• Quotes

Celebrate 2017 with 17 Quotes to Help You Jump Back Into Your Body

Illustration by Michael Glenwood Gibbs

Deepak Chopra, The Book of Secrets: Unlocking the Hidden Dimensions of Your Life — “If you obsess over whether you are making the right decision, you are basically assuming that the universe will reward you for one thing and punish you for another. The universe has no fixed agenda. Once you make any decision, it works around that decision. There is no right or wrong, only a series of possibilities that shift with each thought, feeling, and action that you experience. If this sounds too mystical, refer again to the body. Every significant vital sign- body temperature, heart rate, oxygen consumption, hormone level, brain activity, and so on- alters the moment you decide to do anything… decisions are signals telling your body, mind, and environment to move in a certain direction.”

Holly Mosier — “No beating yourself up. That’s not allowed. Be patient with yourself. It took you years to form the bad habits of thought that you no longer want. It will take a little time to form new and better ones. But I promise you this: Even a slight move in this direction will bring you some peace. The more effort you apply to it, the faster you’ll find your bliss, but you’ll experience rewards immediately.”

Bryant McGill — “Toxic relationships are dangerous to your health; they will literally kill you. Stress shortens your lifespan. Even a broken heart can kill you. There is an undeniable mind-body connection. Your arguments and hateful talk can land you in the emergency room or in the morgue. You were not meant to live in a fever of anxiety; screaming yourself hoarse in a frenzy of dreadful, panicked fight-or-flight that leaves you exhausted and numb with grief. You were not meant to live like animals tearing one another to shreds. Don’t turn your hair gray. Don’t carve a roadmap of pain into the sweet wrinkles on your face. Don’t lay in the quiet with your heart pounding like a trapped, frightened creature. For your own precious and beautiful life, and for those around you — seek help or get out before it is too late. This is your wake-up call!”

Lailah Gifty Akita — “Your mind is your library of what you read.”

Germany Kent — “You have to change your thinking if you desire to have a future different from your present.”

Marcel Proust, The Guermantes Way — “It is illness that makes us recognize that we do not live in isolation but are chained to a being from a different realm, worlds apart from us and by whom it is impossible to make ourselves understood: our body. Were we to meet a brigand on the road, we might manage to make him conscious of his own personal interest if not our plight. But to ask pity of our body is like talking to an octopus, for which our words can have no more meaning than the sound of the sea, and with which we should be terrified to find ourselves condemned to live.”

Janice Anderson — “Entitlement is an expression of conditional love. Nobody is ever entitled to your love. You always have a right to protect your mental, emotional, and physical well-being by removing yourself from toxic people and circumstances.”

António R. Damásio, Descartes’ Error: Emotion, Reason and the Human Brain — “The neural basis for the self, as I see it, resides with the continuous reactivation of at least two sets of representations. One set concerns representations of key events in an individual’s autobiography, on the basis of which a notion of identity can be reconstructed repeatedly, by partial activation in topologically organized sensory maps. … In brief, the endless reactivation of updated images about our identity (a combination of memories of the past and of the planned future) constitutes a sizable part of the state of self as I understand it. The second set of representations underlying the neural self consists of the primordial representations of an individual’s body … Of necessity, this encompasses background body states and emotional states. The collective representation of the body constitute the basis for a “concept” of self, much as a collection of representations of shape, size, color, texture, and taste can constitute the basis for the concept of orange.”

Haruki Murakami, Norwegian Wood — “Relax your body, and the rest of you will lighten up.”

Karen Ruimy, The Voice of the Angel: Sayings from the Angel’s Metamorphosis — “Your heart is the correspondent of your soul. It knows the grooves of joy.”

Sherri Obermark, Back Story Breaking the Cycle of Chronic Pain — “Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures, and the whole of nature and its beauty.”

Colleen M. Flanagan, Tapping for Rescued & Adopted Dogs: Fast Surrogate EFT Methods for Canine Emotional Well Being — “Animals store their fears and at times OUR fears in the body and manifest physical illnesses like we do. Like us, these fears may have occurred in infancy and are still carried in the adult body.”

Patricia Love, The Emotional Incest Syndrome: What to do When a Parent’s Love Rules Your Life — “When a parent interferes with a child’s anger response in these heavy-handed ways [ridiculing, ignoring, isolating, goading, punishing, distracting, hitting, joking], the anger increases and is redirected at the parent: now the parent is the one who’s violating the child’s sense of well-being by interfering with a natural and necessary outlet of emotion. Most parents stifle this secondary outburst of anger, too, only this time with more force. […] Instead of allowing the anger to flow through the child’s system the first time it’s expressed, the parent unwittingly fans the anger, then dams it up. The anger becomes trapped in the little girl’s stomach, muscles, and jaw, and becomes an enduring wound.”

Joe Niemczura, The Sacrament of the Goddess — “Exactly. I think the original tantric Buddhists took notice of was some very wise old people who never studied in their youth, but took part in a range of risk-taking adventures when they were younger, and finally became wise when they reflected upon their lives in old age. There is only one problem. Which is? Risk-taking is a way to die young. It is dangerous and you may forfeit the opportunity to grow old. An early death is not a sure path to wisdom in old age,” Ranjit said, running his finger around the inside of the pipe bowl, “and if you survive without reflecting, then you simply become an old degenerate.”

Abhijit Naskar — “Water and a bubble on it are one and the same. The bubble has its birth in the water, floats on it, and is ultimately resolved into it. Likewise, your consciousness is born in your brain, goes through various states in your lifetime and ultimately resolves into the brain.”

Bessel A. van der Kolk — “In the culture people talk about trauma as an event that happened a long time ago. But what trauma is, is the imprints that event has left on your mind and in your sensations… the discomfort you feel and the agitation you feel and the rage and the helplessness you feel right now.”

Ashish Dalela, Uncommon Wisdom: Fault Lines in the Foundations of Atheism — “…concepts have three fundamental properties—contextuality, intentionality, and abstraction—which independent things do not. To produce a mental world from the physical world, the physical world must first explain how contextuality, intentionality, and abstraction can arise.”

Bessel A. van der Kolk, The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma — “Attachment researchers have shown that our earliest caregivers don’t only feed us, dress us, and comfort us when we are upset; they shape the way our rapidly growing brain perceives reality. Our interactions with our caregivers convey what is safe and what is dangerous: whom we can count on and who will let us down; what we need to do to get our needs met. This information is embodied in the warp and woof of our brain circuitry and forms the template of how we think of ourselves and the world around us. These inner maps are remarkably stable across time.

“This doesn‘t mean, however, that our maps can‘t be modified by experience. A deep love relationship, particularly during adolescence, when the brain once again goes through a period of exponential change, truly can transform us. So can the birth of a child, as our babies often teach us how to love. Adults who were abused or neglected as children can still learn the beauty of intimacy and mutual trust or have a deep spiritual experience that opens them to a larger universe. In contrast, previously uncontaminated childhood maps can become so distorted by an adult rape or assault that all roads are rerouted into terror or despair. These responses are not reasonable and therefore cannot be changed simply by reframing irrational beliefs.”

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