Energy, Authenticity & Character | Creativity & Mind Power

August 24, 2017
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Listen to episode 190 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Energy, Authenticity & Character | Mind Power. Adapted from The Positive Psychology of Success by Newton N. Riddle.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Learn also to cultivate the affections. The emotions are closely allied to the energies. They are a source of life and vitality. Healthy emotional activity is invigorating, energizing, purifying, and elevating. A loveless soul is a dying soul.

The affections give an atmosphere which both receives and communicates influence. A person without love is like a dead planet that receives light, but having no atmosphere cannot convert the light into heat and therefore has no power to sustain life. You would be far better to carry your heart on your sleeve and get scratched once in a while than have no heart at all.

All great personalities have strong emotions, strong affections, strong attachments. If you would have a winning personality, be a great lover. Keep your affections pure and direct them to their proper object; but give them expression. Be faithful in love with your companions, and cultivate a warm, genial friendship for others.

It matters not what your position or calling in life, a strong social nature wisely directed is of great value. It is our greatest charm. It is the secret of many a business and professional success. It opens the door of opportunity. It attracts friends and brings support. It adds much of zest and joy to life, and if we look toward the larger life with the thought of service, or even with the idea of realizing our highest and best, we must love and be loved.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

The 8 Pillars of Prosperity

The Positive Psychology of Success

Native American Wisdom | The Girl & Boy Scouts of America

August 22, 2017
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Listen to episode 189 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Native American Wisdom | The Girl & Boy Scouts of America. Adapted from Indian Scout Talks: A Guide for Boy Scouts & Camp Fire Girls by Charles Eastman.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: To be in harmony with nature, one must be true in thought, free in action, and clean in body, mind, and spirit. This is the solid granite foundation of character.

Have you ever wondered why most great men and women were born in humble homes and passed their early youth in the open country? There a child is accustomed to see the sun rise and set every day; there the rocks and trees are personal friends; the child’s geography is born with them, for they carry a map of the region in their head.

In civilization, there are many deaf ears and blind eyes. Because the average child in the town has been deprived of close contact and intimacy with nature; what they have learned from books they soon forget, or are unable to apply. All learning is a dead language to the student who gets it second hand.

It is necessary that you should live with nature, my friends, if only that you may verify to your own satisfaction your schoolroom lessons. Further than this, you may be able to correct some error, or even to learn something that will be a real contribution to the sum of human knowledge. That is by no means impossible to a sincere observer.

Related Inspirational Podcasts:

Seeing God in Nature

Wanderlust, Poetry & Nature

The Gospel of Good Living | Agnostic Spirituality

August 17, 2017
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Listen to episode 188 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Gospel of Good Living | Agnostic Spirituality. Adapted from “What Must We Do to Be Saved” by Robert G. Ingersoll.

Spirituality Podcast Excerpt: What do I propose? Well, in the first place, I propose good fellowship — good friends all around. No matter what we believe, let us shake hands and let it go. That is your opinion; this is mine: let us be friends. Science makes friends. Religion and superstition make enemies. Preachers say: Belief is important. I say: No, actions are important. Judge by deed, not by creed.

Good fellowship, good friends, sincere men and women, mutual forbearance, born of mutual respect: that is what I propose.

We have too many solemn people. Whenever I see an exceedingly solemn person, I know they are an exceedingly stupid person. No one of any humor ever founded a religion — never. Humor sees both sides. While reason is the holy light, humor carries the lantern, and the person with a keen sense of humor is preserved from the solemn stupidities of life and orthodoxy.

I like men and women who have good feelings for everybody; good fellowship. I believe in the gospel of cheerfulness; the gospel of Good Nature; the gospel of Good Health. Let us pay some attention to our bodies. Take care of our bodies, and our souls will take care of themselves.

Related Spirituality Podcasts:

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Seeing God in Nature

The Anatomy of Greatness | The Innovator’s Mindset

August 15, 2017
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Listen to episode 187 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Anatomy of Greatness (Mindset for Innovators). Adapted from “A Philosophy of Success” by Henry Wise Wood.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: What is greatness? This may seem both commonplace and easily answered, but I assure you that it is neither. I speak from the standpoint of admiration of those who make a practical success of their lives: who address themselves to definite objects; and who, striving unceasingly, finally accomplish them. I mean those who make success, not those who fall into it or who trick it away from other people, but who conceive a worthy plan and are ably carry it to a successful completion.

