A human being is part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest. A kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from the prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. --Albert Einstein
If we're looking for outer conditions to bring us contentment, we're looking in vain. 
--Ayya Khema, "Be an Island"

The universe is not the inert cosmos of the physicists…the universe is life.   --Christian de Duve
"At each stage of human existence the adult man is off on his quest of his holy grail, the way of life he seeks by which to live.
At his first level he is on a quest for automatic physiological satisfaction.
At the second level he seeks a safe mode of living, and this is followed in turn,
by a search for heroic status,
for power and glory,
by a search for ultimate peace,
a search for material pleasure,
a search for affectionate relations,
a search for respect of self,
and a search for peace in an incomprehensible world.
And, when he finds he will not find that peace, he will be off on his ninth level quest. As he sets off on each quest, he believes he will find the answer to his existence. Yet, much to his surprise and much to his dismay, he finds at every stage that the solution to existence is not the solution he has come to find.
Every stage he reaches leaves him disconcerted and perplexed. It is simply that as he solves one set of human problems he finds a new set in their place. The quest he finds is never ending." 
  -- Dr. Clare W. Graves describing the first eight Levels of Spiral Dynamics

The most meaningful activity in which a human being can be engaged is one that is directly related to human evolution. This is true because human beings now play an active and critical role not only in the process of their own evolution but also in survival and evolution of all living beings. Awareness of this places upon human beings a responsibility for their participation in and contribution to the process of evolution.--Jonas Salk

Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.   --Albert Einstein
Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding.  --Albert Einstein
Take it all in---it's as big as it seems! 
Count All Your Blessings.  Remember Your Dreams.   --Jimmy Buffett
Ideals which have lighted my way,
and time after time have given me new courage to face life cheerfully,
have been Kindness, Beauty and Truth.  --Albert Einstein
TWO WOLVES:   One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people.  He said, "My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all.
One is Evil -  It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.
The other is Good -  It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith."
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: "Which wolf wins?"        The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."

The journey of how we see who we are, defined first by our parents and family, then by our peers and partners, then by the workplace and culture, and finally, to a perspective of self definition, is the journey of learning to love ourselves and care for ourselves in ever richer, deeper, and more fulfilling ways. If we understand there is a sequential path we all travel as humans—that there is a map, and there is a predictable unfolding, there are developmental steps we achieve, one step at a time in a predetermined order—we may move more decisively, more clearly, toward an ever richer and more rewarding experience of our lives.   --from "More On the Cultural Trance," by David Yeats
...positive self talk, that is, reminding ourselves regularly that we are good, intact, worthy, and loveable, and overriding any tape that says anything otherwise, (in other words, writing a new positive script to play in our ear buds), opens a whole new view to the world.  We can begin to see positive possibilities, and we can begin to sense the good that exists in the world, despite the negative things that seem to be there. ---from  "Shame , Guilt, and Other Demons," by David Yeats

Quiet Friend who has come so far, feel how your breathing widens the space around you.
Let this darkness be as a bell tower, and you the bell.  As you ring, what bothers you becomes your strength. 
Move back and forth into the change.

What is it like, such intensity of pain?  If the cup tastes bitter, turn yourself to wine.
In this uncontainable night, be the mystery at the crossroads of your senses. Be the meaning revealed there.
And if the world has ceased to hear you, say to the silent earth, I flow. To the rushing water speak, I am.
                                                                  --Rainer Maria Rilke, translated by Joanna Macy & Anita Burrows
The definition of emotional intimacy is this: two people who say what their truth is to each other; who are willing to (slow down and) hear, understand, and have empathy for each other’s truth; and then to collaborate so that both of their truths,(and  needs, and concerns) can be  honored and addressed between them in a way that works for both. 
  --from Autonomy & Connection in Relationship by David Yeats LCSW
If we are to create true self care, we will seek out not only external means of doing so (balancing mind, body, spirit; managing our time; following through with our responsibilities to ourselves, and then to others and the world; among many other means), but we will deliberately and consciously pay attention to honoring our inner intuitions and wisdom—we will act out of a knowing that our inner being is the means to self love and self care.---from Self Care in Relationship, by David A. Yeats LCSW
Sharing experiences does create some degree of closeness, as does moving toward common goals.  But when two people’s lives are so intertwined that their future, their plans, and their wishes, hopes and dreams depend on each other, it takes more than acting together: it takes sharing everyday thoughts and feelings, noticing each other, tuning into each other periodically, respecting each other, and developing the feeling that they “have each other’s back.”
                                          --by David A. Yeats LCSW from The Nurturing of Connection and Collaboration in Relationships