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Motivation Mondays: SIMPLICITY

01/06/2015

“Our life is frittered away by details… simplify, simplify.” Henry David Thoreau

Motivation Mondays: SIMPLICITY - floral in bloom

Motivation Mondays: SIMPLICITY – flora in bloom

 

A monk asked Chao-chou, “I have just entered the monastery: please give me some guidance.”
Chao-chou said, “Have you eaten your rice gruel?”
The monk said,”Yes, I’ve eaten.”
Chao-chou said, “Then go wash your bowl.” Zen Mondo via
AND
One day Chuang-tzu and a friend were walking along a riverbank. “How delightfully the fishes are enjoying themselves in the water!” Chuang-tzu exclaimed.
“You are not a fish,” his friend said. “How do you know whether or not the fishes are enjoying themselves?”
“You are not me,” Chuang-tzu said. “How do you know that I do not know that the fishes are enjoying themselves?” Taoist Mondo The Little Zen Companion by David Schiller via UFL.Edu

What does SIMPLICITY mean to you? I believe that  Simplicity is in the ease with which we choose to move through life… unencumbered by stuff. We can choose a life of easy repose, sloughing off things that no longer serve us, or  we can choose a life of constant stress and scrambling around from spot to spot in search of some version of nirvana.  Relax, become Zen like. There is nothing out there. It is in here – in our hearts; it is inside us.  What  do you do to simplify your life?

 

“Three rules of work: Out of clutter, find simplicity. From discord, find harmony. In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” Albert Einstein

Motivation Mondays: SIMPLICITY - flora in bloom

Motivation Mondays: SIMPLICITY – flora in bloom

 

Missing Somebody? … Call
Want to Meet Up? … Invite
Want to be Understood? … Explain
Have questions? … Ask
Don’t like something? … Say it.
Like Something? … State it
Want something? … Ask for it
Love someone? … Tell it
AND
A monk asked Chao-chou, “If a poor man comes, what should one give him?”
“He lacks nothing,” answered the master

When a Facebook friend shared the brilliant message above, on a poster, it caught my attention because the questions posed were honest and the answers/suggestions were simple common sense answers.  We don’t need to complicate our lives with heavy duty pondering…  The responses and the Zen mondo are simply reminding us to stop complicating our lives. We can let go and move forward and take the path of compassion and minimal confusion. How do you complicate your life and what can you do to let go?

Some of us look at what we have with dissatisfaction, ignoring the gift of our skills, and instead of simplifying our lives,  we complicate it by working ourselves up into a frenzy over things that are not ours to have. We lose our calm, our focus, and our center because our wants have overtaken our wisdom and then, in a flash of recognition, in a eureka moment, we might find ourselves back where we belong; at square one… Wherever we go, there we are. Simplify the wants and the desires because what is ours will always come back looking for us. What are You letting go?  Read the story below for insight. – Keep it simple!

A GREAT STORY: More Is Not Enough – The Stone Cutter
There was once a stone cutter who was dissatisfied with himself and with his position in life. One day, he passed a wealthy merchant’s house and, through the open gateway, he saw many fine possessions and important visitors. “How powerful that merchant must be!” thought the stone cutter. He became very envious and wished that he could be like the merchant.
To his great surprise, he suddenly became the merchant, enjoying more luxuries and power than he had ever imagined. But, he was envied and detested by those less wealthy than himself. Soon a high official passed by, carried in a sedan chair, accompanied by attendants and escorted by soldiers beating gongs. Everyone, no matter how wealthy, had to bow low before the procession. “How powerful that official is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be a high official!”

Then he became the high official, carried everywhere in his embroidered sedan chair, feared and hated by all the people around him. It was a hot summer day, so the official felt very uncomfortable in the sticky sedan chair. He looked up at the sun. It shone proudly in the sky, unaffected by his presence. “How powerful the sun is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be the sun!”
Then he became the sun, shining fiercely down on everyone, scorching the fields, cursed by the farmers and laborers. But soon, a huge black cloud moved between him and the earth, so that his light could no longer shine on everything below. “How powerful that storm cloud is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be a cloud!”

Then he became the cloud, flooding the fields and villages, shouted at by everyone. But soon enough, he found that he was being pushed away by some great force, and realized that it was the wind. “How powerful it is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be the wind!” Then he became the wind, blowing tiles off the roofs of houses, uprooting trees, feared and hated by all below him. But after a while, he ran up against something that would not move, no matter how forcefully he blew against it – a huge, towering rock. “How powerful that rock is!” he thought. “I wish that I could be a rock!”
Then he became the rock, more powerful than anything else on earth. But, as he stood there, he heard the sound of a hammer pounding a chisel into the hard surface, and felt himself being changed. “What could be more powerful than I, the rock?” he thought.
He looked down and saw far below him, the figure of a stone cutter.