We all agree that humankind is the noblest manifestation of nature; and not because of our physical capabilities is this so, but solely because of our mental supremacy. We are fond of assuming that at birth all people are equal; but if such be the case, equality ceases soon after birth; and this not because of the differences which may exist in social environment, or in educational advantage.

Social environment may polish and a solid education may enlarge, but neither alone can make a successful individual. Education may even stunt or enchain the mind instead of enlarging, strengthening, and inspiring it. In my own case, it required great effort to enable me to break away from the confining influence of many things which had been taught me.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

Grit & The Success Mindset

Originality & The Rich Mentality

The Creative Power of Habit: Change Your Life

August 10, 2017
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Listen to episode 186 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Creative Power of Habit: Change Your Life. Edited and adapted from The Wonders of Life by Ida Lyon.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: We idly remark that we are creatures of Habit, and so dismiss the matter from our minds. The vastness of this great truth simply does not impress us. But there is infinitely more to this matter of Habit than we have suspected. It is a great law, one of the primary laws of life.

The question of forming habits is the one question which is of the most vital importance to us, since we are, of necessity, constantly forming habits which are a power for good or evil.

A habit is a dominating power which, when in full control, is master of the situation, and so subtly does it gain control of us that we do not realize what a tremendous power it is, until we try to loose ourselves from its grasp. Even then, we do not stop to think what this power is, or the extent to which we are controlled by it. If anyone cares to take an inventory of their habits, they will be amazed at their number and variety.

We have been taught that no act performed ends with itself, but leaves in the nerve-centers the tendency to do the same thing again. But the immense significance of this truth has not been made apparent to us. We do not stop to consider that it is to Habit (this tendency of the nerve-centers to do the same thing again) that we owe the ability to walk, to talk, to perform all the simple and common acts of life, as well as whatever accomplishments we possess; and that, without Habit, we would literally know nothing, do nothing, and be nothing.

Related Inspirational Podcasts:

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Life is an Adventure: Dare to Live It (Motivational Speeches)

August 8, 2017
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Listen to episode 185 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Life is an Adventure: Dare to Live It. Adapted from The Open Door by Hugh Black.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: In faithless and bitter moods, people may sometimes say that there is nothing new under the sun, though we know as fact that there is nothing but the new. Dr. Johnson may say that a blade of grass is always a blade of grass whether in one country or another, but we know that there are no two blades of grass alike even in the same field.

Life speaks to us with many voices, and not one of them without significance. It speaks to us in the world without and in the world within, by the infinitely little and the infinitely great. The human comedy appeals to laughter and tears, pity and pride; and above all it calls to us to be more than mere spectators. We too are in the play, and must make our part in it as it goes along unrehearsed.

By faith the human mind makes its journey through the world for knowledge, and by faith the soul makes its journey through life. The true heart is not afraid to make either journey, and tastes the relish of living.

Generations ago artists used to discuss solemnly and tragically the great question of whether life is worth living, and wrote books and articles and poems on the subject. The only answer of any value was that of the rogue, who replied that it all depended on the liver. The jaundiced eye will see everything blurred in a haze of yellow. The value of life will only be known by living, and the adventurous nature has at least all the chance there is.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

Dare to Laugh & Live Fully

Dare to Love

Seizing Opportunity: Take Control of Your Thoughts & Life

August 3, 2017
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Listen to episode 184 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Seizing Opportunities: Take Control of Your Thoughts & Life. Adapted from Beginning Right (How to Succeed) by Nathaniel C. Fowler.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: OPPORTUNITY never carries a torch. It travels on byways and along side-streets. It makes no noise. No trumpet sounds its approach. It passes along in the quiet of the starless night. It makes no effort to meet anyone. It never extends a welcome. It minds its own business. But it is ever ready to grasp the hand held out to it, to be a permanent guest in the House of Progress.

Opportunity is in the very air we breathe; it is on the main street, and on the side street, and it inhabits the alley. It may not be as cordial to one person as to another, and it may seem to ignore some districts and occupations; but it is there, everywhere, below the surface, if not above the ground.

Opportunity cannot be seen, unless you are looking for it. To many it seems to be a stranger, and thousands are looking for it and never find it. But it is not the fault of Opportunity. The seeker is often to blame. If opportunity does not appear to be where you are, don't change your environment, but hunt all the more diligently for it.

