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When a spider makes a beautiful web

When a spider makes a beautiful web, the beauty comes out of the spider’s nature. It’s instinctive beauty. How much of the beauty of our own lives is about the beauty of being alive? How much of it is conscious and intentional? That is a big question.

And your own meaning is that you’re there

What’s the meaning of a flea? It’s just there. That’s it. And your own meaning is that you’re there. We’re so engaged in doing things to achieve purposes of outer value that we forget that the inner value, the rapture that is associated with being alive, is what it’s all about.

you are at war with yourself

Then you discover that left to themselves the jumbled pieces fall quite naturally into their own places, and a living pattern emerges without any effort at all on your part. Your job is just to discover it, and in the course of that, you will find yourself and your own place. You must even let your own experience tell you its own meaning; the minute you tell it what it means, you are at war with yourself.

he can only build bridges to other islands

Yet it has come to seem to me that this separateness of individuals, the right of each individual to utilize his experience in his own way and to discover his own meanings in it,—this is one of the most priceless potentialities of life. Each person is an island unto himself, in a very real sense; and he can only build bridges to other islands if he is first of all willing to be himself and permitted to be himself.

That’s the man who never followed his bliss

That’s the man who never followed his bliss. You may have a success in life, but then just think of it — what kind of life was it? What good was it — you’ve never done the thing you wanted to do in all your life.