The details for Motivation Mondays are below. Join in! The themes for May and June are:
05/04 – APPRECIATION
05/11 – HAPPINESS
05/18 – FITNESS
05/25 – SERVICE

06/01 – SIMPLICITY
06/08 – POSSIBILITIES
06/15 – AWARENESS/SACRIFICE
06/22 – DETERMINATION
06/29 – TRUST

Always More Below!

“Manifest plainness, embrace simplicity, reduce selfishness, have few desires.” Lao Tzu

Motivation Mondays: SIMPLICITY - flora in bloom

Motivation Mondays: SIMPLICITY – flora in bloom

Fa-yen, a Chinese Zen teacher, overheard four monks arguing about subjectivity and objectivity. He joined them and said: “There is a big stone. Do you consider it to be inside or outside your mind?”
One of the monks replied: “From the Buddhist viewpoint everything is an objectification of mind, so I would say that the stone is inside my mind.”
“Your head must feel very heavy,” observed Fa-yen, “if you are carrying around a stone like that in your mind.” Zen Story
AND
Another time I saw a child coming toward me holding a lighted torch in his hand. “Where have you brought the light from?” I asked him.
He immediately blew it out, and said to me, “O Hasan, tell me where it has gone, and I will tell you whence I fetched it.” Hasan Basri

Whether we choose to spend our lives quietly or in a big city, we can find that resolve within to simplify and find ways to enjoy our lives without the additional burden of complicated situations. A lot has to do with the agreements we negotiate with ourselves and others in our lives. When we say yes to living our lives in a clear and joyful way, we find that the universe provides us with more opportunities for ease. First, we must want to, and then, we must ask and act… What do you think? What does simplicity mean to you? How do you add simplicity to your life? Do you have days when everything simply falls into place? Do share! Thank you.

Positive Motivation Tip: Simplicity is in the ease with which we choose to move through life… unencumbered by stuff.

Motivation Mondays is open to anyone who wishes to share a motivational quote, photo, personal challenge or a post that encourages others to start the week on an upbeat note.
Basic Instructions: Each week, I will have a motivation word to help us create a response. (See listed words for end of November and all of December below)
Email address: You may email or share your post as a comment and I will add it to the round-up of related posts. email it to: contact(@)mirthandmotivation(.)com
Category tag: – Share your post using Motivation Mondays
Twitter hashtag: – Use this on Twitter #MotvnM
Dedicated Page: There is a dedicated page for Motivation Mondays. It has the same instructions and will include other helpful tools and a link to the round-up
Facebook Page: MotivationOnMondays Join our page and add your post and/or any motivational piece you think will be helpful to others.
Facebook Community: We have a Facebook community forum to compliment the page. It serves as another way to share uplifting posts and thoughts. Please join in and add your voice.

Badge: – I created a fun badge using PicMonkey’s free photo editing tools. You can create your own, use WordPress’ integrated tool on your blog or you are welcome to use mine. (see dedicated page)
Tag: – Motivation Mondays
Hashtag: – #MotvnM

Related Posts

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All Photos: From my Personal Collection and/or Public Domain Flowers via Wikipedia

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

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117 Comments leave one →
  1. Robin Masshole mommy permalink
    01/06/2015 2:55 pm

    I love the pictures of the flowers you posted I think they are the perfect representation for the word simplicity.

    Like

  2. R U S S permalink
    01/06/2015 3:43 pm

    This reminds me of my grandmother. She always taught her children and her grandchildren ( us ) the value of simplicity. It wasn’t easy of course, especially if you grew up in a community and went to school whose values aren’t exactly like that. Simplicity encourages us to be contented with what we have.

    Like

  3. Savannah Miller permalink
    01/06/2015 4:40 pm

    I love the ideal of simplicity! I think to often we over think things and make life more difficult than it has to be.

    Like

  4. I Love Paars by: Lee permalink
    01/06/2015 4:42 pm

    being simple is not having too much desire (in all aspects). esp on material things. if we desire too much, we tend to become selfish. being simple is being contented to whatever you have right now.and just wanting to have what you need rather than what you want.