If, after persistent search, you cannot locate it, then consider a change of base. But remember that where you are may be the best place for you to stay, and it is the best place for you anyway until you see light ahead. Don't plunge from the shadows of the present into the darkness of the future. Stay where you are (even though there seems to be not even reflected Opportunity around you), until you are able to place your finger upon the Opportunity of elsewhere.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

The Positive Psychology of Success

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Parenting on Purpose with Love & Logic (Screamfree)

August 1, 2017
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Listen to episode 183 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Parenting on Purpose with Love & Logic. Adapted from Love’s Way by Orison Swett Marden.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Love is the great educator, the great unfolder of youth. As the sun is the only thing that will bring out the exquisite beauty of fruits and flowers, so love is the only thing that will develop the sweetness and the beauty of the child. It is the only power that will call out the true, the beautiful side of its nature.

It is only the hard, coarse, and unlovely qualities of the child that are developed by force and repression. How often would a little kindness and forbearance on the part of a parent or guardian, a little better knowledge of a child’s nature, do wonders for a so-called "bad child" who is considered "incorrigible" or “hyperactive,” a fit subject for psychiatric drugs.

Benjamin Lindsey, a judge and social reformer who had, perhaps, a better knowledge of the nature of the growing boy and girl than any psychologist or expert in child study, says: "The child is a wonderful creature, a divine machine. We have much to expect from them, but they have much to expect from us, and what they return depends largely upon what we give."

The destiny of the child hangs upon its early environment, its parents, teachers and associates. Upon these depend the qualities or characteristics that will be called out of its nature. There are seeds of all sorts of possibilities lying dormant in the boy and the girl. A bad mother or father, a bad teacher, by appealing to the bad in them, will call out the bad. A good parent, a good teacher, by appealing to the best in them, will call out the best.

Related Inspirational Podcasts:

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The Art of Becoming You | The Power to Be Oneself

July 27, 2017
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Listen to episode 182 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Art of Becoming You | The Power to Be Oneself. Adapted from The Aim of Life by Philip Stafford Moxom.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: The thoughts that I wish to present to you now gather themselves naturally about two simple propositions: The first of these is: Every one ought consciously to have an aim in life. Whether we are conscious of it or not, everyone has a ruling tendency; but everyone should also have a controlling and persistent purpose in life.

No one has a right to live aimlessly, for no one has a right to abandon reason and self-control, and consent to be a mere waif drifting like a plaything of the winds. We are endowed with powers that make us capable of good and often great achievement. We are gifted with reason and conscience and will, in order that we may both become and do that which is noble and beneficent.

In the mythology of the Greeks, Phaethon aspired to drive the flaming chariot of the sun. The task was beyond his human powers, and his disastrous rashness resulted in his death by a bolt hurled from the hand of Zeus; but the Naiads, who buried him, wrote in his epitaph: "He could not rule his father's car of fire; Yet it was much so nobly to aspire."

The individual who drifts aimlessly through the years from youth to age does not truly live. Indeed, those whose aim is even lower than the highest, less than the greatest, is nobler than those who have no conscious purpose in life. But, besides being ignoble, a purposeless life is inefficient; to aim at nothing is to hit nothing.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

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Daily Success Habits: Be Proactive, Decisive & Tactful

July 25, 2017
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Listen to episode 181 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Daily Success Habits: Be Proactive, Decisive & Tactful. Adapted from Beginning Right (How to Succeed) by Nathaniel C. Fowler.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: LIFE has three seasons: yesterday, today, and tomorrow. What you did yesterday overlaps into today, and what you do today is carried over into tomorrow. Which is the most important of the three? No single one of them, because any one by itself is incomplete. If you did your duty yesterday, the work of today becomes easier to accomplish. If you attend to the work of today, tomorrow will be open to you and its duties will not be so difficult to perform.

While each day has its place — yesterday, today, and tomorrow — inattention to any one of those days will materially affect the life and action of the remaining two. You cannot recover yesterday. It has passed out of your life forever.

If it was a day of mistakes, they must be corrected today or tomorrow. The importance of today is not vested wholly in today. It is in tomorrow as well. Today is yours. Tomorrow may be. Unless you anticipate the morrow today, tomorrow you will not have tomorrow well in hand.

