How Can We Make A Change In Life?

Making a Change

Awareness

To become different from what we are, we must have some awareness of what we are.

…..Eric Hoffer

Getting Started

We can’t know that we want to make a change until we first know we have a problem. Even when we’ve identified a problem, we need to know where we’re starting from to understand the job ahead of us.

To make a change in our lives, we need to know where we are right now.

Daily Book of Positive Quotations
Daily Book of Positive Quotations

Linda Picone

Writing History – Ancient vs Modern Methods

Ancient and Modern History

Canons of History

The canons of modern history differ significantly from those of ancient history. Both modern historians and ancient historians utilized various sources in order to construct a narrative account that was faithful to the event or series of events under consideration. However, unlike modern historians, ancient historians often favored oral sources over written ones. Written sources were utilized and incorporated into histories, but information obtained directly through person-to-person communication was considered more trustworthy that that obtained from a written source.

Standards of Documentation

Even though ancient historians, like modern historians, aspired to produce truthful accounts of past events, they did not operate with the concept of “facts” the way modern historians traditionally have – what constitutes being a faithful account of past events was measured by a different standard in antiquity that it is in modernity.The reasons for the difference between that way the ancient world and modern societies report and preserve their pasts are complex and difficult to explain, but at one reason was people in antiquity had few ways to record any given moment at the point it occurred.

There were no telephones, tape recorders, cameras, or video cameras. Neither were there photocopy machines, computers, or fax machines. And, since no such thing as journalism existed yet, people in antiquity did not typically take notes at important events. Thus, the gathering, retrieval, and cross-checking of data was an entirely different matter for ancient historians than it is for modern ones. For example, reporting who said what, when, and to whom would be a difficult thing to do accurately without the benefits of modern technology.

Greco-Roman Period

Historical writings of the Greco-Roman period often contain the text of lengthy speeches given by key figures at key moments. How did ancient historians know exactly what was said if they weren’t present (or even if they were)?

From Thucydides, the 5th century BCE Greek historian who wrote The History of the Peloponnesian War, we know that historians composed speeches themselves. There was no expectation to record the words spoken on a given occasion verbatim. Rather, the author needed to convey what the figure would have plausibly said under the circumstances. From oral traditions about what sort of person he or she was, as well as oral reports about the circumstances in which they found themselves, the ancient historian composed a speech for that person on that occasion.

Paul Was Not A Christian
Paul Was Not A Christian: The Original Message of a Misunderstood Apostle

Pamela Eisenbaum

What Are The Benefits Of Simplicity?

Simplicity

Spiritual traditions throughout history remind us that we can live with joyous simplicity. We can live a life where our mind is our friend, our hearts are loving, and we are at home in our body with each changing moment of life.

Simplicity is the mother of creativity and immediacy, intimacy and understanding, compassion and depth. The key to profound happiness and freedom lies in our capacity to discover simplicity in each moment.

Buddhist Path to Simplicity
The Buddhist Path to Simplicity

Christina Feldman

What Are The Cultural Sources Of Christianity?

Christianity
Ancient Israel 

The Christian cultural stream has its source in the traditions of of ancient Israel whose cultural stream eventually gave rise to three broad traditions – rabbinical Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Each claimed the patriarchs and Israelite prophets as part of their own tradition.

Even the pre-Christian Jewish stream was already much more multi-cultural in origin than the Holy Scriptures tend to imply. From the 6th century BCE onwards, it was influenced by Persian Zoroastrianism and Greek Hellenism. Much of these two lives on incognito in the Jewish, Christian, and Islamic streams.

Influence of Zoroastrianism

From the influence of the Zoroastrian tradition have come such ideas as:

  • the Last Judgment (preceded by a general resurrection)
  • an after-life with rewards and punishments
  • the concept of a personal Devil
  • the writing of our life story in a heavenly book of life
  • the naming of angels with specific functions

Birth of Christianity 

The influence of Jesus of Nazareth had the effect of adding such a fresh burst of vitality to the Jewish cultural stream that it caused part of it to break away and form a new stream, which we now commonly refer to as the Christian tradition. Christianity took with it the Jewish Scriptures, the monotheistic God, and the institution of the synagogue.

At the beginning of the Christian era, the Jewish tradition had no intention of giving birth to the Christian stream. The new Jewish sect known as “the Christians” was regarded as a heretical movement even though its key figure, Jesus of Nazareth, and his chief interpreter, Paul, were both solidly Jewish. In addition, a number of early Christians didn’t see their movement as the abandonment of the Jewish tradition, but as its fulfillment.

Christianity without God
Christianity without God

Lloyd Geering

What Are Life’s Key Reminders?

Keys to Life

Life’s Reminders

  • Appreciate your life – do something meaningful with it.
  • Life is short  – don’t waste time.
  • You create your reality – make sure it’s a good one.
  • Going in circles is pointlesswake up to your life.

The purpose of the Life Reminders is to transform the way we see and relate to our life, and to reorient our mind in the direction of waking up and living the most meaningful life we can.

Four Reminders
The Four Reminders: A Simple Buddhist Guide to Living and Dying Without Regret

Dennis Hunter