    Like

  5. michele d permalink
    01/06/2015 5:19 pm

    Love your Motivation Monday posts specially today’s. I Love all the flowers that you selected. So pretty!

    Like

  6. Crystal From Tidbits of Experience permalink
    01/06/2015 5:25 pm

    These are beautiful. I love seeing all of your beautiful photos. Thank you for sharing them with us.

    Like

  7. Nova permalink
    01/06/2015 5:34 pm

    I love this topic, I’ve always admire those people who are simple yet knows so many things or humble enough that you don’t expect.

    Like

  8. 01/06/2015 5:40 pm

    I like this post especially the ones in italics. Almost the kind of things I do. To make life simple too, sometimes I choose not to care about whatever people are saying against me. Lol. Simple.

    Like

  9. Barb permalink
    01/06/2015 7:08 pm

    You’re photos are so beautiful and convey simplicity!

    Like

  10. Sojourner Walker permalink
    01/06/2015 7:20 pm

    Beautiful post. I think simplicity is the art of letting go and the ability to find joy and peace in the things that nourish you.

    Like

  11. 01/06/2015 8:02 pm

    Sometimes you have to appreciate simplicity at it’s finest. By expressing yourself through an art form like this is one of the best ways of communication to invite or express one’s aspiration in life.

    Like

  12. TweenselMom permalink
    01/06/2015 8:43 pm

    Such an excellent tip to encourage myself to stay simple always!! Great simple lesson!!

    Like

  13. The Trophy WifeStyle permalink
    01/06/2015 8:56 pm

    Simple is always better I think! When I was younger I use to think the more you had the better… These days I’m all about being simple, the simple life is the life for me!

    Like

  14. Debbie Denny permalink
    01/06/2015 9:13 pm

    Simple is the way to go sometimes. Lovely post.

    Like

  15. savingcmncents permalink
    01/06/2015 10:41 pm

    I really love the story of the stone cutter. You have a way of resonating your perspective so well through inspirational stories and in your photos!

    Like

  16. Official Alanna Wong permalink
    01/06/2015 11:34 pm

    I LOVE this post! It’s motivational and inspirational! The photos are so beautiful! Thanks for sharing!! ❤

    Like

  17. Papaleng Pagulong permalink
    02/06/2015 12:13 am

    Simplicity to me is learning to accept what you have and be grateful. Another fine read on a humid afternoon.

    Like

  18. 02/06/2015 12:41 am

    Thank you!

    Like

  19. 02/06/2015 1:51 am

    Brilliant post and just what I needed today. You are amazing!

    Like

  20. Tiffany Yong permalink
    02/06/2015 3:12 am

    As we grow older, we forget the importance of simplicity. Our life gets more complicated as we age that we start to forget simple happiness.

    Like

  21. Ali Kirby permalink
    02/06/2015 4:21 am

    It’s so important to embrace simplicity. I love the quotes you featured in this post!

    Like

  22. Crystal (The Imperfect Mom) permalink
    02/06/2015 4:48 am

    I love flowers! Beautiful!

    Like

  23. Jason Panuelos permalink
    02/06/2015 5:16 am

    Honestly one of my personal mantras. I think we could all stand to learn even more through living simply! 🙂

    Like

  24. Heather permalink
    02/06/2015 6:18 am

    Honestly, I keep changing my approach to each day until I get it right I totally agree that simplicity is key to good living and you do need to channel that inner zen and stop looking for it in weird places. It has to come from within. Great motivational post Elizabeth!

    Like

  25. Liz Mays permalink
    02/06/2015 6:29 am

    I think I live a pretty simple life. I don’t need a whole lot to make me happy. I just need the people I love.

    Like

  26. Maria Teresa Figuerres permalink
    02/06/2015 6:34 am

    Simple is beautiful. Simplicity makes things easier to do and understand, so there’s no misunderstanding when people live simply.

    Like

  27. katrinagehman permalink
    02/06/2015 6:35 am

    i love those flowers. Now if i could get someone to come and plant just some of those for me.

    Like

  28. Rebel Sweetheart permalink
    02/06/2015 7:50 am

    Lovely photos, as always. Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂

    Like

  29. Fred permalink
    02/06/2015 8:13 am

    Simplicity is my favorite virtue. I think of myself as a simple person. In reality, we can all be complex in our own way, but if we should train ourselves to live life simply and happily. – Fred

    Like

  30. Fernando permalink
    02/06/2015 8:29 am

    Simplicity in life connotes wisdom and peacefulness. It’s the way of engaging simple things in life according to its values. Fernando Lachica

    Like

  31. Raymond Vasquez permalink
    02/06/2015 9:23 am

    I appreciate a simple life. As soon as I’m able to read the Leader who had no title. I became aware of the simple joys of a simple living can provide. Way beyond what most people feel in a luxurious state. Simplicity for me is the ultimate connector of the universe and me.