Individuals of great accomplishment do not consider any one day as all-important. They do today's work not wholly because it is of today, but because it will affect tomorrow. Regret yesterday if you will. Be sorry for your backsliding. You may have lost a day. If you have, you must make it up today and tomorrow.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

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The Duty of the Scholar | Baccalaureate Sermons

July 20, 2017
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Listen to episode 180 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Duty of the Scholar | Baccalaureate Sermons. Adapted from The College and The Higher Life by Elmer Hewitt Capen.

Inpsirational Podcast Excerpt: The question, “What is the significance of higher education and what is the proper function of the educated individual?” ever recurs. To be sure, the educational problem has been in a sense worked out, and we have come to take for granted the facilities and instruments of higher learning. But the financial outlay for these is enormous, and is increasing year by year, and the procession of college graduates is large, and growing in volume every day.

We thus often hear the queries, "Why?" and, "To what end?" To answer such question will be the aim of today’s talk. Nor does it seem to me that the task is a difficult one. The answer certainly is given in the words of one of Jesus’s immortal parables: "Behold the sower went forth to sow."

It is not the scholar's business to reap great rewards and to gather in rich harvests. Your place is at the beginnings of things. You lay the foundations. You set up principles. You give out without any thought of what is to come back to you.

As a teacher you must impart; as a leader you must go before; as an inspirer, you must have the power of touching other lives and filling them with new impulses; and in every possible way you must prepare the world for harvests that can only be gathered in some far-off future when your very name shall have passed from human remembrance.

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Your Hidden Talents | Commencement Speeches & Addresses

July 18, 2017
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Listen to episode 179 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Your Hidden Talents | Best Commencement Addresses/Speeches. Adapted from The College and The Higher Life by Elmer Hewitt Capen.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Every individual should look within and around. You should make an inventory of what you have, and consider how the things in your possession are related to the things you would wish to acquire — how being and doing are parts of the same abiding reality and are to be present in every achievement. Thus, and thus only, can you properly interpret the everlasting commands of your soul.

Let me remind you that your talent, your endowment of intellect and moral perception, is a gift. This is what you brought with you into the world. It affords no ground for vanity, nor even of self-congratulation. You have no more right to pride yourself upon it than people have to pride themselves upon inherited wealth.

It should rather make you humble; though of course it may invite to gratitude. It may make you thankful that you are thus gifted and set apart. But even though you may be conscious of unusual power and means of accomplishment, it affords no reason for elation. It is only so much to start with.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

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The Value of Being Thrifty | Money, Success & Generosity

July 13, 2017
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Listen to episode 178 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Value of Being Thrifty (Money & Generosity). Edited and adapted from “On the Threshold” by Theodore Thornton Munger.

Success Podcast Excerpt: There was a time when Americans were considered a thrifty people. However, that time has long since passed — which seems entirely natural, as thrift is more apt to be a phase than a characteristic of the life of a nation — a habit more than a principle. Thrift pertains to details. It is both our glory and our fault that today we are impatient of details.

Our courage prompts to risks; our large-mindedness invites to great undertakings — both somewhat adverse to thrift, because great undertakings are for the few, while thrift is for all. Large enterprises make the few rich, but the majority prosper only through the carefulness and detail of thrift.

I begin by insisting on the importance of having money. Speculate and preach about it as we will, the main factor in civilized society is money. As the universe of planets needs some common force like gravitation to hold them to their place, so society requires some dominating passion or purpose to hold its members in mutual alliance. Money supplies this end. Without some such general moving force, society would be chaotic; people could not work together, could achieve no common results, could have no common standards of virtue and achievement.

The famous English novelist Edward Bulwer Lytton once said: "Never treat money affairs with levity; money is character." And indeed character for the most part is determined by one's relationship to money. Find out how one gets, saves, spends, gives, lends, borrows, and bequeaths money, and you have the character of the person in full outline. "If one does all these wisely," said Henry Taylor, "it would almost argue a perfect individual."

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Being a Gentleman | The Art of Manhood & Manliness

July 11, 2017
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Listen to episode 177 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Being a Gentleman (The Art of Manhood & Manliness). Edited and adapted from “On the Threshold” by Theodore Thornton Munger.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Every man should desire above all else to be regarded as a gentleman. There once was a time when the greatest offense you could levy on man was to call him not a gentleman. But today we struggle to even understand what the term gentleman means. So today we will search it with definitions.

