Friday, May 22, 2009


Anime characters picture display - “Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be understanding and forgiving.”

Do you remember the story of Jeremy Bentham, of London, England? He died in 1832 and left his estate to University College London. He stipulated that his body be embalmed, dressed up and brought in to preside over the annual meeting of university administrators. His preserved body is still there today, displayed in a glass cabinet. And it is apparently still wheeled into the annual meetings. For years, the secretary of the board added to the minutes of each session, "Jeremy Bentham, present but not voting."

I've KNOWN people like that! Present but not voting. They live without passion. They seem to have forgotten the thrill and wonder of life lived in its fullness. They get through each day, but no longer experience joy. Alive, but not in full participation - not fully living.

Like someone said, "It doesn't matter where you live, as long as you live where you are." It's about being fully present - and voting!

Bentham reminds me of a story from Jewish humor about a widow who spoke to friends about her departed husband. "Sidney thought of everything," she said. "Just before he died, he called me to his bedside. He handed me three envelopes. `I have put all my last wishes in these three envelopes,' he said. `After I am dead, please open them and do exactly as I have instructed. Then I can rest in peace.'"

She explained the contents of the envelopes. "The first envelope contained $5,000 with a note: `Use this money to buy a nice casket.' So I bought a beautiful mahogany casket with a soft lining. The second envelope contained $10,000 and a note: `Use this for a nice funeral.' So I used it for flowers, food, music…I know it would have made him happy.' The third envelope contained $25,000 with a note: `Use this to buy a nice stone.'

At that point, the widow held up her hand and pointed to her finger, adorned with a beautiful diamond ring. "So, do you like my stone?"

I WAS a nice stone! She knew that life was for the living.

Maybe diamonds are not your idea of living fully, but are you enjoying life to the fullest? Benjamin Franklin observed that many people die at 25 and aren't buried until they are 75. No matter where you live, are you living where you are?

From Lifesupport.

Lifesigns Life Quotes

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