    Like

  32. upliftingfam permalink
    02/06/2015 10:11 am

    I need to work on simplicity. I tend to over analyze things at times. Thank you for the reminder to live a simple life.

    Like

  33. Kae James permalink
    02/06/2015 10:13 am

    Love this. We all need to enjoy the simplicity of life. But also let everyone know how we feel about them. This makes me want to meditate.

    Like

  34. Wendy permalink
    02/06/2015 10:35 am

    Thank you for the inspiration! Even though I am working in an office I try to surround myself with plants. Nature always relaxes me. I need to try to simplify my life in many ways and get to a more relaxed state.

    Like

  35. Brandy M permalink
    02/06/2015 12:19 pm

    Simplicity to me is just basically that, simple not a whole lot of drama or stuff to buy. I just want simple life, a house that is simple and not over done and friends that like me for me!

    Like

  36. Nova permalink
    02/06/2015 6:21 pm

    I always admire those people who are humble and simple with everything they have.

    Like

  37. leybainpublic permalink
    02/06/2015 7:14 pm

    Simplicity makes the world a better place. Life is much easier when things are simple and plain. Although it’s a human nature to ask for more, having less desire can make our life more valuable.

    Like

  38. louisechelle permalink
    02/06/2015 7:18 pm

    For me, to live simple means one must learn to be contented. When we aspire too much, we begin to complicate our lives. A great example would be purchasing items we don’t really need but we buy anyway to portray our status in the society. Why would you spend your hard earned money just to look better in the eyes of your neighbors? When you can live humbly…

    Like

  39. M from The Stay-at-Home Life permalink
    02/06/2015 8:05 pm

    Beautiful flowers! The colors are so vibrant.

    Like

  40. Carly Brydon Anderson permalink
    02/06/2015 8:11 pm

    Simplifying is definitely something I’ve been working on doing in my life. Things can be so complicated, I need some simplicity in my life!

    Like

  41. Joely Smith permalink
    02/06/2015 8:28 pm

    Wow what an amazing post! I love the details and the tips you provide. My idea of simplicity is every day looking around and being grateful, for all things big and small.

    Like

  42. michelle co-huertas permalink
    02/06/2015 9:22 pm

    Great to see your motivational post. These are very timely specially at the start of the week. Thanks

    Like

  43. sinyees permalink
    02/06/2015 9:44 pm

    Always remember my lecturer said to us, ” Simplicity is the key”. However, people will start think more and more complicated when growing up.

    Like

  44. 03/06/2015 2:53 am

    I always say that the world is simple but it is us who complicates it. Simplicity is the easiest way to be as it comes naturally.

    Like

  45. lovemindanao permalink
    03/06/2015 2:54 am

    it seems it describes me perfectly… simple and not complicated person.. i just want things around me clear and not too much going on… when life is simple there is also peace and order

    Like

  46. Raquel permalink
    03/06/2015 2:58 am

    C.S Lewis has always been my favorite. Thanks for putting the quote there as it inspired me to pursue my dreams and follow my heart. It is absolutely true. There’s no age limit when it comes to dreams.

    Like

  47. Letty permalink
    03/06/2015 5:19 am

    What a gorgeous round up of flower photos. It’s not easy but I try to live simply and not complicate my life with clutter.

    Like

  48. Christy permalink
    03/06/2015 5:28 am

    Those flowers are beautiful.

    Like

  49. Papaleng Pagulong permalink
    03/06/2015 6:34 am

    Every thing starts as simple things. So for me, I’ll try not to make things complicated. And yes, God is all I need to accomplish such simplicity in my life.

    Like

  50. Ling Tan permalink
    03/06/2015 7:42 am

    The thing about simplicity is that, it is just not really simple at all is it? Ah, the idea of letting all the baggage and drama go, so tempting. Not so easy to achieve.

    Like

  51. Chubskulit Rose permalink
    03/06/2015 8:17 am

    Those are simply beautiful! Those flower reminds me of Asia so muc!

    Like

  52. Yona Williams permalink
    03/06/2015 1:21 pm

    I love all of the beautiful photos of the flowers. My parents have been adding new additions to their garden, and I’ve been wanting my own garden and flowers lately.