The word gentleman undoubtedly comes from the Latin gens, meaning tribe or family — hence all the one-sided and incomplete notions that a gentleman is a man of family. It is a good thing to born into a loving family, with inherited tastes and traditions; but birth does not make the gentleman.

The writer Julius Hare famously said that a gentleman should be gentle in everything; at least in everything that depends upon himself — in carriage, temper, construction, aims, desires. He ought, there- fore, to be mild, calm, quiet, temperate; not hasty in judgment, not exorbitant in ambition, not overbearing, not proud, not rapacious, not oppressive.

Other classic writers describe the gentleman as possessing a character that is distinguished by strict honor, self-possession, forbearance, generous as well as refined feelings, and polished deportment — a character to which all meanness, explosive irritability, and peevish fretfulness are alien; to which, consequently, a generous candor, truthfulness, dignity, and self-respect have become natural.

The gentleman is never unduly familiar; takes no liberties; is cautious of questions; is neither artificial nor affected; bears himself tenderly towards the weak and unprotected; is not arrogant; cannot be supercilious; can be self-denying without struggle; is not vain of his advantages; habitually subordinates his lower to his higher self; is (in his best condition) electric with truth, buoyant with veracity.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

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Building Character & The Influence of Friendships

July 6, 2017
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Listen to episode 176 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Building Character & The Influence of Friendships. Edited and adapted from “On the Threshold” by Theodore Thornton Munger.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: There are many turning-points when the question of success or failure is decided again and again. Life is a campaign, in which a series of fortresses are to be taken; all previous victories and advances may be thrown away by failure in the next. Nearly the last of these is companionship; if one wins the victory here, the reward of a prosperous life of character is within his reach.

At the risk of logically inverting my subject, I will speak first of friendship; and I must beg your patience while I put a foundation under my suggestions. If there were but one general truth that I could lodge in the mind of anyone or all men and women, it would be this: that true life consists in the fulfillment of relations. We are born into relations; we never get out of them; all duty consists in meeting them. The family, the community, the humanity at large — these are the sources of our primary and abiding duties, as well as of our happiness — the sum-total of ethics and spirituality.

It is not enough to love only our own family. Love is a great and wide passion, demanding various food and broad fields to range in. When one is only “all about family" they may have a sound nature, but it will not be a large or generous one; and they will shrink rather than expand with years, and sink into the inevitable sadness that attends old age.

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The Four Pillars & Agreements of a Purpose Driven Life

July 4, 2017
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Listen to episode 175 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The 4 Pillars & Agreements of a Purpose Driven Life. Edited and adapted from “On the Threshold” by Theodore Thornton Munger.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Individuals may be divided in many ways, but there is no clearer cut division than between those who have a purpose and those who are without one. It is the character of the purpose that at last determines the character of the person — for a purpose may be good or bad, high or low. It is the strength and definiteness of the purpose that determines the measure of success.

It would be absurd for me to assure you that if you aim and strive with sufficient energy to become a great statesperson, or the head of a corporation, or a famous poet or artist, or any other specific high end, you will certainly reach it. For though there are certain rich prizes that any person may win who will pay the price, there are others that are reserved for the few who are peculiarly fortunate or have peculiar claims.

The Providence which (blindly to us) endows and strangely leads, apportions the great honors of life; but Providence has nothing good nor high in store for the one who does not resolutely aim at something high and good. A purpose is the eternal condition of success. Nothing will take its place:

Talent will not — nothing is more common than unsuccessful men and women of talent.

Genius will not — unrewarded genius is a proverb.

The chance of events, the push of circumstances, will not.

The natural unfolding of faculties will not. Education will not; the country is full of unsuccessful educated people; indeed, it is a problem of society what to do with the young men and women it is turning out of its colleges and professional schools.

There is no road to success but through a clear, strong purpose. Purpose underlies character, culture, position — attainment of whatever sort.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

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Happiness: The Advantage of Marriage & A Happy Home

June 29, 2017
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Listen to episode 174 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Happiness: The Advantage of Marriage & A Happy Home. Edited and Adapted from Marriage: a Lifelong Honeymoon by Bernarr Macfadden.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: Without a home, there can be no true happiness for a man or a woman. No matter how completely one’s ambitions may have been satisfied, we are still an outcast, a vagrant, until we have a home of our own. We cannot know or feel the real, exalted, satisfying happiness that is supposed to come to a human being at some time of their life until independent home conditions are brought into existence.

