this: When I have a subject in hand, I study it profoundly. Day and night it is before me. I explore it in all its bearings; my mind becomes pervaded with it. Then the effort which I eventually make, the people are pleased to call genius. It is the fruit of labor and thought."

Aristotle & Wisdom | It’s a Wonderful Life | Inspirational

January 4, 2018
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Listen to episode 228 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Aristotle & Wisdom | It’s a Wonderful Life. The Way of Wonder. Edited and adapted from a classic book of essays by Stephen Paget.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. Make the year 2018 your best one yet with the help of our Majesty Meditation Program. In just 30 days, you’ll find yourself well along the path to greater happiness and success in your personal and professional life. The price is only 11.99, and you can get 30% off by using the coupon code: inspiration. Learn more at LivingHour.org/majesty.

Now on to today’s reading, which was edited and adapted from a book of essays by Stephen Paget, published in 1911.

THIS much I remember of Aristotle, that he calls Wonder the beginning of the love of Wisdom. To have a right judgment of our surroundings, we must wonder at them, and be surprised that they and we are met together. So long as we exercise this quickening sense of wonder, there is hope for us, and some justification of our presence here on earth — because we all are on the road that leads toward wisdom: and they alone are incorrigible fools to whom Nature comes natural.

Once we have fallen into the bad habit of taking for granted what Nature gives us, and have ceased to be amazed, it may be fairly said that in the midst of life we are in death. For one might as well be dead as alive, to look with dull eyes at the world, not finding it wonderful.

So excellent is Wonder that we must not profane its name in common use. For example, there is the phrase, “I wonder if”. You can be sure that he or she, who turns a sentence thusly, is careless in speech, and oblivious of the rights of words. It is impossible “to wonder if”: you simply are not thinking, nor even trying to think.

New Year’s Resolutions | How to Keep Them | Motivation

January 1, 2018
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Listen to episode 227 of the Inspirational Living podcast: New Year’s Resolutions | How to Keep Them. Edited and Adapted from The Mind & Its Education by George Herbert Betts, published in 1906.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. I’m launching today’s podcast a day early to welcome in the New Year. I’m sure many of you have made set goals for 2018 and made New Year’s resolutions to live in ways that are healthier to the mind, body, and spirit. To do this successfully is all about changing our habits — getting rid of the bad ones and creating positive new ones.

So, habit formation is the subject of today’s reading, which I’ve pulled from the archive. It is edited and adapted from The Mind & Its Education by George Herbert Betts, published in 1906.

Habit is our "best friend or worst enemy." We are "walking bundles of habits." Habit is a "cable which we cannot break." Such are the popular expressions linked with habitual behavior. In other words, let me know your habits of life, and you have revealed your moral standards and conduct. Let me discover your intellectual habits, and I understand your type of mind and methods of thought.

In short, our lives are largely a daily round of activities dictated by our habits in this line or that. Most of our movements and acts are habitual; we think as we have formed the habit of thinking; we decide as we are in the habit of deciding; we sleep, or eat, or speak as we have grown into the habit of doing these things. But while habit may be considered a tyrant, its potential benefits far exceed the bad.

Human Evolution, Intelligent Design & Limitless Possibility

December 28, 2017
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Listen to episode 226 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Human Evolution, Intelligent Design & Limitless Possibility. Edited and adapted from “The Message of New Thought” by Abel Allen.

Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. As I mentioned last time, I am currently on vacation, so this week, as a special gift to our listeners, I am sharing a couple episodes from the series Our Sunday Talks, which ordinarily is only available to our patrons.

To gain full access to this weekly series of thought-provoking spiritual talks, as well as transcripts of the entire archive of the Inspirational Living podcast, please become our monthly patron by visiting LivingHour.org/patron. Today’s episode of Our Sunday Talks was edited and adapted from “Message of New Thought” by Abel Allen, published in 1914.

HUMANITY has ever stalked the world like an idle sleep walker, in a dream of bewilderment, unconscious of the boundless resources of our own nature and the limitless heights that the fully developed person may reach. Limitation has always clouded our vision. Of the limitless reservoirs of mental life within ourselves, we have been totally oblivious. We are a stranger to ourselves, an unguided wanderer, ignorant of our own greatness and possibilities.

We supposed we were made in an instant, the result of a fiat, and that our limitations were set by the divine decree that brought us into existence. We were never told that we were not finished, or of the slumbering possibilities within ourselves. But we are awakening from our long dream, to the realization that “The full measure of the individual has never been taken” and that the infinite path of progress stretches away before us.

How to Pray | The Art of Prayer | Neville Goddard

December 26, 2017
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Listen to episode 225 of the Inspirational Living podcast: How to Pray | The Art of Prayer. Edited and adapted from Prayer, the Art of Believing by Neville Goddard, published in 1945.

Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. I’m currently on vacation for the holidays and unable to record a new podcast this week. So, as a special holiday gift to our listeners, I am going to play for you a reading from Our Sunday Talks, a weekly series that is available exclusively to our patrons. If you enjoy today’s reading, please do consider becoming our patron.

For as little as 3$ a month, you can gain full access to this series of thought-provoking spiritual talks, as well as access to over 200 transcripts of the Inspirational Living podcast. To learn more, please visit: LivingHour.org/patron. This episode of Our Sunday Talks was edited and adapted from Prayer, the Art of Believing by Neville Goddard, published in 1945.

PRAYER is an art and requires practice. The first requirement is a controlled imagination. Ostentation and vain repetitions are foreign to prayer. Its exercise requires tranquility and peace of mind.

The ceremonies that are customarily used in prayer are mere superstitions and have been invented to give prayer an air of solemnity. Those who do practice the art of prayer are often ignorant of the laws that control it. They attribute the results obtained to the ceremonies and mistake the letter for the spirit.

The essence of prayer is faith; but faith must be permeated with understanding to be given that active quality which it does not possess when standing alone.

Our Sunday Talk today is an attempt to reduce the unknown to the known, by pointing out conditions on which prayers are answered, and without which they cannot be answered.....

A Christmas Sermon on Meekness, Humility & Love

December 21, 2017
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Listen to episode 224 of the Inspirational Living podcast: A Christmas Sermon on Meekness, Humility & Love. Edited and adapted from All These Things Added by James Allen.

Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. This is our last podcast before Christmas, so I would like to wish you all a wonderful and healthy Christmas holiday with your friends, family, and everyone you hold dear. Today’s reading was edited and adapted from All These Things Added by James Allen, published in 1903.

THE mountain bends not to the fiercest storm, but it shields the fledgling and the lamb; and though all people tread upon it, yet it protects them, and bears them up upon its sturdy bosom. So it is also with the meek among us, who compassionately bend to shield the lowliest creature, and, though they may be despised, lift all others up and lovingly protect them.

As glorious as the mountain in its silence are the divine man and woman in their silent Meekness; like the mountainous form, their loving embrace is expansive and sublime. Truly their body, like the mountain’s base, is fixed in the valleys and the mists; but the summit of their being is eternally bathed in cloudless glory, and lives with the majestic Silence.

When you have found Meekness, you have found divinity. You have realized the divine consciousness, and know yourself as divine. You also know all others as divine — though they know it not themselves, being asleep and dreaming. Meekness is a divine quality, and as such is all powerful. The meek person overcomes by not resisting, and by allowing themselves to be defeated, they attain to the Supreme Conquest.

Related Christmas Podcasts:

Christmas Gifts & Giving

The Feast of St. Friend

Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Clause

Do Your Best at All Times | Success at Any Age

December 19, 2017
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Listen to episode 223 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Do Your Best at All Times | Success at Any Age. Edited and adapted from “Self-Control: It’s Kingship & Majesty” by William George Jordan.

Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. If you are looking for a last minute Christmas gift, don’t forget that our books Evergreen: 50 Inspirational Life Lessons and Everest: 50 Motivational Life Lessons are now available in e-book, and easily purchased by our listeners worldwide. To buy your copies today, please visit the website InspirationalLifeLessons.com.

Now on to today’s reading, which was edited and adapted from “Self-Control: It’s Kingship & Majesty” by William George Jordan, published in 1898.

Life is a wondrously complex problem for each one of us, until, one day, in a moment of illumination, we awaken to the great realization that we can make it simple — never quite simple, but always simpler.

There are a thousand mysteries of right and wrong that have baffled the wise ones of the ages. There are depths in the great fundamental question of the human race that no plummet of philosophy has ever sounded. There are wild cries of honest hunger for truth that seek to pierce the silence beyond the grave, but ever echo back only a repetition of these unanswered cries.

To us all, there comes, at times, a great note of questioning despair that darkens our horizon and paralyzes our effort: We say to ourselves, “If there really be a God, if eternal justice really rules the world, why should life be as it is? Why do some people starve while others feast; why does virtue often languish in the shadow while vice triumphs in the sunshine; why does failure so often dog the footsteps of honest effort, while the success that comes from trickery and dishonor is greeted with the world’s applause? How is it that the loving parent of one family is taken by death, while the worthless one of another is spared? Why is there so much unnecessary pain, sorrow, and suffering in the world — why, indeed, should there be any at all?”

The Art of Public Speaking | Success Talks Before Ted

December 14, 2017
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Listen to episode 222 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Art of Public Speaking | Success Talks. Edited and adapted from the book Self-Investment by Orison Swett Marden, published in 1911.

Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. If you value our podcast and would like to help support us with a one-time donation this holiday season, please visit LivingHour.org/donate. Your donations are greatly appreciated and will help ensure the continued production of our podcast. Thank you. Today’s reading was edited and adapted from Self-Investment by Orison Swett Marden, published in 1911.