    Like

  53. Karen permalink
    03/06/2015 6:50 pm

    More often it’s the simple things that mean a lot and living a simple life is worth than all the richness in the world.

    Like

  54. The Foodie Affair permalink
    03/06/2015 8:17 pm

    Such beautiful flowers and they are so simple yet filled with details in shapes, colors and form.

    Like

  55. Sunshine Kelly permalink
    03/06/2015 9:07 pm

    Actually life is very simple, we are the one that make it complicated. All I need is have enough food, shelter, family, love, health and happiness the rest of it is secondary. Simplicity is the key to peace and harmony.

    Like

  56. seasidemermaid permalink
    03/06/2015 10:20 pm

    I believe simplicity is the true key to happiness. That is why I strive for simplicity much as I can. 🙂

    Like

  57. Sumi Go | The Purple Doll permalink
    04/06/2015 12:05 am

    This is such a beautiful post. I’ve always believed that it’s us humans who make everything seem complicated. Living a simple life — true to one’s self, is really the way to go to become at peace and happy. At the moment, I try to do this to my own life, although it can be difficult at times when life throws you a lot at one time.

    Like

  58. Dave April Decheine permalink
    04/06/2015 7:11 am

    I lead a very simple life, I love simplicity! We love living without clutter too. It feels so refreshing.

    Like

  59. Fernando permalink
    05/06/2015 4:04 am

    It’s a person choice to do what he/she wants in life. Simplicity is a modest way of living without any difficulties. Fernando Lachica

    Like

  60. JessicaACassidy permalink
    05/06/2015 12:39 pm

    I LOVED the white flowers the most especially the daisies. They’re all beautiful. Simplicity is beauty indeed!

    Like

  61. Dawn McAlexander Crawford permalink
    06/06/2015 6:49 pm

    It is the simpler things in life that make us all happy, really. If life was less complicated, then it would be so much more fun!

    Like

  62. ceemee permalink
    06/06/2015 8:19 pm

    I love the stone cutter story. Simplicity and contentment should go hand in hand. Clutter can be very burdensome!

    Like

  63. Amy Kelsch permalink
    07/06/2015 8:40 am

    The stone cutter story is pretty powerful!

    Like

  64. Mommy Anna permalink
    07/06/2015 6:29 pm

    Simplicity is one of the basic rules to have a happy life 🙂

    Like

  65. maggiesblog2 permalink
    07/06/2015 6:58 pm

    Meal-planning has simplified my life so much! That and carrying 3 different planners!

    Like

  66. Marissa Bautista-Bulatao permalink
    07/06/2015 11:24 pm

    That was a beautiful story about the stone cutter 🙂 Do you think it is in man’s innate nature to always wish for more?

    Like

  67. Michelle Solee permalink
    07/06/2015 11:47 pm

    Simplicity for me is being thankful with what you have and practice minimalist living.

    Like

  68. yolomoments12 permalink
    08/06/2015 6:43 am

    Having less. Do more. Be More. #MySimplicity

    Like

  69. Allan permalink
    09/06/2015 10:09 pm

    I still believe in the cliche but very true saying: Simplicity is beauty.

    Like

  70. Mommy Maye permalink
    09/06/2015 10:37 pm

    I think the simpler the life, the better it is. That’s why I’m trying to have a simple life. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy but I know if I really like it then it’s possible.

    Like

  71. Dinner, then Dessert permalink
    09/06/2015 11:44 pm

    That’s a great lesson in how much you can do with a very simple subject. I need to work on being able to capture such great detail.

    Like

  72. Marichu permalink
    10/06/2015 8:59 am

    Being simple makes life of one easier and less hassle.

    Like

  73. leybainpublic permalink
    10/06/2015 4:25 pm

    There are lots of great things that comes with simplicity. Keeping things simple can make life much easier than ever.

    Like

  74. janzcrystalz permalink
    11/06/2015 12:25 am

    Reading through every Motivation Monday post you share really motivates and inspire me. 🙂

    Like

  75. Peachy A. permalink
    11/06/2015 3:09 am

    Simplicity is not making things complicated by not over analyzing each and everything that is happening to us.

    Like

  76. Melgie permalink
    12/06/2015 5:42 am

    Simplicity is beauty and that’s so true! Thanks for the inspiration Sis

    Like

  77. maria permalink
    13/06/2015 5:58 pm

    Living simply makes life less stressful. Sometimes we need to look beyond the complexities to appreciate the beauty.

    Like

Trackbacks

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