All boys and girls, as they approach maturity, yearn first of all for happy homes of their own. They may change after maturity; unhealthy environments may pervert their true nature, but if left to the dictates of their inner selves, they will grow up yearning more and more for this first essential element of life’s happiness.

The home is the foundation of all that is good, true, and exalted. It is the foundation of civilization; if it falls and disappears from society, with it must go all that is best in human life. Within the home, you will find the culmination of all your social, physical and spiritual yearnings. It is the home that brings out all that is best and true and noble in human character.

True happiness, therefore, cannot be found outside the realm of home life. It encircles the true home like a halo; it cannot be found anywhere else. I admit that home and happiness rarely go together in the present unhealthy state of civilization. But this is not the fault of the home. It is the fault of those who try ineffectually to make the home.

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Living Your Golden Age (The Youthful Edge)

June 27, 2017
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Listen to episode 173 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Living Your Golden Age (The Youthful Edge). Edited and Adapted from Turn Back the Years by Harry J. Gardener.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: In ancient history, the time when Pericles lived was called The Golden Age. But in in today’s talk, I am referring to something far different. I am applying the term Golden Age to that state in life (which can be any age), where you have reached complete control of your personality.

In order to remain young, it is essential that you be young. And by that I mean, you must be adaptable. You should be able to pick up and dash off to a concert or party at a moment's notice, not hem and haw about how you're going to arrive late or that you're really too tired to go, or what you'll wear. You should have the capability to go away for a weekend the moment you get a sudden, unexpected invitation, or you should be able to adapt yourself immediately in event of a surprise meeting with some old friend.

Spontaneity is one of the prime points in being youthful. The minute you settle permanently into the same easy chair to watch the same TV show, wearing the same pajamas and pair of slippers, the same lamp over your shoulder, from that moment on you are doomed to old age just as surely as if all your friends had uttered the sentence themselves and as if Time were your executioner.

So be alive, be joyful, and if you can't be happy, at least never show your unhappiness, or wear it like a bleeding heart on your sleeve. People don't want to hear your troubles any more than you want to hear theirs. Change your events in your social calendar from week to week. Try to see lots of different people, and never go the same places with the same faces week after week if you can possibly avoid it.

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Emotional Intelligence & Interpretive Dance

June 22, 2017
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Listen to episode 172 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Emotional Intelligence & Interpretive Dance. Edited and adapted from How to Develop Your Personality by Clare Tree Major.

Self-Development Podcast Excerpt: HAVE we forgotten how to feel? Life today is so external that it almost seems as though we have. However, our personal ideal will not be realized unless every part of our nature is developed, the emotional as well as the physical and mental. We must know how to feel, to feel keenly, but also to control our feelings.

Are you looking at a beautiful painting? Don't merely catalogue it in your mind. Sit down before it and let it sink into your soul. See the sunset as a real thing, not as exquisite painted coloring. Go up on the hill-top with the artist. Sit with them there until the vision they saw of the opening of the heavens thrills your own feeling into responsiveness.

There are some feelings that we can neither put into word nor into action, and they are sometimes the very deepest, most sacred feelings of which the soul is capable. There are unconscious depths from which our more familiar and external characteristics spring.

Did you ever stand alone on the seashore and let the song of the mighty ocean fill your soul with its transcendent melody? You look out to the horizon across the roaring, foaming billows, and you know that far, far beyond your vision still rolls and tosses this great mass of living water. And your soul is thrilled with a sense of the insignificance of the trivialities of life, and some glimpse of the destiny of humanity comes to you, so that you go home conscious of a strange uplift that helps you to see above and beyond the petty annoyance of the daily grind, that helps to keep you in that perfect poise which is the essence of individuality.

It is in moments like these, when all that is external is forgotten, when the inner self is bathed in the glory of its natural life, that we gain the perspective that is needed if we are to make of ourselves all we are capable of becoming.

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Soul Growth & Spiritual Evolution (Theosophy)

June 20, 2017
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Listen to episode 171 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Soul Growth & Spiritual Evolution (Theosophy). Edited and adapted from Self-Development & The Way to Power by L.W. Rogers.