It does not matter whether you want to be a public speaker or not. A person should have such complete control of themselves, should be so self-reliant and self-poised, that they can get up in front of any audience, no matter how large or formidable, and express their thoughts clearly and distinctly.

Self-expression in some manner is the only means of developing mental power. It may be in music; it may be on canvas; it may be through oratory; it may come through selling goods or writing a book; but it must come through self-expression.

Self-expression in any legitimate form tends to call out what is in us, our resourcefulness and inventiveness. But no other form of self-expression develops us so thoroughly and so effectively, and so quickly unfolds all of our powers, as speaking before an audience.

It is doubtful whether anyone can reach the highest standard of culture without studying the art of expression, especially public vocal expression. In all ages, public speaking has been regarded as the highest expression of human achievement. Young people, no matter what they intend to be, whether mechanic or farmer, merchant or physician, should make it a study.

Pathways to a Beautiful Life | Our Sunday Talks

December 12, 2017
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Listen to episode 221 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Pathways to a Beautiful Life | Our Sunday Talks. Edited and adapted from The Pathway of Roses by Christian D. Larson, published in 1910.

Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. If you have someone on your Christmas shopping list who is interested in spiritual growth and who might describe themselves as “spiritual but not religious,” I have a gift idea for you. Give them exclusive patron access to our series Our Sunday Talks, which features talks dedicated to spirituality and spiritual growth. To learn how you can give access as a special Christmas gift, please visit LivingHour.org/Christmas.

To give you a better idea of the kind of talks that we deliver in Our Sunday Talks, I am going to play for you today a talk that we delivered this past Sunday (December 10th), which was edited and adapted from The Pathway of Roses by Christian D. Larson, published in 1910.

We are searching for pathways to a beautiful life. But often we don’t know where to begin, and what guideposts we should use to navigate our journey. The first thing to do is to recognize the great truth that every individual can live their own life exactly as they wish to. You are the real master of your own existence, and it is you who may determine how perfect and how beautiful that existence is to be.

Your life is in your own hands. You may live as you wish. You may secure from life whatever you desire, because there is no limit to life, and no limit to your capacity to live. The elements of life can be modified, changed, developed and perfected to comply with your own supreme demand.

The increase of life can be realized in the exact measure of your largest need. You are in living touch with Infinite life, and there is neither limit nor end to the source of your supply. To live in the constant recognition of this great truth, is to rise continually into higher and higher degrees of that mastery of life that gives us the power to live our lives according to our most perfect ideals.

For Christmas: Give Access to Our Sunday Talks

December 10, 2017

This Christmas, give a friend or family member 1 Year exclusive access to the Our Sunday Talks series by the Inspirational Living podcast.  

Step 1: Become our patron for as little as $3 a month: https://www.patreon.com/inspirationalpodcasts  

Step 2: Get your private RSS feed for patrons. Learn more here: https://patreon.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/212055866  

Step 3: Download our gift card and type in your private RSS feed*. Right click and choose "Save Link As" here for the Microsoft Word Version or here for the PDF Version.  

Step 4: Print out the card and give to your friend or family member on Christmas!  

*To listen to Our Sunday Talks, they will simply need to type in the private RSS feed into their favorite podcast player.  

Follow the Inspirational Living Podcast on YouTube

December 8, 2017

Don't forget to follow us on Youtube for "fireside chat" versions of the Inspirational Living podcast in HD video, which you can play on your TV and stay inspired to live your best life.

Subscribe to our channel by: Clicking Here.

Success & The Habit of Self-Improvement | Self-Help

December 7, 2017
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Listen to episode 220 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Success & The Self-Development Habit. Edited and adapted from the book Self-Investment by Orson Swett Marden, published in 1911.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Education, as commonly understood, is the process of developing the mind by means of books and teachers. When education has been neglected, either by reason of lack of opportunity, or because advantage was not taken of the opportunities afforded, the one remaining hope is self-improvement.

Opportunities for self-improvement surround us; the helps to self-improvement are abundant, and in this day of cheap books, free libraries, evening schools, and the internet, there can be no good excuse for neglecting to use these faculties for self-development which are so abundantly supplied.

When we look at the difficulties which hindered the acquisition of knowledge long ago (the scarcity and the costliness of books, the long hours of work and toil which left so little time for study), we may well marvel at the giants of scholarship those days of hardship produced. And when we add to these limitations, the physical disabilities, blindness, deformity, and ill-health which many contended against, we may feel shame as we contemplate the fullness of our modern opportunities, and the helps and incentives to study and self-development which are so lavishly provided for our use and inspiration, and of which we avail ourselves so little.

Today is the final day to get our hardcover books Everest (50 Motivational Life Lessons) & Evergreen (50 Inspirational Life Lessons) at a 30% discount. Order your copies by midnight tonight to get them on sale and in time for Christmas!