Spirituality Podcast Excerpt: Welcome to the Inspirational Living podcast. I’d like to start today with some special news. Starting this Sunday, June 25th, we will be launching a new podcast exclusively for our patrons at Patreon.com. The show is called “Our Sunday Talks” and it will deal with topics related to spirituality from both Eastern and Western perspectives.

While we do touch occasionally on the spiritual on the Inspirational Living podcast, the Our Sunday Talks series will focus on this aspect of life, including discussions on the soul, mystical experiences, enlightenment, love, God, prayer, and much more.

This weekly podcast will be released every Sunday and be available exclusively to those listeners who are sponsoring the Inspirational Living podcast at the $3 a month level or higher. If you are currently sponsoring our podcast at the dollar a month level, you can gain access to the new series by upgrading your donation to the $3 a month level.

If you haven’t become a patron of our podcast yet, and would like to gain access to the upcoming Our Sunday Talks series, you can do so today by going to: LivingHour.org/patron. I look forward to seeing you among our Patreon community.

Now, on to today’s reading, which was edited and adapted from Self-Development and The Way to Power by L.W. Rogers, published in 1916.....

It is the natural right of every human being to be happy — to escape all the miseries of life. Happiness is the normal condition, as natural as the landscapes and the seasons. It is unnatural to suffer, and it is only because of our ignorance that we do suffer. Happiness is the product of wisdom. To attain perfect wisdom, to comprehend fully the purpose of life, to realize completely the relationship of human beings to each other, is to put an end to all suffering, to escape every ill and evil that afflicts us. Perfect wisdom is unshadowed joy.

Dare to Laugh & Live | Douglas Fairbanks’ Healthy Lifestyle

June 15, 2017
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Listen to episode 170 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Laugh and Live: Douglas Fairbanks' Healthy Lifestyle. Edited and adapted from the work of Douglas Fairbanks Sr.

Self-Help Podcast Excerpt: We must also remember that out of energy and enthusiasm comes something else that must not be neglected ... in fact it must be cultivated and guarded from the very beginning . . . laughter. The mere possession of energy and enthusiasm makes us feel like laughing. We want to leap and jump and dance and sing. If we feel like doing so, don't let us be afraid to do it.

Get out in the air and run like a child. Jump ditches, vault fences, swing the arms! Never fail to get next to nature when responsive to the call. Indeed, we may woo this call from within ourselves until it comes to be second nature.

When we rise in the morning, let us be determined that we will start the day with a hearty laugh. Laugh because you are alive, laugh with everything. Let yourself go. That is the secret — the ability to let one's self go! If you follow this religiously you will be surprised how successful the day will be. Everything gives way before it. There is one thing in this good old world that is positively sure — happiness is for all who strive to be happy — and those who laugh are happy.

Everybody is eligible — you — me— the other guys and gals. Happiness is fundamentally a state of mind — not a state of body. And mind controls. Indeed it is possible to stand with one foot on the inevitable "banana peel" of life with both eyes peering into the Great Beyond, and still be happy, comfortable, and serene — if we will but so much as smile.

It's all a state of mind, I tell you — and I'm sure of what I say. That's why I have taken up my proverbial fountain pen. Do you ever laugh? I mean do you ever laugh right out loud — spontaneously — joyfully. Well, if you don't, you should. Start off the morning with a laugh and you needn't worry about the rest of the day.

Related Self-Help Podcasts:

Mental & Physical Fitness

How to Improve Your Personality

The Art of Self-Mastery | Success via Self-Discipline

June 13, 2017
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Listen to episode 169 of the Inspirational Living podcast: The Art of Self-Mastery (Success via Self-Discipline). Edited and adapted from The Kingship of Self-Control by William George Jordan.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: Every person has two creators — their God and themselves. Our first creator furnishes us with the raw material of our lives and the laws in conformity with which we can make that life what we will.

The second creator — ourselves — has marvelous powers we rarely realize. It is what we make of ourselves that counts. When someone fails in life, they often will say, “I am as God made me.” But when they succeed, they proudly proclaim themselves “self-made”.

We are placed into this world not as a finality, but as a possibility. Our greatest enemy is: ourselves. In our weakness, we are a creature of circumstances; in our strength, we are the creator of circumstances. Whether you be victim or victor depends largely on you. No one is truly great merely for what they, but ever for what they may become. Until you are truly filled with the knowledge of the majesty of your own possibility, you are merely groping through the years.

To see our lives as we might make it, we must go up alone into the mountains of spiritual thought, as Jesus went alone into the Garden, leaving the world to get strength to live in the world. We must there breathe the fresh, pure air of recognition of our divine importance as an individual. And then with mind purified and tingling with new strength, we must approach the problems of our daily lives.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

The Art of Self-Control

How to Be Self-Confident

Ben Franklin’s Wisdom (Poor Richard’s Almanack)

June 8, 2017
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Listen to episode 168 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Ben Franklin’s Wisdom. Edited and adapted from Poor Richard’s Almanack, a yearly publication produced by Benjamin Franklin from 1732 to 1758.

Inspirational Podcast Excerpt: If you could have Half your Wishes, you would double your Troubles.

Anger is never without a Reason, but seldom with a good One.

Tomorrow, every fault is to be amended; but that Tomorrow never comes.

A Fool is one who cannot conceal their Wisdom.

Think of three things: whence you came, where you are going, and to whom you must account.

Pride dines on Vanity, sips on Contempt. The Proud hate Pride – in others, that is.

Well done is better than well said.

Necessity never made a good bargain.

The Sun never repents of the good it does, nor does it ever demand compensation.

Fear to do ill, and you need fear nothing else.

Beware of little expenses; a small leak will sink a great ship.

Search others for their virtues, thyself for thy vices.

Glass, China, and a Reputation are easily cracked, and never well mended.

Fish & House Guests stink in 3 days.

Wink at small faults; remember that you have great ones.

Do you love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of.

Related Inspirational Podcasts:

Confucius Wisdom: Best Quotes & Sayings

The Meditations by Marcus Aurelius

Positive Success Principles: Integrity, Laughter & Love

June 6, 2017
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Listen to episode 167 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Positive Success Principles: Integrity, Laughter & Love. Edited and adapted from How Success is Won by Bernarr Macfadden.

Motivational Podcast Excerpt: My message today is sent forth with the hope that it will enthuse you who are struggling at the bottom of the ladder of life, and that it may help you to understand that the greatest rewards are easily within reach of those who are willing to struggle on persistently, with a definite and unswerving aim continuously in view.

In the strongest terms, I want to emphasize the importance of interest in your work. I maintain that without it success was never achieved by anyone. The one straight road to success is to learn to love your business. You can do best that which you love best. If you have started in a business which you cannot learn to love, then you should go into some other business. You will never succeed in our age of competition unless you can find real pleasure in your work.

The mere making of money is not a sufficient incentive. You must find your highest enjoyment in the task itself. No person who works along that line can fade. That is my judgment based on my own experience and observation. Determination, persistence, attention to detail, in fact nearly every necessary characteristic in accomplishing results in any sphere of life, depends upon love for your work.

Related Motivational Podcasts:

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Originality & The Rich Mentality (Prosperity Mindset)

June 1, 2017
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Listen to episode 166 of the Inspirational Living podcast: Originality & Rich Mentality (Prosperity Mindset). Edited and adapted from a lecture that was delivered by Harriet Hale Rix, at the Hotel Brighton, Washington, D. C., in 1914.

Self-Improvement Podcast Excerpt: I would like to make a statement here at the very beginning and have you plant this statement, this idea, in your heart as you would a seed: to grow. My statement is this: That the more difficult the situation is, the higher you will rise if you think correctly about it.

Let us make a familiar and close communication with the heart of the affairs, so that in the future (when we may need to be strong under great pressure or temptation) we may, through this correct thinking about it, be buoyed up and comforted.

This is an excellent rule and true of all our activities, especially of prosperity, that when you think correctly about a thing, you are master of the situation and no evil in it nor loss nor limitation can hold you down or bind you.

The question you probably are asking is, “Well, how am I to know what the correct thinking is, about a particular situation?” I believe that the only answer to this is to think about the circumstances (whatever they may be) in terms of health, joy, freedom, and prosperity.

Prosperity does not consist in the things you possess, in the money you have in the bank. In fact, we might say (from a metaphysical standpoint) that if you absolutely understand prosperity, you have no need of a large bank account.

Prosperity is a way, a mode, of thinking. So is poverty. You are poor if you class yourself this way, and you are rich if you can think rich thoughts, thoughts that are constructive, optimistic, unlimited: these instantly crown you successful.

Related Self-Improvement Podcasts:

How to Be Rich Without Money

The Secret of Financial Success